George F Dillon.

War of antichrist with the Church and Christian civilization : lectures delivered in Edinburgh in October 1884 online

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is generally their lot to have, can afibrd to spend earnings which
belong to their children, on the pernicious and expensive luxury
of drink? A working man needs every fraction he can earn by
his labour for the education and maintenance of his children, for
the rainy day, for the season of sickness, for an honest inde-
pendence in his old age. He cannot be honest to his children,
or to himself; he cannot advance religion, education, or the
cause of God, if he drinks. When' a working man loses his
employiuent, when he sickens, when he gets into trouble, we
invariably find drink at the bottom of it. There is nothing that
one can praise in the man who practises this vice. He is mean,
and he is cruelly dishonest always. He driirks the shoes off his
children's feet, the clothes off theu* backs, the bit from out their
mouths, the bed from under them, the home from over them,
and sends them upon society, boys degraded, and guis so lost
that I cannot contemplate the picture. It is therefore that good
Pastors like Cardinal Manning, who (because of his numerous Irish
flock, regards himself in London as an Irish Bishop) have under-
taken a life and death crusade against this devil that preys upon
the vitals of their most choice and devoted people. It is therelore
that Cardinal MacCabe and others have made so many personal


efforts to uproot this vice. My own Archbishop, for many years,
while Bishop of Ossory, in Ireland, practised total abstinence,
in order to give his people an example. He is determined to
make the same sacrifice in the new and vastly more extended
field of labour which the Vicar of Christ has committed to his
care at the Antipodes. I have great faith in such acts of self-
denial coming from such quarters. When those of the flock
who need restraint see the pastors placed over them by God
make such sacrifices for their salvation, there cannot, it seems to
me, be much doubt about the issue. What they can do, what
such men as the late Mr. A. M. Sullivan and others have done,
without any constraining necessity, others, who owe such restraint
to themselves and their families, can do. For the mere temporal
well-being of every working man, and every working man's
family, I would be glad to see every such man a total abstainer.
But when I consider the evils to which the eternal salvation of
the Irish working man, in these countries especially, is exposed
by the habit of drinking, I can find no words strong enough to
express my anxiety to see him give up intoxicating drinks
absolutely and for ever. The sacrifice is small, the gain enormous.
God grant that all whom my words may reach — all Irish
Catholics — may think with me on this point. Should that be so
the consequences would be indeed consoling. The Church of
God might well rejoice. The days of secret societies would for
the Irish end for ever, and for a certainty they would carrv out
to its fulness the glorious destiny given them of planting the
Faith all the world over, and resisting to the bitter end the
wiles, the deceits, and finally the last and most terrible onset of
Antichrist against God, His Church, and Christian civilization
throughout the world.



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iailjil <©bstat :


Censor Theologies Deputatus,

Coll. Om . Sanctorum.

Die Hi. Mensis Mail, \%'6'^.

Impiimatur :

Die iv. Mensis Mali, 1885,


Vic. Cap. Dublinietuis.


The following Lecture on the Spoliation of the Propa-
ganda is given to the I'eadcr almost rerbatim as it was
delivered. It contains, however, in e.rfnino, a translation
of a vaUiable document furnished by Monsignor C'onrado,
Hector of the Urban College, from the archives of the
Sacred Congregation. Some other documents, referred
to when speaking, are, for convenience-sake, embodied in
the text. Every fact stated has been carefully authenticated ;
and the lecturer will be amply rewarded for his pains if
the simple .statement he has given serves to make his
readers fully acquainted with a great wrong done to one
of the most beneficent Christian institutions in the world
by the greed and Anti-Christian hate of the Infidel
Revolution. /

All Hallows College,
Ajml, 188.5.



Hostility of organized Atheism to the Vicar of Christ, shown since the
French Revohitiou — Eecuperative Power of the Papac}- — Action of the
Italian Freemasons — Destruction of the Temporal Power — Suppression
of Religious Corporations — Illusory "Guarantee Laws" — Forced Con-
version of Church Lands into "Yinculated" Italian Bonds — Con-
sequences — The Propaganda — Its Means and Destination — Difference
between its Funds and the Funds of other Corporations — Its Funds
respected by Victor Emanuel — Action of the Italian Ministry after His
Death — Decree to convert the Estates of Propaganda into " Vinculated "
Italian Bonds — Violation of International Eights in this forced Conversion.
— Wrong done to British Catholics by it — Causes why British Statesmen
have not insisted on our rights — Ignorance of the Origin, Nature and
Purposes of the Propaganda Property — Necessity of Catholics being well
informed on this point, in order to be able to show the nature of the
wrong they suffer to their non-Catholic Fellow-citizens and non-Catholic


What is the Propaganda ? — The Propaganda in the Days of St. Peter
—St. Paul the First "Prefect " — The Propaganda as carried on afterwards
by the Popes — Resources for this work supplied even in the ages of
Persecution — Testimony of Monsignor Dupanloup — Conversions in the
days of Constantiue aided by the Popes— Palladius and St. Patrick sent
by Popes to Ireland and Britain — Missions Organized by ^t Leo the
Great— St. Valentinus and St. Severinus — St. Gregory the Great and the
Conversion of the Angles— Consequences — Conversions wrought by Irish
Missionary Saints and by Saints from Britain, always authorized, directed
and assisted by the Popes— Sts. Cyril and ^Methodius— Pope Sylvester II.
and the Hungarians — Conversion of Northern Europe the direct work of
the Popes — New Missionary Fields opened by the Discoveries of
Columbus and Vasco di Gama assiduously cultivated by the Popes— In-
crease of Missionary Zeal on their part consequent on the Apostasv of
many Nations at the Reformation— The Works of Gregory XIII. —


Necessity for Organized Assistance causes the Formation of the Sacred
Congregation of the Propaganda under Gregory XV. — The Bull of
Formation— Powers and Duties of the Propaganda— The Appwiti com-
menting thereupon — Its Staff.


Foundation of the College eomnienced hy Monsignor John Baptist
Vives in the Pontificate of Urban VIII. — Acts and Beneficence of the
Pontiff — The Offices of the Sacred Congregation of the Propaganda
formed in the Palace of Vives in the Piazza di Spagna — Foundations for
Students by Vives in the Urban College — Foundations by Cardinal Antonio
Barberini — Notice of the Foundation of the College by the Hector, Monsig-
nor Conrado, taken from the iVi'chives of the Propaganda — Foundations
from 1637 to 1883 — Nationalities represented in the Urban College —
Proportion of the Irish from the beginning — Privileges granted to Irish
Students — Ahmmi of other Missionary Colleges Taught Gratuitously in
the Propaganda Schools.


Its Contents — Books in Languages -whose Literatures vrere formed by
Propaganda Missionaries — Oriental Literature — Propaganda Linguists —
Professors Ciasca., Ferrata, Cardinal Howard.


The Vatican Printing Office — The Polyglot Press of Propaganda —
Utility for the Spread of the Faith amongst Barbarous Peoples and
amidst the various Oriental Eites.


Their Origin — Donations of Popes — The Cardinals' Rings — Legacies
— Careful Management — Gratuitous Services — Exemption from Taxes
under the Popes — Devotion of the Officials Employed — Hard "Work and
Small Pay — Instances- Monsignor Agliardi — The Cardinal Prefect, Sec-
retary^ and iNIinutanti — Spiritual Advantages, the Chief Reward — Distin-
guished Men connected with its present Management.


Nature and Commencement of its "Work — Its Care of the Oriental
Christians — Successes— Its Work for India, China, Japan and other
Asiatic Nations — For America — Its Zeal for the Conversion of Scotland



and other European Nations lapsed into heresy — Consequences — Its
Work for Irehand and the Irish People everywhere — Its "Work in
England — Its Administration in the Domain committed to its Keeping.


Persecution from the French Eepublic and Empire under Napoleon —
The Students Driven from the Urban College — From Monte Citorio —
Return with the Pontiff — Other Missionary Colleges Reopen — Persecu-
tion in our Days from the Italian Freemasons in Power — Extract from
the London Tablet — The Appunli on the Situation — "Going to Law with
the Devil and the Court ,in Hell" — Advantage to the Freemasons more
Imaginary than Real — The Rights of Foreigners deeply interested
cannot be taken away by an Italian Tribunal acting ultra vires — Injury to
British Catholics.


Who Endowed the Propaganda ? — Wrong Done to the Founders —
Wrong Done to an Irishman, Father Michael Doyle — The Premier's
Reply to Mr. O'Donnell, M.P.— Is Father Doyle's Money a "Sub-
scription ? " — Other British Donors to Propaganda Robbed by the forced
Conversion of the Funds of Propaganda— A Comparison — The Wrong
Done to poor Oriental Catholics — The Wrong as Great to British
Catholics — Tiie Funds of the Propaganda given for the Administration
of the Catholic Church in every portion of the Dominions of Her
Majesty, Queen Victoria — If Confiscated, British Catholics forced
to make iip the Loss — The United States Government forces the
Italians to respect American Catholic Rights less clear than the
Rights of British Catholics — The Case of the Proposed Sale by the
Italians of the Nortli American College — Peremptory Demand of the
United States instantly Respected — Confusion of English Residents in
Rome — Certainty of our non-Catholic Fellow Citizens sympathizing with
our Wrongs, if rightly informed, as we would in theirs.


Necessity of fully informing our Rulers and the Nation of the Wrong'
done us in the forced Conversion of the Propaganda Funds — The Fallacy
of Hopes in Italy being Realized by England- — Italy's ultimate Policy
unfavourable to England — Opinion on the Question by the late Mr,
A. M. Sullivan.



Having treated, as fully as I could in one lecture, of the
nature of that secret and powerfully organized Atheism,
which now for over a century has waged a fierce and
sleepless war with the Church of Jesus Christ, and which
means not only to destroy that Church but every form of
Christianity and Christian civilization, I come this evening
to speak, according to my promise, of a special feature in
that war ; namely, its intense hostility to the Vicar of Jesus
Christ, and its determination to deprive him of every
human means of exercising his divine mission with the
view of thus preventing the government of the Church
and the extension of the Kingdom of Christ in the world.
This feature in the Anti-Christian war of Freemasonry and
its attendant sects, has, as we have seen, been manifest
from the very commencement. Scarcely had its adepts
obtained power at the period of the first French Revolution,
when they aimed and dealt, too, a deadly blow at the
temporal power of the Pope, hoping thereby to cripple and
eventually to terminate his spiritual ministrations. The
blow was repeated under Napoleon, attempted frequently
after the Eevolution of July 1830, and again dealt wdth
the effect of banishing the Pontilf from his See by the
Italian Conspirators of 1848. The Papacy, however, with
that perennial elasticity which marks its history since the


days of St. Peter, returned to Rome, and made good in a
short time the evils which its absence had created. The
Revohition seeing this, seems to have no longer determined
to drive Christ's Vicar from the Vatican ; but, while
permitting him to remain there, practically a prisoner, to
deprive him of every means necessary or useful for the
exercise of his ministry for the benefit of the millions
committed to his keeping by God. Power having come
into the hands of the Freemasons of Italy, by means which
I shall glance at further on, they have taken, step by step,
possession of his temporal kingdom, until finally, in
violation of every right, human and divine, they seized
forcil^ly upon the City of Rome, and confiscated to their
own purposes even its religious treasures. They promised
at the time to respect such Institutions and persons in
that City as all Catholics knew to be necessary for the
government of the Church spread not only in Italy, but
throughout the whole earth. For instance, though by
law, the Religious Orders were suppressed in Piedmont,
in the rest of Italy, and in some other countries fallen
unfortunately into the power of the Atheistic secret
sectaries, they were not suppressed with us, nor, geographi-
cally speaking, in the greater part of the world. Now, the
Pope is sole Superior of all Religious Orders in the
Catholic Church. They are all instituted to serve him
specially and devotedly, and they depend directly upon him.
None know this better than the Italian Freemasons, who
forcibly took possession of Rome. They declared that
though in the rest of Italy, Religious Orders and other
Catholic Institutions were by law suppressed, yet even
these and everything else needed by the Supreme Pontiff"
for the government of the Universal Church, should be
sacredly respected by them in Rome. We know how


they have kept this promise so far as the governing
staff of the Kehgious Orders were concerned. They
respected the Generals and their assistants by casting
them out from their convents upon the streets. They took
possession of these convents for secular purposes. They
confiscated the whole revenues of the religious, and denied
to the successors of the same religious the miserable
pensions granted to those whom they brutally and igno-
miniously expelled. But we were told that this was to be
done only to the religious, and that the rest of the Insti-
tutions of Kome necessary for the service of the Pontiff,
for his dignity, and, above all, for the government of the
Church, should be most scrupulously respected. His person
was to be as much honoured, and to be as inviolable as that
of the King. The one residence left him in Kome was
to obtain the privilege of extra-territoriality, and his
means were to be protected on the pledged faith and
honour of the Italian King and Parliament. We know how
the honour decreed by law to the Supreme Pontiff was
respected by the Government, in the miserable insults offered
by a body of hired ruffians being permitted, if not more
than permitted, to outrage the venerated remains of Pius IX.
on their passage at night from St. Peter's to the Basilica of
San Lorenzo. The Pope refused, of course, the ostentatious
pension his plunderers voted him in lieu of the spoliation
of his States. But this gain did not satisfy them. They
proceeded, whenever they could, to violate or make null their
own laws of guarantee in his regard ; and they succeeded
For instance, they made a law by which the real property of
the Church should be all sold and converted into the bonds of
the new Italian Government. These bonds, at best, are only
worth whatever the solvency of the Italian Government may
be rated at, upon the markets of Eiirope. But the Church was


not to be permitted to have the advantage of ordinary bond-
holders. These latter could sell out their bonds at market
value. The Church was not permitted to do this. The
bonds purchased by the sale of her farms and houses were
made a debt of the Italian Government, it is true — but a State
debt due to the Chmxh only — a debt apart, which could be
dealt with at pleasure, and regarding which any dealing the
Italian Parliament might think well to apply, could not in
any sense affect the solvency of the nation in the markets
of Europe. Regarding the payment of these bonds the
Church has to depend absolutely upon the word of a body
of men who have broken faith with her constantly, and
whose promises were made, only to be broken at the first
favourable moment. ISTo man, therefore, values much the
security of the money of the Church, depending upon the
will of the Italian Masonic Parliament, for the payment
of interest.

Now, amongst other necessary Institutions, the
Pope had, for several centuries, in Rome, a well known
and most beneficial corporation, endowed by the piety of
the Pontiffs, and of Churchmen and pious laymen of every
rank and nationality in the world. Its funds were destined
not for Italy, but for us, and for the Catholics of every
English-speaking land, and for the maintenance of the
Faith and the extension of Christianity and civilization in
all parts of the world, where as yet these blessings had not
penetrated. If any funds could be secured from the grasp
of the Masonic Italian Government, those funds ought. If
any fidelity was to be kept in the observance of the laws
which guaranteed the independence and free exercise of
the universal spiritual mission of the Supreme Pontiff', it
should be shown, by respecting scrupulously the funds of
this institution. The very worst of the Italians, on enter-


ing Eome, protested loudly that the guarantees were real,
and they pointed out the inviolable condition of the Propa-
ganda as an instance of how sacredly these guarantees
were regarded. There might be some confusion of ideas
regarding the property of the religious orders in Rome,
but regarding the Pro2)aganda there could not be that
confusion. They continued to point it out for years, to every
stranger, as a proof of their fidelity. Victor Emmanuelj bad
enough, in all conscience, respected it. In his lifetime it
could not be touched. That would prove too flagrant a
violation, even for him, of the guarantees given by himself
and his Parliament. But the moment he passed away, the
mean, sordid cupidity of the governing sect in Italy mani-
fested itself, and an attempt was made, almost before the
dead King was cold, to subject the real estate of the
Propaganda to that law of conversion to which the property
of every Italian ecclesiastical corporation was subjected.

Two millions sterling Avas too much to remain
unmolested by the Italian "Left" in power. It was too
much for their weak fidelity to principle. It meant the
sale of desirable lands which those sectaries who made
*'an honest penny" somehow, by the change of affairs in
the country, wanted to buy. It meant the addition to the
not overstocked exchequer of the country, of money which
Ministers could disjDose of as they best knew how. It
meant, finally, a profit to the revenue of thirty per cent, on
the sale — a profit taken by various machinations of the
Italian Fiscal laws for the benefit of the " Department of
Finance." It meant the reduction of that great Institution
to the condition in which the finances of the smallest
Italian Diocesan, or other Chapter, is reduced by the forced
sale of its real estate and the conversion of its money into
" ^inculated " Italian Government bonds — bonds that


cannot be sold, and may be any day discarded by the
Italian Parliament.

This, in brief, is the condition to which the estates of
the Catholic Propaganda have been reduced by the action
of the Italian Government. It is a veritable spoliation
which not only reduces the actual revenue of the Institution
to a great extent, but which imperils the very existence
of the rest of that revenue. Now this confiscation would
be bad enough, if it were only a violation of pledges
solemnly made to the Supreme Pontiff. But it is worse.
It is a violation of international right, and no people in the
world are more concerned in the maintenance of that
international right than the Roman Catholic subjects of
Her Majesty Queen Victoria. We are in fact the principal
sufferers in this act of spoliation, for not only are our
religious rights, most justly acquired, interfered with, but
the making good of the damage which the Freemasons of
Italy have done the Institution, will practically fall on our
shoulders. The Propaganda for us means the actual
exercise of the authority of the Vicar of Christ in our
regard. By means of its funds it has carried out and
borne the whole expense of the care and government of
the Church in our midst for over two hundred years. It
has done much for our ancestors, as we shall see. It has
done much more for ourselves. We cannot do without it,
so far as we. are concerned, and then neither can we be,
nor are we, insensible to that which it does for others.
For us — for the Catholics of the world — the Propaganda
is all that which the whole circle of richly endowed,
zealously advanced " Missionary Societies," " Bible
Societies," and " Evangelical Societies," are for the
Protestant world. Our honour is connected with its
maintenance, and we cannot without a supremo struggle


permit it to perish. Nor shall we. But there is no reason
that we should have to do this if our Government be willina"
to protect our interest, and if that Government has not taken
any steps to protect us, I am perfectly sure it is because they
have not comprehended the wrong that is done us. In fact,
the Propaganda has discharged its onerous duties so noise-
lessly by the side of the Vicar of Christ, that we ourselves
came to look upon the beneficent effects, which we experi-
enced from it, as we look upon the light of the sun or the air
about us. We did not advert to the means which piety
had, in the past, placed at its disposal, and of which we
and our fathers received the fruits. It is the loss which
causes us to know, to the full, the value of the benefit — a
benefit, I say, so great, and so much a matter of course to
us, that even we ourselves remained ignorant of the sources
from wdiich it was derived. When, then, even amongst
ourselves there is not a full knowledge of what its history,
nature, and the nature of its resources now endangered, are,
how can we expect that our statesmen, who are not Catholics,
can know these things? It is, therefore, to enlighten them
as well as ourselves ; to inform, in fact, our fellow citizens
of every denomination, of the great international wrong-
done to us, and thereby awaken true sympathy and co-oj^er-
ation, that I have undertaken the task of entering, this
evening, as fully as the time at my disposal will permit,
into the whole question of the spoliation of the Propaganda —
into the nature and history of that noble institution doomed
to perish by local greed, it is true, but still more by the
anti- Christian hate and jDolicy of those ruthless sectaries
whose one aim is to destroy — root and branch — everything
not only that advances, but that even fosters Christianity in
the slightest degree. Their hate is not less for Pro-
testantism than for CathoHcity. Their aim is to eradicate the


very Cliristian idea from the minds and the hearts of man-
kind. Now all this we shall proceed to see by a consider-
ation, first, of the history and natm^e of the sacred Institution,
and, secondly, by a review of the means taken to destroy it.
From both, to-night, I am sure, all here, will come to the
conclusion that it is a clear duty of om^ own Government
to take some action for the preservation of the rights of
British Catholics, and that in any case it is a sacred obliga-

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Online LibraryGeorge F DillonWar of antichrist with the Church and Christian civilization : lectures delivered in Edinburgh in October 1884 → online text (page 18 of 26)