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Saturday, October 29, 2005

Darwell Stone: The Faith of an English Catholic

"Further, the sacramental principle is the principle of society. Hebrew and Greek alike knew that it is not good for man to be alone, and that man is a social animal. Individuals realize their proper being in community with others. One does not stand alone, and he does not fall alone. He is dependent on the help of his fellows. He is affected both by his predecessors and by his contemporaries. There is no such thing as a wholly self-contained life. And the sacraments are social. In Baptism God admits the baptized into a society. In Confirmation God strengthens the social relation. In Communion God unites communicants with one another as well as with Himself. In Penance God restores the social life which sin had broken. In Unction, in Orders, in Matrimony, God treats the soul as one living and dying in the life of a society. There is nothing lost of that which is individual. Each one is as near to God and as much the object of His personal care as if there were no other. But, as in human societies, the life of the one is enriched by his union with others in the divine society of the Church."

Read it all here.

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    O God, most glorious, most bountiful, accept, we humbly beseech thee, our praises and thanksgivings for thy holy Catholic Church, the mother of us all who bear the name of Christ; for the faith which it hath conveyed in safety to our time, and the mercies by which it hath enlarged and comforted the souls of men; for the virtues which it hath established upon earth, and the holy lives by which it glorifieth both the world and thee; to whom, O blessed Trinity (+), be ascribed all honour, might, majesty and dominion, now and for ever. Amen.
    --Bishop Lancelot Andrewes

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