[cf. Augsburg Confession]
As His Worshipful Imperial Majesty received several days since a Confession of Faith presented by the Elector the duke of Saxony and several princes and two cities, to which their names were affixed, with his characteristic zeal for the glory of God, the salvation of souls, Christian harmony and the public peace, he not only himself read the Confession, but also, in order that in a matter of such moment he might proceed the more thoroughly and seasonably, he referred the aforesaid Confession to several learned, mature, approved and honorable men of different nations for their inspection and examination, and earnestly directed and enjoined them to praise and approve what in the Confession was said aright and in accord with Catholic doctrine, but, on the other hand, to note that wherein it differed from the Catholic Church, and, together with their reply, to present and explain their judgment on each topic. This commission was executed aright and according to order. For those learned men with all care and diligence examined the aforesaid Confession, and committed to writing what they thought on each topic, and thus presented a reply to His Imperial Majesty. This reply His Worshipful Imperial Majesty, as becomes a Christian emperor, most accurately read and gave to the other electors, princes and estates of the Roman Empire for their perusal and examination, which they also approved as orthodox and in every respect harmonious with the Gospel and Holy Scripture.
For this reason, after a conference with the electors, princes and states above named, in order that all dissension concerning this our orthodox holy faith and religion may be removed, His Imperial Majesty has directed that a declaration be made at present as follows:
In reference to the matters presented to His Imperial Majesty by the Elector of Saxony and some princes and states of the Holy Roman Empire, on the subject and concerning causes pertaining to the Christian orthodox faith, the following Christian reply can be given:
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