Page images
[ocr errors]


from idolatry in their image worship, say no Now, gentlemen, you must yourselves be more for their exculpation, than the heathens fully aware that I never boldly charged Prosaid for themselves, and that, therefore, Catholics testants with being guilty of perverse and are equally idolatrous as the heathens are, or

groundless misrepresentations of the religion “ Here the impression which generally obtains of Roman Catholics: and therefore the among Protestants on this subject, is stated writer who makes the assertions states that more strongly than it needs be; and as if to give which is not the fact. it the character of the utmost possible offence But I now arraign him upon a more against charity, other language than their own is added to that, which they, correctly. enough, weighty charge. In his first essay, he lays in general, are represented to have used. Ti the ground of our criminality in giving to may be true, that some Protestants, in an intem- creatures the worship due to God alone, perate zeal of dissent from Popery, have con upon one assumption among others, viz., sidered Roman Catholics equally as idolatrous that we call upon the Saints to be merciful to as the heathens either are or were."

us, in the same manner as we call upon In this passage he imputes to me the ad- God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy dition of other language than that which is Ghost, &c. His words are these, in the correctly used by Protestants, but he cannot sixth paragraph of the essay: deny that I use the expressions found in the

Here, after the invocation of God the Father, Catechism. In my letter I made distinct God the Son, God the Holy Ghost, the Holy reference to the following question and an- Trinity, prayer is offered to Angels and Saints, swer of the little work.

to pray for those thus praying to them, to inter"Q. Do they not declare, that they do not cede for them, and be merciful to them.' direct their worship to the images themselves, but pray to Christ and his saints, through the show the truth of the assumption by quoting

In the preceding paragraph he attempts to images ?

"A. That indeed is said by some of them, the Litany of the Saints from the Roman but it is no more than the heathens said for Missal: the latter part of the paragraph as themselves, and cannot excuse them from the given by him is thus: sin of idolatry: for the word of God is express, • Thou shalt' not make to thyself any graven “St. Mary Magdalen, St. Agatha, St. Lucy, image. Thou shalt not bow down to them. St. Agnes, St. Catharine, St. Anastasia, St. Neither shalt thou set thee up any image, which Bridget, all ye Holy Virgins and Widows-Pray the Lord thy God hateth.'” (Deut. xvi. 22.) for us. All ye men and women, Saints of God,

make intercession for us. Be merciful unto us. The conclusion, " Therefore Roman Ca- (pp. 263-4 of the Missal.) tholics are equally idolatrous as the heathens are or were," was clearly my own inference,

The whole of these words it is true are which I believed to be contained in the pre- found in the Missal in the place referred to; mises and inevitably to flow from them; it and yet the assertion which he makes is was distinctly marked as such; and yet this not true. A Roman Catholic will immediwriter complains of me for having added ately perceive what credit is due to such a those expressions. Why then did he add writer, but as some members of other to my expressions, the words groundless and communions might read this letter, it is palpable? Why did he add the word false, necessary for me to enable them to form a which generally implies an intention to de- just estimate of the value of this writer's ceive, and which intention I did not impute? testimony. Why did he add the word wilful, which I The book from which he quotes has the never insinuated? Why did he add the Litanies arranged in the following order : it word shameful, which I did not use? Why commences with an invocation to God did he add the word shocking? Why the

" for mercy.word wicked? Why did he add perverse ? “Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy Why did he assert that I charged malicious on us. Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear misrepresentation? Why had he the hardi- us. Christ, graciously hear us. hood to assert that I charged malignant mis

“God the Father of Heaven! Have mercy on representation? Is either of those phrases or us, any word than can convey a similar mean

God the Son, Redeemer of the world! Have ing to be found in my production, such as

mercy on us.

"God the Holy Ghost! Have mercy on us. it is? Yet this is the champion of truth “Holy Trinity, One God! Have mercy on us." who is to correct my aberrations! who is to vindicate the compilers of the little book

Then follows the invocation of the Saints, from misrepresentation !

in which the address is altogether different; “Why seest thou the mote that is in thy bro- as they are only addressed as co-worshipther's eye: and the beam that is in thy own eye pers of God with us, and asked to “ Pray thou seest not." (Matt. vii. 3.)

for us," or intercede for us.



Holy Mary,

the writer had the whole Litany before Holy Mother of God,

him, and cut a line into two portions, so as to &c., &c.,

Pray for us. add the first half to that with which it had no
St. Catharine,
St. Anastasia,

connexion, and to suppress the latter half, St. Bridget,

it would deserve the other epithets which " All ye men and women, saints of God, he appears so anxious to introduce. He is make intercession for us."

welcome to them if he thinks proper. Good 'This closes the invocation of the saints, gentlemen, I believe this witness is now in which they certainly are called upon to fairly disposed of

. His incompetency is pray for us, and to make intercession for manifest. A writer who garbles a docu

After which, in a distinct clause, fol- ment in the manner which he has done, lows another invocation in the following would not be admitted in any court of words:

justice in the universe. But your corre

spondent is by no means singular in this ; “Be merciful unto us. Spare us, O Lord ! Be merciful unto us. Graciously hear us,

he has only done that which has been O Lord!

usually performed by those of his class and From all evil,

party. From all sin,

of what value then is that part of his conFrom thy wrath,

clusion which in the following passage is &c., &c.,

predicated on this assumed fact, if such preThrough the mystery O Lord! deliver us. dication was therein intended.

of thy holy Incar-

" Then must the honour due to Christ be imThrough thy coming,

paired by any Christian worship that supplicates &c., &c.,

blessing or mercy through any mediation or inWe sinners, Do beseech thee to hear us. tercession, either besides, or to the exclusion of That Thou spare us,

his. That they who use such worship as that of That thou vouchsafe

which I have adduced the several specimens segovern and preserve thy

lected, give to the creatures the worship due to holy Church,

God alone, will not at first view, admit of ques&c., &c., &c.,

We beseech thee tion; nor is it easy, even on a closer considera.

to hear us. That thou vouchsafe to con

tion of the matter, to separate the reproach of firm and preserve us in

direct idolatry from prayer addressed in the same thy holy service,

Lirany to God, and the many canonized saints, &c., &c., &c."

arbitrarily determined to be capable of hearing It is here manifest, that all those latter and answering prayer; and as arbitrarily proinvocations are addressed to our Lord Jesus vine presence."

nounced to be the blessed attendants of the di. Christ, and not to angels or saints. It is manifest that the phrase, Be merciful to us, Then it is not a fact that Roman Catholics which he applies to the saints, is by Ca- ask the saints or angels to have mercy on tholics addressed to their only Lord and them," in the same manner that they ask Saviour and Redeemer Jesus Christ, to God'to have mercy on them, nor at all in whom the subsequent addresses also are the Litany; and hence, so far as this expresmade.

I feel the question to be concluded. The misrepresentation of the fact, of Before I enter upon the other divisions of which your correspondent is here guilty, is the subject, I shall briefly notice the asserone which no honourable man could tion of the writer in paragraph 9, “ the many stoop to commit; it is one, respecting which canonized saints arbitrarily pronounced to no conscientious man could deliberate : be blessed attendants of the Divine prenothing could prompt to its perpetration sence.” As I know not what is the precise but a consciousness of a desperate cause, meaning attached to the phrase the many and a determined obstinacy to hold to that canonized saints, I shall for the moment supcause, right or wrong. I do not accuse the pose it to be restricted to those enumerated writer with the contradictory name, of this in the quotation from the Litany, and upon depraved disposition; but I can give him the application of the principle I will here no alternative but gross inadvertence, to use, I shall be ready to take up the whole which he is welcome as a protection if he Roman Calendar should your correspondent feels that he deserves it. Here then in the prefer it. very outset is the man who denies that our I shall only suppose that the writer is a tenets have been misrepresented in the little Protestant Episcopalian, which is an intelligibook, detected himself in such a misrepre- ble and appropriate name of a very respectsentation as must be under any circum- | able class of Americans; and next suppose stances characterized as groundless, palpa- that he believes and will admit, that the ble, and false ; for aught that I know, where Liturgy of his Church contains nothing VOL. II.


sion goes,

censurable and implies nothing erroneous. Catholic Church as arbitrary in pronouncing The writer counts up the names of three upon what she conceives to be sufficient angels, and fifty-one saints upon our Litany. evidence, that those whom she calls saints Amongst the changes effected by the Ame- are blessed attendants upon the Divine prerican Church in the revision of the English sence, whilst he acquits his own churches ? Liturgy was the omission of several saints' Or if he condemns us, why not condemn days; still a number of those days are ob- them? The principle is the same whether served, and the collects are retained. Nine- the number be great or small. It certainly teen of our fifty-one saints, are specially is no very enviable state, for the English named: and a festival is celebrated for All and American Churches to find themselves Saints ; one of the angels is specially de- pressed on one side by the charge of assignated, and all the angels are joined with suming to declare some who are saints, and him.

with those titles of their churches, those I should hope that I do not misrepresent festivals in their Liturgy and those names the fact when I state my impression, that upon their calendar, to be found proclaimalthough the American Church thought pro- ing that they know not whether they are per to curtail the number of saints' days to saints or not: and still further, should they be observed as festivals, she does not con- admit that a few whom they designate are demn the English Protestant Church, from known to be inhabitants of heaven, to be which she sprung, for retaining a greater perplexed in the effort to confine to that few number of those days; and hence I may the application of a principle which might fairly assume, that she does not think it be fairly extended to several others. This criminal in the Archbishop of Canterbury to is a result of their deviation from principle. believe that an individual named on his The Presbyterians and Baptists are released calendar is a canonized saint, even though from this difficulty by boldly rejecting the he should be omitted upon the American principle at once, they have at least no selfcalendar. Now the English Protestant ca- contradiction on this point, nor are they lendar contains those nineteen names of compelled as Protestant Episcopalians are, saints which are found upon that of the to make an arbitrary distinction. The CathoAmerican Church, and seventeen others of lics do not act arbitrarily, but upon principle; those invoked in the above Litany: so that they have a rule by which they are led, and we have thirty-six of our number pronounced they acknowledge as saints all to whom the by the English Church to be attendants of the rule applies. There is nothing arbitrary in Divine presence: and she has also the names this. The Protestant may, if he will, assert of forty other saints not in the above Litany, that Catholics have no sufficient rule by nor on the calendar of the American Church, which to ascertain that any particular indi. amongst whom is King Charles the Martyr, vidual has been admitted to the divine prewho was beheaded by order of the Refor- sence; but then the asserter himself must, mers of the Church and State of Great Bri- if he will be consistent, not assume for his tain. Besides this, the Church of England society a prerogative which he will deny to has the festival of All Saints, and the festival a pre-existing, a Catholic, and an Apostolic of the Holy Innocents, in like manner as our Church. This and several other assaults Episcopal brethren in this Union celebrate upon popery, by champions of the Protestthem, as also the festival of St. Michael and ant Episcopal Church, always remind me all Angels

. One of the many inconsistencies of a story told somewhere by, I believe Sir then of the English Protestant Church is, R. L'Estrange, of a Lutheran, who declared that although she gives us between seventy that all Martinists were rank heretics, and and eighty saints in her calendar, yet in the erroneous in most of their tenets, as well as admonition to the reader, in Præces Privatæ, schismatical in their origin, when upon exprinted by authority in 1573, it is stated, not amination it was discovered that the Marthat we repute them all for saints or holy men: tinists were followers of Martin Luther and and yet they are all classed together as most steadily adhered to what they had resaints without informing us which is so received as his doctrine. puted and which is not so reputed. Now, I Having thus exhibited the character of would ask who classed these persons in this your correspondent, I shall proceed, gentlemanner? Who declared that any one of men, to examine his production more parthem was a saint? Has the American Church ticularly under the heads of what are our power to do so ? Has the English Church tenets, and what is his theology. power to do so? And if so, why will not the I remain, gentlemen, Roman Catholic Church have at least equal Your obedient humble servant, power? Why then does the writer, with the

B. c. contradictory name, complain of the Roman Charleston, S. C., June 8, 1829.


be offered to angels and saints, I assert it is To the Editors of the Gospel Messenger and

not idolatry. Southern Episcopal Register, &c.

To say that no distinction can be made

by the suppliant who addresses a principal Ye seraphs, who God's throne encircling still, With holy zeal your golden censers fill;

from whom alone the favour must come, Ye flaming ministers, to distant lands

and an intercessor who might join in the Who bear, obsequious, his divine commands; supplication to that principal, is to contradict Ye cherubs, who compose the sacred choir, not only common sense, but daily experi. Attuning to the voice ih' angelic lyre!

ence, and the very paragraph itself affords Or ye, fair natives of the heavenly plain, full evidence that the Roman Catholics do Who once were morial-now a happier train ! Who spend in peaceful love your joyful hours,

act upon this distinction. In blissful meads, and amaranthine bowers, "But Roman Catholics, do not, they say, Oh, lend one spark of your celestial fire, commit idolatry in praying to saints; for they And deign my glowing bosom to inspire, offer them only an inferior worship, and not that And aid the Muse's inexperienced wing, which is due to God-they only invoke them, While Goodness, theme divine, she soars to sing and ask their help in obtaining the benefits which

BOYSE. God alone can confer.” GENTLEMEN :- I now proceed to show that The admission here made, renders it unyour correspondent “Protestant Catholic” is necessary for me to adduce any farther evinot only inconsistent with the tenets of your dence for the fact that the Roman Catholics church, but that he has altogether failed in do make the distinction.—The word prayer sustaining his first charge against me. is then susceptible of two meanings, which

He stated that Roman Catholics called are totally unlike: and Roman Catholics do upon the angels and saints in the same way not pray to angels and saints in the first that they did upon God, to be merciful to sense of the word : to state or to insinuate them, and this ground has been removed, that they do is to misrepresent them. Your because of the untruth of the statement. correspondent makes this statement by a His next averment is that Roman Catholics miserable quibble upon the ambiguity of "pray to angels and saints to save them by the word, prayer, and by an unbecoming their merits." And here he assumes two equivocation attempts to show against their grounds for their condemnation : first, that it own declaration, that Roman Catholics do is idolatry to pray to the blessed spirits, pray to the created spirits in the same way next, that we dishonour Christ when we ask that they offer their prayers to God. to be saved by the merits of such beings. I shall take each topic separately.

· Surely the ora pro nobis, with a view to the

benefits which God alone can conser, addressed to In paragraph 10, he lays down his prin- an invisible being, and in the same office of de. ciple: “And what is prayer offered to a votion in which God is directly supplicated, is, creature, whether visible or invisible, if not to all intents and purposes, prayer; and what is idolatry?" If by prayer be meant the homage prayer offered to a creature, whether visible or which is due only to God, by which we ask invisible, if not idolatry.” of him as the sole fountain of grace and When we ask another to "pray for us," mercy, that which he alone can effectually we avow by the phrase that the person so bestow, I answer distinctly, to offer such called upon by us must address himself to prayer to any creature would be idolatry. another, who can grant what it is not in the But it is untrue that Roman Catholics do power of this intercessor to bestow. Hence, offer any such homage to any creature, and when in the same office of devotion we say until your correspondent shall have proved “Lord, have mercy on us.” “Christ, have that they do, he will not have laid any mercy on us.” Holy Mary, Pray for us.” ground for the application of his principle: So far from placing Christ and Mary upon my assertion is that he has not shown, and an equal footing, we distinctly profess that cannot show that such prayer is so offered. mercy is derived only from him, and that

But the word prayer, frequently signifies she can do no more than obtain from him a “request," "an intreaty made by one by her prayer, to bestow the mercy upon us. creature to another, for such aid as that Thus it prayer to the only source of mercy, creature can bestow," and in this sense l be worship of adoration, it is evident that submit that prayer might be lawfully made by our prayer to the blessed Virgin, we inby a human being, not only to his fellow- treat of Mary to adore our Lord Jesus Christ. man, but to any other creature that can aid | Your correspondent cannot then assert that him.-To make application for such aid to we pray to any angel or saint, in the same one who could not hear, or who hearing, manner as we do to God, until he shall could not help, might be folly; but it would have discovered us asking God to pray for not be idolatry. If prayer of this latter kind us to the angels and saints: asking God

[ocr errors]

thus to adore the blessed spirits. Have we prayer, in its present form, is probably a cause of then not been misrepresented by him?

difficulty to some persons who do not exainine But in paragraph 20, he is still less ex- with sufficient care, nor reflect upon what they cusable. By a mistranslation and a false 100 hastily condemn. They object that by this suggestion he endeavours to distort the equally to the blessed Trinity and to the saints.

prayer, the church professes to offer the sacrifice meaning of a prayer in the Mass, to show This is not the fact, nor is such the meaning of that we place "Jesus Christ and the saints the prayer. It consists of three distinct paris, upon the same footing: In paragraph 5, he The first requesting the oblation to be received quotes from the translation of the Missal

, in memory of the Passion, Resurrection, and printed in New York in 1822. He refers to distinct, and the plain meaning of the request is the same edition in paragraph 7. I am to evidently conformable to the institution.* Do suppose naturally, that he refers to the same this for a commemoration of me. The second book in his quotation in paragraph 20. In part, requesting the oblation to be received in that place he gives the following as the honour of the blessed Virgin, and other sainisprayer on which he builds his argument.

that it may be available to their honour and to

our salvation. This latter clause, our salva. “ Receive, O Holy Trinity, this oblation, tion,' creates no difficulty. The question is now which we make to the memory of the Passion,' what is meant by offering the sacrifice in honour &c.

of the Saints? First, then, the word honour in

The first part of the prayer, is clearly not an exact, The original Latin is placed in one co-though it be a literal translation of the original lumn and the translation in another upon prayer-for it should be rather translated on the the same page 281 of the edition referred festival of the blessed Virgin, &c. Le Brun to, and is the following.

remarks † that the words found in the oldest

copies are in honore, and not in honorem, and “Suscipe Sancta Trinitas hanc oblationem states also, that the words ad honorem found imquam tibi offerimus ob memoriam Passionis," mediately after, strengthens the proof of this &c.

reading being correct, for the persons who fram. The translation, which he quotes as ined the prayer would otherwise have fallen into authorized use, paragraph 5, gives us the evidently ought to be translated on the festival following in page 281:

or at the time we honour. Thus it would appear “Receive, O Holy Trinity, this oblation which as well from the critical examination, as from we make to thee in memory of the Passion, various facts which that author adduces, that Resurrection, and Ascension of our Lord Jesus this is the true meaning of this first phrase. But Christ, and in honour of the blessed Mary ever ad honorem, that it may be available to their ho. a virgin, of blessed John Baptist, the holy nour, i. e., the saints, is distinct, we must then Apostles Peter and Paul, and all the Saints'; see its meaning: that it may be available to their honour, and our “St. Augustine writes, “So that although salvation : and may they vouchsafe to intercede we raise altars to the memory of the martyrs, for us in heaven, whose memory we celebrate on we do not build any to them. For which of our earth. Through the same Christ our Lord. prelates at any time celebrating at the altar in any Amen."

of the places of the saints, has said, " We offer

unto thee, Peter, or Paul, or Cyprian ?! But His object was to persuade his readers that which is offered, is offered to God, who has that Jesus Christ and the saints were con- crowned the martyrs, at those places where is sidered co-equal intercessors, and therefore celebrated their memory whom he has crowned.' after the mistranslation, he who complained And again, in another place. • Nor do we give so much of my having made an addition, because, not they, but their God is our God.'I paragraph 23, now interpolates in the prayer Thus no sacrifice was offered to the saints, the phrase (Jesus, &c.) between the words though places were consecrated to their memory, they which he marks in italics, and the words where iheir virtues were honoured, and aliars "vouchsafe to intercede:" when such was raised at which this honour was paid. Not by by no means the meaning of the prayer. 1 sacrifice to them, but by sacrifice to God; 10 do not think it very unreasonable to suppose by his grace to triumph over sin, and to obtain

their God and ours, to him who enabled them that when this critic undertook to help out glory-the honour we pay to them redounds to his own construction by introducing his own him, who in them has crowned his own graces; words, he looked at the explanation given and when we pray that this sacrifice may be rein the Missal itself for the purpose of know-ceived by the Godhead, it is to the Holy Trinity ing whether he was fairly representing the it is offered, not the saints ; it is offered in comdoctrine which he undertook to explain. If memoration of Christ, on the festival of the he did not, he was negligent. If he did, their memory, and we pray it may be available he was dishonest, for he found the follow-to their honour; we do not offer it to them that ing.

“The celebrant then comes to the middle part * Luke xxii. v. 19. of the altar, and bowing down, says the next + Explic. lit. hist. and dog. part iii. art. ix. prayer, Receive, O Holy Trinity, &c. This

I See App., note A.

« EelmineJätka »