Whereas, Continued attacks, arising from grave misapprehension, have recently been made upon the American Branch of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament;
And, Whereas, The language of those Associates of the C. B. S., whose communications have been published, has, on highly important points, been perverted, and held up as expressing what was neither expressed nor to be implied, and as indicating designs and action on the part of the American Branch of the C. B. S. which are not true;
And, Whereas, It is due to our Right Reverend Fathers the Bishops, and to our Brethren the Clergy and Laity, whose minds may have been influenced by the above named attacks, that they should be officially certified of the incorrectness of the charges made;
Therefore, Resolved, That we place on record the following statement, namely:
I. That it is justice to the American Branch of the C. B. S. that a distinction be made between the personal acts, words or designs of any individuals who may be Associates of the C. B. S. and the acts, words or designs of the Confraternity as an organization. And that any unauthorized acts, words, or designs of the former, if any there have been or are yet to be, should not be charged to the latter.
II. That the American Branch of the C. B. S. is not and never has been a Secret Society.
III. That the American Branch of the C. B. S. did not interfere in any manner whatever with the late Episcopal election in Massachusetts; that it was not organized for the purpose of mingling at all in Church politics; that it has not so mingled at any time; and that as a Confraternity it is wholly averse to ecclesiastical or any other intrigue.
IV. That the members of the American Branch of the C. B. S are not associated for any other purpose than solely and strictly to promote the "Objects," and conform to the "Rules" set down in the Manual of the Confraternity, which are as follows, viz:
1. The Honor due to the Person of our LORD JESUS CHRIST in the BLESSED SACRAMENT of His BODY and BLOOD.
2. Mutual and Special Intercession at the time of and in union with the EUCHARISTIC SACRIFICE.
3. To promote the observance of the Catholic and primitive practice of receiving the Holy Communion fasting.
And that the Sole Rules that bind the Associates, are as follows, viz:
1. To communicate or at least to be present on Sundays and the greater Festivals and other Holy-days, when the HOLY EUCHARIST is Celebrated, unless prevented by sickness or other urgent cause.
2. To promote, by all legitimate means, frequent and reverent Celebrations of the HOLY EUCHARIST, as the Chief Act of Divine Service.
3. To make such Special Intercessions as shall be from time to time directed.
V. That this Council recognizes the truth of the words of the Superior General in his Annual Address, namely, "Whatever means we may lawfully use as separate individuals, to promote the Catholic Truth as set forth by our Church, we should bear in mind that as a Confraternity, our great means to that end is combined prayer." And, as all wrangling in connection with its solemn objects is distasteful to the Confraternity, the Council therefore places this statement on record in no spirit of discussion, but solely for the information of our brethren.
By order of the Council,
F. C. EWER,
Superior General, Am. Br. C. B. S.
T. MCKEE BROWN,