Page:Historical account of Lisbon college.djvu/38

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HISTORICAL ACCOUNT OF LISBON COLLEGE.

from continuing his literary pursuits. His proficiency in the Portuguese language enabled him to exercise his zeal by public exhortations to the people, a practice which has sometimes been imitated by his successors, but of which he stands the first instance upon record. In April, 1660, he was made Doctor of Divinity. But a new field was now opening for the display of his abilities.

In the year 1661, he was appointed Chaplain and Preceptor to the Princess Catharine of Portugal, the destined Consort of King Charles II, and the year following he accompanied her to England. This appointment is evidence of his singular merit, and the high estimation in which he was held. The sufferings and fidelity of the Catholics in the royal cause, had earned for them a short suspension of that cruel and violent persecution with which they had been so long harassed. The clerical persons in the Queen s suite met with every mark of respect, and Dr. Godden had apartments allotted to him in the royal Palace of Somerset House. Here he found abundant opportunities of exercising his zeal and talents in religious and charitable works, and the reputation which he enjoyed brought him to the notice of the King.

It was during this period that he engaged in the celebrated controversy with Dr. Stillingfleet, which perhaps, owing to the great reputation of his opponent, has contributed more than any other event to perpetuate his memory. The occasion of this encounter was an assertion made by Stillingfleet, that though a person born and educated in the Catholic Faith could be saved, salvation was not attainable by those who should em brace Catholicity in case they had been educated in the doctrine of the Reformation. Dr. Godden s telling reply which did not admit of any direct or satisfactory answer, drew from the pen of Stillingfleet a volume of unjust charges and abuse against the Catholic Church. Dr. Godden, victorious in his first encounter, now stood forth in vindication of the Doctrines of the Church in general,