IN the spring of the year 1894 I undertook, with some reluctance, the task of writing a Latin dissertation dealing with the question of English ordinations as discussed from the Roman point of view. The questions involved were tolerably familiar to me, but I had always treated them from the standpoint of those who are ordinarily content to accept as a matter of course the sacramental validity of the sacred ministry exercised in the Church of England. In the course of controversy doubts, historic or theological, were from time to time suggested, needing resolution; the kind of apologetic demanded for this purpose was inevitable; but to throw oneself into a hostile position, to argue upon the assumptions there treated as indisputable, and to wrest from them an affirmative conclusion, was a new employment from which one might naturally shrink. But the work seemed to be needed. The fresh discussion of the subject started by the Abbé Portal in the previous year showed that debate was not impossible; it was not a question merely of controversy, but rather of mutual understanding; a desire for such understanding was in the air, and Leo XIII was said to be passionately bent on furthering the reconciliation of all professing Christians. If we were to render help, it was useless to go on arguing exclusively from our own assumptions; we must place ourselves at the standpoint of those from whom we were separated, and see whether we could not compel them on their own principles to abridge the differences between us and them. This accordingly was attempted.
I have not to tell the whole story of the movement. When that is written, it will be known what hopes were not unreasonably entertained, and what considerations led to the selection of the question of ordination as the best subject of discussion. I am concerned only with my own part in the movement, and with certain misconceptions which it seems well to remove. It was an accident that brought me in. A dissertation was required, and it must be in Latin. Other men were at least as well qualified to handle the matter, but I was supposed to have some special skill in handling the language. The need was explained by a correspondent well acquainted with the ground. "La cour de Rome," he wrote, "ne sait pas l'anglais; elle n'est informée de vos affaires que par un petit nombre de truchements, qui, autant que je les connais, sont loin d'avoir l'esprit très ouvert. En latin vous serez lus; en anglais, vous seriez interprètés." In Latin, then, our argument was to be presented. Mr. Edward Denny, who had recently published an admirable treatise on the subject, was associated with me; we made his Anglican Orders and Jurisdiction the basis of our work, and a pleasanter partnership there could hardly have been, In November the book was all but finished, and the Bishop of Salisbury, after reading some parts of it in manuscript, supplied a preface which lifted both the Latinity and the argument to a higher plane.
Early in the year 1895 our Dissertatio Apologetica de Hierarchia Anglicana issued from the Cambridge University Press, and was criticized with conspicuous fairness in reviews and journals from one end of Europe to the other. The Abbé Boudinhon, one of our earliest reviewers, described the book in the Canoniste Contemporain as "Un modèle de discussion courtoise et approfondie, qui impose à l'adversaire le même sérieux dans les recherches et les preuves, les mêmes sentiments de modération et de loyauté." In the Zeitschrift fur Katholische Theologie the Jesuit Father Emil Lingens acknowledged our merits more cautiously but no less effectively. "Die Verfasser," he wrote, "beide anglicanische Geistliche, zeigen sich auch ernstlich bestrebt, ihrer Gegner mit wahrer Achtung und ohne jegliche Bitterkeit zu behandeln." It was clear that part of our object was attained; we had achieved the tone of sympathetic discussion. The result was seen in much correspondence, which fell for the most part into my hands, and it thus came about that the book was very unfairly attributed more to me than to Mr. Denny.
During the year 1895 things moved apace. It seemed no small matter that Mgr. Gasparri, professor of Canon Law at Paris, took up our question. He had published, two years earlier, a solid treatise on the whole theory and practice of Ordination, in which he had dismissed with even more than ordinary lightness the claims of the English Church to possess a valid ministry. We made much use of his work in writing De Hierarchia, and did not fail to comment on his deplorable treatment of our own question. This brought other critics upon him, and he took chastisement in the most cheerful spirit, freely confessing ignorance of a matter lying outside his own province, and making serious efforts to retrieve his mistake. Visiting Rome in the month of April, he reported that he had brought our book under the notice of certain Cardinals who were intending to study the question, and gave the first warning that much more would turn upon the rite than upon historical circumstances. From this time onward he and M. Boudinhon worked together, not agreeing in all details, but developing in the main the same argument for the validity of the English Ordinations.
In April appeared the Apostolic Letter Ad Anglos of Leo XIII. In September it became known that the Pope was resolved to open up our subject to the fullest investigation. He had demanded and received from the Abbé Duchesne, from Mgr. Gasparri, and from the Jesuit De Augustinis, professor in the Collegio Romano, memoranda which were more or less favourable to our contention; how favourable the last of them was we did not ourselves know until a later day. There was activity on the other side, Cardinal Vaughan working hard in a way not fully understood until his biography by Mr. Snead-Cox was published. Dom Gasquet explored the Vatican Archives and produced two documents of considerable importance, which compelled a careful reconsideration of one part of our argument. In December M. Portal began the issue of the Revue Anglo-Romaine, with a benediction from Cardinal Bourret and an imposing list of contributors. It was a heavy task to keep going this weekly review of forty-six large pages, and those of us who shared the burden had some desperate struggles--not always successful--with the printer's proofs. It lived barely one year, and it is entombed in three massive volumes containing a remarkable body of original articles and selected documents. Policy, and human weakness, forbade exclusive attention to a single subject, and its pages were lightened or burdened by various displays of irrelevant erudition: some of M. Loisy's earlier and more orthodox essays in criticism obtained a narrow publicity by its means. Gasparri dealt with our own special question in a couple of masterly articles, written and published before he was summoned to Rome for the impending Commission. Father Puller contributed another. One that was signed with mysterious asterisks, the unfavourable conclusion of which did not obscure its friendly tone, fell from the pen of a learned Cardinal resident in Rome. I wrote on a subject in regard to which I was very inadequately equipped, and yet Duchesne was good enough to say that he thought I had made out a fair case for the contention that the Popes of Rome and Alexandria--possibly also the Bishop of Antioch--were at one time consecrated with imposition of the Gospel-text in place of the imposition of hands.
These labours occupied the winter. In March the Commission appointed by the Pope to investigate the question assembled in Rome. We had no communication of any kind with De Augustinis, and knew only that he was inclined to our side. With the three appointed on Cardinal Vaughan's advice--Dom Gasquet, Canon Moyes, and the Franciscan Father David Fleming--we had been engaged in open controversy, and with one of them I had had some private correspondence of no importance. With Mgr. Gasparri and the Abbé Duchesne we had closer relations. They now demanded help in detail. Duchesne was drawn to Father Puller, whose full and accurate erudition was exactly of the kind that commanded his confidence; Gasparri had been in communication with me for some time, and asked me to keep him supplied with information.
The result was that Father Puller and I went to Rome to give the help desired. Mr. Snead-Cox has said in his Life of Cardinal Vaughan that we acted with one side of the Commission, "much as solicitors who work with counsel." [Vol. II. p. 195.] That is partly true, but it may suggest a serious falsehood. We did work as solicitors work when instructing counsel: we supplied information, we prompted arguments, we held consultations. But we were not solicitors; we were managing the affairs of no clients; we were promoters of no cause; we had engaged no advocates. To suggest that we were so employed is to revive an old misunderstanding. From more than one side we were represented as going to Rome with a petition for the recognition of our Orders. At an earlier stage of the movement Cardinal Vaughan had privately written of "Halifax and his party" in this sense: "They are most anxious to get some kind of assurance about their Orders, at least the statement that they are possibly valid!" [Ibid., p. 182.] A more complete misconception there could hardly be. We did desire a favourable decision at Rome; we worked for it and we prayed for it; but we did not desire it for our own assurance. Nothing of that kind was needed. What we desired, what we worked for and prayed for, was the removal of a practical obstruction hindering the concord of Christians. It was not on our side alone that the need of this relief was felt. There were others, eager advocates of Christian union, whose efforts were hampered by their uncertainty about our Orders. They could not ignore, as we could, the practice actually current in the Roman Church. For their sake, no less than for our own, the obstruction must, if possible, be demolished. The Pope was willing to examine the obstruction. That was enough for us; we would give our help. It was not, in truth, an action inter partes: there were no petitioners, no respondents. It was an investigation, enjoined by the Pope on his own counsellors, ad informandam conscientiam. We worked as solicitors work, but not always. It is not a solicitor's business to furnish the court with evidence that tells against his own client: he leaves that to the other side. Father Puller and I did furnish the Commission with some evidence that told against our own contention. It annoyed us a little when men praised us for this. It did not seem to us a remarkably virtuous act. We were engaged in an honest investigation and we could not have acted otherwise.
Yet there was something more than the merely superficial aspect of things to encourage the misconception of which I complain. Our conduct of the argument looked that way. I have explained the difficulty which I had in entering on the argument, the necessity of looking at things from a standpoint that was not my own. I forced myself to do this, with so much success that for two years or more the alien standpoint became habitual to me. Father Puller was made of sterner stuff. Portal used to introduce him at Rome as "un Anglican intransigeant;" he would then put me forward as "M. Lacey--qui transige." That was a pleasantry, but there was some truth in it. We were agreed in this, that it was useless to put before the Papal Commissioners arguments which would carry no weight with those to whom they were addressed.
This difficulty may call for some further explanation. How can the validity of an ordination be discussed? There are two ways. There may be a question about the due and proper use of an acknowledged rite. Such questions not infrequently arise in the administration of the Roman rites of Ordination, which are so intricate in themselves, and so hedged about by judicial decisions and theological opinions, that mistakes may easily be made calling for conditional or even unconditional repetitions of an ordination. Mgr. Gasparri was a consummate expert in questions of this kind. There is a question of another kind concerning the general validity of Orders conferred by a doubtful rite or under doubtful conditions. That was the question as presented to the Commission. How is such a question to be discussed?
There is only one way in which the value of a mode of ordination can be determined. It is determined by the practice of the Church. The matter must be considered on the Catholic hypothesis; and the Catholic hypothesis, in its simplest form, is that Holy Order is a gift of God, conferred by means of the ministry of the Church. But there is no prescribed form of this ministration having divine authority, or even human authority of an exclusive and immutable character. The ordinary baptismal formula is taken to be of this kind--even though Nicholas I did seem to acknowledge baptism "in the Name of Christ" as sufficient--and therefore the validity of a baptismal rite is easily determined. There is no corresponding formula for ordination. What, then, is the warrant for Holy Orders? It is found in the mere fact that they are conferred by the Church. The Church, by the hand of a qualified minister, ordains a man; therefore he is duly ordained. There is no prescribed form. On the hypothesis of the fundamental equality of bishops, any diocesan bishop can validly ordain in any form which he chooses to employ. Innocent IV, in the days when he was no more than a prominent canonist, expressed the opinion that in default of any direction from a superior authority it might be sufficient for a bishop to lay his hand on a candidate's head, saying "Sis sacerdos," a form which would be equally appropriate for the inauguration of a Flamen Dialis. In the case of a mere eccentricity like this there might be room for doubt, but such flights of fancy are of only academic interest; bishops do not indulge in them. With all freedom of action, a freedom for many ages almost untrammelled, they have adhered to certain general lines of ritual in ordination. But in the absence of any prescribed form, and of any appointed standard of sufficiency, it is impossible to mark out narrow limits of variation. Any rite seriously used by a bishop of the Catholic Church, with the grave intention of perpetuating the sacred ministry as it has come down from apostolic times, may be taken as adequate. But he must be a bishop of the Catholic Church. The same assurance will not wait upon the action of a bishop standing apart in isolation, or attached to a notoriously heretical community. On this head, if the matter be regarded from the standpoint of those allowing the full claims of the Papacy, there is a sharp distinction to be observed; those bishops only who are in communion with Rome will then be regarded as belonging to the Catholic Church; a form of ordination used by one of them with the Pope's consent, express or implied, is a form used in the Church, and is therefore of unquestionable validity; another form used by a bishop not in communion with Rome may be valid, but has no warrant in itself arising out of that use; it must be examined by reference to the standard of Roman practice.
Now, what was our position? We believe the Church of England to be an integral part of the Catholic Church of Christ. We therefore as a matter of course believe our Orders, received in that Church, to be valid. There can be no general question. There may be an individual doubt whether a particular person has been properly ordained, but there can be no question of the sufficiency of the ritual commonly used. It is used by the Church, and that is conclusive. Neither are we to be troubled by obscure historical difficulties in proving the transmission of Orders. We are affected neither by Macaulay's challenge to prove the direct Apostolic descent of any one bishop in Christendom, nor by a lack of documentary evidence concerning a particular bishop here and there. Belief in the Church implies belief that God's providence will guard what is necessary, and that God's grace is large enough to cover unknown accidents. Without this assurance sacraments would be mere traps for the unwary. We have this assurance, and we are untroubled.
But the canonists and theologians with whom we were working did not share this assurance. On the contrary, they were convinced that the English Church, whatever might be said in its favour, was in a state of schism, and that the English Ordinal had been brought into use by schismatic bishops. The validity of the rite, therefore, could not be assumed; it was not to be regarded as prima facie a rite of the Catholic Church. Even if there were no presumption against it, there must be a strict examination of its merits. It might prove good: other rites of Ordination used by schismatics and heretics had been allowed by the judgment of the Church, and so might this. But how was it to be examined? To what standard should it be brought? There was only one answer. It must be compared with other rites allowed by the Church; if it agreed sufficiently with them, it could be declared valid; if not, there was another conclusion.
To this examination Monsignor Gasparri and M. Boudinhon addressed themselves with all the precise and verbal accuracy of experienced canonists. They collected all the rites of Ordination which churches in communion with Rome are known to have used. It is obvious that nothing which is absent from any one of these can be considered essential. When everything that is peculiar to one or more of them has been set aside, there remains a residue common to all. Nothing more than this can be considered essential. Does the English rite, then, contain what is found in this common residue? If so, it suffices.
The weakness of this method, as seen from our point of view, is obvious. It assumes that the English Church is not a part of the Catholic Church of Christ, but an alien body to be judged by comparison with the true fold. If we were using the method, we should have to include the English rite along with the Latin, the Greek, the Nestorian, and the Coptic, among those collated for the purpose of finding a standard. It could not be brought to the standard for judgment: it would itself form part of the standard. I sometimes pointed this out to our friends, only to be put off with a polite smile. In truth, since we had undertaken the task of convincing the Roman authorities on their own ground, we were obliged to argue as if the English Church were schismatic. We were consequently in a false position; we probably conveyed a false impression; we probably caused some searching of hearts among our own people; we were probably not unaffected ourselves. I can say for myself that, after facing this way for more than two years of continual debate, I had to get back with something like a wrench to my true orientation.
Our friends and opponents are not to be blamed for adopting this method. 1 do not know how else they could have acted; and I would point out that we should be obliged to use the same method in similar circumstances. Let it be supposed--a not improbable supposition--that the authorities of the English Church have to decide whether they will accept as valid the ministry of the Swedish Church. If they hold the Swedish Church to have been throughout the last four centuries an integral part of the Catholic Church of Christ, then cadet quaestio: the Swedish Ordinations will be Ordinations of the Catholic Church. [It is obvious that the general treatment of the subject of Holy Order will have to be considered inter alia in determining the question whether the Church under review be orthodox or not.] If, on the contrary, they hold that the Swedish Church has been schismatic or of doubtful orthodoxy, it will be necessary to inquire whether a genuine ministry has been preserved; and this can hardly be done without ascertaining, among other things, whether the Swedish rites of Ordination are sufficiently in agreement with other rites, including our own, to be warrant of a genuine episcopate and priesthood. For such practical purposes the method seems to be imposed.
But I am now concerned to point out a more serious flaw that vitiates the method if it be pushed beyond its proper limits. It was only by using it and testing it that I became aware of this, and the fruit of such wearisome labour should have some value. A first essay of criticism is contained in this volume. In the course of a lecture delivered at Sion College in November, 1896, I showed the precariousness of the method as used by M. Boudinhon. From a comparison of rites he concluded 'that a certain thing was necessary in the ordination of deacons. I sprang upon him the Canons of Hippolytus, in which was a form for the ordination of a deacon lacking that very thing. At that time those Canons were commonly supposed to be an authentic Roman document of the third century; M. Boudinhon at once bowed to their authority, and varied his judgment on the essentials of diaconal Ordination. An acute critic afterwards showed the particular instance to be faulty; but, as illustrating a defect of method, the incident retains its value. M. Boudinhon's previous conclusion had been based on imperfect evidence. But the evidence will always be imperfect. It can never be known that all the rites used in the Church from the beginning have been ascertained and collated. It is safe to infer the validity of a rite from its agreement with the common element in the known rites of the Church, but it is not safe to pronounce a rite invalid for lack of this agreement: there may have been a rite of the Church, now forgotten, with which it would agree. Imposition of hands appears to be a common element in all the known rites of Ordination; but if I was right in my contention that the bishops of Rome and Alexandria were at one time consecrated without imposition of hands, it would be impossible to pronounce ordinations certainly invalid for lack of that ceremony. Thus the method may establish the adequacy of a rite, but can never establish its inadequacy. The argument may be used dialectically to demonstrate the necessity of acknowledging certain ordinations; it cannot be used for the purpose of determining the abstract essentials of Ordination, and therefore it cannot be pressed in the negative sense to the exclusion of any rite as defective. Mgr. Gasparri and M. Boudinhon did not always observe this limitation, and others less wary have ignored it to their logical undoing.
We then could use this argument dialectically, and be unaffected by any failure to convince those to whom it was addressed. We were not solicitors, but we were in a sense advocates. Certain theologians were urging a change in the practice of the Roman Church. We were not directly concerned, for we had no intention of submitting any question about our own ordination to the judgment of Rome; but for the general good of the Church we desired that change, and we therefore joined in the argument. We had to argue on the ground taken. It was with justifiable pride that I received from a man like M. Paul Fabre his commendation of De Hierarchia: "C'est une étude historique; ce n'est pas un plaidoyer;" but in one way he was wrong. We tried to make it good history, but it was certainly a plea; if anyone, by an allowed misuse of terms, calls it a piece of special pleading, I shall not complain. We were bound to the conditions of t«e argument; we had to set aside our own convictions, and argue from the convictions of others.
These things I recall in reading the notes that I made each day of our work in Rome, and I no longer wonder that Father Puller and I were accused of putting in jeopardy the dignity of our own priesthood. It was a risk which had to be run. I do not remember any consciousness of the peril at the time, but I look back and understand the generosity which impelled Mr. Gladstone to thank us "for undertaking so bravely an arduous work."
Another charge of contrary tenour has more recently been laid against us and those who were engaged with us. We have been accused of trying alternately to bully and to cajole the Pope into giving a decision favourable to our claims. Our aim, it is hinted, was to frighten him by representing an adverse decision as fatal to hopes of union, so that he should at the worst keep silence. The memorandum with which Mr. Gladstone intervened was "a magnificent bribe," an attempt to move the aged Pontiff by holding out the prospect of what was nearest to his heart--the reconciliation of England to the Holy See. Is there any foundation for this presentment of the story? How it is to be reconciled with the supposition that we were timorously seeking a resolution of our own doubts, I will let others determine. We afforded some grounds for that charge; did we afford any for this? I think we did, though the charge can easily be rebutted. Memory and the written records alike tell me that Father Puller and I adopted an attitude in Rome that must have seemed arrogant to those accustomed to another manner. We certainly had not the air of suppliants. Both the "Anglican intransigeant" and the other "qui transigeait" spoke very plainly of the effect which an adverse decision would have. It was useless, we said again and again, to talk to the English Church about reconciliation with Rome until the question of the Ordinations was settled in a favourable sense. That might be a very short step towards reconciliation, but it was the indispensable first step. This was specially noticeable in the latter part of our visit. I am still puzzled to know why the Cardinal Secretary of State pressed us to stay in Rome when the sessions of the Commission were ended; but it was evident then, as now, that we were no longer to be concerned with meticulous inquiry into questions of detail. Something else was required of us. We found that we were expected to enlighten some very eminent persons whose knowledge of English churchmanship was much smaller than their interest in its development. We made no secret of our independent spirit; perhaps we made unnecessary display of it. Duchesne may have thought so. When we demurred to his suggestion that we should visit various Cardinals, on the ground of our lack of credentials to "les grands," he replied in his most caustic manner, "Mais qui y a-t-il a Rome de plus grand que vous?" I was very much nettled, and made no note of the remark in my Diary; I can remember it now with amusement. There were occasions when I, at all events, carried independence of demeanour too far. My insularity, my more than transalpine barbarity, betrayed roe once into a deplorable breach of etiquette m Cardinal Rampolla's antechamber. I tender belated apologies to a magnificent person, of whose rank and station I am ignorant, but whose pained and bewildered expression I cannot forget. To a certain forcefulness of manner, offensive to Italian taste, I plead guilty; I do not acknowledge any dream of enforcing a decision by a suggestion of politic motives. Our only object was to lay the truth bare, to show plainly that no doubts on the matter in question were entertained among ourselves, and to leave no room for mistakes about the way in which an unfavourable decision would be received. If Leo XIII was deceived on this head, the fault was not ours.
The one incident of the campaign which hurts me in retrospect is the treatment of my pamphlet, De Re Anglicana. The pamphlet was, on the face of it, a partial statement, and it was open to legitimate criticism. I could have borne it patiently if I had been told that I saw my surroundings in too rosy a light, that my optimism deceived me, that my knowledge was at fault, that I lacked a sense of proportion, or even that I was carried away by the spirit of party. The reply would have been obvious, that I probably knew more about the subject than my critics. But I encountered criticism of another sort. In a secret paper I was accused of deliberate fraud, of saying things in the ears of Cardinals at Rome which I should not dare to say in the open air of England. It was a charge of conscious and intentional falsehood, and it was delivered as a stab in the dark. The calumny was easily answered when known. My pamphlet was not formally published or put on sale, but a hundred copies were printed and freely circulated not only in Rome, but also in England and America. I sent one, as a matter of course, to my own bishop at Ely. As soon as the accusation came to my ears, and before it was made public, I placed others at the great public libraries in England. It was myself, indeed, who made the accusation public. I was angry, and I retorted in kind; more fiercely, perhaps, than I ought to have done. I had the less right to be angry, as I now see, in that I had nursed similar suspicions and made similar charges against others. This volume contains evidence of it. I would gladly forget the whole matter, but even after this lapse of years I cannot pretend to be anything less than indignant. I no longer suspect my critics of bad faith. Doubtless they were, like me, suffering from nervous tension. But the facts remain: the documents are in this volume; they are part of the record, and must not be suppressed.
When I read my Diary with the deliberate judgment of a later day, two things strike me as remarkable. The first is the disproportionate attention paid by the Commission to unimportant points. It seems to be all about Barlow. We were hardly prepared for this, and much work had to be done with materials not in hand. In dealing with these materials I made one bad blunder, which is recorded and corrected in this volume. Father Puller must have had little or no share in this, as it lay in a department where I usually wearied myself alone. It was pure weariness: only those who have gone through the whole of the stupid business about Barlow can understand the futility of the objections raised, the obscuring of a clear case by needless side issues, the ruin of the sense of proportion which the discussion causes. Lingard settled the matter once for all, with his broad common sense and historic perception: it never should have been moved again. It was threshed out unmercifully in the Commission of 1896, and I make bold to say that anyone who attempts to stir the old objections again should be held convict of dishonest intent. When I handed to Cardinal Mazzella one of the documents--that about which I had gone astray--he put it aside with the remark that it was of no importance. This was unkind, in view of the trouble we had taken over it, but it was true. The documents about Barlow, and the absence of documents, are of no importance. These arguments are for the dustbin.
The second thing that strikes me is the dry and jejune character of my notes. I put this down partly to fatigue. Never in my life have I been so hard worked as during those two months. It should be remembered that, apart from the labours of the Commission, we had to keep going the weekly issue of the Revue Anglo-Romaine, a sufficient task in itself. There were labours of translation also, the most irksome of employments. The differing genius of the two languages became painfully apparent as we strove to render into French clarity the English allusiveness of Newman, the rich imagery of Wiseman, or the majestic involutions of Mr. Gladstone's mind. We had some trouble with a young Lazarist, helping us with Wiseman, who wanted to bring the Children of Israel into conflict with " des Golias" during their wandering in the wilderness; one giant was as good as another for him, but we could not allow Wiseman to be represented as confusing the Anakim with the Philistines of Gath. Our method of translating Mr. Gladstone's Memorandum is not to be recommended. Puller and I first rendered it into what we considered to be French, and Portal then revised our rendering into what he considered to be French. The difficulty was first to ascertain the meaning of the original, and then to find some possible way of expressing that meaning in French. "Ça ne peut pas se dire en français," Portal would say brusquely and despairingly. Puller and I wrangled for twenty minutes over the meaning of one sentence. I then gave way, not because I was convinced, but because I was the younger. Such were our labours.
A short visit to Monte Cassino brought welcome but inadequate respite. The note in my Diary, "Nightingale singing all night," recalls the sleeplessness of fatigue, which beset me the first night that we spent there. I was up at my window constantly, until the purple masses of the engirdling mountains were outlined in gold. Father Puller called me from a passing slumber at half-past four to go to Mattins; I responded with alacrity, just turned over once on my bed, and found him standing over me again with the news that it was past eight o'clock. I remember the listlessness and distaste with which I made some few visits to the usual objects of interest in Rome. In such great weariness, a degree of spiritual dryness and a certain shortness of temper were inevitable. They are reflected in the Diary. Moreover, I was making only notes to aid my memory. I should not like it to be thought that any of those engaged in our work were absorbed in externals and mindful only of the Machinery of the Church. I kept no journal intime of aspirations, of hopes and prayers. Nor would it be seemly to enlarge on these things in retrospect. I will recall only the day when we were allowed to attend a Mass celebrated by M. Portal in the Crypt of St. Peter, at the tomb of the Apostle; the vision of the man rapt in his holy office; the burning words of faith and hope which he addressed in a brief discourse to the worshippers. But for this I should never have understood the deep springs of his busy activity.
These things dwell in my mind more than disputations. My memories of Rome are in the main religious memories. I love the Church of Rome, and I do not know that my love has been diminished by the failure of efforts that were made and of hopes that were entertained fourteen years ago. There have been worse rubs since, which leave me still of the same mind. For Rome is various; there is a worst to be known, and there is a best that hardly can be known. We saw Leo XIII celebrate Mass--with what tremulous devotion, with what sense of the unseen, those who remember him need not be told. A minor prelate of the Court said Mass afterwards. As we descended the stairway, I heard a member of a religious order exclaim: "Si je disais ainsi la Messe devant mon superieur------!" It was a faithful son of Rome who said that things would not mend until four Monsignori had been hanged in the Campo de' Fiori every morning for a considerable spell. Having made the acquaintance of a certain distinguished prelate, I may myself claim to have waded in some of the deepest waters of Popery. This brilliant churchman, for brilliant he was, enlarged to me on the marvellous elasticity of the Church of Rome, her power of utilizing all that is great and good in human nature; she could find room for "hommes d'état, hommes de science, hommes d'affaires," and so on through a dozen categories. A minor prelate, who was sitting by, softly interjected "hommes de vertu." The other laughed lightly, and allowed "hommes de vertu aussi, evidemment;" but I could tell by his angry flush that the shaft went deep. When I asked why Leo XIII tolerated this man, whose reputation would spell ruin for any "homme d'affaires," I was told that he would not willingly quarrel with the French Republic, and that he ran some risk of this even by refusing to make the man a Cardinal. Here is one aspect of Rome. There is another aspect. I shall venture to repeat what I wrote soon after the death of George Tyrrell. I had accused Rome of breeding heretics, and a devout soul, a simple Oblate of St. Benedict, answered me with a passionate reference to "that holy and heavenly faith which is the soul of Rome, and her very self: that faith which is the joy and consolation of her countless sons and daughters." Tyrrell, he said, in this sense died within Rome's holy pale. I allowed the appeal, and explained:--
"I was thinking of another Rome, a Rome which is locally situate in the middle part of Italy, and which thence stretches forth tentacles of amazing grip--oh! how they draw!--the Rome of saints and martyrs and stupendous sinners; the Rome of Popes and Cardinals and Monsignori; the Rome of convents and bells, of colleges and schools; the Rome of scarlet-clad seminarists and purple prelates; the Rome of the Propaganda and of the Holy Office, of Curia and Basilica; the Rome of Medici and Farnese, of Consalvi and of Antonelli; that labyrinth of history, that colluvies gentium, matron and courtesan, murderess and saver of men, preacher of righteousness and worker of iniquity, sea of grace and sink of corruption, commixture of all contraries, great of soul and immeasurably small, scaling heaven and stumbling in the mire--the Church of Rome, the marvellous work of God and the baffling work of man. This it is that breeds heretics; and no wonder!
"That mystical Rome, that hidden soul, which my friend the Oblate loves, and which folded the dying Tyrrell in her arms while the other Rome spat and cursed---this Rome lurks in the narrow streets beside the Tiber, leads about priests in shabby cassocks and here and there a prelate in glossy mantle, prompts the ragged children who say their prayers at San Clemente, guards in spotless purity the cornette of the daughter of St. Vincent, sits in meditation beside the shrine of San Filippo, sometimes slips into a vacant chair at a Sacred Congregation or peeps over the shoulder of a Pope to guide his pen, is always active somewhere, sends out messages to the ends of the earth, and gathers in devotions from all lands. This also is great and wonderful, a marvellous work of God and a satisfying work of man. And this does not breed heretics."