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Michael of Cesena (Michele di Cesena or Michele Fuschi – 29 November 1342) was an Italian Franciscan, general of that Order, and theologian.) (c. 1270
Of his early life little is known. He was born at Cesena. Having entered the Franciscan Order, he studied at Paris and took the doctor's degree in theology. He taught theology at Bologna and wrote several commentaries on Holy Scripture and the Sentences of Peter Lombard .
Cesena (Italian pronunciation: [tʃeˈzɛːna]; Romagnol: Cisêna, is a city and comune in the Emilia-Romagna region, served by Autostrada A14, and located near the Apennine Mountains, about 15 kilometres from the Adriatic Sea. The total population is 97,137.
His advocacy of Evangelical poverty brought him into conflict with Pope John XXII.
Pope John XXII, born Jacques Duèze, was Pope from 7 August 1316 to his death in 1334.
At the general chapter of Naples (31 May 1316) he was elected minister general and went at once to Assisi, where he convoked a chapter to consider the revision of the Constitutions of the order. Returning to Bologna, he issued the document, Gravi qua premor (21 August 1316), which, together with several other ordinances regarding the matter of poverty, induced John XXII to publish the Bull, Quorumdam exigit (7 October 1317) whose purpose was to explain the decretals of Nicholas III, Exiit qui seminat (13 August 1279), and of Clement V, Exivi de paradiso (6 May 1312). As it concerned the principal chapter of the Franciscan Rule, this action caused no little disturbance within the order.
Naples is the regional capital of Campania and the third-largest municipality in Italy after Rome and Milan. In 2017, around 967,069 people lived within the city's administrative limits while its province-level municipality has a population of 3,115,320 residents. Its continuously built-up metropolitan area is the second or third largest metropolitan area in Italy and one of the most densely populated cities in Europe.
Assisi is a town and comune of Italy in the Province of Perugia in the Umbria region, on the western flank of Monte Subasio.
Bologna is the capital and largest city of the Emilia-Romagna Region in Northern Italy. It is the seventh most populous city in Italy, at the heart of a metropolitan area of about one million people.
The Bull was opposed by Cesena and his supporters, who claimed that in adopting the strict poverty upon which Cesena had insisted in his letters, they were following the example and teaching of Christ and the Apostles. Thus the controversy finally shifted to a speculative theological question: whether or not it was consonant with Catholic Faith to hold that Christ and the Apostles had no property individually or in common, and while in the famous dispute at Narbonne in 1321 the inquisitor John of Belna claimed that it was heretical, Berengarius of Perpignan declared it a Catholic dogma in perfect accordance with the decretals of Nicholas III and Clement V.
In Christian theology and ecclesiology, apostles, particularly the Twelve Apostles, were the primary disciples of Jesus. During the life and ministry of Jesus in the 1st century AD, the apostles were his closest followers and became the primary teachers of the gospel message of Jesus.
The matter having been brought before John XXII, a further attempt to settle the controversy was made by distinguishing between dominion and simple use, so that both propositions, Christ and the Apostles had no property, i. e., dominion of property, and Christ and the Apostles possessed property, i. e., the use of property, were true. In the Bull Quia nonnunquam (26 March 1322) the pope declared that he intended merely to explain the decrees of his predecessors, and excommunicated anyone who attempted to misconstrue the meaning of the papal Constitution Quorumdam exigit.
In June of the same year a general chapter of the order was convoked at Perugia and decided that to assert that Christ and His Apostles possessed no earthly goods was not only not heretical, but sound and Catholic doctrine. At the same time Bonagratia of Bergamo was commissioned to represent the chapter before the papal Curia, at Avignon.
Perugia is the capital city of both the region of Umbria in central Italy, crossed by the river Tiber, and of the province of Perugia. The city is located about 164 kilometres north of Rome and 148 km southeast of Florence. It covers a high hilltop and part of the valleys around the area. The region of Umbria is bordered by Tuscany, Lazio, and Marche.
Bonagratia of Bergamo was a leading supporter of the Franciscan Spirituals from within the Franciscan movement. He was a well trained lawyer before entering the Franciscans, and represented the Franciscans at the Papal Curia. The Appellatio magna monacensis, an important manifesto of the group around Michael of Cesena, has been attributed to him.
The controversy continued unabated until, in 1327, Cesena was summoned to appear before the pope. The latter summoned him to Avignon in 1327 and Cesena eventually agreed to go, after feigning illness and delaying. He obeyed a subsequent summons and was forbidden by the pope under pain of grave censure to leave Avignon. He was thus unable to attend the chapter held at Bologna in May of the following year (1328). Despite his absence and the protest of the papal legate, he was reelected minister general, the chapter deeming the charges against him insufficient to deprive him of office.
Cesena managed to win over William of Ockham to his cause. Several prelates and princes wrote to the pope on Cesena's behalf. In the following year, Cesena, Ockham, and a few other high-ranking Franciscans fled from the papal court. They had apparently wished to seek the protection of King Robert of Naples (who favored their views), but a storm on the Mediterranean forced their galley back to the port of Aigues-Mortes, where they transferred to another ship manned by agents of Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor and were taken to Pisa.
At Pisa they were received by the party of Louis and were joined by a number of other schismatics. John XXII was declared to be deposed by the Emperor. Cesena was excommunicated by the Pope. He published a solemn appeal from the pope to a council (12 December 1328), posted it on the door of the cathedral.
In 1329 Cesena was deposed from the Franciscan leadership, now controlled by the Pope, and in 1330 left with his followers in the entourage of Louis, for Germany. The general chapter of Paris (11 June 1329), at which Cardinal Bertrand presided, had condemned the conduct and writings of Cesena and all who took part with him against John XXII, and had elected Gerard Odon minister general of the Franciscan Order.
The pope issued the Encyclical Quia vir reprobus, warning the faithful against Cesena, and the latter answered in his Ad perpetuam rei memoriam innotescat quod ego, Fr. Michael (25 November 1330) and in Christianæ fidei fundamentum, in which he accused the pope of heresy in the three Bulls, Ad Conditorem Canonum, Cum inter nonnullos, and Quia quorumdam. These and Litteras plurium magistrorum, and Teste Solomone which Cesena wrote in his own defence, are contained in Occam's Dialogue.
The chapter of Perpignan (25 April 1331) expelled him from the order and sentenced him to perpetual imprisonment. He continued to struggle for his understanding of evangelical poverty for the rest of his life, and issued an appeal against Benedict XII, who had succeeded John XXII, in 1338. He died in Munich, and was buried there in the Franciscan convent, the Barfüsserkirche. He was officially rehabilitated in 1359.
Michael of Cesena was one of the historical characters in Umberto Eco's novel The Name of the Rose .
William of Ockham was an English Franciscan friar and scholastic philosopher and theologian, who is believed to have been born in Ockham, a small village in Surrey. He is considered to be one of the major figures of medieval thought and was at the centre of the major intellectual and political controversies of the 14th century. He is commonly known for Occam's razor, the methodological principle that bears his name, and also produced significant works on logic, physics, and theology. In the Church of England, his day of commemoration is 10 April.
The Avignon Papacy was the period from 1309 to 1376 during which seven successive popes resided in Avignon rather than in Rome. The situation arose from the conflict between the papacy and the French crown, culminating in the death of Pope Boniface VIII after his arrest and maltreatment by Philip IV of France. Following the further death of Pope Benedict XI, Philip forced a deadlocked conclave to elect the French Clement V as Pope in 1305. Clement refused to move to Rome, and in 1309, he moved his court to the papal enclave at Avignon, where it remained for the next 67 years. This absence from Rome is sometimes referred to as the "Babylonian Captivity of the Papacy".
The Franciscans are a group of related mendicant religious orders within the Catholic Church, founded in 1209 by Saint Francis of Assisi. These orders include the Order of Friars Minor, the Order of Saint Clare, and the Third Order of Saint Francis. They adhere to the teachings and spiritual disciplines of the founder and of his main associates and followers, such as Clare of Assisi, Anthony of Padua, and Elizabeth of Hungary, among many others.
The Fraticelli or Spiritual Franciscans were extreme proponents of the rule of Saint Francis of Assisi, especially with regard to poverty, and regarded the wealth of the Church as scandalous, and that of individual churchmen as invalidating their status. They were thus forced into open revolt against the whole authority of the Church and were declared heretical in 1296 by Boniface VIII.
Ubertino of Casale was an Italian Franciscan and one of the leaders of the Spirituals, the stricter branch of the Franciscan order.
Conciliarism was a reform movement in the 14th-, 15th- and 16th-century Catholic Church which held that supreme authority in the Church resided with an Ecumenical council, apart from, or even against, the pope. The movement emerged in response to the Western Schism between rival popes in Rome and Avignon. The schism inspired the summoning of the Council of Pisa (1409), which failed to end the schism, and the Council of Constance (1414–1418), which succeeded and proclaimed its own superiority over the Pope. Conciliarism reached its apex with the Council of Basel (1431–1449), which ultimately fell apart. The eventual victor in the conflict was the institution of the Papacy, confirmed by the condemnation of conciliarism at the Fifth Lateran Council, 1512–17. The final gesture however, the doctrine of Papal Infallibility, was not promulgated until the First Vatican Council of 1870.
Apostolic poverty is a Christian doctrine professed in the thirteenth century by the newly formed religious orders, known as the mendicant orders, in direct response to calls for reform in the Roman Catholic Church. In this, these orders attempted to live their lives without ownership of lands or accumulation of money, following the precepts given to the seventy disciples in the Gospel of Luke (10:1-24), and succeeding to varying degrees. The ascetic Pope Paschal II's solution of the Investiture Controversy in his radical Concordat of 1111 with the Emperor, repudiated by the cardinals, was that the ecclesiastics of Germany should surrender to the imperial crown their fiefs and secular offices. Paschal proved to be the last of the Gregorianist popes.
Decretals are letters of a pope that formulate decisions in ecclesiastical law of the Catholic Church.
William of Alnwick was a Franciscan friar and theologian, and bishop of Giovinazzo, who took his name from Alnwick in Northumberland.
The Supreme Order of Christ is the highest order of chivalry awarded by the Pope. According to some scholars it owes its origin to the same Order of Christ of the Knights Templar, from which came the Order of Christ that was awarded by the Kings of Portugal and the Emperors of Brazil. The Portuguese order had originally both a secular and religious component; by the 18th century, the religious component had died out.
Geraldus Odonis, Guiral Ot in Occitan, was a French theologian and Minister General of the Franciscan Order.
Francis of Marchia was an Italian Franciscan theologian and philosopher. He was an ally of William of Ockham and Michael of Cesena, and opponent of Pope John XXII, in the struggles of the Franciscan Spirituals, leading to his expulsion from the order in 1329. He was commenting on the Sentences of Peter Lombard around 1320, but no longer closely bound to Lombard; for example he incidentally theorises on projectile motion, views now thought to be taken from Richard Rufus of Cornwall. He was nicknamed Doctor Succinctus.
The term Extravagantes is applied to the canon law of the Roman Catholic Church, to designate some papal decretals not contained in certain canonical collections which possess a special authority. More precisely, they are not found in Gratian's Decretum or the three official collections of the Corpus Juris Canonici.
Papal infallibility is a dogma of the Catholic Church that states that, in virtue of the promise of Jesus to Peter, the Pope is preserved from the possibility of error "when, in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians, in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority, he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole Church." "Infallibility means more than exemption from actual error; it means exemption from the possibility of error;..."
Gauscelin de Jean was a French cardinal.
Jean de Beaune was a Dominican inquisitor in Carcassonne during the early 14th century who played a role in precipitating the Apostolic poverty controversy of the period.
Nicholas of Freising, commonly known as Nicholas the Minorite, was a member of the Franciscan Order during the early 14th Century. He is presumed to be the author of the Chronicle of Nicholas the Minorite, an account of the conflict over Apostolic poverty under the reign of Pope John XXII. The Chronicle was written or assembled as early as 1338.
Spondent Pariter was a papal decretal promulgated in 1317 by Pope John XXII forbidding the practice of alchemy. The rationale provided for the ban in the decretal is not a specifically theological one, but instead a moral condemnation, with the Pope expounding how fraudulent alchemists exploited the poor and charging them with knowingly engaging in falsehood.
The doctrine of the Absolute Poverty of Christ was a teaching associated with the Franciscan order of friars, particularly prominent between 1210 and 1323. The key tenet of the doctrine of absolute poverty was that Christ and the apostles had no property, whether individually or shared. Debate about this came to a head in what is known as the theoretical poverty controversy in 1322–23. Pope John XXII declared this doctrine heretical in November 1323 via the papal bull Cum inter nonnullos, but debate on the subject continued for some years after; indeed, John's own final statement on the subject came in 1329 in his Quia vir reprobus. Key aspects of the debate included: the origins of property and whether use of material objects implied ownership; whether property existed before the Fall of Man; whether Christ while on earth had dominion over temporal things; the detailed and technical status of Christ's well attested poverty; and the apostles' use of material goods.
|Catholic Church titles|
| Minister General of the Order of Friars Minor |
Bertrand de Turre as Vicar general