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of right tolerated in it must be its own wellbeing or ease for the moment. Nations and Government are happily inconsistent, and in many countries people are not yet thrown into the dungeons of liberalism, though the State may have accepted the principle. The Emperor of Russia is consistent; and woe to the people when the consistency in evil has become a law. The State in Russia is religious, for it has chaplains, churches, magnificent ceremonials, and a traditional usage. But the spirit has escaped. The State is really sceptical, for it tolerates, and the people who are sent to school have begun to learn their lesson. It is a question of time probably in Russia, and the day may not be far distant when the priest and his deacon will find themselves alone in the parish church.
Monastic Legends. A Paper. By EDWARD GEORGE KIRWAN BROWNE,
Author of the “Annals of the Tractarian Movement,” etc. London:
R. Washbourne. IN N this paper Mr. Browne touches upon some interesting monastic
legends and more especially upon that beautiful one which still clings to the ruined choir of Tintern, as a pledge to us of happier days for England, when,
“Such a harvest shall be reap'd,
Beyond the World's belief,
For centuries of grief." Mr. Browne, however, somewhat anticipates that happy time at least, he gives us some information for which we were quite unprepared. The sons of S. Bruno are apparently already amongst us in their “ Chartreuse" at Kensington. “ If we would wish to recall the life of S. Bruno," he says, “or desire to visit in spirit that glorious but self-subdued hermit of La Chartreuse, we have but to pay a visit to their house at Kensington, and the realities of their austerities practised by those glorious martyrs, F. Houghton and F. Newdigate, are before us.” We should indeed be glad to know that the sons of S. Bruno had returned to us after three centuries of absence, bringing with them that old silent life of theirs, which is the salt of the earth ; it will be a happy day for England when they come, although it will not be Kensington, we imagine, that they will fix upon for their “ Chartreuse.” But meanwhile we can only suppose Mr. Browne has confused between the Carmelites and the Carthusians. We should not however have pointed out this mistake, had not Mr. Browne told us that he means this paper as an introduction to his “Monasticon Britannicum; or, a Sketch of the Religious Houses and Charities of England and Wales, and the Channel Islands; also the alien Priories in Normandy and Brittany, with three Indexes of Founders, a Description of the Seals (when possible), and also the Names of the Grantees.” For such a work the utmost accuracy is required. If mistakes are made about the green tree, what shall be done with the dry?
Henri Perreyve. By A. GRATRY, Prêtre de l'Oratoire et Membre de
l'Académie Française. Translated, by special permission, by the Author of “A Dominican Artist," “ Life of S. Francis de Sales,” &c. &c. London, Oxford, and Cambridge: Rivingtons. THIS exquisite translation of what we should also call-were we not
will meet with many readers not only for the sake of the beautiful life enshrined within it, but even more perhaps for the sake of its author. The heat of that fiery trial which two years ago tested so many Catholics of what metal they were made, when the definition of the great doctrine that had been set for the rising and falling of not a few in Israel was under discussion, and which for a moment seemed to hide Père Gratry from us in its thick smoke, has died away, and he himself, true and faithful, is resting now, “where beyond these voices there is peace.” He whose constant prayer on earth was that he might have grace to remember the blessed promise that “Whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die,” has passed beyond the veil, but this work is almost as much a revelation of his own soul as of that of the friend about whom it is written. We see in this book how almost impossible it would have been for Père Gratry to have ended as some have ended whom we will not mention here. We see in these pages how truly deep was the current of that inner life hidden with Christ in God, which no obstacle, however great and strong-although the very depths of the waters may have made the fierceness of the struggle more apparent,--could hinder from pouring itself out at last into the ocean of God's love. Indeed we have always regarded Père Gratry as one of the few mystics of our age, one of the very few in these days of ceaseless hurry who have not only believed but have acted upon the belief that spiritual progress, as he himself says, “consists in intensifyingthe inward life.” Everything therefore that opens up to us the thoughts of such a man upon the inner life must be of intense interest and of real value. For ourselves we have only had one regret, that Père Gratry had not more thoroughly cast his mysticism in the mould of the great saintly mystics of the Church. We speak with great diffidence, for these are high matters; but to us it has always seemed that in Père Gratry we meet with the philosophical mysticism of Malebranche rather than the mystical theology of S. Bonaventure, or S. John of the Cross or S. Teresa. We wish that it had been otherwise, for then, we think, he would have been better able to have read the signs of the times. He would not then surely have “ interpreted Revolution by the light of the Gospel in wisdom, in peace, in fraternity” (p. 138), but would rather have looked at it in the light of the judgments of the Holy See, and condemned it as the spirit of the City of Evil. To us Père Gratry seems always to forget that there is such a thing in the world as the City of Evil as well as evil itself, a fact which true mysticism never forgets. Nor can we agree with his view either of the present or the future. Still Père Gratry was in his measure a true mystic,!and that surely is something in
these days of ours, when the forces of men's souls are spread abroad over many things, and dissipated in restless activity, and when recollection is almost unknown. See how beautifully and vigorously he speaks of what he calls the “surface movement” of the present day - by which we whirl about more, but advance less,”—movement being “multiplied in every shape, moral, intellectual,” and physical, while “the central impetus is slackening.” We quote from chapter vi. on Imperfection.
“It is a universal blot; every living thing finds the difficulty of selfrecollection, of gathering itself together, and abiding steadfast at the heart's
It is an evil incident alike to the flowers by the wayside, to all living bodies, to all hearts and minds. It is the degenerare tamen of Virgil, which, passing on from the grain of wheat, he applies to all nature. It is that which S. Bernard, with his deep insight, has called the evisceratio mentis' the 'disembowelling of the soul. S. Augustine alludes to the same under the same metaphor, ' viscera quædam animæ,' when he says that man throws the inner depths of his soul into his outer life, projecit intima sua in via sua.' Life hurries on, spreads itself far and wide, but the source of life dries up. What avails it to conquer the world, if that conquest exhausts the life within us? Yet this is the universal weakness of all creation ; it is the road which leads to death. Let us consider the present time and the tendency of minds in this day to rush forward. If we are to believe one of the latest and ablest psychological authors, that mental and spiritual progress consists in intensifying the inward life (à remonter les degrés d'intériorité) in passing (as mystic writers have welì said) from that which is without to that which is within, and thence to that which is highest,* ab exterioribus ad interiora, ab interioribus ad superiora, --if this, I say, be true, surely at no time has the human mind and soul been so utterly dispersed, plunged amid that which is external, which may perchance prove to be the outer darkness of which we read in tlie Gospel. There is a mighty central life within the vast sphere of a man's soul, which seems to be forgotten, unheeded by all; a neglected sanctuary, a lost fountain-head! And owing to this, those who have wandered farthest would fain assure us that no such invisible world has ever existed. These men tell us that our very soul's existence and that of God, and that science which teaches their union, the interior life, theology, metaphysics, are mere illusion. They end by denying the existence of the very source which gave them life.
“In days of old there were monks whose whole life was absorbed in this great centre, and who found peace, light, and happiness therein. To them it furnished the motive power, the life of all things. But in these days, where shall we find suchi calm, deep minds, dwelling in the invisible, wrapt in heavenly things, ever facing eastward amid the whirl of life? Who now believes in recollection, retirement, and prayer?
“I have seen a discourse which, forty years ago, a learned magistrate ventured to produce, on the advantage of retirement for lawyers ; but, now-a-days, who wouldventure to proffer such an idea ?—who would give a moments heed to it? Let it go! Enough if we may presume to speak of the need for retirement in the priest's case ! Yet a life of retirement and recollection, an interior life, a life of prayer, de interna Christi conversatione, of hidden communion with God; these are, undoubtedly, the greatest of all realities-realities which cannot pass away, an imperative need to the soul.”
Our extract has been long, but we do not think our readers will regret, its length. There is not one amongst us who may not profit by such teaching. It was the want of self-recollection which was the one imper
fection of Henri Perreyve's otherwise almost faultless life, and which cost him the life of his body. Not indeed that he ever wasted his soul in spreading it abroad over unworthy objects, but that out of much love to God and his neighbour he failed to concentrate his love by intensifying his inner life, and so to “possess his soul” and save it for even greater good. And who is there amongst us who may not learn from this solemn warning how to make his own works of charity more vigorous and enduring? In saying however that Henri Perreyve's life was not altogether perfect, our readers must not think that he was unable to form to himself an ideal of the perfect life. In the chapter immediately preceding the one on Imperfection, Père Gratry places before us the ideal which he had formed of what a priest's life should be. It is contained in four Meditations written during his retreat at S. Eusebio, Rome, 1857, on Chastity, the Priest's Death, Persecution, and Son of Man, of which the last three are given, and from which the reader will be able to gather glimpses at least of the nobleness of his soul. With the exception of the one imperfection alluded to, the whole work bears witness how well he lived up to his ideal, and not only lived up to it, but died true to it. As we might have expected from Père Gratry, it is rather a mystical treatment of his life, than a biography; and yet we do not hesitate to say that the seven chapters headed “ Education,” “Vocation,” “Organization of Life," “Ministry,""An Ideal,” “Imperfection,” “Death,” contain a far truer and more vivid idea of the servant of God, and even of the living man, than any mere biography could give. We have lately had occasion to point out how, for spiritual purposes, the Lives of the Saints, composed upon the “hagiological” method, are to be preferred to those written in the biographical form ; and, mutatis mutandis, we think that in the sketch of such a life as that of Henri Perreyve, the method of treatment adopted by Père Gratry gives us far more real knowledge of the life itself than could be derived from the more human interest of a biographical sketch. The last chapter contains a touching account of Henri's last days by the Abbé Bernard. Henri Perreyve is himself well known as an author, having written the “ Journée des Malades," biographical essays on Lacordaire, Rosa Ferrucci, Hermann de Jouffroy, Alfred Tonnelle, and Mgr. Baudry, and the “Station à la Sorbonne,” the last sermons he ever preached. · Had God spared him a little longer, our young men would also have been indebted to him for a work on “Religious and Social Life.” “Nor must it be forgotten,” says the translator, “that we owe that matchless volume of Lacordaire's familiar intercourse with the younger generation he loved so well, “ Lettres à des Jeunes Gens,” to the Abbé Perreyve, to whom many of those exquisitely beautiful letters were addressed.” We are glad to be able to add that a collection of Henri Perreyve's own letters is in course of preparation.
We must say one word upon the translation. It is as nearly perfect as we can conceive a translation can ever be. The translator is, we believe, still an Anglican ; but there has been no tampering with Père Gratry's work, which has been given in its original form. That it will do much good amongst Anglicans by showing them what the true priestly spirit is capable of effecting we have no doubt; and few Catholics, we feel sure,
who read the book, will fail. to offer an earnest prayer to God, that not only the translator, but all who, although strangers to the household of faith, take delight in its pages, may discover, before long, that the perfection of the Christian spirit and life for which they are thirsting is not to be found in the unrealities of Anglicanism, but in that Church alone at the altars of which Henri Perreyve offered in sacrifice, not only his own life, but the Bread of Life itself. Still, we have one fault to find, and it is a grave one. In Henri Perreyve's Second Meditation, p. 161, after having spoken of persecution as an evil that leaves wounds in the breast of a nation which take more centuries to heal than they took days to inflict, he goes on to say that,“ in England the Church was smitten with such wounds, that her present life is more like a miraculous wakening from death than any mere healing." In the translation the passage is thus rendered :~" The Church of England was thus smitten,” &c. Now we have not the original by us, but if in the original the sentence begins with the words, “L'Eglise d'Angleterre," these words in a French priest's mouth, or coming from a French priest's pen, mean something very different from what is conveyed by the expression, “the Church of England." It is of the Church of the living God in communion with the Holy See that Henri Perreyve is speaking; whereas we suppose there will be few Anglicans who read this passage who will not wrap themselves round in the happy thought that the writer is referring to signs of renewed life in their own Establishment. We should be the last to deny that the finger of God is now stretched over the Establishment, but it is stretched over it only to point out the way into the true Church of God; and we should consider ourselves wanting in true charity were we not to try and tear away every one of the deceitful coverings by which Anglicans seek to hide from their own eyes the nakedness of what they call their Church. Even supposing that the translator thought that the words “the Church of England” were an honest rendering of the original, a note of explanation ought at least to have been added. At the same time, we do not wish to speak harshly, but to bear in mind the beautiful words spoken by our Holy Father to Henry Perreyve, and quoted by him at the beginning of his Meditation on the Son of Man :-“Strike boldly at error, but let your hearts be tender as a mother's towards men.” (p. 162.)
Louise Lateau : her Life, Stigmata, and Ecstasies. By Dr. LEBFEVRE.
Translated from the French by J. S. SHEPHARD. Second Edition
Lebfevre's really scientific treatise has reached a second edition, and that thus, while God's marvellous work in the poor peasant-girl of Bois d'Haine is made better known, a work of charity so dear to the Sacred Heart as the Northampton Diocesan Orphanage must surely be, is