Project Canterbury

Catholicism and Roman Catholicism

Three Addresses delivered in Grosvenor Chapel in Advent, 1922.

By Charles Gore.

London: Mowbray, 1922

I. Catholicism

2. Roman Catholicism

3. Protestantism and Anglicanism


I CANNOT allow the publication of the second address in this little volume without regret. It does not at all represent the feeling towards the Roman Church which either I entertain myself or would wish others to entertain on the whole. This is because it is concerned exclusively with the claim of the Roman Church to be the whole Church. Thus it gave me no opportunity to speak of its greatnesses and beauties and glories. I hope my Roman Catholic friends will remember this and forgive me.

If I am asked, as I have been already, how, if every part of the Church is as defective as I say, we can believe in the Church, and trust it, I should wish to give the same reply as Père Gratrygave in other words--it is because of what the Church is entrusted with and embodies, none the less in spite of its defects, in every period and in every portion. Any candid history of almost any period or any part of the Church, at least since "the conversion of the empire," does in fact present a disappointing, sometimes a profoundly disappointing picture. But everywhere, if the Church is challenged to say why it is there, it gives the right answer. It is to hand down the ages a certain faith, to present Jesus Christ to men, and to be the visible organ and dispenser of the grace and the gifts of His Spirit. Thus it offers us the Creed, the Gospels, the Sacraments, and the Communion of Saints. Its unworthinesses and divisions and variations do not touch these things. By them we can live in what is perfect and what can never disappoint; we know that, however weak the cause of our Lord may seem to be in present experience, the kingdom of God and the manifested sovereignty of Christ is certain to come, and is at all times the thing supremely worth living for.

C. G.
Christmas, 1922.

Project Canterbury