This is a section from the aforementioned book.  It is a nice bit of apologetics defending the divine origins of the Catholic Church–using Scripture, no less!  I’m guessing this was written by Fr. Huebsch, who seems to have been an very erudite man.  It said somewhere that he fluently spoke eight languages, and delivered his sermons in English, Bohemian, German, and Polish–which gives you an idea of the cultural make-up of Gonzales, Texas and its environs.  The second paragraph made me ROFLMAO.  Italics are original; bolding is mine.

Who Founded the Catholic Church?

Macaulay, Channing and Bancroft* recognize the greatness, the permanence, and the Christian character of the Catholic Church, but attribute this to “human skill and sagacity in religion,” and regard her as “a monument of human genius.”  These men are like those Jews who looked upon Christ as Elias, or Jeremias, or one of the prophets.

 

What truth is there in this theory?  Let us see:  Here is a Church that possesses unity of faith and an unchangeable code of morals, which counts three hundred millions of men as her children, which has lasted for nineteen centuries, and bids fair to last until the end of all time.  Now, to tell us that this is all due to the sagacity and genius of Catholics is much too flattering to be true, and we honestly cannot so accept it.  Without any claim to an unusual degree of humility, we may, on the part of Catholics, venture to express the opinion that they are not endowed with any more skill, sagacity, or genius than other folk.  We disclaim all natural superiority, as Catholics, over our fellow-men.  The defenders of this theory hardly believe it themselves, but they put it forth in order to avoid the necessity of acknowledging the true character of the Catholic Church.  For there is no other way of giving a rational account of the Catholic Church, except by recognizing that she was founded by Christ, and is guided and upheld by the Holy Spirit of God.

 

The Catholic Church was founded by Jesus Christ.  That Christ intended to found a Church there can be no question.  Here are His words:  “And I say to thee, that thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my Church” (Matt. xvi. 18).  No Christian will venture to doubt that Christ fulfilled this promise.

 

He promised that His Church should never fail; for, after having made the promise, He added, “And the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. Xvi. 18).  Hence the truth of the saying, “Once the Church, always the Church.”

 

Christ gave to His Church the commission and command to preach His Gospel to the whole world: “All power is given to me in heaven and upon earth.  Going, therefore, teach ye all nations” (Matt. xxviii. 18).  A command which the Catholic Church alone has fulfilled.  He promised to remain with His Church always.  “And behold, I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.”  Hence the Church is always holy, for Christ always dwells in her.

 

Be not deceived, sincere reader; it is not human sagacity or genius that has founded the holy Catholic Church, but the word of Jesus Christ, the God-man, who has said, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away” (Matt. xxiv. 35).

 

Be no longer misled; it is not ignorance or superstition which so strongly attaches Catholics to the Church.  It is nothing of this sort; but it is their firm faith, grounded upon the express words and promises of Jesus Christ.

 

Do you, reader, believe firmly in the divinity of Christ?  If so, be a consistent follower of Him, and believe, also, firmly in His word, and acknowledge the Catholic Church, “which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. iii. 15).

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* I think he is referring to prominent 19th-century historians, Thomas Babington Macaulay, Edward Channing, and George Bancroft.

Beautifully said, I think!  I know I would be greatly flattered if someone were to attribute the Church’s greatness to human ingenuity!  But we don’t hear that these days.  Instead of polite gentlemen like Macaulay, Channing, and Bancroft, we get Dawkins, Hitchens, Pullman, et al., snotty TV and radio personalities, batty non-Catholic church leaders, etc., etc., etc.  Some of them seemingly sincere, while others are merely surfing the currents of fashionable anti-Catholicism.  Today, Catholicism is all lunacy, ignorance, diabolical possession, oppressive socio-econo-political tyranny, lust for power, mass hypocrisy, ancient conspiracy, organized crime, and/or shoddy rip-offs of other traditions.  Blah blah blah blah blah. 

Never mind the actual evidence to the contrary, to be found in history, science, art, philosophy, theology, education, and social work, not to mention the parish church down the street!  Never mind the very real, genuine, reasoned, passionate, and unshakable faith and devotion of Catholics great and small, past and present, rich and poor, sophisticated and simple, old and young.  Never mind the holiness that pervades the Church and is bravely carried into the secular world by ordinary people like you and me.  Never mind any of that, because guess what–there’s no way for our critics to explain any of it!  And these days, when you can’t explain something it simply mustn’t be real.  Can’t explain why the Catholic Church is so great?  It mustn’t be great at all, then!  Case closed.

I wonder what Fr. Huebsch would have to say to today’s critics… 

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