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Friday, December 23, 2016

JOAN of ARC

Image result for 1843 view of a heroic Joan of Arc at the stake.

Joan was the daughter of Jacques d'Arc and Isabelle Romée in Domrémy, a village which was then in the French part of the duchy of Bar. Joan's parents owned about 50 acres (20 hectares) of land and her father supplemented his farming work with a minor position as a village official, collecting taxes and heading the local watch. They lived in an isolated patch of eastern France that remained loyal to the French crown despite being surrounded by pro-Burgundian lands. Several local raids occurred during her childhood and on one occasion her village was burned. Joan was illiterate and it is believed that her letters were dictated by her to scribes and she signed her letters with the help of others. 
At her trial, Joan stated that she was about nineteen years old, which implies she thought she was born around 1412. She later testified that she experienced her first vision in 1425 at the age of 13, when she was in her "father's garden" and saw visions of figures she identified as Saint MichaelSaint Catherine, and Saint Margaret, who told her to drive out the English and bring the Dauphin to Reims for his coronation. She said she cried when they left, as they were so beautiful. 
At the age of sixteen, she asked a relative named Durand Lassois to take her to the nearby town of Vaucouleurs, where she petitioned the garrison commander, Robert de Baudricourt, for an armed escort to bring her to the French Royal Court at Chinon. Baudricourt's sarcastic response did not deter her. She returned the following January and gained support from two of Baudricourt's soldiers: Jean de Metz and Bertrand de Poulengy. According to Jean de Metz, she told him that "I must be at the King's side ... there will be no help (for the kingdom) if not from me. Although I would rather have remained spinning [wool] at my mother's side ... yet must I go and must I do this thing, for my Lord wills that I do so." Under the auspices of Metz and Poulengy, she was given a second meeting, where she made a prediction about a military reversal at the Battle of Rouvray near Orléans several days before messengers arrived to report it. Given the distance of the battle's location, Baudricourt felt Joan could only have known about the French defeat by Divine revelation, and this convinced him to take her seriously.

When heresy is used today with reference to Christianity, it denotes the formal denial or doubt of a core doctrine of the Christian faith as defined by one or more of the Christian churchesIt should be distinguished from both apostasy and schismapostasy being nearly always total abandonment of the Christian faith after it has been freely accepted,[3] and schism being a formal and deliberate breach of Christian unity and an offence against charity without being based essentially on doctrine. 

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