« PredošláPokračovať »
THE RIGHT REV. DR. BURGESS, LORD BISHOP OF Sr, DAVID'S,
IN ANSWER TO HIS LORDSHIP's " PROTESTANT CATECHISM."
REV. JOHN MILNER, D.D. F.S. A.
WITH CONSIDERABLE EMENDATIONS BY THE AUTHOR,
THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY
159050 ASTOR, LENOX AND TILDEN FOUNDATIONS.
PRINTED BY RICHARDSON AND SON, DERDY.
PREFACE TO THE PRESENT EDITION.
It has been thought advisable to commence the series of cheap Catholic books, by “The End of Religious Controversy," the golden work of the Right Rev. John Milner, Bishop of Castabala, and Vicar Apostolic of the Midland District of England. The reason for this preference has been, the great demand for this work. It has already indeed passed through many editions; but none has yet appeared which brings it within the reach of our poorer brethren. Now, however, we may hope that few families will be without it. It is moreover a book particularly adapted for the perusal of inquiring Protestants; the one of all others which the Catholic priest or layman wishes to place in the hands of such persons, as best able to assist their search after truth.
We may, in fact, safely say, that no other controversial work of modern times, has had equal success in effecting conversions to our holy religion. Indeed, there are probably few converts who have arrived at it, without being, partly at least, indebted to this excellent work. This is owing, no doubt, in great measure, to the fulness and solidity, as well as the simplicity, with which the important subject of the Church and her marks, is treated. The learned prelate has brought to bear upon it, so as to increase its interest, that historical learning which formed one of his principal pursuits. All the other leading topics of controversial discussion are treated in a similar manner, convincing, and yet highly interesting, delighting by the richness of detail which adorns them, while they overcome by the cogency of their reasoning. Nor must we omit to observe, that the epistolary, and consequently familiar style in which the discussion is carried on, helps to disarm prejudice and to render the work still more engaging.
Although the face of controversy between us and Protestants has undergone many notable alterations since this work was written, still its essential and substantial features remain the same; and the majority of Protestants are involved in the same prejudices, employ the same arguments, and, alas ! too often hear
repeated the same misrepresentations and calumnies, as their fathers before them. While, therefore, new works may be wisely written, to meet such modifications of error as more learned and refined minds may have adopted; or to counteract those new forms which dissent and fanaticism may have assumed, Dr. Milner's work yet retains, and we believe, long will retain its ground, as exactly opposed to that denser mass of obstinate prejudice, complete misapprehension of our doctrines, and perfect ignorance of our commonest arguments, which form the Protestantism of the bulk of the people, and the really heavy resistance to the efforts of our holy cause.
We trust that this description of the work i will not deter any from reading it. If it be
one separated from Catholic Unity who is perusing this preface, we entreat him well to consider what pains he has taken to inform himself regarding our doctrines and their proofs. And if he cannot conscientiously reply that he has given his serious attention to the subject, and yet feels in his mind a repugnance to our creed, let him candidly and generously own, that ignorance, rather than conviction, is the mother of his feelings; and let him not con