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ence not its due, and violates by its acts of tyranny the law of God. Papal infallibility is, therefore, dangerous only to tyranny which it resists with all the moral power at its command. Civil rulers may despise moral power, and attempt with their armed legions to ride roughshod over it; but with only transient success, for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. The archbishop of Westminster's assertion that subjects are bound to obey their rulers in all things not unlawful, means in all things not forbidden by the law of God. This is the doctrine of the church in all ages. Subjects are bound to obey their rulers, therefore, for conscience sake.
The Herald thinks the archbishop's reservation is that of the “ Higher Law" of the abolitionists. Prudentius, in its own columns, has answered the Herald ; and we have only to add that the abolitionists, in their doctrine of the “Higher Law,” erred by appealing from the constitution, not to the law of God' infallibly declared, but simply, as good Protestants, to the individual reason or private judgment, which is below, not above the civil power, and conceals the principle of modern revolutionism. The abolitionists also maintained that a senator, for instance, has the right to use the authority with which the constitution invests him, and which he has sworn to defend, in contravention of its positive injunctions, without resigning his seat in the senate. The fact is that the law of God is not, strictly speaking, a “higher law,” for there is and can be no law that conflicts with it. Acts that contravene it are violences, not laws. The civil courts even refuse to enforce acts of the legislature that are contrary to natural justice, that is, contrary to the natural law; or did so refuse before the doctrine of the supremacy of the civil power came into vogue.
Prudentius has also set the Herald right in regard to its assertion, that faith is simply a sentiment; which is pure Beecherism. The Herald has latterly had some very able and statesmanlike editorials; but its indifferentism in matters of faith, and its lack of proper theological discipline, prevent it from being a safe guide in theological questions. A man is not necessarily a theologian because born of Catholic parents, or educated in a Catholic college.
Unhappily, what we call the age has lost sight of the spiritual or moral order of the universe. The scientists resolve the moral law into the physical laws of nature, and God the creator into mere force or blind energy. The
politicians emancipate the state from the divine law, ana assert its freedom to do whatever it pleases, if able. The limit of its right is only in the limit of its might.
Thus far we had written, when we received the American reprint of Mr. Gladstone's pamphlet, with the replies of Archbishop Manning and Lord Acton. After reading the pamphlet, which strikes us as very weak and ill-tempered, we find on the main question nothing to alter in what we had written. Mr. Gladstone utterly fails either to prove that the church has forfeited her “proud boast of semper eadem” by the decrees of the Vatican, or that papal infallibility makes every Catholic a mental and moral slave, or is incompatible with the allegiance due to the civil power. He has only shown that some disclaimers of English Catholics during the struggle for emancipation are not in accordance with their present claims on the part of the church or the papacy; but this is nothing to the purpose, for these claims, as Lord Acton shows, were always made and known to be made by the popes, and never disclaimed by them. The Council of the Vatican has made no change in them, one way or another. The disclaimers of English Catholics, to conciliate the English government never were of any authority, for they were never confirmed by the
and they never deceived the English government which never trusted them, but imposed a special oath on Catholic members of parliament. Mr. Gladstone has no right to complain if he finds a change in the tone of some English Catholics, or finds them even insisting on claims which he persuaded himself were abandoned, since he knows, or ought to know, that, though the church may not at all times and under all circumstances exercise all her rights, yet she never abandons a claim she has once made and could not without denying her own infallibility. His real complaint is, not that the church has changed, but that she has not changed, and really remains, as she alleges, semper eadem.
Mr. Gladstone's charge is twofold: ist, against the church universal; and 2d, against the Catholic subjects of Great Britain. To the first we have replied at length, and shown that an infallible church or an infallible papacy cannot, in the nature of the case, be hostile to civil allegiance, but enjoins obedience to rulers in all things not forbidden by the supreme law of God, which binds alike the prince and the subject, the state and the citizen. To the second, we have little to say, except that we are glad to find English Catholics speaking out as Catholics, boldly in conformity with their Catholic principles, and no longer speaking as Gallicans, or subordinating their religion to their English prejudices. No good ever came from the Butler policy of trimming, or attempting to explain away certain features of the church foolishly objected to. We never
We never had any sympathy with that policy. We have little respect for the Catholic who lacks the courage of his principles. Archbishop Manning's influence is great and thoroughly Catholic. He knows not what it is to trim. We are glad to hear, and we hope it is true, that he sent not long since a circular to all his clergy, to be read from the pulpit, declaring, which is true, that no one who denies the papal infallibility, as defined by the Council of the Vatican, is a Catholic. It is time to end the senseless babble about ultramontanes. All Catholics are ultramontanes, and anybody who is not is not a Catholic, let him call himself what he will. Mr. Gladstone, if he believed in the sovereignty of God, would see the weakness and absurdity of his pamphlet. There is no obedience due to the civil forbidden by the divine law.
NEWMAN'S REPLY TO GLADSTONE.*
[From Brownson's Quarterly Review for April, 1875.] We discussed as fully as we thought necessary, Mr. Gladstone's main charge, that papal infallibility, as defined by the Council of the Vatican, is incompatible with the civil allegiance of Catholics,—the only charge that affects us Catholics in this country, Dr. Newman, in the publication before us, has replied to Mr. Gladstone's expostulation in extenso, and has replied both as a Catholic and as an Englishman. We have no need to say that the reply is able and exhaustive, but, perhaps, its value is partially lessened by the fact that the author replies for himself, as an independent thinker, who writes on his own responsibility, from his own private and personal convictions, rather than as a doctor of the church, setting forth her doctrine. His convictions are, for
*A Letter addressed to his Grace the Duke of Norfolk, on the occasion of Mr. Gladstone's Recent Erpostulation. By JOHN HENRY NEWMAN, of the Oratory. New York: 1875.
the most part, coincident with the teachings of the church, but do not appear to rest on her authority. His reply, though, as a matter of fact, in the main satisfactory to Catholics, must be taken as the statement of the views of Dr. John Henry Newman by non-Catholics, rather than as the authentic teaching of the church, on the topics discussed; and therefore will not be taken by Protestants as any thing more than the answer, on his own hook, of a very learned, able, and distinguished individual.
A friend, in whose judgment we place great confidence, remarks to us that Dr. Newman does not appear to write in a thoroughly Catholic spirit; that even when his doctrine is orthodox, the animus, the spirit, is at least half-Anglican. Dr. Newman is decidedly an Englishman, with most of the characteristics of Englishmen. He seems to us to retain an affection for Anglicanism which we do not share; to believe it true and sound as far as it goes, and to have rejected it as defective rather than as false. His Catholicity, which we do not doubt is very genuine, is something added to his Anglicanisın, not something diverse or essentially different from it. It is something more than Anglicanisın, but not something different in kind. In fact, we detect no radical change in the habits of his mind effected by his conversion; and his republication of his works written and published when he was still an Anglican, with only very meagre notes, would seem to indicate that in his own judgment none did take place. Indeed he says expressly, somewhere in his · Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine,” that “conversion is a putting on, not a putting off.” In our case it was both,-a putting off of the old man, and a putting on of the new man; but then we were not an Anglican, nor one of the leaders of the “ Oxford movement.” There can be no question that Dr. Newman is not in full and hearty sympathy with his more earnest and enthusiastic brethren, and is far from falling in with them in their devotions to our Lady, for instance, who is for him, in those of his writings we have seen, simply St. Mary, as if she were only an ordinary saint.
Yet we believe much of what seems to us defective in his Catholic sympathy is due to his English reserve and not to any want of Catholic faith or devotion; to his English dread of overdoing, and appearing too demonstrative. He certainly did not sympathize with the Vatican decrees of the supremacy and infallibility of the pope; he seems to have some
doubts if they have the authority of an ecumenical council, because a large minority of the fathers refrained from voting, though not voting against them, and he seems to think these decrees tend to lessen the papal dignity; yet he tells us he believes both the papal infallibility and supremacy, and did believe thein before the Vatican decrees. He, evidently, has also wished to present his statement of the points of Catholic doctrine, specially objected to by Mr. Gladstone, in terms as little offensive to his countrymen as possible, without betraying the truth; yet he defends the papal character of the church, and maintains that the pope holds, jure divino, the deposing power, or power in extreme cases, of which he is the judge, to depose a sovereign prince, and to absolve his subjects from their allegiance, than which nothing in Catholicity is more offensive to English Protestants. He questions the authority of the syllabus, but we have not found him countenancing any error it condemns, or includes as condemned. He says not a few things that will displease many Catholics, and some things which we cannot accept, but it will be difficult, we apprehend, to convict him of any utterance against faith. At any rate, whether his reply proves satisfactory to Catholics or not, it contains nothing, as far as we can judge, to afford aid or comfort to the enemies of the church.
The Review has never eulogized Dr. Newman, and it has criticised some of his publications with great severity, and incurred much odium for itself thereby. We have never liked his English reserve, and apparent want of frankness and fulness in acknowledging his errors and mistakes; he has always seemed to us to write as if he felt himself the leader of a great movement, which he had to take care not to commit by any word or deed of his. The present work is not in all respects satisfactory to us; it reserves a right, in extreme cases, to follow one's private judgment against the authority of the pope, which we dare not claim, and have no disposition to claim for ourselves, even in matters in which the pope does not claim infallibility; still, we like it better than any other of the author's publications that we have seen. Though conciliatory in spirit, and proving from first to last its author a loyal Englishman, it is bold, manly, independent, and unreserved in the expression of his honest convictions. It is, upon the whole, an able defence of Catholicity on the points assailed by Mr. Gladstone, and scatters the charges preferred in his expostulation to the four quar