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Mrfel-' ■' 


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*«« iimusHi umn 

Berg Colleetion 


In memory of 

Raymond A. Berg, Sr. 







1. In Twelve Lectures addressed in 1850 to the Party of t lie 
Religious Movement ^1833. 


VOL. I. 



L O N G M A N S, G R E E N, A N D CO. 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

Lyrasis IVIembers and Sloan Foundation 



D.D., O.S.B., 



My Dear Lord, 

In gaining your Lordship's leave to place the 
following Volume under your patronage, I fear I may 
seem to the world to have asked what is more gracious 
in you to grant, than becoming or reasonable in me 
to have contemplated. For what assignable connection 
is there between your Lordship's name, and a work, 
not didactic, not pastoral, not ascetical, not devotional, 
but for the most part simply controversial, directed, 
moreover, against a mere transitory phase in an acci- 
dental school of opinion, and for that reason, both in 
its matter and its argument, only of local interest and 
ephemeral importance ? 

Such a question may obviously be put to me ; noi 
can I answer it, except by referring to the well-known 
interest which your Lordship has so long taken in 
the religious party to which 1 have alluded, and the 

vi Dedication. 

joy and thankfulness with which you have welcomed 
the manifestations of God's grace, as often as first one 
and then another of their number has in his turn 
emerged from the mists of error into the light and 
peace of Catholic truth. 

Whatever, then, your Lordship's sentiments may be 
of the character of the Work itself, I persuade myself 
that I may be able suitably to present it to you, m con- 
sideration of the object it has in view ; and that you, 
on your part, will not repent of countenancing; an 
Author, who, in the selection of his materials, would 
fain put the claims of charity above the praise oi 
critics, and feels it is a better deed to write for the 
present moment than for posterity. 

Begging your Lordship's blessing, 

I am, my dear Lord, 

Your Lordship's faithful and grateful Servant, 


OF THE Oratory. 
July 14, 1850. 


It may happen to some persons to feel surprise, that 
the Author of the following Lectures, instead of occupy- 
ing himself on the direct proof of Catholicism, should 
have professed no more than to remove difficulties from 
the path of those who have already admitted the argu- 
ments in its favour. But, in the first place, he really 
does not think that there is any call just now for an 
Apology in behalf of the divine origin of the Catholic 
Church. She bears her unearthly character on her 
brow, as her enemies confess, by imputing her miracles 
to Beelzebub. There is an instinctive feeling of 
curiosity, interest, anxiety, and awe, mingled together 
in various proportions, according to the tempers and 
opinions of individuals, when she makes her appear- 
ance in any neighbourhood, rich or poor, in the person 
of her missioners or her religious communities. Do 
what they will, denounce her as they may, her enemies 
cannot quench this emotion in the breasts of others, or 
in their own. It is their involuntary homage to the 
Notes of the Church ; it is their spontaneous recogni- 
tion of her royal descent and her imperial claim ; it 
is a specific feeling, which no other religion tends to 
excite. Judaism, Mahometanism, Anglicanism, Method- 

viil Preface. 

ism, old religions and young, romantic and common- 
place, have not this spell. The presence of the Church 
creates a discomposure and restlessness, or a thrill of 
exultation, wherever she comes. Meetings are held, 
denunciations launched, calumnies spread abroad, and 
hearts beat secretly the v/hile. The babe leaps in 
Elizabeth's womb, at the voice of her in whom is 
enshrined and lives the Incarnate Word. Her priests 
appeal freely to the consciences of all who encounter 
them, to say whether they have not a superhuman gift, 
and that multitude by silence gives consent. They 
look like other men ; they may have the failings of 
other men ; they may have as little worldly advantages 
as the preachers of dissent ; they may lack the popular 
talents, the oratorical power, the imposing presence, 
which are found elsewhere; but they inspire confi- 
dence, or at least reverence, by their very word. 
Those who come to jeer and scoff, remain to pray. 

There needs no treatise, then, on the Notes of the 
Church, till this her mysterious influence is accounted 
for and destroyed ; still less is it necessary just at this 
time, when the writings and the proceedings of a school 
of divines in the Establishment have, against their will 
and intention, done this very work for her as regards 
a multitude of our countrymen. What treatise indeed 
can be so conclusive in this day as the history, carried 
out before their eyes, of the religious teaching of the 
school in question, a teaching simple and intelligible 
in its principles, persuasive in its views, gradually 
developed, adjusted, and enlarged, gradually imbibed 
and mastered, in a course of years ; and now converg- 
ing in many minds at once to one issue, and in some of 
them already reaching it, and that issue the divinity of 

Preface. ix 

tbe Catholic Eeligion ? Feeling, then, that an exhibi- 
tion of the direct Evidences in favour of Catholicism 
is not the want of the moment, the Author has had no 
thoughts of addressing himself to a work, which could 
not be executed by any one who undertook it, except 
at leisure and with great deliberation. At present the 
thinking portion of society is either very near the 
Catholic Church, or very far from her. The first duty 
of Catholics is to house those in, who are near their 
doors ; it will be tim.e afterwards, when this has been 
done, to ascertain how things lie on the extended field 
of philosophy and religion, and into what new position 
the controversy has fallen : as yet the old arguments 
suffice. To attempt a formal dissertation on the N"otes 
of the Church at this moment, would be running the 
risk of constructing what none would need to-day, and 
none could use to-morrow. 

Those surely who are advancing towards the Church, 
Avould not have advanced so far as they have, had they 
not had sufficient arguments to bring them still further. 
What retards their progress is not any weakness in 
those arguments, but the force of opposite considera- 
tions, speculative or practical, which are urged, some- 
times against the Church, sometimes against their own 
submitting to her authority. They would have no doubt 
about their duty, but for the charges brought against 
her, or the remonstrances addressed to themselves ; 
charges and remonstrances which, whatever their logical 
cogency, are abundantly sufficient for their purpose, in 
a case where there are so many inducements, whether 
from wrong feeling, or infirmity, or even error of con- 
science, to listen to them. Such persons, then, have a 
claim on us to be fortified in their ricrht perceptions 


and their good resolutions, against the calumnies, pre- 
judices, mistakes, and ignorance of their friends and of 
the world, against the undue influence exerted on their 
minds by the real difficulties which unavoidably sur- 
round a religion so deep and manifold in philosophy, 
and occupying so vast a place in the history of nations 
It would be wonderful, indeed, if a teaching which 
embraces all spiritual and moral truth, from the highest 
to the least important, should present no mysteries or 
apparent inconsistencies ; wonderful if, in the lapse of 
eighteen hundred years, and in the range of three- 
fourths of the globe, and in the profession of thousands 
of miUions of souls, it had not afforded innumerable 
points of plausible attack ; wonderful, if it could assail 
the pride and sensuality which are common to our 
whole race, without rousing the hatred, malice, jealousy, 
and obstinate opposition, of the natural man ; wonder- 
ful, if it could be the object of the jealous and un- 
wearied scrutiny of ten thousand adversaries, of the 
coalition of wit and wisdom, of minds acute, far-seeing, 
comprehensive, original, and possessed of the deepest 
and most varied knowledge, yet without some sort of 
case being made out against it ; and wonderful, more- 
over, if the vast multitude of objections, great and 
small, resulting from its exposure to circumstances 
such as these, acting on the timidity, scrupulousness, 
inexperience, intellectual lastidiousness, love of the 
world, or self-dependence of individuals, had not been 
sufficient to keep many a one from the Church, who 
had, in spite of them, good and satisfactory reasons for 
joining her communion. Here is the plain reason why 
so many are brought near to the Church, and then go 
back, or are so slow in submitting to her. 

Preface, xi 

Now, as has been implied above, where there is de- 
tachment from the world, a keen apprehension of the 
Unseen, and a simple determination to do the Divine 
Will, such difficulties will not commonly avail, if men 
have had sufficient opportunity of acquainting them- 
selves with the Notes or Evidences of the Church. In 
matter of fact, as we see daily, they do not avail to 
deter those whose hearts are right, or whose minds are 
incapable of extended investigations, from recognizing 
the Church's Notes and acting upon them. They do 
not avail with the poor, the uneducated, the simple- 
minded, the resolute, and the fervent; but they are 
formidable, when there are motives in the backo-round 
amiable or unworthy, to bias the will. Every one is 
obliged, by the lav/ of his nature, to act by reason ; yet 
no one likes to make a great sacrifice unnecessarily; 
such difficulties, then, just avail to turn the scale, and 
to detain men in Protestantism, who are open to the 
influence of tenderness towards friends, reliance on 
superiors, regard for their position, dread of present 
inconvenience, indolence, love of independence, fear of 
the future, regard to reputation, desire of consistency, 
attachment to cherished notions, pride of reason, or 
reluctance to go to school again. No one likes to 
take an awful step, all by himself, without feeling 
sure he is right ; no one likes to remain long in doubt 
whether he should take it or not ; he wishes to be 
settled, and he readily catches at objections, or listens 
to dissuasives, which allow of his giving over the in- 
quiry, or postponing it sine die. Yet those very same 
persons who would willingly hide the truth from their 
eyes by objections and difficulties, nevertheless, if 
actually forced to look it in the face, and brought 

xii Preface. 

under the direct poorer of the Catholic arguments, 
would often have strength and courage enough to take 
the dreaded step, and would find themselves, almost 
before they knew what they had done, in the haven 
of peace. 

These were some of the reasons for the particular 
line of argument which the Author has selected ; and 
in what he has been saying in explanation, he must 
not be supposed to forget that faith depends upon the 
will, not realty on any process of reasoning, and tliat 
conversion is a simple work of divine grace. He aims 
at nothing more than to give free play to the con- 
science, by removing those perplexities in the proof of 
Catholicity, which keep the intellect from being touched 
by its cogency, and give the heart an excuse for trifling 
with it. The absence of temptation or of other moral 
disadvantage, though not the direct cause of virtuous 
conduct, still is a great help towards it ; and, in like 
manner, to clear away from the path of an inquirer 
objections to Catholic truth, is to subserve his conver- 
sion by gi\dng room for the due and efficacious opera- 
tion of divine grace. Eeligious persons, indeed, do 
what is right in spite of temptation ; persons of sensi- 
tive and fervent minds go on to believe in spite of 
difficulty ; but where the desire of truth is languid, 
and the religious purpose weak, such impediments 
suffice to prevent conviction, and faith will not be 
created in the mind, though there are abundant reasons 
for its creation. In these circumstances, it is quite 
as much an act of charity to attempt the removal of 
objections to the truth, which, without excusing, are 
made the excuse for unbelief, as to remove the occasion 
of sin in any other department of duty. 

Preface. xiii 

It is plain that the Author is rather describing what 
his Lectures wei'e intended to he, than what they have 
turned out. He found it impossible to fulfil what he 
contemplated within the limits imposed upon him by 
the circumstances under which they were written. 
The very first objection wliich he took on starting, the 
alleged connection of the Movement of 1833 with the 
National Church, has afforded matter for the greater 
part of the course ; and, before he had well finished 
the discussion of it, it was getting time to think of 
concluding, and that, in any such way as would give 
a character of completeness to the whole. Else, after 
the seventh Lecture, it had been his intention to pro- 
ceed to the consideration of the alleged claim of the 
National Church on the allegiance of its members ; of 
the alleged duty of our remaining in the communion 
in which we were born ; of the alleged danger oi 
trustmg to reason ; of the alleged right of the National 
Church to forbid doubt about its own claims ; of the 
alleged uncertainty which necessarily attends the claims 
of any religion whatever ; of the tests of certainty ; of 
the relation of faith to reason ; of the legitimate force 
of objections ; and of the matter of Catholic evidence. 
He is ashamed to continue the list much further, lest 
he should seem to have been contemplating what was 
evidently impracticable ; all he can say in extenuation 
is, that he never aimed at going more fully into any of 
the subjects of which he was to treat, than he has done 
in the sketches which now he presents to the reader. 
Lastly, he had proposed to end his course with a notice 
of the objections made by Protestants to particular 
doctrines, as Purgatory, Intercession of the Saints, and 
the like. 

xiv Preface, 

Incomplete, however, as the Lectures may be with 
reference to the idea with which they were commenced, 
or compared with what might be said upon each sub- 
ject which is successively treated, of course he makes no 
apology for the actual matter of them ; else he shou^ld 
not have delivered or published them. It has not 
been his practice to engage in controversy with those 
who. have felt it their duty to criticise what at any 
time he has written ; but that will not preclude him, 
under present circumstances, from elucidating what is 
deficient in them by further observations, should 
questions be asked, which, either from the quarter 
whence they proceed, or Irom their intrinsic weight, 
have, according to his judgment; a claim upon hipr 

Birmingham, July 14, 18 ;o. 










NATIONAL CHURCH, . . . . . ^1 












DIRECTION OF A SECT, . . . . 1 97 

xvi Contents. 












THE CHURCH, . . . . . = . 296 






THK CHURCH. . . . . . . . 36-' 






FTIHERE are those, my brethren, who may think it 
strange, and even shocking, that, at this moment, 
when the liberalism of the age, after many previous 
attempts, is apparently at length about to get posses- 
sion of the Church and Universities of the nation, any 
one like myself, who is a zealous upholder of the dog- 
matic principle in all its bearings, should be doing what 
little in him lies to weaken, even indirectly, Institutions 
which, with whatever shortcomings or errors, are the 
only political bulwarks of that principle left to us by 
the changes of the sixteenth century. Eor to help 
forward members of the Established Church towards 
the Catholic Religion, as I propose to do in these 
Lectures, what is this but, so far, to co-operate with a 
levelling party, who are the enemies of God, and truth. 

2 071 the delation of the 

and wtue ? The Institutions in question, it may be 
said, uphold what is right and ^Yhat is holy as far as 
they go, and, moreover, the duty of upholding it: they 
do not in their genuine workings harm the Church; 
they do but oppose themselves to sectarianism, free- 
thinking, infidelity, and lawlessness. They are her 
natural, though they may be her covert, aUies; they 
are the faitliful nurses and conservators of her spirit; 
they are glad, and proud, as far as they are aUowed to 
do so, to throw her mantle over themselves, and they 
do her homage by attempting a mimic Catholicism. 
They have preserved through bad times our old 
churches, our forms, our rites, our customs, in a 
measure, our Creed; they are taunted by our enemies 
for their Catholic or Papistical tendency ; and many of 
those who are submitted to their teaching, look wist- 
fully to us, in their forlorn struggle with those enemies 
of ours, for encouragement and sympathy. Certainly, 
reviewing the history of the last three centuries, we 
cannot deny that those Institutions have uniformly 
repressed the extravagance, and diluted the virulence, 
of Protestantism. To the divines, to whom they have 
given birth, our country is indebted for Apologies in 
behalf of various of the great doctrines of the faith: to 
Bull for a defence of the Creed of Nic^a, nay, m a 
measure, of the true doctrine of justification, which the 
most accomplished Cathohc theologians of this day, as 
well a. of his own, treat with great consideration ; to 

National Church to the Nation. 3 

Pearson for a powerful argument in behalf of the 
Apostolical origin of Episcopacy; to Wall for a. proof 
of the primitive use of Infant Baptism; to Hooker for 
a vindication of the great principle of religious order 
and worship; to Butler for a profound investigation 
into the connection of natural with revealed religion; 
to Paley and others for a series of elaborate evidences 
of the divinity of Christianity. It is cruel, it is impo- 
litic, to cast oft if not altogether friends, yet at least 
those who are not our worst foes; nor can we afford -.0 
do so. If they usurp our name, yet they proclaim it in 
the ears of heretics all about; they have kept much 
error out of the country, if they have let much in; and 
if Neo-Platonism, though false, is more honourable than 
the philosophy of the academy or of the garden, by the 
same rule, surely, we ought, in comparison with other 
sects, to give our countenance to the Anglican Church 
to compassionate her in her hour of peril, "and spare 
the meek usurper's hoary head." 

Well, and I do not know what natural inducement 
there is to urge me to be harsh with her in tliis her 
hour: I have only pleasant associations of those many 
years when I was within her pale; I have no theory to 
put forward, nor position to maintain; and I am come 
to a time of life, when men desire to be quiet and at 
peace ;-moreover, I am in a communion which satis- 
fies its members, and draws them into itself, and, by 
the objects which it presents to faith, and the influences 

4 On the Relation of the 

which it exerts over the heart, leads them to forget the 
external world, and look forward more steadily to the 
future. No, my dear brethren, there is but one thing 
that forces me to speak,— and it is my intimate sense 
that the Catholic Church is the one ark of salvation, 
and my love for your souls ; it is my fear lest you ought 
to submit yourselves to her, and do not ; my feaj lest I 
may perchance be able to persuade you, and not use 
my talent. It will be a miserable thing for you and 
for me, if I had been instrumental in bringing you but 
half-way, if I have co-operated in removing your invin- 
cible ignorance, but am able to do no more. It is this 
keen feeling that my life is wearing away, which over- 
comes the lassitude which possesses me, and scatters 
the excuses which I might plausibly urge to myself for 
not meddUng with what I have left for ever, which 
subdues the recollection of past times, and which 
makes me do my best, with whatever success, to bring 
you to land from off your wreck, who have thrown 
yourselves from it upon the waves, or are clinging to 
its rigging, or are sitting in heaviness and despair upon 
its side. For this is the truth: the Establishment, 
wliatever it be in the eyes of men, whatever its tem- 
poral greatness and its secular prospects, in the eyes 
of faith is a mere week. We must not indulge our 
imagination, we must not dream: we must look at 
things as they are; we must not confound the past 
with the y.resent, or what is substantive with what is 

National Church to the Nation. 5 

the accident of a period. Eidding our minds of these 
illusions, we shall see that the Established Church has 
no claims whatever on us, whether in memory or in 
hope ; that they only have claims upon our commisera- 
tion and our charity whom she holds in bondage, separ- 
ated from that faith and that Church in which alone is 
salvation. If I can do aught towards breaking their 
chains, and bringing them into the Truth, it will be 
an act of love towards their souls, and of piety towards 

I. ' '. . ■ ■ 

I have said, we must not indulge our imagination 
in the view we take of the National Establishment. 
If, indeed, we dress it up in an ideal form, as if it were 
something real, with an independent and a continuous 
existence, and a proper history, as if it were in deed 
and not only in name a Church, then indeed we may 
feel interest in it, and reverence towards it, and affec- 
tion for it, as men have fallen in love with pictures, or 
knights in romance do battle for high dames whom 
they have never seen. Thus it is that students of the 
Fathers, antiquaries, and poets, begin by assuming 
that the body to which they belong is that of which 
they read in times past, and then proceed to decorate it 
with that majesty and beauty of which history teUs, or 
which their genius creates. Nor is it by an easy pro- 
cess or a light effort that their minds are disabused of 
this error. It is an error for many reasons too dear to 

6 On the Relation of the 

them to be readily relinquished. But at length, either 

the force of circumstances or some unexpected accident 

dissipates it; and, as in fairy tales, the magic castle 

vanishes when the spell is broken, and nothing is seen 

but the wild heath, the barren rock, and the forlorn 

sheep-walk, so is it with us as regards the Church of 

England, when we look in amazement on that we 

thought so unearthly, and find so commonplace or 

worthless. Then we perceive, that aforetime w-e have 

not been guided by reason, but biassed by education 

and swayed by affection. We see in the English 

Church, I will not merely say no descent from the first 

ages, and no relationship to the Church in other lands, 

but we see no body politic of any kind ; we see nothing 

more or less than an Establishment, a department of 

Government, or a function or operation of the State, 

— without a substance, — a mere collection of officials, 

depending on and living in the supreme civil power. 

Its unity and personality are gone, and with them its 

power of exciting feelings of any kind. It is easier to 

love or hate an abstraction, than so commonplace a 

framework or mechanism. We regard it neither with 

anger, nor with aversion, nor with contempt, any more 

than with respect or interest. It is but one aspect of 

the State, or mode of civil governance ; it is responsible 

for nothing; it can appropriate neither praise nor 

blame ; but, whatever feeling it raises is to be referred 

on. by the nature of the case, to the Supreme Power 

NoMonal Church to the Nation. 7 

whom it represents, and whose will is its breath. And 
hence it has no real identity of existence in distinct 
periods, unless the present Legislature or the present 
Court can affect to be the offspring and disciple of its 
predecessor. Nor can it in consequence be said to have 
any antecedents, or any future; or to live, except in the 
passing moment. As a thing without a soul, it does 
not contemplate itself, define its intrinsic constitution, 
or ascertain its position. It has no traditions; it 
cannot be said to think; it does not know what it 
holds, and what it does not ; ^ it is not even conscious 
of its own existence. It has no love for its members, 
or what are sometimes called its children, nor any 
instinct whatever, unless attachment to its master, or 
love of its place, may be so called. Its fruits, as far as 
they are good, are to be made much of, as long as they 
last, for they are transient, and without succession ; its 
former champions of orthodoxy are no earnest of ortho- 
doxy now; they died, and there was no reason why 
they should be reproduced. Bishop is not like bishop, 

1 This fact is strikingly brought out in Archbishop Sumner's corre- 
spondence with Mr. Maskell. "You ask me," he says, "whether you are 
to conclude that you ought not to teach, and have not authority of the 
Church to teach any of the doctrines spoken of in your five former ques- 
tions, in the doc/matical terms there stated ? To which I reply. Are they 
contained in the word of God? St. Paul says, 'Preach the word.' . . . 
Now, whether the doctiines concerning which you inquire are contained 
in the Word of God, and can be proved thereby, you have the same 
means of discovering as myself, and I have no special authority to 
declare." The Archbisho}) at least would quite allow what I have said in 
the text, even though he might express himself differeutlj''. 

8 On the Relation of the 

more than king is like king, or ministry like ministry ; 
its Prayer-Book is an Act of Parliament of two centuries 
ago, and its cathedrals and its chapter-houses are the 
spoils of Catholicism. 

I have said all this, my brethren, not in declamation, 
but to bring out clearly to you, why I cannot feel in- 
terest of any kind in the National Church, nor put any 
trust in it at all from its past history, as if it were, in 
however narrow a sense, a guardian of orthodoxy. It 
is as little bound by what it said or did formerly, as 
this morning's newspaper by its former numbers, except 
as it is bound by the Law ; and while it is upheld by 
the Law, it will not be weakened by the subtraction of 
individuals, nor fortified by their continuance. Its life 
is an Act of Parliament. It will not be able to resist 
the Arian, Sabellian, or Unitarian heresies now, because 
Bull or Waterland resisted them a century or two 
before ; nor on the other hand would it be unable to 
resist them, though its more orthodox theologians were 
presently to leave it. It will be able to resist them 
while the State gives the word ; it would be unable, 
when the State forbids it. Elizabeth boasted that she 
"tuned her pulpits;" Charles forbade discussions on 
predestination ; George on the Holy Trinity ; Victoria 
allows differences on Holy Baptism. AVhile the nation 
wishes an Establishment, it will remain, whatever in- 
dividuals are for it or against it ; and that which deter- 
mines its existence will determine its voice. Of course 

National Church to the Nation, 9 

the presence or departure of individuals will be one 
out of various disturbing causes, which may delay or 
accelerate by a certain number of years a change in its 
teaching : but, after all, the change itself depends on 
events broader and deeper than these; it depends on 
changes in the nation. As the nation changes its 
political, so may it change its religious views; the 
causes which carried the Eeform Bill and Free Trade 
may make short work with orthodoxy. 


The most simple proof of the truth of this assertion 
will be found in considering what and how much has 
been hitherto done by the ecclesiastical movement of 
1833, towards heightening the tone of the Established 
Church — by a movement extending over seventeen 
years and more, and carried on with great energy, and 
(as far as concerns its influence over individuals) with 
surprising success. Opinions which, twenty years ago, 
were not held by any but Catholics, or at most only in 
fragmentary portions by isolated persons, are now the 
profession of thousands. Such success ought to have 
acted on the Establishment itself ; has it done so ? 01 
rather, is not that success simply and only in ex- 
pectation and in hope, like the conversion of heathen 
nations by the various Evangelical societies ? The Fa- 
thers have catholicised the Protestant Church at home, 
pretty much as the Bible has evau'-elised the Mahome- 

lo On the Relation of the 

tan or Hindoo religions abroad. There have been 
recurring vaticinations and promises of good; but 
little or no actual fulfilment. Look back year aftei 
year, count up the exploits of the movement party, and 
consider whether it has had any effect at all on the 
religious judgment of the nation, as represented by the 
Establishment. The more certain and formidable is 
the growth of its adherents and well-wishers, so much 
the more pregnant a fact is it, that the Establishment 
has steadily gone on its own way, eating, drinking, 
sleeping, and working, fulfilling its nature and its des- 
tiny, as if that movement had not been; or at least 
with no greater consciousness of its presence, than any 
internal disarrangement or disorder creates in a man 
who has a work to do, and is busy at it. 

The movement, I say, has formed but a party after 
all, and the Church of the nation has pursued the 
nation's objects, and executed the nation's will, in spite 
of it. The movement could not prevent the Ecclesias- 
tical Commission, nor the . Episcopal mismanagement 
of it. Its zeal, principle, and clearness of view, backed 
by a union of parties, did not prevent the royal appoint- 
ment of a theological Professor, whose sentiments were 
the expression of the national idea of religion. Nor 
did its protest even succeed in preventing his sub- 
sequent elevation to the Episcopal bench. Nor did 
it succeed in preventing the establishment of a sort 
of Anfrlo-Pruspian, half -Episcopal, half- Lutheran See at 

National Church to the Nation. i r 

Jerusalem; nor the selection of two individuals of 
heretical opinions to fill it in succession. Nor did it 
prevent the intrusion of the Establishment on the 
Maltese territory ; nor has it prevented the systematic 
promotion at home of men heterodox, or fiercely 
latitudinarian, in their religious views, or professedly 
ignorant of theology, and glorying in their ignorance. 
Nor did the movement prevent the promotion of 
Bishops and others who deny or explain away the 
grace of Baptism. Nor has it hindered the two Arch- 
bishops of England from concurring in the royal deci- 
sion, that within the national communion baptismal 
regeneration is an open question. It has not height- 
ened the theology of the Universities or of the Chris- 
tian Knowledge Society, nor afforded any defence in its 
hour of need to the National Society for Education. 
What has it done for the cause it undertook ? It has 
preserved the Universities to the Established Church 
for fifteen years ; perhaps it prevented certain alter- 
ations in the Prayer-Book; it has secured at Oxford 
the continuance of the Oath of Supremacy against 
Catholics for a like period; it has hindered the pro- 
motion of high-minded liberals, like the late Dr. Arnold, 
at the price of the advancement of second-rate men 
who have shared his opinions. It has built Churches 
and Colleges, and endowed Sees, of which its enemies 
in the Establishment have gladly taken or are taking 
possession; it has founded sisterhoods or enforced 

12 On the Relation of the 

confessions, the fruits of which, are yet to be seen. On 
the other hand, it has given a hundred educated men 
to the Catholic Church; yet the huge creature, from 
which they went forth, showed no consciousness of its 
loss, but shook itself, and went about its work as of 
old time — as all parties, even the associates they had 
left, united, and even glorified, in testifying. And 
lastly, the present momentous event, to which I have 
already alluded, bearing upon the doctrine of Baptism, 
which is creating such disturbance in the country, has 
happened altogether independent of the movement, and 
is unaffected by it. Those persons who went forward 
to Catholicism have not caused it ; those who have 
stayed neither could prevent it, nor can remedy it. It 
relates to a question previous to any of those doctrines 
which it has been the main object of the movement 
to maintain. It is caused, rather it is willed, by the 
national mind ; and, till the grace of God touches and 
converts that mind, it will remain a fact done and over. 
a precedent and a principle in the Establishment. 


This is the true explanation of what is going on 
before our eyes, as seen whether in the decision of the 
Privy Council, or in the respective conduct of the two 
parties in the Establishment with relation to it. It 
may seem strange, at first sight, that the Evangelical 
section should presume so boldly to contravene the 

National Church to the Nation. 13 

distinct and categorical teaching of the national for- 
mularies on the subject of Baptism ; strange, till it is 
understood that the interpreter of their sense is the 
Nation itself, and that that section in the Establishment 
speaks with the confidence of men who know that they 
have the Nation on their side. Let me here refer to the 
just and manly admissions on this subject, of a high- 
principled writer, which have lately been given to the 
public : — 

" There is " a " consideration," he says, " which, for 
some time, has pressed heavily and painfully upon me. 
As a fact, the Evangelical party plainly, openly, and 
fully declare their opinions upon the doctrines which 
they contend the Church of England holds ; they tell 
their people continually, what they ought, as a matter 
of duty towards God and towards themselves, both to 
believe and practise. Can it be pretended that we, as 
a party, anxious to teach the truth, are equally open^ 
plain, and unreserved ? . . . And it is not to be alleged, 
that only the less important duties and doctrines are so 
reserved : as if it would be an easy thing to distinguish 
and draw a line of division between them. . . . We do 
reserve vital and essential truths ; we often hesitate and 
fear to teach our people many duties, not all necessary^ 
perhaps, in every case or to every person, but eminently 
practical, and sure to increase the growth of the inner,. 
spiritual life we differ, in short, as widely from the 
Evargelical part} in the manner and openness, as in the 

14 ^^ ihe Relation of the 

matter and details of our doctrine. . . . All this seems 
to me to be, day by day and hour by hour, more and 
more hard to be reconciled with the real spirit, mind, 
and purpose of the English Eeformation, and of the 
modern English Church, shown by the experience of 
three hundred years. . . . People often say it is wrong 
to use such terms as * the spirit of the Eeformed English 
Church;' or 'its intention,' * purpose,' and the like. 
And is it really so ? was the Eeformation nothing ? 
did it effect nothing, change nothing, remove nothing ? 
.... No doubt the Eeformed Church of England 
claims to be a portion of the Holy Catholic Church; 
and it has been common for many of our own opinions, 
to add also the assertion, that she rejects and condemns, 
as being out of the Church Catholic, the Eeformed 
Churches abroad, Lutheran, Genevan, and others, toge- 
ther with the Kirk of Scotland, or the Dissenters at 
home. Upon our principles, nay, on any consistent 
Church principle at all, such a corollary must follow. 
But there is a strangeness in it ; it commends itself 
perhaps to our intellect, but not to the eye or ear ; nor. 
It may be, to the heart or conscience."^ 

These remarks are as true as they are candid ; and it 
is^ I hope, no disrespect to the Author, if, taking them 
from their context, I use them for my own argument, 
which is not indeed divergent, though distinct from his 
own. Whether, then, they prove that thQ Evangelical 

^ i\Iaskeirs Second Letter, pp. 57-69. 

National Ckurch to the Nation. 15 

party is as much at home in the National Prayer-Book 
as the Anglican, I will not pronounce; but at least 
they prove that that party is far more at home in the 
National EstaUisJiinent ; that it is in cordial and inti- 
mate sympathy with the sovereign Lord and Master 
of the Prayer-Book, its composer and interpreter, the 
Nation itself, — on the best terms with Queen and 
statesmen, and practical men, and country gentlemen, 
and respectable tradesmen, fathers and mothers, school- 
masters, churchwardens,, vestries, public societies, news- 
papers, and their readers in the lower classes. The 
Evangelical ministers of the Establishment have, in 
comparison with their Anglican rivals, the spirit of the 
age with them ; they are congenial with the age ; they 
glide forward rapidly and proudly down the stream ; 
and it is this fact, and their consciousness of it, which 
carries them over all difficulties. Jewell was triumph- 
ant over Harding, and Wake over Atterbury or Leslie, 
with the terrors or the bribes of a sovereign to back them ; 
and their successors in this day have, in like manner, 
the strength of public opinion on their side. The letter 
of enactments, pristine customs, ancient rights, is no 
match for the momentum with which they rush along 
upon the flood of public opinion, which rules that every 
conclusion is absurd, and every argument sophistical, 
and every maxim untrue, except such as it recoi^oises 

16 On the Relation of the 

How different has it been with the opposite party ? 
Confident, indeed, and with reason, of the truth of its 
great principles, having a perception and certainty of 
its main tenets, which is like the evidence of sense 
compared with the feeble, flitting, and unreal views of 
doctrine held by the Evangelical body, still, as to their 
application, their adaptation, their combination, their 
development, it has been miserably conscious that it 
has had nothing to guide it but its own private and 
unaided judgment. Dreading its own interpretation of 
Scripture and the Fathers, feeling its need of an infal- 
lible guide, yet having none; looking up to its own 
Mother, as it called her, and finding her silent, ambigu- 
ous, unsympathetic, sullen, and even hostile to it ; with 
ritual mutilated, sacraments defective, precedents incon- 
sistent, articles equivocal, canons obsolete, courts Pro- 
testant, and synods suspended ; scouted by the laity, 
scorned by men of the world, hated and blackened by 
its opponents; and moreover at variance with itself, 
hardly two of its members taking up the same position, 
nay, all of them, one by one, shifting their own ground 
as time went on, and obliged to confess that they were 
in pro,i,^ress ; is it wonderful, in the words of the 
Pamphlet already referred to, that these men have ex- 
hibited "a conduct and a rule of a religious life," "full 
of shifts, and compromises, and evasions, a rule of life, 
"based upon the acceptance of half one doctrine, all the- 

National Church to the Nation, 1 7 

next, and none of the third, upon the belief entirely of 
another, but not daring to say so ?" After all, they have 
not been nearly so guilty '' of shifts, and compromises, 
and evasions," as the national formularies themselves ; 
but they have had none to support them, or, if I may 
use a familiar word, to act the bully for them, under the 
imputation. There was no one, with confident air and 
loud voice, to retort upon their opponents the charges 
urged against them, and no public to applaud though 
there had been. Whether they looked above or below, 
behind or before, they found nothing, indeed, to shake 
or blunt their faith in Christ, in His establishment of 
a Church, in its visibility, continuance, catholicity, and 
gifts, and in the necessity of belonging to it: they 
despised the hollowness of their opponents, the incon- 
sequence of their arguments, the shallowness of their 
views, their disrelish of principle, and their carelessness 
about truth, but their heart sunk within them, under 
the impossibility, on the one hand, of their carrying 
out their faith into practice, there, where they found 
themselves, and of realising their ideas in fact, — and the 
duty on the other, as they were taught it, of making the 
best of the circumstances in which they were placed 
Such were tliey; I trust they are so still: I will not 
allow myself to fancy that secret doubts on the one hand, 
that self-wiU, disregard of authority, an unmanly, dis- 
ingenuous bearing, and the spirit of party on the other, 
have deformed a body of persons whom I have loved, 

1 8 On the Relation of the 

revered, and sympathised with. I speak of those many 
persons whom I admired; who, like the hero in the 
epic, did not want courage, but encouragement; who 
looked out in vain for the approbation of authority; 
who felt their own power, but shrank from the omen of 
evil, the hateful raven, which flapped its wings over 
them ; who seemed to say with the poet— 

Non me tua fervida terrent 

Dicta, ferox ; Dii me terrent, et Jupiter hostis. 

But their very desire of realities, and their fear of 
deceiving themselves with dreams, was their insur- 
mountable difficulty here. They could not make the 
Establishment what it was not, and this was forced on 
them day after day. It is a principle, in some sense 
acknowledged by Catholic theologians, that the spirit 
of an age modifies its inherited professions. Moralists 
lay down, that a law loses its authority which the 
lawgiver knowingly allows to be infringed and put 
aside; whatever, then, be the abstract claims of the 
Anglican cause, the fact is that the Hving community 
to which they belong has for centuries ignored and 
annulled them. It was a principle parallel to this 
which furnished one of the reasons on which the judges 
of the Queen's Bench the other day acted, when they 
refused to prohibit the execution of the Eoyal decision, 
in the appeal made from the Bishop of Exeter. His 
counsel urged certain provisions in statutes of the reiga 

National Church to the Nation \ 9 

of Henry VIIL, which had not been discussed in the 
pleadings. ''Were the language of 25 Henry VIIT. c. 
9, obscure instead of clear," observed the Chief Justice, 
" we should not be justified in differing from the con- 
struction put upon it by contemporaneous and long- 
continued usage. There would be no safety for property 
or liberty if it could be successfully contended, that all 
lawyers and statesmen have been mistaken for centu- 
ries as to the true meaning of the Act of Parliament/' 
Whatever becomes of the general question, this was 
at least the language of reason and common sense; 
as physical life assimilates to itself, or casts off, what- 
ever it encounters, allowing no interference with the 
supremacy of its own proper principles, so is it with 
life social and civil. When a body politic grows, takes 
definite shape, and matures, it slights, though it may 
endure, the vestiges and tokens of its rude beginnings. 
It may cherish them as curiosities, but it abjures them 
as precedents. They may hang about it, as the 
shrivelled blossom about the formed fruit; but they 
are dead, and will be sure to disappear as soon as they 
are felt to be troublesome. Common sense tells us 
these appendages do not apply to things as they are ; 
and, if individuals attempt to insist on them, they will 
but bring on themselves the just imputation of vexa- 
tiousiiess and extravagance. So it is with the Anglican 
fornmlaries ; they are but the expression of the national 
sentiment, and therefore are necessarily modified by it. 

20 071 the Relation of the 

Did the nation grow into Catholicity, they might easily 
be made to assume a Catholic demeanour ; but as it 
has matured in its Protestantism, they must take, day 
by day, a more Evangelical and liberal aspect. Of 
course I am not saying this by way of justifying 
individuals in professing and using doctrinal and 
devotional forms from which they dissent ; nor am I 
denying that words have, or at least ought to have, a 
definite meaning which must not be explained away ; I 
am merely stating what takes place in matter of fact, 
allowably in some cases, wrongly in others, according 
to the strength, on the one hand, of the wording of 
the formulary, and of the diverging opinion on the 

I say, that a nation's laws are a nation's property, 
and have their life in the nation's life, and their inter- 
pretation in the nation's sentiment: and where that 
living intelligence does not shine through them, they 
become worthless and are put aside, whether formally or 
on an understanding. Now Protestantism is, as it has 
been for centuries, the Eeligion of England ; and since 
the semi-patristical Church, which was set up for the 
nation at the Eeformation, is the organ of that religion, 
it must live for the nation ; it must hide its Catholic 
aspirations in folios, or in college cloisters ; it must call 
itself Protestant, when it gets into the pulpit ; it must 
abjure Antiquity; for woe to it, if it attempt to thrust 
the wording of its own documents in its master's path. 

National Church to the Nation. 2 1 

if it rely on a passage in its Visitation for the Sick, 
or on an Article of the Creed, or on the tone of its 
Collects, or on a catena of its divines, when the age has 
determined on a theology more in keeping with the 
progress of knowledge ! The antiquary, the reader of 
history, the theologian, the philosopher, the Biblical 
student may make his protest; he may quote St. Austin, 
or appeal to the canons, or argue from the nature of 
the case ; but la Beine le veut ; the English people is 
sufficient for itself; it wills to be Protestant and 
progressive; and Fathers, Councils, Schoolmen, Scrip- 
tures, Saints, Angels, and what is above them, must 
give way. What are they to it ? It thinks, argues, 
and acts according to its own practical, intelligible, 
shallow religion ; and of that religion its Bishops and 
divines, will they or will they not, must be exponents.^ 


In this way, I say, we are to explain, but in this way 
most naturally and satisfactorily, what otherwise would 

^ "It is not the practice for Judges to take up points of their own, 
and, without argument, to decide a case upon them. Lord Eldon used to 
say, that oftentimes hearing an argument in support of an opinion he 
had so taken up, convinced him he had been wrong— a great authority iu 
favour of the good sense of the practice, which the Queen's Bench has 
disregarded in this case. In the Hampden case, the wliole practice of 
the Court for two hundred and fifty years was set at naught by Lord 
Denman. In this case a course has been taken which has never liitherto 
been followed in questions of a mandamus to a railway, or a criminal in- 
formation against a newspaper. And both are Church cases."— auardian. 
May I, 1850. 

22 On the Relation of the 

be startling, the late Eoyal decision to which I have 
several times referred. The great legal authorities, on 
whose report it was made, have not only pronounced, 
that, as a matter of fact, persons who have denied the 
grace of Baptism had held the highest preferments in 
the National Church, but they felt themselves autho- 
rised actuaUy to interpret its ritual and its doctrine, and 
to report to her Majesty that the dogma of baptismal 
regeneration is not part and parcel of the national 
religion. They felt themselves strong enough, in their 
position, to pronounce "that the doctrine held by" the 
Protestant clergyman, who brought the matter before 
them, "was not contrary or repugnant to the declared 
doctrine of the Church of England, as by law estab- 
lished." The question was not whether it was true 
or not,— as they most justly remarked,— whether from 
heaven or from hell; they were too sober to meddle 
with what they had no means of determining; they 
" abstained from expressing any opinion of their own 
upon the theological correctness or error of the doctrine " 
propounded : the question was, not what God had said, 
but what the English nation had willed and aUowed; 
and, though it must be granted that they aimed at a 
critical examination of the letter of the documents, yet 
it must be granted on the other hand too, that their 
criticism was of a very national cast, and that the 
national sentiment was of great use to them in helping 
them to their conclusions. AVhat was it to the nation 

National Church to the Nation. 23 

or its lawyers whether Hooker used the word " charity " 
or "piety" in the extract which they adduced from his 
works, and that " piety " gave one sense to the passage, 
and " charity " another ? Hooker must speak as the ex- 
isting nation speaks, if he is to be a national authority. 
What though the ritual categorically deposes to the 
regeneration of the infant baptized ? The Evangelical 
party, who, in former years, had had the nerve to fix 
the charge of dishonesty on the explanations of the 
Thirty-nine Articles, put forth by their opponents, 
could all the while be cherishing in their own breasts 
an interpretation of the Baptismal Service, simply con- 
tradictory to its most luminous declarations. Inexpli- 
cable proceeding, if they were professing to handle the 
document in its letter ; but not dishonourable, not dis- 
honest, not hypocritical, but natural and obvious, on 
the condition or understanding that the Nation, which 
imposes the document, imposes its sense, — that by the 
breath of its mouth it had, as a god, made Establish- 
ment, Articles, Prayer-Book, and all that is therein, 
and could by the breath of its mouth as easily and abso- 
lutely unmake them again, whenever it was disposed. 

Counsel, then, and pamphleteers may put forth un- 
answerable arguments in behalf of the Catholic inter- 
pretation of the Baptismal service ; a long succession 
of Bishops, an unbroken tradition of writers, may have 
faithfully and anxiously guarded it. In vain has the 
Caroline school honoured it by ritual observance; in 

24 On the Relation of the 

vain has the Eestoration illustrated it by varied learn- 
ing ; in vain did the Eevolution retain it as the price 
for other concessions ; in vain did the eighteenth cen- 
tury use it as a sort of watchword against Wesley ; in 
vain has it been persuasively developed and fearlessly 
proclaimed by the movement of 1833; all this is foreign 
to the matter before us. We have not to enquire what 
is the dogma of a collegiate, antiquarian religion, but 
what, in the words of the Prime Minister, will give 
" general satisfaction ; " what is the religion of Britons. 
May not the free-born, self-dependent, animal mind 
of the Englishman, choose his religion for himself ? and 
have lawyers any more to do than to state, as a matter 
of fact and history, what that religion is, and for three 
centuries has been ? are we to obtrude the mysteries of 
an objective, of a dogmatic, of a revealed system, upon 
a nation which intimately feels and has established, 
that each individual is to be his own judge in truth 
and falsehood in matters of the unseen world ? How 
is it possible that the National Church, forsooth, 
should be allowed to dogmatize on a point which 
so immediately affects the Nation itself ? Why, half 
the country is unbaptized ; it is difficult to say for cer- 
tain who are baptized; shall the country uncluis- 
tianize itself ? it has not yet advanced to indifference 
on such a matter. Shall it, by a suicidal act, use its 
own Church against itself, as its instrument whereby to 
cut itself ofi' from the hope of another life ? Shall it 

National Church to the Nation. 25 

confine the Christian promise within limits, and put 
restrictions upon grace, when it has thrown open trade, 
removed disabilities, abolished monopolies, taken off 
agricultural protection, and enlarged the franchise ? — 
Such is the thought, such the language of the England 
of to-day. What a day for the defenders of the dogma 
in bygone times, if those times had anything to do with 
the present ! What a day for Bishop Lavington, who, 
gazing on Wesley preaching the new birth at Exeter, 
pronounced Methodism as bad as ''Popery"! What 
a portentous day for Bampton Lecturers and divinity 
Professors ! What a day for Bishop Mant and Arch- 
bishop Lawrence, and Bishop Van Mildert, and Arch- 
bishop Sutton, and, as we may trust, what a day had 
it been for Archbishop Howley, taken away on its very 
-dawning ! The giant ocean has suddenly swelled and 
heaved, and majestically yet masterfully snaps the 
cables of the smaller craft which lie upon its bosom, 
and strands them upon the beach. Hooker, Taylor, 
Bull, Pearson, Barrow, Tillotson, Warburton, and Home, 
names mighty in their generation, are broken and 
wrecked before the power of a nation's will. One 
vessel alone can ride those waves; it is the boat of 
Peter, the ark of God. 

And now, my brethren, it is plain that this doctrine 
does not stand by itself :— if the grace of Baptism is 
not to be taught dogmatically in the :N'ational Church, 

26 On the Relation of the 

if it be not a heresy to deny it, if to hold it and not to 
hold it be but matters of opinion, what other doctrine 
which that Church professes stands on a firmer or more 
secure foundation ? The same popular voice which has 
explained away the wording of the Office for Baptism, 
may of course in a moment dispense with the Athan- 
asian Creed altogether. Who can doubt, that if that 
symbol be not similarly dealt with in course of law in 
years to come, it is because the present judgment will 
practically destroy its force as efficaciously, and with 
less trouble to the lawyers ? No individual will dare 
to act on views which he knows to a certainty would 
be overruled as soon as they are brought before a legal 
tribunal. As to the document itself, it will be obvious 
to allege that the details of the Athanasian Creed were 
never intended for reception by national believers; that 
all that was intended (as has before now been avowed) 
was to uphold a doctrine of a Trinity, and that, provided 
we hold this " scriptural fact," it matters not whether 
we be Athanasians, Sabellians, Tritheists, or Socinians, 
or rather we shall be neither one nor the other of them. 
Precedents on the other hand are easily adducible of 
Arian, Sabellian, and Unitarian Bishops and digni- 
taries, and of divines who professed that Trinitarianism 
was a mere matter of opinion, both in former times 
and now. Indeed it might with much reason be main- 
tained, were the question before a court, that, looking 
at the matter historically, Locke gave the death-blow 

National Church to the Nation. 27 

to the Catholic phraseology on that fundnmental doc- 
trine among the Anglican clergy; and it is surely 
undeniable, that such points as the Eternal Generation 
of the Son, the Homotision, and the Hypostatic Union, 
have been silently discarded by the many, and but 
anxiously and apologetically put forward by the few. 
With this existing disposition in the minds of English 
Churchmen towards a denial of the Catholic doctrine 
of the Trinity, I surely am not rash in saying, that the 
recent judgment has virtually removed it from their 
authoritative teaching altogether. 

Nor can eternal punishment be received as an 
Anglican dogma, against the strong feeling of the age, 
mth so little in its favour in the national formularies ; 
nor original sin, considering that the national suspi- 
cion of it is countenanced and defended by no less an 
authority of past times than Bishop Jeremy Taylor. 
And much less the inspiration of Scripture, and the 
existence of the evil spirit, doctrines which are not 
mentioned in the Thirty-nine Articles at all. Yet, 
plain though this be, at this moment the Evangelical 
members of the Establishment are extolling the recent 
judgment, and are transported at the triumph it gives 
them, as if it might not, or would not, in time to come, 
be turned against themselves ; as if, while it directly 
affected the doctrine of baptismal grace, it had no bear- 
ing upon those of predestination, election, satisfaction, 
justification, and others, of which they consider them- 

-28 On the Relation of the 

selves so especially the champions. Poor victims 1 do 
you dream that the spirit of the age is working for you, 
or are you indeed secretly prepared to go further than 
you avow ? At least some of you are honest enough to 
be praising the recent judgment on its own account, 
and blind enough not to see what it involves ; and so 
you contentedly and trustfully throw yourselves into 
the arms of the age. But it is " to-day for me, to- 
morrow for thee ! " Do you really think the age is 
stripping Laud or Bull of his authority, in order to set 
up Whittaker or Baxter ? or with what expedient are 
you to elude a power, whose aid you have already 
invoked against your enemies ? ^ 


For us, Catholics, my brethren, while we clearly 
recognise how things are going with our countrymen 

^ The Oxford tutors are more sharp-sighted ; understanding the mental 
state of the junior portion of the University, they see that a decision 
like that of the Privy Council is fitted to destroy at once what little 
hold the old Anglican system has on them, and to give entrance among 
them to a scepticism on all points of religion. In a stiong and spirited 
protest, they quote against the Archbishop the very words he used on 
another occasion, eight or nine years since. Yet his evasive interpreta- 
tion of the Baptismal service is not the fault of the Archbishop, but of 
the Reformers. No member of the Establishment can believe in a system 
of theology of any kind, without doing violence to the formularies. 
Those only go easily along Articles and Prayer-book, who do not think. 
It is remarkable, the Archbishop's book on apostolical Preaching first 
brought the present writer to a belief in baptismal regeneration in 1824. 
He has the copy still, with his objections marked on the side, given him 
for the purpose of convincing him by a dignitary whom he has ever loved 
amid the gravest differences, Dr. Hawkins. 

National Church to the Nation. 29 

and while we would not accelerate the march of infidelity 
if we could help it, yet we are more desirous that you 
should leave a false church for the true, than that a 
false church should hold its ground. For if we are 
blessed in converting any of you, we are effecting a 
direct, unequivocal, and substantial benefit, which out- 
weighs all points of expedience — the salvation of your 
souls. I do not undervalue at all the advantage of 
institutions which, though not Catholic, keep out evils 
worse than themselves. Some restraint is better than 
none ; systems which do not simply inculcate divine 
truth, yet serve to keep men from being utterly hardened 
against it, when at length it addresses them ; they pre- 
serve a certain number of revealed doctrines in the 
popular mind ; they familiarize it to Christian ideas ; 
they create religious associations; and thus, remotely 
and negatively, they may even be said to prepare and 
dispose the soul in a certain sense for those inspirations 
of grace, which, through the merits of Christ, are freely 
given to all men for their salvation, all over the earth. 
It is a plain duty, then, not to be forward in destroying 
religious institutions, even though not Catholic, if we 
cannot replace them with what is better ; but, from fear 
of injuring them, to shrink from saving the souls of the 
individuals who live under them, would be worldly 
wisdom, treachery to Christ, and uncharitableness to 
His redeemed. 

As to the Catholic Church herself, no vicissitude of 

30 On the Relation of the 

circumstances can hurt her which allows her fair play. 
If, indeed, from the ultimate resolution of all heresies 
and errors into some one form of infidelity or scepticism, 
the nation was strong enough to turn upon her in per- 
secution, then indeed she might be expelled from our 
land, as she has been expelled before now. Then perse- 
cution w^ould do its work, as it did three centuries ago. 
But this is an extreme case, which is not to be anti- 
cipated. Till the nation becomes thus unanimous in 
unbelief. Catholics are secured by the collision and 
balance of religious parties, and are sheltered under 
that claim of toleration which each sect prefers for itself. 
But give us as much as this, an open field, and we ask 
no favour ; every form of Protestantism turns to our 
advantage. Its establishments of religion remind the 
world of that archetypal Church of which it is a copyist ; 
its Creeds contain portions of our teaching ; its quarrels 
and divisions serve to break up its traditions, and rid 
its professors of their prejudices ; its scepticism makes 
them turn in admiration and in hope to her, who alone 
is clear in her teaching and consistent in its transmis- 
sion ; its very abuse of her makes them inquire about 
lier. She fears nothing from political parties; she 
shrinks from none of them ; she can coalesce with any. 
She is not jealous of progress nor impatient with con- 
servatism, if either be the national will. ISTor is there 
anything for us to fear (except for the moment and for 
the sake of individuals) in that movement towards 

National Church to the Nat 


Pantheism, in the Protestant woiid,i which excites the 
special anxiety of many ; for, in truth, there is some- 
thing so repugnant to the feelings of man, in systems 
which deprive God of His perfections, and reduce Him 
to a name, which remove the Creator to an indefinite 
distance from His creatures, under the pretence of 
bringing them near to Him, and refuse Him the liberty 
of sending mediators and ordaining instruments to con- 
nect them with Him, which deny the existence of sin, 
the need of pardon, and the fact of punishment, which 
maintain that man is happy here and sufficient for 
himself, when he feels so keenly his own ignorance 
and desolateness, — and on the other hand, the sects and 
parties round about us are so utterly helpless to remedy 
his evils, and to supply his need, — that the preachers of 
these new ideas from Germany and America are really, 
however much against their will, like Caiphas, pro- 
phesying for us. Surely they will find no resting-place 
anywhere for their feet, and the feet of their disciples, 
but will be tumbled down from one depth of blasphemy 
to another, till they arrive at sheer and naked athe- 
ism, the reductio ad ahsurdum of their initial principles. 
Logic is a stern master; they feel it, they protest 
against it ; they profess to hate it and would fain dis - 
pense with it ; but it is the law of their intellectual 

^ I am aware that the name of Pantheism is repudiated by sevei-sil 
writers of the school I allude to, but I think it will be fouud to be the 
ultimate resolution of its princii^les. 

^2 On the Relation, etc. 

nature. StruggUng and shrieking, but in vain, will 
they make the inevitable descent into that pit from 
which there is no return, except through the almost 
miraculous grace of God, the grant of which in tHs life 
is never hopeless. And Israel, without a fight, will see 
their enemies dead upon the sea-shore. 

I will but observe in conclusion, that, in thus ex- 
plaining the feeling under which I address myself to 
members of the Anglican communion in these Lectures, 
[ have advanced one step towards fulfilling the object 
with which I have undertaken them. For it is a very 
common difficulty which troubles men, when they 
contemplate submission to the Catholic Church, that 
perhaps they shall thus be weakening the communion 
they leave, which, with whatever defects, they see in 
matter of fact to be a defence of Christianity against its 
enemies. No, my brethren, you will not be harming 
it; if the National Church falls, it falls because it is 
national; because it left the centre of unity in the 
sixteenth century, not because you leave it in the nine- 
teenth. Cranmer, Parker, Jewell, will complete their 
own work; they who made it, will be its destruction. 



lUT object in these Lectures, my brethren, is not to 
construct any argument in favour of Catholicism, 
for there is no need. Arguments exist in abundance, 
and of the highest cogency, and of the most wonderful 
variety, provided severally by the merciful wisdom of 
its Divine Author, for distinct casts of mind and cha- 
racter;— so much so, that it is often a mistake in con- 
troversy to cumulate reasons for what is on many con- 
siderations so plain already, and the evidence of which 
is only weakened to the individual inquirer, when he 
is distracted by fresh proofs, consistent indeed with 
those which have brought conviction to him, but to 
him less convincing than his own, and at least strange 
and unfamiliar. Every inquirer may have enough of 
positive proof to convince him that the Catholic 
Eeligion is divine ; it is owing to the force of counter- 
objections that his conviction remains in fact either 
defective or inoperative. I consider, then, that I shall 

34 'J-'he Movement 0/1833 

be ministering in my measure to the cause of truth, if I 
do ever so little towards removing the difficulties, or 
any of them, which beset the mind, when it is urged 
to accept Catholicism as true. It is with this view that 
I have insisted on the real character of the Estal.lished 
Church, and its relation to the nation ; for, if it be 
mainly as I have represented it, a department of go- 
vernment under the temporal sovereign, one at least 
is struck off from the catalogue of your objections 
You fear to leave it lest you should, by your secession, 
throw it into the hands of a latitudinarian party ; but 
it never has been in your hands, nor ever under your 
influence. It is in the hands of the nation ; it is mainly 
what the nation is : such is it, while you are in it; such 
would it be, if you left it. I do not deny you may by 
your presence somewhat retard its downward career, 
but you are not of the real importance to it, which 

you fancy. 

Kow, in the course of the argument I made a remark, 
wHch I shall to-day pursue. I spoke of the movement 
which began in the Establishment in 1833, or shortly 
before; and I dwelt on the remarkable fact, that in 
nearly twenty years that movement, though certainly it 
exerted great influence over the views of individuals 
nevertheless has created a mere party in the National 
Church, having had the least possible influence over tlie 
National Church itself ; and no wonder, if that Church 
be simply an organ or department of the State, for in 

Foreign to thr National Church. 35 

that case, all ecclesiastical acts really proceeding from 
the supreme civil government, to influence the Estab- 
lishment, is nothing else than to influence the Statue, or 
even the Constitution. 

Now I shall pursue the argument. I shall, by means 
of one or two suggestions, try to bring home to you the 
extreme want of congeniality which has existed between 
the movement of 1833 and the nation at large; and 
then assuming that you, my brethren, owe your 
principles to that movement, and that your first duty 
is to your principles, I shall infer your own want of 
congeniality with the national reHgion, however you 
may wish it otherwise ; I shaU infer that you have no 
concern with that national religion, have no place in it, 
have no reason for belonging to it, and have no respon- 
sibilities towards it. 

I am then to point out to you, that, what is sometimes 
called, or rather what caHs itself, the Anglo-Catholic 
teaching, is not only a novelty in this age (for to prove 
a thing new to the age, is not enough in order to prove 
it uncongenial), but that, while it is a system adven- 
titious and superadded to the national religion, it is, 
moreover, not supplemental, or complemental, or col- 
lateral, or correlative to it,— not implicitly involved in 
it, not developed from it,— nor combining with it,— nor 
capable of absorption into it: but, on the contrary, 
most uncongenial and heterogeneous, floating upon i^ 
a foreign substance, like oil upon the water. And my 

36 The Movement of iZ^:^ 

proof shall consist, first, of wiiat was augured of it 
vvhen it commenced ; secondly, wliat has been fulfilled 
concerning it during its course. 


As to the auguries with which it started, we need not 
go beyond the first agents of the movement, in order to 
have a tolerably sufficient proof that it had no lot, noi 
portion, nor parentage in the Established Church ; foi 
w^hen those who first recommended to her its principles 
and doctrines are found themselves to have doubted how 
far these were congenial with her, when the very physi- 
cians were anxious as to what would come of their own 
medicines, who shall feel confidence in them ? Such, 
however, was the case : its originators confessed that 
they were forcing upon the Establishment doctrines 
from which it revolted, doctrines with which it never 
had given signs of coalescing, doctrines which tended 
they knew not whither. This is what they felt, this i& 
what with no uncertain sound they publicly proclaimed. 
For instance, one, who, if any, is the author of the 
movement altogether, and whose writings were published 
after his death, says in one of his letters, " It seems 
agreed amoni,^ the wise, that we must begin by laying 
a foundation." Again he writes to a friend, " I am 
getting more and more to feel, what you tell me, about 
the impracticability of making sensible people,' that is, 
the High Church party of the day, ''enter into oui 

Foreign to the National Church. 2>7 

ecclesiastical views; and, what is most discouraging, I 
hardly see how to set about leading them to us.""" Else- 
where he asks, " How is it we are so much in advance 
of our generation?" And again, -The age is out of 
joint." And again, " I shall write nothing on the sub- 
ject of Church grievances, till I have a tide to work 
with." Further he calls the Establishment "an in- 
cubus upon the country," and, "a upas tree:" and, 
lastly, within three or four months of his death, his 
theological views still expanding and diverging from 
the existing state of things, he exclaims, "How mis- 
taken we may ourselves be on many points, that are 
only gradually opening on us !" ^ 

Avowals of a like character are made with the 
utmost frankness in the very work which in 1837 
professed formally to lay down and defend the new 
doctrines. The writer (that is, myself) begins by 
allowing that he is "discussing rather than teaching, 
what was meant to be simply an article of faith, " viz., 
belief in "the Catholic Church," alleging in excuse 
that "the teaching of the Apostles concerning it is, in 
a good measure, withdrawn," and that, "we are, so far, 
left to make the best of our way to the promised land 
by our natural resources." 2 The preaching of the 
doctrines of the movement is compared, in its strange- 
nesa, to the original preaching of Christianity, and this 

^ Fronde's Remains, vol. i. 
2 Prophetical Office of the Church. Vid. Via Media, vcl, i.. ed. 1877. 

38 The Movement o/* 1833 

only alleviation is suggested, if it be any, that they 
who are startled at those doctrines, could not be woore 
startled than "the outcasts to whom the Apostles 
preached in the beginning." Kay, it is categorically 
stated, that " these doctrines are in one sense as en- 
tirely new as Christianity when first preached." He 
continues, " Pre testantism and Popery" (by Popery he 
means the popular Catholic system) " are real religions ; 
no one can doubt about them ; they have furnished the 
mould in which nations have been cast ; but the Via 
Media, viewed as an integral system, has scarcely had 
existence except on paper." Presently he continues 
"It still remains to be tried, whether what is called 
Anglo-Catholicism, the religion of Andrewes, Laud, 
Hammond, Butler, and Wilson, is capable of being 
professed, acted on, and maintained in a large sphere 
of action, and through a sufficient period; or whether 
it be a mere modification or transition state, either of 
Komanism or of popular Protestantism, according as 
we view it." " It may be argued," he adds, and, as he 
does not deny, argued with plausibility, "that the 
Church of England, as established by law, and existing 
in fact, has never represented a certain doctrine, or been 
the development of a principle; that it has been but a 
name, or a department of the State, or a political party 
in which religious opinion was an accident, and there- 
fore has been various." And this prospectus, as it may 
be called, of a new system, ends by stating that, "it 

Foreign to the ^\aional Church. 39 

is proposed to offer helps towards the formation of a 
recognised Anglican theology in one of its departments." 
. . . "We require a recognised theology," he insists, 
" and, if the present work, instead of being what it is 
meant to be, a first approximation to the required so- 
lution, in one department of a complicated problem, 
contains, after all, but a series of illustrations demon- 
strating our need, and supplying hints for its removal ; 
such a result, it is evident, will be quite a sufficient 
return for whatever anxiety it has cost the writer to 
have employed his own judgment on so serious a 

I must add, in justice to this writer, and it is not 
much to say for him, that he did not entertain the 
presumptuous thought of creating, at this time of day, 
a new theology himself; he considered that a theology 
true in itself, and necessary for the position of the 
Anglican Church, was to be found in the writings of 
Andrewes, Laud, Bramhall, Stillingfleet, Butler, and 
other of its divines, but had never been put together, 
— as he expressly declares. Nor, in spite of his mis- 
givings, was he without a persuasion that the theological 
system contained in those writers, and derived, as he 
believed, from the primitive Fathers, not only ought to 
be, but might be, and, as he hoped, would be, acknow 
ledged and acted upon by the Establishment. On the 
other hand, I allow, of course, and am not loth to allow, 
that, had he seen clearly that Antiquity and the Estab- 


The Movement 0/1833 

lishment were incompatible with each other, he would 
promptly have given up the Establishment, rather than 
have rejected Antiquity. Moreover, let it be observed, 
in evidence of his misgivings on the point, that, when 
he gets to the end of his volume, instead of their being 
removed, they return in a more definite form, and he 
confesses that " the thought, with which we entered upon 
the subject, is apt to recur, when the excitement of the 
inquiry has subsided, and weariness has succeeded, that 
what has been said is but a dream, the wanton exercise, 
rather than the practical conclusions, of the intellect." 


These auguries speedily met with a response, though 
in a less tranquil tone, in every part of the Establish- 
ment, and by each of the schools of opinion within it, 
—the High Church section, the Evangelical, and the 
Latitudinarian. They condemned, not only the attempt, 
but the authors of it. The late Dr Arnold, a man who 
always spoke his mind, avowed that his feelings towards 
a Eoman Catholic were quite different from his f eeUngs 
to the author of the above work. '' I think the one," 
he continued, '' a fair enemy, the other a treacherous 
one. The one is the Frenchman in his own uniform, 
the other is the Frenchman disguised in a red coat. I 
should honour the first and hang the second." For the 
Evangelical party, it is scarcely necessary to make the 
following extracts from the work of even a cautious 

Foreign to the National Church. 4 1 

and careful writer: — "If," says the writer of "Essays 
ou the Churcii/' " tlie grievances and warfare of Dis- 
senters against it have greatly diminished in interest, 
a new and gigantic evil has arisen up in their room. 
. . Popery, not indeed of the days of Hildebrand 
or Leo the Tenth, but Popery as it first established 
itself in the seventh and eighth centuries, is already 
among us. . . . Popery has anew arisen up among 
uSj in youthful vigour and in her youthful attractions. 
Such is the chief, the greatly preponderating peril, 
which besets the Church of England at the present day. 
It has in it all the essential features of Popery ; but, 
apart from this, and were it never to proceed beyond 
the perils to which it has now reached, it is fraught 
with the fearful evil of a withering, parching, blighting 
■operation, drying -up and banishing all spiritual life 
and influence from the Church."^ 

Lastly, a theological professor of the High Church 
section, in an attack which he delivered from the pulpit, 
viewed the movement from another point of view, yet 
in perfect accordance of judgment with the two writers 
who have been already cited : " Instead of quietly 
acquiescing," he says, "in what they cannot change, 
submitting in silence to their imagined privations, and 
patiently enduring this ' meagreness of Protestantism,' 
by a species of 'ecclesiastical agitation,' unexampled 

1 Essaj's on the Church, by a Layman, 1838, pp. 270, 299, 30a 
Ditto. 1840, p. 401. 

42 The Movement of iS2,3 

in obtrusiveness and perseverance, they are unsettling 
the faith of the weak, blinding the judgment of the 
sober-minded, raising the hopes of the most inveterate 
advocates of our Eeformed and Protestant Church, and, 
as far as a small knot of malcontents can well be sup- 
posed capable, they are compromising her character and 
disturbing her peace." ^ 

Yet even at this date, in spite of the success which 
for five years had attended him, the author whom I 
have already quoted felt no greater confidence tliac 
before in his own congeniality with the National 
Church ; and, on occasion of the last-mentioned attack 
upon him, scrupled not to avow the fact. " Sure I 
am," said he, " that the more stir is made about those 
opinions which you censure, the wider they will spread. 
Whatever be the faults or mistakes of their advocates, 
they have that root of truth in them, which, as I do 
firmly believe, has a blessing with it. / do not ^pretend 
to say they will ever become widely ]po;pular, that is 
another matter : truth is never, or at least never long, 
popular ; nor do I say they will ever gain that powerful 
external influence over the many which truth, vested 
in the few, cherished, throned, energising in the few, 
often has possessed; nor that they are not destined, 
as truth has often been destined, to be cast away, and 
at length trodden nnder foot as an odious thing : but of 
this I am sure, that, at tliis juncture, in proportion .is 

1 Faussett's Sermon, 1838, Preface to Third Edition. 

Foreign to the National Church. 4-^ 

they are known, they will make their way through the 
community, picking out their own, seeking and obtain- 
ing refuge in the hearts of Christians, high and low, 
here and there, with this man and that, as the case 
may be ; doing their work in their day, and raising a 
memorial and a witness to this fallen generation of 
what once has been, of what God would ever have, of 
what one day shall be in perfection; and that, not 
from what they are in themselves, because, viewed in 
the concrete, they are mingled, as everything human 
must be, with error and infirmity, but by reason of the 
spirit, the truth, the old Catholic life and power which 
is in them." ^ 

What was it, then, which the originators of the 
movement of 1833 demanded or desiderated in its 
behalf, in the communion for whose benefit it was 
intended ? How came they to dread lest the principles 
of St. Athanasius and of St. Ambrose should fail to 
take root in the minds of their brethren, and to spread 
through the laity ? In truth, when they feared that 
the good seed would fall, not on a congenial soil, but 
on hard, or stony, or occupied ground, they were fear- 
ing that the E"ationai Church, though they did not use 
the word, had no life. Life consists or manifests itself 
in activity of principle. There are various kinds of 
life, and each kind is the influence or operation in a 

' The author's "Letter to Dr. Faussett." Vid. Via Media, voi. ii. 

44 The Movem.ent o/* 1833 

body of those principles upon which the body is con- 
stituted. Each kind of life is to be referred, and is 
congenial, to its own principle. Principles, distinct 
from each other, will not take root and flourish in 
bodies to which respectively they are foreign. One 
principle has not the life of another. The life of a 
plant is not the same as the life of an animated being, 
and the life of the body is not the same as the life of 
the intellect ; nor is the life of the intellect the same 
in kind as the life of grace ; nor is the life of the 
Church the same as the life of the State. When, then, 
these writers doubted whether Apostolical principles, 
as they called them, would spread through the laity of 
England, they were doubting whether that laity lived, 
oreathed, energised, in Apostolical principles ; whether 
Apostolical principles were the just expression and the 
constituent element of the national sentiment ; whether 
the intellectual and moral life of the nation was not 
distinct from the life of the Apostolical age ; and, if 
the -Establishment professed to be built upon the 
principles and to partake of the life of the Apostolica] 
age, as they knew ought to be the case, then they 
were doubting whether it really had those principles 
and that life, in spite of its professions. 

There was no doubt at all, there is no doubt at all, 
that the Establishment has some kind of life. No one 
ever doubted it; and one of its dignitaries trium- 
phantly proves it in a passage which I will quote:— 

Foreign to tliv National Church. 


Surely, my dear friend," says this accomplished 
writer,^ with a reference to the present controversy,. 
"it requires an inordinate faith in one's own logical 
dreams, an idolising worship of one's own opinions, ta 
believe that the Church of England, blest as she has 
been by God for so many generations, raised as she 
has been by Him to be the mother of so many 
Churches, with such a promise shining upon her, and 
brightening every year, that her daughters should 
spread round the earth, that she, who has been chosen 
by God to be the instrument of so many blessings, and 
the presence of the Lord and His Spirit with whom 
was never more manifest than at this day, should 
forfeit her office and authority, as a witness of the 
truth, should be cut off from the body of Christ's 
Church, and should no longer be able to dispense the 
grace of the sacraments, because her highest law court 
has not condemned a proposition asserted by one of 
her ministers, concerning a very obscure and perplex- 
ing question of dogmatical theology. Surely this would 
be an extraordinary delusion ; . . . for, whatever 
the dogmatical value of the opinion " in question '' may 
be, the error is not one which indicates any want of 
personal faith and holiness, or any decay of Christian 
life in the Church." 

No, I grant it would be very difficult to the imagina- 
tion to receive it as a dogma, that there was no "life'*" 

^ Archdeacon Hare, in Rtcord Newspaper. 

4.6 The Movement o/' 1833 

in the National Church, or indeed no "faith." The 
simple question is, What is meant by "life" and 
"faith"? Will the Archdeacon tell us whether he 
does not mean by faith a something very vague and 
comprehensive ? Does he mean, as he might say, the 
faith of Marcus Antoninus, St. Austin, and Peter the 
Hermit, of Luther, Eousseau, Washington, and Napo- 
leon Bonaparte ? Faith has one meaning to a Catholic, 
another to a Protestant. And life, — is it the religious 
"life" of England, or of Prussia, that he means, or is it 
Catholic life, that is, the life v/hich belongs to Catholic 
principles ? Else he will be arguing in a circle, if he 
is to prove that Protestants have that life, which mani- 
fests "the presence of the Spirit," on the ground of 
their having, as they are sure to have, a life congenial 
and in conformity to Protestant principles. If then 
" life " means strength, activity, energy, and well-being 
of any kind whatever, in that case doubtless the national 
religion is alive. It is a great power in the midst of 
us ; it wields an enormous influence ; it represses a 
hundred foes; it conducts a hundred undertakings. 
It attracts men to it, uses them, rewards them; it 
has thousands of beautiful homes up and down the 
country, where quiet men may do its work and 
benefit its people ; it collects vast sums in the shape 
of voluntary offerings, and with them it builds 
churches, prints and distributes innumerable Bibles, 
books, and tracts and sustains missionaries in all 

Foreign to the National Church. 47 

parts of the earth. In all parts of the earth it opposes 
the Catholic Church, denounces her as antichristian, 
bribes the world against her, obstructs her influence, 
apes her authority, and confuses her evidence. In all 
parts of the world it is the religion of gentlemen, of 
scholars, of men of substance, and men of no personal 
faith at all. If this be life, — ^if it be life to impart 
a tone to the court and houses of parliament, to 
ministers of state, to law and literature, to universities 
and schools, and to society, — if it be life to be a prin- 
€iple of order in the population, and an organ of 
benevolence and almsgiving towards the poor, — if it be 
life to make men decent, respectable, and sensible, to 
embellish and refine the family circle, to deprive vice 
of its grossness, and to shed a gloss over avarice and 
ambition, — if indeed it is the life of religion to be the 
first jewel in the Queen's crown, and the highest step 
of her throne, then doubtless the National Church is 
replete, it overflows with life; but the question has 
still to be answered. Life of what kind ? Heresy has 
its life, worldliness has its life. Is the Establishment's 
life merely national life, or is it something more ? Is 
it Catholic life as well ? Is it a supernatural life ? Is 
it congenial with, does it proceed from, does it belong 
to, the principles of Apostles, Martyrs, Evangelists, 
and Doctors, the principles which the movement of 1833 
thought to impose or to graft upon it, or does it revolt 
irom them ? If it be Catholic and Apostolic, it will en~ 

48 The Movement of i^2>Z 

dure Catholic and Apostolic principles ; no one doubts 
it can endure Erastian ; no one doubts it can be patient 
of Protestant ; this is the problem which was started by 
the movement in question, the problem for which, surely, 
there has been an abundance of tests in the course of 

twenty years. 

But the passage I have quoted suggests a second 
observation. I have spoken of the tests, which the 
last twenty years have furnished, of the real character 
of the Establishment; for I must not be supposed to 
be inquiring whether the Establishment has been 
unchurched during that period, but whether it has been 
proved to have been no Church from the first. The 
want of congeniality which now exists between the 
sentiments and ways, the moral life of the Anglican 
communion, and the principles, doctrines, traditions of 
Catholicism — this uncongeniality I am speaking of in 
order to prove something done and over long ago before 
the movement, in order to show that that movement of 
1833 was from its very beginning engaged in propa- 
gating an unreality. The eloquent writer just quoted, 
in ridicule of the protest made by twelve very distin - 
guished men against the Queen's recent decision con- 
cerning the sacrament of baptism, contrasts "logical 
dreams" and "obscure and perplexing questions of 
dogmatic theology " with " the promise " in the Estab- 
lishment of a large family " of daughters, spread round 

Foreign to the National Chirdi. 49 

the earth, shining and brightening every year." Xow. 
I grant that it has a narrow and technical appearance to 
decide the Catholicity of a religious body by particular 
words, or deeds, or measures, resulting from the temper 
of a particular age, accidentally elicited, and accom- 
plished in minutes or in days. I allow it and feel it ; — 
that a particular vote of parliament, endured or tacitly 
accepted by bishops and clergy, or by the Metro- 
politans, or a particular appointment, or a particular 
omission, or a particular statement of doctrine, should 
at once change the spiritual character of the body, and 
ipso facto cut it off from the centre of unity and the 
source of grace, is almost incredible. In spite of such 
acts, surely the Anglican Church might be to-day 
what it was yesterday, with an internal power and 
a supernatural virtue, provided it had not already 
forfeited them, and would go about its work as of 
old time. It would be to-day pretty much what it 
was yesterday, though in the course of the night it 
had allowed an Anglo-Prussian See to be set up 
in Jerusalem, and had disavowed the Athanasian 

This is the common sense of the matter, to which the 
mind recurs with satisfaction, after zeal and ingenuity 
have done their utmost to prove the contrary. Of 
course, I am not saying that individual acts do not 
tend towards, and a succession of acts does not issue in, 
the most serious spiritual consequences; but it is so 

i^o The Movement c/ 1833 

difficult to determine the worth of each ecclesiastical 
act, and what its position is relatively to acts before 
and after it, that I have no intention of urging any 
argument deduced from such acts in particular. A gene 
ration may not be long enough for the completion of 
an act of schism or heresy. Judgments admit of repeal 
or reversal ; enactments are liable to flaws and infor- 
malities ; laws require promulgation ; documents admit 
of explanation; words must be interpreted either by 
context or by circumstances; majorities may be ana- 
lysed; responsibilities may be shifted. I admit the 
remark of another writer in the present controversy, 
though I do not accept his conclusion : " The Church's 
motion," he says, '4s not that of a machine, to be 
calculated with accuracy, and predicted beforehand; 
where one serious injury will disturb all regularity, and 
finally put a stop to action. It is that of a living body, 
whose motions will be irregular, incapable of being 
exactly arranged and foretold, and where it is nearly 
impossible to say how much health may co-exist with 
how much disease." And he speaks of the line 01 
reasoning which he is opposing, as being "too logical 
to be real. Men," he observes, " do not, in the prac- 
tical affairs of life, act on such clear, sharp, definite 
theories. Such reasoning can never be the cause of 
any one leaving the Church of England. But it looks 
well on paper, and therefore may, perhaps, be put 
forward as a theoretical argument by those who, from 

Foreign to the National Church. 5 i 

some other feeling, or fancy, or prejudice, or honest 
conviction, think fit to leave us." ^ 

Truly said, except in the imputation conveyed in 
the concluding words. I will grant that it is by life 
without us, by life within us, by the work of grace in 
our communion and in ourselves, that we are all of us 
accustomed practically to judge whether that com- 
munion be Catholic or not ; not by this or that formal 
act or historical event. I will grant it, though of 
course it requires some teaching, and some discernment, 
and some prayer, to understand what spiritual life is, 
and what is the working of grace. However, at any 
rate, let the proposition pass ; — I will here allow it, at 
least for argument's sake ; for, my brethren, I am not 
tiere going to look out, in the last twenty years, for 
dates vv^hen, and ways in which, the Establishment tell 
from Catholic unity, and lost its divine privileges. 
N'o; the question before us is nothing narrow or 
technical ; it has no cut-and-dried premisses, and per- 
smptory conclusions; it is not whether this or that 
statute or canon at the time of the Eeformation, this or 
that " further and further encroachment " of the State 
this or that "Act of William IV.," constituted the 
Establishment's formal separation from the Church: 
not whether the Queen's recent decision binds it to 
heresy ; but, whether these acts, and abundant others, 
are not one and all evidences, in one out of a hundred 

^ Neal's Few Words of Hope, pp. 11, 12. 

52 The Movement o/' 1833 

heads of evidence, that, whatever were the acts which 
constituted, or the moment which completed the schism, 
or rather the utter disorganisation of the National 
Church, cut off and disorganised it is. is'o sober man 
I suppose, dreams of denying, that, if that Church be 
un- apostolical and impure now, it has had no claim to 
be called " pure and apostolical " last year, or twenty 
years back, or for any part of the period since the 

We have, then, this simple question before us: 
What evidence is there, that the doctrines and prin- 
ciples proclaimed to the world in 1833 had then, or have 
now, any congeniality with the Establishment in which 
they were propagated, and that they could or can live 
in that Establishment; whether they can move or 
work, whether they can breathe and live in it, better 
than a being with lungs in an exhausted receiver ? It 
was doubted, as we have seen, by their first preachers ; 
how has it been determined by the event? I^ow, 
then, to give one or two specimens and illustrations 
of a fact too certain, as I think, to need much dwell- 
ing on. 


We know that it is the property of life to be im- 
patient of any foreign substance in the body to which it 
belongs. It will be sovereign in its own domain, and 
It conflicts with what it cannot assimilate into itself, 
and is irritated and disordered till it has expelled it. 

Foreign to the National Church, 53 

Such expulsion, then, is, emphatically, a test of uncon- 
geniality, for it shows that the substance ejected, not 
only is not one with the body that rejects it, but cannot 
be made one with it ; that its introduction is not only 
useless, or superfluous, or adventitious, but that it is 
intolerable. For instance, it is usual for High Church- 
men to speak of the Establishment as patient, in 
matter of fact, both of Catholic and Protestant prin- 
ciples ;— truly said as regards Protestant, and it will 
illustrate my point to give instances of it. ISTo one 
will deny, then, that neither Lutheranism nor Calvinism 
is the exact doctrine of the Church of England, and 
yet either heresy readily coalesces with it in matter 
of fact. Persons of Lutheran and Calvinistic, and 
Luthero-Calvinist bodies, are and have been chosen 
without scruple by the English people for husbands 
and wives, for sponsors, for missionaries, for deans 
and canons, without any formal transition from com- 
munion to communion. The Anglican Prelates write 
complimentary letters to what they call the foreign 
Protestant Churches, and they attend, with their 
clergy and laity, Protestant places of worship abroad. 
William III. was called to the throne, though a Cal- 
vinist, and George I., though a Lutheran, and that in 
order to exclude a family who adhered to the religion 
of Ptome. The national religion, then, has a congeniality 
with Lutheranism and Calvinism, which it has not, for 
instance, with the Greek religion, or the Jewish. Other 

54 The Movement 0/1833 

relio-ions, as they come, whatever they be, are not in* 
different to it; it takes up one, it precipitates another; 
it, as every religion, has a life, a spirit, a genius of its 
own, in which doctrines lie implicit, out of which they 
are developed, and by which they are attracted into it 
from without, and assimilated to it. 

There is a passage in Moehler's celebrated work on 
Symbolism, so much to the point here, that I will quote 
it : '' Each nation," he says, '•' is endowed with a peculiar 
character, stamped on the deepest, most hidden parts of 
its being, which distinguishes it from all other nations, 
and manifests its peculiarity in public and domestic 
life, in art and science ; in short, in every relation. In 
every general act of a people, the national spirit is 
infallibly expressed ; and should contests, should selfish 
factions occur, the element destructive to the vital 
principle of the whole will most certainly be detected 
in them, and the commotion excited by an alien spirit 
either miscarries or is expelled; as long as the com- 
munity preserves its self-consciousness, as long as its 
peculiar genius yet lives and works within it. . . . 
Let us contemplate the religious sect founded by Luther 
himself. The developed doctrines of his Church, con- 
signed as they are in the symbolical books, retain, on 
the whole, so much of his spirit, that, at the first view, 
they must be recognised by the observer as genuine 
productions of Lutlier. With a sure vital instinct, the 
opinions of the Majorists, the Synergists, and others. 

Foreign to flie National Church. 55 

were rejected as deadly, and indeed (from Luther's 
point of view) as untrue, by that community whoso soul, 
whose living principle, he was." ^ 

We have the most vivid and impressive illurstrations 
of the truth of these remarks in the hi-tory of the 
Church. The religious life of a people is of a certain 
quality and in a certain direction, and this quality and 
this direction are tested by the mode in which it 
encounters the various opinions, customs, and institu- 
tions Y/hich are submitted to it. Drive a stake into a 
river's bed, and you will at once ascertain which way 
it is running, and at what speed ; throw up even a straw 
upon the air, and you will see which way the wind blows ; 
submit your heretical and your Catholic principle to 
the action of the multitude, and you will be able to 
pronounce at once wdiether that multitude is imbued 
with Catholic truth or with heretical falsehood. 


Take, for example, a passage in the history of the 
fourth century ; let the place be Milan ; the date the 
Lent of 384, 385 ; the reigning powers Justina and her 
son Valentinian, and St. Ambrose the Archbishop. The 
city is in an uproar ; there is a mob before the imperial 
residence ; the soldiery interferes in vain, and Ambrose 
is despatched by the court to disperse the people. A 
month elapses; Palm Sunday is come; the Aichbisnop 

^ Robertson's Transl., vol. ii. pp. 36-39. 

56 The Movement of 1833 

is expounding the Creed to the catechumens, when he is 
told that the people are again in commotion. A second 
message comes, that they have seized one of the 
empress's priests. The court makes reprisals on the 
tradesmen, some of whom are fined, some thrown into 
prison, while men of higher rank are threatened. We 
are arrived at the middle of Holy Week, and we find 
soldiers posted before one of the churches, and Ambrose 
has menaced them with excommunication. His threat 
overcomes them, and they join the congregation to 
whom he is preaching. The court gives way, the guards 
are withdrawn to their quarters, and the fines are re- 
mitted. What does all this mean? There evidently 
has been a quarrel between the court and the Arch- 
bishop, and the Archbishop, aided by the populai 
enthusiasm, has conquered, A year passes, and there 
is a second and more serious disturbance. Soldiers 
have surrounded the same church; yet, dreading an 
excommunication, they let the people enter, but refuse 
to let them pass out. Still the people keep entering ; 
they fill the church, the courtyard, the priests' 
lodgings ; and there they remain with the Archbishop 
for two or three days, singing psalms, till tlio soldiers, 
overcome by the music, sing psalms too, and the 
blockade melts away, no one knows how. And now. 
what was the cause of so enthusiastic, so dogged an 
opposition to the court, on the part of the population 
of Milan ? The answer is plain ; it was because they 

Foreign to the National Church. 57 

loved Christ so well, and were so sensitive of the 
doctrine of His divinity, that they would not allow the 
reigning powers to take a church from them, and bestow 
it on the Arians. I conceive, then, that Catholicism 
was emphatically the religion of Milan, or that the life 
of the Milanese Church was a Catholic life. 

And so, in like manner, when in St. Giles' Church, 
Edinburgh, in July 1635, the dean of the city opened 
the service-book, in the presence of Bishop and Privy 
Council, and " a multitude of the meanest sort, most of 
them women," clapped their hands, cursed him, cried 
out, " A pope ! a pope ! antichrist ! stone him ; " ^ and 
one flung a stool at the Bishop, and others threw 
stones at doors and windows, and at Privy-seal and 
Bishop on their return, and this became the beginning 
of a movement which ended in obtaining the objects 
at which it aimed, — this, I consider, shows clearly 
enough that the religious life at Edinburgh at that day 
was not Catholic, not Anglican, but Presbyterian and 

And, to take one more instance, when the seven 
Bishops were committed to the Tower, and were pro- 
ceeding " down the river to their place of confinement, 
the banks were covered with spectators, who, while they 
knelt and asked their blessing, prayed themselves for 
a blessing on them and their cause. The very soldiers 
who guarded them, and some even of the officers to 

^ Hume. Charles the First. 

58 The Movement of 18 


whose charge they were committed, knelt in like 
manner before them, and besought their benediction." 
When they were brought before the Court of King's 
Bench, they "passed through a line of people who 
kissed their hands and their garments, and begged 
their blessing ; " and when they were admitted to bail, 
" bonfires were made in the streets, and healths drunk 
to the Seven Champions of the Church." Lastly, 
when they were acquitted, the verdict " was received 
with a shout which seemed to shake the hall. . . . All 
the churches were filled with people : the bells rang 
from every tower, every house was illuminated, and 
bonfires were kindled in every street. Medals M^ere 
struck in honour of the event, and portraits hastily 
published and eagerly purchased, of men who were 
compared to the seven golden candlesticks, and called 
the seven stars of the Protestant Church." 1 ISTow here 
again are signs of life, religious life, doubtless, but 
thev have nothingr to do with Catholicism ; thev are 
indubitable, unequivocable tokens what the national 
religion was and is, affording a clear illustration of the 
congeniality existing between the spirit and character 
of a system and its own principles, and not with their 


Let a people, then. Catholic or not, be little versed 
in doctrine — let them be a practical, busy people, full of 

' Southev's Book of the Churcli. 

Foreign to the National Church, 


their secular matters — let tliein have no keen analvtical 
view of the principles which govern them, — yet they 
will be spontaneously attracted by those principles and 
irritated by their contraries, in such sort as thev can be 
attracted or irritated by no other. Their own principles 
or their contraries, when once sounded in their ears, 
thrill through them with a vibration, pleasant or pain- 
ful, with sweet harmony or with grating discord ; under 
which they cannot rest quiet, but relieve their feelings 
by gestures and cries, and startings to and fro, and 
expressions of sympathy or antipathy towards others, 
and at length by combination, and party manifestos, 
and vigorous action. When, then, the note of Catho- 
licism, as it may be called, was struck seventeen years 
since, and while it has sounded louder and louder on 
the national ear, what has been the response of the 
national sentiment ? It had many things surely in 
its favour; it sounded from a centre which commanded 
attention — it sounded strong and full; nor was it 
intermitted, or checked, or lowered by the opposition 
nor drowned by the clamour, which it occasioned 
while, at length, it was re-echoed and repeated from 
other centres with zeal, and energy, and sincerity, and 
effect, as great as any cause could even desire or could 
ask for. So far, no movement could have more advan- 
tages attendant on it than it had ; and, as it proceeded, 
it did not content itself with propagating an abstract 
theology, but it took a part in the public events of the 

6o The Movement of i^2>Z 

day ; it interfered with court, with ministers, with 
CJniversity matters, and with counter-movements of 
whatever kind. 

And, moreover, which is much to the purpose, it 
appealed to the people, and that on the very ground 
that it was Apostolical in its nature. It made the 
experiment of this appeal the very test of its Aposto- 
licity. "I shall offend many men," said one of its 
organs, " when I say, we must look to the people ; but 
let them give me a hearing. Well can I understand 
their feelings. Who, at first sight, does not dislike the 
thoughts of gentlemen and clergymen depending for 
their maintenance and their reputation on their flocks ? 
of their strength, as a visible power, lying, not in their 
birth, the patronage of the great, or the endowments 
of the Church, as hitherto, but in the homage of a 
multitude ? But, in truth, the prospect is not so bad 
as it seems at first sight. The chief and obviou? 
objection to the clergy being thrown on the people lies 
in that probable lowering of Christian views, and that 
adulation of the vulgar, which would be its conse- 
quence ; and the state of dissenters is appealed to as an 
evidence of the danger. But let us recollect that we 
are an Apostolical body ; we were not made, nor can be 
unmade, by our flocks ; and, if our influence is to depend 
on them, yet the Sacraments are lodged with us. We 
have that with us which none but ourselves possess, the 
mantle of the Apostles ; and this, properly understood 

Foreign to the National ChxtrcL 


and cherished, will ever keep us from being the creatures 
of a population." 1 

Here, then, was a challenge to the nation to decide 
between the movement and its opponents ; and how did 
the nation meet it ? When clergymen of Latitudin- 
arian theology v/ere promoted to dignities, did the 
faithful of the diocese, or of the episcopal city, rise in 
insurrection? Did parishioners blockade a church's 
doors to keep out a new incumbent, who refused to 
read the Athanasian Creed? Did vestries feel an 
instinctive reverence for the altar-table, as soon as 
that reverence was preached? Did the organs of 
public opinion pursue with their invectives those who 
became dissenters or Irvingites ? Was it a subject of 
popular indignation, discussed and denounced m rail- 
way trains and omnibuses and steamboats, m clubs and 
shops, in episcopal charges and at visitation dinners, 
if a clergyman explained away the baptismal service, 
or professed his intention to leave out portions of it 
in mmistration? Did it rouse the guards or the 
artillery to find that the Bishop, where they were 
stationed, was a Sabellian ? Was it a subject for 
public meetings if a recognition was attempted of 
foreign Protestant ordinations? Did animosity to 
heretics of the day go so far as to lead speakers to 
ridicule their persons and their features, amid the 
cheers of sympathetic hearers ? Did petitions load the 

^ Church of the Fathers. 

62 The Movement of 1833 

tables of the Commons from the mothers of England 
or Young Men's Associations, because the Queen went 
to a Presbyteri-an service, or a high minister of state 
was an infidel ? Did the Bishops cry out and stop their 
ears on hearing that one of their body denied original 
sin or the grace of ordination ? Was there nothing in 
the course of the controversy to show what the nation 
thought of that controversy, and of the parties to it ? 


Yes, I hear a cry from an episcopal city ; I have 
before my eyes one scene, and it is a sample and an 
earnest of many others. Once in a w^ay, there were 
those among the authorities of the Establishment who 
made certain recommendations concerning the mode of 
conducting divine \Yorship : simple these in themselves, 
and perfectly innocuous, but they looked like the 
breath, the shadow of the movement; tliey seemed an 
omen of something more to come; tliey were the 
symptoms of some sort of ecclesiastical favour bestowed 
in one quarter on its adherents. The newspapers, the 
organs of the political, mammon-loving community, 
of tlios-:^ vast multitudes of all ranks who are allowed 
by the Anglican Church to do nearly what tliey will 
for six, if not seven days in the week, — who, in spite of 
the theological controversies rolling over their heads, 
could, if they would, buy, and sell, and manufacture, 
and trade at their pleasure, — who might be unconcerned. 

Foreign to the National Cliurch. f>^ 

and go their own way, for no one would interfere with 
them, and might "live and let live,"— the organs, I 
say, of these multitudes kindle with indignation, and 
menace, and revile, and denounce, because the Bishops 
in question suffer their clergy to deliver their sermons, 
as well as the prayers, in a surplice. It becomes a 
matter of popular interest. There are mobs in the 
street, houses are threatened, life is in danger, because 
only a gleam of Apostolical principles, in their faintest, 
wannest expression, is cast inside a building which is 
ohe home of the national religion. The very moment 
tliat Catholicism ventures out of books, and cloisters, 
and studies, towards the national house of prayer, when 
it lifts its hand or its very eyebrow towards this people 
so tolerant of heresy, at once the dull and earthly mass 
is on fire. It would be little or nothing though the 
minister baptized without water, though he chucked 
away the consecrated wine, though he denounced fast- 
ing, though he laughed at virginity, though he inter- 
changed pulpits with a Wesleyan or a Baptist, though 
he defied his Bishop ; he might be blamed, he might 
be disliked, he might be remonstrated with; but he 
would not touch the feelings of men; he would not 
inflame their minds ;— but, bring home to them the 
very thought of Catholicism, hold up a surplice, and 
the religious building is as full of excitement and 
tumult as St. Victor's at Milan in the cause of ortho- 
doxy, or St. Giles\ Edinburgh, for the Xirk. 

64 The Movement o/" 1 8 3 3 

"The uproar commenced," says a contemporary 
account, " with a general coughing down; several per- 
sons then moved to the door making a great noise in 
their pTOgress; a young woman went off in a fit of 
hysterics, uttering loud shrieks, whilst a mob outside 
besieged the doors of the building. A cry of ' fire ' was 
raised, followed by an announcement that the church 
doors were closed, and a rush was made to burst them 
open. Some cried out, 'Turn him out,' 'Pull it ofi 
him.' In the galleries the uproar was at its height, 
whistling, cat-calls, hurrahing, and such cries as 
are heard in theatres, echoed throughout the edifice. 
The preacher still persisted to read his text, but was 
quite inaudible; and the row increased, some of the 
congregation waving their hats, standing on the seats, 
jumping over them, bawling, roaring, and gesticulat- 
incT like a mob at an election. The reverend gentle- 
man, in the midst of the confusion, despatched a 
message to the mayor, requesting his assistance, when 
one of the congregation addressed the people, and also 
requested the preacher to remove the cause of the ill- 
feeling which had been excited. Then another addressed 
him in no measured terms, and insisted on his leaving 
the pulpit. At length the mayor, the superintendent 
of the police, several constables, also the chancellor and 
the archdeacon, arrived. The mayor enforced silence, 
and, after admonishing the people, requested the clergy- 
man to leave the pulpit for a few minutes, which ha 

Foreign to the National Church. 65 

declined to do, — gave out his text, and proceeded with 
his discourse. The damage done to the interior of the 
church is said to be very considerable." I believe I am 
right in supposing that the surplice has vanished from 
that pulpit from that day forward. Here, at length, 
certainly are signs of life, but not the life of the 
Catholic Church. 

And now to draw my conclusion from what I have 
been following out, if I have not sufficiently done so 
already. If, my brethren, your reason, your faith, 
your affections, are indissolubly bound up with the 
holy principles which you have been taught, if you 
know they are true, if you know their life and their 
power, if you know that nothing else is true ; surely 
you have no portion or sympathy with systems which 
reject them. Seek those principles in their true home. 
If your Church rejects your principles, it rejects you ; — 
nor dream of indoctrinating it with them by remaining ; 
everything has its own nature, and in that nature is its 
identity. You cannot change your Establishment into 
a Church without a miracle. It is what it is, and you 
have no means of acting upon it ; you have not what 
Archimedes looked for, when he would move the w^orld, 
— the fulcrum of his lever, — while you are one with it. 
It acts on you, while you act on it ; you cannot employ 
it against itself. If you would make England Catholic, 
you must go forth on your mission from the Catholic 

6b The Movement 0/ 1S33, etc. 

Cliurcli. You have duties towards the Establishment ^ 
it is the duty, not of owning its rule, but of converting 
its members. Oh, my brethren ! Ufe is short, waste 
it not in vanities; dream not; halt not between two 
opinions ; wake from a dream, in which you are not 
profiting your neighbour, but imperilling your own 

( 67 ) 




T AM proposing, my brethren, in these Lectures, to 
answer several of the objections which are urged 
against quitting the National Communion for the 
Catholic Church. It has been a very conamon and 
natural idea of those who belong to the movement of 
1833, as it was the idea of its originators, that, the 
Nation being on its way to give up revealed truth, all 
those who wish to receive that truth in its fulness, and 
to resist its enemies, are called on to make use of the 
National Church, to which they belong, whose formu- 
laries they receive, as their instrument for that purpose. 
I answer them, that their attempt is hopeless, because 
the National Church is strictly part of the Nation, in 
the same way that the Law or the Parliament is part 
of the Nation ; and therefore, as the Nation changes, so 
will the National Church change. That Church, then, 
cannot be used against the spirit of the age, except as 
a drag on a wheel ; for nothing can really resist the 

68 The Life of the Movement of 1 833 

Nation, except what stands on a basis independent of 
the Nation. It must say and will say just what the 
Nation says, though it may be some time in saying it. 
Next, having thus shown that the National Church is 
absolutely one with the Nation, I proceeded further to 
show that, on the other hand, the National Church is 
absolutely heterogeneous from the Apostolic or Anglo- 
Catholic party of 1833; so that, while the National 
Church is part of the Nation, the movement, on the 
contrary, has no part or place in the National Church. 
To aim, then, at making the Nation Catholic by means 
of the Church of England, was something like evan- 
rrelizing Turkey by means of Islamism; and, as the 
Turks would feel serious resentment at hearing th^ 
Gospel in the mouths of their Muftis and MoUahs, so 
was, and is, the English Nation provoked, not per- 
suaded, by Catholic preaching in the Establishment. 

And I rest the proof of these two statements on 
incontrovertible facts going on during the last twenty 
years, and now before our eyes ; for, first, the National 
Church has changed and is changing with the Nation ; 
and secondly, the Nation and Church have been in- 
dignant, and are indignant, with the movement of 
1833. I conceive that, except in imagination and in 
hope, there are no symptoms whatever of the National 
Church preventing those changes of Progress, as it is 
called, whether in the Nation or in itself, though it 
may retard them : nor- any symptoms whatever of its 

not derived from the National Church. 69 

welcoming those retrograde changes, to which it is 
invited under the name of primitive and Apostolical 
truth. The National Church is the slave of the Nation, 
and it is the opponent of the Movement ; vrhich, after 
all, has done no more than form a party in the one to 
the annoyance of the other. 

And now I come to a second objection, which shall 
"be my subject to-day. An inquirer, then, may say, 
*'This is a very unfair and one-sided view of the 
matter. I grant — indeed I cannot deny— that the 
movement has but formed a party in the National 
Church. I grant it has no hold on the Church, that it 
does not coalesce with it, that it hangs loose of it : nay, 
I grant that this want of congeniality comes out clearer 
and clearer year by year, so that the Anglican party 
has never appeared more distinct from the Establish- 
ment, and foreign to it, than at this moment, when 
State and Bishops and people have cast it off, and its 
efforts, whether to alter the constitution of the Estab- 
lishment, or to preserve its doctrine, have failed and 
are failing. I grant all this ; I am forced in fairness 
to grant it;— or rather, whether I grant it or no, it will 
be taken for granted by all men without waiting foi 
my granting. But still, so far is undeniable, that that 
movement of 1833 issued forth fro7n the National 
Church; this, at least, is an incontrovertible fact: 
whatever light, life, or strength it has possessed, or 
possesses, from the National Church was it derived. 

70 The Life of the Movement 0/1833 

To the Sacraments, to the ordinances, to the teaching 
of the national Church, the movement owes its being 
and its continuance ; and, if it be its offspring, it belongs 
to it, it is cognate to it, and cannot be really alien from 
it; and great sin and undutifulness, ingratitude, pre- 
sumption, and cruelty, there must be committed by 
those who, belonging to the movement, abandon the 
Church." This is a consideration which is urged with 
great force against affectionate and dif&dent minds, 
and acts as an insurmountable difficulty in the way of 
their becoming Catholics. It is pressed upon them— 
" The National Church is the Church of your baptism, 
and therefore to leave it is to abandon your Mother." 
Now, then, let us examine what is the real state of 

the case. 


We see then, certainly, a multitude of men all over 
the country, who, in the course of the last twenty years, 
have been roused to a religious life by the influence of 
certain principles professing to be those of the Primi- 
tive Church, and put forth by certain of the National 
Clergy. Every year has added to their number; nor 
has it been a mere profession of opinion which was 
their characteristic, or certain exercises of the intel- 
lect ; not a fashion or taste of the hour, but a rule of 
life. They have subjected their wills, they have chas- 
tened their hearts, they have subdued their affections^ 
they nave submitted their reason. Devotions, com- 

not derived from the National Churcti. 7 1 

munions, fastings, privations, almsgiving, pious mu- 
nificence, self-denying occupations, have marked the 
spread of the principles in question ; which have, more- 
over, been adorned and recommended in those who 
adopted them by a consistency, grace, and refinement 
of conduct nowhere else to be found in the National 
Church. Such are the characteristics of the party in 
question ; and, moreover, its members themselves ex- 
pressly attribute their advancement in the religious life 
to the use of the ordinances of that National Church. 

They have found, they say, as a matter of fact, that 
as they attended those ordinances, they became more 
strong in obedience and dutifulness, had more power 
over their passions, and more love towards God and 
man. " If, then," they may urge, " you confront us 
with those external facts, which have formed the sub- 
jects of your first and second Lectures, here are our 
internal facts to meet them ; our own experience, 
serious, sober, practical, outweighs a hundredfold repre- 
sentations which may be logical, dazzling, irrefragable ; 
but which still, as we ourselves know better than any 
one, whatever be the real explanation of them, are, 
after all, fallacious and untrue." 

Here, then, we are brought to the question of the 
internal evidence, which is alleged in favour of a real, 
however recondite, connection of the ( so-called ) Anglo- 
Catholic party with the National Church. It is said 
that, however you are to account for it, there is the 

72 The Life of the Movement of i^2>Z 

fact of a profound intimate relationship, a spiritual 
bond, between the one and the other ; that party has 
actually risen out of what seems so earthly, so incon- 
sistent, so feeble, and is sustained by it ; and, in fact 
does but illustrate the great maxim of the Gospel, 
that the weak shall be strong, and the despised shall 
be glorious. Taking their stand on this evangelical 
promise and principle, the persons of whom I speak 
are quite careless of argument, which silences them 
without touching them. "Their opponents may tri- 
umph, if they will ; but, after all, there certainly 
must be some satisfactory explanation of the difficulties 
of their own position, if they did but know what it 
was. The question is deeper than argument, while it 
is very easy to be captious and irreverent. It is not 
to be handled by intellect and talent, or decided by 
logic. They are undoubtedly in a very anomalous 
state of things, a state of transition; but they must 
submit for a time to be without a theory of the Church, 
without an intellectual basis on which to plant them- 
selves. It would be an utter absurdity for them to leave 
the Establishment, merely because they do not at the 
moment see how to defend their staying in it. Such 
accidents will from time to time happen in large and 
complicated questions ; they have light enough to guide 
them practically, — first, because even though they 
wished to move ever so much, they see no place to 
move into; and next, because, however it comes to 

not derived from the National Church. 73 

pass, however contrary it may seem to be to all the 
rules of theology and the maxims of polemics, to Apos- 
tles, Scripture, Fathers, Saints, common-sense, and the 
simplest principles of reason, — though it ought not to 
be so in the way of strict science,— -still, so it is, they 
are, in matter of fact, abundantly blest where they are. 
"Certainly it is vexatious that the Privy Council 
should have decided as it has done ; vexatious not to 
know what to say about the decision ; vexatious, incon- 
venient, perplexing, but nothing more. It is not a real 
difficulty, but only an annoyance, to be obliged to say 
something to quiet their people, and not to have a 
notion what. However, they must do their best ; and, 
Lhough it is true one of their friends uses one argument, 
another another, and these arguments are inconsistent 
with one another, still that is an accidental misery of 
their position, and it will not last for ever. Brighter 
times are coming ; meanwhile they must, with resigna- 
tion, suffer the shame, scorn of man, and distrust of 
friends, which is their present portion ; a little patience, 
and the night will be over ; their Athanasius will come 
at length, to defend and to explain the truth, and their 
present constancy will be their future reward.' 


Now, as truth is the object which I set before me in 
the inquiry which I am prosecuting, I will not follow 
their example in considering only one side of the ques 

74 The Life of the Movement 0/1833 

tion. I will not content myself, on my part, with in- 
sisting merely upon the external view of it, which is 
against them, leaving them in possession of that argu- 
ment from the inward evidences of grace, on which they 
especially rely. I have no intention at all of evading 
their position, — I mean to attack it. I feel intimately 
what is strong in it, and I feel where it halts ; so, to 
state their argument fairly, I will not extemporize 
words of my own, but I will express it in the language 
of a writer, who, when he so spoke, belonged to the 
Established Church. 

" Surely," he says, " as the only true religion is that 

which is seated within us, — a matter not of words, but 

of things, so the only satisfactory test of religion is some- 

thino- within us. If religion be a personal matter, its 

reasons also should be personal. Wherever it is present 

in the world or in the heart, it produces an effect, and 

that effect is its evidence. When we view it as set up 

in the world, it has its external proofs ; when as set up 

in our hearts, it has its internal ; and that, whetiier we 

are able to elicit them ourselves, and put them into 

shape, or not. Nay, with some little limitation and 

explanation, it might be said, that the very fact of a 

religion taking root within us is a proof so far that it 

is true. If it were not true, it would not take root. 

Eeligious men have, in their own religiousness, an 

evidence of the truth of their religion. That religion 

is true which has power, and so far as it has power ; 

not derived from the National Church. 


nothing but what is divine can renew the heart. And 
this is the secret reason why religious men believe, — 
whether they are adequately conscious of it or no, — 
whether they can put it into words or no — viz., their 
past experience that the doctrine which they hold is a 
reality in their minds, not a mere opinion, and has come 
to them, ' not in word but in power.' And in this sense 
the presence of religion in us is its own evidence." ^ 

Again : — 

*' If, then, we are asked for ' a reason of the hope that 
is in us,' why we are content, or rather thankful, to be 
in that Church in which God's providence has placed 
us, would not the reasons be some one or other of 
these, or rather all of them, and a number of others 
besides, which these may suggest, deeper than they? 

" First, I suppose a religious man is conscious that 
God has been with him, and given him whatever he 
has of good within him. He knows quite enough of 
himself to know how fallen he is from original righteous- 
ness, and he has a conviction, which nothing can shake, 
that without the aid of his Lord and Saviour, he can do 
nothing aright. I do not say he need recollect any 
definite season when he turned to God, and gave up 
the service of sin and Satan ; but in one sense, every 
season, every year, is such a time of turning. I mean, 
he ever has experience, just as if he had hitherto been 
living in the world, of a continual conversion; he is 

' The author's Sermons on Subjects of the Day, pji. 345, 346. 

76 The Life of the Movement o/' 1833 

ever taking advantage of holy seasons, and new provi- 
dences, and beginning again. The elements of sin are 
still alive within him ; they still tempt and influence 
him, and threaten when they do no more ; and it is 
only by a continual fight against them that he prevails ; 
and what shall persuade him that his power to fight is 
his own, and not from above ? And this conviction oi 
a divine presence with him is stronger, according to the 
length of time during which he has served God, and to 
his advance in holiness. The multitude of men, nay, 
a great number of those who think themselves reli- 
gious, do not aim at holiness, and do not advance in 
holiness ; but consider, what a great evidence it is that 
God is with us, so far as we have it ! Eeligious men, 
really such, cannot but recollect in the course of years 
that they have become very different from what they 
were. ... In the course of years a religious person 
finds that a mysterious unseen influence has been 
upon and changed him. He is indeed very different 
from what he was. His tastes, his views, his judg- 
ments are different. You will say that time changes 
a man as a matter of course ; advancing age, outward 
circumstances, trials, experience of life. It is true; 
and yet I think a religious man would feel it little less 
than sacrilege, and almost blasphemy, to impute the 
improvement of his heart and conduct, in his moral 
being, with which he has been favoured in a certain 
sufficient period, to outward or merely natural causes. 

not derived from the National Chirch. yy 

He will be unable to force himself to do so — that is to 
say, he has a conviction, which it is a point of religion 
with him not to doubt, which it is a sin to deny, that 
God has been wdth him. And this is, of course, a 
ground of hope to him that God will be with him still ; 
and if he, at any time, fall into religious perplexity, it 
may serve to comfort him to think of it." ^ 
And again : — 

" I might go on to mention a still more solemn sub- 
ject, viz., the experience, which, at least, certain religi- 
ous persons have of the awful sacredness of our sacra- 
ments and other ordinances. If these are attended by 
the presence of Christ, surely we have all that a Church 
can have in the way of privilege and blessing. The 
promise runs, ' Lo, I am with you always, even unto 
the end of the world.' That is a Church where Christ 
is present ; this is the very definition of the Church. 
The question sometimes asked is. Whether our services, 
our holy seasons, our rites, our sacraments, our institu- 
tions, really have with them the presence of Him who 
thus promised ? If so, we are part of the Church ; if 
not, then we are but performers in a sort of scene or 
pageant, which may be religiously intended, and which 
God in His mercy may visit ; but if He visits, wiU in 
visiting go beyond His own promise. But observe, as 
if to answer to the challenge, and put herself on trial, 
and to give us a test of her Catholicity, our Church 
^ Ibid., pp. 348-350. 

78 The Life of the Movement of 1833 

boldly declares of her most solemn ordinance, that lie 

who profanes it incurs the danger of judgment. She 

seems, like Moses, or the Prophet from Judah, or Elijah, 

to put her claim to issue, not so openly, yet as really, 

upon the fulfilment of a certain specified sign. Now 

she does not speak to scare away the timid, but to 

startle and subdue the unbelieving, and withal to 

assure the wavering and perplexed; and I conceive 

that in such measure as God wills, and as is known to 

God, these effects follow. I mean, that we really have 

proofs among us, though, for the most part, they will 

be private and personal, from the nature of the case, of 

clear punishment coming upon profanations of the holy 

ordinance in question ; sometimes very fearful instances, 

and such as serve, while they awe beholders, to comfort 

them ; — to comfort them, for it is plain, if God be with 

us for judgment, surely He is with us for mercy also ; 

if He punishes, why is it but for profanation ? And 

how can there be profanation if there is nothing to be 

profaned ? Surely He does not manifest His wrath 

except where He has first vouchsafed His grace ?"i 

I might quote much more to the same purpose ; if I 

do not, it is not that I fear the force of the argument. 

but the length to which it runs. 

Now in this preference of internal evidences to thoiie 

' Ibid., pp. 353-355 

not derived from the National Church, yc^ 

which are simply outward, there is a great princijjle of 
truth ; it requires much guarding, indeed, and explain- 
ing, but I suppose, in matter of fact, that the notes of 
the Church, as they are called, are cliiefly intended, as 
this writer says, as guides and directions into the truth, 
for those who are as yet external to it, and that those 
who are within it have prima facie evidences of another 
and more personal kind. I grant it, and I make use 
of my admission; for one inward evidence at least 
Catholics have, which this writer had not, — certainty. 
I do not say, of course, that what seems like certainty 
is a sufficient evidence to an individual that he has 
found the truth, for he may mistake obstinacy or blind- 
ness for certainty; but, at any rate, the alsence of 
certainty is a clear proof that a person has not yet found 
it, and at least a Catholic knows well, even if he can- 
not urge it in argument, that the Church is able to 
communicate to him that gift. No one can read the 
series of arguments from which I have quoted, without 
being struck by the author's clear avowal of douht, in 
spite of his own reasonings, on the serious subject 
which is engaging his attention. He longed to have 
faith in the National Church, and he could not. 
"What want we," he exclaims, ''hut faith in our 
Church ? With faith we can do everything ; without 
faith we can do nothing." i So all these inward notes 
which he enumerates, whatever their prima facie force, 

^ Ibid., p. 380. 

8o The Life of the Movement o/' 1833 

did not reach so far as to implant conviction even m 
his own breast ; they did not, after all, prove to him 
that connection between the National Church and the 
spiritual gifts which he recognised in his party, which 
he fain would have established, and which they would 
fain establish to whom I am now addressing myself. 

But to come to the gifts themselves. You tell me, 
my brethren, that you have the clear evidence of the 
influences of grace in your hearts, by its effects sensible 
at the moment or permanent in the event. You tell 
me, that you have been converted from sin to holiness, 
or that you have received great support and comfort 
under trial, or that you have been carried over very 
special temptations, though you have not submitted 
yourselves to the Catholic Church. More than this, 
you tell me of the peace, and joy, and strength which 
you have experienced in your own ordinances. You tell 
me, that when you began to go weekly to communion 
you found yourselves wonderfully advanced in purity. 
You tell me that you went to confession, and you nevei- 
will believe that the hand of God was not over you at 
the moment when you received absolution. You were 
ordained, and a fragrance breathed around you; you 
hung over the dead, and you all but saw the happj 
spirit of the departed. This is what you say, and the 
like of this ; and I am not the person, my dear brethren, 
to quarrel with the truth of what you say. I am not 
the person to be jealous of such facts, nor to wish yois 

not Derived from the National Church. 8i 

to contradict your own memory and your own nature; 
nor am I so ungrateful to God's former mercies to 
myself, to have the heart to deny them in you. As to 
miracles, indeed, if such you mean, that of course is a 
matter which might lead to dispute ; but if you merely 
mean to say that the supernatural grace of God, as 
shown either at the time or by consequent fruits, has 
overshadowed you at certain times, has been with you 
when you were taking part in the Anglican ordinances, 
I have no wish, and a Catholic has no anxiety, to deny it. 
Why should I deny to your memory what is so 
pleasant in mine ? Cannot I too look back on many 
years past, and many events, in which I myself expe- 
rienced what is now your confidence ? Can I forget 
the happy life I have led all my days, with no cares, no 
anxieties worth remembering ; without desolateness, or 
fever of thought, or gloom of mind, or doubt of God's 
love to me and providence over me ? Can I forget^ — 1 
never can forget, — the day when in my youth I first 
bound myself to the ministry of God in that old church 
of St. Frideswide, the patroness of Oxford ? nor how 
I wept most abundant, and most sweet tears, when I 
thought what I then had become ; though I looked on 
ordination as no sacramental rite, nor even to baptism 
ascribed any supernatural virtue ? Can I wipe out 
from my memory, or wish to wipe out, those happy 
Sunday mornings, light or dark, year after year, when 

82 The Life of tlie Movement of iS^;^ 

I celebrated your communion-rite, in my own church 
of St. Mary's ; and in the pleasantness and joy of it 
heard nothing of the strife of tongues which surrounded 
its walls ? When, too, shall I not feel the soothing 
recollection of those dear years which I spent in retire- 
ment, in preparation for my deliverance from Egypt, 
asking for light, and by degrees gaining it, with less of 
temptation in my heart, and sin on my conscience, 
than ever before ? my dear brethren, my Anglican 
friends ! I easily give you credit for what I have ex- 
perienced myself. Provided you be in good faith, if 
you are not trilling with your conscience, if you are re- 
solved to follow whithersoever God shall lead, if the ray 
of conviction has not fallen on you, and you have shut 
your eyes to it ; then, anxious as I am about you for the 
future, and dread as I may till you are converted, that 
perhaps, when conviction comes, it will come in vain 
yet still, looking back at the past years of my own life, 
I recognise what you say, and bear witness to its truth. 
Yet what has this to do with the matter in hand ? I 
admit your fact ; do you, my brethren, admit, in turn, 
my explanation of it. It is the explanation ready pro- 
vided by the Catholic Church, provided in her general 
teaching, quite independentiy of your particular case, not 
made for the occasion, only applied when it has arisen; 
— listen to it, and see whether you admit it or not as 
trijii if it be not sufficiently probable, or possible if you 

not Derived from the National C/oireh. 


will, to invalidate the argument on \\liicli you so con- 
fidently rely. 

Surely you ought to know the Catholic teaching on 
the subject of grace, in its bearing on your argument, 
without my insisting on it iSpiritus Domini replevit 
m^hem terrarum. Grace is given for the merits of Christ 
aJl over the earth ; there is no corner, even of Paganism, 
where it is not present, present in each heart of man in 
real sufficiency for his ultimate salvation. Not that the 
grace presented to each is such as at once to bring him 
to heaven ; but it is sufficient for a beginning. It is 
sufficient to enable him to plead for other grace; and 
that second grace is such as to impetrate a third grace ; 
and thus the soul may be led from grace to grace, and 
from strength to strength, till at length it is, To to^ say, 
in very sight of heaven, if the gift of perseverance does' 
but complete the work. Now here observe, it i& not 
certain that a soul which has the first grace will have 
the second ; for the grant of the second at least depends 
on its use of the first. Again, it may have the first and 
second, and yet not the third; from the first on to the 
nineteenth, and not the twentieth. We mount up hy 
steps towards God, and alas ! it is possible that a soul 
may be courageous and bear up for nineteen steps, and 
stop and faint at the twentieth. Nay, further than this, 
It is possible to conceive a soul going forwai'd till it 

84 The Life of the Movement of 1833 

arrives at the very grace of contrition— a contrition so 
loving, so sm-renouncing, as to teng it at once into a 
state °of reconciliation, and clothe it in the vestment of 
justice ; and yet it may yield to the further trials which 
beset it, and fall away. 

Now all this may take place even outside the Church ; 
and consider what at once follows from it. This follows, 
in the first place, that men there may be, not Catholics, 
yet really obeying God and rewarded by Him— nay, I 
might say (at least by way of argument), in His favour, 
with their sins forgiven, and in the enjoyment of a secret 
union with that heavenly kingdom to which they do 
not visibly belong— who are, through their subsequent 
failure, never to reach it. There may be those who are 
increasing in grace and knowledge, and approaching 
nearer to^the Catholic Church every year, who are not 
in the Church, and never will be. The highest gifts 
and graces are compatible with ultimate reprobation. 
As regards, then, the evidence of sanctity in members 
of the National Establishment, on which you insist, 
Catholics are not called on to deny them. We think 
such instances are few, nor so eminent as you are 
accustomed to fancy; but we do not wish to deny, nor 
have any difficulty in admitting such facts as you have 
to adduce, whatever they be. We do not think it 
necessary to carp at every instance of supernatural 
excellence among Protestants when it comes before us, 
or to explain it away; all we know is, that the grace' 

not Derived from, the National Church. 85 

given them is intended ultimately to bring them into 
the Church, and if it is not tending to do so, it will not 
ultimately profit them ; but we as little deny its pre- 
sence in their souls as they do themselves ; and as the 
fact is no perplexity to us, it is no triumph to them. 

And, secondly, in like manner, whatever be the com- 
fort or the strength attendant upon the use of the 
national ordinances of religion, in the case of tliis or 
that person, a Catholic may admit it without scruple, 
for it is no evidence to him in behalf of those ordi- 
nances themselves. It is the teaching of the Catholic 
Church from time immemorial, and independently of 
the present controversy, that grace is given in a 
sacred ordinance in two ways, viz. — to use the scho- 
lastic distinction, ex ojpere operantis, and ex opere operato. 
Grace is given ex opere operato, when, the proper dis- 
positions being supposed in the recipient, it is given 
through the ordinance itself; it is given ex opere 
operantis, when, whether there be outward sign or no, 
the inward energetic act of the recipient is the instru- 
ment of it. Thus Protestants say that justification, for 
instance, is gained by faith as by an instrument— eo? 
opere operantis ; thus Catholics also commonly believe 
that the benefit arising from the use of holy water 
accrues, not ex opere operato, or by means of the 
element itself, but, ex opere operantis, through the 
devout mental act of the person using it, and the prayers 
of the Church. So again, the Sacrifice ot the Mass 

86 The Life of the Movement 0/^1833 

benefits the person for whom it is offered ex opere 
operato, whatever be the character of the celebrating 
priest; but it benefits him more or less, ex opere 
operantis, according to the degree of sanctity which 
the priest has attained, and the earnestness with which 
he offers it. Again, baptism, whether administered by 
man or woman, saint or sinner, heretic or Catholic, 
regenerates an infant ex opere operato ; on the other 
hand, in the case of the baptism of blood, as it was 
anciently called (that is, the martyrdom of unbaptized 
persons desiring the sacrament, but unable to obtain 
it), a discussion has arisen, whether the martyr was 
justified ex opere operato or ex opere operantis — that is, 
whether by the physical act of his dying for the faith, 
considered in itself, or by the mental act of supreme 
devotion to God, which caused and attended it. So 
again, contrition of a certain kind is sufficient as a 
disposition or condition, or what is called matter, for 
receiving absolution in Penance ex opere operato or 
by TOtue of the sacrament ; but it may be heightened 
and purified into so intense an act of divine love of 
hatred and sorrow for sin, and of renunciation of it, 
as to cleanse and justify the soul, without the sacra- 
ment at all, or ex opere operantis. It is plain from 
this distinction, that, if we would determine whether 
the Anglican ordinances are attended by divine 
grace, we must first determine whether the effects 
which accompany them arisp. ex opere operantis or ex 

not Derived from the National Chureh. 87 

02:)ere op&rato — whether out of the religious acts, the 
prayers, aspirations, resolves of the recipient, or by the 
direct power of the ceremonial act itself, — a nice and 
difficult question, not to be decided by means of those 
effects themselves, whatever they be. 

Let me grant to you, then, that the reception of your 
ordinances brings peace and joy to the soul ; that it 
permanently influences or changes the character of the 
recipient. Let me grant, on the other hand, that their 
profanation, wdien men have been taught to believe in 
them, and in profaning are guilty of contempt of that 
God to whom they ascribe then], is attended by judo-- 
ments; this properly shows nothing more than that, 
by a general law, lying, deceit, presumption, or hypo- 
crisy are punished, and prayer, faith, contrition re- 
warded. There is nothing to show that the effects 
would not have been precisely the same on condition 
of the same inward dispositions, though another ordi- 
nance, a love-feast or a washing of the feet, with no 
pretence to the name of a Sacrament, had been in good 
faith adopted. And it is obvious to any one that, for 
a member of the Establishment to bring himself to 
confession, especially some years back, required dis- 
positions of a very special character, a special contrition 
and a special desire of the Sacrament, wdiich, as far as 
we may judge by outward signs, were a special effect 
of grace, and would fittingly receive from God's bounty 
a special reward, some further and higher grace and 

88 The Life of the Movement 0/1833 

even, at least I am not bound to deny it, remission of 
sins. And again, when a member of the Establish- 
ment, surrounded by those who scoffed at the doctrine, 
accepted God's word that He would make Bread His 
Body, and honoured Him by the fact that he accepted 
it, is it wonderful, is it not suitable to God's mercy, if 
He rewards such a special faith with a quasi sacramental 
grace, though the worshipper unintentionally offered to 
a material substance that adoration which he intended 
to pay to the present, but invisible, Lamb of God ? 


But this is not all, my dear brethren ; I must allow to 
others what I allow to you. If I let you plead the 
sensible effects of supernatural grace, as exemplified in 
yourselves, in proof that your religion is true, I must 
allow the plea to others to whom by your theory you 
are bound to deny it. Are you willing to place your- 
selves on the same footing with Wesleyans ? yet what 
is the difference ? or rather, have they not more re- 
markable phenomena in their history, symptomatic of 
the presence of grace among them, than you can show 
in yours ? Which, then, is the right explanation of 
your feelings and your experience,— mine, which I 
have extracted from received Catholic teaching; or 
yours, which is an expedient for the occasion, and can^ 
not be made to tell for your own Apostolical authorit}. 
without telling for those who are rebels a.ijainst it? 

not Derived from tha National CIturch. 89 

Survey the rise of Metliodisin, and say candidly, 
wliether those wlio made light of your ordinances 
abandoned them, or at least disbelieved their virtue, 
have not had among them evidences of that very same 
grace which you claim for yourselves, and which you 
consider a proof of your acceptance with God. Eeally 
I am obliged in candour to allow, whatever part the 
evil spirit had in the work, whatever gross admixture 
of earth polluted it, whatever extravagance there was 
to excite ridicule or disgust, whether it was Christian 
virtue or the excellence of unaided man, whatever was 
the spiritual state of the subjects of it, whatever their 
end and their final account, yet there were higher and 
nobler vestiges or semblances of grace and truth in 
Methodism than there have been among you. I give 
you credit for what you are, grave, serious, earnest, 
modest, steady, self-denying, consistent; you have the 
praise of such virtues ; and you have a clear perception 
of many of the truths, or of portions of the truths, of 
Revelation. In these points you surpass the "Wesley- 
ans ; but if I wished to find what was striking, extra- 
ordinary, suggestive of Catholic heroism — of St. Martin, 
St. Francis, or St. Ignatius — I should betake myself far 
sooner to them than to you. " In our own times," says 
a writer in a popular Review, speaking of the last-men- 
tioned Saint and his companions, ''in our own times 
much indignation and much alarm are thrown away on 
innovators of a very different stamp. From the ascetics 

90 The Life of the Movement ^/ 1833 

of the common room, from men whose courage rises 
high enough only to hint at their unpopular opinions, 
and whose belligerent passions soar at nothing more 
daring than to worry some unfortunate professor, it is 
almost ludicrous to fear any great movement on the 
theatre of human affairs. When we see these dainty 
gentlemen in rags, and hear of them from the snows of 
the Himalaya, we may begin to tremble." Now such 
a diversion from the course of his remarks upon St. 
Ignatius and his companions, I must say, was most 
uncalled for in this writer,^ and not a little ill-natured ; 
for we had never pretended to be heroes at all, and 
should have been the first to laugh at any one who 
fancied us such; but they will serve to suggest the 
fact, which is undeniable, that even when Anglicans 
approach in doctrine nearest to the Catholic Church, 
still heroism is not the line of their excellence. The 
Established Church may have preserved in the country 
the idea of sacramental grace, and the movement of 
1833 may have spread it; but if you wish to find the 
shadow and the suggestion of the supernatural qualities 
which make up the notion of a Catholic Saint, to Wes- 
ley you must go, and such as him. Personally I do not 
like him, if it were merely for his deep self-reliance and 
self-conceit ; still I am bound, in justice to him, to ask, 
and you in consistency to answer, what historical per- 
in the Establishment, during its whole three 

1 Sir James Stejjhen. 

not Derived from the National Church. 


centuries, has approximated in force and splendour of 
conduct and achievements to one who began by innov- 
ating on your rules, and ended by contemning your 
authorities ? He and his companions, starting amid 
ridicule at Oxford, with fasting and praying in the cold 
night air, then going about preaching, reviled by the 
rich and educated, and pelted and dragged to prison by 
the populace, and converting their thousands from sin 
to God's service — were it not for their pride and eccen- 
tricity, tlieir fanatical doctrine and untranquil devotion, 
they v^ould startle us, as if the times of St. Vincent 
Ferrer or St. Francis Xavier were come again in a 
Protestant land. 

Or, to turn to other communions, whom have you with 
those capabilities of greatness in them, which show 
themselves in the benevolent zeal of Howard the phil- 
anthropist, or Elizabeth Fry ? Or consider the almost 
miraculous conversion and subsequent life of Colonel 
Gardiner. Why, even old Bunyan, with his vivid 
dreams when a child, his conversion, his conflicts with 
Satan, his preachings and imprisonments, however in- 
ferior to you in discipline of mind and knowledge of 
the truth, is, in the outline of his history, more Apos- 
tolical than you. *' Weep not for me," were his last 
words, as if he had been a Saint, '' but for yourselves. 
I go to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who doubt- 
less, through the mediation of His Son, will receive 
me, though a sinner, when we shall erelons^ meet, to 

92 The Life of the Movement o/* 1833 

sing the new song and be happy for ever ! " Consider 
the deathbeds of the thousands of those, in and out of 
the Establishment, who, with scarcely one ecclesiastical 
sentiment in common with you, die in confidence of 
the truth of their doctrine, and of their personal safety. 
Does the peace of their deaths testify to the divinity of 
their creed or of their communion ? Does the extreme 
earnestness and reality of religious feeling, exhibited 
in the sudden seizure and death of one who was as 
stern in his hatred of your opinions as admirable in 
his earnestness, who one evening protested against the 
sacramental principle, and next morning died nobly 
with the words of Holy Scripture in his mouth — does 
it give any sanction to that hatred and that protest ? ^ 
And there is another, a Calvinist, one of whose special 
and continual prayers in his last illness was for persever- 
ance in grace, who cried, '' Lord, abhor me not, though 
I be abhorrible, and abhor myself ! " and who, five 
minutes before his death, by the expression of his 
countenance, changing from prayer to admiration and 
calm peace, impressed upon the bystanders that the veil 
had been removed from his eyes, and that, like Stephen, 
he saw things in^dsible to sense ; — did he, by the cir- 
cumstances of his death-bed, bear evidence to the truth 
of what you, as well as I, hold to be an odious heresy ? ^ 
" Mr. Harvey resigned his meek soul into the hands of 
his Redeemer, saying, ' Lord, now lettest Thou Thy ser 

^ Dr Arnold. '^ Mr Scott of Ashton Saiulford. 

not Derived from the National Cfmrdi. 93 

vant depart in peace.' " " Mr. Walker, before he ex- 
pired, spoke nearly these words : ' I have been on the 
wings of the cherubim ; heaven has in a manner been 
opened to me ; I shall be there soon.' " "Mr. Whit- 
field rose at four o'clock on the Sabbath day, went to 
his closet, and was unusually long in private; laid 
himself on his bed for about ten minutes, then went on 
his knees and prayed most fervently he might that day 
finish his Master's work." Then he sent for a clergy- 
man, " and before he could reach him, closed his eyes 
on this world v/ithout a sigh or groan, and commenced 
a Sabbath of everlasting rest." ^ Alas ! there was ano- 
ther, who for three months " lingered," as he said, " in the 
face of death." " my God," he cried, " I know Thou 
dost not overlook any of Thy creatures. Thou dost not 
overlook me. So much torture .... to kill a worm 1 
have mercy on me 1 I cry to Tliee, knowing I cannot 
alter Thy ways. I cannot if I would, and I would not 
if I could. If a word would remove these sufferings, I 
would not utter it." " Just life enough to suffer," he- 
continued; "but I submit, and not only submit, but 
rejoice." One morning he woke up, "and with firm 
voice and great sobriety of manner, spoke only these 
words : ' Now I die ! ' He sat as one in the attitude of 
expectation; and about two hours afterwards, it was 
as he had said." And he was a professed infidel, and 
worse than an infidel — an apostate priest ! 

1 Sidney's Life of HiU. • " 

94 ^'/^^ Life of the Jfovement 0/1833 


No, my dear brethren, these things are "beyond us, 
Nature can do so much, and go so far ; can form such 
rational notions of God and of duty, without grace, or 
merit, or a future hope ; good sense has such an instinc- 
tive apprehension of what is fitting; intellect, imagina- 
tion, and feeling can so take up, develop, and illuminate 
what nature has originated ; education and intercourse 
with others can so insinuate into the mind what really 
does not belong to it ; grace, not effectual, but inchoate, 
can so plead, and its pleadings look so like its fruits ; 
and its mere visitations may so easily be mistaken foi 
its in-dwelling presence, and its vestiges, when it has 
departed, may gleam so beautifully on the dead soul, 
that it is quite impossible for us to conclude, with any 
fairness of argument, that a certain opinion is true, 
or a religious position safe, simply on account of the 
confidence or apparent excellence of those who adopt 
it. Of course, we think as tenderly of them as we can ; 
and may fairly hope that what we see is, in particular 
instances, the work of grace, wrought in those who are 
not responsible for their ignorance; but the claim in 
their behalf is unreasonable and exorbitant, if it is to 
the effect that their state of mind is to be taken in 
evidence, not only of promise in the individual, but of 
truth in his creed. 

And should this view of the subject unsettle and 

not Derived fr 0171 the National Church. 95 

depress you, as if it left you no means nt all of ascer- 
taining whether God loves you, or whether anything is 
true, or anything to be trusted, then let this feeling 
answer the purpose for which I have impressed it on 
you. I wisli to deprive you of your undue confidence 
in self ; I wish to dislodge you from that centre in 
which you sit so self-possessed and self-satisfied. Your 
fault has been to be satisfied with but a half evidence 
of your safety ; you have been too well contented with 
remaining where you found yourselves, not to catch at 
a line of argument, so indulgent, yet so plausible. You 
have thought that position impregnable ; and growing 
confident, as time went on, you have not only said it 
was a sin to ascribe your good thoughts, and purposes, 
and aspirations to any but God (which you were right 
in saying), but you have presumed to pronounce it 
blasphemy against the Holy Ghost to doubt that they 
came into your hearts by means of your Church and by 
virtue of its ordinances. Learn, my dear brethren, a 
more sober, a more cautious tone of thought. Learn 
to fear for your souls. It is something, indeed, to be 
peaceful within, but it is not everything. It may be 
the stillness of death. The Catholic, and he alone, has 
within him that union of external with internal notes 
of God's favour, which sheds the light of conviction 
over his soul, and makes him both fearless in his faith, 
and calm and thankful in his hope. 

( go ) 



TT is scarcely possiV)le to fancy that an event so dis- 
tinctive in its character as the rise of the so-called 
Anglo-Catholic party in the course of the last twenty 
years, should have no scope in the designs of Divine 
Providence. From beginnings so small, from elements 
of thought so fortuitous, with prospects so unpromising, 
that in its germ it was looked upon with contempt, if 
it was ever thought of at all, it suddenly became a 
power in the National Church, and an object of alarm 
to her rulers and friends. Its originators would have 
found it difficult to say what they aimed at of a prac- 
tical kind ; rather they put fortli views and principles 
for their own sake, because they were true, as if tliey 
were obliged to say them; and though their object 
certainly was to strengthen the Establishment, yet it 
would have been very difficult for them to state precisely 
the intermediate process, or definite application, by 

llie Movement not in the Direction, etc. 97 

which, in matter of fact, tlieir preacliing was to arrive 
at that result. And, as they might be themselves sur- 
prised at their earnestness in proclaiming, they had as 
great cause to be surprised at their success in propagat- 
ing, the doctrines which have characterised their school. 
And, in fact, they had nothing else to say but that 
those doctrines were in the air ; that to assert w^as to 
prove, and that to explain was to persuade • and that 
the movement in which they were taking part, was the 
birth of a crisis rather than of a place. I do not mean 
to say, that they did not use arguments on the one 
hand, nor attempt to associate themselves with thino-s 
as they were on the other; but that, after all, their 
doctrine went forth rather than w^as delivered, and 
spoke rather than was spoken ; that it was a message 
rather than an argument ; that it w^as the master, not 
the creature of its proclaimers, and seemed to be said 
at random, because uttered with so indistinct an aim ; 
and so, with no advantage except that of position, 
which of course is not to be undervalued, it spread and 
w^as taken up no one knew how. In a very few years 
a school of opinion was formed, fixed in its principles, 
indefinite and progressive in their range; and it ex- 
tended into every part of the country. If, turning 
from the contemplation of it from within, w^e inquire 
what the world thought of it, we have still more to 
raise our wonder; for. not to mention the excitement 
it caused in England, the movement and its partv- 


98 27^.6 Movement not in the Direction 

nan-eB were known to the police of Italy and the bacK- 
woodsmen of America. So it proceeded, getting stronger 
and stronger every year, till it has come into collision 
with the Nation, and that Church of the Nation, which 
it betran by professing especially to serve : and now its 
upholders and disciples have to look about, and ask 
themselves where they are, and which way they are to 
go, and whither they are bound. 

Providence does nothing in vain ; so much earnest- 
ness, zeal, toil, thought, religiousness, success, as has 
a place in the history of that movement, must surely 
have a place also in His scheme, and in His dealings 
towards His Church in this country, if we could discern 
what that place was. He has excited aspirations, 
matured good thoughts, and prospered pious under- 
takings arising out of them: not for nothing surely 
— then for what ? Wherefore ? 

The movement certainly is one and the same to ail 
who have been influenced by it ; the principles and 
circumstances, which have made them what they are, 
are one and the same ; the history of one of you, my 
brethren, is pretty much the liistory of another— the 
•history of all. Is it meant that you should each of 
you end in his own way, if your beginnings have been 
the same ? The duty of one of you, is it not the duty 
of another ? Are you not to act together ? In other 
words, may I not look at the movement as integrally 
cue and thus investigate what is its bearing and its 

of the National Church. 99 

legitimate issue ? and may not, in consequence, that 
direction and scope of the movement, if such can be 
ascertained, be taken as a suggestion to you how you 
should act, distinct from, and in addition to, the inti- 
mations of God's will, which come home to you per- 
sonally and individually ? The movement has affected 
us in a certain way : at one time we have felt urged 
perhaps, with some of those who took part in it, to go 
forward ; at another, to remain where we are ; then to 
retire into lay-communion, if we were in the Established 
ministry ; then to collapse into a sect external to its 
pale. We have tried to have faith in the sacraments 
of the National Church; for a time we have succeeded, 
and then we have failed ; we have felt ourselves drawn, 
we have felt ourselves repelled by the Catholic Church; 
— we have felt difficulties in her faith, counter-diffi- 
culties in rejecting it, complications of difficulty on diffi- 
culty, concurrent or antagonist, till we could ascertain 
neither their mutual relation nor their combined issue, 
and could neither change nor remain where we were 
without scruple. 

Under such a trial it would be some guidance, a 
:Sort of token or note of the course destined for us by 
Providence, if the movement itself, whose principles 
w^e have drunk in, with which we are so intimately one, 
had, from the nature of the case, its own natural and 
necessary termination. Before now, when a Protestant, 
I have said more or less to others wdio were in anxiety, 

joo The Movement not in the Direction 

*' Watch the movement ; it is made up of individuals, 
but it has an objective being, proceeds on principles, 
is governed by laws, and is swayed and directed by 
external facts. We are apt to be attracted or driven 
this way or that ; each thinks for himself and judges 
differently from others ; each fears to decide ; but may 
we not ascertain and follow the legitimate and divinely 
intended course of that, whose children we are ? " A 
great Saint was accustomed to command his sons, 
when they had to determine some point relatively tc 
themselves and their Society, to throw themselves in 
imagination out of themselves, and to look at the 
question externally, as if it were not personal to them, 
and they were deciding for a stranger. In like 
manner it has been sometimes recommended in the 
solution of public questions, to look at them as they 
will show in history, and as they will be judged of by 
posterity. Now in some such way should I wish, at 
this moment, to regard the movement of 1833, and to 
discover what is its proper, suitable, legitimate termi- 
nation. This, then, is the question I shall consider 
in the present Lecture ; — here is a great existing fact 
before our eyes — the movement and its party. What 
is to become of it ? What ought to become of it ? Is 
it to melt away as if it had not been ? Is it merely to 
subserve the purposes of Liberalism, in breaking up 
establishments by weakening them, and in making 
dogma ridiculous by multiplying sects ? or is it of too 

of the National Churcli. joi 

positive a character, both in its principles and its mem- 
bers, to anticipate for it so disappointing an issue . 

I say, it has been definite in its principles, though 
vague in their application and their scope. It has been 
formed on one idea, which has developed into a body of 
teaching, logical in the arrangement of its portions, 
and consistent with the principles on which it originally 
started. That idea, or first principle, was ecclesiastical 
liberty ; the doctrine which it especially opposed was 
in ecclesiastical language, the heresy of Emstus, and in 
political, the Eoyal Supremacy. The object of its attack 
was the Establishment, considered simply as such. 

When I thus represent the idea of the movement of 
which I am speaking, I must not be supposed to over- 
look or deny to it its theological, or its ritual, or its 
practical aspect ; but I am speaking of what may be 
called its form. If I said that the one doctrine of 
Luther was justification by faith only, or of Wesley the 
doctrine of the new birth, I should not be denying that 
those divines respectively taught many other doctrines 
but merely should mean that the one doctrine or the 
other gave a shape and character to its teaching. In 
like manner, the writers of the Apostolical party of 1833 
were earnest and copious in their enforcement of the 
high doctrines of the faith, of dogmatism, of the sacra- 
mental principle, of the sacraments (as far as the 

I02 The Movement not in the Direction 

Anglican Prayer Book admitted them), of ceremonial 
observances, of practical duties, and of the counsels of 
perfection ; but, considering all those great articles of 
teaching to be protected and guaranteed by the inde- 
pendence of the Church, and in that way alone, they 
viewed sanctity, and sacramental grace, and dogmatic 
fidelity, merely as subordinate to the mystical body of 
Christ, and made them minister to her sovereignty, 
that she might in turn protect them in their pre- 
rogatives. Dogma would be maintained, sacraments 
would be administered, religious perfection would be 
venerated and attempted, if the Church were supreme 
in her spiritual power; dogma would be sacrificed to 
expedience, sacraments would be rationalized, perfec- 
tion would be ridiculed if she was made the slave of 
the State. Erastianism, then, was the one heresy which 
practically cut at the root of all revealed truth ; the 
man who held it would soon fraternise with Unitarians, 
mistake the bustle of life for religious obedience, and 
pronounce his butler to be as able to give communion 
as his priest. It destroyed the supernatural altoge- 
ther, by making most emphatically Christ's kingdom a 
kingdom of the world. Such was the teaching of the 
movement of 1833. The whole system of revealed 
truth was, according to it, to be carried out upon the 
anti-Erastian or Apostolical basis. The independence 
of the Church is almost the one subject of three out of 
four volumes of Mr, Froude's Remains ; it is, in one 

of the National Church. 103 

shape or other, the prevailing subject of the early num- 
bers of the " Tracts for the Times," as well as of other 
publications which might be named. It was for this 
that the writers of whom I speak had recourse to Anti- 
quity, insisted upon the Apostolical Succession, exalted 
the Episcopate, and appealed to the people, not only be- 
cause these things were true and right, but in order to 
shake off the State ; they introduced them, in the first 
instance, as means towards the inculcation of the idea of 
the Church, as constituent portions of that great idea, 
which, when it once should be received, was a match 
for the world. 

" Our one tangible object," it w^as said, in a passage 
too long to be extracted at length, ''is to restore the 
connection, at present broken, between Bishops and 
people ; for in this everything is involved, directly or 

indirectly, for which it is a duty to contend We 

wish to maintain the faith, and bind men together iu 
love. We are aiming, with this view, at that command- 
ing moral influence which attended the early Church, 
which made it attractive and persuasive, which mani- 
fested itself in a fascination sufficient to elicit out of 
Paganism and draw into itself all that was noblest and 
best from the mass of mankind, and which created an 
internal system of such grace, beauty, and majesty, that 
believers were moulded thereby into martyrs and 

evangelists If master-minds are ever granted to 

us, they must be persevering in insisting on the Epis- 

I04 The Movement not in the Direction 

copal system, the Apostolical Succession, the ministerial 
commission, the power of the keys, the duty and desir- 
ableness of Church discipline, the sacredness of Church 
rites and ordinances. But, you will say, how is all this 
to be made interesting to the people ? I answer, that 
the topics themselves which they are to preach are of 
that attractive nature, which carries with it its own 
influence. The very notion that representatives of the 
Apostles are now on earth, from whose communion 
we may obtain grace, as the first Christians did from 
the Apostles, is surely, when admitted, of a most trans- 
porting and persuasive character. Clergymen are at 
present subject to the painful experience of losing the 
more religious portion of their flocks, whom they have 
tutored and moulded as children, but who, as they come 
into life, fall away to the Dissenters. "Why is this ? 
They desire to be stricter than the mass of Churchmen, 
and the Church gives them no means ; they desire to 
be governed by sanctions more constraining than those 
of mere argument, and the Church keeps back those 
doctrines, which, to the eye of faith, give reality and 
substance to religion. One who is told that the Church 
is the treasure-house of spiritual gifts, comes for a 
definite privilege Men know not of tlie legiti- 
mate priesthood, and, therefore, are condemned to hang 
upon the judgment of individuals and self-authorised 
preachers ; they put up with legends of private 
Christians, in the place of the men of God, the meek 

of the National Church. 105 

martyrs, the saintly pastors, the wise and winning 
teachers of the Catholic Church."^ 


Passages such as this, which is but a portion ot a 
whole, show to me, my brethren, clearly enough, that 
these men understood the nature of the Church far better 
than they understood the nature of the religious com- 
munion which they sought to defend. They saw in that 
religion, indeed, a contrariety to their Apostolic prin- 
ciples, but they seem to have fancied that such con- 
trariety was an accident in its constitution, and wa3 
capable of a cure. They did not understand that the 
Established Eeligion " was set up in Erastianism, that 
Erastianism was its essence, and that to destroy Eras- 
tianism was to destroy the religion. The movement, 
then, and the Establishment, were in simple anta- 
gonism from the first, although neither party knew it ; 
they were logical contradictories ; they could not be 
true together ; what was the life of the one was the 
death of the other. The sole ambition of the Establish- 
ment was to be the creature of Statesmen; the sole 
aspiration of the movement was to force it to act for 
itself. The movement went forth on the face of the 
country ; it read, it preached, it published ; it addressed 

1 British Magazine, April 1836— [Discussions and Arguments, pp. 

2 We must not forget, however, Mr. Froude's upas-tree. 

io6 The Movement not in the Direction 

itself to logic and to poetry; it was antiquary and 
architect ; only to do for the Establishment what the 
Establishment considered the most intt)lerable of dis- 
services. Every breath, every sigh, every aspiration, 
every effort of the movement was an affront or an 
offence to the Establishment. In its very first tract, it 
could wish nothing better for the Bishops of t-he Estab- 
lishment than martyrdom ; and, as the very easiest 
escape, it augured for them the loss of their temporal 
possessions. It was easy to foresee what response the 
Establishment would make to its officious defenders, as- 
soon as it could recover from its surprise; biit expe- 
rience was necessary to teach this to men who knew 
more of St. Athanasius than of the Privy Council or 
the Court of Arches. 

"Why should any man in Britain," asks a Tract, 
" fear or hesitate boldly to assert the authority of the 
Bishops and pastors of the Church on grounds strictly 
evangelical and spiritual ? " " Reverend Sir," answered 
the Primate to a protest against a Bishop-elect, accused 
of heresy, " it is not within the bounds of any authority 
possessed by me to give you an opportunity of proving 
your objections; finding, therefore, nothing in which 
I could act in compliance with your remonstrance, I 
proceeded, in the execution of my office, to obey Her 
Majesty's mandate for Dr. Hampden's consecration m 
the usual form." 

"Are we. contented," asks another Tract, "to be 

of the National CliAivch. 


accounted the mere creation of the vState, as school- 
masters and teachers may be, as soldiers, or magistrates. 
or other public officers ? Did the State make us ? Can 
it unmake us ? Can it send out missionaries ? Can it 
arrange dioceses?" "William the Fourth," answers 
the first magistrate of the State, " by the grace of God, 
of the united kingdom of Great Britain, and Ireland, 
King, Defender of the Faith, to all to whom tliese 
presents shall come, greeting : We, having great con- 
fidence in the learning, morals, and probity of our well- 
beloved and venerable William Grant Broughton, do 
name and appoint him to be Bishop and ordinary 
pastor of the see of Australia, so that he shall be, and 
shall be taken to be. Bishop of the Bishop's see, and 
may, by virtue of this our nomination and appoint- 
ment, enter into and possess the said Bishop's see as 
the Bishop thereof, without any let or impediment of 
us ; and we do hereby declare, that if we, our heirs and 
successors, shall think fit to recall or revoke the appoint- 
ment of the said Bishop of Australia, or his successors, 
that every such Bishop shall, to all intents and purposes, 
cease to be Bishop of Australia." 

"Confirmation is an ordinance," says the Tract, "in 
which the Bishop witnesses for Christ. Our Lord and 
Saviour confirms us with the spirit of all goodness; the 
Bishop is His figure and likeness when he lays his 
hands on the heads of children. Then Christ comes 
to them, to confirm in them the grace of baptism.' 

loS The Movement not in the Direction 

''And we do hereby give and grant to the said Bishop 
of Australia," proceeds His Majesty, ''and his suc- 
cessors, Bishops of Australia, full power and authority 
to confirm those that are baptized and come to years of 
discretion, and to perform all other functions peculiar 
and appropriate to the office of Bishop within the limits 
of the said see of Australia." 

^'Moreover," says the Tract, ''the Bishop rules the 
Church here below, as Christ rules it above; and is 
commissioned to make us clergymen God's ministers. 
He is Christ's instrument." "And we do by these 
presents give and grant to the said Bishop and his 
successors, Bishops of Australia, full power and 
authority to admit into the holy orders of deacon and 
priest respectively, any person whom he shall deem 
duly qualified, and to punish and correct chaplains, 
ministers, priests, and deacons, according to their 

" The Bishop speaks in me," says the Tract, " as 
Christ wrought in him, and as God sent Christ ; thus 
the whole plan of salvation hangs together ;— Christ 
the true Mediator ; His servant the Bishop His earthly 
likeness ; mankind the subjects of His teaching ; God 
the author of salvation." And the Queen answers, 
" We do hereby signify to the Most Eeverend Father 
in God, William, Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, our 
nomination of the said Augustus, requiring, and, by 
the faith and love whereby he is bound unto us, com- 

of the National Church. 109 

manding the said Most Eeverend Father in God, to 
ordain and consecrate the said Augustus." And the 
consecrated prelate echoes from across the ocean, 
"Augustus, by the grace of God and the favour of 
Queen Victoria, Bishop." 

" You will, in time to come," says the Tract, 
" honour us with a purer honour than men do now, as 
those who are intrusted with the keys of heaven and 
hell, as the heralds of mercy, as the denouncers of 
woe to wicked men, as intrusted with the awful and 
mysterious privilege of dispensing Christ's Body and 
Blood." And a first Episcopal Charge replies in the 
words of the Homily, "Let us diligently search the 
well of life, and not run after the stinking puddles of 
tradition, devised by man's imagination." A second, 
" It is a subject of deep concern that any of our body 
should prepare men of ardent feelings and warm 
imaginations for a return to the Eoman Mass-book.'' 
And a third, " Already are the foundations of apostasy 
laid ; if we once admit another Gospel, Antichrist is at 
the door. I am full of fear; everything is at stake; 
there seems to be something judicial in the rapid 
spread of these opinions." And a fourth, "It is im- 
possible not to remark upon the subtle wile of the 
Adversary ; it has been signally and unexpectedly 
exemplified in the present day by the revival of errors 
which might have been supposed buried for ever." 
And a fifth, Under the spurious pretence of deference 

1 1 o The Movement not in the Direction 

to antiquity and respect for primitive models, the 
foundations of our Protestant Church are undermined 
by men who dwell within her walls, and those who sit 
in the Reformer's seat are traducing the Reformation." 
"Our glory is in jeopardy," says a sixth. "Why all 
this tenderness for the very centre and core of cor- 
ruption ? " asks a seventh. " Among other marvels of 
the present day," says an eighth, " may be accounted 
the irreverent and unbecoming language applied to the 
chief promoters of the Reformation in this land. The 
quick and extensive propagation of opinions, tending 
to exalt the claims of the Church and of the Clergy, 
can be no proof of their soundness." " Reunion with 
Rome has been rendered impossible," says a ninth, 
" yet I am not without hope that more cordial union 
may, in time, be effected among all Protestant Churches." 
" Most of the Bishops," says a tenth, " have spoken in 
terms of disapproval of the ' Tracts for the Times, 
and I certainly believe the system to be most perni 
cious, and one which is calculated to produce the most 
lamentable schism in a Church already fearfully dis- 

" Up to this moment," says an eleventh, " the move- 
ment is advancing under just the same })acific profes- 
sions, and the same imputations are still cast upon all 
who in any way impede its progress. Even the English 
Bishops, who have officially expressed any disappro- 
bation of the principles or proceedings of the party, 

of the National Church. 


have not escaped such animadversions." "Tractarian- 
ism is the masterpiece of Satan," says a twelfth. 

But there was a judgment more cruel still, because it 
practically told in their favour ; but it was the infeli- 
city of the agents in the movement, that, the ^N'ational 
Church feeling both in its rulers and its people as 
it did, their teaching could not escape animadversion 
except at the expense of their principles. "A Bishop's 
lightest word, ex Cathedra, is heavy," said a writer 
of the "Tracts for the Times." "His judgment on 
a book cannot be light ; it is a rare occurrence." And 
an Archbishop answered from the other side of St. 
George's Channel, " j^lany persons look with consider- 
able interest to the declarations on such matters that 
from time to time are put forth by Bishops in their 
Charges, or on other occasions. But on most of the 
points to which I have been alluding, a Bishop's 
declarations have no more weight, except what they 
derive from his personal character, than any anonymous 
pamphlet would have The points are mostly such as 
he has no official power to decide, even in reference to 
his own diocese ; and as to legislation for the Church, 
or authoritative declarations on many of the most im- 
portant maiters, neither any one Bishop, nor all collec- 
tively, have any more right of this kind, than the 

1 1 2 The Movement not in the Direction 

ordinary magistrates have to take on themselves the 
functions of Parliament." 

However, it is hardly necessary to prolong the exhibi- 
tion of the controversy, or to recall to your recollection 
the tone of invective in which each party relieved the 
keen and vehement feelings which its opponents 
excited ; — how the originators of the movement called 
Jewell " an irreverent Dissenter ;" were even " thinking 
worse and worse of the Eeformers ;" '' hated the Eefor- 
mation and the Eeformers more and more ; " thought 
them the false prophets of the Apocalypse ; described 
the National Church as having " blasphemed Tradition 
and the Sacraments ;" were " more and more indignant 
at the Protestant doctrine of the Eucharist ; " thought 
the principle on which it was founded " as proud, 
irreverent, and foolish, as that of any heresy, even 
Socinianism ; " and considered the Establishment their 
" upas-tree," " an incubus on the country ; " and its 
reformed condition, '' a limb badly set, which must be 
broken before it could be righted." And how they were 
called in turn, '' superstitious," "zealots," "mystical," 
"malignants," ''Oxford heretics," "Jesuits in disguise," 
'tamperers with Popish idolatry," "agents of Satan,' 
« a synagogue of Satan," " snakes in the grass," " walk- 
ing about our beloved Church, polluting the sacred 
edifice, and leaving their slime about her altars : " 
"whose head," it was added, "may God crush 1 " 

Is it not then abundantly plain, that, whatever be 

of the National Church. 113 

the destiny of the movement of 1833, there is no ten- 
dency in it towards a coalition with the Establishment ? 
It cannot strengthen it, it cannot serve it, it cannot obey 
it. The party may be dissolved, the movement may 
die — that is another matter ; but it and its idea cannot 
live, cannot energize, in the National Church. If St. 
Athanasius could agree with Arius, St. Cyril with Nes- 
torius, St. Dominic with the Albigenses, or St. Ignatius 
with Luther, then may two parties coalesce, in a cer- 
tain assignable time, or by certain felicitously gradual 
approximations, or with dexterous limitations and 
concessions, who mutually think light darkness and 
darkness light. " Delenda est Carthago ; " one or other 
must perish. Assuming, then, that there is a scope and 
limit to the movement, we certainly shall not find it in 
the dignities and offices of the National Church. 

if, then, this be not the providential direction of the 
movement, let us ask, in the next place, is it intended 
to remain just what it is at present, not in power or 
authority, but as a sort of principle or view of religion, 
found here and there with greater or less distinctness, 
with more or fewer followers, scattered about or con- 
centrated, up and down the Establishment; with no 
exact agreement between man and man in matters of 
detail or in theoretical basis, but as an influence, sleep- 
ing or rousing, victorious or defeated, from time to 

1 14 The Movement not in ike Direction 

time, as the case may be? This state of things ig 
certainly supposable, at least for a time, for a genera- 
tion; and various arguments may be adduced in its 
behalf. It may be urged, " that if you cannot do any 
positive good to the nation, yet at least in this way you 
may prevent evil ; that to be a drag upon the career of 
unbelief, if you are nothing else, is a mission not to 
be despised ; moreover, if it be not a heroic course of 
action, or look well in history, still so much the more 
does such an office become those who are born in a 
fallen time, and who wish to be humble." 

Again, though it is good to be humble, still, on the 
other hand, " there is a chance," it may be whispered 
by others, " of a nobler and higher function opening on 
you, if you are but patient and dutiful for a time." This 
is the suggestion of those who cannot, will not, look at 
things as they are ; who think objects feasible because 
they are desirable, and to be attempted because they 
are tempting. These persons go on dwelling upon the 
thought of the wonderful power of the British people, 
at this day, all over the world, till at length they begin 
to conjecture what may possibly be the design of Pro- 
vidence in raising it up. They feel that Great Britain 
would be a most powerful instrument of good, if it could 
be directed aright; and then they argue that if it is to 
be influenced, what else ought naturally and obviously 
to influence it but the National Church ? The National 
Church, then, is to be God's instrument for the conver- 

of the. National Church. , i^ 

sion of the worlrl. But in order to this, of course it is 
indispensable that the National Church should have a 
clear and sufficient hold of Apostolical doctrine and 
usage; but then, who is to instruct the National Church 
m these necessary matters, but that Apostolical move- 
ment to which they themselves belong? And thus 
by a few intermediate steps, they have attained the' 
conclusion, that, because the nation is so powerful the 
movement must succeed. Accordingly, they bear'any 
degree of humiliation and discomforture ; nay, any arau- 
mentative exposure, any present stultification of thdr 
principles, any, however chronic, disorganization with 
an immovable resolve, as a matter of duty and merit 
because they are sanguine about the future Tliey 
seem to feel that the whole cause of truth, the reform 
of the Establishment, the catholicizing of the nation 
the conversion of the world, depends at this moment 
on their faithfulness to their position; on their own 
steadfastness the interests of humanity are at stake 
and where they now are, there they will live and die' 
They have taken their part, and to that part they will 
be true. 

Moreover, there are those among them who have 
very little grasp of principle, even from the natural 
temper of their minds. They see that this thin, is 
beautiful, and that is in the Fathers, and a third is 
expedient, and a fourth pious; but of their connection 
one with another, their hidden essence and thnr life. 

1 1 6 The Movement not in the Direction 

and the bearing of external matters upon each and 
upon all, they have no perception or even suspicion. 
They do not look at things as parts of a whole, and 
often will sacrifice the most important and precious 
portions of their creed, or make irremediable concessions 
in word or in deed, from mere simplicity and want of 
apprehension.^ This was in one way singularly exem- 
plified in the beginning of the movement itself. I am 
not saying that every word that was used in the " Tracts 
for the Times " was matter of principle, or that the 
doctrines to be enforced were not sometimes unneces- 
Barily coloured by the vehemence of the writer; but 
still it not seldom happened that readers took state- 
ments which contained the very point of the argument, 
or the very heart of the principle, to be mere intem- 
perate expressions, and suggested to the authors their 
removal. They said "they went a great way with 
us, but they really could not go such lengths. Why 
speak of the Apostolic Succession, instead of Evan- 
gelical truth and Apostolical order ? It gave offence, 
it did no manner of good. Why use the word ' altar,' 
if it displeased weak brethren ? The word ' sacrifice ' 
was doubtless a misprint for ' sacrament ; ' and to talk 
with Bishop Bull of 'making the body of Christ,* 
was a most extravagant, unjustifiable way of describ- 
ing the administration of the Lord's Supper." 

1 Since writing the above, the author finds it necessary to observe, that, 
in writing it, it had no reference to persons, and he would be pained if it 
seemed to refer to actual passages in the controversy now in progress. 

of the National Church, 1 1 7 

Things are changed now at the end of twenty years 
but characters and intellects are the same. Such 
persons, at the present moment, do not formally pro- 
fess any intention of giving up any of the doctrines of 
the movement; but they think it possible and expedient 
to divide portion from portion, and are rash and incon- 
sistent in their advice and their conduct, from mere 
ignorance of what they are doing. So, too, they think 
it a success, and are elated accordingly, if any measure 
whatever, which happens to have been contemplated 
by the movement, is in any shape conceded by the 
Establishment or by the State; heedless altogether 
whether such measure be capable or not of coalescing 
with a foreign principle, and whether, instead of 
modifying, it has not been changed into that against 
which, in the minds of the writers of the Tracts, it was 
directed. For instance, the movement succeeded in 
gaining an increase in the number of Episcopal sees 
at home and abroad ; well, a triumph this certainly is, 
if any how to succeed in a measure which one has 
advocated may be called by that name. But, be it 
recollected, measures derive their character and their 
worth from the principle which animates them ; they 
have little meaning in themselves; they are but 
material facts, unless they include in them their scope 
and enforce their object ; nay, they readily assume the 
animus and drift, and are taken up into the form, of 
the system by which they are adopted. If the Apos- 

1 18 The Movement not in the Direction 

tolical movenient desired to increase the Episcopate, 
it was with a view to its own Apostolical principles ; 
it had no wish merely to increase the staff of Govern- 
ment ofiicers in England or in the colonies, the patronage 
of a ministry, the erection of country palaces, or the 
Latitudinarian votes in Parliament. Has it, for instance, 
done a great achievement at Manchester, if it has 
planted there a chair of liberalism, and inaugurated an 
ant i- Catholic tradition ? 

A policy, then, resting on such a temper of mind a? 
I have been describing, — viz., a determination to act 
as if the course of events itself would, in some way oi 
other, work for Apostolical truth, sooner or later, more 
or less ; to let things alone, to do nothing, to make light 
of every triumph of the enemy from within or without, 
to waive the question of ecclesiastical liberty, to rem air 
where you are, and go about your work in your own 
place, either contented to retard the course of events, 
or sanguine about an imaginary future, — this is simply 
to abandon the cause of the movement altogether. It is 
simply to say that tliere is no providential destmy or 
object connected with it at all. You may be right, my 
brethren ; this may be the case ; perhaps it is so. You 
have a right to this opinion, but understand what you 
are doing. Do not deceive yourselves by words ; it is 
not a biding your time, as you may fancy, if you sur- 

of the National Church. 


render the idea and the main principle of the move- 
ment; it is the abandonment of your cause. You 
remain, indeed, in your place, but it is no moral, no 
intellectual, but a mere secular, visible position which 
you occupy. Great commanders, when in war they are 
beaten back from the open country, retire to the moun- 
tains and fortify themselves in a territory which is their 
own. You have no place of refuge from the foe ; you 
have no place from which to issue in due season, no 
hope that your present concessions will bring about a 
future victory. Your retreat is an evacuation. You 
will remain in the Establishment in your own persons, 
but your principles will be gone, 

I know how it will be— a course as undignified as it 
will be ineffectual. ^ sensation and talk whenever 
something atrocious is to be done by the State against 
the principles you profess ; a meeting of friends liere or 
there, an attempt to obtain an archidiaconal meeting; 
some spirited remarks in two or three provincial nev/s- 
papers ; an article in a review ; a letter to some Bishop; 
a protest signed respectably ; suddenly the news that 
the anticipated blow has fallen, and causa finita est. A 
pause, and then the discovery that things are not so 
bad as they seemed to be, and that after all your 
Apostolical Church has come forth from the trial even 
stronger and more beautiful than before. Still a secret 
dissatisfaction and restlessness ; a strong sermon at a 
visitation; and a protest after dinner, when his lord- 

I20 The Movement not in the Direction 

ship is asked to print his Charge ; a paragraph to your 
great satisfaction in a hostile newspaper, saying how 
that most offensive proceedings are taking place in such 
and such a Tractarian parish or chapel, how that there 
were flowers on the table, or that the curate has ton- 
sured himself, or has used oil and salt in "baptizing, or 
has got a cross upon his surplice, or that in a benefit 
sermon the bigoted Eector unchurched the Society of 
Friends, or that Popery is coming in amain upon our 
venerable Establishment, because a parsonage has been 
built in shape like a Trappist monastery. And then 
other signs of life; the consecration of anew church, 
with Clergy walking in gown and bands, two and two, 
and the Bishop preaching on decency and order, on the 
impressive performance of divine Service, and the due 
decoration of the house of God. Then a gathering in 
the Christian Knowledge Eooms about some new book 
put upon the Society's list, or some new liberalizing 
regulation ; a drawn battle, and a compromise. And 
every now and then a learned theological work, doctrinal 
or historical, justifying the ecclesiastical principles on 
which the Anglican Church is founded, and refuting 
the novelties of Eomanism. And lastly, on occasion of 
a contested election or other political struggle, theology 
mingled with politics; the liberal candidate rejected by 
the aid of the High-Church Clergy on some critical 
question of religious policy ; the Government annoyed 
or embarrassed ; and a sanguine hope entertained of a 

of the Notional ChMvch. 1 2 1 

ministry more favourable to Apostolical truth. My 
brethren, the National Church has had experience of 
this, mutatis mutandis, once before : I mean in the con- 
iuct of the Tory Clergy at the end of the seventeenth, 
and beginning of the following century. Their pro- 
ceedings in Convocation were a specimen of it ; their 
principles were far better than those of their Bishops ; 
yet the Bishops show to advantage and the Clergy look 
small and contemptible in the history of that contest. 
Public opinion judged, as it ever judges, by such broad 
and significant indications of right and wTong; the 
Government party triumphed, and the meetings of the 
Convocation were suspended. 

It is impossible, in a sketch such as this, to complete 
the view of every point which comes into consideration ; 
yet I think I have said enough to suggest the truth of 
what I am urging to those who carefully turn the mat- 
ter in their minds. Is the influence of the movement 
to be maintained adequately to its beginnings and its 
promise ? Many, indeed, will say — certainly many of 
those who hated or disapproved of it — that it was a 
sudden ebullition of feeling, or burst of fanaticism, or 
reaction from opposite errors ; that it has had its day, 
and is over. It may be so ; but I am addressing those 
who, I consider, are of another opinion ; and to them 
I appeal, whether I have yet proposed anything plau- 
sible about the providential future of the movement. 
It is surely not intended, either to rise into the high 

122 The Movement not in the Direction 

places of the Establishment, or to sink into a vague, 
amorphous faction at the foot of it. It cannot rise 
and it ought not to sink. 


And now I am in danger of exceeding the limits 
which I have proposed to myself, though another more 
important head of consideration lies before me, could I 
hope to do justice to it. I have urged that you will be 
most inconsistent, my brethren, with your principles 
and views, if you remain in the Establishment ; I say 
with your principles and views, for you may give them 
up, and then you will not be inconsistent. You may 
say, " I do not hold them so strongly as to make them 
the basis and starting-point of any course of action 
whatever. I have believed in them, it is true ; but I 
have never contemplated the liabilities you are urging 
upon me. I cannot, under any supposition, contem- 
plate an abandonment of the National Church. I am 
not that knight-errant to give up my position, which 
surely is given me by Providence, on a theory. I am 
what I am. I am where I am. My reason has fol- 
lowed the teaching of the movement, and I have assented 
to it ; so far I grant. But it is a new idea to me quite, 
which I have never contemplated at starting, which 
I cannot contemplate now, that possibly it might 

of tJte National Church. 


involve the most awful, most utter of sacrifices. 
I have ten thousand claims upon me, urging me to 
remain where I am. They are real, tangible, habitual, 
immutable; nothing can shake or lessen them from 
within. A distinct call of God from without would, of 
course, overcome them, but nothing short of it. Am I 
as sure of those Apostolical principles which I have 
embraced as I am of these claims ? Moreover, I am 
doing good in my parish and in my place. The day 
passes as usual. Sunday comes round once a week; 
the bell rings, the congregation is met, and service is 
performed. There is the same round of paroeidal 
duties and charities ; sick people to be visited, the 
school to be inspected. The sun shines, and the rain 
falls, the garden smiles, as it used to do ; and can some 
one definite, external event have changed the position 
of this happy scene of which I am the centre ? Is 
not that position a self-dependent, is it a mere relative 
position ? What care I for the Pi ivy Council or the 
Archbishop, while I can preach and catechize just as 
before ? I have my daily service and my Saints' day 
sermons, and I can tell my people about the primitive 
Bishops and martyrs, and about the grace of the Sacra- 
ments, and the power of the Church, how that it is 
Catholic, and Apostolic, and Holy, and One, as if no- 
thing had happened ; and I can say my hours, or use 
my edition of Eoman Devotions, and observe the days 

124 "^^^ Movement not in the Direction 

of fasting, and take confessions, if they are offered, in 
spite of all gains ay ers." 

It is true, my dear brethren, you may knowingly 
abandon altogether what you have once held, or you 
may profess to hold truths without being faithful to 
them. Well, then, you are of those who think that the 
movement has come to an end ; if in your conscience 
you think so — that it was a mere phantom, or deceit, 
or unreality, or dream, which has taken you in, and 
from which you have awakened, — I have not a word to 
say. If, however, as I trust is the case, God has not in 
vain unrolled the pages of antiquity before your eyes, 
but has stamped them upon your hearts; if He has 
put into your minds the perception of the truth which, 
once given, can scarcely be lost, once possessed, wiU 
ever be recognized; if you have by His grace been 
favoured in any measure with the supernatural gift of 
faith, then, my brethren, I think too well of you, I hope 
too much of you, to fancy that you can be untrue to 
convictions so special and so commanding. ISTo; you 
are under a destiny, the destiny of truth — truth is your 
master, not you the master of truth — you must go 
whither it leads. You can have no trust in the Estab- 
lishment or its Sacraments and ordinances. You must 
leave it, you must secede ; you must turn your back 
upon, you must renounce, what has — not suddenly be* 
come, but has now been proved to you to have ever 

of the National Church. 1 2 5 

been — an imposture. You must take up your cross, and 
you must go hence. But whither ? That is the ques- 
tion which it follows to ask, could I do justice to it. 
But you will rather do justice to it in your own thoughts. 
You must betake yourselves elsewhere — and "to whom 
shall you go ? " ~" 

{ 126 ) 




r KNOW how very difficult it is to persuade others 
of a point which to one's self may be so clear as to 
require no argument at all ; and, therefore, I am not 
at all sanguine, my brethren, that what I said in my 
last Lecture has done as much as I wished it to do. It 
is not an easy thing to prove to men that their duty 
lies just in the reverse direction to that in which the;v 
have hitherto placed it; that all they have hitherto 
learned and taught, that all their past labours, hopes, 
and successes, that their boyhood, youth, and manhood, 
that their position, their connections, and their influence, 
are, in a certain sense, to go for nothing ; and that life 
is to begin with them anew. It is not an easy thing 
to attain to the conviction, that, with the Apostle, their 
greatest gain must be counted loss; and that their glory 
and their peace must be found in what will make them 
for a while the wonder and the scorn of the world. It 

The Movement not in the Direction, etc. 127 

is true I may have shown you that you cannot coalesce 
with the National Church ; that you cannot wed your- 
selves to its principles and its routine, and that it, in 
turn, has no confidence at all in you ; — and, again, that 
you cannot consistently hang about what you neither 
love nor trust, cumbering with your presence what you 
are not allowed to serve; but still, nevertheless, you 
will cling to the past and present, and will hope for the 
future against hope ; and your forlorn hope is this, that 
it is, perhaps, possible to remain as an actual party in 
the Establishment, nay, an avowed party ; not, on the 
one hand, rising into ecclesiastical power, yet not, on 
the other, disorganized and contemptible ; but availing 
yourselves of your several positions in it individually, 
and developing, with more consistency and caution, the 
principles of 1833. You may say that I passed over 
this obvious course in my foregoing Lecture, and de- 
cided it in the negative without fair examination; and 
you may argue that such a party is surely allowable in 
a religious communion like the Establishment, which, as 
the Committee of Privy Council impKes, is based upon 
principles so comprehensive, exercises so large a tolera- 
tion, and is so patient of speculatists and innovators, 
■who are even further removed from its professed prin- 
ciples than yourselves. 

Thus I am led to take one more survey of your present 
position ; yet I own I cannot do so without an apology; 
Xo others, who may think that I am triflincr with a 

128 The Movement not in the Direction 

serious subject and a clear case, and imagining objec- 
tions in order to overthrow them. Such persons cer- 
tainly there may be ; but these I would have consider^ 
on the other hand, that my aim is to bring before 
those I am addressing, really and vividly, where they 
are standing; that this cannot be done, unless they 
are induced steadily to fix their minds upon it ; that 
the discussion of imaginary cases brings out principles 
which they cannot help recognizing, when they are pre- 
sented to them, and the relation, moreover, of those 
principles to their own circumstances and duty ; and 
that even where a view of a subject is imaginary, if 
taken as a whole and in its integral perfection, yet 
portions of it may linger in the mind, unknown ta 
itself, and influence its practical decisions. 

With this apology for a proceeding which some 
persons may feel tedious, I shall suppose you, my 
brethren, to address me in the following strain : " The 
movement has been, for nearly twenty years, a party, 
and why should it not continue a party as before ? It 
has avowedly opposed a contrary party in the National 
Church ; it has had its principles, its leaders, its usages, 
its party signs, its publications : it may have them stilL 
It was once, indeed, a point of policy to deny our party 
character, or we tried to hide the truth from, ourselves ; 
but a party we were. The National Church admits of 
private judgment, and where there is private judgment^ 
there must be parties. We are, of course, under a dis- 

of a Painty in tJie National Church. T2q 

advantage now, which then did not lie upon us ; we 
have, at the present time, tlie highest ecclesiastical 
authorities in distinct and avowed opposition to our 
doctrines and our doings; but we knew their feelings 
before they expressed them. This misfortune is nothing 
new ; we always reckoned on an uphill game ; it is 
better that every one should speak out ; we now know 
the worst ; we know now where to find our spiritual 
rulers ; they are not more opposed to us than before, 
but they have been obliged openly to commit them- 
selves, which we always wished them to do, though, 
of course, we should have preferred their committing 
themselves on our side. But, anyhow, we cannot be 
said to be in a worse case than before ; and, if we were 
allowably and hopefully a party before, we surely have 
as ample allowance to agitate, and not less hope oi' 
success, now." 


You think, then, my brethren, tliat to-day can be as 
yesterday, that you were a party then and can remain 
a party now, that your present position is your old one, 
that you can be faithful to the movement, yet continue 
just what you were. My brethren, you do not bear in 
mind that a movement is a thing that moves; you can- 
not be true to it and remain still. The single question 
in. What is the limit or scope of that which once had a 
beginning and now has a progress ? Your principles, 

1 30 The Movement not in the Direction 

indeed, are fixed, but circumstances are not what they 
were. If you would be true to your principles, you 
must remove from a position in which it is not longer 
possible for you to fulfil them. 

Observe : — your movement started on the ground ot 
maintaining ecclesiastical authority, as opposed to the 
Erastiauism of the State. It exhibited the Church as 
the one earthly object of religious loyalty and venera- 
tion, the source of all spiritual power and jurisdiction, 
and the channel of aU grace. It represented it to be 
the interest, as well as the duty, of Churchmen, the 
bond of peace and the secret of strength, to submit 
their judgment in all things to her decision. And it 
taught that this divinely founded Church was real- 
ised and brought into effect in our country in the Na- 
tional Establishment, which was the outward form or 
development of a continuous dynasty and hereditary 
power which descended from the Apostles. It gave, 
then, to that Establishment,, in its officers, its laws, its 
usa^res and its w^orship, that devotion and obedience 
which are correlative to the very idea of the Church. 
It set up on high the bench of Bishops and the Book 
of Common Prayer, as the authority to w^hich it was 
itself to bow, wdth which it was to cow and overpower 
an Erastian State. 

It is hardly necessary to bring together passages 
from the early numbers of the " Tracts for the Times " 
in suDDort of this statement. Each Tract, I may say. 

of a Party in the National Church. 1 3 1 

is directed, in one way or other, to the defence of the 
i3xisting documents or regulations of the National 
Church. No abstract ground is taken in these com- 
positions ; conclusions are not worked out from philo- 
sophical premisses, nor conjectures recommended by 
poetical illustrations, nor a system put together out of 
eclectic materials ; but emphatically and strenuously it 
is maintained, that whatever is is right, and must be 
obeyed. If the Apostolic succession is true, it is not 
simply because St. Ignatius and St. Cyprian might 
affirm it, though Fathers are adduced also, but because 
it is implied in the Ordination Service. If the Church 
is independent of the State in things spiritual, it is not 
simply because Bishop Pearson has extoUed her powori3 
in his Exposition of the Creed, though divines are 
brought forward as authorities too; but by reason of 
" the force of that article of our belief, the one Catholic 
and Apostolic Church." If the mysterious grace of the 
Episcopate is insisted on, it is not merely as contained 
in Holy Scripture, though Scripture is appealed to again 
and again ; but as implied in '' that ineffable mystery, 
called in the Creed, the Communion of Saints." Scrip- 
ture was copiously quoted, the Fathers were boldly in- 
voked, and Anglican divines were diligently consulted; 
but the immediate, present, and, as the leaders of the 
movement lioped, the living authority, on which they 
based their theological system, was what was called the 
'' Liturgy," or Book of Common Prayer. 

132 The Movement not in the Direction 

This " Liturgy," as the instrument of their teaching, 
was, on that account, regarded as practically infallible. 
"Attempts are making to get the Liturgy altered,"* 
says a Tract; "I beseech you consider with me, whe- 
ther vou ought not to resist the alteration of even 
one jot or tittle of it." Then as to the burial service : 
" I frankly own," says another Tract, " it is sometimes 
distressing to use it; but this must ever be in the 
nature of things, wherever you draw the line." Again, 
it was said that " there was a growing feeling that the 
Services were too long," and ought to be shortened 
but it was to be " arrested " by " certain considerations '* 
offered in a third. " There were persons who wished 
certain Sunday Lessons removed from the Service;" 
but, according to a fourth, there was reason the other 
way, in the very argument which was "brought in 
favour of the change." Another project afloat was 
that of leaving out "such and such chapters of the 
Old Testament," and "assigning proper Lessons to 
every Sunday from the New ; " but it was temperately 
and ingeniously argued in a fifth, that things were best 
just as they were. And as the Prayer Book, so too 
was the Episcopate invested with a sacred character, 
which it was a crime to affront or impair. " Exalt our 
Holy Fathers," said a sixth Tract, " as the representa- 
tives of the Apostles, and the Angels of the Churches." 
"They stand in the place of the Apostles," said a 
seventh, "as far as the office of ruling is con- 

of a Party in the National Church. 133 

ceriied; and he that despiseth them despiseth the 


Now, why do I refer to these passages ? Kot for 
their own sake, but to show that the movement was 
based on submission to a definite existing authority, 
and that private judgment was practically excluded. 
I do not mean to say that its originators thought the 
Prayer Book inspired, any more than the Bishops 
infallible, as if they had nothing to do but accept and 
believe what was put into their hands. They had too 
much common sense to deny the necessary exercise of 
private judgment, in one sense or another. They knew 
that the Catholic Church herself admitted it, thoucrh 
she directed and limited it to a decision upon the 
question of the organ of revelation ; and they expressly 
recognized what they had no wish to deny. " So far," 
they said, "all parties must be agreed, that without 
private judgment there is no responsibility . . . even 
though an infallible guidance be accorded, a man must 
have a choice of resisting it or not." ^ But still, not 
denying this as an abstract truth, they determined that, 
as regards the teaching of the Liturgy, or the enuncia- 
tions of the Bishops — which is the point immediately 
under our consideration— all differences of opinion 
existing between members of the Establishment could 

1 Proph. Off. p. 157. 

134 The Movement not in the Direction 

be but minor ones, which might profitably, and without 
effort, be suppressed ; that is, these were such as ought 
to be inwardly discredited and rejected, as less probable 
than the authoritative rule or statement, or at most 
must only be entertained at home, not published or 
defended. The matters in debate could not be more 
than matters of opinion, not of doctrine. Thus, with 
respect to alterations in the Prayer Book, the Tract 
says, ''Though most of you would wish some imma- 
terial points altered, yet not many of you agree in those 
pc»ints, and not many of you agree what is and what is 
not immaterial. If all your respective emendations 
are taken, the alterations in the Service will be exten- 
sive ; and, though each will gain something he wishes, 
he will lose more in consequence of those alterations 
which he did not wish. How few would be pleased by 
any given alterations, and how many pained ! " Though, 
then, the Prayer Book was not perfect, it had a sort of 
practical perfection ; and, though it was not unerring, 
it was a sure and sufficient safeguard against error. It 
was dangerous to question any part of it. "A taste 
for criticism grows upon the mind," said a Tract. 
" This unsettling of the mind is a frightful thing, both 
for ourselves, and more so for our flocks." The prin- 
ciple, then, of these writers was this : An infallible 
authority is necessary ; we have it not, for the Prayer 
Book is all we have got; but since we have nothing 
better, we must use it as if infallible. I am not justi- 

of a Party in tlie National Church. 135 

fying the logic of this proceeding; but if it be deficient, 
much more clearly does it, for that very reason, bring 
out the strength with which they held the princijjle of 
authority itself, when they would make so great an 
effort to find for it a place in the National Eeligion 
and would rather force a conclusion than give up their 

The Prayer Book, then, according to the first agents 
in the movement, was the arbiter, and limit, and work- 
ing rule of the ten thousand varying private judgments 
of which the community was made up, which could not 
all be satisfied, which could not all be right, which 
were, every one of them, less likely to be right than it. 
It was the immediate instrument by means of which 
they professed to make their way, the fulcrum by which 
they were to hoist up the Establishment, and set it 
down securely on the basis of Apostolical Truth. And 
thus it was accepted by the party, not only as essen- 
tially and substantially true, but also as eminently 
expedient and necessary for the time. 

"To do anything effectually," said a speaker in a 
dialogue of mine, who is expressing the philosophy (so 
to call it) of the movement in answer to a Eomanizino- 


friend, "we must start from recognized principles and 
customs. Any other procedure stamps a person as 
wrong-headed, ill-judging, or eccentric, and brings upon 
him the contempt and ridicule of those sensible men by 
whose opinions society is necessarily governed. Put- 

136 The Movement not in the Direction 

ting aside the question of truth and falsehood (which, 
of course, is the main consideration), even as aiming at 
success, we must be aware of the great error of making 
changes on no more definite basis than their abstract 
fitness, alleged scripturalness, or adoption by the an- 
cients. Such changes are rightly called innovations; 
— those which spring from existing institutions, opin- 
ions, and feelings, are called developments, and may be 
recommended, without invidiousness, as improvements. 
I adopt then, and claim as my own, that position of 
yours, that ' we must take and use what is ready to our 
hands.' To do otherwise is to act the doctrinaire, and 
to provide for failure. For instance, if we would enforce 
observance of the Lord's Day, we must not, at the out- 
set, rest it on any theory, however just, of Chui'ch 
authority, but on the authority of Scripture. If we 
would oppose the State's interference with the distri- 
bution of Church property, we shall succeed, not by 
urging any doctrine of Church independence, or by 
citing decrees of general councils, but by showing the 
contrariety of that measure to existing constitutional 
and ecclesiastical precedents ourselves. Hilde- 
brand found the Church provided with certain existing 
means of power ; he vindicated them, and was rewarded 
with the success which attends, not on truth as such, 
but on this prudence and tact in conduct. St. Paul 
observed the same rule, whether in preaching at Athens 
or persuading his countrymen. It was the gracious 

of a Party in the National Church 


condescension of our Lord Himself, not to substitute 
Christianity for Judaism by any violent revolution, but 
to develope Judaism into Christianity, as the Jews 
mioht bear it." ^ 


Now all this was very well, if expedience was the end, 
and not merely a reason, of their extolling the Episco- 
pate and the Prayer Book ; but if it was a question of 
truth (and as such they certainly considered it), then 
it was undeniable, that Prayer Book and Episcopate 
could not support themselves, but required some in- 
tellectual basis ; and what was that to be ? Here 
again, as before (and this is the point to which all 
along I wish to direct your attention), these writers 
professed to go by authority, not by private judgment ; 
for they fell back upon the divines of the Anglican 
Church, as their channels for ascertaining both what 
Anglicanism taught and why. It is scarcely necessary 
to remind any one who has followed the movement 
in its course, how careful and anxious they were, as 
soon as they got (what may be called) under weigh, 
at once to collect and arrange Catenas of Anglican 
authorities, on v/honi their own teaching might be 
founded, and under whose name it might be protected. 
Accordingly the doctrines, especially of the Apostolical 
succession, of Baptismal Eegeneration, of tlie Euchar- 

^ Britisli Mag., April 1836. 

138 The Movement not in the Direction 

istic sacrifice, and of the Eule of Faith, were made the 
subject of elaborate collections of extracts from the 
divines of the Establishment. And so in like manner, 
when a formal theory or idea was attempted of the 
Anglican system, the writer said, and believed, that " he 
had endeavoured, in all important points of doctrine, 
to guide himself by our standard divines ; and, had 
space admitted, would have selected passages from their 
writings, in evidence of it. Such a collection of testi- 
monies," he continued, ''is almost a duty on the part 
of every author, who professes, not to strike out new 
theories, but to build up and fortify what has been 
committed to us." ^ 


But now a further question obviously arises : by 
what rule will you determine what divines are authori- 
tative, and what are not ? for it is obvious, unless you 
can adduce such, private judgment will come in at last 
upon your ecclesiastical structure, in spite of your 
success hitherto in keeping it out. This answer, too, 
was ready : — Scripture itself suggested to them the rule 
they should follow, and it was a rule external to them- 
selves. They professed, then, to take simply those as 
authorities whom '' all the people accounted prophets." 2" 

1 Propb. Off. p. vi. 

- Viz., the text prefixed to the Catenas, Tract 74. There was another 
obvious rule also, but still not a private one. They had recourse to those- 
Angliciui divines who alone contemplated, and professed to provide, au 

of a Party in the National Church. ' 139 

Ap it was no private judgment, but the spontaneous 
sentiment of a whole peoi3le, that canonized tlie Bap- 
tist, as the ancient saints are raised over our altars by 
the acclamation of a universal immemorial belief; so, 
according to these writers, the popular voice was to be 
consulted, and its decision simply recorded and obeyed, 
in the selection of the divines on whom their theology 
was to be founded. Ther professed to put aside in- 
dividual liking ; they might admire Hooker, or they 
might think him obscure : they might love Taylor, or 
they might feel a secret repugnance to him ; they might 
delight in the vigour of Bull, or they might be repelled 
by his homeliness and his want of the supernatural 
element; these various feelings they had, but they did 
not wish to select their authorities by any such private 
taste or reason, in which they would differ from each 
other, but by the voice of the community. For instance, 
Davenant is a far abler writer than Hammond, but how 
few have heard of him ? Home or Wilson is far in- 
ferior in learning, power, or originality to Warburton, 
yet their works have a popularity which Warburton's 
have not, and have, in consequence, a higher claim to 
the formal title of Anglican divinity. Such was the 
principle of selection on which the authors of the 
movement proceeded ; and if you say they were untrue 
to their principles in the Catenas they drew out, and, 

idea, theory, or intellectual positioji for their Church, as Liiud and Stil- 

I40 * The Movement not in the Direction 

after all, selected partially, and on private judgment, 
I repeat, so much the more for my purpose. How 
clearly must the principle of an ecclesiastical and 
authoritative, not a private judgment, have been the 
principle of the movement, when those who belonged 
to it were obliged to own that principle, at the very 
time that it was inconvenient to them, and when they 
were driven, whether consciously or not, to misuse or 
evade it ! 

Such, then, was the principle on which they professed 
to select the authorities they were to follow ; nor was 
their anxiety in consulting them less than their care- 
fulness in ascertaining them. Here again, I am not 
going into the question w^hether they deceived them- 
selves in consulting, as well as in ascertaining these 
divines ; whether they followed them where they agreed 
with themselves, and, where they stopped short, went 
forward without them : I am not aware that they did, 
but, whether they did or no, they tried not to do so; 
they wished to make the Anglican divines real vouchers 
and sanctions of their own teaching, and they used 
their words rather than their own. They shrank from 
seeming to speak without warrant, even on matters 
which in no sense were matters of faith, and T can 
adduce an instance of it, which is more to the point, 
tor the very reason it was singularly misunderstood ; 

of a Party in the National Church. 1 4 1 

and, though it may seem to require some apology that 
I should again refer to an author from whom I have 
made several extracts already, I mean myself, I have 
an excuse for doing so in the circumstance, that I 
naturally know his works better than those of others, 
and I can quote him without misrepresenting him or 
aurting his feelings. In a Eetractation, then, which he 
published in the year 1843, of some strong statements 
which he had made against the Catholic Church, these 
words occur : — " If you ask me how an individual could 
venture, not simply to hold hut to publish such views of 
a communion so ancient, so wide-spreading, so fruitful 
in Saints, I answer, that I said to myself, ' I am not 
speaking my own words, I am but following almost a 
consensus of the divines of my Church. They have 
ever used the strongest language against Eome, even 
the most able and learned of them. I wish to throw 
myself into their system. While I say what they say, 
I am safe. Such views, too, are necessary for our 
position.'" Now, this passage has been taken to 
mean, that the writer spoke from expediency what he 
did not believe; but this is false in fact, and inaccurate 
in criticism. He spoke what he felt, what he thought, 
what at the time he held, and nothing but what he 
held with an internal assent ; but still, though he 
internally thought it, he would not have dared to say 
it — he would have shrunk, as well he might, from 
standing up, on his own private judgment, an accuser 

142 The Movement not in the Direction 

against the great Eoman communion, and unless in 
doing so he felt he had been doing simply what his own 
Church required of him, and what was necessary for his 
Church's cause, and what all his Church's divines had 
ever done before him. This being the case, he '' could 
venture, not simply to hold but to publish ; " he was 
not " speaking his own words,'' though he was express- 
ing his own thoughts ; and, as using those words, he was 
behind '' a system " received by his Church, as w^ell as 
by himself. He felt " safe," because he spoke after, and 
"throwing himself into," he was sheltering himself 
according to its teaching and its teachers. It had, indeed, 
been one sin that he had thought ill of the Catholic 
Church ; it had been another and greater, that he 
had uttered what he thought ; and there was just this 
alleviation of his second siu, that he had not said it 
wantonly, and that he had said what others had said 
before him. There is nothing difficult or unnatural, 
surely, in this state of mind ; but it is not wonderful 
that to the mass of Protestants it was incomprehensible 
that any one should shrink from the display of that 
private judgment in which they themselves so luxu- 
riated, that any one should think of clearing himself 
from what in their eyes was simply a virtue, or should be 
shocked at having the credit given him of making use 
of a special privilege. 

of a Party in the National Church. 14^ 

But I have not yet arrived at the ultimate resolu- 
tion of faith, in the judgment of the theological party 
of 1833: the Anglican divines, it seems, were to be 
followed, but, after all, were they inspired more than 
the Prayer Book ? else, on what are we to say that their 
authority in turn depended ? Again, the answer was 
ready : The Anglican divines are sanctioned by that 
authority, to which they themselves refer, the Fathers 
of the Church. Thus spoke the party : now at length, 
you will say, they are brought to a point, when private 
judgment must necessarily be admitted; for who shall 
ascertain what is in the Fathers and what is not, with- 
out a most special and singular application of his own 
powers of mind, and his own personal attainments, to 
the execution of so serious an undertaking ? But not 
even here did they allow themselves to be committed 
to the Protestant instrument of inquiry, though this 
point will require some little explanation. It must be 
observed, then, that they were accustomed to regard 
theology generally, much more upon its anti-Protestant 
side than upon its anti-Eoman ; and, from the circum- 
stances in which they found themselves, w^ere far more 
solicitous to refute Luther and Calvin than Suarez or 
Bellarmine. Protestantism was a present foe ; Catho- 
licism, or Romanism as they called it, was but a pos- 
sible adversary; 'it was not likely," they said, "that 

144 The Movement not in the Direction 

Romanism should ever again become formidable in 
England;" and they engaged with it accordingly, not 
from any desire to do so, but because they could not 
form an ecclesiastical theory without its coming in 
their way, and challenging their notice. It was '' neces- 
sary for their position" to dispose of CathoHcism, but 
it was not a task of which they acquitted themselves 
with the zeal or interest which was so evident in their 
assaults upon their Protestant brethren. "Those who 
feel the importance of that article of the Creed," the 
holy Catholic Church, says a work several times quoted, 
"and yet are not Romanists, are hound on several 
accounts to show why they are not Romanists, and how 
they differ from them. They are bound to do so, in 
order to remove the prejudice with which an article of 
the Creed is at present encompassed. From the cir- 
cumstances, then, of the moment, the following Lectures 
are chiefly engaged in examining and exposing certain 
tenets of Romanism." ^ The author's feeling, then, seems 
to have been,— I should have a perfect case against this 

1 Proph Office, p. 7. I am not unmindful of the following " ground " 
for publishing the Translations of the Fathers, contained in the prospec- 
ts,, ._" IT The cxreat danger in which the Romanists are of lapsing into 
secr'et infidelity, not seeing how to escape from the palpable errors of 
their own Church, without falling into the opposite errors of ultra-Pro- 
testants It appeare.l an act of especial charity to point out to suca of 
hem !s'are diLatisfted with the state of their own Church, a body o 
ancient Catholic truth, free from the errors alike of -oderu Rome and 
of ultra-Protestantism." I have nothing to say in explanauon, but that 
this passac^e was not written by me, and that I do not consider it to 
have expressed my own feelings, or those of the movement. 

of a Party in the National Church. 145 

Protestantism but for these inconvenient " Eomanists/' 
whose claims I do not admit indeed, but who, contro- 
versially, stand in my way. 

But now, with this explanation, to the point before 
us : — The consequence of this state of mind was, that 
the persons in question were not very solicitous (if I 
dare speak for others) how far the Fathers seemed to tell 
for the Church of Eome or not; on the w^hole, they 
were sure they did not tell materially for her; but it 
was no matter, though they partially seemed to do so ; 
for their great and deadly foe, their scorn, and their 
laughing-stock, was that imibecile, inconsistent thing 
called Protestantism ; and there could not be a more 
thorough refutation of its foundation and superstruc- 
ture than w^as to be found in the volumes of the Fathers. 
There was no mistaking that the principles professed, 
and doctrines taught by those holy men, were utterly 
anti- Protestant ; and, being satisfied of this, which was 
their principal consideration, it did not occur to them 
accurately to determine the range and bounds of the 
teaching of the early Church, or to reflect that, perhaps, 
they had as yet a clearer view of what it did not sanc- 
tion, than of what it did. They saw, then, that there 
simply was no opportunity at all for private judgment, 
if one wished to exercise it ever so much, as regards the 
question of the anti-Protestantism of the Fathers ; it 
was a patent fact, open to all, written on the face of 
their works, that they were anti-Protestaut; you might 

146 The Movement not in the Direction 

defer to them, you might reject them, but you could as 
little deny that they were essentiaUy anti- Protestant, 
as you could deny that " the Eomanists " were anti- 
Protestants. It was a matter of fact, a matter of sense, 
which Protestants themselves admitted or rather main- 
tained; and here, in this public and undeniable fact, 
we have arrived at what the movement considered the 
ultimate resolution of its faith. It argued, for instance, 
- A private Christian may put what meaning he pleases 
on many parts of Scripture, and no one can hinder him. 
If interfered with, he can promptly answer, that it is his 
own opinion, and may appeal to his right of private 
judgment. But he cannot so deal with Antiquity: 
hist°ory is a record of facts; and facts, according to the 
proverb, are stubborn things." ^ And accordingly, these 
writers represented the Church as they conceived of it, 
as having no power whatever over the faith; her Creed 
was simply a public matter of fact, which needed as 
little explanation, as little interpretation, as the fact of 
her own existence. Hence they said: "The humblest 
and meanest among Christians may defend the faith 
against the whole Church, if the need arise. He has 
as much stake in it, and as much right to it, as Bishop 
or Archbishop ; . . . . aU that learning has to do for 
him is to ascertain the fact, what is the meaning of the 
(Jreed in particular points, since matter of opinion it > 

1 Proph. Office, p. 45- . . 

of a Party in the National Church, ] ^y 

not, an}^ more than the history of the rise and spread 
of Christianity itself." i 

Accordingly, as their first act, when they were once 
set off, had been to publish Catenas of the Anglican 
divines, so their second was to publish translations of 
the Fathers — viz., in order to put the matter out of 
their own hands, and throw the decision upon the j9W- 
mz^e judgment of no one, but on the common judgment 
of the whole community, Anglicans and Protestants at 
once. They considered that the Fathers had hitherto 
been monopolised by controversialists, who treated 
them merely as magazines of passages which might be 
brought forward in argument, mutilated and garbled 
for the occasion ; and that the greatest service to their 
own cause was simply to publish them.^ " A main 
reason," it was said, "of the jealousy with which 
Christians of this age and country adhere to the notion 
that truth of doctrine can be gained from Scripture by 
individuals is this, that they are unwilling, as they say, 
to be led by others blindfold. They can possess and 
read the Scriptures ; whereas, of traditions they are not 
adequate judges, and they dread priestcraft. I am not 
here to enter into the discussion of this feeling, whether 
praiseworthy or the contrary. However this be, it does 
seem a reason for putting before them, if possible, the 

1 p. 292. 

2 See this brought out in an article on the Apostolical Fathers, in the 
British Critic of January 1839. [Vide the author's "Essays: Critical 
Aind Historical," Xo. 5.] 

148 The Movement not in the Direction 

principal works of the Fathers, translated as Scripture 
is; that they may have by them what, whether used or 
not, will at least act as a check upon the growth of an 
undue dependence on the word of individual teachers. 
and will be a something to consult, if they have reason 
to doubt the Catholic character of any tenet to which 
they are invited to accede." ^ 

By way, then, of rescuing the faith from private 
teaching on the one hand, and private judgment on 
the other, it was proposed to publish a Library of the 
Fathers translated into English. And let it be ob- 
served, in pursuance of this object, the Translations 
were to be presented to the general reader without note 
or comment. It was distinctly stated in the Prospectus, 
that " the notes shall be limited to the explanation of 
obscure passages, or the removal of any misapprehen- 
Bion which might not improbably arise." And this- 
was so strictly adhered to at first, that the translation 
of St. Cyril's Catechetical Lectures was criticised in 
a Catholic Keview on this very ground; 2 and it was 
asked why his account of the Holy Eucharist was not 
reconciled by the Editor with the Anglican formularies, 
when the very idea of the Editor had been to bring out, 

1 Propli Office, p. 203. This pas.a^e, moreover, uegatives the charge,, 
sometimes advar.ce-l against the agents in the movement, that they 
wished every mdividaul Christian to gain his faith for himself by stuay 
of the Fathers. They have enough to bear without our imagimng 
absurdities. , 

2 Viz the "Dublin Keview." The rule of publishing without note 
or eminent was, in consequence of such objections, soon abandoned. 

of a Party in the National Church. 149 

fads, and leave the result to a judgment more authori- 
tative than his own, and favourable on the whole, as 
he hoped, in the event, to the Church to which he be- 
longed. "We can do no more," he had said in the 
Preface, " than have patience, and recommend patience 
to others; and with the racer in the Tragedy, look 
forward steadily and hopefully to the event, 'in the 
end relying,' when, as we trust, all that is inharmonious 
and anomalous in the details, will at length be practi- 
cally smoothed "1 


Such, then, was the clear, unvarying line of thought, 
as I believed it to be, on which the movement of 1833 
commenced and proceeded, as regards the questions of 
Church authority and private judgment. It was fancied 
that no opportunity for the exercise of private judg- 
ment could arise in any public or important mat- 
ter. The Church declared, whether by Prayer Book or 
Episcopal authority, what w^as to be said or done ; and 
private judgment either had no objection which it could 
make good, or only on those minor matters where there 
was a propriety in its yielding to authority. And the 
present Church declared what her divines had declared ; 
and her divines had declared what the Fathers had 
declared ; and what the Fathers had declared was no 
matter of private judgment at all, but a matter of fact, 

^ Page xi. 


The Movement not in the Direciion 

cognizable by all who chose to read their writings. 
Their testimony was as decisive and clear as Pope's 
Bull or Definition of Council, or catechisings or direc- 
tion of any individual parish priest. There was no 
room for two opinions on the subject ; and, as Catholics 
consider that the truth is brought home to the soul 
supernaturally, so that the soul sees it and no longer 
depends on reason, so in some parallel way it was sup- 
ppsed, in the theology of the movement, that that same 
truth, as contained in the Fathers, was a natural fact, 
recognised by the natural and ordinary intelligence 
of mankind, as soon as that intelligence was directed 
towards it. 

The idea, then, of the divines of the movement 
was simply and absolutely submission to an external 
authority; to such an authority they appealed, to it 
they betook themselves ; there they found a haven of 
rest; thence they looked out upon the troubled surge 
of human opinion and upon the crazy vessels which 
were labouring, without chart or compass, upon it. 
Judge then of their dismay, when, according to the 
Arabian tale, on their striking their anchors into the 
supposed soil, lighting their fires on it, and fixing in it 
the poles of their tents, suddenly their island began to 
move, to heave, to splash, to frisk to and fro, to dive, 
and at last to swim away, spouting out inhospitable jets 
of water upon the credulous mariners who had made it 
their home. And such, I suppose, was the undeniable 

of a Party in the National Church. r 5 1 

fact : I mean, the time at length came, when first of 
all turning their minds (some of them, at least) more 
carefully to the doctrinal controversies of the earh' 
Church, thej^ saw distinctly that in the reasonings of 
the Fathers, elicited by means of them, and in the 
decisions of authority, in which they issued, were con- 
tained at least the rudiments, the anticipation, the 
justification of what they had been accustomed to con- 
sider the corruptions of Eome. And if only one, or a 
few of them, were visited with this conviction, still even 
one was sufficient, of course, to destroy that cardinal 
point of their whole system, the objective perspicuity 
and distinctness of the teaching of the Fathers. But 
time went on, and there was no mistaking or denying 
the misfortune which was impending over them. They 
had reared a goodly house, but their foundations were 
falling in. The soil and the masonry both were bad. 
The Fathers would protect " Eomanists " as well as 
extinguish Dissenters. The Anglican divines would 
misquote the Fathers, and shrink from the very doctors 
to whom they appealed. The Bishops of the seven- 
teenth century were shy of the Bishops of the fourth ; 
and the Bishops of the nineteenth were shy of the 
Bishops of the seventeenth. The ecclesiastical courts 
upheld the sixteenth century against the seventeenth, 
and, regardless of the flagrant irregularities of Protes- 
tant clergymen, chastised the mild misdemeanours of 
Anglo-Catholic. Soon the living rulers of the Establi-sh- 

152 I'lie Movement not in the Direction 

ment began to move. There are those who, reversing 
the Eoman s maxim,i are wont to shrink from the con- 
tumacious, and to be valiant towards the submissive; 
and the authorities in question gladly availed them- 
selves of the power conferred on them by the move- 
ment against the movement itself. They fearlessly 
handselled their Apostolic weapons upon the Aposto- 
lical party. One after another, in long succession, they 
took up their song and their parable against it. It 
was a solemn war-dance, which they executed round 
victims, who by their very principles were bound hand 
and foot, and could only eye with disgust and per- 
plexity this most unaccountable movement, on the 
part of their " holy Fathers, the representatives of the 
Apostles, and the Angels of the Churches." It was the 
beginning of the end. 

My brethren, when it was at length plain that primi- 
tive Christianity ignored the National Church, and that 
the National Church cared little for primitive Christi- 
anity, or for those who appealed to it as her foundation ; 
when Bishops spoke against them, and Bishops' courts 
sentenced them, and Universities degraded them, and 
the people rose against them, from that day their 
"occupation was gone." Their initial principle, their 

1 "Parcere subjectis, et debelkre superbos." It may be right here to 
say. thac nhe author never can forget the great kindness which Dr. Bagot, 
at"'uiat time Bishop of Oxford, showe.i him on several occasions. He 
also has to noti-e the courtesy of Dr. Thirwall's language, a prelate whom 
he has never had the honour of knowing. 

of a Party in the National Church. 1 5 3 

basis, external authority, was cat from under them; 
they had " set their fortunes on a cast ; " they had lost ; 
henceforward they had nothing left for them but to shut 
up their school, and retire into the country. iSTothing 
else was left for them, unless, indeed, they took up 
some other theory, unless they changed their ground, 
unless they ceased to be what they were, and became 
what they were not ; unless they belied their own prin- 
ciples, and strangely forgot their own luminous and 
most keen convictions ; unless they vindicated the right 
of private judgment, took up some fancy-religion, re- 
tailed the Fathers, and jobbed theology. They had but 
a choice between doing nothing at all, and looking out 
for truth and peace elsewuere, 


And now, at length, I am in a condition to answer 
the question which you have proposed for my considera- 
tion. You ask me whether you cannot now continue 
what you were. No, my brethren, it is impossible 
you cannot recall the past ; you cannot surround your 
selves with circumstances which have simply ceased to 
be. In the beginning of the movement you disowned 
private judgment, but now, if you would remain a party, 
you must, with whatever mconsisteucy, profess it; — 
then you were a party only externally, that is, not in 
your wishes and feelings, but merely because you were 
seen to differ from others in matter of fact, when the 

154 The Movement not in the Direction 

world looked at you, whether you would or no ; but 
now you will be a party knowingly and on principle, 
intrinsically, and will be erected on a party basis. You 
cannot be what you were. You will no longer be 
Anglo-Catholic, but Patristico-Protestants. You will 
be obliged to frame a religion for yourselves, and then 
to maintain that it is that very truth, pure and celestial, 
which the Apostles promulgated. You will be induced 
of necessity to put together some speculation of your 
own, and then to fancy it of importance enough to din 
it into the ears of your neighbours, to plague the world 
with it, and, if you have success, to convulse your own 
Communion with the imperious inculcation of doctrines 
which you can never engraft upon it. 

For me, my dear brethren, did I know myself weU 
I should doubtless find I was open to the temptation, 
as well as others, to take a line of my own, or, what is 
called, to set up for myself ; but whatever might be my 
real infirmity in this matter, I should, from mere com- 
mon sense and common delicacy, hide it from myself, 
and give it some good name in order to make it palat- 
able. I never could get myself to say, '' Listen to me, 
for I have something great to tell you, which no one 
else knows, but of which there is no manner of doubt." 
I should be kept from such extravagance from an intense 
sense of the intellectual absurdity, which, in my feelings, 
such a claim would involve ; which would shame me as 
keenly, and humble me in my own sight as utterly, as 

of a Party in the National CIturch. 155 

Bonie moral impropriety or degradation. I should feel 
I was simply making a fool of myself, and taking on 
myself in figure that penance, of which we read in tlie 
Lives of the Saints, of playing antics and making faces 
in the market-place. Not religious principle, but even 
worldly pride, would keep me from so unworthy an 
exhibition. I can understand, my brethren, I can sym- 
pathise with those old-world thinkers, whose commen- 
tators are MantandD'Oyly, whose theologian is Tomline, 
whose ritualist is Wheatly, and whose canonist is Burns ; 
who are proud of their Jewels and their Chillingworths, 
whose works they have never opened, and toast Cranmer 
and Eidiey, and William of Orange, as the founders of 
their religion. In these times three hundred years is a 
respectable antiquity ; and traditions, recognized in law 
courts, and built into the structure of society, may 
well without violence be imagined to be immemorial. 
Those also I can understand, who take their stand upon 
the Prayer Book; or those who honestly profess to 
follow the consensus of Anglican divines, as the voice of 
authority and the standard of faith. Moreover, I can 
quite enter into the sentiment with which members of 
the liberal and infidel school investigate the history and 
the documents of the early Church. They profess a 
view of Christianity, truer than the world has ever had ; 
nor, on the assumption of their principles, is there 
anything shocking to good sense in this profession. 
They look upon the Christian Religion as somethinor 

156 The Movement not in the Direction 

simply human ; and there is no reason at all why a 
phenomenon of that kind should not be better under- 
stood, in its origin and nature, as years proceed. It is, 
indeed, an intolerable paradox to assert, that a revela- 
tion, given from God to man, should lie unknown or 
mistaken for eighteen centuries, and now at length 
should be suddenly deciphered by individuals ; but it 
is quite intelligible to assert, and plausible to argue, 
that a human fact should be more philosophically 
explained than it was eighteen hundred years ago, and 
more exactly ascertained than it was a thousand. His- 
tory is at this day undergoing a process of revolution ; 
the science of criticism, the disinterment of antiquities, 
the unrolling of manuscripts, the interpretation of 
inscriptions, have thrown us into a new world of 
thought ; characters and events come forth transformed 
in the process; romance, prejudice, local tradition, 
party bias, are no longer accepted as guarantees of 
truth; the order and mutual relation of events are 
readjusted; the springs and the scope of action are 
reversed. Were Christianity a mere work of man, it, 
too, might turn out something different from what it 
has hitherto been considered; its history might require 
re-writing, as the history of Rome, or of the earth's 
strata, or of languages, or of chemical action. A 
Catholic neither deprecates nor fears such inquiry, 
though he abhors the spirit in which it is too often 
conducted. He is willing that infidelity should do its 

of a Party in the National Chuych. 1 5 7 

work against the Church, knowing that she will be 
found just where she was, when the assault is over. It 
is nothing to him, though her enemies put themselves 
to the trouble of denying everything that has hitherto 
been taught, and begin with constructing her history 
all over again, for he is quite sure that they will end 
at length with a compulsory admission of what at first 
they so wantonly discarded. Free thinkers and broad 
thinkers, Laudians and Prayer-Book Christians, high- 
and-dry and Establishment-men, all these he would 
understand; but what he would feel so prodigious 
is this, — that such as you, my brethren, should con- 
sider Christianity given from heaven once for all, 
should protest against private judgment, should pro- 
fess to transmit what you have received, and yet 
from diligent study of the Fathers, from your thorough 
knowledge of St. Basil and St. Chrysostom, from living, 
as you say, in the atmosphere of Antiquity, that you 
should come forth into open day with your new edi- 
tion of the Catholic faith, different from that held in 
any existing body of Christians anywhere, which not 
half-a-dozen men all over the world would honour 
with their imprimatur ; and then, withal, should be 
as positive about its truth in every part, as if the 
voice of mankind were with you instead of being 
against you. 

You are a body of yesterday ; you are a drop in the 
ocean of professing Christians ; yet you would give the 

158 The Movement not in the Direction 

law to priest and prophet ; and you fancy it an humble 
office, forsooth, suited to humble men, to testify the very 
truth of Kevelation to a fallen generation, or rather to 
almost a long bi-millenary, which has been in unallevi- 
ated traditionary error. You have a mission to teach 
the National Church, which is to teach the British em- 
pire, which is to teach the world ; you are more learned 
than Greece ; you are purer than Eome ; you know 
more than St. Bernard; you judge how far St. 
Ihomas was right, and where he is to be read with 
caution, or held up to blame. You can bring to 
light juster views of grace, or of penance, or of invoca- 
tion of saints, than St. Gregory or St. Augustine, — 

" qualia viucunt 
Pj'thagoran, Anytiqne reum, doctumque Platona." 

This is what you can do ; yes, and when you have 
done all, to what have you attained ? to do just what 
heretics have done before you, and, as doing, have 
incurred the anathema of Holy Church. Such was 
Jansenius ; for of him we are told, " From the com- 
mencement of his theological studies, when he began 
to read, with the schoolmen, the holy Fathers, and 
especially Augustine, he at once saw, as he confessed, 
that most of the schoolmen went far astray from that 
holy Doctor's view, in that capital article of grace and 
free will. He sometimes owned to his friends, that he 
had read over more than ten times the entire works of 
Augustine, with lively attention and diligent annota- 

of a Party in the National Church. 1 5 9 

tion, and Lis books against the Pelagians at least thirty 
times from beginning to end. He said that no mind, 
whether Aristotle or Archimedes, or any other under 
the heavens, was equal to Augustine. ... I have heard 
him say more than once, that life would be most 
delightful to him, though on some ocean-isle or rock, 
apart from all human society, had he but his Augustine 
with him. In a word, after God and Holy Scripture, 
Augustine was his all in all. However, for many years 
he had to struggle with his old opinions, before he put 
them all off, aud arrived at the intimate sense of St. 
Augustine. . . . Tor this work, he often said, he was 
specially born ; and that, when he had finished it, he 
should be most ready to die." ^ Such, too, was another 
nearer home, on whom Burnet bestows this panegyric : 
— " Cranmer," says he, '• was at great pains to collect 
the sense of ancient writers upon all the heads of 
religion, by which he might be directed in such an 
important matter. I have seen two volumes in folio, 
written with his own hand, containing, upon all the 
heads of religion, a vast heap of places of Scripture, 
and quotations out of ancient Fathers, and later doctors 
and schoolmen, by which he governed himself in that 

And now, my brethren, will it not be so, as I have 
said, of simple necessity, if you attempt at this time to 

' Syuops, Vit.. ap. Opp. 1643. •■ • .... 

i6o The Movement not in the Direction 

perpetuate in the National Church a form of opinion 
which the National Church disowns? You do not 
follow its Bishops ; you disown its existing traditions ; 
you are discontented with its divines ; you protest 
against its law courts ; you shrink from its laity ; you 
outstrip its Prayer Book. You have in all respects an 
eclectic or an original religion of out own. You dare 
not stand or fall by Andrewes, or by Laud, or by Ham- 
mond, or by BuU, or by Thorndike, or by all of them 
together. There is a consensus of divines, stronger than 
there is for Baptismal Regeneration or the Apostolical 
Succession, that Rome is, strictly and literally, an anti- 
Christian power :— Liberals and High Churchmen in 
your Communion in this agree with Evangelicals ; you 
put it aside. There is a consensus against Transub- 
stantiation, besides the declaration of the Article ; yet 
many of you hold it notwithstanding. Nearly all your 
divines, if not all, call themselves Protestants, and you 
anathematize the name. Who makes the concessions 
to Catholics which you do, yet remains separate from 
them ? Who, among Anglican authorities, would speak 
of Penance as a Sacrament, as you do ? Who of them 
encourages, much less insists upon, auricular confession, 
as you ? or makes fasting an obligation ? or uses the 
crucifix, and the rosary ? or reserves the consecrated 
bread ? or believes in miracles as existing in your com- 
munion ? or administers, as I believe you do, Extreme 
Unction ? In some points you prefer Rome, in others 

of a Party in the National Church. i6i 

Greece, in others England, in others Scotland ; and 
of that preference your own private judgment is the 
ultimate sanction. 

What am I to say in answer to conduct so prepos- 
terous ? Say you go "by any authority whatever, and I 
shall know where to find you, and I shall respect you. 
Swear by any school of Eeligion, old or modern, by 
Eonge's Church, or the Evangelical Alliance, nay, by 
yourselves, and I shall know what you mean, and will 
listen to you. But do not come to me with the latest 
fashion of opinion which the world has seen, and pro- 
test to me that it is the oldest. Do not come to me at 
this time of day with views palpably new, isolated, 
original, sui generis, warranted old neither by Christian 
nor unbeliever, and challenge me to answer what I 
really have not the patience to read. Life is not long 
enough for such trifles. Go elsewhere, not to me, if 
you wish to make a proselyte. Your inconsistency, 
my dear brethren, is on your very front. Nor pretend 
that you are but executing the sacred duty of defending 
your own Communion : your Church does not thank you 
for a defence, which she has no dream of appropriat- 
ing. You innovate on her professions of doctrine, and 
then you bid us love her for your innovations. You 
cling to her for what she denounces ; and you almost 
anathematise us for taking a step which you would 
please her best by taking also. You call it restless, 

impatient, undutiful in us, to do what she would have 


1 62 TJie Movement not in the Direction 

us do ; and you think it a loving and confiding course 
in her children to believe, not her, but you. She is to 
teach, and we are to hear, only according to your own 
private researches into St. Chrysostom and St. Augus- 
tine. '' I began myself with doubting and inquiring," 
you seem to say; "I departed from the teaching I 
received ; I was educated in some older type of Angli- 
canism ; in the school of Newton, Cecil, and Scott, or 
in the Bartlett's-Building School, or in the Liberal Whig 
School. I was a Dissenter, or a Wesleyan, and by study 
and thought I became an Anglo -Catholic. And then 
I read the Fathers, and I have determined what works 
are genuine, and what are not ; which of them apply to 
all times, which are occasional ; which historical, and 
which doctrinal; what opinions are private, wha<- 
authoritative ; what they only seem to hold, what they 
ought to hold ; what are fundamental, what ornamental. 
Having thus measured and cut and put together my 
creed by my own proper intellect, by my own lucubra- 
tions, and differing from the whole world in my results, 
I distinctly bid you, I solemnly warn you, not to do as 
I have done, but to accept what I have found, to revere 
that, to use that, to believe that, for it is the teaching 
of the old Fathers, and of your Mother the Church of 
England. Take my word for it, that this is the very 
truth of Christ ; deny your own reason, for I know 
better than you, and it is as clear as day that some 
moral fault in you is the cause of your differing from 

of a Party in the National Church. 163 

me. It is pride, or vanity, or self-reliance, or fulness 
of bread. You require some medicine for your soul • 
you must fast ; you must make a general confession ; 
and look very sharp to yourself, for you are already 
next door to a rationalist or an infidel." 

Surely, I have not exaggerated, my brethren, what 
you will be obliged to say, if you take the course which 
you are projecting; but the point immediately before 
us is something short of this; it is, whether a party in 
the Establishment formed on such principles (and as 
things are now it can be formed on no other) can in 
any sense be called a genuine continuation of the 
Apostolical party of twenty years ago ? The basis of 
that party was the professed abnegation of private 
judgment ; your basis is the professed exercise of it. 
li you are really children of it as it was in 1833, jou 
must have nothing to say to it as it is in 1850. 

( i64 ) 





HEEE are persons who may think that the line of 
thought which I pursued in my last two Lectures 
had somewhat of a secular and political cast, and was 
deficient in that simplicity which becomes an inquiry 
after religious truth. We are inquiring, you may say, 
whether the National Church is in possession of the 
Sacraments, whether we can obtain the grace of Christ, 
necessary for our salvation, at its hands ? On this 
great question depends our leaving its communion or 
not ; but you answer us by simply bidding us consider 
which course of action will look best, what the world 
expects of us, how posterity will judge of us, what 
termination is most logically consistent with our com- 
mencement, what are to be the historical fortunes in 
prospect of a large body of men, variously circum- 
stanced, and subject to a variety of influences from 
without and within. It is a personal, an individual 

The Movement, etc. [65 

question to each inquirer; but you ^\ould have us 
view it as a political game, in which each side makes 
moves, and just now it is our turn, not, as it really 
is, a matter of religious conviction, duty, and re- 

But thus to speak is mistaking the argument alto- 
gether. First, I am not addressing those who have no 
doubt whatever about the divine origin of the Estab- 
lished Church. I am not attempting to rouse, or, as 

some would call it, unsettle them. If there be such 

for, to tell the truth, I almost doubt their existence 

I pass them by. I am contemplating that not incon- 
siderable number, who are, in a true sense, though in 
various degrees, and in various modes, inquirers ; who, 
on the one hand, have no doubt at all of the great Apos- 
tolical principles which are stamped upon the face of 
the early Church, and were the life of the movement of 
1833 ; and who, on the other hand, have certain doubts 
about those principles being the property and the life 
of the National Church— who have fears, grave anxieties 
or vague misgivings, as the case may be, lest that com- 
munion be not a treasure-house and fount of grace — 
and then all at once are afraid again, that, after all, 
perhaps it is, and that it is their own fault that they 
are blind to the fact, and that it is undutifulness in 
them to question it; — who, after even their most 
violent doubts, have seasons of relenting and com- 
punction; and who at length are so perplexed by 

1 66 The Movement not in the Direction 

reason of the clear light pouring in on them from 
above, yet by the secret whisper the while, that they 
ought to doubt their own perceptions, because (as they 
are told) they are impatient, or self-willed, or excited, 
or dreaming, and have lost the faculty of looking at 
things in a natural, straightforward way, that at length 
they do not know what they hold and what they do not 
hold, or where they stand, and are in conflict within, 
and almost in a state of anarchy and recklessness. 


j^ow, to persons in this cruel strife of thought, I offer 
the consideration on which I have been dwelling, as a 
sort of diversion to their harassed minds ; as an argu- 
ment of fact, external to themselves, and over which 
they have no power, which is of a nature to arbitrate 
and decide for them between their own antagonist 
judgments. You wish to know whether the Establish- 
ment is what you began by assuming it to be — the 
grace-giving Church of God. If it be, you and your 
principles will surely find your position there and your 
home. When you proclaim it to be Apostolical, it will 
smile on you ; when you kneel down and ask its bless- 
ing, it will stretch its hands over you ; when you would 
strike at heresy, it will arm you for the fight; when 
you wind your dangerous way with steady tread be- 
tween Sabellius, Nestorius, and Eutyches, between 
Pelagius and Calvin, it will follow you with anxious 

of a Branch CJhurch. 167 

eyes and a beating heart ; when you proclaim its 
relationship to Eome and Greece, it will in transport 
embrace you as its own dear children; you will sink 
happily into its arms, you will repose upon its breast, 
you will recognise your mother, and be at peace. If, 
however, on the contrary, you find that the more those 
great principles w^hich you have imbibed from St. 
Athauasius and St. Augustine, and which have become 
the life and the form of your moral and intellectual 
being, vegetate and expand within you, the moreaw^kward 
and unnatural you find your position in the Establish- 
ment, and the more difficult its explanation; if there 
is no lying, or standing, or sitting, or kneeling, or stoop- 
ing there, in any possible attitude ; if, as in the tyrant's 
cage, when you would rest your head, your legs are 
forced out between the Articles, and when you w^ould 
relieve your back, your head strikes against the Prayer 
Book ; when, place yourselves as you will, on the right 
side or the left, and try to keep as still as you can, 
your flesh is ever being punctured and probed by the 
stings of Bishops, laity, and nine-tenths of the Clergy 
buzzing about you ; is it not as plain as day that the 
Establishment is not your place, since it is no place 
for your principles ? Those principles are not there 
professed, they are not there realised. That mystical 
sacramental system on which your thoughts live, which 
was once among men, as you know well — and therefore 
must be always with them — is not the inheritance of 

1 68 The Movement not in the Direction 

Anglicanism, but must have been bequeathed to others , 
it must be sought elsewhere. You have doubts on the 
point already ; well, here is the confirmation of them. 
I have no wish, then, to substitute an external and 
political view for your personal serious inquiry. I am 
Uut assisting you in that inquiry; I am deciding exist- 
ing doubts, which belong to yourselves, by an external 
fact, which is as admissible, surely, in such a matter, as 
the allegation of miracles would be, or any other evi- 
dence of the kind ; for the same God who works in you 
individually, is working in the public and historical 
course of things also. 

I think, then, that in my last Lectures I have proved, 
not adequately, for it would take many words to do 
justice to a proof so abundant in materials, but as far 
as time allowed, and as was necessary for those who 
would pursue the thought, that the movement to wliich 
you and I belong, looks away from the EstabHshment, 
that " Let us go hence " is its motto. I cannot doubt 
you would agree with me in this, did you not belong to 
it, did you disbelieve its principles, were you merely 
disinterested, dispassionate lookers-on ; in that case you 
would decide that you must join some other com- 
munion: judge then as disbelieving, act as believing. 
If the movement be a providential work, it has a pro- 
vidential scope; if that scope be not in the direction of 
the Establishment, as I have been proving, in what 
direction is it ? Does it look towards Greece, or toward s 

of a Branch Church. 169 

America, or towards Scotland, or towards Eome ? This 
IS the subject which has next to be considered, and to 
which, in part, I shall address myself to-day. 

Here then, when you are investigating whither you 
shall go for your new succession and your new priest- 
hood, I am going to offer you a suggestion which, if it 
approves itself to you, will do away with the oppor- 
tunity, or the possibility, of choice altogether. It will 
reduce the claimants to one. Before entering, then, 
upon the inquiry, whither you shall betake yourselves, 
and what you shall be, bear with me while I give you 
one piece of advice ; it is this : — While you are looking 
about for a new Communion, have nothing to do with 
a " Branch Church." You have had enough experience 
of brancb churches already, and you know very well 
what they are. Depend upon it, such as is one, such 
is another. They may differ in accidents certainly ; 
but, after all, a branch is a branch, and no branch is a 
tree. Depend on it, my brethren, it is not worth while 
leaving one branch for another. While you are doing 
so great a work, do it thoroughly ; do it once for all ; 
change for the better. Eather than go to another 
brancb, remain where you are ; do not put yourselves 
to trouble for nothing ; do not sacrifice this world with- 
out gaining the next. Now let us consider this point 

170 The Movement not in the Direction 

By a Branch Churcli is meant, I suppose, if we 
interpret the metaphor, a Church which is separate 
from its stem ; and if we ask what is meant by the 
stem, I suppose it means the " Universal Church," as 
you are accustomed to call it. The Catholic Church, 
indeed, as understood by Catholics, is one kingdom or 
society, divisible into parts, each of which is in inter- 
communion with each other and with the whole, as the 
members of a human body. This Catholic Church, as 
I suppose you would maintain, has ceased to exist, or 
at least is in deliquium, for you will not give the name 
to us, nor do you take it yourselves, and scarcely ever 
use the phrase at all, except in the Creed; but a 
" Universal Church " you think there really is, and you 
mean by it the whole body of professing Christians all 
over the world, whatever their faith, origin, and tradi- 
tions, provided they lay claim to an Apostolical Suc- 
cession, and this whole is divisible into portions or 
branches, each of them independent of the whole, dis- 
cordant one with another in doctrine and in ritual, des- 
titute of mutual intercommunion, and more frequently 
in actual warfare, portion with portion, than in a state 
of neutrality. Such is pretty nearly what you mean by 
a Brancli, allowing for differences of opinion on the sub- 
ject ; such, for instance, is the Kussian Branch, which 
denounces the Pope as a usurper; such the Papal, 
which anathematises the Protestantism of the Anglican ; 

of a Branch Church. 171 

such the Anglican, which reprobates the devotions and 
scorns the rites of the Eussian ; such the Scotch, which 
has changed the Eucharistic service of the Ano-lican ; 
such the American, which has put aside its Athanasian 

Sucli, I say, is a Branch Church, and, as you will see 
at once, it is virtually synonymous with a National; 
for though it may be in fact and at present but one out 
of many communions in a nation, it is intended, by 
its very mission, as preacher and evangelist, to spread 
through the nation ; nor has it done its duty till it has 
so spread, for it must be supposed to have the promise 
of success as w^ell as the mission. On the other hand, 
it cannot extravagate beyond the nation, for the very 
principle of demarcation between Branch and Branch is 
the distinction of Nation or State ; to the Nation, then, 
or State it is limited, and beyond the Nation's boun- 
daries it cannot properly pass. Thus it is the normal 
condition of a Branch Church to be a National Church ; 
it tends to nationality as its perfect idea; till it is 
national it is defective, and when it is national it is all 
it can be, or was meant to be. Since, then, to under- 
stand what any being is, we must contemplate it, not 
in its rudiments or commencements, any more than in 
its decline, but in its maturity and its perfection, it 
follows that, if we would know^ what a Branch Church 
is, we must view it as a National Church, and we 
shall form but an erroneous estimate of its nature and 

172 The Movement not in the Direction 

its characteristics, unless we investigate its national 

EecoUect, then, that a Branch Church is a National 
Church, and the reason why I warn you against getting 
your orders from such a Church, or joining such a 
Church, as, for instance, the Greek, the Russian, or 
some Monophysite Church, is that you are in a National 
Church already, and that a National Church ever will 
be and must be what you have found your own to 
]3e, — an Erastian body. You are going to start afresh. 
"Well, then, I assert, that if you do not get beyond the 
idea of Nationalism in this your new beginning, you 
are just where you were. Erastianism, the fruitful 
mother of all heresies, will be your first and your last. 
You will have left Erastianism to take Erastianism up 
again, — that heresy which is the very badge of Angli- 
canism, and the abomination of that theological move- 
ment from which you spring. 

I here assert, then, that a Branch or National 
Church is necessarily Erastian, and cannot be other- 
wise, till the nature of man is other than it is ; and I 
shall prove this from the state of the case, and from 
the course of history, and from the confession, or rather 
avowal, of its defenders. The English Establishment 
is nothing extraordinary in this respect ; the Eussian 
Church is Erastian, so is the Greek ; such was the 
Nestorian ; such would be the Scotch Episcopal, such 
the Anulo- American, if ever the}' became commensurate 

of a Branch Church. 173 

with the nation. And now for my reasons for saying 



You hold, and rightly hold, that the Church is a 
sovereign and self-sustaining power, in the same sense 
in which any temporal State is such. She is sufficient 
for herself ; she is absolutely independent in her own 
sphere ; she has irresponsible control over her subjects 
in religious matters ; she makes laws for them of her 
own authority, and enforces obedience on them as the 
tenure of their membership with her. And you know, 
in the next place, that the very people, who are her 
subjects, are in another relation the State's subjects, 
and that those very matters which in one aspect are 
spiritual, in another are secular. The very same per- 
sons and the very same things belong to two supreme 
jurisdictions at once, so that the Church cannot issue 
any order, but it affects the persons and the things of 
the State ; nor can the State issue any order, without 
its affecting the persons and the things of the Church.. 
Moreover, though there is a general coincidence be- 
tween the principles on which civil and ecclesiastical 
welfare respectively depend, as proceeding from one- 
and the same God, who has given power to the Magis- 
trate as well as to the Priest, still there is no necessary 
coincidenxje in their particular application and resulting 
details, in the one and in the other polity, just as the 
good of the soul is not always the good of the body ; 

f 74 The Movement not in the Direction 

and mucli more is this the case, considering there is no 
divine direction promised to the State, to preserve it 
from human passion and human selfishness. You will, 
T think, agree with me in judging, that under these 
circumstances it is morally impossible that there should 
not he continual collision, or chance of collision, be- 
tween the State and the Church; and, considering 
the State has the power of the sword, and the Church 
has no arms but such as are spiritual, the problem to 
be considered by us is, how the Church may be able to 
do her divinely appointed work without let or hindrance 
from the physical force of the State. 

And a difficulty surely it is, and a difficulty which 
Christianity for the most part brought into the world. 
It can scarcely be said to have existed before ; for, if 
not altogether in Judaism, yet certainly in the heathen 
polities, the care of public w^orship, of morals, of educa- 
tion, was mainly committed, as well as secular matters, 
to the civil magistrate. There was once no independent 
jurisdiction in religion ; but, when our Lord came, it 
was with the express object of introducing a new king- 
dom, distinct and different from the kingdoms of the 
world, and He was sought after by Herod, and con- 
demned by Pilate, on the very apprehension that His 
claims to royalty were inconsistent with their preroga- 
tives. Such was the Church when first introduced into 
the world, and her subsequent history has been after 
the pattern of her commencement ; the State has ever 

of a BrancJi Church, 175 

"been jealous of her, and has persecuted her from with- 
out and bribed her from within. 

I repeat, the great principles of the State are those 
of the Church, and, if the State would but keep within 
its own province, it would find the Church its truest 
ally and best benefactor. She upholds obedience to the 
magistrate ; she recognises his office as from God ; she 
is the preacher of peace, the sanction of law, the first 
element of order, and the safeguard of morality, and 
that without possible vacillation or failure : she may 
be fully trusted ; she is a sure friend, for she is in- 
defectible and undying. But it is not enough for the 
State that things should be done, unless it has the doing 
of them itself; it abhors a double jurisdiction, and 
what it calls a divided allegiance ; aut Ccesar aut 7iullus, 
is its motto, nor does it willingly accept of any com- 
promise. All power is founded, as it is often said, on 
public opinion ; for the State to allow the existence of 
a collateral and rival authority, is to weaken its own ; 
and, even though that authority never showed its 
presence by collision, but never concurred and co-ope- 
rated in the acts of the State, yet the divinity with 
which the State would fain hedge itself would, in the 
minds of men, be concentrated on that Ordinance of 
■God which has the higher claim to it. 


Such being the difficulty which ever has attended, 

176 The Movement not in the Direction 

and ever will attend, the claims and the position of the 
Catholic Church in this proud and ambitious world, 
let us see how, as a matter of history, Providence has 
practically solved or alleviated it. He has done so 
by means of the very circumstance that the Church i» 
Catholic, that she is one organised body, expanded over 
the whole earth, and in active intercommunion part 
with part, so that no one part acts without acting on 
and acting with every other. He has broken the force 
of the collisions, which ever must be, between Church 
and State, by the circumstance that a large community, 
such as the Church, necessarily moves slowly ; and thia 
will particularly be the case when it is subject ta 
distinct temporal rulers, exposed to various political 
interests and prepossessions, and embarrassed by such 
impediments to communication (physical or moral, 
mountains and seas, languages and laws) as separation 
into nations involves. Added to this, the Church ia 
composed of a vast number of ranks and offices, so that 
there is scarcely any of her acts that belongs to one 
individual will, or is elaborated by one inteUect, or that 
is not rather the joint result of many co-operating- 
agents, each in his own place, and at his appointed, 
moment. And so fertile an idea as the Christian faith, 
so happy a mother as the Catholic Church, is necessa- 
rily developed and multiplied into a thousand various- 
powers and functions ; she has her Clergy and laity, 
lier seculars and regulars, her Episcopate and Prelacy,. 

of a Branch Church. 177 

her diversified orders, congregations, confraternities, 
communities, each indeed intimately one with the 
whole, yet with its own characteristics, its own work, 
its own traditions, its graceful rivalry, or its disgraceful 
jealousies, and sensitive, on its own ground and its own 
sphere, of whatever takes place anywhere else. And 
then again, there is the ever- varying action of the ten 
thousand influences, political, national, local, municipal, 
provincial, agrarian, scholastic, all hearing upon her; 
the clashing of temporal interests, the apprehension of 
danger to the whole or its parts, the necessity of con- 
ciliation, and the duty of temporising. Further, she 
has no material weapons of attack or defence, and is at 
any moment susceptible of apparent defeat from local 
misfortune or personal misadventure. Moreover, her 
centre is one, and, from this very circumstance, sheltered 
from secular inquisitiveness ; sheltered, moreover, in 
consequence of the antiquated character of its tradi- 
tions, the peculiarity of its modes of acting, the tran- 
quillity and deliberateness of its operations, as well as 
the mysteriousness thrown about it both from its pictu- 
resque and imposing ceremonial, and the popular opinion 
of its sanctity. And further still, she has the sacred 
obligation on her of long-suffering, patience, charity, of 
regard for the souls of her children, and of an anxious 
anticipation of the consequences of her measures. 
Hence, though her course is consistent, determinate, 
and simple, when viewed in history, yet to those who 

178 The Movement not in the Direction 

accompany the stages of its evolution from day to aay 
as they occur, it is confused and disappointing. 

How different is the bearing of the temporal power 
upon the spiritual ! Its promptitude, decisiveness, keen- 
ness, and force are well represented in the military host 
which is its instrument. Punctual in its movements, 
precise in its operations, imposing in its equipments, 
with its spirits high and its step firm, with its haughty 
clarion and its black artillery, behold, the mighty 
world is gone forth to war, with what ? with an un- 
known something, which it feels but cannot see ? which 
ihts around it, which flaps against its cheek, with the 
an^ with the wind. It charges and it slashes, and it 
tires its volleys, and it bayonets, and it is mocked by a 
foe who dwells in another sphere, and is far beyond the 
force of its analysis, or the capacities of its calculus. 
The air gives way, and it returns again; it exerts a 
gentle but constant pressure on every side; moreover, 
it is of vital necessity to the very power which is attack- 
mg it. Whom have you gone out against ? a few old 
men, with red hats and stockings, or a hundred pale 
' students, with eyes on the ground, and beads in their 
girdle; ihey are as stubble; destroy them;— then there 
wiU be other old men, and other pale students instead 
of them. But we will direct our rage against one ; he 
flees ; what is to be done with him ? Cast him out 
upon the wide world 1 but nothing can go on without 
bim. Then bring him back ! but he will give us no 

of a Branch Church 179 

guarantee for the future. Then leave him alone; his 
power is gone, he is at an end, or he will take a 'new 
course of himself: he will take part with tlie State or 
the people. Meanwhile the multitude of interests in 
active operation all over the great Catholic body rise 
up, as it were, all around, and encircle the combat, and 
hide the fortune of the day from the eyes of the world; 
and unreal judgments are hazarded, and rash predic- 
tions, till the mist clears away, and then the old man 
is found in his own place, as before, saying Mass over 
tlie tomb of the Apostles. Eesentment and animosity 
succeed in the minds of the many, when they find 
their worldly wisdom quite at fault, and that the weak 
has over-mastered the strong. They accuse the Church 
of craft. But, in truth, it is her very vastness, her 
manifold constituents, her complicated structure, which 
gives her this semblance, whenever she wears it, of 
feebleness, vacillation, subtleness, or dissimulation. 
She advances, retires, goes to and fro, passes to the 
right or left,, bides her time, by a spontaneous, not a 
dehberate action. It is the divmely-intended method 
of her coping with the world's power. Even in the 
brute creation, each animal which God has made has 
its own instincts for securing its subsistence, and 
guarding against its foes ; and, when He sent out His 
own into the world, as sheep among wolves, over and 
above the harmlessness and wisdom with which He 
gifted them, He lodged the security of His truth in the 

i8o 'flie Movement not in the Direction 

very fact of its Catholicity. The Church triumphs 
over the world's jurisdiction everywhere, because, 
though she is everywhere, for that very reason she 
is in" the fulness of her jurisdiction nowhere. Ten 
thousand subordinate authorities have been planted 
round, or have issued from, that venerable Chair where 
sits the plenitude of Apostolical power. Hence, when 
she would act, the blow is broken, and concussion 
avoided, by the innumerable springs, if I may use the 
word, on which the celestial machinery is hung. By 
an inevitable law of the system, and by the nature 
of the case, there are inquiries, and remonstrances, 
and threatenings, and first decisions, and appeals, and 
reversals, and conferences, and long delays, and arbitra- 
tions, before the final steps are taken in its battle with 
the State, if they cannot be avoided, and before the 
proper authority of the Church shows itself, whether 
in definition, or bull, or anathema, or interdict, or other 
spiritual instrument; and then, if, after all, persuasion 
has failed, and compromise with the civH power is 
impossible, the world is prepared for the event ; and even 
in that case the Sovereign Pontiff, as such, is spared 
any direct collision with it, for the reason that he is no 
subject in matters temporal of the State with which 
he is at variance, whatever it be, being temporal 
Sovereign in his own home, and treating with the 
States of the earth only through his secular represen- 
tatives and ministers. 

of a Branch Church. r^r 

The remarks I have been making are well illustrated 
by the history of our own great St. Thomas, in his 
contest with King Henry II. Deserted by his suffra- 
gans, and threatened with assassination, he is forced 
to escape, as he can, to the Continent. He puts his 
cause before the Pope, but with no immediate result, 
for the Pope is in contest with the Emperor, who has 
supported a pretender to the Apostolic See. Por two 
years nothing is done ; then the Pope begins to move, 
but mediates between Archbishop and King, instead 
of taking the part of the former. The King of Prance 
comes forward on the Saint's side, and his friends 
attempt to gain the Empress Matilda also. Strength- 
ened by these demonstrations, St. Thomas excommu- 
nicates some of the King's party, and threatens the 
King himself, not to say his realm, with an interdict. 
Then there are appeals to Piome on the part of the 
King's Bishops, alarmed at the prospect of such 
extremities, while the Pope on the other hand gives 
a more distinct countenance to the Saint's cause. 
Suddenly, the face of things is overcast ; the Pope has 
anathematised the Emperor, and has his hands fuU 
of his own matters ; Henry's agents at Eome obtain a 
Legatine Commission, under the presidency of a Car- 
dinal favourable to his cause. 

The quarrel lingers on ; two years more have passed, 
and then the Commission fails. Then St. Thomas 

1 82 The Movement not in the Direction 

rouses himself again, and is proceeding with the inter 
diet, when news comes that the King has overreached 
the Pope, and the Archbishop's powers are altogether 
suspended for a set time. The artifice is detected by 
the good offices of the French Bishops, the Pope sends 
comminatorv letters to the King, but, then again, does 
not carry them out. There is a reconciliation between 
the Kings of England and Prance, at the expense of 
St. Thomas ; but, by this time, the suspension is over, 
and the Saint excommunicates the Bishop of London. 
In consequence, he receives a rebuke from the Pope, 
who, after absolving the Bishop, takes the matter into 
his own hands, himself excommunicates the Bishop, 
and himself threatens the kingdom with an interdict. 
Then St. Thomas returns, and is martyred, winning 
the day by suffering, not by striking. 

Seven years are consumed in these transactions from 
first to last, and they aftbrd a sufficient illustration of 
the subject before us. If I add the remarks made on 
them by the editor of the Saint's letters, in Mr. Fronde's 
- Eemains," it is for the sake of his general statement, 
which is as just as it is apposite to my purpose, though 
I may not be able to approve of the tone or the drift of 
it. Speaking of St. Thomas, he says, '' His notions, both 
as regarded the justice and policy to be pursued in the 
treatment of Henry, had suggested this course [the 
interdict] to him from the first opening of the contest ; 
and he seems always to have had such a measure before 

of a Branch Church. 183 

him, only the interruptions occasioned by embassies 
from Eome, and appeals to Eome, and other temporary 
suspensions of his ecclesiastical powers, had prevented 
him from putting his purpose into effect ; these having, 
in fact, taken up almost the whole of the time. For 
an embassy, it must be observed, from the first day of 
its appointment, suspended the Archbishop's move- 
ments, who could do nothing while special and higher 
judges were in office. ... In this way, there being so 
much time, both before and after the actual holdincr of 
the conferences, during which the Archbishop's hands 
were tied, he may be said to have been almost under 
one sentence of suspension from the first, only rendered 
more harassing and vexatious from the promise afforded 
by his short intervals of liberty, and the alternations, 
in consequence, of expectation and disappointment. It 
was a state of confinement, which was always approach- 
ing its termination, and never realising it. With a 
clear line of action before him from the first, and with 
resolution and ability to carry it out, the Archbishop 
was compelled to keep pace, step by step, with a court 
that was absolutely deficient in both these respects ; and 
found himself reduced throughout to a state of simple 
passiveness and endurance." ^ Of course; — a Branch 
Church indeed, with the Catholic docmia and with 
Saints in it, cannot be; but, supposing the English 
Church had been such at the time of that contest, it 

^ Fronde's Remains, vol. iv. p. 449. 

1 84 The Movement riot in the Direction 

would, humanly speaking, have heen inevitably shat- 
tered to pieces by its direct collision with the civil 
power; or else, its Saints got rid of, its Erastianising 
Bishops made its masters, and ultimately its dogma 
corrupted, and the times of Henry VIII. anticipated;— 
this would have been the case, but for its intercom- 
munion with the rest of Christendom and the supremacy 

of Eome. 


This, however, is what has been going on, in one 
way or another, for the whole eighteen centuries of 
Christian history. For even in the ante-Nicene period, 
the heretic Patriarch of Antioch was protected by the 
local sovereign against the Catholics, and was dis- 
possessed by the authority and influence with the 
Imperial Government of the See of Eome. And since 
that time, again and again would the civil power, 
humanly speaking, have taken captive and corrupted 
each portion of Christendom in turn, but for its union 
with the rest, and the noble championship of the 
Supreme Pontiff. Our ears ring with the oft-told tale, 
how the temporal sovereign persecuted, or attempted, or 
gained, the local Episcopate, and how the many or the 
few faitliful fell back on Rome. So was it with the 
Avians in the East and St. Athanasius ; so with the 
Byzantine Empress and St. Chrysostom ; so with the 
Vandal Hunneric and the Africans; so with the 130 
Monophysite Bishops at Ephesus and St. Flavian ; so 

of a Branch Church 185 

was it in the instance of the 500 Bishops, who, by the 
influence of Basilicus, signed a declaration against the 
Tome of St. Leo ; so in the instance of the Henoticon 
of Zeno ; and so in the controversies both of the Mono- 
thelites and of the Iconoclasts. Nay, in some of those 
few instances which are brought in controversy, as de- 
rogatory to the constancy of the Eoman See, the vacil- 
lation, whatever it was, was owing to what, as I have 
shown, is ordinarily avoided, — the immediate and 
direct pressure of the temporal power. As, among a 
hundred Martyr and Confessor Popes, St. Peter and St. 
Marcellinus for an hour or a day denied their Lord, so 
if Liberius and Vigilius gave a momentary scandal to 
the cause of orthodoxy, it was when they were no 
longer in their proper place, as the keystone of a great 
system, and as the correlative of a thousand minister- 
ing authorities, but mere individuals, torn from their 
see and prostrated before Csesar. 

In later and modern times we see the same truth 
irresistibly brought out ; not only, for instance, in St- 
Thomas's history, but in St. Anselm's, nay, in the 
whole course of English ecclesiastical affairs, from the 
Conquest to the sixteenth century, and, not with least 
significancy, in the primacy of Cranmer. Moreover, 
we see it in the tendency of the Gallicanism of Louis 
XIV., and ilie Josephism of Austria. Such, too, is 
the lesson taught us in the recent policy of the Czar 
towards the United Greeks, and in the present bearing 

1 86 The Movement not in the Direction 

of the English Government towards the Church of Ire- 
land. In all these instances, it is a struggle between 
the Holy See and some local, perhaps distant, Govern- 
ment, the liberty and orthodoxy of its faithful people 
being the matter in dispute ; and while the temporal 
power is on the spot, and eager, and cogent, and per- 
suasive, and dangerous, the strength of the assailed 
party lies in its fidelity to the rest of Christendom and 
to the Holy See. 

Well, this is intelligible ; we see why it should be 
so, and we see it in historical fact : but how is it pos- 
sible, and where are the instances in proof, that a Church 
can cast off Catholic intercommunion without falling 
under the power of the State? Could an isolated 
Church do now, what, humanly speaking, it could not 
have done in the twelfth century, though a Saint 
was its champion ? Do you hope to do, my brethren, 
what was beyond St. Thomas of Canterbury ? Truly 
is it then called a Branch Church; for, as a branch 
cannot live of itself, therefore, as soon as it is lopped 
off from the Body of Christ, it is straightway grafted 
of sheer necessity upon the civil constitution, if it is 
to preserve life of any kind. Indeed, who could ever 
entertain such a dream, as that a circumscribed reli- 
gious society, without the awfulness of a divine origin, 
the sacredness of immemorial custom, or the authority 
of many previous successes, while standing on its own 
f^round, and simply subordinate as reoards its constitu- 

of a Branch Church.. 187 

ent members to the civil power, should be able to assort 
ecclesiastical claims, which are to impede the free action 
of that same sovereign power, and to insult its majesty ? 
— a subject hierarchy, growing out of a nation's very 
soil, yet challenging it, standing breast to breast against 
it, breathing defiance into its very face, striking at it 
full and straight, — why, as men are constituted, such 
a nuisance, as they would call it, would be intoler 
able. The rigid, unelastic, wooden contrivance would 
be shivered into bits by the very recoil and jar of the 
first blow it was rash enough to venture. But matters 
would not go so far ; the blandishments, the alliances, 
the bribes, the strong arm of the world, would bring it 
to its senses, and humble it in its own sight, ere it had 
opportunity to be valiant. The world would simply 
over - master the presumptuous claimant to divine 
authority, and would use for its own purposes the 
slave whom it had dishonoured. It would set her 
to sweep its courts, or to keep the line of its 
march, who had thought to reign among the stars of 

For, it is evident enough, a National or Branch 
Church can be of the highest service to the State, if 
properly under control. The State wishes to make its 
subjects peaceful and obedient; and there is nothing 
more fitted to effect this object than religion. It wishes 
them to have some teaching about the next world, but 
not too much : just as much as is important and bene- 

1 88 The Movement not in the Direction 

ficial to the interests of the present. Decency, order, 
industry, patience, sobriety, and as much of purity as 
can be expected from human nature, — this is its list 
of requisites ; not dogma, for it creates the odium theo- 
logicum ; not mystery, for it only serves to exalt the 
priesthood. Useful, sensible preaching, activity in bene- 
volent schemes, the care of schools, the superinten- 
dence of charities, good advice for the thoughtless and 
idle, and " spiritual consolation" for the dying— these 
are the duties of a National or Branch Church. The 
parochial clergy are to be a moral police; as to the 
Bishops, they are to be of&cers of a State-religion, not 
shepherds of a people ; not mixing and interfering in 
the crowd, but coming forward on solemn occasions to 
crown, or to marry, or to baptize royalty, or to read 
prayers to the House of Peers, or to consecrate churches, 
or Lo ordain and confirm, or to preach for charities, and 
to be but little seen in public in any other way. Synods 
are unnecessary and dangerous, for they convey the im- 
pression that the Establishment is a distinct body, and 
has rights of its own. So is discipline, or any practical 
separation of Churchmen and Dissenters ; for nation- 
ality is the real bond, and Churchmanship is but the 
accident, of Englishmen. Churches and churchyards are 
national property, and open to all, whatever their deno- 
mination, for marriage and for burial, when they will. 
Nov must the Establishment be in the eye of the law 
a corporation, even though its separate incumbents and 

of a Bi 'an ch Ch u rch . 189 

chapters be such, lest it be looked upon as politically 
more than a name, or a function of State. 


Now, in order to show that this is no exaggeration, 
I will, in conclusion, refer in evidence to the celebrated 
work of a celebrated man, in defence of the Establish- 
ment ; a work, too, which disowns Erastianism, and, in 
a certain sense, is written against it, and which, more- 
over, is, in breadth of doctrine, behind what would 
be maintained or taken for granted by statesmen now. 
For all these reasons, if I would illustrate what I have 
been saying of the certainty of a theoretical Branch 
Church becoming, in fact, and in the event, a Branch of 
the State, and of the liking of the State for Branch 
Churches and nothing else, I could not take a work fairer 
to the :N'atioiial Church, than " The Alliance of Churoh 
and State " of Bishop Warburton. A few extracts will 
be sufficient for my purpose. 

In this Treatise he tells us, that the object of the 
State in this alliance is, not the propagation of the 
truth, but the wellbeing of society. " The true end," 
he says, "for which religion is established," by the 
State, " is not to provide for the true faith, but for civil 
utility." ^ This is " the key," he observes, " to open the 
whole mystery of this controversy, and to lead " a man 
"safe through all the intricacies, windings, andperplex- 

' Bp. Warbunoii's "Alliance of Church aucl State," ]>. 148, ed. 1741. 

I go The Movement not in the Direction 

ities in which it has been involved." Next, religion is 
to be used for the benefit of that civil power, which, it 
seems, does not in any true sense provide for religion. 
" This use of religion to the State," he says, ' was seen 
by the learned, and felt by all men of every age and 
nation. The ancient world particularly was so firmly 
convinced of this truth, that the greatest secret of the 
sublime art of legislation consisted in this — how best 
religion might be applied to serve society." ^ 

Well, so far we might tolerate him ; such statements, 
if not simply true, are not absolutely unheard of or 
paradoxical ; but next he makes a startling step in ad- 
vance. " Public utility and truth coincide," - he says ; 
nay, further still, he distinctly calls public utility " a 
sure rule and measure of truth ;"3 so that he continues, 
by means of it the State " will be much better enabled 
to find out truth, than any speculative inquirer with all 
the aid of the philosophy of the schools."* ''From 
whence it appears," he continues, " that while a State, 
in union with the Church, hath so great an interest and 
concern with true religion, and so great a capacity for 
discovering what is true, religion is likely to thrive 
much better than when left to itself." The State, then, 
it would appear, out of compassion to Eeligion, takes 
it out of the schools, and adapts it to its own purposes 
to keep it pure and make it perfect. 

1 Bp. Warburton's '^Alliance of Church and State." p. i8. 

2 Ibid. p. 147. ^ Ibid. p. 135. * Ibid 

of a Branch Church. i q j 

He does not scruple to bring out this very sentiment 
in the most explicit statements, that there may be no 
mistake about his meaning. He considers conformity 
to objects of State, the sim])le rule of truth, of purity, 
of exaggeration, of excess, of perversity, and of danger- 
ousiiess in doctrinal teaching. " Of whatever use," he 
says, "an alliance may be thought for preserving the 
being of religion, the necessity of it for preserving its 

purity is most evident Let us consider 

the danger religion runs, when left in its natural state 
to itself, of deviating from truth. In those circum- 
stances, the men who have the greatest credit in the 
Church are such as are famed for greatest sanctity. 
:N^ow, Church sanctity has been generally undei stood to 
be then most perfect, when most estranged from the 
world and all its habitudes and relations. But this 
being only to be acquired by secession and retirement 
from human affairs, and that secession rendering man 
ignorant of civil society and its rights and interests, in 
place of which will succeed, according to his natural 
temper, all the follies of superstition or fanaticism, we 
must needs conclude, that religion, under such directors 
and reformers (and God knows these are generally its 
lot), will deviate from truth, and consequently from a 
capacity, in proportion, of serving civil society. 

. Such societies w^e have seen, who.<e religious 
doctrines are so little serviceable to civil society, that 
they can prosper only on the ruin and destruction of it. 

192 The Movement not in the Direction 

sTicli are those who preach up the sanctity of celibacy, 
asceticism, the sinfulness of defensive war, of capital 
punishments, and even of civil magistracy itself. Ou 
the other hand, when Eeligion is in alliance with the 
State, as it then comes under the magistrate's direction 
(those holy leaders having now neither credit nor power 
to do mischief), its purity must needs be reasonably 
well supported and preserved. For, truth and public 
utilitv coinciding, the civil magistrate, as such, will see 
it for his interest to seek after and promote the truth 
in religion; and, by means of public utility, which 
his office enables him so well to understand, he will 
never be at a loss to know where such truth is to be 
found." 1 

He takes delight in this view of the subject, and 
enf o]-ces it as follows :— " The means of attaining man's 
happiness here," he says, "is civil society; the means 
of his happiness hereafter is contemplation. If, then, 
opinions, the result of contemplation, obstruct the effects 
of civil society, it follows that they must be restrained. 
Accordingly, the ancient masters of wisdom, who, from 
these considerations, taught that man w^as born for 
action, not for contemplation, universally concurred to 
establish it as a maxim, founded on the nature of things, 
that opinions should always give way to civil peace." ^ 
And he proceeds to defend it as follows: "God so dis- 

1 Bp. Warburton's "Alliance of Church and State," p. .^S. 
'^ ib^d. p. 12(3. 

of a Branch Church. 193 

posed things, that the means of attaining the happiness 
. of one state [of existence] should not cross or obstruct 
the means of attaining the happiness of the other. 
From whence we must conclude, that where the sup- 
posed means of each — viz., opinions and civil peace — 
do clash, there one of them is not the true means of 
happiness. But the means of attaining the happiness 
peculiar to that state in which the man at present exists, 
being 'perfectly and infallibly known by man, and the 
means of the happiness of his future existence, as far 
as relates to the discovery of truth, but very imperfectly 
known by him, it necessarily follows that, wherever 
opinions clash with civil peace, those opinions are no 
means of future happiness, or, in other words, are either 
no truths, or truths of no importance." Behold the 
principle of the reasonings of the Committee of Privy 
Council, and the philosophy of the Premier's satisfac- 
tion thereupon ! Baptismal regeneration is determined 
to be true or not true, not by the text of Scripture, the 
testimony of the Fathers, the tradition of the Church, 
nay, not by Prayer Book, Articles, Jewell, Usher, 
Carleton, or Bullinger, but by its tendency to minister 
to the peace and repose of the community, to the con- 
venience and comfort of Downing Street, Lambeth, and 
Exeter Hall. 

If the Bishop makes doctrine depend upon political 
expedience, it is not wonderful that he should take the 
same measure of the Sacraments and Orders of his 


1 94 Tlie Movement not in the Direction 

Church. "Hence," he says, "may be seen the foUy 
of those Christian sects, which, under pretence that 
Christianity is a spiritual religion, fancy it cannot 
have rites, ceremonies, public worship, a ministry or 
ecclesiastical policy. Mt reflecting that without these 
it could never have hecome national, and consequently, 
could not have done that service to the State that it, 
of all religions, is most capable of performing." ^ And 
then in a note, on occasion of Burnet's statement, that 
« Sidney's notion of Christianity was, that it was like 
a divine philosophy in the mind, without public worship 
or anything that looked like a Church," he adds, "that 
an ignorant monk, who had seen no further than hifi 
cell, or a mad fanatic, who had thrown aside his reason, 
should talk thus is nothing; but that the great Sidney, 
a man so superlatively skilled in the science of human 
nature and civil policy, and who so well knew what reli- 
gion was capable of doing for the State, should fall into 
this extravagant error, is, indeed, very surprising." 

Accordingly, he mentions some of the details in which 
ecclesiastical ceremonies are serviceable to the State ; 
and in quoting his list and reasons of them, I shall 
conclude my extracts from his very instructive volume. 
"There are peculiar junctures," he says, "when the 
influence of religion is more than ordinarily serviceable 
to the State, and these the civil magistrate only knows. 
Now, while a Church is in its natural state of inde- 

i Bp. "Warburton's "Alliance of Church and State," p 104. 

of a Branch Church. i^^ 

pendency, it is not in his power to improve these con- 
junctures to the advantage of the State by a proper 
application of religion ; but when the alliance is made, 
and, consequently, the Church under his direction, he 
has the authority to prescribe such public exercises of 
religion, as days of humiliation, fasts, festivals, exhor- 
tations and dehortations, thanksgivings and deprecia- 
tions, and in such a manner as he finds the exigencies 
of State require." ^ 


And now I think I have shown you, my brethren, as 
far as I could hope to do so in the course of a Lecture, 
that if your first principle be, as it was the first prin- 
ciple of the movement of 1833, that the Church should 
have absolute power over her faith, worship, and teach- 
ing, you must not be contemplating an ecclesiastical 
body, local and isolated, or what you have been ac- 
customed to call a Branch Church. The fable of the 
bundle of sticks especially applies to those who have 
no weapons of flesh and blood,— to an unarmed hier- 
archy, who have to contend with the pride of intellect 
and the power of the sword. Look abroad, my brethren, 
and see whether this union of many members, divided 
in place and circumstances, but one in heart, is not 
most visibly the very strength of the Catholic Church 
at this very time. Then only can you resist the world, 

1 Bp. Warburton's "Alliance of Church and State," p. 63. 

ig(y The Movement, etc. 

when you belong to a communion which exists under 
many governments, not one; or should it ever be under 
some empire commensurate with itself (which is not 
conceivable), a communion which has, at least, an im- 
movable centre to fall back upon. But if this be the 
state of the case, if you must, on the one hand, leave 
the existing Establishment, yet, on the other, not seek 
or form a Branch Church instead of it, I have brought 
you by a short, but I hope, not an abrupt or unsafe 
path, to the conclusion that you must cease to be an 
Anglican by becoming a Catholic. Indeed, if the 
movement, of which you are the children, had any 
providential scope at aU, I do not see how you can 
disguise from yourselves that Catholicism is it. The 
Catholic Church, and she alone, from the nature of the 
case, is proof against Erastianism. 

( 19: 



TT was my object yesterday to show that such persons 
as are led by the principles of the anti-Erastian 
movement of 1833 to quit the Establishment, are neces- 
sarily called upon, as by one and the same act, to join 
the Catholic Church ; for the case is not supposable in 
reason, of their quitting the one without their joining 
the other. The ODly other course which lies open to 
them is either that of joining the communion of some 
other National or Branch Church, or, on the other hand, 
that of founding a Sect; but a Branch or N"ational 
Church is inevitably Erastian. This point I argued 
out at considerable length : and now I come to the 
second alternative, viz., that of founding a Sect, or as it 
is sometimes familiarly called, setting up for one's self. 
And I shall show to-day that, bad as it is for a man to 
take the State for his guide and master in religion, or 
to become an Erastian, it is worse still to become a 
Sectarian, that is, to be his own Doctor and his own 

198 The Movement not in the Direction 

What is really meant by a '' Church," is a religious 
body which has jurisdiction over its members, or which 
governs itself; whereas, according to the doctrine of 
Erastus, it has no such jurisdiction, really is not a 
body at all, but is simply governed by the State, and is 
one department of the State's operations. This is one 
error, and a great one ; it is an error, my brethren, which 
you have from the first withstood; but now I wish to 
show you that, if you will not accept of the Catholic 
Church, and submit yourselves to her authority, this 
said Erastianism is the least and the most tolerable 
error you can embrace ; that your best and most re- 
ligious of courses, which are all bad and irreligious, is 
to acquiesce in Erastianism at once ; to give up the 
principles on which you set out, and to teU the world 
that the movement of 1833 was a mistake, and that 
you have grown wiser. 


I would have you recollect, then, that the civil power 
is a divine ordinance ; no one doubts it. It is prior in 
history to ecclesiastical power. The Jewish lawgivers, 
judges, prophets, kings, had some sort of jurisdiction 
over the priesthood, though the priesthood had its dis- 
tinct powers and duties. The Jewish Church was not 
a body distinct from the State. In a certain sense, then, 
the civil magistrate is what divines call, "in posses- 
sion;" the onus prohandi lies with those who would 

r)f a Sect. 


encroach upon his power. He was in possession in 
the age when Christ came; he is in possession now 
in the minds of men, and in the prima facie view of 
human society. He is in possession, because the bene- 
fits he confers on mankind are tangible, and obvious to 
the world at large. And he is recognised and sanc- 
tioned in Scripture in the most solemn way ; nay, the 
very instrument of his power, by which he is strong, 
the carnal weapon itself, is formally committed to him. 
''Let every soul," says St. Paul, "be subject to the 
higher powers; for there is no power but from God; 
and those that are," the powers that be, " are ordained 
of God. Therefore he that resisteth the power, resis- 
teth the ordinance of God ; and they that resist, pur- 
chase to themselves damnation. For princes are not 
a terror to the good work, but to the evil. Wilt thou, 
then, not be afraid of the power ? Do that which is 
good, and thou shalt have praise from the same. For 
he is God's minister to thee for good. But if thou do 
that which is evil, fear, for he beareth not the sword in 
vain. For he is God's minister, an avenger to execute 
wrath upon him that doth evil." 

It is difficult to find a passage in Scripture more 
solemn and distinct than this — distinct in the duty 
laid down, and in the sin of transgressing it, and 
solemn in the reasons on which the duty is enforced. 
The civil magistrate is a minister, or, in a certain sense, 
a priest of the Most High ; for, as is well known, the 

200 The Movement not in the Direction 

word in the original Greek is one which commonly is 
appropriated to denote the sacerdotal office and func- 
tion. He is, moreover, " an avenger to execute wrath ; " 
he is the representative and image on earth of that 
awful attribute of God, His justice, as fathers are types 
and intimations of His tenderness and providence to- 
wards His creatures. Nor is this a solitary recognition 
of the divine origin and the dignity of the civil power : 

when Divine Wisdom, in the book of Proverbs, would 

enlarge upon her great works on the earth, she finds 
one principal and special instance of them to consist 
in her presence and operation in the rulers of the 
people. " By me," she says, " kings reign, and lawgivers 
decree just things : by me princes rule, and the mighty 
decree justice." And let it be observed, that the func- 
tion here ascribed to the civil magistrate, and requiring 
a peculiar gift, is one of those which especially enters 
into the idea of the times of the promised Messias. 
"Behold," says the Prophet, "a king shall reign in 
justice, and princes shall rule in judgment." Such is 
the civil power, the representative, and oracle, and in- 
strument, of the eternal law of God, with the power of 
life and death, the awful power of continuing or cutting 
short the probation of beings destined to live eternally. 
To it are committed all things under heaven ; it is the 
sovereign lord of the wide earth and its various fruits, 
and of men who till it or traverse it ; and it allots, and 
distributes, and maintains, the one for the benefit of the 

of a Sect. 20 1 

other. And as it is sacred in its origin, so may it be 
considered irresponsible in its acts, and treason against 
it, in some sort, rebellion against the Most High. 

ISTow, such being the office of the temporal power, and 
considering the manifold temporal blessings of which it 
is the source and channel, and the cruelty of disturbing 
the settled order of society, and the madness of the 
attempt, surely a man has to think twice, and ought to 
be quite sure what he is doing, and to have a clear case 
to produce in his behalf, before he sets up any rival 
society to embarrass and endanger it. Pause before you 
decide on such a step, and make sure of your ground. 
Surely it is not likely that God should undo His own 
work for nothing. He does not revoke His ordinances 
except when they have failed of their mission. He does 
not supersede them or innovate on them, except when 
He is about to commence a higher work than He has 
already committed to them. Judaism was supplanted 
by Christianity, because its law was unprofitable, and 
because the Gospel was a definite revelation and doc- 
trine from above, which required a more perfect organ 
for its promulgation. An institution was formed upon 
a new idea, and to it was transferred a portion of that 
authority which hitherto had centred in the State, and 
independence was bestowed on it ; but surely only be- 
cause it was able to do something which aucient philo- 
sophy and statesmanship had not dreamed of. Unless 
the duties of the Church had been different, or if thev 

202 The Movement not in the Direction 

had been but partially different, from the duties of the 
State, it is obvious to ask, for what conceivable reason 
should two societies be set up to do the work of one ? 
Is it likely that Almighty Wisdom would have set up 
a second without recalling the first ? would have con- 
tinued the commission to the first, yet sent forth a 
second upon the same field ? Such a course would simply 
have been adapted to kindle perpetual strife, and, if we 
may judge by appearances, to defeat the very purposes 
for which the civil power was appointed, and therefore 
is, in the highest degree, improbable, prior to some very 
clear proof to the contrary. This surely approves itself 
to the common sense of mankind. Either no Church 
has been set up in the world, or it is not set up for no- 
thing ; it must have a mission and a message of its own. 
Everything is defined, or made specific by its object : 
if the duties of the Church, its functions, its teaching, 
its working, be not specially distinct from those of the 
State, why, it will be impossible to resist the conclusion, 
that it was meant to be amalgamated with the State, 
to join on to it, to be a part of it, to be subordinate to 
it. We do not form two guilds for the same trade. 
Either assign to the Church its own craft, or do not ask 
that it should be chartered. Its object is its claim. 

This consideration is a sufficient exposure of the 
theory of Alliance between Church and State, of which 
I was led to speak yesterday. Warburton maintains 
that each power, the Church and the State, does sub- 

of a Sect. 203 

stantially just one and the same thing; the Church 
preaches truth, the State pursues expediency ; but 
Christian truth is identical with political expediency. 
There is no possible thesis which a preacher can put 
forth, or a synod could define as true, but is infallibly 
determined to be such (" infallible " is his word) by the 
political expedience and experience of ihe State. But 
if this be really so, what is the use of this second 
Society, which you put forth as naturally independent 
of the State, and as so high and mighty an ally of it ? 
I do not say that to preach is not a function different 
from speaking in Parliament, or reading prayers to a 
congregation from sitting in a police court ; the func- 
tions are different, and the functionaries will be differ- 
ent. But in like manner the function of a police 
magistrate is different from the function of a speaker 
in Parliament ; but you do not have a distinct society, 
divine in its origin, independent in its constitution, to 
exercise jurisdiction over members of Parliament or of 
the Police. I repeat, unless the Church has something 
to say and something to do, very different from what 
the State says and does, Erastianism is the doctrine of 
common sense, and must be very clearly negatived in 
Scripture if it is to be discarded. 


I will refer to another author in illustration. There 
was an anonymous work published, apparently in the 

204 The Movement not in the Direction 

character of a Scotch Episcopalian, some years befoie 
the movement of 1833 ; which, on supposed principles 
of Scripture, advocated a Branch or National Church, 
though the author would, I suppose, have preferred the 
words, " free," " independent," or " unestablished." Judg- 
ing from the internal evidence, the world identified him 
with a vigorous and original thinker, whom none could 
approach without being set thinking also, whether with 
him or contrary to him, and who has since risen to 
the very highest rank of the Anglican hierarchy.^ He 
wrote, partly in answer to Warburton, and partly to 
exhibit a counter-view of his own ; but, if he will 
pardon me in saying it, he is an instance of the same 
unreality and inconsistency which I have just been 
imputing to Warburton himself. 

" The supreme head on earth," he says, " of each 
branch of Christ's Church should evidently be some 
spiritual officer or body. Wliether the governor of the 
English Church were the primate, or the convocation, 
or both conjointly, or any other man or body of men, 
holding ecclesiastical authority, not attached to any 
civil office, nor in the gift of any civil governor, in 
either case the non-secular character of Christ's king- 
dom would be preserved. The king, in conjunction 
with the other branches of the legislature, ought to 
have a distinctly defined temporal authority over every 
one of his subjects, of whatever persuasion; and, of 

^ Dr. Whately. 

of a Sect. 205 

consequence, over the ministers and all other members, 
both of the Church of England and of every other 
religious community, Christian, Jewish, or Pagan, with- 
in his dominions ; but neither he, nor any other civil 
power, should interfere with articles of faith, liturgy. 
Church discipline, or any other spiritual matters. The 
kingdom of Heaven has no king but Christ ; and He 
delegated His authority to Apostles, and through them 
to Bishops and Presbyters ; not to any secular magis- 
trates. These, therefore, ought not, by virtue of their 
civil offices, to claim the appointment to any office in 
the Church." ^ You see, my brethren, what clear views 
this anonymous writer has of the jurisdiction of the 
Church; they are identical with your own, or rather 
they go beyond you. 

In consequence he speaks of its " degrading " the- 
sacred character of Articles and Liturgy, ''that they 
should stand upon the foundation of Acts of Parlia- 
ment ; that the spiritual rulers cannot alter them when 
they may need it; and that the secular power can, 
whether they need it or not. And accordingly," he 
continues, "it is almost a proverbial reproach, that 
yours is a ' parliamentary religion ; ' that you worship 
the Almighty as the Act directs; and that you are 
bound to seek for salvation 'according to the law in 
that case made and provided' by kings, lords, and 

1 Letters on the Church, p. 181. Dr. Whately never, I believe, owned 
to the authorship of this work. 

2o6 The Movement not in the Direction 

commons ; under the directions of the ministers of 
State; of persons," he adds, with a prophetic eye to- 
wards 1850, "who may be eminently well* fitted for 
their civil offices, and who may indeed chance to be not 
only exemplary Christians, but sound divines, but who 
certainly are not appointed to their respective offices 
with any sort of view to their spiritual functions, who 
cannot even pretend that any sort of qualification for 
the good regulation of the Church is implied by their 
holding such stations as they do. Can this possibly be 
agreeable to the designs and institutions of Christ and 
His Apostles ? If any one will seriously answer in the 
affirmative, he is beyond my powers of argumentation."^ 
Presently he observes, " The English Government 
seems to have a delight and a pride, in not only making 
the clergy do as much as possible in return for the pro- 
tection they enjoy, but in enforcing their services in 
the most harsh and mortifying way. Like the ancient 
Persian soldiers, they are brought into the field under 
the lash of perpetual penalties, which serve to keep 
your ministers in a state of degradation as well as of 
dependence on the State, which I defy you to parallel 
in any other Christian Church that ever existed." 2 He 
then compares certain of the clergy to the dog in the 
fable, who mistook the clog round his neck for a badge 
of honourable distinction. He continues, " Altogether, 
indeed, I cannot but say, if I must speak out, there is 
^ p. 119- ^ p. 125. 

of a Sect. 207 

another fable respecting a dog, of which the conditiou 
of your Church strongly reminds me. Your American 
brethren, for instance, and some others, might say to 
you, as the lean and hungry wolf did to the well-fed 
mastiff, *you are fat and sleek, indeed, while I am 
gaunt and half-famished, but what means that mark 
round your neck ? ' You must do this, under a penalty ; 
and you must not do that under a penalty; you must 
■comply with the rubric, and yet, at the same time, you 
must not comply with the rubric. ... In short, you 
^re fettered and crippled and disabled in every joints 
by your alliance with a body of a different charactei; 
which could not, even with the best intentions, fail 
to weaken instead of aiding you; but which, in fact, 
aims chiefly at making a tool of you. But some oi 
you seem so habituated to this dependence of the 
Church on the State, and so fond of it, as to have even 
solicited interference in a case which could not concern 
the civil community, and which the secular magistrate 
was likely to care about as little as Gallio. An English 
bishop did not dare to ordain an American to officiate 
in a country not under British dominion, without ask- 
ing and obtaining permission of his government, which 
had just as much to do with the business as the 
■government of Abyssinia." ^ 

Now all this is very ably put, and very true ; but the 
•question comes upon the reader, What is the meaning 

'■ p. I2q, 

2o8 The Movement not in the Direction 

and object of the sweeping ecclesiastical changes which 
are advocated by this author ? We must not take to- 
pieces the constitution and re- write the law for nothing. 
What would be gained by his recommendations prac- 
tically ? And what are they intended to accomplish or 
secure ? Is it a gymnastical display or " agonism," as 
the heathen author calls it, from the Academy or the 
Garden, or a clever piece of irony which he presents to 
our perusal, or is it the grave and earnest sermon of 
one who would practise what he preaches, and would 
not partake of what he condemns ? Now I will do the 
writer the justice to confess, that he does not agi^eo: 
with Warburton in considering that truth is measured 
by political expediency. He is too honest, too generous,, 
too high-minded, too sensible, for so miserable a para- 
dox; but, considering the far higher views he takes of the 
position of the Church, how he frets under her humilia- 
tion, how nobly zealous he is for her liberty, certainly 
he will be guilty of a different, indeed, but a not less 
startling paradox himself, if he has such exalted notions 
of the Church, and yet gives her nothing to do. War- 
burton recognises the Church in order to destroy it ; he 
thinks it never has existed, or rather never ought to^ 
have existed in its proper nature, but, from its first mo- 
ment of creation, ought to have been dissolved into the 
constitution of the State. But our author makes much 
ado about ecclesiastical rights and privileges, which he- 
considers divinely bestowed, and, therefore, indefeasible,- 

of a Sect. 209 

He thinks the Church so pure and celestial, as to be 

insulted, defiled, by any communion with things simply 

secular. " My kingdom is not of this world," said our 

Lord, and, therefore, it seems, no ecclesiastical person 

must, as such, have a seat in Parliament, and, on the 

other hand, neither King nor Parliament, as such, must 

be able to appoint a fast day. '• It was," he says, 

" Satan who first proposed an alliance between the 

Christian Church and the State, by offering temporal 

advantages in exchange for giving up some of the 

'things that be God's/ and which we ought to 'render 

unto God,'— for not ' serving Him only,' whom only we 

ought to serve. The next, I am inclined to think, who 

proposed to himself this scheme, and endeavoured to 

bring it about, was Judas Iscariot." ^ 

Well, then, if the Church be a kingdom, or govern- 
ment, not of this world, I do trust' you have provided 

for her a message, a function, not of this world, 

something distinct, something special, something which 
the world cannot do, which "eye hath not seen, nor 
ear heard, nor heart of man conceived." It is not 
enough to give her morality to preach about; why 
a heaven-appointed Society for that ? With the Bible 
in his hands, if that be all, I do not see why one 
man, if properly educated, should not preach morality 
as well as another, without any disturbance of the 
fights of the magistrate or the order of civil society, 
^ p- 97. 

2IO The Moveinent not in the Directiou 

It is sometimes said in bitterness that the Church's 
work is priestcraft ; I have already accepted the word ; 
it is a craft, a craft in the same sense that goldsmiths' 
work, or architecture, or legal science is a craft; it 
must have its teaching, its intellectual and moral 
habits, its long experience, its precedents, its tradi- 
tions; nay, it must have all these in a much higher 
sense than crafts of this world, if it is to claim to 
come from above. The more certainly the Church 
is a kino-dom of heaven, and, as the author is so fond 
of saying, "not of this world," the more certain is 
it that she must have simply a heavenly work also, 
which the world cannot do for itself. 

Now, I fear, I must say, I see no symptoms at 
all of the writer in question intending to make his 
pattern- Church answer to this most reasonable ex- 
pectation. There is nothing in his book to show that 
he entrusts his Church with any special doctrine or 
work of any kind. Whatever he may say, there is 
nothing to show why a lawyer, or a physician, or 
a scientific professor, or a country gentleman, or any 
one who has his evenings to himself, and is of an 
active turn, should not do everything which he 
ascribes to his heaven-born society. If, for instance, 
religion has its mysteries, if it has its fertile dogmas 
and their varied ramifications, if it has its theology, 

of a Sect. 2 1 T 

If il has its long line of momentous controversions, its 
careful ventilation of questions, and its satisfactory 
and definite solutions; if, moreover, it has its special 
work, its substantial presence in the midst of us, its 
daily gifts from heaven, and its necessary ministries 
thence arising, then we shall see the meaning, we 
shall adore the wisdom, of the Divine Governor of 
all, in havmg done a new thing upon the earth when 
Christ came, in having withdrawn a jurisdiction He 
had once given to the State, and having bestowed 
it on a special ordinance created for a special pur- 
pose. But in proportion as this author fails in this 
just anticipation, and disappoints the common sense 
of mankind, if he has nothing better to tell us than 
that one man's opinion is as good as another's : that 
Fathei's and Schoolmen, and the greater number of 
Anglican divines, are puzzled- headed or dishonest; 
that heretics have at least this good about them, that 
they are in earnest, and do not take doctrines for 
granted; that religion is simple, and theologians have 
made it hard ; that controversy is on the whole a 
logomachy; that we must worship in spirit and in 
truth ; that we ought to love truth ; that few people 
love truth for its own sake; that %ve ought to be 
candid and dispassionate, to avoid extremes, to eschew 
party spirit, to take a rational satisfaction in contem- 
plating the works of nature, and not to speculate 
about " secret thincrs ; " that our Lord came to teach 

2 12 The Movement not in the Direction 

us all this, and to gain us immortality by His death, 
and the promise of spiritual assistance, and that this 
is pretty nearly the whole of theology; and that at 
least all is in the Bible, where every one may read 
it for himself — (and I see no evidence whatever of 
his going much beyond this round of teaching) — then, 
I say, if the work and mission of Christianity be so 
level in its exercise to the capacities of the State, 
surely its ministry also is within the State's jurisdic- 
tion. I cannot believe that Bishops, and clergymen, 
and councils, and convocations have been divinely 
sent into the world, simply or mainly to broach 
opinions, to discuss theories, to talk literature, to dis- 
play the results of their own speculations on the text 
of Scripture, to create a brilliant, ephemeral, ever- 
varying theology, to say in one generation what the 
next will unsay; else, why were not our debating 
clubs and our scientific societies ennobled with a 
divine charter also ? God surely did not create the 
visible Church for the protection of private judgment : 
private judgment is quite able to take care of itself. 
This is no day for what are popularly called '' shams.'* 
Many as are its errors, it is aiming at the destruction 
of shadows and the attainment of what is either 
sensibly or intellectually tangible. Why, then, should 
we have so much bustle and turmoil about "supre- 
macy," and " protection," and " alliance," and " autho- 
rity," and " indefeasible rights," and " encroachments,'* 

of a Sect. 213 

and " usurpations," after the manner of this writer, if 
all the effort and elaboration is to be in its result but 
a mountain in labour, bringing forth nothing ? 

The State claims the allegiance of its subjects on 
the ground of the tangible benefits of which it is the 
instrument towards them. Its strength lies in this 
undeniable fact, and its subjects endure and maintain 
its coercion and its laws, because the certainty of 
this fact is ever present to their minds. What mean 
the array and the pomp which surround the Sovereign, 
— the strict ceremonial, the minute etiquette, the 
almost unsleeping watchfulness which eyes her every 
motion, which follows her into her garden and her 
chamber, which notes down every shade of her coun- 
tenance and every variation of her pulse ? Why do 
her soldiers hover about her, and officials line her 
ante-rooms, and cannon and illumination carry forward 
the tiding of her progresses among her people ? Is 
this all a mockery? Is it done for nothing? Surely 
not; in her is centred the order, the security, the 
happiness of a great people. And, in like manner, 
the Church must be the guardian of a fact ; she must 
have something to produce ; she must have something 
to do. It is not enough to be keeper of even an 
inspired book: for there is nothing to show that her 
protection of it is necessary at this day. The State 
might fairly commit its custody to the art of printing, 
and dissolve an institution whose occupation was no 

2 1 4 The Movement not in tJie Direction 

more. She must, in order to have a meaning, do that 
which otherwise cannot be done, which she alone can 
do. She must have a benefit to bestow, in order to 
be worth her existence; and the benefit must be a 
fact which no one can doubt about. It must not 
be an opinion, or matter of opinion, but a something 
which is like a first principle, which may be taken 
for granted, a foundation indubitable and irresistible. 
In other words, she must have a dogma and Sacra- 
ments; — it is a dogma and Sacraments, and nothing 
else, which can give meaning to a Church, or sustain 
her against the State; for by these are meant certain 
facts or acts which are special instruments of spiritual 
good to those who receive them. As we do not gain 
the benefits of civil society unless we submit to its 
laws and customs, so we do not gain the spiritual 
blessings which the Church has to bestow upon us, 
unless we receive her dogmas and her Sacraments. 

This, yon know, is understood by every fanatic who 
would collect followers and form a sect. Who would 
ever dream of collecting a congregation, and having 
nothing to say to them ? No ! they think they have 
that to offer to the world which cannot otherwise be 
obtained. They do not bring forward mere opinions ; 
they do not preach a disputable doctrine ; but they 
assert, boldly and simply, that he who believes them 
will be saved. They announce, for instance, that every 
one must undergo the new binh, and for this they 

of a Sect. 215 

organise their society ; viz., in order to preach and to 
testify, to realise and to perpetuate in the world this 
great and necessary fact, — the new birth of the soul. 
Or, again, they have a commission to do miracles, or 
they can prophesy, or they are sent to declare the end 
of the world. Something or other they do, which the 
existing establishments of Church and State do not, 
and cannot do. 


This being the state of the case, consider how entirely 
the reasonable anticipation of our minds is fulfilled in 
the professions of the Catholic Church. A Protestant 
wanders into one of our chapels; he sees a priest kneel- 
ing and bowing and throwing up a thurible, and boys in 
cottas going in and out, and a whole choir and people sing- 
ing amain all the time, and he has nothing to suggest to 
him what it is all about; and he calls it mummery, and 
he walks out again. And would it not indeed be so, my 
brethren, if this were all ? But will he think it mummery 
when he learns and seriously apprehends the fact, that, 
according to the belief of a Catholic, the Word Incarnate, 
the Second Person of the Eternal Trinity, is there bodily 
present, — hidden, indeed, from our senses, but in no 
other way withheld from us ? He may reject what we 
believe ; he will not wonder at what we do. And so, 
again, open the Missal, read the minute directions given 
for the celebration of Mass, — what are the fit disposi- 

2 1 6 The Movement not in the Direction 

tions under which the Priest prepares for it, how he is 
to arrange his every action, movement, gesture, utterance, 
durincr the course of it, and what is to be done in case 
of a variety of supposable accidents. What a mockery 
would all this be, if the rite meant nothing ! But if it 
be a fact that God the Son is there offered up in human 
flesh and blood by the hands of man, why, it is plain 
that no rite whatever, however anxious and elaborate, 
is equal to the depth of the overwhelming thoughts 
which are borne in upon the mind by such an action 
Thus the usages and ordinances of the Church do not 
exist for their own sake ; they do not stand of them- 
selves : they are not sufficient for themselves ; they do 
not hght against the State their own battle ; they are 
not appointed as ultimate ends; but they are dependent 
on an inward substance ; they protect a mystery ; they 
defend a dogma ; they represent an idea ; they preach 
good tidings; they are the channels of grace. They 
are the outward shape of an inward reality or fact, 
which no Catholic doubts, which is assumed as a first 
principle, which is not an inference of reason, but the 
object of a spiritual sense. 

Herein is the strength of the Church; herein she 
differs from all Protestant mockeries of her. She pro- 
fesses to be built upon facts, not opinions; on objective 
truths, not on variable sentiments ; on immemorial tes- 
timony, not on private judgment ; on convictions or 
perceptions, not on conclusions. iSTone else but she can 

of a Sect. 2 1 7 

make this profession. She makes high claims against 
the temporal power, but she has that within her which 
justifies her. She merely acts out what she says she 
is. She does no more than she reasonably should do. 
If God has given her a specific work, no wonder she is 
not under the superintendence of the civil magistrate 
in doing it. If her Clergy be Priests, if they can for- 
give sins, and bring the Son of God upon her altars, it 
is obvious they cannot, considered as such, hold of the 
State. If they were not Priests, the sooner they were 
put under a minister of public instruction, and the 
Episcopate abolished, the better. But she has not dis- 
turbed the world for nothing. Her precision and per- 
emptoriness, all that is laid to her charge as intolerance 
and exclusiveness, her claim entirely to understand and 
to be able to deal with her own deposit and her own 
functions; her claim to reveal the unknown and to 
communicate the invisible, is, in the eye of reason (so 
far from being an objection to her coming from above), 
the very tenure of her high mission, — ^just what w^ould 
be sure to characterise her if she had received such a 
mission. She cannot be conceived without her messasfe 
and her gifts. She is the organ and oracle, and nothing 
else, of a supernatural doctrine, which is independent 
of individuals, given to her once for all, coming down 
from the first ages, and so deeply and intimately embo_ 
somed in her, that it cannot be clean torn out of her, 
even if you should try; which gradually and majesti- 

2t8 Tfie Movement not m the Direction 

cally comes forth into dogmatic shape, as time goes on 
and need requires, still by no private judgment, but at 
the will of its Giver, and by the infallible elaboration 
of the whole body ; — and which is simply necessary for 
the salvation of every one of us. It is not a philosophy, 
or literature, cognisable and attainable at once by those 
who cast their eyes that way; but it is a sacred deposit 
and tradition, a mystery or secret, as Scripture calls it, 
sufficient to arrest and occupy the ^^•hole intellect, and 
unlike anything else; and hence requiring, from the 
nature of the case, organs special to itself, made for the 
purpose, whether for entering into it.-, fulness, or carry- 
ing it out in deed. 


And now, my brethren, you may have been some 
time asking yourselves how all this bears upon tb.e par- 
ticular subject on which these Lectures are engaged ; 
and yet I think it bears upon it very closely and signi- 
ficantly. For, perhaps, you may have said, in answer 
to my Lecture of yesterday, " We do not aim at forming 
a Branch Church ; we put before us a really humble 
work. We have no ambition, no expectation of spread- 
ing through the nation, or of spreading at all. We do 
but mean to preserve for future times what we hold to 
be the truth. As books are consigned to some large 
library, with a simple view to their security, not let out 
to the world, and apparently useless, but yet with a 

of a SacJ. 219 

definite object and benefit, — 'though for no other cause, 
yet for this/ as Hooker says, ' that posteriiy may know 
we have not loosely through silence permitted things 
to pass away as in a dream,' — so, we care not to be suc- 
cessful in our day ; we are willing to be despised ; we 
do but aim at transmitting Catholic doctrine in its purest 
and most primitive form to posterity. We are willing 
to look like a small sect at the gate of the National 
Church, when really we are the heirs of the Apostles. 
We do not boast of this ; we do not wish to inflict it 
upon the world ; leave us to ourselves quietly and un- 
ostentatiously to transmit our burden to posterity in 
our own way." 

I say, in reply, my brethren, that so far you are right, 
that you at least profess to have something to transmit ; 
but be you sure withal that you have it, and know what 
it is. It will not do to have only a vague idea of it, if 
it is to form the basis of a communion ; you must be at 
home with it, and must have surveyed it in its various 
aspects, and must be clear about it, and be prepared to 
state decisively to all inquirers its ground, its details, 
and its consequences, and must be able to say, unequi- 
vocally, that it comes from heaven ; — or it will not serve 
your purpose. I am not sanguine that you will be able 
to do this even as regards the Sacrament of Baptism; 
differences have already risen among you as to the 
relative importance, at least under circumstances, of 
separate portions of the doctrine ; and when you come 

2 20 The Movement not in the Direction 

to define the consequences of sin after it, and the re- 
medies of that sin, your variations and uncertainties 
will be greater still. And much more of other doctrines ; 
there is hardly one of which you will be able to take a 
clear and complete view. I say, then, Do not set up a 
sect, till you are quite sure what is to be its creed. 

In the commencement of the movement of 1833, much 
interest was felt in the Non- jurors. It was natural 
that inquirers who had drawn their principles from the 
primitive Church, should be attracted by the exhibition 
of any portion of those principles anywhere in, or about, 
an Establishment which was so emphatically opposed 
to them. Therefore, in their need, they fixed their eyes 
on a body of m.en who were not only sufferers for 
conscience' sake, but held, in connection with their 
political principles, a certain portion of Catholic truth. 
But, after all, what is, in a word, the history of the Non- 
jurors, for it does not take long to tell it ? A party 
composed of seven Bisiiops and some hundred Clergy, 
virtuous and learned, and, as regards their leaders, even 
popular, for political services lately rendered to the 
nation, is hardly formed but it begins to dissolve and 
come to nought, and that, simply because it had no 
sufficient object, represented no idea, and proclaimed no 
dogma. What should keep it together ? why should it 
exist ? To form an association is to go out of the way, 

of a Sect. 221 

and ever requires an excuse or an account of so preten- 
tious a proceeding. Such were the ancient apoloo-ies 
put forward for the Church in her first age ; such the 
Apologies of the Anglican Jewell, and the Quaker 
Barclay. What was the apology of the ISTon-jurors ? 
Now^ their secession, properly speaking, was based on 
no theological truth at all ; it arose simply because, as 
their name signifies, certain Bishops and Clergy could 
not take the oaths to a new King. There is something 
very venerable and winning in Bishop Ken ; but this 
arises in part from the very fact that he was so little 
disposed to defend any position, or oppose things as they 
were. He could not take the oaths, and was dispossessed • 
but he had nothing special to say for himself ; he had 
no message to deliver ; his difficulty was of a personal 
nature, and he was unwilling that the Non-jurin^^ 
Succession should be continued. It was against his 
judgment to perpetuate his own communion. But look 
at the body in its more theological aspect, and its nega- 
tive and external character is brought out even more 
strikingly. Its members had much more to say against 
the Catholic Church, like Protestants in general, than 
for themselves. They are considered especially high in 
their Doctrine of the Holy Eucharist ; yet, I do not 
know anything in Dr. Brett's whole Treatise on the 
Ancient Liturgies, which fixes itself so vividly on tlie 
reader's mind, as his assertion, that the rubrics of the 
Koman Missal are " corrupt, dangerous, superstitious, 

2 22 The Movement not in the Dwection 

abominably idolatrous, theatrical, and utterly unworthy 
the gravity of so sacred an institution." 

The Non-jurors were far less certain what they did 
hold, than what they did not. They were great cham- 
pions of the Sacrifice, and wished to restore the ancient 
Liturgies ; yet, they could not raise their minds to any- 
thiuo- hio-her than the sacrifice of the material bread and 
wine, as representatives of One, who was not literally 
present but absent ; as symbols of His Body and Blood, 
not in truth and fact, but in virtue and effect. Yet, 
while they had such insulficient notions of the heavenly 
gift committed to the ordinance, they could, as 1 have 
said, be very jealous of its outward formalities, and laid 
the greatest stress on a point, important certainly in its 
place, but not when separated from that which gave it 
meaning and life, the mixing of the water with the 
wine; and ui.)on this, and other questions, of higher 
moment indeed, but not of a cliaracter specifically dif- 
ferent, they soon divided into two communions. They 
broke into pieces, not from external causes, not from 
the hostility or the allurements of a court, but simply 
because they had no common heart and life in them. 
They were safe from the civil sword, from their insig- 
nificancy ; they had no need of falling back on a distant 
centre for support; all they needed was an idea, an 
object, a work to make them one. 

But I have another lemark to make on the N'on- 
jurors. You lecollect, my brethren, that they are the 

of a Sect. 2 2'' 

coiitiimation and heirs of the traditions, so to call them, 
of the High-Church divines of the seventeenth century. 
Now, how high and imposing do the names sound of 
Andrewes, Laud, Taylor, Jackson, Pearson, Cosin, and 
their fellows ? I am not speaking against them as 
individuals, but viewing them as theological authorities. 
How great and mysterious are the doctrines which they 
teach ! and how proudly they appeal to primitive times, 
and claim the ancient Fathers ! Surely, as some one 
says, " in Laud is our Cyprian, and in Taylor is our 
Chrysostom, and all we want is our Athanasius." Look 
on, my brethren, to the history of the Non-jurors, and 
you will see what these Anglican divines were worth. 
There you will see that it was simply their position, 
their temporal possessions, their civil dignities, as stand- 
ing round a King's throne, or seated in his great council, 
and not their principles, which made ihem what they 
were. Their genius, learning, faith, whatever it was, 
would have had no power to stand by themselves ; 
these qualities had no substance, for, as we see, when 
the State abandoned them, they shrank at once and 
collapsed, and ceased to be. These qualities were not 
the stuff out of which a Church is made, though they 
looked well and bravely when fitted upon the Establish- 
ment. And, indeed, they did not, in the event, wear 
better in the Establishment than out of it ; for since 
the Establishment at the Eevolution had changed its 
make and altered its position, the old vestments would 


Tlie Movement not in the Direction 

not fit it, and fell out of fashion. The Nation and the 
National Church had got new ideas, and the language 
of the ancient Fathers could not express them. There 
were those, who, at the era in question, took the oaths ; 
they could secure their positions, could they secure 
their creed ? The event answers the question. There 
is some story of BuU and Beveridge, who were two of 
the number, meeting together, I think in the House of 
Lords, and mourning together over the degeneracy of 
the times. The times certainly luere degenerate ; and 
if learning could have restored them, there was enough 
in those two heads to have done the work of Athanasius, 
Leo, and the seventh Gregory ; but learning never made 
a body live. The High Church party died out within 
the Establishment, as well as outside of it, for it had 
neither dogma to rest upon, nor object to pursue. 

AU this is your warning, my brethren ; you too, when 
it comes to the point, will have nothing to profess, 
to teach, to transmit. At present you do not know 
your own weakness. You have the life of the Estab- 
lishment in you, and you fancy it is your own life; 
you fam;y that the accidental congeries of opinions, 
which forms your creed, has that unity, individuality, 
and consistency, which allows of its developing into a 
system, and perpetuating a school. Look into the mat- 
ter more steadily ; it is very pleasant to decorate your 
chapels, oratories, and studies now, but you cannot be 
doing this for ever. It is pleasant to adopt a habit or 

of a Sect. 2 2- 

a vestment. ; to use your office book or your beads ; but 
It is like feeding on flowers, unless you Lave that ob- 
jective vision in your faith, and that satisfaction in 
your reason, of which devotional exercises and ecclesi- 
astical regulations are the suitable expression. Such 
will not last, on the long run, as are not commanded 
and rewarded by divine authority ; they cannot be 
made to rest on the influence of individuals. It is well 
to have rich architecture, curious works of art, and 
splendid vestments, when you have a present God ; 
but oh ! what a mockery, if you have not ! If your 
externals surpass what is within, you are, so far, as 
hollow as your evangelical opponents who baptize, 'yet 
expect no grace; or, as the latitudinarian writer I have 
been reviewing, who would make Christ's kingdom not 
of this world, in order to do a little more than the 
world's work. Thus your Church becomes, not a 
home, but sepulchre; like those high cathedrals, once 
Catholic, which you do not know what to do with 
which you shut up and make monuments of, sacred 
to the memory of what has passed away. 

Therefore, I saynow,-as I have said years a^o, when 
others have wished still to uphold their partv, after 
their arguments had broken under them— Find out 
first of all where you stand, take your position, write 
down your creed, draw up your catechism. Tell me 

2 26 Tlie Movement not in the Direction 

why you form your party, under what conditions, how 
long it is to last, what are your relations to the Estab- 
Ushment, and to the other branches (as you speak) of 
the Universal Church, how you stand relatively to 
Antiquity, what is Antiquity, whether you accept the 
Via Media, whether you are zealous for " Apostolical 
order," what is your rule of faith, how you prove it, and 
what are your doctrines. It is easy for a while to be 
doing merely what you do at present ; to remain where 
you Ire, till it is proved to you that you must go ; to 
refuse to say what you hold and what you do not, and 
to act only on the offensive ; but you cannot do this 
for ever. The time is coming, or is come, when you 
must act in some way or other for yourselves, unless 
you would drift to some form of infidelity, or give up 
principle altogether, or believe or not believe by acci- 
dent. The onus prohandi will be on your side then. 
Now you are content to be negative and fragmentary in 
doctrine; you aim at notHng higher than smart articles 
in newspapers and magazines, at clever hits, spirited 
attacks, raiUery, satire, skirmishing on posts of your 
own selecting; fastening on weak points, or what you 
think so, in Dissenters or Catholics; inventing ingeni- 
ous retorts, evading dangerous questions ; parading this 
or that isolated doctrine as essential, and praising this 
or that Catholic practice or Catholic saint, to make up 
tor abuse, and to show your impartiality ; and taking 
all along a high, eclectic, patronising, indifferent tone ; 

of a Sect. 227 

this has been for some time past your line, and it will 
not suffice ; it excites no respect, it creates no confidence, 
it inspires no hope. 

And when, at length, you have one and all agreed 
upon your creed, and developed it doctrinally, morally, 
and polemically, then find for it some safe foundation, 
deeper and than private judgment, which may 
ensure its transmission and continuance to generations 
to come. And, when you have done all this, then, last 
of all, persuade others and yourselves, that the founda- 
tion you have formed is surer and more trustworthy 
than that of Erastianism, on the one hand, and of 
immemorial and uninterrupted tradition, that is, of 
(Catholicism, on the other. 






T HAVE been engaged in many Lectures in showing 
that your place, my brethren, if you own the prin- 
ciples of the movement of 1833, is nowhere else but 
the Cathohc Church. To this you may answer, that, 
even though I had been unanswerable, I should not 
have done much, for my argument has, on the whole, 
been a negative one ; that there are difficulties on both 
sides of the controversy; that I have been enlaro-ino 

o o 

on the Protestant difficulty, but there are not a few 
Catliolic difficulties also ; that, to be sure, you are 
not very happy in the Establishment, but you have 
serious misgivino;s whether you would be happier 


Social State of Catholic Countries 

with us. Moreover, you might mention the following 
objection, in particular, as prominent and very prac- 
tical, which weighs with you a great deal, and warns 
you off the ground whither I am trying to lead you. 
You are much offended, you would say, with the bad 
state of Catholics abroad, and their uninteresting char- 
acter everywhere, compared with Protestants. Those 
countries, you say, which have retained Catholicism, 
are notoriously behind the age; they have not kept 
up with the march of civilization ; they are ignorant, 
and, in a measure, barbarous; they have the faults 
of barbarians ; they have no self-command ; they can- 
not be trusted. They must be treated as slaves, or 
they rebel ; they emerge out of their superstitions in 
order to turn infidels. They cannot combine and 
coalesce in social institutions; they want the very 
faculty of citizenship. The sword, not the law, is 
their ruler. They are spectacles of idleness, sloven- 
liness, want of spirit, disorder, dirt, and dishonesty. 
There must, then, be something in their religion to 
account for this ; it keeps them children, and then, 
being children, they keep to it. No man in his senses, 
certainly no English gentleman, would abandon the 
high station which his country both occupies and 
bestows on him in the eyes of man, to make himself 
the co-religionist of such slaves, and the creature of 
such a Creed. 

I propose to make a suggestion in answer to this 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 231 

objection ; and, in making it, I shall consider you, my 
brethren, not as unbelievers, who are careless whether 
this objection strikes at Christianity or no; nor as 
Protestants proper, who have no concern about so 
expressing themselves, as to compromise the first 
centuries of the Church ; but as those who feel that 
the Catholic Church was in the beginning founded 
by our Lord and His Apostles; again, that the Estab- 
lishment is not the Catholic Church; that nothing 
hut the Church of Eome can be ; that, if the Church 
of Eome is not, then the Catholic Church is not to 
be found in this age, or in this part of the world; 
for this is what I have been proving in my preceding 
Lectures. Wliat, then, you are saying comes, in fact, 
to this : We would rather deny our initial principles, 
than accept such a development of them as the com- 
munion of Eome, viewed as it is; we would rather 
believe Erastianism, and all its train of consequences, 
to be from God, than the religion of such countries 
as France and Belgium, Spain and Italy. This is 
what you must mean to say, and nothing short of 



I simply deny the justice of your argument, my 
brethren; and, to show you that I am not framing a 
view for the occasion, and, moreover, in order to start 
with a principle, which, perhaps, you yourselves have 
before now admitted. 1 will quote words which I used 

232 Social State of Catliolic Countries 

myself twelve years ago ; — " If we were asked what 
was the object of Christian preaching, teaching, and 
instruction ; what the office of the Church, considered 
as the dispenser of the Word of God, I suppose we 
should not all return the same answer. Perhaps we 
might say that the object of Eevelation was to en- 
lighten and enlarge the mind, to make us act by 
reason, and to expand and strengthen our powers : or 
to impart knowledge about religious truth, knowledge 
being power directly it is given, and enabling us 
forthwith to think, judge, and act for ourselves; or 
to make us good members of the community, loyal 
subjects, orderly and useful in our station, whatever 
it be ; or to secure, what otherwise would be hopeless, 
our leading a religious life, — the reason why persons 
go wrong, throw themselves away, follow bad courses, 
and lose their character, being, that they have had no 
education, that they are ignorant. These and other 
answers might be given ; some beside, and some short 
of, the mark. It may be useful, then, to consider 
with what end, with what expectation, we preach, 
teach, instruct, discuss, bear witness, praise, and blame; 
what fruit the Church is right in anticipating as the 
result of her ministerial labours. St. Paul gives us 
a reason . . . different from any of those which I 
have mentioned. He laboured more than all the 
Apostles. And why ? Xot to civilize the world, not 
to smooth the face of societv, not to facilitate the 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 233 

movements of civil government, not to spread abroad 
knowledge, not to cultivate the reason, not for any 
great worldly object, but 'for the elect's sake.' . . . 
And such is the office of the Church in every nation 
where she sojourns; she attempts much; she expects 
and promises little." ^ 

I do not, of course, deny that the Church does 
a great deal more than she promises: she fulfils a 
number of secondary ends, and is the means of 
numberless temporal blessings to any country which 
receives her. I only say, she is not to be estimated 
and measured by such effects; and if you think she 
is, my brethren, then I must rank you with such 
Eiastians as Warburton, who, as I have shown you 
in a former Lecture, considered political convenience 
to be the test and standard of truth. 

I thus begin with a consideration which, you see, I 
fully recognised before I was a Catholic; and now I 
proceed to another, which has been forced ou me, as a 
matter of fact and experience, most powerfully ever 
since I was a Catholic, as it must be forced on every 
one who is in the communion of the Church; and which, 
therefore, like the former, has not at all originated in 
the need, nor is put forth for the occasion to meet your 

The Church, you know, is in warfare ; her life here 
below is one long battle. But with whom is she light- 

' Parocli. Serni., vol. iv. 

2 34 Social State of Catholic Countries 

ing ? For till we know her enemy we shall not be able 
to estimate the skill of her tactics, the object of her 
evolutions, or the success of her movements. We shall 
be like civilians, contemplating a field of battle, and 
seeing much dust, and smoke, and motion, much defil- 
ing, charging, and manoeuvring, but quite at a loss to 
tell the meaning of all, or which party is getting the 
better. And, if we actually mistake the foe, we shall 
criticise when we should praise, and think that all is 
a defeat, when every blow is telling. In all under- 
takings we must ascertain the end proposed, before we 
can predicate their success or failure; and, therefore, 
before we so freely speak against the state of Catholic 
countries, and reflect upon the Church herself in con- 
sequence, we must have a clear view what it is that the 
Church has proposed to do with them and for them 
Vfe have, indeed, a right to blame and dissent from 
the end which she sets before her; we may quarrel with 
the mission she professes to have received from above ; 
we may dispense with Scripture, Fathers, and the con- 
tinuous tradition of 1 8oo years. That is another matter ; 
then, at least, we have nothing to do with the theological 
movement which has given occasion to these Lectures ; 
then we are not in the way to join the Catholic Church ; 
then we must be met on our own ground : but I am 
speaking to those who go a great way with me ; who 
admit my principles, who almost admit my conclusion ; 
who are all but ready to submit to the Church, but who 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Churc/i. 235 

are frightened by the present state of Catholic countries ; 
— to such I say, Judge of her fruit by her principles 
and her object, which you yourselves also admit; not 
by those of her enemies, which you renounce. 

The world believes in the world's ends as the greatest 
of goods ; it wishes society to be governed simply and 
entirely for the sake of this world. Provided it could 
gain one little islet in the ocean, one foot upon the coast, 
if it could cheapen tea by sixpence a pound, or make its 
flag respected among the Esquimaux or Otaheitans, at 
the cost of a hundred lives and a hundred souls, it 
would think it a very good bargain. What does it 
know of hell ? it disbelieves it ; it spits upon, it abomi- 
nates, it curses its very name and notion. IsText, as to 
the devil, it does not believe in him either. We next 
come to the flesh, and it is " free to confess " that it does 
not think there is any great harm in following the 
instincts of that nature which, perhaps it goes on to say, 
God has given. How could it be otherwise ? who ever 
heard of the world fighting against the flesh and the 
devil ? Well, then, what is its notion of evil ? Evil, 
says the world, is whatever is an offence to me, what- 
ever obscures my majesty, whatever disturbs my peace. 
Order, tranquillity, popular contentment, plenty, pros- 
perity, advance in arts and sciences, literature, refine- 
ment, splendour, this is my millennium, or rather my 
elysium, my swerga ; I acknowledge no whole, no in- 
dividuality, but my own ; the units which compose me 

236 Social State of Catholic Countries 

are but parts of me ; they have no perfection in them- 
selves ; no end but in me ; in my glory is their bliss, 
and in the hidings of my countenance they come to 


Such is the philosophy and practice of the world ; — 
now the Church looks and moves in a simply opposite 
direction. It contemplates, not the whole, but the 
parts ; not a nation, but the men who form it ; not 
society in the first place, but in the second place, and 
in the first place individuals; it looks beyond the 
outward act, on and into the thought, the motive, the 
intention, and the will ; it looks beyond the world, and 
detects and moves against the devil, who is sitting in 
ambush behind it. It has, then, a foe in view ; nay, it 
has a battle-field, to which the world is blind ; its proper 
battle-field is the heart of the individual, and its true 
foe is Satan. 

My dear brethren, do not think I am declaiming in 
the air or translating the pages of some old worm-eaten 
homily ; as I have already said, I bear my own testi- 
mony to what has been brought home to me most 
closely and vividly as a matter of fact since I have been 
a Catholic ; viz., that that mighty world-wide Church, 
like her Divine Author, regards, consults for, labours for 
the individual soul ; she looks at the souls for whom 
Christ died, and who are made over to her; and her 
one object, for winch everything is sacrificed — appear- 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 237 

ances, reputation, worldly triumph — is to acquit herself 
well of this most awful responsibility. Her one duty 
is to bring forward the elect to SMlvation, and to make 
them as many as she can : — to take offences out of their 
path, to warn them of sin, to rescue them from evil, to 
convert them, to teach them, to feed them, to protect 
them, and to perfect them. Oh, most tender loving 
Mother, ill-judged by the world, which thinks she is, 
like itself, always minding the main chance ; on the 
contrary, it is her keen view of things spiritual, and 
her love for the soul, which hampers her in her negotia- 
tions and her measures, on this hard cold earth, which is 
her place of sojourning. How easy would her course 
be, at least for a while, could she give up this or that 
point of faith, or connive at some innovation or irregu- 
larity in the administration of the Sacraments ! How 
much would Gregory have gained from Eussia could 
he have abandoned the United Greeks! how secure 
had Pius been upon his throne, could he have allowed 
himself to fire on his people I 

No, my dear brethren, it is this supernatural sight 
and supernatural aim, which is the folly and the feeble- 
ness of the Church in the eyes of the world, and would 
be failure but for the providence of God. The Church 
overlooks everything in comparison of the immortal soul. 

Good and evil to her are not lights and shades passing 
over the surface of society, but living powers, springino- 
from the depths of the heart. Actions in her sight are 

238 Social State of Catholic Countries 

not mere outward deeds and words, committed by hand 
or tongue, and manifested in effects over a range of 
influence wider or narrower, as the case may be ; but 
they are the thoughts, the desires, the purposes of the 
solitary responsible spirit. She knows nothing of space 
or time, except as secondary to will ; she knows no evil 
but sin, and sin is a something personal, conscious, vol- 
untary ; she knows no good but grace, and grace again 
is something personal, private, special, lodged in the 
soul of the individual. She has one and one only aim 
—to purify the heart ; she recollects who it is who has 
turned our thoughts from the external crime to the 
inward imagination ; who said, that " unless our justice 
abounded more than that of Scribes and Pharisees, we 
should not enter into the kingdom of Heaven ; " and 
that " out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, 
adulteries, fornications, thefts, false testimonies, blas- 
phemies. These are the things that defile a man." 

Now I would have you take up the sermons of any 
preacher, or any writer on moral theology, who has a 
name among Catholics, and see if what I have said is 
not strictly fulfilled, however little you fancied so be- 
fore you make trial. Protestants, I say, think that the 
Church aims at appearance and effect; she must be 
splendid, and majestic, and influential: tine services, 
music, lights, vestments, and then again, in her deal- 
ings with others, courtesy, smoothness, cunning, dex- 
terity, intrigue, management— these, it seems, are the 

no Prejudice to ike Sanctity of ' the Church. 


weapons of the Catholic Church. Well, my brethren, 
she cannot help succeeding, she cannot help be-in^ 
strong, she cannot help being beautiful ; it is her gift ; 
as she moves, the many wonder and adore ; — " Et 
vera incessu patuit Dea." It cannot be otherwise, 
certainly ; but it is not her aim ; she goes forth on the 
one errand, as I have said, of healing the diseases of 
the soul. Look, I say, into any book of moral theology 
you will ; there is much there which may startle you : 
you will find principles hard to digest; explanations 
which seem to you subtle ; details which distress you ; 
you will find abundance of what will make excellent 
matter of attack at Exeter Hall; but you will find 
from first to last this one idea — (nay, you will find 
that very matter 6i attack upon her is occasioned by 
her keeping it in view ; she would be saved the odium, 
she would not have thus bared her side to the sword, 
but for her fideKty to it) — the one idea, I say, that 
sin is the enemy of the soul ; and that sin especially 
consists, not in overt acts, but in the thoughts of the 


This, then, is the point I insist upon, in answer to 
the objection which you have to-day urged against me. 
The Church aims, not at making a show, but at doing 
a work. She regards this world, and all that is in it, 
as a mere shadow, as dust and ashes, compared witli 
the value of one single souL She holds that, unless 

240 Social State of Catholic Countries 

she can, in her own way, do good to souls, it is no use 
her doing anything ; she holds that it were better for 
sun and moon to drop from heaven, for the earth to 
fail, and for all the many millions who are upon it to 
die of starvation in extremest agony, so far as temporal 
affliction goes, than that one soul, I w^ill not say, 
should be lost, but should commit one single venial 
sin, should tell one wilful untruth, though it harmed 
uo one, or steal one poor farthing without excuse. 
She considers the action of this world and the action 
of the soul simply incommensurate, viewed in their 
respective spheres; she would rather save the soul of 
one single wild bandit of Calabria, or whining beggar 
of Palermo, than draw a hundred lines of railroad 
through the length and breadth of Italy, or carry out a 
sanitary reform, in its fullest details, in every city of 
Sicily, except so far as these great national works 
tended to some spiritual good beyond them. 

Such is the Church, ye men of the world, and now 
vou know her. Such she is, such she will be ; and, 
though she aims at your good, it is in her own way,— 
and if you oppose her, she defies you. She has her 
mission, and do it she will, whether she be in rags, or 
in fine linen; whether with awkward or with refined 
carriage ; whether by means of uncultivated intellects, 
or with the grace of accomplishments. Not that, in 
fact, she is not the source of numberless temporal 
and moral blessings to you also ; the history of ages 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 241 

testifies it ; but she makes no promises ; she is sent to 
seek the lost ; that is her first object, and she will fulfil 
it, whatever comes of it. 

And now, in saying this, I think I have gone a 
great way towards suggesting one main solution of the 
difficulty which I proposed to consider. The question 
was this:— How is it, that at this time Catholic 
countries happen to be behind Protestants in civiliza- 
tion ? In answer, I do not at all determine how far 
the fact is so, or what explanation there may be of the 
appearance of it; but anyhow the fact, granting it 
exists, is surely no objection to Catholicism, unless 
Catholicism has professed, or ought to have professed, 
directly to promote mere civilization; on the other 
hand, it has a work of its own, and this work is, first, 
different from that of the world; next, difficult of 
attainment, compared with that of the world; and, 
lastly, secret from the world in its details and con- 
sequences. If, then, Spain or Italy be deficient in 
secular progress, if the national mind in those countries 
be but partially formed, if it be unable to develope 
into civil institutions, if it have no moral instinct of 
deference to a policeman, if the national finances be in 
disorder, if the people be excitable, and open to decep- 
tion from political pretenders, if it know little or 
nothing of arts, sciences, and literature ; I repeat, of 
course, I do not admit all this, except hypotheticaUy, 
because it is difficult to draw the line between what is 


242 Social State of Catholic Countries 

true in it and what is not :— then all I can say is, that 
it is not wonderful that civil governments, which 
profess certain objects, should succeed in them better 
than the Church, which does not. Not till the State is 
blamed for not making saints, may it fairly be laid 
to the fault of the Church that she cannot invent a 
steam-engine or construct a tariff. It is, in truth, 
merely because she has often done so much more than 
she professes, it is reaUy in consequence of her very 
exuberance of benefit to the world, that the world is 
disappointed that she does not display that exuberance 
always,— like some hangers-on of the great, who come 
at length to think they have a claim on their bounty. 


Now, let me try to bring out what I mean more in 
detail; and, in doing so, I hope to be pardoned, my 
brethren, if my language be now and then of a more 
directly religious cast than I willingly would admit 
into disquisitions such as the present ; though speak- 
ing, as I do, in a place set apart for religious purposes, 
I am not perhaps caHed upon to apologize. In religious 
language, then, the one object of the Church, to which 
every other object is second, is that of reconciling the 
soul to God. She cannot di?guise from herself, that, 
with whatever advantages her children commence their 
course, in spite of their baptism, in spite of their most 
careful education and training, still the great multi- 

7^0 Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 243 

tude of them require her present and continual succour 
to keep them or rescue them from a state of mortal 
sin. Taking human nature as it is, she knows well, 
that, left to themselves, they would relapse into the 
state of those who are not Catholics, whatever latent 
principle of truth and goodness might remain in them, 
and wdiatever consequent hope there might be of a 
future revival. They may be full of ability and energy, 
they may be men of genius, men of literature and taste, 
poets and painters, musicians and arcliitects ; they may 
be statesmen or soldiers; they may be in professions 
or in trade; they may be skilled in tlie mechanical 
arts ; they may be a hard-working, money-making com- 
munity ; they may have great political influence ; they 
may pour out a flood of population on every side ; they 
may have a talent for colonization; or, on the other 
hand, they may be members of a country once glorious, 
whose day is past; where luxury, or civil discord, or 
want of mental force, or other more subtle cause, is 
the insuperable bar in the way of any national 
demonstration; or they may be half reclaimed from 
barbarism, or they may be a simple rural population ; 
they may be the cold north, or the beautiful south ; 
but, whatever and wherever tliey are, the Church 
knows well, that those vast masses of population, 
as viewed in the individual units of which they are 
composed, are iji a state of continual lapse from the 
Centre of sanctity and love, ever falling under His 


Social State of Catholic Countries 

displeasure, and tending to a state of habitual aliena- 
tion from Him. Her one work towards these many 
millions is, year after year, day after day, to be raising 
them out of the mire, and when they sink again to 
raise them again, and so to keep them afloat, as she 
best may, on the surface of tliat stream, which is 
carrying them down to eternity. Of course, through 
God's mercy, there are numbers who are exceptions 
to this statement, who are living in obedience and 
peace, or going on to perfection: but the word of 
Christ, '' T^fnny are called, few are chosen," is fulfilled 
in any extensive field of operation which the Church 
is called to superintend. Her one object, through 
her ten thousand organs, by preachers and by con- 
fessors, by parish priests and by religious communi- 
ties, in missions and in retreats, at Christmas and at 
Easter, by fasts and by feasts, by confraternities and 
by pilgrimages, by devotions and by indulgences, is- 
this unwearied, ever-patient reconciliation of the soul 
to God and obliteration of sin. Thus, in the w^ords of 
Scripture, most emphatically, she knows nought else but 
''Jesus Christ and Him crucified." It is her ordinary 
toil, into which her other labours resolve themselves, 
or towards which they are directed. Does she send 
out her missionaries ? Does she summon her doctors ? 
Does she enlarge or diversify her worship ? Does she 
multiply her religious bodies ? It is all to gain souls 
to Christ. And if she encourages secular enterprises. 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 245 

studies, or pursuits, as she does, or the arts of civiliza- 
tion generally, it is either from their indirect hearing 
upon her great object, or from the spontaneous energy 
which great ideas, sucli as hers, exert, and the irre- 
sistible influence which they exercise, in matters and 
in provinces not really their own. 

Moreover, as sins are of unequal gravity in God's 
judgment, though all of whatever kind are offensive 
to Him, and incur their measure of punishment, the 
Church's great object is to discriminate between sin 
and sin, and to secure in individuals that renunciation 
of evil, which is implied in the idea of a substantial 
and unfeigned conversion. She has no warrant, and 
she has no encouragement, to enforce upon men in 
general more than those habits of virtue, the absence 
of which would be tantamount to their separation 
from God ; and she thinks she has done a great deal, 
and exults in her success, does she proceed so far ; and 
she bears as she may, what remains still to be done, in 
the conviction that, did she attempt more, she might 
lose all. There are sins which are simply incompatible 
with contrition and absolution under any circum- 
stances; there are others which are disorders and 
disfigurements of the soul She exhorts men against 
the second, she directs her efforts against the first. 

Now here at once the Church and the world part 
company ; for the world, too, as is necessary, has its 
scale of offences as well as the Church : but. referring 

246 Social State of Catholic Countries 

them to a contrary object, it classifies them on quite a 
contrary principle; so that what is heinous in the 
world is often regarded patiently by the Church, and 
what is horrible and ruinous in the judgment of the 
Church may fail to exclude a man from the best 
society of the world. And, this being so, when 
the world contemplates the training of the Church 
and its results, it cannot, from the nature of the 
case, if for no other reason, avoid thinking very 
coutemptuously of fruits, which are so different from 
those which it makes the standard and token of moral 
excellence in its own code of right and wrong. 

I may say the Church aims at three special virtues, 
as reconciling and uniting the soul to its Maker: — 
faith, purity, and charity ; for two of which the world 
cares little or nothing. The world, on the other hand, 
puts in the foremost place, in some states of society, 
certain heroic qualities ; in others certain virtues of a 
political or mercantile character. In ruder ages, it is 
personal courage, strength of purpose, magnanimity; 
in more civilized, honesty, fairness, honour, truth, and 
benevolence :— virtues, all of which, of course, the 
teaching of the Church comprehends, all of which she 
expects in their degree in all her consistent children, 
and all of which she enacts in their fulness in her 
saints ; but which, after all. most beautiful as they are, 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Chitrcli. 247 

admit of being the fruit of nature as well as of grace ; 
which do not necessarily imply grace at all : which do 
not reach so far as to sanctify, or unite the soul by 
any supernatural process to the source of supernatural 
perfection and supernatural blessedness. Again, as I 
have already said, the Church contemplates virtue and 
vice in their first elements, as conceived and existintr 
in thought, desire, and will, and holds that the one or 
the other may be as complete and mature, without 
passing forth from the home of the secret heart, as if it 
had ranged forth in profession and in deed all over 
the earth. Thus at first sight she seems to ignore 
bodies politic, and society, and temporal interests : 
wiiereas the world, on the contrary, talks of religion as 
being a matter of such private concern, so personal, so 
sacred, that it has no opinion at all about it ; it praises 
public men, if they are useful to itself, but simply 
ridicules inquiry into their motives, thinks it imper- 
tinent in others to attempt it, and out of taste in 
themselves to sanction it. All public men it considers 
to be pretty much the same at bottom; but what 
matter is that to it, if they do its work? It offers 
high pay, and it expects faithful service ; but, as to its 
agents, overseers, men of business, operatives, journey- 
men, figure-servants, and labourers, what they are 
personally, what are their principles and aims, what 
their creed, what their conversation ; where they live, 
how they spend their leisure time, whither they are 

248 Social State of Catholic Countrieb 

going, how they die — I am stating a simple matter of 
fact, I am not here praising or blaming, I am but con- 
trasting,— I say, all questions implying the existence 
of the soul, are as much beyond the circuit of the 
world's imagination, as they are intimately and pri- 
marily present to the apprehension of the Church. 

The Church, then, considers the momentary, fleeting 
act of the will, in the three subject matters I have 
mentioned, to be capable of guiltiness of the deadliest 
character, or of the most efficacious and triumphant 
merit. Moreover, she holds that a soul laden with the 
most enormous offences, in deed as well as thought, a 
savage tyrant, who delighted in cruelty, an habitual 
adulterer, a murderer, a blasphemer, who has scoffed 
at religion through a long life, and corrupted every 
soul which he could bring within his influence, who 
has loathed the Sacred Name, and cursed his Saviour, 
— that such a man can under circumstances, in a 
moment, by one thought of the heart, by one true 
act of contrition, reconcile himself to Almighty God 
(through His secret grace), without Sacrament, with- 
out priest, and be as clean, and fair, and lovely, as if 
he had never sinned. Again, she considers that in a 
moment also, with eyes shut and arms folded, a man 
may cut himself off from the Almighty by a deliberate 
act of the will, and cast himself into perdition. With 
the world it is the reverse ; a member of society may 
go as near the line of evil, as the world draws it, as he 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 249 

Mill; but, till he has jjassed it, he is safe. A-ain, 
when he has once transgressed it, recovery is impos- 
sible ; let honour of man or woman be sullied, and to 
restore its splendour is simply to undo the past; it is 

Such being the extreme difference between the 
Church and the world, both as to the measure and the 
scale of moral good and evil, we may be prepared for 
those vast differences in matters of detail, which I 
hardly like to mention, lest they should be out of 
keeping with the gravity of the subject, as contem- 
plated in its broad principle. For instance, the 
Church pronounces the momentary wish, if conscious 
and deliberate, that another should be struck down 
dead, or suffer any other grievous misfortune, as a 
blacker sin than a passionate, unpremeditated attempt 
on the life of the Sovereign. She considers direct 
unequivocal consent, though as quick as thought, to 
a single unchaste desire as indefinitely more heinous 
than any lie which can possibly be fancied, that is, 
when that lie is viewed, of course, in itself, and apart 
from its causes, motives, and consequences. Take a 
mere beggar-woman, lazy, ragged, and filthy, and not 
over-scrupulous of truth — (I do not say she had 
arrived at perfection) — but if she is chaste, and 
sober, and clieerful, and goes to her religious duties 
(and I am supposing not at all an impossible case), 
sl^e vrill, in the eyes of the Churcli, have a prospect of 

2 50 Social State of Catholic Countries 

heaven, which is quite closed and refused to the 
State's pattern-man, the just, the upright, the generous, 
the honourable, the conscientious, if he be all this, 
not from a supernatural power— (I do not determine 
whether this is likely to be the fact, but I am contrast- 
ing views and principles)— not from a supernatural 
power, but from mere natural virtue. Polished, 
delicate - minded ladies, with little of temptation 
around them, and no self-denial to practise, in spite 
of their refinement and taste, if they be nothing more, 
are objects of less interest to her, than many a poor 
outcast who sins, repents, and is with difficulty kept 
just within the territory of grace. Again, excess in 
drinking is one of the world's most disgraceful offences ; 
odious i"t ever is in the eyes of the Church, but if it 
does not proceed to the loss of reason, she thinks it a 
far less sin than one deliberate act of detraction, 
though the matter of it be truth. And again, not 
unfrequently does a priest hear a confession of thefts, 
^vhich he knows would sentence the penitent to trans- 
portation, if brought into a court of justice, but which 
he knows, too, in the judgment of the Church, might 
be pardoned on the man's private contrition, without 
any confession at all. Once more, the State has the 
guardianship of property, as the Church is the guar- 
dian of the faith :— in the Middle Ages, as is often 
objected, the Church put to death for heresy; well 
but on the other hand, even in our own times, the 

710 Prejudice to tJie Sanctity of the Church 


State has put to death for forgery ; nay, I suppose for 
sheep-stealing. How distinct must be the measure of 
crime in Church and in State, when so heterogeneous 
is the rule of punishment in the one and in the 
other ! ■ 

My brethren, you may think it impolitic in me thus 
candidly to state what may be so strange in the eyes 
of the world ; — but not so, my dear brethren, just the 
contrary. The world already knows quite enough of 
our difference of judgment from it on the w^hole; it 
knows that difference also in its results ; but it does 
not know that it is based on principle; it taunts the 
Church with that difference, ns if nothing could be 
said for her, — as if it were not, as it is, a mere question 
of a balance of evils,— as if the Church had nothing to 
show for herself, were simply ashamed of her evident 
helplessness, and pleaded guilty to the charge of her 
inferiority to the world in the moral effects of her 
teaching. The world points to the children of the 
Church, and asks if she acknowledges them as her own. 
It dreams not that this contrast arises out of a differ- 
ence of principle, and that she claims to act upon a 
principle higher than the world's. Principle is always 
respectable; even a bad man is more respected, though 
he may be more hated, if he ow^ns and justifies his 
actions, than if he is wicked by accident; now the 
Church professes to judge after the judgment of the 
iilmighty; and it cannot be imprudent or impolitical 

252 Social State of Catholic Countries 

to bring this out clearly and boldly. His judgment 
is not as man's : " I judge not according to the look 
of man," He says, " for man seeth those things which 
appear, but the Lord beholdeth the heart." The 
Church aims at realities, the world at decencies; 
she dispenses with a complete work, so she can but 
make a thorough one. Provided she can do for the 
soul what is necessary, if she can but pull the brands 
out of the burning, if she can but extract the poisonous 
root which is the death of the soul, and expel the 
disease, she is content, though she leaves in it lesser 
maladies, little as she sympathises with them. 


Now, were it to my present purpose to attack the 
principles and proceedings of the world, of course it 
w^ould be obvious for me to retort upon the cold, cruel, 
selfish system, which this supreme worship of comfort, 
decency, and social order necessarily introduces : to 
show you how the many are sacrificed to the few, the 
poor to the wealthy, how an oligarchical monopoly 
of enjoyment is established far and wide, and the 
claims of want, and pain, and sorrow, and affliction, 
and guilt, and misery, are practically forgotten. But 
I will not have recourse to the common - places of 
controversy when I am on the defensive. All I 
w^ould say to the world is, — Keep your theories to 
yourselves, do not inflict them upon the sons of Adam 

no Prejudice to the Sanctitij of the Church. 253 

everywhere; do not measure heaven and earth by 
views which are in a great degree insular, and can 
never be philosophical and catholic. You do your 
work, perhaps, in a more business-like way, compared 
with ourselves, but we are immeasurably more tender, 
and gentle, and angelic than you. We come to poor 
human nature as the Angels of God, and you as police- 
men. Look at your poor-houses, hospitals, and prisons; 
how perfect are their externals ! what skill and ingenuity 
appear in their structure, economy, and administration! 
they are as decent, and bright, and calm, as what our 
Lord seems to name them, — dead men's sepulchres. 
Yes ! they have all the world can give, all but life ; 
all but a heart. Yes! you can hammer up a cof!in, 
you can plaster a tomb; you are nature's undertakers; 
you cannot build it a home. You cannot feed it or 
heal it ; it lies, like Lazarus, at your gate, full of sores. 
You see it gasping and panting with privations and 
penalties ; and you sing to it, you dance to it, you 
show it your picture-books, you let off your fireworks, 
you open your menageries. Shallow philosophers ! is 
this mode of going on so winning and persuasive that 
we should imitate it ? 

Look at your conduct towards criminals, and honestly 
say, whether you expect a power which claims to be 
divine, to turn copyist of you ? You have the power 
of life and death committed to you by Heaven ; and 
some wretched being is sentenced to fall under it for 

2 54 Social State of Catholic Countries 

some deed of treachery and blood. It is a righteous 
sentence, re-echoed by a whole people; and you have 
a feeling that the criminal himself ought to concur in 
it, and sentence himself. There is an universal feeling 
that he ought to resign himself to your act, and, as it 
were, take part in it ; in other words, there is a sort of 
instinct among you that he should make confession, 
and you are not content without his doing so. So far 
the Church goes along with you, So far, but no further. 
To whom is he to confess ? To me, says the Priest, for 
he has injured the Almighty. To me, says the world, 
for he has injured me. Forgetting that the power to 
sentence is simply from God, and that the sentence, 
if just, is God's sentence, the world is peremptory 
that no confession shall be made by the criminal to 
God, without itself being in the secret. It is right, 
doubtless, that that criminal should make reparation 
to man as well as to God ; but it is not right that the 
world should insist on having precedence of its Maker, 
or should prescribe that its ]\Iaker should have no secrets 
apart from itself, or that no divine ministration should 
relieve a laden breast without its meddling in the act. 
Yet the world rules it, that whatever is said to a minister 
of religion in religious confideuce is its own property. 
It considers that a clergyman who attends upon the 
oulprit is its own servant, and by its boards of magis- 
trates, and by its literary organs, it insists on his re- 
vealing to its judgment-seat what was uttered before 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 255 

tlie judgment-seat of God. What wonder, then, if 
such forlorn wretches, when thus plainly told that 
the world is their only god, and knowing that they 
are quitting the presence of that high potentate for 
ever, steel themselves with obduracy, encounter it 
with defiance, baflfle its curiosity, and inflict on its 
impatience such poor revenge as is in its power ? 
They come forth into the liglit, and look up into the 
face of day for the last time, and, amid the jests and 
blasphemies of myriads, they pass from a world w^hich 
they hate into a world which they deny. Small mercies, 
indeed, has this world shown them, and they make no 
trial of the mercies of another ! 



Oh, how contrary is the look, the bearing of the 
Catholic Church to these poor outcasts of mankind ! 
There was a time, when one who denied his Lord was 
brought to repentance by a glance ; and such is the 
method wdiich His Church teaches to those nations 
who acknowledge her authority and her sway. The 
civil magistrate, stern of necessity in his function, and 
inexorable in his resolve, at her bidding gladly puts on 
a paternal countenance, and takes on him an office of 
mercy towards the victim of his wrath. He infuses 
the ministry of life into the ministry of death; he 
afflicts the body for the good of tlie soul, and converts 
the penalty of human law into an instrument (A 

256 Social State of Catholic Countries 

everlasting bliss. It is good for human beings to die 
as infants, before they liave known good or evil, if 
thev have but received the baptism of the Church; but 
next to these, who are the happiest, who are the safest, 
for whose departure have we more cause to rejoice, and 
be thankful, than for theirs, who, if they live on, are 
so likely to relapse into old habits of sin, but who are 
taken out of this miserable world in the flower of their 
contrition and in the freshness of their preparation ; — 
just at the very moment w^hen they have perfected 
themselves in good dispositions, and from their heart 
have put off sin, and have come humbly for pardon, 
and have received the grace of absolution, and have 
been fed with the bread of Angels, and thus amid the 
prayers of all men have departed to their Maker and 
their Judge ? I say, '' the prayers of all :" for oh the 
difference, in this respect, in the execution of the 
extreme sentence of the law, between a Catholic State 
and another I We have all heard of the scene of im- 
piety and profaneness which attends on the execution 
of a criminal in England ; so much so, that benevolent 
and thoughtful men are perplexed between the evil of 
privacy and the outrages which publicity occasions. 
Well, England surpasses Eome in ten thousand matters 
of this w^orld, but never would the Holy City tolerate 
an enormity which powerful England cannot hinder. 
An arch-confraternity was instituted there at the close 
of the fifteenth century, under the invocation of San 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church 257 

Giovanni Decollato, that Holy Baptist, who lost his 
head by a king's sentence, though an unjust one ; 
and it exercises its pious offices towards condemned 
criminals even now. When a culprit is to be executed, 
the night preceding the fatal day, two priests of the 
brotherhood, who sometimes happen to be Bishops or 
persons of high authority in the city, remain with him 
in prayer, attend him on the scaffold the next morn- 
ing, and assist him through every step of the terrible 
ceremonial of which he is the subject. The Blessed 
Sacrament is exposed in all the churches all over the 
city, that the faithful may assist a sinner about to 
make a compulsory appearance before his Judge. The 
crowd about the scaffold is occupied in but one 
thought, whether he has shown signs of contrition. 
Various reports are in circulation, that he is obdurate, 
that he has yielded, that he is obdurate still. The 
women cry out that it is impossible ; Jesus and Mary 
will see to it ; they will not believe that it is so ; they 
are sure that he will submit himself to his God before 
he enters into His presence. However, it is perhaps 
confirmed that the unhappy man is still wrestling with 
his pride and hardness of heart, and though he has 
that illumination of faith which a Catholic cannot but 
possess, yet he cannot bring himself to hate and abhor 
sins, which, except in their awful consequences, are, as 
far as their enjoyment, gone from him for ever. He 
cannot taste again the pleasure of revenge or of for- 

258 Social State of Catholic Countries 

bidden indulgence, yet he cannot get himself to give 
it up, though the world is passing from him. The 
excitement of the crowd is at its height: an hour 
passes; the suspense is intolerable, when the news is 
brought of a change; that before the Crucifix, in the 
solitude of his cell, at length the— unhappy no longer 
—the happy criminal has subdued himself ; has prayed 
with real self-abasement; has expressed, has felt d, 
charitable, a tender thought, towards those he has 
hated; has resigned himself lovingly to his destiny; 
has blessed the hand that smites him; has supplicated 
pardon ; has confessed with aU his heart, and placed 
himself' at the disposal of his Priest, to make such 
amends as he can make in his last hour to God and 
man ; has even desired to submit here to indignity, to 
pain,' to which he is not sentenced; has taken on 
himself any length of purgatory hereafter, if thereby 
he may now, through God's mercy, show his smcerity, 
and his desire of pardon and of gaining the lowest 
place in the kingdom of Heaven. The news comes; 
it is communicated through the vast multitude all at 
once; and, I have heard from those who have been 
present, never shaU they forget the instantaneous 
shout of joy which burst forth from every tongue, and 
formed itself into one concordant act of thanksgiving 
in acknowledgment of the grace vouchsafed to one so 
near eternity. 

It is not wonderful then to find the holy men, who. 

TW Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 259 

from time to time, have done the pious office of pre- 
paring such criminals for death, so confident of their 
salvation, "So well convinced was Father Claver of 
the eternal happiness of almost all whom he assisted," 
says this saintly missionary's biographer, " that, speak- 
ing once of some persons who had in a bad spirit 
delivered a criminal into the hands of justice, he said, 
' God forgive them ; but they have secured the salvation 
of this man at the probable risk of their own.' Most 
of the criminals considered it a grace to die in the 
hands of this holy man. As soon as he spoke to 
them the most savage and indomitable became gentle 
as lambs ; and, in place of their ordinary imprecations 
nothing was heard but sighs, and the sound of bloody 
disciplines, which they took before leaving the prison 
for execution." 

But I must come to an end. I do not consider, my 
brethren, I have said all that might be said in answer 
to the difficulty which has come under our considera- 
tion; nor have I proposed to do so. Such an under- 
taking does not fall within the scope of these Lectures ; 
it would be an inquiry into facts. It is enough if I 
liave suggested to you one thought which may most 
materially invalidate the objection. You tell me, that 
the political and civil state of Catholic countries is 
below that of Protestant : I answer, that, even thousjh 

26o Social State of Catholic Countries, etc. 

you prove the fact, you have to prove something besides, 
if it is to be an argument for your purpose, viz., that the 
standard of civil prosperity and political aggrandisement 
is the truest test of grace and the largest measure of 

( 26l ) 



T CONSIDERED, in the preceding Lecture, the 
objection brought in this day against the Catholic 
Church, from the state of the countries which belong 
to her. It is urged, that they are so far behind the 
rest of the world in the arts and comforts of life, in 
power of political combination, in civil economy, and 
the social virtues, in a word, in all that tends to make 
this world pleasant, and the loss of it painful, that their 
religion cannot come from above. I answered, that, 
before the argument could be made to tell against us, 
proof must be furnished, not only that the fact was as 
stated (and I think it should be very closely examined), 
but especially that there is that essential connection in 
the nature of things between true religion and temporal 
prosperity, which the objection took for granted. That 
there is a natural and ordinary connection between 
them no one would deny ; but it is one thing to say 
that prosperity ought to follow from religion, quite 
another to sav that it must follow from it. Thus, health. 

262 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

for instance, may be expected from a habit of regular 
exercise; but no one would positively deny the fact 
that exercise had been taken in a particular case, 
merely because the patient gave signs of an infirm and 
sickly state of the body. And, indeed, there may be 
particular and most wise reasons in the scheme of 
Divine Providence, whatever be the legitimate tend- 
ency of the Catholic faith, for its being left, from time 
"to time, without any striking manifestations of its 
beneficial action upon the temporal interests of man- 
kind, without the influence of wealth, learning, civil 
talent, or political sagacity; nay, as in the days of 
St. Cyprian and St. Augustine, with the actual reproach 
of impairing the material resources and the social great- 
ness of the nations which embrace it : viz., in order to 
remind the Church, and to teach the world, that she 
needs no temporal recommendations who has a heavenly 
Protector, but can make her way (as they say) against 
wind and tide. 

This, then, was the subject I selected for my fore- 
going Lecture, and I said there were three reasons why 
the world is no fit judge of the work, or the kind of 
work, really done by the Church in any age: — first, 
because the world's measure of good and scope of action 
are so different from those of the Church, that it judges 
as unfairly and as narrowly of the fruits of Catholicism 
and their value, as the Caliph Omar might judge of the 
use and the influence of literature, or rather indefinitely 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 263 

more so. The Church, though she embraces all con- 
ceivable virtues in her teaching, and every kind of good, 
temporal as well as spiritual, in her exertions, does 
not survey them from the same point of view, or classify 
them in the same order as the world. She makes 
secondary what the world considers indispensable ; she 
places first what the world does not even recognise, or 
undervalues, or dislikes, or thinks impossible ; and not 
being able, taking mankind as it is found, to do every- 
thing, she is often obliged to give up altogether what 
she thinks of great indeed, but of only secondary 
moment, in a particular age or a particular country, 
instead of effecting at all risks that extirpation of social 
evils, which, in the world's eyes, is so necessary, that it 
thinks nothing really is done till it is secured. Her 
base of operations, from the difficulties of the season 
or the period, is sometimes not broad enough to enable 
her to advance against crime as well as against sin, 
and to destroy barbarism as well as irreligion. The 
world, in consequence, thinks, that because she has 
not done the world's work, she has not fulfilled her 
Master's purpose; and imputes to her the enormity 
of having put eternity before time. 

And next, let it be observed that she has undertaken 
the more difficult work; it is difficult, certainly, to 
enlighten the savage, to make him peaceable, orderly, 
and self-denying; to persuade him to dress like a 
European, to make him prefer a feather-bed to the 

264 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

heather or the cave, and to appreciate the comforts of 
the fire-side and the tea-table : bnt it is indefinitely 
more difficult, even with the supernatural powers given 
to the Church, to make the most refined, accomplished, 
amiable of men, chaste or humble ; to bring, not only 
his outward actions, but his thoughts, imaginations, 
and aims, into conformity to a law which is naturally 
distasteful to him. It is not wonderful, then, if the 
Church does not do so much in the Church's way, as 
the world does in the world's way. The world has 
nature as an ally, and the Church, on the whole, and 
as things are, has nature as an enemy. 

And lastly, as I have implied, her best fruit is 
necessarily secret : she tights with the heart of man ; 
her perpetual conflict is against the pride, the impurity, 
the covetousness, the envy, the cruelty, which never 
gets so far as to come to light ; which she succeeds in 
strangling in its birth. From the nature of the case, 
she ever will do more in repressing evil than in creating 
good ; moreover, virtue and sanctity, even when realised, 
are also in great measure secret gifts, known only to 
God and good Angels; for these, then, and other 
reasons, the powers and the triumphs of the Church 
must be hid from the world, unless the doors of the 
Confessional could be flung open, and its whispers 
carried abroad on the voices of the winds. Nor indeed 
would even such disclosures suffice for the due com- 
parison of the Church with religions which aim at no 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 265 

personal self-government, and disown on principle 
examination of conscience and confession of sin ; but 
in order to our being able to do justice to that com- 
parison, we must wait for the Day when the books 
shall be opened and the secrets of hearts shall be 
disclosed. For all these reasons, then, from the pecu- 
liarity, and the arduousness, and the secrecy of the 
mission entrusted to the Church, it comes to pass that 
the world is led, at particular periods, to think very 
slightly of the Church's influence on society, and 
vastly to prefer its own methods and its own 

So much I have already suggested towards the 
consideration of a subject, to which justice could not 
really be done except in a very lengthened disquisition, 
and by an examination of matters which lie beyond 
the range of these Lectures. If then to-day I make a 
second remark upon it, I do so only with the object I 
have kept before me all along, of smoothing the way 
into the Catholic Church for those who are alreadv 
very near the gate ; who have reasons enough, taken 
by themselves, for believing her claims, but are per- 
plexed and stopped by the counter-arguments which 
are urged against her, or at least against their joining 



To-day, then, I shall suppose an objector to reply to 
what I have said in the following manner: viz., I 

266 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

shaU suppose him to say, that "the reproach of 
Catholicism is, not what it does not do, so much as 
what it does; that its teaching and its training do 
produce a certain very definite character on a nation 
and on individuals; and that character, so far from 
being too religious or too spiritual, is just the reverse, 
very like the world's ; that religion is a sacred, awful, 
mysterious, solemn matter; that it should be ap- 
proached with fear, and named, as it were, sotto voce ; 
whereas Catholics, whether in the North or the South, 
in the Middle Ages or in modern times, exhibit the 
combined and contrary faults of prof aneness and super- 
stition. There is a bold, shallow, hard, indelicate 
way among them of speaking of even points of faith, 
which is, to use studiously mild language, utterly out 
of taste, and indescribably offensive to any person of 
ordinary refinement. They are rude where they should 
be reverent, jocose where they should be grave, and 
loquacious where they should be silent. The most 
sacred feeHngs, the most august doctrines, are glibly 
enunciated in the shape of some short and smart theo- 
logical formula; purgatory, hell, and the evil spirit, 
are a sort of household words upon their tongue ; the 
most solemn duties, such as confession, or saying 
office, whether as spoken of or as performed, have a 
business-like air and a mechanical action about them, 
quite inconsistent with their real nature. Eeligion is 
made both free and easy, and yet is formal. Supersti- 

710 Prejudice to the Sanctity oftlte Church. 267 

tions and false miracles are at once preached, assented 
to, and laughed at, till one really does not know what 
is believed and what is not, or whether anything is 
believed at all. The saints are lauded, yet affronted. 
Take medieval England or France, or modern Belgium 
or Italy, it is all the same ; you have your Boy-bishop 
at Salisbury, your Lord of Misrule at Piheims, and at 
Sens your Feast of Asses. Whether in the South now, 
or in the North formerly, you have the excesses of 
your Carnival. Legends, such as that of St. Dunstan's 
fight with the author of all evil at Glastonbury, are 
popular in Germany, in Spain, in Scotland, and in 
Italy ; while in Naples or in Seville your populations 
rise in periodical fury against the celestial patrons 
whom they ordinarily worship. These are but single 
instances of a widespread and momentous phenomenon, 
to which you ought not to shut your eyes, and to 
which we can never be reconciled ; — a phenomenon in 
which we see a plain providential indication, that, in 
spite of our certainty, — first, that there is a Catholic 
Church, next, that it is not the religious communion 
dominant in England, or Eussia, or Greece, or Prussia, 
or Holland ; in short, that it can be nothing else hut 
the communion of Rome, — still, that it is our bounden 
duty to have nothing to do with the Pope, the Holy 
See, or the Church of which it is the centre." Such is 
the charge, my brethren, brought against the Catholic 

268 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

Church, both by the Evangelical section of the Estab- 
lishment, and by your own. 


Now I will, on the whole and in substance, admit 
the fact to be as you have stated it ; and next I will 
o-rant, that to no national differences can be attributed 
a character of religion so specific and peculiar. It is 
too uniform, too universal, to be ascribed to anything 
short of the genius of Catholicism itself ; that is, to 
its principles and influence acting upon human nature, 
such as human nature is everywhere found. I admit 
both your fact and your account of the fact ; I accept 
it, I repeat, in general terms what you have said ; but 
I would add to it, and turn a particular fact into a 
philosophical truth. I say, then, that such a hard, 
irreverent, extravagant tone in religion, as you con- 
sider it, is the very phenomenon which must neces- 
sarily result from a revelation of divine truth falling 
upon the human mind in its existing state of ignorance 
and moral feebleness. 

The wonder and offence which Protestants feel arises, 
in no small measure, from the fact that they hold the 
opinions of Protestants. They have been taught a 
religion, and imbibed ideas and feelings, and are suf- 
fering under disadvantages, which create the difficulty 
of which they complain ; and, to remove it, I shall be 
oblit^ed, as on some formei occasions, against mv will 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 269 

to explain a point of doctrine : — Protestants, then, 
consider that faith and love are inseparable ; where 
there is faith, there, they think, are love and obedi- 
ence ; and in proportion to the strength and degree of 
the former, are the strength and degree of the latter 
They do not think the inconsistency possible of really 
believing without obeying; and, where they see dis- 
obedience, they cannot imagine there the existence of 
real faith. Catholics, on the other hand, hold that 
faith and love, faith and obedience, faith and works, 
are simply separable, and ordinarily separated, in fact; 
that faith does not imply love, obedience, or works ; 
that the firmest faith, so as to move mountains, may 
exist without love, — that is, real faith, as really faith 
in the strict sense of the word as the faith of a martyr 
or a doctor. In other words, when Catholics speak of 
faith they are contemplating the existence of a gift 
which Protestantism does not even imagine. Faith is 
a spiritual sight of the unseen ; and since in matter 
of fact Protestantism does not impart this sight, does 
not see the unseen, has no experience of this habit, 
this act of the mind — therefore, since it retains the 
word " faith," it is obliged to find some other meaning 
for it; and its common, perhaps its commonest, idea 
is, that faith is substantially the same as obedience ; 
at least, that it is the impulse, the motive of obedience, 
or the fervour and heartiness which attend good works. 
In a word, faith is hope or it is love, or it is a mixture 

2 70 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

of the two. Protestants define or determine faith, not 
by its nature or essence, but by its effects. When it 
succeeds in producing good ^Yorks, tliey call it real 
faith; when it does not, they call it counterfeit— as 
though we should say, a house is a house when it is 
inhabited; but that a house to let is not a house. If 
we so spoke, it would be plain that we confused 
between house and home, and had no correct image be- 
fore our minds of a house jjer se. And in like manner, 
when Protestants maintain that faith is not really faith, 
except it be fruitful, whether they are right or wrong 
in saying so, anyhow it is plain that the idea of faith, as a 
habit in itself, as a something substantive, is simply, from 
the nature of the case, foreign to their minds, and that 
is the particular point on which I am now insisting. 

Now faith, in a Catholic's creed, is a certainty of 
things not seen but revealed; a certainty preceded 
indeed in many cases by particular exercises of the 
intellect, as conditions, by reflection, prayer, study, 
argument, or the like, and ordinarily, by the instru- 
mental sacrament of Baptism, but caused directly by 
a supernatural influence on the mind from above. 
Thus it is a spiritual sight; and the nearest parallel 
by which it can be illustrated is the moral sense. As 
nature has impressed upon our mind a faculty of re- 
cocrnisincT certain moral truths, when they are presented 
to US from without, so that we are quite sure tliat 
veracity, for instance, benevolence, and purity, are 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 2 7 : 

right and good, and that their contraries involve ^mih, 
in a somewhat similar way, grace impresses upon us 
inwardly that revelation which comes to us sensibly by 
the ear or eye; similarly, yet more vividly and dis- 
tinctly, because the moral perception consists in senti- 
ments, but the grace of faith carries the mind on to 
objects. This certainty, or spiritual sight, which is 
included in the idea of faith, is, according to Catholic 
teaching, perfectly distinct in its own nature from the 
desire, intention, and power of acting agreeably to it. 
As men may know perfectly well that they ought not 
to steal, and yet may deliberately take and appropriate 
what is not theirs ; so may they be gifted with a simple, 
undoubting, cloudless belief, that, for instance, Christ 
is in the Blessed Sacrament, and yet commit the 
sacrilege of breaking open the tabernacle, and carrying 
off the consecrated particles for the sake of the precious 
vessel containing them. It is said in Scripture, that 
the evil spirits "believe and tremble;" and reckless 
men, in like manner, may, in the very sight of hell, 
deliberately sin for the sake of some temporary gratifi- 
cation. Under these circumstances, even though I did 
not assume the Catholic teaching on the subject of 
faith to be true (which in the present state of the 
argument I fairly may do, considering whom I am 
addressing), though I took it merely as an hypothesis 
probable and philosophical, but not proved, still I 
would beg you to consider whether, as ;m hypothesis. 

272 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

it does not serve and suffice to solve the difficulty which 
is created in your minds by the aspect of Catholic 
countries. This, too, at least I may say: if it shall 
turn out that the aspect which Catholic countries 
present to the looker-on is accounted for by Catholic 
doctrine, at least that aspect wiU be no difficulty to you 
when once you have joined the Catholic Church, for, in 
joining the Church, you will be, of course, accepting 
the doctrine. Walk forward, then, into the Catholic 
Church, and the difficulty, like a phantom, will, as a 
matter of necessity, disappear. And now, assuming the 
doctrine as an hypothesis, I am going to show its 
bearing upon the aUeged difficulty. 


The case with most men is this : certainly it is the 
case of any such large and various masses of men as 
constitute a nation, that they grow up more or less in 
practical neglect of their Maker and their duties to 
Him. Nature tends to irreligion and vice, and in 
matter of fact that tendency is developed and fulfilled 
in any multitude of men, according to the saying of the 
old Greek, that "the many are bad," or according to 
the Scripture testimony, that the world is at enmity 
with its Creator. The state of the case is not altered, 
when a nation has been baptized; still, in matter of 
fact nature gets the better of grace, and the population 
falls into a^state of guilt and disadvantage, m one 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 273 

point of view worse than that from which it has been 
rescued. This is the matter of fact, as Scripture pro- 
phesied it should be: "Many are called, few are 
chosen;" "the kingdom of heaven is like unto a 
net gathering together of every kind." But still, this 
being granted, a Catholic people is far from being in 
the same state in all respects as one which is not 
Catholic, as theologians teach us. A soul which has 
received the grace of baptism receives with it the germ 
or faculty of all supernatural virtues whatever,— faith, 
hope, charity, meekness, patience, sobriety, and every 
other that can be named ; and if it commits mortal sin, 
it falls out of grace, and forfeits these supernatural 
powers. It is no longer what it was, and is, so far, in 
the feeble and frightful condition of those who were 
never baptized. But there are certain remarkable 
limitations and alleviations in its punishment, and one 
is this : that the faculty or power of faith remains to 
it. Of course the soul may go on to resist and destroy 
this supernatural faculty also; it may, by an act of the 
will, rid itself of its faith, as it has stripped itself of 
grace and love ; or it may gradually decay in its faith 
till it becomes simply injadel ; but this is not the 
common state of a Catholic people. What commonly 
happens is this, that they fall under the temptations 
to vice or covetousness, which naturally and urgently 
beset them, but that faith is left to them. Thus the 
many are in a condition which is absolutely novel and 


2 74 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

strange in the ideas of a Protestant; they have a vivid 
perception, Hke sense, of things unseen, yet have no 
desire at all, or affection, towards them; they have 
knowledge without love. Such is the state of the many; 
the Church at the same time is ever labouring with aU 
her might to bring them back again to their Maker; 
and in fact is ever bringing back vast multitudes one 
by one, though one by one they are ever relapsing from 
her. The necessity of yearly confession, the Easter 
communion, the stated seasons of indulgence, the high 
festivals. Lent, days of obligation, with their Masses and 
preaching,— these ordinary and routine observances 
and the extraordinary methods of retreats, missions, 
jubilees, and the like, are the means by which the 
powers of the world unseen are ever acting upon 
the corrupt mass, of which a nation is composed, and 
breaking up and reversing the dreadful phenomenon 
which fact and Scripture conspire to place before us. 

Nor is this all: good and bad are mixed together, 

and the good is ever influencing and mitigating the 

bad. In the same family one or two holy souls may 

shed a light around and raise the religious tone of the 

rest. In large and profligate towns there will be 

planted here and there communities of religious men 

and women, whose example, whose appearance, whose 

churches, whose ceremonies, whose devotions,— to say 

nothing of tlieir sacerdotal functions, or tlieir charitable 

ministrations,-will ever be counteracting the intensity 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 275 

of the poison. Again, you will have vast multitudes 
neither good nor bad ; you will have many scandals ; you 
will have, it may be, particular monasteries in a state 
of relaxation ; rich communities breaking their rule, 
and living in comfort and refinement, and individuals 
among them lapsmg into sin; cathedrals sheltering a 
host of officials, many of whom are a dishonour to the 
sacred place ; and in country districts, priests who set 
a bad example to their flock, and are the cause of 
anxiety and grief to their bishops. And besides, you 
will have all sorts of dispositions and intellects, as 
plentiful of course as in a Protestant land: there are 
the weak and the strong-minded, the sharp and the 
dull, the passionate and the phlegmatic, the generous 
and the selfish, the idle, the proud, the sceptical, the 
dry-minded, the scheming, the enthusiastic, the self-con- 
ceited, the strange, the eccentric; all of whom grace 
leaves more or less in their respective natural cast or 
tendency of mind. Thus we have before us a confused 
and motley scene, such as the world presents generally; 
good and evil mingled together in all conceivable 
measures of combination and varieties of result; a 
perpetual vicissitude; the prospect brightening and 
then overcast again ; luminous spots, tracts of splendour, 
patches of darkness, twilight regions, and the glimmer 
of day; but in spite of this moral confusion, in one 
and all a clear intellectual apprehension of the truth. 
Perhaps you will say that this conflict of good and 

276 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

evil is to be seen in a Protestant country in just the 
same way : that is not the point ; but. this —that, in a 
Catholic country, on the mixed multitude, and on each 
of them, good or bad, is written, is stamped deep, this 
same wonderful knowledge. Just as in England, the 
whole community, whatever the moral state of the 
individuals, knows about railroads and electric tele 
graphs ; and about the Court, and men in power, and 
proceedings in Parliament; and about religious con- 
troversies, and about foreign affairs, and about all that 
is going on around and beyond them : so, in a Catholic 
country, the ideas of heaven and heU, Christ and the 
evil spirit, saints, angels, souls in purgatory, grace, the 
Blessed Sacrament, the sacrifice of the Mass, absolution, 
indulgences, the virtue of relics, of holy images, of holy 
water, and of other holy things, are of the nature of 
facts, which all men, good and bad, young and old, rich 
and poor, take for granted. They are facts brought home 
to them by faith ; substantially the same to all, though 
coloured by their respective minds, according as they are 
religious or not, and accordmg to the degree of their 
religion. Eeligious men use them well, the irreligious 
use them ill, the inconsistent vary in their use of them, 
but all use them. As the idea of God is before the 
minds of all men in a community not Catholic, so, but 
more vividly, these revealed ideas confront the minds of 
a Catholic people, whatever be the moral state of that 
people, taken one by one. They are facts attested by 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 277 

each to all, and by all to each, common property, 
primary points of thought, and landmarks, as it were, 
upon the territory of knowledge. 


Now, it being considered, that a vast number of 
sacred truths are taken for granted as facts by a 
Catholic nation, in the same sense as the sun in the 
heavens is a fact, you will see how many things take 
place of necessity, which to Protestants seem shocking, 
and which could not be avoided, unless it had been 
promised that the Church should consist of none but 
the predestinate ; nay, unless it consisted of none but 
the educated and refined. It is the spectacle of super- 
natural faith acting upon the multitudinous mind of a 
people ; of a divine principle dwelling in that myriad of 
characters, good, bad, and intermediate, into which the 
old stock of Adam grafted into Christ has developed. 
If a man sins grossly in a Protestant country, he is at 
once exposed to the temptation of unbelief ; and he is 
irritated when he is threatened with judgment to come. 
He is threatened, not with what to him is a fact, but 
with what to him is at best an opinion. He has power 
over that opinion ; he holds it to-day, whether he shall 
hold it to-morrow he cannot exactly say ; it depends on 
circumstances. And, being an opinion, no one has a right 
to assume that it is anything more, or to thrust it upon 
him, and to threaten him with it. This is what is to him 

278 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

so provoking and irritating. Protestants hold that there 
is a hell, as the conclusion of a syUogism ; they prove 
it from Scripture ; it is from first to last a point of 
controversy, and an opinion, and must not be taken 
for granted as immntable. A vicious man is angry 
with those \Yho hold opinions condemnatory of himself, 
because those opinions are the creation of the holders, 
and seem to reflect personaUy upon him. Nothing is so 
irritating to others as my own private judgment. But 
men are not commonly irritated by facts ; it would be ir- 
rational to be so, as it is in children who beat the ground 
when they faU down. A bad Catholic does not deny 
hell, for it is to him an incontestable fact, brought 
home to him by that supernatural faith, with which he 
assents to the Divine Word speaking through Holy 
Church ; he is not angry with others for holding it, for 
it is no private decision of their own. He may indeed 
despair, and then he blasphemes ; but, generally speak- 
ing, he will retain hope as well as faith, when he has 
lost charity. Accordingly, he neither complains of God 
nor of man. His thoughts wHl take a different turn ; he 
seeks to evade the difficulty ; he looks up to our Blessed 
Lady ; he knows by supernatural faith her power and 
her goodness ; he turns the truth to his own purpose, his 
bad purpose ; and he makes her his patroness and protec- 
tress against the penalty of sins which he does not mean 
to abandon. Such, I say, is the natural effect of having 
faith and hope without the saving grace of divine love. 

no Prejudice to the Sanctitfj of the Church. 279 

Hence, the strange stories of highwaymen and 
brigands devout to the Madonna. And, their wishes 
leading to the belief, they begin to circulate stories 
of her much- coveted compassion towards impenitent 
offenders; and these stories, fostered by the circum- 
stances of the day, and confused with others similar 
but not impossible, for a time are in repute. Thus, the 
Blessed Virgin has been reported to deliver the repro- 
bate from hell, and to transfer them to purgatory ; and 
absolutely to secure from perdition all who are devout 
to her, repentance not being contemplated as the means. 
Or men have thought, by means of some sacred relic, 
to be secured from death in their perilous and guilty 
expeditions. So, in the middle ages, great men could 
not go out to hunt without hearing Mass, but were 
content that the priest should mutilate it and worse, 
to bring it within limits. Similar phenomena occur in 
the history of chivalry : the tournaments were held in 
defiance of the excommunications of the Church, yet 
were conducted with a show of devotion ; ordeals, again, 
were even religious rites, yet in like manner undergone 
in the face of the Church's prohibition. We know the 
dissolute character of the medieval knights and of the 
troubadours ; yet, that dissoluteness, which would lead 
Protestant poets and travellers to scoff at religion, led 
them, not to deny revealed truth, but to combine it with 
their own wild and extravagant profession. The knight 
awore before Almighty God. His Blessed Mother, and — 

28o Religious State of Catholic Countries 

the ladies ; the troubadour offered tapers, and paid for 
Masses, for his success in some lawless attachment ; 
and the object of it, in turn, painted her votary under the 
figure of some saint. Just as a heathen phraseology is 
now in esteem, and " the altar of hymen " is spoken of, 
and the trump of fame, and the trident of Britannia, 
and a royal cradle is ornamented with figures of Nox 
and Somnus ; so in a Catholic age or country, the 
Blessed Saints will be invoked by virtuous and vicious 
in every undertaking, and will have their place in every 
room, whether of palace or of cottage. Vice does not 
involve a neglect of the external duties of religion. 
The Crusaders had faith sufficient to bind them to a 
perilous pilgrimage and warfare ; they kept the Friday's 
abstinence, and planted the tents of their mistresses 
within the shadow of the pavilion of the glorious St. 
Louis. There are other pilgrimages besides military 
ones, and other religious journeys besides the march on 
Jerusalem ; but the character of all of them is pretty 
much the same, as St. Jerome and St. Gregory Nyssen 
bear witness in the first age of the Church. It is a 
mixed multitude, some members of it most holy, 
perhaps even saints ; others penitent sinners ; but 
others, again, a mixture of pilgrim and beggar, or 
pilgrim and robber, or half gipsy, or three-quarters 
boon companion, or at least, with notliing saintly, and 
little religious about them. They will let you wash 
their feet, and serve them at table, and the hosts have 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 281 

more merit for their ministry than the guests for their 
wayfaring. Yet, one and all, saints and sinners, have 
faith in things invisible, which each nses in his own 


Listen to their conversation; listen to the conversa- 
tion of any multitude of them or any private party : 
what strange oaths mingle with it ! God's heart, and 
Ood's eyes, and God's wounds, and God's blood: you 
cry out, " How profane ! " Doubtless ; but do you 
not see, that their special profaneness over Protestant 
oaths, lies, not in the words, but simply in the speaker, 
and is the necessary result of that insight into the 
invisible world, which you have not? You use the 
vague words *' Providence," or " the Deity," or " good- 
luck," or " nature :" you would use more sacred words 
did you believe in the things denoted by them : Catho- 
lics, on the contrary, whether now or of old, realise 
the Creator in His supernatural works and personal 
manifestations, and speak of the " Sacred Heart," or of 
" the Mother of mercies," or of " our Lady of Walsing- 
ham," or of " St. George, for merry England," or of 
loving " St. Francis," or of dear " St. Philip." Your 
people would be as varied and fertile in their adjura- 
tions and invocations as a Catholic populace, if they 
had as rich a creed. Again, listen how freely the 
name of the evil spirit issues from the mouth even of 
the better sort of men. What is meant by this very 

282 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

off-hand meDtion of the most horrihle object in 
creation, of one who, if aUowed, could reduce us to 
ashes by the very hideousness of his countenance, or 
the odour of his breath ? WeU, I suppose they act 
upon the advice of the great St. Anthony; he, in 
the lonely wilderness, had conflicts enough with the 
enemy, and he has given us the result of his long expe- 
rience. In the sermon which his far-famed biogra- 
pher puts into his mouth, he teaches his hearers that 
the devH and his host are not to be feared by those 
who are within the fold, for the Good Shepherd has 
put the wolf to flight. Henceforth, the evil spirit 
could do no more than frighten them with empty 
noises (except by some particular permission of God), 
and could only pretend to do what was now really 
beyond his power. The experience of a saint, I sup- 
pose, is imprudently acted on by sinners; not as if 
Satan's malice were not equal to any assault upon body 
or soul ; but faith accepts the word that his rule over 
the earth is now broken, and that any child or peasant 
may ordinarily make sport of him and put him to 
ridiculous flight by the use of the " Hail Mary !" or 
holy water, or the sign of the cross. 

Once more, listen to the stories, songs, and ballads 
of the populace ; their rude and boisterous merriment 
still runs upon the great invisible subjects which 
possess their imagination. Their ideas, of whatever 
sort, cTood, bad, and indifferent, rise out of the next 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Chirrch. 283 

world. Hence, if they would have x^lays, the subjects 
are sacred ; if they would have games and sports, these 
fail, as it were, into procession, and are formed upon 
the model of sacred rites and sacred persons. If they 
sing and jest, the Madonna and the Bambino, or St. 
Joseph, or St. Peter, or some other saint, is introduced, 
not for irreverence, but because these are the ideas 
that absorb them. There is a festival in the streets ; 
you look about : what is it you see ? What would be 
impossible here in London. Set up a large Crucifix 
at Charing Cross ; the police would think you simply 
insane. Insane, and truly : but w^hy ? why dare you 
not do it ? why must you not ? Because you are 
averse to the sacred sign ? Not so ; you have it in 
your chamber, yet a Catholic would not dare to do so, 
more than another. It is true that awful, touching, 
winning Form has before now converted the very 
savage who gazed upon it; he has wondered, has 
asked what it meant, has broken into tears, and been 
converted ere he knew that he believed. The mani- 
festation of love has been the incentive to faith. I 
cannot certainly predict what would take place, if a 
saint appealed to the guilty consciences of those thou- 
sand passers-by, through the instrumentality of the 
Divine Sign. But such occurrences are not of every 
day; what you would too securely and confidently 
foretell, my brethren, were such an exhibition made, 
would be, that it would but excite the scorn, the rac^e. 

284 Religious State of Catholic Counties 

the blasphemy, of the out-pouring flocking multitude, 
a multitude who in their hearts are unbelievers. Alas ! 
there is no idea in the national mind, supematur- 
ally implanted, which the Crucifix embodies. Let a 
Catholic mob be as profligate in conduct as an English, 
still it cannot withstand, it cannot disown, it can but 
worship the Crucifix ; it is the external representation 
of a fact, of which one and all are conscious to them- 
selves and to each other. And hence, I say, in their 
fairs and places of amusement, in the booths, upon the 
stalls, upon the doors of wine-shops, will be paintings 
of the Blessed Virgin, or St. Michael, or the souls in 
purgatory, or of some Scripture subject. Innocence, 
guilt, and what is between the two, all range them- 
selves under the same banners ; for even the resorts of 
sin will be made doubly frightful by the blasphemous 
introduction of some sainted patron. 


You enter into one of the churches close upon the 
scene of festivity, and you turn your eyes towards 
a confessional. The penitents are crowding for admis- 
sion, and they seem to have no shame, or solemnity, 
or reserve about the errand on which they are come ; 
till at length, on a penitent's turning from the grate, 
one tall woman, bolder than a score of men, darts 
forward from a distance into the place he has vacated, 
to the disappointment of the many who have waited 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 285 

longer than she. You almost groan under the weight 
of your imagination that such a soul, so selfish, so 
unrecollected, must surely he in very ill dispositions 
for so awful a sacrament. You look at the priest, and 
he has on his face a look almost of impatience, or of 
good-natured compassion, at the voluble and super- 
fluous matter which is the staple of her confession. 
The priests, you think, are no better than the people. 
My dear brethren, be not so uncharitable, so unphiloso- 
phical. Things we thoroughly believe, things we see, 
things which occur to us every day, we treat as things 
which do occur and are seen daily, be they of this 
world, or be they of the next. Even Bishop Butler 
should have taught you that "practical habits are 
strengthened by repeated acts, and passive impres- 
sions grow weaker by being repeated upon us." It is 
not by frames of mind, it is not by emotions, that we 
must judge of real religion ; it is the having a will and 
a heart set towards those things unseen ; and though 
impatience and rudeness are to be subdued, and are 
faulty even in their minutest exhibitions, yet do not 
argue from them the absence of faith, nor yet of 
love, or of contrition. You turn away half satisfied, 
and what do you see ? There is a feeble old woman, 
who first genuflects before the Blessed Sacrament, 
and then steals her neighbour's handkerchief, or 
prayer-book, who is intent on his devotions. Here 
at last, you say, is a thing absolutely indefensible and 

286 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

inexcusable. Doubtless; but what does it prove? 
Does England bear no thieves ? or do you think this 
poor creature an unbeliever ? or do you exclaim against 
Catholicism, which has made her so profane? but 
why ? Faith is illuminative, not operative ; it does not 
force obedience, though it increases responsibility ; it 
heightens guilt, it does not prevent sin ; the will is the 
source of action, not an influence, though divine, which 
Baptism has implanted, and which the devil has only 
not eradicated. She worships and she sins ; she kneels 
because she believes, she steals because she does not 
love ; she may be out of God's grace, she is not alto- 
gether out of His sight. 

You come out again and mix in the idle and dis- 
sipated throng, and you fall in with a man in a 
palmer's dress, selling false relics, and a credulous 
circle of customers buying them as greedily as though 
they were the supposed French laces and India silks 
of a pedlar's basket. One simple soul has bought of 
him a cure for the rheumatism or ague, the use of 
which might form a case of conscience. It is said to 
be a relic of St. Cuthbert, but only has virtue at sun- 
rise, and when applied with three crosses to the head, 
arms, and feet. You pass on, and encounter a rude 
son of the Church, more like a showman than a 
religious, recounting to the gaping multitude some tale 
of a vision of the invisible world, seen by Brother 
Augustine of the Friars Minors, or by a holy Jesuit 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 287 

preacher who died in the odour of sanctity, and send- 
ing round his bag to collect pence for the souls in 
purgatory ; or of some appearance of our Lady (the 
like of which has really been before and since), but on 
no authority except popular report, and in no shape 
but that which popular caprice has given it. You go 
forward, and you find preparations in progress for a 
great pageant or mystery ; it is a high festival, and the 
incorporated trades have each undertaken their special 
religious celebration. The plumbers and glaziers are 
to play the Creation ; the barbers, the Call of Abraham ; 
and at night is to be the grandest performance of all, 
the Eesurrection and Last Judgment, played by the 
carpenters, masons, and blacksmiths. Heaven and 
hell are represented, — saints, devils, and living men; 
and the chef dJoeuvre of the exhibition is the display of 
fireworks to be let off as the finale. " How unutterably 
profane!" again you cry. Yes, profane to you, my 
dear brother — profane to a population which only 
half believes; not profane to those who, however 
coarse-minded, however sinful, believe wholly, who, 
one and all, have a vision within, which corresponds 
with what they see, which resolves itself into, or 
rather takes up into itself, the external pageant, what- 
ever be the moral condition of each individual com- 
posing the mass. They gaze, and, in drinking in the 
exhibition with their eyes, they are making one con- 
tinuous and intense act of faith. 

aSS Religious State of Catholic Countries 

You turn to go home, and, on your way, you pass 
through a retired quarter of the city. Look up at those 
sacred windows ; they belong to the convent of the 
Perpetual Adoration, or to the poor Clares, or to the 
CarmeUtes of the reform of St. Theresa, or to the nuns 
of the Yisitation. Seclusion, silence, watching, medi- 
tation, is their life day and night. The immaculate 
Lamb of God is ever before the eyes of the worshippers \ 
or at least the invisible mysteries of faith ever stand 
out, as if in bodily shape, before their mental gaze. 
Where will you find such a realised heaven upon 
earth ? Yet that very sight has acted otherwise on the 
mind of a weak sister; and the very keenness of hei 
faith and wild desire of approaching the Object of it, 
has led her to fancy or to feign that she has received 
that singular favour vouchsafed only to a few elect 
souls; and she points to God's wounds, as imprinted 
on her hands, and feet, and side, though she herself 
has been instrumental in their formation. 


In these and a thousand other ways it may be 
shown, that that special character of a Catholic 
country, which offends you, my brethren, so much, 
that mixture of seriousness and levity, that familiar 
handling of sacred things, in word and deed, by good 
and bad, that publication of religious thoughts and 
practices, so far as it is found, is the necessary con- 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 289 

sequence of its being Catholic. It is the consequence 
of mixed multitudes aU having faith; for faith im- 
presses the mind with supernatural truths, as if it 
were sight, and the faith of this man, and the faith of 
that, is one and the same, and creates one and the 
same impression. The truths of religion, then, stand in 
the place of facts, and public ones. Sin does not obli- 
terate the impression; and did it begin to do so in 
particular cases, the consistent testimony of all around 
would bring back the mind to itself, and prevent 
the incipient evil. Ordinarily speaking, once faith, 
always faith. Eyes once opened to good, as to evil, 
are not closed again; and, if men reject the truth, it 
is, in most cases, a question whether they have ever 
possessed it. It is just the reverse among a Protestant 
people; private judgment does but create opinions, 
and nothing more; and these opinions are peculiar to 
each individual, and different from those of any one 
else. Hence it leads men to keep their feelings to 
themselves, because the avowal of them only causes in 
others irritation or ridicule. Since, too, they have no 
certainty of the doctrines they profess, they do but 
feel that they ought to believe them, and they try to 
believe them, and they nurse the offspring of their 
reason, as a sickly child, bringing it out of doors only 
on line days. They feel very clear and quite satisfied, 
while they are very still; but if they turn about their 
head, or change their posture ever so little, the vision 

290 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

of the Unseen, like a mirage, is gone from them So 
they keep the exhibition of the. faith for high days 
J great occasions, when .t comes forth suffi- 
cient pomp and gravity of language, and ceremomal of 
nianner Truths slowly totter out with Scripture te.ts 
at their elbow, as unable to walk alone. Moreover, 
Protestants know, if such and such things be true 
what ou,ht to be the voice, the tone, the gesture, and 
the carnage attendant upon them; thus reason, whrch 
is the substance of their faith, supplies also the rubrics 
as 1 may call them, of their behaviour. This some of 
you my brethren, call reverence ; though I am obliged 
to say it is as much a mannerism, and an unpleasant 
mannerism, as that of the Evangelical party, which 
they have hitherto condemned. They condemn Catho- 
lics, because, however religious they may be, they are 
natural, unaffected, easy, and cheerful, in their mention 
of sacred things; and they think themselves never so 
real as when they are especiaUy solemn. 


And now, my brethren, I will only observe, in con- 
clusion how merciful a providence it has been, that 
faith and love are separable, as the Catholic creed 
teaches. I suppose it might have been, as Luther said 
it is, had God so willed it-faith and love might have 
been so intimately one, that the abandonment of the 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 2qi 

latter was the forfeiture of the former. Now, did sin 
not only throw the soul out of God's favour, but at 
once empty it of every supernatural principle, we 
should see in Catholics, what is, alas ! so common 
among Protestants, souls brought back to a sense of 
guilt, frightened at their state, yet having no resource, 
and nothing to build upon. Again and again it hap- 
pens, that, after committing some offence greater than 
usual, or being roused after a course of sin, or fright- 
ened by sickness, a Protestant wishes to repent ; but 
what is he to fall back upon ? whither is he to go ? 
what is he to do ? He has to dig and plant his founda- 
tion. Every step is to be learned, and all is in the 
dark ; he is to search and labour, and after all for an 
opinion. And then, supposing him to have made some 
progress, perhaps he is overcome again by temptation ; 
he falls, and all is undone again. His doctrinal views 
vanish, and it can hardly be said that he believes any- 
thing. But the Catholic knows just where he is and 
what he has to do ; no time is lost when compunction 
comes upon him ; but, while his feelings are fresh and 
keen, he can betake himself to the appointed means of 
cure. He may be ever falling, but his faith is a con- 
tinual invitation and persuasive to repent. The poor 
Protestant adds sin to sin, and his best aspirations 
come to nothing ; the Catholic wipes off his guilt again 
and again ; and thus, even if his repentance does not 
endure, and he has not strength to persevere, in a 

292 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

certain sense lie is never getting worse, but ever be- 
ginning afresh. Nor does the apparent easiness of 
pardon operate as an encouragement to sin, unless, 
indeed, repentance be easy, and the grace of repentance 
to be expected, when it has already been quenched, or 
unless we come to consider past repentance to avail, 
when it is not persevered in. 

And, above all, let death come suddenly upon him, 
and let him have the preparation of a poor hour; what 
is the Protestant to do ? He has nothing but sights 
of this world around him; wife, and children, and 
friends, and worldly interests ; the Catholic has these 
also, but the Protestant has nought but these. He 
may, indeed, in particular cases, have got firm hold of his 
party's view of justification or regeneration ; or it may 
be, he has a real apprehension of our Lord's divinity, 
which comes from divine grace. But I am speaking, 
not of the more serious portion of the community, 
but of the popular religion ; and I wish you to take a 
man at random in one of our vast towns, and tell me, 
has he any supernatural idea before his mind at all? 
The minutes hasten on; and, having to learn every- 
thing, supposing him desirous of learning, he can 
practise nothing. His thoughts rise up in some vague 
desire of mercy, which neither he nor the bystanders 
can analyze. He asks for some chapter of the Bible to 
be read to him, but rather as the expression of his 
horror and bewilderment, than as the token of his 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 293 

faith ; and then his intellect becomes clouded, and he 

How different is it with the Catholic ! He has with- 
in him almost a principle of recovery, certainly an 
instrument of it. He may have spoken lightly of the 
Almighty, but he has ever believed in Him ; he has 
sung jocose songs about the Blessed Virgin and Saints, 
and told good stories about the evil spirit, but in 
levity, not in contempt ; he has been angry with his 
heavenly Patrons when things went ill with him, but 
with the waywardness of a child who is cross with his 
parents. Those heavenly Patrons were ever before 
him, even when he was in the mire of mortal sin and 
in the wrath of the Almighty, as lights burning in the 
firmament of his intellect, though he had no part with 
them, as he perfectly knew. He has absented him- 
self from his Easter duties years out of number, but 
he never denied he was a Catholic. He has laughed 
at priests, and formed rash judgments of them, and 
slandered them to others, but not as doubting the 
divinity of their function and the virtue of their 
ministrations. He has attended Mass carelessly and 
heartlessly, but he was ever aware what really was 
before him, under the veil of material symbols, in that 
august and adorable action. So, when the news comes 
to him that he is to die, and he cannot get a priest, 
and the ray of God's grace pierces his heart, and he 
yearns after Him whom he has neglected, it is with no 

294 Religious State of Catholic Countries 

inarticulate, confused emotion, which does but oppress 
him, and which has no means of relief. His thoughts 
at once take shape and order; they mount up, each m 
its due place, to the great Objects of faith, which 
are as surely in Ms mind as they are in heaven. He 
addresses himself to his Crucifix; He invokes the 
Precious Blood or the Five Wounds of his Redeemer ; 
he interests the Blessed Virgin in his behalf; he 
hetakes himself to his patron Saints ; he calls his good 
Angel to his side; he professes his desire of that 
sacramental absolution, which from circumstances he 
cannot obtain; he exercises himself in acts of faith, 
hope, charity, contrition, resignation, and other virtues 
suitable to his extremity. True, he is going into the 
unseen world; but true also, that that unseen world 
has already been with him here. True, he is going to 
a foreign, but not to a strange place ; judgment and 
purgatory are famiUar ideas to him, more fully realised 
within him even than death. He has had a much deeper 
perception of purgatory, though it be a supernatural 
object, than of death, though a natural one. The 
enemy rushes on him, to overthrow the faith on which 
he is built; but the whole tenor of his past life, his 
very jesting, and his very oaths, have been overruled, 
to create in him a habit of faith, girding round and 
protecting the supernatural principle. And thus, even 
one who has been a bad Catholic may have a hope in 

no Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church. 295 

his death, to which the most virtuous of Protestants, 
nay, my brethren, the most correct and most thought- 
ful among yourselves, however able, or learned, or 
sagacious — if you have lived not by faith but by 
private judgment — are necessarily strangers. 

( 296 ) 




AM going to-day to take notice of an objection to 

the claims of that great Communion, into which, 

my brethren, I am inviting you, which to me sounds so 

feeble and unworthy, that I am loth to take it for my 

subject ; for an answer, if corresponding to it, must be 

trifling and uninteresting also, and if careful and exact, 

will be but a waste of effort. I, therefore, do not know 

what to do with it : treat it with respect I cannot ; yet 

since it is frequently, nay, triumphantly, urged by 

those who wish to make the most of such difficulties 

as they can bring together against our claims, I do not 

like to pass it over. Bear with me then, my brethren, 

nay, I may say, sympathize with me, if you find that 

the subject is not one which is very fertile in profitable 



When, then, the variations of Protestantism, or the 
divisions in the Establishment, are urged as a reason 
for your distrusting the Communion in which they are 

Differences among Catholics, etc. 297 

found, it is answered, that divisions as serious and as 
decided are to be found in the Catholic Church. It is 
a well-known point in controversy, to say that the 
Catholic Church has not any real unity more than 
Protestantism ; for, if Lutherans are divided in creed 
from Calvinists, and both from Anglicans, and the 
various denominations of Dissenters each has its own 
doctrine and its own interpretation, yet Dominicans 
and Franciscans, Jesuits and Jansenists, have had their 
quarrels too. Nay, that at this moment the greatest 
alienation, rivalry, and difference of opinion exist 
among the members of the Catholic priesthood, so that 
the Church is but nominally one, and her pretended 
unity resolves itself into nothing more specious than 
an awkward and imperfect uniformity. This is what 
is said : and, I repeat, my answer to it cannot contain 
anything either new or important, or even satisfactory 
to myself. However, since I must enter upon the 
subject, I must make the best of it ; so let me begin 
with an extract from Jewel's Apology, in which the 
objection is to be found. 

"Who are these," he says, "that find fault with 
dissensions among us ? Are they all agreed among 
themselves ? Hath every one of them determined, to 
his own satisfaction, what he should follow? Have 
there been no differences, no disputes among them? 
Then why do not the Scotists and the Thomists come 
to a more perfect agreement touching the merit of con- 

298 Differences among Catholics 

gruity and condignity, touching original sin in the 
Blessed Virgin, and the obligations of simple and 
solemn vows ? Why do the Canonists affirm auricular 
confession to be of human and positive, and the School- 
men, on the contrary, maintain that it is of divine 
right ? Why does Albertus Pighius differ from Caje- 
tan, Thomas Aquinas from Peter Lombard, Scotus from 
Thomas Aquinas, Occham from Scotus, Peter D'Ailly 
from Occham, the Nominalists from the Eealists? 
And, not to mention the infinite dissensions of the 
friars and monks (how some of them place their 
holiness in the eating of fish, others in herbs ; some in 
wearing of shoes, others in sandals; some in linen 
garments, others in woollen ; some go in white, some in 
black ; some are shaven broader, some narrower ; some 
shod, some barefoot; some girded, others ungirded), 
they should remember that some of their own ad- 
herents say, that the body of Christ is in the Lord's 
supper naturally ; that others again, of their own party, 
teach the very reverse : that there are some who affirm 
that the body of Christ in the Holy Communion is 
torn and ground with our teeth ; others again there are 
who deny it : that there are some who say that the 
body of Christ in the Eucharist hath quantity; and 
others again deny it: that there are some who say 
that Christ consecrated the bread and wine by the 
especial putting forth of His divine power; others, 
that He consecrated in the benediction : some, by the 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 299 

conceiving the five words in His mind ; otliers, Vjy His 
uttering them : others there are who, in these five 
words, refer the demonstrative pronoun 'this' to the 
wheaten bread ; others to what they call an individu- 
um vagum : some there are who affirm that dogs and 
mice can verily and truly eat the body of Christ; 
others there are who do not hesitate to deny it; some 
there are who say that the very accidents of the bread 
and wine give nourishment ; others, that the substance 
of bread and wine returns after consecration. And 
why should we bring forward more ? It would be 
only tedious and burdensome to enumerate them all ; 
so unsettled and disputed is yet the ivhole form of these 
men's religion and doctrine even among themselves, 
from whom it sprang and proceeded. For scarcely 
ever are they agreed together, unless, as of old, the 
Pharisees and Sadducees were, or Herod and Pilate, 
against Christ." 

It is equally common to insist upon the breaches of 
charity which are to be found among the members of 
the Catholic Church. For instance, Leslie says, " If 
you have not unity in faith, nor in those principles 
and practices which are no less necessary to salvation, 
nor in that love and charity which Christ has made 
the characteristic of Christians, and without which no 
man can know who are His disciples ; but, instead of 
that, if you have envyings and strife among you, 
among your several religious orders, betwixt National 

300 Differences among CcMolics 

and iSTational Church, concerning the infallibility and 
supremacy of the Pope, and of his power to depose 
princes, upon which the peace and unity of the world 
and our eternal salvation does depend ; and, in short, 
if you have no unity concerning your rule of faith 
itself, or of your practice, what will the unity of 
communion do, upon which you lay the whole 
stress ?"i 

Such is the retort, by which Protestants would 
divert our attack upon their own mutual differences 
and variations in matters of faith. They answer, that 
differences of religious opinion and that party dissen- 
sions are found within the Catholic Church. 

Now, in beginning my remarks upon this objection, 
I would have you observe, my brethren, that the very 
idea of the Catholic Church, as an instrument of s uper- 
natural grace, is that of an institution which innovates 
upon, or rather superadds to nature. She does some- 
thing for nature above or beyond nature. When, then, 
it is said that she makes her members one, this implies 
that by nature they are not one, and would not become 
one. Viewed in themselves, the children of the Church 
are not of a different nature from the Protestants 
around them; they are of the very same nature. 
What Protestants are, such would they be, but for tlie 

• Wnrks, 1832, vol. iii. p. 171. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 301 

Church, which brings them together forcibly, though 
persuasively, "fortiter et suaviter," and binds them 
into one by her authority. Left to himself, each 
Catholic likes and would maintain his own opinion 
and his private judgment just as much as a Protes- 
tant ; and he has it, and he maintains it, just so far as 
the Church does not, by the authority of Eevelation, 
supersede it. The very moment the Church ceases to 
speak, at the very point at which she, that is, Cod 
who speaks by her, circumscribes her range of teaching, 
there private judgment of necessity starts up ; there is 
nothing to hinder it. The intellect of man is active 
and independent : he forms opinions about everything ; 
he feels no deference for another's opinion, except in 
proportion as he thinks that that other is more likely 
than he to be right ; and he never absolutely sacrifices- 
his own opinion, except when he is sure that that 
other knows for certain. He is sure that God knows ; 
therefore, if he is a Catholic, he sacrifices his opinion 
to the Word of God, speaking through His Church. 
But, from the nature of the case, there is nothing to 
hinder his having his own opinion, and expressing it, 
whenever, and so far as, the Church, the oracle of 
Eevelation, does not speak. 

But again, human nature likes, not only its own 
opinion, but its own way, and will have it whenever 
it can, except when hindered by physical or moral 
restraint. So far forth, then, as the Church does not 

302 Differences among Catholics 

compel her childreu to do one and the same thing (as, 
for instance, to abstain from work on Sunday, and 
from flesh on Friday), they will do different things; 
and still more so, when she actually allows or com* 
missions them to act for themselves, gives to certain 
persons or bodies privileges and immunities, and 
recognizes them as centres of combination, under her 
authority, and within her pale. 

And further still, in all subjects and respects what- 
ever, whether in that range of opinion and of action 
which the Church has claimed to herself, and where 
she has superseded what is private and individual, or, 
on the other hand, in those larger regions of thought 
and of conduct, as to which she has not spoken, 
though she might speak, the natural tendency of the 
children of the Church, as men, is to resist her autho- 
rity. Each mind naturally is self-willed, self-dependent, 
self-satisfied ; and except so far as grace has subdued 
it, its first impulse is to rebel. Now this tendency, 
through the influence of grace, is not often exhibited 
in matters of faith ; for it would be incipient heresy, 
and would be contrary, if knowingly indulged, to the 
first element of Catholic duty; but in matters of 
conduct, of ritual, of discipline, of politics, of social 
life, in the ten thousand questions which the Church 
has not formally answered, even though she may have 
intimated her judgment, there is a constant rising of 
the human mind against the authority of the Church, 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 303 

and of superiors, and that, in proportion as each 
individual is removed from perfection. For all these 
reasons, there ever has been, and ever will be, a vast 
exercise and a realized product, partly praiseworthy, 
partly barely lawful, of private judgment within the 
Catholic Church. The freedom of the human mind is 
" in possession " (as it is called), and it meddles with 
every question, and wanders over heaven and earth, 
except so far as the authority of the Divine Word, as a 
superincumbent weight, presses it down, and restrains 

it within limits. 


The most obvious instance of this liberty or licence 
within the Church is that of nationality : and I do not 
understand why it has not been urged in the contro- 
versy more prominently than the mere rivalry and 
party- spirit of monastic bodies. What a vast assem- 
blage of private attachments and feelings, judgments, 
tastes, and traditions, goes to make up the idea of 
nationality ! yet, there it exists in the Church, because 
the Church has not been divinely instructed to forbid 
it, and it fights against the Church and the Church's 
objects, except where the Church authoritatively repels 
it. The Church is' a preacher of peace, and nationality 
is the fruitful cause of quarrels, far more sinful and 
destructive tlian the paper wars, and rivalry of customs 
or precedents, which alone can possibly exist between 
religious bodies. The Church grants to the magistrate 

304 Differences among Catholics 

the power of the sword, and the right of making war 
in a lawful quarrel, and nations abuse this prerogative 
to break up that unity of love which ought to exist in 
the baptized servants of a common Master, and to put 
to death by wholesale those whom they pray to live 
with for ever in heaven. This, I say, might be urged in 
controversy against Catholicism, as an extreme instance 
of the want of unity in the Church ; and yet, when 
properly considered, it is rather a special instance, I 
do not say of her unity, but of her uniting power. 
She fights the battle of unity against nationality, and 
she wins. Look through her history, and you cannot 
deny but she is the one great principle of unity 
and concord which the world has seen. In this day, 
I grant, scientific unions, free trade, railroads, and 
industrial exhibitions are put forward as a substitute 
for her influence, with what success posterity will be 
able to judge ; but, as far as the course of history has 
yet proceeded, the Church is the only power that has- 
wrestled, as with the concupiscence, so with the pride,, 
irritability, selfishness, and self-love of human nature. 
Her annals present a series of victories over that 
human nature, wliich is the subject-matter of her 
operations; and to object to her " that she has an 
enemy to overcome, surely would be a most perverse 
view of the case, and a most sophistical argument in 
controversy. The barbarian invaders of the empire 
were the enemies of the human race and of each other; 

no Prejudice to tlie Unity of the Church. 305 

an! to subdue and unite them, and to harness them, 
as it were, to her triumphal chariot by her look and by 
her voice, was an exploit of moral power, such as the 
world has never seen elsewhere. Such, too, was her 
continual arbitration between the fierce feudal mon- 
archs of the Middle Ages, which, though not always 
successful to the extent of her desire, exhibits her 
most signally in that her great and heavenly character 
of peacemaker, and vindicates for her the attribute, 
given her in the Creed, and envied her by her enemies, 
of being One. 

And here I cannot but allude to the subject which 
employed our attention yesterday ; for, be it for good 
or for evil, it then seemed a truth beyond contradic- 
tion, that one and the same character was to be found 
in all Catholic nations, in north and south, in the 
middle age and in the present. I repeat, I am not 
assuming now, any more than then, that this common 
character is admirable and beautiful, or denying (as 
far as this argument goes) that it is despicable and 
offensive ; I only remind you that its identity every- 
where was in yesterday's Lecture taken for granted; 
and what was granted by me to our own prejudice 
then, must be conceded to me in our favour now. 
Considering the wide differences in nations and in 
times, it surely is very remarkable that the religious 
character, which the Catholic Church forms in her 
populations, is so identical as it is found to be. Can, 

3o6 Differences among Catholics 

indeed, there be a more marvellous, or even awful, 
instance of her real internal unity, than that a modern 
Naples should be like medieval England? and if we 
do not see the same character more than partially 
developed in Ireland at this moment, is not this the 
plain reason, that the Irish people has been worn 
down by oppression, not allowed to be joyous, not 
allowed to be natural, as little capable of exhibiting 
human nature in a Catholic medium, as primitive 
Christianity while it lived in the Catacombs? 


After considerations such as these, I own I can 
scarcely treat seriously the earnestness with which 
Protestant controversialists would call me back to 
contemplate the quarrels and jealousies of seculars 
and regulars, among themselves, or with each other; 
as if the human mind were not at all times, so far as 
it is left to itself, selfish and exclusive, and especially 
in the various circumstances under which it is found 
in a far-spreading polity or association. When Catho- 
lics in any country are poor or few, each religious body, 
each college, each priest, is tempted to do his utmost 
for himself, at the expense of every one else. I do 
not mean for his temporal interests, for he has not 
the temptation, but for the interests of his own mission 
and place, and of his own people. He has to build his 
chapel, to support his school, to feed his poor ; and if 

no Prejudice to tlie Unity of the Church. 307 

his next-door neighbour gets the start of him, no 
means will be left for himself. Or if he is of a 
mendicant order, he feels he has a claim on the sup- 
port of the faithful, prior to a religious body Avhich 
lives on endowments or has other property; but the 
latter has lately come to the country, and thinks it 
very fair, on its first start, once for all to make a 
general appeal, without which it never will be able 
to get afloat. All parties, then, are naturally led to 
look out for themselves in the first instance ; and this 
state of mind may easily degenerate into a jealousy of 
the good fortune or prosperity of others. And then 
again, some men, or races of men, are more sudden in 
their tempers than others, or individuals may be defi- 
cient in moral training or refinement, and strangers 
may mistake for a real dissension what is nothing more 
than momentary and transitory collision. 

Or again, let the country be Catholic, and the Church 
rich; then, what so natural, so inevitable, taking men 
as they are, as that large, and widely-spread, and 
powerful congregations or orders, high in repute, com- 
manding in station, famous in historical memories, 
rich in saints, proud of tlieir doctors, and of schools 
founded on their tradition, should be exposed to the 
various infirmities of party spirit, adhere sensitively 
and obstinately to the privileges they possess, or to the 
doctrines which have been their watchwords, disparage 
others and wish to overbear them, and provoke the 

3o8 Difference's among Catholics 

interposition of authority to put an end to the disputes 
which they have excited ? I should be curious to 
know whether there ever was a case when two Protestant 
sects or parties found anv umpire at aU, in a question 
of opinion between them, except indeed the strong arm 
of the law. And, in saying all this, I am not deter- 
mining the fact of such quarrels among Catholics, nor 
the degree to which they proceed; for, as in former 
Lectures, I am not specially concerned with the inves- 
tigation of facts; I am taking for granted what is 
alleged by our opponents, and is antecedently probable, 
taking human nature as it is. But, in truth, you 
might far better refer to the esprit de corps of separate 
regiments in her Majesty's service, in order to prove 
that the tribes of Eed Indians may be fairly said to 
live in peace together,— or point to the rivalries and 
party poUtics of separate coUeges in the national seats 
of learning as a proof that those bodies are mutual 
beUigerents, and assert that the university is not one, 
and "does not act as one, because its colleges differ 
among themselves,— than assert the like of any of 
those ''religious bodies, established and sanctioned by 
the Catholic Church. The very same parties, who have 
their domestic feuds with one another, will defend, as 
Catholics, their common faith, or common Mother, 
against an external foe; but when did the Bishops of 
the Establishment ever stand by the Friends or by the 
Independents, or the Wesleyans by the Baptists, on 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 309 

any one point of doctrine, with a unity of opinion, 
intelligent, positive, and exact ? 

You recollect the popular story, which is intended 
to exemplify the supremacy of the instinct of benevo- 
lence over religious opinion. It is supposed to be one 
o'clock on Sunday, and a number of congregations are 
pouring out, their devotions being over, from their 
respective chapels and meeting-houses, when a woman 
is taken ill in the street. The sight of this physical 
calamity is represented as sufficient to supersede all 
other considerations in the minds of the beholders, 
and to bind together for the moment the most bitter 
opponents in the common work of Christian charity. 
This argument of course is based uj^on the assumption, 
and a very reasonable one, that the differences which 
exist between man and man in religious matters, far 
from disproving, do but illustrate and confirm the fact 
of the participation of all men in the natural sentiment 
of compassion ; and surely the case is the same in the 
Catholic Church, as regards the differences and the 
unanimity of her religious bodies. Augustinians, 
Dominicans, Franciscans, Jesuits, and Carmelites have 
indeed their respective homes and schools; but they 
have, in spite of all that, a common school and a 
common home in their Mother's voice and their 
Mother's bosom ; " omnes omnium caritates patria una 
complexa est ; " but Protestants can but " agree to 
differ." Quarrels, stopping short of division, do but 

3 TO Differences among Catholics 

prove the strength of the principle of combination; 
they are a token not of the languor, but of the vigour, 
of its life. Surely this is what we see and say daily as 
regards the working of the British constitution. 


But we have not yet got to the real point of the 
question which lies between us: you allege these 
differences in the Catholic Church, my brethren, as a 
reason for your not submitting to her authority. Now, 
in order to ascertain their force in this point of view, 
let it be considered that the primary question, with 
every serious inquirer, is the question of salvation. I 
am speaking to those who feel this to be so; not to 
those who make religion a sort of literature or philo- 
sophy, but to those who desire, both in their creed and 
in their conduct, to approve themselves to their Maker, 
and to save their souls. This being taken for granted, 
it immediately follows to ask, " What must I do to be 
saved?" and "who is to teach me?" and next, can 
Protestantism, can the National Church, teach me? 
No, is the answer of common sense, for this simple 
reason, because of the variations and discordances in 
teaching of both the one and the other. The National 
Church is no guide into the truth, because no one 
knows what it holds, and what it commands : one party 
says this, and a second party says that, and a third 
party says neither this nor that. I must seek the truth 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 31 1 

then elsewhere; and then the question foHows, Shall 
I seek it in the Communion of Rome ? In answer, this 
objection is instantly made, " You cannot find the 
truth in Rome, for there are as many divisions there 
as in the national Communion." Who would not sup- 
pose the objection to mean, that these divisions were 
such as to make it difficult or impossible to ascertain 
what it was that the Roman Communion taught ? Who 
would not suppose it to mean that there was within 
the Communion of Rome a difference of creed and of 
dogmatic teaching; whereas the state of the case is 
just the reverse ? No one can pretend that the quarrels 
in the Catholic Church are questions of faith, or have 
tended in any way to obscure or impair what she declares 
to be such, and what is acknowledged to be such by the 
very parties in those quarrels. That Dominicans and 
Franciscans have been zealous respectively for certain 
doctrinal views, which they declare at the same time to 
be beyond and in advance of the promulgated faith of 
the Church, throws no doubt upon that faith itself; how 
does it follow that they differ in questions of faith, 
because they differ in questions not of faith ? Rather, 
I would say, if a number of parties distinct from each 
other give the same testimony on certain points, their 
differences on other points do but strengthen the evi- 
dence for the truth of those matters in which they all 
are agreed ; and the greater the difference, the more 
remarkable is the unanimity. The question is, " Where 

3 1 2 Differences among Catholics 

can I be taught, who cannot be taught by the national 
communion, because it does not teach ? " and the Protes- 
tant warning runs, " Not in the Catholic Church, be- . 
cause she, in spite of differences on subordinate points 
amongst her members, does teach." 

In truth, she not only teaches in spite of those dif- 
ferences, but she has ever taught by means of them. 
Those very differences of Catholics on further points 
have themselves implied and brought out their absolute 
faith in the doctrines which are previous to them. The 
doctrines of faith are the common basis of the combat- 
ants, the ground on which they contend, their ultimate 
authority, and their arbitrating rule. They are assumed, 
and introduced, and commented on, and enforced, in 
every stage of the alternate disputation; and I will 
venture to say, that, if you wish to get a good view of 
the unity, consistency, solidity, and reality of Catholic 
teaching, your best way is to get up the controversy on 
grace, or on the Immaculate Conception. No one can 
do so without acquiring a mass of theological know- 
ledge, and sinking in his intellect a foundation of 
dogmatic truth, which is simply antecedent and com- 
mon to the rival schools, and which they do but exhibit 
and elucidate. To suppose that they perplex an in- 
quirer or a convert, is to fancy that litigation destroys 
the principles and the science of law, or that spelling 
out words of five syllables makes a child forget his 
alphabet. On the other hand, place your unfortunate 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 313 

inquirer between Luther and Calvin, if the Holy 
Eucharist is his subject; or, if he is determining the 
rule of faith, between Bramhall and Chilling worth, 
Bull and Hoadley, and what residuum will be left, when 
you have eliminated their contr^irieties ? 


It is imprudent in opponents of the Catholic Eeligion 
to choose for their attack the very point in which it 
is strong. As truth is tried by error, virtue by tempta- 
tion, courage by opposition, so is individuality and life 
tried by disturbance and disorder ; and its trial is its 
evidence. The long history of Catholicism is but a co- 
ordinate proof of its essential unity. I suppose, then, 
that Protestants must be considered as turning to bay 
upon their pursuers, when they would retort upon us 
the argument available against themselves from their 
religious variations. "The Eomanist must admit," it 
has been urged, " that the state, whether of the Church 
Catholic or of the Eoman Church, at periods before or 
during the Middle Ages, was such as to bear a very 
strong resemblance to the picture he draws of our own. 
I do not speak of corruptions in life and morals merely, 
or of errors of individuals, however highly exalted, but 
of the general disorganized and schismatical state of 
the Church, lier practical abandonment of her spiritual 
pretensions, the tyranny exercised over her by the civil 
power, and the intimate adherence of the worst pas- 

314 Differences among Catholics 

sions and of circumstantial irregularities to those acts 
which are vital portions of her system." ^ Such is the 
imputation ; but yet, to tell the truth, I do not know 
any passages in her history which supply so awful, an 
evidence of her unity and self-dependence, or so lumi- 
nous a contrast to Anglicanism or other Protestantism, 
as these very anomalies in the rule and tenor of her 
course as I have already observed, and shall presently 
show by examples. 

Two years back, when European society was shaken 
to its basis, the question which came before us was, 
not whether this or that nation was great and power- 
ful, and able, in case of necessity, to go to war with 
vif^our and effect, but even whether it could hold to- 
gether, whether it possessed that internal consistency, 
reality, and life, which made it one. This was the 
question asked even about England ; it was a problem, 
debated before it could be tried, settled distinctly in the 
affirmative, when a trial was granted. Much as we 
mio-ht have confided in the steadiness of character, good 
sense, reverence for law, contentment and political 
discipline of our people, we shall, I suppose, admit that 
there was an evidence laid before the world of our 
national stability, after April 1848, to which no mere 
anticipation was equivalent. No one can deny, that, 
fully as we may be impressed with the security of 
Russia, still we have not, as regards Russia, such a 

1 Proph Off., p. 408. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Chui^ch. 3 1 5 

vivid impression on our mind, almost on our senses, of 
the fact, as was created by the threat and the failure of 
a political rising in England at the date I have men- 
tioned. And sometimes the longer is the trial, and the 
more critical the contest (as in the instance of the civil 
discords of ancient Eome), the greater vigour and the 
more obstinate life is exhibited by the nation and state, 
when once it is undeniably victorious over its internal 
disorders. As external enemies do not prove a state to 
be weak till they prevail over it, so rebellions from 
within may but prove its strength, if they are smitten 
down and extinguished. Now, the disorders which have 
afBicted the Church have just had this office assigned 
them in the designs of Providence, and teach us this 
lesson. They have but assayed what may be called the 
unitive and integrating virtue of the See of St. Peter, 
in contrast to such counterfeits as the Anglican Church, 
which, set up in unconditional surrender to the nation, 
has never been able to resist the tyranny or caprice of 
the national will. The Establishment, having no in- 
ternal principle of individuality, except what it borrows 
from the nation, can neither expel what is foreign to 
itself, nor heal its own wounds ; the Church, a living 
body, when she becomes the seat of a malady or 
disorder, tends from the first to its eradication, which 
is but a matter of time. This great fact continually 
occurring in her history, I will briefly illustrate by two 
examples, which will be the fairest to take, from, the 

1 6 Differences among Catholics 

extraordinary obstinacy of the evil, and its occasional 
promise of victory : — the history of the heresies con- 
cerning the Incarnation, and the history of Jansenism. 
Each controversy had a reference to a great mystery of 
the faith ; in each every inch of the gronnd was con- 
tested, and the enemy retired step by step, or at least 
from post to post. The former of the two lasted for 
between four and five hundred years, and the latter 
nearly two hundi'ed. 


First, as to the doctrine of the Incarnation, the mind 
of man is naturally impatient of whatever it cannot 
reduce to the system of order and of causation to which 
it subjects all its knowledge ; that is, of whatever is 
mysterious and incomprehensible ; no wonder, then, 
that it was discontented with a doctrine so utterly im- 
possible to fathom as that of the Almighty and Eternal 
becoming man. As private judgment is ever rising 
up against Eevelation, as the irascible principle in our 
nature is ever insurgent against reason, so there was 
a most determined effort and (to use a familiar word) 
set against this capital and vital article of faith, age 
after age, on the part of various schools of opinion all 
over Christendom. They differed, and indeed were 
almost indifferent, how the mystery was to be disposed 
of ; they took up opposite theories against it ; they were 
antac^onists of each other ; but <^o it must. The attack 


Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 3 1 7 

came upon the Church, not on this side or that, but 
from all quarters, at once or successively, whether in 
the wide field of speculation, or within the territory of 
the Church, and circled round the Holy See, rallying 
and forming again and again in very various positions, 
though beaten back for a time, and apparently Ijrought 
under. It was a very stubborn fight ; and till the end 
appeared, which was not till after many generations, it 
would have been easy to indulge misgivings whether it 
would ever have an ending. Let us fancy an erudite 
Nestorian of the day living in Seleucia, beyond the 
limits of the Eoman Empire, and looking out over the 
Euphrates upon the battle which was waging between 
the See of St. Peter and the subtle heresy of the Mono- 
physites, through so protracted a period ; and let him 
write a defence of his own Communion for the use of 
theological students. Doubtless he would have used 
that long contest as a decisive argument against the 
unity and purity of the Catholic Church, and might 
have adopted, by anticipation, the triumphant words 
of a learned Anglican divine, rashly uttered in 1838, 
and prudently recalled in 1842, with reference to that 
Jansenistic controversy, which I reserve for my second 
example. '' This very [Monophysite] heresy," he would 
have said, " has, in opposition to all these anathemas 
and condemnations, and in spite of the persecution of 
the temporal powers, continued to exist for nearly [300] 
years ; and, what is more, it has existed all along in the 

3 1 8 Differences among Catholics 

very heart of the Eoman Church itself. Yet, it has 
perpetuated itself in all parts of that Church, sometimes 
covertly, sometimes openly, exciting uneasiness, tumults, 
innovations, reforms, persecution, schisms, but always 
adhering to the Eoman communion with invincible 
tenacity. It is in vain that, sensible of so great an 
evil, the Eoman Church struggles and resorts to every 
expedient to free her from its presence; the loathed 
and abhorred heresy perpetuates itself in her vitals, 
and infects her bishops, her priests, her monks, her 
universities ; and, depressed for a time by the arm of 
civil power, gains the ascendancy at length, influences 
the councils of kings, . . . produces religious innova- 
tions of the most extraordinary character, and inflicts 
infinite and permanent injury and disgrace on the cause 
of the Eoman Church." ^ 

Such is the phenomenon which Monophysitism dis- 
tinctly presents to us more than a thousand years be- 
fore the rise of a heresy, which this author seems to 
have fancied the first instance of such an anomaly. 
The controversv besfan amid the flourisliins^ schools of 
Syria, the most learned quarter of Christendom; it 
extended along Asia Minor to Greece and Constan- 
tinople; and then there was a pause. Suddenly it 
broke out in an apparently dissimilar shape, and with 
a new beginning, in the imperial city ; summoned its 
adherents, confederates, and partisans from ISTorth to 

1 Palmer's Essay on the Church, vol. i. p- 320. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 3 1 9 

South, came into collision with the Holy See, and con- 
vulsed the Catholic world. Subdued for a while, it 
returned to what was very like its original form and 
features, and reared its head in Egypt with a far more 
plausible phraseology, and in a far more promising 
position. There, and in Syria, and thence through the 
whole of the East, supported by the emperors, and after- 
wards by the Mahometans, it sustained itself with great 
ingenuity, inventing evasion after evasion, and throwing 
itself into more and more subtle formulas, for the space 
of near three hundred years. Lastly, it suddenly 
appeared in a new shape, and in a final effort, four 
hundred years from the time of its first rise, in the 
extreme West of Europe, among the theologians of 
Spain ; and formed matter of controversy for our own 
Alcuin, the scholar of St. Bede, for the interposition 
of Charlemagne, and the labours of the great Council 
of Erankfort. 

It is impossible, T am sure, for any one patiently to 
read the history of this series of controversies, what- 
ever may be his personal opinions, without being 
intimately convinced of the oneness or identity of the 
mind, which lived in the Catholic Church tlirouo-h 


that long period; which baffled the artifices and 
sophistries of the subtlest intellects, was proof against 
human infirmity and secular expedience, and succeeded 
in establishing irrevocably and for ever those points 
of faith with which she started in the contest." " Any 

320 Differences among Catholics 

one false step would have thrown the whole theory of 
the doctrine into irretrievable confusion; but it was as 
if some individual and perspicacious intellect, to speak 
humanly, ruled the theological discussion from first to 
last. That in the long course of centuries, and in spite 
of the failure, in points of detail, of the most gifted 
fathers and saints, the Church thus wrought out the 
one and only consistent theory which can be formed 
on the great doctrine in dispute, proves how clear, 
simple, and exact her vision of that doctrine was." ^ 
Now I leave the retrospect of this long struggle with 
two remarks— first, that it was never doubtful to the 
world for any long time what was the decision of 
authority on each successive question as each came 
into consideration ; next, that the series of doctrinal 
errors which was evolved tended from the first to an 
utter overthrow of the heresy, each decision of autho- 
rity being a new and further victory over it, which was 
never undone. It was aU along in visible course of 
expulsion from the Catholic fold. Contrast this with 
the denial of baptismal grace, viewed as a heresy 
within the Anglican Church; has the sentiment of 
authority against it always been unquestionable ? Has 
there been a series of victories over it ? Is it in visible 
course of expulsion ? Is it ever tending to be expelled ? 
Are the infiuence and prospects of the heresy less 
formidable now than in the age of Wesley, or of 

I Essay on Doctrinal Development, p. 438. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 321 

Calamy, or of Baxter, or of Abbot, or of Cartwright, or 
ot the Eeformers ? 


The second controversy which I shall mention is one 
not so remarkable in itself, not so wide in its Held of 
conflict, nor so terrible in its events, but more interest- 
ing perhaps to us, as relating almost to our own times, 
and because it is used as an argument against the 
Church's unity and pov/er of enforcing her decisions, 
by such writers as the theologian, of whose words I 
just now availed myself. Eor the better part of two 
centuries Jansenism has troubled the greater part of 
Catholic Europe, has had great successes, and has 
expected greater still ; yet, somehow or other, such is 
the fact, as a looker-on would be obliged to say, what- 
ever be the internal reasons for it, of which he would 
not be a judge, at the end of the time you look for it 
and it is gone. As fire among the stubble threatens 
great things, but suddenly is quenched in the very 
fulness of its blaze, so has it been with the heresy 
in question. One might have thought that an age like 
this would have been especially favourable for the 
development of many of its peculiarities; one never 
should be surprised even now, if it developed them 
again. The heresy almost rose with Protestantism, 
and kept pace with it; it extended and flourished in 
those Catholic countries on which Protestantism had 


322 Differences among Catholics 

made its greatest inroads, and it grew by the side of 
Protestantism ; when now suddenly we find it dead in 
France, and it is receiving its death-blow in Austria, 
in the very generation, at the very hour, when Protes- 
tantism is at length getting acknowledged possession of 
the far-famed communion of Laud and Hammond. 

There was a time when nearly all that was most 
gifted, learned, and earnest in France seemed corrupted 
by the heresy; which, though condemned again and 
again by the Holy See, discovered new subterfuges, 
and gained to itself fresh patrons and protectors, to 
shelter it from the Apostolic ban. What circle of 
names can be produced, comparable in their times 
for the combination of ability and virtue, of depth of 
thought, of controversial dexterity, of poetical talent, 
of extensive learning, and of religious reputation, with 
those of Launoy, Pascal, Nicole, Arnauld, Eacine, 
Tillemont, Quesnel, and their co-religionists, admirable 
in every point, but in their deficiency in the primary 
grace of a creature, humility ? What shall we say to 
the prospects of a school of opinion, which was influen- 
cing so many of the most distinguished Congregations 
of the day; and which, though nobly withstood by 
the Society of Jesus and the Sulpicians, yet at length 
found an entrance among the learned Benedictines of 
St. Maur, and had already sapped the faith of various 
members of another body, as erudite and as gifted 
as they ? For fifteen years a Cardinal Archbishop of 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 323 

Paris was its protector and leader, and this at a distance 
of sixty years after its formal condemnation. First, 
the book itself of Jansenius had been condemned; 
and then, in consequence of an evasion, the sense of 
the book; and then a controversy arose whether the 
Church could decide such a matter of fact as that 
a book had a particular sense. And then the further 
question came into discussion whether the sense of 
the book was to be condemned with tlie mere intention 
of an external obedience, or with an internal assent. 
Eleven bishops of France interposed with the Pope 
to prevent the condemnation; there were four who 
required nothing more of their clergy than a respectful 
silence on the subject in controversy; and nineteen 
wrote to the Pope in favour of these four. Before 
these difficulties had been settled, a fresh pr&acher 
of the same doctrines appeared in the person of 
Quesnel ; and on the Pope's condemning his opinions 
in the famous bull Unigenitus, six bishops i-^fused to 
publish it, and fourteen formally opposed it ; and then 
sixteen suspended the effects of it. Three universities 
took part with them, and the parliaments of various 
towns banished their Archbishops, Bishops, or Priests, 
and confiscated their goods, either for taking part 
against the Jansenists or for refusing them the 
Sacraments. 1 

As time went on, the evil spread wider and grew 

1 Vide Memoires pour sei-vir, kc, and Palmer on the Church. 

324 Differences among Catholics 

more intense, instead of being relieved. In the middle 
of last century, a hundred years after the condemnation 
of the heresy at Eome, it was embodied in the person 
of a far more efficacious disputant than Jansenius or 
Quesnel. The Emperor Joseph developed the apparently 
harmless theories of a theological school in the practical 
form of Erastianism. He prohibited the reception of 
the famous bull Unigenitus in his dominions ; subjected 
all bulls, rescripts, and briefs from Eome to an imperial 
supervision; forbade religious orders to obey foreign 
superiors; "suppressed confraternities, abolished the 
processions, retreuched festivals, prescribed the order of 
offices, regulated the ceremonies, the number of masses, 
the manner of giving benediction, nay the number of 
waxlights." 1 He seized the revenues of the Bishops, 
destroyed their sees, and even for a time forbade them 
to confer orders. He permitted divorce in certain 
cases, and removed images from the churches. The new 
Reformation reached as far as Belgium on the one 
hand, and down to Naples on the other. The whole of 
the Empire and its aUiances were apparently on the 
point of diso^vning their dependence on the Apostolic 
See. The worship of the saints, auricular confession, 
indulgences, and other Catholic doctrines, were openly 
written against or disputed by bishops and professors. 
The Archduke of Tuscany, imitating the Emperor, sent 
catechisms to the bishops, and instructed them by his 

1 Memoires pour servir. &c. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 325 

circulars or charges ; while a Neapolitan prelate, instead 
of his ordinary title of " Bishop by the grace of the 
Holy Apostolic See/' styled himself "Bishop by the 
grace of the King." Who would not have thought that 
Henry of England had risen from his place, and was at 
once in Vienna, Belgium, Tuscany, and Naples ? The 
reforming views had spread into Portugal; and, to 
complete the crisis, the great antagonist of Protestan- 
tism, which was born with it in one day, and had ever 
since been the best champion of the Holy See, the 
Society of Jesus itself, by the inscrutable fiat of 
Providence, was, in that hour of need, to avoid worse 
evils, by that very See suppressed. Surely the Holy 
Eoman Church is at length in the agonies of dis- 
solution. The Catholic powers, Germany, Prance, 
Portugal, and Naples, all have turned against her. 
Who is to defend her ? The mystery of Protestantism 
is unravelled ; the day of Luther is come ; the Catholics 
send up a cry, and their enemies a shout of joy. 


Noli cemulari. Is it not written in the book of truth, 
that the ungodly shall spread abroad like a green bay- 
tree, and then shall wither ? that the adversary reaches 
out his hand towards his prey, in order that he may be 
more emphatically smitten ? " Yet a little while, and 
the wicked shall not be : I passed by, and lo ! he was not ; 
I sought him, and his place was not found. Better is 

326 Differences among Catholics 

a little to the just than the great riches of the wicked ; 
for the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the 
Lord strengtheneth the just/' So was it with the great 
Arian heresy, which the civil power would fain have 
forced upon the Church ; but it fell to pieces, and the 
Church remained One. So was it with Nestorius, with 
Eutyches, with the Image-breakers, with Manichees, 
with Lollards, with Protestants, into whom the State 
would put life, but who, one and all, refuse to live. So 
is it with the communion of Cranmer and Parker, 
which is kept together only by the heavy hand of the 
State, and cannot aspire to be free without ceasing to 
be one. One power alone oh earth has the gift and 
destiny of ever being one. It has been so of old time ; 
surely so will it be now. Man's necessity is God's 
opportunity. Noli cemulari, "Be not jealous of the 
evil-doers." ... 

It is towards the end of the century : what shall be, 
ere that end arrive ? . . . Suddenly there is heard a 
rushing noise, borne north and south upon the wings of 
the wind. Is it a deluge to sweep over the earth, and 
to bear up the ark of God upon its bosom ? or is it the 
fire which is ravaging to and fro, to try every man's 
work what it is, and to discriminate between what is of 
earth and what is of heaven ? Now we shall see what 
can live and what must die ; now shall we have the 
proof of Jansenism; now shall we see whether the 
Catholic Church has that eternal individuality which is 

710 Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 327 

of the essence of life, or whether it be an external thincr, 
a birth of the four elements, a being of chance and 
circumstance, made up of parts, but with no integrity 
or immaterial principle informing it. The breath of 
the Lord hath gone forth far and wide upon the face 
of the earth ; the very foundations of society are melt- 
ing in the fiery flood which it has kindled ; and we shall 
see whether the Three Children will be able to walk in 
the midst of the furnace, and will come forth with their 
hair unsinged, their garments whole, and their skin 
untainted by the smell of fire. 

So closed the last century upon the wondering world ; 
and for years it wondered on ; wondered what should 
be the issue of the awful portant which it witnessed, 
and what new state of things was to rise out of the old. 
The Church disappeared before its eyes as by a yawning 
earthquake, and men said it was a fulfilment of the 
prophecies, and they sang a hymn, and went to their 
long sleep, content and with a Nunc Dimittis in their 
mouths ; for now at length had an old superstition been 
wiped off from the earth, and the Pope had gone his 
way. And other powers, kings, and the like, dis- 
appeared too, and nothing was to be seen. 

Fifty years have passed away since the time of those 
wonders, and we, my brethren, behold in our degree 
the issue of what our fathers could but imagine. Great 
changes surely have been wrought, but not those which 
they anticipated. The German Emperor has ceased to 

328 Differences among Catholics 

"be ; he persecuted the Church, and he has lost his place 
of pre-eminence. The Galilean Church, too, with its 
much-prized liberties, and its fostered heresy, was also 
swept away, and its time-honoured establishment dis- 
solved. Jansenism is no more. The Church lives, the 
Apostolic See rules. That See has greater acknowledged 
power in Christendom than ever before, and that 
Church has a wider liberty than she has had since the 
days of the Apostles. The faith is extending in the 
great Anglo-Saxon race, its recent enemy, the lord of 
the world, with a steadiness and energy, which that 
proud people fears, yet cannot resist. Out of the ashes 
of the ancient Church of France has sprung a new 
hierarchy, worthy of the name and the history of that 
great nation, as fervent as their St. Bernard, as tender 
as their St. Francis, as enterprising as their St. Louis, 
as loyal to the Holy See as their Charlemagne. The 
Empire has rescinded the impious regulations of the 
Emperor Joseph, and has commenced the emancipation 
of the Church. The idea and the genius of Catholicism 
has triumphed within its own pale with a power and 
a completeness which the world has never seen before. 
Never was the whole body of the faithful so united to 
each other and to their head. Never was there a time 
when there was less of error, heresy, and schismatical 
perverseness among them. Of course the time will 
never be in this world, when trials and persecutions 
£hall be at an end : and doubtless such are to come. 

no Prejudice to the Unity of the Church. 329 

even though they be below the horizon. But we may 
be thankful and joyful for what is already granted us ; 
and nothing which ia to be can destroy the mercies 
which have been. 

"So let all Thy enemies perish, Lord; but let 
them that love Thee shine, as the sun shineth in his 
rising ! *' 




rpHEEE is no objection made at this time to the 

-■- claims of the Catholic Church more imposing to 

the imagination, yet less tenable in the judgment of 

reason, than that which is grounded on there being at 

present so many nations and races, which have kept 

the name of Christian, yet given up Catholicism. It 

fecundity has ever been considered one of the formal 

notes or tokens of the Mother of souls, it is fair to look 

out for it now ; and if it has told in favour of the 

communion of Eome in former times, so now surely it 

may be plausibly made to tell against it. It would 

seem as if in this age of the world the whole numbei 

of anti-Catholics were nearly equal to the number of 

Catholics, at least so our opponents say; and I am 

willing, for argument's sake, to grant it. Let it be so, 

or, in other words, let it be assumed that scarcely more 

than half of Christendom subjects itself to the Catholic 

Church. '' Is it rot preposterous, then, " it is asked of 

Heretical and Schismatical Bodies, etc. 331 

us, "to claim to be the whole, when you are but a 
moiety ? And with what countenance can you demand 
that we should unhesitatingly and without delay leave 
our own Communion for yours, when there is so little to 
show at first sight that you have more pretensions to 
the Christian name than we have ?" 

This is the argument, put in its broadest, simplest 
shape ; and you, my brethren, would like to avail your- 
selves of it just as I have stated it, if you could. But 
you cannot ; for it puts together all creeds and opinions, 
all communions, whatever their origin and history, and 
adds up the number of their members in rivalry of that 
of the Church's children. You would do so if you 
could, as your forefathers did before you ; two centuries 
ago Archbishop Bramhall did so, and you have every 
good wish to copy him, as in his other representations, 
so in this. " We hold communion," he says, speaking 
of the Church of England in contrast with those whom 
he would call Eomanists, " with thrice so many Catholic 
Christians as they do ; that is, the eastern, southern, 
and northern Christians, besides Protestants."! "Di- 
vide Christendom into five parts, and in four of them 
they have very little or nothing to do. Perhaps they 
have here a monastery, or there a small handful of 
proselytes ; but what are five or six persons to so many 
millions of Christian souls, that they should be Catholics, 
and not all the others ?"2 This being the case, as he 

1 Vol. i. p. 628. Ed. 1842. 2 Ibid. p. 23S. 

332 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

views the matter, it of course follows that we are but 
successors of the ancient Donatists, a mere fraction 
of the Church excommunicating all the rest. '-'The 
Donatists," he says, "separat^^d the whole Church from 
their Communion, and substituted themselves, being 
but a small part of the Christian world, in the place of 
the Catholic Church, just as the Eomanists do at this 

This, certainly, was turning the tables against his 
opponents, who had been accustomed to consider that 
the Church of England, granting it was a Church, was 
in the very position of the followers of Donatus, a 
fragment of Christendom claiming for itself immaculate 
purity ; but let us observe what he is forced to do to 
make his argument good. First, of course, he throws 
himself into communion, whether they will have him 
or not, not only with the Greek Church, but with the 
various heretical bodies all over the East; the ISTes- 
torians of Chaldsea, the Copts of Egypt, the Jacobites 
of Syria, and the Eutychians of Armenia, whose heresy 
in consequence he finds it most expedient to doubt. 
" Those Churches," he says, speaking of the East, " do 
aoree better, both amono; themselves and with other 
Churches, than the Eoman Church itself, both in pro- 
fession of faith (for they and we do generally acknow- 
ledge the same ancient Creeds, and no other) and in 
inferior questions, being free from the intricate and 

1 Ibid p. io6. 


Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 333 

perplexed difficulties of the Eoman schools. . . . How 
are they 'heretical' Churches ? Some of them are 
called Nestorians, but most iDJuriously, who have no- 
thing of Nestorius but the name. Others have been 
suspected of Eutychianism, and yet in truth orthodox 
enough. ... It is no new thing for great quarrels to 
arise from mere mistakes."^ Elsewhere he says: ''It 
is true that some few Eastern Christians, in com- 
parison of those innumerable multitudes, are called 
Nestorians; and some others, by reason of some un- 
usual expression, suspected of Eutychianism, but both 
most wrongfully. Is this the requital that he," that is, 
his Catholic opponent, " makes to so many of these poor 
Christians, for maintaining their religion inviolated so 
many ages under Mahometan princes ?"2 

Admitting, as he does, these ancient and distant 
sectaries to have a portion in the Catholic faith and 
communion, it is not surprising that he extends a like 
privilege to the recently formed Protestant communities 
in his own neighbourhood. " Because I esteem these 
Churches not completely formed," he says, " do I there- 
. fore exclude them from aU hope of salvation ? or esteem 
them aliens and strangers from the commonwealth of 
Israel ? or account them formal schismatics ? No such 
thing." 3 "I know no reason why we should not 
admit Greeks and Lutherans to our communion ; and,. 
if he" (that is, his opponent) "had added them, 
1 Ibid. p. 260. 2 ibi(j_ p 328. 3 iijid. p. 70. 

334 Heretical and Sckismatical Bodies 

Armenians, Abyssenes, Muscovites.^ . . . For tliG 
Lntherans, he does them egregious wrong. Throughout 
the kingdoms of Denmark and Sweden they have their 
bishops, name and thing ; and throughout Germany they 
have their superintendents." ^ 

Such was the line of argument which the defenders of 
the ]^ational Church adopted two centuries back ; and, 
of course, it was much stronger in the way of argument 
than anything which is attempted now. ISTow, the 
Protestants are given up ; we hear little or nothing of 
" Churches not completely formed ; " not much account 
is taken of the "superintendents" of Germany; and 
as to the episcopacy of Denmark and Sweden, the 
thing, if not the name, is simply gone. Nor would 
any adherent of the theological party whom I am 
addressing, think with much respect either of the 
ISTestorians or of the Monophysites of Asia and Egypt. 
The anti-Catholic bodies, which are made the present 
basis of the argument against us, are mainly or solely 
the Greek and the Anglican communities ; and, as the 
antiquity, prescriptive authority, orders, and doctrine 
of Anglicanism, are the very subject in dispute, it is 
usual to simplify the argument by resting it upon 

1 He adds : "And all those who do profess the Apostolical Creed, as 
it is expounded in the first four general councils under the primitive 
discipline." These words are not quoted above, because they are cer- 
tainly ambiguous. Bramhall does not say, "All those who do profess 
the decrees of the first four general councils." 

2 Ibid. p. 564. 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 335 

grounds which it is supposed we cannot deny ; viz., 
the pretensions of the Greek Church, whose apostolical 
descent is unquestionable, and whose faith almost 


The argument, then, which I have to consider, is an 
appeal to the imagination of the following kind : The 
Eussian Church, according to the statistical tables of 
1835, includes 39,862,473 souls within its pale ;i the 
Byzantine, or what is commonly called the Greek 
Church, is said to number about three millions; 2 so 
that, excluding the heretical bodies of the East, we may 
place the whole Greek communion, from north to south, 
at about forty-three millions,^ with such increase of 
population as in the last fifteen years it has gained. 
On the other hand, the whole number of Catholics, 
which has been placed by some as low as one hundred 
and sixteen millions, is considered by Catholics at pre- 
sent to reach two hundred. But, whatever be the pro- 
portion between the Greeks and ourselves, anyhow so 
vast a communion as one of forty-three million souls is 
a difficulty, it is said, too positive for us to overcome. 
It seems incredible that we can have exclusive claims 
to be Christ's heritage, if those claims issue in the 
exclusion of such immense populations from it ; it is 

1 Theiner, L'Eglise Kiisse, 1846. 2 Conder, View of Eeligions. 

3 In controversial writings, the numbers of the Greek orthodox com- 
niunion are put at seventy or even ninety millions ; it does not appear 
on what data. Conder puts them at fifty millions. 

33^ Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

incredible that we should be the Catholic Church, if we 
have not the power to take them up into our system, 
but let them lie in their own place. " If the Greeks are 
separate from the See of Eome/' it is argued, " as we see 
they are, we too may without hazard be separate also. 
They are too powerful, too numerous for you to consider 
them as the subjects of a schism ; they are too large a 
limb to admit of your amputation ; they enter into the 
Church's life and essence; in ejecting them from her 
bosom, she would be tearing out herself ; in excommuni- 
cating them, you rather excommunicate yourselves ; you 
are affording us a plain redicdio ad absurdum of your 
Catholicity. And there is a second consideration which 
urges us, and that is, the frightful cruelty of denying to 
such multitudes of men, and to so great an extent of 
territory, a place in the Church, claiming it as they do 
from generation to generation, and fully believing their 
own possession of it. Charity, still more than the 
necessities of controversy, obliges you to acknowledge 
them as a portion of the fold of Christ." 

This is the objection which I am to examine, and 
you win observe that I am to examine it only as an 
objection ; that is to say, I am supposing that there is 
sufficient proof on other grounds that the Communion 
of Eome is the Catholic Church, for to this the move- 
ment of 1833 has already been supposed to lead; and 
then, with this fact sufficiently proved, an objection is 
brouo-ht as an obstacle to our surrendering ourselves to 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the CJturch. 337 

the convicfcion which follows upon the proof of the fact. 
What I have to do, then, is to show that the proof 
already brought home to us of the Catholicity of the 
Eoman Communion, is not affected by the phenomenon 
in question ; or that there are ways of accounting for 
it, if we do but assume, which I claim to do, that the 
Church of Eome and Catholicism are synonymous 


I observe, then, that this phenomenon is but one 
instance of a great and broad fact, which has ever been 
seen on the earth, viz., that truth is opposed not only 
by direct contradictions which are unequivocal, but also 
by such pretences as are of a character to deceive men 
at first sight, and to confuse the evidence of what alone 
is divine and trustworthy. Thus, if I must begin from 
the very beginning, the enemy of man did not over- 
come him in Paradise, except by pretending to be a 
prophet, and, as it were, preaching against his Maker. 
"Ye shall not die the death," he said; ''ye shall be 
as gods, knowing good and evil." Again, when Moses 
displayed his miracles before Pharaoh, Jannes and 
Mambres were allowed to imitate them ; in order, so to 
speak, to give the king a pretext, if he was perverse 
enough to take it, for rejecting the divine message. 
When the same great prophet had led out the chosen 
people towards the promised land, their enemies made 
the attempt to set up a rival prophet in Balaam, though 

338 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

it was overruled, as in other cases, by their Almighty 
Protector. When a prophet denounced the schism of 
Jeroboam, there was an old deceiver who seduced him 
by the claim, "I also am a prophet like unto thee," 
The Temple had not long been built before a rival 
shrine arose on Mount Gerizim, as if with the very 
object of perplexing the inquirer. '« Our fathers adored 
m this mountain," says the Samaritan woman to our 
Lord, " and ye say that at Jerusalem is the place where 
men must adore." And He Himself warns us of false 
Christs and Antichrists, who were to mislead the many 
with the imitation of His claims; and His Apostles 
were resisted, and in a manner thwarted, by Simon 
Magus, and others who set up against them. They 
themselves distinctly prophesied that such delusions 
were to be after them, and apparently to endure till the 
end of ail things ; so much so, that were such imposing 
phenomena as the Greek Church taken out of the way, 
it would be difficult to say how the actual state of 
Christendom corresponded to the apostolic anticipations 
of it; nor should we have any cause to be surprised 
though the effect of such phenomena in time to come 
were°more practically urgent and visibly influential 
than it has been hitherto. " After my departure," says 
St. Paul, " ravenous wolves will enter in among you, 
not sparing the flock. And of your own selves will rise 
up men speaking perverse things to draw away disciples 
after them." And in his parting words he warns us 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 339 

that " in the last days shall come dangerous times, 
for men shall be lovers of themselves . . . having an 
appearance indeed of piety," that is, of orthodoxy, '' but 
denying the power thereof." " Evil men and seducers 
shall grow worse and worse, erring, and driving into 
error." And "there shall be a time when they will 
not bear sound doctrine, but according to their own 
desires they will heap to themselves teachers having 
itching ears." I need not remind you that St. John and 
St. Jude bear a similar testimony, which the event in 
uo long time fulfilled. 

If you would ask me for the most remarkable ful- 
filment of their warning, I should point to Mahome- 
tanism, which is a far more subtle contrivance of the 
enemy than we are apt to consider. In the first place, 
it perplexes the evidence of Christianity just in that 
point in which it is most original and striking : I mean, 
it professes the propagation of a religion through the 
world, which I suppose was quite a new idea when 
Christianity appeared. In the event, indeed, it did but 
illustrate the divinity of Christianity by the contrast ; 
for while the Catholic Church is a proselytizing power, 
as her enemies confess, even at the end of eighteen 
centuries, Maliometanism soon got tired of its own 
undertaking, and, when the novelty and excitement of 
conversion were over, it relapsed into a sort of conser- 
vative, local, national religion, such as the Greek and 
Latin polytheisms before it, and Protestantism since. 

340 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

And next, it acted over again, as if in mockery, the 
part which Christianity had taken towards Judaism, 
viz., it professed to be an improvement on the Gospel, 
as the Gospel had been upon the law; and just as 
Christianity dealt with Judaism, so it pointed to the 
Christian prophecies themselves in evidence of its 
claims, which it affected to interpret better than 
Christians themselves. Moreover, it swept away a 
considerable portion of the Christian heritage ; and there 
it remains to this day in the countries which it seized 
upon, lying over against us, and for this reason only 
not interfering with the arguments of our opponents 
for the divine origin of Christianity, that England 
lies north and Islamism is in the south. 

Then again, I cannot help thinking that Judaism is 
somewhat of a difficulty of the same kind; not as 
if any one were likely to prefer it, any more than 
Mahometanism, to Christianity ; that is another matter 
altogether ; nor, in like manner, do I think that any 
of you, my brethren, would turn Greek rather than 
become Catholic : but I mean, that, as the fact of the 
Greek Church impairs the simplicity of the Catholic 
argument, by its rival pretensions, so does the existence 
of Judaism interfere with Christianity; for, compared 
with it, Christianity is a novelty ; and it may be said 
to Christians, Do not stand midway, but either go on 
to some newer novelty, such as first Montanus, then 
Manes, and then Mahomet introduced, and others since, 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 341 

or else go back to the mother of all religions, the 
Jewish Law, which, as yourselves allow, once at least 
was a prophet of God. On the other hand, even if we 
became Jews, as considering Judaism to be the perma- 
nent religion which Grod had given, still this would not 
get rid of the difficulty I am describing, for the proper 
claims of Christianity would remain; then, as before, 
you would have two rival prophets, one true, and one 
not true, though you would have changed your mind, 
as to which was true and which was false. Looking, 
then, at the world as it is, taking facts as they are, you 
cannot rid yourselves of those difficulties in the evidence 
of religion, which arise from the existence of bold, 
plausible, imposing counter-claims on the part of error, 
such as the Greek communion makes against Catholi- 
cism ; and you must reconcile yourselves to them, unless 
you are content to believe nothing, and give up the 
pretension of faith altogether. 

But we need not go to Judaism or Mahometanism 
for parallels to the Greek communion; look at the 
history of the Christian Church herself, and you will 
find precedents in former times of the present difficulty, 
more exact and apposite than those which can be 
adduced from the existence of Jew or Mussulman. It 
may be observed that the Apostle, in the passage 
already quoted, speaks of the sects and persuasions, 
which by implication he condemns, not merely as 
collateral and independent creations, but as born in 

342 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

the Catholic body, and going out from it. "Of your 
own selves shall men arise," he says ; and St. John 
says, " They went out from us, but they were not of 
us ; for, if they had been of us, they would no doubt 
have continued with us." If this was not fulfilled in 
the very days of the Apostles on the extensive scale on 
which it was afterwards, this was simply because large 
national conversions and serious schisms are not the 
growth of a day ; but, as far as it could exist in the 
first ages, it has existed from the very first, though far 
more strikingly in the succeeding centuries of the 
Church. From the first, the Church was but one 
Communion among many which bore the name of 
Christian, some of them more learned, and others 
affecting a greater ^rictness than herself ; till at length 
her note of Catholicity was for a while gathered up 
and fulfilled simply in the name of Catholic, rather 
than was a property visibly peculiar to herself and 
none but her. Hence the famous advice of the Fathers, 
that if one of the faithful went to a strange city, he 
should not ask for the " Church," for there were so 
many churches belonging to different denominations 
that he would be sure to be perplexed and to mistake, but 
for the Catholic Church. " If ever thou art sojourning 
in any city," says St. Cyril, " inquire not simply where 
the Lord's House is, for the sects also make an attempt 
to call their own conventicles houses of the Lord, nor 
merely where the Church is, but where is the Catholic 

no Frejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 343 

Church." St. Cyril wrote in Palestine ; but St. Austin, 
in Africa, and St. Pacian in Spain say the same thing. 
The present Greek Church is at best but a local form 
of religion, and does not pretend to occupy the earth ; 
whereas some of the early heretical bodies might almost 
have disputed with the See of St. Peter the prerogative 
of Catholicity. The stern discipline of the Novatians 
extended from Eome to Scythia, to Asia Minor, to 
Alexandria, to Africa, and to Spain; while, at an 
earlier date, the families of Gnosticism had gone forth 
over the face of the world from Italy to Persia and 
Egypt on the east, to Africa on the south, to Spain on 
the west, and to Gaul on the north. 

But you will say, there were, in those times, no 
national heresies or schism, and these alone can be 
considered parallel to the case of the Greek Church, 
supposing it schismatical ; — turn then to the history 
of the Gothic race. This great people, in all its 
separate tribes, received Christianity from Arian 
preachers; and, before it took possession of the Em- 
pire, Mtesogoths, Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Alani, Suevi, 
Vandals, and Burgundians, had all learned to deny the 
divinity of Christ. Suddenly France, Spain, Portugal, 
Africa, and Italy, found themselves buried under the 
weight of heretical establishments and populations. 
This state of things lasted for eighty years in Fiance, 

344 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

for a hundred in Italy and Africa, and for a hundred 
and eighty in Spain, extending through a space of two 
centuries. It should be added that these Gothic hordes, 
which took possession of the Empire, had little of the 
character of barbarism, except that they were cruel; 
they were chaste, temperate, just, and devout, and 
some of their princes were men of ability and patrons 
of learning. Did you live in that day, my brethren, 
you would, perhaps, be looking with admiration at 
these Arians, as now you look at the Greeks ; — not from 
love of their heresy, but, your imagination being 
affected by their number, power, and nobleness, you 
would try to make out that they really did hold the 
orthodox faith, or at least that it was not at all cer- 
tain that they did not, though they did deny, to be 
sure, the ^STicene Creed, against which they had been 
unhappily prejudiced, and anathematized Athanasius 
from defective knowledge of history. You would have 
used the words of Bramhall, quoted above, when speak- 
ing of later families of heretics : — " How are they 
heretical Churches ? some of them are called Arians ; 
but most injuriously, who have nothing of Arius, but 
the name; others have been suspected of Macedonianism, 
and yet in truth orthodox enough. It is no new thing 
for great quarrels to arise from mere mistakes." Bulk, 
not symmetry ; vastness, not order ; show, not principle 
— I fear I must say it, my dear brethren — these are 
your tests of truth. A century earlier than the Goths. 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 345 

you would have been enlarging on the importance of 
the Donatists. " Four hundred sees ! " you would 
have said; "a whole four hundred! why, it is a fifth 
of the Episcopate of Christendom. Unchurch them! 
impossible; we shall excommunicate ourselves in the 



Still, it may be said, I have produced nothing yet 
to match the venerable antiquity and the authoritative 
traditions of the Greek Church, which is coeval with 
the Apostles, and for near a thousand years has been 
in its present theological position, and which, since 
its separation from the Holy See, has been able, as is 
alleged, to expand itself in a vast heathen country, 
which it has converted to the faith. Such is the objec- 
tion ; and, as to the facts on which it is built, I will 
take them for granted, as before, for argument's sake, 
for anyhow they are not sufficient to make the objec- 
tion sound. For in truth, whether the facts be as 
represented or not, you will find them all, and more 
than them all, in the remarkable history of the 
Nestorians. The tenot on which these religionists 
separated from the See of Eome is traceable to 
Antioch, the very birthplace of the Christian name; 
and it was taken up and maintained by Churches 
which were among the oldest in Christendom. Driven 
by the Eoman power over the boundaries of the Empire, 
it placed itself, as early as the fifth centur}', under the 

34^ Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

protection of Persia, and laid the foundations of a 
sr^hismatical communion, the most wonderful that the 
world has seen. It propagated itself, both among Chris- 
tians and pagans, from Cyprus to China; it was the 
Christianity of Bactrians, Huns, Medes, and Indians, of 
the coast of Malabar and Ceylon on the south, and of 
Tartary on the north. This ecclesiastical dominion lasted 
for eight centuries and more, into the depth of the middle 
ages— beyond the Pontificate of Innocent III. It was 
administered by as many as twenty-five archbishoprics ; 
and, though there is perhaps no record of the number of 
its people, yet it is said, that they and the opposite sect 
of the Monophysites, in Syria and Egypt, taken together, 
at one time surpassed in populousness the whole Catholic 
Church, in its Greek' and Latin divisions. And it is 
to be observed, which is much to the purpose, that it 
occupied a portion of the world, with which, as far as I 
am aware, the Catholic Church, during those many 
centuries, interfered very little. It had the further 
Asia aU to itself, from Mesopotamia to China ; far more 
so than the Greek Church has at this time possession 
of Eussia and Greece. 

With this prominent example before onr eyes, 
during so large a portion of the history of Chris- 
tianity, I do not see how the present existence of the 
Greek Church can form any valid objection to the 
Catholicity which we claim for tlie Communion of 
Home. Nestorianism came from Antioch, the original 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 347 

Apostolic see; Photianism, as it has been called, from 
Constantinople, a younger metropolis. Nestorianism 
had its Apostolical Succession, as Photianism has, and 
a formed hierarchy. If its principal seat was new and 
foreign, in Chaldsea, not at Antioch, so the principal 
seat of Photianism is foreign too, being Eussia; if 
from Eussia it has sent out missions and made con- 
versions, so, and much more so, did Nestorianism from 
Chaldaea. You will, perhaps, object that Nestorianism 
was a heresy ; — therein lies the force of my argument, 
viz., that large, organized, flourishing, imposing com- 
munions, which strike the imagination as necessary 
portions of the heritage of Christ, may, nevertheless' 
in fact be implicated in some heresy, which, in the 
judgment of reason, invalidates their claim. If the 
Nestorian communion, enormous as it was, was yet 
external to the Church, why must the Greek com- 
munion be within it, merely because, supposing the 
fact to be so, it has some portion of the activity and 
success which were so conspicuous in the Nestorian 
missioners ? Do not, then, think to overcome us 
with descriptions of the multitude, antiquity, and 
continuance of the Greek Churches; dismiss the 
vision of their rites, their processions, or their vest- 
ments ; spare yourselves the recital of the splendour 
of their churches, or the venerable aspect of their 
bishops ; Nestorianism had then all : — the question 
lies deeper. 

34^ Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 


It lies, for what we know, and to all appearance, in 
the very constitution of the human mind ; corruptions 
of the Gospel being as necessary and ordinary a pheno- 
menon, taking men as they are, as its rejection. Why 
do you not bring against us the vast unreclaimed popu- 
lations of paganism, or the political power of the British 
Colonial Empire, in proof that we are not the Catholic 
Church ? Is misbelief a greater marvel than unbelief ? 
or do not the same intellectual and moral principles, 
which lead men to accept nothing, lead them also to 
accept half of revealed truth ? Both effects are simple 
manifestations of private judgment in the bad sense 
of the phrase, that is, of the use of one's own reason 
against the authority of God. If He has made it a 
duty to submit to the supreme authority of the Holy 
See (and of this I am aU along assuming there is fair 
proof), and if there is a constant rising of the human 
mind against authority, as such, however legitimate, 
the necessary consequence will be the very state of 
things we see before our eyes, — not merely individuals 
casting off the Eoman Supremacy (for individuals, as 
being of less account, have less temptation, or even 
opportunity, to rebel, than collections of men), but, 
much more, the powerful and the great, the wealthy 
and the flourishing, kings and states, cities and races^ 
falling back upon their own resources and their own 


Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 349 

connections, making their home their castlo, and refus- 
ing any longer to be dependent on a distant centre, or 
to regulate their internal affairs by a foreign tribunal. 
Assuming then that there is a supreme See, divinely 
appointed, in the midst of Christendom, to which all 
ought to submit and be united, such phenomena, as the 
Greek Church presents at this day, and the Nestorian 
in the middle ages, are its infallible correlatives, as 
human nature is constituted; it would require a miracle 
to make it otherwise. It is but an exemplification of 
the words of the Apostle, *' The law entered in, that sin 
might abound ; " and again, " There must be heresies,, 
that they also who are proved may be made manifest 
among yon." A command is both the occasion of 
transgression, and the test of obedience. All depends 
on the fact of the Supremacy of Eome ; I assume this 
fact ; I admit the contrary fact of the Arian, Nestorian, 
and the Greek Communions ; and strong in the one, 
I feel no difficulty in the other. Neither Arian, nor 
Nestorian, nor Greek insubordination is any true ob- 
jection to the fact of such supremacy, unless the divine 
foresight of such a necessary result can be supposed 
to have dissuaded the Divine Wisdom from giving 
occasion to it 


But another remark is in place here. ISTothing is 
more likely to characterize large populations of Chris- 
tians, if left to themselves, than a material instead of 

350 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

a formal faith. By a material faith, I mean that sort 
of habitual belief which persons possess in consequence 
of having heard things said in this or that wa}^ from 
their childhood, being thoroughly familiar with them, 
and never having had difficulty suggested to them from 
without or within. Such is the sort of belief which 
many Protestants have in the Bible; which they accept 
without a doubt, till objections occur to them. Such 
as this becomes the faith of nations in process of time, 
where a clergy is negligent ; it becomes simply national 
and hereditary, the truth being received, but not on 
the authority of God. That is, their faith is but 
material not formal, and really has neither the character 
nor the reward of that grace-implanted, grace-sustained 
principle, which believes, not merely because it was so 
taught in the nursery, but because God has spoken; 
not because there is no temptation to doubt, but because 
there is a duty to believe. And thus it may easily 
happen, in the case of individuals, that even the restless 
mind of a Protestant, who sets the Divine Will before 
him in his thoughts and actions, and wishes to be 
taught and wishes to believe, may have more of grace 
in it, and be more acceptable in the divine sight, than 
his, who only believes passively, and not as assenting 
to a divine oracle; just as one who is ever fighting 
successfully with temptations against purity has, so far, 
a claim of merit, which they do not share, who from 
natural temperament have not the trial. ISTow, the 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 351 

faultiness of this passive state of mind is detected, 
whenever a new definition of doctrine is promulgated 
by the competent authority. Its immediate tendency, 
as exhibited in a population, will be to resist it, simph- 
because it is new, while they on the other hand are dis- 
posed to recognise nothing but what is familiar to them ; 
whereas a ready and easy acceptance of the apparent 
novelty, and a cordial acquiescence in its promulgation, 
may be the very evidence of a mind, which has lived, 
not merely in certain doctrines, but in those doctrines 
as revealed, — not simply in a Creed, but in its Giver, — 
or, in other words, which has lived by real faith. 

As, then, heathens are tried by the original preaching 
of the Word, so are Christians tested by recurring 
declarations of it ; and the same habit of mind, which 
makes one man an infidel, when he was before merely 
a pagan, makes another a heretic, who before was but 
an hereditary or national Christian. And surely we 
can fancy without difficulty the circumstances, in which 
a people, and their priesthood, who ought to hinder it, 
may gradually fall into tliose heavy and sluggish habits 
of mind, in which faith is but material and obedience 
mechanical, and religion has become a superstition 
instead of a reasonable service ; and then it is as certain 
that they will become schismatics or heretics, should 
trial come, as that heathen cities, which have no heart 
for the truth, when it is for the first time preached to 
them, will harden into direct infidelity. It is much to 


Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

be feared, from what travellers tell us of the Greek 

priesthood and their flocks, that both in Eussia and in 

Greece Proper, they are more or less in this state, — 

which may be called the proper disposition towards 

heresy and schism ; T mean, that they rely on things 

more than on persons, and go through a round of duties 

in one and the same way, because they are used to 

them, and because in consequence they are attached to 

them, not as having any intelligent faith in a divine 

oracle which has ordered them; and that in consequence 

they would start in irritation, as they have started, 

from such indications of that oracle's existence as is 

necessarily implied in the promulgation of a new 

definition of faith. 


I am speaking of the mass of the population ; and, at 
first sight, it is a very serious question, whether the 
population can be said to be simply gifted with divine 
faith, any more than our own Protestant people ; yet I 
would as little dare to deny or to limit exceptions to 
this remark, as I would deny them or limit them among 
ourselves. Let there be as many exceptions, as there 
can be found tokens of their being ; and the more they 
are, to God the greater praise ! In this point of view it 
is, that we are able to take comfort even from the con- 
templation of a country which is given up whether to 
heresy or schism. Such a country is far from being 
in the miserable state of a heathen population : it has 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 353 

portions of the truth remaining in it, it has some super- 
natural channels of grace ; and the results are such as 
can never be known till we have all passed out of this 
visible scene of things, and the accounts of the world 
are finally made up for the last tremendous day. 
While, then, I think it plain that the existence of large 
Anti-Catholic bodies professing Christianity are as in- 
evitable, from the nature of the case, as infidel races or 
states, except under some extraordinary dispensation of 
divine grace, while there must ever be in the world 
false prophets and Antichrists, standing over against 
the Catholic Church, yet it is consolatory to reflect how 
the schism, or heresy, which the self-will of a monarch 
or of a generation has caused, does not suffice altogether 
to destrov the work for which in some distant ao-e 
Evangelists have left their homes, and Martyrs have 
shed their blood. Thus, the blessing is inestimable to 
England, so far as among us the Sacrament of Baptism 
is validly administered to any portion of the population. 
In Greece, where a far greater attention is paid to 
ritual exactness, the whole population may be con- 
sidered regenerate ; half the children born into the 
world pass through baptism from a schismatical Church 
to heaven, and in many of the rest the same Sacrament 
may be the foundation of a supernatural life, which Ih 
gifted with perseverance in the hour of death. There 
may be many too, who, being in invincible ignorance 
on those particular points of religion on which their 

354 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

Communion is wrong, may still have the divine and 
unclouded illumination of faith on those numerous 
points on which it is right. And further, if we con- 
sider that there is a true priesthood in certain countries, 
and a trae sacrifice, the benefits of Mass to those who 
never had the means of knowing better, may be almost 
the same as they are in the Catholic Church. Humble 
souls who come in faith and love to the heavenly rite, 
under whatever disadvantages they lie, from the faulty 
discipline of their Communion, may obtain, as well as 
we, remission of such sins as the Sacrifice directly 
effects, and that supernatural charity which wipes out 
greater ones. Moreover, when the Blessed Sacrament 
is lifted up, they adore, as well as we, the true Imma- 
culate Lamb of God ; and when they communicate, it is 
the True Bread of Life, and nothing short of it, which 
they receive for the eternal health of their souls. 

And in like manner, I suppose, as regards this 
country, as well as G-reece and Eussia, we may enter- 
tain most reasonable hopes, that vast multitudes are in 
a state of invincible ignorance; so that those among 
them who are living a life really religious and conscien- 
tious, may be looked upon with interest and even plea- 
sure, though a mournful pleasure, in the midst of the 
pain which a Catholic feels at their ignorant prejudices 
ao-ainst what he knows to be true. Amongst the most 
bitter railers against the Church in this country, may 
be found those who are influenced by divine grace, and 

no Prejudice Co Catholicity of the Church, 355 

are at present travelling towards heaven, whatt^ver be 
their ultimate destiny. Among the most irritable dis- 
putants against the Sacrifice of the Mass ur Transub- 
stantiation, or the most impatient listeners to the glories 
of Mary, there may be those for whom she is saying to 
her Son, what He said on the cross to His Father, 
"Forgive them, for they know not what they do." 
Kay, while such persons think as at present, they are 
bound to act accordingly, and only so far to connect 
themselves with us as their conscience allows. " When 
persons who have been brought up in heresy," says a 
Catholic theologian, "are persuaded from their child- 
hood that we are the enemies of God's word, are idol- 
aters, pestilent deceivers, and therefore, as pests, to be 
avoided, they cannot, while this persuasion lasts, hear 
us with a safe conscience, and they labour under invin- 
cible ignorance, inasmuch as they doubt not that they 
are in a good way." ^ 

Nor does it suffice, in order to throw them out of this 
irresponsible state, and to make them guilty of their 
ignorance, that there are means actually in their power 
of getting rid of it. For instance, say they have 
no conscientious feeling against frequenting Catholic 
chapels, conversing with Catholics, or reading their 
books; and say they are thrown into the neighbour- 
hood of the one or the company of the other, and do 
not avail them.selves of their opportunities; still these 

^ Busemiiaum, vol. i. p. 54, 

35 6 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

persons do not become responsible for their present 
ignorance till such time as they actually feel it, till a 
doubt crosses them upon the subject, and the thought 
comes upon them, that inquiry is a duty. And thus 
Protestants may be living in the midst of Catholic 
light, and labouring under the densest and most stupid 
prejudices ; and yet we may be able to view them with 
hope, though with anxiety — with the hope that the 
question has never occurred to them, strange as it may 
seem, whether we are not right and they wrong. Nay, 
I will say something further still ; they may be so cir- 
cumstanced that it is quite certain that, in course of 
time, this ignorance will be removed, and doubt will be 
suggested to them, and the necessity of inquiry conse- 
quently imposed ; and according to our best judgment, 
fallible of course as it is, we may be quite certain too, 
that, when that time comes, they will refuse to inquire, 
and will quench the doubt; yet should it so happen 
that they are cut off by death before that time has 
arrived (I am putting an hypothetical case), we may 
have as much hope of their salvation as if we had had 
no such foreboding about them on our mind ; for there 
is nothing to show that they were not taken away on 
purpose, in order that their ignorance might be their 


As to the prospect of those countless multitudes of a 
country like this, who apparently have no supernatural 
vision of the next world at all, aad die without fear 

no Pi-ejiidice to Catholicity of the Cliurch. 357 

"because they die without thought, with these, alas 1 I 
am not here concerned. But the remarks I have been 
making suggest much of comfort, when we look out 
into what is called the religious world in all its varieties, 
whether it be the High Church section, or the Evan- 
gelical, whether it be in the Establishment, or in 
Methodism, or in Dissent, so far as there seems to be 
real earnestness and invincible prejudice. One cannot 
but hope that that written Word of God, for which they 
desire to be jealous, though exhibited to them in a 
mutilated form and in a translation unsanctioned by 
Holy Church, is of incalculable blessing to their souls, 
and may be, through God's grace, the divine instrument 
of bringing many to contrition and to a happy death 
who have received no sacrament since they were 
baptized in their infancy. One cannot hope but that the 
Anglican Prayer Book, with its Psalter and Catholic 
prayers, even though these, in the translation, have 
passed through heretical intellects, may retain so much 
of its old virtue as to co-operate with divine grace in 
the instruction and salvation of a large remnant. In 
these and many other ways, even in England, and much 
more in Greece, the difficulty is softened which is pre- 
sented to the imagination by the view of such large 
populations, who, though called Christian, are not 
Catholic or orthodox in creed. 

35^ Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

There is but one set of persons, indeed, who inspire 
the Catholic with special anxiety, as much so as the 
open sinner, who is not peculiar to any Communion, 
Catholic or schismatic, and who does not come into the 
present question. There is one set of persons in whom 
every Catholic must feel intense interest, about whom 
he must feel the gravest apprehensions ; viz., those who 
have some rays of light vouchsafed to them as to their 
heresy or as to their schism, and who seem to be 
closing their eyes upon it ; or those who have actually 
gained a clear view of the nothingness of their own 
Communion, and the reality and divinity of the Catholic 
Church, yet delay to act upon their knowledge. You^ 
my dear brethren, if such are here present, are in a very 
different state from those around you. You are called 
by the inscrutable grace of God to the possession of a 
great benefit, and to refuse the benefit is to lose the 
grace. You cannot be as others: they pursue their 
own way, they walk over this wide earth, and see 
nothing wonderful or glorious in the sun, moon, and stars 
of the spiritual heavens; or they have an intellectual 
sense of their beauty, but no feeling of duty or of love 
towards them ; or they wish to love them, but think 
they ought not, lest they should get a distaste for that 
mire and foulness which is tlieir present portion. They 
have not yet had the call to inquire, and to seek, and 
to prav for further guidance, infused into their hearts 

no Prejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 359 

by the gracious Spirit of God ; and they will be judged 
according to what is given them, not by what is not. 
But on you the thought has dawned, that possibl;y 
Catholicism may be true ; you have doubted the safety 
of your present position, and the present pardon of your 
sins, and the completeness of your present faith. You, 
by means of that very system in which you find your- 
selves, have been led to doubt that system. If the 
Mosaic law, given from above, was a schoolmaster to 
lead souls to Christ, much more is it true that an 
heretical creed, when properly understood, warns us 
against itself, and frightens us from it, and is forced 
against its will to open for us with its own hands its 
prison gates, and to show us the way to a better country. 
So has it been with you. You set out in simplicity 
and earnestness intending to serve it, and your very 
serving taught you to serve another. You began to 
use its prayers and act upon its rules, and they did but 
witness against it, and made you love it, not more but 
less, and carried off your affections to one whom you 
had not loved. The more you gazed upon your own 
communion the more unlike it you grew ; the more you 
tried to be good Anglicans, the more you found your- 
selves drawn in heart and spirit to the Catholic Church. 
It was the destiny of the false prophetess that she 
could not keep the little ones who devoted themselves 
to her; and the more simply they gave up their private 
judgment to her, the more sure they were of being 
thrown off bv her, against their will, into the current 

360 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies 

of attraction which led straight to the true Mother of 
their souls. So month has gone on after month, and 
year after year ; and you have again and again vowed 
ohedience to your own Church, and you have protested 
against those who left her, and you have thought you 
found in them what you liked not, and you have pro- 
phesied evil about them and good about yourselves; 
and your plans seemed prospering and your influence 
extending, and great things were to be ; and yet, strange 
to say, at the end of the time you have found your- 
selves steadily advanced in the direction which you 
feared, and never were nearer to the promised land 
than you are now. 

Oh, look well to your footing that you slip not ; be 
very much afraid lest the world should detain you; 
dare not in anything to fall short of God's grace, or to 
lag behind when that grace goes forward. Walk with 
it, co-operate with it, and I know how it will end. You 
are not the first persons who have trodden that path ; 
yet a little time, and, please God, the bitter shall be 
sweet, and the sweet bitter, and you will have under- 
gone the agony, and will be lodged safely in the true 
home of your souls and the valley of peace. Yet but 
a little while, and you will look out from your resting- 
place upon the wanderers outside; and will wonder 
why they do not see that way which is now so plain to 
you, and will be impatient with them that they do not 
come on faster. And, whereas you now are so per- 
plexed in mind that vou seem to yourselves to believe 

no Frejudice to Catholicity of the Church. 361 

nothing, then you will be so full of faith, that you will 
almost see invisible mysteries, and will touch the 
threshold of eternity. And you will be so full of joy 
that you will w4sh all around you to be partakers of it, 
as if for your own relief; and you will suddenly be 
filled with yearnings deep and passionate, for the 
salvation of those dear friends whom you have out- 
stripped; and you will not mind their coolness, or 
stiffness, or distance, or constrained gravity, for the love 
you bear to their souls. And, though they will not 
hear you, you will address yourselves to those who will; 
I mean, you will weary heaven with your novenas for 
them, and you will be ever getting Masses for their 
conversion, and you will go to communion for them, 
and you will not rest till the bright morning comes, 
and they are yours once again. Oh, is it possible that 
there is a resurrection even upon earth ! wonderful 
grace, that there should be a joyful meeting, after part- 
ing, before we set to heaven ! It was a weary time, 
that long suspense, when with aching hearts we stood 
on the brink of a change, and it was like death both to 
witness and to undergo, when first one and then another 
disappeared from the eyes of their fellows. And then 
friends stood on different sides of a gulf, and for years 
knew nothing of each other or of their welfare. And 
then they fancied of each other what was not, and there 
w^ere misunderstandings and jealousies ; and each saw 
the other, as if his ghost, only in imagination and 

362 Heretical and Schismatical Bodies, etc. 

in memory ; and all was sickness and anxiety, and hope 
delayed, and ill-requited care. But now it is all over ; 
the morning is come ; the severed shall unite. 1 see 
them as if in sight of me. Look at us, my brethren, 
from our glorious land ; look on us radiant with the 
light cast upon us by the Saints and Angels who stand 
over us; gaze on us as you approach, and kindle as 
you gaze. We died, you thought us dead : we live ; we 
cannot return to you, you must come to us, — and you 
are coming. Do not your hearts beat as you approach 
us? Do you not long for the hour which makes us 
one ? Do not tears come into your eyes at the thought 
of the superabundant mercy of your God ? 

" Sion is the city of our strength, a saviour ; a wall, 
and a bulwark shall be set therein. Open ye the gates, 
and let the just Nation that keepeth the truth enter in. 
The old error is passed away ; Thou wilt keep peace, 
peace because we have hoped in Thee. In the way of 
Thy judgments, Lord, have we waited for Thee ; Thy 
Name and Thy remembrance are the desire of our souL 
Lord, our God, other lords beside Thee have had 
possession of us ; but in Thee only may we have re- 
membrance of Thy Name. The dying, let them not 
hve; the giants let them not rise again; therefore Thou 
hast visited and crushed them, and hast destroyed aD 
their Tuemorv.'"' 

( 363 ) 




T7EELING, my dear brethren, I should be encroach- 
ing on your patience, if I extended this course of 
Lectures beyond the length which it is now reaching, 
I have been obliged, in order to give a character of 
completeness to the whole, to omit the discussion of 
subjects which I would fain have introduced, and to 
anticipate others which I would rather have viewed in 
another connection. This must be my apology, if in 
their number and selection I shall in any respect dis- 
appoint those who have formed their expectations of 
what I was to do in these Lectures, upon the profession 
contained in their general title. I have done what my 
limits allowed me : if I have not done more, it is not, 
I assure you, from having nothing to say, — for there 
are many questions upon which I have been anxious 
to enter, — but because I could neither expect you, my 
brethren, to give me more of your tm^e, nor could 
command my own. 

As, then, I have already considered certain popular 

364 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

objections which are made respectively to the Sanctity, 
Unity, and Catholicity of the Church, now let me, as 
far as I can do it in a single Lecture, direct your atten- 
tion to a difficulty felt, not indeed by the world at large, 
but by many of you in particular, in admitting her 
Apostolical pretensions. 

i say, " a difficulty not felt by the world at large ; " 
for the world at large has no such view of any con- 
trariety between the Catholic Church of to-day and the 
Catholic Church of fifteen hundred years ago, as to 
be disposed on that account to deny our Apostolical 
claims ; rather, it is the fashion of the mass of Protes- 
tants, whenever they think on the subject, to accuse 
the Church of the Fathers of what they call Popish 
superstition and intolerance ; and some have even gone 
so far as to say, that in these respects that early Church 
was more Popish than the Papists themselves. But 
when, leaving this first look of the subject, and the 
broad outline, and the general impression, we come 
to inspect matters more narrowly, and compare them 
exactly, point by point, together, certainly it is not 
difficult to find various instances of discrepancy, ap- 
parent or real, important or trivial, between the modern 
and the ancient Church ; and though no candid person 
who has fairly examined the state of the case can doubt, 
that, if we differ from the Fathers in some things, 
Protestants differ from them in all, and if we vary from 
them in accidentals, Protestants contradict them in 

to the Ajpostolicity of the Churcli. 365 

essentials, still, since attack is much easier and plea- 
santer than defence, it has been the way with certain 
disputants, especially with the Anglican school, instead 
of accounting for their own serious departure in so many 
respects from the primitive doctrine and ritual, to call 
upon us to show why we differ at all from our first 
Fathers, though partially and intelligibly, in matters 
of discipline and in the tone of our opinions. Thus 
it is that Jewel tries to throw dust in the eyes of the 
world and does his best to make an attack upon the 
Papacy and its claims pass for an Apology for the 
Church of England ; and more writers have followed 
his example than it is worth while, or indeed possible, 
to enumerate. And they have been answered again 
and again; and the so-called novelties of modern 
Catholicism have been explained, if not so as to silence 
all opponents (which could not be expected), yet at the 
very lowest so far as this (which is all that is incumbent 
on us in controversy), so far as to show that we have a 
case in our favour. I say, even though we have not 
done enough for our proof, we have done enough for' 
our argument, as the world will allow ; for on our 
assailants, not on us, lies- the ^' onus prolandi,'' and 
they have done nothing till they have actually made 
their charges good, and destroyed the very tenable- 
ness of our position and even the mere probability of 
our representations. However, into the consideration, 
whether of these objections or of their answers, I shall 

366 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

not be expected to enter; and especially, because 
«ach would form a separate subject in itself, and fur- 
nish matter for a separate Lecture. How, for instance, 
would it be possible in the course of an hour, and wifch 
such an exercise of attention as might fairly be exacted 
of you, to embrace subjects as distinct from each other 
as the primitive faith concerning the Blessed Virgin, 
and the Apostolic See, and the Holy Eucharist, ' and 
the worship of images ? You would not expect such 
an effort of me, nor promise it for yourselves ; and the 
less so, because, as you know, my profession all alone 
has been to confine myself, as far as I can, to general 
considerations, and to appeal, in proof of what I assert, 
rather to common sense and truths before our eyes than 
to theology and history. 


In thus opening the subject, my brethren, I have 
been both explaining and apologizing for what 1 am 
proposing to do. For, if I am to say something, not 
directly in answer to the particular objections in detail, 
brought from Antiquity against the doctrine and dis- 
ciphne of the present Catholic Church, but by way of 
appeasing and allaying that general misgiving and 
perplexity which these objections excite, what can I do 
better than appeal to a fact, — though I cannot do so 
without some indulgence on the part of my hearers, — 
a fact connected with myself ? And it is the less unfair 

to the Apostolicity of the Church 3^7 

to do so, because, as regards the history of the early 
Church and the writings of the Fathers, so many must 
go by the testimony of others, and so few have oppor- 
tunity to use their own experience. I say, then, that 
the waitings of the Fathers, so far from prejudicing at 
least one man against the modern Catholic Church, 
have been simply and solely the one intellectual cause 
of his having renounced the religion in which he was 
born and submitted himself to her. What other causes 
there may be, not intellectual, unknown, unsuspected 
by himself, though freely imputed on mere conjecture 
by those who would invalidate his testimony, it would 
be unbecoming and impertinent to discuss; for himself, 
if he is asked why he became a Catholic, he can only 
give that answer which experience and consciousness 
bring home to him as the true one, viz., that he joined 
the Catholic Church simply because he believed it, and 
it only, to be the Church of the Fathers ; because he 
believed that there was a Church upon earth till the end 
of time, and one only ; and because, unless it was the 
Communion of Eome, and it only, there was none ; — 
because, to use language purposely guarded, because it 
was the language of controversy, " all parties will agree 
that, of all existing systems, the present Communion 
of Eome is the nearest approximation in fact to the 
Church of the Fathers ; possible though some may 
think it, to be still nearer to it on paper ; " — because, 
"did St. Athanasius or St. Ambrose come suddenly to 

■2 68 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

life, it cannot be doubted what communion they would 
mistake," that is, would recognize, " for their own ; " ~ 
because " all will agree that these Fathers, with what- 
ever differences of opinion, whatever protests if you 
will, would find themselves more at home with such 
men as St. Bernard or St. Ignatius Loyola, or with tlie 
lonely priest in hie lodgings, or the holy sisterhood of 
charity, or the unlettered crowd before the altar, than 
with the rulers or the members of any other religious 
community." ^ 

This is the great, manifest, historical phenomenon 
which converted me, — to which all particular inquiries 
converged. Christianity is not a matter of opinion, 
but an external fact, entering into, carried out in, 
indivisible from, the history of the world. It has a 
bodily occupation of the world; it is one continuous 
fact or thing, the same from first to last, distinct from 
everything else : to be a Christian is to partake of, to 
submit to, this thmg; and the simple question was, 
^Hiere, what is this thing in this age, which in the first 
age was the Catholic Church? The answer was un- 
deniable ; the Church called Catholic now, is that very 
same thing in hereditary descent, in organization, in 
principles, in position, in external relations, which was 
called the Catholic Church then; name and thing have 
ever gone together, by an uninterrupted connection 
and succession, from then till now. Whether it had 

1 Essay on Doctriiial Development, p. 138. 

to the Apostolicity of the CI aire] i. 369 

been corrupted in its teaching was, at best, a matter of 

opinion. It was indefinitely more evident a fact, that 

it stood on the ground and in the place of the ancient 

Church, as its heir and representative, than that certain 

peculiarities in its teaching w^ere really innovations and 

corruptions. Say there is no Church at all, if you will, 

and at least I shall understand you ; but do not meddle 

with a fact attested by mankind. I am almost ashamed 

to insist upon so plain a point, which in many respects 

is axiomatically true, except that there are persons 

who wish to deny it. Of course, there are and have 

been such persons, and men of deep learning ; but their 

adverse opinion does not interfere with my present use 

of what I think so plain. Observe, I am not insisting 

on it as an axiom, though that is my own view of the 

matter; nor proving it as a conclusion, nor forcing it on 

your acceptance as your reason for joining the Catholic 

Church, as it was mine. Let every one have his own 

reason for becoming a Catholic: for reasons are m 

plenty, and there are enough for you all, and moreover 

all of them are good ones and consistent with each 

other. I am not assigning reasons why you should be 

Catholics ; you have them already : from first to last I 

am doing nothing more than removing difficulties in 

your path, which obstruct the legitimate effect of those 

reasons which have, as I am assumincf, alreadv con- 

vinced you. And to-day I am answering the objection, 

so powerfully urged upon those who iiave no means of 

2 A 

370 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

examining it for themselves, that, as a matter of fact, 
the modern Church has departed from the teaching ot 
the ancient. Now even one man's contrary testimony 
obscures the certainty of this supposed matter of fact, 
though it is not sufficient to establish any opposite 
matter of fact of his own. I say, then, the Catholicism 
of to-day is not likely to be really very different from 
the Catholicism of Antiquity, if its agreement, or rather 
its identity, with Antiquity forms the very reason on 
which even one educated and reflecting person was 
induced, much against every natural inducement, to 
submit to its claims. Ancient Catholicity cannot supply 
a very conclusive argument against modern Catholicity, 
if the ancient has furnished even one such person with 
a conclusive argument in favour of the modern. Let 
us grant that the argument against the modern Church 
drawn from Antiquity, is not altogether destroyed by 
this antagonistic argument in her behalf, drawn from 
the same Antiquity ; yet surely that argument adverse 
to her will be too much damaged and enfeebled by the 
collision to do much towards resisting such direct inde- 
pendent reasons, personal to yourselves, as are already 
leading you to her. 


My testimony, then, is as follows. Even when I was 
a boy, my thoughts were turned to the early Church, 
and especially to the early Fathers, by the perusal of 
the Calvinist John Milner's Church History, and I 
have never lost, I never have suffered a suspension of 

to the Apostoticity of the Church. 2)7^ 

the impression, deep and most pleasurable, wliich his 
sketches of St. Ambrose and St. Augustine left on my 
mind. From that time the vision of the Fathers was 
always, to my imagination, I may say, a paradise of 
delight to the contemplation of which I directed my 
thoughts from time to time, whenever I was free from 
the engagements proper to my time of life. When 
years afterwards (1828) I first began to read their 
works with attention and on system, I busied myself 
much in analysing them, and in cataloguing their 
doctrines and principles ; but, when I had thus pro- 
ceeded very carefully and minutely for some space of 
time, I found, on looking back on what I had done, 
that I had scarcely done anything at all ; I found 1:hat 
I. had gained very little from them, and I came to the 
conclusion that the Fathers I had been reading, which 
were exclusively those of the ante-Nicene period, had 
very little in them. At the time I did not discover 
the reason of this result, though, on the retrospect, it 
was plain enough : I had read them simply on Protes- 
tant ideas, analysed and catalogued them on Protestant 
principles of division, and hunted for Protestant doc- 
trines and usages in them. My headings ran, " Justifi- 
cation by faith only," " Sanctification," and the like. 
I knew not what to look for in them ; 1 sought what 
was not there, I missed what was there; I laboured 
through the night and caught nothing. But I should 
make one important exception : T rose from their per- 
usal with a vivid perception of the divine institution. 

372 Ecclesiastical History no Prejmdire 

the prerogatives, and the gifts of the Episcopate ; that 
is, with an implicit aversion to the Erastian principle. 

Some years afterwards (1831) I took up the study 
of them again, when I had occasion to employ myself 
on the history of Arianism. I read them with Bull's 
Defensio, as their key, as far as his subject extended; 
but I am not aware that I made any other special 
doctrinal use of them at that time. 

After this I set myself to the study of them, with 
the view of pursuing the series of controversies con-^ 
nected with our Lord's Person; and to the examination 
of these controversies I devoted two summers, witk 
the interval of several years between them (1835 and 
1839). And now at length I was reading them for my-^ 
self ; for no Anglican writer had specially and minutely 
treated the subjects on which I was engaged. On 
my first introduction to them I had read them as- 
a Protestant ; and next, I had read them pretty much 
as an Anglican, though it is observable that, whatever- 
I gained on either reading, over and above the theory 
or system with which I started, was in a Catholic 
direction. In the former of the two summers above 
mentioned (1835), my reading was almost entirely 
confined to strictly doctrinal subjects, to the exclusion 
of history, and I believe it left me pretty much where 
I was on the question of the Catholic Church ; but m. 
the latter of them (1839) it was principally occupied 
with the history of the Monophysite controversy, and 

to the ApostoUcity of the Church. 373 

the circumstances and transactions of the Council of 
Chalcedon, in the fifth century, and at once and irre- 
vocably I found my faith in the tenableness of the 
fundamental principle of Anglicanism disappear, and 
a doubt of it implanted in my mind which never was 
eradicated. I thought I saw in the controversy I have 
named, and in the Ecumenical Council connected with 
it, a clear interpretation of the present state of Christen- 
dom, and a key to the different parties and personages 
who have figured on the Catholic or the Protestant 
side at and since the era of the Eeformation. During 
the autumn of the same year, a paper I fell in witl 
upon the schism of the Donatists,^ deepened the im- 
pression which the history of the Monophysites had 
made ; and I felt dazzled and excited by the new view 
of things which was thus opened upon me. Distrusting 
my judgment, and that I might be a better judge of 
the subject, I determined for a time to put it away 
from my mind ; nor did I return to it till I gave 
myself to the translation of the doctrinal Treatises of 
St. Athanasius, at the end of 1841. This occupation 
brought up again before me the whole question of the 
Arian controversy and the Nicene Council; and now 
I clearly saw in that history, what I had not perceived 
on the first study of it, the same phenomenon which 
had already startled me in the history of St. Leo and 
the Monophysites. From that time, what delayed my 

^ By Dr. Wisemai). 

374 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

conviction of the claims of the Catholic Church upon 
me, ^vas not any confidence in Anglicanism as a system 
of doctrine, but particular objections which as yet I saw 
no way of reducing, such as may at present weigh with 
you, and the fear that, since I found my friends strongly 
opposed to my view of the matter, I might, in some 
way or other, be involved in a delusion. 

And now you will ask me, what it is I saw in the 
history of primitive controversies and Councils which 
was so fatal to the pretensions of the Anglican Church ? 
I saw that the general theory and position of Anglican- 
ism was no novelty in ancient history, but had a distinct 
place in it, and a series of prototypes, and that these 
prototypes had ever been heretics or the patrons of 
heresy. The very badge of Anglicanism, as a system, 
is that it is a Via Media ; this is its life ; it is this, or 
it is nothing ; deny this, and it forthwith dissolves into 
Catholicism or Protestantism. This constitutes its only 
claim to be recognized as a distinct form of Christianity ; 
it is its recommendation to the world at large, and its 
simple measuring-line for the whole field of theology. 
The Via Media appeals to the good sense of mankind ; 
it says that the human mind is naturally prone to 
excess, and that theological combatants in particular 
are certain to run into extremes. Truth, as virtue, lies 
in a mean ; whatever, then, is true, whatever is not true. 

to the Apostolicity of the Chureh 

3/ D 

extremes certainly are false. And, whereas truth is in 
a mean, for that very reason it is very moderat'- and 
liberal; it can tolerate either extreme with great 
patience, because it views neither with that keenness 
of contrariety with which one extreme regards the other. 
For the same reason, it is comprehensive ; because, 
being in a certain sense in the centre of all errors, 
though having no part in any of them, it may be said 
to rule and to temper them, to bring them together, 
and to make them, as it were, converge and conspire 
together in one under its owm meek and gracious sway. 
Dispassionateness, forbearance, indulgence, toleration, 
and comprehension are thus all of them attributes of the 
Fia Media. It is obvious, moreover, that a doctrine like 
thiswillfind especial acceptance with the civil magistrate. 
Eeligion he needs as an instrument of government; 
yet in religious opinion he sees nothing else but the 
fertile cause of discord and confusion. Joyfully then 
does he welcome a form of theology, whose very mission 
it is to temper the violence of polemics, to soften and 
to accommodate differences, and to direct the energies of 
churchmen to the attainment of tangible good instead 
of the discussion of mysteries. 

This sentiment I expressed in the following passage, 
in the year 1837, which I quote with shame and sorrow ; 
the more so, because it is certainly inconsistent with 
my own general teaching, from the very time I began 
to write, except for a short interval in 1825 ami 1826 

27^ Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

whicli need not be noticed here. However, it is an 
accurate exponent of the Anglican theory of religion. 
''Though it is not likely," I said, "that Romanism 
should ever again become formidable in England, yet 
it may be in a position to make its voice heard ; and, 
in proportion as it is able to do so, the Via Media will 
do important service of the following kind. In the 
controversy which will ensue, Rome will not fail to 
preach, far and wide, the tenet which it never conceals, 
that there is no salvation external to its own com- 
munion. On the other hand, Protestantism, as it exists, 
will not be behind- hand in consigning to eternal ruin 
all who are adherents of Roman doctrine. What a 
prospect is this ! two widely-spread and powerful par- 
ties dealing forth solemn anathemas upon each other, 
in the Xame of the Lord ! Indifference and scepticism 
must be, in such a case, the ordinary refuge of men of 
mild and peaceable minds, who revolt from such pre- 
sumption, and are deficient in clear views of the truth. 
I cannot well exaggerate the misery of such a state of 
things. Here the English theology would come in with 
its characteristic calmness and caution, clear and de- 
cided in its view, giving no encouragement to luke- 
warmness and liberalism, but withholding all absolute 
anathemas on errors of opinion, except where the 
primitive Church sanctions the use of them." "^ 

Such, then, is the Anglican Church and its Via Media ^ 

' Proph. Off. p. 26. 

to the Apostoliciti/ of the Church. 377 

and such the practical application of it; it is an inter- 
position or arbitration between the extreme doctrines of 
Protestantism on the one hand, and the faith of Konie 
which Protestantism contradicts on the other. At tlie 
same time, though it may be unwilling to allow it, it is, 
from the nature of the case, but a particular form of 
Protestantism. I do not say that in secondary principles 
it may not agree with the Catholic Church ; V)ut, its 
essential idea being that she has gone into error, whereas 
the essential idea of Catholicism is the Church's infal- 
libility, the Via Media is really nothing else than 
Protestant. Not to submit to the Church is to oppose 
her, and to side with the heretical party ; for medium 
there is none. The Via Media assumes that Protestant- 
ism is right in its protest against Catholic doctrine, only 
that that protest needs correcting, limiting, perfecting. 
This surely is but a matter of fact ; for the Via Media 
has adopted all the great Protestant doctrines, as its 
most strenuous upholder and the highest of Anglo- 
Catholics will be obliged to allow ; the mutilated canon, 
the defective Eule of Faith, justification by faith only, 
putative righteousness, the infection of nature in the 
regenerate, the denial of the five Sacraments, the relation 
of faith to the Sacramental Presence, and the like ; its 
aim being nothing else than to moderate, with Melano- 
thon, the extreme statements of Luther, to keep them from 
shocking the feelings of human nature, to protect them 
from the criticism of common sense, and from the 

^jS Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

pi^ssure and urgency of controversial attack. Thus we 
have three parties on the historical stage ; the See and 
Communion of Eome; the original pure Protestant, 
violent, daring, offensive, fanatical in his doctrines ; and 
a cautious middle party, quite as heretical in principle 
and in doctrinal elements as Protestantism itself, but 
having an eye to the necessities of controversy, sensible 
in its ideas, sober in its tastes, safe in its statements, 
conservative in its aims, and practical in its measures. 
Such a Via Media has been represented by the line of 
Archbishops of Canterbury from Tillotson dov^n wards, 
as by Cranmer before them. Such in their theology, 
though not in their persons or their histories, were Laud 
and Bull, Taylor and Hammond, and I may say nearly 
all the great authorities of the Established Church. 
This distinctive clmracter has often been noticed, 
especially by Mr. Alexander Knox, and much might b& 
said upon it ; and, as I have already observed, it ever 
receives the special countenance of the civil magistrate, 
who, if he could, would take up with a religion without 
any doctrines whatever, as Warburton well understands, 
but who, in the case of a necessary evil, admires the 
sobriety of Tillotson, and the piety of Patrick, and the 
elegance of Jortin, and the biblical accomplishments of 
Lowth, and the shrewd sense of Paley. 


Now this sketch of the relative positions ot the See- 

to the Apostolicity of the C/i/arch. 379 

of Eorae, Protestantism, the Vice Media, and tlie State, 
wiiich we see in the history of the last three centuries, 
is, I repeat, no novelty in history ; it is ahiiost its rule, 
certainly its rule during the long period when relations 
existed between the Byzantine Court and the Holy See ; 
and it is impossible to resist the conclusion, whicli the 
actual inspection of the history in detail forces upon us, 
that what the See of Eome was then such is it now : 
that what Arius, Nestorius, or Eutyches were then, such 
are Luther and Calvin now ; what the Eusebians or 
Monophysites then, such the Anglican hierarchy now; 
what the Byzantine Court then, such is now the Govern- 
ment of England, and such would have been many a 
Catholic Court, liad it had its way. That ancient history 
is not dead, it lives ; it prophesies of what passes before 
our eyes ; it is founded in the nature of things ; we see 
ourselves in it, as in a glass, and if the Via Media was 
heretical then, it is heretical now. 

I do not know how to convey this to others in one 
or two paragraphs; it is the living picture which 
history presents to us, which is the evidence of the 
fact ; and to attempt a mere outline of it, or to detach 
one or two groups from the finished composition, is to 
do injustice to its luminousness. Take, for instance, the 
history of Arianism. Arius stood almost by himself; 
bold, keen, stern, and violent, he took his stand on two 
or three axiomatic statements, as he considered them, 
appealed to Scripture, despised authority and tradition, 

3 So Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

and carried out his heretical doctrine to its furthest 
limits. He absolutely maintained, without any reserve, 
that our Lord was a creature, and had a becrinnins:. 
Next, he was one of a number of able and distinguished 
men, scattered over the East, united together by the 
bond of a common master and a common school, who 
might have been expected to stand by him on his 
ap23ealing to them ; but who left him to his fate, or at 
least but circuitously and indirectly served his cause. 
High in station, ecclesiastical and civil, they found it 
more consistent with their duties towards themselves 
to fall back upon a more cautious phraseology than his, 
and upon less assailable principles, to evade inquiry, to 
explain away tests, and to profess a submission to the 
voice of their forefathers and of the Catholic world ; 
and they developed their formidable party in that form 
of heresy which is commonly called Semi-Arianism or 
Eusebianism. They preached peace, professed to agree 
with neither St. Athanasius nor Arius, excited the 
jealousies of the Eastern world against the West, were 
strong enough to insult the Pope, and dexterous enough 
to gain the favour of Const antine and the devoted attach- 
ment of his son Constantius. The name of Eusebians 
they received from their leader, the able and unscrupulous 
Bishop of Mcomedia, with whom was associated another 
Eusebius, better known to posterity as the learned his- 
torian of the Church, and one of the most accomplished 
and able of the Fathers. It will be to my purpose to 

to the Apostolic I ty of the Chxiroh. 38 r 

quote one ov two sentences in description of the cliarao.ter 
of this celebrated man, written by me at a tin 10 wlien 
the subject of the Via Media had not as yet been mooted 
in the controversy, nor the bearing of the Arian history 
upon it been suggested to my mind. 

" He seems," I said, speaking of Eusebius of Caesarea, 
"to have had the faults and the virtues of the mere 
man of letters ; strongly excited neither to good noi 
to evil, and careless at once of the cause of truth and 
the prizes of secular greatness, in comparison of the 
comforts and decencies of literary ease. In his writings, 
numerous as they are, there is very little wliich fixes 
on Eusebius any charge, beyond that of an attachment 
to the Platonic phraseology. Had he not connected 
himself with the Arian party, it would have been unjust 
to have suspected him of heresy. But his acts are his 
confession. He openly sided with those whose blas- 
phemies a true Christian w^ould have abhorred; and 
he sanctioned and shared their deeds of violence and 
injustice perpetrated on the Catholics. . . . The grave 
accusation under which he lies is not that of Arian- 
ising,! but of corrupting the simplicity of the Gospel 
with an Eclectic spirit. While he held out the am- 
biguous language of the schools as a refuge, and the 
Alexandrian imitation of it as an argument, against 
the pursuit of the orthodox, his conduct gave coun- 

1 The author has now still less favourable views of Eusebius" tiieology 
than he had when he wrote this in 1832. 

382 Ecclesiastical History 710 Prejudice 

tenance to the secular maxim, that difference in creeds 
is a matter of inferior moment, and that, provided we 
confess as far as tlie very terms of Scripture, we may- 
speculate as philosophers and live as the world. . . . 
The remark has been made, that throughout his Eccle- 
siastical History no instance occurs of his expressing 
abhorrence of the superstitions of paganism; and that 
his custom is either to praise, or not to blame, such 
heretical writers as fall under his notice." ^ Much 
more might be added in illustration of the resemblance 
of this eminent writer to the divines of the Anglican 
Via Media. 

The Emperor Constantine has already been named; 
and looking at him in his ecclesiastical character we 
find him committed to two remarkable steps ; one that 
he frankly surrendered himself to the intimate friend- 
ship of this latitudinarian theologian ; the other, that, 
at the very first rumour of the Arian dissensions, he 
promptly, and with the precision of an instinct, inter- 
fered in the quarrel, and in a politician's way pro- 
nounced it to be a logomachy, or at least a matter 
of mere speculation, and bade bishops and heretics 
embrace and make it up with each other at once. This 
did he in a question no less solemn than that of the 
divinity of our Lord, which, if any question, could not 
be other than most influential, one would think, in a 

1 Arians of the Fourth Century, p. 281. [p. 269 ed. 1871.I 

to the Apostolicity of tic Church. 2^^^ 

Christian's creed. But Constantine was not a Christian 
as yet; and this, while it partly explains the extrava- 
o-ance of his conduct, illustrates the external and utili- 
tarian character of a statesman's religion. 

I will present to you portions of the celebrated letter 
which he addressed to the Bishop of Alexandria and 
to Arius, as quoted in the history to which I have 
already referred. " He professes therein two motives as 
impelling him in his public conduct ; first, the desire 
of effecting the reception, throughout his dominions, of 
some one definite and complete form of religious wor- 
ship ; next, that of settling and invigorating the civil 
institutions of the empire. Desirous of securing a unity 
of sentiment among all the believers in the Deity, he 
first directed his attention to the religious dissensions 
of Africa, which he had hoped, with the aid of the 
Oriental Christians, to terminate. ' But glorious and 
Divine Providence I ' he continues, ' how fatally were my 
ears, or rather, was my heart wounded, by the report 
of a rising schism among you far more acrimonious 
than the African dissensions. ... On investigation, I 
find that the reasons for this quarrel are insignificant 
and worthless. ... As I understand it, you, Alexander, 
were asking the separate opinions of your clergy on 
&ome passage of your law, or rather were inquiring 
about some idle question, when you, Arius, inconsider- 
ately committed yourself to statements, which should 
either never have come into vour mind, or have been 

384 Ec4:h'^iastical History no Prejudice 

at once repressed. On this a difference ensued, Chris- 
tian intercourse was suspended, the sacred flock was 
divided into two, and the harmonious unity of the 
Church broken. . . . Listen to the advice of me your 
fellow-servant ; — neither ask nor answer questions 
which are not any injunction of your law, but are the 
altercation of barren leisure; at best, keep them to 
yourselves, and do not publish them. . . . Your con- 
tention is not about any capital commandment of your 
law, neither of you is introducing any novel scheme of 
divine worship, you are of one and the same way of 
thinking, so that it is in your power to unite in one 
communion. Even the philosophers can agree together 
one and all, though differing in particulars. ... Is it 
right for brothers to oppose brothers, for the sake of 
trifles ? . . . Such conduct might be expected from the 
multitude or from the recldessness of boyhood, but is 
little in keeping with your sacred profession and with 
your personal wisdom. . . . Give me back my days of 
calm, my nights of security ; that I may experience 
henceforth the comfort of the clear light and the cheer- 
fulness of tranquillity. Otherwise I shall sigh and be 
dissolved in tears. ... So great is my grief, that I put 
off my journey to the East on the news of your dissen- 
sion. . . . Open for me that path towards you, which 
your contentions have closed up. Let me see you and 
nil other cities in happiness, that I may offer due 

to the Apostolicity of the Church. 385 

thanksgivings to God above for the unanimity and free 
interconrse which is seen among you.' " ^ 

Such was the position which the Christian civil 
power assumed in the very first days of its nativity. 
The very moment the State enters into the Church, 
it shows its nature and its propensities, and takes up 
a position which it has never changed, and never will. 
Kings and statesmen may be, and have been, saints ; 
but, in being such, they have acted against the interests 
and traditions of kingcraft and statesmanship. Con- 
stantine died, but his line of policy continued. His 
son, Constantius, embraced the Via Media of Eusebi- 
anism on conviction as well as from expediency. He 
sternly set himself against both extremes, as he con- 
sidered them, banished the fanatical successors of Arius, 
and tortured and put to death the adherents to the 
Nicene Creed and the cause of St. Athanasius. Thus 
the Via Media party was in the ascendancy for about 
thirty years, till the death of the generation by whom 
it had been formed and protected ; — with quarrels and 
defections among themselves, restless attempts at 
stability in faith, violent efforts after a definite creed, 
fruitless projects of comprehension, — when, towards 
the end of their domination, a phenomenon showed 
itself, which claims our particular attention, as not 
without parallel in ecclesiastical history, and as re- 
minding us of what is going on, in an humbler way 

1 Arians of the Fourth Century, p. 267. [p. 255.] 

386 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

and on a narrower stage, before our eyes. In vari- 
ous districts, especially of Asia Minor, a considerable 
party had gradually been forming, and had exercised 
a considerable influence in the ecclesiastical transactions 
of the period, who, though called Semi-Arians and pro- 
fessing their symbols, had no sympathies with the 
Eusebians, and indeed were ultimately disowned by 
them. There seems to have been about a hundred 
bishops who belonged to this party, and their leaders 
were men of religious habits and unblemished repute, 
and approximated so nearly to orthodoxy in their 
language, that Saints appear among the number of their 
friends, or have issued from their school Things could 
not stand as they were : every year brought its event ; 
Constantius died; parties were broken up, — and this 
among the rest. It divided into two; as many as 
fifty-nine of its bishops subscribed the orthodox for- 
mula, and submitted themselves to the Holy See. A 
body of thirty-four persisted in their separation from 
it, and afterwards formed a new heresy of their own. 

These are but a few of the main features of the history 
of Arianism : yet they may be sufficient to illustrate 
the line of argument which Antiquity furnishes against 
the theories, on which alone the movement of 1833 had 
claim on the attention of Protestants. Those theories 
claimed to represent the theological and the ecclesias- 
tical teaching of the Fathers ; and the Fathers, when 
interrogated, did but pronounce them to be the offspring 
of eclecticism, and the exponent of a State Church. It 

to the Apostolicity of the Church. 387 

could not maintain itself in its position without allying 
itself historically with that very Erastianism, as seen in 
Antiquity, of which it had so intense a hatred. What 
has been sketched from the Arian history might be 
shown still more strikingly in the Monophysite.^ 


Nor was it solely the conspicuous parallel which I 
have been describing in outline, which, viewed in its 
details, was so fatal a note of error against the Anglican 
position. I soon found it to follow, that the grounds 
on which alone Anglicanism was defensible formed an 
impregnable stronghold for the primitive heresies, and 
that the justification of the Primitive Councils was as 
cogent an apology for the Council of Trent. It was 
difficult to make out how the Eutychians or Monophy- 
sites were heretics, unless Protestants and Anglicans 
were heretics also ; difficult to find arguments against 
the Tridentine Fathers which did not tell against the 
Fathers of Chalcedon; difficult to condemn the Popes 
of the sixteenth century, without condemning the Popes 
of the fifth. The drama of religion and the combat 
of truth and error were ever one and the same. The 
principles and proceedings of the Church now were those 
of the Church then ; the principles and proceedings of 
heretics then were those of Protestants now. I found 
it so — almost fearfully ; there was an awful simiKtude, 

1 Vid. Essay on Doctrinal Development, chap. v. sec. 3. 

388 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

more awful, becaus'e so silent and unimpassioned, 
between the dead records of the past and the feverish 
chronicle of the present. The shadow of the fifth cen- 
tury was on the sixteenth. It was like a spirit rising 
from the troubled waters of the Old World with the 
shape and lineaments of the new. The Church then, 
as now, might be called peremptory and stern, resolute, 
overbearing, and relentless ; and heretics were shifting, 
changeable, reserved, and deceitful, ever courting the 
civil power, and never agreeing together, except by its 
aid ; and the civil power was ever aiming at comprehen- 
sions, trying to put the invisible out of view, and to 
substitute expediency for faith. What was the use of 
continuing the controversy, or defending my position, 
if, after all, I was but forging arguments for Arius or 
Eutyches, and turning devil's advocate against the 
much- enduring Athanasius and the majestic Leo ? Be 
my soul with the Saints ! and shall I lift up my hand 
against them ? Sooner may my right hand forget her 
cunning, and wither outright, as his who once stretched 
it out against a prophet of God, — ^perish sooner a whole 
tribe of Cranmers, Eidleys, Latimers, and Jewels, — 
perish the names of Bramhall, Ussher, Taylor, Stilling- 
fleet, and Barrow, from the face of the earth, — ere I 
should do aught but fall at their feet in love and in 
worship, whose image was continually before my eyes, 
and whose musical words were ever in my ears and on 
my tongue I 

to the Apostolicity of the Church. 389 

This, too, is an observable fact, that the more learned 
Anglican writers seem aware of the state of the case, 
and are obliged, by the necessities of their position, 
to speak kindly of the heretical communities of ancient 
history, and at least obliquely to censure the Councils, 
which, nevertheless, they profess to receive. Thus 
Bramhall, as we saw yesterday, strives to fraternize 
with the sectaries now existing in the East ; nor could 
he consistently do otherwise, with the Council of Trent 
and the Protestants in the field of controversy ; it being 
difficult indeed to show that the Eastern Churches in 
question are to be accounted heretical on any principles 
which a Protestant is able to put forward. It is not 
wonderful, then, that other great authorities in the 
Established Church are of the same way of thinking. 
"Jewel, Ussher, and Laud," says an Anglican divine 
of this day, " are apparently of this opinion, and Field 
expressly maintains it." ^ 

Jeremy Taylor goes further still, that is, is still more 
consistent; for he not merely acquits of heresy the 
existing communities of the East who dissent from the 
third and fourth Councils, but he is bold enough to 
attack the first Council of all, the Nicene. He places 
the right of private judgment, or what he calls " the 
liberty of prophesying," above all Councils whatever. 
As to the Nicene, he says, " / am much pleased with 
the enlarging of the Creed which the Council of ISTice 

1 Palmer (<n the Churoh, vol. i, p. 418. 

390 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

made, because they enlarged it in my sense ; but I am 
not sure that others were satisfied with it."i '-'That 
faith is best which hath greatest simplicity ; and . . . 
it is better, in all cases, humbly to submit, than 
curiously to inquire, and pry into the mystery under 
the cloud, and to hazard our faith by improving our 
knowledge. If the Nicene Fathers had done so too, 
possibly the Church would never have repented it."^ 
" If the article had been with more simplicity and less 
nicety determined, charity would have gained more, 
and faith would have lost nothing." ^ And he not only 
calls Eusebius, whom it is hard to acquit of heresy, 
"the wisest of them all,"* but actually praises the 
letter of Constantino, which I have already cited, as 
most true in its view and most pertinent to the occasion. 
" The Epistle of Constantine to Alexander and Arius," 
he says, "tells the truth, and chides them both for com- 
mencing the question ; Alexander for broaching it, 
Arius for taking it up. And although this be true, 
that it had been better for the Church it never had 
begun, yet, being begun, what is to be done in it ? Of 
this also, in that admirable epistle, we have the Em- 
peror's judgment . . . for, first, he calls it a certain 
vain piece of a question, ill begun and more unadvisedly 
published, .... a fruitless contention, the product of 
idle brains, a matter so nice, so obscure, so intricate, 

1 Vol. vii. p. 481, ed. 1828, 2 Jeremy Taylor, ibid. p. 485. 

3 Ibid. ^ ibid. 

to tiie Apostolicity of the Church. 391 

that it was neither to be explicated by the clergy, nor 

understood by the people; a dispute of words 

It concerned not the substance of faith, or the worship 
of God, nor any chief commandment of Scripture . . . 
the matter being of no great importance, but vain, and 
a toy, in respect of the excellent blessings of peace and 
charity." ^ When we recollect that the question con- 
fessedly in dispute was whether our Lord is the Eternal 
God or a creature, and that the Nicene symbol against 
which Taylor writes was confessedly the sole test 
adequate to the definition of his divinity, it is scarcely 
conceivable that a writer should really believe that 
divinity and thus express himself. 

Taylor is no accident in the history of the Via Media ; 
he does but speak plainer than Field and Bramhall; 
and soon others began to speak plainer than he. The 
school of Laud gave birth to the latitudinarians ; Hales 
and Chillingworth, their first masters, were personal 
friends of the Archbishop, whose indignation with them 
only proves his involuntary sense of the tottering state 
of his own theological position. Lord Falkland, again, 
who thinks that before the Nicene Council nhe gene- 
rality of Christians had not been always taught the 
contrary to Arius's doctrine, but some one way, others 
the other, most neither," ^ was the admired friend of 
Hammond; and Grotius, whose subsequent influence 
upon the national divines has been so serious, was 

'1 V ,,\2. " Haiumond's Works, vol. ii. p. 655. 

392 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

introduced to their notice by Hammond and Bram- 

Such has been the issue of the Via Media; its 
tendency in theory is towards latitudinarianism ; its 
position historically is one of heresy ; in the National 
Church it has fulfilled both its theoretical tendency 
and its historical position. As this simple truth was 
brought home to me, I felt that, if continuance in the 
]^ational Church was defensible, it must be on other 
grounds than those of the Via Media. 


Yet this was but one head of argument, which the 
history of the early Church afforded against the E'ational 
Establishment, and in favour of the Eoman See. I 
have already alluded to the light w^hich the schism of 
the African Donatists casts on the question between 
the two parties in the controversy ; it is clear, strong, 
and decisive, but perfectly distinct from the proof 
derivable from the Arian, Nestorian, and Monophysite 

Then again, after drawing out from Antiquity the 
outlines of the ecclesiastical structure, and its relations 
to bodies and powers external to it, when we go on, as 
it were, to colour it wdth the thousand tints which are 
to be found in the same ancient records, when we con- 
sider the ritual of the Church, the ceremonial of religion, 

1 Vide Dublin Reviexi', August 1839, Ai-t. "'Anglican Claim." 

to the Apostolicity of the ChMvch. 393 

the devotions of private Christians, the opinions gene- 
rally received, and the popular modes of actin<^, what 
do we find but a third and most striking proof of the 
identity betvs^een primitive Christianity and modern 
Catholicism ? ^ No other form of Christianity but 
this present Catholic Communion, has a pretence to 
resemble, even in the faintest shadow, the Christianity 
of Antiquity, viewed as a living religion on the stage 
of the world. This has ever attached me to such works 
as Fleury's Church History; because, whatever may 
be its incidental defects or mistakes, it brings before 
the reader so vividly the Church of the Fathers, as a 
fact and a reality, instead of speculating, after the 
manner of most histories, on the principles, or of 
making views upon the facts, or cataloguing the 
heresies, rites, or writers, of those ancient times. 
You may make ten thousand extracts from the 
Fathers, and not get deeper into the state of their 
times than the paper you write upon; to imbibe 
into the intellect the Ancient Church as a fact, is 
either to be a Catholic or an infidel. 

EecoUect, my brethren, I am going into these 
details, not as if I thought of convincing you on the 
spot by a view of history which convinced me after 
careful consideration, nor as if T called on you to be 
convinced by what convinced me at all (for the methods 
of conviction are numberless, and one man approaches 

' Dublin Preview, Dec. 1843, Art. "A Voice from Eome " 

394 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

the Church by this road, another by that), but merely 
in order to show you how it was that Antiquity, 
instead of leading me from the Holy See as it leads 
many, on the contrary drew me on to submit to its 
claims. But, even had I worked out for you these 
various arguments ever so fully, I should have brought 
before you but a secondary portion of the testimony 
which the Ancient Church seemed to me to supply 
to its own identity with the modern. "What was far 
more striking to me than the ecclesiastical phenomena 
which I have been drawing out, remarkable as they 
are, is a subject of investigation which is not of a 
nature to introduce into a popular lecture ; I mean 
the history of the doctrinal definitions of the Church. 
It is well known that, though the creed of the Church 
has been one and the same from the beginning, yet 
it has been so deeply lodged in her bosom as to be 
held by individuals more or less implicitly, instead 
of being delivered from the first in those special state- 
ments, or what are called definitions, under which it 
is now presented to us, and which preclude mistake 
or ignorance. These definitions, which are but the 
expression of portions of the one dogma which has 
ever been received by the Church, are the work of 
time; they have grown to their present shape and 
number in the course of eighteen centuries, under the 
exigency of successive events, such as heresies and the 
like, and they may of course receive still further addi- 

to the Aj^ostolicity of the Church. y^^ 

tions as time goes on. Now this jjrocess of doctrinal 
development, as you might suppose, is not of an acci- 
dental or random character ; it is conducted upon law.<, 
as everything else which comes from God; and the 
study of its laws and of its exhibition, or, in other 
words, the science and history of the formation of 
theology, was a subject which had interested me more 
than anything else from the time I first began to read 
the Fathers, and ^vhich had engaged my attention in a 
special way. ISTow it was gradually brought home to 
me, in the course of my reading, so gradually, that I 
cannot trace the steps of my conviction, that the decrees 
of later Councils, or what Anglicans call the Eoman 
corruptions, were but instances of that very same 
doctrinal law which was to be found in the history 
of the early Church ; and that in the sense in which 
the dogmatic truth of the prerogatives of the Blessed 
Virgin may be said, in the lapse of centuries, to have 
grown upon the consciousness of the faithful, in that 
same sense did, in the first age, the mystery of the 
Blessed Trinity also gradually shine out and manifest 
itself more and more completely before their minds. 
Here was at once an answer to the objections urged 
by Anglicans against the present teaching of Eome; 
and not only an answer to objections, but a positive 
argument in its favour ; for the immutability and 
uninterrupted action of the laws in question through- 
out the course of Church history is a plain note of 

39^ Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

identity between the Catholic Church of the first ages 
and that which now goes by that name ; — just as the 
argument from the analogy of natural and revealed 
religion is at once an answer to difficulties in the 
latter, and a direct proof that Christianity has the 
same Author as the physical and moral world. But 
the force of this, to me ineffably cogent argument, I 
cannot hope to convey to another. 


And now, my dear brethren, what fit excuse can I 
make to you for the many words I have used about 
myself, and not in this Lecture only, but in others 
before it ? This alone I can say, that it was the 
apprehension, or rather the certainty that this would 
be the case, which, among other reasons, made me as 
unwilling as I was to begin this course of Lectures at 
all. I foresaw that I could not address you on the 
subjects which I proposed, without introducing myself 
into the discussion ; I could not refer to the past with- 
out alluding to matters in which I had a part ; I could 
not show tiiat interest in your state of mind and course 
of thought which I really feel, without showing that I 
therefore understood it, because I had before now expe- 
rienced it myself ; and I anticipated, what I fear has 
b<^en the case, that in putting before you the events of 
former years, and the motives of past transactions, and 
the operation of common principles, and the complexion 

to the Ajjostolicity of the Church. 397 

of old habits and opinions, I should be in no sli;,dit de- 
gree constructing, what I have ever avoided, a defence 
of myself. 

But I have had another apprehension, both before 
and since beginning these Lectures, viz., lest it was (to 
say the least) an impolitic proceeding to contemplate 
them at all. Things were proceeding in that course in 
which I knew they must proceed; I could not foretell 
indeed that a decision would issue from the Committee 
of Privy Council on the subject of Baptism; I could 
not anticipate that this or that external event would 
suddenly undo men's confidence in the National Church; 
but it required no gift of prophecy to feel that false- 
hood, and pretence, and unreality could not for ever 
enslave honest minds sincerely seeking the truth. It 
needed no prophetical gift to be sure that others must 
take ultimately the course which I had taken, though 
I could not foretell the time or the occasion ; no gift 
to foresee, that those who did not choose to plunge into 
the gulf of scepticism must at length fall back upon 
the Catholic Church. Nor did it require in me much 
faith in you, my dear brethren, much love for you, to 
be sure that, though there were close around you men 
who look like you, but are not, that you, the children 
of the movement, were too conscientious, too much in 
earnest, not to be destined by that God, who made you 
what you are, to greater things. Others have scoffed 
at you, but I never; others may have made light of 

398 Ecclesiastical History no Prejudice 

your principles, or your sincerity, but never I ; others 
may have predicted evil of you, I have only felt vexed 
at the prediction. I have laughed, indeed, I have 
scorned, and scorn and laugh I must, when men set up 
an outside instead of the inside of religion— when 
they affect more than they can sustain — when they 
indulge in pomp or in minutiae, which only then are 
becoming when there is something to be proud of, 
something to be anxious for. If I have been excessive 
here, if I have confused what is defective with what 
is hollow, or have mistaken aspiration for pretence, or 
have been severe upon infirmities of which self-know- 
ledge would have made me tender, I wish it otherwise. 
Still, whatever my faults in this matter, I have ever 
been trustful in that true Catholic spirit which has 
lived in the movement of which you are partakers. I 
have been steady in my confidence in that supernatural 
influence among you, which made me what I am, — 
which, in its good time, shall make you what you shall 
be. You are born to be Catholics ; refuse not the 
unmerited grace of your bountiful God ; throw off' for 
good and all the illusions of your intellect, the bondage 
of your affections, and stand upright in that freedom 
which is your true inheritance. 

And my confidence that you will do so at last, and 
that the sophistries of this world will not hold you for 
ever, is what has caused the hesitation to which I have 
referred, whether I have done wisely in deciding on 

to the Apostolicity of the Church. 399 

addressing you at all. I have in truth had anxious 
misgivings whether I should not do better to let you 
alone, my own experience teaching me, that even the 
most charitable attempts are apt to fail, when their end 
is the conviction of the intellect. It is no work of a 
day to convince the intellect of an Englishman that 
Catholicism is true. And even when the intellect is 
convinced, a thousand subtle influences interpose in 
arrest of what should follow, carrying, as it were, an 
appeal into a higher court, and claiming to have tlie 
matter settled before some tribunal more sacred, and 
by pleadings more recondite, than the operations and 
the decision of the reason. The Eternal God deals 
with us one by one, each in his own way; and by- 
standers may pity and compassionate the long throes 
of our travail, but they cannot aid us except by their 
prayers. If, then, I have erred in entering upon the 
subjects I have brought before you, pardon me; pardon 
me if I have rudely taken on myself to thrust you 
forward, and to anticipate by artificial means a di\dne 
growth. If it be so, I will only hope that, though I 
may have done you no good, yet my attempt may be 
blessed in some other way ; that I may have thrown 
light on the general subject which I have discussed, 
have contributed to map out the field of thought on 
which I have been engaged, and to ascertain its lie and 
its characteristics, and have furnished materials for 
what, in time to come, may be the science and received 

400 Ecclesiastical History, etc. 

principles of the whole controversy, though I have failed 
in that which was my immediate object. 

At all events, my dear brethren, I hope I may be at 
least considered to be showing my good- will and kind- 
ness towards you, if nothing else, and my desire to be 
of use to you. All is vanity but what is done to the 
glory of God. It glitters and it fades away ; it makes 
a noise and is gone. If I shall not do you or others 
good, I have done nothing. Yet a little while and the 
end will come, and all will be made manifest, and error 
wiU fail, and truth will prevail. Yet a little while, and 
"the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.'* 
May you and I live in this prospect; and may the 
Eternal God, Father, Son, and Spirit, Three in One, 
may His Ever-blessed Mother, may St. Philip, my dear 
father and master, the great Saints Athanasius and 
Ambrose, and St. Leo, pope and confessor, who have 
brought me thus far, be the hope, and help, and reward 
of you and me, all through this weary Hfe, and in the 
day of account, and in glory everlasting ! 

3 5282 00172 1375 







STACKS BX1751.A1 N4 1895x vol. 1 

Newman, John Henry, 
Certain difficulties felt by Anglicans i 

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