תמונות בעמוד

fick Person, a Pra&tice, I confess, which I have heard fome learned and pious Divines with had not been finee left out of the Office for the Vifitation of the Sick. But then, as your Church is guilty of many abuses, so particularly of perverting the use of this Ceremony; not in anointing the Sick for bodily Health, but the Dying, of whose Life there is no hope, as a Viand to them who are departing out of the World'; for which there is no ground in Scripture, nor in the practice of the ancient Church..

As for Miracles, of which I have heard much among you, we hold them not necessary to the Ohörch, having the powerful Evidence of former Miracles, and the Testimony of so many holy Martyrs and Confessors, and the written Word of God, which we think fufficient Reasons and Motives of Belief; and that the Faith of those who have believed without Miracles, fince Miracles ceased, hath a parciedlar Testimony of approbation and acceptance from his blessed Mouth; who faid unto St. Thomas,

[ocr errors]

Spirit of all Strength, Relief, and Gladness. And vouchsafe for bis great Mercy (if it be his blessed Will) to restore unto thee thy bodily Health and Strength to serve him, and send thee release of all waj Pains, Troubles, and Diseases, both in Body and Mind. And hotelever bás Goodness (by his divine and unsearchable Providence) sbal dispose of thee : We his unworthy Ministers and Servants, humnbly befeech the eternal Majesty to do with thee according to the Multitude of his innumerable Mercies; and to pardon thee all thy Sins And offences, committed by all thy bodily Senses, Paffions, and car. tüb affe&tions: Who alsó vouchsafe mercifully to grant unto thee ghajtly Strength by his holy Spirit, to withstand, and overcome all Temptations, and Alfaults of thine Adversary, that in no wife he prevail against thee; but that thou mayest bave perfe& Vi&tory and Triumph against the Devil, Şin, and Death, through Christ our Lord who by bis Death bath overcome the Prince of Death, and spith the Father and the Holy Ghost, ever more liveth and reigneth God, World without end. Amen."So in the celebration of the Holy. Communion for the sick, there is this Rubrick :/ And if the Sick defire to be anoinced, then thall the Pries use the appointed Prayer without any Pfalm.




who would not believe without seeing, Bleffed are they, who have not seen and yet have believed Howa ever if you, who talk fo much of your Miracles, will work beneficial and lasting Miracles among us; if you'll feed five Thousand of us with a few Loaves, and a few Files, if you'll Curé all Diseaci ses, give Sight to the Blind, make the Lame Walk, and Raise the Dead; and do these:Wonders openly in the places of publick Concourse, in our Streets and Piazza's, at the Gates of our Cities and Témples, and in the Highways; if you'll speak ftrange Languages, and Prophesie, and cast out Devils, and shew thefe miraculous Powers and Gifts in heretical, and other fchifmatical Countries, then we will believe your Church to be the Holy Catholick Church, or if we do not, then shake off the Dust of your Feet as a Testimony against us, and Seal ús up in Unbelief. But Miracles, Sir, pretended to be: wrought among your selves, only in your own Churches and Cloysters, and among the Ignorant, Credulous, and Superftitious; and those who al ready believe your Shrine-cures and Crucifix-cures, your sweating and bleeding Images, the Conception of your Women by virtue of St. Francis's Cordon, your Teresian Visions, and fuch like prétended Wonders among you will never make us believe your Church to be the true, or only true Church, to be the Mother and Mistress of all Churches the Church, which is the Centre of Ecclesiastical Communion, that infuseth Unity, the form of Univerfality into all other Churches, who are no otherwise to be called Catholick but by participation and agreement in Do&trine and Worthip with her, and Subje&ion to her Head, the Pope. Sir, the Englisle Protestants will never believe these, and your other incredible Doctrines upon the fight, ora report of such pretended local Miracles among you, but rather harden them in their Herefy and

W41 $chism, which you so frankly lay to their charge. :3



Next to your Miracles, you are wont to boast of your wonderful Conversions of Nations by your Miffoners: But how, or to what did you convert them? • You converted a great part of the Christians of St. Thomas, in the East-Indies, by most cruel and barbarous Perfecutions , forcing them againlt their Consciences, to embrace your Religion, and come into the Communion of your Church. And if these, and all your Perfecutions, and the Havock you have made of God's People in them were computed, I fear it would appear, you have not converted more (I should have said perverted) than you have detroyed. Mar Abraham and Mar Joseph, as well as Cyril Lucar among the Greeks, will rise up in Judgment against you : And in the mean time the Blood thed by you in Malabar, as well as in the Western World, will cry for Vengeance; and hasten that terrible Day, whep for shedding the Blood of the Saints, God shall give you Blood to drink.

I have also heard, that among the Chineses you are wont to represent Jesus Christ to them as a great Hero, and not as a poor crucified Man; who pro. ved himself to be God, and the Saviour of the World, by his Resurrection from the Dead. You there also, as I am told, allow, your Converts to worship CONFUSIUS with Christ, and that you set up their, and your images together. Nor do you give the Nations under the Rising Sun, the pure Doctrines of the Gospel, by which Heathens of old were converted; but such as the corrupt Gospel of Hieronymus Xaverius, a Jesuit of Biscay, which he made up of false, ridiculous, idolatrous, and other impious Mixtures, without mentioning the Instituti

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

of these barbarok's Persecutions there is a good account given in vlete excellent French Book, printed at Roterdam, 1707. with this Title, Differtations Historiques sur divers sujets.

See a short and clear account of the Persecutions of the Chrifti. ans of St. Thomas Monumens Authentiques de la Religion des Grecs. p. 80. dore.


on of the Holy Eucharist, because he durft not ex pose your absurd Doctrine of Transubstantiation, which is so contrary to the obvious figurative Sense of the words of its Institution. Thus you would be wiser than God; you would not trust to him in preaching the pure uncontaminate Gospel to the Orientals, though by the Foolishness of it he confounded the Wisdom of the Greeks and Romans, who were as bright People as any the East can shew. But your Misioners took another course than the Mifsioners of Christ did; they would not trust to the Foolishness of God, which is wifer, and to the Weakness of God, which is stronger than Men, but to their own human Politicks and Inventions. And I appeal to your Conscience, Sir, whether their Conversions are like those of the Apostles, unto the pure Faith of the crucified Jesus, whom God hath made both Lord and Chrift. In short, Sir, your Conversion of other Christians is a mere Perversion, and those you have converted from Heathenism to your Religion, have need again to be converted to the true Catholick and Apoftolick Faith, which was once delivered to the Saints. In the West-Indies you were much more intent upon killing than converting, having had more mind to the Gold of the Natives of the Islands and Continents, than to their Conversion; and to plunder their Treasures, than to save their Souls. In Hispaniola the Spaniards reduced 3 Millions of innocent People to less than 300. They made the rich Illand of Cuba, and many other Islands intirely. desert; and in the Continent they ruined Ten Kingdoms bigger than all Spain, by moft barbaroas and unheard of Cruelties. Don Barthol. de las Casas, Bishop of Chiaba, relates all these inhumane Butcheries and Rapines, who was an Eye-witness of them; and Spain the most Roman Catholick of all Countries, is still in Debt to Divine Vengeance for these monstrous Cruelties, which no Man who is


not abandon'd to Humanity, can read, relate, of hear without Horror.

You are also wont to object, that we have a Parliamentary Church, and a Parliamentary Religion, for no other Reason that I know, but because our Kings by their Ads in Parliament have confirmed the Reformation, and added the Civil Sanction to the Acts of the Church. . For the fame Reason your Church in the Realms of England, Scotland, and Ireland, was a Parliamentary Church, and your Religion a Parliamentary Religion before the Reformation: And you would be very glad to have it acknowledged, and established again in these Kingdoms by Acts of Parliament, as it was here in Queen Mary's Days. You also reproach us with owning the King to be the Head of the Church, which you should not do, were it true ; because your Bishops and Clergy in their Act of Submission, first owned King Henry VIII. to be fo before the Reformation. But tho’ your Bishops did; we do not own the King to be the Head of the Church, but the supreme Governor over all Persons, Ecclesiastical as well as Civil: Or if you please, we own our Kings and Queens too to be the supreme Civil Governors, or external Heads of the Church, under God, to protect and defend her, and see that her Bishops and Priests do their Duties, to which God hath called and appointed them in the Church ; and to coerce them by Civil Censures and Punishments, when they fail in their Duty, and to make the Canons of the Church, when they please, Statutes of the Realm, and to exact Laws for the external Regulation of Religion, as Constantine, the first Christian Emperor did ; who therefore called himself the external Bishop of the Church in the Roman Empire. And if any of our Princes chance, at any time, to assume a greater Power and Authority in Matters Ecclesiastical than is meet, Sovereign Princes and States, within the Pale of your Church,


« הקודםהמשך »