Choose a topic from Vol 3:


Reason proves God's existence
Primitive monotheism
Mystery of God's inner nature
Personality of God
Providence of God and the problem of evil


Immortal destiny of man
Can earth give true happiness?
Do human souls evolve?
Is transmigration possible?
Animal souls
Freedom of will
Free will and faith


Religion and God
The duty of prayer
The mysteries of religion
Can we believe in miracles?

The Religion of the Bible

Historical character of the Gospels
Canonical Books of the Bible
Original Manuscripts
Copyists' errors
Truth of the Bible
New Testament "contradictions"

The Christian Religion

Christianity alone true
Not the product of religious experience
Compared with Buddhism, Confucianism, Mahometanism, Bahaism, etc.,
Rejected by modern Jews
The demand for miracles
The necessity of faith
Difficulties not doubts
Proofs available
Dispositions of unbelievers

A Definite Christian Faith

One religion not as good as another
Changing one's religion
Catholic convictions and zeal
Religious controversy
The curse of bigotry
Towards a solution

The Problem of Reunion

Efforts at the reunion of the Churches
The Church of England as a "Bridge-Church"
Anglicans and the Greek Orthodox Church
The "Old Catholics" of Holland
Reunion Conferences
Catholic Unity
The Papacy as reunion center
Protestant hostility to Catholicism
The demands of charity

The Truth of Catholicism

Necessity of the Church
The true Church
Catholic claim absolute
A clerical hierarchy
Papal Supremacy
Temporal Power
Unity of the Church
Holiness of the Church
Catholicity of the Church
Catholic attitude to converts
Indefectible Apostolicity
Necessity of becoming a Catholic

The Church and the Bible

Catholic belief in the Bible
Bible-reading and private interpretation
Value of Tradition and the "Fathers"
Guidance of the Church necessary

The Dogmas of the Catholic Church

Dogmatic certainty
Credal statements
Faith and reason
The voice of science
Fate of rationalists
The dogma of the Trinity
Creation and evolution
The existence of angels
Evil spirits or devils
Man's eternal destiny
The fact of sin
Nature and work of Christ
Mary, the mother of God
Grace and salvation
The sacraments
Holy Eucharist
The Sacrifice of the Mass
Holy Communion
Marriage and divorce
Extreme Unction
Man's death and judgment
Resurrection of the body
End of the World

Moral Teachings of the Catholic Church

Catholic intolerance
The Spanish Inquisition
Prohibition of Books
Liberty of worship
Forbidden Socieities
Church attendance
The New Psychology
Deterministic philosophy
Marriage Legislation
Birth Prevention
Monastic Life
Convent Life
Legal defense of murderers
Laywers and divorce proceedings
Judges in Divorce
Professional secrecy

The Church in Her Worship

Why build churches?
Glamor of ritual
The "Lord's Prayer"
Pagan derivations
Liturgical symbolism
Use of Latin
Intercession of Mary and the Saints

The Church and Social Welfare

The Church and Education
The Social Problem
Social Duty of the Church
Catholicism and Capitalism

The necessity of faith

182. The problem of religion seems to be extraordinarily difficult.

The problem is extraordinarily difficult yet extraordinarily simple. The simplest truth revealed by God is extraordinarily deep when we try to sound it to its full depths. Yet faith in all that God has taught is a simple act, based not on the understanding of every least thing God has revealed, but on a consciousness of the claims of God to our allegiance no matter what He reveals. By this faith, which a child can possess, we accept all that He reveals in general, and each thing as further study reveals it to us as contained in the general revelation. But this faith is a gift of God, to be prayed for rather than to be attained by our own efforts, even though our own efforts are required as a disposing condition.

183. You maintain that faith in Christ is necessary for salvation?

I maintain that Christ is the Savior of mankind, and that there is no salvation except through Christ. A man's own efforts cannot accomplish his salvation, for man cannot be his own redeemer. If any man is saved, therefore, he will owe it to the grace of Christ. But as regards actual faith in Christ, professed during one's lifetime, that will be required only of those who have had Christian teaching sufficiently manifested to them. One who has had sufficient opportunity to believe in Christ is guilty before God if he refuses deliberately to do so, and dies still rejecting His teaching authority. Therefore, Christ said, "He who believes shall be saved; he who believes not, shall be condemned."

184. What of those who have never heard of Christianity and follow other beliefs?

God obliges no one to the impossible. If these people are sincere in their mistaken beliefs, try to obey natural conscience, and repent of their failures and sins, God will give them the necessary interior graces for their salvation, graces due to the merits of Christ. The moment after their death they will know that Christ has been their Redeemer, even though, through no fault of their own, they did not recognize the fact during life.

185. What of the countless millions before Christ?

The same answer applies to them also. Those who knew of the Old Testament promises of the Redeemer to come had to have faith in those promises of God as a condition of their salvation. Others were in the same position as those today who have never heard of Christ. But all graces given prior to Christ, whether to those who believed in God's revelation, or to the inculpably ignorant, were given in view of Christ's death on the Cross; and He is the Savior of all.

186. Faith is a blind acceptance of what we do not know to be true, and religion is but organized ignorance.

The Christian faith is certainly not blind. It is wide-awake acceptance of what God has taught only after one has solid evidence that God has so spoken. If a man is ill, it is faith in the medical profession that takes him to the operating table; and far from this being an ignorant action, it is a most wise one. The same principle is involved in an act of faith in God's reliability when He deigns to teach us truth in the supernatural order.

187. Is it a virtue to be so convinced of one's own beliefs as to exclude any possibility of being wrong?

Not if one's own beliefs happen to be the result of one's own speculations, with nothing particularly in their favor save that one desires to maintain them. It is a virtue, however, to maintain the absolute truth of what Christ has taught, once one has attained the reasonable conviction that He is God. For true virtue refuses to admit that God does not know what He is talking about, or that He is given to telling lies. It is not a question of refusing to admit a possibility of our being wrong. It is a question of refusing to admit the possibility of God being wrong. Virtue forbids blasphemous insults against God.

188. Once you say that your religion deals with the infinite and the supernatural you rule out any possibility of knowing it to be true.

You are confusing two things, a religion as a religion, and the contents of its teachings. For example, we can know in the strict sense that Christ really existed, that He claimed to be God, and wrought more than enough signs to justify belief in that claim. A Christian knows that his religion is the one true religion. The teachings of that religion, which deal with the infinite and supernatural, he believes by faith. He knows that God teaches certain things, but because they are beyond human comprehension, he believes them by faith in God's knowledge and veracity.

189. However reasonable a thing may be, if it is not demonstrable, it remains mere theory.

You are not making sufficient allowance for the different kinds of demonstration, the one from intrinsic evidence, the other from extrinsic evidence. For example, I know that two and two make four by intrinsic evidence. I have only to set out two units with another two units before me, and I know that there are four units. But proof by extrinsic evidence differs. I prove that God exists from reason. By history I prove that He said this thing. But since what He says is as far above me as the Einstein theory of relativity is above the powers of a child of seven, I believe it simply because He says so. And I have a genuine knowledge of the truth based upon His authority. It is not mere theory. A theory is a probable guess, a conjecture, or an hypothesis. But the doctrine I believe is not a guess, conjecture, or hypothesis of my own.



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