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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Fri. 08/18/06 07:32:28 AM

Assumed Principles the Intellectual Ground of the Protestant View

Lecture 7 of Lectures on the Present Position of Catholics in England.

Delivered on Monday, August 18, 1851.

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There is a great and a growing class in the community, who wish to be fair to us, who see how cruelly we are dealt with, who are indignant at the clamour, and see through the calumnies, and despise the prejudice, which are directed against us, who feel themselves to be superior to the multitude in their feelings and their judgments, who aim at thinking well of all men, all persuasions, all schools of thought, and of Catholics in the number, and to like each for what is good in it, though they may not follow it themselves. Being thus candid, and, in a certain sense, unbiassed, they readily acknowledge the grandeur of the Catholic Religion, both in history and in philosophy; they wish to be good friends with it; they delight to contemplate its great heroes; they recognise, perhaps, with almost enthusiastic admiration, the genius and other gifts of the intellect, which in every age have been so profusely found among its adherents. They know and they like individual Catholics; they have every desire to like us in all respects; they set their minds towards liking us, our principles, our doctrines, our worship and our ways. As far as can be said of men, they really have no prejudice. In this interesting and excellent state of mind, they take up one of our books, sincerely wishing to get on with it; alas, they are flung back at once; they see so much which they cannot abide at all, do what they will. They are annoyed at themselves, and at us; but there is no help for it; they discover, they feel that between them and us there is a gulf. So they turn from the subject in disgust, and for a time perhaps are in bad humour with religion altogether, and have a strong temptation to believe nothing at all. Time passes; they get over the annoyance, and perhaps make a second attempt to adjust their own feelings with our doctrines, but with no better success. They had hoped to have found some middle term, some mode of reconciliation; they did not expect agreement, but at least peace; not coincidence, but at least a sort of good understanding and concurrence: whereas they find antagonism. No: it is impossible; it is melancholy to say it, but it is no use disguising the truth from themselves; they cannot get over this or that doctrine or practice; nay, to be honest, there is no part they can acquiesce in; each separate portion is part of a whole. They are disappointed, but they never can believe, they never can even approve; if the Catholic system be true, faith in it must be a gift, for reason does not bear it out....


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P.S. Thanks.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 08/18/06 07:32:28 AM
Categorized as Historical & Literary & Religious & Speeches and Suchlike & The Present Position of Catholics.


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