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To help the Church bear this heavy burden, I propose that she rediscover one of her venerable traditions--praying the penitential psalms.
Praying the penitential psalms is a tradition that was inexplicably discarded following the Second Vatican Council, but it need not be irretrievably lost.
Thus Schaff viewed Anabaptism's focus on the "inner man" as a significant moment in the unfolding of history, much as John McNeill viewed the penitentials as a breakthrough of Christian sensitivity heralding modem psychology.
Although she asserts that the seventh-century diffusions of penitentials she considers Celtic "marked a culmination of processes that had been set in motion over two centuries earlier" (269), she offers no discussion of the content or texts of those penitentials.
That enquiry broadened to encompass very large questions about the origins, functions, forms, and causes for change in penitential practices.
is at his best in a textual analysis of the eight key sinful diseases, showing their symptoms and the remedies proposed in the penitentials.
generally fails to note negative features of the penitentials or to analyze the Irish system critically in relation to what preceded and followed.
To understand the passionate rejection of the integrity of confession, I will briefly situate the summae confessorum in the tradition of the general patristic penitential practice and the Irish and Frankish penitentials to demonstrate the rigorist tradition which the summae confessorum mediated to the Reformation.
The penitentials contain long lists of questions by which "all (things) can be diligently investigated,"(40) but Rogino suggests that this be done "softly and gently.
These texts reflect the desire of tent-hand eleventh-century bishops to promote reform by asserting their authority over their priests and penitential practice.
The clear distinction between public and private penance breaks down under Hamilton's scrutiny of two penitential ordines preserved in the Romano-German pontifical.
They vary in genre and purpose: from Raguel's account of the witness of the martyr Pelagius, through Alan of Lille's The Plaint of Nature (a revisionist gloss on Ovid's Metamorphoses) and the Penitential manuals of Paul of Hungary and Robert of Flambourgh, to Aquinas's Summa theologiae.