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An Extract from the Letter of the Cardinals of Gregory 10th to
Charles King of France. That, as it is notorious, and manifest from the continually increasing evils the church of God has been greatly impaired from the beginning of this most wicked schism until the present day, and that too, alas ! with a great destruction of souls, the immeasurable greatness of the ruin shows, the loss teaches us, and the deformity of that which remains, together with the greatness of defective, I might also most say of perishing, faith, proves ; so that one cannot present a particle of this holy and mystical body from the lowest extremity to the top, which this devouring malice, this horrid pestilence, has not seized.
An Extract from a Speech delivered by the Bishop of Novara before
the General Council of Pisa respecting Benedict and Gregory.
But our former popes, disregarding the honour of God, and the good of Christianity, preferred breaking their oaths to abandoning the smoke of the sparks of a worldly and splendid crown, the glory of a silk and purple robe, pomp, and the preservation of perishable honour.
Session 15. An. Dom. 1409. An Extract from the Sentence of Deposition of the contending Popes
as brought forward with the consent of the Council by ihe Patriarch of Ålerandria.
The substance of the Sentence.
* and that the aforesaid Angelo Corrario and Peter de Luna, the competitors for the popedom, and each of them, have been and are notorious schismatics, and the supporters, defenders, favourers, and approvers of the old schism, obstinate and notorious heretics, moreover, and wanderers from the faith, entangled in the enormous and infamous crimes of perjury and violation of
promise, openly scandalizing the holy church universal of God, with notorious, evident, and manifest incorrigibility, contumacy, and pertinacity, and from these and other causes have rendered themselves utterly unworthy of the honour and dignity of the popedom; and that they and neither of them shall on account of the aforesaid offences, crimes, and excesses, rule or reign or preside over the church, but shali even be cut off from her communion, &c.
Session 18. An. Dom. 1409. On the 26th of June, in the year of our Lord 1409, about nine o'clock in the morning, the Lord Peter, a native of Candia, but called the Milanese, a friar minorite, a Greek, a Parisian doctor of divinity,
An. Ch. 1409, p. 144, Pis. Conc. Gen. Er Epistola Cardinalium Gregorii 12. ad Carolum regem Fran
Quoniam ut ipsa res per se notoria est, et de continuis malis in pejus semper excrescentibus manifesta, quantum eccelsia Dei a primordio hujus nefandissimi schismatis usque in hos dies, cum ingenti animarum interitu, proh dolor! sit atırita, ostendit ruinæ inmensurabilis quantitas, docet excidium, restantis partis informitas, et deficientis, immo ruentis jam fidei magnitudo, ut non sit dare in hoc sacro mystico corpore particulam, quam ab imo usque ad verticem hic livor edax, hæc. pestis horrenda non carpserit.
Pis. Conc. Generale. Episcopus Novariensis, de Benedicto et Gregorio, in solemni oratione,
An. 1409, in Concilio Pisano dicta. Ex MS. Erfurt. Nostri autem olim pontifices, prostergato Dei honore ac salute Cbristianæ religionis, elegerunt potius rumpere jusjurandi fidem, quam fucum scintillæ mundani et gemmati verticis, quàm gloriam serici et purpurei tegminis, quam fastum, caduci honoris observantiam,
P. 402, Sessio 15, An. 1409. Qui quidem Alexandrinus (scilicet patriarcha) de consensu concilii ex
pressè protulit sententiam in scriptis sedendo, cujus tenor sequitur, inferius.
Ipsosque Angelum Corrario et Petrum de Luna, de papatu, ut præfertur, contendentes, et eorum utrumque fuisse et esse notorios schismaticos et antiqui schismatis nutritores, defensores, fautores et approbatores, et manutentores, pertinaces, necnon notorios hæreticos et a fide devios, notoriisque criminibus enormibus perjuriï et violatione voti irretitos, universalem ecclesiam sanctam Dei notoriè scandalizantes, cum incorrigibilitate, contumacia, et. pertinacia notoriis, et evidentibus, et manifestis, et ex his ac aliis se reddidisse omni honore et dignitate etiam papali indignos, ipsosque et eorum utrumque propter præmissas iniquitates, crimina et excessus, ne regnent, vel imperent, aut præsint, ac etiam ab ecclsia præcisos, &c. &c.
P. 410, Sess. 18, An. Ch. 1409. Mercurii 26, die Junii an. Dom. 1409, circa horam nonam in mane, Dominus Petrus de Candia, Mediolanensis nuncupatus, de ordine fratrum minorum,natione Græcus,magisterin sacra theologia Parisiensi, electus fuit in summum pontificem,et ejus publicatio publicata in domo
was elected pope, and his election was published in the archepiscopal palace at Pisa without any opposition, and he was called Alexander 5th, &c.
Session 19. Then the lord cardinal (of Bologna) read another paper containng many articles. ist. That the pope converted the two colieges of cardinals into one college. Another article declared that the pope intended to set about the reformation of the church as well in its head as in its members, as be had swom to the other lord cardinals, one of whom lie then was, and that he was desirous that different countries should elect certain deputies, moral and tried men of a suitable age and learning, who should treat with the lord pope and cardinals respecting it.
The General Council of Pisa.-An. Dom. 1409. The Speech of Dr. John Gerson, Chancellor of Paris, delitered by
him before Pope Alexander and the Council of Pisa on the day of our Lord's Ascension.
I had rather that the church herself should utter the words of her saints, should say what roots she desires to have cut off, and what to have planted. Behold! she speaks. Attend not 10 me, but rather to her. Ah, woe is me! unhappy me! from what a height of dignity am I dragged down by the hands of the wicked, how is my beautiful complexion changed, and the splendour of my countenance obscured? My heavenly beauty is polluted with earthly stains, my body is rendered bloodless, pitiable, neglected, rough, and spoiled of its fragrant garments.
But, alas! what complaints shall I make, miserable that I am, of my present calamities?
Scarcely are my ordinances read in books, much less in the manners of the age.
We see archbishop's either ignorant of, or despising their superiors, and alleging against them prescription or exemption. And do not the archbishops experience the same things from their inferiors? We behold' those who have inade a profession of poverty, so that they should not reserve to themselves anything individually or in common, in order that they may more unrestrainedly imitale upon earth the seraphim in the ardour of their love, and the cherubim in the fulness of knowledge, either aspiring with all their powers after governments, or if they dare not do this, running after the cures of smaller bene. fices, noi fearing lest looking back, like the wife of Lot, they be changed into a pillar of sali, uot sufficiently mindful of the examples of Ananias and Sapphira. li is astonisling that others are not in so
archiepiscopali Pisana concorditèr, nemine reclamante, qui vocatus est Alexander 5. Quæ quidemn electio nunciata fuit in civitate Lilcana dicta die circa horam meridiei, per quenquam servientem armorum papæ.
P. 411, Sess. 19. Finita collatione papæ, cardinalis Bononiensis assistentibus sibi duobus vel tribus, episcopis, &c.
Item lecla fuit per dictum cardinalem Bononiensem una cedula, per quam in effectu papa cum concilio universali removendum fore decernebat omne impedimentum oppositum in beneficiis, &c.
Deinceps legit dominus cardinalis aliam cedulam plures articulos continentem, primo quod papa de ambobus collegiis dominorum cardinalium facit unum collegium. Alius articulus quod papa intendit laborare circa reformationem ecclesiæ tam in cupite quam in membris, sicutjuraverat cuin aliis cardinalibus de quoruin numero tunc erat, et volebat quod nationes eligerent certos deputatos, viros moribus ætate et scientiâ providos, provectos et approbatos, qui de hoc cum ipso domino papa et cardinalibus tractarent.
An. Ch. 1409, Pis. Conc. Gen. p. 414. Sermo Joannis Gersonis doctoris et cancellarii Parisiensis, factus
coram Alexandro Papa in concilio Pisano in die ascensionis Domini.
Malo tamen dicat ipsamet ecclesia voces sanctorum suorum, dicat quas velit stirpes exscindi, et quas plantari. En loquitur ! non jam in me sed in eam intendite. Væ miseræ mihi, væ infelici, ex quo dignitatis culmine, manibus iniquorum, detracta sum, quomodo mutatus est color optimus, obfuscaius faciei nitor? Cæfestis pulchritudo terrenis sordibus inquinata, exangue corpus effectum, miserandum, incultum, hispidum, vestimentis fragrantibus spoliatum.
Sed heu! quid de calamitate præsentium temporum querar misera?
vix jam ordo meus, quem instituisti, legitur in libris, quanto minus in moribus ? Cernere est archiepiscopos primates suos vel ignorare vel contemnere; adversus illos aut consuetudinis diuturnæ præscriptionem, aut exceptionem allegare. Et nome hæc eadem ab inferioribus suis archiepiscopi patiuntur ? est professos paupertatem ita ut nec in privato nec in communi sibi quidquam reservaverint, quo liberius in terris charitatis ardore seraphím, scientiæ plenitudine cherubim imitarentur, aut ad præfecturas risibus summis aspirare, aut si hoc non audeant, ad beneficiorum minorum, quod est usitatius, commendas currere, non veritos ne cum uxore Loth restrospicientes in salis effigiem redigantur, neque satis memores Ananiæ et Saphiræ. Mirum est non alios æque festioare ditari his, quorum professio vetat ditari. Cur enim
great a hurry to grow rich as those whose profession forbids their getting riches. Why do they perseveringly fatigue the apostolic ear in order to extort new privileges ? But let them see that they make good their public profession, rather than fill their money bags, live splendidly, and lay aside the poverty which they have vowed. But although experience, who is my mistress, has taught me many things, I am unwilling to pass judgment. You may see others not content with vine ordinations ; they are not content with nine benefices; as long as they live they pant after new acquisitions, they would add house to house, they would join field to field, and dwell as it were alone in the midst of the earth, despising as a fable the prophetical warning of Isaiah. You may behold them all striving against the laws with the greatest eagerness, at one time endeavouring to obtain things incompatible with each other, at another time to gather profits when absent, at one time to obtain great dignities before the proper age, at another not to be compelled to assuine holy orders, and a thousand other things forbidden by strict law. Wherefore it is not to be borne that great prelates should expose the flocks committed to them to wolves, and daily watch for the counting of the king's money, fearless of transgressing the apostolical command : “Let no one warring for God entangle himself in secular affairs,” in the sense in which it was formerly interpreted by a holy council. Why should I speak of them, who after the custom of their country lise helmets for mitres, and use an iron instead of a linen vestment; they carry arms, they wage wars, they shed blood, they refuse to be prelates, they appear as generals, they are unacquainted with the Spirit, they cherish the flesh, as if the arins of our warfare were carnal and not powerful in God to destroy every high thing extolling itself against the knowledge of God.
Hence it happens that sometimes the ear is made use of for seeing and the eye for hearing, and that there is a similar confusion among the other members, than which there cannot be a greater mischief. But from what roots am I to believe that these things have sprung? Truly from the foul pollutions of the clergy. Hence have perished the virtues by which my happy similitude to the heavenly hierarchy was preserved untainted, and all the beauty of the order in which it was to
founded removed. Those former days under whom it flourished with great blessedness, glowed with heavenly wisdom and faith ; these of the present times are corrupted with carnal wisdom. The former were influenced by the love of God; these burn with desire. The former were established with a solid trust in that which is truly good; these incline with a deceitful hope to false good. Hence it happens that as the former by the wisdom of the Spirit, and by their other distinguished virtues, founded, adorned, and amplified my kingdom ; so these by their carnal wisdom and foul vices destroy, pollute, and restrict it, &c.
Are they not wise in collecting wealth, in making feasts, in accumulating honours, in cherishing pomp, and are they not neglectful in governing the people, in cherishing the poor, iu loving