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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. IV:
Writings in Connection with the Manichæan Controversy.: Chapter 32

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 32.—Praise of the Clergy.

69.  There is not, however, such narrowness in the moral excellence of the Catholic Church as that I should limit my praise of it to the life of those here mentioned.  For how many bishops have I known most excellent and holy men, how many presbyters, how many deacons, and ministers of all kinds of the divine sacraments, whose virtue seems to me more admirable and more worthy of commendation on account of the greater difficulty of preserving it amidst the manifold varieties of men, and in this life of turmoil!  For they preside over men needing cure as much as over those already cured.  The vices of the crowd must be borne with in order that they may be cured, and the plague must be endured before it is subdued.  To keep here the best way of life and a mind calm and peaceful is very hard.  Here, in a word, we are among people who are learning to live.  There they live.

Next: Chapter 33

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