Alfonso Salmeron

Last updated
Alfonso Salmeron Alfonso Salmeron.jpg
Alfonso Salmerón
Portrait of Alfonso Salmeron, Jesuit, found in the 1602 edition of Salmeron's commentary on the Gospel (Commentarii in Evangelicam Historiam et in Acta Apostolorum). Portrait of Alfonso Salmeron, XVI century.jpg
Portrait of Alfonso Salmerón, Jesuit, found in the 1602 edition of Salmerón's commentary on the Gospel (Commentarii in Evangelicam Historiam et in Acta Apostolorum).

Alfonso (Alphonsus) Salmerón (8 September 1515 – 13 February 1585) was a Spanish biblical scholar, a Catholic priest, and one of the first Jesuits.

Contents

Biography

He was born in Toledo, Spain on 8 September 1515. He studied literature and philosophy at Alcalá and then philosophy and theology at the Sorbonne in Paris. Here, through Diego Laynez, he met St. Ignatius of Loyola and with Laynez, St. Peter Faber and St. Francis Xavier, he enlisted as one of the first companions of Loyola in 1534. [1] The small company left Paris on 15 November 1536, reached Venice on 8 January 1537 and during Lent of that year went to Rome. He delivered a discourse before the Pope and was, in return, granted leave to receive Holy orders so soon as he reached canonical age. About 8 September, all the first companions met at Vicenza and all, save St. Ignatius, said their first Mass. The plan of a pilgrimage to the Holy Land was abandoned. Salmeron devoted his ministry in Sienna to the poor and to children. On 22 April 1541, he pronounced his solemn vows in St. Paul's-Outside-the-Walls basilica as a professed member of the newly established Society of Jesus.

In the autumn of 1541 Pope Paul III sent Salmeron and Paschase Broët as Apostolic nuncios to Ireland. They landed by way of Scotland on 23 February 1542. Thirty-four days later they set sail for Dieppe and went on to Paris. For two years Salmeron preached in Rome; his exposition of the Pauline Epistle to the Ephesians thrice a week in the church of the Society effected much good (1545). After preaching during Lent at Bologna, he went with Diego Laynez to the Council of Trent (18 May 1546) as theologian to Paul III. The Dogma of Justification was under discussion.

The two Jesuits at once reportedly won the hearts and respect of all; their discourses had to be printed and distributed to the bishops. Both set out for Bologna (14 March 1547) with the Council. After serious sickness at Padua, Salmeron once again took up his council work. The next two years were in great part spent in preaching at Bologna, Venice, Padua and Verona. On 4 October 1549, Salmeron and his companions, Claude Le Jay and Peter Canisius, took their doctorate at the University of Bologna, so that they might, at the urgent invitation of William IV of Bavaria, accept chairs in Ingolstadt. Salmeron undertook to interpret the Pauline Epistle to the Romans. Upon the death of Duke William, at the instigation of the Bishop of Verona, much to the chagrin of the faculty of the Academy of Ingolstadt, Salmeron was returned to Verona (24 September 1550). That year he explained the Gospel of St. Matthew.

In 1551 he was summoned to Rome to help St. Ignatius in working up the Constitutions (statutes) of the Jesuit Society. Other work was in store. He was soon (February, 1551) sent down to Naples to inaugurate the Society's first college there, but after a few months was summoned by Ignatius to go back to the Council of Trent as theologian to pope Julius III. It was during the discussions preliminary to these sessions that Laynez and Salmeron, as papal theologians, gave their vota first. When the Council once again suspended its sessions, Salmeron returned to Naples (October, 1552). Pope Paul IV sent him to the Augsburg Diet (May, 1555) with nuncio Lippomanus, and thence into Poland and in April, 1556 to Belgium.

Another journey to Belgium was undertaken in the capacity of adviser to Cardinal Giovanni Pietro Caraffa (2 December 1557). Laynez appointed Salmeron first Jesuit Provincial of Naples in 1558 and vicar-general in 1561 during the former's apostolic legation to France. The Council of Trent was again resumed (May, 1562) and a third pontiff, Pius IV, chose Salmeron and Laynez for papal theologians. The subject to be discussed was very delicate: the Divine origin of the rights and duties of bishops. During the years 1564-82, Salmeron was engaged chiefly in preaching and writing; he preached every day during eighteen Lenten seasons; his preaching was fervent, learned and fruitful. His writings during this long period were voluminous; Saint Robert Bellarmine spent five months in Naples reviewing them; each day he pointed out to Salmeron the portions that were not up to the mark, and the next day the latter brought back those parts corrected. He died at Naples on 13 February 1585.

Works

The chief writings of Salmeron are his sixteen volumes of Scriptural commentaries: eleven on the Gospels, one on the Acts, and four on the Pauline Epistles. Southwell says that these sixteen volumes were printed by Sanchez, Madrid, from 1597 till 1602; in Brescia, 1601; in Cologne, from 1602–04, Sommervogel (Bibliothèque de la C. de J., VII, 479) has traced only twelve tomes of the Madrid edition - the eleven of the Gospels and one of the Pauline commentaries. The Gospel volumes are entitled, Alfonsi Salmeronis Toletani, e Societate Jusu Theologi, Commentarii in Evangelicam Historiam et in Acta Apostolorum, in duodecim tomos distributi (Madrid, 1598–1601). The first Cologne edition, together with the second (1612–15), are found complete. These voluminous commentaries are the popular and university expositions which Salmeron had delivered during his preaching and teaching days. In old age, he gathered his notes together, revised them, and left his volumes ready for posthumous publication by Bartholomew Pérez de Nueros. Hartmann Grisar (Jacobi Lainez Disputationes Tridentinae, I, 53) thinks that the commentary on Acts is the work of Perez; Braunsberger (Canisii epist., III, 448) and the editors of Monumenta Historica S. J. (Epistolae Salmeron, I, xxx) disagree with Grisar.

He was noted for his devotion to the Church, his fortitude, prudence, and magnanimity. The Acts of the Council of Trent show that he wielded tremendous influence there by his vota on issues including justification, Holy Eucharist, penance, purgatory, indulgences, the Sacrifice of the Mass, matrimony and the origin of episcopal jurisdiction.

Related Research Articles

J. B. Lightfoot British bishop and scholar of early Christianity (1828-1889)

Joseph Barber Lightfoot, known as J. B. Lightfoot, was an English theologian and Bishop of Durham.

Counter-Reformation Catholic political and religious response to the Protestant Reformation

The Counter-Reformation, also called the Catholic Reformation or the Catholic Revival, was the period of Catholic resurgence that was initiated in response to the Protestant Reformation. It began with the Council of Trent (1545–1563) and largely ended with the conclusion of the European wars of religion in 1648. Initiated to address the effects of the Protestant Reformation, the Counter-Reformation was a comprehensive effort composed of apologetic and polemical documents and ecclesiastical configuration as decreed by the Council of Trent. The last of these included the efforts of Imperial Diets of the Holy Roman Empire, exiling/forcibly converting Protestant populations, heresy trials and the Inquisition, anti-corruption efforts, spiritual movements, and the founding of new religious orders. Such policies had long-lasting effects in European history with exiles of Protestants continuing until the 1781 Patent of Toleration, although smaller expulsions took place in the 19th century.

Daniello Bartoli

Daniello Bartoli was an Italian Jesuit writer and historiographer, celebrated by the poet Giacomo Leopardi as the "Dante of Italian prose"

John of Ávila Spanish priest and Doctor of the Church

John of Ávila was a Spanish priest, preacher, scholastic author, and religious mystic, who has been declared a saint and Doctor of the Church by the Catholic Church. He is called the "Apostle of Andalusia", for his extensive ministry in that region.

Peter Faber Jesuit priest and evangelist

Saint Peter Faber was the first Jesuit priest and theologian, who was also a co-founder of the Society of Jesus, along with Ignatius of Loyola and Francis Xavier. Pope Francis announced his canonization on 17 December 2013.

Nicolas Bobadilla was one of the first Jesuits.

Simão Rodrigues

Simão Rodrigues de Azevedo, was a Portuguese Jesuit priest and one of the co-founders of the Society of Jesus.

Diego Laynez

Several spellings of his names are in use and some of them can be found in other Wikipedia articles

Alphonsus Liguori

Alphonsus Liguori (1696–1787), sometimes called Alphonsus Maria de Liguori or Saint Alphonsus Liguori, was an Italian Catholic bishop, spiritual writer, composer, musician, artist, poet, lawyer, scholastic philosopher, and theologian.

Luigi Fortis

Very Rev. Luigi Fortis, S.J. was an Italian Jesuit elected the twentieth Superior-General of the Society of Jesus.

Roman College

The Roman College was a school established by St. Ignatius of Loyola in 1551, just 11 years after he founded the Society of Jesus (1540). It quickly grew to include classes from elementary school through university level. It moved to several different locations to accommodate its growing student population. With the patronage of Pope Gregory XIII, from 1582 to 1584 the final seat of the Roman College was built near the center of Rome's most historic Pigna district, on what today is called Piazza del Collegio Romano. The college remained at this location for 286 years until the Capture of Rome in 1870. In 1873, the remaining philosophical and theological faculties of the Roman College formed the Gregorian University, named after the benefactor of the College in the sixteenth century and thus establishing the link with the previous institution.

Bernardino Realino was an Italian Roman Catholic priest and a professed member of the Jesuits. His entire career was devoted to the areas of Naples and Lecce. Realino pursued a career in law and served in several municipal capacities before feeling called to the Jesuit life and being ordained to the priesthood in Naples. He is often dubbed as the "Apostle of Lecce" for his commitment to the poor and for his preaching abilities.

Daniel J. Harrington, S.J., was Professor of New Testament and Chair of the Biblical Studies Department at Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

The history of Catholic dogmatic theology divides into three main periods: the patristic, the medieval, the modern.

Hermann Thyräus was a German Jesuit theologian and preacher.

Ignatius of Loyola Catholic Saint, founder of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits)

Ignatius of Loyola, venerated as Saint Ignatius of Loyola, was a Spanish Basque Catholic priest and theologian, who co-founded the religious order called the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) and became its first Superior General at Paris in 1541. The Jesuit order served the Pope as missionaries, and they were bound by a fourth vow of special obedience to the sovereign pontiff in regard to the missions. They therefore emerged as an important force during the time of the Counter-Reformation.

PaschaseBroët was a Catholic priest, and one of the first Jesuits.

Juan Alfonso de Polanco was a Spanish Jesuit priest. From 1547 to 1556, he was the secretary of Ignatius of Loyola and one of his closest advisers. Later, he was the secretary of the first two superior generals of the Society of Jesus after Loyola, Diego Laynez, and Francis Borgia. He also chronicled the early history of the Jesuits.

Jérôme Nadal Spanish catholic priest

Jérôme Nadal was born on 11 August 1507 in Palma De Mallorca, in the Balearic Islands, Spain, and died on 3 April 1580 in Rome. He was a Spanish Jesuit priest in the first generation of the companions of St. Ignatius of Loyola. A very close collaborator of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, he was sent to explain to the various Jesuit communities of Europe the first draft of the Constitutions. He is known as the "Ignatian theologian" for having developed the theology behind Ignatian spirituality.

References

Attribution
  1. Michael Servetus Research Archived 2014-10-11 at the Wayback Machine Website that includes graphical documents in the University of Paris of: Ignatius of Loyola, Francis Xavier, Alfonso Salmerón, Nicholas Bobadilla, Peter Faber and Simao Rodrigues, as well as Michael de Villanueva ("Servetus")