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THE CURIA

but rather administrators o law and order. They are not essentially priests; they are theologians, jurists and diplomats.

The cardinals figure in very early Church history as counsellors of the Popes. Thus a Roman Council convened by Pope Stephen III in 769 spoke of cardinal-bishops. These were the heads of the neigh- bouring dioceses of Rome, the "suburban" bishoprics. Their duty consisted in alternately spending a week with the Pope in the Lateran as aids not in his work as Bishop of Rome, but in those tasks he con- fronted as the highest sovereign of the Church. At bottom theirs was the obligation to function as a college of counsellors, which the cardinalcy has juridically remained even in times when its powers became more extensive. Today there are ten times as many men, of different nations, in the College of Cardinals as there were in the eighth century; and yet those helpful neighbours of yore still retain the first places. They are the Cardinal-Bishops of Ostia and Velletri, Porto and San Rufino, Sabina, Albano, Palestrina and Frascati. The titular Cardinal of Ostia has had since St. Augustine's time the right to consecrate the Pope a bishop in case he should not be one when elected. Today these cardinal-bishops no longer reside in their own dioceses but live in Rome and like all Roman cardinals are not allowed to leave the city without Papal permission.

The second rank of cardinals originated in a similar way, Rome was of old divided into districts, one might almost say parishes, which were called rides (titulf) . Every supreme head of one of these Roman titular churches was a cardinal-priest, and that is still true today. The relationship has, however, been reversed. Formerly the priest who was appointed to such a Church received at the same time the dignity of cardinal-priest. Today a newly named cardinal is given his titular Church, with which only a very few rights and duties associate him. The third rank of cardinals is derived from the deacons who in the days of early Christianity were entrusted with charitable institutions. These cardinal-deacons are now as little associated with the chapels to which their rank goes back as are the cardinal-priests with theirs. Even today the law does not stipulate that they be ordained priests; and they may, when they are not, nevertheless be admitted to the high- est offices of the Church and to candidacy to the Papal throne* just as other members of the Sacred College arc. Of course in our rimes it


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