The Tridentine Profession of Faith
One of the great works of the Council of Trent was to produce the Tridentine Profession of Faith, a statement of the Creed that clearly articulates the perennial Faith in the face of the heretical revolutionary doctrines of the Protestant so-called “Reformers.”
The “Professio fidei Tridentina”, also known as the “Creed of Pope Pius IV”, is one of the four authoritative Creeds of the Catholic Church. It was issued on November 13, 1565 by Pope Pius IV in his bull “Iniunctum nobis” under the auspices of the Council of Trent (1545 – 1563). It was subsequently modified slightly after the First Vatican Council (1869 – 1870) to bring it inline with the dogmatic definitions of the Council. The major intent of the Creed was to clearly define the Catholic faith against Protestantism. At one time it was used by Theologians as an oath of loyalty to the Church and to reconcile converts to the Church, but it is rarely used these days.
Find below the complete Tridentine Profession of Faith
I, ——-, with a firm faith believe and profess all and every one of the things contained in that Creed which the holy Roman Church makes use of: “I believe in one God, the Father Almighty,” etc. [The Nicene Creed]
I most steadfastly admit and embrace apostolic and ecclesiastical traditions, and all other observance and constitutions of the same Church.
I also admit the holy Scriptures, according to that sense which our holy mother Church has held and does hold, to which it belongs to judge of the true sense and interpretation of the Scriptures; neither will I ever take and interpret them otherwise than according to the unanimous consent of the Fathers.
I also profess that there are truly and properly seven sacraments of the new law, instituted by Jesus Christ our Lord, and necessary for the salvation of mankind, though not all for ever one, to wit: baptism, confirmation, the eucharist, penance, extreme unction, holy orders, and matrimony; and that they confer grace; and that these, baptism, confirmation, and ordination can not be reiterated without sacrilege. I also receive and admit the received and approved ceremonies of the Catholic Church, used in the solemn administration of the aforesaid sacraments.
I embrace and receive all and every one of the things which have been defined and declared in the holy Council of Trent concerning original sin and justification.
I profess, likewise, that in the mass there is offered to God a true, proper, and propitiatory sacrifice for the living and the dead; and that in the most holy sacrament of the eucharist there is truly, really and substantially, the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ; and that there is made a change of the whole essence of the bread into the body, and of the whole essence of the wine into the blood; which change the Catholic Church calls transubstantiation.
I also confess that under either kind alone [either the bread or the cup] Christ is received whole and entire, and a true sacrament.
I firmly hold that there is a purgatory, and that the souls therein detained are helped by the suffrages of the faithful. Likewise, that the saints reigning with Christ are to be honoured and invoked, and that they offer up prayers to God for us, and that their relics are to be had in veneration.
I most firmly assert that the images of Christ, and of the perpetual Virgin the Mother of God, and also of other saints, ought to be had and retained, and that due honor and veneration are to be given them. I also affirm that the power of indulgences was left by Christ in the Church, and that the use of them is most wholesome to Christian people.
I acknowledge the holy Catholic Apostolic Roman Church for the mother and mistress of all churches; and I promise and swear true obedience to the Bishop of Rome, successor to St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles, and Vicar of Jesus Christ.
I likewise undoubtingly receive and profess all other things delivered, defined, and declared by the Sacred Canons and General Councils, particularly by the holy Council of Trent; and I condemn, reject, and anathematize all things contrary thereto, and all heresies which the Church has condemned, rejected, and anathematized.
I do, at this present, freely profess and truly hold this true Catholic faith, without which no one can be saved; and I promise most constantly to retain and confess the same entire and inviolate, with God’s assistance, to the end of my life. And I will take care, as far as in me lies, that it shall be held, taught, and preached by my subjects, or by those the care of whom shall appertain to me in my office. This, I promise, vow, and swear – so help me God, and these holy Gospels of God.