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Re: [mythsoc] Who is Shift?

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  • Patrick Wynne
    ... If I might play Devil s Advocate ... ;-) In 1302 AD, Pope Boniface VIII wrote the following _ex cathedra_ (i.e. infallible) statement in the bull _Unam
    Message 1 of 6 , Jul 12, 2005
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      On Jul 12, 2005, at 6:34 AM, Carl F. Hostetter wrote:

      > These supposed claims attributed to the Pope come as a surprise to
      > this lifelong Catholic. Neither the Pope nor the Church has ever
      > claimed or taught that the Pope is either God's "mouthpiece" or "the
      > only way to God" (indeed, the Church has taken flak from some of its
      > members for quite specifically _denying_ that it claims to be "the
      > only way to God").

      If I might play Devil's Advocate ... ;-)

      In 1302 AD, Pope Boniface VIII wrote the following _ex cathedra_
      (i.e. infallible) statement in the bull _Unam Sanctam_:

      "Furthermore we declare, state, define, and pronounce that it
      is altogether necessary to salvation for every human creature
      to be subject to the Roman pontiff."

      (Cited by Henry Bettenson, Ed., _Documents of the Christian
      Church_ (London: Oxford University, 1963), p. 116.)

      This was later reaffirmed by the First Vatican Council in 1869-70,
      and seems pretty close (at least to this Lutheran's ears) to saying
      that the Pope is "the only way to God". However, I gather from
      what Carl has told me in conversations on this topic that the
      modern Catholic Church no longer holds to this teaching. When
      was it specifically changed, I wonder? At Vatican Two?

      -- Pat

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Ginger McElwee
      I agree with Carl. Additionally I see no evidence in any of Lewis’ writings that he misunderstood Catholicism so profoundly. Granted he had issues with the
      Message 2 of 6 , Jul 12, 2005
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        I agree with Carl. Additionally I see no evidence in any of Lewis�
        writings that he misunderstood Catholicism so profoundly. Granted he
        had issues with the church, but I think he understood the church�s
        position well enough not to equate it with a weak and manipulative ape
        whose main characteristics are selfishness, stupidity, and disbelief.

        Ginger McElwee

        -----Original Message-----
        From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
        Of Carl F. Hostetter
        Sent: Tuesday, July 12, 2005 6:34 AM
        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Who is Shift?


        On Jul 11, 2005, at 11:53 PM, juliet@... wrote:

        > Shift and Roman Catholicism have some things in common, and Lewis
        > likely meant to point out that anyone who claims to be the only way
        > to God should be highly suspect--but to call Shift a satire of
        > Roman Catholocism seems overly exclusive. There are many people
        > besides the Pope who claim to be the mouthpiece of God. The Pope
        > is at least probably more sincere than most. Shift, as you point
        > out, is not the least bit sincere.

        These supposed claims attributed to the Pope come as a surprise to
        this lifelong Catholic. Neither the Pope nor the Church has ever
        claimed or taught that the Pope is either God's "mouthpiece" or "the
        only way to God" (indeed, the Church has taken flak from some of its
        members for quite specifically _denying_ that it claims to be "the
        only way to God").

        > I also think people who assume the Calormenes are Muslims aren't
        > reading very carefully. That all just sounds like people trying to
        > read their own ideas into the story and missing the deeper truths
        > Lewis is trying to discuss.

        How ironic.




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      • Carl F. Hostetter
        ... That is an accepted translation of the text of the Bull ( _Declaratio quod subesse Romano Pontifici est omni humanae creaturae de necessitate salutis_ ),
        Message 3 of 6 , Jul 12, 2005
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          On Jul 12, 2005, at 8:15 AM, Patrick Wynne wrote:

          > In 1302 AD, Pope Boniface VIII wrote the following _ex cathedra_
          > (i.e. infallible) statement in the bull _Unam Sanctam_:
          >
          > "Furthermore we declare, state, define, and pronounce that it is
          > altogether necessary to salvation for every human creature to be
          > subject to the Roman pontiff."

          That is an accepted translation of the text of the Bull ("_Declaratio
          quod subesse Romano Pontifici est omni humanae creaturae de
          necessitate salutis_"), but is itself open to interpretation: namely,
          as to whether the Bull is stating that 1) every individual human
          being is _de facto_ subject to the authority of the Pope with respect
          to and for the purposes of achieving salvation through Christ's
          Church; or 2) that every individual human being must submit himself,
          knowingly, to the authority of the Pope, in order to achieve his own
          salvation, and without doing so he will of a certainty not be saved?

          The latter interpretation would seem to forbid even an appeal to
          "invincible ignorance" as hope for salvation for any non-Catholic but
          otherwise righteous person. But that would itself contradict the
          constant teaching of the Church (see <http://www.catholicculture.org/
          docs/doc_view.cfm?recnum=1203>) that those who are invincibly
          ignorant _may_ be saved; and so it would seem to me to not be the
          correct interpretation (if it were, it would "prove too much", as
          they say: namely, that invincible ignorance is no excuse of
          culpability, which is contrary to Catholic teaching).
          To my eyes, a plain reading of the text of the Bull in question in
          its entirety and in its context of a time of looming schism, and of
          revolt by King Philip IV, make it clear that the subject of the Bull
          is the primacy of the Church, and thus of its head the Pope, over
          every other worldly authority; in particular, over that of kings,
          princes, and soldiers. From both the text and the context of the
          whole Bull, what I see is a restatement and definition of what the
          Catholic Church has always taught: that to it and to it alone has
          been given supreme worldly authority (through the Keys of Peter and
          Apostolic Succession), that this authority was granted and guaranteed
          to the Pope and the Church by Christ for the purpose of securing the
          salvation of all mankind, and that the Pope and the Church are not
          subject or subordinate to any other worldly authority:

          "Both, therefore, are in the power of the Church, that is to say, the
          spiritual and the material sword, but the former is to be
          administered for the Church but the latter by the Church; the former
          in the hands of the priest; the latter by the hands of kings and
          soldiers, but at the will and sufferance of the priest.

          "However, one sword ought to be subordinated to the other and
          temporal authority, subjected to spiritual power. For since the
          Apostle said: "There is no power except from God and the things that
          are, are ordained of God" [Rom 13:1-2], but they would not be
          ordained if one sword were not subordinated to the other and if the
          inferior one, as it were, were not led upwards by the other."

          "Hence we must recognize the more clearly that spiritual power
          surpasses in dignity and in nobility any temporal power whatever, as
          spiritual things surpass the temporal. This we see very clearly also
          by the payment, benediction, and consecration of the tithes, but the
          acceptance of power itself and by the government even of things. For
          with truth as our witness, it belongs to spiritual power to establish
          the terrestrial power and to pass judgement if it has not been good."

          "Therefore, if the terrestrial power err, it will be judged by the
          spiritual power; but if a minor spiritual power err, it will be
          judged by a superior spiritual power; but if the highest power of all
          err, it can be judged only by God, and not by man, according to the
          testimony of the Apostle: "The spiritual man judgeth of all things
          and he himself is judged by no man" [1 Cor 2:15]. This authority,
          however, (though it has been given to man and is exercised by man),
          is not human but rather divine, granted to Peter by a divine word and
          reaffirmed to him (Peter) and his successors by the One Whom Peter
          confessed, the Lord saying to Peter himself, "Whatsoever you shall
          bind on earth, shall be bound also in Heaven" etc., [Mt 16:19].
          Therefore whoever resists this power thus ordained by God, resists
          the ordinance of God [Rom 13:2], unless he invent like Manicheus two
          beginnings, which is false and judged by us heretical....
          Furthermore, we declare, we proclaim, we define that it is absolutely
          necessary for salvation that every human creature be subject to the
          Roman Pontiff."

          (Note the prominent "therefore" underpinning both the negative and
          the positive statements, both of which must be understood in light of
          all the preceding indicated by that "therefore".)

          (<http://www.ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/B7UNAM.HTM>)
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