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Franciscan Urban Preachers in Defense of Catholicism in the Low Countries c. 1520–1568

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Chapter Summary

This chapter shows that the religious production of Catholic authors comprised more than just messages of devotion and repentance. With recourse to works produced by Franciscan preachers who were active in the Low Countries during this very period, the chapter demonstrates that at least a number of such texts contained an engaging defense of the Catholic Church and of Catholic doctrines. It also upholds that Catholic teachings provided by mendicant preachers in Dutch towns during the sixteenth century were much more interesting and could have a much more doctrinal character than Dutch historians of the early Protestant Reformation want one to believe. The Antwerp collection contains for instance sermons on the interaction between free will and grace (an important theme since Luther's utterances on predestination), the dangers of modern heresies, and again the necessity to safeguard the unity of Catholicism.

Keywords: Catholic Church; Dutch towns; Franciscan urban preachers



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