LÉvangile et le peuple de Dieu (Les brochures de la Gospel Coalition t. 4) (French Edition)

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Table of contents

Beaumarchais had continuing trouble with the courts, mainly over financial matters. He rarely won in court, but his written accounts of the misadventures were an important in fostering distrust of the corrupt courts of the old regime. One Parlementarian, Goezman, who took Beaumarchais's bribe and ruled against him anyway, was ruined when Beaumarchais published an account. Trying to reprise his earlier success in dealing arms, Beaumarchais in tried to secure 60, muskets from Holland.

After being arrested in August, , and barely escaping the September Massacre, he went abroad and did not return to France until Carlyle seems under the impression that Charlesmagne was buried at Salzburg, but most sources say Aachen Aix la Chapelle. Rousseau had a way with words that extends even into translation.

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Imagine the effect of paragraphs like these:. Aristotle was right; but he took the effect for the cause. Nothing can be more certain than that every man born in slavery is born for slavery. Slaves lose everything in their chains, even the desire of escaping from them: they love their servitude, as the comrades of Ulysses loved their brutish condition. If then there are slaves by nature, it is because there have been slaves against nature. Force made the first slaves, and their cowardice perpetuated the condition. Studies have shown, however, that the Contrat was not widely read before the Revolution.

Danton's original base of power was the Cordeliers district of Paris where he exercised great influence as section President. On the death of Louis XV, his successor confined Dubarry to a convent for two years. On her release, she resumed a life of luxury and lovers.

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Her many trips to England brougt her under the suspicion of the Revolutionary government; she was arrested, tried and executed at the age of Fabre is perhaps best known for two things: Inventing the names of the months and days of the Revolutionary calendar; and blithely passing out copies of his poems on his way to the gallows.

Twice in the French Revolution , Carlyle puts the scissors in the hands of Clotho, I know not on what authority. After the execution of the King, Ferson came to Paris in disguise to try to rescue the Queen, but with no success. Kellerman was imprisoned by Robespierre but survived the terror to become a Marshal of France under Napoleon and Duke of Valmy after the Restoration. The latter were spared because they served a vital public The determined, albeit selective destruction of the church archives at Montauban suggests the general contours of the surviving manuscript sources.

The registers of baptism, marriages and funerals are the most voluminous. Though they remain almost exclusively in manuscript form, recent developments make them increasingly accessible. If the demographic sources are relatively plentiful, the records of the deliberations of the consistories are decidedly sparse.

Relatively few survived the devastation associated with the Revocation. The documentation exists largely in manuscript form; only a handful of registers have been published. The manuscripts, moreover, are fragmentary and are widely scattered in archival repositories and libraries across France. Raymond Mentzer has recently published an inventory of the extant registers for the period between the early s, from which the earliest registers date, and the proscription of Protestantism in The remainder are located in the provinces, mostly in the various departmental and municipal archives, but also in the hands of local churches and private individuals.

One quarter of the registers are from the period prior to the Edict of Nantes, the remainder cover the years between and The oldest are from the s. BnF, Ms. No more than a tiny fraction of the consistory registers has been edited and published. More recently, Philip Benedict and Nicolas Fornerod have made available one of the earliest consistory registers, that of Le Mans from — The paucity of records for the colloquies, provincial synods and even the national synods is equally striking.

Colloquies and synods at every level in the French Reformed Churches had no permanent bureaucratic staff or offices. Their decisions were carefully recorded by scribes, but the acts were not published except for the national synods. Even then publication occurred much later, and on an unofficial and incomplete basis.

As a result, the surviving manuscript copies are scattered in a variety of repositories. In an attempt to draw the sources together and make them available in critical editions, a number of publication projects are underway. They include. Die, Dieulefit et Beaumont. Or il y avait plus de 70 consistoires dans la province. Grenoble Cote R Paris: Benedict and Fornerod, — John Quick ed. London: Jean Aymon ed. The Hague: Charenton —Loudun Geneva: Didier Boisson ed.

Anjou-Touraine-Maine — Geneva: Often the best sources for these documents are the consistorial registers of local churches wherein the decisions were occasionally recorded. Given the absence of support from the state in the development of the institutional structure of the Reformed Churches of France, consistories throughout the realm differed in their composition and function.

Still, the institutional flexibility of the consistory fit within the broader framework of the consistorial-synodal system which accorded the elders charge over the daily administration of the church. They were usually assisted by the deacons who had responsibility over the management of charitable assistance. The number and function of the elders and deacons varied from one church to another. There were ten elders and two deacons at Gallargues, and six elders and two deacons at Aimargues.

Some towns, Aigues-Mortes for instance, had no deacons. The Church at Pau had ten elders, but did not designate precise supervisory districts.

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Benedict and Fornerod eds. This quick overview makes clear the extent to which Reformed polity adapted to the size of the local community and its administrative traditions. Deacons and elders, lay persons who held crucial positions in keeping with the notion of the priesthood of all believers, were limited in their tenure. The members of these ministries were typically selected from among the heads of families within the community. In theory, they served an annual term, but in practice their charge could be renewed for longer periods, in some cases for three or four years, or even longer in smaller communities where the candidate pool was limited.

The consistory generally met in the temple, or somewhat exceptionally in a designated consistory chamber. Meetings occurred weekly in the larger cities, less often in rural churches, where much depended on the size of the community and the urgency of the matters to be discussed. Urban churches had salaried officials whose roles have yet to be examined thoroughly. They performed non-ministerial functions for which they were poorly paid. They were cantors and bell-ringers, who might also serve as caretakers for the temple.

He was responsible for the regular upkeep of the temple, and the maintenance of the registers of baptism, marriage, burial and conversion. Yet his principal function, which explains the name, was to inform individuals of their summons to appear before the consistory and to accompany them to the door of the chamber on the appointed day. Didier Poton and Raymond A. Mentzer Paris: , 95— The initial model was the Church of Geneva where the creation of supervisory districts dated from The Genevan ordinances of set their number at twelve.

An elder had responsibility for each district and was assisted by the dizeniers, who were assigned to the twenty-five dizaines, originally a military territorial arrangement that predated the Reformation. Together, the elders and dizeniers worked to settle endless neighborhood quarrels. At this same session, consistory members divided the town into ten districts for the purpose of close supervision of the faithful. The elders now corresponded to the highly symbolic number of Apostles, an arrangement that had long existed in Geneva. Guy Astoul and P.

Chareyre Montauban: , — As such, the new rendering allowed the Reformed Church to lay claim to this space and to imbue it with its own standards. This was the world of daily Christian life, which complemented the communal gathering in the temple to hear the preaching of the Word. This space became the indisputable everyday structure for morals control and the formation of the new Christian. This religious investment of public space served to sacralize the ordinary and as such sanctified the street.

They have focused on the development of a society in which the individual was subject to new standards decreed by an ever more powerful state even as the new churches imposed practices and behavior that represented a rupture with traditional customs. Within the framework of this double supervision, the handling of morals offenses—in excruciating detail and often in great number—made the consistory the most active agent in the construction of a modern mannered society. Didier Poton, Saint-Jean-de-Gardonnenque.

The individual, the family, and social groupings, deprived of other intercessors, were forced to conform to this new mold, the only one capable of bestowing upon them divine beneficence. The principal interest of the consistory was the moral supervision of society, the establishment of a fraternal Christian community, and the elimination of violent behavior. French consistories, which did not have the support of the secular authorities, could only impose ecclesiastical sanctions. They ranged, according to the national Discipline, from simple admonition to censure, and ultimately excommunication.

The consistorial procedure unfolded in four stages: the gathering of information, an acknowledgement of guilt by the sinner, administration of punishment, and finally penitential reparation. The process was fairly rapid in the case of a simple admonition followed by censure; it could be more protracted for grave offenses that involved suspension from the Supper. The first phase began when the consistory received a report that a transgression had occurred. The information could come directly from the elders or by rumor, often relayed by women.

Suzannah Lipscomb has shown that women, though excluded from holding ecclesiastical offices, could, as witnesses to Joel F. Harrington and H. Mentzer and Spicer, 44— The sinner received a stern warning never to repeat the offense or, if he or she denied fault, was told to reappear at a later date to be confronted by the witnesses to the misdeed. In most instances, the individual repented immediately and was subject to a simple censure. In the case of grievous failings, the consistory imposed a temporary suspension from the Supper. This could also be a preventative measure in instances where the inquiry into the matter had not yet concluded.

Depending upon the gravity and the degree of public knowledge of the transgression, the suspension could be private and pronounced within the consistory chambers, or public and announced from the pulpit on Sunday. The final phase was reparation, private or public depending upon the nature of the suspension. Integrated into the Reformed liturgy, the penitential ritual was meant as much to reconcile the sinner with the Church as to leave its mark on the spirit of the faithful, reaffirming the legitimacy of Reformed discipline and, in a larger sense, the Reformation itself.

This sort of excommunication generally lasted for no more than one or two celebrations of the Supper, an event which occurred four times a year. Following late-medieval practices,46 suspension was more often than not imposed when the sinner refused to make amends, resisted the consistory, and thereby rebelled against the authority of the Church. Full excommunication remained rare, representing only 3 per cent of the suspensions in the sample of southern French churches studied by Mentzer.

It possessed three instruments for the discharge of this latter task. The first was the register of deliberations which recorded the cases that had been discussed and the sanctions imposed. All of these procedures along with their written documentation had the double goal of reforming the faithful and presenting a united, sanctified community to the Creator.

The consistory sought to demonstrate that it had fulfilled its task as guardian of the flock and prevented the faults of a few from bringing divine judgment upon the entire community. The very first mission of consistories everywhere was to insure the passage from the old to the new Church, then when Catholicism was not completely supplanted, to prevent contact with former beliefs and practices, now considered impure and idolatrous. The elders watched, in particular, for those who continued to attend Mass and participate in other Catholic ceremonies, whether out of curiosity or through attraction to the renewed splendor initiated by Tridentine reforms.

They also labored to curb cross-confessional social Mentzer Kirksville, Mo. To thwart confessional contamination and further demographic weakening of a community that was already a minority, the consistory repeatedly denounced mixed marriages. His manifestations included blasphemous oaths invoking the devil, divination, white magic, poisonings and spells such as the notorious satanic ligature, a widely accepted late-sixteenth and early 17th century magical spell that was thought to doom a newly married couple to sterility.

Still, these admittedly rare affairs tend to figure in scholarly analyses because they were often referred to the synod where matters of general interest to the churches were discussed. The consistory was ever attentive to the family and the institution of marriage, suppressing attempts to break betrothal promises and marital engagements, and cracking down on illicit sexual affairs before and after marriage.

Extramarital liaisons only created household discord. The consistory spared no effort in its inquiries; multiple discussions and a variety of testimony, often highly detailed and colorful, lent these matters a prominent place in consistorial proceedings. They also sought to insure that the family cell was a pacified and tranquil space. Thus, the elders worked to end disputes between husbands and wives, and between parents and children; they chastised violent spouses and strongly discouraged harsh treatment of servants.

The desire for familial peace and harmony was part of a broader goal to establish public order. Didier Boisson and Yves Krumenacker eds. Etudes sur les relations entre protestants et catholiques dans la France moderne Lyon: Laurence Croq and David Garrioch Rennes: , 97— and — The pacifying activity of the consistory extended to the whole of society and existed throughout Europe.

In the latter instances, 22 per cent of suspensions from the Supper resulted from violent comportment. This was again the case in the rural world of southern France where 41 per cent of censures were for fighting and other forms of combative conduct. To resist reconciliation was to court suspension from the Supper.

The difficult task of reconciling feuding persons, in which the consistory became the restorer of offended honor, was a sphere where it enjoyed considerable success and where its authority was least contested. Consistories, however, did not operate uniformly in the realm of morals control. A comparative study of the consistories of Languedoc and the German Palatinate demonstrated that the targets of censure were dependent upon local habits and could vary from one place to another. Sparks Columbia, sc: , 45— The power relationships within urban society could also mean that practices were differentiated according to time and place.

Accordingly, dancing, affectation in dress, and games were often behaviors attributed to the elite and might well have been considered a matter of contestation by artisans and members of the legal professions who frequently served as elders in the urban setting. Finally, it would seem that the condemnation of games was a phenomenon of the latethcentury, while the campaign against dancing was strongest in the early 17th and then lessened several decades later.

As for consistorial interest in magical practices, they should be understood as part of the wider upsurge of witch hunts across Europe in the late lateth and early 17th centuries. These observations of course raise questions of whether the cases recorded in the consistory registers are representative of larger social patterns and how historians ought to interpret the content of the registers in their chronological dimension. Quantitative studies of the content of the consistory registers suggest an evolution toward fewer censures.

The trend is perhaps a reflection of the adaptation of the consistory to its institutional environment as well as new, more efficient forms of control. The development appears to have had a double dynamic, moving principally in the direction of lending pastors greater authority, but also toward heads of household who were given new responsibilities over their members.

The consistory seems to have accorded less importance to morals offenses, which from now on were resolved in private, excepting prominent persons and theology students whose transgressions demanded public resolution in order to set an example. In this regard, the many works authored by Pastor Paul Ferry of Metz are a prime example. Both works went through many editions. In France, as in Switzerland and Germany,63 pastors in visiting their fold reminded families and, in particular, heads of household of their responsibility for domestic piety. In the educational sphere, pastors had a primary role.

This transformation of consistorial activity bears witness to a redefinition not only of institutional functioning, but also of the edification of the entire Church, to the point that Fred van Lieburg and others, Maurice Daumas Orthez: , — These and similar published materials can be consulted through the Post-Reformation Digital Library www.

Ozment, When Fathers Ruled. Books Have Their Own Destiny, eds. Fragonard and M. Assistance to the less fortunate members of the Church was an activity in the French consistories that, contrary to developments in the Netherlands or in Switzerland, took second place only to morals control. It was, of course, vital that funds earmarked for the poor be spent only on those who were worthy of assistance; aid to the impoverished could not become a pretext for idleness. At Loudun, management of financial matters represented of the 3, recorded actions of the consistory, or 20 per cent of its total activity in the years between and These financial concerns grew to fully half of recorded activity during the s, and became the principal undertaking twenty years later.

The development hardly left time for the elders to attend to misbehavior. The competition from the Catholic Church in the domain of social welfare and the concern to avoid abjurations in the face of a Tridentine Catholicism that sought to regain lost ground may also help to explain these developments. Nonetheless, the exercise of charity remained a means for supervising the weakest members of the community by conditioning the receipt of assistance upon obedience to the moral standards established by ecclesiastical discipline.

Specialists in the French Reformed tradition had long concentrated their efforts on institutional accounts69 or the history of local churches. Fred W. Graham Kirksville, Mo.


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Paris: — As we have noted, the religious transformations associated with the Reformation involved far more than an altered set of theological tenets or the introduction of new modes of prayer and liturgical practice. The developments also meant a careful reordering and supervision of the entire community. This was a monumental attempt to translate belief and ideology into a system of everyday attitudes and practices. Assessing individual and collective responses has been challenging. Scholars have adopted a number of methodological approaches in exploring the issues; and while the synodal institutions have not been ignored, attention thus far has focused primarily on the consistory.

Studies that utilize quantitative methods were among the first and most enduring. The goal of the consistory, Garrisson argued, was the religious and moral transformation of the individual through religious instruction and edification as well as the reform of everyday life. By quantifying these activities she sought to measure the impact and evolution of the disciplinary initiative undertaken by local Protestant communities and their churches.

This perspective obviously accentuated the consistory as a morals tribunal. Towards the end of the s, two doctoral theses presented at the University of Montpellier employed quantitative methods to explore long-term consistorial action. See also her comparative study of consistorial activity in Languedoc and the Palatinate undertaken with Bernard Vogler.

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They cover more than one hundred and twenty years, beginning in and ending in Nearly all the proceedings, dutifully recorded by a trained scribe, have survived. Only the deliberations from — have been lost. Careful use of serial data allowed Chareyre to trace the evolution of consistorial concerns. As previously noted, after the pastors and elders were less preoccupied with behavioral matters. Their attention turned increasingly to poor relief and the confessional struggle with the Catholics.

Poton also had access to an impressive series of consistory registers from Saint-Jean-du-Gard, embracing almost eighty years from to He too utilized quantitative analysis to reveal a slow but troublesome transformation in consistorial activity. Early endeavors to correct moral failings gave way over the course of the 17th century to political preoccupations and attempts to safeguard the Church from destruction.

Others since have pursued similar, though not always equally ambitious projects. He subsequently published a quantitative analysis of excommunication for ten Reformed churches in southern France. The data bank also yielded valuable information regarding demographic trends at Loudun and hence the delicate balance between Protestants and Catholics in this bi-confessional town.

The demographic realities, in turn, help to explain certain aspects of consistorial activity. The quantitative methodology employed by Garrisson, Chareyre, Poton, Mentzer, Bezzina and others has shown great promise. Still, it is not without risk. Judith Pollmann, in a celebrated article detailing Church discipline at the Dutch city of Utrecht during the s, raised serious questions about the reliability, meaning and value of these quantitative studies. Astonishingly, the Reformed Church of Utrecht kept no record of roughly 70 per cent of the disciplinary cases that it handled, thus casting doubt on the assumption that the records of deliberations are representative of consistorial activity.

Again, the exchange centered on the relevance and limitations of quantitative analysis for assessing consistorial interest and endeavor. In her Oxford dissertation and several published articles, Lipscomb has explored the manner in which the Reformed disciplinary system offered women unexpected opportunities to exercise their influence. Female communication networks could readily be deployed to insure that the consistory received information aimed at restoring the honor and reputation of a falsely accused woman.

Philippe Chareyre and Raymond A. The extraordinary richness of the documentation, growing body of secondary literature, and fresh interpretative perspectives suggest the diverse array of promising possibilities for future research. How did the personal objectives of the faithful differ from those of Church authorities? To what extent did wives and mothers see the consistory as a means to exercise a measure of control over their husbands and children?

Did churches, consistories and synods act as agents for the codification of social values such as honor, status and virtue? Did the concerns exhibited by pastors, elders and deacons mirror the overall realities of society? Or were they simply the focused preoccupations of Church authorities? Was ecclesiastical and social discipline a system imposed by the elite of the community? Or was it an occasion for negotiation among different social groups?

Finally and perhaps most importantly, how did a minority religion and its institutions function within a bi-confessional, indeed predominantly Catholic world? Was coexistence an illusion? Was the maintenance of Reformed confessional identity and avoidance of contaminating contact with Catholicism, through mixed marriages for instance, impossible?

These and other, yet to be formulated questions await future scholars of the Reformation in France. With the support of successive national synods these three texts became the common doctrinal and liturgical standard for the French Reformed Churches and French Protestants, even after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes At the beginning of the 17th century, demands for change were expressed in the synods, and other catechisms and forms of prayer were used in the Reformed Churches of France.

These might have modified slightly the meaning and use of the text of the Geneva Psalter, but it was not replaced until the first decades of the 18th century. The aim of the pastors was to present the king, assumed to be misinformed, with the confession of faith of those Frenchmen stigmatized as heretics. They also sought to assure the doctrinal unity of all the Reformed churches scattered through the kingdom. The text they adopted had 40 articles and was almost a duplicate of a shorter version that Calvin had sent from Geneva; it was largely his own work.

The 40 articles recognizably possessed the structure Calvin had adopted for the revised edition of his Institutes of the Christian Religion, composed during the winter of —59 in four parts. The Knowledge of God the Creator. The Knowledge of God the Redeemer in Christ. The Way in which we receive the Grace of Christ. What Benefits Come to Us from It? What Effects Follow? In English translation, Philip Schaff, ed. Grand Rapids, Mich. A starting point for the decisions of the national synods is John Quick ed. London: ; and Jean Aymon ed.

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McNeill, trans. Ford Lewis Battles 2 vols. Philadelphia: It is the place where the Word of God is received and where there is the use of the sacraments an echo of the Augsburg Confession. The pastors are in principle equal, under the unique bishop Jesus Christ, with equality of the Churches as a corollary art. The Calvinist model of the Church was based on a plurality of offices, collegial, not hierarchical, and elective. Baptism art. Although he be in heaven until he comes to judge all the earth, still we believe that by the secret and incomprehensible power of his Spirit he feeds and strengthens us with the substance of his body and of his blood.

Paris: We hold then that we must obey their laws and statutes, customs, taxes and other dues, and bear the yoke of subjection with a good and free will, even if they are unbelievers, provided that the sovereign empire of God remains intact [Acts 4: 19]. Therefore we detest all those who would like to reject authority, to establish community and confusion of property, and overthrow the order of justice art. The confession of faith thus ends with a protestation of almost unlimited political obedience, underlined by an attack on Anabaptists.

Thus, it emphasized the conformity of Reformed doctrine to that of the universal Catholic Church, the Church of the Fathers, both in a profession of Nicene orthodoxy and in a denunciation of heresies. The mention art. On the other hand, polemics against the Catholic Church were muted being explicit only in art. Intended to be presented to King Henry ii, the Confession of Faith of the Reformed Churches had to wait until the regency of Catherine de Medici, who in favored a policy of religious concord.

On two occasions during , it was officially presented to King Charles ix in connection with Huguenot political petitions. For Beza, however, engaged in political and ecclesiastical diplomacy with the Lutherans in the Empire, the absence of a royal signature weakened the French Confession of Faith. This was why it was important for him to have it publicly authenticated at the national synod held at La Rochelle in in the presence of the princes of the blood.

Besides its apologetic function in a context of confessional conflict or agreement, every confession of faith had a function of internal doctrinal regulation. In this case, this function was demonstrated by several practices. The first usage of the confession, which the Discipline anticipated already in , focused on doctrinal control of the ministers. The second national synod of Poitiers in extended this provision to the elders and deacons, in other words to the members of the consistories that regulated the lives of the faithful in the local congregations. The synod of extended the requirement to professors of theology and the schoolmasters.

The French Confession of Faith, also called the Confession of Faith of La Rochelle after the synod that confirmed it, was not only the standard for preaching from the pulpits and for teaching in the schools and academies, but also that for the Discipline of the churches, which the various synods elaborated and the consistories put into effect. Beginning with the synod of , a reading of the confession of faith was the first order of business at the beginning of each national synod, to verify and affirm the agreement of the deputies of the churches.

In the course of these periodical reviews by the national synods, clarifications and updates were proposed as late as , but they were almost always rejected. The new articles that the pastors and professors had to sign in the future were considered an interpretative appendix to the unchanged Confession of Faith.

Although formal adherence to the 40 articles of the Confession of Faith was not required for all the faithful, it was nevertheless presumed. Placed at the end of the Genevan Psalter, the Confession of Faith was meant to be read repeatedly. Was this distillation of the Institutes of the Christian Religion, like that masterful volume, not a guide for the reading of Scripture?

It was a catechism designed according to question and response, a method pioneered by Luther in his Small Catechism of , targeting above all children. Here the play of questions by the minister or teacher and answers by the child is set forth in detail. It is designed for use in the weekly collective catechism sessions on Sunday at noon, and followed an annual cycle. Prayer, adding a fourth section on the sacraments—baptism and the Supper.

The goal of the catechism lessons was not only memorization, but informed assimilation of the contents of the faith. The child was addressed directly, beginning with an initial question about the meaning of human life: Minister: What is the chief end of human life? Child: To know God. Why do you say this?

Because he created us and placed us into the world to be glorified in us…without this our condition is worse than that of the brute beasts. But what is the true and right knowledge of God? When one knows him in order to honor him. Since the catechism was addressed only to the Reformed faithful children as well as adults for their instruction and edification, its concerns were above all pedagogical. Yet instruction did not exclude all polemic, all the more because the question-and-answer format easily lent itself to doctrinal controversy.

The questions were often formulations of the objections of Catholic controversialists. Was the Supper then not established to make an oblation [sacrifice] of the body of Jesus to God his Father? Because he, himself alone, has this privilege as he is the eternal sacrificer Hebrews But he commands us not to offer his body, but only to receive it Matthew You do not understand then, either that the body is enclosed in the bread or the blood in the chalice? But on the contrary to truly receive the sacrament we must raise our hearts to heaven, where Jesus Christ is in glory with his Father…and not look for him in these corruptible elements.

It was the only one to appear in the Psalter. It argued methodically, with the aid of numerous citations from Scripture, and when appropriate from experience or reason. And again, while proclaiming salvation through faith alone, he also included discussion of works. The first synods of the Desert, under the guidance of Antoine Court — , recommended its use, resulting in numerous reprintings at Geneva. Ostervald — It was introduced into France clandestinely, at first as separate pieces printed in short collections of prayers, then beginning in it was inserted into the psalter of Marot and Beza and carried in the baggage of ministers coming from Geneva.

Although not formally adopted by the first national synods, the liturgy of Geneva, along with the psalms, was confirmed by the synod of Montpellier in as the common and unalterable liturgy of the Reformed Churches of France. While the Form of Prayer left the officiating ministers some latitude, the synods were careful to preserve this common system by restraining any local attempts at modification.

The national synod of Loudun of barely yielded to demands for the modernization of the language of the psalms, which was considered outmoded. If the Church was, as the Reformers described it, the assembly where the Word of God was proclaimed and preached, and the sacraments administered according to the Word, its highlight was the Sunday service. Die Abendmahlsliturgie der Reformationskirchen in Jahrhundert, ed. Irmgard Pahl Freiburg: , — It ordinarily included no Eucharistic celebration.

The pastor began with the service with an invocation and a prayer for confession of sins, adopted from a prayer in the Strasbourg liturgy: Lord God, eternal and all-powerful father, we confess and acknowledge without pretense before your holy Majesty that we are poor sinners, conceived and born in iniquity and corruption, inclined to evil, unable to do good. The singing of a psalm by the assembly came next and then the sermon, preceded by the reading of supporting verses and of a prayer composed by the minister.

The Form of Prayer said nothing about the sermon, but the Geneva practice, which was recommended by the national synod of Sainte-Foy in , For the social, cultural, and material impact of preaching in the language of the people, and more broadly for the reception and effects of Reformed liturgical norms in France, see Raymond A. Lee P. Wandel Kirksville, mo. It was an exegetical commentary extending over several months.

In the course of the 17th century, this practice competed with offering sermons on particular topics, a practice authorized by the national synod of Charenton in The pastor was free to choose his text, specifying a topic as the subject of his sermon, particularly on days when celebrating the Supper.

The national synod of Paris recommended it in as a common rule for the French Reformed Churches. Maria-Cristina Pitassi Paris: , 57— The minister then distributed the bread and the cup to the faithful, who processed to the Communion table. The use of the language of the people, the distribution of both the bread and the wine to the people, and the instructions denying the doctrine of transubstantiation and the sacrifice carried out by the priest for the salvation of the living and the dead were all tended to desacralize the principal sacrament of the Church.

Lewis Bayly, available in French by Apart from the Sundays for celebration of the Supper, three of which corresponded to the three great Christian feasts, all Sundays were the same. No traditional feast is mentioned in the Form of Prayer or in the calendars sometimes printed at the beginning of the Geneva Psalter. No special liturgy was provided for Easter, Pentecost or Christmas, even if on those days the preacher reminded people of the great events of salvation.

These were services of weekly prayers in connection with times of When the synods were later consulted, they hesitated to encourage them, leaving them at the discretion of the local churches. Calvin had justified the practice of fasts in times of calamity in imitation of the prophet Joel , on condition they were interpreted as exercises supporting prayers for repentance and not as meritorious acts.

The solemnity of the ceremony was emphasized. The marriage liturgy had its place in the Form of Prayer. It was to be announced at the beginning of the sermon on Sunday or a weekday and was to begin with a discussion of marriage and its treatment in Genesis and as reiterated in the Gospels and the Pauline epistles. After inquiries to verify the volition of the engaged couple and the absence of any impediment, the minister presided over the exchange of vows.

It will suffice that a declaration explaining the office to which he is being ordained should be made by one of the ministers, and then that prayers and. In reestablishing a pastoral succession linked to the early church, the imposition of hands acquired special meaning for the clandestine and scattered French churches. A formula for the imposition of hands, drafted by the pastor Antoine de Chandieu, was adopted by the synod of La Rochelle in and added to the Discipline. In France, the Reformed manuals for consoling the sick, with many editions in the 17th century, were addressed to pastors as well as to elders and the faithful in the countryside where no pastor was close at hand.

Like the liturgical collections produced by the Swiss Reformed differing on this point from the Lutheran Reformation , the Form of Prayer is silent on the subject of funerals. This silence voiced a radical desacralization of death. Prayers and Masses for the dead were rejected by Luther and the other reformers as practices derived from a misinterpretation of the Gospel the Mass as a sacrifice, penitence as a work of satisfaction, purgatory as the site of exchanges between the living and the souls of the dead. In the Lutheran churches, Masses for the dead were replaced by funeral sermons, justified as consolation for the living, purged of any proposed intervention for the salvation of souls.

Beginning in the s, two national synods echoed demands for the relaxation of the Discipline to permit a pastoral presence at burials. These contained varying lists of Scriptural citations and prayers, to be chosen and adapted according to the concrete situation. Mentzer and Andrew Spicer Cambridge: , — Starting with these models of prayer, fervent Reformed even constructed their own family liturgy.

The son in talking to his father describes the family worship: You have established this order in your family, that morning and evening you have me read two or three chapters [from Scripture]… But before beginning the morning reading, I offer this prayer… Afterwards I begin reading, we sing a psalm or the last three verses of Psalm 50, and you have us note the most important doctrines encountered there.

After this, the father will read the Scriptural text discussed in the selected sermon. They emphasized the edification of the faithful more than instruction, and prayer more than the sermon. Undoubtedly, the prohibition of all expression of the Reformed religion in France after contributed to prolonging the use of the old Geneva Psalter, both in the Desert and in the numerous churches of the Refuge.

For the Huguenots, deprived of temples and pastors or of their native land itself, this small book, combining the Confession of Faith and the Geneva Catechism, the Form of Prayer, and the metrical psalms, took the place of temples and pastors or even of their homeland. Brousson, ministre et martyr du saint Evangile Utrecht: , — But the reaction organized by the civil and ecclesiastical authorities with the support of the parlements quickly convinced even the most optimistic that divine providence would have to be aided by human effort.

See also Robert M. Geneva: Much has been written about the crucial role of the mothers and wives of prominent men of the kingdom in their conversion to the Reformed religion. This is the case with Louise de Montmorency, sister of the constable, who was the source of two of the most enduring branches of the Reformed nobility. But he waited until to profess it publicly.

He did not actually commit himself to the Huguenot cause until after the beginning of the civil wars. Madeleine de Mailly, a widow by and half-sister of the Coligny brothers by the same mother, seems to have declared herself earlier, although little can be stated with certainty.

We do not know when or under what circumstances the latter first manifested interest in the Reformed religion. Still, we do know that he passed through Geneva in October when returning from Italy and that he heard a sermon there. As a prince of the blood his conversion was of capital importance for the political awakening of 2 Nancy L.

See also the essay by Amanda Eurich in this volume. On the other hand, her husband Antoine de Bourbon, king of Navarre and first prince of the blood, whose conversion might have disposed royal policy to favor the Reformed camp, after long hesitation ended by reaffirming his loyalty to Catholicism. His genuine sympathy for the evangelical movement was trumped by his political ambition. While it focuses almost entirely on the provinces north of the Loire, it allows us to identify members of the upper and middle nobility by name and to set at more than the number of gentilshommes willing to serve under the Huguenot banner.

Eros and Sexuality in the History of Western Esotericism

It also evidences the support from persons of distinction, some of whom held offices in the service of the king in Picardy, Normandy, Poitou, Saintonge, Angoumois and the Ile-de-France. Historians have discussed at length the basic motivations that led to these religious changes. The debates have generally set the proponents of sincere adherence to the Reformed faith against those who argue for actions guided by political or economic interest.

On the other hand, among the middling nobility it is probable that ties of clientage and personal fidelity played a more determinative role. Among the converts, those closest to the king were available to serve as vectors for the grievances of their coreligionists and to form a sort of pressure group at the court. This new course of action was suggested by the monarchy itself, which in an edict of 16 March , authorized the Reformed subjects of the king to address petitions to him. It was not until 23 August , when an assembly of notables was meeting at Fontainebleau, that Coligny inaugurated the new procedure by presenting Francis ii and Catherine de Medici with two petitions submitted by the Reformed of Normandy and Picardy.

They decided to establish a permanent deputation from the Reformed Churches to the king. While this group was composed about half-and-half of men from the legal professions and members of the nobility, it was invariably the latter who were designated to speak for the delegation.

The outbreak of the first civil war in March led to the dispersion of this deputation, whose members left the court. While these attempts suffered a variety of fates, it should be noted that in the Estates of Pontoise a number of deputies from the nobility and the third estate advanced political claims similar to those defined in Poitiers. This activism, designed to influence royal policy in favor of the Reformed, was only one aspect of the Huguenot struggle.

Beginning in , there was also a gradual change in the polemical literature penned by Reformed authors. The full text has been lost. See Hugues Daussy, Le parti huguenot, 44— These early stages in the politicization of Reformed propaganda became clearer in the waning months of Several works with distinct political content, which are known only from later descriptions,14 were circulated throughout the kingdom.

They constructed for the first time a coherent systematic argument opposing the Guise activity that they sought to condemn. Some months later, between March and July , the development of this political argument reached a decisive stage with the publication of a dozen works justifying the Conspiracy of Amboise. The themes advanced in —59 were now repeated and developed. This interpretation permitted the Huguenots to excuse the sovereign from all responsibility for the royal policy hostile toward Reformed Protestants carried on by his perverse counselors, who were accused of usurping his power and reigning in his place.

See the detailed analysis of these works in Daussy, Le parti huguenot, — Accordingly, their determination to free the monarch from those who were forcing him to act against his will justified their recourse to arms. The fact that the Guises were originally from Lorraine, which was outside the kingdom, and were therefore foreigners was also underscored in order to discredit them. Pursuant to an argument that had now been Complete list and detailed analysis of these works in Daussy, Le parti huguenot, —; — During the second and third civil wars—between September and August —more than fifty pamphlets with strong political connotations emerged from the Reformed presses.

It was no longer only the Lorrainers, but also the Italians who benefited from royal favor thanks to the queen mother, herself a Florentine. Parallel to the development of this combative thinking, a genuine political organization soon developed. By , its creation was essential for the Huguenots, since their ecclesiastical institutions, which were not intended to play a political role, could not continue to provide the necessary impetus in this domain.

Still, the transfer of political initiative to decision-making bodies separate from the consistorial-synodal system was accomplished only gradually. In initiating the dispatch of deputies from the French Churches to the court in March , the national synod of Poitiers had laid the first foundation block of a Reformed political organization on a national scale. In the following months, all the energy of the nascent Huguenot party was absorbed by the Estates-General of Pontoise and the Colloquy of Poissy.

But in the provinces, and especially in the southern reaches, Reformed Protestants had to confront the increasingly violent aggressiveness of their Catholic neighbors. For a complete list and detailed analysis of these works see Daussy, Le parti huguenot, —71; —8. At the very end of , he asked that a list be made of forces that could be mobilized immediately by the Huguenots in case of war. Meetings were More ambitious was the provincial synod held in Paris on 16 and 17 September It announced the principle of mutual aid among the Reformed from the different synodal provinces, always within a strict framework of obedience to the king.

This political organization had two levels. They envisioned carrying out the struggle on the scale of the kingdom as a whole. They were not strictly speaking new institutions, created ex nihilo, but a confessional version of the provincial Synodes provinciaux et autres documents, eds. Philip Benedict and Nicolas Fornerod Geneva: , — In Languedoc, they were also, at a lower territorial level, confessionalized adaptations of the local estates of Vivarais, as well as of assemblies for tax assessment and local assemblies held in the civil dioceses dominated by the Huguenots, especially that of Castres in Upper Languedoc.

The study of these assemblies remains fragmentary,27 as the incomplete and scattered documentation remains largely neglected. On the political front, the first decisions concerned the command organization in the areas dominated by the Reformed.

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In the financial area, the assemblies took many decisions in order to mobilize their resources. Confiscations and taxes accumulated, allowing them to gather large sums of money that attracted the envy of the great personages of the The author of this chapter is currently studying this political system.

For the assemblies before see Daussy, Le parti huguenot, passim. Philippe Chareyre and Hugues Daussy Rennes: List and detailed analysis in Daussy, Le parti huguenot, —86; —8; —8. The latter, ensconced at La Rochelle during the third war, negotiated with the assemblies of Languedoc for the payment of subsidies to finance their troops. This did not appear out of nowhere, however, since the presence of a marginal and subterranean current of thought in the French evangelical movement was not a novelty. During the first civil war, attacks and iconoclastic depredations of royal tombs and effigies had been reported.

If he shirked them and acted as a tyrant he could be dethroned. La violence au temps des troubles de religion, vers —vers , vol. Unanimously condemned by the Lyon Reformed pastors, with Pierre Viret at their head, it was so violent that Soubise ordered it burned and all those possessing it condemned to death. This was an assertion that the Reformed, careful to clear themselves of any inclination to sedition, could not possibly endorse.

Beginning in October and as the result of the two successive wars that disturbed the kingdom until the Peace of Saint-Germain, Huguenot political ideas were pushed farther along the road to radicalism. He thus affirmed that princes are de facto deprived of their authority when they cease to serve God and that they should not thereafter be considered princes. Not only should 34 Charles Du Moulin, Apologie de M. Quarante-sept sermons de M.

Even if this group of authors generally agreed in reaffirming that Charles ix was not responsible for the tyrannical acts committed in his name, mention of royal innocence gradually tended to disappear and be replaced by warnings. Several pieces in verse were more menacing and seemed to have had the audacity to address the king directly. Here again the theories advanced were innovative, since the sacred character of the sovereign and his power were brought into question. The author of the Requeste et remonstrance du peuple did not hesitate to state that historically the people preceded the king, whom they freely consented to recognize because God had inspired them with the desire for obedience.

Thus, royalty was not divinely delegated. The idea of consent as the source of monarchical power appeared again in one of the most famous pamphlets, published at La Rochelle during the third civil war. This contract, an agreement between the king 38 39 Kingdon Geneva: In virtue of that original engagement, the subjects were required to obey the king and the king to look after his subjects. These treatises redefined the relationship of obedience to a prince who tyrannized his subjects.

The basis of the argument was the assertion of the sovereignty the people as a body represented by the Estates-General and not of the populace in general. The people have the power to choose their kings and to depose them by virtue of a double contract. This was the principle of the double covenant. The second contract imposed unequal obligations.

The people were required to obey their prince only when the latter respected the engagements he had made to them. However, there was no question of authorizing tyrannicide against what These works do not reject monarchy, but rather the gradual slide of the method of governing the kingdom toward the solitary exercise of monarchical power.

It developed rapidly with the reestablishment of the political assemblies, which had not met since the Peace of Saint-Germain. A more complex system quickly emerged. The first assemblies that included deputies from several provinces met at the end of the winter of The practice seems to have been inaugurated at Anduze in February Vexin, and the Pays de Caux also sent deputies. At Montauban in , only six deputies out of thirty-seven had come from north of the Loire. Ten years later at Sainte-Foy, the delegates from the more northerly provinces of the kingdom constituted 50 per cent of the assembly.

It marked the completion of the evolution of a system for the effective representation of all the Reformed Churches of France. Over the course of the nine general assemblies held between February and August the first decisions aimed at establishing an effective Reformed political organization were taken. More importantly, the term seems to imply, by analogy with the United Provinces that were established in with the division of the Spanish Netherlands, that the French Reformers planned this political system as a basis for secession.

This was not the case. All the texts originating with the political assemblies that met after December reaffirmed the obedience of the French Reformers to their king and their inclusion in the kingdom.

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