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Roger De Hoveden The Annals vol.1., From A.D. 732 To A.D. 1180.

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Roger De Hoveden
The Annals vol.1., From A.D. 732 To A.D. 1180.
page 522



A.D. 1179. THE DECREES OF POPE ALEXANDER. . men in cities throughout the different parts of the world, as well as others who seem to hold some power, frequently impose upon churches such numerous burdens, and oppress them with such heavy and repeated exactions, that the priesthood seems under them to be in a worse condition than it was under Pharaoh, who had no knowledge of the law of the Lord. Por whereas he, when all others were reduced to slavery, left their priests and possessions in their former liberty, and gave them sustenance at the public expense, these others impose almost all their burdens on the churches, and afflict them with so many anxieties, that the lamentation of Jeremiah seems to apply thereto, ' She that was princess among the provinces, now is she become tributary ! ' 4 1 Por, whether it is the expense of making fortifications, or whether of an expedition, or whether they think proper to do anything else, they generally attempt to provide for them all out of the property of the churches, of the clergy, and of the poor, the advantages of Christ being thereby curtailed. On these grounds we must feel grieved for the churches, and none the less for those who seem to have entirely lost all fear of God and respect for the ecclesiastical order. Wherefore, under the most severe penalty of excommunication, we do strictly forbid any one in future to presume to make such an attempt, unless a bishop or clerk shall evidently see such a case of necessity and utility as to be of opinion that, without compulsion, subsidies may be collected throughout the churches to relieve the common necessities, the means of the laity not sufficing thereto. And if rulers, or other persons, shall in future be guilty of this, and, on being warned, shall chance to be unwilling to desist, they are to know that both themselves, as well as their abettors, are subjected to^ excommunication, and are not to bo restored to intercourse with the faithful until such time as they shall have made befitting satisfaction. That prelates are to provide necessaries for the masters of schools. "Inasmuch as the Church of God, both in those things which tend to the support of the body and in those which pertain to the profit of the soul, is bound, like an affectionate mother, to provide for the needy, in order that the opportunity »J Lam. i. 1.


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