Monday 22nd December 2014

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:

CACG: Faux Catholic Front Group Still An Outsider?

At Catholic World Report Anne Hendershott revisits the notorious democrat front group, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, and gives us an idea of their set of 2016 tricks. Promising yet again to “move beyond partisan and ideological divisions,”…Continue Reading

The Catholic Weakness

A large proportion of traditional, Mass-going Catholics don’t believe basic Church doctrine. Why not? By Maggie Gallagher   Last week I wrote about one piece of data that jumped out from the Austin Institute’s fascinating new study, Relationships in America:…Continue Reading

Cardinal Burke . . . “The Church depends on sound Catholic family life, and it depends on sound Catholic families.”

An Interview with Cardinal Burke  On Vatican II Q. Your Eminence, you grew up before the Second Vatican Council. How do you remember those times? A. I grew up in a very beautiful time in the Church, in which we…Continue Reading

Did Pope Francis really say all dogs go to heaven? UPDATED

That nice man, Pope Francis, says you get to see your pets again in Heaven. But Pope Benedict is a mean old Grinch who wants to remove the animals from your Nativity scene Christmas decorations. Oh, really? Please don’t believe…Continue Reading

Catholic Church in Australia links celibacy to child abuse

By Jonathan Pearlman, Sydney, and Nick Squires in Rome 8:04PM GMT 12 Dec 2014 Priests’ vows of celibacy may have led to paedophilia, the Roman Catholic Church in Australia has said, in what is believed to be the first such…Continue Reading

Pope Calls For More ‘Integration’ Of Divorced Catholics, Gays

By Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis said that the Catholic Church must consider various ways to integrate the divorced and civilly remarried in the life of the church — not merely allowing them…Continue Reading

‘I’m not worried’ about resistance, Pope Francis says in new interview

Vatican City, Dec 7, 2014 / 11:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In an interview with the Argentine daily “La Nacion” published Sunday, Pope Francis spoke on a variety of topics, giving specific attention to the ongoing reform of the Roman Curia,…Continue Reading

Catholic Church Severs Ties with Agency over Gay Adoption Ruling

The Catholic Church in Northern Ireland is pulling the plug on a long-standing relationship with the Family Care Society, a Catholic adoption agency, after a judge ruled that all adoption services must be willing to place children with same-sex couples…Continue Reading

Reaction to Chicago archbishop’s remarks on pro-abort pols receiving Communion

n a radical departure from the position of Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Blase Cupich – said to have been handpicked by Pope Francis for Chicago – has presented giving Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians as a positive move. Asked Sunday…Continue Reading

Pope Francis dodges reporter’s question on treatment of homosexuality in Synod’s controversial mid-term report

Since the conclusion of the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family, reporters around the world have been wondering where Pope Francis stands on the controversial language about homosexuality in the mid-term Synod report.  The opportunity to ask the pope…Continue Reading

Archbishop Cupich Says Yes to Communion for Pro-Abortion Politicians

In October of last year veteran Italian journalist Sandro Magister wrote of the new path that many believed the Church was embarking upon. Magister observed: “In Italy, but not only there, it was the cardinal and Jesuit Carlo Maria Martini…Continue Reading

Francis calls for a change mentality in the Church, easier homilies and flexible times

Francis addresses participants of the International Pastoral Congress on the World’s Big Cities: “Go out and facilitate”, don’t be afraid of multicultural contexts or of proclaiming Jesus DOMENICO AGASSO JR ROME Francis was honest from the start: “I don’t want…Continue Reading

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 subscribe 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

'From our friends at The Foundry'


Today . . .

Exclusive . .

Cardinalburke

Pope Francis: Christmas Greetings To Curia

pope703

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis received the heads and other senior officials of the departments of the Roman Curia on Monday, in their traditional exchange of Christmas greetings. In remarks prepared for the occasion and delivered Monday morning, the Holy Father focused on the need for those who serve in the curia – especially those in positions of power and authority…Continue Reading

Pope: At Christmas Jesus Knocks At The Doors Of Your Heart

POPE701

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday invited the faithful to listen carefully when God knocks at their door. “Too often – he said – Jesus passes by in our lives, he sends an angel and we are so caught up in our thoughts and concerns we do not even notice”. Speaking to the pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for…Continue Reading

Pope Francis receives John XXIII Community

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis received nearly 8 thousand members and associates of the Pope St. John XXIII Community on Saturday. Now recognized as an Association of Lay Faithful, the  Pope John XXIII Community was founded by Fr. Oreste Benzi of the clergy of the Diocese of Rimini in 1968, on the basis of his decade of experience with young people…Continue Reading

To The Infant Martyrs

By MARK AMOROSE (Matt. 2:16-18) Pour out your smiling souls into the sky: Your tongues will learn to speak as spirits fly. Seek not maternal milk from earthly clay: Your sustenance will be the Milky Way. + + + Latin original from Complete Poetry of Richard Crashaw, ed. Geo. Walton Williams. (New York: Doubleday, 1970),…Continue Reading

Anna’s Wish

By DEREK BECHER Anna lay still on her hospital bed, which was tilted slightly upward, while she slept. Her parents sat beside her, with their hands clenched together, sharing a prayer as they watched their only child laboring with each breath. She had only just turned nine, but the brave little girl had fought the…Continue Reading

Cardinal Piacenza To Confessors.. Remember The Priceless Ministry Of Confession At Christmas

VATICAN CITY (ZENIT) — Here is a letter to confessors from Mauro Cardinal Piacenza, major penitentiary, released Gaudete Sunday, December 14. In the letter, the cardinal emphasized that “the time of Advent, and especially the days of the beautiful novena of Christmas, are characterized by a particularly attentive waiting, not only by men for God…but…Continue Reading

Archbishop Of Karachi . . . Says “The Taliban Will Stop At Nothing Now”

By JOHN PONTIFEX LONDON (ACN News) — Innocent people in Pakistan — young and old alike — are now at increased risk of terrorist attack, according to the leader of the country’s Catholics, who has called on the government to step up security in the wake of the Peshawar school massacre. Archbishop Joseph Coutts of…Continue Reading

Ten Complacent Maxims

By DONALD DeMARCO Mark Strand, Pulitzer Prize winner and former U.S. poet laureate, passed away recently (November 29, 2014). He was a staunch atheist, declaring that he had never met God and had never been to Heaven. He said: “Although there are a lot of people claiming that God is telling them what to do,…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

A Leaven In The World . . . Let Christmas Joy Overflow The Hearts Of Believers

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK Let your prayer for these final days of Advent and for the Solemnity of Our Lord’s holy birth be that our joy might be so great at receiving Him at Christmas that it will be as though we are receiving Him for the first time. His grace is sufficient so as to grant us the…Continue Reading

Mary’s Perpetual Virginity… Didn’t Jesus Have Brothers And Sisters?

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 1 “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not His Mother called Mary? And are not His brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all His sisters with us?” (Matt. 13:54-57; also Mark 6:2-3). “And His Mother and…Continue Reading

The Canon Of Scripture

By DON FIER Part 2 We ended last week’s installment by showing that the apostles and early Christians accepted the 46-book Septuagint as the authentic Old Testament right from the Church’s beginning. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) teaches, these 46 divinely inspired books constitute “an indispensable part of Sacred Scripture” (CCC, n. 121) and “bear witness to…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Questions And Answers About Christmas Q. Do we know the exact year in which Jesus was born? A. No, we do not. In the sixth century, a monk named Dionysius Exiguus drew up a calendar that fixed the birth of Christ in the Roman year 753, but scholars today agree that Dionysius miscalculated by a few years. So it is…Continue Reading

The Law Of The Lord

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Feast Of The Holy Family (YR B) Readings: Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14 Col. 3:12-21 Luke 2: 22-40 Today we celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family. In a particular way this refers to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. However, it also refers to all families that are striving to live according to the ways of holiness and truth.…Continue Reading

Cast A Gauntlet – Sola Scriptura: Part 1

Catholic Heroes . . . Blessed Urban V

By CAROLE BRESLIN The year 1309 marked the beginning of the Avignon papacy, under Pope Clement V, who was French. The Popes of Avignon built a papal palace, increasing it in size over the next 70 years. The first crack in the control of the papacy by the French began when Pope Urban V left Avignon to reside in Rome…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Sabbas

By CAROLE BRESLIN Silence. Quiet. The search for peace, serenity, and calm has led many in today’s world to take up Yoga, Eastern mysticism, or life in remote areas to escape the noise of our modern world. This is not a modern quest. The quest for quiet has been with man for millennia. Although St. Anthony the Great (died 356)…Continue Reading

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