St. Cyril Of Jerusalem
( Originally Published 1906 )
It is perhaps worth while to insist once more upon the fact that the Fathers of the Church were called upon to deal primarily with the circumstances of their own age ; not with those of days gone by, nor with those of days to come. That is one side of the truth. But if circumstances change quickly and greatly, human nature alters slowly and little. Always, though it is often overlooked and sometimes denied, the main aim of education is development of capacity. Instruction is less an end than a means. Of human capacities, that of sound thought leading to sound judgment is perhaps the most valuable. It depends on the exercise of will and on the right training of what Locke called understanding. To present knowledge or hypothesis so that it exercised a pupil's thought, so that it forced him to honest intellectual effort, that was a teacher's business in St. Cyril's age as it is in our own. And if it may be said with reverence, one might urge that the Doctrine of the Trinity affords matter for true educational training as much as the theory of evolution, as the methods of constructing the Forth Bridge, or as the work of the grammarian when he
"settled Hoti's business . . .
If this be allowed, St. Cyril's work as a catechist must be admitted into the circle of educational endeavour : a brief survey of his lectures will indicate clearly enough that his pupils were called upon to think, to put forth intellectual effort, to discipline the will, to arrive at sound judgment.
He was fortunate in his time, for he lived and worked at Jerusalem during the reign of the first nominal Christian emperor, Constantine ; his diaconate probably belongs to the year 334 A.D., or possibly to the early part of 335. In the latter year there was a great gathering in Jerusalem when the Christians assembled for the consecration of Constantine's church on Mount Calvary. Eusebius in his Life of Constantine' observes that " Jerusalem became the gathering point for distinguished prelates from every province, and the whole city was thronged by a vast assemblage of the servants of God . . . the whole of Syria and Mesopotamia, Phoenicia and Arabia, Palestine, Egypt, and Libya, with the dwellers in the Thebaid, all contributed to swell the mighty concourse of God's ministers, followed as they were by vast numbers of every province."
The young deacon Cyril was thus a witness, not only of an immense concourse assembled together to do honour to an emperor and to worship God, but he also witnessed the triumph of Arius and his party over the recently deposed Athanasius, who had been condemned by the Synod of Tyre earlier in this same year 335 A.D. That the Christian Church was highly organised at this time is suggested by a passage in the Encyclical Epistle of St. Athanasius, written in 341 " Our Canons and our forms were not given to the Churches at the present day, but were wisely and safely transmitted to us from our forefathers. Neither had our faith its beginning at this time, but it came down to us from the Lord through His disciples. That, therefore, the ordinances which have been preserved in the Churches from old time until now, may not be lost in our days, and the trust which has been committed to us required at our hands, rouse yourselves, brethren, as being stewards of the mysteries of God, and seeing them now seized upon by aliens."
Into the Arian controversy, educationalists are not required to plunge ; it is sufficient to realise how stirring were the days in which St. Cyril had to play his part.
The date of his ordination as a priest is not exactly known : he was admitted to Priest's Orders by Maximus, bishop of Jerusalem.
Dr. Gifford (Introduction to St. Cyril's Catechetical Lectures, chap. ix.1) adduces arguments to prove that the lectures were delivered in the season of Lent in the year 348 A.D. He further remarks : "It is expressly stated by Sozomen that `the interval called Quadragesima' was made to consist of six weeks in Palestine, whereas it comprised seven weeks in Constantinople and the neighbouring provinces."
The eighteen lectures which made up the course were preceded by a discourse called the Procatechesis. This, it appears, was delivered at a public service, attended by a general congregation, to the catechumens, on the Sunday preceding the Fast.
St. Cyril refers more than once to the fact that the period of the Fast was forty days ; in all probability the first catechetical lecture was delivered on the opening day, the Monday, and the eighteenth on the night of Good Friday, the eve of the " Great Sabbath," the Saturday which represents the modern Easter Day. The opening sentence of the last lecture in this catechetical course strikes the Easter note : 1 "The root of all good works is the hope of the Resurrection." Again, in the " exhortation" at the end of the lecture, St. Cyril dwells on the immediate nearness of the crowning Festival in the Christian Calendar : 2 " And now, brethren beloved, the word of instruction exhorts you all to prepare your souls for the reception of the heavenly gifts. As regards the Holy and Apostolic Faith delivered to you to profess, we have spoken through the grace of the Lord as many Lectures as was possible in these fast days of Lent ; not that this is all we ought to have said, for many are the points omitted ; and these perchance are thought out better by more excellent teachers. But now the holy day of the Passover is at hand, and ye, beloved in Christ, are to be enlightened by the Laver of Regeneration. And after Easter's Holy Day of Salvation, ye shall come on each successive day, beginning from the second day of the week, after the assembly into the Holy Place of the Resurrection" (i.e. the original "new tomb hewn out in the rock," in which Joseph of Arimathea ea had buried Christ), "and here, if God permits, ye shall hear other lectures, in which ye shall again be taught the reasons of everything which has been done."
These lectures to the newly-baptized are extant : they are five in number. The first is upon the Christian mysteries, enforced by a consideration of the last seven verses of the fifth chapter of St. Peter's First Epistle. The second deals with baptism, the third with chrism, the fourth with the Body and Blood of Christ, the fifth and last with the Christian Liturgy, including the ritual of the Sacrament of the Eucharist. These last five lectures are valuable to the student of theology : Dr. Gifford calls them 1 "a most important record of the Sacramental Rites and Doctrines of the Eastern Church in the fourth Century, the most critical period of Ecclesiastical History."
But to the student of education the first eighteen are the more valuable, being as they are—to quote Dr. Gifford's words once more 2—" the first and only complete example of the course of instruction given in the early centuries to Candidates seeking ad-mission to the fuller privileges of the Christian Church."
Before considering these lectures, a short account of the Christian community in Jerusalem seems essential. All readers of the Acts of the Apostles will remember that at Jerusalem was settled that strife which arose between the Jewish Christians who maintained the necessity for retaining the Mosaic law with all its ceremonies, and those others who admitted non-Jewish converts to equality with themselves without imposing upon them the Mosaic rites. Though the fifteenth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles seems to represent St. Peter and Paul as fairly at one, yet the latter,' writing to the Galatian Christians, indicates that considerable dissension occurred before the community reached a solution.
Neander refers to the efforts of St. Paul to establish and propagate "the more expanded view of Christianity," and also to " the conciliating elements of the Apostle John's labours" after the death of St. Paul Neander observes that this division lasted on, continuing among Jewish Christians in the second century, as is proved by Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho. (Chapters x., xi., xii. and xviii. of that Dialogue, as well as several more, testify to the existence of this schism in the middle and latter part of the second century.) Eusebius and Epiphanius describe, with varying detail, the withdrawal from Jerusalem of the members of the Christian community. Before the siege of the capital, they retired to the district St.-E. of the Sea of Galilee, known as Decapolis, having Pella for their centre.
Neander regards the tradition—that these self-exiled Jews returned later—as probably true. He notes that in the reign of Hadrian this community, composed till now of Christians observing the Mosaic rites, suffered a change. That emperor, in consequence of insurrections in the city, turned all native Jews,' "who had not by their whole manner of life utterly renounced their nation," out of Jerusalem.
Eusebius relates the results of this law : 2 " The city of the Jews being thus reduced to a state of abandonment for them, and totally stripped of its ancient inhabitants, and also inhabited by strangers ; the Roman city which subsequently arose, changing its name, was called Aelia, in honour of the Emperor Aelius Adrian ; and when the Church was collected there of the Gentiles, the first bishop after those of the circumcision was Marcus."
The closing lines show the changed nature of the new Church. Eusebius says the rebellion occurred in the eighteenth (and elsewhere he says the sixteenth) year of Hadrian, i.e. in 135 or 133 A.D. Neander, writing of this change, says : " If the story, already alluded to, concerning the return of the original community from Pella to Jerusalem is a correct one, or if a great majority of them at least did not remain behind at Pella, the event just mentioned would naturally lead those who held tenaciously to the Mosaic law, to separate themselves from the mixed community and repair once more to Pella, where a strictly Jewish Christian Church maintained its existence down to the fifth century."
Dr. Bigg reminds us of the immense differences of race, class, and occupation which existed in the later years of the Empire :1 " Historians, again, speak of Greco-Roman culture as if there was one definite thing answering to the name. But what we actually find is the most amazing disparity. Between the highest and the lowest of the subjects of Caesar there was no less difference than there is today between an Englishman and a Kaffir. Yet, further, men of every race, every colour, every degree of civilisation, dwelt not only within the same empire, but within the same walls. Barbarian, Scythian, bond and free, jostled one another in the streets of Rome. Great nobles, learned scholars, experienced men of affairs, admirable artists, skilful artisans, lived in the same city, under the same roof, with fierce and ignorant savages from the mountains of Morocco or the wilds of Britain." Dr. Bigg is writing of Rome ; but that which was true of the capital of the Empire applied in a mitigated degree to Jerusalem colonised under a Roman name.
St. Jerome in his Lives of Illustrious Men throws no light on the composition of the Church at Jerusalem in the time of St. Cyril ; but in his letter to St. Paulinus of Nola (written probably about 395 A.D.) he draws the following picture of Jerusalem : l "Men rush here from all quarters of the world ; the city is filled with people of every race ; and so great is the throng of men and women, that there you will have to tolerate in its full dimensions an evil from which you desired to flee when you found it partially developed elsewhere." St. Cyril addressed his catechumens two hundred and ten years after Jerusalem became the Roman colony Aelia, and nearly fifty before the moment when Jerome wrote of its populous condition. We may gather, therefore, that the Church of his day lived in the midst of an infinitely various population.
Early in the fifth century St. Jerome, writing Against Vigilantius, describes the poor of Jerusalem in words that contrast painfully with the Apostolic description of the primitive Church there, when the Christians had " all things in common " : 1 " You, forsooth, were so generous to the whole community that if you had not come to Jerusalem and lavished your own money or that of your patrons, we should all be on the verge of starvation." St. Jerome seems to argue that the Apostolic custom of collecting through all the Churches for the poor of Jerusalem makes Vigilantius' claim false ; but he does not deny the poverty of the faithful ; he admits the necessity of alms " to support the weakness of the poor body, and to stave off cold and hunger."
It was evidently, then, in a populous city, inhabited by men of many different races, that St. Cyril was called upon to work. The nature of the teaching which he addressed to them may be gathered from his Catechetical Lectures.
The Procatechesis, or Prologue to the lectures, is really full of indications of St. Cyril's teaching method, consequently of hints to the teacher of today.
Everyone who has ever taught in any real and continued fashion knows the difficulty of making the horse drink when he has been taken to the water, or the water has been brought to him. Because this difficulty is widespread, though not universal, a division has arisen between Teachers : some preferring the primrose path of ease for their scholars,—a path from which the solicitous and elaborately active teacher has eliminated every stone and every thorn, every roughness, every obstacle; others advocating the all - essentialness of the natural way, so that dangers and difficulties assail, and temptations allure the child, as they most certainly will beset him later, however indulgent the years of infancy have been made.
A few, like St. Cyril, take the via media. The opening lines of his address to the audience of catechumens (an audience whose units were so different in race, capacity, and environment) strike a ringing note of encouragement. There is nothing dull, hard, tedious, repulsive in his invitation : it savours of hope, light, and warmth. Even in a translation these are not dissipated or lost : Already there is an odour of blessedness upon you, O ye who are soon to be enlightened : already ye are gathering the spiritual flowers to weave heavenly crowns : already the fragrance of the Holy Spirit has breathed upon you : already ye have gathered round the vestibule of the King's palace."
It is nothing to the purpose to argue that Cyril is speaking of religion, and the modern teacher is dealing most frequently with secular matters. What we have to learn is that good teaching hits, that bad teaching misses the mark. It is of no consequence that St. Cyril's target was of one colour, ours sometimes of another. The question of interest is, given the aim, does the method adopted achieve it? The catechumens gathered round Cyril to hear the new faith, not to listen to disquisitions on heathen authors, or to learn some new truth concerning art. That being so, the note of encouragement is exactly apt. They long to know, to feel, what other men and women whom they have met have obviously known and felt ; they are gathered here for that special purpose. It is not to be supposed that they were all equally eager, equally well informed, equally intelligent. Yet upon the ears of the most strenuous there, as upon the ears of him who had hardly been induced to attend, fell the words of satisfaction or encouragement, as the case may be, "already" something is in your hands, "already" a part, if an infinitesimal part, of your object is attained. Every teacher knows the difficulty of holding back the over-eager, of spurring on the laggard at one and the same time and place. How exactly St. Cyril suited his words to his hearers : how tactfully he gets into touch with them at the first moment of encounter. Yet with that encouragement he at once blends warning, even in the first sentence, which is quoted above without its closing words-" may ye be led in also by the King." The second sentence mingles encouragement and warning just as the first does : already something is won, but the achievement of the whole may prove toilsome :
"For blossoms now have appeared upon the trees ; may the fruit also be found perfect."
It is worth while to point out that St. Cyril is not only thinking of what might be called difficulties of the will and of feeling, but of those of the intellect too : he suggests the part that attention, memory, reasoning may be called upon to play : "The honesty of purpose makes thee called : for if thy body be here but not thy mind, it profiteth thee nothing." Later on in this discourse there is a much clearer call to effort : " Beware lest thou have the title of faithful, but the will of the faithless. Thou hast entered into a contest, toll on through the race : another such opportunity thou canst not have."
St. Cyril further warns his pupils against two dangers which beset learners : the first is the want of serious purpose ; the want of what an economist would call an effective demand. Most teachers have encountered those who desire the fruit of efforts, but will not spend the essential time and pains : it is one of the commonest experiences to hear someone say, "I wish I knew this or that," and then to see him show by lack of effort, by trifling, that the wish is not backed up by any serious purpose, is not, in fact, " effective." By an image of spiritual things St. Cyril shows us the possibility of ineffective demand which reigns everywhere, not less in things secular than in sacred:1 "Even Simon Magus once came to the Laver : he was baptized, but was not enlightened ; and though he dipped the body in water, he enlightened not his heart with the Spirit." If any age ever needed this warning more than St. Cyril's did, perhaps our own does, this warning of the utter folly of desiring an end and refusing or neglecting the natural means to it.
The second danger which he indicates is quite different : the desire is present, and the effort is put forth ; but the end is vanity, because the desire was tainted ; it is not a real thirst for knowledge, but idle curiosity :1 "Let none of you enter saying, 'Let us see what the faithful are doing : let me go in and see, that I may learn what is being done."
A most interesting indication of general method occurs over and over again in this introduction to the Lectures. It is a commonplace of modern pedagogues that teaching should be exemplified and illustrated by constant appeals to things well within the learner's experience. It is hard to say when this dictate of wisdom dawned first on human intelligence. No reader of the Parables can doubt for a minute that the Teacher who was so great in Himself, so great in the matter of His instruction, was hardly less so in His method. Perhaps St. Cyril learned to appeal constantly to the well-known in order to elucidate the unknown, from the example of the one great Master of the Christians. Many instances occur in this introduction, consisting of seventeen short paragraphs. The season was Lent, the spring. St. Cyril opens with figures drawn from the new life ascending from the earth into the being of man, of the animals and birds and insects and plants : "already ye are gathering the spiritual flowers"; blossoms now have appeared upon the trees." Again the new ceremonies about to be undergone must have engendered a feeling of strangeness in the minds of the catechumens, "blank misgivings of a Creature Moving about in worlds not realised."
In a single sentence St. Cyril tries to prove to them that the new and the unknown will not be altogether alien to the old and the familiar. Again we must remember how mixed was his audience : the slave, may be, sat next to the soldier or to the young man of the world, and within touch of some public servant. Before the passage is quoted it should be said that at the beginning of Lent a public call was uttered, followed by the registration of the names of those who responded ; and that when the catechumens were first admitted they seem to have formed in procession, carrying tapers. St. Cyril's rendering of their new condition is calculated to appeal to all acquainted with domestic, military, or civil service, as also to the frequenter of ordinary society : "Thus far there has been an inscription of your names, and a call to service, and torches of the bridal train, and a longing for heavenly citizenship." How could he better have linked on the novel and untried to the life of everyday experience?
The passage quoted above : " Thou hast entered into a contest, toil on through the race," was calculated to reassure the athlete. The remark further on : "Suppose thou hast gold un-wrought and alloyed, mixed with various substances, copper and tin and iron and lead : we seek to have the gold alone ; can gold be purified from the foreign substances without fire ? " appeals to the experience of the smelter or refiner, who might quite well be listening as a catechumen. The possibility that there were such before St. Cyril is strengthened by his return to this image : "Let your mind be refined as by fire into reverence : let your soul be forged as metal : let the stubbornness of unbelief be hammered out : let the superfluous scales of the iron drop off, and what is pure remain ; let the rust of the iron be rubbed off, and the true metal remain."
Another illustration is drawn from husbandry : "Suppose it is the season for planting trees : if we do not dig, and dig deep, where else can that be planted rightly which has once been planted ill ?"
And then, in a final effort to impress upon his hearers the true nature of the work lying before them, he employs an illustration which would appeal to every one of his hearers, either as a designer, a maker of, or a dweller in a house :1 " Suppose, pray, that the catechising is a kind of building : if we do not bind the house together by regular bonds in the building, lest some gap be found and the building become unsound, even our former labour is of no use. But stone must follow stone by course, and corner match with corner, and by our smoothing off inequalities the building must thus rise evenly. In like manner we are bringing to thee stones, as it were, of knowledge. Thou must hear concerning the living God ; thou must hear of Judgment ; must hear of Christ, and of the Resurrection. And many things there are to be discussed in succession, which though now dropped one by one are afterwards to be presented in harmonious connection. But unless thou fit them together in the one whole, and remember what is first and what is second, the builder may build, but thou wilt find the building unsound."
If nothing remained to us of St. Cyril's lectures save the Procatechesis, there would be sufficient evidence to prove that he was a skilled and sympathetic teacher.
How well he understood the lesson inculcated in the image of the wise builder, can be seen in his own orderly handling of his matter. The titles of his lectures indicate the methodical progress of thought. The necessity of securing the beginning is a point on which all educational writers of eminence have laid stress ; but the sequence which should follow the beginning has not been clearly explained and laid down perhaps before Herbart, who took up and elaborated Pestalozzi's tentative efforts after ordered progress. We cannot expect to find the famous " five steps" in Cyril's lectures ; yet they would require less ingenuity and special pleading than many other examples of teaching before they were tortured into a very passable example of Herbart's method.
The following are the titles of the first five lectures :
(1) To those who are to be enlightened: with a reading from Isa. i. 16.
(2) On Repentance and Remission of sins, and concerning the Adversary.
(3) On Baptism.
(4) On the Ten points of Doctrine.
(5) On Faith.
Now, the most casual reader can see that here there is a methodical sequence of thought. There is first of all the preparation of the pupils' minds for the new teaching. St. Cyril had grasped two elementary principles of teaching : the first is to make clear announcement about what is coming, the second is to hammer in the matter of the lesson by deliberate repetition.
The announcement to those seeking baptism is clearly made : the words of the text at the head of the lecture strike the keynote of the discourse—Wash you, make you clean.
The catechumens, full of expectation, anxious for the setting forth of the new doctrine, are pulled up short with the information that something is required of them, required at once, and of them all.
Over and over again St. Cyril presses the lesson upon them, the lesson of effort, of purification, of self-discipline :1 "Ye that are clothed with the rough garment of your offences . . . wash you, make you clean."
" If any here is a slave of sin, let him promptly prepare himself through faith for the new birth into freedom and adoption."
" The Lord in enlisting souls examines their purpose ; and if any has a secret hypocrisy, He rejects the man as unfit for His service ; but if He finds one worthy, to him He readily gives His grace."
"Blot out from thy mind all earthly care; for thou art running for thy soul."
Wrestle for thine own soul, especially in such days as these."
This whole first lecture is contained in six brief paragraphs. It is not too much to say that S Cyril has here presented a single theme so clearly, with such deliberate repetition and elaboration, that no hearer not extraordinarily deficient in intelligence could go away without having learnt the desired lesson. And that is the test of good teaching. It is of no consequence that the matter of lessons differs ; it does not signify what St. Cyril wished to teach. The question for the student of education is, did he teach it ? was his method properly directed to achieve his aim? The unbiassed reader can hardly answer except in the affirmative.
So much, then, for the first lecture : the catechumens would go away with the impression that effort was required of them ; and they would bring that notion back with them to the second lecture.
St. Cyril seems to have felt that in the interim the question would have presented itself to them, " What is it against which this effort is to be directed ? " and that question he sets himself to answer in the next lecture : the first discourse has been a deliberate preparation for the second.
A fearful thing is sin." Those are the opening words of the address. St. Cyril had evidently learned the wisdom of arresting the attention at the outset. A teacher who begins in a muddle, or wearies his pupil by a lengthy exordium with no apparent aim, will find it a difficult task later in the lesson to galvanise the blunted, numbed faculties into new life. So this skilled teacher answers the question which should be stirring in the minds of those before him with a startling statement — " A fearful thing is sin." It is against this fearful thing that the effort is to be made. But St. Cyril is not sensational: he announces at once that it is "a fearful evil, but not incurable." He proceeds to analyse its nature, its origin : "It is not an enemy, O man, that assails thee from without, but an evil shoot growing up out of thyself." "Yet thou art not the sole author of the evil ; but there is also another most wicked prompter, the devil."
Then he announces the remedy, confession of sin, that God may grant forgiveness.
The wealth of illustration, the multiplication of examples of those who having confessed had received forgiveness, is another instance of the excellence of St. Cyril's teaching. He is never "in the air"; he repeatedly brings his catechumens back to illustrative facts, known and read of all men.
Lecture III., On Baptism, is a continuation of the subject introduced at the end of the previous discourse. How is remission of sins to be obtained ? was the question left to arise in the catechumens' mind after St. Cyril's elaborate description of the sinful state.
By baptism, is the answer in the third lecture. But the Father elaborates his teaching. The catechumens are not to look upon baptismal lustration as a kind of magical charm. St. Cyril hints that the washed soul is in no condition of permanent safety, the struggle will begin again, and can be carried on successfully only by means of the baptismal mystical (not magical) "grace":
" When thou hast been deemed worthy of the grace, He then giveth thee strength to wrestle against the adverse powers. For as after His baptism He was tempted forty days,... so thou likewise though not daring before th baptism to wrestle with the adversaries, yet after thou hast received the grace, and art henceforth confident in the armour of righteousness, must then do battle and preach the gospel if thou wilt "
Briefly to recapitulate, these first three lectures showed the catechumens three main points :
(1) That the new life was t be one of struggle, in which effort would be required of them.
(2) The nature and cause of e struggle, and the existence of a remedy.
(3) The nature and working and extent of the remedy.
The subject of the fourth lecture is more purely intellectual. St. Cyril has carried them on a certain distance towards understanding the nature of the Christian life : now he seems o stop and remind them that this community which they are about to join is built on what one Might almost call an intellectual basis. The Christian life is not to be a matter of mere sensation or enthusiasm ; it is a thought out scheme. Probably t was nearly as true in St. Cyril's time as it was in S, Paul's that "not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called ";1 and yet at the same time the Christian scheme, though the simple might grasp enough of it for their safety, made its appeal to the wise and learned : 2 " The method of godliness consists of these two things, pious doctrines and virtuous practice ; and neither are the doctrines acceptable to God apart from good works, nor does God accept the works which are not perfected with pious doctrines."
St. Cyril had a mixed audience before him. This is not a matter of conjecture, but of his own statement. In the third paragraph he refers to "the more simple among you," and to "those here present whose habit of mind is mature." The problem is to present the necessary doctrines in a manner simple enough for the ignorant and not tedious to the learned. He has no intention of shirking the difficulty ; " a most precious possession therefore is the knowledge of doctrines " : the simplest there must make the necessary mental effort ; there is an intellectual element in the new faith which all must at least endeavour to grasp. Yet in the same breath St. Cyril warns the more learned of their special danger : if the illiterate may miss the truth through want of culture, the educated may obscure it by over subtlety : " Also there is need of a wakeful soul, since there are many that make spoil through philosophy and vain deceit."
This fourth lecture is indeed and admirable instance of the Father's skill in keeping all the units of a heterogeneous class at the full stretch of their powers ; a skill which many a modern teacher might envy, as he surveys a large class of imperfectly graded min s. St. Cyril proceeds to deliver " a short summary of necessary doctrines" in a manner "fitted . . .for children." In fact he deals with the ten points—Of God ; Of Christ ; Concerning His Birth of a Virgin ; Of the Cross ; Of His Burial ; Of the Resurrection ; Concerning the Ascension ; Of Judgment to come ; Of the Holy Ghost ; Of the Soul : and difficult subjects in the rare it is within the grasp of the the learned by jejune crudeness St. Cyril adds a few par. "body"; he suggests ruleshe deals with these manner which, while it is within the grasp of the simple, does not repel the learned by jejune crudeness.
The fifth lecture is on Faith. Its place in the course is judicious. The previous lecture on the ten points of doctrine must have suggested the necessity for it. And that necessity will be intensified by the remaining thirteen lectures on the main clauses of the Apostles' Creed.
The above brief outline will have shown the plan of St. Cyril's lectures ; the methods resemble those which he used in the Procatechesis : in them we find a similar clearness of exposition ; a like mingling of encouragement and warning ; a similar appeal to intellect, will, and feeling ; an equal aptness of illustration ; a similar careful elucidation of the unknown by the known. The matter of his lectures is, of course, wholly theological. It is not, however, so much the matter as the form which interests the student of education. No illiterate, no untrained teacher would ever dream of such orderly sequence in the presentation ; no untrained intelligence would link truth to truth and draw conclusion from premises so logically ; no undisciplined, unread speaker would have at his fingers' ends such richness of illustration, such appositeness of diction. Had St. Cyril been ignorant or careless of mundane learning, his religious teaching could not have shown such point, dignity, and penetration.
It has seemed better to put St. Clement of Alexandria and St. Cyril of Jerusalem more or less side by side, because they offer in rather a remark-able way examples of men who, being learned, used their learning unconsciously, as it were, for the furtherance of the Christian Faith. They concentrate their attention more closely on the purely religious side of Christian education. If St. Clement's Paedagogue seems to deal in the main with moral training, St. `Cyril's Catechetical Lectures show us the intellectual side of Christian education, the care for the mind, the appeal to the under-standing, the stimulus to the will.
But when Roman education developed in the centuries following the birth of Christ, when schools sprang up in the wake of her armies as they added province to province and founded colony after colony, then the Christian leaders, who penetrated into the remote corners of the Empire without relinquishing their work in her great cities, found themselves continually brought into contact with secular education ; they could not all detach them-selves entirely, and devote their energies to the purely religious side of the question as St. Clement in the second and St. Cyril in the fourth centuries seem to have been able to do. Prominent among the Christians who thus came into touch with secular education are Tertullian in the end of the second and beginning of the third centuries, and Jerome in the fourth. Before we pass on to the first of these, Tertullian, one or two passages may be quoted from St. Cyril's lecture indicative of his literary capacity, a capacity which proves the soundness of his own learning, and the reality of his desire to train the taste of his pupils. Naturally, in a translation, much of the grace and original beauty escapes ; perhaps enough remains to show that the Saint was an accomplished writer. One of the most picturesque, as it is also one of the best known, passages in St. Cyril's lectures occurs in the sixteenth (upon the Holy Ghost the Comforter) :1 "For one fountain watereth the whole of Paradise, and one and the same rain comes down upon all the world ; yet it becomes white in the lily, and red in the rose, and purple in violets and hyacinths, and different and varied in each several kind : so it is one in the palm-tree and another in the vine, and all in all things; and yet is one in nature, not diverse from itself ; for the rain does not change itself, and come down first as one thing then as another, but adapting itself to the constitution of each thing which receives it, it becomes to each what is suitable. Thus also the Holy Ghost, being one and of one nature, and indivisible, divides to each His grace, according as He will.
Reference was made before to St. Cyril's ability in packing a single sentence full of instruction and meaning for different minds : the following is a good example of this : " on the day of Pentecost, I say, they were sitting, and the Comforter came down from Heaven, the Guardian and Sanctifier of the Church, the Ruler of Souls, the Pilot of the tempest-tossed, who leads the wanderers to the light, and presides over the combatants, and crowns the victors."
Every practical teacher knows the difficulty of attracting and riveting the attention of many minds at once, especially when, as was the case with St. Cyril's hearers, those minds differ widely in attainment and capacity, and will appreciate the skill wherewith this Christian teacher makes a many-sided appeal in so few words. Once more the skilful teacher who also possesses literary capacity is distinguished by his ability to express those truths which he desires shall remain in the pupil's mind, at once graphically and succinctly. An instance of this occurs when St. Cyril has come to an end of his teaching concerning the Holy Ghost, and wishes to leave an ineffaceable mark on his hearers' memories : 2 "All thy life long will thy Guardian the Comforter abide with thee ; He will care for thee as for His own soldier ; for thy going out, and thy coming in, and thy plotting foes."
Every strenuous yet experienced and often disappointed hearer of St. Cyril, could he once grasp and believe that simple yet comprehensive sentence, had seized the pith of two lectures, and had found the comfort he wanted. One last quotation may be given as an instance of St. Cyril's method of solving a theological difficulty by comparing it to some fact within his hearers' knowledge, a fact in which they would all acquiesce contentedly. The special difficulty treated is one which has troubled men's minds in all ages, the long tarrying of God's judgments. A simile is not, of course, a method of proof or disproof, but it is a method of consolation, and as such St. Cyril uses it here : l "Marvel not, however, because of the delay of judgment ; no combatant is crowned or disgraced till the contest is over ; and no president of the games ever crowns men while striving, but he waits till all the combatants have finished, and then deciding between them, he may dispense the prizes and the chaplets. Even thus God also, so long as the strife in this world lasts, succours the just but partially, but afterwards He renders to them their rewards fully."