Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Pieter Kanis, Apostle of Germany

Today is the Feast of St. Peter Canisius, Doctor of the Church, famous for his catechetical work. From a seventeenth-century translation of one of his catechisms (I have modernized spelling and some punctuation):

16. What is the sum of the Articles of the second person in Deity?

This: that Christ is true God and man, who began and brought to pass the wonderful work of man's Redemption, so that he is unto us the Way, Truth, and Life, by whom only, when we had all perished, we were saved and restored, and reconciled unto God the Father.

Of the benefit and true of such Redemption, we find thus written: The grace of God our Savior has appeared to all men instructing us, that, denying impiety and worldly desires, we live somberly, justly, and godly in this world, expecting the blessed hope and advent of the glory of the great God, and our Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and might cleanse to himself a people acceptable, a pursuer of good works. These be the words of the Apostle S. Paul; and in another place: We are the work of God, created in Christ Jesus in good works, which God has prepared that we should walk in them. And again Christ died for all: that they also which live, may not now live to themselves, but to him that died for them and rose again.

Wherefore we must take diligent heed of the erroneous opinion of those, that do confess Christ not wholly and perfectly, but as it were, lame and maimed, whilst they do only acknowledge him as a Mediator and Redeemer, in whom we may trust, but do not withal admit him for a Law-maker, whose commandments we must obey, and a pattern of all virtue, which we must imitate, and a just Judge, who surely is to repay the due reward, or punishment to the works of everyone.

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