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the iniquity of the system, that he renounced it and embraced the Protestant faith. This, of course, will overthrow his credit with every good Papist, and every fact of his will be called a forgery, though he relates nothing worse than what can be proved by a hundred other witnesses. It is a rule with writers of controversy on the popish side, that nothing is to be believed that is written by a Protestant, unless he be such a one as Heylen, the companion of Laud, who was more than three-fourths a Papist.
" I can give you on this subject,” says the writer in a letter to a friend, " the result of a conference, at which I was present myself, sometime ago, at Blois in France, upon occasion of several relics kept in the parish of St. Victor, two leagues distant from that city. These relics were much out of order, in old wooden cases, all wormeaten and rotten with age, which hindered them from being carried in procession, and exposed to public view. The concern, therefore, was to have them more modishly accommodated, and transported into new
To this end the bishop of Chartres was petitioned to perform the translation, who presently sent his order to the archdeacon of Blois for that purpose; who assembled several of the clergy to consult with the curates and priests of St. Victor about the precautions to be observed in that translation. The resolution was, that to avoid the scandal that might happen, if nothing should chance to be found in the old cases, and to prevent the declining of the good opinion and devotion of the people, in case only some few bones should be found in them, the transportation of them into the new ones should not be done in public, but as private as possibly might be, in the presence of only some prudent persons, who might be ready to remedy all sorts of accidents upon occasion: I was desired by some friends of the archdeacon, to be present with them; and I can assure you, sir, that the resolution was taken, if it should chance that nothing were found in the cases, to maintain peremptorily that the bodies of the saints were there whole and entire. And to allay somewhat the scruples that might start by occasion of this proceeding, a canon of St. Saviour's church of Blois, a man resolute and of a small conscience, maintained in the face of the assembly, that no difficulty ought to be made of asserting such a thing, though altogether false: that in a case where the interest of the church was concerned, all manner of respects and sentiments whatsoever were to be given up; that the mysteries of the Catholics were not to be exposed to the raillery of the heretics, (so they call the Protestants,) who would not fail to mock at them, so soon as they should understand that nothing had been found in the cases of St. Victor, which for so long a time had been the object of the people's adoration ; besides, that the devotion of laics, in assisting the clergy, was already so far cooled, that scarce any thing now was to be got from them, but by some pious fraud or holy artifice. The archdeacon heard all his discourse without contradicting him in the least; and the curate of the parish, as being the person most concerned in the case, very officiously returned him his most hearty thanks. This done, they proceeded to the opening of the cases; and the truth is, bones either of saints or no saints were found in them. In the mean time, a monk of the abbey of St. Lomer in Blois, who was present, cried out at the very instant, that he smelt a very sweet odour which proceeded
from them, wherewith he was so strongly seized, that it was likely to overcome him. A young religious (his companion) seconded him immediately, and some country people of the parish protested the very same thing. The archdeacon, and the rest of the company, freely declared that they smelt nothing: yet forasmuch as it might be, that those persons having some more particular merit before God, he might think them worthy of receiving the like favours; it was ordered that their attestation should be received, and set in the margin of the verbal process which was then making of that translation, the original of which was to be shut up with the relics in the new cases. I had the curiosity some weeks after, in the time of vintage, to examine some of these persons about the odour they pretended to have smelt, of what kind it was; whereupon some of them said it was the scent of a rose, others of jessamin, and others of violet: but finding that they faltered in their expressions, and smiled withal, I took occasion to press them more seriously, so that at the upshot they confessed, that the good opinion they had of the two monks, which first started the matter, had drawn them in, and in a manner forced their imagination to believe, that they smelt that which they never had smelt indeed.” Frauds of Romish Monks and Priests, vol. i. pages 8-10.
The author has a roundabout way of telling his story, on which account I will give the sequel in my own way. He got
young monk to confess that he had smelt nothing of the miraculous odour; but being ashamed to be supposed less gifted with heavenly favours than his brother, he had pretended to be sensible of it. He acknowledged, (being a young inexperienced man,) that he had had some qualms of conscience on account of what he had done, that he had consulted his superiors about the matter, and that they told him the rule in such cases was, to consider whether the thing was for the glory of God, and the advantage of the order to which he belonged. They did not hesitate to affirm “that it was not against the glory of God to advance the honour of one of his saints, especially when some circumstances that were both glorious and profitable to that order, engaged the doing of it; and that all the evil that could be supposed in the case, came but to this, to say, that God had done what he might have done, and which he had done on many other occasions; which at the highest could be no more than a small venial sin; as, they say all lies are, that do not infringe justice, that is to say, that do nobody any harm.” It was impossible, however, to make the old monk depart from his first declaration. He persisted in maintaining that the odour had not only been smelled by him at the opening of the chest, but that it had followed him every where so long as a particle of the dust of the relics remained upon his clothes. Thus St. Victor's saintship was confirmed; and he remains in the calendar an object of worship to all the simple faithful who cannot raise their minds to a higher object.
I give the following as a specimen of the process of canonization. I could produce a number of such cases; but let this one suffice. “On the 12th of May, 1707, a general congregation to confer upon the rights of the church, having been summoned by the pope's order, wherein Cardinal Pamphilio required their approbation of the miracles wrought by Andrew Avellino, of the order of the Theatines. These miracles were eight in number; of which, after a full and serious
disquisition, the three following were solemnly ratified by the general consent and concurrent votes of the whole congregation, viz. The third, which was the first in order, being a cure performed on the person of Jacob Giovio, who was miraculously restored to the entire use of his limbs by the said Andrew Avellino, though his sinews had been shrunk, and a deadly palsy had seized one side of his body. The next was the fourth in order, namely, the healing a dangerous wound John Battista Corrizo had received in his head; and that without the appearance of the least mark or scar. The last was the restoring Scipio Arleo's child to health, by curing it of a great bruise in its forehead, and of a wry neck.
“As these miracles were the fruits of his most exemplary piety, and heroic virtues, the holy assembly being authorized to it by the consent and directions of his holiness, declared, that in conformity to the customs of the holy Roman church, and by the authority of the same, the forenamed Andrew Avellino might and ought to be deemed a saint, and be canonized accordingly." Romish Ecclesiastical History of late years, p. 6.
This Andrew Avellino was accordingly canonized, along with several others, with much pomp and ceremony; and became of course an object of that religious worship which is due to those idols which the pope
has set up. It is, indeed, only that sort of worship which they call dulia; but as I have shown in a former number, the distinction between this and latria is absolutely unintelligible to the unlearned, and perhaps also the learned themselves. Let them say what they will in theory, this is practically the adoration of a creature; it is trust or confidence in a creature, which is, in scripture, condemned as a departing from the living God. Let a person go into one of their great churches, where there are a number of altars: before one allar he will see a group of prostrate worshippers praying, Holy Jesus, have mercy upon us; before another altar, a group praying, Holy Mary, have mercy upon us; before a third altar, the prayer is, Holy St. Peter, have mercy upon us; and so on, before all the altars that are dedicated to all the saints: nay, the same individual will pay his devotions at several altars the same day, not sure that he will succeed in his suit at any one altar, or by addressing one saint; he makes it is as sure as possible, by addressing as many as he can, or as many as he can afford to pay, for no one must approach an altar without a gift. Now when the same words are addressed to the different objects of worship, with the same apparent devotion, who is able to distinguish between latria, dulia, and hyperdulia? Nay, let any man consider the following extract from a prayer which Mr. Andrews has provided for the devout worshippers of St. Wenefride, and say if stronger words can be used in addressing the Supreme Deity. “O blessed St. Wenefride, hear the prayers and receive the humble supplications of thy devout pilgrims, and obtain, that by thy pious intercession, God of his infinite mercy will be pleased to grant us a full pardon and remission of our sins, and a blessing to this our pilgrimage; and that we may increase and persevere in God's grace, and enjoy him eternally in heaven.
This we bege of thee, O blessed virgin and martyr, for Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour's sake. Amen." In the beginning of this extract, the saint is addressed as mediator with God, io procure blessings by her
pious intercession; at the close of the prayer, Jesus Christ is represented as Mediator with her, and she is entreated to grant the blessings for his sake, which is actually putting her in the place of God the Fa. ther. My readers, I am afraid, will scarcely believe that such impiety exists in the present day, but I assure them that the above are the concluding words of a book printed in 1817, and strongly recommended by W. Eusebius Andrews.
I have met with no popish writer who can explain to me how they get their prayers conveyed to the saints in heaven, or how they know that they reach that place. As I conferred several favours on Mr. Andrews in my last number but one, I request of him the favour of a paper or two on this subject. I must suppose, that he very piously makes use of the prayers which he has composed for the worshippers of his favourite idol, St. Wenefride; and he must know that a number of pilgrims are every day paying their devotions at her holy well: now I ask him seriously, how she can attend to all the prayers of these pilgrims in Wales, and at the same time hear his prayers in Drake street, Red Lion square, London? Or, supposing her to be in heaven, how can she attend to either the one or the other? If Mr. Andrews shall make this intelligible and credible, he will show himself to be as great a man as the unanswerable Dr. Milner himself.
For want of popish authority on this subject, I take the following from THE PROTESTANT ADVOCATE, in the Antijacobin Review, for April last. “1st, The saints know the prayers of men by the agency of angels, who are always passing backwards and forwards. 2d, The saints themselves are always passing backwards and forwards. 3d, The saints view all things in God from the moment of their beatitude. 4th, That this is not the case, but our prayers are then only revealed to thern by God when they are made. The first two have lived their day, and although they once blinded the minds of the weak, they are now generally allowed to be nonsense. The third fast approaches the same fate; for the expression, view all things in God, begins to be regarded as words without meaning."-"Hence, the last, is the one at present depended upon."
My readers will agree with me that this is not a proper subject of levity; and yet it is difficult to treat it with becoming reverence. It is no doubt possible with God to communicate to the saints in heaven the prayers of their friends on earth; but it may be asked for what conceivable purpose? The grosscst idolater will not say in plain words that the saints are upon a fooling of equality with God, and that he must consult them whether it be proper to grant all or any of the petitions which he is supposed to communicate to them; or that he must suspend the granting of such petitions as he approves, till the saints express their approbation. I know it is alleged that God grants the petitions that are addressed to the saints, and which he makes known to them, in consideration of the singular merits of the saints; but this only leads to other, and equally fatal errors: it is putting the merits of mere creatures in the place of Christ's righteousness; while, in point of fact, there is not a particle of merit to be found among all the saints in heaven. Their unceasing acknowledgment, in common with that of the saints on earth, is, “ Not by works of righteousness which we
have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.” Tit. iii. 5
ANECDOTE OF A NATIVE OF INDIA. LIBERTY TAKEN BY THE PAPISTS WITH THE COM
MANDMENTS. WORSHIP OF IMAGES SANCTIONED BY THE HIGHEST AUTHORITIES OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY. COUNCIL OF TRENT. THOMAS AQUINAS. ATTEMPTS AT VISIBLE REPRESENTATIONS OF GOD, THE HOLY SPIRIT, AND TRINITY. PRAYER USED AT THE CONSECRATION OF IMAGES.
SATURDAY, June 12th, 1819. A Writer in the Antijacobin Review for April last, informs us, that "a native of India, lately in London, very much censured the want of images in our churches; he said, the worshippers had nothing upon which they could fix their attention, and hence they were often gazing at each other, and often at mere inanity. We, says he, have in our temples an image of the Deity to look at, with large eyes, huge ears, great hands, and long feet. Not that we believe this very image to be the Deity, but we use it only to fix our attention, and to remind us that the Being which it represents, can see every thing, hear every thing," &c. I make use of this anecdote as an introduce tion to what I have to say on the subject of worshipping images, as practised in the church of Rome.
There can be nothing more explicit than the divine command, “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them." In my seventeenth number, I convicted the church of Rome of mutilating the ten commandments, by leaving out the whole of the second. To make up the number, they divided what we call the tenth into two; but this reduced them to a difficulty which required some cunning to get over. In the second edition of the commandments, in the fifth chapter of Deuteronomy, the arrangement of the tenth is different from that of Exodus xx. The one is, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife; the other is, Thou shalt not desire thy neighbour's wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbour's house. Thus, according to the popish arrangement, what was the ninth commandment in the one passage, would be the tenth in the other. It required no less than the wisdom of the council of Trent to remedy this evil, which they did by uniting the two; and thus it stands in the Douay catechism to this day: " The ninth and tenth commandments. Say the ninth and tenth. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's goods." From Deut. x. 4. we are sure that the words or commandments were ten. Nothing can appear more natural than the Protestant division of them; and it is evident that the popish division cannot be the right one, seeing it requires them to blend what they call two into one.
"This inversion," says Mr. Cunninghame, "of the two first clauses