Thursday, October 19, 2023

Schneider - How Close is he to Quesnel?

Michael Lofton had LOTS to say on Athanasius Schneider's Credo Catechism.

Bishop Athanasius Schneider's Credo Catechism
Reason & Theology, 17 Oct. 2023

The video being one hour long, I made a first reaction, then looked at the timestamps marked and found one very interesting.

my first reaction:

Does Schneider's catechism say anything as egregious as §283 in the infamous CCC?

22:39 Does the "offspring" in Acts 17:28—29 equal "son or daughter" in §226?

25:31 I'll go back to where he was quoted in writing.

In 224 he is not answering about "the dignity of the Christian" but "of the human person" ....

The thing said in 225 is in and of itself correct.

However, I-II, Q 109, A 4, in the corpus has:

I answer that, There are two ways of fulfilling the commandments of the Law. The first regards the substance of the works, as when a man does works of justice, fortitude, and of other virtues. And in this way man in the state of perfect nature could fulfil all the commandments of the Law; otherwise he would have been unable to sin in that state, since to sin is nothing else than to transgress the Divine commandments. But in the state of corrupted nature man cannot fulfil all the Divine commandments without healing grace. Secondly, the commandments of the law can be fulfilled, not merely as regards the substance of the act, but also as regards the mode of acting, i.e. their being done out of charity. And in this way, neither in the state of perfect nature, nor in the state of corrupt nature can man fulfil the commandments of the law without grace. Hence, Augustine (De Corrupt. et Grat. ii) having stated that "without grace men can do no good whatever," adds: "Not only do they know by its light what to do, but by its help they do lovingly what they know." Beyond this, in both states they need the help of God's motion in order to fulfil the commandments, as stated above (Articles 2 and 3).

The main point is whether God offers any gratia sanans to unbelievers.

To people not in the state of grace.

Note also, there is a certain dignity of man with which politics are concerned, insofar as the prince punishes evildoers, not the innocent. But here we have Q 96 A 2, also just the corpus.

I answer that, As stated above (Question 90, Articles 1 and 2), law is framed as a rule or measure of human acts. Now a measure should be homogeneous with that which it measures, as stated in Metaph. x, text. 3,4, since different things are measured by different measures. Wherefore laws imposed on men should also be in keeping with their condition, for, as Isidore says (Etym. v, 21), law should be "possible both according to nature, and according to the customs of the country." Now possibility or faculty of action is due to an interior habit or disposition: since the same thing is not possible to one who has not a virtuous habit, as is possible to one who has. Thus the same is not possible to a child as to a full-grown man: for which reason the law for children is not the same as for adults, since many things are permitted to children, which in an adult are punished by law or at any rate are open to blame. In like manner many things are permissible to men not perfect in virtue, which would be intolerable in a virtuous man.

Now human law is framed for a number of human beings, the majority of whom are not perfect in virtue. Wherefore human laws do not forbid all vices, from which the virtuous abstain, but only the more grievous vices, from which it is possible for the majority to abstain; and chiefly those that are to the hurt of others, without the prohibition of which human society could not be maintained: thus human law prohibits murder, theft and such like.

I e, as far as human society is concerned, a drunkard should retain all of his dignity beyond the question of friendly ridicule. Dito for a homosexual who is not committing sodomy. It is certain that for the former example, he is not fulfilling the natural law, hence lacks gratia sanans or response to it. So, in a sense someone can have all of the human dignity with which human law is concerned, and not be in a state of grace.

Yes, I believe there is some error going on in the correlation of 224 and 226.

Obviously if a man is not even drunkard or homosexual, but only calumniated as such, the one losing in human dignity is actually the calumniator.

And "going by what is seen externally" is not a valid excuse if that is interpreted through a filter of either personal animosity or a social prejudice, like against a homeless drinking alcohol at all. Not over much, but at all.

25:31 bis.
I did not notice certain signs with due diligence on my part (though they crossed my mind) that FSSPX could be holding the whole of what Schneider says in 224 - 226. I do hold 225 and thought simply this was what FSSPX held.

I wonder if there is a connexion to this condemned proposition of Unigenitus ...

42. The grace of Christ alone renders a man fit for the sacrifice of faith; without this there is nothing but impurity, nothing but unworthiness.

I have seen FSSPX accused of Jansenism, and it looks suspiciously like Schneider holding here some version of prop. 42.

Speaking of the question whether an unbeliever could have gratia sanans ...

26. No graces are granted except through faith.

The Pope back in 1713 at least thought so ...

25:08 St.Paul is noting that (according to the supposition of each having the responsability of his position), the Catholic Palestinian is likelier to be a child of God than the Mitsrahi Jew an the Muslim Palestinian. It is not a question of whether a non-believer ceases from the dignity of man, it is a question of whether a non-believing Jew is really fully a child of Abraham (spoiler alert : no).

Beyond what St. Paul says, one can of course speculate whether there are cases when the Catholic falls off from his faith or the Jew has an unforeseen excuse (like blindness, evoked in liturgy — however see also Mt 15:14).

26:36 On which part of the spectrum would you place Arius?

I would say, he went so far as to deny both, but started out denying the full humanity.

If Jesus had "the Son" or "the Word" instead of a human soul, as Arius thought (according to the assessment of St.Thomas), this is immediately in and of itself a denial of His humanity. But it leads to a further denial of His divinity, since we are not Hindus, if it can enter into composition with a human body as its soul, it cannot be God Himself.

Later Arians seem more to have started out with this denial of full divinity, and this is even further accentuated in Mohammed (JW's are closer to Arius on this point).

27:08 Just hoping Pope Michael I didn't share and Pope Michael II doesn't share the position of Schneider on this point ...

It can be noted that those inspiring my conversion originally, Chesterton and Tolkien, would not have, and I never left their view even as an FSSPX-er.

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