What is the enemy of man: the world, the flesh, or the devil? Sin is the ultimate enemy of man, since it is the only thing that can ultimately keep us from God, our beatitude. This traditional understanding of the Church's wisdom has led to the development of an elaborate theology of sin and its consequences, detailed here in full by Henry Cardinal Manning. He reveals in characteristic style:
- how venial sin leads to mortal,
- how sins of omission to sins of commission, and
- why sin is worse than disease.
Far from causing scruples and fear, Cardinal Manning's emphasis is on the healing and pardon that God's grace and appropriate penance can bring to the soul. Ultimately, sin does not have the last say; God's grace, through our cooperative repentance, does.
Henry Cardinal Manning was one of the most important converts to come out of the Oxford Movement in mid-19th-century England. Initially an Archdeacon in the Anglican Church, Manning converted to Catholicism at 43 and became a staunch priest of the true Church in England. He eventually became the second Archbishop of Westminster, the head of the renewed Catholic Church in England. He acquired the land for Westminster Cathedral in London and was instrumental in the First Vatican Council and influencing the social doctrine of the Church under Pope Leo XIII.
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- Cardinal Henry Edward Manning