Open main menu

Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 10.djvu/415

This page needs to be proofread.




After the French Repolulivn. — After the sanguinary crisis of the Revohition, the way was gradually paved for the restoration of the congregation. It was not until 1S27, however, that its abnormal situa- tion ceased when the two vicars-general Bonjard in France and Boceari in Rome having resigned, Pope Leo XII, by a Brief of 16 Jan., 1827, nominated Peter Dewailly superior general. In IS04 an imperial de- cree dated 27 May re-established the Congregation of the Lazarists; in ISIO, under the Government of the Restoration a royal ordinance recognized it in the condition in which it had l>een placed by the Act of 1804. It was especially on the basis of these two decrees that the Council of State of 16 Jan., 1901, considered the Congregation of .St. Lazare as legally recognized in France. The old house of St. Lazare having been transferred by the State to the public service, the Government handed over to the use of the congregation a piece of property situated at Rue de Sevres 95, the Hotel des Lorges, and here Verbert, the vicar-general, entered with his community still small in number, 19 Nov., 1817. Some adjoining ground on the Rue de Sevres was bought partly by King Charles X for the building of a chapel, which was blessed by Mgr. de Qu^len, Archbishop of Paris, 1 Nov., 1827. The following is a list of the superiors general who have been elected by the general assemblies held in Paris down to 1910. After Peter Dewailly died, 23 Oct., 1828, the general a.ssembly of 15 May, 1829, selected as his successor Dominic Salhorgne. He had the consolation of seeing the relics of St. Vincent which had to be hidden during the Revolu- tion brought back in solemn state to his religious family in 1830. Under the weight of age and infirmities he resigned in 1835. The general assembly named as his successor John Baptist Nozo who was succeeded in 1843 by John Baptist Etienne whose long and most successful generalship continued until his death in 1874. Then Eugene Bor6 was elected, a man well known in the world of literature and science. Death claimed him after four years, and in 1878 the general assembly made Anthony Fiat his successor, and he is now, 1910, at the head of the congregation.

The work of the congregation has remained un- changed save for adaptations to new circumstances. Missions at home are no less necessary than formerly. A special consideration makes them more than ever the objects of solicitude. It is that the people of our democratic age have acquired an influence and an au- thority which they never exercised before. Besides missions to the people, the congregation has adapted its methods in seminaries to new conditions. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries clerics received their formation chiefly at the universities or in the colleges of the chief cities; clerics who did not study there unfortunately but too often did not study at all. In this state of affairs it sufficed to provide seminaries as ecclesiastical homes for clerics who went out to follow the courses in the universities and col- leges of the city. In the seminary there was a course in liturgy; the students were helped to make for themselves a practical abridgment of moral theology and when the time came they were aided by the exercises of the retreat to prepare for ordinations. Two or three priests at most sufficed for such estab- lishments. To-day all is changed in this regard. Seminarians ordinarily spend all their time within the walls of the seminary. The seminary gives them ecclesiastical instruction in philosophy, history, ex- egesis, canon law, and theology, teaching that they could not find outside save in a few universities. Seminary life no longer lasts for some months only, as it usually did in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, but for several years, so that the faculty required for a seminary, whether it be composed of members of a community or of the .secular clergy, must be much more numerous and specially equipped

for scientific training. The Congregation of the Mission had then to adapt itself to the new order of things. Finally, as to the foreign missions, new facilities of travel and communication, and new means of influence and of intercourse with pagan or savage peoples have given a new character to the work of evangelization, requiring missionary bodies to change their methods to meet these changed conditions.

IV. Literary and Scientific Activity. — Teaching. — The method of teaching which prevails in Lazarist colleges and semmaries, is that of explaining a well chosen text of some approved author from w'lose opinions even the professor is not allowed to depart, except by the express permission of his superiors. Such a text is placed in the hands of the pupils, who learn a portion of it, and receive explanations and comments from the professor. Individual research is encouraged but within limits suggested by the practi- cal character of Lazarist college and seminary train- ing. Conformably to the commands and recommen- dations of Leo XIII and Pius X, philosophy and theology are taught in accord with the doctrines of St. Thomas and of his most authorized interpreters. Novelties in doctrine are distinctly discouraged, while professors are bidden to make themselves acquainted with modern errors, for refutation. Writings. — The life of Lazarists is above all, an active life, in college, in the seminary, and on the missions, hence their writ- ings have been called forth for some practical utility, or as a result of their scientific explorations and their journeys as missionaries. The following are note- worthy as writers: (1) Theology. — Collet, Peter, a Frenchman (b. 1693; d. 1770), professed theology with success in Paris. When Tournely died (1729) leaving unfini-shed a course of theology which the university and the seminaries held in high esteem. Cardinal Fleury, then prime minister, invited Collet whose talfiits hr knew, \n continue and complete the work, wliirli ('(.lli'i .liil with much success, publishing "Continual ii) l'r;ilrriii>num Theologicarum Horatii Tournely" in 8 volumes (Paris, 1733-1760). He made an abridgment of this work as a class book of theology for seminaries. " Institutiones theologicse quas a fusioribus suis editis et ineditis ad usum Seminariorum contraxit Pet rus Collet " (Paris, 1744, 5 vols.). Whilst engaged in this great work. Collet composed more than forty volumes on different the- ological, canonical, liturgical, and devotional sub- jects. Brunet, Francis Florentin ( France, 1731; d. 1806), wrote a " Paralleic des Uf-licions" in 5 vol- umes 4° (Paris, 1792), which I >> it ~ :il researches paved the way for the conijiaiai i\ c histories of reli- gion now so much in vogue. Morino, John, visitor of the Neapolitan province, issued in 1910 the seventh edition of his Moral Theology. MacGuiness, John, a native of Ireland and professor in the Irish College in Paris, has recently published a second edition of a complete course of theology. McNamara, Thomas, a pioneer Irish Vincentian, published many books of great utility to the clergy, the best known of these is "Programme of Sermons and Instructions", which is still much used.

(2) Works on Canon Law and Liturgy. — De Martinis (b- in Italy, 1829; died 1900), Archbishop of Laodicaea, published "Juris Pontificii de Propa- ganda Fide, Pars Prima continens Bullas, Brevia, Acta S.S. a Congregationis institutione ad pra'sens, juxta temporis seriem disposita" (Rome, 1888- 1897, 7 vols., in quarto), a collection of documents emanating from the Propaganda in every respect superior to any preceding collection. Baldcschi, Joseph (b. in Italy, 1791; d. 1849), published an "Espositione delle Sacre Ceremonie" (Rome, 1830, 4 vols., 24mo.), which has been translated into various tongues. Mancini, Calcedonio (d. 1910) began at the Lazarist house of Montecitorio, Rome, in 1887, the publicatirm of a monthly review.