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The Papacy:

Its Historic Origin and Primitive Relations with the Eastern Churches

by Abbé Guettée

Source: http://reocities.com/heartland/5654/orthodox/essays.html

the Papacy which caused the division has perpetuated and strengthened it by innovations, and made it a schism.

From the facts which we have just discussed, it appears that the Papacy in the ninth century sought dominion over the Church, and the position of a sovereign pontificate, the centre of unity and the guardian of orthodoxy. Its defenders are very far from contesting this; but they claim that these pretensions were not new, and to prove this they appeal to the dogmatic testimony of the Fathers, to the facts of ecclesiastical history of the first centuries of the Church, and even to the word of God.

We announced it as our special purpose to show their assertions to be false in regard to the first eight centuries of the Church, and this we have done.

We grant that after the ninth century the Popes assumed to exercise the sovereign pontificate. We have pointed out the first occasions on which Rome came before the Eastern Church with her new pretensions, and we have ascertained that the Oriental Church refused to recognize them.

It is thus beyond all doubt that it was the Papacy which provoked the division, by seeking to impose a sovereignty upon the whole Church which had been unknown during the first eight centuries of the Church.

Union being reëstablished, at least in appearance, between the Papacy and Photius, the Eastern Church was none the less separated from Rome; for there was now a radical divergency between them. Peace would not have existed even outwardly between them if the letters of Pope John had been read to the last council as they were written. In the assembly of 869 the partisans of Ignatius and Ignatius himself declared against the Papal sovereignty almost as energetically as Photius and his friends. On her side, Rome no longer did any thing without asserting her pretended sovereignty, and without setting herself up as the necessary centre of unity.

The controversies between the Papacy and Photius, like their reconciliation, would have remained as unimportant as a thousand others of the same kind in the history of the Church, if a radical division had not been worked out from that time in consequence of the institution of the Papacy. In following out these relations of the East with Rome, we shall meet with many attempts to reconcile the two churches at different periods. But Rome insisting upon a recognition of her sovereignty as a condition precedent, and the Eastern Church always appealing to the doctrine of the first eight centuries, unity could never be reëstablished. It would now only be possible on condition that the Papacy should abandon its unlawful pretensions, or the Eastern Church the primitive doctrine. Now, the Eastern Church well knows that the renunciation of that doctrine would not only be criminal in itself, but would result in subjection to an autocracy condemned by the Gospel and by Catholic doctrine; hence she cannot yield without incurring guilt and without committing suicide. And the Papacy, on its side, knows that it annihilates itself by returning to the Catholic unity with the simple character of the ancient Roman episcopate. It will not, therefore, yield any of the prerogatives which it has grown to consider as emanating from a divine source. For this cause it not only provoked the division in the Church, but has perpetuated and strengthened it by the pertinacity with which it has maintained what was the direct cause of it.

To this first cause we must add the successive changes which it has introduced in orthodox doctrine and the œcumenical rules of discipline. The history of its innovations would be long. From the institution of the autocracy to the new dogma of the Immaculate Conception, how many changes! how many important modifications! We may write this sad history in a special work. At this time it will suffice to consider the most serious innovation which it has permitted itself, namely, the addition which it has made to the Creed; for that addition, together with the Papal autocracy, was the direct cause of the division which still exists between the Eastern and Western churches.

It has been sought to trace the discussion respecting the procession of the Holy Spirit to remote antiquity. We will not follow the learned upon this ground, but will simply show that it was in the eighth century that it first assumed any importance. It seems certain that the addition to the Creed was made by a council of Toledo in 633, and was confirmed by another held in the same city in 653. N. Alexander, Hist. Eccl. Dissert. xxvii. In Sæcul. iv. maintains that it was admitted in the Council of Toledo In 589, but it has been proved that the acts of the council were altered in this particular.

Two Spanish Bishops, Felix d'Urgel and Elipand of Toledo, taught that Christ was the adopted Son of God, and not his Word, coëssential with the Father. Their errour called forth unanimous complaints in the West, particularly in France, whose kings then possessed the northern part of Spain. The defenders of orthodoxy thought they had found an excellent weapon against adoptivism when they decided that the Son is so thoroughly one in substance with the Father, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from him as well as from the Father.

This formula was looked upon as the bulwark of orthodoxy, and was introduced into the Creed, to which was added, in consequence, the word Filioque (and from the Son) after the words proceeding from the Father.

That addition, made by a local church which had no pretensions to infallibility, was for this very cause irregular. It was further wrong in giving a conception of the Trinity contrary to the teaching of the Scriptures, according to which there is in God but one principal, which is the Father, from which proceed, from all eternity, the Word by generation, and the Spirit by procession. As the quality of a principle forms the distinctive character of the Father's personality, it evidently cannot be attributed to the Word without ascribing to Him that which is the distinctive attribute of another Divine Person. Thus the French and Spanish bishops, wishing to defend in the Trinity the unity of essence or of substance, attacked the personal distinction and confounded the attributes which are the very basis of that distinction.

Another serious errour on their part was in giving a decision without first ascertaining that the words which they employed were authorized by Catholic tradition. Outside of the perpetual and established doctrine, no bishop can teach any thing without danger of falling into the most serious errours.

The dogmatic truths of Christianity relating to the very essence of God—that is, of the Infinite—are necessarily mysterious; hence no one should presume to teach them of his own authority. Even the Church herself only preserves them as she has received them. Revelation is a deposit confided by God to His Church, and not a philosophical synthesis which may be modified. Without doubt these Spanish and French bishops had no other end in view but in the clearest manner to expound the dogma of the Trinity; but their exposition, not having the traditional character, was an errour.

The design of this work does not permit us to discuss thoroughly the question of the procession of the Holy Spirit. We recommend to those who need to be enlightened upon this important question the treatise published by Monseigneur Macarius, Archbishop of Krakow, In his Théologie Dogmatique Orthodoxe. This learned theologian has discussed the question, and summed up the labours of several theologians of the Eastern Church upon the subject, in such a manner us to leave no doubt. The treatise of Monseigneur Macarius is one of the most learned theological works that we have read. [Théologie Dogmatique Orthodoxe, French edition, vol. i. Paris: Cherbuliez, 10 Rue de la Monnale.]

That addition was first adopted in Spain, in the seventh century, in a committee at Toledo, and was adopted by several Western churches. In 767, Constantine Copronymus having sent some ambassadors to Pepin, King of the Franks, this prince received them in an assembly known as the Council of Gentilly. As the Greeks were accused of errour respecting the worship of images, so the ambassadors accused the Franks of errour concerning the Trinity, and in having added the word Filioque to the creed. The details of the discussion upon this subject are not extant, but it is certain that the addition was very little spread through France before the close of the eighth century, when Elipand and Felix d'Urgel taught their errour. The Council of Frioul, in 791, saw fit to oppose them by approving the doctrine of the procession from the Father and the Son, but without admitting the addition of the Filioque, because the Fathers who composed the creed were right in using only the evangelical expression, proceeding from the Father. Father Labbe, Collection of Councils, vol. vii.

Felix of Urgel, after having been condemned in several councils, was banished to Lyons, by Charlemagne, in 799. He doubtless propagated his errours in that city, and the question of the procession of the Holy Ghost was discussed there. The learned Alcuin wrote to the brethren at Lyons, urging them both to avoid the errours of the Spanish Bishop and also any interpolation of the creed. "Beloved brethren," he says, "look well to the sects of the Spanish errour; follow in the faith the steps of the holy Fathers, and remain attached to the holy Church Universal in a most holy unity. It has been written, 'Do not overstep the limits laid down by the Fathers; insert nothing new in the creed of the Catholic faith, and in religious functions be not pleased with traditions unknown to ancient times.'" Alcuin Epist. 69.

This letter was written in 804. It thus appears that at the beginning of the ninth century the addition was already condemned in France by the most learned and pious men. Alcuin also censured, as we see, the usage that was beginning to prevail of chaunting the creed in the service instead of reciting it.

The interpolation in the creed had, nevertheless, some advocates, who, five years later, proposed, in a council at Aix-la-Chapelle, to solemnly authorize the Filioque. They met with opposition, and it was decided to refer the question to Rome. Leo III. was then Pope. He compromised the matter. Without positively rejecting the doctrine of the procession from the Father and from the Son, he censured the addition made to the creed. Sirmond's Concil. Angiq. Gall., vol. ii. He even saw fit to transmit to posterity his protest against any innovation, by having the creed engraved upon two tablets of silver that were hung in St. Peter's Church, and under which was written the following inscription: "I, Leo, have put up these tablets for the love and preservation of the orthodox faith." The deputies from the Council of Aix-la-Chapelle had needed all the resources of their logic and erudition to persuade Leo III. that this doctrine of the procession of the Holy Ghost might be Catholic. Their erudition was inaccurate, and consequently the opinions they rested upon it were not true. They confounded in God the substance with the proper character of the divine personality, the essential procession of the Spirit with His mission in the world. This confusion is at the bottom of all the arguments of the Western theologians to this day. In support of their errour, they rely upon certain texts in which the Fathers speak only of the divine substance common to the three persons, and make no mention of the essential character of the personality in each of them. This character in the Father is that of being the sole principle of the Son by generation, and of the Spirit by procession. Such is the doctrine of the Church, including the Roman Church herself. Such admits that the Father is the sole principle in the Trinity, and that such is the character of His personality, without perceiving that she contradicts herself in making of the Son another principle in the Trinity by her addition of Filioque, since she makes the personal action of the Son the same as that of the Father in the procession of the Holy Ghost. Leo III., although he gave a hearing to their arguments, did not show himself any more favourable to the addition, nor even to the chaunting of the creed in the services of the Church.

Nevertheless, the Creed continued to be chaunted with the addition in Spain and in all the countries subject to Charlemagne. Rome only adopted that practice at the commencement of the eleventh century, (about 1015,) at the request of the Emperor Henry, but she seemed to agree with the other Western churches as to the substance of the doctrine. It was thus that Photius could justly reproach the Roman Church as well as other Western churches with admitting an innovation in the faith. After having been deposed by Nicholas, and after himself condemning that Pope, he sent to the Eastern Patriarchs a circular letter, in which he thus expresses himself upon the question of the Filioque: [The editor always permits the Abbé to speak for himself and for the Greeks, but it must not be inferred that he admits the justice of all that is here quoted from Photius, nor even of all which the Greeks still charge on those who retain the Filioque. The truth is, the Filioque is of no authority at all in the Creed, considered as the Creed. This is confessed by Anglicans; but it is retained in the Liturgy as true in itself, and true in a sense not at all conflicting with the Greek Orthodoxy.]

"Besides the gross errours we have mentioned, they have striven, by false interpretations and words which they have added, to do violence to the holy and sacred Creed, which has been confirmed by all the œcumenical councils, and possesses irresistible force. O diabolical inventions! Using new language, they affirm that the Holy Spirit does not proceed from the Father only, but from the Son also! Who ever heard such language, even from the mouth of the impious of past ages! Where is the Christian who could admit two causes in the Trinity, that is to say, the Father—cause of the Son and Holy Spirit; and the Son—cause of the same Spirit?

"This is to divide the first principle into a double divinity—it is to lower Christian theology to the level of Grecian mythology, and to wrong the Trinity incomprehensible and one in principle, (ὑðåñïõóßïõ êáὶ ìïíáñ÷éôῆò ÔñéÜäïò.) But how should the Holy Spirit proceed from the Son? If the procession He holds from the Father is perfect, (and it is thus, since He is very God of very God,) what is this procession from the Son, and what is its object? Certainly it is a vain and futile thing. Moreover, if the Spirit proceed from the Son as well as the Father, why is not the Son begotten by the Spirit as well as by the Father? Let them say this in order that there be no piety mixed with their impiety, that their opinions may agree with their language, and they may shrink from no undertaking. Let us consider further, that if the property of the Holy Spirit be known in that He proceeds from the Father, the property of the Son likewise consists in His being begotten by the Father. But as they in their madness assert, the Spirit proceeds also from the Son; hence the Spirit is distinguished from the Father by more numerous properties than the Son, since the Spirit proceeding from both, is something common to the Father and to the Son. The procession of the Spirit from the Father and the Son is the property of the Spirit. If the Spirit is further removed from the Father than the Son, the Son must be nearer to the substance of the Father than the Spirit. Such was the origin of the audacious blasphemy pronounced against the Holy Spirit by Macedonius, who followed without knowing it the system and errour of those who teach it in these days.

"Moreover, if all be common between the Father and the Son, assuredly that which concerns the Holy Spirit is common also, namely, that He must be God, King, Creator, Almighty, Simple, without exterior form, Incorporeal, Invisible, and absolute All. Now if the procession of the Spirit be common to the Father and to the Son, then the Spirit must also proceed from Himself, He is His own principle—at one and the same time cause and effect. Even the Greeks have not gone to such length in their fables.

"One more reflection: if it were the property of the Spirit alone to have relation to different principles, He would be the only one to have a plural principle and not a single one.

"Let me add that if, in the things where there is community between the Father and Son, the Spirit must be excluded, and if the Father be one with the Son in substance only and not in properties, then necessarily the Holy Spirit can have nothing in common except what concerns the substance.

"You see how little the advocates of this errour are entitled to the name of Christians, and that they only take it to deceive others. The Spirit proceeding from the Son! Where hast thou learned this fact that thou assertest? In what Gospel hast thou found this word? To what council belongs such blasphemy?"

Photius appeals to Scripture and Catholic tradition against the Western system. He adds that the consequence of this system is that there are in God four persons or hypostases; for the Spirit having a double principle, is a Being double as to personality. He further unfolds many considerations which prove in him a profoundly philosophical mind, and to which the Western theologians have answered nothing to the purpose. The reader will soon be of our opinion if he will read without prejudice and with an unbiased mind the treatise of Monseigneur Macarius, which we have already mentioned, and the learned work of Zœrnicave, who devoted almost his entire life to the study of the question before us in all the records of tradition. The works of such as Perrone and Jager, not to mention the rest, are very meagre as compared with those we speak of. This last-named author claims to rest his arguments upon ontological considerations to prove that the Father is the sole principle in the Trinity, although the Son is so also with him. A very original idea indeed to resort to the science of the human being in order to explain the Infinite Being! And besides, the reflections of the Abbé Jager, and those authors upon whom he relies, have this slight defect, that they are unintelligible not only to the reader, but most probably to the writers. Ambiguous phrases never make a good argument for an innovation. All the arguments in favour of pure Catholic tradition, prove conclusively that particular churches never, even with the best intentions, can meddle with impunity with the sacred deposit of Revelation. Among the letters of Photius (Lib. II. ep. 24) there is one to the metropolitan of Aquilela. He replies to the texts of the Latins by saying that if ten or twenty can be found in favour of the innovation, there can be found six hundred against it; whence it follows that tradition will always remain clear on this point. He also works out the same arguments as in his encyclical letter.

Photius brought several more accusations against the Roman Church. He knew perfectly that each particular church was entitled to its own regulations, and he had laid down this soundest of principles in opposition to Nicholas himself, who sought to impose the discipline of the Western Church upon the Eastern. But in discipline we should distinguish between Apostolic rules, which have a character of universality, and private regulations. Now, he claimed that the Roman Church violated Apostolic rules of discipline upon three principal points. First, in imposing the fast and abstinence of Saturday. Secondly, in making ecclesiastical celibacy a general law. Thirdly, in regarding as void confirmation given by priests after baptism. The Roman Bishop who had been sent to the Bulgarians had transgressed the principles of orthodoxy so far as to repeat the sacrament of confirmation to those who had received it from Greek priests. This was such a flagrant violation that even the Romanists do not defend it.

Photius, in his encyclical letter, appeals to all the Apostolic sees of the East against the innovations of the Italians. He concludes by entreating them to adhere publicly to the second Nicene Council, to proclaim it the seventh œcumenical, and to declare against the innovations of the barbarous nations of the West who undertake to adulterate the true doctrine.

Photius had some reason to consider the Western people as little civilized. Since the invasion by the tribes which had transformed the West, the ecclesiastical schools and libraries had been destroyed, and the clergy were profoundly ignorant.

Charlemagne had given a strong impulse to letters; but in spite of his efforts and those of the distinguished men who aided him, the ecclesiastical sciences were in their infancy, and a certain pedantry too often took their place. Now, the character of a pedant is to be quite certain about every thing. The innovators therefore thought they had done a work of high religious philosophy in adding to the Creed those words of which Photius complained. They thought they had defined the nature of the Trinity better than the Nicene Council, in attributing to the Son the personal quality of the Father in order to prove that he had the same substance. They defended this doctrine by some misinterpreted texts from the Fathers, of whom they possessed very few works, and thus they set up a false opinion as a dogma, without regard to the testimony of the Apostolic churches of the East. They consulted the Popes; but the Popes, who were themselves very ignorant, swayed on the one hand by the reasoning of men whom they thought learned, and, on the other hand, desiring to avail themselves of this opportunity to do an act of sovereign authority, yielded and sanctioned the innovation, even while they resisted its introduction into the Creed.

Thus was Rome influenced by errour in the interest of her assumed sovereignty. And hence Nicholas felt that the Papacy itself was attacked by the encyclical letter of Photius. At a loss how to reply, he applied to those scholars who, in the Church of France, were the avowed champions of the innovation. Photius had taken no notice of the Latin innovations so long as they remained in the West, and perhaps only knew of them vaguely. But when the Roman priests spread them through Bulgaria, in defiant opposition to the doctrine of the Eastern Church, and among a people brought into the faith by the Church of Constantinople, he could be silent no longer, and he drew up against the Roman Church such a bill of attainder as shall endure for ever as a protest against the abuses and errours of which she has been guilty.

Nicholas so far humbled himself that he applied to Hincmar, a famous Archbishop of Rheims, who had resisted his autocratic pretensions. He felt he had need of this great theologian of the West to resist Photius. He had received the accusations of that Patriarch through the Prince of Bulgaria. "In reading that paper," he says, Nichol. Epist. in Labbe's Collection, vol. viii. "we have concluded that the writers dipped their pen in the lake of blasphemy, and that instead of ink they used the mire of errour. They condemn not only our Church, but the whole Latin Church, because we fast on Saturday and teach that the Holy Ghost proceeds from the Father and the Son; for they maintain that He proceeds from the Father only." Nicholas sums up some further complaints of the Greeks. Some of them are not to be found in the circular of Photius to the Easterns. "What is still more senseless," he adds, "before receiving our legates, they would oblige them to make a profession of faith, in which these articles and those who have maintained them are anathematized, and to present canonical letters to him whom they call their œcumenical Patriarch." We perceive by this that the Easterns, in order to preserve the ancient faith and discipline against Roman innovations, resorted to all the means in their power.

It is impossible to share the opinion of Nicholas, who chose to regard as foolish measures of caution both perfectly legitimate and canonical, which were only wrong inasmuch as they were an obstacle to his ambitious projects.

Having exhibited his grievances against the Easterns, Nicholas commanded all the Metropolitans to assemble Provincial Councils, reply to the accusations of Photius, and send the result of their deliberations to Hincmar of Rheims, who would transmit them to him. The Bishops of France assembled. Several of them entered the lists against the Easterns, particularly Æneas of Paris. Ratramn, a monk of Corbey, composed the most learned work. No one could have done better in the defence of a bad cause. At a time when the records of tradition were very rare in the West, it was difficult to compile from them any complete instruction. The Frankic divines therefore quoted in their favour only, a few texts, of which many were from apocryphal works. Photius seems to allude to these labours when he says in his letter to the Metropolitan of Aquileia, that if one could quote ten or twenty Fathers in favour of the opinions of the Latins, one might quote six hundred in support of the belief of the Church. The historical facts adduced by Ratramn in proof of the Roman primacy are completely distorted for want of proper information; and, besides, in defending that primacy, he had no intention whatever to maintain a sovereignty of divine right. His reasoning and his quotations, like those of Æneas, respecting the celibacy of the priesthood, did not reach that question; for the Easterns did not disapprove of celibacy in itself considered, but only as a general law imposed upon the clergy. In this light celibacy certainly changed the general discipline of the primitive Church, and the Easterns were right in attacking it on this ground.

Under John VIII. the question of the Procession of the Holy Ghost changed its character at Rome like that of the elevation of Photius to the Patriarchal chair. The addition of the Filioque made to the Nicene Creed in the West was solemnly condemned in the sixth session of the council of 879. The legates of the Pope, those of the Eastern Patriarchal sees, and all the bishops concurred in that condemnation.

The Pope; upon receiving the transactions, wrote to Photius. Joann. viii. epist.

"We know the unfavourable accounts that you have heard concerning us and our Church; I therefore wish to explain myself to you even before you write to me on the subject. You are not ignorant that your envoy, in discussing the Creed with us, found that we preserved it as we originally received it, without adding to or taking anything from it; for we know what severe punishment he would deserve who should dare to tamper with it. To set you at ease, therefore, upon this subject, which has been a cause of scandal to the Church, we again declare to you that not only do we thus recite it, but even condemn those who, in their folly, have had the audacity to act otherwise from the beginning, as violators of the divine word, and falsifiers of the doctrine of Christ, of the Apostles, and of the Fathers, who have transmitted the Creed to us through the councils; we declare that their portion is that of Judas, because they have acted like him, since, if it be not the body of Christ itself which they put to death, it is, at all events, the faithful of God who are his members, whom they tear by schism, giving them up, as well as themselves, to eternal death, as also did that base Apostle. Nevertheless, I think that your Holiness, so full of wisdom, is aware of the difficulty of making our bishops share this opinion, and of changing at once so important a practice which has taken root for so many years. We therefore believe it is best not to force any one to abandon that addition to the Creed, but we must act with moderation and prudence, little by little, exhorting them to renounce that blasphemy. Thus, then, those who accuse us of sharing this opinion do not speak the truth. But those who say that there are persons left among us who dare to recite the Creed in this manner, are not very far from the truth. Your Holiness should not be too much scandalized on our account, nor withdraw from the healthy part of the body of our Church, but zealously contribute by your gentleness and prudence to the conversion of such as have departed from the truth, so that with us, you may deserve the promised reward. Hail in the Lord, worthily venerated and catholic brother!"

John VIII. spoke particularly of the addition; but the expressions he used prove that he condemned the doctrine, as well, which that addition represented. The word would have been no blasphemy if it had expressed a truth. The Papacy was changeful, then, as to the doctrine; it hesitated under Leo III.; it approved the new dogma under Nicholas I.; it rejected it as blasphemous under John VIII. Several Western writers have endeavoured to disprove the authenticity of this letter of John VIII. Their arguments cannot counterbalance this fact, that this letter was published from Western manuscripts. Had the Easterns invented it, as the Romanists maintain without any proof, it would have come from the East to the West, while it really went from the West to the East. This certain fact speaks louder than all their dissertations, and answers every objection.

After having ascertained this principal Roman innovation, let us now continue our account of the Roman enterprises against the East.

John VIII. being dead, Marin Known also as Martin II. was elected Bishop of Rome. He had been one of the legates of Nicholas in Bulgaria and at the council of 869. It could not, therefore, be hoped that he would follow the course of his immediate predecessor. It is thought that it was he who carried to Constantinople the letters of John approving the council of 879, except in those things wherein the legates had exceeded their powers. This exception was a mere formality; for he had received the acts; knew perfectly what had happened; very modestly urged Photius not to take it amiss, that he had demanded a submission from him; and knew the Patriarch had not been willing to make one, for this reason, that only the guilty should beg pardon. Joann. viii. Epist. Marin could not concur with the council of 879, without condemning that of 869, of which he had been one of the presidents. He, therefore, refused, when he was at Constantinople, to condemn himself by condemning that council, and the Emperor Basil detained him a prisoner one month for this cause.

Raised to the Roman episcopate, (882,) Marin had a grudge to satisfy. He hastened to condemn Photius. But his pontificate was short, and in 884 he was succeeded by Adrian III., who also condemned the Patriarch of Constantinople. The Emperor Basil wrote very energetic letters to this Pope, but they only arrived at Rome after his death, and were delivered to his successor, Stephen V., (885,) who had been the intimate friend and confidant of Marin, against whom the Emperor's letters were particularly directed. Stephen undertook his defence. We will quote some passages of his letter, which are well worthy of notice. Steph. V. Epist. Labbe's Collection, vol. ix. "As God has given you the sovereignty of temporal things, in like manner we have received from him, through St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles, the sovereignty of spiritual things. To us is committed the care of the flock; this care is as much more excellent as the heavens are above the earth. Hear what the Lord said to Peter, Thou art Peter, etc. I therefore entreat your Piety to honour the name and dignity of the Prince of the Apostles by conforming to his decrees; for the episcopate in all the churches on earth owes its origin to St. Peter, by whom we instruct all the faithful, teaching them wholesome and incorruptible doctrine."

Here is a clear enunciation of Papal sovereignty and Papal infallibility of divine right. Stephen pretends that the legates of Pope Sylvester, at the first Council of Nicea, established this principle, " That the first bishop could not be judged by any one. Such an assertion was worthy of the erudition of that age. As a consequence of his doctrine of the episcopal character, Stephen claims that Photius never was any thing but a layman, since he did not derive his episcopate from Rome.

"Did not the Roman Church," he adds, "write to you to hold a council at Constantinople? I ask you, to whom could it write? To Photius, a layman? If you had a Patriarch, our Church would often visit him by letters. But, alas! the glorious city of Constantinople is without a pastor, and if the affection that we bear toward you did not lead us to bear patiently the insult to our Church, we should be obliged to pronounce against the prevaricator, Photius, who has so basely spoken against us, more severe penalties than our predecessors. We do not presume, in thus speaking, to fail in the respect due to you; we speak in our own defence and that of Pope Marin, who held the same sentiments as Pope Nicholas."

Thus Nicholas had bequeathed to Marin the sentiments which the latter had bequeathed to Stephen. As for the acts of John VIII., they were completely ignored. Photius did not change as easily as the Popes, and he followed the rules of ancient law with moderation and intelligence.

It appears from the letter of Stephen V. that the Papacy was no longer so very defiant toward the emperors of the East. The Roman empire of the West had crumbled with Charlemagne. From its fragments had sprung a thousand little independent states, for ever quarreling among themselves. The feudal system was organizing: The Papacy no longer saw a powerful prince at hand to protect it. Rome itself was a prey to the quarrels of several hostile parties. Meanwhile the Mussulmans continued their conquests. Checked in the East by the Emperor Basil, they were pouring in upon the West, and Rome itself was threatened. John VIII. knew that Rome could obtain better aid from the Emperor of the East than from the divided princes of the West. His successors, with less cleverness, implored the same assistance without sacrificing any of their contemptible personal grudges. It was only fair that they should not succeed.

Had the Papacy been happily inspired, it might have availed itself of its influence in the West to arouse the Princes against the Mussulmans, and unite them with the Emperor of the East in that great struggle. But Rome preferred to indulge her antipathies against a Church which set up the doctrine and laws of the primitive Church in opposition to her usurpations. She aroused the West as much against the Eastern Christians as against the Mussulmans, and thus introduced a radical fault in those great movements of nations known as the Crusades. The conception of these expeditions was grand, and for the West it led to some useful results. We do not deny it; but historical impartiality demands that it should be confessed, at the same time, that the Papacy, which set these expeditions on foot, failed to give them the character of grandeur they would have had, if instead of circumscribing them to the West it had united in a fraternal embrace the Eastern Christians with the Crusaders. Rome sacrificed all to her hatred of the Eastern Church.

The Emperor Basil died shortly after receiving the letter of Pope Stephen V. Leo, the Philosopher, son of Basil, succeeded him upon the throne of the East. He drove Photius from the see of Constantinople, to put there his own brother Stephen. As a pretext for this usurpation, he sent two of his officers to the Church of Saint Sophia, who ascended the pulpit and publicly read off the crimes which it pleased the Emperor to impute to Photius; and the Patriarch was next accused of having been concerned in a plot, the object of which was to place one of his relatives on the throne. Not a single proof of this charge could be adduced. Then Leo had Bishop Stylien brought to court, who was a personal enemy of Photius, and the two composed an infamous letter for the Pope (a.d. 886) in which they collected all the accusations of the enemies of Photius—accusations which had been declared to be calumnies by John VIII., and by a council of four hundred bishops. This letter of Stylien is one of the Principal documents of which the Western writers have made use in their accounts of what they call the schism of the East. The Abbé Jager innocently says, "The letter of Stylien is a historic monument upon which we have frequently drawn." Hist. of Phot. book ix. p. 387, edit. 1854.

Its value may be estimated at a glance. Stylien's letter only arrived at Rome after Stephen's death, (891.) Formosus, his successor, replied that Photius had never been any thing more than a layman; that the bishops whom he had ordained were likewise nothing but laymen; that he was therefore condemned without need of any trial; that the bishops, his adherents, should be treated with mercy but only as laymen. See Labbe's Collection of Councils, vols. viii. and ix. The Pope who wrote this answer was exhumed by Pope Stephen VI. His putrescent corpse was cited, judged, and condemned. John IX. reversed this judgment of Stephen VI. These facts and the atrocious immoralities of the Popes of that period are covered by Romanists with a veil of complaisance. They have anathemas only for a great Patriarch who, by his virtues and ecclesiastical learning, deserves to rank with the most illustrious bishops of the Church. There is no doubt that Photius died the same year that Formosus wrote his famous letter to Stylien against him, that is, in 891. M. Jager, who thinks himself a historian of some weight, says that Photius died In 891, adding that this was several years after the letter of Formosus. That letter, however, as well as the pontificate of Formosus only dates from the year 891, Stephen V., his predecessor, having died only the same year.

The Eastern Church holds Ignatius and Photius in equal veneration. She has declared anathemas against all that has been written against either of them. She is perfectly wise in this decision. It was her will that these two Patriarchs should be judged by themselves and by their own writings, without reference to other writings dictated by passion. Now, Ignatius wrote nothing against Photius; and the latter, in his numerous writings, never attacked Ignatius. After the restoration of Ignatius, and the reconciliation of Photius with the Emperor Basil, they saw each other, forgave each other, and it may be said that Ignatius died in the arms of Photius according to what this latter Patriarch declared before four hundred bishops in the council of 879.

It is therefore dishonest to appeal to the testimony of a few enemies of Photius who were Greeks, on the ground that they belonged to the Eastern Church. That Church has disowned them, and has had the wisdom to warn her faithful that calumnies inspired by blind hatred, whether they come from Greeks or Latins, are alike to, be condemned. The Abbé Jager sees an astonishing contradiction in the conduct of the Greek Church. (Hist. of Phot. book ix, p. 392). This is the fault of his eyes, which by the effect of a singular mirage have made him see things quite different from what they are in reality. A historian who "starts with the principle of only listening to the enemies of the person whose history he is about to write, must necessarily find contradictions in those who have followed an opposite course. The question is, whether in judging a man it is expedient to refer exclusively to his enemies. There is in the work of the Abbé Jager a contradiction much more astonishing than that which he imputes to the Greek Church. It is the Satanic character he ascribes to Photius, side by side with that which shows forth from the letters he has quoted of this great man. Mr. Jager did not perceive that Photius, by his letters, belies all these infamous accusations that he renewed against him.

Stylien, Bishop of Neo-Cæsarea, and an enemy to Photius, remained in correspondence with the Popes after the death of that Patriarch. John IX. wrote to him in the year 900, See Collection of Councils, by Father Labbe, vol. ix. to this effect, "It is our will that the decrees of our predecessors (concerning the Patriarchs of Constantinople) should remain inviolate;" but this Pope did not attempt to reconcile those of John VIII. with those of Nicholas, both of whom were equally his predecessors. Five years after, the court of Rome had some relations with the East, to sanction an act of injustice. The Emperor Leo VI. having married for the fourth time, had thereby violated the discipline of the Eastern Church, sanctioned even by civil laws. The Patriarch Nicholas besought him to have the case examined by the five Patriarchal churches. Leo feigned to consent, and wrote to Sergius III., Pope of Rome, to Michael, Pope of Alexandria, The Patriarch of Alexandria took the title of Pope as well as the Bishop of Rome, and still preserves it. to Simeon, Patriarch of Antioch, and Elias, Patriarch of Jerusalem. The Patriarchs sent legates. The Emperor bribed them. The faithful bishops were exiled. Nicholas was deposed, and Euthymius put in his place; and, finally, a dispensation was granted to the Emperor for his fourth marriage. Thus did Rome sustain the unjust deposition of a Patriarch who was guilty of nothing more than of maintaining the rules of church discipline. For in all things she acted less in accordance with justice than with her own interest. If she had taken the part of Ignatius, it was because she feared the opposition of Photius to her sovereignty. If she so readily sacrificed Nicholas, it was in order to do an act of authority in the East. Power was her sole object. Pope Sergius could not indeed be fastidious upon the subject of the illicit marriage of Leo, for he was himself the lover of the infamous Marozia, and had by this adulterous connection a son, who was a Pope like himself. Rome was then governed by three prostitutes, Theodora and her two daughters Marozia and Theodora, who disposed of the Popedom in favour of their lovers and adulterine children. Such a Pope could not understand the delicacy of conscience of the Patriarch Nicholas. After the death of the Emperor Leo, Euthymius was driven away and Nicholas reïnstated. This Patriarch was even placed at the head of the regency during the minority of the young Emperor Constantine, surnamed Porphyrogenitus. Reinstalled in his see, he wrote (a.d. 912) to Pope Anastasius III., the successor of Sergius, to complain of the conduct of his legates at Constantinople. "They seem," Nicol. Epist. in the Collection of the Councils, vol. ix. Appendix. he wrote, "to have come from Rome for no other purpose than to declare war against us, but since they claimed the primacy in the Church, they ought carefully to have ascertained the whole affair, and written a report of it, instead of consenting to the condemnation of those who had incurred the displeasure of the Prince only for their detestation of incontinency. It is not, indeed, to be wondered at that two or three men should be taken by surprise; but who could have supposed that Western bishops would confirm that unjust sentence by their votes without knowledge of the cause? I learn that the pretext of dispensation is brought forward, as if by a dispensation debauchery could be authorized and the canons violated. Dispensation, if I am not mistaken, is intended to imitate the mercy of God; it extends its hand to the sinner and lifts him up, but it does not permit him to remain in the sin into which he has fallen."

This perfectly just doctrine was not that of Rome. At one time, under pretence of observing the canons, she would throw an entire kingdom into confusion, as under Nicholas I., in relation to the marriage of Hloter; then again she could give dispensation without difficulty in equally important cases. This was because her study was always to establish the principle of her absolute power over laws as well as men. Her will was her law, and the interest of her sovereignty her only rule.

The Patriarch Nicholas felt the consequences of the palace intrigues; he was banished and again reïnstated. Peace was finally reestablished in 920, by an imperial decree which again recognized the discipline for which Nicholas had suffered persecution. This Patriarch wrote to Pope John X. to renew friendly relations between the churches of Rome and Constantinople. But John X. was more engrossed by his adulterous amours with Theodora, Marozia's sister, than by the affairs of the Church.

For a century there was scarcely any intercourse between the churches of Rome and Constantinople; which did not tend to reünite them in matters of doctrine. Nat. Alex. in Hist. Eccl. Dissert. IV. Sæcul. ix. et. x. In 1024 the Patriarch Eustathius attempted to have himself recognized at Rome as the ecclesiastical chief of the East, in the same way as the Pope was chief of the West. His envoys were on the point of succeeding—thanks to their money, of which the court of Rome was very greedy; but the intrigue transpired, and caused some agitation, principally in Italy. The court of Rome did not dare to go further. This fact proves, at least, that the Bishops of Rome and Constantinople were not at strife. Those of Rome were mostly unworthy of their place; their political business and the struggles which prevailed in most of the Western churches were as much as they could attend to, and they did not trouble themselves with the Eastern churches, where their sovereignty was always opposed. But the contest recommenced in 1053, when Leo IX. was Bishop of Rome.

Having received letters of communion from Peter, the new Patriarch of Antioch, Leo affected, in his answer, to tell him that he held the third rank in the Patriarchate, thus ignoring the Patriarch of Constantinople, notwithstanding the decrees of the œcumenical councils, which had given him the second rank, the third to the Patriarch of Alexandria, and the fourth to the Patriarch of Antioch. At that time Michael Cerularius was Patriarch of Constantinople; he had written a letter to John, Bishop of Trani, against several disciplinary or liturgical practices of the Latin Church. This letter may be found in the Annals of Baronius. See Letters of Leo IX. in the Collection of Cuoncils. Nat. Alexand. Hist. Eccl. Synop. Sæcul. xi. c. iv. Cardinal Humbert having read this letter at the Bishop's house, translated it into Latin and sent it to Pope Leo IX. The Pope wrote to the Patriarch of Constantinople in unmeasured terms. The Patriarch then wrote a second letter against the Latins, completing his accusations. The most serious one was that of adding the Filioque to the Creed. Leo IX. should have calmly answered these accusations; proved that many of them were unfounded; and excused several Latin usages upon the principle that discipline may vary in different countries, provided the regulations of the Apostles and of the œcumenical councils are kept inviolate; confessed, in fine, that many of the accusations made by the Patriarch were just, and undertaken the reform of the Western Church. But Leo IX. only cared for the injury that he thought was done to his pretensions as sovereign head of the Church, and he wrote to Michael Cerularius under the influence of that thought. Leo IX. Ep. in Labbe's Collection of Councils, vol. ix.

After a long exordium upon the unity of the Church, he claims that unity to be in the Roman Church, which has received that high prerogative from God through St. Peter. That Church having received as its foundation Jesus Christ through St. Peter, is the unshaken rock against which the gates of hell shall never prevail. There can, therefore, be no errour in the Roman Church, and it is only through pride that the Eastern Church makes those accusations. He attacks that Church on account of the heresies that have sprung up in her bosom; but he does not observe that no church can be made responsible for heresies she has condemned; whilst the Roman Church was herself accused of having taught errour in lieu of sound doctrine. He ventures to recall the opposition of the ancient Bishops of Rome to the title of œcumenical, but does not remark that the Popes had usurped the thing as well as the title, although not officially introduced in all their acts; he falsely maintains that the first Council of Nicea declared that no one could judge the Bishop of Rome, and that he was the chief of all the churches. He cites an apocryphal grant of Constantine to prove the sovereign power of the Pope in a temporal as well as a spiritual point of view. He thinks also that he has subdued the impudent vanity of those who contested the rights of the Papacy. He resorts to those texts of Scripture which at all times have constituted the meagre arsenal of the Papacy. He maintains that Constantinople owes to the Holy See the second rank that she occupies among the Patriarchal Churches. As for the Roman Church, she has an exceptional rank, and to attack her rights is to attack the Church Universal, of which she is the divine centre. Pride and jealousy alone could suggest such sacrilegious intentions.

Such is the substance of the first letter of Leo IX. to the Patriarch Michael Cerularius.

Politics envenomed these first discussions. The Normans were attacking the empire. The Emperor Constantine Monomachus, too weak to resist all his enemies, resolved to ask the aid of the Germans and Italians, and to this end applied to the Pope, who had great influence over those people. In order to conciliate the Pope he wrote to him that he ardently desired to reëstablish friendly relations, so long interrupted, between the churches of Rome and Constantinople. He persuaded the Patriarch Michael to write in the same strain to Leo IX., who at once sent three legates to Constantinople with a letter for the Emperor and another for the Patriarch, (1054.)

He begins by felicitating the Emperor upon the pious desire he had communicated to him, but very soon comes down to the rights of the Roman see. "The Catholic Church," he says, "mother and immaculate virgin, although destined to fill the whole world with her members, has nevertheless but one head, which must be venerated by all. Whoever dishonours that head claims in vain to be one of her members." That head of the Church is Rome, whose power the great Constantine recognized by his grant. Now, as Bishop of Rome, he is the Vicar of God charged with the care of all the churches. He therefore wishes to restore its splendour to the Roman Episcopate, which for a long time has been governed by mercenaries, he says, rather than pastors. The Emperor of Constantinople can aid him in this work, by restoring the estates which the Roman Church possessed in the East, and by checking the enterprises of the Patriarch Michael, whom he accuses of ambitious projects against the churches of Alexandria and Antioch.

In his letter to Michael Cerularius, Leo IX. first acknowledges the receipt of the letters written to him by that Patriarch in favour of a pacification. "We shall have peace," he tells him, "if you will, in future, abstain from overstepping the boundaries set up by the Fathers." This is just what the Eastern Church said to the Papacy. Leo then finds fault with Michael for his ambition, his luxury, and his wealth. Did such blame fall with a good grace from the mouth of a Pope? He adds, "What a detestable, lamentable, sacrilegious usurpation is yours, when in speech and in writing you call yourself universal Patriarch!" Then he mentions the opposition of St. Gregory to this title; and this brings him to the pretended rights of the Church of Rome. "The Roman Church," he says, "is not, as you allege, a local church; is she not the head and mother? How could she be this if she had neither members nor children? We proclaim this openly because we believe it firmly; the Roman Church is so little a local church, that in all the world, no nation which presumes to disagree with her can any longer be regarded as belonging to the Church. It is thenceforth only a conventicle of heretics—a synagogue of Satan! Therefore let him who would glory in the name of a Christian cease to curse and attack the Roman Church; for it is vain in him to pretend to honour the Father of the family if he dishonours his spouse!"

Is it surprising that the Eastern Church energetically protested against this sacrilegious doctrine?

Cardinal Humbert was chief of the legates of Leo IX., who were bearers of these letters. The Emperor received them with distinction, and Humbert opened the discussion at once, entering upon the defence of the Latin Church, making sundry accusations against the Greek Church, and showing that the Greek Church had her own peculiar discipline and her own peculiar abuses as well, as the Latin Church. His writings were translated into Greek by the Emperor's order.

The Patriarch Michael refused to communicate with the legates. Without doubt he knew that it was a foregone conclusion with the Emperor to sacrifice the Greek Church to the Papacy in order to obtain some aid for his throne. The letter he had received from the Pope had enlightened him sufficiently as to what Rome meant by union. The legates proceeded to the Church of Saint Sophia at the hour when the clergy were preparing for the mass. They loudly complained of the obstinacy of the Patriarch, and placed upon the altar a sentence of excommunication against him. They went out of the church, shaking the dust from their feet and pronouncing anathemas against all those who should not communicate with the Latins. All this was done with the Emperor's consent; which explains why the Patriarch would have no intercourse with the legates. The people, convinced of the Emperor's connivance, revolted. In the moment of danger Constantine made some concessions. The legates protested that their sentence of excommunication had not been read as it was written; that the Patriarch had the most cruel and perfidious designs against them. However that may be, and had Michael even been guilty of such wicked designs, this manner of acting was none the more dignified or canonical. Michael has been further accused of making groundless complaints against the Latin Church. Several of these were, in fact, exaggerated; but it has not been sufficiently observed that the Patriarch, in his letter, only echoed the sentiments of all the Eastern churches. Ever since the Papacy had attempted to impose its autocracy upon them, there had been a strong reäction in all these churches. On the spur of this sentiment every thing had been sought out that could be laid at the door of the Roman Church, which by her bishops held herself out as the infallible guardian of sound doctrine. Michael Cerularius was only the interpreter of these complaints; he would never have had enough influence to impose his grievances, true or pretended, upon the whole Christian East; so that those who call him the consummator of the schism commenced under Photius, have but superficially understood the facts. What made the strength of Photius against the Papacy was, that all the churches of the East were with him, in spite of political intrigues, imperial influence, Papal violence, and the spite of relentless enemies. Therein lay the strength of Michael Cerularius also. This Patriarch possessed neither the learning, the genius, nor the virtues of Photius; but he spoke in the name of the East, and the East recognized its own sense in his protests against the innovations of Rome. The Emperor, jealous of the influence he had acquired, banished him, and was endeavouring to have him deposed by a council, when he heard of his death, (1058.)

After the death of the Patriarch Michael intercourse between Rome and Constantinople became even less frequent than before. We hear of one legate sent in 1071, by Pope Alexander II., but rather for a political object than from motives of religion. He thought that the Eastern Emperors might be of great help in the Crusades.

Gregory VII, who soon after ascended the Papal chair, (in 1073,) raised the Papacy to its greatest height, by skilfully taking advantage of the divisions caused by the feudal system, to extend the influence of the Church, which he summed up in the Bishop of Rome. But he did not use his influence to reconcile the West with the East; and besides the antagonism was too great between the two churches, to allow the diplomatic negotiations of the Popes with the Emperors of the East to have any useful result. The Papacy had spread throughout the West the idea that the Greeks were schismatics and dangerous enemies to the Church, while the Easterns regarded the people of the West in the light of barbarians who were Christians only in name and had tampered with the faith and the holiest institutions of the Church. Hence the distrust of the Crusaders on the part of the Greeks, and the violence of the Crusaders against them. We are not concerned with those expeditions in this work. We will only notice this acknowledged fact, that the Crusades only strengthened the antipathy which had long existed between East and West, and that if any attempt were made to reconcile them, it was ever the emperors, acting from motives of policy and interest, that took the lead. These emperors never ceased to think of their Western possessions. They watched the contests between several of the Popes and the emperors of the West. These contests, as animated as they were protected, were caused by the Papacy, which, in virtue of its spiritual sovereignty, pretended to overrule the temporal powers. Alexis Comnenus endeavoured to turn them to account. He sent (a.d. 1112) an embassy to Rome announcing that he was inclined to proceed thither to receive the imperial crown from the hands of the Pope. This step did not lead to any thing more but it proves that the emperors of that period had a decided tendency to conciliate Rome from motives of mere policy. Manuel Comnenus (a.d. 1155) sought the alliance of the Pope and of Frederic, Emperor of the West, against the Normans, who had wrested Sicily from the empire of Constantinople. Upon that occasion Pope Adrian IV. sent legates to Manuel, with a letter for Basil, Archbishop of Thessalonica, in which he exhorted that bishop to procure the reünion of the churches. Adrian iv. Ep. 7. Basil answered that there was no division between the Greeks and Latins, since they held the same faith and offered the same sacrifice. "As for the causes of scandal, weak in themselves, that have separated us from each other," he adds, "your Holiness can cause them to cease, by your own extended authority and the help of the Emperor of the West."

This reply was as skilful as it was wise. The Papacy had innovated; it enjoyed a very widespread authority in the West. What was there to prevent its use of that authority to reject its own innovations or those it had tolerated? It was in the power of the Church of Rome to bring about a perfect union between the two churches. But the Papacy had no such idea of union; no union could exist in its view except upon the submission of the Eastern Church to its authority. But the Eastern Church, while maintaining the ancient doctrine, was in an attitude of continual protest against this usurped authority, and was not disposed to submit to this unlawful yoke.

The emperors continued their political intrigues while the Church was in this situation. They kept on good terms with the Emperor of the West so long as he was friendly with the Papacy; but as soon as new struggles arose, they profited by them to renew their applications to the Popes respecting the imperial crown. Alexander III. being at war with Frederic, Manuel Comnenus sent him (a.d. 1166) an embassy, to make known to the Pope his good intentions of reüniting the Greek and Latin churches, so that Latins and Greeks should thenceforth make but one people under one chief. He asked, therefore, the crown of the whole Roman empire, promising Italy and other material advantages to the Roman Church. The Pope sent legates to Constantinople. Two years later (a.d. 1169) Manuel sent a new embassy to Alexander, offering to reünite the Greek and Latin churches, if he would grant him the crown he solicited. The Pope refused, under pretext of the troubles that would follow that grant. Notwithstanding this refusal the most friendly relations existed between the Pope and Manuel, at whose request a Cardinal sub-deacon, named John, went to Constantinople to work for the union of the churches. But Manuel's tendencies were not approved of by the Greeks, who detested the Latins, not only for religious reasons, but also from resentment for the violence they had suffered from the Crusaders. And accordingly, after Manuel's death, the Latins were massacred without mercy at Constantinople, (a.d. 1182.) Cardinal John was one of the victims. Andronicus, who had instigated the massacre, was elected Emperor. He died shortly after, and was succeeded by Isaac Angelus, who was dethroned by his brother, Alexis Angelus. Innocent III. was Bishop of Rome, (a.d. 1198.) Since Gregory VII. no other Pope had had so much influence in the West. Alexis Angelus hastened to follow the policy of the Comneni: he sent ambassadors, with a letter to the Pope from him, and another from the Patriarch John Camaterus, in order to prove to him that they desired to procure a union between the churches. Innocent dispatched legates to Constantinople, bearing letters in which he exalted the Roman Church beyond all measure. The Patriarch gave the legates his answer, which began thus:

"To Innocent, very holy Roman Pope, and our beloved brother in the Lord Christ, John, by the Divine Mercy, Archbishop of Constantinople, Patriarch of New Rome, love and peace from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ." Here is the substance of his letter:

"In reading the letter you have sent to our Humility, we have approved of the zeal of your Holiness for our mutual union in the faith. But I will not conceal from you what has greatly embarrassed me in your letter. It amazes me, in fact, that you call the Church of Rome one and universal, since it is well established that the Church is divided into particular churches, governed by pastors, under one sole, supreme pastor, Jesus Christ. And what I do not further understand is, that you call the Church of Rome the mother of the other churches. The mother of the churches is that of Jerusalem, which surpasses them all in antiquity and dignity. I cannot, therefore, plead guilty to the accusation, which your Holiness makes against me, that I divide the single and seamless coat of Christ. When, on one side, we behold our own Church carefully preserving the ancient doctrine of the Procession of the Holy Ghost, and, on the other, your Church fallen into errour on this point, we may well ask you which of them has rent the coat of Christ?

"I am not the less disposed, for all that, to second the kind intentions of the Emperor for good."

The Emperor also answered the Pope, who replied in two letters from which we will give some extracts. He writes to the Patriarch: "The primacy of the Roman see has been established, not by man, but by God, or rather, by the Man-God; this can be proved by numberless evangelic and apostolic evidences, confirmed by canonical constitutions which attest that the most holy Roman Church was consecrated in Saint Peter, the prince of the Apostles, to be the mistress and mother of all the others." Innocent cites many texts from Scripture, interpreting them in his own way. We have already determined their true sense in the first chapter of this work. He wonders that the Patriarch is ignorant of these interpretations then he undertakes to answer the two questions which he had put to him: "You ask me," he says, "how the Roman Church is one and universal. The universal Church is that which is composed of all the churches, according to the force of the Greek word Catholic. In this sense, the Roman Church is not universal, it is only a part of the Universal Church; but the first and the principal part, like the head in a body. The Roman Church is such because the fulness of power resides in her, and that only a part of that fulness overflows to the others. That one Church is therefore universal in this sense, that all the others are under it. According to the true sense of the word, the Roman Church only is universal, because it is the only one that has been raised above the others. . . . . .

"You ask me how the Roman Church is the mother of the churches? She is so not according to time but according to dignity. The Church of Jerusalem may be regarded as the mother of the faith, because that faith came first from her bosom; the Church of Rome is the mother of the faithful, because she has been placed over them all by the privilege of her dignity." Innocent then congratulates the Patriarch upon his desire for unity, and adds that he owes respect and obedience to the Roman Church and to its bishop as to his chief; that he will receive him upon condition that he shall be subject as a member should be to the head, but that if he refuse respect and obedience, he will proceed against him and the Greek Church.

Innocent III. liked to talk like a master. He expresses himself in the same manner in his reply to the Emperor. He declares his willingness to call a council, although the constitution of the Church is not synodal; that he will invite the Patriarch to it; that if he will there submit to the Roman Church, and render it the obedience which he owes to it, peace shall be made with him. He begs the Emperor to see that the Patriarch appears at the council thus disposed; and concludes this letter also with threats.

He did not carry them into execution, however; for he knew that to secure the success of the Crusade which was then organizing, he must keep on good terms with the Greek Emperor. He therefore wrote to the Crusaders who had just left Venice, and were on their way to Constantinople, "Let none among you flatter himself that he may be permitted to invade or pillage the land of the Greeks, under pretext that it is not sufficiently submissive to the Holy See, or that the Emperor is an usurper, having wrested the empire from his brother. What crimes he or his subjects may have committed, it is not for you to judge; and you have not taken the Cross to avenge that injury."

The Crusaders knew perfectly well that their success would insure their absolution. They had made a treaty at Venice, with the young Alexis, son of Isaac and nephew of the Emperor. This prince promised, that if the Crusaders should give him back the throne his uncle had usurped, be would subject the Greek Church to the Papal sovereignty, and join the Crusaders against the Mussulmans.

Upon reaching Constantinople, the Crusaders showed the young Alexis to the people, but soon perceived that they would excite no sympathy in this manner. They then determined to force him upon the city, which they took by assault. They sent news of this to the Pope by a letter in which they sought to excuse themselves for having, attacked the Greeks. See Villehardouin; see It. Godef. ad ann. 1203; Raynold. Annal.; Innocent III. Epist. "The cruel usurper of the empire (Alexis Angelus) had harangued the people and had persuaded them that the Latins were coming to ruin their ancient liberty, and subjugate, the empire to their laws and to the authority of the Pope. This so excited them against us and against the young Prince, that they would not listen to us." They pretended to have been first attacked by the Greeks; they related what the old Emperor Isaac, together with his son Alexis, was doing for them, and took good care to add, "He further promises to render you that obedience which the Catholic emperors, his predecessors have rendered to the Popes, and to do all in his power to lead back the Greek Church to that obedience."

One of the chiefs of the Crusaders, the Count of St. Paul, wrote, on his part, to the Duke of Louvain: "We have so much advanced the cause of the Saviour that the Eastern Church, of which Constantinople was formerly the metropolis, being reünited to the Pope its head, with the Emperor and all his empire, as it was formerly, recognizes herself as the daughter of the Roman Church, and will humbly obey her for the future. The Patriarch himself is to go to Rome to receive his pallium, and has promised the Emperor on his oath to do so. The young Alexis wrote in the same strain to the Pope. "We own," he said, "that the chief cause which has brought the pilgrims to succor us is, that we have voluntarily promised, and upon oath, that we would humbly recognize the Roman Pontiff as the Ecclesiastical head of all Christendom, and as the successor of St. Peter, and that we would use all our power to lead the Eastern Church to that recognition, understanding well, that such reünion will be very useful to the empire and most glorious for us. We repeat to you the same promises by these presents, and we ask your advice how to woo back the Eastern Church."

It was, therefore, well understood that union meant nothing but submission to the Roman see. The Crusaders and their protegés knew that only such promises could lead Innocent III. to approve what he had at first censured. The experiment succeeded. Innocent replies to Alexis that he approves of his views as to the reünion of the Eastern Church. If he will remain faithful to his engagements, he promises him all manner of prosperity; if he should fail, he predicts that he will fall before his enemies.

Innocent then replied to the Crusaders. He feared that they had only exacted from Alexis the promise to subject the Eastern to the Roman Church, in order to excuse their own fault. "We will judge by these results," he said, "whether you have acted sincerely: if the Emperor sends us letters-patent that we may preserve as authentic proof of his oath; if the Patriarch sends us a solemn deputation to recognize the primacy of the Roman Church, and to promise obedience to us; and if he asks of us the pallium, without which he cannot legitimately exercise the Patriarchal functions."

Could the Eastern Church recognize such a doctrine as being that of the first eight centuries?

The Crusaders soon quarreled with Alexis, who, when he was Emperor, at once forgot his promises. But this young prince had alienated the Greeks by ascending the throne by means of the Latins. He was dethroned, and Constantinople fell into the power of an adventurer. The Crusaders decided that this man had no right to the crown, and that the Greeks were to be treated without much consideration, since they had withdrawn from their obedience to the Pope. They, therefore, took possession of the city, and placed one of their number, Baldwin, Count of Flanders, on the throne. Constantinople was sacked; all its churches polluted, pillaged, and laid waste.

The Latin Empire of Constantinople began in 1204 and ended in 1261. During that period of about half a century, the hatred between the Greeks and Latins assumed fearful proportions. The Marquis of Monferrat, chief of the Crusaders, wrote to the Pope, that, if Constantinople had been taken, it was principally to do a service to the holy see, and bring the Greeks back to the obedience which was due to it." After our miraculous conquest," he adds, "we have done nothing except for the sake of reuniting the Eastern Church to the holy see; and we await your counsel for that result."

In his reply, Innocent censures the excesses and sacrileges of which the Crusaders had been guilty. "The Greeks," he adds, "notwithstanding the bad treatment they suffer from those who wish to force them to return to the obedience of the Roman Church, cannot make up their minds to do so, because they only see crimes and works of darkness in the Latins, and they hate them like dogs. . . . But the judgments of God," continues the Pope, "are impenetrable, and hence we would not judge lightly in this affair. It may be that the Greeks have been justly punished for their sins, although you acted unjustly in gratifying your own hatred against them; it is possible that God may justly reward you for having been the instruments of His own vengeance." It is evident that Innocent III. was calm enough to make subtle distinctions in the presence of a city of bloodshed and ruins. The rest of his letter is worthy of the foregoing: "Let us leave," he says, "these doubtful questions. This is certain, that you may keep and defend the land which is conquered for you by the decision of God; upon this condition, however, that you will restore the possessions of the churches, and that you always remain faithful to the holy see and to us."

The Papal sovereignty was the great and single aim. Crimes became virtues, provided the authority of the holy see was propagated and sustained.

Not content with approving the taking of Constantinople, Innocent undertook to establish firmly the new empire. He accordingly wrote to the bishops of France a circular, of which this is the substance: "God, wishing to hallow His Church by the reünion of the schismatics, has transferred the empire of the proud, disobedient, and superstitious Greeks to the humble, pious, catholic, and submissive Latins. The new Emperor, Baldwin, invites all manner of people, clerical and lay, noble and villain, of all sexes and conditions, to come to his empire to receive wealth according to their merit and quality. The Pope, therefore, commands the bishops to persuade every one to come; and he promises the Indulgence of the Crusade to those who will go to uphold the new empire."

Baldwin having begged the Pope to send him some Latin ecclesiastics to strengthen the Papal Church in the East, Innocent wrote a new circular to the bishops of France. "Send," says he, "to that country all the books you can spare, at least to have them copied, that the Church of the East may agree with that of the West in the praises of God!" Thus the venerable liturgies of the East found no grace in the eyes of the Papacy. It was a new church it wished for in the new Latin-Greek Empire.

Baldwin established a Latin clergy at Constantinople, and named the canons, whom he installed at Saint Sophia. These elected the Venetian, Thomas Morosini, for their Patriarch. Innocent found no irregularity except in his elective character; therefore, instead of confirming the election, he directly appointed Thomas to the Patriarchate. His letter deserves to be quoted: "As for the personal character of the Patriarch elect, he is sufficiently known to us and to our Brethren the Cardinals, because of the long sojourn be has made with us. We know he is of a noble race, and of proper life, prudent, circumspect, and sufficiently learned. But having examined the election, we have not found it canonical, because, laymen having no right to dispose of ecclesiastical affairs, the Patriarch of Constantinople should not have been elected by the authority of any secular prince. Besides, the Venetian clergymen, who call themselves canons of Saint Sophia, could not have the right of election, not having been established in their Church either by ourselves or our legates or deputies. For this reason we have cancelled the election in full Consistory."

Then the Pope declares that, wishing to provide for that Church, the care of which is specially his, he appoints the same Thomas Patriarch in virtue of the fulness of his power.

Nothing can be legitimate in the Church, except by this full power; such was the claim of the Papacy.

Innocent defended the ecclesiastical possessions of which a part had been appropriated by the Crusaders. "It is not expedient," he said, "for the holy see to authorize this act. Moreover, since their treaty was made with the Venetians—for the honour of the Roman Church, as they say in nearly every article—we cannot confirm an act which detracts from that honour."

Innocent conferred upon Thomas Morosini, who was only a sub-deacon, the diaconate, the priesthood, and the episcopacy; then he published a bull, in which he thus expresses himself: "The prerogative of grace which the holy see has given to the Byzantine Church proves clearly the fulness of power that this see has received from God, since the holy see has put that Church in the rank of Patriarchal Churches. It has drawn it, as it were, from the dust; it has raised it to the point of preferring it to those of Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem; it has placed it next to the Roman Church, above all others."

Innocent recognized the fact that the Church of Constantinople had the second rank in the Church. But he ascribed this to the Roman see, although that see had protested against the decrees of the œcumenical councils of Constantinople and Chalcedon, which had given that Church the second rank in spite of Rome. It was thus that the Papacy in the middle ages distorted history to find proofs in support of its pretensions.

The Greek Patriarch of Constantinople, John Camaterus, resigned and retired to Thrace. He was succeeded by Michael Autorian, who crowned Theodore Lascaris Emperor of the Greeks. They both fixed their residence at Nicea in Bithynia.

The French and Venetians quarreled about the new Latin Patriarch and the division of the ecclesiastical property. Thomas applied to the Pope, who replied in a long letter, from which we will quote an extract: "Of the four beasts which are about the throne Ezekiel put the eagle above the others, because, of the four Patriarchal Churches, represented by the four beasts, which surround the holy see as its servants, the Church of Constantinople has the preëminence."

Thus Rome was the throne. The imperial eagle, the type of Constantinople, was to be the first of the symbolic beasts that adored it. Such was Innocent's modest notion of his authority. He thus gives a divine origin to the preëminence of Constantinople, because it had come from the holy see—God's organ. After this preamble the Pope gives Thomas some instructions, among which we will notice the following: "You ask me how you should arrange the bishoprics in those countries where there are only Greeks, and in those where they are mixed with Latins. In the first you must consecrate Greek bishops, if you find any, who will be faithful to you, and are willing to receive consecration from you. In mixed bishoprics you will ordain Latins, and give them preference over the Greeks. . . . If you cannot bring the Greeks to the Latin ritual, you must suffer them to keep their own until the holy see otherwise orders." Such was the policy constantly followed by the Papacy in respect to the united Greeks; to tolerate them until they could be made to submit.

From that epoch there were in the East, by Papal authority, two Catholic churches opposed to each other. Schism was thenceforth an accomplished fact, (1206.) As the Bishop of Thessalonica justly wrote to Pope Adrian IV., no schism really existed before that period. There had merely been a protest of the Eastern Church against the Roman innovations. This protest was anterior to Michael Cerularius and even to Photius. It took a more decided character under those Patriarchs, because Rome innovated more and more, and wished to impose her autocracy upon the whole Church; but in reality the schism had not taken shape. As Fleury judiciously remarks, respecting the intercourse between Manuel Comnenus and Alexander III., "It cannot be said that in his day the schism of the Greeks had yet taken shape." Fleury Hist. Eccl. liv. ixxiii. § 32. This cursory remark of the learned historian, who cannot be suspected of partiality for the Greek Church, has an importance which every one will understand. It necessarily follows from it that neither Photius nor Michael Cerularius created the schism. Who then was its author? It would be impossible to point one out among the Greeks. To our minds it is the Papacy, which, after having called forth the protests of the Eastern Church, and strengthened them by its own autocratic pretensions, was really the founder of the schism. The true author of it is Pope Innocent III. It had been commenced by the Latin Church of Jerusalem; it was consummated by that of Constantinople.

This is the testimony of authentic and impartial history. The Papacy, after having established the schism, strengthened it by establishing Latin bishoprics in cities where Greek bishoprics had existed since the Apostolic times. When the Latin bishops could not reside there, Rome gave them titles in partibus infidelium, as if the Apostolic Church of the East had none but infidels among its members.

Innocent III. died in 1216. His successors continued his work. But the Greek Emperors of Nicea, on the verge of being overcome by the Latin Emperors of Constantinople, bethought themselves to resume the policy of their predecessors toward the Papacy. At the entreaty of the Emperor John Vataces, the Patriarch Germanus wrote to Pope Gregory IX. (1232.) His letter was filled with the best sentiments. See this letter Labbe's collection of Councils, vol. xi.; also in the Historian Matthew Parris. He first calls upon Jesus Christ, the corner-stone which joins all nations in one and the same Church; he acknowledges the primacy of the Bishop of Rome, and declares that he has no desire to contest it; and he adds: "Let us seek, with all possible care, who have been the authors of the division. If we ourselves, then point out to us the wrong we have committed and apply the remedy; if the Latins, then we cannot believe that it is your determination to remain outside of the Lord's heritage, through ignorance or criminal obstinacy. All acknowledge that the division has sprung from different beliefs, from abolishing canons and changing the ritual that has come to us by tradition from our fathers. Now all are witness that we ask supplicatingly to be reünited in the truth, after a profound examination to be made thereof, so that we may no longer hear from either party the imputation of schism." After having drawn the picture of the woes which that imputation of schism had drawn upon them from the Crusaders, Germanus exclaims, "Is it this that St. Peter teaches when he recommends the pastors to govern their flocks without violence or domination? I know that each of us believes himself right, and thinks that he is not mistaken. Well then, let us appeal to Holy Scripture and the Fathers."

Germanus wrote in the same way to the Cardinals who constituted the Pope's council. "Permit us," he writes to them; "to speak the truth; division has come from the tyrannical oppression that you exercise, and from the exactions of the Roman Church, which is no mother, but a stepmother, and tramples upon the other churches just in proportion as they humiliate themselves before her. We are scandalized to see you exclusively attached to the things of this world, on all sides heaping up gold and silver, and making kingdoms pay you tribute." Germanus then demands a thorough examination of the questions that divide the Church; and to show the importance of such an examination, he calls attention to the fact that a large number of nations agree with him.

Gregory IX. Greg. IX. Ep. in Labbe's Collection of Councils, vol. xi. did not follow Germanus upon the ground which this Patriarch had taken. He accuses the Greek Church of too much submission to the temporal power, whereby it had lost its liberty; but he does not say wherein the liberty of the Church lies. For every Christian that liberty consists in the right to preserve revealed doctrine and Apostolic laws in their integrity. From this point of view has not the Eastern Church been always more free than the Western? Whether a Church sacrifice the truth to an Emperor or to a Pope-King, it is equally servile in either case. Is it not wonderful to hear the Papacy talk thus of liberty to the Eastern Church while in the very act of attempting her subjugation, and after it has enslaved the Church of the West? Gregory IX., instead of accepting the discussion proposed by Germanus, promised to send him two Dominicans and two Franciscans to explain to him his intentions and those of the Cardinals. These monks actually set out for Nicea in the following year, (a.d. 1233,) bearing a letter to the Patriarch Germanus, in which the Pope compared the Greek schism to that of Samaria. It will be granted that the comparison was not very exact.

In fact, Rome was neither Jerusalem, nor the universal temple, nor the guardian of the law. These titles rather belonged to the Eastern Church than to the Roman, which had altered dogmas and Apostolic laws, while the other had piously preserved them. In the same letter Gregory IX. claims, as head of the Church, the twofold power, spiritual and temporal; he even maintains that Jesus Christ gave that power to St. Peter when he said to him, "Put up thy sword into the sheath." Gospel acc. to St. John 18:11. This interpretation of the text is worthy of the opinion it was cited to sustain. Gregory IX. concludes by attacking the use of leavened bread for the Eucharist. "That bread," be said, "typifies the corruptible body of Jesus Christ, while the unleavened bread represents his risen and glorious body." The four Western monks were received at Nicea with great honours. They conferred with the Greek clergy concerning the procession of the Holy Ghost; the report is still extant that was made in the West. Ap. Raynald. ad Ann. 1233. In this report the monks claim to have had the advantage, as may well be imagined; but by their own showing, they confounded substance with personality in the Trinity—the essential procession, with the temporary sending of the Holy Spirit upon the Church; they misquoted Scripture and the Fathers; they could give no reason for the addition made to the creed; and they likened that addition, irregularly made, and involving a new dogma, to the development that the œcumenical Council of Constantinople had given to the creed of the first œcumenical Council of Nicea.

As for the Eucharist, the discussion concerning it was quite insignificant. Before they retired, the monks declared to the Emperor that, if the Greeks wished to unite with the Roman Church, they must subscribe to her doctrine and submit to the Pope's authority. It appears, therefore, that they had not come to inquire what was the true doctrine, and whether or not the Papal authority was legitimate; union to them, as to the Pope, meant nothing but submission. The Patriarch Germanus did not understand it so; therefore he called a council to examine the points of difference existing between the Greeks and Latins. Raynald. ad Ann. 1233; Wading. Annal. Min. ad Ann. 1233. That assembly was held at Nymphæum. According to the account of the Nuncios themselves, their only triumph was in asking the Greeks why they no longer submitted to the Pope, after having formerly recognized his authority? If we may believe them, the Greeks were very much embarrassed by this question, and kept silence. Such a remark is sufficient to show with how little honesty their account was composed. Certainly the most ignorant of the Greeks knew that the Papal authority had never been recognized in the East. After long discussions upon the procession of the Holy Spirit, and upon unleavened bread, the Emperor summoned the Nuncios and said to them, "To arrive at peace, each side must make concessions; abandon your addition to the creed, and we will approve of your unleavened bread." The Nuncios refused. "How then shall we conclude peace?" asked the Emperor. "Thus," replied the Nuncios: "You shall believe and teach that the Eucharist can be consecrated only in unleavened bread; you shall burn all the books in which a different doctrine is taught; you shall believe and teach that the Holy Ghost proceeds from the Son as well as from the Father, and shall burn all the books that teach the contrary. The Pope and the Roman Church will not abate one iota of their belief; the only concession that can be made to you is, not to oblige you to chaunt the creed with the Latin addition. Such was the substance of the reply of the Nuncios. The Emperor was much annoyed at it, and at the last session of the council the two parties separated, mutually anathematizing each other. No other result could have been anticipated.

About thirty years after this Council, (a.d. 1269,) Michael Palæologus reëntered Constantinople, and destroyed the Latin empire, which had only lasted fifty-seven years. The Papacy now saw vanish its most cherished hopes. Urban IV., the reigning Pope, wrote to Louis IX., King of France, urging him to take up the defence of the Latin Emperor, "expelled by the schismatic Greeks, to the shame of the West." He endeavoured to arouse the whole of Europe, and caused a Crusade to be preached against Palæologus. The Emperor sought to move the Pope by embassies and presents, and promises to work efficiently for the union of the churches. This policy, first adopted by the Comneni, and now resumed by Palæologus, resulted in two solemn assemblies—the second Council of Lyons and that of Florence, in which it was sought to fix upon a basis of union. All endeavours to do this proved futile, because the Papacy had no notion of having its supreme and universal authority, nor its doctrines, called in question. Clement IV. formally declared this in a proposal for union which he sent to Michael Palæologus by four Franciscans. Raynald Annal. Eccl.; Labbe's Collection of Councils, vol. ix.; Wading. Annal. min.; Pachymeros, Hist. Orient. book v. According to the same Pope, Michael was guilty of the division existing between the churches, because if he chose to use his power, he could force all the Greek clergy to subscribe to the demands of the Pope. To use that power, he said, in forcing the Greek clergy was the only mode of securing his empire against the enterprises of the Latins. Thus, according to Clement IV., interest, brute force, and threats were the true means of obtaining unity. Michael Palæologus was particularly in danger of an invasion on the part of Charles, King of Sicily. Remembering that Clement IV. had written to him that the only mode of protecting himself against the Latins was to unite the churches, he wrote to Gregory X. to express to him his own good intentions in this respect.

It is not our purpose to give a detailed account of the relations between Gregory and Michael. We need only say that the latter acted solely from political motives; that he abused his imperial power to persuade some of the bishops to favour his projects; that he persecuted those who resisted him; that some bishops, who were traitors from interested motives, made all the concessions that the Pope demanded; that their course was disavowed by the rest, notwithstanding the dreadful persecutions that this disavowal drew upon them; in fine, that reünion, instead of being established by those intrigues and acts of violence, only became more difficult than ever.

Such is, in substance, the history of what took place at the second Council of Lyons (1274) in regard to the reünion of the churches, and of what took place in the Greek Church after the Council. It is all political, and has no religious character. Gregory X. declared peace at Lyons upon the basis laid down by Clement IV. But this union was only made with Michael Palæologus and a few men without principles. The Church of the East had no share in it. Rome herself was so persuaded of this, that Martin IV. excommunicated Michael Palæologus for having, tricked the Pope under pretext of reünion, (1281.) Andronicus, who succeeded Michael, (1283,) renounced a policy in which there was so little truth.

But it was resumed by John Palæologus for the Council of Florence.

In the interval between these two assemblies of Lyons and Florence, several parleys took place between the Popes and the Emperors, but they resulted in nothing, because the Eastern Church, instead of drawing nearer to the Church of Rome, was increasing the distance between them in proportion as the Papacy became more proud and exacting.

Still, John Palæologus; succeeded, by using all his authority, in persuading a few bishops to attend the Council of Florence.

There were two distinct periods in that assembly—that of the doctrinal expositions, and that of the concessions.

By the doctrinal exposition it was made apparent that the Eastern Church differed from the Roman upon many fundamental points, and that she maintained her doctrine against Papal innovations, because that doctrine had been bequeathed to her by the Apostles and the ancient Fathers.

The concessions were inconsistent with the doctrinal exposition. Why? Because the Pope and the Emperor of the East used all the resources of their despotic power to overcome the resistance of the Greeks; because the Pope, in spite of his formal engagements, left to perish with hunger those Greeks who did not yield to his demands, while at the same time the Emperor of the East rendered their return to their country an impossibility; because the Papacy was able to gain over some ambitious men, whose treachery it rewarded with a cardinal's hat and other honours. But the Papacy did not succeed, for all that, in obtaining from the Council of Florence any distinct recognition of its pretended sovereignty. For that assembly, even while it proclaimed that sovereignty of divine right, inserted in its decree one clause which annulled it, and declared it a sacrilegious usurpation.

In fact that sovereignty can only be an usurpation if we seek to determine its character by a reference to the œcumenical councils.

Thus was iniquity false to herself in that famous assembly, which was nothing more than a conspiracy against sound doctrine, which, under the name of a union, promulgated only a mendacious compromise, broken before it was concluded; the abettors of which were anathematized by the Eastern Church; of which the Church of the West, represented in a great majority by the Council of Basle, condemned the principal author, Pope Eugene, as a heretic, a schismatic, and a rebel to the Church.

Since the sad drama of Florence the Papacy has not attempted to subjugate the Eastern Church. It has preferred to endeavour to disorganize her, little by little, in order gradually to attain to her enslavement. Its policy has been to pay an outward respect to the Eastern ritual and doctrine; to profit by every circumstance particularly by all conflicts between nationalities, to insinuate itself and lend its authority as a support and a safeguard to national rights; to be contented, at first, with a vague and indeterminate recognition of that authority, and then, by all manner of hypocrisy and deceit, to strengthen that authority, in order to turn it afterward against the doctrines and ritual for which at first it feigned respect.

This explains the contradictory bulls issued by the Popes on the subject of the united of all churches. The united Greeks of the East and of Russia, the united Armenians, the united Bulgarians, the united Maronites, etc., etc.

If, as we hope, we should ever publish a special work on the points of difference between the Eastern and Roman Churches, we shall exhibit in its details, and with proper references to authorities, the policy of the Papacy. We shall detect that policy at work in the assemblies of Lyons and of Florence; in all the relations between the Popes and the Emperors of Constantinople, since the establishment of the Latin kingdoms of the East; and in the contradictory bulls that have emanated from Rome from that time to our own.

Our object in the present work has been only to prove:

First. That the Papacy, from and after the ninth century, attempted to impose, in the name of God, upon the universal Church, a yoke unknown to the first eight centuries.

Secondly. That this ambition called forth a legitimate opposition on the part of the Eastern Church.

Thirdly. That the Papacy was the first cause of the division.

Fourthly. That the Papacy strengthened and perpetuated this division by its innovations, and especially by maintaining as a dogma the unlawful sovereignty that it had assumed.

Fifthly. That by establishing a Papal Church in the very bosom of the Catholic Church of the East, it made a true schism of that division, by setting up one altar against another altar, and an illegitimate episcopacy against an Apostolic episcopacy.

We have proved all these points by unanswerable facts. It is therefore with justice that we turn back upon the Papacy itself that accusation of schism of which it is so lavish toward those who refuse to recognize its autocracy, and who stand up in the name of God and Catholic tradition against its usurpations and sacrilegious enterprises.

We say now to every honest man: On the one side you have heard Scripture interpreted according to the Catholic tradition; you have heard the Œcumenical Councils and the Fathers of the Church; you have heard the Bishops of Rome of the first eight centuries. On the other side you have heard the Popes subsequent to the eighth century. Can you say that the doctrines of the one and of the other are identical? Are you not compelled to acknowledge that there are concerning the Papacy two contradictory doctrines: the divine doctrine, preserved during eight centuries even in the bosom of the Roman Church—a doctrine which condemns every idea of autocracy or sovereignty in the Church of Jesus Christ; and the Papal doctrine, which makes of that autocracy an essential and fundamental dogma of the Church, a dogma without which the Church cannot exist?

Which is the doctrine that every Christian must prefer? That of God, or that of the Pope? That of the Church, or that of the Court of Rome?

You must choose between the two. Are you in favour of the divine doctrine, preserved by the Church? Then you are a Catholic Christian. Are you in favour of the doctrine of the Papacy? Then you are a Papist, but you are not a Catholic. This name only belongs to those, who, in their faith, follow Catholic tradition. That tradition contradicts the Papal system; hence you cannot be a Catholic and accept this system. It is high time to cease playing upon words and to speak distinctly; be a Papist if you will, but do not then call yourself a Catholic. Would you be a Catholic? Be no longer a Papist. There is no possible compromise; for Catholic and Papist are words which mutually deny each other.


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Article published in English on: 6-2-2010.

Last update: 6-2-2010.