THERE was once a time, though alas! it is many hundred years since, when the Holy Catholic Church was a glorious building, all one, like the seamless vest of her Master, Christ. The remote cities of Egypt and Syria, Greece and Rome, Gaul and Britain, were all one body, in one Lord, one faith, one baptism. The voice of discord was scarcely heard within her. Heresy found no resting-place within the sanctuary. The Church was like the New Jerusalem above, which is the mother of us all. East and west, north and south, continued steadfastly in the Apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. These were happy times, a great deal too happy to last. It was a state of things too unlike this world; and it was easy to see, that as soon as ever the Church and the world became friends, one or other of the two must become very much altered: and as we all know that the world is very pliable, and has a way of seeming to give up a great deal, while in fact it gives up nothing at all, it was most probable that the Church would be the sufferer. Thus it turned out. She left her first love, and so the glories of her candlestick were dimmed. It is not necessary for my purpose, as practical to ourselves, to follow her course as she journeyed from east to west. Long time abode we in Rome, doing as Rome bid us, albeit she was a hard task-mistress.
Frederick W Faber MA, Brother Hermenegild TOSF, Paperback, ISBN 10: 1497309492, ISBN 13: 9781497309494