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Hæc autem omnia planè et sincere agnosco et juro, secundum expressa verba a me prolata, et juxta planum et communem sensum atque intelligentiam ipsorum verborum, absque ullâ æquivocatione, aut mentali evasione, aut secretâ reservatione quâcunque.
Sensus verè intentus.
VII. Videtur esse impossibile ut Excluditur hic illa solum homo catholicus hæc omnia æquivocatio et reservatio, quæ agnoscat, absque aliquâ æqui. sit deliberatè frustratoria juravocatione, amphibologiâ aut menti, ejusve fini contraria. evasione mentali.
Nam æquivocatio aut amphibo
logia quæ contingit bonâ fide agentibus, et conditiones illæ in omni juramento subintellectæ, si recte capio salvo honore Dei et fidei catholicæ hâc clausulâ non censentur excludi.
Hanc vero recognitionem et agnitionem facio ex corde, libenter, et veraciter, in fide verâ christiani; sic me Deus adjuvet.
Sensus verè intentus.
VIII. Quomodo potest libenter hæc Omnis christianus timoratus facere, qui non nisi coactus ad ita debet esse affectus, ut non hoc juramentum accedit? nisi necessitate veritatis, aut
veritate charitatis, ad juramentum accedat ; sed, quando aut veritas aut charitas postulat, libenter et ex.corde debet accedere.
Hinc videtur deduci, multa Ex his videtur multo vericontra fidem in hac juramenti similius deduci, nihil contra formulâ contineri; ideoque ip- fidem in hoc juramento consam non posse in conscientia tineri, sed omnia, quæ in eo a catholicis præstari.
exiguntur, esse in praxi honesta et licita.
Ex hac comparatione judicare possunt eminentissimi domini, quid de totâ hac re sentiendum sit, atque decernendum; sed ulterius, si placeat, corollarium hoc accipite.
Cum recusatio juramenti non solum mitissimum regem vehementer offendat, verum etiam omnes catholicos Angliæ in certissimum discrimen confiscationis omnium fortunarum suarum, et perpetuæ incarcerationis conjiciat: et tamen aliunde ea, quæ in hoc juramento jubentur, in catholico regno Galliæ tolerentur, immo veluti leges regni fundamentales teneantur, ut demonstrat ex perpetuâ praxi Michael Rousselius, scriptor pius et vere catholicus, in Historiâ Jurisdictionis Ecclesiasticæ; et ab ordine universo societatis Jesu per Gallias, duodecim præcipius patribus id acceptantibus, coram senatu Parisiensi, ut in praxi justa admissa fuerint; et vero talia sint, judicio cardinalis Perronii, ut propterea schismatis causa esse non debeant; quod est dicere schismaticum non esse, atque adeo nec temerariam, qui ita sentiat, sicut in juramento exigitur : consideratione eminentissimorum dominorum dignissimum est, an non expediat hæc tolerare in Angliâ, æque atque in Galliâ ; et tam suspendere decreta prohibitoria, propter sensum a rege serenissimo declaratum, quam etiam ab ulterioribus prohibitionibus hâc in re abstinere.
Father More (Hist. 1. viii. sect. 2.) notices the oath of James, and the objections to it. These he generally adopts. On the clause, by which the deposing power is rejected, he says, that “no one yet had exempted the
subjects of kings from the power of the pope, of the “ church, and of the Roman see, to coerce them, or to extend
“ their spiritual censures to temporal punishments. and “mulcts, and, though it might be conceded to the defend“ers of this clause, that, as James, though educated in “ heresy, had not yet exercised any severity against the “ catholics, he himself might be so exempt, yet, who could
answer for his numerous successors, so far as to bind “ himself to their defence, by an inviolable oath, unless he “ denied the deposing power to the pope in every case ?”
He mentions that father Holtby, who succeeded Garnett in the superiority over the Englishjesuits, immediately after the oath was promulgated, sent a copy of it to Rome, and forbade the members of his order to give an opinion on its lawfulness; that he often discussed it with other priests, sometimes separately and sometimes at the house of Blackwell the archpriest, but that they came to no agreement in opinion.-Blackwell, he says, thought, from the first, that it was lawful to take the oath ; and, so far was he from being induced by the briefs from Rome to alter his opinion, that he took it himself; and advised his assistants and brethren to take it; and so firmly persisted in these sentiments, that, when he was pressed, on his deathbed, to retract and repent of them, the utmost, which could be drawn from him, was, that “ if he had erred in this “ respect, he repented.”—More says, " that all the jesuits “agreed in condemning the oath.”
Towards the conclusion of his work, (l. x. s. 33), he justly observes, that “ the fidelity which the catholics “showed to Charles in his distresses --not one of them
having proved unfaithful to him,-showed that those, “ who objected to the oath, did not do it from want of true « allegiance, but from conscientious objections to its “ language."
The Apologetical Epistle addressed by the Right Reverend
Doctor William Poynter, Vicar-apostolic in the Southern District of the Catholics of England, to his Eminence Cardinal Litta, Præfect of the Sacred Congregation de Propaganda Fide, against the Charges brought against him and the other Vicars-apostolic in England, by the Right Reverend Doctor John Milner, Bishop of Castabala, Vicar-apostolic of the Midland District of the Catholics of England ; translated from the Latin Original, by the Author of the Historical Memoirs of the English, Irish and Scottish Catholics.
Most Eminent and Reverend Sir! When unwillingly and with sorrow, I present to your eminence a narrative, in some degree apologetical, of certain catholic transactions in England, which I have judged it necessary to prepare, it is my wish, in the first place, that your eminence should be persunded, that, in writing it, I have been influenced neither by anger nor resentment against any of my beloved and venerable brethren : although, for the sake of truth and justice, I have been obliged, in defending the authority and character of my brethren and myself, and in refuting the ill-conceived opinions formed of our councils and actions, and even the erroneous expositions of facts, to deny the truth of the charges brought against us. Certainly in executing the duty thus imposed on me, I am most sure, that not even a shade of an
mind lurks in my breast, inasmuch as, from the inmost feeling of my soul, I have for the sake of Christ our Lord, long forgiven the injuries, which have personally affected me and my individual character.
But, while my beloved and venerable colleagues, the vicars-apostolic in England, as well as myself, are beyond all doubt, placed in a situation which makes us feel, that, to the detriment both of ourselves and of the religion, of which we are the protectors, not only a heavy injury has been brought, but an unexpected wound has been inflicted upon our authority and reputation, which both as bishops and as vicars of the supreme pontiff, we are bound, by indispensable necessity, to uphold and defend with all dignity, -we have judged it to be no longer allowable to persevere in that silence, which, solely for the love of peace, has been observed in England up to this time. We have also thought it our duty to expose and present to the sacred congregation de Propaganda Fide all the charges against us, which have come to our knowledge, together with our answers, supported by proper proofs of their truth, to show that all these charges have been and are made without reason. In adopting this method, we most earnestly urge by our entreaties, that such a sentence may be pronounced by the holy see, as will make it manifest to our respective flocks, that we have performed, in their regard, all the duties of good shepherds, under the supreme shepherd, Christ our Lord, with the greatest care, and in every thing; and that we have deserved some mark of the approbation of Pius VII. the visible vicar of Christ, the most illustrious shepherd of the flock upon earth, the successor of St. Peter, not only on account of our filial devotion towards his sacred person, our profound reverence towards the holy see, which he fills with so much dignity and renown, and our most humble submission to the supreme authority, which he exercises; but also on account of the fidelity, with which we have discharged a most weighty office, which he has conferred upon us, his vicars; and on account of the zeal, with which we