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Arianism, as Baronins confesses: and 'Gratian affirms that Pope Anastasius II. was stricken of God for communicating with the heretic Photinusk. I know it will be made light of, that Gregory VII. saith, the very exorcists of the Roman church are superior to princes. But what shall we think of that decretal of Gregory the Third, who wrote to Boniface his legate in Germany, - quòd illi quorum uxores infirmitate aliquâ morbidâ debitum reddere noluerunt, aliis poterant nubere 1." Was this a doctrine fit for the head of the church, an infallible doctor? It was plainly, if any thing ever was, doctrina dæmoniorum,' and is noted for such by Gratian,
caus. 32. q. 7. can. quod proposuisti :" where the gloss also intimates that the same privilege was granted to the Englishmen by Gregory, “ quia novi erant in fide.”-And sometimes we had little reason to expect much better : for not to instance in that learned discourse in the m canon law de majoritate et obedientia,' where the Pope's supremacy over kings is proved from the first chapter of Genesis, and the Pope is the sun, and the emperor is the moon, for that was the fancy of one Pope perhaps, though made authentic and doctrinal by hím; it was, if it be possible, more ridiculous, that Pope Innocent the Third urges, that the Mosaical law was still to be observed, and that upon this argument ; « Sane," saith he, “ cum Deuteronomium secunda lex interpretur, ex vi vocabuli comprobatur, ut quod ibi decernitur, in Testamento Novo debeat observari.” Worse yet ; for when there was a corruption crept into the decree called Saneta Romana ",' where, instead of these words, Sedulií opus hercicis versibus descriptum,' all the old copies, till of late, read, hæreticis versibus descriptum ;' this very mistake made many wise men (as Pierius” says), yea, Pope Adriano the Sixth, no worse man, believe, that * all poetry was heretical ;' because, forsooth, Pope Gelasius, whose decree that was, although he believed Sedulius to be a good catholic, yet, as they thought, concluded his verses to be heretical. But these were ignorances ; it hath been worse amongst some others, whose errors have been more malicious. Pope Honorius was condemned by the sixth general synod, and his 1 A. D. 357. n. 44.
k Dist. 19. c.9. Lib. 4. Ep. 2. | Vid. Corranz. Sum. Concil. fol. 218. edit. Antwerp.
m Cap. per venerab. qui filii sint legitimi, Dist. 15. apud Gratian. o De Sacerd. barb.
epistles burnt; and in the seventh action of the eighth synod, the acts of the Roman council under Adrian the Second are recited, in which it is said that Honorius was justly anathematized, because he was convicted of heresy. Bellarmine says, it is probable that Pope Adrian and the Roman council were deceived with false copies of the sixth synod, and that Honorius was no heretic. To this I say, that although the Roman synod, and the eighth general synod, and Pope Adrian, all together are better witnesses for the thing than Bellarmine's conjecture is against it; yet if we allow his conjecture, we shall lose nothing in the whole for either the Pope is no infallible doctor, but may be a heretic, as Honorius was; or else a council is to us no infallible determiner. I say, as to us: for if Adrian and the whole Roman council and the eight general were all cozened with false copies of the sixth synod, which was so little a while before them, and whose acts were transacted and kept in the theatre and records of the catholic church; he is a bold man that will be confident, that he hath true copies now. So that let which they please stand or fall, let the Pope be a heretic, or the councils be deceived and palpably abused (for the other, we will dispute it upon other instances and arguments, when we shall know which part they choose), in the meantime we shall get in the general, what we lose in particular. This only, this devise of saying the copies of the councils were false, was the strategem of Albertus Pighius nine hundred years after the thing was done ; of which invention Pighius was presently admonished, blamed, and wished to recant P. Pope Nicolas explicated the mystery of the Sacrament with so much ignorance and zeal, that in condemning Berengarius he taught a worse impiety. But what need I any more instances ? It is a confessed case by Baronius, by Biel, by Stella, Almain, Occham, and Canus, and generally by the best scholars in the church of Rome, that a Pope may be a heretic, and that some of them actually were so; and no less than three general councils did believe the same thing, viz., the sixth, seventh, and eighth, as Bellarmine is pleased to acknowledge in his fourth book “ De Pontifice Romano, c. 11. resp. ad Arg. 4.” And the canon “ Si Papa, dist. 40," affirms it in express terms, that a Pope is judicable and punishable in that case. But there is no wound but some empiric or other will pretend to cure it; and there is a cure for this too. For though it be true, that if a Pope were a heretic, the church might depose him,-yet no Pope can be a heretic; not but that the man may, but the Pope cannot, for he is ipso facto no Pope, for he is no Christian; so Bellarmine: and so when you think you have him fast, he is gone, and nothing of the Pope left. But who sees not the extreme folly of this evasion? For besides that out of fear and caution he grants more than he needs, more than was sought for in the question,—the Pope hath no more privilege than the abbot of Cluny; for he cannot be a heretic, nor be deposed by a council: for if he be manifestly a heretic, he is 'ipso facto’ no abbot, for he is no Christian; and if the Pope be a heretic privately and occultly, for that he may be accused and judged, said the gloss upon the canon “ Si Papa, dist. 40.” and the abbot of Cluny and one of his meanest monks can be no more, therefore the case is all one. But this is fitter to make sport with, than to interrupt a serious discourse. And therefore, although the canon
p Vide diatrib. de act. 6. et Tæ. synod. præfatione ad Lectorem, et Dominicum Bannes 22æ. q. 1. a. 10. dub. 2. Picus Mirand. in exposit. theorem. 4,
66 Sancta Romana” approves all the decretals of Popes, yet that very decretal hath not decreed it firm enough, but that they are so warily received by them, that when they list, they are pleased to dissent from them. And it is evident in the Extravagant of Sixtus IV. “cum de reliquiis,” who appointed a feast of the immaculate conception, a special office for the day, and indulgences enough to the observers of it: and yet 'the Dominicans were so far from believing the Pope to be infallible', and his decree authentic, that they declaimed against it in their pulpits so furiously and so long, till they were prohibited under pain of excommunication to say the Virgin Mary was conceived in original sin. Now what solemnity can be more required for the Pope to make a cathedral determination of an article ? The article was so concluded, that a feast was instituted for its celebration, and pain of excommunica
9 Lib. 2. c. 30. ubi suprà. sect. est ergó. r Vide Alphons. à Cast. 1. 1. adv. hæres. c. 4. hoc lemma ridentem affabre. Vid. etiam Innocentium Ser. 2, de consecrat. Pontif. act. 7. 8æ. Synodi, et Concil. 5. sub Symmadio. Vide Collat. 8. can. 12. ubi patres judicialem sententiam p. Vigilii in causa trium Capitulorum damnârunt expressè. Extrav. comm. Extrav. grave, Tit. X. De Angelo custod. fol. 59. de consecrat. dist. 3. can. pronunciand. gloss. verb. Nativ
tion threatened to them which should preach the contrary: nothing more solemn, nothing more confident and severe. And yet after all this, to shew that whatsoever those people would have us to believe, they will believe what they list themselves, this thing was not determined . de fide,' saith Vic torellus ; nay, the author of the gloss of the canon law hath these express words, “ De festo conceptionis nihil dicitur, quia celebrandum non est, sicut in multis regionibus fit, et maxime in Anglia ; et hæc est ratio, quia in peccatis concepta fuit, sicut et cæteri sanctii." And the commissaries of Six. tus V. and Gregory XIII. did not expunge these words, but left them upon record, not against a received and more approved opinion of the Jesuits and Franciscans, but also in plain defiance of a decree made by their visible head of the church, who (if ever any thing was decreed by a Pope with an intent to oblige all Christendom) decreed this to that purposes
16. So that, without taking particular notice of it, that egregious sophistry and flattery of the late writers of the Romian church, are, in this instance, besides divers others before mentioned, clearly made invalid. For here the bishop of Rome, not as a private doctor, but as Pope, not by declaring his own opinion, but with an intent to oblige the church, gave sentence in a question which the Dominicans will still account pro non determinata.' And
decretal recorded in the canon law, if it be false in the matter, is just such another instance. And Alphonsus à Castro says to the same purpose, in the instance of Cælestine dissolving marriages for heresy, “Neque Cælestini error talis fuit, qui soli negligentiæ imputari debeat; ità ut illum errâsse dicamus velut privatam personam, et non ut Papam : quoniam hujusmodi Cælestini definitio habetur in antiquis decretalibus, in cap. " Laudabilem,' titulo De Conversione Infidelium;' quam ego ipse vidi et legi." (Lib. 1. adv. hæres. cap. 4.) And therefore it is a most intolerable folly to pretend that the Pope cannot err in his chair, though he may err in his closet, and may maintain a false opinion even to his death. For besides that it is sottish to think, that either he would not have the world of his own opinion (as all men naturally would); or that, if he were set
8 Hâc in perpetuum valiturâ constitutione statuimus, &c. De reliquiis, &c. Extray. Com. Sixt. 4. cap. 1.
in his chair, he would determine contrary to himself in his study: and therefore to represent it as possible, they are fain to fly to a miracle, for which they have no colour, neither instructions nor insinuation, nor warrant, nor promise : besides that it were impious and unreasonable to depose him for heresy, who may so easily, even by setting himself in his chair and reviewing his theorems, be cured : it is also against a very great experience. For besides the former allegations, it is most notorious that Pope Alexander III. in a council at Rome, of three hundred archbishops and bishops, A. D. 1179, condemned Peter Lombard of heresy in a matter of great concernment, no less than something about the incarnation ; from which sentence he was, after thirty-six years abiding it, absolved by Pope Innocent III. without repentance or dereliction of the opinion. Now if the sentence was not a cathedral dictate, as solemn and great as could be expected, or as is said to be necessary to oblige all Christendom, let the great hyperaspists of the Roman church be judges, who tell us, that a particular council with the Pope's confirmation is made oecumenical by adoption, and is infallible, and obliges all Christendom : so Bellarminet. And therefore he says, that it is “ temerarium, erroneum, et proximum hæresi," to deny it. But whether it be or not, it is all one as to my purpose. For, it is certain, that in a particular council confirmed by that Pope, if ever, then and there the Pope sat himself in his chair ; and it is as certain, that he sat beside the cushion, and determined ridiculously and falsely in this
But this is a device for which there is no scripture, no tradition, no one dogmatical resolute saying of any father, Greek or Latin, for above one thousand years after Christ : and themselves, when they list, can acknowledge as much. And therefore Bellarmine's saying, I perceive, is believed of them to be true. That there are many things in the Decretal Epistles which make not articles to be de fide". And therefore, “Non est necessario credendum determinatis per summum Pontificem,” says Almain. And this serves their turns in every thing they do not like; and therefore, I am resolved
+ Lib. 2. de Concil. cap. 5.—De Pontif. Rom. c. 14. sect. respondeo. In 3. sent. d. 24. q. in cont. 6. dub. 6. in fine.
u Proverbialiter olim dictum erat de Decretalibus, Malè cum rebus humanis actum esse, ex quo Decretis alæ accesserunt; scil. cùm Decretales post Decretum Gratiani sub nomine Gregorii noni edebantur.