Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Four Authoritative Creeds


(H/T St. Louis Catholic via Fr. Z.)

The Apostle's Creed

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Ghost Church, the communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.

Athanasian Creed

The Athanasian Creed, also know as the "Quicumque vult", was formerly recited at the office of Prime on Sundays. It is one of the four authoritative Creeds of the Catholic Church. In 1940, the lost 'Excerpta' of St. Vincent of Lerins (flourished in 440: "quod ubique, quod semper, quod ab omnibus creditum est") was discovered, and this work contains much of the language of the Creed. The earliest known copy of the creed was included in a prefix to a collection of homilies by Caesarius of Arles (died 542).
Whoever wishes to be saved must, above all, keep the Catholic faith.
 For unless a person keeps this faith whole and entire he will undoubtedly be lost forever.
 

This is what the Catholic faith teaches: we worship one God in the Trinity and the Trinity in unity. 
We distinguish among the persons, but we do not divide the substance. 


For the Father is a distinct person; the Son is a distinct person; and the Holy Ghost is a distinct person. 
Still the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost have one divinity, equal glory, and coeternal majesty.


What the Father is, the Son is, and the Holy Ghost is. 
The Father is uncreated, the Son is uncreated, and the Holy Ghost is uncreated.
 The Father is boundless, the Son is boundless, and the Holy Ghost is boundless.
The Father is eternal, the Son is eternal, and the Holy Ghost is eternal.
 

Nevertheless, there are not three eternal beings, but one eternal being.
Thus there are not three uncreated beings, nor three boundless beings, but one uncreated being and one boundless being. 


Likewise, the Father is omnipotent, the Son is omnipotent, and the Holy Ghost is omnipotent.
Yet there are not three omnipotent beings, but one omnipotent being. 
Thus the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God.
 But there are not three gods, but one God.


The Father is Lord, the Son is Lord, and the Holy Ghost is Lord. 
There as not three lords, but one Lord.
 For according to Christian truth, we must profess that each of the persons individually is God; and according to Christian religion we are forbidden to say that there are three gods or lords.


The Father is not made by anyone, nor created by anyone, nor generated by anyone.
The Son is not made nor created, but he is generated by the Father alone.
 The Holy Ghost is not made nor created nor generated, but proceeds from the Father and the Son.
 There is, then, one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, but not three sons; one Holy Ghost, not three holy ghosts.


In this Trinity, there is nothing greater, nothing less than anything else. 
But the entire three persons are coeternal and coequal with one another.
 

So that, as we have said, we worship complete unity in the Trinity and the Trinity in unity. 
This, then, is what he who wishes to be saved must believe about the Trinity. It is also necessary for eternal salvation that he believes steadfastly in the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.


The true faith is: we believe and profess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is both God and man. 
As God He was begotten of the substance of the Father before time; as man He was born in time of the substance of His Mother.
 He is perfect God; and He is perfect man, with a rational soul and human flesh.


He is equal to the Father in His divinity, but He is inferior to the Father in His humanity. 
Although He is God and man, He is not two, but one Christ.
And He is one, not because His divinity was changed into flesh, but because His humanity was assumed to God.
 He is one, not at all because of a mingling of substances, but because He is one person.
 As a rational soul and flesh are one man: so God and man are one Christ.


He died for our salvation, descended to hell, arose from the dead on the third day.
 Ascended into heaven, sits at the right hand of God the Father almighty, and from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.


At His coming, all men are to arise with their own bodies; and they are to give an account of their lives. 
Those who have done good deeds will go into eternal life; those who have done evil will go into everlasting fire.
 This is the Catholic faith. Everyone must believe it, firmly and steadfastly; otherwise He cannot be saved. Amen.



Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible. I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; Through him all things were made. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven, and by the Holy Ghost was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death and was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end. I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets.
I believe in one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.
Amen.


(IANS' Personal Favorite, with Athanasius' a close second

Creed of Pope Pius IV

The "Professio fidei Tridentina", also known as the "Creed of Pope Pius IV", is one of the four authoritative Creeds of the Catholic Church. It was issued on November 13, 1565 by Pope Pius IV in his bull "Iniunctum nobis" under the auspices of the Council of Trent (1545 - 1563). It was subsequently modified slightly after the First Vatican Council (1869 - 1870) to bring it inline with the dogmatic definitions of the Council. The major intent of the Creed was to clearly define the Catholic faith against Protestantism. At one time it was used by Theologians as an oath of loyalty to the Church and to reconcile converts to the Church, but it is rarely used these days.

I, N, with a firm faith believe and profess each and everything which is contained in the Creed which the Holy Roman Church maketh use of. To wit:

I believe in one God, The Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible. And in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the Only-begotten Son of God. Born of the Father before all ages. God of God, Light of Light, true God of true God. Begotten, not made, of one substance with the Father. By whom all things were made. Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven. And became incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary: and was made man. He was also crucified for us, suffered under Pontius Pilate, and was buried. And on the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and His kingdom will have no end. And in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life, Who proceeds from the Father and the Son. Who together with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, and who spoke through the prophets. And one holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I await the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.

The Apostolic and Ecclesiastical traditions and all other observances and constitutions of that same Church I firmly admit to and embrace.

I also accept the Holy Scripture according to that sense which holy mother the Church hath held, and doth hold, and to whom it belongeth to judge the true sense and interpretations of the Scriptures. Neither will I ever take and interpret them otherwise than according to the unanimous consent of the Fathers.

I also profess that there are truly and properly Seven Sacraments of the New Law, instituted by Jesus Christ our Lord, and necessary for the salvation of mankind, though not all are necessary for everyone; to wit, Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Extreme Unction, Holy Orders, and Matrimony; and that they confer grace; and that of these, Baptism, Confirmation, and Holy Orders cannot be repeated without sacrilege. I also receive and admit the accepted and approved ceremonies of the Catholic Church in the solemn administration of the aforesaid sacraments.

I embrace and accept each and everything which has been defined and declared in the holy Council of Trent concerning original sin and justification.

I profess, likewise, that in the Mass there is offered to God a true, proper, and propitiatory sacrifice for the living and the dead; and that in the most holy sacrament of the Eucharist there is truly, really, and substantially, the Body and Blood, together with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ; and that a conversion takes place of the whole substance of the bread into the Body, and of the whole substance of the wine into the Blood, which conversion the Catholic Church calls Transubstantiation. I also confess that under either species alone Christ is received whole and entire, and a true sacrament.

I steadfastly hold that there is a Purgatory, and that the souls therein detained are helped by the suffrages of the faithful. Likewise, that the saints, reigning together with Christ, are to be honored and invoked, and that they offer prayers to God for us, and that their relics are to be venerated. I most firmly assert that the images of Christ, of the Mother of God, ever virgin, and also of other Saints, ought to be kept and retained, and that due honor and veneration is to be given them.

I also affirm that the power of indulgences was left by Christ in the Church, and that the use of them is most wholesome to Christian people.

I acknowledge the Holy Catholic Apostolic Roman Church as the mother and teacher of all churches; and I promise true obedience * to the Bishop of Rome, successor to St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles, and Vicar of Jesus Christ. 

I likewise undoubtedly receive and profess all other things delivered, defined, and declared by the sacred Canons, and general Councils, and particularly by the holy Council of Trent, and by the ecumenical Council of the Vatican, particularly concerning the primacy of the Roman Pontiff and his infallible teaching. I condemn, reject, and anathematize all things contrary thereto, and all heresies which the Church hath condemned, rejected, and anathematized.

This true Catholic faith, outside of which no one can be saved, which I now freely profess and to which I truly adhere, I do so profess and swear to maintain inviolate and with firm constancy with the help of God until the last breath of life. And I shall strive, as far as possible, that this same faith shall be held, taught, and professed by all those over whom I have charge. I N. do so pledge, promise, and swear, so help me God and these Holy Gospels of God.

* SSPX Schismatics can not say this Creed with
   any intellectual honesty for they refuse to obey 
   the Pope

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