Citing the last sentence of Gottschalk's schedula in section XIV, the archbishop objects that the monk quotes Gregory the Great and then misapplies the quotation to himself. When Gregory wrote, "the one who is full of virtues applies the rule in spite of himself, the one who is void of virtues does not apply it even when constrained," 50 he was thinking of the "spiritual person" of St. Paul (1 Cor 2,15), not of "the heretic Gottschalk." And, after citing Augustine, Hincmar concludes with a long reflection on virtue and the search for perfection. This ends with a doxology that we have already cited:
Thanks be to God. Whatever we are, priests and those who have been placed in the government of the Church, who serve the Catholic faith in the body of Christ, from which Gottschalk has been expelled, we do not remain empty of virtues, for, as Augustine said, virtue is right or perfect reason.... Our imperfection will not be entirely detrimental to us if, being set in the way of God, we pay no attention to what is already done but we hasten to what is still to be done. For the One who enkindles the desires of the imperfect strengthens them in some way, in view of perfection, through Our Lord Jesus Christ, who with Him lives and reigns as God in the unity of the Holy Spirit. Amen. 51
As Hincmar brings to a close his central refutation of Gottschalk's trinitarian doctrine, the heart of the question appears to be twofold. Linguistically it lies in opposite understandings of the word trina: Is the term divisive, the equivalent of triple, as Hincmar asserts? Or is it compatible with unity, designating the threefoldness of one nature, as Gottschalk maintains? Theologically the heart of the question lies in two areas. First, may the deity or divine essence be treated like an attribute of God, as Gottschalk does and Hincmar cannot do? Second, may one say with Gottschalk, and in spite of Hincmar, that each Person has its own divinity?
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Publication information: Book title: Trina Deitas:The Controversy between Hincmar and Gottschalk. Contributors: George H. Tavard - Translator. Publisher: Marquette University Press. Place of publication: Milwaukee, WI. Publication year: 1996. Page number: 114.
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