The Great Question--Part II

Part II of II

We say nothing new or recondite.    Our holy religion has from the first been addressed to sinners, and its grand assumption is that all men are sinners, dead in trespasses^ and sins, till made alive in Christ Jesus.    The wages of sin is death, and death hath passed upon all men, for all have sinned.    The Church addresses herself to a world lying in wickedness, festering in its own iniquity, as the divinely provided means, and the only means, of their restoration to spiritual life and health. Her mission is the revelation of the glory of God in the salvation of sinners.    It is against sin, sin in all its forms, in all its disguises, in all its subterfuges, in high places or low places, that she is commissioned to carry on a fierce and exterminating war. She is here in this world the Church Militant.    She fights and never ceases to fight sin, for she is holy, and she only can overcome it.    Wherever she sends her missionary, the brave soldier of the cross, she sends him to a world dead in trespasses and sins, to carry to them the Gospel of life and immortality. She sends him, not to find the Gospel with them, to tell them that what he brings is preferable to what they have, but yet it is possible for them to be saved without it ; but to tell them that they are dead, that they are strangers to eternal life, that he has eternal life to offer them, that he alone has^ it, and that they must receive it from his hands or not receive it at all.    " How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the Gospel of peace, that bring glad tidings of good things ! "    He goes to sinners to proclaim, in the name of his Master, the glad tidings of eternal life, through a crucified, a risen Redeemer ; and who but he has  these glad tidings to  proclaim ?     " Lord, to whom shall we go ?    Thou hast the words of  eternal life."    And where is Christ, he who is the resurrection and the life, who has come that we might have life, and have it more abundantly, to be found as the Saviour of sinners, and the giver of eternal life, but in his Church, his mystical  body, his Spouse, his Beloved ?    Assuredly nowhere else.    The words of eternal life are with us, and not elsewhere,  in our Church, and in her only.   Need we, then, fear to say so ?    Need we, then, hesitate to tell the world lying in wickedness around us, that they are destitute of eternal life, that they are in sin, and to beseech them, as they love their own souls, to come into the ark where, and where alone, there is safety ?
There is no salvation out of the Church. Men must come into her communion or be lost, and lost for ever. If it be not so, why has God instituted his Church, why has he given her authority, and commanded her to teach all nations until the consummation of the world ? Why are we so attached to her, why does she hold so high a place in our affections, and why would we rather suffer a thousand deaths than swerve one iota from the faith she enjoins ? Why do we strive to bring all men into her sacred inclosure ? Why visit our missionaries every land, and in every land suffer privation, want, distress, persecution, and death, to bring men into the Church, if salvation is possible without her agency, if the people who sit in the region and shadow of death, by following such light as they have, can be saved, though living and dying out of her communion, and in ignorance of her very existence ? Concede the possibility, and the conduct of the Apostles, the Fathers, the Saints and Martyrs, of zealous Catholics in every age, is madness, folly, or fanaticism.

But, if it be true, and as sure as God exists and can neither be deceived nor deceive it is true, that there is no salvation out of the Church, what a fearful responsibility should we not incur, were we to forbear to proclaim it, or, by our mistimedor misplaced qualifications, to encourage the unbelieving, the heretical, or the indifferent to hope the contrary ! And how much more fearful still, if we should go farther, and attempt in our publications to prove that he who firmly insists on it is harsh, unjust, uncharitable, running in his rash zeal to an unauthorized extreme ! No doubt, the truth is always and everywhere to be adhered to, let the consequences be what they may ; no doubt, he who errs by his rigor is to be rebuked, as well as he who errs by his laxity ; but if, in our zeal to rebuke imaginary rigor, we should compel the missionary to prove the necessity of his Church against his friends before he could be at liberty to assert it against infidels and heretics,  run before him and intercept his arrows winged at the sinner's conscience, or follow immediately after and bind up and assuage the wounds they may have inflicted, our zeal would but indifferently atone for the good we hinder, or the scandal we cause. These poor souls, for whom our Lord shed his precious blood, for whom bleed afresh the dear wounds in his hands, his feet, his side, bound in the chains of error and sin, suspended over the precipice, ready to drop into the abyss below, admonish all who have hearts of flesh or any bowels of compassion to speak out, to cry aloud in awful and piercing tones to warn them of their danger, rather than by ingenious distinctions or qualifications to flatter them, or to have the appearance of flattering them, with the hope that, after all, their condition is not perilous.
We speak not now in relation to other ages or countries. We are discussing the question in its relation to our own countrymen, the great practical question of salvation, as it comes up here and now. We have no concern with distant or merely speculative cases, or with scholastic distinctions and qualifications which have and can have no practical application here. The question is, What are we authorized and bound by our religion to proclaim to all those of our countrymen whom our words can reach ? Iiere are the great mass out of the Church, unbelieving and heretical, careless and indifferent, and it is idle to expect to make any general impression upon them, unless we present the question of the Church as a question of life and death, unless we can succeed in convincing them, that, if they live and die where they are, they can never see God. This is the doctrine and the precise doctrine needed. Is it true ? Yes or no ? Is it denied ? By those out of the Church, certainly, and hence the great reason why they are content to live and die out of the Church. Is it denied by those in the Church ? What Catholic dare deny it ? To what individual or class of individuals are we authorized by our holy faith to promise even the bare possibility of salvation, without being joined to the visible communion of the Church of God ?

Is it said that those without are simply bound to seek, and that we can deny them the possibility of salvation only on the condition that they do not seek ? Be it so. But if they are bound to seek, it is because Almighty God commands them to seek, and gives them the grace which enables them to seek; and who is prepared to say, if they seek cauta sollicitudiney as St. Augustine makes it necessary for them to do, that they will not find ? If God commands them to seek, they can find ; for he never commands one to seek in vain.   " Seek and ye shall find ; knock and it shall be opened unto you......For every one that seeketh findeth, and to every one that knocketh it shall be opened."*(footnote: * St. Matt. vii. 7, 8.) It is fair, then, to conclude, if there is one who does not find, to whom it is not opened, that he is one who does not seek ; and if he does not seek, he is out of the Church by his own fault. The grace of prayer is given unto every one, and every one can pray, and if he does, he shall receive; and it would impeach both the wisdom and the veracity of God to maintain the contrary.

Those of our countrymen not in the Church may be divided into two classes, and each of these may be subdivided into two subordinate classes,  infidels and sectarians, and each negative and positive; that is, infidels and sectarians who are such knowingly, and infidels and sectarians who are such through ignorance. The first two subdivisions are formal infidels or heretics, and are condemned for their sin of infidelity or heresy. Of these, there can be no question ; not one of them can be saved, unless he become a member, truly a member, of the Church. These know the will of God and do it not, and therefore " shall be beaten with many stripes." *(footnote: * St. Luke xii.47.)   But they who are infidels or sectarians through ignorance, what is to be said of them ? "The servant that knew not his master's will, but did things worthy of stripes," shall he not escape ? Our Lord answers, not that he shall escape, but that " he shall be beaten with few stripes." (footnote: ibid) The Holy Ghost represents the sinners in hell as saying,  " We have erred from the way of truth ; and the light of justice hath not shined unto ws, and the sun of understanding hath not risen upon us. We wearied ourselves in the way of iniquity and destruction, and have walked through hard ways ; but the way of the Lord we have not known." (footnote:  t Wisdom v. 6, 7.) It is clear, then, that ignorance does not always excuse, and that the servant who knoweth not his master's will, though he may be punished less than the one who does know it and doeth it not, will nevertheless be punished.

But they who are merely negative infidels, or unbelievers purely through ignorance, in consequence of never having heard about the Gospel, are not guilty of the sin of infidelity ? Certainly not. Every Catholic is presumed to know that the 68th proposition of Baius, Infidelitas pure negativa in his, quibus Christus non est praidicatus, peccatum es£, is a condemned proposition, and therefore that purely negative infidelity in those to whom Christ has not been preached is inculpable,  as St. Augustine teaches, the penalty of sin, not sin itself. But who therefore concludes that they are in the way of salvation, or that they can be saved without becoming living members of the body of our Lord ? " Infidels of this sort," says St. Thomas, " are damned, indeed, for other sins which without faith cannot be remitted, but they are not damned for the sin of infidelity.    Whence the Lord says, ' If I had not come and spoken to them, they would, not have sin'; that is, as St. Augustine explains it, would not have the sin of not believing in Christ." *(footnote: * "Quiautem sic infideles, damnantur quidem propter alia peccata,qii8e sine fide remitti non possunt; non autem propter intidelitatis peccatum. Unde Dominus dicit, Joan, xv. 22, Si non venhsem, et locutus cis fuis-sr.m, peccatum non haberent. Quod Augustinus (Tract, in Joan, lxxxix. ante med.) dicit, * quod loquitur de illo peccato quo non crediderunt in Christum.' "  Summa 2-2. Q. 10. a. 1. corp.-end of footnote). There is a considerable distance between being free from the formal sin of infidelity, and being in the way of salvation. No infidel, positive or negative, in vincible or invincible ignorance, can be saved ; u for without faith it is impossible to please God," and " he that believeth not shall be damned," and faith in voto, not in re, is inconceivable.(footnote: Heb. xi. 6; St. Mark xvi. 10.) Neither of the subdivisions of the unbelieving class of our countrymen are, then, in the way of salvation.

But may it not prove better with sectarians ? With those who are knowingly such, of course not, and nobody pretends that it can. But may not those who are baptized in heretical societies through ignorance, believing them to be the Church of Christ, be regarded as in the way of salvation ? We will let the Brothers Walenburch answer for us from St. Augustine. They are speaking de cxcusationibus simpliciorum among Protestants. The first excuse they notice, the influence of tyrants, &c, is nothing to our present purpose, and we begin with the second.

" The second excuse they make is, That not they who are born and educated in Protestant churches have separated themselves from the unity of the Catholic Church, but their ancestors, Calvin, Luther, &c. Let St. Augustine reply : 'But those who through ignorance are baptized there [with heretics], judging the sect to be the Church of Christ, sin less than these [who know it to be heretical] ; nevertheless they are wounded by the sacrilege of schism, and therefore sin not lightly, because others sin more gravely. For when it is said to certain persons, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom in the day of judgment than for you, it is not therefore said because the Sodomites will not be punished, but because the others will be more grievously punished,'

"The third excuse is, They say that they have been baptized, that they believe in Christ, apply themselves to good works, and therefore may hope for salvation, although they adhere to the party divided from the Church.    St. Augustine replies, ' We are accustomed from these words(footnote: * l Cor. xiii. 1-8.) to show men that it avails them nothing to have either the sacraments or the faith, if they have not charity, in order that, when you come to Catholic unity, you may understand what is conferred on you, and how great is that in which you were before deficient. For Christian charity cannot he kept out of the unity of the Church; and thus you may see that without it you are nothing, even though you have baptism and the faith, and by your faith are able to remove mountains. If this is also your opinion, let us not detest and scorn either the sacraments which we acknowledge in you, or the faith itself, but let us maintain charity, without which we are nothing, even with the sacraments and the faith. But we maintain charity, if we embrace unity; and we embrace unity when our knowledge is in unity through the words of Christ, not when through our own words we form a partial sketch.' " The fourth excuse is, Some say that God is to be believed according to the measure of grace received from him; Catholics, indeed, believe many things which Protestants do not, but the former have received the live talents, the latter the two or three. They do not condemn Catholics, but they hope to be saved in the small measure which they have themselves received. But here may avail what we have just adduced from St. Augustine ; for if even baptism and faith profit nothing without indispensable charity, much less will profit a mere portion which is held in division and schism." *(footnote-De Controversiis Tractatus Generates IX., de Unit. Eccl. et Schism. cap. 15. We subjoin the original. " Excusatio 2 est, Quod dicant se non recessisse ab imitate Ecclesia? Catholicse, qui in Ecclesiis Protestan-tiurn nati et educati sunt, sed majores suos, Calvinum, Lutherum, et similes. Respondet S. Augustinus (lib 1. de Bapl. contr. Donal. cap. 5); 'Illi vero qui per ignorantiam ibi [apud hcereticos] baptizantur, arbitrantes ipsam esse Ecclesiam Christi, in istorum quidem comparatione [qui sciunt esse hfcreticam] minus peccant.; sacrilegio tamen schismatis vulnerantur; non ideo non graviter, quod alii gravius. Cum enirn dictum est quibus-dam : Tolerabilius erit Sodomis in die judicii t/uam vobis (S. Matt. xi. 24); non ideo dictum est, quia Sodomitre non torquebuntur, sed quia illi gra-vius torquebuntur. ' Vide etiam S. Aug. lib. 1. contr. lilt. Pctil. cap. 2.3 et lib. 2, cap. 8; et de Unit. Eccl cap. 2. S. Optal. Milevit. lib. 1 et 2.  

"Excusatio 3 est, Quod dicant se esse baptizatos, se credere in Christum, se bonis operibusoperam dare, ac proinde se sperare salutem, etiamsi illi parti adhareant, qua divisa est ab imitate Ecclesiaj Catholics. Respondet S. Augustinus, contr. litt. Pctil. lib. 2;cap. 77 :  ' His enim nos apostolicis verbis (1 Cor. xiii. 1-8), commendantibus eminentiam chari-tatis, vobis solemus ostendere quomodo non prosit hominibus, quamvis in eis sint vel Sacramenta vel fides, ubi charitas non  est; ut cum ad unitatom Catholicam venitis, intelligatis quid vobis conferatur, et quantum sit quod minus habebatis : charitas euim Christiana nisi in unitate Eccle-sice non potest custodiri : atque ita videatis sine ilia nihil vos esse, etsi Baptismum et fidem teneatis, et per illam etiam montes transferre possi-tis. Quod si ha;c et vestra sentcntia est, non in vobis detestemur et exsufflemusvelDeiSacramentaquaj novimus, vel ipsam fidem ; sed tenea-mus charitatem, sine qua et cum Sacramentis et cum fide nihil sumus. Tenemus autem charitatem, si amplectimur unit tern: amplcctimur autem. unitatem, si earn non per verba nostra in parte confingimus, sed per verba Christi in unitate cognoscimus.' Vide lib. 2. contr. Crescon. cap. 12, m Psalm. 88, et Epist. Edit. Maur. Hi, al. 152.
" Excusatio 4 est, Quod nonnulli dicant Deo credendum esse secundum mensuram gratise ab ipso accepta;; Catholicos quidem multa credere, uutt) Protestantes non credunt; sed illos quinque talenta accepisse, hos duo, vel tria. Se Catholicos non damnare ; sed in sua modicitate salu-tem sperare. Resp : Hie valent, quoe ex S. Augustino ad prrocedentia at-tulimus. Nam si nihil prodest Baptismus et fides, sine necessana clian-tate, multo minus proderit aliqua portio fidei, qua; habetur in divisione et
schismate."--end of footnote)

This is high authority, and express to the purpose.    It cuts off every possible excuse which our countrymen can allege, or which can be alleged for them.    They who are brought up in the Church, instructed in her faith, and admitted to her sacraments, if they break away from her, can be saved only by returning and doing penance ; and all who knowingly resist her authority,  or adhere to heretical and schismatical societies, knowing them to be such, are in the same category, and have no possible means of salvation without being reconciled to the Church, and loosened by her from the bonds with which she has bound them.    Thus far all is clear and undeniable.    But even they who are in  societies separated  from the Church through ignorance, believing them to be the Church of Christ, according to the authorities adduced, are wounded by sacrilege, a most grievous sin, are destitute  of charity, which cannot be kept out of the unity of the  Church, and without which they are nothing, and therefore, whatever may be the comparative degree of their sinfulness, are in the road to perdition, as well as the others, and no more than the others can be saved without being reconciled to the Church.    But these several classes include all of our countrymen not in the Church, and therefore, as every one of these is exposed to the wrath and condemnation of God, we have the right, and are in duty bound, to preach to them  all, without exception, that, unless they come into  the Church, and humbly submit to her laws, and persevere in their love and obedience, they will inevitably be lost.* (footnote: * Vide Bishop Hay, Sincere Christian, 2d American edition, 1 luladel-phia pp 315-390. This is a work of high authority, second to none in our lancruaae.    It has fallen into our hands for the first time since he present article was written, or we should have drawn largely from its pages. We have small space left for extracts, hut we cannot resist the temptation to quote an authority which the lit. Reverend author cites from St. Fulgentius. " St. Fulgentius in the sixth century speaks thus : ' Hold most firmly, and without any douht, that no one who is baptized out of the Catholic Church can partake of eternal life, if before the end of this life lie be not restored to the Catholic Church and incorporated therein.' Lib. deFid. cap. 37." To the same effect we may cite St. Augustine. Tract. 45 in Joan. n. 15. " Non autem potest quisque per ostium, id est per Christum, egredi ad vitam arternam, qua) erit in specie, nisi per ipsuin ostium, hoc est per eumdem Christum in Ecclesiam ejus, quod est ovile ejus, intraverit ad vitam temporalem, quae est in fide." This, taken in connection with its context and the scope of the general argument of the Tract, cannot possibly be understood otherwise than in the sense of St. Fulgentius; and it is worthy of especial notice, that those recent theologians who seem unwilling to assent to this doctrine cite no authority from a single Father or Mediaeval doctor of the Church, not strictly compatible with it.                                                                                       

Unquestionably, authorities in any number may be cited to prove  what nobody disputes that pertinacity in rejecting the authority of the Church is essential to formal or culpable heresy, that persons may be in heretical societies without being culpable heretics, and therefore that we cannot say of all who live and die in such societies, that they are damned precisely for the sin of heresy. Father Perrone, and our own distinguished theologian, the erudite Bishop of Philadelphia, whose contributions have so often enriched our pages, cite passages in abundance to this effect, which, as Suarezius asserts, is the uniform doctrine of all the theologians of the Church ; but they cite not a single authority of an earlier date than the seventeenth century, which even hints any thing more than this. Hut this by no means militates against St. Augustine, St. Fulgentius, the Brothers Walenburch, or Bishop Hay; because it by no means follows from the fact that one is not a formal heretic, that he is, so long as in a society alien to the Church, in the way of salvation. A man may, indeed, not be damned for his erroneous faith, and yet be damned for sins not remissible without the true faith, and for the want of virtues impracticable out of the communion of the Church. Father Perrone very properly distinguishes material heretics from formal heretics; but when treating the question c,v pro/csso, he by no means pronounces the former in the way of salvation ; he simply remits them to the judgment of God, who, he assures us,  what nobody questions,  will consign no man to endless tortures, unless for a crime of which he is voluntarily guilty. Tract, de Vera Rett*. advert. Heterodox. Prop. XI.                                                                  

Moreover, Father Perrone, when refuting those who contend that salvation would be attainable if the visible Church should fail, that is, by internal means, by being joined in spirit to the true Church, maintains that in such case there would be no ordinary means of salvation ; that when Christ founded his Church, he intended to offer men an ordinary means or rather a collection of means, which all indiscriminately, and at all times might use for procuring salvation ; that if God had been willing to operate our salvation by the assistance of internal means, there would have been no reason for instituting the Church ; that what is said of being joined to the Church through the spirit, and of invincible ignorance, or of material heretics, could be admitted only on the hypothesis that God should provide no other means ; that, since it is certain that God has willed to save men by other means, namely, by the institution of the Church visible and external, and which is at all times easily distinguished from every sect, it is evident that the subterfuge imagined by non-Catholics is altogether unavailable. " Obj. Qiuk a Catholicis proferuntur ad indefectibilitatern Ecclesia; adstruendam nihili prorsus pendenda sunt. Etenim quamvis vera Ecclesia deficeret vol ex toto vol ex aliqua sua parte, non propterea sequeretur homines omni destitui salutis medio; posset enim Deus supplcre mediis internis, possent homines spiritu saltern conjungi cum vera Christi Ecclesia: pra\sertim cum error est omnino involuntarius et ineluctabilis; tunc enim nocere non
potest, ut constat ex luereticis ?naterialibus nuncupatis.....Iicsp.   Non
sequeretur homines omni destitui salutis medio exfraordinario, Tr. vcl C. Ordinario, N. Jam vero quando Christus condidit Ecclesiam suam, intendit priubore hominibus medium ordinarium, seu potius collectionem medi-orum, quibusomnes indiscriminatim uti quovis tempore possent ad salutem sibi comparandam. Si Deus voluisset ope interiorum mediorum nostram operari salutem, nulla fuisset Ecclesia; instituenda} ratio. Mediis internis, turn extraordinaria ratione nobis prospicit Deus, quando nulla alia suppetit via, neque nostra culpa factum est, ut media nobis ordinaria defuerint. Deus ctiam posset hoc universum regere absque causis secundis, quod tamen non prtttstat, si excipias casus extraordinarios, cum nempo prodigia operatur. Quod vero adjiciunt adversarii de conjunctione per spiritum cum vera Ecclesia, de errore ineluctabili, ant hsereticis materialibus, locum pariter habere tantum posset in hypothesi quod Deus nullum aliud medium suppedi-taret: cum vero constet Deum alia ratione voluisse hominum saluti consu-lere, per institutionem videlicet Ecclesieo visibilis atque externa?, qiuequo ab omni secta facile semper discernipossit, patet inutile prorsus esse ejusmodi effugium ab acatholicis excogitatum, qui nolunt veram Ecclesiam agnos-cere."  De Loc. Theologic. p. 1, cap. 4, art. 1.
This says all we wish to say ; for we are not discussing what is possible by a miracle of grace, but what is possible in the order of grace. Nor does the admission of an extraordinary interposition for our salvation, when the ordinary means, through no fault of ours, fail us, necessarily imply the possibility of salvation without the medium ordinarium; for it may be to bring us to it, or it to us, so that we may be saved by it, and not without it. That there may be persons in heretical and schismatical societies, invincibly ignorant of the Church, who so perfectly correspond to the graces they receive, that Almighty God will by extraordinary means bring them to the Church, is believable and perfectly compatible with the known order of his grace, as is evinced by the case of the eunuch of Queen Candace, that of Cornelius, the captain of the Italian band, and hundreds of others recorded by our missionaries, especially the missionaries of the Society of Jesus. In all the instances of extraordinary or miraculous intervention of Almighty God, whether in the order of nature, or in the order of grace, known to us, he has intervened ad Ecclesiam, and there is not a shadow of authority for supposing that ho over has miraculously intervened or ever will intervene otherwise. To assume that he will, under any circumstances, intervene to save men without the medium or dinar ium is perfectly gratuitous, to say the least. To bring men in an extraordinary manner to the Church is easily admissible, because it does not dispense with the revealed economy of salvation, nor imply its inadequacy ; but to intervene to save them without it appears to us to dispense with it, and to imply that it is not adequate to the salvation of all whom God's goodness leads him to save.
That those in societies alien to the Church, invincibly ignorant of the Church, if they correspond to the graces they receive, and persevere, will be saved, we do not doubt, but not where they are, or without being brought to the Church. They are sheep, in the prescience of God Catholics, but sheep not yet gathered into the fold. " Other sheep 1 have," says our Blessed Lord, " that are not of this fold ; tiikm also I must p.iung ; they shall hear my voieE ; and there shall be made one fold and one shepherd." This is conclusive ; and that these must he brought, and enter the fold, which is the Church, in this life, St. Augustine expressly teaches in the words cited in the beginning of this note. See also Sincere Christian, p. 300. Almighty God can be at no loss to save by the medium ordinariiim all who are willing to be saved, and that, too, without contradicting himself, departing from, or superseding the order of his grace ; and, till better informed, wo must believe it sounder theology to trust to his extraordinary grace to bring men to the Church than it is to invincible ignorance to save them out of it; " quia etipsaignorantiain eisqui intelli-gere noluerunt, sine dubitatione peccatum est; in eis autemqui non potuc-runt, poena peccali. Ergo in utriusque non est justa excusatio, sed justa damnatio." St. Aug. Epist. ad Sixtum, Ed. Manr. 194, n. 27, Those who think otherwise we hope will not go so far as to say with Rousseau,  " Quiconque osedire, ' hors da l-Eg/ise point de salut,' doit etre chasse de 1'etat! "   Du Contr. Soc, liv. iv. eh.
--end of footnote)

Into  the Church, unquestionably ; but not necessarily into the visible Church, some may answer.    We must distinguish between the body or exterior communion of the Church, and the soul or interior communion.    The dogma of faith simply says, out of the Church there is no salvation, and you have no right to go farther and add the word visible or exterior.

We add the word exterior or visible to distinguish the Church out of which there is no salvation from the invisible Church contended for by Protestants, and which no Catholic does or can admit. Without it the dogma of faith contains no meaning which even a Socinian or a Transcendentalist has any urgent occasion to reject. Unquestionably, as our Lord in his humanity had two parts, his body and his soul, so we may regard the Church, his Spouse, as having two parts, the one exterior and visible, the other interior and invisible, or visible only by the exterior, as the soul of man is visible by his face ; but to contend that the two parts are separable, or that the interior exists disconnected from the exterior, and is sufficient independently of it, is to assert, in so many words, the prevailing doctrine of Protestants, and, so far as relates to the indispensable conditions of salvation, to yield them, at least in their understanding, the whole question.     In the present state of the controversy with Protestants, we cannot save the integrity of the faith, unless we add the epithet visible or external.

But it is not true that hy so doing we add to the dogma of faith. The sense of the epithet is necessarily contained in the simple word Church itself, and the only necessity there is of adding it at all is in the fact that heretics have mutilated the meaning of the word Church, so that to them it no longer has its full and proper meaning. Whenever the word Church is used generally, without any specific qualification, expressed or necessarily implied, it means, by its own force, the visible as well as the invisible Church, the body no less than the soul ; for the body, the visible or external communion, is not a mere accident, but is essential to the Church. The Church by her very definition is " the congregation of men called by God through the evangelical doctrine, and professing the true Christian faith under the regimen of their legitimate pastors." *(footnote: * FF. Walenburch, do Controv. Tract.  IX.   cap. 1.    Vide BelUirmin. do Fed. Mil it. Lib. 3. cap. 2.) This definition may, perhaps, not be complete, but it certainly takes in nothing not essential to the very idea of the Church. The Church, then, is always essentially visible as well as invisible, exterior as well as interior ; and to exclude from our conception of it the conception of visibility would be as objectionable as to exclude the conception of body from the conception of man. Man is essentially body and soul ; and whosoever speaks of him  as living man  must, by all the laws of language, logic, and morals, be understood to speak of him in that sense in which he includes both. So in speaking of the Church, if the analogy is admissible at all. Consequently, when faith teaches that out of the Church there is no salvation, and adds herself no qualification, we are bound to understand the Church in her integrity, as body no less than as soul, visible no less than invisible, external no less than internal. Indeed, if either were to be included rather than the other, it would be the body ; for the body, the congregation or society, is what the word primarily and properly designates ; and it designates the soul only for the reason that the living body necessarily connotes the soul by which it is a living body, not a corpse. We have, then, the right, nay, are bound by the force of the word itself, to understand by the Church, out of which there is no salvation, the visible or external as well as the invisible or internal communion.    Hence the brothers Walenburch begin their Treatise on Unity and Schism by assuming,  " 1. Ecclesiam vocatorum esse visibilem ; 2. Extra com-munionem externum cum vera Jesu Christi Ecclesia, non esse salutem ; 3. Extare hoc tempore visibilem Ecclesiam Jesu Christi, cui se fideles clebeant conjungere." *(footnote: * FF. Walenburch, ubi supra, cap. 2.)

What Bellarmine, Billuart, Perrone, and others say of persons pertaining to the soul and yet not to the body of the Church makes nothing against this conclusion. They, indeed, teach that there is a class of persons that may be saved, who cannot be said to be actu et proprie in the Church. Bellarmine and Billuart instance catechumens and excommunicated persons, in case they have faith, hope, and charity ; Perrone, so far as we have seen, instances catechumens only ; and it is evident from the whole scope of their reasoning that all they say on this point must be restricted to catechumens, and such as are substantially in the same category with them ; for they instance no others, and we are bound to construe every exception to the rule strictly, so as to make it as little of an exception as possible. If, then, our conclusion holds true, notwithstanding the apparent exception in the case of catechumens and those substantially in the same category, nothing these authors say can prevent it from holding true universally.

Catechumens are persons who have not yet received the visible sacrament of baptism in re, and therefore are not actu et proprie in the Church, since it is only by baptism that we are made members of Christ and incorporated into his body. With regard to these there is a difficulty," says Bellarmine, " because they are of the Faithful, and if they die in that state may be saved ; and yet no one can be saved out of the Church, as no one was saved out of the ark, according to the decision of the fourth Council of Lateran, C. 1 :  Una est fulelium Universalis Ecclesia, extra quam nullus omnino salvatur. Still, it is no less certain that catechumens are in the Church, not actually and properly, but only potentially, as a man conceived, but not yet formed and born, is called man only potentially. For we read, Acts ii. 41,

' They therefore that received his word were baptized ; and there were added to them that day about three thousand souls.' Thus the Council of Florence, in its Instructions for the Armenians, teaches that men are made members of Christ and the body of the Church when they are baptized ; and so all the Fathers teach......Catechumens are not actually and properly in the Church.    How can you say they are saved, if they are out of the Church ? "

It is clear that this difficulty, which Bellarmine states, arises from understanding that to be in the Church means to be in the visible Church, and that when faith declares, out of the Church no one can be saved, it means out of the visible communion. Otherwise it might be answered, since they are assumed to have faith, hope, and charity, they belong to the soul of the Church, and that is all faith requires. But Bellarmine does not so answer, and since he does not, but proceeds to show that they do in a certain sense belong to the body, it is certain that he understands the article of faith as we do, and holds that men are not in the Church unless they in some sense belong to its body.

But Bellarmine continues,  " The author of the book Dc Ecclesiasticis Dogmatibus replies, that they are not saved. But this appears too severe. Certain it is that St. Ambrose, in his oration on the death of Valentinian, expressly affirms that catechumens can be saved, of which number was Valentinian when he departed this life. Another solution is therefore to be sought. Melchior Cano says that catechumens may be saved, because, if not in the Church properly called Christian, they are yet in the Church which comprehends all the faithful from Abel to the consummation of the world. But this is not satisfactory ; for, since the coming of Christ, there is no true Church but that which is properly called Christian, and therefore, if catechumens are not members of this, they are members of none. I reply, therefore, that the assertion, out of the Church no one can be saved, is to be understood of those who are of the Church neither actually nor in desire, as theologians generally say when treating of baptism."*(footnote: * Dc Eccl. Milit. lib. 3. cap. 3.)

" I have said," says Billuart, " that, catechumens are not actually and properly in the Church, because, when they request admission into the Church, and when they already have faith and charity, they may be said to be in the Church proximately and in desire, as one may be said to be in the house because he is in the vestibule for the purpose of immediately entering. And in this sense must be taken what I have elsewhere said of their pertaining to the Church, that is, that they pertain to her inchoately, as aspirants who voluntarily subject themselves to her laws ; and they may be saved, notwithstanding there is no salvation out of the Church ; for this is to be understood of one who is in the Church neither actually nor virtually, nee re, nee in voto. In the same sense, St. Augustine, Tract. 4 in Joan. n. 13, is to be understood, when he sa)'s, u Futuri crant allqui in Ecclesia excelsioris gratice catcchumeni,"  that is, in will and proximate disposition, u in voto et proxima dispositione." *(footnote: * Theologia, dc Reg. Fid. Dissert. 3, Art. 3.)
It is evident, both from Bellarmine and Billuart, that no one can be saved unless he belongs to the visible communion of the Church, either actually or virtually, and also that the salvation of catechumens can be asserted only because they do so belong ; that is, because they are in the vestibule, for the purpose of entering,  have already entered in their will and proximate disposition. St. Thomas teaches with regard to these, in case they have faith working by love, that all they lack is the reception of the visible sacrament in re ; but if they are prevented by death from receiving it in re before the Church is ready to administer it, that God supplies the defect, accepts the will for the deed, and reputes them to be baptized. If the defect is supplied, and God reputes them to be baptized, they are so in effect, have in effect received the visible sacrament, are truly members of the external communion of the Church, and therefore are saved in it, not out of it. *(footnote: * Summa 3, Q. G8, a. 2. corp. ad 2. et ad 3.)

Bellarmine, Billuart, Perrone, &c, in speaking of persons as belonging to the soul and not to the body, mean, it is evident, not persons who in no sense belong to the body, but simply those who, though they in effect belong to it, do not belong to it in the full and strict sense of the word, because they have not received the visible sacrament in re. All they teach is simply that persons may be saved who have not received the visible sacrament in re ; but they by no means teach that persons can be saved without having received the visible sacrament at all. There is no difference between their view and ours, for we have never contended for any thing more than this ; only we think, that, in these times especially, when the tendency is to depreciate the external, it is more proper to speak of them as belonging in effect to the body, as they certainly do, than it is to speak of them simply as belonging to the soul; for the fact the most important to be insisted on is, not that it is possible to be saved without receiving the visible sacrament in re, but that it is impossible to be saved without receiving the visible sacrament at least in voto et proximo, disposition.

The case* of catechumens disposes of all who are substantially in the same category.    The only persons, not catechumens, who can be in the same category, are persons who have been validly baptized, and who stand in the same relation to the sacrament of Reconciliation that catechumens do to the sacrament of Faith.    Infants, validly baptized, by whomsoever baptized, are made  members of the body of our Lord, and, it dying before coming to the age of reason, go immediately to heaven.    But persons having come to the age of reason, baptized in an heretical society, or persons baptized in such society in infancy, and adhering to it after having come to years ot understanding,  for there can be no difference between the two classes, - whether through ignorance or not, are, as we have seen, out of unity, and therefore out of charity, vyithout which they are nothing.    Their faith, if they have any, does not avail them : their sacraments are sacrilegious.    T he wound of sacrilege is mortal, and the only possible way of being healed  is through the sacrament of Reconciliation or Penance.    But lor these to stand in the same relation to this sacrament that catechumens do to the sacrament of Faith, they must cease to adhere to their heretical societies, must come out from among them, seek and find the Church, recognize her as the Church, believe what she teaches, voluntarily subject themselves to her laws, knock at the door, will to enter, stand waiting to enter as soon as she opens and says, Come in.     If they do all this, they are substantially in the same category with catechumens ; and if prevented by  death from receiving the visible sacrament in re, they may be saved, yet not as simply joined to the soul of the Church, but as in effect joined or restored to her external communion.    By their voluntary renunciation ot their heretical or schismatic society, by their explicit recognition of the Church, by their actual return to her door, by their disposition and will to enter, they are effectually, it not in form, members of the body as well as of the soul.    Persons excommunicated stand on the same footing as these.     I hey are excluded from the Church, unless they repent.    If they repent and receive the visible sacrament of Reconciliation vet re, vel voto, they may be saved, because the Church in excommunicating; them  has willed their amendment, not their exclusion from the people of God ; but we have no authority to affirm their salvation on any other conditions.

The apparent exception alleged turns out, therefore, to be no real exception at all ; for the persons excepted are still members of the body of the Church in effect, as the authorities referred to labor to prove. They are persons who have renounced their infidel and heretical societies, and have found and explicitly recognized the Church. Their approach to the Church is explicit, not constructive, to be inferred only from a certain vague and indefinite longing for truth and unity in general, predicable in fact, we should suppose, of nearly all men ; for no man ever clings to falsehood and division, believing them to be such. Their desire for truth and unity is explicit. Their faith is the Catholic faith ; the unity they will is Catholic unity ; the Church at whose door they knock is the Catholic Church ; the sacrament they solicit, they solicit from the hands of her legitimate priest. They are in effect Catholics, and though not re et proprie in the Church, nobody ever dreams of so understanding the article, out of the Church no one can be saved, as to exclude them from salvation. These being in effect members of the external communion, the distinction between the soul and the body of the Church does not at all affect the assumption of the Brothers Walenburch, " out of external communion with the true Church of Jesus Christ there is no salvation."

The Church is always and everywhere, at once and indisso-lubly, as the living Church, interior and exterior, consisting, like man himself, of soul and body. She is not a disembodied spirit, nor a corpse. The separation of the soul and body of the Church is as much her death, as the separation of the soul and body of man is his. She is the Church, the living Church, only by the mutual commerce of soul and body. There may be grave sinners in her body who have no communion with her soul; these are indeed members, but not living members, and are in the body rather than o/it, as vicious humors may be in the blood without being of it, for they must have communion with the soul in order to be living members ; and some theologians maintain that they who are in the body of the Church, without pertaining to the soul, at least by faith, though a dead faith, are not, strictly speaking, members at all. On the other hand, if, as all our theologians teach, and Moehler and Perrone especially, the life of the Church is in the mutual commerce of the exterior and the interior, the body and the soul, no individual not joined to her body can live her life. Indeed, to suppose that communion with the body alone will suffice, is to fall into mere formalism, to mistake the corpse for the living man ; and, on the other hand, to suppose that communion with the soul out of the body and independent of it is practicable is to fall into pure spiritualism, simple Quakerism, which tapers off into   Transcendentalism   or mere  sentimentalism,   a  doctrine which Father Perrone expressly controverts.    Either extreme is the death of the Church, which is, as we have said, to be regarded as always, at once and indissolubly, soul and body.*(footnote: * Vide Perrone, de Loc. Theol. p. 1, cap. 2, art. 3, et cap. 4, art. 1, ad 1.) To assume real or virtual communion with the body is not necessary, or that we may be joined to the spirit without being joined to the body is to make the body only occasionally or accidentally necessary to salvation ; and, in fact, some modern speculations imply, perhaps expressly teach, that it is necessary only in the case of those who recognize it to be necessary, as if its necessity depended on the state of the human intellect, and not on the appointment of God, or as if a man's disbelief could excuse or make up for his want of faith,  a doctrine not to be extracted from the Holy Scriptures, taught by no Father or Mediaeval Doctor, and from which we should suppose every Catholic would instinctively turn with loathing and disgust.    The Church is the living Temple of God, into which believers must be builded as so many living stones.     It is his body, and its body is no more to be dispensed with than its soul; otherwise we could  not call  her always visible, for to some she would be visible, to others only invisible, and then there would be no visible Catholic Church.

There is no name given under heaven among men but the name of Jesus Christ by which we can be saved. There is salvation in none other ; and what Catholic needs to be told that Christ, as the Saviour, is in the Church, which is his body, and that it is in the Church, and nowhere else, that he does or will save ? True, though in the Church, he is also out of her, by his grace operating on the hearts of those not yet within ; but he operates ad Ecclesiam, to bring them within, that he may save them there, not that he may save them without. He loves his Church ; she is his Chosen, his Beloved, his Spouse, and he gave his life for her. In her, so to speak, centre all his affections, his graces, and his providences ; and all creatures and events are ordered in reference to her. Without her all history is inexplicable, a fable, and the universe itself meaningless and without a purpose. The salvation of souls itself is in order to her, and God will have no children who are not also hers. As there is but one Father, so can there be but one Mother, and none are of the Father who are not of the Mother. Clear and explicit are all the Fathers and Saints as to this, and they plainly teach that it would dishonor her, and make God an adulterer, to suppose the salvation of a single soul of which she is not the spiritual mother.

God, in establishing his Church from the foundation of the world, in giving his life on the cross for her, in abiding always with her, in her tabernacles, unto the consummation of the world, in adorning her as a Bride with all the graces of the Holy Spirit, in denominating her his Beloved, his Spouse, has taught us how he regards her, how deep and tender, how infinite and inexhaustible, his love for her, and with what love and honor we should behold her. He loves us with an infinite love, and has died to redeem us ; but he loves us and wills our salvation, only in and through his Church. He would bring us to himself, and he never ceases as a lover to woo our love ; but he wills us to love, and reverence, and adore him only as children of his Beloved. Our love and reverence must redound to his glory as her Spouse, and gladden her maternal heart, and swell her maternal joy, or he wills them not, knows them not. O, it is frightful to forget the place the Church holds in the love and providence of God, and to regard the relation in which we stand to her as a matter of no moment ! She is the one grand object on which are fixed all heaven, all earth, ay, and all hell. Behold her impersonation in the Blessed Virgin, the Holy Mother of God, the glorious Queen of heaven. Humble and obscure she lived, poor and silent, yet all heaven turned their eyes towards her; all hell trembled before her ; all earth needed her. Dear was she to all the hosts of heaven ; for in her they beheld their Queen, the Mother of grace, the Mother of mercies, the channel through which all love, and mercies, and graces, and good things were to flow to man, and return to the glory and honor of their Father. Humblest of mortal maidens, lowliest on earth, under God, she was highest in heaven. So is the Church, our sweet Mother. O, she is no creation of the imagination ! O, she is no mere accident in human history, in divine providence, divine grace, in the conversion of souls ! She is a glorious, a living reality, living the divine, the eternal life of God. Her Maker is her Husband, and he places her, after him, over all in heaven, on the earth, and under the earth. All that he can do to adorn and exalt her he has done. All he can give he gives ; for he gives himself, and unites her in indissoluble union with himself.    Infinite love, infinite wisdom, infinite power, can do no more.    All hail to thee, dear and ever-blessed  Mother, thou  chosen   one,  thou well-be loved,   thou Bride adorned, thou chaste, immaculate Spouse, thou Universal Queen ! All hail to thee !   We honor thee, for God honors thee ; we love thee, for God  loves thee ; we obey thee, for thou ever commandest the will of thy lord.     I he passers-by may ieer thee ; the servants of the prince of this world may call thee black ; the daughters of the uncircumcised may beat thee, earth and hell rise up in wrath against thee, and seek to despoil thee of thy rich ornaments and to sully thy fair name ; but all the more dear art thou to our hearts ; all the more deep and sincere the homage we pay thee ; and all the more earnestly do we pray thee to receive our humble -offerings, and to own us for thy children, and watch over us that we never forfeit the right to call thee our Mother.

Did we reflect on what the Church is, did we consider her rank in the universe, her relation to God, the place she holds, so to speak, in his affections, the bare thought oi the salvation of a single soul not spiritually begotten of her would make us thrill with horror.    It would give the lie to all God's providences, and subvert the whole economy of his grace.    We need not start at this.    All may have the Church for their mother, it they choose.    Christ is in the Church, but he is also out ot the Church.    In the Church he is operating by his grace to save those who enter ; out of her he operates also by his grace, or is ready to operate, in the hearts of all men, to supply the will and the ability to come in.    Do not imagine that God has only half done his work, that he has merely prepared  his Church, fitted her up as a palace, filled her with all good things, all things necessary for our salvation, when once we have entered, but that he has left us without the ability to find her out, or, having found her out, without ability to enter.    He leaves nothing undone.    No man has the natural ability to come into the Church, any more than he has the natural ability to save himself after he has come in.     All before and all after is the work of God.    We can do nothing of ourselves alone, make not even the first motion without his grace inciting and assisting us. Of no use would have been his Church,  it would have been a mere mockery, or a splendid failure, if he had not provided for our entrance as well as for our salvation aiterwards. But he has provided for our entrance.    He gives sufficient ace to all men.    The grace of prayer, gratia oralioms, is
grace given freely, gratuitously, unto every one. All receive the ability to ask ; all, then, can ask, and if they do ask, as sure as God cannot lie they shall receive the grace to seek ; and if they seek, the same divine veracity is pledged that they shall find ; and if they find, they may knock ; and if they knock, it shall be opened to them. God has said it. Christ is in the Church ; he is out of it. In it and out of it he is one and the same, and operates ever ad unitatem. He is out of the Church to dravy all men into the Church ; all have, then, if they will, the assistance of the Infinite God to come in, and if they do not come in, it is their own fault. God withholds nothing necessary. He gives to all, by his grace, every thing requisite, and in superabundance. If we come not at his call, on our own heads lies the blame. We have no excuse, not the least shadow of an excuse. The reason why we come not can be only that we do not choose to come, that we resist his grace, and scorn his invitations, and will not yield to his inspirations. No nice theological distinctions, no scholastic subtilty, no latitudi-narian ingenuity, can relieve us of the blame, or make it not true that we could have come, had we been so disposed. If, then, we stay away, and are lost, it is we who have destroyed ourselves.

Here are the great mass of our countrymen aliens from the Church of God. Why do they not come and ask to be received as children and heirs ? Is it lack of opportunity ? It is false. There is no lack of opportunity. God does not deny them, not one of them, the needed grace. The Church is here ; through her noble and faithful pastors, her voice sounds out from Maine to Florida, from the Atlantic to the Pacific. How can they hear without a preacher ? But they have heard. Verily the voice of the preacher is gone out into all the earth. They have no need to say, Who shall ascend into heaven to bring Christ down ? or, Who shall descend into hell to bring Christ up from the dead ? The word is nigh them. It sounds in every ear ; it speaks in every heart. We all know they might come, if they would. From all sections, and from all ranks and conditions, some have come, and by coming proved that it is possible for all to come; and in so proving rendered invalid the plea of ignorance or inability. Those who have not come can as well come as those who have come ; and their guilt in not coming is aggravated by their knowledge of the fact that some of their own number have come ; for they are
longer in ignorance.* (footnote* S. Aug. lib. 1, th Bapt. contr. Donai. cap. 5.   Etiam S. Joan. Chrysost. in Epist. ad Rom. xxvi.) The fault is their own They stay away because they do not will to come. « Ye will not come, to me that ye may have life, because your deeds are evil. 1 ney disregard divine grace, they disdain the Church, they con emu her pastors, they scorn her sacraments, lor what Catholic can doubt, if they were to seek the truth, cauta solhcitudine, as St. Augustine says they must, even to excuse them from formal heresy or infidelity, that they would find, and, finding and knocking, that they would be admitted ?                                 

No ; let us love  our countrymen too much to be ingenious in inventing excuses for them, to strain the faith in their behalf till it is nearly ready to snap.    Let us from a deep and tender charity, which, when need is, has the nerve to be terribly severe, thunder, or, if we are no Boanerges, breathe m solt but thrilling accents, in their ears, in their souls, in their consciences, those awful truths which they will know too late at the day of judgment.    We must labor to convict them ot sin, to show them their folly and madness, to convince them that they are dead in trespasses and sins, and condemned already, and that they can be restored to life, and freed from condemnation, only by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, whom we, and we only/preach, which is dispensed through the Church, and the Church only.                                                         

It has been said that our countrymen are not to be driven into the Church, and that a soft answer turneth away wrath. All very  true, who doubts it?     Use as soft words and speak in as honeyed tones as you please, but do not forget to set forth sound doctrine, or to use hard arguments.     I ell the trutli in your own way, and by all means in a manner as little offensive as possible ; but tell it.    Nobody has any wish or intention to  drive people into the Church.    There are some things so obvious, that men of ordinary sense may be presumed not to overlook them.    The only driving we wish is the driving by the force of truth distinctly  enunciated, by solid arguments clearly stated, and solemn appeals well put.  so far as this may be called driving, which is only presenting motives to reason and free-will, we are for driving, and will do all we can to drive, till every one is driven within the fold.    The loid ot the nuptial feast did not command his servants to go out into the highways and hedges and coax people to come in, but to compel them to come in, that his house might be full. No man can honestly mistake the drift of our remarks, or imagine that they proceed from harshness of temper, or want of respect for the rights or the characters of those without, as well as of those within. What we urge and insist upon is, that we feel, and freely, earnestly, solemnly, without fear or palliation, set forth to our unbelieving and heretical countrymen, the danger, the sinfulness, of their present condition ; that, in so far as we wish or seek their conversion, we must follow the example of the Apostles and Fathers, and reason of sin, justice, and judgment to come ; that we must present the .question of the Church, not as an intellectual or sesthetical question, but as a question of life and death, of heaven and hell. Infidelity and heresy have not improved by age, and they are as hateful to God, as odious to the Saints, as destructive to the souls of men, here and now, as they were in the days of St. Athana-sius, St. Hilary, St. Jerome, or St. Augustine, and are to be met and conquered only in the spirit and by the weapons these holy Fathers and great Saints met and conquered them.

If any Catholics imagine, that, in some things we have said, their favorite policy has been arraigned, they will take care not to misinterpret us. We have spoken strongly, earnestly, as we have the right to speak, as it was our duty to speak ; but we hope we have not spoken arrogantly, harshly, uncharitably, or without authority. We have impeached no one's motives, faith, zeal, or piety. We trust we are not so utterly destitute of Christian humility as to imagine that we have any special monopoly of true Catholic faith and zeal, or as not to feel that they who prefer a policy we may disapprove may be at least as true believers, as deeply in earnest, as solicitous for the salvation of souls, as ourselves. God forbid that we should think of drawing a parallel, or presume in the remotest degree conceivable to breathe a censure against them ! We are not insensible to the pious worth, nor destitute of admiration of the labors, of those who have worn out their lives in laboring to plant the Church in this moral wilderness. We are not untouched by the recital of their labors, their privations, their sufferings, their sacrifices, and we would that we could aspire to their virtues. We offer our prayer at the tombs of those who have been called to their reward ; we love and reverence those still living. Who are we, to judge them ? We speak not of the policy they may have adopted in its relation to their times, and the frightful circumstances under which they unfurled here the banner of the cross. We speak only in relation to the country as it now is. Times have changed. Protestantism is not, as to its forms, what it was even twenty years ago. We have as bitter enemies as ever, but not in the same shape. The bigot gives place to the latitudinarian. We have not now to prove that the Church may be as good as the sects, or even better than the sects ; for these two points are now virtually conceded us. We have now to prove that she alone is Christianity, and that without Christianity, without Christ, there is no true life here or hereafter. It is this great fact, so solemn and so terrible, that we have wished to place prominently before our readers,  not to censure the past, but to guide our future efforts, and for the purpose of rendering such service as may be in our power to the great and glorious cause equally dear to all Catholics.