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the desert, and are dead. This is the BREAD which cometh down from heaven. If any man eat of it, he may not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of it, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, for the life of the world.

"The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us his flesh to eat? Then Jesus said to them: Amen, amen, I say unto you: except you shall eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you. He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood, abideth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father, so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead. He that eateth this bread shall live for ever. Many therefore of his disciples hearing it, said: this saying is hard, and who can hear it. After this many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him."

"But does not Christ, in another verse, expressly declare that his words are spirit and life?" returned Virginia.

"He does," replied Rowland, "but never did he mean to explain in a figurative sense, the declaration which he had made. Else why did many of his disciples abandon him? And you must remark, Miss, that they abandoned him after he had used the terms spirit and life; now I contend, if the Saviour had explained his meaning, according to the acceptation of the Protestant world, his disciples would not have forsaken him: the saying would not have been hard: for certainly, it was no hard matter to believe that the body of Christ could be represented under the form of bread, and his blood under that

of wine. But even after the explanation, if explanation it can be called, given by the Redeemer, the incredulous disciples abandoned him. Christ did not call them back, and show them how they had misconceived his meaning, no, but turning to the twelve, will you also go away? he said. 'And Simon Peter answered him: Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life." "


"But you quote from the Catholic_bible," said Virginia, can you find the same related in the Protestant scripture?"

"Certainly, I can."

"Pardon me, if I say, that I very much doubt it, Sir."

"Here is a bible, published by the bible Society of Maryland," said Rowland, opening the volume, "the facts are the very same, and the language varies but little." Here he read the whole of the passage.

"Is not that enough to convince the most incredulous, Virginia?" exclaimed Louisa.

Virginia was silent, and looked amazed.

"Again," resumed Rowland," in St. Matthew, we read that, at the last supper, Jesus took bread and brake and gave to his disciples, saying: this is my body, (26. vi.) Allow me to make one simple reflection on this text. According to the principle of the Protestant religion, each individual has a right to read and interpret the bible as he pleases. Is it not true, Miss Virginia?"

"By all means; on that grand and liberal principle our church is founded."

"If, therefore, after a mature perusal and reflection, I am convinced that it should be understood literally, no one has any right to condemn me. I act on the broad principle of Protestantism. Why then should I be accused of error, or idolatry; especially when to my interpretation, I

adjoin that of the greatest, wisest, holiest, and most learned of men, during eighteen hundred years?"

"But was it really the doctrine of all Christendom, before the reformation?" asked Virginia.

"If there be any truth in history, this fact is manifest," returned Rowland. "The first person who dared to attack it, was one Berengarius, who lived in the twelfth century. But he was immediately condemned by the whole world, and afterwards retracted, and repented. And at the present day, it is the doctrine of a great majority of christians. In Italy, in Austria, in Poland, in France, in the Netherlands, in Portugal, in Spain, in Ireland, in South America, in the east, it is the faith of the greatest, the noblest, and the wisest of men. Are all these persons so stupid as to take that for the real body of Christ, which is a mere wafer? Is it not more safe, at least, is it not more prudent, for us to believe with them, especially when the scripture is so plain on the subject, than to adhere to the opinions of a few, who found those opinions on the principle, that they are allowed to interpret the bible as they choose, and they choose to interpret it figuratively? And because they interpret it to suit and please themselves, they wish to deprive me, and all who believe in the real presence, of the privilege of interpreting it according to the literal acceptation."

"What a strange inconsistency on the part of the Protestants!" exclaimed Louisa.

"The Protestant religion, I am more and more persuaded, is made up of inconsistencies," said Mrs. Wolburn.

Virginia fixed her eye on the floor, and was pensive. After a considerable pause, "indeed," she said, "the Catholics appear more consistent.

They interpret the bible after their own conviction, and have the authority of almost all the world besides."

"And of all antiquity," added Rowland.

"But our Saviour said: 'Do this in commemoration of me,'" replied Virginia.

"This objection is always adduced, when no other can be found," said Rowland: "but it proves nothing against the real presence, much less in favour of the figurative interpretation."

"Why not?" asked Virginia.

"Because, you must remark, in the institution of the blessed sacrament, there are two distinct propositions: one of which cannot contradict the other. The first is: This is my body. The second: Do this in commemoration of me. By the first, the bread was changed into the body of Christ, as I have proved. By the second, the apostles were commanded to do the same, and of course received the power to do it. And this power was transmitted to their successors; in virtue of which we transubstantiate, at mass, the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ."

"Hence the institution of the mass, my dear," said Mrs. Wolburn.

"Again," said Rowland," Protestants are not generally aware of the frightful consequences to which their doctrine of a figurative presence would inevitably lead. It tends to destroy the reality, and by consequence, the efficacy of the great christian atonement."

"That will be a singular and convincing argument, indeed," said Virginia, "if it can be sustained."

"Well you shall hear," replied Rowland."At the institution of the eucharist, Christ did not simply say: This is my body: he added, ukich shall be broken or delivered for you. He

thus distinctly describes the body of which he spoke. He identifies it with that very body which was broken for our sins on the cross. We must, therefore, either admit, that the words of Christ are to be taken in their obvious and literal sense, as indicating a real presence of his real body, or we shall be forced to acknowledge, that his body did not really suffer on the cross. For, adopting for a moment the figurative interpretation, Christ's words will run thus: "This is my body, (that is, the figure of my body,) which (that is, which figure of my body,) will be delivered for you." Now we all agree, that it was the real body of Christ which was delivered for us into the hands of his enemies, and which was broken for us, upon the cross, and consequently, I think, that we should reject that interpretation which would tend to overturn the whole foundation of our hopes. A similar process of reasoning may be applied to the words spoken at the consecration of the cup."

"Really," said Virginia, "that view of the subject never struck me before; and, besides, I cannot conceive how, at so solemn a moment, Christ could have used other than the plainest and most simple language."

"The remark is just," replied Rowland. "But observe further, that our Redeemer foresaw the manner in which the great body of christians, with very few exceptions, would interpret his words for fifteen hundred years, as significative of a real presence; and do you not think if he meant the contrary, his goodness and mercy to his creatures would have induced him to employ such language as would leave no doubt of this doctrine? Now he has done the very contrary, and has spoken in such clear terms in favour of the real presence, that his words must be unna

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