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BRIXEN


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BRIXEN


accormts for the fact tliat during the difficulties between the papacy and the empire, the Bishops of Brixen generally took the part of the emperors; particularly notorious is the case of Alt win, during whose episcopate (1049-91) the ill-famed pseudo- sjTiod of 1080 was held in Brixen, at which thirty bishops, partisans of the emperor, declared Pope Gregory VII deposed, and set up as antipope the Bishop of Ravenna.

The temporal power of the diocese soon suffered a marked diminution through the action of the bishops themselves who bestowed large sections of their territory in fief on temporal lords, as for example, in the eleventh century eountships in the Inntal and the Eisacktal granted to the Counts of Tyrol, and in 1165 territory in the Inntal and the Pustertal to the Counts of Andechs-Meran. The Counts of Tyrol, in particular, who had fallen heir in large part to the territories of the Count of Meran, constantly grew in power; Bishop Brimo (1249-88) had diffi- culty in asserting his authority over a section of his territory against the claims of Count Meinhard of TjTol. Likewise Duke Frederick IV, who was called the Penniless, compelled the Bishops of Brixen to acknowledge his authority. The dissensions between Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa (1450-64), appointed by Pope Nicholas V Bishop of Brixen, and Archduke Sigmund were also unfortunate; the cardinal was made a prisoner, and although the pope placed the diocese under an interdict, Sigmund came out victor in the struggle.

The Reformation was proclaimed in the Diocese of Brixen during the episcopate of Christoph I von Schrofenstein (1.509-21) by German emissaries, like Strauss, Urban Regius, and others. In 1525, under Bishop Georg III of Austria (152.5-39), a peasants' uprising broke out in the vicinity of Brixen, and several monasteries and strongholds were destroyed. The promise of King Ferdinand I, civil ruler of Tyrol, to redress the grievances of the peasants restored tranquillity, and at a diet held at Innsbruck, the most important demands of the peasants were acceded to. Although in 1532 these promises were withdrawn, peace remained undisturbed. Ferdinand I and his son Archduke Ferdinand II, in particular, as civil rulers took active measures against the adherents of the new teachings, chiefly the Anabaptists, who had been secretly propagating their sect; thus they preserved religious unity in the district of Tyrol and the Diocese of Brixen. At this time important ser- vices were rendered in safeguarding the Catholic Faith by the Jesuits, Capuchins, Franciscans, and Servites. Chief among the bishops of the period were: Cardinal Andreas of Austria (1.591-1600), and Christoph IV von Spaur (1601-13), who in 1607 founded a seminary for theological students, en- larged the cathedral school, and distinguished him- self as a great benefactor of the poor and sick. The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries saw a great reawakening of religious life in the Diocese of Brixen; many monasteries were founded, new missions for the cure of souls established, and the religious in- struction of the people greatly promoted; in 1677 the University of Innsbruck was founded. The most prominent bishops of this period were: Ka.spar Ignaz, Count von Kijnigl (1702-47), who founded many benefices for the care of souls, made diocesan visita- tions, kept a strict watch over the discipline and moral purity of his clergy, introduced missions under Jesuit Fathers, etc. : Leopold, Count von Spaur (1747- 78), who rebuilt the seminary, completed and con- secrated the cathedral, and enjoyed the high esteem of Empress Maria Theresa; Joseph Philipp, Count von Spaur (1780-91), a friend of learning, who, however, in his ecclesiastical policy, leaned towards Josephin- ism. The Government of Emperor Joseph dealt roughly with church interests; about twenty monas-


teries of the diocese were suppressed, a general semi- nary was opened at Innsbruck, and pilgrimages and processions were forbidden.

It was Bishop Franz Karl, Count von Lodron (1791- 1828), who was to see the collapse of the temporal power of the diocese. In 1803 the principality was secularized, and annexed to Austria, and the cathe- dral chapter dissolved. During the brief rule of Bavaria the greatest despotism was exercised to- wards the Church; the restoration of Austrian su- premacy (1814) improved conditions for the diocese. By the papal Bull "Ex imposito" (2 May, 1818) a new circumscription was given to the diocese which in this way received a considerable increase in ter- ritory; Vorarlberg, in particular, which had previ- ously been divided among the tlu'ee dioceses of Chur, Constance, and Augsburg, was added to the Diocese of Brixen. Vorarlberg was. as a matter of fact, to form a separate diocese, with Feldkirch as see, but this plan has never been put into execution; Vorarl- berg is now administered by a vicar-general residing at Feldkirch, who, as a rule, is the auxiliary bishop of Brixen. In 1825 the cathedral chapter was re- established. All during the nineteenth centurj' the episcopal see was occupied by distinguished men who safeguarded the unity of the Faith in the dio- cese, as is instanced in the enforced removal in 1830 of the Protestant families of the Zillertal, who actively championed the rights and privileges of the Church, and by missions and diocesan visitations, and by the introduction of religious orders endeav- oured, with success, to raise the religious life of their dioce-se to a higher level. Karl Franz was succeeded by Bernhard Galiu-a (1828-56), Vincenz Gasser (1856-79), Johann IX von Leiss, Laimburg (1879- 84), Simon Aichner (1884-1904), who resigned 5 March, 1904, and Joseph Altenweisel (1904).

II. St.\tistics. — According to the figures for 1907 the Diocese of Brixen includes at the present time 438,448 Catholics in 501 spiritual charges. There are 28 deaneries, 6 in Vorarlberg, 380 parishes, 75 stations [Exposituren) ,215 benefices and chaplaincies, and 725 primary schools with 1,333 classes. The cure of souls is exercised by 879 secular priests, and 580 regulars, 14 members of religious orders being at present outside the dioce-se. The cathedral chapter consists of 3 dignities (1 mitred provost, 1 dean, and 1 scholasticus), 4 capitular and 6 honorary canons. The prince-bishop as well as the members of the chapter, with the exception of the provost, are appointed by the emperor. In addition to the cathedral chapter there is a collegiate chapter of six canons at Innichen, a provost at Ehrenburg, and one at St. Ceroid. Of the spiritual charges, 180 are sub- ject to the free collation of the bishop, in 97 the municipality has the right of patronage, in 47 the right of patronage belongs to private individuals, in 87 to the Government or exchequer, in 15 to the religious fund, in 76 to religious corporations and monasteries. For tlie training of theologians there is a theological faculty at the I'niversity of Innsbruck with 17 professors, members of the Society of Jesus, and 352 theological students (many of them from the Ignited States). There is a diocesan theological school in Brixen, with 8 professors; a seminary at Brixen, with 113 candidates for Holy orders (30 of them from other dioceses); the Seminarium Vin- centinum (a diocesan preparatory seminarj- and gjin- nasivim)with 21 professors; and the Cassianeuni, with 3 professors and 51 students. Moreo^■er, there are religious professors in the civil Higher Gymnasium at Brixen, and six other intermediate schools for boys conducted by the State.

Religious congregations of men possess 44 houses, and in 1907 numbered about 1,213 members, includ- ing 594 priests, 185 clerics, 348 lay brothers, 86 novices. There are two houses of Augustinian canons