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the palm-branch be taken up, which a spiritual Power can alone offer unto us. Blood will continue to flow over Europe until nations shall be made sensible of the fearful frenzy that carries them around; until influenced and softened by sacred music, they shall return in crowds to their ancient altars ; undertake works of peace, and on the reeking battle-field, amidst burning tears of joy, shall solemnize a festival of peace, a great repast of love. Religion alone can again awake all Europe: she alone can give security to the people,-can invest Christendom with new glory upon the earth, and reinstate her in her ancient peace-making office.
Have not the nations received everything from men, except that holy organ—their heart ? Will not friends forget every animosity in the tomb of their love, when our Heavenly Sympathiser speaks to us ? Shall not grief and affection fill their eyes with tears? Do they not sacrifice and devote themselves entirely to Omnipotence, and long again to become friends and allies with each other? Where is that ancient, lovely, and sanctifying faith in the government of God upon earth; that heavenly confidence which men had in each other; that sweet regard for the effusions of inspired minds; that all-embracing spirit of Christianity ? Christianity has two forms and characters. One is the generative element of religion, as a friend to every religion.* Another, that of a mediator in general, as believing in the universal fitness of every earthly thing,—to become the bread and wine of eternal life. A third, that of a belief in Christ, in his mother, and the saints. Choose any of these you please : choose all the three; it is immaterial; thereby you will become Christians, and members of an united, perpetual, and inexpressibly happy community.
The old Catholic faith of Christendom was active and vigorous: this is its last character. Its all-presence in life; its love for the arts; its deep humanity ; the-indissolubility of its marriages ; its joy in poverty, its obedience and fidelity, clearly prove it to be the true religion, because they include the grounds of its constitution.f The other parts of the world await the pacification and resurrection of Europe, in order to be united together, and to become members of this heavenly kingdom! Will there not quickly be again in Europe a number of truly holy minds, and must not all true friends of religion sigh again to behold this heaven upon earth,-to meet together, and pour forth a
* In one sense this is not correct. + See “Mores Catholici, or, Ages of Faith.”
holy chorus of love p* Christianity must again become living and effective; she must again form herself into a visible church, without any regard to land-marks, that so she may receive into her bosom those souls that thirst after heavenly things, and become the mediator of the old and new world. She must pour out again over the nations her ancient horn of benediction. From the sacred womb of a venerable European council, Christendom will arise, and then will be conducted the resuscitation of religion according to a divine-comprehensive plan. No one will then “protest” against the spiritual or temporal power ; because the existence of the Church will be true liberty, and under her guidance every necessary reformation will be carried on, like proper and peaceful reformations in the state. And when shall this be? It is not for us to say. Only let us have patience. It will — it must come; the holy period of everlasting peace, when the new Jerusalem shall form the capital of the world : till then let us be calm and courageous amidst the dangers that surround us, fellow-members of one faith : let us preach by word and by deed, the Gospel of Christ, and remain until death faithful to the true and eternal religion of Christianity.
Such is the conclusion of this beautiful, historical fragment, the production of one whose mind was eminently Catholic; who, in union with Tieck and F. Schlegel, contributed towards producing a mighty revolution in German Literature; who introduced new and purer, views of art, and rendered full justice to the genius and piety of the Middle Ages. “Christendom” may truly be termed a literary bijou ; and small as it is, yet so excellent in form and matter, it would alone have established the author's reputation. When we consider the amiable feelings with which it abounds, the tone of religious earnestness that pervades it, the originality and loftiness of many of its views, and the signal fulfilment which several of its predictions have received in our times, we are tempted to weep over the untimely fate which bereaved the world of that excellent and highly-gifted young - Novalis.
He had hardly set his foot in the porch
* “Sollte es nicht in Europa, bald eine Menge Wahrtraft heiliger Gemüthre wieder geben; sollten nicht alle wahrhafte Religionsverewandte voll Sehnsucht werden, den Himmel auf Erden zu erblicken, und Gern zusammentreten, und heilige Chöre anstimmen?"-(See F. Schlegel's Philosophy of History. Vol. II. Sect. xvii. London, 1835.
of the Catholic Church ; he had caught but a distant glimpse of the glories which radiate from her sanctuary, and but indistinctly heard the celestial harmonies that resound within her walls, when he was spatched away by the pitiless hand of death!
But we have every reason to hope that a spirit so pure, so earnest in its inquiries after truth, has elsewhere attained the reward which was denied to it here; and that those mists of error, from which while upon earth it had not wholly disengaged itself, have long disappeared before the glorious visions of eternity.*
With such sentiments every one must agree. But Novalis himself utters sentiments far more sweet and joyful- that must find an echo in hundreds of sympathising bosoms--in kindred spirits that now think and write as he once did." The other parts of the world await the resurrection of Europe, in order to become united together, to be made members of this heavenly kingdom. Will there not be quickly again in Europe a number of truly holy minds, and must not all true friends of religion sigh to behold this heaven upon earth, to meet together and pour forth a holy chorus of love ?" &c.
Yes! there are indeed now in these our days, “a number of truly religious minds,” who sigh and pray for the coming of this heavenly kingdom upon earth ;—who, like unto Novalis, consider not the Reformation as the work of God, nor the individuals connected with its introduction as men of heavenly minds; who look upon it rather as a scourge sent by the Almighty, in the mysterious ways of his Providence--a scourge whereby the cause of Christ and his Church was nigh being undone. But what Novalis applied to his own land, may now be applied with ten-fold truth to England :-“ The Spirit of God moveth on the waters, and a heavenly island is seen over the receding waves, to form the abode of renovated humanity, the well-spring of eternal life !" The night of our affliction hath passed away, through the power and mercy of the Most High: the future is full of the sweetest hopes and consolations; yea, fuil of things heavenly, which though as yet only seen as through a mist, sufficiently indicate that the sun of justice is about to break forth, and that this land which had been so long desolate and impassible, “shall again be glad, shall again rejoice and flourish like the lily, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of the Lord and the beauty of our God !” Could Novalis
see these our days, how would he rejoice ; and had we lived at the time when the apostles first went forth, to plant that small grain of mustard-seed which is now rising up into such a majestic tree, and especially had we dwelt in that sacred land which our Saviour himself inhabited ; could we have seen Him raising the dead, giving sight to the blind, and curing all diseases--instructing the ignorant, confounding the Scribe and the Pharisee, and bringing back the lost sheep to the house of Israel, how should we have rejoiced, and how lovingly should we have exclaimed, “Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, because He hath visited, and hath wrought the redemption of his people.”
But though we can no longer behold our Saviour visibly amongst us, doing these wonders, yet our hearts ought not the less to rejoice on this account. Is He not still, by means of his ministers, upon earth, raising to life again those who were spiritually dead? Is He not curing the sick of those diseases that are far more dreadful than anything he cured of old in the bodies of those that surrounded Him ? Are not the eyes of the blind opening, and the tongue of the dumb made free to utter forth his praise ? And shall we not then rejoice with Novalis, seeing this “new order of things "-this beavenly regeneration of the intellectual world ? Does not the captive rejoice when his chairs are broken ; does not the exile wipe away his tears, when he returneth to the home of his fathers ? Even so should we.
Such reflections must arise within us on perusing the conclusion of “ Christendom.” But whilst we rejoice, we must at the same time fear. We must not imagine, that now everything is smooth and easy before us,—that our labours and trials have now past and gone for ever. No, for the “ Evil One," seeing that his kingdom is about to be dissolved, employeth all his arts to disunite us, that so scandal may be given unto others who are not of the household of the faith. But “ it must needs be that scandals come:" such are sent for the glory of the Church, as well as for her trial; for her exaltation, as well as for her humiliation. The Church is now assaulted on all sides;from within and from without. But there is a heavenly pilot on board who can command the winds and the waves, when He willeth, and hush them into gentle slumber. We must not, however, relax our endeavours : we must not become indifferent in the great cause we ought all to have at heart; “Be ye therefore stedfast and immovable ; watch ye, stand fast in the faith; do manfully, and be strengthened.” Must we not pray for those whose minds have not even yet
learned to recognise their ancient mother? some of whom still devise many bitter things against her; who still proclaim aloud," that an union with her is impossible," as she is at present; and who may be grievously scandalized at our present unhappy dissensions, not remembering that although we differ amongst ourselves in mere opinions, yet the Church and her children are but one heart and soul in faith and doctrine. We inherit a land that was once a “garden enclosed,” yea, a paradise most beautiful before the Lord. But now, alas ! most poisonous weeds are rooted in the soil; and who hath planted such noxious weeds where once so many fair flowers bloomed ? “ An enemy hath done this "-our common enemy, the devil. He it is that seeketh to persuade others that the Catholic Church is disunited ; that she inculcateth principles subversive of the beauty of holiness, and shall we not then endeavour to counteract his evil doings,--to live worthy of our high calling,- to endear unto others that Church, which hath produced in all ages and in all nations so many whose names are, we trust, written in the book of life? If we act in this manner, then, to use the language of Novalis himself, “ Shall the nations return in crowds to their ancient altars; they shall undertake works of peace; and on the reeking battle-field, amidst burning tears of joy, a festival of peace shall be solemnized-a great repast of love! Religion alone can again awake all Europe ; she alone can give security to the people ; can invest Christendom with new glory upon earth, and reinstate her to her ancient, peace-making office."
J. DALTON. Octave of St. George, 1842.
CONVENT OF SISTERS OF MERCY, IN THE LINCOLN'S INN FIELDS AND WARWICK
We have much pleasure in laying the following circular of the Rev. Messrs. Hearne, relative to the aboveo rk of mercy, before our readers ; for we are sure it will meet with the hearty approval of all, and be responded to with that sympathy which proves its worth, by showing itself in a tangible form. It will be observed that the maintenance of the community has been already secured, all that is required