chapter  5
27 Pages

Church and state

TheChurchthatemergedfromtheCouncilofTrent-revitalized,more militant,andfullydeterminednotonlytocontainand,ifpossible,torollback theProtestanttide,butalsotosetitsownhouseinorderandtoreshape societyaccordingtoitsownmoralstandards-hadtodependonthe cooperationoftheconfessionalstateforimplementingitsvastprogramme. Ontheirpart,seculargovernments,intheireffortstostrengthentheirholdon thevariouscomponentsofsocietyandtoavoidcivilstrifegeneratedby religiousdivisions,hadanobviousinterestinsafeguardingthereligiousunity oftheirrespectivecountries,andthismeantsupportingtheestablished Churchasitstrovetostampoutreligiousdissentandtocorrectthemost flagrantformsofclericalmisconduct.Yet,forallthosesharedgoalsand commoninterests,theallianceofthroneandaltarwasboundtoexperience strainsandeventemporarybreakdowns,notbecausethereligiousallegiance oftheseveralItalianrulerswaseverindoubt,butbecausetheChurch's determinationtopursueitsownprogrammeinfullautonomyinevitablyran intothestate'sequallystrongdeterminationtoassertameasureofcontrol overecclesiasticalinstitutions,propertiesandpersonnel,acontrolitconsideredessentialforitsownconsolidation.1