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Breaking with the Past Catholic Principles Abandoned at the Reformation   By: (1846-1929)

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BREAKING WITH THE PAST

OR

CATHOLIC PRINCIPLES ABANDONED AT THE REFORMATION

Four Sermons Delivered at St. Patrick's Cathedral New York, on the Sundays of Advent, 1913

BY

FRANCIS AIDAN GASQUET

ABBOT PRESIDENT OF THE ENGLISH BENEDICTINES

WITH A PREFACE BY

HIS EMINENCE CARDINAL FARLEY

P. J. KENEDY & SONS PRINTERS TO THE HOLY APOSTOLIC SEE NEW YORK

NIHIL OBSTAT REMIGIUS LAFORT Censor Deputatus

IMPRIMATUR JOHN CARDINAL FARLEY Archbishop of New York

January 3, 1914

COPYRIGHT, 1914 P. J. KENEDY & SONS

TO HIS EMINENCE CARDINAL FARLEY ARCHBISHOP OF NEW YORK THESE SERMONS DELIVERED AT HIS REQUEST IN HIS CATHEDRAL CHURCH ARE DEDICATED AS A SMALL TOKEN OF SINCERE RESPECT AND AFFECTION

PREFACE

THE Rt. Rev. Francis Aidan Gasquet, Abbot General of the English Benedictines and Chairman of the Commission appointed for the revision of the Vulgate or Latin Bible, gave a course of sermons at the High Mass in St. Patrick's Cathedral on the Sundays of Advent, 1913, on "Catholic Principles abandoned at the Reformation."

These sermons attracted very wide attention. The subject chosen, while seemingly a familiar one, proved most interesting to the vast congregations, drawn by the fame of the preacher as a historian of the Reformation period. His manner of treatment had much to do with the profound interest manifested by his listeners. All attempt at pulpit oratory was cast aside, and the preacher confined himself to a clear unvarnished tale of the causes that led up to the so called Reformation. He showed himself a complete master of the question. As announced in his opening sermon, the Rt. Rev. Abbot did not seek to be controversial, but purely historical, and this purpose he followed to the end, basing all his statements on documents whose authenticity could not be called in question. He made clear what Cardinal Manning has so often repeated, that England did not give up the Catholic faith of centuries, but was simply robbed of it.

It was my pleasure to be present at all the sermons, and to be held under the spell of his simple eloquence, and to experience the appeal his strong arguments must have made. The main thesis which the learned Abbot sought to establish was that the doctrines of the Church in England had been reconstructed under Lutheran and Calvinistic influence, and the cultural beliefs held by the Church from the time of Christ had been rejected. This was especially true of the priesthood. By Act of Parliament a new form of ordination, carefully and systematically excluding every word that could be interpreted to mean that the candidate was to be a sacrificing priest, was introduced.

In these days when there is a strong movement on foot without the fold, to restore the unity of the Christian faith, we can indulge the hope that the four lectures of the distinguished Abbot will prove fruitful. They are on subjects so vital to unity; i. e. the Supremacy of the Pope, the Sacrifice of the Mass, the Eternal Priesthood, the Universal Church. We pray that these sermons will attract the attention of many outside the Church, and make them meditate on the bitterness of breaking from their "Father's House." May God's holy grace prove stronger than prejudice, as it has so often in the past, and may it soften the hearts which have been hardened by cruel legislation rather than by wilful disobedience.

JOHN CARDINAL FARLEY, Archbishop of New York .

NEW YORK, The Feast of St. Thomas the Apostle, 1913

CONTENTS

I THE POPE'S AUTHORITY II THE HOLY MASS III THE PRIESTHOOD IV THE CHURCH BY LAW ESTABLISHED BOOKS SUGGESTED FOR READING

I

I

THE POPE'S AUTHORITY

TO DAY we begin the work of Advent. During these weeks of preparation for the great feast of Christmas it is usual and useful to turn our thoughts to some of the great principles upon which our faith as Catholics is grounded, in order that we may realise more fully all that our Blessed Lord's coming into this world has done for mankind in general and for our individual souls in particular... Continue reading book >>




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