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command, the Roman Catholic "bows down and serves" his image, sets up his light before it, carries it in procession, anathematizes and persecutes those who refuse to render it any honour. It is very easy to affirm that the reverence is paid to the being represented, and not to the representation: it is equally easy to reply that the distinction is too refined for the mass of the people, and that it does not exist in practice. "Superstition" and "base gains" are prohibited in the decree; but in truth the whole is superstitious and base. It would seem a harmless thing to set up an image or painting of a good and great man, and even to pay it some kind of homage: but "the Lord our God is a jealous God," and the oft-repeated denunciations of his word have been amply justified by fact. "Due honour," adoration, and idolatry are inseparably connected together. Nor should it be forgotten, that in religion the absence of a command is a virtual prohibition. "What thing soever I command you, observe to do it, thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." Bo

For ages has the credit of images and relics, as well as of every other papal invention, been sustained by pretended miracles. These "lying wonders" have done incalculable mischief. They have deluded the ignorant

30 Deut. xii. 32. Akin to the worship of images is the use of Agnus Dei's. "An Agnus Dei (so called from the image of the Lamb of God impressed on the face of it) is made of virgin wax, balsam, and chrism, blessed according to the form prescribed in the Roman ritual. The spiritual efficacy, or virtue of it, is gathered from the prayers that the church make use of in the blessing of it. which is to preserve him who carries an Agnus Dei, or any particle of it, about him, from any attempts of his spiritual or temporal enemies; from the dangers of fire, of water, of storms and tempests, of thunder and lightning, and from a sudden and unprovided death. It puts the devils to flight, succours women in child-bed, takes away the stains of past sins, and furnishes us with new grace for the future, that we may be preserved from all adversities and perils, both in life and death, through the cross and merits of the Lamb who redeemed and washed us in his blood.

"The Pope consecrates the Agnus Dei's the first year of his pontificate, and afterwards on every seventh year, on Saturday before Low Sunday, with many solemn ceremonies and devout prayers." And this in the nineteenth Century, and believed and held by Englishmen!! See "Devotion and Office of the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ," p. 375.

and unwary, and hardened the infidel. And although in innumerable instances the vile imposture has been detected and exposed, or the true cause of the phenomenon (if it were such) explained, ingenuity is still at work, and new miracles "recognised and approved," accord ing to the requirement of the decree, are pompously announced, and lauded as irrefragable proofs of the divinity of the Roman Catholic religion. 31 The established Protestant is not moved by these things. Admitting, in some cases, the truth of the alleged facts, he is fully prepared to prove that they are not miraculous, and may be easily accounted for. A strongly excited imagination has often produced extraordinary effects

31 The Breviary teems with narratives of miracles wrought by the saints. For instance, St. Francis Xavier turned a sufficient quantity of salt water into fresh to save the lives of five hundred travellers, who were dying of thirst, enough being left to allow a large exportation to different parts of the world, where it performed astonishing cures. St. Raymond de Pennafort laid his cloak on the sea, and sailed thereon from Majorca to Barcelona, a distance of a hundred and sixty miles, in six hours. St. Juliana lay on her deathbed: her stomach rejected all solid food, and in consequence she was prevented from receiving the eucharist. In compliance with her earnest solicitations, the consecrated wafer was laid upon her breast; the priest prayed; the wafer vanished; and Juliana expired. S. Elizabeth, queen of Portugal, had lived a long while on bread and water; in her illness the physicians directed her to take wine; when she refused to follow their prescription, the water she was about to drink was miraculously changed into wine. With many others of the same sort. Breviar. Dec. 3; Jan. 23; June 19; July 8.

Many pages might be filled with accounts of modern miracles, of the most ridiculous description, yet piously believed by Roman Catholics. The reader may consult Forsyth's Italy, ii. p. 154–157. Rome in the Nineteenth Century, i. p. 40, 86; ii. p. 356; iii. p. 193-201. Lady Morgan's Italy, ii. p. 306; Graham's Three Months' Residence, &c. p. 241.

Every body has heard of the annual liquefaction of the blood of St. Januarius at Naples. "During the first occupation of the French the miracle failed, and was so designedly conducted for the purpose of agitating the people, and producing a re-action: but the French general sent a peremptory order to the saint to do his spiriting gently,' under pain of making an example of the attending priests, which he promptly obeyed. When the miracle fails, the people load the saint with all manner of abuse and execration; and wote the foreigner who shall continue in the church at this juncture; the failure is soon attributed to his heretical presence, and he is sure to be outraged, if not injured." Lady Morgan's Italy, iii. p. 189.

on the human frame, apart from all divine interposition. Besides this, he knows that the doctrines in support of which the miracles are said to be wrought, are not found in Scripture, nor can be derived therefrom, by any fair argument or deduction. Of the divine origin and authority of the Sacred Volume he has previous and wellgrounded assurance. All religious sentiments not contained in that. holy book are necessarily erroneous, and any presumed supernatural interference in their behalf is delusive and false.




Decrees of reformation-Acclamations of the fathers at the close of the council-Index of prohibited books-Rules of the congregation of the Index-Account of a Spanish Index Expurgatorius-Publication of the Catechism-Remarks on a recent translation of that work.

THE reforming decrees passed in the two last sessions of the council of Trent yet remain to be noticed. They included the following particulars :

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It was enjoined that in the election of bishops great care should be taken to select persons of suitable age, qualifications, and character; and that after due examination and inquiry, report thereon should be made to the Pope, who, with the advice of the consistory, would make the appointment; and similar regulations were decreed in reference to cardinals. Feeling, however, that it was useless to legislate for the sovereign pontiff, a clause was added, expressive of the deep concern felt by the council that his Holiness would choose none but fit and proper persons for those important stations, lest the flocks should perish through the negligence of the shepherds. Provincial and diocesan synods were ordered to be held, the former once in three years, the latter annually. Patriarchs, bishops, archdeacons, &c. were directed to make periodical visitations of the dioceses, for the maintenance of orthodox sentiments, the suppression of heresy, and the correction of evils and abuses; and priests were commanded to preach and catechise every Sunday and holiday, and daily in Lent and Advent, as also to explain to the people the nature and power of the sacraments, and give other useful instructions, in the intervals of mass, in the vernacular tongue. The Pope reserved to himself the judgment of all important

criminal causes affecting bishops, especially heresy.Confessionals were ordered to be established in cathedral churches, and public penance inflicted for very scandalous offences; the latter provision, however, was nullified by permission given to the bishop to commute public for private penance, if he saw sufficient grounds for so doing. The former decrees respecting pluralities were renewed. Cardinals and prelates were admonished not to exceed the bounds of moderation in their manner of living, furniture, dress, &c. Solemn injunctions were issued to all ecclesiastics, of every rank, and to all members of universities, to receive and hold whatever the council had decreed, to promise and profess due obedience to the Roman Pontiff, and to anathematize publicly all heresies. Excommunication, which had been so often inflicted on slight grounds that it was rather despised than dreaded, was to be very cautiously enforced, and only for weighty reasons: magistrates were strictly forbidden to interfere with the bishops in this matter, or to prevent the exercise of their power. Neglect or refusal to pay tithes was especially mentioned as a valid ground for excommunication. Priests keeping concubines, or retaining any suspicious females in their houses, were condemned to suffer the loss of a third part of their incomes; if they persisted, they incurred suspension; for a third offence, privation; for a fourth, excommunication. Should any bishops be found guilty of such an offence, and refuse to amend, they were to be reported to the Pope, who would exercise his own discretion in the infliction of punishment. The children of priests were forbidden the enjoyment of any ecclesiastical place or office in the church in which their fathers officiated-an enactment which unwittingly betrayed the inefficiency of the laws of continence. A severe law was passed against duelling, subjecting the parties, both principals and seconds, to excommunication (in which sentence even the sovereigns, princes, or nobles in whose dominions the duel was permitted to take place, were included,) confiscation of all their property, perpetual infamy, and the punishments inflicted for manslaughter, with denial of the rites of christian interment, if either fell in the conflict. The clause in the first decree passed under Pius IV. by which the legates reserved to them

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