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THE T'WO THEORIES OF PURGATORY.

CDe Ctuo Cbcories of PurgatorP


By M. F. Ecew, S'J.
life"
Iw one of his admirable little treatises on the spiritual
Dom S. Louismet saYs:-

li..:i:1. rcocl ancl hay and stubble. It is manifest that the


rilc consu.lles ihe r-ood of our iransgressions and then
r'('r-'rs to Ls tj:e relvard of our g^ood works." And
. ,-'-r' e ftrrt of Gccl's unto the
j
I ,r:r' ouls ;" the prlnig gation. "
>:. "cleanses
Nyssa say,s r "
'..1c r'nich the scu f'or St.

In the Latin liathers, the emphasis is rnore on punish-


nrent,, brii the idea of cleansing is nowhere excludd. It
i: rot uriti rve colne to the Sliolastics that we flnd the

obect of God's displeasure. St. Thomas explains it by


Him requires. - !l;,i, rr,r.0.; to thc I a,i, Art.
" I'r;: nioi'.-." I)icliona r por-
,'
1 " Nfysticism-Trl.o anil False, ch. 6 pp' 40f' (zn'ct ed' 1919)' :j,J1.","'
XIl. .cction.\-or T{qcl_.
il:. The
g),-Oh.
,tbbot Vonier' (" T.he Eluinan Sou," c]'- 3.6, " Purgatory ") states the :l;i :.
f oor-
in'equally uncompr:omising fashion'
"".-t.lne
26 THE IRISH THEOLOGICL QUARTERLY' THE TWO THEORIES OF PURG.TORY. 27

apart from their ca-se, ihey have nothing to do with the


question of sin and p-rinishment. Tbe physical craving for
driak, for instance, tnr7' be either the result of sinfui in-
duigence or sirnply an inherited tairt. In either case it
is a furrction of the body and disappears at death. But
there are a,lalogous effecis in the scul, due entirely to sin
as su.ch. The. directiy hinder the operations cf Divine
Grace, and if ihey are not purgecl a-,rav during life they
must be got rid of af'r,el death i:efore the soul can entet
into gtrory.a
Thirdly, there is the reatus oence, the debt of punish-
-rnent due to God's
3'ustice.
Suarez maintains ihat uhen a soul psses into eiernity
I.rearinE upon i the guilt of u-rrepen.ted r.enial sin, the I{ere of the School $leaks the ianEuaEe of
' reniains ' of mcrtal sins , forqiven brit no altcg:bher iilc , :it', evc:r rhoug,h ,ho will is trtr;d";;"G;d.
ou.rged-, and irnperfect cr e-il inclinations .itue to nast si;is, tle s,ort stieic fe-st la j+,. fi js ejea.nsed c;ry b-r
-..
q.85, ets. 1nC 2.
3?-rirr.clcclind.c. ,'^',. lc F^-;;ol:ti_.." i:sn. 11. s^: t. r. ll. S- St. Tltonas.
lbboi Vcrier (l,oi. e i.) sc-;;s to iqnore tlis clistincr;io, fcr' 'ljch see , --
' .'' ,,. -. . . ,. .,L..12 ,I -o"i,:inl,ure J,l
a
Sua.tez, t'De Poeni::rriia," 1)isp. 47, sect. 1, la::. 5, aircl ncciclr.- theclogiens
. ,^, .:';.._- :. "::,,:
:: ('-, C:) : afo c j t:.1 ti:an S!.
sL,rtos ir:t St.
,l l.Cl:ils. ,s
71:'aLnL.
'fHl, TWO THEORiES OI PURG,{TORY 29
2E THE IRISH THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY.
There is another difference between his earlier and later
lonE and loving endurance of pain, and the more it has teaching, which at first sight seems important. fn his
1r;;-; ttache to its faults-the longer the purgation earlier w-ork he taught lhat the guilt of venial sin is rq-
needed. mitted 'per poenam purgatorii,' per ignem purga,-
torium.' Ilere, on the contrary, he savs:
A.d nonum dicendum quod remissio veniaiis peccati
in purgatorio quantum ad poenam est ex par'rg puli.3'a-
to:r:i, quia homo et patiendo et solvit qr.od clebet, et
ita cessat-reatus; sed quantum ad culpam non remit-
titur per poeam neque secundurn quod ac+"u sustinetur,
quia non esl ineritoria, neq-.re secundum qilod reco3i-
ttur. l{on enirn esset rnotus caritatis quod aliqriis
cletestaretur peccatum veniale prooter poenaln; sed
magis esset motus timoris servilis vet naturaiis.
Remittitur ergo in purgatorio veniale quantum ad
culpam virtute gratiae . . . prout exit in actum
caritatis detestantis veniale peccatum.
But the opposition betrveen the two passages is more
rerbal than real. In the earlier -rork he dicl rot hoid
that i,he purifving agencv -was either suffering rn itself
or h-rtred of sin on account of the pain it brought. Ile
In anolhel 'al'eatise,7 later I believe in date tharr said that suffering cleansed the souls because it lv*as
his Comrnenta:ies on the Sentences, St' Thomas returns ' aliqualiter voluntaria,' that is, because tl'" was spon-
'uo tl:e subjeci of Furgator-y- trt is- on^ this passage that taneorsly accepted in the spirit of contrition. This is really
the defendrs cf Suaiz' theorv rell' for support' The rvhat rve mean when we say of souls on earth that i"hey are
thesis of the article is that venial sins are remitted quoad purifieC by suffering; and it harmonises well enough rvith
what he says here.e
It is. I think, fair to s)r that while in this passage St.
Thomas does not reassert his former doctiine of the gra-
dual puriflca1,ion of the Holr Souls from the guilt of venial
sin. he at least leaves the question open.
But besides the o,uestion of guilt, ''hose foundation (in
the case of veirial sins) is the undue adherence of the actie
povrer of the 'will to a created good, there remains the
question of evil or imperfect habits, the ' nist of sin,' the
6 fn 4 Sent. cl- 3, q. tr, a. 6. ' emains of sin,' the undl',e attraction exercised by crea-
? !rDe l{alo," q. 7, ert. 11. tures over the will, il,s passive clinging lo them even after
i has turned to God with its active po$er. Itrere we mar
IThere is jndeeC one el"enoe, but it c'lops not lffect our
discuesion. fn lle ea.riier ruas svs that their (aeccptance of)
suffering absolves the sou mctiti ' : in " I)e \[ac " he clcnies
this, and says the efiect per" modum dispositionis.'
3C THE IRISH THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY. THE TWO THEORIES ON PURGATORY. 3a

St. Catherine of Gonoa's little attrition in the sacramont of penance. And it is upon
recall that accordine
Treate on Purgatoru,
"sotohighly prized by Bellarmine and that question that we are interrogating the Fathers nd,
S. Francis de Sales,ro the ouls are cleansed from the theologians.
sult of their (venial) sins by the
them plunge of their own accord
puriffng flames are none the le
'' rust of sin."
" The hindrance is the rust of sin; the fire consumes
the rust, and thus the soul goes on laying itself open to
the Divine inflowinE.
" It is as with a"covered object. The object cannot re-
spond to the rays of the sun, not because the sun ceases to
s-hine . . but'because the covering intervenes. Let the

true sun.'l 1t
Suarez (disp. 47, sect. I., tr. 5) and Bellarmine reject
this cloctrine.- Purgatory is not needed, they bo,th say,
to cure these defects. If an adult dies immediate after
earlier view (and therefore against Suarez). Ilis words
are interesting, because though he does not refer to the

Even on the question of the' pravi habitus ' he hesitates.


10.S o the I'r'ench translation. Bellarmine speakr Speaking of soine doubts of S. Augustine about Purg-
,of her lv ile Sales calls her 'a
cherub "ofGhost. St.
love.'
f.rhancis
tory, he-says:
-dmo
of St.
Jungmann and Palnieri teacr the doctrine " Augustine's doubt in these passages is only as to what
u tt Treatiser" c}n. 2. kind of"sins are punished in Pirrgatry; whether it may
32 THE IRISH THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY' THE T\4/O THEORIES OE pURG.rTORy. Js

But he is a one i,vith hsr in holding that souls are punifled


of their stains in Purgaiory, and purifled by sufierin-"
St. Francis de Saiei, Suarez' contemporar;r also, defrnes

S. Francis ever formally discusses Su-arez' theory; but


if he had accepted it he could hardly have used this lan-
guage.
- Let us close cul list of authorities with St. John of the
Cross. llis testrnony is especially valuable, not onlr bs-
cause he is an accomplished theologian, a profound and
exact psychological observer, and a great saint; but be-

" De Purgatorio." The


only edition of his works
not the same as ir other
lefererrces,
purgatoire " (t' Oeuvres," 14
" Dark Night of the Soul," I.k. 2, ch. 10, n. 6.
r lbid. ch. 72, n. l.
34 THE rRrsH THEOLOGIC'{L QUARTERLY'

CDe Dlscopal, Successlon 0f RapDoe


from 1200 fo 1547.

Canon t\| ogtir,s List. Dr. ITlood's List.


trfaelis O'Deery, rzo3 A.D- Maclise O'Deirg, rzo3.
Donal O'Garvey
Felirnl- O'Syda 3o-f 2 53
12
Patricl< O'Scanlon 3-rz6r.
rz 5
J_o!n di Alneto (elect), rz63-5.
theologians. Cairbre O'Scoba, tz66-74.
""if.eless, in this article itis the theologians I have O'Friel, \27 5-gg.
Florcnrre
It seerns to me that the;r leave us quite Ihomas O'Naan (elect), t299-
"triu-fii"oosultd.
free i'o follorv the saints-and the people' r3o6.
Henry r\{acCrossan, r3o6-:19.
Thomas O'Donnell, 1319-.37.
Patrick \4ac\4onagle, 134o-66.
Conor O'Donnell, r367-97.
John l4ael{enarnin O'Donnell,
Antho'rry, r4r3.
f 397-r413.
Robert Jlulrie. rrl.r3-r4. John Nlac\lenamin, 14:16-'-19.
John llacCormric. rar5--r9.
f,arnence O'Gallagher. -l ., i qr9- Laugrhlin O'Gallaeher, r4r9-38.
38.
John lf ae l:. r4e8-4o.
Gilbri, Colnelius \tlacBrrcle, r440-12.
VlcBriric. "r 44o- -1,2.
Cor;relous
Laru'. O'Grllagher II.. r+43- Lautence O'Gallagher', 1442-7g.
so (P)
Donatus O'Gallagher, died r45o. john de Rogerii, r479-85.
tJohn Gilhride. r4.5o-84. I,[enelaus \'f aeCarmacain, r483-
Menelaus I lacCa imaca in, t 484- I5I3.
I5 I5.
Lornctrus ()'Kane. T5r5__3,+. Colnelius O'Cahan, \SrS-47.
Quintinus O'Higgins." r533. Bdmund O'Gallagher:, r534-43
ldr1t.] O'Gaaer. T 534-43.
rArt O'Gallagher, r547
Art O'Gallagher, r547-6t.
-6r"