Protestantism Does Not Possess the Notes of the True Church of Christ
Christian Apologetics, a Defense of the Catholic Church

Categories: Apologetics
Topics: Church

Imprimatur : John M. Farley, Archbishop of New York

April 15, 1908

Protestantism Does Not Possess the Notes of the True Church of Christ1

There is really but one serious heresy at the present day, Protestantism. Under this generic name we include all who, accepting revelation, protest against the authority of the Catholic Church and claim that Scripture is the only source of revealed truth. Protestantism, in fact, is not a definite religion. The innumerable sects which it includes have no other bond of communion than the same negative name which belongs alike to all heresy, no other principle of life than the dogmas and precepts which they have preserved from the Catholic Church from which they separated.

I. Historical Notice

Let us say a few words of the first authors of Protestantism2. Martin Luther was born at Eisleben in Saxony in 1483. He embraced the religious life in the Augustinian convent of Erfurt and was sent by his superiors to the University of Wittenberg, where he taught theology. He was particularly remarkable here for his love of novelties and his indomitable pride. In 1517 Leo X entrusted the preaching of certain indulgences to the Dominicans. The preference shown another order probably offended Luther, who was of a lively imagination and passionate nature. He began by violently attacking what he called the preachers’ abuses and exaggeration in language, and was soon led into attacking the doctrine of indulgences itself and the right to grant them. Then, carried on by the consequences of a first false principle, he went from one error to another. From this time forward we find in his writings addressed to the people the principle which was to play so important a role in his doctrinal system: faith alone obtains the remission of sin. After long and patient efforts on the part of Leo X to win him back to truth and obedience, a bull of excommunication was issued against the rebellious monk. Far from submitting, the heresiarch consummated his rebellion by causing the bull to be burned publicly at Wittenberg, and Protestantism found its first apostle. Eight years later he married an ex-nun called Catherine Bora. He died in 1546.

Unbridled love of false liberty, covetous desire for ecclesiastical spoils, a moral teaching which gave free rein to the passions, the abolition of ecclesiastical celibacy, the unheard-of violence exercised toward those who desired to remain faithful to the faith of their fathers, together with other causes, secured him a large number of followers.

Shortly after Luther, Zwinglius began to dogmatize in Switzerland, and Calvin in Geneva. Their doctrines are far from being in accord with those of Luther, but they all agree in contradicting the teaching of the Catholic Church, and according great freedom to the passions. As to Henry VIII, King of England, we know how, after writing against Luther and obtaining the title of “Defender of the Faith,” he led his people into schism. He sought from the Pope authority to gratify his uncontrolled passions. As the Pope refused to second his criminal desires by sanctioning his divorce from Catherine of Aragon, his faithful wife, he abandoned the Church of Rome and had himself proclaimed head of the Anglican Church (1534). Heresy was soon grafted upon schism.

We have no need to insist further on these well-known facts, but let us demonstrate that Protestantism has none of the positive notes of the true Church of Christ.

Protestantism is Absolutely Devoid of Unity

A. It Lacks Unity of Doctrine

a. There was no agreement whatever in matters of doctrine among the first founders of Protestantism, and their doctrinal divergences became more and more marked. In fact they have increased to such a degree that it is almost true to say that the diversity of principles in the Church equals that of individuals. Luther himself acknowledged this in 1525. “There are,” he wrote, “almost as many sects and beliefs as there are individuals. One will not admit Baptism; another rejects the Sacrament of the Altar; this one places another world between this present world and the day of judgment; that one teaches that Christ is not God. There is no one, however ignorant, who may not claim to be inspired by the Holy Spirit and give forth his imaginings and his dreams as prophecies.” With time the diversity has become only more wide-spread. The number of sects existing in complete independence one of another can no longer be estimated. According to the official reports there are at present [1903, Ed.] in the United States fifty-six principal sects, which with the secondary sects make two hundred and twenty-eight. In the city and suburbs of London alone there are more than one hundred different sects, and in each sect the various professions of faith succeed one another like leaves on the trees. Thus a Protestant minister of Kiel, Harms, did not hesitate to say that he could undertake to write on his thumbnail all the doctrines uniformly accepted by his brethren.

b. Not only were the leaders of the Reformation far from agreeing in their religious tenets, but each one changed his religious opinions without the slightest difficulty, alternately accepting and rejecting points of doctrine according to the needs of the moment. Luther went so far as more than once to threaten his followers to retract all his innovations if they persisted in annoying him and creating difficulties. According to Melanchthon himself, the most moderate of all the apostles of the Reformation, “the articles of faith should be frequently changed and should be based upon the character of the times and circumstances.”

c. This variation in the belief of the early reformers and of their followers of the present day need not astonish us; it is a necessary consequence of the Protestant rule of faith. In fact, Protestants reject the Catholic principle of the authority of the Church divinely charged to interpret infallibly Holy Scripture and tradition. They claim that the Bible alone, interpreted according to the reason of the individual, teaches each one what he is to believe. It is not difficult to see whither this dissolvent principle may lead.3 Thus it furnished Bossuet in the century immediately following the Reformation matter for his masterpiece, the “History of the Variations of the Protestant Church.”

Remark — Despite this so-called rule of faith, the majority of Protestants obey in reality any minister who has the address to make himself heard and to secure the suffrage of a certain number. But such authority, besides being purely human, as well as contrary to the fundamental principle of their rule of faith, can hardly fail to produce diversity of beliefs. Why should there be more conformity among the teachers than among their flocks?

d. Worship being only an expression of faith, and diversity of belief entailing necessarily diversity of rites and religious ceremonies, it must introduce in Protestantism great variety of practices in regard to Sacraments, sacrifices, and prayers. Thus some admit and others reject the same Sacrament; and among those who admit it some accept it in one sense, others in another. Luther, for example, reduced the number of Sacraments from seven to two. Again, according to the Lutheran doctrine, Baptism is not regenerating, it does not produce interior sanctification; again, justification does not mean that sin is really effaced; it means that it is not imputed to man, that it is covered by faith in the merits of Jesus Christ. As to the Eucharist, some acknowledge the Real Presence of Jesus in the sacred Host, others regard it only as a figure. Luther, though forced by the clearness of the sacred text to admit this Presence, nevertheless modified the Catholic dogma concerning it. He claimed that the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ are not present by the conversion of the elements of bread and wine, or by transubstantiation, but that they are present under and with the bread and the wine; that Christ is present only at the moment we receive the Eucharist; that the Sacrament was instituted only to be received in Communion, but not to be offered as a true exterior sacrifice. Nor do our opponents differ any less in the administration of the Sacrament. Finally, some adore Christ as God, others refuse Him the homage of their worship; some pray for the dead, others condemn the practices.

e. Many Protestant churches, in order to preserve a shadow of unity, have had recourse to formulas of faith, creeds, or synodal decrees. Luther himself, in direct contradiction of his fundamental rule of faith, wrote a catechism; he even went farther and declared: “There is not an Angel in Heaven, still less a man upon earth, who may and who dares to judge my doctrine: whosoever will not adopt it cannot be saved; and whosoever believes not as I believe is destined for Hell.” There could hardly be a more formal contradiction of private interpretation. Many of his followers refused to accept either the formulas or decisions, justly observing that under such conditions they had better have remained in submission to the great and ancient authority of the Church of Rome. We see that this want of unity is an absolutely incurable evil among Protestants. There are Protestant sects, but there is not, there cannot be a Protestant Church, since they have no common faith, no unity of doctrine, nor any principle of such unity.

B. It Lacks Unity of Ministry or Government

Each sect, by the fact that it possesses a belief of its own, is independent of all the others, and the ministers of one have not the right to interfere in the ministry and government of another. What is more, in each determined communion the ministers are in reality independent of one another. It is, in fact, a Protestant principle that each one lawfully exercises his ministry if he does not diverge from the doctrine of the fundamental articles. But, again, who has the requisite authority to define these articles?

II. Protestantism Does Not Posess Holiness4

A. It Is Not Holy In Its Founders

1st. History represents Luther as a man of violent temper, addicted to excesses of the table, and trampling under foot the most solemn engagements; Calvin as an impure, vindictive character; Zwinglius as a debauchee, as he himself acknowledges; Henry VIII as an adulterer and a debauchee. The morals and private sentiments of Luther as revealed in his own writings will not bear publication.

2d. The reformers authorized the most revolting crimes in their followers. Luther, in servile deference to a crowned head, did not dare to preach against polygamy, and even went so far as to permit bigamy in the Landgrave Philip of Hesse; the permission was confirmed by seven other reformers, and Melanchthon assisted at the marriage.

3rd. In their writings and conversation they show themselves men of ungoverned temper, corrupt heart, and indomitable pride. At the least resistance they broke forth into abusive and profane language. Luther’s language, particularly, is at times most gross and revolting.5

B. It Is Not Holy In Its Doctrine

Protestantism has no common moral teaching binding upon all, any more than a common belief which all are obliged to accept. Its adherents claim that the Bible is the only rule of morals as well as belief, and as each one is allowed to interpret it according to the light of his reason there is nothing to prevent anyone from fashioning his own moral teaching: he may even change his ethics according to the ever-varying disposition of his mind. That which his prejudice of today makes him read in the Scriptures may appear to him tomorrow in an entirely different light, and he is free to change his conduct according to his convictions.

Finally (it is hardly credible), a Protestant is not obliged to practise what he reads in the Scriptures, however clear it may be. For the founders of the Reformation teach that works are useless and even injurious to salvation; that faith suffices to make us the friends of God; that man once justified before God is sure of being saved, whatever crimes he may afterward commit. What is more, that it is even impossible for man to sin since he is not free. Luther and Calvin go so far as to deny the existence of free-will in man. Luther wrote a book called “Slave Will,” which may be summed up thus: “God is the author of the evil as well as the good in us, and as He saves us without any merit on our part, He also damns us through no fault of ours. … All that we do is done, not freely, but through pure necessity.” (Works of Luther, vol. ii., p. 435.) Calvin holds the same language. “God,” he says, “for incomprehensible reasons excites men to violate His laws. His inspirations move the hearts of sinners to evil. Man falls because God has so ordered it.” (Instit. Christ.; bk. vii., ch. 23.) Again, “God,” says Zwinglius, “is the first principle of sin. It is through a Divine necessity that man commits all crimes.” (De Provid. Ep., vol. i., p. 355.)

Let us give a few other texts from Luther, for they are more conclusive than argument. “How rich is the Christian! Even if he would he could not be disinherited by sin: not to believe in the Son of God is the only sin in this world. Believe, therefore, and you are sure of your salvation.” (Luther, “Captivity of Babylon.”) “There is no more dangerous, more pernicious scandal than a good life exteriorly manifested by good works. Pious souls who do good to gain the kingdom of Heaven not only will never reach it, but will be counted among the damned.” (Works of Luther, vol. vi.) “The Gospel does not ask our works for our justification; on the contrary, it condemns these works.” “Murder, theft are not sins so great as to wish to reach Heaven through good works, which are the things most prejudicial to salvation.” (Sermons inédits publiés par Mack.)

This same inefficacy and uselessness of good works is taught by Calvin in more than fifteen different parts of his “Institutes of the Christian Religion.” Such a doctrine flows naturally from the idea those innovators had of justification or righteousness. Man is made just and righteous, they said, without any internal change in him; it all consists in the gratuitous and merely external imputation of the righteousness of Jesus Christ to the Christian. A sinner becomes a just man by the mere fact that God deigns to consider him covered as with a mantle by the holiness of His Son. The moral character of man’s conduct does not enter at all into the conditions required for the friendship of God; sin amounts to nothing, provided faith remains firm and strong. “Be a sinner and sin stoutly,” Luther wrote to his friend Melanchthon. … “We must needs sin as long as we are in this world; … sin cannot deprive us of God, even were we to commit in the same day a thousand adulteries and murders.” 6 Such doctrine is evidently the destruction of the very principle of morality. If it were true, Jesus Christ, instead of coming into the world to deliver us from sin and to teach us, by word and example, to practise all, even the most heroic virtues, would have died to leave us free to live with impunity in crime.

C. It Is Not Holy In Its Influence Upon Morals

We can readily divine whither a doctrine must lead which places Robespierre and St. Vincent of Paul on the same level. Why should man trouble himself to restrain his evil inclinations; why may he not give free rein to his passions? It is not astonishing, therefore, to find Calvin protesting only a few years after the inauguration of the quasi-reformation that “among the hundred evangelists hardly one could be found who had adopted the ministry from any other motive than to be able to abandon himself with greater liberty to all kinds of voluptuousness and incontinency.” Luther himself was soon alarmed at the fruit of his teaching. “Our Germany,” he says, “since she has seen the light of the Gospel almost seems to be possessed by the devil. … The fear of God has disappeared; it is a deluge of vice of all kinds. … They take the Gospel for a gastronomic doctrine which teaches one to get drunk and to eat to bursting. This is the actual opinion of all without distinction. … Who among us would have entered upon this ministry could we have foreseen the numerous calamities and scandals it would breed? Now that we have begun we must abide by the consequences.” (Luther’s Works, ed. Walch, vol. viii.) And again he says: “I admit that my doctrine has indeed given rise to scandals. I shall not deny that the new state of things frequently makes me tremble, particularly when my conscience reproaches me with having disturbed the ancient order of the Church, which was so tranquil, so peaceful under the papacy, and with having, by my doctrine, created discord and trouble.” 0 Such avowals, which we could multiply, and which are to be found in Janssen’s History of the German People, demonstrate whether God is with those who claimed to reform the Church of Rome. While the sects of the Reformation incurred from the first the severest censures and bitterest reproaches, the Fathers of the Council of Trent, assisted by the Holy Spirit, efficaciously remedied by wise and prudent rules the abuses which had gradually crept into ecclesiastical discipline.

III. Protestantism Does Not Possess Catholicity

It is only too evident that Protestantism is not universal either as regards time or place. It began only in the sixteenth century; and even in the countries where it has penetrated, though it bears a generic name, it is in reality divided into a multitude of sects completely independent of one another, separated even by specific names, and frequently bitter enemies, having no other bond than their common hatred of the Catholic Church. How can they form but one religion when they have not and cannot have a body of truths uniformly taught everywhere? Uniformity of belief, binding upon all, would, moreover, be a contradiction of their fundamental principle, private interpretation of the Bible. Not only does no fraction of Protestantism approximate in numbers to the Catholic Church, but the sum of all its adherents does not equal the number of the Catholic faithful.

IV. Protestantism Does Not Possess Apostolicity

A. It Is Not Apostolic In Its Doctrine

This we have superabundantly proved. Where is the apostolic doctrine imposed as of faith upon all? The Apostles evidently did not receive from Christ and transmit to their successors the varied and frequently contradictory opinions which divide Protestant sects.

B. Nor Is It Apostolic In Its Ministry

How can the founders of Protestantism hold their authority from the Apostles, they who revolted against the successors of the Apostles, and preached a doctrine opposed to that which had been believed for centuries? In truth, Luther, Calvin, and the other leaders of Protestantism, realizing the necessity of justifying their revolt, claimed to have received what they called their mission of reformation from the Apostles. But the authority to alter or perfect a Divine work must rest upon something more than an affirmation. Christ Himself felt obliged to give abundant proofs of His mission. The reformers should have furnished at least a few miracles to credit their mission to the people. Luther was deeply sensitive to the need of such proof, and sorely perplexed how to furnish it. Sometimes he said he held his mission from the magistrate of Wittenberg, sometimes from his dignity of doctor. In the space of twenty-four years he changed his opinion on this point fourteen times.

The truth is, no one has received or ever will receive such a mission. We have seen that the Apostles received the mission to teach all men, to preserve all that Jesus Christ had confided to them; and St. Paul pronounced anathema against anyone, [even] were he an Angel from Heaven, who would teach any other doctrine than that of the Apostles. Hence it is proved that it was on their own authority that those so-called reformers arrogated to themselves their alleged mission. And the Church has the right to say to them: “You are of yesterday; I know you not.”

As to Anglicans, though their [first] bishops possessed the power of order, which they do not, it is manifestly evident that they have not the power of jurisdiction.7 We have seen (p.329 f.) that jurisdiction is transmitted by the authority in whom it is vested, and according to the canonical law in force at the time of the transmission.

Now whom do Protestant pastors succeed? From whom and how have they received jurisdiction? Certainly not from Luther, or Calvin, or Henry VIII. Nor from their first bishops, who abandoned the Church of Rome to embrace the tenets of the Reformation. The latter, it is true, received jurisdiction from the Church of Rome; but Rome, after their defection, took away the subjects she had confided to them, having as much right to withdraw them as she had to give them. 9

Conclusion

Protestantism, therefore, possesses none of the characteristic notes with which Our Saviour marked His Church; the work of the innovators of the sixteenth century is not the work of Christ; it is not the edifice built by the Divine Hand to shelter the elect during their passage through this world.

There is still an easier means of setting forth most clearly the falseness of Protestantism, namely, by showing that its rule of faith is absolutely untenable and contrary to the will of Christ. When this basis is overthrown the whole edifice of the Reformation crumbles of itself.

Another peremptory and at the same time easy argument showing the illegitimate birth and existence of Protestantism: we shall find in the primacy bestowed by Christ on St. Peter (see below, Art. V.).

V. The Protestant Rule of Faith Differs From That of Christ

The Bible, nothing but the Bible, freely interpreted by every one, such has been from the beginning and still is the Protestant rule of faith.

We Catholics profess also the greatest respect for the Holy Scriptures, but we receive it from the hands of the Church, which, in virtue of her infallibility, guarantees its inspiration. Moreover, with the Scriptures we receive from the same hand with equal veneration Tradition, that is, the word of God not contained in the Sacred Scriptures. Finally, far from claiming, like Protestants, that every one has the right to determine the meaning of Scripture, far from declaring every man the judge and arbiter of his belief, we say that it belongs to the Church, assisted by the Holy Spirit, to fix the catalogue or canon of the Holy Scriptures, to determine the meaning of the sacred text and unerringly interpret Tradition. In a word, the Catholic Rule of Faith is the teaching authority of the Church, her living and infallible voice and doctrine.

Thesis. — The Protestant Rule of Faith is Untenable.8

First Argument

This rule of faith is contrary to the will of Christ, and condemned by Scripture itself

a. Protestants, if faithful to their rule of faith, must prove to us by clear texts from Scripture that the Apostles received from their Divine Master the command to write the teachings which fell from His lips. Far from being able to do this, they find as we do, when they read the Bible, that Christ, after founding His Church upon Peter and the twelve Apostles, did not say to them, “Go distribute Bibles”, but, “Go teach all nations, preach the kingdom of God to them; teach them to observe whatsoever I have commanded you; he that heareth you heareth Me.”

b. Christ giving example in His Own Person preached, but He wrote nothing. Nowhere do we find that He founded a religion to be taught by writing, still less that it was to be done exclusively by writing. “Christ,” says St. John Chrysostom, “left no written instructions to His Apostles; but instead of books He promised them the Holy Spirit, Who would inspire them what they should say.”

c. The Apostles, to whom Christ promised that the Holy Spirit would recall all that He had taught them, did as their Master commanded them. It was by preaching that faith was propagated in the world. It was only occasionally that a few of the Apostles committed their teachings to writing. The other Apostles wrote nothing, and yet they converted whole nations. It was only at the end of the first century, about sixty-seven years after the death of Christ, that the books of the New Testament were completed; yet the faithful could not have been without a rule of faith during all these years. Moreover, the sacred writers constantly refer to a parallel oral teaching; they formally declare that they wrote only a very small portion of Our Saviour’s, teachings; and they exact the same respect for what they taught by word of mouth as for what they had written. (2 John 5:12) “Stand fast, brethren,” says St. Paul to the Thessalonians, who were already Christians, “and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word or by our epistle” (2 Thessalonians 2:14). And to Timothy (2 Timothy 2:2): “The things which thou hast heard of me by many witnesses, the same commend to faithful men, who shall be fit to teach others.”

d. It is well known that we have no biblical authority, no authority but tradition, for example, for the substitution of Sunday for the Sabbath, for the validity of Baptism administered by heretics. If there be in the Church a certain and unchangeable rule, followed by all the Fathers, proclaimed by all Councils, and observed by all her Doctors, it is assuredly this: To follow most faithfully the command so often repeated by St. Paul: “O Timothy, that keep which is committed to thy trust” (I Timothy 6:20). Keep, as St. Vincent of Lerins explains, not what you have discovered yourself, but what has been entrusted to you; not what you have yourself invented, but what has been handed to you by others; not what your own mind has told you, but what you have learned from your predecessors; not what you have established by your individual efforts, but what you have received from hand to hand, by a public and official tradition, whereof you are not the author, but a simple guardian.

Second Argument

This rule of faith is condemned by the teaching of the history of the Church.

According to the testimony of St. Irenreus, there were, even in his time, many barbarous nations who believed in Christ, though paper and ink were unknown among them. These countries did not have the Holy Scriptures, and yet the same Saint attests that they preserved the faith pure and intact by means of tradition. Do we find anywhere in the history of later times that the baggage of the ministers of the Church consisted of books which they distributed before they preached? How, moreover, would this have been possible before the invention of printing, that is, during the fourteen centuries when copies of the Bible were few and very expensive? During this period the majority of the faithful had little means of instruction save the oral teaching of the ministers of the Church, and yet they were Christians.

From all that we have said it is evident that the Church was founded without the Bible, and that it existed before the Bible. The Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, the Epistles, and the Apocalypse did not form the Christian communions or the Church, but they were addressed to these communions already formed. Thus St. Augustine had good reason to declare that he would not believe the Gospel except on the authority of the Catholic Church.9

Third Argument

In any case, if the Bible freely interpreted by all were the only rule of faith, very large classes even of the present day would be deprived of the means of salvation, for there is a large majority that cannot read, or whose laborious life leaves them no time to read. And yet, according to Protestant teaching, every one must verify for himself the inspiration of Holy Scripture, the true meaning of each verse, as well as the authenticity, integrity, and fidelity of the version in his hands. If God had given the Bible as a rule of faith, if He had, as Protestantism insists, made it a law for all Christians to read the Bible for themselves, He would have made the entrance to the Church, to eternal salvation, impossible for nearly all men, particularly for the poor. Now one of the special marks which Christ has given of His Divine mission is that the poor shall have the Gospel preached to them, and He declares them His favorite children (Luke 4:18; 7:22).

Fourth Argument

Without the authority of the Church it is impossible to establish the full canon of Scripture and to offer to the faith of believers a clearly and positively defined body of doctrine. In fact Protestants, even the most learned among them, cannot be certain that the Bible is inspired, that is, that it contains the word of God, not simply that of man. Nor can they be certain what books form part of the Bible. The testimony of history, the agreement of manuscripts, criticism, furnish only a human authority, upon which it would be impossible to make an act of Divine faith. Criticism, moreover, has led Protestants to cut off successively from the list of the sacred books nearly all the books of the Old and the New Testament; and many of them even deny that any part of the Scripture is inspired.10

Conclusion

The following simple dilemma suffices to prove the falseness of Protestantism: During the first period of its existence either the Church of Christ was buried in error or it had preserved the integrity and purity of its doctrine. In the first case, the promises which guaranteed the stability and perpetuity of the Church were not fulfilled, consequently the Author of these promises was not God nor was He sent by God. Hence we have no need to concern ourselves with His work, still less with the work of Luther or Calvin. If, on the contrary, the Church of Christ remained pure in its doctrine, this Church was the Church of Rome or it was another. If it was another Church, Protestantism ought to have allied itself with that other Christian society, which was the true Church. Now this it did not do. If this true Church was the Church of Rome, then Protestantism had no right or reason to separate from her, and in rebelling against her it proclaimed its own illegitimacy.

May our separated brethren remember that their ancestors were Catholics, and that in adopting the Catholic faith they are not changing to a new religion; they are only returning to the bosom of the Church which their fathers unfortunately abandoned three centuries ago.


  1. In this and the following article consult the corresponding references given in the preceding articles of this chapter. [return]
  2. On Luther see Anderdon; Audin; Dollinger; Stang; Verres; Murphy, ch. 22; Parsons, Studies, III., ch. 18; A C. Q. viii. 689, ix. 551; D. R. Old Ser. xxxix. 1; M. xlix. 305-457. On Calvin see Parsons, 1. c., ch. 21; C. W. xxxvii 769; D. R. Old Ser. xxix. 30; De Trevern, 1.2, app. 2. On Wyclif see Stevenson, S.J.; Parsons, Studies, II., ch. 41; D. R. Old Ser. xxxv. 382. On Wesley see D. R. NewSer. xxiii. 87. On Henry VIII. see Gasquet, O.S.B. (also M., July ‘82 ff.), and Kenrick, Vindication. On Knox see Spalding, Hist. of Ref., II., pp. 228 and 489. On Huss see Spalding, Miscell., I., essay 10; Parsons, 1. c.; III., ch. 1. In general see Works on Church History. [return]
  3. See Lacordaire, conf. 27, Cath. Doct. [return]
  4. On the Fruits of Protestantism see Spalding, History of the Reformation, p. III., IV.; Evidences, 1. 7; Spalding J. L., lect. 1; Marcy, ch. 23 fr.; A. C. Q. ix. 70 (Puritans), 127, xiv. 243; Br. W. v. 244, xiv. 447; C. W. xxxviii. 194 (in England); D. R. Old Ser. xiv. 379; III. Ser. xiv. (in Prussia). [return]
  5. See Jansen, Verres, O’Connor, and Audin, also our remarks upon Protestant intolerance below in Ch. IV. [return]
  6. Here is the Latin text: “Esto peccator et pecca fortiter, sed fortius fide et gaude in Christo qui victor est peccati, mortis et mundi. Peccandum est quamdiu hie sumus. Sufficit quod agnovimus per divitias Dei Agnum qui toll it peccata mundi: ab hoc non avellet nos peccatum, etiamsi millies et millies.uno die fornicemur et occidamus.” (Works, Jena, 1556, vol. i., p. 545.) [return]
  7. On Anglican Orders see Leo XIII on Anglican Orders; Estcourt; Breen; M., Sept. ‘94 iI.; Sydney Smith, S.J., Reasons for Rejecting Angl. Orders; Brandi, S.J., Last Word on Anglican Orders; Ryan; Galway, S.J.; Wiseman, Essays, v. ill. See also works on Continuity; also the interesting collection, The Church of Old England, 4 vols., C.T.S. [return]
  8. On the Bible as the rule of faith see Wiseman, Lectures, vol. i.; Lockhart, 1. c., ch. 4 iI.; Bp. Shield, The Bible against Prot.; Preston, Protestantism and the Bible; Humphrey, S.J., Bible and Belief; Written Word, ch. 3 ff.; Alnatt in C. T. S. v., xiii.; Kenrick, Vindication, 1. 3,4; Hunter, I., tr. 2, ch. 2; The Bible Question fairly tested (Baltimore); Br. W. v. 352, vi. 122, 165, 203, 275, vii., viii. 373, 418; D. R., Oct. ‘94, 313. [return]
  9. Alnatt, The Church and the Sects, I. Ser., 1.5. [return]
  10. Protestants reproach the Catholic Church with not allowing all the faithful to read the Bible. But it was precisely because of the abuse which the Waldenses, Albigenses, and particularly Protestants made of the sacred text, more especially since the world has been flooded with false versions, that the Church was obliged, for the protection of her children, to make wise restrictions concerning the reading of the Scriptures. These restrictions, it must be borne in mind, refer only to the Bible translated into the vernacular; even then it is not prohibited when the version is approved by the Apostolic See, or when it is published with notes from the Fathers or learned Catholic authors.

    Besides the authors mentioned in note 10 above, see also Clarke, S.J., The Pope and the Bible; Br. W. vi. 212. 232, vii. 237; D.R.Old Ser. xxiii. 145; M. lxiv. 480, lxv. 1; C. W. lvii. 20, lviii. 587. On the Bib!e before the Reformation see Alnatt, Which is the True Church?, p. 38; Buckingham, The Bible in the MidcUe Ages; Maitland, Dark Ages; C. W. xxvii. 359; Murphy, ch. 30. On English Catholic versions see Gasquet, Pre-Reformation Bible; Card. Newman, Tracts, etc., n. 6; C. W. x.ii. 149; D. R. i. 367, ii. 475, ill. 428, July ‘94, p. 122. On Protestant versions see A. C. Q. iv. 123,344,521, v. 701.

    [return]