Manuscript Fragment of St. Thomas Aquinas Discovered in Georgetown Library
Word of the rare find traveled fast through Washington, DC. On one Sunday morning talk show, MSNBC commentator Chris Matthews referred to the manuscript as not only supporting the assertion of Father Reese about the GOP but proving 'beyond a doubt' that if St. Thomas Aquinas were alive today 'he would be a Democrat!'
A fragment of a lost manuscript by St. Thomas Aquinas was discovered this past week in the rare book collection of the Woodstock Theological Center section of the Lauringer Library at Georgetown University. Luckily, one of the few medievalists who is able to read Aquinas's medieval shorthand was in residence at The Catholic University of America.
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - (Though I was hesitant to write these introductory comments, I felt it was necessary. This is a satirical article written by a brilliant Catholic lay philosopher, author and political activist named Deal Hudson, Ph.D. For those unfamilair with the writings of the Angelic Doctor, St Thomas Aquinas, the satire is structured in the same format of his masterpiece, The Summa Theologica - Editor in Chief)
A fragment of a lost manuscript by St. Thomas Aquinas was discovered this past week in the rare book collection of the Woodstock Theological Center section of the Lauringer Library at Georgetown University.
A graduate student was examining rare manuscripts of Dominican theologian Tommaso Campanella when several pages of nearly unreadable Medieval Latin fell to the floor. (Campanella formulated an early form of proto-socialism in the early 17th century.) When shown the pages, a member of the theology faculty recognized it immediately as from the Angelic Doctor.
Luckily, one of the few medievalists who is able to read the medieval shorthand of Aquinas was in residence at The Catholic University of America. After translating the pages, this scholar returned them to his colleague at Georgetown asking that his name not be made public. He explained that he did not want to be in the middle of any controversy stirred up by the publication of the newly discovered thoughts of St. Thomas on such a controversial issue.
The two pages contain an argument presented in the same format used by St. Thomas in his Summa Theologica; a question followed by arguments supporting one answer; an "on the contrary" stating the correct answer; followed by arguments that support the conclusion and answer the arguments supporting the opposing side.
Here is the translation of the previously unknown work by St. Thomas Aquinas. Georgetown scholars have begun a systematic search through the rare book collection for other portions of the manuscript.
Whether Country Club Membership is an Intrinsic Evil?
It seems that Country Club membership is not an intrinsic evil.
1. Jesus seems to commend the virtues of festivity and celebration in the parable of the Great Feast, Matthew 21.1-14.
2. Holy Scripture describes David's leaping and dancing before the Lord as expressive of joy and praise to God, 2 Samuel 6:14.
3. Finally, Jesus himself selected a group of twelve disciples with whom he often ate exclusively, such as at his Last Supper, Mark 14.12-26.
On the contrary: Scripture exhorts us to "brotherly love." Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares, Hebrews 13.1-2.
Response: An intrinsic evil is an act incapable of being ordered to God. Since membership in a country club requires the deliberate exclusion of human persons who either cannot afford to join or are rejected for membership for other reasons, such an act is intrinsically evil. Such membership is contrary to "brotherly love" and shows no hospitality to the strangers in our midst.
Reply to 1: The Parable of the Great Feast has nothing to do with trivial entertainment: Jesus tells the parable in order to explain why some will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, represented by the Great Feast, and others will not.
Reply to 2: David's dancing was just another example of his lack of temperance and self control, as described in 2 Samuel 11 when he cannot resist the sight of the naked woman Bathsheba.
Reply to 3: Jesus did not intend his disciples to exclude anyone. Even though women were not allowed in the inner circle, Scripture describes women being particularly close to Jesus and were the first to see him rise from the dead, Matthew 28.1.
This remarkable discovery comes on the heels of similar comments made by Rev. Thomas Reese, SJ, a theologian in residence at Georgetown. Speaking of Catholics in the Republican Party he said:
"Catholic Republicans are kind of country-club Republicans....they live in the suburbs. They're professionals and managers in corporations. Romney is one of their neighbors or reminds them of their boss, so they're very comfortable with him."
Father Reese could not be reached for comment. Several messages were left for him at the front desk of the Jesuit residence of Georgetown University, Wolfington Hall.
Word of the rare find traveled fast through Washington, DC. On one Sunday morning talk show, MSNBC commentator Chris Matthews referred to the manuscript as not only supporting the assertion of Father Reese about the GOP but proving "beyond a doubt" that if St. Thomas Aquinas were alive today "he would be a Democrat!"
Matthews then announced he had heard from a "credible source" that this new text from St. Thomas Aquinas would spur a renewal in Catholic social thought and a reconsideration of the critique of socialism in John Paul II's 1991 encyclical Centesimus Annus.
Deal W. Hudson is president of the Pennsylvania Catholics Network; founder and former president of Catholic Advocate; former publisher and editor Crisis Magazine; and author of Onward Christian Soldiers: The Growing Power of Catholics and Evangelicals in the United States (Simon & Schuster 2008).
- - -
Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Georgetown, Woodstock Theological Center, Chris Matthews, Father Reese, Georgetown University, Republican, Democrat, consrvative, liberal, Republican, Democrat, Dr Deal Hudson,
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