Tuesday 4th August 2015

Home » Frontpage » Currently Reading:

Revisiting The Restoration Of The Jesuits

August 6, 2014 Frontpage No Comments

By RAY CAVANAUGH

Many assume that Jesuits have existed without much official opposition. Such has not been the case. This August 7 will mark the 200th anniversary of the issuing of the papal bull, Sollicitudo omnium ecclesiarum, which restored the Jesuit power that had been suppressed for some 41 years. The post-Restoration decades would see a mighty rebound, as Jesuit institutions — including many in the U.S. — began to flourish.
Established in 1540 by Ignatius of Loyola, the Society of Jesus consisted of members known as Jesuits who each desired “to serve as a soldier of God.” By the 1750s, there were over 20,000 Jesuits across the world.
Aside from converting countless souls to Catholicism, they were an intellectual force, having founded several hundred seminaries and colleges worldwide; they were also the preeminent scholastic influence in Europe.
With such power, however, came controversy and enemies. Anti-Jesuit sentiment was championed by leading philosophers of the Enlightenment era, which bloomed as the 1700s progressed. Aside from this opposition in the intellectual climate, Jesuits were viewed as meddling too much in governmental affairs and not deferring sufficiently to the European monarchs.
God’s Soldiers by Jonathan Wright tells how the first nation to turn against the Jesuits was Portugal. There was already tension between the Jesuits and the Spanish and Portuguese empires over the handling of Jesuit settlements in South America. Aside from conflict with the leadership, the Society irked much of the regular population when, in the aftermath of an immensely destructive 1755 earthquake, Jesuits blamed the event on the nation’s sinful climate.
In 1758, there was an unsuccessful assassination attempt on King Joseph of Portugal. The Jesuits were blamed for this act, and in February of the following year, the government took severe action.
All of the country’s Jesuits were restricted to three of their buildings, and their other properties went to auction. April 1759 saw the official banishment of the Society; over 1,000 Jesuits were exiled, and 250 were sent to prison.
After Portugal, came France. There, the monarchy had grown tired of disputing with the Society over its handling of French territories in the Caribbean. Inspired by the recent Portuguese turn of events, the French government declared in March 1762 that the Society had never held genuine legal status.
Many Jesuit works were cast into the fire, and the closure of all Jesuit schools began. Though the Society was officially dissolved in 1764, the terms were not quite as harsh as in Portugal, and ex-Jesuits were allowed to remain in the country.
After France, came Spain. Following a substandard harvest in 1766, the people of Madrid began to riot, lashing out against the increasing cost of bread. Amidst this climate of tumult and misery, the Jesuits became a scapegoat. In January 1767, Spain dissolved the Society and also expelled all of its members from Spanish America. Within one year, Naples and Sicily followed suit with their own official dissolutions.
As each leading Catholic monarchy had dissolved the Society, a universal Jesuit suppression seemed imminent. In Rome, Pope Clement XIV tried to delay any such suppression, but his effort was futile. Jean Lacouture, author of Jesuits: A Multibiography, writes how in 1773 Pope Clement XIV, “jostled, harassed, and threatened” by the worldly powers that be, succumbed to their wishes and formally ended the Jesuit Society by issuing the papal bull Dominus ac Redemptor.
There had been scant Jesuit resistance in Western Europe, where many members seemed resigned to the turn of events. However, there was passive rebellion among many Jesuits in faraway lands who, deciding that they were too geographically distant to be effectively disciplined, simply ignored the fact that their Society had been dissolved and went on with their work as if nothing had occurred.
Even in Western Europe, not every banished Jesuit met a grim fate; many instead joined a different religious order. Additionally, a number of former Portuguese Jesuits found their way to China. It appeared the Society had spread its tentacles too far to be fully extinguished.
Furthermore, two non-Catholic monarchs — Frederick the Great of Prussia and Catherine the Great of Russia — helped indirectly ensure the survival of the Jesuits in Europe; as these monarchs proudly refused to acknowledge any papal authority, Jesuits were allowed to ignore the Pope’s official dissolution.
Of course, the Jesuit question did not remain a top priority; plenty was going on in Europe — such as the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars — during the four decades of official Jesuit suppression. Some war-weary Catholics wondered if the suppressed Society might have had a mitigating effect on all of the bloodshed and terror. Perhaps mankind’s Enlightenment was not all it was advertised to be.
The 19th century began with a new Pope, Pius VII, in Rome. He had long wanted to restore the Jesuits, but felt he did not have sufficient authority until August 7, 1814, when he issued a papal bull reading: “With one voice the Catholic world demands the reestablishment of the Company of Jesus. . . . We have decided to do today what we would have wished to do at the beginning of our pontificate.”
Thus began the official Jesuit Restoration.
In the Restoration’s first years, things seemed somewhat less than auspicious, as almost every returning Jesuit was a very old man. Soon enough, though, younger members were recruited, and a full-fledged recovery was underway. The Society gathered particularly good momentum in the United States, where 22 Jesuit colleges were established in the 19th century.
Among the most notable of these institutions was Boston College, where a conference was held this June to “shed new light on neglected aspects” of the Jesuit Restoration. Though the Jesuits, like many religious orders, have seen a decline in recent decades, these “soldiers of God” continue to serve in well over 100 countries: Only the Apocalypse could suppress them now.

+    +    +

(Ray Cavanaugh has written for such publications as Celtic Life, History Today, and New Oxford Review.)

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Untitled 3

Pope FrancisAn Open Letter To His Holiness Pope Francis      Given the controversy and confusion surrounding the 2014 Synod on the Family, the staff of The Wanderer and its supporters thought it appropriate to address Pope Francis with an open letter . . .

Democrats Defeat Senate Effort to De-Fund Planned Parenthood After It Sells Aborted Babies

Senate Democrats today defeated an effort to revoke taxpayer funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business by filibustering the bill and preventing a vote on it. Republicans were unable to secure the 60 voted needed to invoke cloture and stop…Continue Reading

With Apologies to Donald Trump for the Crazy ‘Nativist’ Rant of Cardinal Dolan

This week, Cardinal Timothy Dolan took to the New York Daily News to write an incoherent and defamatory political hit piece against Donald Trump. As a Catholic priest, I can only say it is embarrassing to have a Cardinal so blatantly and unfairly trying…Continue Reading

Promote the common good and give workers a raise, Catholic leaders tell Congress

Washington D.C., Jul 31, 2015 / 05:31 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholic leaders are calling on Congress to raise the minimum wage, for the good of low-wage workers and their families. “An economy thrives only when it is centered on the…Continue Reading

Catholic Colleges Must Regain the Art of Temperate Drinking, Says Author

July 30, 2015, at 2:40 PM  |  By Justin Petrisek  | Catholic colleges need to be mindful of the moral and spiritual state of their students, said Dr. Michael Foley, associate professor of patristics at Baylor University, in an interview…Continue Reading

Last Catholic priest at US base in Antarctica leaves post

A Catholic priest who served at the U.S.-operated McMurdo Station in Antarctica was told he will have to leave his post due to declining attendance and budget cuts. Father Dan Doyle, who lives in Christchurch, New Zealand, would spend summers…Continue Reading

Jamestown Excavation Unearths Four Bodies and a Possible Catholic Reliquary

Could a mysterious box unearthed in historic Jamestown, Virginia, the first permanent English settlement in North America, point to a Catholic connection with the foundation of the United States of America? While Spanish and Portuguese exploration, settlement and conquest of…Continue Reading

Catholic officials, others react to Boy Scouts’ decision to allow openly gay leaders

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The top leaders of the National Catholic Committee on Scouting have made an uneasy peace with the Boy Scouts of America’s decision July 27 to allow openly gay troop leaders and employees to serve in their ranks…Continue Reading

The Remnant REALLY? . . . Is This How We Support Fellow Catholics Battling A Cause We Should All Be Behind?

Planned Parenthood Hires PR Firm to Run Damage Control After It’s Exposed Selling Aborted Babies

The Planed Parenthood abortion business is so desperate to put out the public relations fires that have developed in the wake of it being caught numerous times selling the body parts of aborted babies that it has hired a top…Continue Reading

More than Half of Young Catholic Families Are Latino Despite Recent Decline

More than half of young Catholic families (53 percent) identify themselves as Latino or Hispanic compared with 32 percent of all Catholics, according to a recent survey. Could the presence of Hispanic families in the Catholic Church indicate Latino congregational…Continue Reading

New York Catholic churches closing after decades of service

Parishioners in New York are losing their churches as the Catholic Archdiocese carries out an aggressive consolidation plan. The cuts are driven by declining membership, fiscal insolvency of churches, and fewer priests, according to church officials. While there are 2.8…Continue Reading

Kenyan President to Obama: You Will not Impose The ‘Gay Rights’ Agenda In Kenya

We need to speak frankly about these things” says President Kenyatta in response to Obama’s statement that Kenya must share the same values as the United States on sodomite rights issues. Kenyatta, at the press conference this morning in Kenya,…Continue Reading

Newsmax

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man

There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope Francis: “Jesus is the bread of life”

pope512

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has urged the faithful to look beyond material needs and turn to Jesus who is “the bread of life”. The Pope’s words came as he addressed the crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the Sunday Angelus. Taking his cue from the Gospel reading of the day which tells of the crowd that went looking for Jesus, not because they saw the signs but because they had eaten the loaves of…Continue Reading

‘Shadow council’ speaker pushes Church acceptance of contraception, gay sex

By Andrea Gagliarducci Rome, Italy, Jul 29, 2015 / 03:01 am (CNA).- Yes to contraception, homosexual acts, and Communion for the divorced and remarried – all considering the circumstances. No to understanding any acts as intrinsically evil. These are the positions advocated by speakers at the May 25 “shadow council” which gathered prelates and theologians, led by the German bishops, at a Jesuit university in Rome. That day 50 specially chosen representatives of the the…Continue Reading

Canada’s Bishops Urge Faithful to Respond to Government Consultation on Euthanasia

Canada, July 31, 2015 (ZENIT.org) Staff Reporter Canada’s bishops are calling on the faithful to respond to a government consultation on euthanasia. Earlier this month (July 17), the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Peter MacKay, and Minister of Health, Rona Ambrose, announced the establishment of an External Panel of experts who will consult with stakeholders and with all Canadians on options for dealing with the Supreme Court of Canada’s lifting of the prohibition…Continue Reading

US Bishops Respond to Planned Parenthood Videos

Washington, D.C., July 30, 2015 (ZENIT.org) Kathleen Naab The Center for Medical Progress released today its fourth video exposing Planned Parenthood’s use of fetal tissue, with the results of its investigation attracting growing national and international attention. On Wednesday, the chairman of the US bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities released a brief statement about the videos. Cardinal Seán O’Malley, archbishop of Boston, cited Pope Francis’ teaching on abortion and said that the heart of the…Continue Reading

Caring For The Elderly Vs. Assisted Suicide

By FR. JOHN FLYNN, LC (Editor’s Note: Fr. John Flynn, LC, wrote this commentary for ZENIT News Agency. Fr. Flynn, a regular ZENIT contributor, holds degrees from the University of New South Wales and from the Pontifical Gregorian University. All rights reserved.) + + + On Sunday, July 26, the Church in England and Wales…Continue Reading

Holy See Stresses Pro-Life Creds At UN Amid Questions

By PATRICK B. CRAINE and PETE BAKLINSKI NEW YORK (LifeSiteNews) — The Holy See is emphasizing its commitment to promoting life and family at the United Nations after a confusing statement the nunciature made in a negotiation on the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in June. In a speech on June 22, Msgr. Joseph Grech, representing…Continue Reading

Hillary Lies Again

By ANDREW P. NAPOLITANO In a column I wrote in early July, based on research by my colleagues and my own analysis of government documents and eyewitness statements, I argued that in 2011 and 2012 then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton waged a secret war on the governments of Libya and Syria, with the approval of…Continue Reading

A Book Review . . . An Excellent Guide To Answering Anti-Catholic Attacks

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY Five Anti-Catholic Myths: Slavery, Crusades, Inquisition, Galileo, Holocaust by Gerard M. Verschuuren (Angelico Press: 2015; 181 pages, $16.95 print edition). Available at http://angelicopress.com/. In this book the author sets out to investigate just how it has come about that anti-Catholic myths about particular topics have managed to become so deeply embedded…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Homosexuality And The Church Crisis”

By BRIAN CLOWES Part 2 (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For electronic copies of previous articles on homosexual “marriage,” the special rights agenda and the role of homosexuality in the Church crisis, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) + + + “Facts are stubborn things,…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

A Leaven In The World… Marking Humanae Vitae’s 47th Anniversary

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK Families are under attack on several fronts: whether it is what makes a marriage with one man and one woman, whether it is children who should have a mother and a father or about how life comes into the world. Those who wish to redefine God’s plan continue to apply euphemisms in attempts to change…Continue Reading

An Apologetics Course . . . The Divinity Of Christ — A Response To Islam

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 13 In our days, a misguided sense of ecumenism tends to equate the main monotheistic religions (Christianity, Judaism, and Islam) as different ways to worship the same God. It is like saying that all Protestant denominations are OK as long as you mention the name of Jesus, regardless of the visceral doctrinal contradictions that…Continue Reading

The Four Marks Of The Church — Catholicity

By DON FIER Part 4 “The Church is catholic,” proclaims the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), firmly and without hesitation. “She proclaims the fullness of the faith. She bears in herself and administers the totality of the means of salvation. She is sent out to all peoples. She speaks to all men. She encompasses all times” (n. 868). Moreover,…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: In the wake of the latest Planned Parenthood scandal involving selling the body parts of aborted babies (see LifeNews.com to view the videos of interviews with Planned Parenthood officials), this is an opportune time to contact not only your legislators about ending taxpayer funding of this conglomerate that kills more than 330,000 babies a year, but also to…Continue Reading

Our Journey Through The Desert

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Nineteenth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR B) Readings: 1 Kings 19:4-8 Eph. 4:30-5:2 John 6:41-51 In the second reading today St. Paul instructs us to do nothing that will grieve the Holy Spirit. In his brief list of offenses that would grieve the Holy Spirit, St. Paul includes bitterness, fury, anger, reviling, shouting, and all malice.…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Martha

By CAROLE BRESLIN A popular pilgrimage among the Catholics of southern France takes visitors to the Grotte de la Sainte-Baume, located in the hills of Provence about 20 miles east of the port of Marseilles. To reach this holy site, the driver must cover miles of winding, ascending roads to the foot of the mountain. Then the pilgrim ascends a…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Bridget

By CAROLE BRESLIN One of St. Teresa of Calcutta’s most quoted sayings would fit with this column’s saint, “God hasn’t called me to be successful. He has called me to be faithful.” What encouraging words for anyone seeking to do God’s will, knowing that the cross, the setbacks, and the obstacles are all part of working for the Kingdom of…Continue Reading