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Open Access Peter Canisius and the Protestants

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Peter Canisius and the Protestants

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A Model of Ecumenical Dialogue?

image of Journal of Jesuit Studies

Some modern interpreters have incorrectly suggested that Peter Canisius was an ecumenist before his time. Their insistence on his extraordinary kindness towards Protestants does not stand the test of the scrutiny of the relevant sources. An analysis of Canisius’s advice on how Jesuits should deal with “heretics” in Germany, of his catechisms, and of his polemical works reveals a typical Catholic controversialist of the Reformation era. Canisius was disposed to display hostility, more than good will, to Protestants.

Affiliations: 1: Department of History, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada, pabel@sfu.ca

Some modern interpreters have incorrectly suggested that Peter Canisius was an ecumenist before his time. Their insistence on his extraordinary kindness towards Protestants does not stand the test of the scrutiny of the relevant sources. An analysis of Canisius’s advice on how Jesuits should deal with “heretics” in Germany, of his catechisms, and of his polemical works reveals a typical Catholic controversialist of the Reformation era. Canisius was disposed to display hostility, more than good will, to Protestants.

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/content/journals/10.1163/22141332-00103002
2014-04-01
2016-12-03

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