Monday, February 04, 2008

The Vatican vs. Gertrude Stein (Part XII)

THE VATICAN: These dangers -- namely, the confounding of license with liberty, the passion for discussing and pouring contempt upon any possible subject, the assumed right to hold whatever opinions one pleases upon any subject and to set them forth in print to the world -- have so wrapped minds in darkness that there is now a greater need of the Church's teaching office than ever before, lest people become unmindful both of conscience and of duty. Did not your country, the United States, derive the beginnings both of faith and of culture from the children of religious families? And even at the present time wherever religious families are found, how speedy and yet how fruitful a harvest of good works do they not bring forth! How very many leave home and seek strange lands to impart the truth of the gospel and to widen the bounds of civilization; and this they do with the greatest cheerfulness amid manifold dangers! Nor should any difference of praise be made between those who follow the active state of life and those others who, charmed with solitude, give themselves to prayer and bodily mortification. From the foregoing it is manifest that we are not able to give approval to those views which, in their collective sense, are called by some "Americanism."

GERTRUDE STEIN: There is no pope.


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