BETWE EN it- GARBINAb COI BL 2728 165 c. 1 ROBA R. C INCERSOLL. ^^M TORON TO : JATIONAI, PUBLISHING COMPANY. UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO THE Great Controversy BETWEEN CARDINAL MANNING AND COL. R. G. INGERSOLL TORONTO : THK NATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY THE HIM ITS THE Vatican Council, in its Decree on Faith has these words: " The Church itself, by its marvelous propagation, its eminent sinctity, its inexhaustible fruitfulness in all good things, its catholic unity and invincible stability, is a vast and perpetual motive of credibility, and an irrefragable witness of its own Divine legation."* Its Divine Founder said : "lam the Light of the world;" and, to His Apostles, He said also, " Ye are the light of the world," and of His Church He added, " A city seated on a hill cannot be hid." The Vatican Council says : " The Church is its own witness." My pur pose is to draw out this assertion more fully. These words affirm that the Church is self-evident, is light as to the eye, and, through sense, to the intellect. Next to the sun at noon-day, there is nothing in the world more manifest than the one visible Universal Church. Both the faith and the infidelity of the world bear witness to it. It is loved and hated, trusted and feared, served and assaulted, honored and blasphemed : it is Christ or Anti christ, the Kingdom of God or the imposture of Satan. It pervades the civilized world. No man and no nation can ignore it, none can be indifferent to it. Why is all this ? How IB its existence to be accounted for ? Let me suppose that I am an unbeliever in Christianity, and that some frifttd should make me promise to examine the evidence to show that Christianity is a Divine revelation ; I should then sift and test the evidence as strictly as if it were in a court of law, and in a cause of life and death ; my will won ! be in suspense : it would in no way control the process of my intuJ : ct. If it had any inclina tion from the equilibrium, it would be towards mercy and hope ; but this would not add a feather s weight to the evidence, nor sway the intellect a hair s breadth. After the examination ha.s boon completed, and my intellect con- *" Coast. Dogai. de FUe Catholica, o. iii. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. pinced, the evidence being sufficient to prove that Christianity is a divine revelation, nevertheless I am not yet a Christian. All this sifting brings me to the conclusion of a chain of reasoning ; but I am not j 7 et a believer. The last act of reason has brought rne to the brink of the first act of faith. They are generically distinct and separable. The acts of reason are intellectual, and jealous of the interference of the will. The act of faith is an imperative act of the will, founded on and justified by the process and conviction of the intellect. Hitherto I have been a critic ; henceforward, if I will, I become a disciple. It may here be objected that no man can so far suspend the in clination of the will when the question is, has God indeed spoken to man or no ? is the revealed law of purity, generosity, perfection, divine, or only the poetry of imagination ? Can a man be indifferent between two such sides of the problem ? Will he not desire the higher and better side to be true ? and if he desire, will he not in cline to the side that he desires to find true ? Can a moral being be absolutely indifferent between two such issues ? and can two such issues be equally attractive to a moral agent ? Can it be indifferent and all the same to us whether God has made Himself and His will known to us or not ? Is there no attraction in light, no repulsion in darkness ? Does not the intrinsic and eternal distinction of good and evil make itself felt in spite of the will ? Are we not responsible to " receive the truth in the love of it ?" Nevertheless, evidence has its own limits and quantities, and cannot be made more or less by any act of the will. And yet, what is good or bad, high or mean, lovely or hateful, ennobling or degrading, must attract or repel men as they are better or worse in their moral sense ; for an equilibrium between good and evil, to God or to man, is impossible. The last act of my reason, then, is distinct from my first act of faith precisely in this : so long as I was uncertain I suspended the inclination of my will, as an act of fidelity to conscience and of loyalty to truth ; but the process once complete, and the conviction once attained, my will imperatively constrains me to believe, and I become a disciple of a Divine revelation. My friend next tells me that there are Christian Scriptures, and I go through precisely the same process of critical examination and final conviction, the last act of reasoning preceding, as before, the first act of faith. He then tells me that there is a Church claiming to be divinely founded, divinely guarded, and divinely guided in its custody of Christianity and of the Christian Scriptures. Once more I have the same twofold process of reasoning and of believing to go through. There is, however, this difference in the subject-matter : Chris tianity is an order of supernatural truth appealing intellectually to my reason ; the Christian Scriptures are voiceless, and need a wit ness. They cannot prove their own mission, much less their own authenticity or inspiration. Bnt the Church is visible to the eye, : ; THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. audible to the ear, self -manifesting and self asserting : I cannot escape from it. If I go to the east, it is there ; if I go to the west, it is there also. If I stay at home, it is before me, seated on the hill ; if I turn away from it, 1 am surrounded by its light. It pursues me and calls to me. I cannot deny its existence ; I cannot be indiffer ent to it ; I must either listen to it or wilfully stop my ears ; I must heed it or defy it, love it or hate it. But my lirst attitude towards it is to try it with forensic strictness, neither pronouncing it to be Christ nor Antichrist till I have tested its origin, claim, and char acter. Let us take down the case in shorthand. 1. It says that it interpenetrates all the nations of the civilized world. In some it holds the whole nation in its unity, in others it holds fewer ; but in all it is present, visible, audible, naturalized, and known as the one Catholic Church, a name that none can ap propriate. Though often claimed and controversially assumed, none can retain it ; it falls off. The world knows only one Catholic Church, and always restores the name to the right owner. 2. It is not a national body, but extra-national, accused of its foreign relations and foreign dependence. It is international, and independent in a supernettional unity. 3. In faith, divine worship, sacred ceremonial, discipline, govern ment, from the highest to the lowest, it is the same in every place. 4. It speaks a)l languages in the civilized world. 5. It is obedient to one Head, outside of all nations, except one only; and in thafc nation, his headship Is not national but world wide. ( ; . The world- wide sympathy of the Church in all lands with its Head has been manifested in our days, and before our eyes, by a series of- public assemblages in Home, of which nothing like or second to it can be found. In 1854, 350 Bishops of all nations sur rounded their Head when he defined the Immaculate Conception. In 180V,, 400 Bishops assembled at the canonization of the Martyrs of Japan. In 1867, 500 Bishops came to keep the eighteenth cen tenary of St. Peter s martyrdom. In 1870, 700 Bishops assembled in the Vatican Council. On the Feast of the Epiphany, 1870, the Bishops of thirty nations during two whole hours made profession of faith in their own languages, kneeling before their head. Add to this, that in 1869, in the sacerdotal jubilee of Pius IX., Home was filled for months by pilgrims from all lauds in Europe and beyond the sea, from the Old World and from the New, bearing all manner of gifts and oblations to the Head of the Universal Church. To this, again, must be added the world-wide outcry and protest of all the Catholic unity against the seizure and sacrilege of September, 1870, when Rome was taken by the Italian Revolution. 7. All this came to pass not only by reason of the great love of the Catholic world for Pius IX., but because they revered him as the successor of St. Peter and the Vicar of Jesus Christ. For that undying reason thr same events have been reproduced in the time of Leo XIII, In the early months of this year Rome was once 6 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. filled with pilgrims of all nations, coming in thousands as representa tives of millions in all nations, to celebrate the sacerdotal jubilee of the Sovereign Pontiff. The courts of the Vatican could not find room for the multitude of gifts and offeriugs of every kind which wre sent from all quarters of the world. 8. Those things are here said, not because of any other import auce, bub because they set forth in the most visible and self-evident way the living unity and the luminous universality of the One Catholic and Roman Church. ;). What has thus far been said is before our eyes at this hour. It is no appeal to history, but to a visible and palpable fact. Men may explain ifc as they will ; deny it, they cannot. They see the Head of the Church year by year speaking to the nations of the world ; treating with Empires Republics and Governments. There is no other man on earth that can so bear himself. Neither from Canter bury nor from Constantinople can such a voice go forth to which ruiers and people listen. This is the century of revolutions. Rome has in our time been be sieged three times ; three Popes have beeu driven out of it, two have been shut up in the Vatican. The city is now full of the Re volution. The whole Church has been tormented by Falck laws, Mancini laws, and Crispi laws. An unbeliever in Germany said some years ago, " The net is now drawn so tight about the Church, that if it escapes this time I will believe in it." Whether he be lieves in it, or is even alive now to believe, 1 cannot say. Nothing thus far has b en said as proof. The visible, palpable facts, which are at this moment before the eyes of all men, speak for themselves. There is one, and only one, world- wide unity of which these things can be said. It is a fact and a phenomenon for which an intelligible account must be rendere-1. If it be only a human system built up by the intellect, will and energy of men, let the adversaries prove it. The burden is upon them ; and they will have more to do as we go on. Thus far we have rested upon the evidence of sense and fact. We must now go ou to history and reason. Every religion and every religious body known to history has var ied from itself and broken up. Brahminism has given birth to Bud dhism ; Mahometanism is parted into the Arabian and European Khalifates ; the Greek schism into the Russian, Constantinopolitan, and Bulgarian autocephalus fragment ; Protestantism into its multitudious diversities. All have departed from their original type, and all are continually developing new and irreconcilable, intel lectual au l ritualistic, diversities and repulsions. How is it that, with all diversities of language, civilization, race, interest, and conditions, social and political, including persecution and warfare, the Catholic nations are at this day, even when in warfare, in un changed unity of faith, communion, worship and spiritual sympathy with each other and with their Head V This needs a rational ex pi a nation. ^ THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS- 7 It may be said in answer, endless divisions have come out of the Church, from Arius to Photius, and from Photius to Luther. Yes, but they all came out. There is the difference. They did not re main in the Church, corrupting the faith. They came out, and ceased to belong to the Catholic unity, as a branch broken from a tree ceases to belong to the tree. Bat the identity of the tree re mains the same. A branch is not a tree, nor a tree a branch. A tree may lose branches, but it rests upon its root, and renews its loss. Not so the religions, so to call them, that have broken away from unity. Not one has retained its members or its doctrines. Once separated from the sustaining unity of the Church, all separ ations lose their spiritual cohesion, and then their intellectual iden tity. Ramus prceeisus arescit. For the present it is enough to say that no human legislation, , authority or constraint can ever create internal unity of intellect and will ; and that diversities and contradictions generated by all human systems prove the absence of Divine authority. Varia tions or contradictions are proof of the absence of a Divine missiou to mankind. All natural causes run to disintegration. Therefore, they can render no account of the world- wide unity of the One Uni versal Church. Such, then, are the facts before our eyes at this day. We will seek out the origin of the body or system called the Catholic Church, and pass at once to its outset, eighteen hundred years ago. I affirm, then, three things : (1) First, that no adequate account can be given of this undeniable fact from natural causes : (2) that the history of the Catholic Church demands causes above nature ; and (3) that it has always claimed for itself a Divine origin and Divine authority. I. And, first, before we examine what it was and what it has done, we will recall to mind what was the world in the midst of which it arose. The most comprehensive and complete description of the old world, before Christianity came in upon it, is given in the first chapter of the Epistle to the Romans. Mankind had once the know ledge of God ; that knowledge was obscured by the passions of sense ; in the darkness of the human intellect, with the light of nature still before them, the nations worshipped the creature that is, by pan theism, polytheism, idolatry ; and, having lost the knowledge of God and of His perfections, they lost the knowledge of their own nature and of its laws, even of the natural and rational laws, which thence forward ceased to guide, restrain or govern them. They became perverted and inverted with every possible abuse, defeating the end and destroying the powers of creation. The lights of nature were put out, and the world rushed headlong into confusions, of which the beasts that perish were innocent. This is analytically the his tory of all nations but one. A line of light still shone from Adam to Enoch, from Enoch to Abraham, to whom the command was given, "Walk before Me and be perfect." And it ran on from THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. Abraham to Caiaphas, who crucified the founder of Christianity. Through all anthropomorphism of thought and language this line of light still passed inviolate and inviolable. But in the world, on either side of that radiant stream, the whole earth was dark. The intellectual and moral stite of the Greek world may be measured in its highest excellence in Athens ; and of the Roman world in Rome. The state of Athens its private, domestic, and public morality may be seen in Aristophanes. The state of Rome is visible in Juvenal, and in the fourth book of St. Augustine s " City of God." There was only one evil wanting. The world was not Atheist. Its polytheism was the example and the warrant of all forms of moral abominations. Imitnri quod colts plunged the nations in crime. Their theology was their degradation ; their text- book of an elaborate corruption of intellect and will. Christianity came in " the fullness of time." What that fullness may mean is one of the mysteries of times and seasons which it is not for us to know. But one motive for the long delay of four thousand years is not far to seek. It gave time, full and ample, for the utmost development and consolidation of all the falsehood and evil of which the intellect and will of man are capable. The four great empires were each of them the concentration of a supreme effort of human power. The second inherited from the first, the third from both, the fourth from all three. It was, as it was fore told or described, as a beast, " exceeding terrible ; his teeth and claws were of iron ; he devoured and broke in pieces ; and the rest he stamped upon with his feet."* The empire of man over man was never so widespread, so absolute, so hardened into one organ ized mass, as in Imperial Rome. The world had never seen a mili tary power so disciplined, irresistible, invincible ; a legislation so just, so equitable, so strong in its execution ; a government so uni versal, so local, so minute. It seemed to be imperishable. Rome was called the eternal. The religions of all nations were enshrined in Dea Roma ; adopted, practiced openly, and taught. They were all rdiyiones licita, known to the law ; not tolerated only, but recog nized. The theologies of Egypt, Greece, and of the Latin world, met in an empyreum, consecrated and guarded by the Imperial law, and administered by the Pontifex Maximus. No fanaticism ever surpassed the relig ous cruelties of Rome. Add to all this thecolluvies of false philosophies of every laud, and of every date. They both blinded and hardened the intellect of public opinion and of private men against the invasion of anything except contempt, and hatred of both the philosophy of sophists and of the religion of the people. Add to all this the sensuality of the most refined and of the grossest luxury the world had ever seen, and a moral confusion and corrup tion which violated every law of nature. The god of this world had built his city. From foundation to parapet, everything that the skill and power of man could do had *Daniel, vii. 19. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 9 been done without stiot of means or limit of will. The Divine hand was stayed, or rather, as St. Augustine says, an unsurpassed natural greatness was the reward of certain natural virtues, degraded as they were in unnatural abominations. Rome was the climax of the power of man without God, the apotheosis of the human will, the direct and supreme antagonist of God in His own world. In this the fullness of the time was come. Man built all this for himself. Certainly, man could not also build the City of God. They are not the work of one and the same architect, who capriciously chose to build first the city of confusion, suspending for a time his skill and Eower to build some day the City of God. Such a hypothesis ia :>lly. Of two things, one. Disputers must choose one or the other. Both cannot be asserted, and the assertion needs no answer it re futes itself. So much for the first point. II. In the reign of Augustus, and -in a remote and powerless Oriental race, a Child was born in a stable of a poor Mother. For thirty years He lived a hidden life ; for three years He preached the Kingdom of Go.l, and gave laws hitherto unknown to men. He died in ignominy upon the Cross ; on the third day He rose again ; and after forty days He was seen no more. This unknown Man created the world-wide unity of intellect and will which is visible to the eye, and audible, in all languages, to the ear. It is in harmony with the reason and moral nature of all nations, in all ages, to this day. What proportion is there between the cause and the effect? What power was there in this isolated Man ? What unseen virtues went out of Him to change the world ! For change the world He did ; and that not in the line or on the level of nature as men had corrupted it, but in direct contradiction to all that was then supreme in the world. He taught the dependence of the intellect against its self-trust, the submission of the will against its license, the subjuga tion of the passions by temperate control or by absolute subjection against their willful indulgence. This was to reverse what men be lieved to be the laws of nature : to make water climb upward and- fire point downward. He taught mortification of the lusts of the flesh, contempt of the lusts of the eyes, and hatred of the pride of life. What hope was there that such a teacher should convert imperial Rome ? that sach a doctrine should exorcise the fullness of human pride and lust ? Yet so it has come to pass ; and how ? Twelve men more obscure than Himself, absolutely without authority or influence of this world, preached throughout the empire and beyond it. They asserted two facts : the one, that God had had been made man ; the other, that lie died and rose again. What could be more incredible ? To the Jews the unity and spirituality of God were axioms of reason and faith ; to the Gentiles, however cultured, the resurrection of the flesh was impossible. The Divine Person Who had died and risen could not be called in evidence as the chief witness. He could not; be produced in court. Could anything be more suspicious if credible, or less credible even if He were there to say so ? A.11 that they could do was to say, " We knew Him for 10 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. three years, both before His death and after He rose from the dead. If you will believe us, you will believe what we say. If yoa will not believe us, we cau say no more. He is not here, but in heaven. We cannot call Ilirn down." It is true, as we read, that Peter cured a lame man at the gate of the Temple. The Pharisees could not deny it, but they would not believe what Peter said ; they only told him to hold his tongue. And yet thousands in one day in Jerusalem be lieved in the Incarnation and the Resurrection ; and when the Apostles were scattered by persecution, wherever they went men believed their word. The most intense persecution was from the Jews, the people of faith and of Divine traditions. In the name of God and of religion they stoned Stephen, and sent Saul to persecute at Damascus More than this, they stirred up the Romans in every place. As they had forced Pilate to crucify Jesus of Nazareth, so they swore to slay Paul. And yet, in spite of all, the faith spread. It is true, indeed, that the Empire of Alexander, the spread of the Hellenistic <!reek, the prevalent e of Greek in Rome itself, the Roman roads which made the Empire traversable, the Roman peace which sheltered the preachers of the faith in the outset of their work, gave them facilities to travel and to be understood. But these were only external facilities, which in no way rendered more credible or more acceptable the voice of penance and mortification, or the mysteries of the faith, which was immutably " to the Jews a stumbling-block and to the Greeks foolishness." It was in change less opposition to nature as man had marred it ; but was in absolute harmony with nature as God had made it to His own likeness. Its power was its persuasiveness ; and its persuasiveness was in its conformity to the highest and noblest aspirations and aims of the soul in man. The master-key so long lost was found at last; and its conformity to the wards of the lock was its irrefragable witness to its own mission and message. But if it is beyond belief that Christianity in its outset made good its foothold by merely human causes and powers, how much more does this become incredible in every age as we come down from the first century to the nineteenth, and from the Apostolic mission to the world-wide Church, Catholic and Roman, at this day. Not only did the world in the fullness of its power give to the Christian faith no help to root or to spread itself, but it wreaked all the fullness of its power upon it to uproot and to destroy it. Of the first thirty Pontiffs in Rome, twenty-nine were martyred. Ten successive persecutions, or rather one universal and continuous per secution of two hundred years, with ten more bitter excesses of enmity in every province of the Empire, did all that man can do to extinguish the Christian name. The Christian name may be blotted out here and there in blood, but the Christian faith can nowhere be slain. It is inscrutable, and beyond the reach of man. In nothing is the blood of the martyrs more surely the seed of the faith. Every martyrdom was a witness to the faith, and the ten persecutions were the sealing of the work of the twelve Apostles. The destroyer THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 11 defeated himself. Christ crucified was visibly set forth before all the nations, the world was a Calvary, and the blood of the martyrs preached in every tongue the Passion of Jesus Christ. The world did its worst, and ceased only for weariness and conscious defeat. Then came the peace, and with peace the peril of the Church. The world outside had failed ; the world inside began to work. It no longer destroyed life; it perverted the intellect, and through in tellectual perversion, assailed the faith at its centre. The Angel of light preached heresy. The Baptismal Creed was assailed all along the line ; Gnosticism assailed the Father and Creator of rJl things ; Arianism, the God-head of the Son; Nestorianisiu, the upiuy of His person ; Monophysites, the two natures ; Mouothelitec, the divine and human wills ; Macedonians, the person of the Holy Ghost. So throughout the centuries, from Nicssa to the Vatican, every article has been in succession perverted by heresy and denned by the Church. But of this we shall speak hereafter. If the human in tellect could fasten its perversions on the Christian faith, it would have done so long ago ; and if the Christian faith had been guarded by no more than human intellect, it would, long ago have been dis integrated, as we see in every religion outside the unity of the one Catholic Church. There is no example in which fragmentary Christianities have not departed from their original type. No human system is immutable ; no tiling human is changeless. The human intellect, therefore, can give no sufficient account of the identity of the Catholic faith in all places and in all ages by any of its own natural processes or powers. The force of this argument is immensely increased when we trace the tradition of the faith through the nineteen (Ecumenical Councils which, with one con tinuous intelligence have guarded and unfolded the deposit of faith, defining every truth as it has been successively assailed, in absolute harmony and unity of progression. What the Senate is to your great Republic, or the Parliament to our English monarchy, such are the nineteen Councils of the Church, with this only difference : the secular Legislatures must meet year by year with short recesses ; Councils have met on the average once in a century. The reason of this is that the mutabilities ot nation al life, which are as the water-floods, need constant remedies ; the stability of the Church seldom needs new legislation. The faith needs no definition except in rare intervals of periodical intellectual disorder. The discipline of the Church reigns by an universal common law which seldom needs a change, and by local laws which are provided on the spot. Nevertheless, the legislation of the Ghoxch, tho Corpus Juris i OT f tcnm Lair, is a creation of wisdom and justice, to which no Statutes at large or Imperial pandects can bear comparison. Human intellect has reached its climax in juris prudence, but the world-wide and secular legislation of the Church has a higher character. How the Christian law corrected, elevated, and completed the Imperial law, may be seen in a learned and able work by an American author, far from the Catholic faith, but in the 12 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. main just and accurate in his facts and arguments the Gesta Ckristi of Charles Loring Brace. Water cannot rise above its source, and if the Church by mere human wisdom corrected and perfected the Imperial law, its source must be higher than the sources of the world. This makes a heavy demand on our credulity. Starting from St. Peter to Leo XIII., there have been some 25- Pontiffs claiming to be, and recognized by the whole Catholic unity as, successors of St. Peter and Vicars of Jesus Christ. To them has been rendered in every age not only the external obedience of out ward submission, but the internal obedience of faith. They have borne the onset of the nations who destroyed Imperial Rome, and the tyranny of heretical Emperors of Byzantium ; and, worse than this, toe alternate despotism and patronage of Emperors of the West, and the subtraction of obedience in the great Western icLwrna, when the unity of the Church and the author ity of its Head were, as men thought, gone for ever. It was the last assault the forlorn hope of the gates of hell. Every art of destruction had been tried : martyrdom, hereny, secularity, schism ; at last, two, and three, and four claim ants, or, as the world says, rival Popes, were set up, that men might believe that St. Peter ha i no longer a successor, aud our Lord no Vicar, upon earth ; for, though all might be illegitimate, only one could be the lawful and true Plead of the Church. Was it only by the human power of man that the unity, external and internal, which for fourteen hundred years had bo^n supreme, was once more restored in the Council of Constance, never to be broken again / The succession of the English monarchy has been, indeed, often broken, and always restored, in these thousind years. But here is a monarchy of eighteen hundred years, powerless in worldly force or support, claiming and receiving not only outward allegiance, but inward unity of intellect and will. If any man tell us that these two phenomena are on the same level of merely human causes, it is too severe a tax upon our natural reason to believe it. But the inadequacy of human causes to account for the uni versality, unity, and immutability of the Catholic Church, will stand out more visibly if we look at the intellectual and moral revolution which Christianity has wrought in the world and upon mankind. The first effect of Christianity was to fill the world with the true knowledge of the One True God, and to destroy utterly all idols, not by tire but by light. Before the Light of the world no false god a^a no polytheism could stand. The unity and spirituality of God swept away all theogonies and theologies of the first four thou sand year- . The stream of light which descended fiom the beginning expanded into a radiance, and the radiance into a flood, which il luminated all nations, as it ha-1 been foretold. " The earth is filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as the covering waters of the sea ;" * A,nd idols shall be utterly destroyed."* In this true knowledge Isaias, xi. 911, 18. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 18 of the Divine Nature was revealed to men their own relation to a "Creator as of sons to a father. The Greeks called the chief of gods Zeus Pater, and the Latins Jupiter ; but neither realized the de pendence and love of sonship as revealed by the Founder of Chris tianity. The monotheism of the world comes down from a primeval and Divine source. Polytheism is the corruption of men and of nations. Yet in the multiplicity of all polytheisms, one supreme Deity was always recognized. The Divine unity was imperishable. Polythe ism is of human imagination : it is of men s manufacture. The deification of nature and passions and heroes had filled the world with an elaborate and tenacious superstition, surrounded by rev erence, fear, religion, and awe. Every perversion of what is good in man surrounded it with authority ; everything that is evil in man guarded it with jealous care. Against this world-wide and imper ious demonology the science of one God, all holy and supreme, advanced with resistless force. Beelzebub is not divided against himself ; and if polytheism is not Divine, monotheism must be. The overthrow of idolatry and demonology was the mastery of of forces that are above nature. This conclusion is enough for our present purpose. A second visible effect of Christianity of which nature cannot offer any adequate cause is to be found in the domestic life of the Christian world. In -some nations the existence of marriage was not so much as recognized. In others, if recognized, it was dishon ored by profuse concubinage. Even in Israel, the most advanced nation," the law of divorce was permitted for the hardness of their hearts. Christianity republished the primitive law by which mar riage unites only one man and one woman indissolubly in a perpet ual contract. It raised their mutual and perpetual contract to a sacrament. This at one blow condemned all other relations between man and woman, all the legal gradations of the Imperial law, and all forms of pleas and divorce. Beyond this the spiritual legislation of the Church framed most elaborate tables of consanguinity and affinity, prohibiting all marriages between persons in certain de grees of kinship or relation. This law has created the purity and peace of domestic life. Neither the Greek nor the Roman world had any true conception of a home. The E<m a or Vesta was a sac red tradition guarded by vestals like a temple worship. It was not a law and power in the homes of the people. Christianity, by en larging the circles of prohibition within which men and women were as brothers and sisters, has created the home with all its purities and safeguards. Such a law of unity and indissolubility, encompassed by & multitude of prohibitions, no mere human legislation could im pose on the passions and will of mankind. And yet the Imperial laws gradually yielded to its resistless pressure, and incorporated it in its world-wide legislation. The passions and practices of four thousand years were against the change ; yet it was accom- 14 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. plished, and it reigns inviolate to this day, though the relaxations of schism in the East and the laxities of the West have revived the abuse of divorces, and have partially abolished the wise and salu tary prohibitions which guard the homes of the faithful. These relaxations prove that all natural forces have been, and are, hostile to the indissoluble law of Christian marriage. Certainly, then, it was not by natural forces that the Sacrament of Matrimony and the legislation springing from it were enacted. If these are restraints of human liberty and license, either they do not spring from nature, or they have had a supernatural cause whereby they exist. It wa? this that redeemed woman from the traditional degradation iD which the world had held her. The condition of women in Athens and in Rome which may be taken as the highest points of civiliza tion is too well known to need recital. Women had no rights, no property, no independence. Plato looked upon them as State property ; Aristotle as chattels ; the Greeks wrote of them as KMW?, ywaiK.es, " r aA/.d K.-JJ fiara. They were the prey, the sport, the slaves of man. Even in Israel, though they were raised incompar ably higher than in the Gentile world, they were far below the dignity and authority of Christian women. Libanius, the friend of Julian, tbe Apostate, said, " O ye gods of Greece, how great are the women of the Christians !" Whence came the elevation of woman hood ? Not from the ancient civilization, for it degraded them ; not from Israel, for among the Jews the highest state of * omauhood was the marriage state. The daughter of Jepthe went into the mountains to mourn not her death but her virginity. The marriage state in the Christian world, though holy and good, is not the high est state. The state of virginity unto death is the highest condition of man and woman. But this is above the law of natiue. It be longs to a higher order. And this life of virginity, in repression of natural passion and lawful instinct, is both above aud against the, tendencies of human nature. It begins in a mortification, and ends in a mastery, over th 3 movements and ordinary laws of human nature. Who will ascribe this to natural causes ? and, if so, why did it not appear in the first four thousand years ? And when has it ever appeared except in a handful of vestal virgins, or in Oriental recluses, with what reality history shows ? An exception proves a rule. No one will imagine that a life of chastity is impossible to nature ; but the restriction is a repression of nature which individ uals may acquire, but the multitude have never attain t.-d. A re ligion which imposes chastity on the unmarried, and upon its priest hood, and upon the multitudes of women in every age who devote themselves to the service of One Whom they have never seen, is a mortification of nature in so high a degree as to stand out as a fact and a phenomenon, of which mere natural causes afford no adequate solution. Its existence, not in a handful out of the millions of the world, but its prevalence aud continuity in multitudes scattered throughout the Christian world, proves the presence of a cause high er than the laws of nature. So true is this, that jurists teach that THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 15 the three vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience are contrary to " the policy of the law," that is, to the interests of the common wealth, which desires the multiplication, enrichment, and liberty of its members To what has been said may be added the change wrought by Christianity upon the social, political, and international relations of the world. The root of this ethical change, private and public, is the Christian home. The authority of parents, the obedience of children, the love of brotherhood, are the three active powers whicL have raised the society of man above the level of the old world. Israel was head and shoulders above the world around it ; but Christendom is high above Israel. The New Commandment of brotherly love, and the Sermon on the Mount, have wrought a revolution, both in private and public life. From this comes the laws of justice and sympathy which bind together the nations of the Christian world. In the old world, even the most refined races, worshipped by our modern philosophers, held and taught that man could hold property in man ? It was no philosopher : even Aristotle taught that a slave was bpyavov Qov. It was no lawgiver, for all taught the lawfulness of nature till Christianity denied it. The Christian law has taught that man can lawfully sell his labor, but that he cannot lawfully be sold, or sell himself. The necessity of being brief, the impossibility of drawing out the picture of the old world, its profound immoralities, its unim aginable cruelties, compels me to argue with my right hand tied be hind me. I can do no more than point again to Mr. Brace s " Gesta Christi," or to Dr. Dollinger s " Gentile and Jew," as witnesses to the facts which I have stated or implied. No one who has not read such books, or mastered their contents by original study, can judge of the force of the assertion that Christianity has reformed the world by direct antagonism to the human will, and by a searching and firm repression of human passion. It has ascended the stream of human license, contra ictum Jtuminis, by a power mightier than nature, and by laws of a higher order than the relaxations of this world. Before Christianity came on earth, the civilization of man by merely natural force had culminated. It could not rise above its source ; all that it could do was done ; and the civilization in every race and empire had ended in decline and corruption. The old civilization was not regenerated. It passed away to give place to a new. But the new had a higher source, nobler laws and super natural powers. The highest excellence of men and of nations is the civilization of Christianity. The human race has ascended into what we call Christendom, that is, into the new creation of charity and justice among men. Christendom was created by the world-wide Church as we see it before our eyes at this day. Philosophers and statesmen believe it to be the work of their own hands : they did not make it ; but they have for three hundred years been unmaking it by reformations and revolutions. These are destructive forces. 16 THK CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. They build up nothing. It has been well said by Donoso Cortez that " the history of civilization is the history of Christianity, the history of Christianity is the history of the Church, the history of the Church is the history of the Pontiffs, the greatest statesmen and rulers that the world has ever seen." Some years ago, a Professor of great literary reputation in Eng land, who was supposed even then to be, as his subsequent writings have proved, a skeptic or non-Christian, published a well-known and very candid book, under the title of " Ecce Homo." The writer placed himself, as it were, outside of Christianity. He took, not the Church in the world as in this article, but the Christian Scriptures as a historical record, to be judged with forensic severity and abso lute impartiality of mind. To the credit of the author, he fulfilled this pledge ; and his conclusion shall here be given. After an examination of the life and character of the Author of Christianity, he proceeded to estimate His teaching and its effects under the fol lowing heads : 1. The Christian Legislation. 2. The Christian Rupublic. 3. Its Universality. 4. The Enthusiasm of Humanity. 5. The Lord s Supper. * 6. Positive Morality. 7. Philanthropy. 8. Edification. 9. Mercy. 10. Eesentment. 11. Forgiveness. He then draws his conclusion as follows : " The achievement of Christ iu founding by his single will and power a structure so durable and so universal is like no other achievement which history records. The masterpieces of the men of action are coarse and commonplace in comparison with it, and the masterpieces of speculation flimsy and unsubstantial. When we speak of it the commonplaces of admiration fail us altogether. Shall we speak of the originality of the design, of the skill displayed in the execution ? All such terms are inadequate. Originality and contriving skill operate indeed, but, as it were, implicitly. The creative effort which produced that against which it is said the gates of hell shall not prevail cannot be analyzed. No architect s designs were furnished for the Nefo Jerusalem ; no committee drew up rules for the universal commonwealth. If in the works of nature we can trace the indications of calculation, of a struggle with diffi culties, of precaution, of ingenuity, then in Christ s work it may be that the same indications occur. Rut these inferior and secondary powers were not consciously exercised ; they were implicitly pre- THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 17 sent in the manifold yet single creative act. The inconceivable work was done in calmness ; before the eyes of men it was noise lessly accomplished, attracting little attention. Who can describe that which unites men ? Who has entered into the formation of speech, which is the symbol of their union? Who can describe ex haustively the origin of civil society ? He who can do these things can explain the origin of the Christian Church. For others it must be enough to say, The Holy Ghost fell on those that be lieved. No man saw the building of the New Jerusalem, the work men crowded together, the unfinished walls and unpaved streets ; no man heard the clink of trowel and pickaxe : it descended out of heaven from God. "* And yet the writer is, as he was then, still outside of Christianity. III. We come now to our third point, that Christianity has al ways claimed a Divine origin and a Divine presence as the stfcirce of its authority and powers. To prove this by texts from the New Testament would be to transcribe the volume ; and if the evidence of the whole New Testa ment were put in, not only might some men deny its weight as evidence, but we should place our whole argument on a false foun dation. Christianity was anterior to the New Testament, and is independent of it. The Christian Scriptures presuppose both the faith and the Church as already existing, known, and believed. Prior liber quant stylus : as Tertullian argued. The gospel was preached before it was written. The four books were written to those who already believed, to confirm their faith. They were written at in tervals : St. Matthew in Hebrew in the year 31), in Greek in 45. St. Mark in 43, St. Luke in 57, St. John about 90, in different places and for different motives. Four Gospels did not exist for sixty years, or two generations of men. St. Peter and St. Paul knew of only three of our four. In those sixty years the faith had spread from east to west. Saints and Martyrs had gone up to their crown who never saw a sacred book. The Apostolio Epistles prove the antecedent existence of the Churches to which they were addressed. Rome and Corinth, and GalatiaandEphesus, Philippi and Colossae, were Churches with pastors and people before St. Paul wrote to them. The Church had already attested and executed its divine legation before the New Testament existed ; and when all its books were written they were not as yet collected into a volume. The earliest collection was about the beginning of the second century and in the custody of the Church iu Ptome. We must, therefore, seek to know what was and is Christianity before aud outside of the the written books ; and we have the same evidence for the oral tra dition of the faith as we have for the New Testament itself. Both alike were in the custody of the Church : both are delivered to us by the same witness and on the same evidence. To reject either is logically to reject both. Happily, men are not saved by logic, but *" Eeoe Homo," Conclusion, p. 329, Fifth Kdition. Macmillau. 1886. 18 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. by faith. The millions of men in all ages have believed by inherit ance of truth divinely guarded and delivered to them. They have no need of logical analysis. They have believed from their child hood. Neither children nor those who infantibus aqniparantur are logicians. It is the penance of the doubter and the unbeliever to regain by toil his lost inheritance. It is a hard penance, like the suffering of those who eternally debate on "predestination, freewill, fate." Between the death of St. John and the mature lifetime of St. Irenaeus fifty years elapsed. St. Polycarp was disciple of St. John, St. Irenaeus was disciple of St. Polycarp. The mind of Sfc. John and the minds of St. Irenaeus had only one intermediate intelligence in contact with each. It would be an affectation of minute criticism to treat the doctrine of St. Irenaeus as a departure from the doctrine of St. Polycarp, or the doctrine of St.. Polycarp as a departure from the doctrine of St. John. Moreover, St. John ruled the Church at Ephesus, and St. Irenseus was born in Asia Minor about the year A.D. 120 that is, twenty years after St. John s death, when the Church in Asia Minor was still full of the light of his teaching and of the accents of his voice. Let us see how St. Ireuaeus describes the faith and the Church. In his work against Heresies, in Book iii. chap, i., he says : " We have known the way of our salvation by those through whom the Gospel came to us ; which, indeed they then preached, but afterwards, by the will of God, delivered to us in Scriptures, the future foundation and pillar of our faith. It ia not lawful to say that they preached before they had perfect know ledge, as some dare to affirm, boasting themselves to be correcters of the Apostles. For after our Lord rose from the dead, and when they had been clothed with the power of the Holy Ghost, Who came upon them from on high, they were filled with all truths, and had knowledge which was perfect." In chapter ii. he adds that, " When they are refuted out of Scripture, they turn and accuse the Scriptures as erroneous, unauthoritative, and of various readings, so that the truth cannot be found by those who do not know tradition " that is, their own. " But when we challenge them to come to the tra dition of the postles, which is in custody of the succession of Presbyters in the Church, they turn against tradition, saying that they are not only wiser than the Presbyters, but even the Apostles, and have found the truth." " It therefore comes to pass that they will not agree either with the Scriptures or with tradition." (Ibid. c. iii.) " Therefore, all who desire to know the truth ought to look to the tradition of the Apostles, which is manifest in all the world and in all the Church. We are able to count up the Bishops who were instituted in the Church by the Apostles, and their successors to our day. They never taught nor knew such things as these men madly assert. " " But as it would be too long in such a book as this to enumerate the successions of all the Churches, we point to the tradition of the greatest, most ancient Church, known to all, founded and constituted in Rome, by the two glorious THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 19 Apostles, Peter and Paul, and to the faith announced to all men, coming down to us by the succession of Bishops, thereby confound ing all those who, in any way, by self-pleasing, or vainglory, or blindness, or an evil mind, toach as they ought not. For with this Church, by reason of its greater principality, it is necessary that all churches should agree ; that is, the faithful, wheresoever they be, for in tiiat Church the tradition of the Apostles has been preserved." No comment need be made on the words the " greater principality," which have been perverted by every anti-Catholic writer from the time they were written to this day. But if any one will compare them with the words of St. Paul to the Colossians (chap. i. IB), de scribing the primacy of the Head of the Church in heaven, it will appear almost certain that the original Greek of St. Irenaus, which is unfortunately lost, contained either ra irpu-ela, or some inflection of -/HJTEV U which signifies primacy. However this may be, St. Irenreus goes on : " I lie blessed Apostles, having founded and in structed the Church, gave in charge the Episcopate, for the admin istration of the same, to Linus. Of this Linus, Paul, in his Epistle to Timothy, makes mention. To him succeeded Anacletus, and after him, in the third place from the Apostles, Clement received the Episcopate, he who saw the Apostles themselves and conferred with them, while as yet he had the preaching of the Apostles in his ears and the tradition before his eyes ; and not he only, but many who had been taught by the Apostles still survived. In the time of this Clement, when no little dissension had arisen among the brethren in Corinth, the Church in Rome wrote very powerful letters lininitisxhiit is litteras to the Corinthians, recalling them to peace, restoring their faith, and declaring the tradition which it had so short a time ago received from the Apostles." These letters of St. Clement are well known, but have lately become more valuable and complete by the discovery of fragments published in a new edition by Lightfoot. In these fragments there is a tone of authority fully explaining the words of St. Irenoeus. He then traces the succession of the Bishops of Rome to his own day, and adds : " This demon stration is complete to show that it is one and the same life-giving faith which has been preserved in the Church from the Apostles until now, and is handed on in truth." "Polycarp was not only taught by the Apostles, and conversed with many of those who had s<:eu our Lord, but he also was constituted by the Apostles in Asia to be Bishop in the Church of Smyrna. We also saw him in our early youth, for he lived long, and when very old departed from this life most gloriously and nobly by martyrdom. He ever taught that what he had learned from the Apostles, and what the Church had delivered, those things only are true." In the fourth chapter St. Irenaeus goes on to say : " Since, then, there are such proofs (of the faith), the truth is no longer to be sought for among others, which it is easy to receive from the Church, forasmuch as the Apostles laid up all truth in fullness in a rich depository, that all who will may re ceive from it the water of life." " But whatif the Apostles had not left 20 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. us the Scriptures : ought we not to follow the order of tradition, which they gave in charge to them to whom they entrusted the Churches ? To which order (of tradition) many barbarous nations yield assent, who believe in Christ without paper and ink, having salvation written by the Spirit in their hearts, and diligently holding the ancient tradition." In the twenty-sixth chapter of the same book he says : " Therefore it is our duty to obey the Presbyters who are in the Church, who have succession from the Apostles, as we have already shown; who also with the succession of the Episcopate have the charisma veritatis certum" the spiritual and certain gift of truth. I have quoted these passages at length, not so much as proofs of the Catholic Faith as to show the identity of the Church at its out set with the Church before our eyes at this hour, proving that the acorn has grown up into its oak, or, if you will, the identity of the Church at this hour with the Church of the Apostolic mission. These passages show the Episcopate, its central principality, its succession, its custody of the faith, its subsequent reception and guardianship of the Scriptures, its Divine tradition, and the charisma or Divine assistance by which its perpetuity is secured in the succes sion of the Apostles. This is almost verbally, after eighteen hundred years, the decree of the Vatican Council : Veritatis etfidei nunquam deficientis charisma.* But St. Irenaeus draws out in full the Church of this day. H shows the parallel of the first creation and of the second ; of the first Adam and the Second ; and of the analogy between the Incar nation or natural body, and the Church or mystical body of Christ. He says : Our faith " we received from the Church, and guard . . . . as an excellent gift in a noble vessel, always full of youth, and making youthful the vessel itself in which it is. For this gift of God is in trusted to the Church, as the breath of life (was imparted] to the first man, to this end, that all the members partaking of it might be quickened with life. And thus the communication of Christ is imparted ; that is, the Holy Ghost, the earnest of incorruption, the confirmation of the faith, the way of ascent to God. For in the Church (St. Paul says) God placed Apostles, Prophets, Doctors, and all other operations of the Spirit, of which none are partakers who do not come to the Church, thereby depriving themselves of life by a perverse mind and worse deeds. For where the Church is, there is also the Spirit of God ; and where the Spirit of God is, there is the Church, and all grace. But the Spirit is truth. Wherefore, they who do not partake of Him (the Spirit}, and are not nurtured onto life at the breast of the mother (the Church), do not receive ot that most pure fountain which proceeds from the body of Christ, but dig out for themselves broken pools from the trenches of the earth, and drink water soiled with mire, because they turn aside * " Const. Dogmatica Prirna de Ecclesia Christi," cap. iv. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 21 from the faith of the Church lest they should be convicted, and re- ject the Spirit lest they should be taught"* Again he says : " The Church, scattered throughout all the world, even unto the ends of the earth, received from the Apostles and their disciples the faith in one God the Father Almighty, that made the heaven and the earth, and the seas, and all things that are in them," &c.f He then recites the doctrines of the Holy Trinity, the Incarna tion, the Passion, Resurrection, and Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ, and His coming again to raise all men, to judge men and angels, and to give sentence of condemnation or of life everlasting. How much soever the language may vary from other forms, such is the substance of the Baptismal Creed. He then adds : " The Church having received this preaching and this faith, as we have said before, although it be scattered abroad through the whole world, carefully preserves it, dwelling as in one habitation, and believes alike in these (doctrines) as though she had one soul and the same heart : and in strict accord, as though she had one mouth, proclaims, and teaches, and delivers onward these things. And although there be many diverse languages in the world, yet the power of the tradition is one and the same. And neither do the Churches planted in Germany believe otherwise, or otherwise de liver (the faith), nor those in Iberia, nor among the Celt e, nor in the East, nor in Egypt, nor in Libya, nor they that are planted in the mainland. But as the sun, which is God s creature, in all the world is one and the same, so also the preaching of the truth shineth everywhere, and lighteneth all men that are willing to come to the knowledge of the truth. And neither will any ruler of the Church, though he be mighty in the utterance of truth, teach otherwise than thus (for no man is above the master), nor will he that is weak in the same diminish from the tradition ; for the faith being one and the same, he that is able to say most of it bath nothing over, and he that is able to say least hath no lack."J To St. Ireuaeus, then, the Church was " the irrefragable witness of its own legation." When did it cease so to be ? It would be easy to multiply quotations from Tertulliau in A. D. 200, from St. Cyprian A.D. 250, from St. Augustine and St. Optatus in A.D. 350, from St. Leo in A.D. 450, all of which are on the same traditional lines of faith in a divine mission to the world and of a divine assist ance in its discharge. But I refrain from doing so because I should have to write not an article but a folio. Any Catholic theology will give the passages which are now before me ; or one such book as the Loci Theoloyid of Melchior Canus will suffice to show the con tinuity and identity of the tradition of St. Irenaeus and the tradition * St. Irenaeus, Cont. Hceret., lib., iii. cap. xxiv. t Lib. i. cup. x. J St. Irenseus, lib. i. o. x. 22 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. of the Vatican Council, in which the universal church last declared the immutable faith and its own legation to mankind. The world-wide testimony of the Catholic Church is a sufficient witness to prove the coming of the Incarnate Son to redeem man kind, and to return to His Father ; it is also sufficient to prove the advent of the Holy Ghost to abide with us for ever. The work of the Son in this world was accomplished by the Diviue acts and facts of His three-and- thirty years of life, death, Resurrection and Ascension. The office of the Holy Ghost is perpetual, not only as the Illuminator and Sauctiner of all who believe, but also as the Life and Guide of the Church. I may quote now the words of the Founder of the Church : " It is expedient to you that I go : for if I go not the Paraclete will not come to you : but if I go, I will send Him to you."* " I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another Paraclete, that He may abide with you for ever. t " The Spirit of Truth, Whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, nor kuoweth Him ; but you shall know Him, because He shall abide with you and shall be in you."| St. Paul in the Epistle to thd Ephesians describes the Church as a body of which the Head is in heaven, an t the Author of its indefectible life abiding in it as His temple Therefore the words, " He that heareth you heareth Me." This could not be if the witness of the Apostles had been only human. A divine guidance was attached to the office they bore. They were, therefore, also judges of right and wrong, and teachers by Diviue guidance of the truth. But the presence and guidance of the Spirit of Truth is as full at this day as when St. Irengeus wrote. As the Churches then were witnesses, judges, and teachers, so is the i hurch at this hour a world-wide witness, an unerring judge and teacher, divinely guided and guarded in the truth. It is there fore not only a human and historical, but a Divine witness. This is the chief Divine truth which the last three hundred years have obscured. Modern Christianity believes in the one advent of the Redeemer, but rejects the full and personal advent of the Holy Ghost. And yet the same evidence proves both. The Christianity of reformers always returns to Judaism, because they reject the full, or do not believe the personal, advent of the Holy Ghost. They deny that there is any infallible teacher among men ; and therefore they return to the types and shadows of the Law before the Incar nation, when the Head was nofcyet incarnate, and the Body of Christ did not as yet exist. But perhaps some one will say, " I admit your description of the Church as it is now and as it was in the days of St. Irenseus ; but the eighteen hundred years of which you have said nothing were ages of declension, disorder, superstition, demoralization." I will answer by a question : was not this foretold ? Was not the Church St. John, xvi.7. tlbid. xiv. 16. tSt. John, xiv. 16,17. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 23 to be a field of wheat and tares growing together till the harvest at the end of the world ? There were Cathari of old, and Puritans since, impatient at the patience of God in bearing with the perversities and corruptions of the human intellect and will. The Church, like its Head in heaven, is both human and divine. " He was crucified in weakness," but no power of man could wound His divine nature. So with the Church, which is His Body. Its human element may corrupt and die; its divine life, sanctity, authority, and structure cannot die ; nor can the errors of human intellect fasten upon its faith, nor the immoralities of the human will fasten upon its sanctity. Its organization of Head and Body is of divine creation, divinely guarded by the Holy Ghost, who quickens it by His indwelling, and guides it by His light. It is in itself incorrupt and incorruptible in the midst of corruption, as the light of heaven falls upon all the decay and corruption in the world, unsullied and unalterably pure. We are never concerned to deny or to cloak the sins of Christians or of Catholics. They may destroy themselves, but they cannot infect the Church from which they fall. The fall of Lucifer left no stain behind him. When men accuse the Church of corruption, they reveal the fact that to them the Church is a human institution, of voluntary aggre gation or of legislative enactment. They reveal the fact that to them the Church is not an object of Divine faith, as the Real Presence in the Sacrament of the Altar. They do not perceive or will not believe that the articles of the Baptismal Creed are objects of faith, divinely revealed or divinely created. " I be lieve in the Holy Ghost, the Holy Catholic Church, the Communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins," are all objects of faith in a Divine order. They are present in human history, but the human element which envelops them has no power to infect or to fasten upon them. Until this is perceived there can be no true or full belief in the ad vent and office of the Holy Ghost, or in the nature and sacra mental action of the Church. It is the visible means and pledge of light and of sanctilication to all who do not bar their intel lect and their will against its inward and spiritual grace. J 1 e Church is not on probation. It is the instrument of probation to the world. As the light of the world, it is changeless as the firma ment. As the source of sautitication, it is inexhaustible as the River of Life. The human and external history of men calling themselves Christian and Catholic has been at times as degrading and abominable as any adversary is pleased to say. But the sanc tity of the Church is no more affected by human sins than was Baptism by the hypocrisy of Simon Magus. The Divine founda tion, and office, and mission of the Church is a part of Christian ity. They who deny it deny an article of faith ; they who believe it imperfectly are the followers of a fragmentary Christianity of modern date. Who can be a disciple of Jesus Christ who does not believe the words ? " On this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it ;" " As the Father has 24 THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. sent Me, I also send you f "* " I dispose to you, as My Father hath disposed to Me, a kingdom ;"f " All power in heaven and earth is given unto Me. Go, therefore, and teach all nations ;"| " He that heareth you heareth Me ; " I will be with you always, even unto the end of the world ;"|| " When the days of Pentecost were accom plished they were all together in one place : and suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a mighty wind coming, and there appeared to them parted tongues, as it were, of fire ;" " And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost ;"** " It seemed good to the Holy Ghost and to us to lay upon you no other burdens, "ft But who denys that the Apostles claimed a Divine mission ? and who can deny that the Catholic and Roman Church from St. Irenseus to Leo XIII. has ever and openly claimed the same, invoking in all its supreme acts as witness, teacher, and legislator, the presence, light, and guidance of the Holy Ghost ? As the preservation of all created things is by the same creative power produced in per petual and universal action, so the indefectibility of the Church and of the faith is by the perpetuity of the presence and office of the Third Person of the Holy Trinity. Therefore St. Augustine calls the day of Pentecost, Natalis Spiritus S tncti. It is more than time that I should make an end ; and to do so it will be well to sum up the heads of our argument. The Vatican Council declares that the world-wide Church is the irrefragable witness of its own legation or mission to mankind. In truth of this I have affirmed : 1. That the imperishable existence of Christianity, and the vast and undeniable revolution that it has wrought in men and in nations, in the moral elevation of manhood and of womanhood, and in the domestic, social and political life of the Christian world, cannot be accounted for by any natural causes, or by any forces that are, as philosophers say, intra possibiiitatem natures, within the limits of what is possible to man. 2. That this world-wide and permanent elevation of the Christian world, in comparison with both the old world and the modern world outside of Christianity, demands a cause higher than the possibil ity of nature. 3. That the Church has always claimed a Divine origin and a Divine office and authority in virtue of a perpetual Divine assist ance. To this even the Christian world, in all its fragments external to the Catholic unity, bears witness. It is turned to our reproach. They rebuke us for holding the teaching of the Church to be ini allible. * St. John, xx. 21. t St. Luke, xxii, 29. t St. Matthew, xxviii. 18, 19. St. Luke, x 10. II ISt. Matthew, xxviii. 20. ** Acts, ii. 1-5. ft Acts, xv. 28. THE CHURCH ITS OWN WITNESS. 25 We take the rebuke as a testimony of our changeless faith. It is not enough for men to say that they refuse to believe this account of the visible and palpable fact of the imperishable Christianity of the Catholic and Roman Church. They must find a more reason able, creditable and adequate account for it. This no man has yet done. The denials are many and the solutions are many ; but they do not agree together. Their multiplicity is proof of their human origin. The claim of the Catholic Church to a Divine authority and to a Divine assistance is one and the same in every age, and is identical in every place. Error is not the principle of unity, nor truth of variations. The Church has guarded the doctrine of the Apostles, by Divine assistance, with unerring fidelity. The articles of the faith are to-day the same in number as in the beginning. The explicit definition of their implicit meaning has expanded from age to age, as the everchanging denials and perversions of the world have demanded new definitions of the ancient truth. The world is against all dogma, because it is impatient of definiteness and certainty in faith. It loves open questions and the liberty of error. The Church is dogmatic for fear of error. Every truth de fined adds to its treasure. It narrows the field of error and enlarges the inheritance of truth. The world and the Church are ever mov ing in opposite directions. As the world becomes more vague and uncertain, the Church becomes more definite. It moves against wind and tide, against the stress and storm of the world. There was never a more luminous evidence of this supernatural fact than in the Vatican Council. For eight months all that the world could say and do, like the four winds of heaven, was directed upon it. Governments, statesmen, diplomatists, philosophers, intriguers, mockers, and traitors did their utmost and their worst against it. They were in dread lest the Church should declare that by Divine assistance its Head in faith and morals cannot err ; for if this be true, man did not found it, man cannot reform it, man cannot teach it to interpret its history or its acts. It knows its own history, and is the supreme witness of its own legation. I am well aware that I have been writing truisms, and repeating trite and trivial arguments. They are trite because the feet of the faithful for nearly nineteen hundred years have worn them in their daily life ; they are trivial because they point to the one path in which the wayfarer, though a fool, shall not err. HENRY EDWARD, Card. Archbishop of Westminster. BOME, OR REASON? A REPLY TO CARDINAL MANNING. Superstition ** has ears more deaf than adders to the voice of any true decision." PART I. CARDINAL MANNING has stated the claims of the Roman Catholic Church with great clearness, and apparently without reserve. The age, position and learning of this man give a certain weight to his words, apart from their worth. He represents the oldest of the Christian churches. The questions iavolved are among the most important that can engage the human mind. No one having the slightest- regard for that superb thing known as intellectual honesty, will avoid the issues tendered, or seek in any way to gain a victory over truth. Without candor, discussion, in the highest sense, is impossible. All have the same interest, whether they know it or not, in the establishment of facts. All have the same to gain, the same to lose. He loads the dice against himself who scores a point against the righfc. Absolute honesty is to the intellectual perception what light is to the eyes. Prejudice and passion cloud the mind. In each disputant should be blended the advocate and judge. In this spirit, having in view only the ascertainment of the truth, let us examine the arguments, or rather the statements and con clusions, of Cardinal Manning. The proposition is that " The Church itself, by its marvelous propagation, it* eminent sanctity, its inexhaustible fruitf ulness in all good things, its catholic unity and invincible stability, is a vaafc ROME, OR REASON ? 27 and perpetual motive of credibility, and an irrefragable witness of its own divine legation." The reasons given as supporting this proposition, are : That the Catholic Church interpenetrates all the nations of the civilized world; that it is extranational and independent in a super- national unity ; that it is the same in every place ; that it speaks all languages in the civilized world; that it is obedient to one head; that as many as seven hundred bishops have knelt before the pope ; that pilgrims from all nations have brought gifts to Rome, and that all these things set forth in the most self evident way the unity and universality of the Roman Church. It is also asserted that " men see the Head of the Church year by year speaking to the nations of the world, treating with Empires Republics and Governments;" that " there is no other man on earth that can so bear himself," and that " neither from Canterbury nor from Constantinople can such a voice go forth to which rulers and people listen." It is also claimed that the Catholic Church has enlightened and purified the world ; that it has given us the peace and purity of domestic life ; that it has destroyed idolatry and demonology ; that it gave us a body of law from a higher source than man; that it has p oduced the civilization of Christendom ; that the popes were the greatest of statesmen and rulers ; that celibacy is better than mar riage, aud that the revolutions and reformations of the last three hundred years have been destructive and calamitous. We will examine these assertions as well as some others. No one will dispute that the Catholic Church is the best witness of its own existence. The same is true of every thing that exists of every church, great and small, of every man, and of every insect. But it is contended that the marvelous growth or propagation of the Church is evidence of its divine origin. Can it be said that success is supernatural? All success in this world is relative. Majorities are n r t necessarily right. If anything is known if anything can be known we are sure that very large bodies of men have frequently been wrong. We believe in what is called the progress of mankind. Progress, for the most part, consists in find ing new truths and getting rid of old errors that is to say, getting nearer and nearer in harmony with the facts of nature, seeing with greater clearness the conditions of well-being There is no nation in which a majority leads the way. In the progress of mankind, the few have been the nearest right. There have been centuries in which the light seemed to emanate only from a handful of men, while the rest of the world was enveloped in dark ness. Some great man leads the way he becomes the morning star, the prophet of a coming day. Afterwards, many millions accept his views. But there are still heights above and beyond ; there are other pioneers, and the old day, in comparison with the new, becomes a night. So, we cannot say that success demonstrates either divine origin or supernatural aid. 28 ROME, OR REASON ? We know, if we know anything, that wisdom has often been trampled beneath the feet of the multitude, We know that the torch of science has been blown out by the breath of the hydra- headed. We know that the whole intellectual heaven has been darkened again and again. The truth or falsity of a proposition cannot be determined by ascertaining the number of those who assert, or of those who deny. If the marvelous propagation of the Catholic Church proves its divine origin, what shall we say of the marvelous propagation of Mohammedanism ? Nothing can be clearer than that Christianity arose out of the ruins of the Roman Empire that is to say, the ruins of Paganism. And it is equally clear that Mohammedanism arose out of the wreck and ruin of Catholicism. After Mohammed came upon the stage, " Christianity was forever expelled from its most glorious sea f s from Palestine, the scene of its most sacred recollections ; from Asia Minor, that of its first churches ; from Egypt, whence issued the great doctrine of Trini tarian Orthodoxy, and from Carthage, who imposed her belief on Europe." Before that time " the ecclesiastical chiefs of Rome, of Constantinople, and of Alexandria were engaged in a desperate struggle for supremacy, carrying out their purposes by weapons and in ways revolting to the conscience of man. Bishops were con cerned in assassinations, poisonings, adulteries, Windings, riots, treasons, civil war. Patriarchs and primates were excommunicating and anathematizing one another in their rivalries for earthly power bribing eunuchs with gold and courtesans and royal females with concessions of episcopal love. Among legions of monks who carried terror into the imperial armies and riot into the great cities arose hideous clamors for theological dogmas, but never a voice for intellectual liberty or the outraged rights of man. " Under these circumstances, amid these atrecities and crimes, Mohammed arose, and raised his own nation from Fetichism, the adoration of the meteoric stone, and from the basest idol worship, and irrevocably wrenched from Christianity more than half and that by far the best half of her possessions, since it included the Holy Land, the birth-place of the Christian faith, and Africa, which had imparted to it its Latin form ; and now, after a lapse of more than a thousand years that continent, and a very large part of Asia, remain permanently attached to the Arabian doctrine." It may be interesting in this connection to say that the Moham medan now proves the divine mission of his Apostle by appealing to the marvelous propagation of the faith. If the argument is good in the mouth of a Catholic, is it not good in the mouth of a Moslem ? Let us see if it is not better. According to Cardinal Manning, the Catholic Church triumphed only over the institutions of men triumphed only over religions that had been established by men, by wicked and ignorant men. But Mohammed triumphed not only over the religions of men, but ROME, OR REASON ? 29 over the religion of God. This ignorant driver of camels, this poor, unknown, unlettered boy, unassisted by God, unenlightened by supernatural means, drove the armies of the true cross before him as the winter s storm drives withered leaves. At his name, priests, bishops and cardinals fled with white faces popes trembled, and the armies of God, fighting for the true faith, were conquered on a thousand fields. If the success of a church proves its divinity, and after that an other church arises and defeats the first, what does that prove ? Let us put this question in a milder form : Suppose the second church lives and flourishes in spite of the first, what does that prove ? As a matter of fact, however, no church rises with everything against it. Something is favorable to it, or it could not exist. If it succeeds and grows, it is absolutely certain that the conditions are favorable. If it spreads rapidly, it simply shows that the condi tions are exceediugly favorable, and that the forces in opposition are weak and easily overcome. Here, in my own country, within a few years, has arisen a new religion. Its foundations were laid in an intelligent community, having had the advantages of what is known as modern civilization. Yet this now faith founded on the grossest absurdities, as gross as we find in the Scriptures in spite of all opposition began to grow, and kept growing. It was subjected to persecution, and the per secution increased its strength. It was driven from State to State by the believers of universal love, until it left what was called civilization, crossed the wide plains and took up its abode on the shores of tho Great Salt Lake. It continued to grow. Its founder, as he declared, had frequent conversations with God, and received directions from that source. Hundreds of miracles were performed multitudes upon the desert were miraculously fed the sick were cured the dead were raised, and the Mormon Church continued to grow, until now, less than half a century after the death of its founder, there are several hundred thousand believers in the new faith. Do you think that men enough could join this church to prove the truth of its creed ? Joseph Smith said that he found certain golden plates that had been buried for many generations, and upon these plates, in some un known language, had been engraved this new revelation, and I think he insisted that by the use of miraculous mirrors this language was translated. If there should be Mormon bishops in all the countries of the world, eighteen hundred years from now, do you think a cardinal of that faith could prove the truth of the golden plates simply by the fact that the faith had spread and that seven hundred bishops had knelt before the head of that church ? It seems to me that a " supernatural" religion that is to say, a religion that is claimed to have been divinely founded and to be authenticated by miracle, is much easier to establish among an ignor- 80 ROME, OR REASON ? ant people than any other and the more ignorant the poople, the easier such a religion could be established. The reason for this is plain. All ignorant tribes, all savage men, believe in the miracu lous, in the supernatural. The conception of uniformity, of what may be called the eternal consistency of nature, is an idea far above their comprehension. They are forced to think in accordance with their minds, and as a consequence they account for all phenomena by the acts of superior beings that is to say, by the supernatural. In other words, that religion having most in common with the savage, having most that was satisfactory to his mind, or to his lack of mind, would stand the best chance of success. It is probably safe to say that at one time, or during one phase of the development of man, everything was miraculous. After a time, the mind slowly developing, certain phenomena, always happening under like conditions, were called "natural," and none suspected any special interference. The domain of the miraculous grew less and less the domain of the natural larger ; that is to say, the com mon became the natural, but the uncommon was still regarded as the miraculous. The rising and setting of the sun ceased to excite the wonder of mankind there was no miracle about that ; but an eclipse of the sun was miraculous. Men did not then know that eclipses are periodical, that they happen with the same certainty that the sun rises. It took many observations through many gen erations to arrive at this conclusion. Ordinary rains became "na tural," floods remained " miraculous." But it can all be summed in this : The average man regards the common as natural, the uncommon as supernatural. The edu cated man and by that I mean the developed man is satisfied that tdl phenomena are natural, and that the supernatural does not and can not exist. As a rule, an individual is egotistic in the proportion that he lacks intelligence. The same is true of nations and races. The barbarian is egotistic enough to suppose that an Infinite Being is constantly doing something, or failing to do something, on his ac count. But as man rises in the scale of civilization, as he becomes really great, he comes to the conclusion that nothing in Nature happens on his account that he is hardly great enough to dis turb the motions of the planets. Let us make an application of this : To me, the success of Mor- monism is no evidence of its truth, because it has succeeded only with the superstitious. It has been recruited from communities brutal ized by other forms of superstition. To me, the success of Mohammed does not tend to show that he was right for the reason that he triumphed only over the ignorant, over the superstitious. The same is true of the Catholic Church. Its seeds were planted in darkness. It was accepted by the credulous, by men incapable of reasoning upon such questions. It did not, it has not, it can not triumph over the intellectual world. To count its many millions does not tend to prove the truth of its creed. On the contrary, a creed that delights the credulous gives evidence against itself. ROME, OB REASON ? 81 Questions of fact or philosophy cannot be settled simply by num bers. There was a time when the Copernican system of astrompny had but few supporters the multitude being on the other side. There was a time when the rotation of the earth was not believed by the majority. Let us press this idea further. There was a time when Chris- tianity was not in the majority, anywhere. Let us suppose that the first Christian missionary had met a prelate of the Pagan faith, and suppose this prelate had used against the Christian missionary the Cardinal s argument how could the missionary have answered if the Cardinal s argument is good. But, after all, is the success of the Catholic Church a marvel ? If this Church is of Divine origin, if it has been under the especial care, protection and guidance of an Infinite Being, is not its failure far more wonderful than its success ? For eighteen centuries it has persecuted and preached, and the salvation of the world is still re mote. This is the result, and it may be asked whether it is worth while to try to convert the world to Catholicism. Are Catholics better than Protestants ? Are they nearer honest, nearer just, more charitable ? Are Catholic nations better than Protestant ? Do the Catholic nations move in the van of progress ? Within their jurisdiction are life, liberty and property safer than anywhere else ? Is Spain the first nation of the world ? Let me ask another question : Are Catholics or Protestants better than Freethinkers ? Has the Catholic Church produced a greater man than Humboldt ? Has the Protestant produced a greater than Darwin ? Was not Emerson, so far as purity of life is concerned, the equal of any true believer? Was Pius IX., or any other Vicar of Christ, superior to Abraham Lincoln ? But it is claimed that the Catholic Church is universal, and that that its universality demonstrates its divine origin. According to the bible, the Apostles were ordered to go into all the world and preach the gospel yet not one of them, nor one of their converts at any time, nor one of the Vicars of God, for fifteen hundred years afterward, knew of the existence of the Western Hemisphere. During all that time, can it be said that the Catholic Church was universal ? At the close of the fifteenth century, there was one half of the world in which the Catholic faith had never been preached, and in the other half not one person in ten had ever heard of it, and of those who had hear.l of it, not one in ten believed it. Certainly the Catholic Church was not then universal. Is it universal now ? What impression has Catholicism made upon the many millions of China, of Japan, of India, of Africa? Can it truthfully be said that the Catholic Church is now universal ? When any church becomes universal, it will be the only church. There cannot be two universal church ss, neither can there be one universal church and any other. The Cardinal next tries to prove that the Catholic Church is divine, " by its eminent sanctity and its inexhaustible fruitfulness in all good things." 32 HOME, OR REASON ? And here let me admit that there are many millions of good Catholics that is, of good men and women who are Catholics It is unnecessary to charge universal dishonesty or hypocrisy, for the reason that this would he only a kind of personality. Many thou sands of heroes have died in defence of the faith, and millions of Catholics have killed and been killed for the sake of their religion. And here it may be well enough to say that martyrdom does not. even tend to prove the truth of a religion. The man who dies in flames, standing by what he believes to be true, establishes, not the truth of what he believes, but his sin arity. Without calling in question the intentions of the Catbolic Church, we can ascertain whether it has been inexhaustibly fruitful in all good things," and whether it has been " eminent for its sanctity." In the first place, nothing can be better than goodness. Nothing is more sacred, or can be more sacred, than the well-being of man. All things that tend to increase o r preserve the happiness of the human race are good that is to say, they are sacred. All things that tend to the destruction of man s well-being, that tend to his unhappiness, are bad, no matter by whom they are taught or done. It is perfectly certain that the Catholic Church has taught, and still teaches, that intellectual liberty is dangerous that it should not be allowed. It was driven to taken this position because it had taken another. It taught, and still teaches, that a certain belief is necessary to salvation. It has always known that investigation and inquiry led, or might lead, to doubt ; that doubt leads, or may lead, to heresy, and that heresy leads to hell. In other words, the Catholic Church has something more important than this world, more important than the well-being of man here. It regards this life as an opportunity for joining that Church, for accepting that creed, and for the saving of your soul. If the Catholic Church is right in its premises, it is right in its conclusion. If it is necessary to believe the Catholic creed in order to obtain eternal joy, then, of course, nothing else in this world is, comparatively speaking, of the slightest importance. Consequently, the Catholic Church has been, and still is, the enemy of intellectual freedom, of investigation, of inquiry in other words, the enemy of progress in secular things. The result of this was an effort to compel all men to accept the belief necessary to salvation. This effort naturally divided itself into persuasion and persecution. It will be admitted that the good man is kind, merciful, chari table, forgiving and just. A church must be judged by the same standard. Has the Church been merciful? Has it been " fruitful in the good things " of justice, charity and forgiveness ? Can a good man, believing a good doctrine, persecute for opinion s sake ? If the Church imprisons a man for the expression of an honest opinion, is it not certain, either that the doctrine of the Church is wrong, or that the Church is bad ? Both cannot be good. " Sanctity " with out goodness is impossible. Thousands of " saints" have been the KOME, OR REASON ? 33 most malicious of the human race. If the history of the world proves anything, it proves that the Catholic Church was for many centuries the most merciless institution that ever existed among men. I cannot believe that the instruments of persecution were made and used by the eminently good ; neither can I believe that honest people were imprisoned, tortured, and burned at the stake by a Church that was " inexhaustibly fruitful in all good things." And let me say here that I have no Protestant prejudices against Catholicism, and have no Catholic prejudices against Protestantism. I regard all religions either without prejudice or with the same pre judice. They were all, according to my belief, devised by men, and all have for a foundation ignorance of this world and fear of the next. All the Gods have been made by men. They are all equally powerful and equally useless. I like some of them better than I do others, for the same reason that I admire some characters in fiction more than I do others. I .prefer Miranda to Caliban, but have not the slightest idea that either of them existed. So I prefer Jupiter to Jehovah, although perfectly satisfied that both are myths. I believe myself to be in a frame of mind to justly and fairly consider the claims of different religions, believing as I do that all are wrong, and admitting as I do that there is some good in all. When one speaks of the " inexhaustible fruitfulness in all good things" of the Catholic Church, we remember the horrors and atro cities of the Inquisition the rewards offered by theEoman Church for the capture and murder of honest men. We remember the Dominican Order, the members of which, upheld by the Vicar of Christ, pursued the heretics like sleuth hounds, through many centuries. The Church, "inexhaustible in fruitfulness in all good things," not only imprisoned and branded and burned the living, but viola ted the dead. It robbed graves, to the end that it might convict corpses of heresy to the end that it might take from widows their portions and from orphans their patrimony. We remember the millions in the darkness of dungeons the millions who perished by the sword the vast multitudes destroyed in flames those who were flayed alive those who were blinded those whose tongues were cut out those into whose ears were poured moulten lead those whose eyes were deprived of their lids those who were tortured and tormented in every way by which pain could be inflicted and human nature overcome. And we remember, too, the exultant cry of the Church over the bodies of her victims : " Their bodies were burned here, but their souls are now tortured in hell." We remember that the Church, by treachery, bribery, perjury, and the commission of every possible crime, got possession and con trol of Christendom, and we know the use that was made of this power that it was used to brutalize, degrade, stupefy, and "sanc tify" the children of men. We know also that the Vicars of Christ were persecutors for opinion s sake that they sought to destroy 34 ROME, OR REASON ? the liberty of thought through fear that they endeavored to make every brain a Bastile in which the mind should be a convict that they endeavored to make every tongue a prisoner, watched by a familiar of the Inquisition and that they threatened punishment here, imprisonment here, burnings here, and, in the name of their God, eternal imprisonment and eternal burnings hereafter. We know, too, that the Catholic Church was, during all the years of its power, the enemy of every science. It preferred magic to medicine, relics to remedies, priests to physicians. It thought more of astrologers than of astronomers. It hated geologists it persecu ted the chemist, and imprisoned the naturalist, and opposed every discovery calculated to improve the condition of mankind. It is impossible to forget the persecutions of the Cathari, the Albigenses, the Waldenses, the Hussites, the Huguenots, and of every sect that had the courage to think just a little for itself. Think of a woman the mother of a family taken from her child ren and burned, on account of her view as to the three natures of Jesus Christ. Think of the Catholic Church an institution with a Divine Founder, presided over by the agent of God punishing a woman for giving a cup of cold water to a fellow-being who had been anathematized. Think of this Church, " fruitful in all good things," launching its curse at an honest man not only cursing him from the crown of his head to the soles of his feet with a fiendish particularity, but having at the same time the impudence to call on God, and the Holy Ghost and Jesus Christ, and the Virgin Mary, to join in the curse ; and to curse him not only here, but forever here after calling upon all the saints and upon all the redeemed to join in a hallelujah of curses, so that earth and heaven should reverber ate with countless curses launched at a human being simply for having expressed an honest thought. This Church, so "fruitful in all good things," invented crimes that it might punish. This Church tried men for a "suspicion of heresy" imprisoned them for the vice of being suspected stripped them of all they had on earth and allowed them to rot in dungeons, be cause they were guilty of the crime of having been suspected. This was a part of the Canon Law. It is too late to talk about the "invincible stability" of the Catho lic Church. It was not invincible in the Seventh, in the Eighth, or in the Ninth centuries. It was not invincible in Germany in Luther s day. It was not invincible in the Low Countries. It was not invincible in Scotland, or in England. It was not invincible in France. It is not invincible in Italy. It is not supreme in any intellectual centre of the world. It does not triumph in Paris, or Berlin ; it is not dominant in London, in England ; neither is it triumphant in the United States. It has not within its fold the philosophers, the statesmen, and the thinkers, who are the leaders of the human race. It is claimed that Catholicism " interpenetrates all the nations ROME, OR REASON ? 35 of the civilized world," and that " in some it holds the whole nation in its unity." I suppose the Catholic Church is more powerful in Spain than in any other nation. The history of this nation demonstrates the result of Catholic supremacy, the result of an acknowledgment by a people that a certain religion is too sacred to be examined. Without attempting in an article of this character to point out the many causes that contributed to the adoption of Catholicism by the Spanish people, it is enough to say that Spain, of all nations, has been and is the most thoroughly Catholic, and the most thoroughly interpenetrated and dominated by the spirit of the Church of Rome. Spain used the sword of the Church. In the name of religion it endeavored to conquer the Infidel world. It drove from its territory the Moors, not because they were bad, not because they were idle and dishonest, but because they were Infidels. It expelled the Jews, not because they were ignorant or vicious, but because they were unbelievers. It drove out the Moriscoes, and deliberately made outcasts of the intelligent, the industrious, the honest and the useful, because they were not Catholics. It leaped like a wild beast upon the Low Countries, for the destruction of Protestantism. It covered the seas with its fleets, to destroy the intellectual liberty of man. And not only so it established the Inquisition within its borders. It imprisoned the honest, it burned the noble, and succeeded after many years of devotion to the true faith, in destroying the industry, the intelligence, the usefulness, the genius, the nobility and the wealth of a nation. It became a wreck, a jest of the conquered, and excited the pity of its former victims. In this period of degradation, the Catholic Church held "the whole nation in its unity." At last Spain began to deviate from the path of the Church. It made a treaty with an Infidel power. In 1782 it became humble enough, and wise enough, to be friends with Turkey. It made treaties with Tripoli and Algiers and the Barbary States. It had become too poor to ranson the prisoners taken by these powers. It began to appreciate the fact that it could neither conquer nor con vert the world by the sword. Spain has progressed in the arts and sciences, in all that tends to enrich and ennoble a nation, in the precise proportion that she has lost faith in the Catholic Church This may be said of every other nation in Christendom. Torquemada is dead ; Castelar is alive. The dungeons of the Inquisition are empty, and a little light has penetrated the clouds and mists not much, but a little. Spain is not yet clothed and in her right mind. A few years ago the cholera visited Madrid and other cities. Physicians were mobbed. Pro cessions of saints carried the host through the streets for the pur pose of staying the plague. The streets were not cleaned ; the sewers were filled. Filth and faith, old partners, reigned supreme. The Church, "eminent for its sanctity," stood in the light and cast 36 ROME, OR REASON ? its shadow on the ignorant and the prostrate. The Church, in its " inexhaustible fruitfulness in all good things," allowed its children to perish through ignorance, and used the diseases it had produced as an instrumentality to futher enslave its votaries and its victims. No one will deny that many of its priests exhibited heroism of the highest order in visiting the sick and administering what are called the consolations of religion to the dying, and in burying the dead. It is necessary neither to deny nor disparage the self- denial and goodness of these men. But their religion did more than ail other causes to produce the very evils that called for the exhi bition of self-denial and heroism. One scientist in control of Madrid could have prevented the plague. In such cases, cleanliness is far better than "godliness;" science is superior to superstition ; drainage much better than divinity ; therapeutics more excellent than theo logy. Goodness is not enough intelligence is necessary. Faith is not sufficient, creeds are helpless, and prayers fruitless. It is admitted that the Catholic Church exists in many nations ; that it is dominated, at least in a great degree, by the Bishop of Rome that it is international in that sense, and that in that sense it has what may be called a "supernational unity." The same, however, is true of the Masonic fraternity. It exists in many nations, but it is not a national body. It is in the same sense extra- national, in the same sense international, and has in the same sense a supernational unity. So the same may be said of other societies. This, however, does not tend to prove that anything supernational is supernatural. It is also admitted that in faith, worship, ceremonial, discipline and government, the Catholic Church is substantially the same wherever it exists. This establishes the unity, but not the divinity, of the institution. The church that does not allow investigation, that teaches that all doubts are wicked, attains unity through tyranny, that is, mono tony by repression. Wherever man has had something like freedom, differences have appeared, heresies have taken root, and the divisions have become permanent new sects have been born and the Catho lic Church has been weakened. The boast of unity is the confession of tyranny, It is insisted that the unity of the Church substantiates its claim to divine origin. This is asserted over and over again, in many ways ; and yet in the Cardinal s article is found this strange mingling of boast and confession : " Was it only by the human power of man that the unity, external and internal, which for fourteen hundred years had been supreme, was once more restored in the Council of Constance, never to be broken again ?" By this it is admitted that the internal and external unity of the Catholic Church has been broken, and that it required more than human power to restore it. Then the boast is made that it will never be broken again. Yet it is asserted that the internal and ex ternal unity of the Catholic Church is the great fact that demon strates its divine origin. ROME, OR REASON? 87 Now if this internal and external unity was broken, and remained broken for years, there was an interval during which the Church had no internal or external unity, and during which the evidence of divine origin failed. The unity was broken in spite of the Divine Founder. This is admitted by the use of the word " again. " The unbroken unity of the Church is asserted, and upon this assertion is based the claim of divine origin ; it is then admitted that the unity was broken. The argument is then shifted, and tbe claim is made that it required more than human power to restore the inter nal and external unity of the Church, and that the restoration, not the unity, is proof of the divine origin. Is there any contradiction beyond this ? Let us state the case in another way. Let us suppose that a man has a sword which he claims was made by God, stating that the reason he knows that God made the sword is that it never had been and never could be broken. Now if it was afterwards ascer tained that it had been broken, and the owner admitted that it had been, what would be thought of him if he then took the ground that it had been welded, and that the welding was the evidence that it was of divine origin ? A prophecy is then indulged in, to the effect that the internal and external unity of the Church can never be broken again. It is ad mitted that it was broken it is asserted that it was divinely restored and then it is declared that it is never to be broken again. No reason is given for this prophecy : it must be born of the facts already stated. Put in a form to be easily understood, it is this : We know thai, the unity of the Church can never be broken, be cause the Church is of divine origin. We know that it was broken ; but this does not weaken the argument, because it was restored by God, and it has not been broken since. Therefore, it never can be broken again. It is stated that the Catholic Church is immutable, and that its immutability establishes its claim to divine origin. Was it immu table when its unity, internal and external, was broken ? Was it precisely the same after its unity was broken that it was before ? Was it precisely the same after its unity was divinely restored that it was while broken ? Was it universal while it was without unity ? Which of the fragments was universal which was immutable ? The fact that the Catholic Church is obedient to the pope, estab lishes, not the supernatural origin of the Church, but the mental slavery of its members. It establishes the fact that it is a success ful organization ; that it is cunningly devised ; that it destroys the mental independence, and that whoever absolutely submits to its authority loses the jewel of his soul. The fact that Catholics are to a great extent obedient to the pope, establishes nothing except the thoroughness of the organiza tion. How was the Kouian empire formed ? By what means did that 88 ROME, OR REASON ? Great Power hold in bondage the then known world ? How is it that a despotism is established ? How is it that the few enslave the many ? How is it that the nobility live on the labor of peasants ? The answer is in one word, Organization. The organized few triumph over the unorganized many. The few hold the sword and the purse. The unorganized are overcome in detail terrorized, brutalized, robbed, conquered. We must remember that when Christianity was established the world was ignorant, credulous and cruel. The gospel with its idea of forgiveness -with its heaven and hell was suited to the bar barians among whom it was preached. Let it be understood, once for all, that Christ had but little to do with Christianity. The people became convinced being ignorant, stupid and credulous that the Church held the keys of heaven and hell. The foundation for the most terrible mental tyranny that has existed among men was in this way laid. The Catholic Church enslaved to the extent of its power. It resorted to every possible form of fraud ; it per verted every good instinct of the human heart ; it rewarded every vice ; it resorted to every artifice that ingenuity could devise, to reach the highest round of power. It tortured the accused to make them confess ; it tortured witnesses to compel the commission of perjury ; it tortured children for the purpose of making them con vict their parents ; it compelled men to establish their own in nocence ; it imprisoned without limit ; it had the malicious patience to wait ; it left the accused without trial, and left them in dungeons until released by death. There is no crime that the Catholic Church did not commit, no cruelty that it did not practice, no form of treachery that it did not re ward, and no virtue that it did not perse- cute. It was the greatest and most powerful enemy of human rights. It did all that organization, cunning, piety, self-denial, heroism, treachery, zeal and brute force could do to enslave the children of men. It was the enemy of intelligence, the assassin of liberty, and the destroyer of progress. It loaded the noble with chains and the infamous with honors. In one hand it carried the alms dish, in the other a dagger. It argued with the sword, persuaded with poison, and convinced with the fagot. It is impossible to see how the divine origin of a Church can be established by showing that hundreds of bishops have visited the pope. Does the fact that millions of the faithful visit Mecca establish the truth of the Koran ? Is it a scene for congratulation when the bishops of thirty nations kneel before a man ? Is it not humiliating to know that man is willing to kneel at the feet of man ? Could a noble man demand, or joyfully receive, the humiliation of his fellows ? As a rule, arrogance and humility go together. He who in power compels his fellow man to kneel, will himself kneel when weak. The tyrant is a cringer in power ; a oringer is a tyrant out of power. Great men stand face to face. They meet on equal terms. The ROME, OR REASON ? 89 cardinal who kneels in the presence of the pope, wants the bishop to kneel in his presence ; and the bishop who kneels demands that the priest shall kneel to him ; and the priest who kneels demands that they in lower orders shall kneel ; and all, from pope to the lowest, that is to say, from pope to exorcist, from pope to the one in charge of the bones of saints all demand that the people, the lay men, those upon whom they live, shall kneel to them. The man of free and noble spirit will not kneel. Courage has no knees. Fear kneels, or falls upon its ashen face. The Cardinal insists that the pope is the Vicar of Christ, and that all popes have been. What is a Vicar of Jesus Christ ? He is a substitute in office. He stands in the place, or occupies the posi tion in relation to the Church, in relation to the world, that Jesus Christ would occupy were he the pope at Rome. Tn other words, he takes Christ s place; so that, according to the doctrine of the Catholic Church, Jesus Christ himself is present in the person of the We all know that a good man may employ a bad agent. A good king might leave his realm and put in his place a tyrant and a wretch. The good man, and the good king, cannot certainly know what manner of man the agent is what kind of person the vicar is consequently the bad may be chosen. But if the king appointed a bad vicar, knowing him to be bad, knowing that he would oppress the people, knowing that he would imprison and burn the noble and generous, what excuse can be imagined for such a king ? Now if the Church is of divine origin, and if each pope is the Vicar of Jesus Christ, he must have been chosen by Jesus Christ ; and when he was chosen, Christ must have known exactly what his vicar would do. Can we believe that an infinitely wise and good Being would choose immoral, dishonest, ignorant, malicious, heart less, fiendish, and inhuman vicars ? The Cardinal admits that " the history of Christianity is the history of the Church, and that the history of the Church is the history of the Pontiffs," and he then declares that " the greatest statesmen and rulers that the world has ever seen are the Popes of Rome." Let me call attention to a few passages in Draper s " History of the Intellectual Development of Europe." " Constantino was one of the Vicars of Christ. Afterwards, Stephen IV. was chosen. The eyes of Constantino were then put out by Stephen, acting in Christ s place. The tongue of the Bishop Theo doras was amputated by the man who had been substituted for God. This bishop was left in a dungeon to perish of thirst. Pope Leo III. was seized in the street and forced into a church, where the nephews of Pope Adrian attempted to put out his eyes and cut off his tongue. His successor, Stephen V., was driven ignomin- iously from Rome. His successor, Paschal I., was accused of blind ing and murdering two ecclesiastics in the Lateran Palace. John VIII., unable to resist the Mohammedans, was compelled to pay them tribute. 40 ROME, OR REASON ? " At this time, the Bishop of Naples was in secret alliance with the Mohammedans, and they divided with this Catholic bishop the plunder they collected from other Catholics. This bishop was ex communicated by the pope ; afterwards he gave him absolution be cause he betrayed the chief Mohammedans, and assassinated others. There was an ecclesiastical conspiracy to murder the pope, and some of the treasurers of the Church were seized, and the gate of St. Pancrazia was opened with false keys to admit the Saracens. Formosus, who had been engaged in these transactions, who had been excommunicated as a conspirator for the murder of Pope John, was himself elected pope in 891. Boniface VI. was his successor. He had been deposed from the diaconate and from the priesthood for his immoral and lewd life. Stephen VII. was the next pope, and he had the dead body of Formosus taken from the grave, cloth ed in papal habiliments, propped up in a chair and tried before a Council. The corpse was found guilty, three fingers were cut off and the body cast into the Tiber. Afterwards Stephen VII., this Vicar of Christ, was thrown into prison and strangled. " From 896 to 900, five popes were consecrated. Leo V., in less than two months after he became pope was cast into prison by Christopher, one of his chaplains. This Christopher usurped his place, and in a little while was expelled from Rome by Sergius III., who became pope in 905. This pope lived in criminal inter course with the celebrated Theodora, who with her daughters Marozia and Theodora, both prostitutes, exercised an extraordinary control over him. The love of Theodora was also shared by John X. She gave him the Archbishopric of Ravenna and made him pope in 915. The daughter of Theodora overthrew this pope. She surprised him in the Lateran Palace. His brother, Peter, was killed ; the pope was thrown into prison, where he was afterward murdered. Afterward this Marozia, daughter of Theodora, made her own son pope, John XI. Many affirmed that Pope Sergius was his father, but the mother inclined to attribute him to her husband Alberic, whose brother Guido she afterward married. Another of her sons, Alberic, jealous of his brother John, the pope, cast him and their mother into prison. Alberic s son was then elected pope as John XII. "John was nineteen years old when he became the Vicar of Christ. His reign was characterized by the most shocking immor alities, so that the Emperor Otho I. was compelled by the German clergy to interfere. He was tried. It appeared that John had re ceived bribes for the consesecration of bishops ; that he had ordained one who was only only ten years old ; that he was charged with incest, and so many adulteries that the Lateran Palace had become a brothel. He put out the eyes of one ecclesiastic ; he maimed another both dying in consequence of their injuries. He was given to drunkenness and to gambling. He was deposed at last, and Leo VII. elected in his stead. Subsequently he got the upper hand. He seized his antagonists ; he cut off the hand of one, the noso s the ROME, OR REASON ? 41 finger, and the tongue of others. His life was eventually brought to an end by the vengeance of a man whose wife he had seduced." And yet, I admit that the most infamous popes, the most heart less and fiendish bishops, friars and priests were models of mercy, charity, and justice when compared with the orthodox God with the God they worshipped. These popes, these bishops, these priests could persecute only for a few years they could burn only for a few moments but their God threatened to imprison and burn for ever ; and their God is as much worse than they were, as hell is worse than the Inquisition. 11 John XIII. was strangled in prison. Boniface VII. imprisoned Benedict VII., and starved him to death. John XIV. was secretly put to death in the dungeons of the castle of St. Angelo. The corpse of Boniface was dragged by the populace through the streets." It must be remembered that the popes were assassinated by Catholics murdered by the faithful that one Vicar of Christ strangled another Vicar of Christ, and that these men were " the greatest rulers and the greatest statesmen of the earth." " Pope John XVI. was seized, his eyes put out. his nose cut off, his tongue torn from his mouth, and he was sent through the streets mounted on an ass, with his face to the tail. Benedict IX., a boy of less than twelve years of age, was raised to the apostolic throne. One of his successors, Victor III., declared that the life of Benedict was so shameful, so foul, so execrable, that he shuddered to describe it. He ruled like a captain of banditti. The people, unable to bear longer his adulteries, his homicides and his abominations, rose against him, and in despair of maintaining his position, he put up the papacy to auction, and it was bought by a Presbyter named John, who became Gregory VI., in the year of grace 1045. Well may we ask, Were these the Vicegerents of God upon earth these, who had truly reached that goal beyond which the last effort of human wick edness cannot pass." It may be sufficient to say that there is no crime that man can commit that has not been committed by the Vicars of Christ. They have inflicted every possible torture, violated every natural right. Greater monsters the human race has not produced. Among the " some twohundred and fifty-eight" Vicars of Christ there were probably some good men. This would have happened even if the intention had been to get all bad men, for the reason that man reaches perfection neither in good nor in evil ; but if they were selected by Christ himself, if they were selected by a Church vrith a divine origin and under divine guidance, then there is no way to account for the selection of a bad one. If one hypocrite was duly elected pope one murderer, one strangler, one starver this demon strates that all the popes were selected by men, and by men only, and that the claim of divine guidance is born of zeal and uttered without knowledge. But who were the Vicars of Christ ? How many have there 42 ROME, OR REASON ? been ? Cardinal Manning himself does not know. He is not sure. He says : " Starting from St. Peter to Leo XIII., there have been some two hundred and fifty -eight Pontiffs claiming to be recognized by the whole Catholic unity as successors of St. Peter and Vicars of Jesus Christ." Why did he use the word "some?" Why " claiming ?" Does he not positively know ? Is it possiblethat the present Vicar of Christ is not certain as to the number of his pre decessors ? Is he infallible in faith and fallible in fact. PART II. " If we live thus tamely, To be thus jaded by a piece of scarlet, Farewell nobility." No ONE will deny that " the pope speaks to many people in many nations ; that he treats with empires and governments," and that " neither from Canterbury nor from Constantinople such a voice goes forth." How does the pope speak ? What does he say ? He speaks against the liberty of man against the progress of the human race. He speaks to calurninate thinkers, and to warn the faithful against the discoveries of science. He speaks for the de struction of civilization. Who listens ? Do astronomers, geologists and scientists put the hand to the ear fearing that an accent may be lost ? Does France listen ? Does Italy hear ? Is not the Church weakest at its centre ? Do those who have raised Italy from the dead, and placed her again among the great nations, pay attention ? Does Great Britain care for this voice this moan, this groan of the Middle Ages ? Do the words of Leo XIII. impress the intelligence of the Great Republic ? Can anything be more absurd than for the vicar of Christ to attack a demonstration of science with a passage of Scripture, or a quota tion from one of the " Fathers "? Compare the popes with the kings and queens of England. In finite wisdom had but little to do with the selection of these mon- archs, and yet they were far better than any equal number of con secutive popes. This is faint praise, even for kings and queens, but it shows that chance succeeded in getting better rulers for Eng land than " Infinite Wisdom " did for the Church of Rome. Com pare the popes with the presidents of the Republics elected by the people ! If Adams ha 1 murdered Washington, and Jefferson had imprisoned Adams, and if Madison had cut out Jefferson s tongue, and Monroe had assassinated Madison, and John Quincy Adams had poisoned Monroe, and General Jackson had hung Adams and his Cabinet, we might say that presidents had been as virtuous as popes. But if this had happened, tho verdict of the world would be that the people are not capable of selecting their presidents. ROME, OR REASON ? 43 But this voice from Rome is growing feebler day by day ; so feeble that the Cardinal admits that the vicar of God, and the Super natural Church, " are being tormented by Falck laws, by Mancini laws and by Crispi laws." In other words, this representative of God. this substitute of Christ, this Church of divine origin, this supernatural institution pervaded by the Holy Ghost is being tormented " by three politicians. Is it possible that this patriotic trinity is more powerful than the other ? It is claimed that if the Catholic Church " be only a human system, built up by the intellect, will and energy of men, the adver saries must prove it that the burden is upon them." As a general thing, institutions are natural. If this Church is supernatural, it is the one exception. The affirmative is with those who claim that it is of divine origin. So far as we know, all govern ments and all creeds are the work of man. No one believes that Rome was a supernatural production, and yet its beginnings were as small as those of the Catholic Church. Commencing in weakness, Rome grew, and fought, and conquered, until it was believed that the sky bent above a subjugated world. And yet all was natural. For every effect there was an efficient cause. The Catholic asserts that all other religions have been produced by man that Brahminism and Buddhism, the religion of Isis and Osiris, the marvelous mythologies of Greece and Rome, were the work of the human mind. From these religions Catholicism has borrow ed. Long before Catholicism was born, it was believed that women had borne children whose fathers were gods. The Trinity was promul gated in Egypt centuries before the birth of Moses. Celibacy was taught by the ancient Nazarenes and Essenes, by the priests of Egypt and India, by mendicant monks, and by the piously insane of many countries long before the Apostles lived. The Chinese tell us that "when there were but one man and one woman upon the earth, the woman refused to sacrifice her virginity even to people the globe; and the gods, honoring her purity, granted that she should conceive beneath the gaze of her lover s eyes, and a virgin mother became the parent of humanity." The founders of many religions have insisted that it was the duty of man to renounce the pleasures of sense, and millions before our era took the vows of chastity, poverty and obedience, and most cheerfully lived upon the labor of others. The sacraments of baptism and confirmation are far older than the Church of Romt?. The Eucha ist is pagan. Long before popes began to murder each other, pagans ate cakes the iiesh of Ceres, and drank wine the blood of Bacchus. Holy water flowed in the Ganges and Nile, priests interceded for the people, and anointed the dying. It will not do to say that every successful religion that has taught unnatural doctrines, unnatural practices, must of necessity have been of divine origin. In most religions there has been a strange mingling of the good and bad, of the merciful and cruel, of the lov- 44 ROME, OR REASON ? ing and malicious. Buddhism taught the universal brotherhood of man, insisted on the development of the mind, and this religion was propagated not by the sword, but by preaching, by persuasion, and by kindnessyet it many things it was contrary to the human will, contrary to the human passions, and contrary to good sense. Bud dhism succeeded. Can we, for this reason, say that it is a super natural religion ? Is the unnatural the supernatural ? It is insisted that, while other churches have changed, the Catho lic Church aloue has remained the same, and that this fact demon strates its divine origin. Has the creed of Buddhism changed in three thousand years V Is intellectual stagnation a demonstration of divine origin? "When anything refuses to grow, are we certain that the seed was planted by God ? If the Catholic Church is the same to-day that it has been for many centuries, this proves that there has been no intel lectual development. If men do not differ upon religious subjects, it is because they do not think. Differentiation is the law of growth, of progress. Every church must gain or lose; it cannot remain the same; it must decay or grow. The fact that the Catholic Church has not grown that it has been petrified from the first does not establish divine origin ; it simply establishes the fact that it retards the progress of man. Everything in nature changes every atom is in motion every star moves. Nations, institutions and individuals have youth, manhood, old age, death. This is and will be true of the Catholic Church. It was once weak it grew stronger it reached its climax of power it began to decay it never can rise again. It is confronted by the dawn of Science. In the presence of the nineteenth century it cowers. It is not true that "All natural causes run to disintegration." Natural causes run to integration as well as to disintegration. All growth is integration, and all growth is natural. AH decay is dis integration, and all decay is natural. Nature builds and nature destroys. When the acorn grows when the sunlight and rain fall upon it and the oak rises so far as the oak is concerned "all natural causes" do not "run to disintegration." But there comes a times when the oak has reached its limit, and then the forces of na ture run towards disintegration, and finally the old oak falls. But if the Cardinal is right if "all natural causes run to disintegration," then every success must have been of divine origin, and nothing is natural but destruction. This is Catholic science : "All natural causes run to disintegration." What do these causes find to disin tegrate ? Nothing that is natural. The fact that the thing is not disintegrated shows that it was and is of supernatural origin. Ac cording to the Cardinal, the only business of nature is to disinte grate the supernatural. To prevent this, the supernatural needs the protection of the infinite. According to this doctrine, if any thing lives ana grows, it does so iu spite of nature Growth, then, is not in accordance with, but in opposition to nature. Every plant ROME, OR REASON ? 45 is supernatural it defeats the disintegrating influences of rain and light. The generalization of the Cardinal is half the truth. It would be equally true to say : All natural causes run to integration. But the whole truth is that growth and decay are equal. The Cardinal asserts that "Christendom was created by the world-wide Church as we see it before our eyes at this day. Phi losophers and statesmen believe it to be the work of their own hands ; they did not make it, but they have for three hundred years been unmaking it by reformations and revolutions. The meaning of this is that Christendom was far better three hundred years ago than now; that during these three centuries Christendom has been going towards barbarism. It means that the supernatural Church of God has been a failure for three hun dred years ; that it has been unable to withstand the attacks of philosophers and statesmen, and that it has been helpless in the midst of " reformations and revolutions." What was the condition of the world three hundred years ago, the period, according to the Cardinal, in which the Church reached the height of its influence, and since which it has been unable to withstand the rising tide of reformation and the whirlwind of revo lution. In that blessed time, Philip II. was king of Spain he with the cramped head and the monstrous jaw. Heretics were hunted like wild and poisonous beasts ; the inquisition was firmly established, and priests were busy with rack and fire. With a zeal born of the hatred of man and the love of God, the Church, with every instru ment of torture, touched every nerve in the human body. In those happy days the Duke of Alva was devastating the homes of Holland ; heretics were buried alive their tongues were torn from their mouths, their lids from their eyes ; the Armada was on the sea for the destruction of the heretics of England, and the Mor- iscoes a million and a half of industrious people were being driven by sword and flame from their homes. The Jews had been expell ed from Spain. This Catholic Country had succeeded in driving intelligence and industry from its territory ; and this had been done with a cruelty, with a ferocity, unequaled in the annals of crime. Nothing was left but ignorance, bigotry, intolerance, credulity, the Inquisition, the seven sacraments and the seven deadly sins. And yet a Cardinal of the nineteenth century, living in the land of Shakespeare, regrets the change that has been wrought by the in tellectual efforts, by the discoveries, by the inventions and heroism of three hundred years. Three hundred years ago, Charles IX., in France, son of Catherine de Medici, in the year of grace 1572 after nearly sixteen centuries of Catholic Christianity after hundreds of vicars of Christ had sat in St. Peter s chair after the natural passions of man had been " softened " by the creed of Rome came the Massacre of St. Bartholomew, the result of a conspiracy between the Vicar of Christ, Philip II., Charles IX., and his fiendish mother. Let the Cardinal 46 ROME, OR REASON ? read the account of this massacre once more, and after reading it, imagine that he sees the gashed and mutilated bodies of thousands of men and women, and then let him say that he regrets the revolutions and reformations of three hundred years. About three hundred years ago Clement VIII. , Vicar of Christ, acting in God s place, substitute of the Infinite, persecuted Giordano Bruno, even unto death. This great, this sublime man, was tried for heresy. He had ventured to assert the rotary motion of the earth ; he had hazarded the conjecture that there were in the fields of in- fite space worlds more larger and glorious than ours. For these low and grovelling thoughts, for this contradiction of the word and vicar of God, this man was imprisoned for many years. But his noble spirit was not broken, and finally in the year 160J, by the order of the infamous Vicar, he was chained to the stake. Priests believing in the doctrine of universal forgiveness priests who when smitten upon one cheek turned the other carried with a kind of ferocious joy fagots to the feet of this incomparable ruan. These disciples of " Our Lord " were made joyous as the flames, like serpents, climbed around the body of Bruno. In a few moments the brave thinker was dead, and the priests who had burned him fell upon their knees and asked the infinite God to continue the blessed work for ever in hell. There are two things that cannot exist in the same universe an infinite God and, a martyr. Does the Cardinal regret that kings and emperors are not now engaged in the extermination of Protestants ? Does he regret that dungeons of the Inquisition are no longer crowded with the best and bravest ? Does he long for the fires of the auto da f6 ? In coming to a conclusion as to the origin of the Catholic Church in determining the truth of the claim of infallibility we are not restricted to the physical achievements of that Church, or to the history of its propagation, or to the rapidity of its growth. This Church has a creed; and if this Church is of divine origin if its head is the vicar of Christ, and, as such, infal lible in matters of faith and morals, this creed must be true. Let us start with the supposition that God exists, and that he is infinitely wise, powerful and good and this is only a supposition. Now, if the creed is foolish, absurd and cruel, it cannot be of divine origin. We find in this creed the following : " Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic faith." It is not necessary, before all things, that he be good, honest, merciful, charitable and just. Creed is more important than con duct. The most important of all things is, that he hold the Catholic faith. There were thousands of years during which it was not necessary to hold that faith, because that faith did not exist ; and yet during that time the virtues were just as important as now, just as important as they ever can be. Millions of the noblest of the human race never heard of this creed. Millions of the bravest ROME, OR REASON ? 47 and beat have beard of it, examined, and rejected it. Millions of the most infamous bave believed it, and because of their belief, or notwithstanding their belief, have murdered millions of their fellows. We know that men can be, have been, and are just as wicked with it as without it. We know that it is not necessary to believe it to be good, loving, tender, noble and self-denying. We admit that millions who have believed it have also been self-denying and heroic, and that millions, by such belief, were not prevented from torturing and destroying the helpless. Now if all who believed it were good, and all who rejected it were bad, then there might be some propriety in saying that " whoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic faith." But as the experience of mankind is otherwise, the declaration becomes absurd, ignorant and cruel. There is still another clause : " Which faith, except everyone do keep entire and inviolate, without doubt, he si all everlastingly perish." We now have both sides of this wonderful truth : The believer will be saved, the unbeliever will be lost. We know that faith is not the child or servant of the will. We know that belief is a con clusion based upon what the mind supposes to be true. We know that it is not an act of the will. Nothing can be more absurd than to save a man because he is not inelligent enough to accept the truth, and nothing can be more infamous than to damn a man because he is intelligent enough to reject the false. It resolves itself into a question of intelligence. If the creed is true, then a man rejects it because he lacks intelligence. Is this a crime for which a man should everlastingly perish ? If the creed is false, then a man accepts it because he lacks intelligence. In both cases the crime is exactly the same. If a man is to be damned for reject ing the truth, certainly he should not be saved for accepting the false. This one clause demonstrates that a being of infinite wis dom and goodness did not write it. It also demonstrates that it was the work of men who had neither wisdom nor a sense of justice. What it this Catholic faith that must be held? It is this : " That we worship one God in Trinity and Trinity in Unity, neither confounding the persons nor dividing the substance." Why should an Infinite Being demand worship? Why should one God wish to be worshiped as three ? Why should three Gods wish to be worshiped as one ? Why should we pray to one God and think of three, or pray to three Gods and think of one? Can this increase the happiness of the one or of the three ? Is it possible to think of one as three, or of three as one ? If you think of three as one, can you think of one as none, or of none as one ? When you think of three as one, what do you do with the other two? You must not "confound the persons" they must be kept separate. When you think of one as three, how do you get the other two ? You must not " divide the substance." Is it possible bo write greater contradictios than these ? 48 ROME, OR REASON ? This creed demonstrates the human origin of the Catholic Church. Nothing could be more unjust than to punish man for unbelief for the expression of honest thought for having been guided by his reason for having acted in accordance with his best judgment. Another claim is made, to the effect " that the Catholic Church has filled the world with the true knowledge of the one true God, and that it has destroyed all idols by light instead of by fire." The Catholic Church described the true God as a being who would inflict eternal pain on his weak and erring children ; de scribed him as a fickle, quick-tempered, unreasonable deity, whom honesty enraged, and whom flattery governed; one who loved to see fear upon its knees, ignorance with closed eyes and open mouth ; one who delighted in useless self denial, who loved to hear the sighs and sobs of suffering nuns, as they Jay prostrate on dungeon floors ; one who was delighted when the husband de serted his family and lived alone in some cave in the far wilder ness, tormented by dreams and driven to insanity by prayer and penance, by fasting and faith. According to the Catholic Church, the true God enjoyed the agonies of heretics. He loved the smell of their burning flesh ; he applauded with wide palms when philosophers were flayed alive, and to him the auto da i& was a divine comedy. The shrieks of wives, the cries of babes when fathers were being burned, gave con trast, heightened the effect and filled his cup with joy. This true God did not know the shape of the earth he had made, and had forgotten the orbits of the stars. " The stream of light which de scended from the beginning " was propagated by fagot to fagot, until Christendom was filled with the devouring fires of faith. It may also be said that the Catholic Church filled the world with the true knowledge of the one true Devil. It filled the air with malicious phantoms, crowded innocent sleep with leering fiends, and gave the world to the domination of witches and wizards, spirits and spooks, goblins and ghosts, and butchered and burned thousands for the commission of impossible crimes. It is contended that : " In this true knowledge of the Divine Nature was revealed to man their own relation to a Creator as sons to a Father." This tender relation was revealed by the Catholics to the Pagans, the Arians, the Cathari, the WaMenses, the Albigenses, the heretics, the Jews, the Moriscoes, the Protestants to the natives of the West Indies, of Mexico, of Peru to philosophers, patriots and thinkers. All these victims were taught to regard the true God as a loving Father, and this lesson was taught with every instrument of torture with brandings and burnings, with flayings and flames. The world was filled with cruelty and credulity, ignorance and intolerance, and the soil in which all these horrors grew was the true knowledge of the one true God, and the true knowledge of the one true Devil. And yet, we are compelled to say, that the one true Devil described by the Catholic Church was not as malevolent as the one true God. ROME, OR REASON ? 49 Is it true that the Catholic Church overthrew idolatry ? What is idolatry ? What shall we say of the worship of popes of the doctrine of the Real Presence, of divine honors paid to saints, of sacred vestments, of holy water, of consecrated cups and plates, of images and relics, of amulets and charms ? The Catholic Church filled the world with the spirit of idolatry. It abandoned the idea of continuity in nature, it denied the integ rity of cause and effect. The government of the world was the composite result of the caprice of God, the malice of Satin, the prayers of the faithful softened, it may be, by the charity of Chance. Yet the Cardinal asserts, without the preface of a smile, that " Demonology was overthrown by the Church, with the assist ance of forces that were above nature ;" and in the same breath gives birth to this enlightened statement : " Beelzebub is not divided against himself." Is a belief in Beelzebub a belief in demon- ology ? Has the Cardinal forgotten the Council of Nice, held in the year of grace 787, that declared the worship of images to be lawful ? Did that infallible Council, under the guidance of the Holy Ghost, destroy idolatry ? The Cardinal takes the ground that marriage is a sacrament, and therefore indissoluble, and he also insists that celibacy is far better than marriage, holier than a sacrament, that marriage is not the highest state, but that "the state of virginity unto death is the highest condition of man and woman." The highest ideal of a family is where all are equal where love has superseded authority where each seeks the good of all, and where none obey where no religion can sunder hearts, and with which no church can interfere. The real marriage is based on mutual affection the ceremony is but the outward evidence of the inward flame. To this con tract there are but two parties. The Church is an impudent in truder. Marriage is made public to the end that the real contract may be known, so that the world can see that the parties have been actuated by the highest and holiest motives that find expres sion in the acts of human beings. The man and women are not joined together by God, or by the Church, or by the State. The Church and State may prescribe certain ceremonies, certain for malities but all these are only evidence of the existence of a sacred fact in the hearts of the wedded. The indissolubility of marriage is a dogma that has filled the lives of millions with agony and tears It has given a perpetual excuse for vice and immorality. Fear has borne children begotten by brutality. Countless women have endured the insults, indignities and cruel ties of fiendish husbands, because they thought that it was the will of God. The contract of marriage is the most important that human beings can make ; but no contract can be so important as to release one of the parties from the obligation of performance; and no contract, whether made between man and woman, or between them and God, alter a failure of consideration caused by the wil- 50 ROME, OB REASON ? ful act of the man or woman, can hold and bind the innocent and honest. Do the believers in indissoluble marriage treat their wiver better than others ? A little while ago, a woman said to a man who had raised his hand to strike her: " Do not touch me ; you have DO right to beat me ; I am not your wife." About a year ago a husband, whom God in his infinite wisdom had joined to a loving and patient woman in the indissoluble sacranieut of marriage, becoming enraged, seized the helpless wife and tore out one of her eyes. She forgave him. A few weeks ago he deliber ately repeated this frightful crime, leaving his victim totally blind. Would it not have been better if man, before the poor woman was blinded, had put asunder whom God had joined together ? Thou sands of husbands, who insist that marriage is indissoluble, are the beaters of wives. The law of the Church has created neither the purity nor the peace of domestic life. Back of all the churches is human affection. Back of all theologies is tbe love of the human heart. Back of all your priests and creeds is the adoration of the one woman by the one man, and of the one man by the one womau. Back of your faith is the fireside, back of your folly is the family ; and back of all your holy mistakes and your sacred absurdities is the love of hus band and wife, of parent and child. It is not true that neither the Greek nor the Roman world had any true conception of a home. The splendid story of Ulysses and Penelope, the parting of Hector and Andromache, demonstrate that a true conception of home existed among the Greeks. Before the establishment of Christianity, the Roman matron commanded the admiration of the then known world. She was free and noble. The Church degraded woman made her the property of the husband, and trampled her beneath its brutal feet. The "fathers " denounced woman as a perpetual temptation, as the cause of all evil. The Church worshipped a God who had upheld polygamy, and had pro nounced his curse on woman, and had declared that she should be the serf of the husband. This Church followed the teachings of St. Paul. It taught the uncleanness of marriage, and insisted that all children were conceived in sin. This church pretended to have been founded by one who offered a reward in this world, and eternal joy in the next, to husbands who would forsake their wives and children and follow him. Did this tend to the elevation of woman ? Did this detestable doctrine " create the purity and peace of domestic life "? Is it true that a monk is purer than a good and noble father ? that a nun is holier than a loving mother ? Is there anything deeper and stronger than a mother s love ? Is there anything purer, holier than a mother holding her dimpled babe against her billowed breast ? The good man is useful, the best man is the most useful. Those who fill the nights with barren prayers and holy hunger, torture themselves for their own good and not for the*- benefit of others. ROME, OR REASON ? 61 They are earning eternal glory for themselves they do not fast for their fellow men their selfishness is only equalled by their foolish ness. Compare the monk in his selfish cell, counting beads and say ing prayers for the purpose of saving his barren soul, with a husband and father sitting by his fireside with wife and children. Compare the nun with the mother and her babe. Celibacy is the essence of vulgarity. It tries to put a stain upon motherhood, upon marriage, upon love that is to say, upon all that is holiest in the human heart. Take love from the world, and there is nothing left worth living for. The Church has treated this great, this sublime, this unspeakably holy passion, as though it polluted the heart. They have placed the love of God above the love of woman, above the love of man. Human love is generous and noble. The love of God is selfish, because man does not love God for God s sake, but for his own. Yet the Cardinal asserts " that the change wrought by Christianity in the social, political and international relations of the world " " that the root of this ethical change, private and public, is the Christian home." A moment afterwards, this prelate in sists that celibacy is far better than marriage. If the world could be induced to live in accordance with the "highest state," this generation would be the last. Why were men and women cre ated ? Why did not the Catholic God commence with the sin less and sexless ? The Cardinal ought to take the ground that to talk well is good, but that to be dumb is the highest condition ; that hearing is a pleasure, but that deafness is ecstasy ; and that to think, to reason, is very well, but that to be a Catholic is far better. Why should we desire the destruction of human passions ? Take passions from human beings and what is left ? The great object should be not to destroy passions, but to make them obedient to the intellect. To indulge passion to the utmost is one form of in temperance to destroy passion is another. The reasonable gratifi cation of passion under the domination of the intellect is true wis dom and perfect virtue. The goodness, the sympathy, the self-denial of the nun, of the monk, all come from mother -instinct, the father-instinct all were produced by human affection, by the love of man for woman, of woman for man. Love is a transfiguration. It ennobles, purifies and glorifies. In true marriage two hearts burst into flower. Two lives unite. They melt in music. Every moment is a melody. Love is a revelation, a creation. From love the world borrows its beauty and the heavens their glory. Justice, self-denial, charity and pity are the children of love. Lover, wife, mother, husband, father, child, home these words shed light they are the gems of human speech. Without love all glory fades, the noble falls from life, art dies, music loses meaning and becomes mere motions of the air, and virtue ceases to exist. It is asserted that this life of celibacy is above and against the 52. ROME, OR REASON ? tendencies of human nature ; and the Cardinal then asks : " Who will ascribe this to natural causes, and, if so, why did it not appear in the first four thousand years ?" If there is in a system of religion a doctrine, a dogma, or a practice against the tendencies of human nature if this religion succeeds, then it is claimed by the Cardinal that such religion must be of divine origin. Is it " against the tendencies of human nature " for a mother to throw her child into the Ganges to please a supposed God ? Yet a religion that insisted on that sacrifice succeeded, and has, to-day, more believers than the Catholic Church can boast. Religions, like nations and individuals, have always gone along the line of least resistance. Nothing has " ascended the stream of human license by a power mightier than nature." There is no such power. There never was, there never can be, a miracle. We know that man is a conditional being. We know that he is affected by a change of conditions. If he is ignorant he is superstitious : this is natural. If his brain is developed if he perceives clearly that all things are naturally produced, he ceases to be superstitious, and becomes scientific. He is not a saint, but a savant not a priest, but a philosopher. He does not worship he works ; he investigates ; he thinks ; he takes advantage, through intelligence, of the forces of nature. He is no longer the victim of appearances, the dupe of his own ignorance, and the persecutor of his fellow men. He then knows that it is far better to love his wife and children than to love God. He then knows that the love of man for woman, of woman for man, of parent for child, of child for parent, is far better, far holier, than the love of man for any phantom born of ignorance and fear. It is illogical to take the ground that the world was cruel and ignorant and idolatrous when the Catholic Church was established, and that because the world is better now than then, the Church is of divine origin. What was the world when science came ? What was it in the days of Galileo, Copernicus and Kepler ? What was it when print ing was invented? What was it when the Western World was found ? Would it not be much easier to prove that science is of divine origin ? Science does not persecute. It does not shed blood it fills the wo Id with light. It cares nothing for heresy; it develops the mind, and enables man to answer his own prayers. Cardinal Manning takes the ground that Jehovah practically abandoned the children of men for four thousand years, and gave them over to every abomination. He claims that Christianity came " in the fullness of time," and it is then admitted that " what the fullness of time may mean is one of the mysteries of times and sea sons, that it is not for us to know." Having declared that it is a mystery, and one that we are not to know, the Cardinal explains it : " One motive for the long delay of four thousand years is not ROME, OR REASON ? 53 far to seek it gave time, full and ample, for the utmost develop ment and consolidation of all the falsehood and evil of which the intellect and will of man are capable. Is it possible to imagine why an infinitely good and wise being 4 gave time full and ample for the utmost development and con solidation of falsehood and evil ?" Why should an infinitely wise God desire this development and consolidation ? What would be thought of a father who should refuse to teach his son and deliber ately allow him to go into every possible excess, to the end that he might develop all the falsehood and evil of which his intellect and will were capable ?" If a supernatural religion is a necessity, and if without it all men simply develop and consolidate falsehood and evil, why was not a supernatural religion given to the first man ? The Catholic Church, if this be true, should have been founded in the garden of Eden. Was it not cruel to drown a world just for the want of a supernatural religion a religion that man, by no possibility, could furnish ? Was there " husbandry in heaven?" But the Cardinal contradicts himself by not only admitting, but declaring, that the world had never seen a legislation so just, so equitable, as that of Rome. Is it possible that a nation in which falsehood and evil had reached their highest development was, after all, so wise, so just, and so equitable? Was not the civil law far better than the Mosaic more philosophical, nearer just ? The civil law was produced without the assistance of God. According to the Cardinal, it was produced by men in whom all the falsehood and evil of which they were capable had been developed and con solidated, while the cruel and ignorant Mosaic code came from the lips of infinite wisdom and compassion. It is declared that the history of Rome shows what man can do without God, and I assert that the history of the Inquisition shows what man can do when assisted by a church of divine origin, pre sided over by the infallible vicars of God. The fact that the early Christians not only believed incredible things, but persuaded others of their truth, is regarded by the Cardinal as a miracle. This is only another phase of the old argu ment that success is a test of divine origin. All supernatural re ligions have been founded in precisely the same way. The credulity of eighteen hundred years ago believed everything except the truth. A religion is a growth, and is of necessity adapted in some degree to the people among whom it grows. It is shaped and molded by the general ignorance, the superstition and credulity of the age in which it lives. The key is fashioned by the lock. Every religion that has succeeded has in some way supplied the wants of its votaries, and has to a certain extent harmonized with their hopes, their fears, their vices, and their virtues. If, as the Cardinal says, the religion of Christ is in absolute harmony with nature, how can it In; supernatural ? The Cardinal 54 ROME, OR REASON ? also declares that " the religion of Christ is in harmony with the reason and moral nature in all nations and all ages to this day." What becomes of the argument that Catholicism must be of divine origin because " it has ascended the stream of human license, contra ictumjluminis, by a power mightier than nature ? If " it is in harmony with the reason and moral nature of all nations and all ages to this day," it has gone with the stream, and not against it. If " the religion of Christ is in harmony with the reason and moral nature of all nations," then the men who have rejected it are un natural, and these men have gone against the stream. How then can it be said that Christianity has been in changeless opposition to nature as man has marred it ? To what extent has man marred it ? In spite of the marring by man, we are told that the reason and moral nature of all nations in all ages to this day is in harmony with the religion of Jesus Christ. Are we justified in saying that the Catholic Church is of divine origin because the Pagans failed to destroy it by persecution ? We will put the Cardinal s statement in form : Paganism failed to destroy Catholicism by persecution, therefore Catholicism is of divine origin. Let us make an application of this logic : Paganism failed to destroy Catholicism by persecution ; there fore, Catholicism is of divine origin. Catholicism failed to destroy Protestantism by persecution ; therefore, Protestantism is of divine origin. Catholicism and Protestantism combined failed to destroy Infi delity ; therefore, Infidelity is of divine origin. Let us make another application : Paganism did not succeed in destroying Catholicism ; therefore, Paganism was a false religion. Catholicism did not succeed in destroying Protestantism ; there fore, Catholicism is a false religion . Catholicism and Protestantism combined failed to destroy Infi delity ; therefore, both Catholicism and Protestantism are false religions. The Cardinal has another reason for believing the Catholic Church of divine origin. He declares that the " Canon Law is a creation of wisdom and justice to which no statutes at large or imperial pandects can bear comparison ;" " that the world-wide and secular legislation of the Church was of a higher character, and that as water cannot rise above its source, the Church could not, by mere human wisdom, have corrected and perfected the imperial law, and therefore its source must have been higher than the sources of the world." When Europe was the most ignorant, the Canon Law was su preme. As a matter of fact, the good in the Canon Law was bor rowed the bad was, for the most part, original. In my judgment, the legislation of the republic of the United States is in many re spects superior to that of Rome, and yet we are greatly indebted tc ROME, OR REASON ? 55 the Civil Law. Our legislation is superior in many particulars to that of England, and yet we are greatly indebted to the Common Law ; but it never occurred to me that our Statutes at Large are divinely inspired. If the Canon Law is, in fact, the legislation of infinite wisdom, then it should be a perfect code. Yet, the Canon Law made it a crime next to robbery and theft to take interest for money. With out the right to take interest the business of the world would, to a large extent, cease and the prosperity of mankind end. There are railways enough in the United States to make six tracks around the globe, and every mile was built with borrowed money on which interest was paid or promised. In no other way could the savings of many thousands have been brought together and a capital great enough formed to construct works of such vast and continental importance. It was provided in this same wonderful Canon Law that a heretic could not be witness against a Catholic. The Catholic was at lib erty to rob and wrong his fellow man, provided the fellow man was not a fellow Catholic, and in a court established by the vicar of Christ, the man who had been robbed was not allowed to open his mouth. A Catholic could enter the house of an unbeliever, of a Jew, of a heretic, of a Moor, aud before the eyes of the husband and father murder his wife and children, and the father could not pronounce in the hearing of a judge the name of the murderer. The world is wiser now, and the Canon Law, given to us by infinite wisdom, has been repealed by the common sense of man. In this divine code it was provided that to convict a cardinal bishop, seventy-two witnesses were required ; a cardinal presbyter, forty-four ; a cardinal deacon, twenty-four ; a sub-deacon, acolyth, exorcist, reader, ostiarius, seven ; and in the purgation of a bishop, twelve witnesses were invariably required ; of a presbyter, seven ; of a deacon, three. These laws, in my judgment, were made, not by God, but by the clergy. So too in this cruel code it was provided that those who gave aid, favor or counsel, to excommunicated persons, should be anathema, and that those who talked with, consulted, or sat at the same table with or gave anything in charity to the excommunicated should be anathema. It is possible that a being of infinte wisdom made hospit lity a crime ? Did he say : " Whoso giveth a cup of cold water to the excommunicated shall w ar forever a garment of fire ?" Were not the laws of the Ilomans much better ? Besides all this, under the Canon Law the dead could be tried for heresy, and their estates confiscated that is to say, their widows and orphans robbed. The most brutal part of the common law of England is that in relation to the rights of women all of which was taken from the Corpus Juris Canonici, "the law that came from a higher source than man." The only cause of absolute divorce as laid down by the pious canonists was propter infidelitatem, which was when one of the par- 56 ROME, OR REASON ? ties became Catholic, and would nob live with the other who con tinued still an unbeliever. Under this divine statute, a pagan wishing to be rid of his wife had only to join the Catholic Church, provided she remained faithful to the religion of her fathers. Under this divine law, a man marrying a widow was declared to be a bigamist. It would require volumes to point out the cruelties, absurdities and inconsistencies of the Canon Law. It has been thrown away by the world. Every civilized nation has a code of its own, and the Canon Law is of interest only to the historian, the antiquarian, and the enemy ot theological government. Under the Canon Law, people were convicted of being witches and wizards, of holding intercourse with devils. Thousands perish ed at the stake, having been convicted of these impossible crimes. Under the Canon Law, there was such a crime as the suspicion of heresy. A mail or woman could be arrested, charged with being suspected, and under this Canon Law, flowing from the intellect of infinite wisdom, the presumption was in favor of guilt. The suspect ed had to prove themselves innocent. In all civilized courts, the presumption of innocence is the shield of the indicted, but the Canon Law took away this shield, and put in the hand of the priest the sword of presumptive guilt. If the real pope is the vicar of Christ, the true shepherd of the sheep, this fact should be known not only to the vicar, but to the sheep. A divinely founded and guarded church ought to know its own shepherd, and yet the Catholic sheep have not always been certain who the shepherd was. The Council of Pisa, held in 1409, deposed two popes rivals Gregory and Benedict that is to say, deposed the actual vicar of Christ and the pretended. This action was taken because a council, enlightened by the Holy Ghost, could not tell the genuine from the counterfeit. The council then elected another vicar, whose author ity was afterwards denied. Alexander V. died, and John XX.III. took his place ; Gregory XII. insisted that he was the lawful pope ; John resigned, then he was deposed, and afterwards imprisoned ; then Gregory XII. resigned, and Martin V. was elected. The whole thing reads like the annals of a South American revolution. The Council of Constance restored, as the Cardinal declares, the unity of the Church, and brought back the consolation of the Holy Ghost. Before this great council John Huss appeared and main tained his own tenets. The council declared that the Church was not bound to keep its promise with a heretic. Huss was condemn ed and^xecnted on the Cth of July, 1415. His disciple, Jerome of Prague, recanted, but having relapsed, was put to death, May 80th, 1410. This cursed council shed the blood of Huss and Jerome. The Cardinal appeals to the author of " Ecce Homo" for the pur pose of showing that Christianity is above nature, and the following passages, among others, are quoted : " Who can describe that which unites men ? Who has entered ROME, OR REASON ? 57 into the formation of speech, which is the symbol of their union ? Who can describe exhaustively the origin of civil society ? He who can do these things can explain the origin of the Christian Church." These passages should not have been quoted by the Cardinal. The author of these passages simply says that the origin of the Christian Church is no harder to find and describe than that which unites men than that which has entered into the formation of speech, the symbol of their union no harder to describe than the origin of civil society because he says that one who can describe these can des cribe the other. Certainly none of these things are above nature. We do not need the assistance of the Holy Ghost in these matters. We know that men are united by common interests, common purposes, com mon dangers by race, climate, and education. It is no more won derful that people live in families, tribes, communities and nations, than that birds, ants and bees live in flocks and swarms. If we know anything, we know that language is natural that it is a physical science. But if we take the ground occupied by the Cardinal, then we insist that everything that cannot be accounted for by man, is supernatural. Let me ask, by what man ? What man must we take as the standard? Cosmas or Humboldt, St. Irenaeus or Darwin ? If everything that we cannot account for is above nature, then ignorance is the test of the supernatural. The man who is mentally honest, stops where his knowledge stops. At that point lie says that he does not know. Such a man is a phi losopher. Then the theologian steps forward, denounces the modesty of the philosopher as blasphemy, and proceeds to tell what is beyond the horizon of the human intellect. Could a savage account for the telegraph, or the telephone, by natural causes ? How would he account for these wonders ? He would account for them precisely as the Cardinal accounts for the Catholic Church. Belonging to no rival church, I have not the slightest interest in the primacy of Leo XII f., and yet it is to be regretted that this primacy rests upon such a narrow and insecure foundation. The Cardinal says that " it will appear almost certain that the original Greek of St. Irenaeus, which is unfortunately lost, contained either ra Trpurela, or some inflection of irpuTev u, which signifies primacy." From this it appears that the primacy of the Bishop of Rome rests on some "inflection" of a Greek word and that this supposed inflection was in a letter supposed to have been written by St. Irenaeus, which has certainly been lost. Is it possible that the vast fabric of papal power has this, and only this, for its founda tion ? To this "inflection" has it come at last ? The Cardinal s case depends upon the intelligence and veracity of his witnesses. The Fathers of the Church were utterly incapable of examining a question of fact. They were all believers in the miraculous. The same is true of the Apostles. If St. John was 58 ROME, OR REASON ? the author of the Apocalypse, he was undoubtedly insane. If Polycarp said the things attributed to him by Catholic writers, he was certainly in the condition of his master. What is the testimony of St. John worth in the light of the following ? " Cerinthus, the heretic, was in a bath-house. St. John and another Christian were about to enter. St. John cried out : * Let us run away, lest the house fall upon us while the enemy of truth is in it." " Is it pos sible that St. John thought that God would kill two eminent Chris tians for the purpose of getting even with one heretic ? Let us see who Polycarp was. He seems to have been a proto type of the Catholic Church, as will be seen from the following statement concerning this Father : " When any heretical doctrine was spoken in his presence he would stop his ears. " After this, there can be no question of his orthodoxy. It is claimed that Poly carp was a martyr that a spear was run through his body, and that from the wound his soul, in the shape of a bird, flew away. The history of his death is just as true as the history of his life. Irenaeus, another witness, took the ground that there was to be a millennium a thousand years of enjoyment in which celibacy would not be the highest form of virtue. If he is called as a wit ness for the purpose of establishing the divine origin of the Church, and if one of his "inflections " is the basis of papal supremacy, is the Cardinal also willing to take his testimony as to the nature of the millennium ? All the Fathers were infinitely credulous. Every one of them believed, not only in the miracles said to have been wrought by Christ, by the Apostles, and by other Christians, but every one of them believed in the Pagan miracles. All of these Fathers were familiar with wonders and impossibilities. Nothing was so com mon with them as to work miracles, and on many occasions they not only cured diseases, not only reversed the order of nature, but succeeded in raising the dead. It is very hard, indeed to prove what the Apostles said, or what the Fathers of the Church wrote. There were many centuries filled with forgeries many generations in which the cunning hands of ecclesiastics erased, obliterated and interpolated the records of the past during which they invented books, invented authors, and quoted from works that never existed. The testimony of the " Fathers " is without the slightest value. They believed everything they examined nothing. They receiv ed as a waste-basket receives. Whoever accepts their testimony will exclaim with the Cardinal : " Happily, men are not saved by logic." ROBERT G. INGERSOT.L. REV. L A. LAMBERT S NOTES OM INGERSOLL EIGHTH EDITION. ONE HUNDRED AND TENTH THOUSAND, PRICE, - - - 15 Cents. For Sale By all Hook sellers. TORONTO: THE NATIONAL PUBLISHING Co.