CENTER-SHOTS AT ROME
ROMANISM AND AMERICAN INSTITUTIONS.
We are Americans, and these colors [pointing to the flag with which the Bible-stand was draped] are our banners. [Applause.]
Romanism affords such a variety of subjects that months could be devoted to its discussion. But it is the object of this series of lectures to emphasize only the major themes.
In the second speech I called your attention to the fallacy of Papal infallibility.
The third lifted to your view the priesthood — human and powerless, and the iron grasp of an unnatural, immoral system, and necessarily depraved because the law of cause and effect is no respecter of persons, situations, or religions.
[pg. 152] The fourth revealed the confessional-box, the heart-throb of the system, as the instrument through with the unreligious, uncivilized, unlawful theology that is taught in the Catholic seminaries strikes both ways, and frequently accomplishes the ruin of both priest and penitent.
The fifth presented conclusively evidence — evidence, that most of which slipped from Rome's own tongue — in proof of the proposition that modern Roman Catholicism is nothing more nor less than medieval Roman Catholicism.
In the first discourse it was stated that Romanism is not a religion, but a world-wide political organization, and that it has designs on the United States. To-night evidence in support of that charge will be presented — evidence that will enable a blind man to see that Rome's church functions and benevolences are only covers under which she is operating her schemes against the freedom for which the fathers of our country poured out their blood.
Next Sunday night, when discussing
[pg. 153] "The Protestantism of Our Day and Its Relations to Roman Catholicism," I shall prescribe what I consider the only remedy.
To my Protestant critics — and I expected them to pop up [laughter] — who think me unbalanced and reckless, accuse me of sinister motives, and claim that I'm calling attention to a "mares nest" [laughter], I wish to say that my intellectual friends are chosen with some care and that I'm in good company, as I shall very soon prove. [Applause.]
I could introduce an array of great men, who, if they stood side by side, would form a line from Broad and Twenty-first Streets to the Capitol — men who, have studied Romanism from every angle and foreshadowed its trend, have been brave and patriotic enough to proclaim their convictions from the housetops. But as I have some propositions of my own to present for your consideration, I shall refer you to the utterances of only a few.
"The influence of the Roman Catholic Church is adverse to freedom in the
[pg. 154] state, the family and the individual.'' — William E. Gladstone.
"The pope, who would employ fire and sword against us if he had the power to do so, who would confiscate our property and not spare our lives, expects us to allow him full, uncontrolled sway." — Bismarck.
"This country had its first conflict for its independent existence; its second for its unbroken unity; the third will be for its institutions. — Philip Schaff.
"Papacy is a political system, despotic in its organization, antidemocratic and antirepublican, and can not, therefore, exist with American republicanism." — Professor Morse.
"If the liberties of the American people are ever destroyed, it will be by the power of the Roman clergy." — Lafayette.
"The whole of the Roman Catholic
[pg. 155] population of the male persuasion are being drilled and disciplined. I tell you, we are living upon a volcano." — Col. Edwin A. Sherman.
"It is no secret that the Roman Catholic Church is utterly and irrevocably opposed to our common-school system." — Beecher.
"If we are to have another contest in the near future of our national existence, I predict that the dividing-line will not be Mason and Dixon's, but it will be between patriotism and intelligence on one side and superstition, ambition, and ignorance on the other." — General Grant. [Applause.]
"The history of the last thousand years tell us that wherever the Church of Rome is not a dagger to pierce the bosom of a free nation, she is a stone to her neck and a ball to her feet, to paralyze her and prevent her advance in the ways of civilization, science, intelligence, happiness and liberty. Though not a prophet, I see a very dark cloud on our horizon. And that dark cloud is coming from Rome. It is filled with
[pg. 156] tears and blood. It will rise and increase till its flanks will be torn by a flash of lightning, followed by a fearful peal of thunder. Then a cyclone, such as the world has never seen, will pass over this country, spreading ruin and desolation from North to South. After it is over, there will be long days of peace and prosperity; for popery, with its Jesuits and merciless Inquisition, will have been forever swept from our country."— Abraham Lincoln. [Applause.]
Ladies and gentlemen, I would rather think in line with such men as these than be classed with the spineless preachers and thimble-brained laymen who are jabbing at me with toothpicks and saying I ought to preach the gospel and let Romanism alone. [Applause.] Nine-tenths of the people who are always objecting to what some one else is doing would not know the gospel it they met it on the street. [Laughter.] And the preacher who hasn't gotten far enough into the alphabet of the gospel to discover that it condemns Romanism ought to go back to plowing corn. [Applause.]
[pg. 157] But I doubt if he would have sufficient gumption to discriminate between the weeds and the corn. [Laughter.]
I have repeatedly called your attention to the fact that Catholics of to-day are taught that their church is infallible, and therefore unchangeable. In the preceding lecture I affirmed that the decrees of Romanism against the heretics have not only never been rescinded, but are still taught as doctrines divine, and that the old-time spirit of persecution — shorn of its legal power — is yet in existence, manifesting itself in numerous ways. And I submitted irrefutable evidence in support of the affirmation.
To-night I shall prove just a conclusively that Rome's political ambitions are as robust and determined to-day as they were in 1213, when King John of England was humiliated, and in 1209, when Count Raimond of France was beaten, and in 1077, when Emperor Henry of Germany kissed the pope's toe. [Laughter.] Perhaps some of you, who have attended all these meetings, are convinced by this time that when I say I'll prove
[pg. 158] something I mean business. [Applause.] And you will also recall that I usually pour the final glass of cider out of the Catholic jug. [Laughter.] In support of the charge I've just preferred, I shall rely exclusively upon Catholic testimony, giving you only a little of the mass in my possession. For a few minutes, therefore, you will have to drink only from the Catholic jug. [Laughter.] And I hope the beverage will sufficiently intoxicate you to stir your patriotism and determine you to at once start a movement in Columbus that will tell Romanism it does not own the very air you breathe. [Applause.]
Thomas Aquinas lived in the thirteenth century, but his "De Regimine Principum" and "Summa" are still taught in the Catholic seminaries.
Pope Leo XIII., in his Encyclical of 1879, commanded that all the doctrines of Aquinas should be taught [Aeterni Patris, para. 31]. And that command, like all other Papal commands, is still law in the Catholic Church. I can give you only a snatch of this present-day Catholic teaching, and here it is
[pg. 159] — verbatim et literatim. "The Church of Rome is one monarchy over all the kingdoms of the earth, and is, among the temporal kingdoms, as the mind or soul in the body of a man, or as God in the world. The Church of Rome was instituted by Christ to direct men into the ultimate end of man; and therefore must be unerring, and must also govern all secondary ends; must order everything which has the least relation to the ultimate end, whether it helps or obstructs men in reaching the end. Therefore the Church of Rome must not only have all spiritual power, but also the supreme temporal power." [— Thomas Aquinas]
How does that sound over here in America in the year 1914? If any of you have been blind to the situation, and have concluded that the Roman Church long ago sent her political ambitions to purgatory [laughter], and is now spending all her time saying mass [laughter], perhaps this will serve you as an eye-opener.
But when the eyes are pried open, they usually need a little ointment to
[pg. 160] make the vision clearer. Don't get uneasy and fear that the medicine-chest may be empty; I have plenty of ointment. [Laughter.] Before I began practicing on this case, I anticipated the demand for medicine, and "stocked up" [Laughter.] I could rummage among the ancient medicine-shelves, but I haven't much use for an out-of-date doctor. [Laughter.]
The first application will be that of a salve made by Dr. Leo XIII. in 1885. [Laughter.] Its technical name is "Immortale Dei." this encyclical proclaims that "the pope has supreme authority, spiritual and temporal; and has the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and has a supreme legislative, judicial, and coactive authority in both spheres." Now, I know your eyes feel a little easier. [Laughter.]
But wait, I'll put a little ointment out of the present Papal bottle [laughter] and it will cut away what remains of the cataract the "Catholic Benevolence" scheme has grown over your eyes. Pius X. is pointed to as a liberal pope. the truth is, he is about as straight as a
[pg. 161] pretzel. [Laughter.] In his recent Encyclical to the French, "Vehementer Nos," he declares: "That the church and state should be separated is a most false and pernicious doctrine." Isn't that superlatively delicious! [Laughter.] Doesn't it make your eyes feel good? [Laughter.] I told you I could cure you. [Laughter.]
From the first proclamation of universal Papal supremacy down to the last word spoken upon the subject, by the present pontiff, the Catholic Church has taught, as she intends to always teach, that the pope is the only logical ruler of the world.
If Pius X. should speak a word or write down a sentence against universal Papal dominion, he would, by that act, put a lie between the lips of all his predecessors, declare the Papacy fallible, and touch a spring in Peter's chair which would shoot him, like a sky-rocket, into a mud-hole on Mars. [Laughter.] He would be deposed so suddenly that he would think Mrs. Pankhurst and a million suffragettes had dropped down out
[pg. 162] of the sky into his bachelor quarters about two minutes before breakfast. [Laughter.] And he would go down in history as an antipope. Therefore, perhaps he should not be too severely censured for saying to himself: "Times are hard and living is high. It would be difficult for an old bachelor, like me, to make both ends meet — should I leave the Vatican. I doubt it, at my time of life, I could marry a rich widow. [Laughter.] And, although I live in the twentieth century and know better, I'll continue this silly notion of Papal supremacy and hold on to my job." [Applause.]
But I'm not yet through with your eyes. They have fully recovered their sight. But, inasmuch as the majority of you are getting along in years [laughter], I think you will need some extra glimmers. [Laughter.] I shall, therefore, hang a pair of American glasses on your nose. [Laughter.] And when they are properly adjusted, you will have no doubts about the thing you are looking at.
In an uncontradicted sermon, re-
[pg. 163] ported to have been delivered in St. Louis, June 30, 1912, by Father D.S. Phelan — pastor of Mt. Carmel Church and editor of the Western Watchman, and reputed to be one of the brainiest and most influential men in the Catholic Church to-day — we read the following patriotic deliverance: "Why is it everybody is afraid of the Catholic Church? And the American people more afraid of her than any people of the world? Why are they afraid of the Catholic Church? They know what the Catholic Church means. It means all the Catholics of the world; not of one country, or two countries, but all the countries of the world. And it means more than that: it means that the Catholics of the world love the church more than anything else; that the Catholics of the world love the church more than they do their own governments, more than they do their own people, more than they do their own fortunes, more than they do their own selves. We of the Catholic Church are ready to go to death for the church. Under God, she is the supreme object of
[pg. 164] our worship. Tell us that we think more of the church than we do of the United States; of course we do. Tell us we are Catholics first and Americans or Englishmen afterwards; of course we are. Tell us, in the conflict between the church and the civil government, we take the side of the church; of course we do. Why, if the Government of the United States were at war with the church, we would say, to-morrow, to hell with the Government of the United States; and if the church and all the governments of the world were at war, we would say to hell with all the governments of the world."
I understand some of my critics are accusing me of delivering inflammatory speeches. But it's a case of mistaken identity. [Laughter.] Father Phelan's the fellow that's doing it, out in St. Louis. [Laughter.]
But don't leave the soda-fountain yet. [Laughter.] The holy St. Louis father is about to pour another refreshing drink of loyal Americanism out of that gill bottle he calls his head. [Laughter.]
"Why is the Pope such a tremendous
[pg. 165] power? All the emperors, all the kings, all the princes, all the Presidents of the world to-day, are as these altar boys of mine. The Pope is the ruler of the world." This according to the reported sermon of June 30, 1912.
Hey, Teddy! [laughter] Go to St. Louis and put Father Phelan in the Ananias Club! [Laughter.] He's told a whopper! [Laughter.]
If you think Rome has become so old and feeble that she's lost her political ambitions, you are reckoning without your host.
The old lady has lived a long time. But, while she's suffering considerably with congestion of the confessional-box iniquities [laughter], inflammation of public sentiment [laughter] and a clearly pronounced case of bacheloritis [laughter], she's still quite spry [laughter] — and she's reaching for Uncle Sam's chin-whisker. [Laughter.] And if once she gets her fingers round it good and tight, she'll swing the old gentleman about until he'll think he's Josiah Allen, tumbling down the stairs at Saratoga.
[pg. 166] If someone should propose that there should be a Methodist or Baptist or Presbyterian delegate at Washington, or that our Government should be permanently or now and then officially represented at the headquarters of either of these or any Protestant denomination, he would be considered a fit subject for the lunacy commission. [Applause.]
Or if it should be suggested that a delegate, representing all the Protestant denominations, be stationed at Washington, the proposition would be regarded as a big joke. [Applause.]
And if the Jews should come forward with their official representative, Uncle Sam would split his sides with laughter. [Applause.]
If it be argued that I'm treading on thin ice and am likely to fall through into hot water [laughter], I would like to ask a few questions.
Why is it that the Roman Church has a standing cabinet which, through her agents the world around, keeps the Vatican posted regarding all details of governmental affairs under the sun? And
[pg. 167] if the Vatican is not in politics, why does it wish such information? If any are disposed to doubt the propriety of this question, let him consult the files of the London Times and read Lord Robert Montague's articles.
Why does Uncle Sam's face settle into serious repose at the mention of a Papal delegate? Why doesn't he throw his star-spangled hat into the air, slap his striped trousers, and laugh till his teeth fly out [laughter] when Rome says to him: "Bend down. I want to whisper something of a confidential nature into your ear"? [Applause.]
Why the suspicious visits of busy cardinals to the United States? And why do they always manage to get into secret touch with the influential men of our country? Why is there a handsome building in Washington, maintained as the headquarters of the "Papal Delegate to the Catholic Church in the United States"? Why is this building in Washington instead of Baltimore, or some other Catholic stronghold? And why is it constantly surrounded with such
[pg. 168] an atmosphere of mystery — if it is in nowise the headquarters of a nuncio to our Government?
Why did President Taft send Major Butt, and employe in the United States Government, over to Rome? I've seen the explanation that Major Butt simply carried the greetings from the President to the Pope. But why partiality? Why didn't the President send the Major with greetings to the head of the Episcopal Church in England, and head of the Lutheran Church in Germany, and the head of the Greek Church in Russia? [Applause.] Are we to conclude that his supply of greetings was too limited to go around? [Laughter.] I do not wonder that the "Titanic," on which the greeting-bearer was returning home, decided to hide her blushing face and plunged to the bottom of the ocean. [Applause.]
And why have our Presidents formed the habit of taking members of the Cabinet and going to St. Patrick's on Thanksgiving Day, thereby setting an obnoxious precedent, and, whether they
[pg. 169] acknowledge or deny it, officially recognizing the Roman Catholic Church? [Applause.] Why do they not distribute their Thanksgiving visits among all the great churches? [Applause.]
Many have inquired, since these meeting began, as to the complexion of my politics. I have nothing to conceal, and I'll admit that I've spent all my life voting for Bryan. [Laughter.] And when Wilson was inaugurated and Bryan became Secretary of State, I threw up my cap and shouted, "Hurrah! The country's saved again!" [Laughter.] But when, on last Thanksgiving Day, Wilson and Bryan — each an elder in the Presbyterian Church — proceeded to St. Patrick's, against the united protest of the Washington clergy and the wishes of the entire American Protestantism which had put them in office, and participated in a ceremony from which their hearts were as far removed as the poles are apart, I was ashamed to look my dog in the face and tell him I was a Democrat. [Laughter.]
But you Republicans needn't laugh so
[pg. 170] hilariously at the predicament we Democrats are in [Laughter.] Think of Taft and hang your own heads. [Laughter.]
Unless the sign-posts are all mismarked, the Democratic and Republican parties have each sold out to Rome, and are both in the same boat — sinking together. [Applause.]
The American people are gradually awakening from their "party loyalty sleep," and the time is at hand when the integrity of their institutions will mean more to them than political parties. [Applause.]
If the Republican party should cut loose from Rome and let the people know it, I believe the elephant could come back. [Applause.] But I don't believe it has the sense and the backbone to do it. [Applause.]
The Catholic Church is neither Democratic nor Republican. But the Democratic and Republican parties are both Roman Catholic. [Applause.] If there were no other evidence, the Chicago and Baltimore conventions would verify the statement. [Applause.]
[pg. 171] But while the spectacular exhibitions of party loyalty to Rome are disgusting in the extreme, such episodes as the President kissing the Pope's toe — paregorically speaking [laughter] — are not so serious as Rome's manipulation of governmental machinery under cover. [Applause.]
Consult the rosters and convince yourselves the Vatican party — operating in the disguise of both Democracy and Republicanism — places it watchdogs at every possible door. When there is an appointive office of significance hanging over the wall, Rome reaches for it and usually gets it.
If you wish to shake hands with the President, you must first shake hands with Tumulty. [Laughter.] And if you wish to write a letter to the President, I would advise you to direct it to Bryan; it might reach its destination with greater speed. [Applause.]
I'm pointing to the White House door only as an example. The White House is by no means the most important center of our Government.
[pg. 172] Come down the line through the national houses, glance at the committees, and continue your journey of investigation into the governments of States.
You need go no farther than Ohio to be convinced that I'm not chasing a flea. [Laughter.] It's the larger pest I'm after. [Laughter.] Uncle Sam wonders why he can't sleep. But if he would examine his bed, he would discover that his pillow-cases and sheets are peppered all over with the stains of his own blood. [Laughter.] Count the Catholics on the bench and at the head of departments in Ohio — number them one by one — and don't overlook the fact that the secretaries of the industrial and administration boards are in a position to guard Rome's interests. And when you have consulted the political map of Ohio, you will have looked at the situation, varied a little here and there, the country over.
Inflate the statistics all you may, by counting children that have died since the beginning of a given year and children yet unborn, and you will discover
[pg. 173] that the Catholics do not constitute one-fifth of our country's population. The Catholic representation in our multiplex government is, therefore, out of all proportion to the Catholic population. Why?
Parties have come and parties have gone, but Rome has pushed hand is pushing steadily on — getting her hooks into the network of our Government, both Federal and State, to say nothing of the municipal end of the game.
In 1888 James G. Blaine introduced a bill in the House of Representatives the object of which was the safeguarding of our school funds and public lands against sectarian abuses. Senator Blair unhesitatingly said the bill was defeated as a consequence of Catholic influence.
But that is not the only fish the Pope has kept our lawmakers from pulling ashore. If you will watch the houses at Washington, and the State Legislatures as well, you will frequently see good-looking fish dangling above the water, then you will hear a splash and they are gone. [Laughter.] There's an unseen hand
[pg. 174] which reaches forth and unhooks them. [Laughter.] Rome teaches that in the olden days she performed miracles. I don't believe it. But I'm convinced that, at Washington and our State capitols, she performs miracles nowadays. [Laughter.]
But let us glance at some of our more specific institutions.
Is the Catholic Church opposed to our public schools? It will not require much time to answer the question.
A book to Catholic parents, "Judges of Faith; Christian vs. Godless Schools," endorsed by Cardinal Gibbons and other high Romish churchmen, and containing the rulings of twenty councils, six synods, and two popes, denounces the public school as "vicious," "filthy," "irreligious," "scandalous," "unchristian," "diabolical," "godless", "positively dangerous", "a detestable system," and "a place where children imbibe germs of infidelity and immorality."
Freeman's Journal, a Catholic paper, said: "Let the public-school system go back to where it came from — the devil."
[pg. 175] In 1902, in one of the largest Catholic churches of Chicago, the priest delivered a sermon in which he said: "Parents who send their children to the godless public school are going straight to hell."
By why multiply testimony? Leo XIII. spoke, ex-cathedra, against the public school; the present pontiff is, ex-cathedra, against it; the Catholic press is against it, and the argument is complete.
Nevertheless, the Catholic Church see to it that she is influentially represented both on the school boards and in the classroom.
Furthermore, while a present there is a lull in the agitation of the subject, Rome's demand for a division of the school funds is not hushed — nor will it be for years to come.
That the Catholic Church is opposed to free speech is evidenced by the meetings she has broken up, one of which was at New Lexington, Ohio, only a few weeks ago.
Eighteen or twenty years ago, when the Christian Endeavor Convention was
[pg. 176] held in Montreal, a Catholic mob cut down the tent in the afternoon and besieged the Drill Hall at night. The soldiery of the city had to be called out to protect the Christian Endeavorers. I was in both the tent and the hall, and know whereof I speak.
And an official demand, which contained the usual low-down, cowardly, hell-born boycott threat, was made right here in Columbus, that the officers of this church should padlock my mouth. [Laughter.] But the key was lost and it couldn't be padlocked. [Laughter.] And, while I inaugurated this series of lectures entirely on my own responsibility, I wish to add that the officers of this church had backbones and stood by the ship. [Applause.]
I'll not be so mild as to say Roman Catholicism is opposed to a free press. The general press of our country is no longer free; it is chained down good and tight. This is a sweeping statement. But if I don't prove it, I'll eat my only hat and go bareheaded till Bryan is elected president. [Laughter.]
[pg. 177] In his book, "America or Rome," Brandt states, and submits and abundance of evidence in support of his charge, that the Catholic Church dominates the mechanical, distributing, reportorial, and editorial departments of the great papers; that she censors the Associated Press news; and that the boycott club is held over the management of every newspaper in the land. But, as I have more specific evidence, I'll dismiss Mr. Brandt and order his testimony stricken out.
During the past six weeks, if I'm correctly informed, this church has been an interesting center — talked about on the streets, in offices, and even made the topic on conversation in towns fifty and sixty miles away. [Applause.]
People tell me I am speaking to audiences twice as large as any other in the city. Each Monday morning we read about church meetings, great and small. But our enterprising newspapers have forgotten that I'm in town. [Laughter.] I'm disappointed. [Applause.] There's a reason, and I know its nature. [Laughter.] Had our papers given ex-
[pg. 178] cerpts of these lectures, they would have lost thousands of dollars — the absence of Catholic advertisements would have made them baldheaded. [Laughter.] The silence of the Columbus papers is pretty good evidence. But we will let it slide, also. I have better testimony. [Applause.]
I have here [holding it up] and affidavit, made day before yesterday by a gentleman who now sits within ten feet of this Bible-stand — a man well known throughout the city and highly respected by all. He states in this instrument that, thinking this a good time to get antipapal into the homes of the people, he contracted with one our daily papers to run an ad calling attention to the merits of Protestant Magazine. He paid $4.80 for the space and received a receipt. But his money was returned, and he was informed by the man "higher up" than the desk clerk that the contract had been canceled. In a subsequent conversation he offered to modify the ad. But the man "higher up" replied that it could not be accepted
[pg. 179] under any circumstances. Think of it! A newspaper that runs whisky ads, and, like all other papers, seeks all kinds of ads, declining to advertise the most conservative antipapal magazine in the country! [Applause.] Think of it! A Columbus newspaper violating a written contract, in which a money receipt figures, and laying itself liable to successful prosecution — simply to keep on good terms with Rome! [Applause.] This is splendid testimony. But I'll throw it out, and rest my case on something else. [Applause.]
Now, I've thrown away all this evidence — evidence that would stand in any court — and dismissed the witnesses. What shall I do? [Laughter.] If ever a man was in a pickle, I'm that man. [Laughter.] Ah! I hear an idea coming down through the dome! I have it! [Looks up and catches it like a ball.] [Applause.] Why should I have remained, even a moment, in this hot box of extremity when my faithful old witness was so near? [Applause.] You will recall that from the beginning of these
[pg. 180] lectures until now, Rome has been my "friend indeed" because she has been my "friend in need." [Applause.]
Dear old Rome! [Laughter.] You have sustained me in every argumentative crisis. You have been faithful and truthful [laughter] in this campaign, and I have every reason for believing that you will not forsake me now and leave me helpless and embarrassed before this great audience. [Applause.] I'm now in the tightest of all the tight places I've been in yet [laughter], and if I ever needed your friendship, it's here and now. [Laughter.] Come to my rescue, friend of mine! [Laughter.]
Why, how do you do? [Greets Rome with hearty handgrasp.] I'm delighted to see you. Pray be seated.
Madam, I've managed to get myself into a scrape. I asserted that you control the general press of the United States. I had some excellent witnesses — all unimpeachable. But I dismissed them and threw their testimony out of court. And now I rely entirely upon your
[pg. 181] generosity. If you fail me, I shall sink — never to rise again. But if you sustain me, I'll appreciate the favor and give you another thrashing next Sunday night. [Laughter.] Please face the jury and state whether or not I told the truth.
The old lady advises me that, as she has waddled along at a rapid gait to get here and rescue me, she is out of breath and will make Father Phelan her mouthpiece. [Applause.] I think you have heard of the gentleman. [Laughter.] She hands me a copy of the Western Watchman holds up the paper], issued Jan. 22, 1914. This sermon is such a brilliant gem that it was pulled and put into type before it was delivered. [Laughter.] I would like to read you the whole of the remarkable sermon; it's as entertaining as a Punch and Judy show. [Laughter.] But I can take only enough time to read two items.
1. "If the Catholics were united, we could walk over the world." If you doubt Rome's desire to "walk over the world," ask Father Phelan about it. He never loses an opportunity to open his mouth and put his foot in it. [Laughter.]
2. "We are respectable people, we are intelligent people, we can hold our own anywhere. In the pulpit, the world must listen to us. We control the press of the United States." [Applause.]
Ladies and gentleman of the jury, I rest the case and entertain no fears of an unfavorable verdict at your hands. [Applause.] Bryan can delay his election to the Presidency as long as he pleases, I'll not have to eat my hat. [Laughter.]
I've talked more than an hour, but I'm nothing like through. ["Keep on" from all over the house.]
While I'm neither a Socialist nor a Freethinker, I am a free lance, in the full exercise of my prerogative to state my convictions. I now happen to have a conviction on tap, and I shall at once
[pg. 183] proceed to pour it out. [Applause.] If you wish to drink it, well and good. If you don't, you have my permission to continue drinking tea. [Laughter.] However, the time is not far distant when the weak tea of surface sentiment will no longer be on the market, and you will have to steady your nerves with the black, unsweetened coffee of common sense.
Jesus was not little enough to crumple himself up at Caesar's throne and whine: "Your excellency, I'm a preacher of righteousness. Therefore, I pray that I may be excused from paying my taxes." [Applause.] He paid his tax, held his head up, and exhibited such sterling masculine strength that Pilate pointed to him and said: "Behold the man!" [Applause.]
One of the most ludicrous performances I've ever witnessed was on a train between Petersburg and Norfolk, Va., when a preacher, weighing at least 250 pounds, pulled himself, with great difficulty, into the vestibule, squeezed through the door, spread himself over an entire
[pg. 184] seat, then meekly handed the conductor a child's ticket. [Laughter.]
The Christian religion, like its manly founder, should pay its own way, hold up its head, and walk through the world with an air of independence. [Applause.]
I've been pastor of struggling churches and associated with struggling church enterprises for nearly a quarter of a century; and my life in the future will be sacrificed upon the altar whereon I laid it when only a boy. But I declare to you that, after carefully considering the matter from all viewpoints, I see no reason under the sun why church property of any kind should be exempt from taxation. [Prolonged applause.] The exemption of church property from taxation is incipient union of church and state. [Applause.]
Furthermore, no church that sells a dish of strawberry ice-cream, with no strawberry in it [laughter], or plate of warm water, with a last year's oyster in it [laughter], is living up to the requirements of the law, which is stretched
[pg. 185] over the situation — law stretched so taut that it hangs together only by threads. [Applause.]
So far as hospitals are concerned, the law is stretched still more, even the threads are snapping. [Applause.] The charity accommodations of hospitals are usually so limited that I, for one, have frequently been unable to secure the entrance of worthy patients.
State hospitals are regular, if they are managed in the interests of the public. But church hospitals, exempt from taxation and partially dependant upon State appropriations, are irregular.
And when a church hospital compels a girl of tender years — a charity patient — to work in laundry and kitchen, scrub floors, empty jars, clean expectoration tins, and to sleep in a bed so situated that the wind blows from an open window to it over two tubercular patients, and a Sister whips her because her work is unsatisfactory, as this affidavit [holding up paper], made Jan. 15, 1914, and subscribed to by two reputable citizens, declares a Catholic hospital in our city did
[pg. 186] two weeks before Christmas — its time for the citizens of Columbus and Ohio to make a sweeping investigation. [Applause.] And I further aver that the law is stretched until even the threads no longer hold together. [Applause.]
But I have, still, a more vital union of church and state to illustrate. I do not personally prefer the charge, because I personally know nothing about it. But this affidavit [produces it], made by a well-known and respected citizen, who, if he swore to a falsehood, ought to be taken in charge by his friends for having been foolish enough to take such a risk [applause], states that, in 1912, a prominent manufacturing company of our city had sixty-three sewing-machines in the convent at West Broad and Sandusky Streets; that these machines were operated by girls, a number of whom were under fourteen years of age; and that these girls were given daily tasks to perform. Before the war you Northern people thought it outrageous that Southern people should assign their slaves daily tasks. According to this document, there
[pg. 187] are white slaves right here in your own city — wearing out their lives in a Catholic sweatshop and suffering the imposition of daily tasks! What are you going to do about it! [Applause.] If a secular company's sewing-machines in an untaxed convent sweatshop, and run by children under a scorpion lash of the "daily task," is not union of church and state on a scale that should cause every patriotic citizen of Ohio to rise up in a frame of mind that would be ready to demolish the iniquitous system which throttles our laws and commits such crimes, the word "patriotism" is as empty as a last year's bird nest. [Applause.]
This evidence in my hands respects only Columbus institutions. But it strengthens the suspicion that Catholic institutions throughout our land are violators of the law. [Applause.] All kinds of charges are preferred against Roman institutions that are exempt from taxation and protected by the Government. No other church would be permitted to have closed institutions, concerning which there was one-hundredth
[pg. 188] part as much suspicion as is lodged against the stone buildings of the Catholic Church. [Applause.] Why this partiality? [Applause.]
O men of America! stand up straight, look your Government squarely in the face, and demand that every door shall be swung wide open and the light turned on! [Tremendous applause.]
I have here two other affidavits. But they are of such a nature that I dare not call your attention to their contents. They respect priests. [Laughter.]
All these affidavits will be kept in a business man's safe, where I can put my hands on them at my will. And I wish to add that, if any one is boycotted as a result of these lectures, or any other dirty work is pulled off, I'm not a bit too good to put the law on a convent and a hospital and lift a couple of priests into unpleasant notoriety. [Applause.]
I shall say no more in support of the proposition that Romanism is a menace to American institutions, though there's plenty more that could be said. [Applause.]
[pg. 189] Rome acknowledges that she is after our institutions, and, as I proved awhile ago, she even boasts, from the pulpit and in print, that she has captured and controls Uncle Sam's most powerful agency — the public press. And it's my opinion that a Protestant who is so dumb he can not see danger ahead ought to be taken to the confessional-box and put on penance until he learns how to think. [Applause.]
Rome is determined to force Columbus Day on the American people; not that she is patriotic, but to strengthen her cause. She maintains that Columbus was a Catholic. But if any priest, bishop, cardinal, or pope will meet me in debate and try and prove that Columbus was a Catholic, I'll undertake the task of proving that he was a Jew. [Applause.]
It is also rumored that Romanism is quietly planning to create sentiment in favor of putting a cross on the flag.
I daily strive to live with the cross before my eyes. "I am a soldier of the cross."
"In the cross of Christ I glory,
Towering o'er the wrecks of time:
All the light of sacred story
Gathers 'round its head sublime.!"
I shall humbly follow the cross down the slope of time, and when disease or accident hurls me upon the heaving bosom of the eternal deep, the cross will be my Rock of Ages. [Applause.]
Nevertheless, I know I speak for millions of loyal Americans when I say I stand ready to spill every drop of blood in my body before the cross shall be printed on the flag. [Applause.]
The cross, lifted up in the gospel message — by precept and example — means ultimate universal redemption. [Applause.]
But the cross athwart the "Stars and Stripes" would mean the degradation of America to the illiteracy and depravity of America to the illiteracy and depravity of Catholic countries beyond the seas and the hell that is now raging in Mexico. [Applause.]
Last Friday I received a letter from a young man in the U.S. Navy. I'll
[pg. 191] read you a snatch from its pages of patriotism:
"I feel doubly proud when the ship's band strikes up 'The Star-spangled Banner,' and I stand at attention and salute the old flag. I love that flag and would die to protect it. As I see it rise to the peak of the ship's flagstaff, a peculiar thrill affects me that is hard to describe." [Applause.]
The flag stands for an unfettered state, liberty of conscience, free speech, and unbound press, and the freedom of all other institutions of public interest. [Applause.]
Liberty! On Bedlow's Island she proudly stands, clothed in 220 tons of bronze, and in her outstretched hand, 305 feet above meantide, she holds the torch that will illuminate the world! [Applause.]
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Continue on to 7. The Remedy.