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Et similiter theologiae doctores sunt quasi principales artifices, qui inquirunt et docent qualiter alii debeant salutem animarum procurare. Simpliciter ergo melius est docere sacram doctrinam, et magis meritorium, si bona intentione agatur, quam impendere particularem curam saluti huius et illius; unde apostolus de se dicit, I ad Corinth. I, 17: non enim misit me Christus baptizare, sed evangelizare; quamvis baptizare sit opus maxime conferens saluti animarum; et II ad Timoth., II, 2, idem apostolus: commenda fidelibus hominibus qui idonei erunt et alios docere. (Quodlibet I q. 7, a.2)

And similarly the doctors of theology are like principal architects, who research and teach how others ought to work out the salvation of their souls. Simply put, therefore, it is better to teach Sacred Doctrine, and more so meritorious, if done in good intention, which hangs the particular care of salvation of this one and that; thus the Apostle speaks about himself, “Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel” [I Cor 1.17]; although to baptize is work most suited for bringing about the salvation of souls; the Apostle again, “Commend to the faithful who will be suitable to teach others” [II Tim 2.2]. (translation mine)

St Thomas Aquinas, Quaestiones de quolibet

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