How to Annoy the Devil

‘Religion is now somewhat more established than it was. The people are everywhere exceedingly inclined to the better part. The practice of joining in church music [i.e. the psalms] has very much helped this. For as soon as they had once begun singing in public, in only one little church in London, immediately not only the churches in the neighbourhood, but even the towns far distant began to vie with each other in the same practice. You may now sometimes see at St. Paul’s Cross, after the service, six thousand persons, old and young, of both sexes, all singing together and praising God. This sadly annoys the Mass priests and the devil. For they perceive that by these means the sacred discourses sink more deeply into the minds of men, and that their kingdom is weakened and shakened at almost every note.’

— John Jewel, Bishop of Sarum, to Peter Martyr Vermigli


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