“Priest and Parson Act Together” American Sentinel 10, 5, pp. 35, 36.

THE Detroit Daily News of January 16, contains the following account of a confederacy between Protestant ministers and Roman Catholic priests, which we reprint, including the News significant headlines:—


That Joins Catholic and Protestant Together.
All Said to Be Members of the Same
“Mystical Body.”

BAY CITY, MICH., Jan. 17.—The Bay City ministers will not carry on a social crusade in the Saginaw or Little Parkhurst style, but on the contrary announce that they do not sympathize with the methods employed in a majority of these movements. They have, however, organized a movement that will be farther reaching in its effects.

The avowed objects of this association are to promote “Christian unity” and arouse a feeling that all Christian churches are engaged in one great object. Prejudice and intolerance are especially denounced and are to be opposed by the association.

The matter has been brewing since Thanksgiving day, when Rev. C. T. Patchell preached a strong sermon on the subject. Monday, a meeting was held at the rectory of St. James’ Catholic Church, at which nearly all of the Catholic priests and a number of the leading Protestant ministers were present. Christian unity was the object of the gathering, but church unity was not thought of. After thorough discussion the following was adopted as embodying the sentiment of those present:—

“The aim of this meeting is to instill into every Christian heart the necessity of mutual love and respect among the members of the mystical body of Christ. It is unnatural that members of the same body should tear one another to pieces. They should protect and assist each other.

“The means to attain this end are of two kinds: (a) fraternal meetings of the ministers of the different churches, with a view to becoming better acquainted, and for devising means whereby to carry on our mutual work; (b) public lectures on ‘Christian unity,’ ‘Christian tolerance,’ ‘Christian charity,’ and kindred subjects, said lectures to be delivered alternatively by priest and minister.

“It must be well understood that the presence of a minister or a priest at one of our meetings does not in the least affect his distinctive religious principles. Each remains what he is, prejudice and its consequences expected.”

The memorial is signed by the following pastors: Rev. Wm. H. Clark, First Presbyterian Church; Rev. H. Schneider, Zion Reformed Church; Rev. T. W. McLean, Trinity Episcopal Church; Rev. M. Matkowski, St. Stanislaus Kostka Catholic Church; Rev. R. C. Johnson, Second Baptist Church; Rev. J. G. Sanson and Rev. Jos. Shrembs, St. Mary’s Catholic Church, West Bay City; N. Rutenik, German Reformed Church, West Bay City; Rev. M. C. Hawks, Madison Avenue M. E. Church; Rev. Thomas Rafter, St. James Catholic Church; Rev. C. T. Patachell, First Congregational Church; Rev. John G. Wyss, St. Boniface Catholic Church; Rev. Jacob Braun, German Methodist Church.

What a confederation! Presbyterian, Reformed, Episcopalian, Baptist, German Reformed, Methodist, Congregational and German Methodist ministers uniting with [36] Roman Catholic priests, as members of the “mystical body of Christ,” “in mutual love and respect,” “to carry on” “our mutual work! Shades of Protestantism, of Wycliffe, Martin Luther, John Knox and John Wesley! The founders of every one of the Protestant churches here represented, boldly and scripturally declared that the Roman Catholic Church is the anti-Christ of Scripture. The Roman Catholic Church, a part of the “mystic body of Christ”! Where then is anti-Christ? Catholic and Protestant ministers uniting to “protect and assist each other” in “our mutual work”! Has it come to this, that Protestant churches have become so blinded by a false charity that they can unite to protect each other in a “mutual work” with the “infallible” papal church—“drunk with the blood of the saints”? There is not “mutual work” between true Protestantism and the papacy. “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial?” 2 Corinthians 6:14, 15.

Philip Melancthon, at the Diet of Augsburg, undertook to unite the Reformation with the Roman Church “in mutual love and respect,” with the view to carrying on a “mutual work;” but the God of saints and martyrs used Martin Luther to prevent the fatal compromise, and Luther wrote to Melancthon:—

There can be no concord between Christ and Belial. As far as regards me, I will not yield a hair’s breadth. Sooner than yield, I should prefer suffering everything, even the most terrible evils. [251]

Writing again, he said:—

I learn that you have begun a marvelous work, namely, to reconcile Luther and the pope; but the pope will not be reconciled, and Luther begs to be excused. And if, in despite of them you succeed in this affair, then after your example I will bring together Christ and Belial. [252]

But popular Protestantism has lost the spirit of the Reformation, and the uncompromising attitude of the leading Reformers so much praised in denominational books of fifty years ago, is now repudiated and their noble work discounted, if not by direct declaration, by an attitude of compromise, with the enemy of the Reformation.

And it is just this kind of a confederation of papists and apostate Protestants which the SENTINEL has looked for. We have never expected that there would be an organic union of either the popular Protestant sects, or these sects with the papacy; but we have looked for a confederation of papists and so-called Protestants to accomplish certain “mutual work,” prominent among which is the enforcement of the Roman Catholic Sunday. Already we have seen Cardinal Gibbons and Archbishop Ireland indorsing petitions for Sunday legislation prepared and circulated by the popular Protestant churches. Why is it that Rome refuses to compromise on the dogmas of the church, and yet eagerly joins with these churches in exalting Sunday?—It is because when Sunday is exalted, the papacy which instituted the Sunday Sabbath, is exalted. When Cardinal Gibbons added his name to the petition for a national Sunday law, he had penned the following words, found on page 111 of his book, “Faith of Our Fathers:—

Is not every Christian obliged to sanctify Sunday, and to abstain on that day from unnecessary servile work? Is not the observance of this law among the most prominent of our sacred duties? But you may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify.

And now we venture to predict that one of the first acts of “mutual” performed by this confederacy of the papists and compromising Protestants will be the enforcement of the Sunday institution,—the badge of the papal beast of prophecy. [36]

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