Every day, people are straying away from the church and going back to God.
Men who fight about religion have no religion to fight about, since they do in the name of religion the thin which religion itself forbids. To be furious in religion is to be irreligiously religious. It were better to be of no church than to be bitter in any.
People today live without faith. On the one hand, the minority of wealthy, educated people, having freed themselves from the hypnotism of the Church, believe in nothing. They look upon all faiths as absurdities or as useful means of keeping the masses in bondage - no more. On the other hand, the vast majority, poor, uneducated, but for the most part truly sincere, remain under the hypnotism of the Church and therefore think they believe and have faith. But this is not really faith, for instead of throwing light on man’s position in the world it only darkens it.
Religion condemns religion. It is not the school that is without God, it is the Church that is without God.
The grandest operations, both in nature and in grace, are the most silent and imperceptible. The shallow brook babbles in its passage, and is heard by every one; but the coming on of the seasons is silent and unseen. The storm rages and alarms, but its fury is soon exhausted, and its effects are partial and soon remedied; but the dew, though gentle and unheard, is immense in quantity, and the very life of large portions of the earth. And these are pictures of the operations of the grace in the church and in the soul.
Some political and social activities of the Catholic Church are detrimental and even dangerous for the community as a whole... [e.g.] the fight against birth control at a time when overpopulation [is] a serious obstacle to peace.
To be of no church is dangerous. Religion, of which the rewards are distant and which is animated only by Faith and Hope, will glide by degrees out of the mind unless it be invigorated and reimpressed by external ordinances, by stated calls to worship, and the salutary influence of example.
The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state. It must be the guide and the critic of the state, and never its tool. If the church does not recapture its prophetic zeal, it will become an irrelevant social club without moral or spiritual authority.
The opening of the first grammar-school was the opening of the first trench against monopoly in Church and State.
The church of tomorrow must be universal. It cannot belong to a particular class, race or nation, but must transcend all such barriers so the brotherhood of man may be extended among us.
Abuse resembles a church procession; it always returns to the point from which it set out.
I condemn Christianity, I bring against the Christian Church the most terrible charge any prosecutor has ever uttered. to me it is the extremist thinkable form of corruption, it has had the will to the ultimate corruption conceivably possible. The Christian Church has left nothing untouched by its depravity, it has made of every value a disvalue, of every truth a lie, of every kind of integrity a vileness of soul. People still dare to talk to me of its ‘humanitarian’ blessings! To abolish any state of distress whatever has been profoundly inexpedient to it: it has lived on states of distress, it has created states of distress in order to externalize itself.
Time makes more Converts than Reason...the adulterous connection of church and state.
The decline of religion in modern times means simply that religion is no longer the uncontested center and ruler of man’s life., and that the church is no longer the final and unquestioned home and asylum of his being.
The consciousness of abiding safety in the bosom of the Church is one of the most serious obstacles to an honest confrontation with the Christian faith.
The continuous and widespread fragmentation of the church has been the scandal of the ages. It has been Satan’s master strategy. The sin of disunity probably has caused more souls to be lost than all other sins combined.
From the patristic period to the present, the Church has affirmed that misuse of the world’s resources or appropriation of them by a minority of the world’s population betrays the gift of creation since “whatever belongs to God belongs to all.”
People are driven from the church not so much by stern truth that makes them uneasy, as by weak nothings that make them contemptuous.
The Miracles of the Church seem to me to rest not so much upon faces or voices or healing power coming suddenly near to us from afar off, but upon our perceptions being made finer, so that for a moment our eyes can see and our ears can hear what is there about us always.
Leave every church Independent; not Independent from brotherly Counsel, God forbid it that we should refuse that; but when it comes to power, that one Church shall have the power over the rest, then look for a Beast.