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markable a distinction. Speaking largely, Buddhists and Mahometans and even the worst forms of heathenism have some kind of teaching, be it more or less, which it is not lawful to dispute about or deny. Or, take the numerous sects which abound in this country. Presbyterians and Irvingites and Wesleyans and Quakers plainly teach or plainly condemn this or that particular doctrine. But the Establishment has no deliberate or certain teaching. She has thrown utterly away every pretence to the exercise of the prophetical office and leaves her members to find out for themselves, if they can, what is true and what is false. Acting like the heathen judge of old, the reformed Church of England is content (not to answer but) to ask "What is Truth?" (pp. 10, 11.)
The ritualists know well that the established Church teaches with certainty on scarcely a single Christian doctrine. They have never dared to bring an evangelical minister into court. Their utmost threatening has been that they will prosecute some distinguished opponent for disobedience to some ceremonial rubric. In such a case it is very likely (for the Judicial Committee must decide as lawyers) that they might succeed, and make all bishops wear copes and at confirmations lay hands singly on every candidate. But they dare not bring a low churchman before an ecclesiastical judge on any disputed point of doctrine; except, perhaps, for some denial of a part of the Athanasian Creed, so barefaced and so extravagant as to be nothing less than a denial of Christianity altogether. (pp. 15, 16.)
[In the Anglican Church] there is no certainty about any doctrine; perhaps the Bible is inspired, perhaps it is not; perhaps the sacraments convey grace, perhaps it is nonsense to suppose they do; perhaps the punishment of the wicked will be eternal, perhaps not; perhaps God the Son is co-eternal with the Father, perhaps not; perhaps all men "who will be saved" must think in one way only of the Trinity, perhaps not. And so on through the long list of the articles of the Christian Faith. (pp. 21, 22.)
The ritualists are in fact ultra-protestants.
The great characteristics of protestantism are, first, abuse of Roman doctrine and of Roman Catholics; and, secondly, a claim to the unlimited right of private judgment. Both of these characteristics are eminently shown by writers of the school commonly called ritualist; who are in fact ultra-protestant. (p. 20.)
Mr. Maskell draws an important distinction, between the tractarians of thirty years ago and the present ritualists.
In considering the position occupied by ritualists in the established Church, one characteristic is to be remarked by which that party is distinguished from the earlier school of tractarians of about thirty years ago. The tractarians endeavoured to prove that the doctrines which they taught were the doctrines of the reformed Church. They were not satisfied to be merely allowed to teach them, but declared all who held opposite opinions to be not truly members of the Church. They did not merely assert (for example hat episcopal ordination is of necessity, or that all children are regenerated
in the sacrament of baptism, but they further said that nothing more was required to prove this than to bring to the test of a formal trial the contradiction of either of these great truths by a beneficed clergyman,
The first case which occurred involved the doctrine of baptism: and Englishmen generally were amazed to find that, in spite of the apparently strong language of the Common Prayer-book and the authority of a long tradition, the formularies of the English Church permit both the denial and the assertion of regeneration in baptism. So it has been since laid down with regard to other doctrines: and the ritualists have been compelled to take a position altogether different from and far lower in principle than that which the tractarians endeavoured to defend.
In fact, the two positions scarcely admit of comparison, so widely are they separated. Tractarians could not admit the idea of a Church which did not teach and by teaching they understood the positive rejection of heresy equally with the acceptance of Christian truth. Ritualists, on the other hand, are content to be suffered to hold their peculiar opinions: they are content to claim no higher authority for what they speak to their people than that which sends their next-door neighbour into his pulpit to contradict them in every possible way: they are content to be allowed to put on copes and chasubles and make "high celebrations" upon the strength of an old rubric which refers to the second year of Edward VI., although they well know that the vast majority of English ministers are no less borne out when they wear unseemly surplices and say the office of communion with every mark of carelessness, and with full intention to show, practically, the absurdity of fancying that there can be any Real Presence in the Eucharist or any character of Sacrifice except of thanksgiving.
The old tractarians when the knowledge was forced upon them that the reformed Church has no dogmatic teaching felt the ground upon which they had stood, and tried to fight the battle of the Establishment, cut away from beneath their feet. Some saw at once and clearly the logical consequence of a result so unlooked for, so fatal to all claims upon a reasonable obedience, and became converts to the Catholic Faith. Some fell back into what is called the high and dry school, and having once resisted the grace of conversion were soon falsely satisfied with their new resting-place, and retained small feeling about anything except anger against those who, by leaving the Establishment, condemned the seeming dishonesty of others who remained. Some, again, seeing plainly that the old tractarian arguments had been proved to be incorrect, gave up the whole notion as untrue and joined the winning party of the low church and evangelicals. (pp. 12, 13.)
F. Humphrey draws out a similar view, with less brilliancy perhaps, but on the other hand with even greater fulness and breadth of thought. We are sure our readers will not regret the length of our quotation. He begins by contrasting high-churchmen with "Bible Christians."
I have a great affection, and in a manner a reverence, for those Bible Christians, as they are called; and for this reason. True, they worship they
know not what; it is an irrational worship,-it is, if you please, something akin to Fetish worship, or to the worship by the Ephesians of their goddess Diana, who fell down to them out of heaven from Jupiter; but with all those drawbacks, it is the nearest approach to an act of faith which is or can be made out of the Catholic and Roman Church. There is a submission of reason and will to something divine, as divine.
They are hopelessly at sea as to why it is divine, and why it possesses a divine and so supreme authority over their consciences and even in their worship there is a large alloy of private judgment; for what they submit to is, the Scriptures not simply as objectively true, but as subjectively true to them, that is, as interpreted by them. Yet still there is a submission to an authority, and so at least a shadow of an act of faith. They are irrational, but they are religious; they are puzzle-headed more than proud. They assert and act on the principle of Infallibility, although they are wrong as to its subject; transferring to an inanimate object that which is the property of a living Body-the Church of God, and its visible Head, the Roman Pontiff.
Now as to our High-Church friends, what is the ground of their faith? To what authority do they submit their reason? They answer-"To the Church." But what Church? Certainly not the Catholic and Roman Church, for they lie under her excommunication. Certainly not the schismatic Greek Church; for even separated as it is from the Catholic Church, it will not ally itself with Protestant sects. What remains? The Church of England. But do they submit their reason to it, as to a divine and infallible authority? Read their organs, and the articles full of abuse and ridicule they contain against the ecclesiastical authorities of that Church, and the accusations of heresy they bring against its heads, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, and say whether they submit their reason to its teaching and authority, to its mind and will.
Certainly they are right in this, that given the divine truth of the doctrines they hold in common with the Catholic and Roman Church, their archbishop is a heretic. But does this help their position? Nay, what does it entail upon them as a necessary consequence ? It is an acknowledged principle, that those who are in communion with heretics are partakers thereby in their sins, they are heretics also. But they accuse their archbishop and the majority of his colleagues of heresy, and yet they are in communion with them; therefore they are themselves heretics on their own showing. They must take their choice of one or other term of the dilemma. If their archbishop is right, they are necessarily heretics; if they are right, he is a heretic, and they, being in communion with him, share his heresy.
Now, can you imagine me, for instance, writing in the Tablet of the Archbishop of Westminster as they, week after week, write of their bishops? What would be the consequence in my case, if I did? You cannot doubt but that I should be immediately suspended. There would be an exercise of authority on the part of my ecclesiastical superior; and on my part, if I wished to remain in his communion, there would be a necessary act of submission.
If, on the contrary, I persevered in my contumacy, I should be excommunicated; and if any of my brethren in the priesthood or of my people adhered to me, they would share my excommunication.
True, I might be in the right, and he in the wrong; and were I persuaded of this, I might appeal to him who is superior to both of us-to the Supreme Pontiff. He is the Bishop of my Archbishop as well as mine; and my Diocesan is as much subject to the jurisdiction and authority of the one Father of the One Family, the one King of One Kingdom, as I am. And were the Holy Father to sustain my appeal, and decide that I was in the right, and my Archbishop in the wrong; he would submit to his superior, acknowledge his fault, and repair his error. In my appeal there would be no insubordination, and in his submission there would be no indignity.
But were he to resist the judgment of his superior, the Holy Father, his excommunication would follow in due course, and thereupon his subjects would renounce their allegiance to him. If they adhered to him, from personal affection, for worldly advantages, or from private judgment, they would simply share his excommunication, and be, like him, members severed from the one Living Body-branches broken from the one Mystic Vine. Here you have authority in action; and submission its correlative. (pp. 37-40.)
The pamphlet by "two Catholics" has been occasioned by a ritualistic criticism of Mgr. Capel's recent lectures. We are very glad to hear that these lectures are likely to be published; for they have already done excellent service, and cannot fail to be even more influential when more widely circulated. Mgr. Capel is daily assuming a more important position among English Catholics, and we hail with much pleasure his promised appearance as an author. The pamphlet before us is written in the best spirit, and displays throughout great force of reasoning. The writers are evidently much more recent converts than Mr. Maskell, and have far more direct acquaintance than he with the modern exhibitions of ritualism. extract one telling passage. The ritualist whom they are answering had said, that he would rather remain an Anglican, than, "for love of excitement, music, or" Mgr. Capel, "run off on Sundays to places of worship." The "two Catholics" reply:
There is undoubtedly a large element of sensationalism and excitement in the services of the Ritualistic churches which cannot exist in the services of the Catholic Church, because they are always the same in ritual and ceremonies as the different festivals come round. There is also wholly absent a feeling that a pang would go through the heart of the bishop of the diocese, which rather enhances the excitement, if not the enjoyment, of a Ritualistic function; nor are Catholics on their great festivals in a state of excitement as to whether their parish priest will have "got a little further, and have another light or two, or a banner, or a crucifix, or possibly clothe himself in a cope." Nor do we suppose a Catholic has ever been heard to say that he cannot go to his parish church because it is so disturbing to devotion, VOL. XIX.—NO. XXXVIII. [New Series.] 2 K
"always something new," and yet you must know how often this has been urged even by High Churchmen. (p. 23.)
We can also heartily recommend the whole letter of Mr. Harington Moore, addressed to his late parishioners. It takes up a position, which is very familiar to Catholics, but which very few Anglicans will even attempt to apprehend. Real service then is done, when a certain number of them are addressed by one whom they already know, and who may hope therefore with more success than another to engage their attention. We subjoin a few extracts.
If the Church of England is in disunion with the Catholic Church and the Greek Church, it is also in the most utter state of disunion within its own pale. The possibility of the High-Church, Low-Church, and Broad-Church parties all finding their place in it, all recognised by authority, ought in itself to make thinking men very careful to inquire whether such an unparalleled state of affairs can be possible in any religious body possessing a vestige of truth. In no dissenting sect is so much variety of doctrine to be found. (p. 6.) What does the Church of England teach? Just what each individual clergyman pleases. The Church of England is no teacher at all. The High Churchman and the Low Churchman each asserts his own to be the teaching of the Prayer-book; but there is no living voice of authority to decide for the inanimate Prayer-book which is right. (p. 7.)
You know, too, that you are taught to regard dissenters with holy horror, and yet the Established Church was clearly the first dissenter, inasmuch as it severed itself from the Catholic Church 300 years ago, which Church was then, as Anglican theology itself teaches, the true Church of God on earth. But then, perhaps, you will say a reformation was necessary, and that the Established Church merely corrected errors which had sprung up in the Catholic Church. I reply, How do you know they were errors? Who gave the Reformers the gift of infallibility, that they should presume to know better what was error and truth than the Church of Christ did, which had the Holy Ghost with it to keep it in all truth? By accepting the religion of the Reformation you are accepting the infallibility of fallible men, in preference to the infallibility of the Catholic Church. And if you want to satisfy yourself as to the characters of the Fathers of the Anglican Establishment, who set up as teachers of Christ's Church, I refer you to a pamphlet written by a High Churchman, and entitled "Innovations." (p. 12.)
Each Ritualistic clergyman seems to me to comprise within himself the respective powers of Pope, Bishop, and Priest, if not of a General Council. I know not what authority he submits to. Certainly not his bishop, because his bishop may be Low Church, and may order him to abstain from some doctrine or practice, which he pleases to call Catholic, without a chance of meeting with obedience from him. Certainly not the Privy Council; and yet this is the court of final appeal recognised by the whole episcopate of the Established Church, and one of the two archbishops always appends his signature to its judgments. When the Church of England cast off the autho