Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Vox Ecclesiae, Vox Christi

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Not 'neath the altar only,—yet, in sooth,
There more than elsewhere,—is the cry, “How long?”
The right sown there hath still borne fruit in wrong—
The wrong waxed fourfold. Thence, (in hate of truth)
O'er weapons blessed for carnage, to fierce youth
From evil age, the word hath hissed along:—
“Ye are the Lord's: go forth, destroy, be strong:
Christ's Church absolves ye from Christ's law of ruth.”
Therefore the wine-cup at the altar is
As Christ's own blood indeed, and as the blood
Of Christ's elect, at divers seasons spilt
On the altar-stone, that to man's church, for this,
Shall prove a stone of stumbling,—whence it stood
To be rent up ere the true Church be built.

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Dante Gabriel Rossetti