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Saints' Discussion Forums  |  Forums  |  Book Study  |  Topic: Extracts from the Catechism of the Summa Theologica by R.P. Thomas Pegues, O.P. 0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Extracts from the Catechism of the Summa Theologica by R.P. Thomas Pegues, O.P.  (Read 4699 times)
Shin
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« on: March 16, 2017, 05:42:27 PM »

BRIEF OF HIS HOLINESS POPE BENEDICT XV.

To our well-beloved son Thomas Pegues of the Order of Friars Preachers.

BELOVED SON,

Greeting and Apostolic Benediction. The manifold honours paid by the Holy See to St. Thomas Aquinas exclude for ever any doubt from the mind of Catholics with regard to his being raised up by God as the Master of Doctrine to be followed by the Church through all ages. It was therefore fitting that the singular wisdom of the Holy Doctor should be made accessible not only to the clergy but to the faithful in general, and to whomsoever desired to make a deeper study of the things of religion; for in very truth, the nearer one approaches to the light, so much the more is one enlightened.

Much praise is therefore due to you first of all because you have undertaken to write a commentary in your mother tongue* upon the greatest work of the Angelic Doctor, viz., the Summa Theologica (the volumes already published of this work show what success has attended your labours); and, secondly, because you have recently published the Summa Theologicain the form of a catechism.

Therein you have aptly accommodated the riches of the great genius to the understanding of the less instructed as well as of the learned ; briefly and succinctly you have expounded the doctrine, and in the same luminous order as that of the Angelic Doctor whose treatise is more lengthy and more detailed.

We congratulate you sincerely on this fruit of your labours which shows your masterly knowledge of St. Thomas doctrine. We hope, therefore, through your love of Holy Church that this work will bring many souls to a sound knowledge of Christian doctrine.

As a mark of the divine largess and in testimony of our own special good will we impart in all affection to you and to your pupils the Apostolic Benediction.

Given at Rome at St. Peter s the fifth day of February,
1919, in the fifth year of our Pontificate,

POPE BENEDICT XV.
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'Flores apparuerunt in terra nostra. . . Fulcite me floribus. (The flowers appear on the earth. . . stay me up with flowers. Sg 2:12,5)
Shin
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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2017, 05:47:36 PM »

THE FIRST PART
OF GOD

(THE SOVEREIGN BEING; THE SOURCE AND
MASTER OF ALL THINGS)

The Divine Nature and Attributes.
The Blessed Trinity.
The Creation: Angels, the World, Man.
The Divine Government.

I. - OF GOD'S EXISTENCE


Does God exist ?
Yes, God exists (II.).

Why do you say that God exists? (II. 3).

Because if God did not exist, nothing would exist.

How do you prove that if God did not exist nothing would exist?
It is proved by this argument: That which exists through God only, would not exist if God did not exist. But whatever exists that is not God, exists through God only. Therefore, if God did not exist nothing would exist.

But how do you prove that whatever exists that is not God, exists through God only ?
By this argument : Final analysis shows that that which does not exist of itself, can only exist through some other which exists of itself; and this latter we call God. But whatever exists that is not God, does not exist of itself. Therefore final analysis shows that whatever exists that is not God, exists through God only.

But how do you prove that whatever exists that is not God, does not exist of itself?
By this argument : That does not exist of itself, which has need of some other. But whatever exists that is not God, has need of some other. Therefore whatever exists that is not God, does not exist of itself.

But why is it that whatsoever has need of another, does not exist of itself?
Because that which exists of itself, neither depends nor could it depend upon anything or anybody ; on the other hand, whatever has need of something or somebody, depends upon this something or this somebody.

But why do you assert that what exists of itself neither depends nor could depend on something or on somebody?
Because, existing of itself, it has everything in itself and through itself, and can receive nothing either from anything or from anybody.

Therefore every existing thing that has need of some other, manifestly proves by its very existence that God exists?

Yes. Every existing thing that has need of some other manifestly proves by its very existence that God exists.

What then do those say who deny the existence of God?

They say that what has need of all has need of nothing, and conversely.

But surely that is a contradiction?

Precisely; one cannot deny God without falling into contradiction.

Is it then foolish to deny the existence of God?

Yes, it is indeed foolish to deny the existence of God.
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eschator83
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« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2023, 09:38:05 PM »

This book and the Summa itself I would love to see further discussion.  Tonight as I read the Summa I was struck by the paradox, or perhaps it's irony, that St Thomas' primary argument in Question 6 The Goodness of God, Article 1, is taken from the Book of Lamentations, 3.25.  This led me to reflection on the further paradox that late in life St Thomas sensed a Revelation (? demonic?) that there was no value in his Summa and asked that it be destroyed.  Can you recall where this is reported? 
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Shin
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« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2023, 09:26:27 PM »

Here is an extract from an old book on St. Thomas's life:

The year 1273 was drawing to a close when the pen dropped from his hand, before reaching his fiftieth year. It was on Saint Nicholas Day, the 6th day of December, and in that saint's chapel, that he had a long ecstasy while saying Mass; what was then communicated to him he never revealed, but from that hour "he suspended his writing instruments," as William de Tocco puts it. Frequently he had been observed to be raised several cubits in the air, while engaged in prayer. Directly the treatise on the Eucharist was finished, some two months before this, Father Dominic di Caserta and other friars saw him thus uplifted in Saint Nicholas Chapel shortly before Matins; but what filled them with awe was the miraculous voice proceeding from the mouth of the crucifix over the altar. "Thomas, thou hast written well of Me; what reward wilt thou have?" To which the holy man at once replied: "None other but Thyself, Lord ". Mid-way in the treatise of the Sacrament of Penance, after finishing ninety Questions, of five hundred and forty-nine articles, he lapsed into silence. To every appeal made by superiors or brethren there came the same reply: "I can do no more". Father Reginald, his secretary and confidant, urged him to resume his task. "Father, why do you leave unfinished this great work, which you have undertaken for God's glory and the world's enlightenment?" But he could only draw the reply: "I can do no more. Such secrets have been communicated to me, that all I have written and taught seem to me to be only like a handful of straw." Few could credit the report that the great oracle would speak no more; none imagined that the sun was setting, and in part already below the horizon.


And also of his death:

To Father Reginald it seemed impossible that Saint Thomas should die thus early, when only entering upon his fiftieth year, so he used every art to rouse him, especially by dwelling on the great work which was before him in the coming Council, and of the sure honours which awaited him. Then with dying breath the holy Doctor made his last reply: “My son, keep yourself from harbouring any such thoughts, or from troubling yourself in this matter. What used to be at one time the object of my desires, is now a matter of thanksgiving. What I have ever been asking of He now grants to me this day, in withdrawing me from this life in the same state in which it pleased His mercy to place me. Without a doubt I might have made further progress in learning, and have made my learning to be more profitable to others, by sharing with them what has been manifested to me. But the infinite goodness of my has let me know, that if, without any merit of my own, I have received more graces and lights than other Doctors who have lived a long while, it is because the wished to shorten the days of my exile, and to take me the sooner to be a sharer in His glory, out of a pure act of mercy. If you love me sincerely, be content and comforted, since my own consolation is perfect.”

After receiving the Holy Viaticum he closed his eyes, and was silent for a short time, then repeated aloud his devout Rhythm:

    Adoro Te devote, latens deitas,
    quae sub his figuris vere latitas.

He uttered this song to the finish, and yielded up his soul in the early morning of 7 March, 1274.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2023, 04:05:17 AM by Shin » Logged

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eschator83
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« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2023, 09:34:11 PM »

Many thanks for this reply.  I can only wonder that my reply has been delayed both by our reopening at camp and the difficulty of trying to think through the brilliance and the humility of St Thomas Aquinas.  Could he have struggled to discern the value of his own writing and asked for it to be destroyed?  Where could we find a good teaching on discernment?
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« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2023, 09:29:05 PM »

Many thanks for this reply.  I can only wonder that my reply has been delayed both by our reopening at camp and the difficulty of trying to think through the brilliance and the humility of St Thomas Aquinas.  Could he have struggled to discern the value of his own writing and asked for it to be destroyed?  Where could we find a good teaching on discernment?
No, God freed Saint Thomas from the limits that his writings had placed upon the knowledge of God and compared to what God had revealed to Saint Thomas Aquinas, his works were considered by him to be of the lowest quality possible.  Saint Thomas Aquinas was referring to 1 Corinthians chapter 3
"According to the grace of God given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building upon it. But each one must be careful how he builds upon it, 11for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. 12If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw,[/u] 13the work of each will come to light, for the Day will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire [itself] will test the quality of each one’s work. 14If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. 15But if someone’s work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire"
More importantly, the Summa is not actually an authoritative document as Saint Thomas refused to be made a Bishop so the work remains simply the opinion of the Angelic Doctor. Whatever the Church affirms of it is correct and whatever the Church leaves uncontradicted may generally be accepted as an acceptable theological position and whatever the Church rejects from it is incorrect, this is the case with all of the Angelic Doctor's work. Now, thankfully, the Angelic Doctor was rather faithful in his transmission of the faith and so he Church has commended his work for its excellence in both method and content. But it is important to remember Saint Thomas as a priest is not a magisterial teacher of the faith as only the Pope and Bishops in Communion with the Pope have that office. Saint Thomas is rather an expositor of the faith as received from the Fathers and the Magisterium. He chose to summarize and reconcile different positions and to refute challenges and that was his great success, making the faith more succinct and approachable for theologians and clergy. His contribution to the Catholic intellectual tradition via the proofs of God also are noteworthy even if several of them are based upon dated scientific ideas, the principles remain the same.
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PAX
CRUX SANCTI PATRIS BENEDICTI
CRUX SACRA SIT MIHI LUX!
NON DRACO SIT MIHI DUX!
VADE RETRO SATANA!
NUMQUAM SUADE MIHI VANA!
SUNT MALA QUAE LIBAS
IPSE VENENA BIBAS!
All Glory Be To God!
All Praise Be To God!
For God Is Greater Than All Things!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
Glory to Th
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