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in the same manner, as those are who through their own fault die without Confession as is above decreed.

Decree VI. THe Synod being informed that the greatest

1 part of those that die of the Small-Pox, tho they lived in Towns and desired Confession, do die without it, that Distem per being so very dangerous and infectious, that the Priests are afraid of coming near those that have it ; doth command all Vicars to be careful, that none such do die without Confession, and either to go themselves, in Person, or to send one to Confess them; a due regard being still to be had to their own health, either by confesting them at some distance,or so that the Wind shall blow the steams from them, and by having taken preservatives against tlie Di. stemper; that so none may die without Confellion, which is what the Synod doth very earnestly recommend to them in the Lord.

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THe Synod doth earnestly recommend to all

1 the faithful Christians Inhabitants of this Bishoprick, not to satisfie themselves with having confessed their Sins once a Year at Easter, when they are bound to it upon the penalty of mortal Sin ; but that they do frequently make use of this Sacrament, in proportion to the Sins they fall into daily, and not to fail to Confess themselves on the Festivities of the Nativity of the Holy Ghost, and the Assumption of our Lady, and at the Wake of their Parish, and the Vicars must not fail to admonish their People thereof on the Sunday before those Festivities.

Decrec VIII. THe Synod doth declare, That notwith

I standing the power of pardoning Sins is annexed to the Sacerdotal Order, nevertheless that all Priests cannot hear Confessions, but only such as are Licensed by the Prelate; for the Ad of Abfolution being an Act of Jurisdiction, and Judicature, cannot be without Subjects, which the Prelate only can give when he appoints Con

ry; so that a Priest having no Licence, or transgressing the bounds that were set to him by his Prelate, if he shall presume to hear Confessions and Abfolve, his Confeflions and Absolutions are void and of no force ; neither are the Sins of the Penitents pardoned, who are therefore bound . to Confess themselves again to a Confefior that has power to Absolve, as if they had not Conselled beforę; but when any one is in probable danger of Death, and cannot have a Priest that is Licensed, any Priest, tho' he is not Licensed, may Confess and Abfolve him in that case.

Decree

Decree IX. IT 7 Hereas it belongs to the good Government

W of the Church and the Faithful, that Crimes of a heinous nature should be judged not by every Priest, but by Prelates or Bishops, because for that reason Christians will be the more fearful to commit them ; besides that, it has always been the Custom of the Church, to reserve to the Prelates, and even to the Pope as the Universal Head of the Church, fome Crimes from which they and none else can Absolve, or not do it without their leave : therefore the Synod doth declare, That notwithstanding this Doctrine has not hitherto been understood or practised in this Bishoprick, by reason of the great Ignorance of the Church and sacred Canons that has reigned therein: Nevertheless, that the ordinary Confeflors have no power to Absolve in cafes reserved to the Prelate, and least of all in those that are reserved to the Pope, namely, those contained in the Bulla Cænd Domini; which all Confessors ought to be acquainted with ; neither can they Absolve in the Crime of Heresy, or in any cases wherein the Faith is concerned; all which do belong to the Court of the Holy Office of Inquisition, or to such as are Commissioned by them, or to the Bishop who by himself may Abfolve in the Form of the Holy Council of Trent; and according to the Ordinations of the Holy Fathers: Nei

ther can ordinary Confessors dispense with or change the Vows of Penitents, because that belongs to the Prelate, or such as are deputed by him, or that have obtained Apostolical Privileges to that effect. Only at the point of Death, not only approved Confeflors, but also all simple Priests, there being no other to be had, are obliged to hear Confessions, and may also Absolve in all Cases and from all Censures to whomsoe'er reserved. Tho' as to the Censures with this Obligation, that if the Sick Person shall recover, they shall return to the Persons again to whom they were before reserved, from whom they shall receive such healthful Penance as shall be thought meet.

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Hat Confessors may the better know in 1 what Cases they may, and in what Cases they may not absolve their Penitents, having no Authority to do it, the Synod doth command the Bulla Cænæ Domini,and all the Cales relerved in this Bishoprick to be pasted on a Board, and set up in all Sacristies, and where there are no Sacristies, in the chief Chapel in every Church in the Malabar

Tongue, for the direction of the Confeflors, and 'doth furthermore in its regulation of the reler

ved Cases in this Diocess, declare, That willful Murther, publickly committed with violence on

the Person of an Ecclesiastick, the voluntary · firing of Houses, or of any Goods belonging to

T2

ChriChristians, formal Simony both in the givers and receivers, marrying without the Vicar and two Witnesses, Schism and Disobedience against the Prelate, in all that are guilty thereof, or that favour such as are, the having of any of the Books condemned by this Synod in their Houses, or the reading of any of them, the performing of the publick Ceremonies called Taliconum Colicons, the having of Pagods or Idols in their Houses, and the giving them any Veneration, bave all the censure of Excommunication annexed to them, of which tho’some are* reserved by Law, yet that they might be the better known, it was thought fit to have them expressed here.

* Reserved.) This is what triamque redire ita liberos, ut non destroys all Discipline io che tantum beneficia, quibus ob fcelera Church of Rome, and what the privati fuerant , cum maximo deBishops thereof complain of lo decore do juftitiæ, contemptu, favore much. Didacus Abulenfis in the lo importunis precibus obtinuerint 73d. page of his Book of Couv. iterum apud Romanam Curiam ; cils, gives the following account fed do aliis pinguioribus, bonorati in of it, Eft in urbe Romana pernicio- premium criminun, liberam iterum fus abuíus qui disimulatione quâdam millies peccandi licentiam ferè imjam diu toleratur, nam scelerati - petraverint; funt enim in Curiâ Rofimi homines Episcoporum do alio. manâ tot Officiales, quorum munus rum Judicum ordinariorum , juftis- potißimum eft præ avaritiâ maximâ fimam punitionem effugientes tan- og voracitate ab ipfis litigantibus quam ad tut illimum aflum Roma- aliis extorquere, ut tandem jam nam accedunt curiam, nihil aliud nihil obtineri apud eandem curiam cogitantes quam quod eo ipso fint à poflit, aliter quam ingenti pecuniâ, gravifimis maximâ cum Justitie veluti in pretium rei impetrate imjacturâ immunes: Hinc sane palim penfâ. And in the 62d. Page he videmus Clericos Criminum atro- gives the Pope himselfche followcisimoruin autores, ab ordinariis ing wholsome advice: Cavere de

Judicibus fugientes in Romanam bet summus ipse Pontifex, ne dum Curiam, propriis beneficiis, quæ obti. agitur de morum censura, que ad nebant, &quiffimè privatos, brevi clericos, Episcopos do alios Christiane compendio temporis in Hispaniam pa- professionis homines, omnino in ipfo

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