Monday, January 18, 2016

The submission of a man of great courage

"In the post-Tridentine [(postèrieurs)] writings of [Cardinal] Seripando one finds no further mention of double justice.  This submission showed the high degree to which he was [a] true Catholic.  His filial attachment to the Church was [much] more profoundly rooted in him than his conviction [on the subject] of double justice, as tenaciously [as he argued for the latter throughout the discussions of 1546 (si ferme pourtant)]."

     P. Pas, "La doctrine de la double justice au Concile de Trent,"  Ephemerides theologicae Lovanienses 30 no 2/3 (April/September 1954):  51 (5-53).  Pas gives a good sense of the penultimate tenacity of this man, e.g. on p. 17:  "Given this context and the manifest intention of the author to give expression to the opinion of the majority, one is astonished to find yet again in the fourth canon [of Seripando's draft of 19 August (CT V, 828-833)], in the most explicit fashion, the doctrine of double justice.  In the midst of a placid exposé, which is far from requiring the idea, this canon affirms that the Christian possesses, besides grace, 'the very pure justice of the Christ' of whom he is a member.  Seripando had to have been profoundly convinced of the truth of this doctrine in order to reintroduce [(maintenir)] it even after having renounced the personal views that were its native habitat [(qui en formaient le contexte normal)]."  (This, by the way, is said to be "the first time that we find, in Seripando, the technical term" De duplici iustitia (duplex iustitia).)  And on p. 24:  "That he had, despite everything, the courage of his opinion his very profound conviction places beyond all doubt.  In any case he could not consent to the explicit rejection of double justice as he understood it to be enunciated in the new decree.  That transmogrification [(métamorphose)] of his own work he could only accept after a reprobation of his doctrine, not by certain unknown editors, but by the entire council."  Moreover he was virtually alone in this.  "This option for double justice was not driven by fidelity to a long [Augustinian] tradition", for there was none (30; cf. 27 ff.).  Indeed, of all of the five (!) defenders of double justice at the Council of Trent, we know of only one whose commitment to it was independent of Seripando's:  Cardinal Pole (30).