On Justification (6th session)
On the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist (13th session)
On the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass (22nd session)
I’m very fond of the Council of Trent.
When I started looking into Catholicism, I thought Trent was evil, maybe even evilly evil. (Which as I’m sure you all know is the difference between Sadaam Hussein and Cruella de Vil; evilly evil is fabulously evil and evilly fabulous…) I thought it was manically irrational and hopelessly reactionary, inaugurating centuries of repression, casuistry, hierarchy, and dead-letter spirituality.
Then I actually read the decrees and was like, wow, this kind of makes sense.
That was once I figured it out what it was actually saying of course. The council fathers at Trent are like Victorian novelists. They like looooong, confusing and dense sentences. They’re always asking the question, why have four sentences when you could have one? Heck, why not stuff centuries of theology in one paragraph, and then mix up the clauses just to make it interesting (i.e. incomprehensible)?
And that’s why I started making summaries of the decrees of the Council of Trent.
NOTE: These are the decrees of the Council, not the canons. The canons are the ones with the anathemas which tell you what you can and can’t believe to be Catholic. The decrees are the truths contained in the canons put into their context, with some explanation. So you shouldn’t really read what Trent condemns without reading what it affirms.