Sunday, May 16, 2010

Aquinas and Balthasar ftw...

"...a Church cannot be a "branch" of a historical unity which no longer exists" - Hans Urs Von Balthasar (The Office of Peter) p. 91

""our Lord says: “There shall be one fold and one shepherd” (John 10:16).

But let one say that the one head and one shepherd is Christ, who is one spouse of one Church; his answer does not suffice. For, clearly, Christ Himself perfects all the sacraments of th Church: it is He who baptizes; it is He who forgives sins; it is He, the true priest, who offered Himself on the altar of the cross, and by whose power His body is daily consecrated on the altar—nevertheless, because He was not going to be with all the faithful in bodily presence, He chose ministers to dispense the things just mentioned to the faithful, as was said above. By the same reasoning, then, when He was going to withdraw His bodily presence from the Church, He had to commit it to one who would in His place have the care of the universal Church. Hence it is that He said to Peter before His ascension: “Feed My sheep” (John 21:17); and before His passion: “You being once converted confirm your brethren” (Luke 22:32); and to him alone did He promise: “I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven” (Mat. 16:19), in order to show that the power of the keys was to flow through him to others to preserve the unity of the Church.

But it cannot be said that, although He gave Peter this dignity, it does not flow on to others. For, clearly, Christ established the Church so that it was to endure to the end of the world; in the words of Isaiah (9:7): “He shall sit upon the throne of David and upon His kingdom to establish and strengthen it with judgment and with justice from henceforth and forever.” It is clear that He so established therein those who were then in the ministry that their power was to be passed on to others even to the end of time; especially so, since He Himself says: “Behold I am with you all days even to the consummation of the world” (Mat. 28:20).

By this, of course, we exclude the presumptuous error of some who attempt to withdraw themselves from the obedience and the rule of Peter by not recognizing in his successor, the Roman Pontiff, the pastor of the universal Church." - St. Thomas Aquinas Summa Contra Gentiles 4, 76.

ok. I submit, and reject Anglicanism and other expedients as attempts for me to escape the divine command of being converted, the painful reality of sanctification, and my need to repent. It's not that I like Catholicism, it's that there is nowhere else. Henceforth, I will continue trying to find a way to like it.

I'm sorry for disappointing everyone who reads this at some point, either today, or in the last few weeks.


  1. But desire is not answered because I cut it off: why were you given this attraction to Anglicanism? Attraction reminds us of our continual desire for a deeper, fuller life.

    Where in the Church do you see those who live the joy of the Resurrection? When asked by his disciples the where and when of the kingdom, Jesus said that when you see the green buds on the trees, you know that spring is near. Where do you see life beginning to bud? And if you see the slightest hint of this brightness, you need to follow it (no matter how timidly) so that you don't lose it.

  2. I like your argument here but I'm not sure it applies to Anglicanism. At least not directly. One of the historical claims of Anglicanism as via media is that it is apostolic. That it carries the apostolic line. (Otherwise, Anglicanism is just Calvinism with better taste in music, liturgy, architecture and vestments.)

    Every time an Anglican stands up and says the creed they declare their faith in one catholic and apostolic church. Acceptance or rejection has to turn on whether Anglicanism really is or really is not that one holy catholic and apostolic church.