He proposed an Italian city, preferably Rome, as the place of assembly.The emperor, however, distrusted the pope, believing that Clement did not really desire a council.At the same time the latter sent assurances to Rome that he considered the council as very serviceable for the extermination of heresy, carrying on, as regards the holding of a council, the double intrigue he always pursued in reference to German Protestantism.
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The nineteenth ecumenical council opened at Trent on 13 December, 1545, and closed there on 4 December, 1563.
Its main object was the definitive determination of the doctrines of the Church in answer to the heresies of the Protestants ; a further object was the execution of a thorough reform of the inner life of the Church by removing the numerous abuses that had developed in it.
He executed his commission with zeal, although he frequently met with reserve and distrust.
The selection of the place of meeting was a source of much difficulty, as Rome insisted that the council should meet in an Italian city.
The matter was also discussed at the Diet of Augsburg in 1530, when Campegio again opposed a council, while the emperor declared himself in favour of one provided the Protestants were willing to restore earlier conditions until the decision of the council.
Charles's proposition met the approval of the Catholic princes, who, however, wished the assembly to meet in Germany.On 28 November, 1518, Luther had appealed from the pope to a general council because he was convinced that he would be condemned at Rome for his heretical doctrines.The Diet held at Nuremberg in 1523 demanded a "free Christian council" on German soil, and at the Diet held in the same city in 1524 a demand was made for a German national council to regulate temporarily the questions in dispute, and for a general council to settle definitely the accusations against Rome, and the religious disputes.The Protestant rulers, meeting at Smalkald in December, 1535, rejected the proposed council.In this they were supported by Kings Henry VIII and Francis I.On 2 June, Paul III published the Bull calling all patriarchs, archbishops, bishops, and abbots to assemble at Mantua on 23 May, 1537, for a general council.