Reprinted by Blavatsky Study Center
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"Absolution" and "Confession" through "Apostolic Succession"
"An outcry has just been made in England over the discovery that Anglican priests are largely introducing auricular confession and granting absolution after enforcing penances. ... The bishop, questioned, points to Matthew xvi, 19, for the source of his authority to bind and loose on earth those who are to be blessed or damned in heaven; and to the apostolic succession for proof of its transmission from Simon Bar-jona to himself. The present volumes have been written to small purpose if they have not shown,
"1, that Jesus, the Christ-God, is a myth concocted two centuries after the real Hebrew Jesus died;
"2, that, therefore, he never had any authority to give Peter, or anyone else, plenary power;
"3, that even if he had given such authority' the word Petra (rock) referred to the revealed truths of the Petroma, not to him who thrice denied him; and that besides, the apostolic succession is a gross and palpable fraud;
"4, that Gospel according to Matthew is a fabrication based upon a wholly different manuscript." (Isis Unveiled II, p. 544)
"Among students of Church history widely divergent views are held about the origin of Holy Orders. The Roman Church has always maintained that the three Orders (bishop, priest and deacon) were instituted by Christ Himself and that the first bishops were consecrated by the apostles. Presbyterians and others, not themselves possessing the apostolic succession, contend that in the earliest times bishops and presbyters were synonymous terms . . . Clairvoyent investigation into those early periods absolutely confirms the contention of the Roman Church . . . They know that there has been no break in apostolic succession." (C. W. Leadbeater, Science and the Sacraments, pp. 282, 286)
" But let no one suppose that the public absolution given to the whole flock is in any way less effective than private absolution, if the desire for rectification on the part of the wrong-doer is equally earnest and sincere ... In the Liberal Catholic Church auricular confession is entirely optional, and its frequent and systematic practice is not encouraged, since it is felt that under such conditions the detailed confession is apt to become a matter of routine, and its spiritual value in the life of the individual thereby defeated. For all ordinary purposes the general confession in the Holy Eucharist should suffice." (C. W. Leadbeater, Science and the Sacraments, p. 84)