19 October 2015

"They professed themselves Catholic from considerations of worldly prudence or convenience..."

From Pastor's History of the Popes, Vol. I :
The adherents of the false Renaissance, with scarcely an exception, were, during life, indifferent to religion.  They looked on their classical studies, their ancient philosophy, and the faith of the Church as two distinct worlds, which had no point of contact.  From considerations of worldly prudence or convenience they still professed themselves Catholics, while in their hearts they were more or less alienated from the Church.  In many cases, indeed, the very foundations of faith and morals were undermined by the triumph of false Humanism.  Lechler says: "Most of them must inwardly have wavered between skepticism and fragments of the Catholic faith, in which they had brought up, and adhered to the Church externally from motives of prudence."  Hettner very aptly remarks: "It is not in the nature of the Latin race to grub and delve like Faust; dogmatic questions were discussed but not solved.  They were either rank skeptics or careless hypocrites."