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who were skilled in the Scriptures, were urged to give themselves to constant meditation, in order to discover the best means by which the intention of the council might be rightly directed, and the wished-for effects realised; so that what merited condemnation might be condemned, and approbation be awarded where it was deserved ; that throughout the whole world men might glorify God with one mouth and one confession of faith. In giving their opinions or votes, they were to avoid all clamour and tumult, all frivolous or obstinate disputation, and to speak with mildness and modesty. It would have been well if these regulations had been observed. 4 9
Several of the bishops had expressed in open session their discontent at the non-insertion of the clause, "representing the universal church.” The legates were very angry at this, and reproved the offenders for it, at a congregation held a few days after. In the debate which ensued, the bishop of Feltri observed, that if the clause were admitted, the Protestants would take occasion to say, that since the church is composed of two orders, the clergy and the laity, it could not be fully represented if the latter were excluded. To this the bishop of St. Mark replied, that the laity could not be termed the church, since, according to the canons, they had only to obey the commands laid upon them; that one reason why the council was called was, to decide that laymen ought to receive the faith which the church dictated, without disputing or reasoning; and that consequently the clause should be inserted, to convince them that they were not the church, and had nothing to do but to hear and submit! Jerome Seripand advised that the decision should be deferred till the council had issued some decree that would justify the adoption of so magnificent a title. Subsequently, the legates so far yielded as to allow the insertion of the words “æcumenical and universal," and this was approved by the Pope.
An important question next occupied their attention
49 Two titular archbishops were present; Olaus Magnus, archbishop of Upsal, and Robert Wanchop, archbishop of Armagh, who is said to have first introduced the Jesuits into Ireland. They were sent by the Pope, and supported at his expense; ît was easy to see on which side they would vote. Sarpi, 1. ii. s. 34.; Pallav. I. vi.e.
-whether they should begin with doctrine or discipline. The Pope had already determined on the former. On the other side was the Emperor, whose views were powerfully advocated by the Cardinal of Trent. In an address which made a deep impression on the audience, he contended that the reformation of the ecclesiastics would be the fittest means of reclaiming men from heretical pravity. But for the promptitude and address of the Cardinal de Monte, the Pope's party would have been in the minority on this occasion. He perceived the effect produced on the assembly by the speech just delivered, and adroitly replied, that he gave thanks to God, who had inspired the Cardinal of Trent with so excellent a disposition; that for his own part, as he excelled the rest in dignity, he was willing to set them an example; that to show his sincerity, he would resign the bishopric of Pavia, part with his splendid furniture, and diminish the number of his domestics; that the same might be done by others, and that this would excite the clergy every where to imitation. But the declaration of the true faith ought not on this account to be deferred. The reformation so generally desired was a matter of great moment; for not only was the Court of Rome corrupt, but abuses had crept in among all ranks and orders of men, the correction of which would require much time; meanwhile the faithful ought not to be left in uncertainty respecting the true doctrine of Christ. This plausible speech was loudly praised. It touched the Cardinal of Trent to the quick, whose ecclesiastical revenues were immense, and his establishment unusually magnificent and expensive. He answered, murmuringly, that his meaning had been misunderstood; he had intended no personal allusions: of this he was persụaded, that some persons could better govern two bishoprics than others could one; but that he was willing to resign the see of Brescia, if such were the wish of the council.50 In the issue, it was agreed to adopt a plan proposed by the bishop of Feltri, which was, that some subject, both of doctrine and discipline, should be decided in each session. This measure was observed in all the future proceedings of the council,
50 Pallav. I. vi. c. 7. s. 6—8.
and eventually was allowed by the Pope who at first was violently enraged at a measure which thwarted his pre-determined plan.
His Holiness began to fear that the free spirit already shown by some of the fathers would prove very detrimental to his interests. To counteract this evil, required artful management and perpetual watchfulness. Under his directions, the council was divided into three congregations, one being assigned to each of the legates, at whose residence their meetings were held. The reasons alleged for this division were the despatch of business and the prevention of disorder; but the true motives, as avowed by Pallavicini, were these: first, that separation would facilitate government, according to the old maxim, “divide et impera ;" secondly, that cabals and intrigues would be checked; thirilly, that the boldness of any independent prelate would only influence the congregation to which he was attached, and would not infect the whole council. 51 The same business was brought before each meeting, and a general congregation was afterwards convened, when the results of the discussions were einbodied in a decrce. Every evening the legates assembled by themselves, reported their observations on the opinions and behaviour of the prelates, and matured their plans and negotiations: thus they preserved the mastery.52
The next session was appointed to be held on the 4th of February. The day was fast approaching, but nothing definitive was agreed upon, and the legates were at a loss how to act, in the absence of instructions from Rome. In this dilemma, Bertani, bishop of Fano, remarked, that as the ancient councils had usually proinulgated a creed, it appeared highly proper that the same should be done again; he therefore proposed that the Nicene creed should be recited in the forthcoming decree, as the received faith of the church. In vain was it objected that it would be very ridiculous to hold a session for the purpose of repeating a creed 1200 years old, and which was universally believed ; that it would be of no service against the Lutherans, who received it as well as themselves; and that the heretics would take
51 Pallay. I. vi. c. 8. s.5.
52 Vargas, p. 52,
occasion to say, and with good reason, that if that creed contained the faith of the church, they ought not to be compelled to believe any thing else. The legates were so pleased with the expedient, that they procured its adoption. Nevertheless, many of the fathers could not help expressing their discontent, and were heard complaining to one another as they left the assembly, that the negotiations of twenty years had ended in coming together to repeat the belief!
The third session was celebrated on the appointed day. The following decree was passed :
“In the name of the holy and undivided Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
"The sacred, holy, æcumenical and general Council of Trent, lawfully assembled in the Holy Spirit, under the presidency of the three before-mentioned legates of the apostolic see ;-considering the importance of the subjects to be discussed, and especially of those which are included in these two articles; the extirpation of heresies, and the reformation of manners, for which causes chiefly the council has been assembled ;-moreover, acknowledging with the apostle, that its' wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the spirits of wickedness in high places,' doth in the first place, after the example of the same apostle, exhort all persons to be strengthened in the Lord, and in the might of his power, in all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith they may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one, and the helmet af salvation with the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God.: 53 Therefore, that this its pious care may, both in its commencement and its progress, enjoy the favour of God, it hath appointed and decreed, that before all things confession of faith be made; following in this the examples of the fathers, who were accustomed, in their sacred councils, at the very beginning of their proceedings, to hold up this shield against all heresies; by which means alone they have not unfrequently drawn infidels to the faith, confuted heretics, and confirmed believers. Wherefore, the council hath thought proper to recite in that form of words which is
53 Ephes, vi. 10–17.
read in all churches, the confession of faith adopted by the holy Roman church, which contains the first principles in which all who profess the faith of Christ necessarily agree, and is the firm and only foundation, against which the gates of hell shall never prevail. It is as follows:
“I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, 5 4 Maker of heaven and carth, and of all things visible and invisible. And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, and born of the Father before all ages. 5 5 God of God; Light of Light; true God of true Gol; begotten, not made; consubstantial to the * Father, by whom all things were made. Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, and became incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was made man.58 He was crucified also for us, suffered under Pontius Pilate, and was buried.57
54 Let him, who by the divine bounty believes these truths, constantly beseech and implore God.... that, admitted one day into the eternal tabernacles, he may be worthy to see how great is the fecundity of the Father, who, contemplating and understanding himself, begot the Son like and equal to himself; how a love of charity in both, entirely the samie and equal, which is the Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son, connects the begetting and the begotten by an eternal and indissoluble bond; and that thus the es. sence of the Trinity is one, and the distinction of the three persons perfect.” Catechism of the Council of Trent, translated by the Rer. J. Donovan, p. 20.
55 “ Amongst the different comparisons employed to elucidate the mode and manner of this eternal generation, that which is borrowed from thought seems to come nearest to its illustration; and hence St. John calls the Son “the Word;' for as the mind, in some sort looking into and understanding itself, forms an image of itself, which theologians express by the term 'word;' so God, as far, however, as we may compare human things to divine, understanding himself, begets the Eternal Word.” Ibid. p. 35.
56 As soon as the soul of Christ was united to his body, the divinity became united to both; and thus at the same time his body was formed and animated, and the divinity united to body and soul. Hence, at the same instant, he was perfect God and perfect man, and the most Holy Virgin, having at the same moment conceived God and man, is truly and properly called Mother of God and man.” “ As the rays of the sun penetrate, without breaking, or injuring in the least, the substance of glass; after a like, but more incomprehensible manner, did Jesus Christ come forth from his mother's womb without injury to her maternal virginity, which, immaculate and perpetual, forms the just theme of our eulogy.” Ibid. p. 39, 42.
57 “When, therefore, we say that Jesus died, we mean that his