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of Şir. J. Newport
23 Copy of the Bill proposed to be submit-
STATE OF MORALS.
conformable to truth." What SoveN my numbers for October and reign can be safe, WHAT PEOPLE
November last, I commented upon can be VIRTUOUS, where princian atrocious article inserted in Cob- ples of so infernal a nature ARE rebett's Register, under the signature of cognised and inculcated ?"-As to the “An Obseryer,” in which article the safety of Sovereigns, I shall leave that writer attempted to affix the most diaa subject for another number,' and con bolical and infernal principles on the tent myself for the present with sheva Catholic religion, but which I clearly ing that it was the opinion of the first prored, by the production of histo- reformers themselves, that the step rical facts, to be nothing less than a which they had made to reform Pocollection of infamous and, base ca. pery was more productive of vice and lumnies on the faith of our forefathers; immorality than of virtue and honesty. and that if there was any foundation for And I shall further shew, that this the existence of such principles as those enlightened country, which can boast attributed to Popery by the base and so much of its religious institutions, hypocritical writer, they were to be such as Hibernian Societies for the found in the effects produced by the Conversion of Irish Papists, Church attempt to reform the Religion which Missionary Societies, Bible Societies, had civilized and instructed the minds Evangelical Societies, Methodistical Soof our pagan ancestors, and which cieties, Societies for the Conversion of taught our forefathers to erect a Civil. Jews, with various others which I Constitution, from the privileges of cannot now recollect, and last, though which six millions of his Catholic not least, a Society for the Suppression countrymen are unjustly excluded, of VICE, cannot truly boast of the merely because they believe in the progress of its inhabitants in the pracsame faith, and worship God in the tice of virtue, but, on the contrary, same form, as those who framed the that, at the present period, it exhibits Great Charter of British Rights.- a scene of immorality and irreligion The senseless writer having, it may be which must sink the character of Engsupposed, conceived that he had car- lishmen in the esteem of foreign na. ried conviction to the minds of his tions, and ought to make the liberalreaders, and nine out of ter, I am minded, the candid, the truth-telling firmly persuaded, were stupid enough Mr. Cobbett ashamed of his countryto believe him, he concludes with put- men, and teach him for the future to ting the following question to them, be more careful how he attempts to for the purpose, we may conjecture, libel those who differ from him in rethat they should form the conclusionsligious principles, and who prefer ada natural to be drawn, if the picture | hering to that religion which was the which the scribe had given of the doca faith of the most virtuous divines, the trines of the Catholic church were most disinterested statesmen, the most ORTHOD. JOUR. VOL. III.
upright lawyers, and the most intrepid | leagues of practising the most diabowarriors of all nations, whose names lical and irreligious means to accomare recorded in the page of history. plish their ends -- means such as Mr. C. A religion which was professed for has been warring against himself, but centuries by the WHOLE of Chris- which he has latterly employed, with tendom, and which, according to the considerable acrimony, to set his rea. statement of the late Mr. Fox in 1805, ders against the Pope and the Jesuits, might reckon one hundred millions and create a jealousy towards his Ca. of believers in Europe alonę.--'The tholic countrymen, at a moment when crusade of the Reform was begun by they are combatting the attacks of a the instigation of the enemy of man- host of foes, and seeking to gain that kind; it was raised by men of the rank in the pate of the Constitution, most immoral character; its progress of which they were deprived by the was marked by a train of diabolical bigotry and injustice of former days. acts which stain, the annals of our But, let us now hear the great aposcountry; and its chief supporters were tle of the Reformation, Luther. “ For. falsehood, forgery, calumny, and op- merly,” says he, “ when we were sepression. To substantiate the picture duced by the Pope, EVERY ONE which I have here drawn, I shall not, WILLINGLY FOLLOWED GOOD like Protestant accusers, bring forth WORKS; but NOW people neither witnesses who are interested in the say nor know any thing but how to cause. I shall confine myself to the get all to themselves, by EXACTIONS, testimony of the reformers themselves, PILLAGE, THEFT, FALSEHOOD, USURY, and they shall bear witness to their &c.” (Luth. in Serm. dom. 26, post own works.-- The celebrated Protest- | Pent.) – It would seem by this that apt professor Zanchius thus com- father Luther had a different opinion plained of his colleagues :--" I am in- of Popery than Mr. Cobbett or his dignant when I consider the manner Correspondent; but he undoubtedly in which most of us defend our cause. spoke feelingly and from his own The true state of the question we knowledge. Luther knew better than often, op set purpose, involve in dark- the scribbler in the Register; he had ness, that it may not be understood: been educated in the school of Catho. we have the impudence to deny things licity, and so far from doubting whethe most evident'; 'WE ASSERT ther a Papist could be virtuous, he WHAT IS the most POISIBLY FALSE: the here says, that when the people bemost impiaus doctrines we force on lieved in Popery EVERY ONE WILthe people as the first principles of LINGLY FOLLOWED GOOD faith, and orthodox opinions we con- WORKS. The next witness I shall demn as he al: we torture the produce is John Calvin, the second scriptures till they agree with our own apostle of reform.-He observes, “ of fancies; and boast of being the disci- the thousands who renounced Popery, ples of the fathers, while we refuse to and seemed eagerly to embrace the follow their doctrine: to DECEIVE, to gospel, how few have amended their CALUMNIATE, LO ABUSE, IS OUR FA- lives? Indeed, what else did the MILIAR PRACTICE: NOR DO WE greater part pretend to, than by shak. GARE FOR ANY THING, PROVIDED Weing off the yoke of superstition to CAN DEFEND, OUR CAUSE, GOOD OR give themselves. more liberty, and to BAD, RIGHT OR WRONG. O what plunge into EVERY KIND OF LASCItimes, what manners." (Zanchius ad VIOUSNESS.” (Calv. l. vi. de Scand.) Stormium, tom. viii. col. 328.) What To this may be added the testimony will Mr. Cobbett, the great admirer of Bucer, who says “The greater of truth, say to this? Here is the de. part of the people seem to have em. claration of a fellow-labourer in the braced the gospel only to live at their Reformation, who accuses his col. pleasure, and enjoy their lust and
lawless appetites without controul. | pit incendiaries cried out, that the Hence they lend a willing ear to the places where idols had been worshipdoctrine, that we are justified by faith ped ought to be destroyed by the law only, and not by good works, for of God; and the sparing of them, was which they have no relish.” (Buc. de reserving the accursed things:-and Regn. Christ. 1. i. c. 4.)—So much for thus every building with a steeple was the declarations of the Reformer's of a mark of the beast, –a seat of idolaPopery as to the virtuous practices of try described by Moses,-a house of their new proselytes ; let us now see devotion for the Amorrites.By the the effects produced in our own coun- help of TUIES DIVINITY the try, by the spirit of Reform which Churches were all rased, or battered ; pervaded the nations of Europe in the the beauty of the great towns scanda 16th century. Heylin, in his History lously blemished; and the public orof the Reformation, says, “ The open naments of the kingdom laid in ruhlewdness in whieh many lived, with Dish. The communion plate was made out shame or remorse, gave great oc- prize, and the bells, timber, and lead casion for their adversaries to say, that set to sale in the markets. Registers they were in the right to assert justifi- and libraries were destroyed, and the cation without works, since they were remains of learning and antiquity to every good work reprobate. Their thrown into the fire. The greve was gross and insatiable scrambling after ro protection against the se zealots. the goods and wealth that had been They rifled monuments and tombs, did dedicated with good designs, without what they could to extinguish the applying any part of it to the promot- names of those in the other world, and ing of the Gospel, the instruction of murder them in their memory. To youth, and the relieving of the poor, see (says he) noble structures consemade all people conelade that it was crated to the honour of the ever bles. for ROBBERY, and NOT for RĖ- sed Trinity, where all the articles of FORMATION, that their zeal made them the Apostles' Creed were professed, so active." - The same historian, the Christian Sacraments administered, speaking of the immorality of the and all the inspired writings received lives of many of the professors of the as such ; places where there was no gospel, adds, "By these things, which Polytheism, no addressing devils, no were but too visible in some of the roasting of children, no licentious more eminent among them, the people worship, so much as pretended; in were much alienated from them; and short, where there was no resemblance as much as they were formerly set of a parallel with the heathen idola. against Popery, so they grew to have try, mentioned in the Old and New kinder thoughts of it, and to look on Testaments; I say, to see the houses all the changes that had been made, as of God thus ravaged and rased, the designs to enrich some ricious cour- furniture made plunder, and the tiers, and to let in an inundation of Church estates seized, gires a frightful VICE AND WIOKEDNESS UPON THE NA- idea of some of these reformers; and TION.”..-Collier, also, has given us to consider the fact without knowing the following statement of facts, which the whole history would almost make I recommend to the attention of Mr. a man believe some rough unconverted Cobbett and his correspondent. “Eli- nation had made an invasion, and carzabeth,” says he, « completed the ried the country.”--Had this horrible Reformation by the same methods it picture of the virtuous proceedings of was first begun among the common the Reformers to amend and purge people. When the preachers had in- Popery been drawn by the pen of a flamed their ignorance, pushed them to Catholic, it might have been consisacrilege and fury, and blown them dered as too highly coloured; but up to this pitch of distraction, the pul- coming, as it does, from the hands of
Protestants, we may reasonably sup- which were broached by the different = pose that the description falls short of Ministers in the successive reigns, in : the horrid atrocities and blasphemous order to traduce and stigmatize the scenes which were exhibited in those Catholics as the contrivers and abet- i days. With these facts before our tors of their infernal schemes, and "eyes, may not Catholics, with a thus render them odious in the eyes of : greater degree of truth and justice, their dissenting countrymen. Were » ask Mr. Cobbett-What people can be the doctrines of Popery of that dia- : virtuous where deeds of so wicked and bolical kind as: laid down by the wriabominable a nature were legalized ter in Cobbett's Register, could it be and encouraged? Yet such was the rendered necessary for the legislators case, as we gather from the said Pro. of this country to make a law to : testant historian (Heylin). “For," HANG men merely for embracing it ? says he, “ though Parliament consist. Yet such a law was passed in the reiga 'ed of such members as disagreed among of James I. Yes, reader, such was then themselves in respect of religion ; yet the bloody murdering principles of they agreed well enough in one com- Popery, that the meek and innocent mon principle, which was to serve the professors of Protestantism passed a present time, and PRESERVE THEM law, not to punish the Catholic for state
For' though a great part of treason and rebellion; not for mur. the nobility, and not a few of the gen-, der and sedition; nor for felony, or try in the House of Commons, were calumny; no, no; these crimes were cordially affected to the Church of forbidden by Popery: it was therefore Rome, yet were they willing to give judged necessary that the person who way to all such acts and statutes as was so wicked as to embrace that faith were made against it, out of fear of which, but a few years before, was losing such lands and statutes as they the creed of the whole of Christenwere possessed of, if that religion dom; it was judged necessary, I say,
tbt should prevail and get up again; and in those days, that that individual, as for the rest, who were either to who should presume to exercise his make or improve their fortunes, there own free will in the choice of the road is no question to be made, but that he should take to carry him to heaven, they were resolved to further SUCH a should be hung, drawn, and quarreformation as should most visibly tered, and his bowels burnt, if he was conduce TO THE ADVANCE- hardy enough to choose the religion MENT OF THEIR SEVERAL preached by the apostles, and which ENDS."-Can we wonder, reader, had been the faith of his forefathers from the description here given of the for several centuries ! Oh! the meekeffects of the Reformation, that the ness, the mildness, the consistency of sober and thinking part of the people the professors of Protestantism! Mr. should prefer the superstitions of Po- Cobbett, in comparing the events inpery, as the safest road to Heaven, and terwoven with, and which are the rethe most virtuous code of morality on sult of, the late continental peace, earth, to the vicious and delusive doc- may “ be deeply afflicted with the retrines of Evangelical Liberty. That storation of the Papal Hierarchy, the such was the fact, and that the leading Inquisition, and the Order of the Jepoliticians and courtiers of those days suits-Powers that she says) we know were alarmed for their temporal inte. have committed ten thousand more rests, which they had aggrandized by cruelties than the deposed Napoleon," the spoliation of the property belong- but will he, can he produce one ining to the Church, which was also the stance of such a Penal Code against patrimony of the poor, we have only the Professors of Protestantism in any to refer to the statute-book, and to Catholic country similar to that which the various plots and conspiracies even now disgraces our Statute Book