22 JUNE 1867, Page 2

It is stated, on fair authority, that Pio Nono contemplates

a step which will endanger the whole future of Catholicism. He wishes to convert the vast assembly of prelates now gathering at Rome into an (Ecumenical Council, and to declare the infallibility of the Pope a dogma of the Church. Hitherto the doctrine has been the infallibility of the Church as the living depositary of all Christian truth, speaking through the Pope. Should the Bishops consent, which is more than doubtful, devout Catholics will be compelled to believe that the Pope is little short of an avatar, a being kept from error by a constantly recurring miracle. As human being, for example, a bad Pope might tell a lie, but as incarnate Church the lie would be miraculously made true. It is possible to believe that of a Church, a thing the mind hardly realizes, but difficult to believe it of a visible being, liable, like all other beings, to lesions of the brain. Lamaism is a dangerous addition to Catholicism, as Archbishop Manning, its great advocate, will one day find.