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nister, “ by the sovereign's concession,” the property of their churches; “they ought to exhort the people to the observance of the laws; and it is especially enjoined that they should be present at the promulgation of the civil laws, and admonish ihe people to be also present.” The care of orphans, the poor, and of illegitimate children, is confided to them. “ They must either personally, or through the schoolmasters, assist the military conscription, and furnish whatever information is in their power to give from the parish books.”
The third book proceeds to the consideration of the most delicate part of the subject, and discusses the general relations which the church bears to the state. Catholicism is generally treated as solving the questions which have been agitated on this head in a manner subversive of the dignity and interests of the state ; but in this respect great difference has always existed in the degrees to which Catholic states have been inclined to give way to clerical pretensions, and even among Protes'ants the controversy has been by no means without extremes, which it would be equally difficult to reconcile with each other, and with the liberties of the community. Dr. Magee is now thundering against the theories of Warburton on this very point, and our contemporary, the British Critic, No. III., is doing his best to ahet the former. The Court of Austria, in the midst of its Catholicism, has found the means of keeping church authority within quite as narrow limits as most Protestants would wish to prescribe, and much straiter than would suit either Dr. Magee or the great authority which he ventures to impugn.
The Austrian ecclesiastical system lays down that the church and civil society are two moral beings or states, essentially different as to their origin, objects, and means; but that they are not contrary to each other, and can even much assist each other. The church can by its precepts render citizens upright, tranquil, and obedient to civil authority, and the state can assist the church by protecting its worship, &c. The church, like any other legal association in the state, has its property, civil rights, &c., and is subject to civil authority, to its laws and burdens. The state, as a state, is not the subject matter of religion; it is not combined with any church ; its compact of union with a church or churches is not grounded on the idea that its subjects should profess any one religion in preference to another. The sovereign, like his subjects, is at liberty to enter or not into the society of any church. A sovereign who is a Catholic, has, as a sovereign, neither more nor less rights than a sovereign who professes any other mode of worship
The state has jurisdiction over all civil matters. The church has no power to do any thing mixed up with civil relations or not essential to its ends, which the civil power deems pernicious, and on that head the state is the sole judge. Al temporal jurisdiction on the part of the church over the civil power is of course denied, and contended to be unwarranted by scriptural or other rational authority. No excommunication even is allowed in Austria without the sovereign's consent. Ecclesiastical immunities have also been destroyed, and the clergy are tried like all other citizens. The church is allowed to claim as rights-a right to liberty of action or free exercise of religion ; a right to civil protection ; and a right to prevent the civil power from obstructing the church's exercise of that obligation to promote religious salvation for which it is formed. But the church has no other power of redress, in case of invasion of its rights, than those of exhortation, prayer, patience, and constancy. The civid power must be predomi
nant in actual force, for one of the two must prevail, and the church is in the state, and subject, therefore, to its laws ; but the state is not in the church. Ecclesiastical censures can reach the sovereign only as a private man, and not as head of the state, since in that capacity he is not a member of any church.
The state is not held to have any direct right over what are strictly religious matters. In matters concerning conscience and religion, it is asserted that the citizens have neither the inclination nor the power to renounce their natural liberty. But the state asserts a right of superior inspection over all the societies within its jurisdiction. It claims a right of examination and prevention in the affairs of ecclesiastical societies as well as of other communities within its limits; and to be entitled to have an account of their proceedings and decrees, and to prohibit what it sees to be detrimental to its ends.
The state's right or mode of interference in religious matters is held to include principally the following subjects :- 1. The right or duty of providing that its subjects be instructed in true principles of religion ; but it does not claim the power of deciding on religious doctrines, though it obliges the ministers of religion to discharge their duties, and does not suffer principles to be inculcated contrary to the purity of the Christian doctrine as admitted by the universal church or to the rights of the state. 2. It inculcates the due observance of the canons of the church, and prevents abuses, and regulates the accidental rites of religion, as holidays, &c. 3. As to marriage, all legal determinations respecting the contract of marriage depend solely on civil authority ; the religious sacrament is only accessary, the civil contract being the essential. 4. The state may repress or moderate religious controversies on disputed dogmas, as rarely attended with advantage, and often injurious to public order. The Austrian government, for instance, has forbidden all public disputations on the bull Unigenitus, and on the opinions of the Molinists and Jansenists. 5. The sovereign has the right of toleration, and of allowing to all his subjects of different persuasions the free exercise of their opinions, whatever inclination to the contrary a particular church might be inclined to shew. The regulation of the mode and extent of this civil toleration lies with the state. “ Religion," it is laid down, " abstractedly considered, formed no part of the social compact, nor could the citizens renounce the natural liberty of exercising what form of worship they pleased, provided no detriment could then arise to the civil community. It may
be admitted, moreover, that religion is a matter that cannot be forced, because as soon as restraint begins to operate, religion becomes an external hypocritical cloak to faith and piety.” 6. The state has the power of regulating and restricting the number of ecclesiastical persons, of settling their qualifications, and of excluding from ecclesiastical offices persons of whom it entertains just apprehensions. It considers church property as similar in als nature to all other kinds of property which are commonly described as in a state of wardship, and regulates the due application of the proper portion for public purposes, charity, &c.
s Aurum Ecclesia habet, non ut servet, sed ut eroget et subveniat in necessitatibus.”—St. Ambrose.
A chapter is devoted to the reciprocal relations between the different religious persuasions in a state.
It allows to the Catholic church no other mode of propagating its faith but instruction, and that instruction conveyed at a proper time and in a proper place. It forbids such attempts even at proselytism, which it judges to be injurious to public tranquillity, and it
especially denies the church's right to constrain the opinions of any one. In Austria a man may pass from one Christian sect to another, tolerated by law, with certain precautions, having in view to ascertain that he does so by free-will and full knowledge; and it is strictly recommended to the members of different faiths mutually to respect each other, and to live in peace and harmony. The schools are so regulated that youths of different persuasions have their appropriate instructions in religious matters, and have in common those branches which are independent of religious belief.
The religious concerns of the Protestants in Austria are managed by two consistories, constituted and approved by the sovereign, one for the confession of Augsburg, the other for the Reformed Churches of Germany and Bohemia. All pastors are confirmed by these consistories. Of these pastors
, some, called elders, are superiors, and preside over the provincial assemblies
. The Catholic church, being the most numerous, has greater and peculiar privileges, such as those of bells, steeples, and public entrances fronting squares and streets. The parochial registers are kept hy them, to which the Protestant clergy send certificates of the marriages, &c. performed by them, for registration. Towards Catholic processions, &c., the Protestants must pay respect or withdraw; and the Catholic clergy, on the other hand, are bound to abstain from all insulting and satirical expressions. Protestant children attending Catholic schools are allowed to retire when the Catholic catechism is heard. Where the Protestants have no burying-ground they are to be buried in the Catholic grounds without any peculiar rites, and the nearest Protestant minister must be invited to accompany
The banns of marriage of Protestants are published both in the Catholic church and their own place of worship.
The Protestants are not compelled to contribute to the reparation or maintenance of the Catholic churches. Their pastors perform all rites for them, giving immediate notice to the Catholic priest of the district, that they may be duly registered. If there be no resident Protestant pastor, the Catholic priest baptizes, marries, &c. If the Protestants have schools of their own, they are ihen under no obligation to contribute to the Catholic schools. It is a duty incumbent on every Catholic parish-priest to be carefully vigilant that the laws of toleration be accurately observed; he is bound to conciliate differences if they arise ; to prevent useless disputes ; to report on proper occasions all contested matters to the public authorities for their decision, and, at the same time, to provide them with all the requisite proofs and documents.
Such is an outline of the singular system of Austrian regulation of ecclesiastical matters. It is obviously a code of despotic policy, in which the interests and views of the state are the basis of every thing ; but it will have been seen that this policy bears with it a considerable portion of what is sensible and enlightened; that the government takes some pains to make every one do his duty, and confine himself to his proper sphere; and is in no way disposed to lend itself either to the bigotry of fanatics or the hypocritical zeal of a corrupt hierarchy.
ART. III.-Hymns, written and adapted to the Weekly Church Service of
the Year. By the Right Rev. Reginald Heber, late Lord Bishop of Cala cutta. London. John Murray. 1827.
As a collection of Poems, by the late lamented Bishop of Calcutta, this volume is interesting and valuable—as a selection of Hymns fitted for the public services of the Church, it surely cannot be held in high repute by any party. The want of simplicity in style, the jingling metres occasionally adopted, and the inattention to accuracy of measure in the several stanzas of the same Hymns, forbid the idea of their universal adoption. We have a better opinion of the taste and science of the Church of England. Even as poems, there is in some of Bishop Heber's pieces a vehemence, and in others an airy lightness, by no means consistent with the calm character of Sacred Poetry. But taken as Hymns, our objections would be much more serious.
However, there are some beautiful and striking specimens in the collection-more especially among those by the Bishop himself. His imagination
vely, his style bold and vigorous, often passing the bounds of perfect sobriety, but always forcible and original; and the devotion of his mind appears to have been tinctured with a romantic enthusiasm, which gives an appearance of freshness and sincerity to every thing he wrote. In all belonging to the services of that Church of which he was a member, he took an intense interest, and the present collection took its rise from the double desire of reviving a more particular observance of her days of solemn remembrance, and of rendering that observance efficacious in promoting the increase of devout feelings. By the attempt itself, and still more by his manner of executing it, it may be gathered that Bishop Heber held in some estimation the Catholic plan of dramatizing the whole year by connecting every day with the image of some event memorable in the Christian annals. The field of remark into which this propensity might lead, cannot be entered upon here ; but let it be observed, that if some Christians have nearly lost sight of the plain duties of this world, by constantly contemplating the past and the future, we, on the other hand, are too apt to bring the spirit of a calculating selfishness into our religion. It is positively good to contemplate the glories of the Christian dispensation in the spirit of pious adoration. In dwelling on the touching passages of the gospel history, the matchless character of Jesus Christ, the labours of his primitive followers, in ascending with the beloved disciple in the spirit towards that “ new heaven and new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness,” we forget for a time the directness at least of our selfishness. We acquire a taste for happiness, not exactly as it is opposed to our notions of pain and suffering and mortal infirmity, but as it is holiness and participation in the faith and love of those who are gone before. It is a compound feeling, made up of veneration, for virtue in its highest forms, mixed with a desire to be what we admire, and so,-and not merely because it is the possession of physical or intellectual enjoyment,—to
Many of bishop Heber's hymns are very devotional, but, of course, they will not meet with the approbation of Unitarians when they turn on such points as are considered contrary to the spirit and doctrine of the gospel. Of these is the following on Trinity Sunday, which we quote more as a specimen of his manner of dealing with a difficult theme, than for any other
We say difficult, for the idea of addressing a Triune God seems to us to present an almost insuperable obstacle to the grandeur and dignity of
“ Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty !
Early in the inorning our song shall rise to thee!
God in three persons, blessed Trinity !
Casting down their golden crowns around the glasay sea;
Which wert and art and evermore shalt be!
Though the eye of sinful man thy glory may not see,
Perfect in power, in love, and purity !
All thy works shall praise thy name, in earth and sky and sea;
God in three persons, blessed Trinity.” The following is truly elegant, though much too light and airy for the purposes of worship:
“ Lo! the lilies of the field,
How their leaves instruetion yield !
God provideth for the morrow!" As a specimen of a totally different style we insert a very bold Hymn for the first Sunday after Trinity, and shall close our extracts by the beautiful and nearly perfect address, for Hymn it cannot be called, to Jerusalem :