Leo XIII


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Leo XIII,

1810–1903, pope (1878–1903), an Italian (b. Carpineto, E of Rome) named Gioacchino Pecci; successor of Pius IXPius IX,
1792–1878, pope (1846–78), an Italian named Giovanni M. Mastai-Ferretti, b. Senigallia; successor of Gregory XVI. He was cardinal and bishop of Imola when elected pope.
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. Ordained in 1837, he earned an excellent reputation as archbishop of Perugia (1846–77), and was created cardinal in 1853. Leo's election brought a turn in the course of the papacypapacy
, office of the pope, head of the Roman Catholic Church. He is pope by reason of being bishop of Rome and thus, according to Roman Catholic belief, successor in the see of Rome (the Holy See) to its first bishop, St. Peter.
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; he was abreast of the times and tried, especially by preaching to the whole church, in encyclical letters, to form Roman Catholic attitudes appropriate to living in the modern world. His influence was increased by the length of his reign; thus he was able to furnish the college of cardinals with an unusual number of excellent men (including John Henry NewmanNewman, John Henry,
1801–90, English churchman, cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church, one of the founders of the Oxford movement, b. London. Early Life and Works
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 in 1879 and James Gibbons in 1886). By a combination of vigor and tact he ended the KulturkampfKulturkampf
[Ger.,=conflict of cultures], the conflict between the German government under Bismarck and the Roman Catholic Church. The promulgation (1870) of the dogma of the infallibility of the pope in matters of faith and morals within the church sparked the conflict; it
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 (1887). He tried repeatedly to bring French Roman Catholics to support the republic. In 1885 his encyclical Immortale Dei charted the course of Catholics as responsible citizens in modern secular, democratic states; he thus refuted both the French royalists' claim that they were especially good Catholics and the contention of French anti-Catholics that the church was committed to political reaction. The letter was a great vindication of Catholic democrats. With the anti-Catholic government of Italy there was no conciliation. Leo's program for society appeared in Rerum novarum (1891), an arraignment of capitalism that also showed the insufficiencies of Marxian socialism; it set up Catholic aims and ideals. (It was supplemented in Quadragesimo Anno [1931] of Pius XIPius XI,
1857–1939, pope (1922–39), an Italian named Achille Ratti, b. Desio, near Milan; successor of Benedict XV. Prepapal Career

Ratti's father was a silk manufacturer. He studied in Milan and at the Gregorian Univ., Rome, and was ordained in 1879.
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 and in Mater et Magistra [1961] of John XXIIIJohn XXIII, Saint,
1881–1963, pope (1958–63), an Italian (b. Sotto il Monte, near Bergamo) named Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli; successor of Pius XII. He was of peasant stock.
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.) Leo met the intellectual attack on Christianity by advancing Thomism, with its insistence that there can be no conflict between science and faith; to this end he wrote Aeterni Patris (1879), declaring the philosophy of St. Thomas AquinasThomas Aquinas, Saint
[Lat.,=from Aquino], 1225–74, Italian philosopher and theologian, Doctor of the Church, known as the Angelic Doctor, b. Rocca Secca (near Naples).
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 official and requiring its study; he also founded the institute of Thomistic philosophy at the Univ. of Louvain. He was profoundly interested in the advancement of learning. He opened the Vatican secret archives to all scholars, and he reminded Catholic historians that nothing but the whole truth must be found in their work. He encouraged Bible study and set up (1902) the permanent Biblical Commission. He sponsored a number of faculties and universities, including the Catholic Univ. at Washington, D.C. For sheer productivity Leo surpassed all his predecessors in modern times. He was succeeded by Pius XPius X, Saint,
1835–1914, pope (1903–14), an Italian named Giuseppe Sarto, b. near Treviso; successor of Leo XIII and predecessor of Benedict XV. Ordained in 1858, he became bishop of Mantua (1884), a cardinal (1893), and patriarch of Venice (1893).
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.

Bibliography

See biography by K. K. Burton (1962); studies by L. P. Wallace (1966) and J. Watzlawik (1966); E. Gilson, ed., The Church Speaks to the Modern World (tr. 1954; con aining nine encyclicals of Pope Leo XIII); E. T. Gargan, ed., Leo XIII and the Modern World (1961).

Leo XIII

original name Gioacchino Pecci. 1810--1903, pope (1878--1903). His many important encyclicals include Rerum novarum (1891) on the need for Roman Catholics to take action on various social problems
References in periodicals archive ?
(3.) Leo XIII, encyclical letter Rerum Novarum (May 15, 1891), [section]51.
In some sense, it is hard to fault Leo XIII's combative stance.
Connected to the unscrupulous practice of hording monetary and material resources, Rerum (Leo XIII, 1891) reaffirmed the notion of the laborer as an individual who, by God's graces, was entitled to share in the profits generated from his or her work.
When Leo XIII became pope in 1878, he largely continued Pius IX's teachings.
(3) Encyclicals like Leo XIII's Providentissimus Deus (1893) defended the infallibility of scripture at a time when "the thirst for novelty and unrestrained freedom of thought make the danger of error most real and proximate"; the Church was most concerned that contradictions based on the "peremptory pronouncements of a certain newly invented 'free science'" might cause the "more ignorant masses" to lose confidence in the Bible and question the true meaning of scripture.
Leonard also laments the death of Queen Victoria and Pope Leo XIII and comments on the election of the pope's successor, Pius X.
In a key passage he proposes Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) as a model for reform-minded Muslims: "Rather than an Islamic Luther, Islamic reformers might better look towards the possibility of an Islamic Leo XIII: towards the possibility of a religious leader who reaches back into the deeper philosophical resources of his tradition in order to broker a critical engagement with Enlightenment political thought....
After presenting helpful introductions to modern conceptions of law and to modern Roman Catholicism, Teachings considers the contributions of seven influential figures from the twentieth century: Leo XIII, Jacques Maritain, John Courtney Murray, John XXIII, Gustavo Gutierrez, Dorothy Day, and John Paul II.
In an 1899 encyclical addressed to the American bishops, Pope Leo XIII warned that "The underlying principle of these new opinions is that, in order to more easily attract those who differ from her, the church should shape her teachings more in accord with the spirit of the age and relax some of her ancient severity and make some concessions to new opinions." The pope condemned the "new opinions" as attempts to "tone down" church teachings.
As the section ends, the reader is provided with the social backdrop to Pope Leo XIII's (1891) landmark encyclical Rerum Novarum.
As Pope Leo XIII noted in the encyclical Rerum Novarum, the Marxist ideal of absolute equality results in the "levelling down of all to a like condition of misery and degradation" Suppressing economic initiative and the right to private contract, argued Pope John Paul II, puts "everyone in a position of almost absolute dependence."