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Arkansas Catholic
Litlte Rock, Arkansas
December 4, 1920     Arkansas Catholic
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December 4, 1920
 

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PAGE FOUR Published Weekly by THE CATHOLIC PUBLICATION SOCIETY of the Diocese of Little Rock 309 WEST SECOND STREET Entered as second-class matter March 21, 1911. at the postoflice at Little Rock, A,'k., under the Act of Congress of March 3, 1879. J __ SUBSCRIPTION PRICE, $2.00 THE YEAR cHAN G'E'"O F A-DDR ESS When a change of address is desired the subscriber should give both the old and the new addlcss. CORRESPONDENCE Iatler intended for publication in The Guardian should reach us not later than Wednesday morning. Brief news correspondence is always welcome. The kindness of the clergy in this matter is cordially appreciated. Very Rev. A. Stocker, O. S. B., D. D ................... Editor-in-Chief Rev. Edward A. Flannery ......................... Contributing Editor Rev. Gee. H. McDermott ............................. Managing Editor All communications about "The Guardian" should be ,addressed to the Rev. Geo, H. licDermott, 39 West Second Street. OFFICIAL"APPROVAL The Guardian is the official organ of the diocese of Little Rock. and I pray God that it may be an earnest chaml)ion in the cause of right, justice and truth and an ardent defender of the religion which we all love so well. I exlcnd to it my blessing with the sincere hope that its career lnay be long and prosperous, JOHN B. MORRIS, Bishop of ? ittle Rock. Little Rock, Ark., December 4, 1920. From the Ohio Waisenfreund we learn that' Archbishop Pimenta has been chosen a member of the Brazilian Academy, the first time that such an honor has come to a Catholic bishop in that country. On the occasion of his reception the president of the society said in part: "Only peo- ple of weak intelligence can underrate the ira- portance of the Catholic influence in the social development of Brazil. And in this Catholic in- fluence the Brazilian episcopate has had no mean share. Within recent years the prestige of Cath- olicism has grown apace and promises to become mightier from day to day." 0-O A. G. Gardiner, former editor of the London Daily News, declares, in a special cable message to the New York Herald of November 21, that public indignation is' rising rapidly in England among the better elements over the shameful atrocities committed by the Lloyd George govern- ment against the Irish people. "The Peace With Ireland Council," he says, "is mobilizing all that is best in all the parties against this infamy and is'arranging a monster demonstration throughout the country. Labor is solid in hostility. But it is the Liberal Party that has been struck to fiercest anger--an anger that is intensified by the fact that this unspeakable shame has been in- flicted on the country by a man who once was a Liberal. When the Liberal federation meets, the Liberal forces of the country will join in crushing condemnation of Lloyd George's treachery to everything that liberalism holds dear." Press reports have it that Lenine is increasing the force of his agents in.this country to exploit the present situation of wide-spread unemploy- ment in behalf of his revolutionary plans. Un- fortunately a few strong groups of employers in this country are working, by their campaign in behalf of the open shop (which in reality is aimed at the destruction of trade-unionism), into the hands of the revolutionaries. In a statement by the social department of the National Cath- olic Welfare Council we read: "There is great 'danger that the whole nation will be harmed by this campaign of a few groups of strong em- ployers. To aim now at putting into greater sub- jeetion the workers in industry is blind and fool- hardy. The radical movements and d'isturbances in Europe ought to hold a lesson for the em- ployers of America. And the voice of the Ameri- can people ought to be raised in the endeavor to drive this lesson home." O-O" What we hear about the Czech Schism only confirms what could be guessed beforehand, viz. : that those priests did. not leave the Church be- cause the Church was corrupt but because they ;were corrupt themselves. " The discipline of Rome was too strict 'for them, and seeing an opportunity to shake it off without forfeiting their, living, the temptation was too great for them. Here are the words of one of their spokes- men (quoted froman article by E. Christitch in America of November 20): "Earth would be a Paradise if religions and ceremonies were done away with. I do not believe in an Almighty God, or in a devil, or in Providence. All this is a Lie i" - Is it a wonder that men like these did not find themselves at home in the Catholic Church? Nor need the Church regret their exodus, for open apostates are less dangerous than disguised wolves within the flock. fS-( DOCTORED HISTOR Y. By doctored history we mean history written with a partisan purpose. Personalities and events are disinfected to let a given cause appear in a more farm:able light than it deserves in reality. This may lie done by a suppression of Sruth or by a statement of 'falsehood, the "latter of which is evidently the more serious fault of the wo. 'That history, both civil and ecclesiastical, has .been written in this manner cannot be gainsaid. ;And if this reproach is sometimes made against Catholic church-historians, they, as compared with THE GUARDIAN, SATURDAY, DECEMBER 4, 1920. i i ii Protestant church-historians, certainly show to no disadvantage. If, therefore, a Catholic were visited with this taunt, Your Catholic histories are not telling the truth, he might answer with the retort, What about yours? This would end the dispute, because probably neither one nor the other could go further in his argument. But while a retort may be a ready method to get rid of an impertinent intruder, the question really remains to be settled whether there is any ground for the impeachment of Catholic church-histo- rians before the bar of historical truth. For one wrong" does not neutralize another, and though others lie against you, you are not justified in lying back against them. This train of thoughts has been suggested to us by an article of the Rev. William Henry Kent, 0. S. C., in The Catholic Historical Review of October. With him we distinguish between his- tory and history. One might write a history of the great men of a country, the men whose achievements have marked the progressive stages of a commonwealth, remaining silent about less glorious episodes and even about some blemishes that attached to the private lives of these great public men. Such a history is true, as far as it a'oes, and serves a legitimate purpose, viz., to fos- ter patriotism in the reader. A sinilar method with a similar purpose may be pursued by a church-historian. Agafn, a text book of history, which is neces- sarily compendious, as it cannot mention all the good things each historical character has done, is not bound to divulge all the incidental evil. A fair proportion of lights and shades is all that can be expected from a historian working under the indicated limitations. If therefore in either of these two cases a. Catholic church-historian does not tell the whole truth, no fair-minded per- son will accuse him of prevarication. But when there is question of history for his- tory's sake, then its aim is to furnish as faithful a portrait of past times as the most painstaking researches can compass. As Father Kent says, some Catholic historians--not, however, in con. trast to Protestants have shown an unworthy pussillanimity in facing the sometimes ugly facts. Such conduct is not to be condoned in a historian. Catholic historians, ought to remember that there are, according to Christ's own prediction, good and bad fish in the net of God's Kingdom, as there is cockle amidst the wheat. Nor did the inspired writers who wrote the history of God's chosen people of the ancient covenant suppress the often humiliating truth. Neither has the Church of the New Covenant or-its rulers been promised impeccability. If one of the twelve original Apostles failed, we cannot be surprised that some of the later apostles fell short of the spirit of heir vocation. S. PLIABILITY OF MIND. In the Biblical World of September Shailer Mathews discusses the subject of "changing one's religious mind." He says that, on the one hand frequent changes of mind betoken a vacillati'ng character, while, on the other hand, the'reluct- ance to change it on the presentation of new evi dence is neither honest nor creditable to a Chris- tian. As a general proposition this statement may go unchallenged. But in its practical appli- cation it has not the same meaning and scope for all Christians. Let us begin with some distinctions. The atti- tude of the mind towards a proposition of reli- gion, say the Existence of God, may be denial, doubt, surmise, opinion, or certitude. He who denies it refuses his assent, he who doub*ts it sus- pends his assent, he who surmises it inclines his assent, he who has an opinion about it embraces the proposition though with a misgiving of being possibly mistaken, he who has certitude embraces the proposition without the least fear of being mistaken. Now it starLds to reason that a change of mind from denial upward to certitude is a laudable thing and cannot honestly or virtuously be re- fused in the face of ex, idence. You cannot hon- estly deny or doubt what you know to be so and not oherwise. And this is precisely the meaning of evidence. That in science there are things we know to be so and not otherwise, is plain; for instance, the multiplication table or the laws of physics and chemistry. To change one's mind in regard to these scientific facts once attained would be a retrogression from truth to error. But is there a final certitude, even on this earth, also in matters, of religion or faith ? If so, there may be a state of the religious mind where change would be neither hor.est nor creditable to a Christian. Now, Catholics believe that there is such a state of certitude in matters of re!igion, because their faith comprises the tenet of the in- fallible teachifig authority of the Church. Pro- testants, on the contrary, waive the claim of the infallibility of their churches and proclaim the principle of private judgment as the right of each individual Christian. Hence, while they may be certain about the Bible as the word of God, they can, in accordance with their very principles, have no final certitude about its interpretation, And I it is the interpretation that matters. For, after all, it depends on the interpretation whether you.! get themird ofGod out of the Bible or not. For Us Catholics the infallibility of the Church guar- antees the correctness of the interpretation, and as far as the Church's authentic interpretation has covered the field of divine revelation our[ mental certitude is fixed and unchangeable. From this it follows at once that a Protestant may become a Catholic without doing violence to the principles of his religion, tie is professedly a searcher after religious truth. Private judg- ment is his native right, and, as we said above, his church does not claim to be his infallible guide. Hence if a Protestant,by reading the Scriptures with his private judgTaent, has come to recognize the Catholic Church as the true church and joins it, no one can blame him for this move without, at least implicitly, both denying the right of pri- vate judgment and asseling the infallibility of the denomination from which he has withdrawn. A Catholic, on the contrary, by leaving his Church, violates a fundamental principle of his religion. He is truly an apostate, while this name in no way belongs to a Protestant convert to the Catholic Church. So much, then, we have from this discussion that a Protestant, to be true to his religion, must ever' be ready to change his religious mind, while a Catholic, to be true to his religion, must have an absolutely settled religious mind as far as it is imbued with the authoritative teachings of his Church. Whether this position of the Catholic is objectively correct depends on the question whether the Church is really infallible. It can- not be our present purpose to enter into argu- ments on this subject. But does it not seem ante- cedently plausible that God giving a revelation to mankind would make his gift perfect by giving with it an official interpretation? So did the Fathers of this country not only give us a Con- stitution but a Supreme Court also to interpret it. Without the latter the Constitution would have become a source of confusion and disruption, as has been the case with the Bible wherever the authority of the Church has been set aside. S. O-O. FUTILE PREA CHING. John S pargo, who writes glorious Enffli,h and who till recently belonged to orthodox Socialism, recently started a controversy in a more or less I Protestant publication whether or not preaching was useless. Immediately he was answered by Lyman Abbot and a few less known members of the non-Catholic clergy. We Catholics are inter- ested in the debate merely because it emphasizes points upon which our Church has been always strongly insistent. To begin with Spargoscouts the idea that the Christian church was ever established to suggest schemes of economic or political alleviation. When clergymen stand in the pulpit and pretend to advise experts in the pews on the ways and means of remedying all the ills that flesh is heir to the chances are that ministerial words fall on deaf, if not scoffing ears. The Shantung situa- tion, coal strikes, the League of Nations, and for ourselves we might add the death of MacSwiney, "might be appropriate themes for journalistic com ment, but as pulpit subjects they hardly fit into the command that the gospel must be preached to all the people. From which we derive the Catholic, as opposed to the non-Catholic, idea of the Christian religion. The Protestant" Reformation was based on the supposition that the faith of Christ was purely" intellectual, appealing to one faculty in the soul of man. So preaching, not service or ceremonial, was accentuated, at .the expense of that rounded out ritualistic observance which speaks to all the powers of the human spirit. So today when a question is raised about the worth or futility of preaching it 0nly stresses the fact that outside of Catholicism the appeal to the intellect constitutes the substance of the faiths foreign to our belief and when such approaches fail nothing remains to induce men and women to adhere to Christian worship. Whereas in our Church, no matter what the character of. the preaching may be, the Great Sacrifice and the sacraments retain the people faithful to the practices of their religion. F. PREJUDICE. It is difficult at times to figure how certain edi tors despise the intelligence of the average reader. What presently calls up the thought is the atti- tude of the New York Times on the Irish situa- tion. This journal, which re-echoes the sentiments of its namesake across the seas, has had two long and labored editorials on the disturbances in the Emerald Isle which insult the' intelligence of any rational peruser of the daily press. The awful happenings of Bloody Sunday are dwelt upon  ith a minuteness of detail to influence the mind of Americans hostilely towards the representa- tives of the Irish Republic. Not one word is said of the heinous criminality which turned machine guns on an innocent crowd, to show that murder is courtenanced by a government which pretends to hold up its hands in holy horror against law- lessness. :It may be known o'the reader ,that a publica- tion in New Yoik has f0"rmel': .commi, orig- inally one hundred, but since increased, to find the:true conditions of the situat%n. Irish Look- ing through the list it will be found Catholic prelates are included, while all other denominations are numbered score. Most of us thought that it was jmT from the nature of names corn committee. On the special investigating tee David Walsh of Massachusetts is Catholic, Irish descendant. The however, discovers that it is gathering foes to render a verdict in favor of it not about the hour for the big declare who owns them and why are so futile and unimpressive? g, QUESTION How do you explain that we give priest to have him say Mass? We know that the Mass cannot be sold. Even though it could be bought impossible to place a price, since the finite in value. The Catholic makes to the priest when he asks him to say i his intention. This offering or i tribution on the part of the faithful !support of their priests. A priest muSSy: !must be suported by those for priest, to whom he is devoting all his have the authority of Saint Paul: dained that they who preach the live by the Gospel." It is suitable ful take occasion when asking a at the hands of their priest to make for their support. In order that abuse, the Church has fixed the person is supposed to give to the asks him to offer a Mass for his a priest accepts the offering or bound in justice to say the Mass.' Why is it that there is so little Third Person o/ the Blessed TrinitY! It is unfortunately true that therell dev6tion to the Holy Ghost that The Holy Ghost occupies in the Church a position equal with thg of the Blessed Trinity and all her offered up in His Name as well as in' the Father and of the Son. Every the Sign of the Cross we call Ghost, together with the Father and ! should have a special devotion to son of the Adorable Trinity. In salvation it is His distinctive work souls of the faithful, souls that the Father and redeemed by the How can one figure whether he his portion to the support o the Each one is supposed to port of the Church according to your conscience troubles-you, to your confessor, telling him you receive each year and how give to God. He will then be in: advise you. Will children dying without punishment ? .. Infants who die without is called the pain of loss, that is, admitted to the Beatific Vision of the loss of the Beatific Vision is terrible punishments in hell for sinner, it will not affect the the same way. Infants dying will have the natural happiness cording to their knowledge. Not the supernatural order, they natural knowledge of God or a sire for Him. Was it ever a practice in the to baptize by immersion? In the early days the three infusion and aspersion were three forms is valid. In mersion was generally employed, held that infusion or aspersion present Ritual prescribes that poured on the head of the This is a.matter of discipline Church has full control. Does a person have to have marry? Is a person's out by God? Some calls to a particular state 1 providentially by God. For left to our own. choice. that God detenins for life and thata person's chiefly on this shelve: erally held. "If this @ere infinitely good, would every man in a way which derstood..In the Case of Divine decree, logically lions, which assigns to While God knows what each state of life he will folloW, married will select, He leaves of the individual. in We Unless . of ci far