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Catholic intellectuals

by
03 July 2020

July 2nd, 1920.

THE Anglo-Catholic Congress has met, and the world may know now, if it chooses to read, what our position is. Often it has pretended not to know, and has tried to treat us as if we were children playing with toys in the middle of an exasperated public. There will be no longer any excuse for this. Not all the brains are on one side, nor all the dunces on the other. The names of many of those who read papers at the Congress would command respect anywhere. Can our opponents show on their side a better philosopher than Mr A. E. Taylor, a sounder or more reliable historical critic than Mr C. H. Turner, a more brilliant literary man than Mr G. K. Chesterton? We doubt it. Certainly among those who think differently from ourselves there are a number of men of the highest eminence in the world of learning. We shall never speak disrespectfully of the brilliant abilities of men like the Dean of St Paul’s, the Dean of Carlisle, Canon Headlam, or Dr Streeter. But not all the learning and all the eminence are on one side. Nor are all the most brilliant of the young men at the Universities against us. No one, not blinded by prejudice, will deny the intellectual capacities of the younger Oxford and Cambridge men who appeared on the platform at the Albert Hall this week. The Catholic party in the Church of England is not going to sink into a dishonoured grave because all the intellectuals have deserted it. It is alert, eager, and confident in the soundness of its position.


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