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Not all is known about the doctrine of the infallibility of the Pope that should be known, either by Protestants or Roman Catholics themselves. Much more went on in the Vatican Council of 1870 that promulgated the doctrine than meets the eye, or than is permitted now to appear in the pages of history. Episcopal opposition to the decree was far greater than can be explained away by declaring that it was ""inopportunism,"" a matter of timing rather than principle. Indeed, there is good ground to believe that the majority wanted the promulgation of the decree because they deemed it expedient, and that because they were afraid. They saw that the position of the Roman Church in the 19th century was extremely perilous, and the extensive reforms demanded by the times too arduous and time-consuming. The best way to nip the danger in the bud was to affirm the infallibility of the Pope so that fears arising from growing doubts might not come to the surface. The author, Geddes MacGregor, does not seek to disparage the Roman Catholic Church, and is appreciative of the true heritage and richness of the Church's life. He believes that the vitality of the Roman Church is in spite of, rather than because, of its rigid autocracy, -- and suggests that nothing would be lost, and much gained, if the doctrine of Papal infallibility, supported by many specious historical and theological arguments, should be relaxed, or even at length abandoned. This is good reading, well written for Protestants and liberal Roman Catholics alike, and the argument is not technically involved. But only Protestants are likely to find ready access to this book. They should be encouraged to do so.

Publisher: Beacon Press