On the Miraculous Images. Chapter 2: Compromise Of The Church With Paganism

It was easy for the modern reformers to condemn, by an unjust blame, the leaders of the church; they should, however, have acknowledged, that the principal interest of Christianity was to wrest from error the greatest number of its partisans, and that it was impossible to attain this object without providing for the obstinate adherents of the false gods an easy passage from the temple to the church. If we consider that, notwithstanding all these concessions, the ruin of Paganism was accomplished only by degrees and imperceptibly,—that during more than two centuries it was necessary to combat, over the whole of Europe, an error which, although continually overthrown, was incessantly rising again,—we shall understand that the conciliatory spirit of the leaders of the church was true wisdom.

By Walerian Krasiński

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