Newspaper Page Text
"I i If til H1NG MOT EHMIS. The Catholic Bulletin takes much pleasure in publishing the subjoined letter, written by a Chaplain in the United States Army, with a view of interesting the Catholics of the coun try in the matter of better provision for the spiritual care of Catholic sol diers. The writer of the letter is one who has labored long and hard in the service of our soldiers. He speaks from actual experience his words merit serious attention. He is a chap lain in the army, and treats only of the army. But, in fact, his observa tions apply equally to the navy. At the present time there are six Catho lic chaplains in the navy: there is need of more if the proportion of Catholics on our war-ships is duly considered. But the case is with the navy as it is with the army: the fault lies, not with the government, but with Catholics themselves, who fail to turn to advan tage the good will and impartiality of the government. LETTER OF AN ARMY CHAPLAIN. "Six years ago we had twelve posi tions allotted to Catholics, and today we have sixteen. But with the twelve as well as with the sixteen, the same conditions obtained, that is, a short age of applicants. There are two va cancies now, to be filled by Catholic priests. The Protestants are turning Washington upside down trying to get these places filled by their own minis ters. Inasmuch as these vacancies do not belong to us by law, but were only assigned through the courtesy and kindness of the War Department, they can be filled by Protestants at any time. And while the War Department is ever anxious* to get priests, and willing to put up with many incon veniences rather than diminish their number, still, it cannot continue to leave regiments without chaplains in definitely, and may at any time be forced to fill these places with Protest ants. And once we yield our grip on those positions, we can never regain them. The original vacancies as well as the increase came from the en largement of the Army, as the Protest ants would not relinquish one position they already held. The worst feature of the whole affair is that there is a probability of an increase of sixteen chaplains in our Army during the com ing winter, and of these we ought to get four, making a total of twenty. But unless we promptly fill the exist ing vacancies, the War Department will not be willing to permit four more regiments to be indefinitely without chaplains. "A few years ago there was a clam or in the country for Catholic Chap lains, and the Government was fre quently styled 'bigoted,' because we were not properly represented. It would seem as though the_title was ill-merited, and that we ourselves are the real offenders. It may be suggest ed that while Chaplains are loaned to the Service, they always belong to their bishops, and it would be a mat ter of some comfort to them if their bishops would keep in close touch with their priests in the Army and the Navy, and make them feel that after a career of honor in the Army and the Navy, they may return to their Dioceses and there receive the same consideration for their work as they would have received for similar work in the Diocesan field. Chaplains may enter the service for a limited period. "But there is anotlSer matter which demands immediate attention, and that is, the care of the soldiers when they are located in Posts, where there is no Catholic Chaplain. It is true that some of these are very well at tended by priests in nearby parishes, and some are visited occasionally, but the large majority are totally neglect ed, and the soldiers never get an op portunity of going to Mass or of re ceiving the Sacraments. I have just returned from a visitation of our sem inaries whither I went to appeal to our future priests on behalf of out sol diers, that they, through love of God and of country, may do all in their power to keep the faith alive among the Catholic soldiers. The interest and enthusiasm displayed everywhere in soldiers and the many expressions of devotion to such a work, convince me that we are not lacking in priests who have the proper spirit of sacrifice necessary for this special vocation. On my trip I visited many Army Posts, some indeed, among the most import ant in the country, and I found that while in many cases, priests never enter the gate, protestant teachers and the Y. M. C. A. secretaries were constant and consistent in their ef forts to get Catholics under their •VEing. I found a perfect system in op eration for tabulating soldiers where by they can keep in touch with them as long as they are in the army. What chance, I ask, has an ordinary Catho lic soldier of preserving the Faith of his Fathers under such circumstan ces? We have the same right to en ter Army Posts and to care for our own as have the protestants, and the Government and Army officers are al ways very willing to help us, if we only seek their aid. Probably the greatest menace to the progress of the Catholic Church in our Army today, is the Y. M. C. A. They are building establishments in .every Army Post, and while pretend ing to be non-sectarian, they are, to us$ the words of one of our Archbish ops, "all that is left of protestants to day." These men are trained for this special work, which is to capture con verts, through athletics, education, or (fatli oli any other means whatever. It is no use for us, through blindness or in difference, to say that they are not making progress, or that Protestants are opposed to them as we are. Many Protestants do not like them for the very reason that we should oppose them, that is, because they are a re ligious body masquerading under non sectarian colors, and who are* there fore, fishing for converts in every pond. They are decatholicising many of our soldiers. Last winter Congress voted the right of fr$e transportation on the transports, in the Philippines, Porto Rico and Honolulu, etc., for Y. M. C. A. secretaries, and their para phernalia, that is, bibles, tracts, etc. That means that the Government practically subsidizes them, and plac es them and their religious propagan das before the people of our depen dencies, as objects of special favor. Having served in Cuba for two and one-half years, I know the Spanish character very well, and I can say in all truth that such action will be con strued by the people of our Catholic dependencies to mean that this is a Proteslant country, because they have hitherto been accustomed to the union of the Church and State, and they will feel that this material assistance could only come from such a combi nation. There is no telling how much injury the Church is suffering today through this one thing. The law ought to be repealed next Congress, or amended to include emissaries, from these countries, of every other religion which, I feel, would kill it." ELEMENTARY EDUCATION. There is a widespread belief—wheth er based on truth or not does not here call for comment—that the ele mentary schools of the country, both public and private, are not fulfilling the mission for which they were estab lished. It is said that they fail to im part to the child a proper training in the fundamental branches of an ordi nary education and they lose no time on non-essentials, on fads and fancies that they do not prepare a child for his future career that they rest upon a theoretical and impractical basis that they look to the benefit of the few who enter high school and ignore the interests of the many who do not go beyond the elementary grades that they show results ill-proportioned to the vast expenditure of time and money. Fast upon this severe arraignment, there follows, as might be expected, proposals for remedying the radical defects. Some demand a complete re organization of the elementary school, and a curriculum more practical in character and better suited to present social, economic, and industrial condi tions. This new curriculum would be so formed as to bring into the first six years of school life the most potent forces of education and would be di rected more to the service of the ninety or ninety-five per cent, of the children who never enter a secondary school, rather than to the small per centage who do. Coincident with these demands, and as an outcome of them, is the plea for another class of schools—the industrial, the trade, and the vocational school. Those who are guiding the educa tional life of the nation are not in sensible to the urgent demands for a change in the efficiency and charac ter ot the elementary school, and for the establishment of schools adapted to the industrial needs of our vast population. They recognize, however, that the solution of the problems cre ated by the present educational sys tem is by no means easy. It may be conceded that dissatisfac tion with the work of the schools is justified that a readjustment of the present course of study is necessary to put it in accord with the require ments of modern life. It may also be granted that complete success will no more attend a simplified and carefully planned than a complex, ill-adapted course, unless the teachers are trained in the right methods of imparting knowledge, and are fitted to form the moral and intellectual life of the child for it is the teacher alone who can give soul and strength to the lifeless word. How this efficiency is to be secured to the teacher does not enter into the scope of this report my pur pose is rather to speak briefly for the agencies which must concur in the making of the successful teacher. The first agency is the Motherhouse of the religious teaching community The Motherhouse bears the heaviest burden of this highly responsible work it must make its members first religious and then teachers. However careful a teaching community may be about the first duty, it cannot sue ceed without a keen sense of its re sponsibility as to the second for to send insufficiently prepared teachers into the class-room is to introduce into the community's organism ele ments which will gradually destroy both its intellectual and religious life The second formative power in pro viding a well-trained teaching body is the local superior of the Parish School On the local superior depends largely the success of the school, the chai acter of the work done in it, the at titude of parents towards it, the har monious relations between the pastor and the teaching corps. The local superior should be spiritually minded and exact in the observance of her rule. The relaxation of the safeguards of the religious life brings into danger one of the most potent influences in the formation of the religious charac (Continued on page 4.) Spain is not, indeed, a republic neither is it an absolute monarchy. Its governmental system compares very favorably with that of any other constitutional monarchy in Europe. In the matter of individual security against arbitrary treatment by the sovereign or his official representa tives, the Spanish subject has for cen turies been effectively protected by fundamental and organic law. The Privelegio General of Aragon was granted only 68 years after the sign ing of the Magna Charta, and its pro visions for the protection of the indi vidual, especially in his rights to life, liberty, and property, are second only to those of the famous English docu ment. The Manifestacion, which is more than 700 years old, is as effective as the writ of habeas corpus for pre venting arbitrary imprisonment. Con cerning the legal system of medieval Spain, Mr. S. P. Scott, a high Ameri can authority writes: "In its thor oughness of organization in its adapt ability for the requirements of those for whose benefit it was designed and in its impartial and speedy adminis tration of justice, it was at least four centuries in advance of the judica ture of England." ("Annual Bulletin, Comparative Law Bureau of the Amer ican Bar Association," July 1, 1909, p. 19.) He sums up his study of Spanish Jurisprudence in the following words: ST. PAUL, MINN., JANUARY 14, 1911 £RRER III 1 CM Of IMHTT. The Constitution and Code of Spain are founded upon exact principles of justice, and admirably adapted to all the purposes of legislation, judicature, the protection of civil rights, and the repression of arbitrary power" (p. 25). Indeed, the every day life of the indi vidual is less affected by the national government in Spain than in most of the countries of Europe, with the nat ural result that the majority of the people take very little interest in na tional affairs. Yet the average American thinks of Spain as the typical land of centrali zation, arbitrary power, and opposi tion to the principles of democracy, though he would probably concede that she is no worse in these respects than Russia. The victims of this im pression ought to read history. If they did they would find that, in the early seventeenth century, when the doctrine of the divine right of kings had become fashionable in more than one country of Europe (it was not known in the Catholic Middle Ages) a Spanish theologian, Francisco Suarex, defended in terms that would satisfy any moderate believer in democracy the theory that civil power has its im mediate origin in popular consent and commission, and not in a supernatural delegation from God. Replying to James I of England, one of the au thentic inventors of the "divine right of kings," Suarez declared: "No mon arch holds authority immediately from God, but only through the medi um of the human will. This is, indeed, a 'celebrated theological axiom,' not, as the king says, 'ridiculous,' but true ("Defensio Fidei Catholicae, III, ii, 10). Commenting on a similar pas sage in another part of the works of Suarez, the English historian, Hallam, observes: "So clear, brief, and dis passionate a statement might have caused our English divines, who be came very fond of the patriarchical theory [that the king held his au thority directly from God] to blush before the Jesuit of Granada" ("His tory of Literature," II, 133). Nevertheless, it may be objected that certain hereditary and privileged classes exercise too much power in the upper house of the Spanish legis lature that it would be better for Spain and the majority of the Spanish people if the influence of these classes were diminished, and some represen tation in the Senate accorded to the working classes. The principle of representation by classes in one of the two houses of the national legislature is fundamentally sound, inasmuch as it enables the members of each class to safeguard their own interests by sending to the legislature men who represent and understand these inter ests specifically but any scheme based upon this principle ought to provide for the representation of all the important classes, especially the poorest and most numerous. The jus tification of the latter statement is identical with the justification of de mocracy, or representative govern ment, as against absolutism and bene volent despotism. Normal self devel opment supposes that no man or class will permit another to do for him or them those things which he or they can do as advantageously for them selves. In the second place, there are some things pertaining to the welfare of every class which no other class can understand as well or provide for as effectively as the class itself that is directly interested. In the third place, the superior intelligence of the upper classes does not always include that particular kind of intelligence which is necessary for wise and just government moreover, the superior classes have generally shown them selves quite as selfish as any other and quite as apt to regard the public welfare as identical with their own welfare. In so far as the legislative system of Spain ignores the foregoing facts, it is capable of improvement. Whatever defects exist in the Span ish Constitution can all be removed by orderly and constitutional methods This is quite as true 01 Spain as it is of England, where a far-reaching cfiange of this kind is now in process, ifo other country of Europe furnishes less provocation for the activities of anarchists, whether of the peaceable or the violent stripe. Now Ferrer's sole aim as a teacher and publicist was to make revolutionists and anar dhists. While he did not, in his later years, advocate the use of force, there can be no doubt that he would have approved it if he thought it opportune. Nor can anyone doubt that his teach ing was calculated to foster precisely the same attitude in others. Unless, therefore, Mr. Archer believes in the theories of anarchism, to be realized if necessary by the bomb and the torch, he does but stultify himself when he implies or suggests that Fer rer's political teaching and activity were in the direction of progress. JOHN A. RYAN. THE SISTERS OE THE i There is nothing written that does afnple justice to the work of the Con gregation of the Good Shepherd. No pen picture of the character of the SjLsters of this community reveals to the saintly beauty of their lives, hen the convent doors close behind em they are completely separated om the world. When the veil is taken and the vows spoken, the re nunciation of all human things is so complete that the white-robed Sister nnot ever again enter her own home en at the time of the death of a Icjved parent. Postulants are received ly from the very best families and e young lady who heeds the call of the Master to serve Him in the clois ter has been surrounded by comforts— often by luxuries—in her home. The moral conditions for admission to the novitiate are most exacting and in tellectually we find them with a su perior mind and an education that fits many of them to adorn the most ex alted places in civil society. Th$ Workings of Grace. The operations of grace are here rtrjst manifest. The secluded—one wears a peaceful smile that shows how happy her life is and if events of the world outside are spoken of in her presence she evinces no interest un less it has to do with undertakings and movements that promote the great er glory of God. Her thoughts are fixed on high and her great aim is to be ever worthy of her high calling, to be a dutiful child of our Heavenly Father and a profitable servant of the Great Master. Though secluded, she is not living for herself. Fired with zeal for the salvation of others she labors unceasingly "serving God and souls where service is the supreme act of personal surrender for God's sake to the children of misery and of dereliction, gathering to her account day by day merit and title to reward." Though separated from the world she is not unacquainted with its fell Influence on the weak and its power to pull down the supposedly strong. Though associated in her religious life with the purest of souls she min gles with the victims of the debasing passions of the votaries of pleasure and has under her directfon those over whom the powers of evil have had complete control. A true spouse of Christ she labors to make Him and His teachings known to those whose religious training has been neglected, or restore His spirit to the breasts of those who have rejected Him. Rescue of the Fallen. Oar Catholic people should know the wonderful results achieved by the Sisters of the Good Shepherd in the reform of girls who have fallen so low that we must be silent about the nature and extent of their depravity. Good and zealous men and women in terested in the erring girl outside of a house of refuge are working for her welfare at a great disadvantage. The evil influences surrounding her are very powerful and ever leading her to a life of sin. Though efforts made for her well-doing are earnest they are oftimes ineffective on account of not being constant as those who seek to bring about her reform cannot exer cise hourly vigilance over her. With strong tendencies to evil, dwelling in a home that in no sense safeguards her from soul-defilement, breathing an atmosphere that is morally poisonous the odds are against a happy outcome of the contest between good and evil. While yet a little child she becomes familiar with the language of the de praved and at the time when she should be unaware of the existence of immorality she has learned the mean ing of the unspeakable language of the vile. In consequence while yet young she becomes like to her associates and after repeated and serious downfalls she is given over to the care of those angelic women who, with outstretched arms, are ever willing to receive the most degraded of their sex. No mat ter with what disgust we may look upon her surroundings and sensual as sociates we learn by study of such cases that they exercise over her a peculiar charm and occupy a warm place in her heart. The tie that binds her to her tainted home and unworthy friends may be a very strong one. The loss of what she considers liberty, removal from ter home and separation from those (Continued on page 3.) I DOME OE THE BLESSES SACRAMENT. Under the Jewish dispensation there was, so to speak, only one parish church for all Israel. The "Mountain of the House of the Lord" was pre pared "on the top of the mountains," and "exalted above the hills." "Come and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob, and He will teach us his ways, and we will walk in his paths for the Law shall come forth from Sion, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem." "In every place there is sacrifice, and a clean oblation." Where ever the glorious Name is known and confessed, though only a handful of the poorest be gathered together, though the place of meeting be as wretched as the Stable of Bethlehem, there is the good God willing to set His taber nacle in their midst to walk among them to be their God and to recog nise them as His Chosen People. The first and supreme purpose of a parish church is to provide an altar for the Adorable Sacrifice and a shelter for the Divine Presence. You have not forgotten, no one could for get, the infinitely tender as well as sacred association of the First Mass. The injunction "Do this in commem oration of Me" has never ceased to haunt the Church's memory or to melt her heart. Once for all the liturgical "breaking of bread" took its place as the one outstanding feature of her worship. The "Ecclesia," the place of assembly, became straightway the "Dominicum" the House of Our Lord. For many a long year of unceasing oppression, again and again breaking out into fierce persecution, she cher ished her gift in silence and conceal ment. Her oratories, like our own in penal days, were dark and hidden sanctuaries: a room in some Christian house, or, when the storm was at its height, a subterraneous chamber among the resting places of her heroic dead. Yet even then her mind was busy about the great future that she knew was hers. She spent the weary centuries weaving assiduously the precious web of Sacred Liturgy where with to veil the Divine Mysteries with becoming splendour when her hour had come. She evolved the rite of Holy Mass as we, know it now in all its essential features. She elaborated her Sacramental Ritual so that the outward sign might speak volumes to the inward sense. She chose her les sons from the Old and New Testament. She selected her psalms and canticles, and composed her earliest hymns, and taught her children how to while away the long vigils in holy song. Then, too, she poured out her heart in preface and in prayer, those in spired utterances, recurring in her services like gems threaded on a golden cord. At length when dawn flushed the sky and the voice of Constantine an nounced freedom and honour to the disciples of the Cross, the Church came forth from her catacombs well furnished for her larger opportunities. Like a Queen she took possession of the basilicas built for her, and the pagan world realised with breathless astonishment the wonder of Catholic worship. The despised Christian mys teries, opening out their petals and dif fusing their odour in the light of day, captivated the human soul as no other rite ever had or ever will. The old gods fled. Their temples fell into ruins. Churches grew up with all the profusion of spring. The prophecy had come true. The name of the One God was great among the Gentiles, and the clean oblation was ascending be fore the throne from the rising to the setting of the sun. "I will set my tabernacle in the midst of you." First and last, dear brethren, this new church of yours is a Mass house: and, were it a thousand times as magnificent, a thousand times as costly, it would still be a feeble in strument to reveal the glories of Holy Mass. But such as it is, so far be yond what it is given to other congre gations to possess, you are bound by every tie to use it to good effect. It must be for you a point of honour, nay, a matter of conscience, to dis play in this church the noblest type of Divine Service. For the young priests of the diocese you must pro vide a training-ground, where they can learn only the best traditions. For the missions of the diocese, less bless ed than yourselves, you must be a model and an inspiration. For your separated brethern you must be mis sionaries, showing them all the wealth of spiritual help they have lost, and which it is still possible for them to regain. All this is expected of you, and I feel sure the expectation will not be disappointed. Pride is a vile word, and I will not exhort you to "take pride in your church." I will rather say, undertake the work of pro viding all that is requisite for the glory of Catholic worship with enthusiasm generosity and a deep feeling of piety In such a scheme place can always be found for the gifts of the poor, so peculiarly dear to the Sacred Heart. But as a congregation I would ask you to bear in mind that petty economy is never so out of place as when making offerings to Him "who openeth His hand and fllleth with blessing every living creature." The best is infinitely unworthy. Less than the best is in sufferably mean. Clothe your priests for the divine offices with "a robe of glory." Make your sanctuary resplen dent with fair white linen. Let tapes MINHEr:'"'TA H'STORiCAL O i V Number 2 tries and carpets be fit for the court of the King of Kings. Place no can delabra or other furniture near thv altar of sacrifice except the best work of "excellent artificers," as the Scrip ture says. Banish every object that is vile, or ragged, or soiled, or broken, at least as promptly as you would ban ish it from a drawing-room. As for the character of your services* the Sacred Liturgy, "the full service of God," as one of our martyrs call® it, looking back upon it with tender regret, will satisfy your highest ambi tion. Once it was familiar to every Englishman. You have the opportun ity and the obligation of making it familiar again. No meretricious at tractions of modern invention are needed where pains are taken to mas ter the holy offices, to penetrate their meaning, and to carry them out with befitting splendour. Every season of the year, the times of mourning and the high festivals, will speak to you in the sublime ac cents the Church knows so well how to choose, of sin and redemption, and repentance and sanctification, of the glory and intercession of our Blesseff Mother and the Saints, and of the needs of the suffering souls. Only this morning, for example, what a wonder ful pageant was that most familiar of all functions, the Solemn High Mass! How stately its progress from the humble confession of guilt at the foot of the altar, on through the ceremon ious chanting of Epistle and Gospel, Creed and Preface, to the thrilling climax of the Consecration! "Thett all the people together made haste and fell down to the earth upon their fac® to adore the Lord their God, and to pray to the Almighty God, the Most High. And the singers lifted up their voices, and in the great house the sound of sweet melody was increased. And the people in prayer besought the Lord the Most High, until the worship of the Lord was perfected, and they had finished their office." Then tha High Priest in blessing "lifted up his hands over all the congregation to give glory to God with his lips, and to glory in his name: and he repeated his prayer, willing to show the power of God."—The Bishop of Northampton England, on the occasion of a recent Church Dedication. IMPORTANT WORK oi^A BENE OICTINE. v i- Father Antonio Staerk, monk of the Benedictine Monastery at Buckfast, at present serving in the Church of St. Stanislaus, 9, Malia Masterskia, has nearly completed his important work the reproduction of the original texts of St. Jerome, which are in the Russian Imperial library. This work contains several manuscripts of great interest to Englishmen, especially those on the ecclesiastical history «f the Venerable Bede and his comment aries on Holy Scripture. Others are on the famous codex of four Gospels in old Irish writing of the eighth cen tury by Frideger. There are also several old manuscripts of the school of Bobbio (a foundation of St. Colum banus). The scientific academies could not undertake the production of such an expensive work, but Father Staerk has carried it out free of debt, thanks to the liberal help he has re ceived from all, Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant. It will form a mag nificent volume, and will contain about a third more than was promised in the prospectus. Nearly all the principal libraries of the Continent, England and America are on the list of sul» scribers. The texts, many of which have never been reproduced, will be of great value in the revision of the Vulgate. Everybody connected with the work, publishers, printers and photographers, have co-operated heartily with Father Staerk, and it Is through the kindness of the Russia® authorities that these valuable manu scripts will be given to the world, iv is not too much to say that the book will be he most remarkable one of the coming year. THE ADESTE FIDELI3. As the Adeste Fidelis is sung until Candlemas Day, February 2nd, thia word about its origin will be interest ing. Individual authorship the Adeste Fidelis may not have had. The at mosphere of the monastic scriptorium breathes, however, through its melodi ous strophes. It is in many respects unique in Christmas hymnology. More than any other church song it blends prophecy, history, prayer, exultation and praise. If it were printed side by side with the Nicene Creed it would be found an astonishing versification of that august prose. Every line of the Adeste is a casket of faith and love. Upon its cadence many hours must have been spent for the crystalization of sublime truth into crisp and dazzling syllables. Adeste: approach fldeles: ye faithful laeti: joyful triumphantes: victorious venite: come adoremus: let us adore Dominum: the Lord. The hymn in the Latin form, is so musical that it is memorized almoti& without effort. It is found continu ously from the middle of the seven teenth century. It is believed that in many centers of devotion it was made also a recitation as of an oratorio. Plays drawn from Holy Writ were In vogue during the same period and the Adeste Fideles would have been a congruous incident in either a Passion play, a miracle play, or a Madonna play.