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February 26, 1987     The Malakoff News
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February 26, 1987

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First Two Thousand Years 25 moments that shaped today's Church ARKANSAS CATHOLIC ARKA The Council of Trent BY CHARLES SULLIVAN he first decades of the 16th century marked an era of intense and constant criticism of the Roman papacy and the institutional Church. As the Reformation gathered momentum and Protes- tantism began to emerge not only in distinct and disparate denominations but also as a growing secular power, the Church was stirred to action by the urgings of the Holy Spirit. In May 1542, Pope Paul I[I called for an ecumenical (world-wide) council to meet at Trent, a small Northern Italian city that marked the geographical and psychological "mid-way point" between the German churches and Rome Opening on Dec. 13, 1545, the three major objectives of the council were to heal the wounds of division that had sprit Christianity;, to effect a thorough reform of the Cathoric Church; and to establish peace throughout the empire so that a strong defense against the threatening Ottoman Turks could be organized. The whole body of Catholic teaching was discussed in ! light of Protestant criticism. The early debates concerned the relationship between Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture in response to Luther's assertion that "scripture alone" (sola scriptura) was the means by which God's mes- sage is preserved and transmitted throughout the ages. In sessions five and six, the council fathers dealt with the con- troversial issues of original sin andjnstification. As a mat- ter of fact, the council spent nearly seven months debating the issue of justification (which is longer than any debate over a particular issue in the entire history of Church councils). In 1552, political realities divided the council and itwas tbrced to close tor a time. Pins IV re-convoked the coun- cil in 1561, which subsequently went on to debate and define Church doctrine concerning the Eucharist and sac- rifice of the Mass (sessions 21 and 22) and the sacraments of holy orders and marriage (sessions 23 and 24). On Jan. 28, 1564, Pope Pins IV confirmed all the decrees of the council without exception The imple- mentation of these decrees was now in the hands of suc- ceeding popes, the college of bishops, and the universal Church as a whole This task of implementation (and the painful but necessary reform associated with it) continued unabated throughout most of the next two centuries. The result was a form of Roman Catholicism that flourished and endured into the second half of the 20th century. 1 AJ~. 250 A.D. 500 A.D. 750 A.D. 1000 A.D. 1250 A.D. 1500 A.D. f l,, ...... ',4 ,1 , ,, i , ........................ ',,l,,,l ,I I I I 4,,,,4 BIIRTH OF O-'IRIS-I" 1750 A.D. 2000 A.D. PRESENT we are res or Zion's sake I will not be silent, for Jerusalem s sake I will not be JL quiet, until her vindication shines forth like the dawn and her victory like a burning torch." Most priests, often without realizing that they are doing so, live by Isaiah's heart-felt words. They believe that God wants them to preach the message until people finally become fully converted. "I can't be quiet," one priest confided, "until all my parishioners finally lake the Lord and his teachings seriously." Then he added almost as an aside, 'q'hey'll probably get tired of me, but that's all right." This priest died a number of years ago. Although his preaching and example met with only limited success, I'm sure that God not only gave him the divine equivalent of an "E" for effort, but also commanded an angel to show him to one of the choicer places in Scripture Speaks Today ISAIAH 62:1-5 1 CORINTHIANS 12:4-I I JOHN 2:1-I I Father John Gould heaven. He richly deserved the reward. He was one of the most dedicated priests that I've ever known. Even though most of us priests take our priesthood and its responsibilities seriously, usnng our the Church cannot depend just on'us. All Catholics are expected to share this same attitude. The spread of the Gospel depends on the work and witness of each one of us. It also requires that we all bear witness together as a Church. The world will change only when we decide to help change it. This is where today's second reading enters the picture. God has given us different gifts, forms of service and works. All of these -- as well as all of us -- are important. "To each indi- vidual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit ... But one and the same Spirit produces all of these, distribut- ing them individually to each person as he wishes." It is our responsibility as Cathorics to use our to benefit others. They have been given for the building up of God's kingdom, ll, Lea~ 19.Mak~ 20, M0n 21,~lia 23.N0t, which is visibly present in the world as th( Church. They are to be used to bring dt Gospel to people and to bring those peop 30.1 32. Oeri to Jesus Christ. , 33,t , If we share Isaiah s sense of commil .Enc( ment and urgency, we will minister thog 37.suk gifts and works not only well but also effec 9.Clu tively. In this context, the Gospel is not jt ! about a wedding that took place two mille ma ago at Cana m Galilee. It is Jesus pro ise that he work miracles whenever iollow his m.other's command: "Do whateV he tells you. ,, , .i And what does he tell us? For Zion s I will not be silent, for Jerusalem s sake I w~ not be quiet, until her vindication shin~ forth like the dawn and her victory like ~'~ burning torch." Father William Gould's weekly column is sored by Little Rock Scripture Study. ! The Diocese of Utile Rock Marriage Tribunal seeks a secretary to assist canon lawyers with annul- ment cases. This full-time position receives a full benefits package, induding retirement. Qualifications include secretarial skills, transcription, typing and ability to deal diplomatically with people and confidential information. Contact: Greg Wolfe, Chancellor 2500 N. Tyler St. Little Rock, AR 72207 (501) 664-0340 C 0 M P A N Y REALTORS Opening Doors in Northwest Arkansas. Philip Taldo Arkansas Catholic is seeking to hire a part-time advertising mana- ger to coordinate and sell adver- tising for the weekly newspaper. This is primarily an inside sales position. The salary includes base wage and commission, plus health and dental insurance, retirement savings plan and vacation. If interested, send a cover letter and resume to: Malea Hargett, Editor Arkansas Catholic P.O. Box 741 7 Little Rock, AR 7221 7 ,Drug- 121 North Court CARLISLE (870) 552,7837 Harold Lewis I Pat Cook