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King St. Louis IX – my kind of interreligious dialogue! June 17, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, history, manhood, Saints, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.

I say that a bit tongue in cheek, of course. From the life of King St. Louis IX by Joinville, a bit of proper perspective on the Church’s historical approach to “interreligious dialogue.”  I’m not saying this is what should be done today by you or me, but it certainly does provide a marked contrast to the kind of mealy-mouthed, “you’re right we’re so sorry we’re so afraid to offend” garbage we’ve had to endure for decades.  I do like how the knight below rebukes the abbot for being more interested in serving men than God, in “getting along” versus having concern for souls.

I guess the question  you might take away from the below is, has the Church gotten wiser, or just colder in the Faith from that 13th century mountain top?:

King Louis spoke……..of a great assembly of clergy and Jews which had taken place at the monastery of Cluny.  There was a poor knight there at the time to whom the abbot had often given bread for the love of God.  This knight asked the abbot if he could speak first, and his request was granted, though somewhat grudgingly.  So he rose to his feet, and leaning on his crutch, asked to have the most important and the most learned rabbi among the Jews brought before him. As soon as the Jew had come, the knight asked him a question.  “May I know, sir,” he said, “if you believe that the Virgin Mary, who bore our Lord in her body and cradled Him in her arms, was a virgin at the time of His birth, and is in truth the Mother of God?”

The Jew replied that he had no belief in any of those things.  Thereupon the knight told the Jew that he had acted like a fool when  – neither believing in the Virgin, nor loving her – he had set foot in that monastery that was her house.  “And by heaven,” exclaimed the knight, “I’ll make you pay for it!”  so he lifted his crutch and struck the Jew such a blow to the rear that he knocked him down.  Then all the Jews took to flight, and carried their sorely wounded rabbit away with them.  Thus the conference ended.

The abbot went up to the knight and told him he had acted most unwisely.  The knight retorted that the abbot had been guilty of even greater folly in calling people together for such a conference, because there were many good Christians there who, before the discussion ended, would have gone away with doubts about their own religion through not fully understanding the Jews.  “So I tell you,” said the king, “that no one, unless he is an expert theologian, should venture to argue with these people. But a layman, whenever he hears the Christian religion abused, should not attempt to defend its tenets, except with his sword, and that he should thrust into the scoundrel’s belly, and as far as it will enter.”

King St. Louis IX has to be one of the few Saints to be canonized who killed people as part of his public role for which he was eventually canonized!  And I don’t mean ordered to be killed, or caused to die because of some policy decision he made – Joinville is clear, in the kind of hand to hand combat that predominated in the heroic Age of Faith, Louis IX participated directly.  He had Saracen blood on his sword.

Of course, he wasn’t canonized for that, specifically, but his perfection in the role of Christian political leader is a major component in his canonization, and going on Crusade was a key point of his monarchy, so……




1. camper - June 18, 2016

The trouble with this is that Catholics who imitate the example of this knight would be open to the charge that they are like Mohammedans, viz., they believe that it is permissible to commit crimes to defend the religion.
I have mixed feelings about the crusades and haven’t heard a good defense of them, or a sound condemnation. Still, I like thinking about St. Louis because he presided over a sound Catholic country.

2. camper - June 19, 2016

I don’t know if this is your first time posting here, but at the risk of sounding like a very badly broken record, try the SSPX.

3. richard - June 20, 2016


Gutting those who profane the Catholic faith, well, lets say we need to be much more aggressive in defending our faith and that starts by knowing it well and possessing a willingness to show charity through opposition.

As for a a great defense of The Crusades, I will point you to a well researched and very convincing account of the truth behind the crusades and its justification. Below is a quick summary, but I incurrage you to watch is in its entirety. It can be found under premium content at ChurchMilitant.com It is well worth the half hour, after which, you will be better prepared to help other understand the truth.

What really happened in the Crusades:
• It was Muslims … not Catholics … who were the aggressors attempting to spread their faith by the sword.
• The Catholic Church NEVER condoned violence committed by its soldiers against the innocent. Often the violence wasn’t even committed by the actual Crusaders … but by uninvited tagalongs who had their own agendas.
• The current understanding of the Crusades … the one that says that Catholics were forcing everyone to convert or killing them … essentially stemmed from two books … The Talisman by Sir Walter Scott and History of the Crusades by Joseph Francois Michaud.
• The Crusaders DID commit violence … but that doesn’t necessarily mean they did anything wrong. A Catholic can be justified in using force. Look at paragraph 2309 of the Catechism …which explains the just war doctrine. And don’t forget … Christ was the Prince of Peace … but he was NOT a pacifist. The peace that Christ spoke of was not the mere absence of war, but a spiritual peace of the soul.

Tantumblogo - June 20, 2016

I’m no opponent of the Crusades. I think they were long overdue.

And I think we’re long overdue for one today, too.

4. richard - June 20, 2016

Tantumblogo, sorry if you took my comments as directed towards you, they where not. They were directed more towards the other commenters.

Tantumblogo - June 20, 2016

Thanks for clarifying! I figured, but I thought my comments could kind of be misconstrued as maybe looking down on the Crusades, anyway, so I thought it would not be a bad idea to be clear.

5. john darin - June 21, 2016

Truth always wins, aggression doesn’t accomplish the Christian goal, but it does offer physical protection and is necessary until our Spiritual conscience enters the realm of those like Justin Martyr, Ignatius, Irenaeus, or Clement of Rome. There willingness to oppose heretics, with the intention of converting their thinking even in the face of death is the approach Christians need to emulate, however, only a few Christians will be able to do so since most of us aren’t able to be on the same Spiritual level as these men. The closest example of total Spiritual sell-out for Christ are those in the Middle East today that are being killed, testifying for Christ. May we decide to witness here by standing for what we believe, patiently, passionately, in the face of ridicule for not being politically correct. Remembering of course, evangelization will not be successful unless it is done in the love Christ has shown us how to give others.
john darin, wishing you all a blessed journey toward the Promise Land.

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