AND NEW BOND STREET.
Chapter I. Catholic Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism
Chapter II. The Great Men of the Russian Church
Chapter III. The Mission of the Altai
Chapter IV. The Dogma of the Immaculate Conception
Chapter V. Letters from Palestine
Chapter VI. Letter to a Roman Neophyte
Chapter VII. Acathiston; or, Prayers in honour of the Divine Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ
Chapter VIII. The Expositions of Faith employed by the Holy Eastern Church
WHILE slowly and laboriously carrying on my "History of the Holy Eastern Church," I cannot but feel the deepest interest in the present prospects, and hopes, and trials, and efforts, of that most venerable communion. The documents which appear in the present volume are such as are calculated to give the latest information on the state of the Oriental Church; and they have the advantage of allowing its members to speak for themselves.
I have been the more desirous of publishing them, because certain works that have lately appeared, as for example the "Eglise Orientale" of Pitzipios Bey, and the "La Russie sera-t-elle Catholique?" of Prince Gagarin, are calculated to give a very false impression regarding the East, particularly as respects her attitude towards Rome.
The first six Essays and Letters are from the able pen of Andrew Nicolaievitch Mouravieff, late Procurator to the Holy Governing Synod. They (but with Considerable alterations) have all appeared in French (some of them, I believe, only in that language,) under the title of "Question Réligieuse d'Orient et d'Occident," Moscow, 1856, and S. Petersburg, 185S. Those which were originally written in Russ, I have translated from that language; which I mention, in ease these pages should fail into the hands of any one who possesses the French work, and who might in consequence wonder at the discrepancies between it and my own, which are very considerable.
Of these essays, the first seems to me singularly valuable. It appeared first under the same title afterwards given to all, and has been largely read. I should perhaps mention that the former part of this essay is not my own translation.
The third, though too statistical to be exactly interesting, is yet valuable as referring to a subject with which the English reader had before no possibility of becoming acquainted, the details of a Russian Mission.
The fourth I have given, not so much for its own value, as from the fact that Roman writers have more than once claimed the Eastern Church in defence of their new dogma of the Immaculate Conception. The most able refutation of that doctrine which I have yet seen, is to be found in the "Observateur Catholique," a work of intense interest to English Churchmen, as the sole Gallican periodical, and, as such, breathing a most friendly feeling to our Church. The refutation of the Bishop of Bruges' work on the Bull Ineffabilis therein contained is the most crushing rejoinder that it is possible to conceive.
The Acathiston is the composition of one of the most pious and laborious of Russian Prelates, Innocent, Archbishop of Odessa, who was called to his reward on the 12th of May, 1857. Besides its intrinsic beauty, it is curious, as completely fusing the Western system of separate devotion to our LORD's individual Wounds into an Eastern mould. Innocent was one of the first preachers of his time: a selection from his sermons has been translated into French by the late M. De Stourdza.
Some notes, it appeared to me, were absolutely necessary: but I have limited them to the smallest possible space.
And now I pray GOD to accept this volume as a mite thrown into the treasure-house of preparation for Union. The Union of the Three Churches, that second and even more glorious Pentecost, we cannot hope to see; but in the meantime, amidst all the obloquy, and disputes, and suspicions, and hard words of this generation, it is a blessed and consoling dream, which some day will, most assuredly, become a reality. But a real and true union must not be, like that of Lyons or Florence, the triumph of one party, and the surrender of the other; but an equal assembly, where the problem of Orthodoxy on the one side, and Catholicity on the other, may be happily and enduringly solved. May GOD hasten that most glorious day!