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meaning is that this was a thing which the Apostles themselves believed and preached.

The Church, then, and the Holy Scripture are simply our means for finding out what the doctrine of the Apostles was. And it must not be imagined that we trust more to the Church than to the Bible. In point of fact the Bible is for us, as well as for Protestants, the higher authority of the two; for its teaching is inspired by the Holy Ghost, whereas that of the Pope or of the Church is merely preserved from error by Him. But in order to reverence the Holy Scripture and to learn our faith from it, it is necessary in the first place to know what is Holy Scripture for certain, and what cannot be depended on as such; and it is also necessary to have a guide to help us to understand its sense, which is obscure in many places, as is evident by the different interpretations which good and learned men have put on it. But where its sense is plain, the Church does not presume to overrule or ignore it; and the Church is not afraid of any part of the Bible as being irreconcilable with her doctrine.

To these two great sources of Christian truth another may be added with evident propriety. This is what we call tradition. By this we mean the account of the faith which is handed. down by word of mouth, or by writing, from one generation to another. Any ordinarily

well-instructed Catholic can, for example, give an account of his faith in its principal points ; he can teach it orally to his children, or write it down for those generally who are to come after him. Still better can this be done by the learned who have made the faith their special study.

Now, one such statement of the doctrine of the Church in general, or of any special point or points of it, does not of itself amount to so very much, as the source from which it proceeds is not infallible ; but if any point is found on which the great majority of these statements agree, the evidence in favor of this point becomes very strong. It does not give the same certainty which comes from the plain words of Scripture, or from a definite decree of the Church itself; but it gives something very near it. And the Bible itself gives testimony to the utility of this means in preserving the faith entire and unchanged. “Brethren," says St. Paul, writing to the Thessalonians (II. Thess. ii. 14), “hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or our epistle." And to Timothy he writes (II. Tim. ii. 2), "the things which thou hast heard of me by many witnesses, the same commend to faithful men, who shall be fit to teach others also.”

But really we hardly need this guarantee of the usefulness of this method of preserving any

kind of valuable information. It is practised constantly in all the arts and trades of men, and even in the sciences; and in religion it is, indeed, used by Protestants themselves.

Let us now come to the consideration of the actual doctrine of the Church, as derived by us from these three sources. But let it not be understood that we mean that all its points, though held, as we believe, by the Apostles; were taught by them with equal prominence. Some are more important than others in themselves; and some-as, for instance, that of the Resurrection of our Lord—were more necessary to be insisted on at the times in which they lived and had to work. With regard to others, also, as is simple matter of history, we know that instruction was in the early ages given secretly—that is, only to those who had been baptized ; in order that doctrines which were difficult or mysterious might not be exposed to public ridicule or misinterpretation. This "discipline of the secret," as it was called, applied specially to the dogma of the Real Presence of Christ in the consecrated elements.

Again, other matters of faith, thouglı very fundamental and important, were not so much insisted on in various ages of the Church as in others, because they were not then denied or called in question. Indeed the definitions of the Church, the bringings of its faith to the

surface as it were, have generally been occasioned by the spread of opinions contrary to that faith. Thus, the doctrine of the Holy Trinity itself was not clearly defined for about three hundred years after Chirist, when the definition was required by tlie emergencies of the time; and so one point of faith after another has been specially emphasized by definitions as the times may seem to demand.

The creed or collection of dogmas, then, , which I am about to present, need not all have been taught with equal prominence or emphasis by the Apostles; there may, indeed, have been other matters to which they devoted more attention than to some of these. But these are the ones most important to be understood and formally or explicitly accepted at present; they constitute the profession or declaration of faith made by converts to the Church when they are received into it; and naturally the ones to which the greatest interest att es.

This profession or declaration of faith is, then, as follows :

"I (the name is here given), having before my eyes the holy Gospels, which I touch with my hand, and knowing that no one can be saved without that faith which the Holy Catholic Apostolic Roman Church holds, believes, and teaches, against which I grieve that I have greatly erred, inasmuch as I have held and believed doctrines opposed to her teaching :

I now, with grief and contrition for my past errors, profess that I believe the Holy Catholic Apostolic Roman Church to be the only and true Church established on earth by Jesus Christ, to which I submit myself with my whole heart. I believe all the articles that she proposes to my belief, and I reject and condemn all that she rejects and condemns, and I am ready to observe all that she commands me. And especially, I profess that I believe :

One only God in three divine Persons, distinct from, and equal to each other-that is to say, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost;

The Catholic doctrine of the Incarnation, Passion, Death, and Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ ; and the personal union of the two Natures, the divine and the human ; the divine Maternity of the most holy Mary, together with her most spotless Virginity;

The true, real, and substantial presence of the Body and Blood, together with the Soul and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in the most holy Sacrament of the Eucharist;

The seven Sacraments instituted by Jesus Christ for the salvation of mankind; that is to say, Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Extreme Unction, Order, Matrimony;

Purgatory, the Resurrection of the dead, Everlasting life ;

The Primacy, not only of honor, but also of jurisdiction, of the Roman Pontiff, successor of St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles, Vicar of Jesus Christ ;

The veneration of the Saints, and of their images;

The authority of the Apostolic and Ecclesiastical Traditions, and of the Holy Scriptures, which we must interpret and understand only in the sense which our holy mother the Catholic Church has held, and does hold i

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