Love God, serve God: everything is in that. --St. Clare of Assisi
QuoteAnd I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for unchastity, and marries another, commits adultery; and he who marries a divorced woman, commits adultery.The Cardinal's quite shocking affirmation made me think again about something which the Holy Father himself had said, at the beginning of the 2014 session of the Synod, to all of the Synod Fathers.
QuoteDispensation was a use of the absolute power to set aside existing law; suppletio was an act of absolute power to remedy defects that had arisen either through the non-observance of existing law or because existing law was inadequate to meet the particular circumstances. In both cases the absolute power, the plenitudo potestatis, stands revealed as a discretionary power over the established legal order, a prerogative power to act for the common welfare outside that order, if, in the pope's judgment, circumstances made this necessary.In other words, the fullness of power was not understood as an authority over the very constitution of the Church or her Magisterium but as a necessity for the governance of the Church in accord with her constitution and Magisterium. Hostiensis describes it as a necessary tool so that "curia business could be expedited, delays shortened, litigation curtailed," while, at the same time, "he considered that it was a power to be used with great caution, as a power in the Pauline phrase 'unto edification and not for destruction,' a discretionary power to maintain the constitution of the Church, not to undermine it."
QuoteIt was axiomatic that any power which had been given by Christ to His Church was for the purpose of fulfilling the end of the society which He had founded, not to thwart it. Therefore the prerogative power could only be exercised within these terms. Therefore "absolutism" (solutus a legibus) was not licence for arbitrary government. If it was true that the will of the prince made the law, in the sense that there was no other authority which could make it; it was also true as a corollary that, where this will threatened the foundations of the society whose good the will existed to promote, it was no law. The Church was a society to save souls. Heresy and sin impeded salvation. Any act of the pope in quantum homo which was heretical or sinful in itself or might foster heresy or sin threatened the foundations of society and was therefore void.In other words, the notion of fullness of power was carefully qualified.
QuoteIt was unfitting to depart from the ius commune too frequently or to do so sine causa. The pope could do so, but he should not, for the exercise of the plenitudo potestatis was to further the utilitas ecclesie et salus animarum and not the self-interest of individuals. The setting aside of the ius commune must therefore always be an exceptional act impelled by grave reasons. If the pope did so act sine causa or arbitrarily, he put his salvation in danger.Since the notion of fullness of powers contains the just-described limitations, how is the violation of the limitations judged and corrected?
QuoteThat the concept of ecclesiastical sovereignty expressed by this particular term had been formulated before Hostiensis wrote, is clear from Innocent III's decretals and the early commentary thereon. Examination of the decretist background to early decretalist work makes it clear that no novelty of doctrinal essence was here involved. The decretals register a crystallization of terminology; sure mark of the maturity of the canonist understanding of the notion in question. The Professio fidei known to the Second Council of Lyons was but a more solemn acceptance of a position held generally much earlier, not least among canonists, expressed now with the help of a term which the canonists had made a technical one. In the form adopted at Lyons, plenitudo potestatis represented two things, both of which corresponded exactly to its canonistic history: the principle of jurisdictional primacy as such, in all its judicial, legislative, administrative and magisterial aspects, and more narrowly, the principal that prelates derived their jurisdiction from the pope.In fact, the ever-deepening understanding of the fullness of power of the Roman Pontiff during the medieval period has led to the ongoing study of the primacy of Peter and of the power connected with it. Any discussion of the matter would be incomplete without taking into account the essential work accomplished by canonists during the Middle Ages.
There was, however, a third level of interpretation of the term: the plenitude of power in its purest juristic form. This was the level at which the canonists were most deeply engaged, in that it concerned the practical applications of supreme authority and considered its relationship to law already in being and an ordo iuris already established. In short, a problem of developed legal theory, the concept of the power of the sovereign over law and the juridical order.
Progress was made with some simple distinctions about the nature of this power. The pope's jurisdiction was said to be exercised in a two-fold way. There was an exercise which had a recognized and regular place, established by existing law and translated into practice by existing procedures: his ordinary power. There was further his extraordinary power, inhering him personally and alone, by which - manifestation par excellence of sovereign authority - existing law and established procedures might be suspended, abrogated, clarified, supplemented. This was the prerogative power of the pope supra ius; the plenitude of power seen in its most characteristic juristic form as the right to regulate established legal machinery. Solutus a legibus, the absolute ruler might redispose any of the mechanisms of law. In the doing thereof, the plenitude of power was deployed in its most practical form.
Once the plenitudo officii had been distinguished from the plenitudo potestatis and the potestas ordinaria from the potestas absoluta (and with these distinctions Hostiensis seems to have made his most individual contribution to the common stock of canonist ideas on papal power), it followed logically that the circumstances in which this power was used extra ordinarium cursum should be examined.
QuoteFurthermore, with the approval of the Second Council of Lyon, the Greeks professed that "the holy Roman Church possesses the supreme and full primacy and authority over the universal Catholic Church, which she recognizes in truth and humility to have received with fullness of power from the Lord himself in blessed Peter, the prince or head of the apostles, of whom the Roman pontiff is the successor. And, as she is bound above all to defend the truth of the faith, so too, if any questions should arise regarding the faith, they must be decided by her judgment.The dogmatic definition makes it clear that the fullness of power of the Roman Pontiff is necessary if the Apostolic Faith is to be safeguarded and promoted in the universal Church.
QuoteFor the Holy Spirit was not promised to the successors of Peter that they might disclose a new doctrine by his revelation, but rather that, with his assistance, they might reverently guard and faithfully explain the revelation or deposit of faith that was handed down through the apostles. Indeed, it was this apostolic doctrine that all the Fathers held and the holy orthodox Doctors reverenced and followed, fully realizing that this See of St. Peter always remains untainted by any error, according to the divine promise of our Lord and Savior made to the prince of his disciples: "But I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail; and when you have turned again, strengthen your brethren"[Lk 22:32].Following the constant understanding of the Church down the centuries, the Council Fathers taught that Petrine Primacy and the corollary fullness of power of the Roman Pontiff, instituted by Christ in His constitution of the Church as His Mystical Body, are directed exclusively to the salvation of souls by the safeguarding and promoting of the solid doctrine and sound discipline, handed down in an unbroken line by means of Apostolic Tradition.
Now this charism of truth and of never-failing faith was conferred upon Peter and his successors in this chair in order that they might perform their supreme office for the salvation of all; that by them the whole flock of Christ might be kept away from the poisonous bait of error and be nourished by the food of heavenly doctrine; that, the occasion of schism being removed, the whole Church might be preserved as one and, resting on her foundation, might stand firm against the gates of hell.
QuoteBut the college or body of bishops has no authority unless it is understood together with the Roman pontiff, the successor of Peter as its head. The pope's power of primacy over all, both pastors and faithful, remains whole and intact. In virtue of his office, that is, as vicar of Christ and pastor of the whole Church, the Roman pontiff has full, supreme, and universal power over the Church. And he is always free to exercise this power. The order of bishops, which succeeds to the college of apostles and gives this apostolic body continued existence, is also the subject of supreme and full power over the universal Church, provided we understand this body together with its head, the Roman pontiff, and never without this head. This power can be exercised only with the consent of the Roman pontiff. For our Lord placed Simon alone as the rock and the bearer of the keys of the Church [cf. Mt 16:18-19] and made him shepherd of the whole flock; it is evident, however, that the power of binding and loosing, which was given to Peter [Mt 16:19], was granted also to the college of apostles, joined with its head [cf. Mt 18:18; 28:16-20].The distinct office of the Roman Pontiff with respect to the College of Bishops and indeed to the universal Church is described in the following number of Lumen Gentium with these words: "The Roman pontiff, as the successor of Peter, is the perpetual and visible principle and foundation for the unity of the multiplicity of both the bishops and the faithful."
QuoteThis sacred synod, following in the steps of the First Vatican Council, teaches and declares with it that Jesus Christ, the eternal pastor, set up the holy Church by entrusting the apostles with their mission as he himself had been sent by the Father (cf. Jn. 20:21). He willed that their successors, the bishops namely, should be the shepherds in his Church until the end of the world. In order that the episcopate itself, however, might be one and undivided he put Peter at the head of the other apostles, and in him he set up a lasting and visible source and foundation of the unity both of faith and of communion.After the symposium entitled "The Primacy of the Successor of Peter," organized by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from December 2nd to 4th of 1996, the Congregation published certain considerations regarding the subject of the Petrine Office and the power conferred upon it.
QuoteAll Bishops are subjects of the care of all the Churches (sollicitudo omnium Ecclesiarum) inasmuch as they are members of the Episcopal College which succeeds to the college of the Apostles, of which the extraordinary figure of Saint Paul was a member. This universal dimension of their episkopè (oversight) is inseparable from the particular dimension relative to the offices entrusted to them. In the case of the Bishop of Rome - Vicar of Christ in the proper manner of Peter as Head of the College of Bishops - , the care of all the Churches acquires a particular force because it is accompanied by full and supreme power in the Church: a truly episcopal power, not only supreme, full and universal, but also immediate, over all, both pastors and other faithful. The ministry of the Successor of Peter, therefore, is not a service which reaches each particular Church from outside, but is inscribed in the heart of every particular Church, in which "the Church of Christ is truly present and acts", and by this carries in itself the opening to the ministry of unity. This interiority of the ministry of the Bishop of Rome to each particular Church is also an expression of the mutual interiority between the universal Church and the particular Church.The Petrine Office is therefore in its proper essence and in its exercise different from offices of civil government.
QuoteThe Roman Pontiff is - as are all the faithful - submitted to the Word of God, to the Catholic faith and is the guarantee of the obedience of the Church and, in this sense, is the servant of the servants (servus servorum). He does not decide according to his own will, but gives voice to the will of the Lord who speaks to man in the Scriptures lived and interpreted by the Tradition; in other terms, the episkopè of the Primate has the limits which flow from divine law and the inviolable divine constitution of the Church contained in Revelation. The Successor of Peter is the rock who, contrary to arbitrariness and conformism, guarantees a rigorous fidelity to the Word of God: the martyrological character of his Primacy follows from this.The fullness of power of the Roman Pontiff cannot be properly understood and exercised except as obedience to the grace of Christ the Head and Shepherd of the flock in every time and place.
QuoteThe Roman Pontiff, who is the successor of St. Peter in the primacy, possesses not only a primacy of honor, but supreme and full power of jurisdiction in the entire Church in matters which belong to faith and morals as well as in those which pertain to discipline and the government of the Church throughout the world.
This power is truly episcopal, ordinary and immediate over all and each of the churches and over all and each of the pastors and the faithful, and is independent of every human authority.
QuoteThe bishop of the Roman Church, in whom continues the office given by the Lord uniquely to Peter, the first of the Apostles, and to be transmitted to his successors, is the head of the college of bishops, the Vicar of Christ, and the pastor of the universal Church on earth. By virtue of his office he possesses supreme, full, immediate, and universal ordinary power in the Church, which he is always able to exercise freely.The power of the Roman Pontiff is understood from the adjectives which modify it.
QuoteTo listen to the voice of the Churches is, in fact, a proper characteristic of the ministry of unity, also a consequence of the unity of the episcopal Body and of the sensus fidei of the entire People of God; and this bond appears substantially endowed with greater force and certainty than juridical instances - a moreover inadmissible hypothesis because of lack of foundation - to which the Roman Pontiff would have to respond. The final and binding responsibility of the Roman Pontiff finds its best guarantee, on the one hand, in its insertion in the Tradition and in fraternal communion and, on the other hand in the assistance of the Holy Spirit Who governs the Church.
QuoteWithout doubt, the end and the mission of the Church indicate well articulated limits which are not of easy juridical formulation. But, if we would wish juridical formulations, we could say that these limits are those that the divine law, natural and positive, establishes.
Above all, the Pope has to exercise his power in communion with the whole Church (c. 333, § 2). Wherefore, these limits stand in relationship with the communion in the faith, in the Sacraments and in ecclesiastical governance (can. 205). The Pope has to respect the deposit of the faith - he holds the authority to express the Credo in a more adequate manner but he cannot act contrary to the faith - , he has to respect all and each of the Sacraments - he cannot suppress nor add anything that goes against the substance of the Sacraments - , and, finally, he has to respect the ecclesial rule of divine institution (he cannot prescind from the episcopate and has to share with the College of Bishops the exercise of the full and supreme power).
QuoteLet no mortal being have the audacity to reprimand a Pope on account of his faults, for he whose duty it is to judge all other men cannot be judged by anybody, unless he should be called to task for having deviated from the faith.
Quote from: Mithrandylan on November 09, 2017, 10:19:10 AMThis is not an authoritative source, but merely a table of possible spousal combinations and places/conditions of marriage, along with a corresponding note of validity and lawfulness for each scenario. The table itself was initially designed by Geremia here and I filled it in. The version hosted here contains the same content, but has been reformatted for much easier readability. I intend to post a .pdf version eventually, too.(source)
 [Civil Marriage] "Marriage between unbaptized persons is subject to the civil power, and in the case of these marriages the civil law has the right to determine the condition of the validity as well as the liceity of these marriage contracts. However, the civil power is bound to respect the divine law on marriage, and all civil laws which contradict the divine law are necessarily null and void" (Woywod vol. 1, p. 647 1957 ed.).
 [Marriage outside the Catholic Church] Canon 1094: "General Principle: Church Law requires for the validity of marriage that it be celebrated in the presence of the pastor or Ordinary of the place, or of a priest delegated by either of these, and at least two witnesses...
..."The Following Persons are obliged to observe the form above prescribed:
1) All who are baptized in the Catholic Church or who have been converted to it from heresy or schism, even though the former or the latter may later have left the Church, whenever the contract marriage among themselves;
2) The same persons above mentioned, if they contract marriage with non-Catholics, either baptized or not baptized, even after obtaining a dispensation from the impediment of mixed religion or disparity of cult" (Bouscaren and Ellis, 1946, C. 1094, p. 516).
 [Civil Marriage between two Catholics as Valid and Licit] "If the civil law demands it, the Church does not censure parties for appearing even before a non-Catholic minister who is acting merely as an official of the government, provided that their purpose is solely to comply with the civil law and to get civil recognition of their marriage" (Woywod., p. 704).
 [Civil Marriage between two Catholics as Valid and Licit] "Also note that Canon 1098 provides for Catholics who, if their pastor is unavailable to witness their marriage for the foreseeable future (a month), they are allowed to validly marry before witnesses only, and the canon does not require that these witnesses be Catholic. So in such a situation, a civil ceremony would suffice" (Woywod p. 705). [Also see "Regarding Canon 1098" at the end of the notes].
 [Civil Marriage between two Catholics as Invalid and Illicit] It would be invalid and illicit, taking into account the principles from  and the details of canon 1099, if the couple forewent the religious ceremony in favor of the civil ceremony. Note that the civil officiation of the marriage does not make it valid or licit, but only under certain conditions simply makes it allowable, provided that canon 1094 is followed.
 [Marriage by two Catholics in the Catholic Church without the Bishop's Permission] Does not seem possible; the bishops permission is not required except inasmuch as the couple are to be married in front of their pastor who is deputed by the bishop to act on his behalf. So in the rare and unusual instance that a couple, though free to marry, are for some reason forbidden by their pastor from marrying (something he does not, to my knowledge, have the power to do), and they go and get married in a different parish, one might perhaps face this instance. But it would still seem valid and lawful.
 [Marriage between two Catholics outside the Catholic Church with Bishop's Permission] Does not seem possible at all.
 [Marriage between two Catholics outside the Catholic Church without Bishop's Permission as invalid and illicit] See Note . Also, regard later notes re: C. 1098
 [Civil Marriage between a Catholic and a non-Catholic as invalid and illicit] It depends on whether or not the baptized non-Catholic was baptized in the Catholic Church. See note  and notes [3-5]
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic in the Catholic Church with the Bishop's Permission as valid and licit] The impediment of mixed religion may be dispensed from, rendering the marriage lawful and valid. Note that mixed religion never (by itself) renders a marriage invalid (Woywod, p. 670). The conditions for the dispensation to be granted is moral certainty on the part of the bishop that the non-Catholic party will at least not interfere with the upbringing of Catholic children and will not interfere with the Catholic life and duty of the family.
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic in the Catholic Church, without the Bishop's permission as valid and illicit] "Canon 1060. The Church everywhere most severely forbids the contracting of marriage between two baptized persons of whom one is a Catholic whereas the other is a member of a heretical or schismatical sect; and if there is danger of perversion for the Catholic party and the children, the marriage is forbidden also by the divine law itself" (Bouscaren and Ellis, p. 458 ).
My comment: without a dispensation (i.e., the permission of the ordinary), the marriage would be unlawful.
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic outside the Catholic Church with the Bishop's permission as valid and licit] This would require not only a dispensation from the impediment but also a dispensation to the Catholic party to dispense them from observing the Catholic form of marriage.
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic outside the Catholic Church without the Bishop's permission as valid and licit] Theoretically lawful and valid according to canon 1098. [See also note  and "Regarding Canon 1098" at the end of the notes].
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic outside the Catholic Church without the bishop's permission as valid and illicit] Theoretically valid but unlawful according to canon 1098 depending on why the bishop's permission was not given-- was he appealed to? Could he be appealed to? etc. This note is not substantially different from the previous note. It's a very complicated situation. [See also note  and "Regarding Canon 1098" at the end of the notes].
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic outside the Catholic Church, without the Bishop's permission as invalid and illicit] Without any extenuating circumstance (such as one which would make canon 1098 applicable), the marriage would be invalid for wont of form and the lack of dispensation allowing the Catholic to marry elsewhere.
 [Civil Marriage between a Catholic and a non-baptized as valid and licit] This is the impediment of disparity of cult (C. 1070), which renders a marriage invalid unless dispensed from (Woywod p. 712, see note ). So if this couple marries civilly without sufficient reason/dispensation, it is an invalid marriage. If, however, a dispensation is granted and the marriage before civil authorities is simply to gain civil benefits and recognition while the couple intend to or already have married in the Church with the proper dispensation and form, see note .
 [Marriage between a Catholic and a non-baptized without the Bishop's permission, regardless of place] Marriage between a person baptized in the Catholic Church, or received into the Church from heresy or schism, and an unbaptized person is null and void" (Woywod p. 712, C. 1070)
 [All marriages where both parties are not baptized] The Church's law does not govern infidels. Such persons are capable of contracting natural marriages that are valid and lawful inasmuch as they meet the conditions established for validity and liciety according to whatever governing body to whom they answer.
Regarding Canon 1098: Canon 1098 is, in my opinion (so take it for what it's worth), a law which dispenses parties from the requirement to observe the proper form of marriage, i.e., it dispenses from the requirement to marry in front of one's pastor under pain of invalidity.
My opinion is based on the fact that the canon itself makes no requirement regarding the quality of witnesses (that is, it does not require them to be Catholic), nor have I ever read any commentators who require such a thing--indeed, most who write about the canon presuppose that this is not the case (i.e., when a couple to whom canon 1098 applies decide to marry in front of a civil official).
If that is the case, and I believe it is, then as a general (though exceptional) rule given the current ecclesiastical crisis, we can view the marriages between Catholics who marry outside the Church, and between Catholics and the baptized non-Catholics who marry outside the Church, as valid.
This study goes into great detail on the matter and echoes my own view about it.
Presumption of Validity: To bolster that contention, I would point out that marriage is a unique sacrament because it enjoys the favor of the law. That means that regardless of the type of doubt which may occur after the attempted contracting of marriage, marriages are presumed valid until and unless they are proven invalid.
Baptized in the Catholic Church: This term causes some confusion. It is not a colloquial expression, but a technical term in canon law. In principle, it has nothing at all to do with the actual minister or even the place of baptism but with the intent of the person who is seeking baptism (or in the case of infants, the intent of the parents who seek to secure baptism for their child).
Here is Woywod on the term:
Quote"The term 'baptized in the Catholic Church' creates some difficulty, especially in cases of baptism administered by lay persons. In the first place, if the father and mother, or at least one of them, are Catholics and adhere to the Church, the infant baptized at the request of the Catholic party by a non-Catholic doctor or nurse in a case of emergency may still be considered baptized in the Catholic Church, for there is but one baptism, and whether the reception of that baptism means the joining of the Catholic Church or of some non-Catholic denomination depends on the will of the person who has the right and duty to care for the welfare of the infant. If neither parent adheres to the Catholic Church (i.e., if both are Protestants or apostate Catholics), but one of them consents to have the infant baptized by a Catholic priest, one must know whether some guarantee was given of the Catholic education of the child; if so, the child was by the will of the parent legitimately enrolled in the Catholic Church. If such guarantee was not given, no Catholic priest or layman had the right to baptized the child, and it was not legitimately enrolled in the Church Church, except in urgent danger of death... The Committee for the Authentic Interpretation of the Code declared on April 29, 1940, that persons born of non-Catholics and baptized in the Catholic Church, but not raised as Catholics, are subject to the impediment of disparity of cult according to Canon 1070 when they marry unbaptized persons" (Woywod p. 713-14).
Again, "baptized in the Catholic Church" is not a "common sense" term, not a general colloquialism, or anything of the like. It is a technical term with an intended legal meaning and legal consequences in this context. Apostates, for instance, would be "baptized in the Catholic Church" and despite their current-non-membership and rejection of the Church, they would be bound by this law. The Church normally governs only members in the sense that most of her laws apply only to members, but by divine right she has jurisdiction over all the baptized, and it is her jurisprudential prerogative to decide the extent to which she imposes her laws on them.
Purpose of Table: This is all my own opinion based on the sources provided. It's not uncommon for questions about marital validity to pop up around the forums, so I thought having this table would be useful. The table itself was designed by Geremia and posted on CI a while back, with a request for someone to fill it in. I am more than happy to receive any corrections or additions to the table if I've got something wrong.
Please also note that when I reference a marriage as lawful, that doesn't necessarily mean that either party attempting the marriage is free of all guilt. For instance, while I believe that the marriage between two Catholics in front of a Lutheran minister can be lawful, I do not mean to imply by this that the parties necessarily act with all moral uprightness in so marrying, only that the marriage itself is not unlawful. Other Catholic and moral principles that are distinct from marriage law still apply to all individuals.
Furthermore, a note of validity assumes that parties are free to marry and that there are no other impediments which would render the marriage invalid. In cases where other diriment impediments are present, those can of course render a marriage null regardless of who the parties are and where (and in front of whom) they marry.
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 2 (Burke p. 38n19)Marriage could not signify that [the union of Christ and the church], unless between husband and wife, over and beyond the civil contract, there were also a spiritual union of souls. ... If God joins man and woman for this purpose, that by their spiritual union they should signify the spiritual union of Christ and the Church, he then doubtlessly gives them the grace without which they could not achieve that spiritual union.
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 5 (Burke p. 84n29)[Matrimony] is a union that consecrates and sanctifies souls [unio sacrans, et sanctificans animas].
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 6 (Burke p. 34n6 & Pius XI's Casti Connubii §110)The sacrament of matrimony can be regarded in two ways: first, in the making, and then in its permanent state. For it is a sacrament like that of the Eucharist, which not only when it is being conferred, but also while it remains, is a sacrament; for as long as the married parties are alive, so long is their union a sacrament of Christ and the Church.
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 6 (Burke p. 200n47)The third end is that marriage be a remedy against concupiscence [Tertius finis est ut sit coniugium in remedium contra concupiscentiam].
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 7 (Burke p. 7n8)The Council [of Trent] does not acknowledge any difference between Matrimony in ancient times, whether before or after the sin of Adam, and Matrimony as it is a Sacrament of the new law, insofar as concerns the rite. It places the distinction in that the latter is a cause of grace, while the former was not. According to the Council of Trent therefore, the matter, form and minister of the Sacrament of Matrimony are the same as they were in the Marriages of the ancients, which were not Sacraments.
Quote from: De Matrimonio ch. 14 (Burke p. 9n14). St. Robert summarizes the erroneous claim of Melchior Cano, O.P., that a priest's blessing constitutes the form of matrimonyif matrimony is truly a sacrament, then, besides the civil contract, it should have some sacred form, as well as an ecclesiastical minister.
Quote from: St. ThomasWe may likewise gather the number of the sacraments from their being instituted as a remedy against the defect caused by sin.For the first ordering above, he gives this reason (ibid. a. 2 c.): "those sacraments which are intended for the perfection of the individual naturally precede those which are intended for the perfection of the multitude". Also, Holy Orders and Matrimony are last ∵ they are "intended for the perfection of the multitude" and "Matrimony is placed after order, because it has less participation in the nature of the spiritual life, to which the sacraments are ordained." He says Eucharist could be placed before Confirmation, too, because nourishment causes growth. Baptism is so important! Everything is rooted in it!
- Baptism is intended as a remedy against the absence of spiritual life;
- Confirmation, against the infirmity of soul found in those of recent birth;
- Eucharist, against the soul's proneness to sin;
- Penance, against actual sin committed after baptism;
- Extreme Unction, against the remainders of sins---of those sins, namely, which are not sufficiently removed by Penance, whether through negligence or through ignorance;
- order, against divisions in the community;
- Matrimony, as a remedy against concupiscence in the individual, and against the decrease in numbers that results from death.
Quote from: St. ThomasSome, again, gather the number of sacraments from a certain adaptation to the virtues and to the defects and penal effects resulting from sin. They say that
- Baptism corresponds to Faith, and is ordained as a remedy against original sin;
- Extreme Unction, to Hope, being ordained against venial sin;
- Eucharist, to Charity, being ordained against the penal effect which is malice.
- order, to Prudence, being ordained against ignorance;
- Penance to Justice, being ordained against mortal sin;
- Matrimony, to Temperance, being ordained against concupiscence;
- Confirmation, to Fortitude, being ordained against infirmity.
Quote from: St. Thomas Aquinasastrologers not unfrequently forecast the truth by observing the stars...because a great number of men follow their bodily passions, so that their actions are for the most part (in pluribus*) disposed in accordance with the inclination of the heavenly bodies: while there are few, namely, the wise (sapientes) alone, who moderate these inclinations by their reason. The result is that astrologers in many cases foretell the truth, especially in public occurrences which depend on the multitude (ex multitudine).*Today we would use a statistical term like "on average".
Location in Amoris Laetitia
Kind of reference
Chap. 4, para. 99
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (108)
STh II-II, q. 114, a. 2, ad 1
The virtue of affability
Chap. 4, para. 102
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (110)
STh II-II, q. 27, a. 1, ad 2
Generosity within charity
Chap. 4, para. 102
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (111)
STh II-II, q. 27, a. 1
Generosity within charity
Chap. 4, para. 120
Citation in a footnote (115)
STh I, q. 20, a. 1, ad 3
The unitive nature of love
Chap. 4, para. 120
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (116)
STh II-II, q. 27, a. 2
Love as affective union
Chap. 4, para. 123
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (122)
ScG III, c. 123
Conjugal love as the highest friendship
Chap. 4, para. 126
Paraphrase in the main text with citation in a footnote (127)
STh I-II, q. 31, a. 3, ad 3
Joy as an expansion of the heart
Chap. 4, para. 127
Brief quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (129)
STh I-II, q. 26, a. 3
The price of the loved person
Chap. 4, para. 134
Quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (135)
STh, II-II, q. 24, a. 7
The infinite increase of charity
Chap. 4, para. 145
Citation in a footnote (140)
STh I-II, q. 24, a. 1
The moral neutrality of the passions
Chap. 4, para. 148
Citation in a footnote (144)
STh I-II, q. 32, a. 7
Chap. 4, para. 148
Latin quotation and citation in a footnote (145)
STh II-II, q. 153, a. 2, ad 2
The worth of conjugal sexual pleasure
Chap. 4, para. 162
Citation in a footnote (172)
STh II-II, q. 27, a. 1
Generosity within charity
Chap. 8, para. 301
Paraphrase in the main text with citation in a footnote (341)
STh I-II, q. 65, a. 3, ad 2
Difficulty in exercising an infused virtue
Chap. 8, para. 301
Citation in a footnote (341)
De Malo, q. 2, a. 2
Difficulty in exercising an infused virtue (?)
Chap. 8, para. 301
Quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (342)
STh I-II, q. 65, a. 3, ad 3
Difficulty in exercising an infused virtue
Chap. 8, para. 304
Quotation in the main text with citation in a footnote (347)
STh I-II, q. 94, a. 4
Action deals with contingent realities
Chap. 8, para. 304
Quotation in a footnote (348)
VI Nic. Ethic. lect. 6
Norms and practical discernment
QuoteI think it is important to indicate one aspect: Pope Francis speaks here, with rare clarity, of the role of the passiones, passions, emotion, eros and sexuality in married and family life. It is not by chance that Pope Francis reconnects here with St. Thomas Aquinas, who attributes an important role to the passions, while modern society, often puritanical, has discredited or neglected them.3Indeed, in a section entitled "The World of Emotions" (143-46), Amoris Laetitia highlights the decisive role of the passions within human existence and especially within the relationships that constitute marriage and family life.
QuoteDesires, feelings, emotions, what the ancients called "the passions," all have an important place in married life. . . . It is characteristic of all living beings to reach out to other things, and this tendency always has basic affective signs: pleasure or pain, joy or sadness, tenderness or fear. They ground the most elementary psychological activity. Human beings live on this earth, and all that they do and seek is fraught with passion.Paragraph 144 underlines the extent to which the Lord Jesus himself, within the truth of his humanity, assumed this "passionate" dimension of the human condition. Saint Thomas is then explicitly referenced in paragraph 145 for his Aristotelian thesis concerning the moral neutrality of the passions, opposed to the Stoic thesis that holds that every passion is in itself morally disordered.5
QuoteExperiencing an emotion is not, in itself, morally good or evil [footnote 140 here refers to STh I-II, q. 24, a. 1]. The stirring of desire or repugnance is neither sinful nor blameworthy. What is morally good or evil is what we do on the basis of, or under the influence of, a given passion.Along the line of this integration of the passions within an anthropology and an ethic that are fully human, Amoris Laetitia highlights "the erotic dimension of love" (150-52), since conjugal love has the vocation of uniting synthetically, while also arranging in a hierarchy, the different aspects of the affective life of the spouses: sensuality, feeling, and will. Within this context, it is understandable why, in paragraph 148, Amoris Laetitia makes reference to question 153 of the Secunda secundae (STh II-II, q. 153, a. 2, ad 2), where St. Thomas--in a statement that was not routine in the general context of medieval theology--teaches that the sexual act between spouses may be without sin (and even meritorious) since sexual pleasure experienced within the fully human relational context of marriage does not in any way contradict virtue: "the exceeding pleasure attaching to a venereal act directed according to reason, is not opposed to the mean of virtue."6 Nonetheless, in the same paragraph 148, another reference to St. Thomas draws attention to how an excess harms pleasure itself. In question 32 of the Prima secundae (STh I-II, q. 32, a. 7), a question consecrated to the causes of pleasure, St. Thomas explains that likeness--even though in itself it is a cause of pleasure--can accidentally corrupt the proper good of the subject. For example, even though food may be a source of pleasure for a person due to the fact that it is consistent with the demands of that person's bodily life, an excess of food can corrupt the body's good and consequently destroy the pleasure of eating.
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QuoteSaint Thomas Aquinas himself recognized that someone may possess grace and charity, yet not be able to exercise any one of the virtues well; in other words, [End Page 511] although someone may possess all the infused moral virtues, he does not clearly manifest the existence of one of them, because the outward practice of that virtue is rendered difficult: "Certain saints are said not to possess certain virtues, in so far as they experience difficulty in the acts of those virtues, even though they have the habits of all the virtues."Amoris Laetitia, as did previously Evangelii Gaudium, explicitly refers to question 65 of the Prima secundae (STh I-II, q. 65, a. 3, ad 2), in the Summa's treatise on the virtues, and more curiously, to question 2, article 2 of the disputed questions De malo ("Whether sin consists only in an act of the will"), where, salvo meliori iudicio, I have found nothing that directly concerns the problem at hand. Question 65 of the Prima secundae is consecrated to the connection between the virtues. In article 3, St. Thomas defends the thesis according to which, because all the virtues are connected in charity, "which binds everything together in perfect harmony" (Col 3:14 in the RSV), the person in the state of grace, who therefore possesses charity, cannot but possess all of the moral virtues, if not in second act then at least in first act (i.e., in the state of habitus: in habitu). Nonetheless, there is a crucial difference between the acquired moral virtues and the infused moral virtues. The acquired virtues are put in place by the progressive elimination within the subject of dispositions contrary to the virtuous act in such a way that these, over time, disappear. By contrast, the infused virtues can coexist with dispositions contrary to the virtuous act, dispositions inherited from the past life of sin. This renders much more difficult the exercise of virtuous acts. The infused moral virtues therefore do not always have the ease of the acquired virtues. Supposing that a Don Juan has been miraculously touched by grace and justified by it, he would immediately possess the infused virtue of chastity, but it is probable that he would face difficulties in exercising it due to the contrary psychological and even corporeal dispositions that remain etched in him. As Evangelii Gaudium 171 well summarizes, "the organic unity of the virtues always and necessarily exists in habitu, even though forms of conditioning can hinder the operations of those virtuous habits." From this we see the necessity of a great patience toward oneself and others in the [End Page 512] course of moral growth in the Christian life. One will immediately note that this thesis of St. Thomas in no way signifies that the state of grace can coexist with an act that is gravely contrary to a virtue (a mortal sin) but only that it can coexist with a difficulty in actively exercising a virtue. The converted alcoholic probably does not experience, at least initially, any pleasure in sipping an orange juice, but through his infused virtue of temperance he does not thereby abstain any less resolutely from getting drunk. Whatever otherwise may be the case concerning the question of a possible coexistence between, on the one hand, the life of grace, and, on the other hand, voluntary acts that objectively are of a gravely sinful nature (such as adulterous sexual relations) but that may not be mortal sins due to subjective conditionings, this is not directly what the thesis of St. Thomas intends to express.
QuoteI earnestly ask that we always recall a teaching of Saint Thomas Aquinas and learn to incorporate it in our pastoral discernment: "Although there is necessity in the general principles, the more we descend to matters of detail, the more frequently we encounter defects. . . . In matters of action, truth or practical rectitude is not the same for all, as to matters of detail, but only as to the general principles; and where there is the same rectitude in matters of detail, it is not equally known to all . . . The principle will be found to fail, according as we descend further into detail (Et hoc tanto magis invenitur deficere, quanto magis ad particularia descenditur)."Amoris Laetitia refers here to the very important question 94 of the Prima secundae, consecrated to the natural law, and more precisely to article 4, which discusses the unity and universality of the natural law. In this article, St. Thomas begins by elaborating a difference between the object of speculative reason and the object of practical reason. Speculative reason bears upon a necessary object: the (common) principles are necessary, as are the (proper) conclusions. In contrast, practical [End Page 513] reason bears on an object (human action) that must fit within a reality marked by contingency. The principles, then, possess a certain necessity, but the more one gets down to the conclusions (i.e., the more one approaches the concrete action, which alone is real), the more "play" and contingency there are.
QuoteWhile the negative precepts of the Law forbid sinful acts, the positive precepts inculcate acts of virtue. Now sinful acts are evil in themselves, and cannot become good, no matter how, or when, or where, they are done, because of their very nature they are connected with an evil end . . . wherefore negative precepts bind always and for all times [semper et ad semper]. On the other hand, acts of virtue must not be done anyhow, but by observing the due [End Page 516] circumstances, which are requisite in order that an act be virtuous; namely, that it be done where, when, and how it ought to be done.19 [End Page 517]The last reference to St. Thomas in Amoris Laetitia is found in footnote 348 at the end of this same paragraph 304. In the heart of paragraph 304, after having quoted question 94, article 4 of the Prima secundae, we see two points meant to balance each other out: (1) "general rules . . . cannot provide absolutely for all particular situations," and (2) "what is part of a practical discernment in particular circumstances cannot be elevated to the level of a rule." We turn, then, to footnote 348:
QuoteIn another text, referring to the general knowledge of the rule and the particular knowledge of practical discernment, Saint Thomas states that "if only one of the two is present, it is preferable that it be the knowledge of the particular reality, which is closer to the act": Sententia libri Ethicorum, VI, 6It is important to interpret correctly this remark of St. Thomas. In no way is it a question of giving preference to the exception to the norm, as opposed to the norm itself. In reality, St. Thomas does not compare here two norms but two types of knowledge of a norm: (1) general, "abstract" knowledge of the one, universal norm and (2) the proper knowledge of a particular application of this norm in the concrete. This particular knowledge implicitly contains the general norm, in such a way that he who possesses it can get by without explicit knowledge of the general norm. The example given by St. Thomas, which comes directly from Aristotle,20 allows us to understand this better:
(ed. Leonina, t. XLVII, 354).
QuoteAction has to do with singulars. Hence it is that certain people not possessing the knowledge of universals are more effective about some particulars [i.e., better qualified for action] than those who have universal knowledge, from the fact that they are expert in other particulars. Thus if a doctor knows that [End Page 518] light meats are easily digestible and healthful but does not know which meats are light, he cannot help people to get well. But the man who knows that the flesh of fowls is light and healthful is better able to effect a cure. Since then prudence is reason concerning an action, the prudent person must have a knowledge of both kinds, viz., universals and particulars. But if it is possible for him to have only one kind, he ought rather to have the latter, i.e., the knowledge of particulars that are closer to operation.21The person who only possesses particular knowledge does not in any way contradict the general principle that light meats are easy to digest and thus procure health. But he knows by experience that the flesh of fowls procures health without necessarily knowing that this property results from the fact that fowl is a meat easy to digest.
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Our daily love," § "Love is not rude," ¶99As an essential requirement of love, "every human being is bound to live agreeably with those around him".*
*Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae II-II, q. 114, art. 2, ad 1. ["Whether this kind of friendship (affability) is a part of justice?"]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Our daily love," §§ "Love is generous," ¶102Saint Thomas Aquinas explains that "it is more proper to charity to desire to love than to desire to be loved";* indeed, "mothers, who are those who love the most, seek to love more than to be loved".**
*Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, II-II, q. 27, art. 1, ad 2. ["Whether to be loved is more proper to charity than to love?"]
**Ibid., q. 27, art. 1.
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Growing in conjugal love," ¶120Our reflection on Saint Paul's hymn to love has prepared us to discuss conjugal love. This is the love between husband and wife,* a love sanctified, enriched and illuminated by the grace of the sacrament of marriage. It is an "affective union",** spiritual and sacrificial, which combines the warmth of friendship and erotic passion, and endures long after emotions and passion subside.
*Thomas Aquinas calls love a vis unitiva (Summa Theologiae I, q. 20, art. 1, ad 3 ["Whether love exists in God?"]), echoing a phrase of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite (De Divinis Nominibus, IV, 12: PG 3, 709). [The previous citation is to a page-length, extended quote of a Martin Luther King Jr. sermon!]
**Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae II-II, q. 27, art. 2. ["Whether to love considered as an act of charity is the same as goodwill?" Also, Francis's next citation is to Casti Connubii.]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Growing in conjugal love," §§ "Lifelong sharing," ¶123After the love that unites us to God, conjugal love is the "greatest form of friendship".*
*Thomas Aquinas, Summa Contra Gentiles III, 123 ["That matrimony should be indivisible"]; cf. Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, 8 ["Friendship"], 12 (ed. Bywater, Oxford, 1984, 174). [This is quite good and true; cf. this Christendom college prof.'s lecture: "Friendship of Man and Woman According to Aristotle and St. Thomas."]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Growing in conjugal love," §§ "Joy and beauty," ¶126Saint Thomas Aquinas said that the word "joy" refers to an expansion of the heart.*
*Cf. Summa Theologiae I-II, q. 31, art. 3., ad 3. ["Whether delight differs from joy?"]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Growing in conjugal love," §§ "A love that reveals itself and increases," ¶134The very special form of love that is marriage is called to embody what Saint Thomas Aquinas said about charity in general. "Charity", he says, "by its very nature, has no limit to its increase, for it is a participation in that infinite charity which is the Holy Spirit...Nor on the part of the subject can its limit be fixed, because as charity grows, so too does its capacity for an even greater increase".*bsp; [li]
*Summa Theologiae II-II, q. 24, art. 7. ["Whether charity increases indefinitely?"]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Passionate love," §§ "The world of emotions," ¶145Experiencing an emotion is not, in itself, morally good or evil.*
*Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae II-II, q. 24, art. 1. ["Whether moral good and evil can be found in the passions of the soul?"]
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Passionate love," §§ "God loves the joy of his children," ¶148Excess, lack of control or obsession with a single form of pleasure can end up weakening and tainting that very pleasure* and damaging family life. A person can certainly channel his passions in a beautiful and healthy way, increasingly pointing them towards altruism and an integrated self-fulfillment that can only enrich interpersonal relationships in the heart of the family. This does not mean renouncing moments of intense enjoyment,** but rather integrating them with other moments of generous commitment, patient hope, inevitable weariness and struggle to achieve an ideal.]
*Cf. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae I-II, q. 32, art.7 ["Whether likeness is a cause of pleasure?"].
**Cf. Id., Summa Theologiae II-II, q. 153, art. 2 ["Whether no venereal act can be without sin?"], ad 2: "Abundantia delectationis quae est in actu venereo secundum rationem ordinato, non contrariatur medio virtutis" ["The exceeding pleasure attaching to a venereal act directed according to reason, is not opposed to the mean of virtue."].
Quote from: ch. 4 "Love in Marriage," § "Passionate love," §§ "Marriage and virginity," ¶162A wife can care for her sick husband and thus, in drawing near to the Cross, renew her commitment to love unto death. In such love, the dignity of the true lover shines forth, inasmuch as it is more proper to charity to love than to be loved.*
*Cf. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, II-II, q. 27, art. 1. ["Whether to be loved is more proper to charity than to love?"]
Quote from: ch. 8 "Accompanying, Discerning, and Integrating Weakness," § "Mitigating factors in pastoral discernment," ¶301Hence it is can no longer simply be said that all those in any "irregular" situation are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace. [!!!] More is involved here than mere ignorance of the rule. ... Saint Thomas Aquinas himself recognized that someone may possess grace and charity, yet not be able to exercise any one of the virtues well;* in other words, although someone may possess all the infused moral virtues, he does not clearly manifest the existence of one of them, because the outward practice of that virtue is rendered difficult: "Certain saints are said not to possess certain virtues, in so far as they experience difficulty in the acts of those virtues, even though they have the habits of all the virtues".** [Being in the state of grace means having the freedom to exercise the virtues? This quote of St. Thomas seems to be a non sequitur; it appears he quotes the greatest theologian of the Church to rationalize living in sin!!]
*Cf. Summa Theologiae I-II, q. 65, art. 3 ["Whether charity can be without moral virtue?"] ad 2; De Malo, q. 2, art. 2 ["Whether sin consists only in the act of the will?"].
**Ibid., ad 3.
Quote from: ch. 8 "Accompanying, Discerning, and Integrating Weakness," § "Rules and discernment," ¶304It is reductive simply to consider whether or not an individual's actions correspond to a general law or rule, because that is not enough to discern and ensure full fidelity to God in the concrete life of a human being. [St. Thomas says that conscience is the act of applying abstract principles (e.g., "Thou shalt not commit adultery") to concrete situations in one's life (cf. Summa Theologica I q. 79 a. 13 c.). Thus, Francis says conscience "is reductive;" it's something we need to move beyond!] I earnestly ask that we always recall a teaching of Saint Thomas Aquinas and learn to incorporate it in our pastoral discernment: "Although there is necessity in the general principles, the more we descend to matters of detail, the more frequently we encounter defects... In matters of action, truth or practical rectitude is not the same for all, as to matters of detail, but only as to the general principles; and where there is the same rectitude in matters of detail, it is not equally known to all... The principle will be found to fail, according as we descend further into detail".* It is true that general rules set forth a good which can never be disregarded or neglected, but in their formulation they cannot provide absolutely for all particular situations. [So, God has called us to do the impossible by giving us the "general rules" of the Ten Commandments (natural law)‽ God does not "suffer us to be tempted above that which we are able" (1 Cor. 10:13), as the Council of Trent reiterated in its Doctrine on the Sacrament of Matrimony.] At the same time, it must be said that, precisely for that reason, what is part of a practical discernment in particular circumstances cannot be elevated to the level of a rule. That would not only lead to an intolerable casuistry, but would endanger the very values which must be preserved with special care.**]
*Summa Theologiae, I-II, q. 94, art. 4. ["Whether the natural law is the same in all men?"]
**In another text, referring to the general knowledge of the rule and the particular knowledge of practical discernment, Saint Thomas states that "if only one of the two is present, it is preferable that it be the knowledge of the particular reality, which is closer to the act": Sententia libri Ethicorum, VI, 6 ["Wisdom, the Principle Intellectual Virtue," ¶1194] (ed. Leonina, t. XLVII, 354.)
QuoteA small error in the beginning (or in principles) leads to a big error in the end (or in conclusions).See St. Thomas Aquinas De Ente et Essentia, proemium, which references Aristotle De Cœlo bk. 1, specifically 271b:
Quote...the least initial deviation from the truth is multiplied later a thousandfold. Admit, for instance, the existence of a minimum magnitude, and you will find that the minimum which you have introduced, small as it is, causes the greatest truths of mathematics to totter. The reason is that a principle is great rather in power than in extent; hence that which was small at the start turns out a giant at the end.Upon which St. Thomas commentates (In De caelo lib. 1 l. 9 n. 4 [97.]):
Quote...one who makes a slight departure from the truth in his principles gets 10,000 [i.e,. many] times farther from the truth as he goes on. This is so because all things that follow depend on their principles. This is especially clear in an error at the crossroads: for one who at the beginning is only a slight distance from the right road gets very far away from it later on.* And he gives, as an example of what he is talking about, the case of those who posited a smallest magnitude, as Democritus posited indivisible bodies. By thus introducing a least quantity, he overthrew the most important propositions of mathematics -- for example, that any given line can be cut into two halves. The reason for this effect is that a principle, though small in stature, is nevertheless great in power, just as from a small seed a mammoth tree is produced. Hence it is that what is small in the beginning becomes multiplied in the end, because it reaches unto all that to which the power of the principle extends, whether this be true or false.*St. Thomas's example here is exactly that of Chaos: A Mathematical Adventure, ch. 2 "Vector Fields", 9:10ff.; see also ibid. ch. 7 "Strange Attractors & the Butterfly Effect".