Pusey wanted union, and tended, naturally, to focus on the positive reactions of those Catholics like the Archbishop of Paris, Darboy (who would later become a martyr in the days of the Paris Commune), who, as he told Keble at the end of October 1865:
acknowledged our orders, was fully satisfied by the grace of our Sacraments, thought there had been mistakes on both sides about the end of the Reformation
and who thought that unity was attainable. But, at least in the public prints, such Catholics were in the minority, and most of those who responded were negative. As we have seen, Newman was not enamoured of the way Pusey had gone about his task, but he was wary of identifying himself with the mainly Ultramontane attacks on his old friend, not least because it was precisely from that direction that so much suspicion of himself came. The fact that Manning had rebuked William Lockhart for a mainly favourable review of the Eirenicon further increased Newman's relucatance to enter into print on the matter. As he told Pusey on 23 November:
you may be sure Manning is under the lash as well as others. There are men who would remonstrate with him, and complain of him at Rome if he did not go all lengths,—and in his position he can't afford to get into hot water, even tho' he were sure to get out of it.
But write Newman did. In a letter written on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception he wrote to his old friend:
You must not be made anxious that I am going to publish a letter on your "Eirenicon." I wish to accept it as such, and shall write in that spirit. And I write, if not to hinder, for that is not in my power, but to balance and neutralize other things which may be written upon it. It will not be any great length. If I shall say anything which is in the way of remonstrance, it will be because, unless I were perfectly honest, I should not only do no good, but carry no one with me,—but I am taking the greatest possible pains not to say a word which I shall be sorry for afterwards.
Pusey was, Newman told hm on 10 November 1865, taking a 'mere doctrinaire view' if if was basing himself on the canons of Trent. He needed to take into account what Newman called 'its practical system' - that was its 'popular catechism and books of devotion'; there was more to a church, and indeed to Christianity, than ecclesiology and official teaching. This, really, was the issue between the two men: to what extent did the official teaching the Church - assuming any one individual could identify it all - define what it meant to be an Anglican or a Roman Catholic. Newman, as we shall see, whilst disclaiming official authority for some of the more fanciful marian devotions, did not believe they could be set aside as somehow 'not Catholic'.