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Again : “ This mystery is a pledge (so supposition that nothing more so could the Catholic Church calls it, a pledge of eter possibly be imagined. nal life) and a figure: [of Christ really pre After all it is a matter of no moment for sent in it, for] Christ's body is truth itselfe. us to find the Catholic doctrine either in This pledge we doe keep myetically, until Ælfric or Ratramn; and though for the that we be come to the truth itselfe [as the sake of truth, we cannot grant, yet, for the council of Trent expresses it, without any sake of argument, we are willing to suppose veil], and then is this pledge ended. Truly that their tracts on the eucharist have perit is so, as we before have said, Christ's haps a Protestant meaning; what advanbody and his blood : not bodily, but ghostly. tage will this hypothesis afford the system And ye should not search how it is done, of our opponents ? None whatever. The but hold it in your beleefe that it is so done." Catholic Church has nothing more to fear
After this, Ælfric relates, in proof of his from her obscure than from her declared doctrine, two miracles in which the holy enemies. Her doctrine is invariable, like eucharist, by the permission of God, ap the rock upon which she is built,like her peared to different persons under the form divine founder himself; “and whosoever of flesh and blood. These the English shall fall on this stone shall be broken; but editor carefully suppresses, under the honest on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind pretence that they are tales, nay infarced him to powder.” (Matt. xxi, 44.) tales. (See note of p. 97.) Whether tales Far then, from having held, either in or not, we shall not examine; one thing is the ninth, or in any preceding or subsecertain, that Ælfric considered them true quent century, a belief different from what and real miracles, and related them as such. she holds at present, we maintain, and shall ow, it is easy to understand that he did
prove, we hope, to the satisfaction of the so to prove the change of the eucharistic reader, that the assertion of our opponents bread and wine into the body and blood of on this head is nothing short of a complete Christ. But that he should have had re absurdity, and that all their efforts to estabcourse to the above facts, to show that Christ lish their point are not only unavailing, is not substantially present in the eucharist, but serve merely to show more and more and that, instead of any transubstantiation the utmost weakness of their cause. This taking place, the bread remains bread, and will be the subject of another article in the the wine remains wine, is so ridiculous a next number.
ELIGION and reason alike proclaim
that, according to the plans of infinite wisdom, the contemplation of the material world was destined by the divine Architect 10 something more than mere earthly purposes; to raise the mind of man to the great Author of his being, to serve as a mirror in which the perfections of the Deity were to be reflected as the continual object of his adoration and love. With this origi
nal order of Providence, the true worship of God has in all ages accorded. We every where see the outward world ministering to the spiritual, because human nature, composed of matter as well as of spirit, requires the aid of exterior things to impress the soul with ideas and feelings of a religious and devotional character. Hence the offering of sacrifice under the law of nature, and the majestic ceremonial of the Israelitic dis
pensation. Far from having revoked or tume and banner, as well as in the miniature changed this order of things, the divine that preserves the memory of friendship or founder of Christianity has on the contrary affection. Why then, should symbolism inculcated its perfection, by teaching a more have no religious application? Why should sublime morality, and establishing more in that instinctive disposition of the human timate relations between man and his Cre heart, to foster the best sentiments of nature ator.
by the aid of external things, be checked in His religion is eminently symbolical. the elevation of the soul to the highest obThe sacraments, which he has made the ject that can possibly claim its considerachannels of his grace, are symbols; and tion ? To oppose this innate propensity the Church itself instituted by him, is but would be acting against every dictate of an outward symbol of the inward and di reason, and every law of experience ; for vine influence which is directed to the sanc while the former teaches us that any agency tification of souls. The primitive Chris tending to the moral culture of man, may tians, imbued with a deep spirituality, only be safely directed to the honor of God, we developed this tendency of the religion learn from the latter, as a distinguished which they had learned, when almost at modern writer has observed, that " for the every moment they expressed themselves mass of mankind, busily occupied from in some exterior symbol of the divine mercy morning till night with the things of the and goodness; and among the practices world, the things of sense must be raised which prevailed in those ages of pure and up to heaven by the spirit, or they will drag fervent faith, was the use of the sign of the the spirit down to hell.” This principle cross. “When we walk," says Tertullian, was well understood by our forefathers, and “when we come in, when we go out, when hence it was that by various monuments we warm ourselves, go to bathe, sit at table, and customs they brought the exterior and light candles, go to bed, in short, in all our spiritual world into a beautiful harmony. actions and deportments, we mark ourselves Among other objects that arrested the atwith the sign of the cross. If you are ob tention of the passer-by, was the emblem stinate in demanding Scripture for every of our Saviour's passion. “Innumerable discipline and usage of this kind, you
will crosses of stone or wood were erected by find none.
But they are supported by tra the public ways, in the heart of forests dition which authorizes them, by custom and amidst the wildest scenes of nature, on which confirms them, and faith which ob bridges, which heard amidst the eternal serves them.” What more beautiful and murmur of the streams, the chant of nocmore eloquent memorial of the Saviour's turns in the night, and on the craggy sumincomprehensible love for man, and of the mit of islands that lay far in the melancholy example which he traced for the imitation
sea; that no place might be left without the of his followers, than the sign of the cross ? symbol of human redemption, and the me The Church, his earthly spouse, has al morial of the passion of Jesus.”* This ways cherished it with peculiar veneration, sacred representation sanctified the shades and everywhere exhibited it to her children of retirement, while on the high-ways as the symbol of their faith and of their bade the pilgrim pause and offer up a prayer hopes. What is the cross but the whole to the throne of mercy. By these or simiscience of Jesus Christ crucified ? Cold lar demonstrations has the veneration of the and cheerless indeed must be that philoso cross of Christ displayed itself in every age phy or religion which does not find in that of the Christian era, and it points with ir sacred einblem a nutriment of true devotion. resistible evidence to the Church that still Among a certain class of persons, the use cherishes the spirit and the practice of primiof ceremonies and symbols for secular pur tive times. poses is acknowledged to possess its advantages. They admire it in the military cos
Ages of Faith, vol. ü.
THE WAYSIDE CROSS.
It is a custom, familiar to all who have travelled in the Catholic countries of Europe, to mark the spot, where a murder has been committed, by the erection of a cross. The following stanzas were suggested by the picture of a wooden cross overgrown by a vine.
It stands, as ages past it stood,
By living vines o'ergrown;
A lesson may be shown.
'Tis said that in the olden time,
of blood and wrong was wrought;
Its faded trace who sought.
Here ’mid repentance deep and prayers
And sighs in anguish given;
In prayer for him to heaven.
But be the legend false or true,
Emotions strong arise?
The heart beyond the skies?
On life's highway who hath not known,
His heedless course to stay?
The hallowed sign to pray.
Sustaining grace who hath not found,
Each bitter grief was flung?
Which firmly to it clung.
Symbol of shame! whereon once died
And scoffing crowds below,
Was doomed thy pangs to know!
* St. Paul to the Galatians (vi, 14) says, “God forbid that I should glory but in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
THE EDICT OF NANTES.
BY ROBERT HARE.
THE Edict of Nantes is one of those sub
Tijes Which forme she staple of a great
deal of writing and declamation, often without any precise ideas as to its character, or as to the traits of the times when it was adopted, or when it was revoked. It is the object of this lecture to attempt to describe its circumstances and results; and that without assuming to decide what was right or what was wrong, either in comparison with our own ideas, or those of the times which it immediately concerned.
Toleration in all matters, is said to be a principle of this age. It is professed to be, and for the most part is felt in all public transactions and affairs. It is fortunate it is so far adopted and realized, since it cannot be said that opinion has lost much of its intenseness or exclusiveness, whether it be opinion in matters of religion, of conduct, of politics, or of one's own wisdom. Toleration is the avowed rule of the age, and it has been agreed upon because it is found better for the community, that all opinions should be tolerated, than that any man should suffer, as for a crime, punishment, which in truth might be inflicted upon his greater weakness or his greater sagacity, and perhaps, also, because it is more charitable that We should exert ourselves to bear with the opinions of another, than visit upon him the bitterness of our own self-love.
Mankind were, for a long time, endeavoring to find out, embody, enforce, and
practise this doctrine of toleration, and it is now only in the weakness of immaturity. It has grown to be recognized as a public principle, and it is to be hoped it may from being a public principle, in the course of time, become a private pleasure. Whatever it may be now, or may be destined to become, toleration was neither a principle, nor a duty, nor a pleasure, of any part of mankind in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and the discomfort or desolation which then fowed from intolerance is as chargeable
upon one set of opinions and of men as another. The pleasures and advantages which spring from toleration are as much due to the spirit of one faith as anotherare attributable to no one creed or doctrine, nor to any one band of men or writers.
The brief and imperfect sketch of the his tory of the Edict of Nantes, which it is the purpose of this lecture to present, may show the course of the passions which beget intolerance, and which for so long time affected mankind, as it may show, also, the sincerity and risk with which in those days opinions were held and furthered.
The Reformation, as it is commonly called, broke out in Germany about the year 1520. Soon after Luther's first demonstration of opposition to Rome, the excitement of its discussions was extended into France where, however, it was for some time dissipated rather than strengthened, by the variety of opinions which this new religion had produced among those who were not unwilling to take part in the movement. His own particular doctrines (which varied with his temper or his friends), were not at first adopted there by any set of men, and the greatest effect which he engendered, was rather in diverting the attention with what he called the abuses of Rome, (and it never was denied that there were many among the lower clergy) than in rendering men dissatisfied with the tenets of the Ca. tholic faith.
He was soon, however, followed by Zuingle whose doctrines of faith being for the most part afterwards embodied in the Institutes of Calvin, attracted large numbers of followers since known as Calvinists, the Lutherans having been always a very small party in point of numbers or influence among the French seceders generally called Huguenots.
The then monarch of France, Francis I, whose memory is always to be cherished for his gallant and chivalrous disposition,