Choose a topic from Vol 4:

Religion - Yes or No

Necessity of Religion
Reality of Religious Experience
Religion and life
Religious statistics
Nature of religion
Necessity of worship
Neglect of religion
Religion and history
Conversion of mankind

The Christian Church

Nature of the Church
Necessity of the Church
Visible organisation
Hierarchical constitution
Papal supremacy
Perpetuity of the Church

"This Shall Be the Sign"

Notes of identification
Unity of the Church
Holiness of the Church
Catholicity of the Church
Apostolic succession
"Roman" but not "Roman Catholic"

Dogmatic Authority of the Church

Authority in religion
Catholic Church infallible
The Pope infallible
Papal definitions
Dogmatic spirit of the Catholic Church
"Religion of the spirit"
Individual freedom
Re-stating Christianity
Athanasian Creed
Meaning of faith
Faith and reason
Faith and science
Religion and education
Religion and morals
Catholic countries backward
Universities and religion
Natural Moral Law
Christian principles of morality
Catholicism versus the world

The Power-Complex Illusion

Legislative power of the Catholic Church
Coercive power of the Catholic Church
Catholic Church and political ambitions
Divided allegiance of Catholics
Rome and totalitarianism
Aim of the Catholic Church in America
Catholic Action
Political freedom of Catholics
Catholic infiltration of civic life
Catholicism anti-democatic
Rival totalitarianisms, Rome and Moscow
Catholic attitude to Protestants
Spanish Inquisition
Church and State
Federal Union or "One World State"

Life-Or-Death Social Problems

Social reform necessary
Trade unions
Protestant Churches and Communism
Social apathy of Churches
Catholic social teaching
Family life
Primary purpose of marriage
Religion and marriage
Form of marriage
Mixed marriages
Birth control
"Catholic birth control"
Divorce and re-marriage
Catholics and civil divorce
Nullity decrees
Therapeutic abortion
Euthansia or mercy-killing

Those Exclusive Claims

Divided Christendom
Do divisions matter?
The "Only True Church" claims
Cause of sectarian bigotry
Reunion Movement
Catholic non-cooperation

Religious Liberty

Religious freedom
Catholic intolerance
Protestants and the principles of religious liberty
Rome and the "Four Freedoms"
Heresy and heretics
Religious rights of Protestants
Religious persecution
"Rome's historical record"
Protestant missionaries in Spain
In Italy
In South America
Conditions in Colombia

Are Only Catholics Saved

"Outside the Catholic Church no salvation"
Beliefs of Catholics
Salvation of Pagans
Salvation of Protestants
Why become a Catholic?
Duty of inquiry
Salvation of apostate Catholics
Test at the Last Judgment
Obstacles to conversion
Truth of Catholicism

Do divisions matter?

1349. You speak of divisions amongst the Protestant Churches, but fundamentally do they not all teach the same?

No. Some teach the doctrine of the Holy Trinity; others deny it. Anglicans teach the necessity of a hierarchy of bishops, priests and deacons; other Protestants reject with horror all such hierarchical distinctions between clergy and laity. Some Protestants insist that Sacraments are necessary; others repudiate them altogether.

1350. All are in perfect harmony that the saving of mankind is the object of Christianity.

All agree, perhaps, that it is necessary for men to save their souls. But the Protestant Churches definitely do not agree as to what men must believe and do in order to save their souls, according to the requirements of Christianity. Some say this, and some say that. And they declare their differences so essential and fundamental that, whilst they talk of the necessity of reunion, they cannot manage it in practice.

1351. The religious position as I see it is that, on the one hand men of high intelligence, with philosophical and theological degrees claim this or that as true, whilst on the other hand, men equally good, clever and distinguished, disclaim what the former assert.

That is not the religious position as it really is. You have omitted the greatest factor of all from your consideration. For on the one hand we have the Catholic Church, a vast united body with hundreds of millions of adherents drawn from all nations; people who probably disagree on almost everything else, yet who agree in the acceptance of the religious teachings of their Church. For they accept their Church as an infallible guide guaranteed by God in religious matters. On the other hand, outside that Church, we have the picture you have presented, dispute, uncertainty and chaos amongst even the best equipped scholars. This very impossibility of getting men to agree on religious matters when they are left to their own resources is an argument that if God reveals a body of doctrine and wants it preserved intact, He must provide a supernaturally safeguarded agency to conserve and teach it with authority. The Catholic Church is that agency. Those who are willing to be taught by her are preserved in the truth. Those unwilling to be taught by her go astray, whatever their academic qualifications, in a thousand different ways. And here it should be noted that, if it is natural to men to think differently and to disagree, the remarkable agreement of millions of all types of men in the Catholic Church is more than a merely natural phenomenon. The influence of God can alone account for it.

1352. All these scholars seem to be sincere, and to have spent their lives studying the questions at issue.

That these non-Catholic scholars cannot agree proves the fallibility of men when left to themselves. But the Catholic at least is not asked to make any act of faith in fallible human beings. He makes an act of faith in the infallible Catholic Church. You may say that the Catholic Church consists of human beings. But the infallibility of the Catholic Church is not dependent upon the human beings belonging to the Church, nor derived from them. It is due to the influence exercised by God Himself in and through that Church. The non-Catholic minister or scholar will set forth his own merely human opinion, or at most a tenet of his man-made sect. But the Catholic priest speaks, not in his own name when declaring Christian truth, but in the name of a truly universal and infallible Church. He submits to the authority of that Church even as he asks others to do so, and is subject to the same conditions as those obliging every other Catholic. He explains a divinely revealed truth as taught by an infallible Church, and not as a merely human opinion which he has thought out for himself. There is a world of difference between the two positions.

1353. Do differences really matter? The things in which all agree are greater than those on which they differ.

Even were that so, it would not mean that the things on which they differ do not matter and could just be ignored. But, in reality, it is not true that the things on which all agree are greater than those on which they differ. For where there is a question of doctrines revealed as true by Almighty God, the denial of any of them would be just as much a repudiation of His authority as the denial of all of them. Catholics, therefore, hold that God's authority for many of the doctrines which Protestants deny is every bit as great as for the things they admit. They cannot, therefore, say to Protestants: "The important thing is that you admit some of our basic Catholic doctrines, so we can regard it as of no importance that you deny others!"

1354. What on earth is one to do who has neither the time nor the ability for deep research, in the presence of such confusion?

The discovery of the truth and arrival at certainty where religion is concerned does not really depend on deep research. Christ knew quite well that millions of human beings would have neither the time nor the ability to engage in profound research. Nor, in any case, could He give a religion in which people with more leisure and more brains would have a greater chance of arriving at the truth than those with less leisure and less intellectual capacity. He therefore established His Church and sent it to teach all nations, imposing on all the obligation to be taught by that Church, the simple and learned alike. So conditions are the same for all. Now the Catholic Church is the only one that goes right back to Christ. She alone could have been established by Him. She alone claims to teach with His infallible authority. All other Churches say expressly that they cannot teach with any infallible authority. And a man who sees this much is justified in asking for instruction in what the Catholic Church teaches. If he is sincere, and prays earnestly, God will give him a conviction of the divine authority of the Catholic Church; he will realize the truth of her doctrines; and he will attain to certainty. There is no other way.



A Radio Analysis"
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