The purpose of the Council of Trent (1545 - 1563)

  1. Define doctrine in response to the Protestant Reformation.
  2. Address issues of church discipline.

The Council of Trent is considered by the Catholic Church to be authoritative in matters of Catholic doctrine.

I wrote these series of articles (see menu sidebar to the left) as a Catholic for Catholics, but I no longer accept Catholic teaching as the authoritative source of truth.I have not attempted to align these articles with my current views.

I address certain key portions of the Council of Trent dealing with certain doctrinal issues.


Index ...

Canon of Scripture | Original Sin | Justification | Purgatory | Indulgences

Key Topics

Born Again
more
Temporal Punishment
Judgment of Believers
more
Rewards for Good Deeds
more more
Obedience
more more

The Stages of Justification

(1) Called
more more more more
more
(2) Saved
more more more more
more more more
(3) Growth
more more

Protestant Doctrine

Sin Merely Covered?
more more more
Keep the Commandments
God Assists more
Not Saved by Works
more more more more
Faith Alone (Sola Fide)
more more more more
more more more
Total Depravity
more more
Predestination
more more
Assurance
more more more more
Lose Salvation
more more
Free Will
more more more more
more more
Scripture Alone

Purgatory & Indulgences

Purgatory
Prayer for the Dead
more
Indulgences
more more
Abuses
more more more more more

Catholic Doctrine

Tradition
more more
Teaching Authority
Faith and Morals
more more
Ordination
Interpret Scripture
Baptism
Salvation
more more

Images, Saints, Relics

Images
more more more
Saints
more more more more
Relics
more more
Prayer to Saints
more more more
Veneration of Saints
Pilgrimages
Not Worship
more more more
Abuses
more more

Sin

Venial Sins
Mortal Sins
more
Concupiscence
more more

The Canon of Scripture ...

That the purity of the gospel is preserved by the Catholic Church and that the church must be careful to remove errors from her teaching.

Errors being removed, the purity itself of the Gospel be preserved in the Church.

That the Church is the final authority concerning faith and morals.

Which Gospel, before promised through the prophets in the holy Scriptures, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, first promulgated with His own mouth, and then commanded to be preached by His Apostles to every creature, as the fountain of all, both saving truth, and moral discipline.

That we are to accept both scripture and verbal tradition as authoritative.

This truth and discipline are contained in the written books, and the unwritten traditions.

That the passing on of tradition from generation to generation is a valid way in which God preserves His truth.

Unwritten traditions received by the Apostles from the mouth of Christ himself, or from the Apostles themselves, the Holy Ghost dictating, have come down even unto us, transmitted as it were from hand to hand.

That the Catholic Church is the repository of authoritative tradition because it has been passed on in a continuous succession.

Also the said traditions, as well those appertaining to faith as to morals, as having been dictated, either by Christ's own word of mouth, or by the Holy Ghost, and preserved in the Catholic Church by a continuous succession.

From the Decree Concerning the Edition, and the Use, of the Sacred Books: That no one should interpret scripture to contradict (1) the teachings of the Catholic Church, or (2) the unanimous consent of the Church Fathers. Also, that the Catholic Church has the sole authority to interpret scripture in matters of faith and morals.

No one, relying on his own skill, shall, — in matters of faith, and of morals pertaining to the edification of Christian doctrine, — wresting the sacred Scripture to his own senses, presume to interpret the said sacred Scripture contrary to that sense which holy mother Church, — whose it is to judge of the true sense and interpretation of the holy Scriptures, — hath held and doth hold; or even contrary to the unanimous consent of the Fathers.


Original Sin ...

The doctrine of original sin.

Adam, when he had transgressed the commandment of God in Paradise, immediately lost the holiness and justice wherein he had been constituted; and that he incurred, through the offence of that prevarication [deviation from truth], the wrath and indignation of God, and consequently death, with which God had previously threatened him, and, together with death, captivity under his power who thenceforth had the empire of death, that is to say, the devil, and that the entire Adam, through that offence of prevarication, was changed, in body and soul, for the worse.

That all receive the sin of Adam by propagation, not by imitation.

Sin of Adam, — which in its origin is one, and being transfused into all by propagation, not by imitation, is in each one as his own.

That in baptism original sin is removed, and that God's righteousness in not merely imputed (as many Protestants claim).

by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is conferred in baptism, the guilt of original sin is remitted; or even asserts that the whole of that which has the true and proper nature of sin is not taken away; but says that it is only rased, or not imputed.

That baptism does not remove concupiscence, which is defined as being an inclination to sin and that we are capable of resisting the urges of concupiscence.

In the baptized there remains concupiscence, or an incentive (to sin); which, whereas it is left for our exercise, cannot injure those who consent not, but resist manfully by the grace of Jesus Christ;

(1) That the word sin in the New Testament sometimes refers to concupiscence, and (2) that concupiscence inclines one to sin.

This concupiscence, which the apostle sometimes calls sin, the Catholic Church has never understood it to be called sin, as being truly and properly sin in those born again, but because it is of sin, and inclines to sin.


Justification ...

That the Protestant doctrine concerning justification is erroneous and that it has split the church.

Grievous detriment to the unity of the Church, a certain erroneous doctrine disseminated touching Justification.

That man can't be justified by the works of the law as the book of Romans affirms.

Inability of Nature and of the Law to justify man.

That humans still have free will even though original sin has severely weakened them.

Not the Gentiles only by the force of nature, but not even the Jews by the very letter itself of the law of Moses, were able to be liberated, or to arise, therefrom; although free will, attenuated as it was in its powers, and bent down, was by no means extinguished in them.

That justification is through Christ and His work.

Who are justified through Christ.

(1) That Christ died for all, yet (2) not all receive the benefit of His sacrifice. (3) In order to be justified the merit of His passion must be somehow communicated to them.

Though He died for all, yet do not all receive the benefit of His death, but those only unto whom the merit of His passion is communicated.

The Catholic Church teaches that we can be born again.

Born again in that new birth, there is bestowed upon them, through the merit of His passion, the grace whereby they are made just.

A definition of justification. Note that justification is not limited to a mere covering of sin.

Justification as being a translation, from that state wherein man is born a child of the first Adam, to the state of grace, and of the adoption of the sons of God.

That God initiates the process of justification through His grace.

The beginning of... Justification is to be derived from the prevenient [anticipating or preceding] grace of God.

(1) That we are called by God even when we had no merits to deserve such a calling. (2) That we freely choose to cooperate with God's grace, and (3) that God assists us in our free will choice.

Without any merits existing on their parts, they are called; they, who by sins were alienated from God, may be disposed through His quickening and assisting grace, to convert themselves to their own justification, by freely assenting to and co-operating with that said grace.

We are able to reject God's grace yet we cannot do anything to merit justification other than receive His free gift.

Able to reject it; yet is he not able, by his own free will, without the grace of God, to move himself unto justice in His sight.

That justification is a process consisting of several stages.

The manner of Preparation.

God's grace assists us in freely choosing to move towards God.

Excited and assisted by divine grace, conceiving faith by hearing, they are freely moved towards God, believing those things to be true which God has revealed and promised.

That the understanding of our sinfulness is a necessary ingredient in justification and that we must detest sin.

Understanding themselves to be sinners, they, by turning begin to love Him as the fountain of all justice; and are therefore moved against sins by a certain hatred and detestation, to wit, by that penitence....

That justification does not consist solely in the remission of sins but also in a change in the inward man. It is not a mere covering of sins.

[This] preparation, is followed by Justification itself, which is not remission of sins merely, but also the sanctification and renewal of the inward man.

That through justification we truly become just and are not merely called just in a legal sense. That different people's level of cooperation with God can be different with the effect that we will each be infused with differing amount of this grace.

Not only reputed, but are truly called, and are, just, receiving justice within us, each one according to his own measure, which the Holy Ghost distributes to every one as He wills, and according to each one's proper disposition and co-operation.

That the process of justification results in both (1) the remission of sins, and (2) the infusion of the gifts of faith, hope and charity.

Man . . . receives . . . together with the remission of sins, all these (gifts) infused at once, faith, hope, and charity.

That the gift of faith is not sufficient to unite a person to Christ but they must also have hope and charity.

Faith, unless hope and charity be added thereto, neither unites man perfectly with Christ, nor makes him a living member of His body.

That we must keep the commandments in order to be saved.

If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

No deeds that we do before becoming justified earn us God's grace of justification.

None of those things which precede justification — whether faith or works — merit the grace itself of justification.

The confidence that we are saved is a vain confidence (unless we receive that knowledge through special revelation from God.)

Against the vain confidence of Heretics [that they are justified].

The belief in the certainty that our sins are forgiven does not mean that our sins really are forgiven.

Not to be said, that sins are forgiven, or have been forgiven, to any one who boasts of his confidence and certainty of the remission of his sins, and rests on that alone.

That people who think you must believe you are justified in order to truly be justified are deceiving themselves. Also, that the act of believing you are justified does not mean that you really are justified.

Neither is this to be asserted, — that they who are truly justified must needs, without any doubting whatever, settle within themselves that they are justified, and that no one is absolved from sins and justified, but he that believes for certain that he is absolved and justified; and that absolution and justification are effected by this faith alone.

We should have absolute confidence that God is merciful but we should not presume to know with certainty whether we have saving faith.

No pious person ought to doubt of the mercy of God, of the merit of Christ, and of the virtue and efficacy of the sacraments, even so each one, when he regards himself, and his own weakness and indisposition, may have fear and apprehension touching his own grace; seeing that no one can know with a certainty of faith, which cannot be subject to error, that he has obtained the grace of God.

That we must obey the commandments of the church. That good deeds are an integral part of saving faith. That we must persevere in practicing spiritual discipline. That our justification can increase through diligently doing these things.

By mortifying [disciplining] the members of their own flesh, and by presenting them as instruments of justice unto sanctification, they, through the observance of the commandments of God and of the Church, faith co-operating with good works, increase in that justice.

That our justification can increase.

Are still further justified.

That we must keep the commandments and that it is possible to do so.

On keeping the Commandments, and on the necessity and possibility thereof. No one, ought to think himself exempt from the observance of the commandments.

That it is possible for one who is justified to obey the commandments and that we should pray to God to assist us in this and He will assist us.

No one ought [to say]... that the observance of the commandments of God is impossible for one that is justified. God commands not impossibilities, but, by commanding, both admonishes thee to do what thou are able, and to pray for what thou art not able (to do), and aids thee that thou mayest be able; whose commandments are not heavy;

That even those who are justified still commit venial sins, which are small daily sins. That venial sins do not take away their justification.

During this mortal life, men, how holy and just soever, at times fall into at least light and daily sins, which are also called venial, not therefore do they cease to be just.

That the doctrine of faith alone is not correct. That we must also suffer with Christ by fighting the good fight and running the race well.

No one ought to flatter himself up with faith alone, fancying that by faith alone he is made an heir, and will obtain the inheritance, even though he suffer not with Christ.

That the doctrine that we sin even in doing good is incorrect. That the doctrine of total depravity is incorrect.

Who assert that the just man sins, venially at least, in every good work; or, which is yet more insupportable, that he merits eternal punishments.

That it is an error to believe with certainty that you are predestined unto salvation.

That a rash presumptuousness in the matter of Predestination is to be avoided . . . . No one . . . ought . . . to presume as regards the secret mystery of divine predestination, as to determine for certain that he is assuredly in the number of the predestinate.

That it can't be known who God has chosen. That the doctrine that once a person is justified that they can no longer sin is incorrect. That a person can only know for certain if they are saved is through special revelation.

He that is justified either cannot sin any more, or, if he do sin, that he ought to promise himself an assured repentance; for except by special revelation, it cannot be known whom God hath chosen unto Himself.

That salvation requires perseverance to the end.

He that shall persevere to the end, he shall be saved.

That no one should be absolutely certain of their salvation but they should hope in God's assistance.

Let no one herein promise himself any thing as certain with an absolute certainty; though all ought to place and repose a most firm hope in God's help.

That those who have fallen from grace may again attain to it.

Those who, by sin, have fallen from the received grace of Justification, they may be again justified.

That a person who falls from grace is in a very different situation than one who is coming into grace for the first time.

The penitence of a Christian, after his fall, is very different from that at (his) baptism.

That coming back into grace requires absolution (the forgiveness of sins), and spiritual practices.

Absolution; satisfaction by fasts, alms, prayers, and the other pious exercises of a spiritual life.

That there is such a thing as temporal punishment which is not necessarily remitted when God forgives us the sins we commit after baptism, however, as a result of baptism for the first time there is no temporal punishment for any of the sins committed previously. However, this temporal punishment does not result in a loss of salvation for those who are otherwise justified.

Eternal punishment, is, together with the guilt, remitted, either by the sacrament, or by the desire of the sacrament, but the temporal punishment, which, as the sacred writings teach, is not always wholly remitted, as is done in baptism.

That when a believer sins against God it is as they were violating God's holy temple.

Have not feared to violate the temple of God.

That there are mortal sins and that they result in a loss of saving grace. However, the person still possesses faith which can lead them to ask God for forgiveness.

By every mortal sin, grace is lost, but not faith.

That in mortal sin justification is lost and that faith may also be lost.

The received grace of Justification is lost, not only by infidelity whereby even faith itself is lost, but also by any other mortal sin whatever, though faith be not lost.

That it is not just the unbelieving who are excluded from heaven but also believers who commit deadly sins.

Excludes from the kingdom of God not only the unbelieving, but the faithful also (who are) fornicators, adulterers, effeminate, liers with mankind, thieves, covetous, drunkards, railers, extortioners, and all others who commit deadly sins.

That God rewards us for our good deeds done in faith.

God is not unjust, that he should forget your work, and the love which you have shown in his name; and, do not lose your confidence, which hath a great reward.

That good deeds are necessary for justification and that God rewards these.

Life eternal is to be proposed to those working well unto the end, and hoping in God, both as a grace mercifully promised to the sons of God through Jesus Christ, and as a reward which is according to the promise of God Himself, to be faithfully rendered to their good works and merits.

That we are not saved by our works but, rather, we are saved by receiving God's grace.

[It is wrong to believe that] man may be justified before God by his own works, without the grace of God through Jesus Christ.

That we are not saved without God's grace and that our free will merely allows us to choose to receive God's saving grace.

[It is wrong to believe that] the grace of God, through Jesus Christ, is given only for this, that man may be able more easily to live justly, and to merit eternal life, as if, by free will without grace.

That we require the prevenient [anticipating or preceding] calling of the Holy Spirit in order to be motivated to desire justification.

[It is wrong to believe that] without the prevenient inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and without his help, man can believe, hope, love, or be penitent as he ought, so as that the grace of Justification may be bestowed upon him.

That man has free will and must use it in willfully choosing to receive God's justification.

[It is wrong to believe that] man's free will moved and excited by God, by assenting to God exciting and calling, nowise co-operates towards disposing and preparing itself for obtaining the grace of Justification.

That we have free will and that Adam's sin did not result in a loss of this free will.

[It is wrong to believe that] since Adam's sin, the free will of man is lost and extinguished.

That even before justification people can do good works which are not sinful.

[It is wrong to believe that] all works done before Justification, in whatsoever way they be done, are truly sins.

That the doctrine of faith only (Sola Fide) is incorrect.

[It is wrong to believe that] by faith alone the impious is justified.

That the doctrine of faith only (Sola Fide) is incorrect as there are other factors besides faith which are required in order to receive God's saving grace of salvation.

[It is wrong to believe that] nothing else [besides faith] is required to co-operate in order to the obtaining the grace of Justification.

That we are just only through Christ's work of redemption on our behalf — there is no other way to be justified.

[It is wrong to believe that] men are just without the justice of Christ, whereby He merited for us to be justified.

That justification is not merely an imputation of Christ's justice nor of the remission of sins as a mere legal covering of our sins but, rather, results in grace being poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit.

[It is wrong to believe that] men are justified, either by the sole imputation of the justice of Christ, or by the sole remission of sins, to the exclusion of the grace and the charity which is poured forth in their hearts by the Holy Ghost.

That our confidence of our justification does not save us and justification is not merely this confidence in our salvation.

[It is wrong to believe that] justifying faith is nothing else but confidence in the divine mercy which remits sins this confidence alone is that whereby we are justified.

That it is unnecessary that a person believe they are saved in order to be saved.

[It is wrong to believe that] it is necessary for every one, for the obtaining the remission of sins, that he believe for certain, and without any wavering arising from his own infirmity and disposition, that his sins are forgiven him.

That justification does not result from merely having faith that you are saved and that this faith alone does not save.

[It is wrong to believe that] man is truly absolved from his sins and justified, because that he assuredly believed himself absolved and justified; or, that no one is truly justified but he who believes himself justified; and that, by this faith alone, absolution and justification are effected.

That it is unnecessary for a person who is saved to believe with certainty that he is saved.

[It is wrong to believe that] a man who is born again and justified, is bound of faith to believe that he is assuredly in the number of the predestinate.

That the once saved, always saved doctrine is incorrect.

[It is wrong to believe that] he will for certain, of an absolute and infallible certainty, have that great gift of perseverance unto the end, — unless he have learned this by special revelation.

That the doctrine of predestination as taught by Luther, Calvin and other Protestant reformers is incorrect.

[It is wrong to believe that] the grace of Justification is only attained to by those who are predestined unto life; but that all others who are called, are called indeed, but receive not grace, as being, by the divine power, predestined unto evil.

That the gospel message contains more than just the topic of salvation.

[It is wrong to believe that] nothing besides faith is commanded in the Gospel.

That the ten commandments are binding on Christians.

[It is wrong to believe that] the ten commandments nowise appertain to Christians.

That Christians are bound to obey the commandments of the church.

[It is wrong to believe that] the man who is justified and how perfect soever, is not bound to observe the commandments of God and of the Church, but only to believe.

That obedience to the commandments is an important part of the gospel message.

[It is wrong to believe that] the Gospel were a bare and absolute promise of eternal life, without the condition of observing the commandments

That we must obey the commands of Christ and not to merely believe in Him.

[It is wrong to believe that] Christ Jesus was given of God to men, as a redeemer in whom to trust, and not also as a legislator whom to obey.

That it is incorrect to believe that a person who is justified can't sin and that a person who sins was never really justified. This refutes the Protestant doctrine that you can't lose your salvation.

[It is wrong to believe that] a man once justified can sin no more, nor lose grace, and that therefore he that falls and sins was never truly justified.

That good works are not merely the fruits of justification but that they cause an increase in justification.

[It is wrong to believe that] good works are merely the fruits and signs of Justification obtained, but not a cause of the increase thereof.

That the just do not sin in performing good deeds which refutes the doctrine that in every deed we sin. That it is incorrect to believe that salvation is merely a process of God covering our sin.

[It is wrong to believe that] in every good work, the just sins venially at least, or — which is more intolerable still — mortally, and consequently deserves eternal punishments; and that for this cause only he is not damned, that God does not impute those works unto damnation.

That there can still be temporal punishment and guilt for sins committed after a person is justified.

[It is wrong to believe that] after the grace of Justification has been received, to every penitent sinner the guilt is remitted. [It is wrong to believe that] there remains not any debt of temporal punishment to be discharged either in this world, or in the next in Purgatory, before the entrance to the kingdom of heaven can be opened (to him).

That there is no sin in performing good deeds after being justified and that God rewards these good deeds.

[It is wrong to believe that] the justified sins when he performs good works with a view to an eternal recompense.

That good deeds performed after justification do merit rewards by God.

[It is wrong to believe that] the good works which he [a believer] performs through the grace of God and the merit of Jesus Christ does not truly merit increase of grace, eternal life, and the attainment of that eternal life.


Purgatory ...

That purgatory exists and that those in purgatory can be assisted by masses performed for them as well as by spiritual practiced performed for them.

There is a Purgatory, and that the souls there detained are helped by the suffrages of the faithful but principally by the acceptable sacrifice of the altar.

That the teachers of the church should not burden those who are not educated with information that does not directly result in an increase in their piety.

Let the more difficult and subtle questions, and which tend not to edification, and from which for the most part there is no increase of piety, be excluded from popular discourses before the uneducated multitude.

That the teachers of the church should not publicize speculations about things which are untrue so as to not mislead the members of the church.

Such things as are uncertain, or which labour under an appearance of error, let them not allow to be made public.

That church leaders have the responsibility to help the members of the church avoid superstitious beliefs.

Those things which tend to a certain kind of curiosity or superstition.

That church leaders have the responsibility to avoid stumbling the members of the church through scandals or anything else.

Prohibit as scandals and stumbling-blocks of the faithful.

That spiritual practices for those in purgatory are beneficial. These include attending mass, prayer, and almsgiving.

The suffrages of the faithful who are living, to wit the sacrifices of masses, prayers, alms, and other works of piety which have been wont to be performed by the faithful for the other faithful departed, be piously and devoutly performed.

That sacred images have a place in the lives of believers. That various kinds of interactions with the Saints have a place in the lives of believers including; veneration, prayer to them, and the honor paid to relics.

Invocation, Veneration, and Relics, of Saints, and on Sacred Images.

That the Saints in heaven rule and reign with Christ and that they pray and intercede for us on earth. That it is good and useful for us to invoke their intercessions for us through prayer.

The saints, who reign together with Christ, offer up their own prayers to God for men; that it is good and useful suppliantly to invoke them.

That the Saints are to be invoked because they pray for us here on earth.

They think impiously, who deny that the saints, who enjoy eternal happiness in heaven, are to be invocated; or who assert either that they do not pray for men.

That prayer to the Saints for their intercession for us is not idolatry nor is it repugnant to God or to Jesus.

[It is wrong to believe that] the invocation of them [the Saints] to pray for each of us even in particular, is idolatry or, that it is repugnant to the word of God.

That it does not dishonor Christ when we pray to Saints. That it is a good thing to pray to the Saints through vocal or mental prayer.

[It is wrong to believe that the invocation of the Saints] is opposed to the honour of the one mediator of God and men, Christ Jesus; or, that it is foolish to supplicate, vocally, or mentally, those who reign in heaven.

That we should venerate the holy bodies of the martyrs of the faith.

The holy bodies of holy martyrs, and of others now living with Christ are to be venerated by the faithful;

That veneration and prayer to the Saints causes God to bestow benefits on us — it is not through the power of the Saints but through God's power just as is the case in any kind of intercession of one for another.

Benefits are bestowed by God on men.

That it is a good thing to venerate and honor the relics of Saints and to make pilgrimages to holy sites.

[It is wrong to believe that] veneration and honour are not due to the relics of saints; or, that these, and other sacred monuments, are uselessly honoured by the faithful; and that the places dedicated to the memories of the saints are in vain visited with the view of obtaining their aid.

That veneration and honor of images of Christ, of Mary, and of the Saints are a good thing provided we don't consider that the images themselves have power and that we don't trust in the images for divine assistance.

Images of Christ, of the Virgin Mother of God, and of the other saints, are to be had and retained particularly in temples, and that due honour and veneration are to be given them; not that any divinity, or virtue, is believed to be in them, on account of which they are to be worshipped; or that anything is to be asked of them; or, that trust is to be reposed in images.

That the veneration and honor which we show to images of Christ, of Mary, and of the Saints are referred to the prototypes which those images represent. In venerating and honoring images we are in actuality venerating and honoring the one pictured in the image.

The honour which is shown them [images] is referred to the prototypes which those images represent; in such wise that by the images which we kiss, and before which we uncover the head, and prostrate ourselves, we adore Christ; and we venerate the saints, whose similitude they bear.

That images of historical events of redemption history are a good thing because they help us to meditate on these events and to keep them in mind.

By means of the histories of the mysteries of our Redemption, portrayed by paintings or other representations, the people is confirmed in (the habit of) remembering, and continually revolving in mind the articles of faith; as also that great profit is derived from all sacred images.

That miracles associated with the Saints confirm the value of their example and cause us to give thanks to God.

The miracles which God has performed by means of the saints, and their salutary examples, are set before the eyes of the faithful; that so they may give God thanks for those things.

That Saints provide a holy example of how we should live our lives.

Order their own lives and manners in imitation of the saints.

That the church acknowledges that there have been abuses in these doctrines and that the church has the responsibility to correct these abuses.

Abuses have crept in amongst these holy and salutary observances.

That particular images should be rejected which suggest false doctrine to the uneducated.

No images, (suggestive) of false doctrine, and furnishing occasion of dangerous error to the uneducated, be set up.

That images do not take on the attributes of divinity in the manner of belief of those who worship idols.

People shall be taught, that not thereby is the Divinity represented [in the images] as though it could be seen by the eyes of the body, or be portrayed by colours or figures.

That in the use of images and in veneration of the Saints there is to be not even a hint of unholiness. That in sacred celebrations there is to be no unholiness such as revellings and drunkenness.

In the invocation of saints, the veneration of relics, and the sacred use of images, every superstition shall be removed, all filthy lucre be abolished; finally, all lasciviousness be avoided; in such wise that figures shall not be painted or adorned with a beauty exciting to lust; nor the celebration of the saints, and the visitation of relics be by any perverted into revellings and drunkenness; as if festivals are celebrated to the honour of the saints by luxury and wantonness.


Indulgences ...

That the doctrine of indulgences is true and was established by Christ.

Power of conferring Indulgences was granted by Christ to the Church.

That indulgences are beneficial.

Indulgences, for the Christian people most salutary, and approved of.

That the church has the power to grant indulgences and indulgences are beneficial.

It [the church] condemns with anathema [excommunication] those who either assert, that they [indulgences] are useless; or who deny that there is in the Church the power of granting them.

That the church admits that there were abuses in the use of indulgences and that she has the responsibility to correct these abuses.

And being desirous that the abuses which have crept therein, and by occasion of which this honourable name of Indulgences is blasphemed by heretics, be amended and corrected.

That the church admits that desire for evil gain was a primary form of the abuse of indulgences and that she has the responsibility to correct these abuses.

all evil gains — a most prolific cause of abuses — be wholly abolished.

That the church admits that there were abuses of indulgences which arose from superstition, ignorance, and irreverence that she has the responsibility to correct these abuses.

Other abuses which have proceeded from superstition, ignorance, irreverence.