« ÖncekiDevam »
tives, and could have no object to gain by condemning herself to punishment hereafter. She is a Catholic, and believes in the intercession of her Redeemer, whom she appealed to for the truth of ber deposition ; and could they believe she would daily approach the celebration of his sacrifice with perjury upon her lips? He (Mr. O'Connell) was told that day, in the hall of the Four Courts, by a respectable gentleman, that Mrs. Stuart had been dead for some time past.
Mr. O'Gorman here observed, that report was generally circulated throughout the country
He asked him (Mr. O'Connell) if he believed in the cure ? and upon telling him he did, the gentleman went off without hearing him as to his reasons for so believing.
He had dwelt upon that topic rather long, because he considered it one of importance to Ireland ; and though he believed the cure a miraculous one, yet he quarrelled with no one who believed it to be natural. But not so with the intolerant scurrilous fanatics who have reviled and calumniated one of the meekest and least pretending of men—a prelate of a mild and humane disposition, unobtrusive and peaceable habits, whose splendid talents and scholastic acquirements have been ever exercised for the good of his species and the advancement of Christianity. (Hear, hear.) HE—the scholar of Him from whose example he has learned meekness and humbleness of heart-HF, the metropolitan head of the Catholic Church, has been assailed with a virulence disgraceful to any but the vile Orange press of Dublin. Oh! what a frightful state of society, when persons are found capable of traducing such characters as Doctor Murray, merely because he should sanction, by the authority of his name, what he knew to be true, and what he (Mr. O'Connell) hoped Parliament would appoint a commission to inquire into.
In the pamphlet of which he (Mr. O'Connell) spoke, how finely portrayed was that amiable quality, Christian forbearance ; and how mildly opposed to volumes of personal abuse! Doctor Doyle had not replied—he had merely written an apology for the Catholic belief, that the arm of God is not now less powerful thau when it created the world, however infidels may coaleso to destroy that belief, by impious ribaldry.
The next charge against the Catholics, and against which Doctor Doyle had so admirably and effectively vindicated them is-“ That the Catholic religion is anti-Christian, and is so slavish as to unfit its professors for the enjoyment of freedoma ;" and never was a charge more distinctly or happily refuted than by the ceply, that that religion cannot be anti-Christian with whici Christianity began ; nor slavish, which first disseminated free. dom, in establishing the British constitution ; nor slavish, which established with it free states, before they became munarchical; and monarchical governments, before they became absolute.
The inestimable disquisition upon tithes he (Mr. O'Connell) could not sufficiently panegyrize. The author had satisfactorily proved that they were not of divine right, but of human institution (hear), and that they are some of the blessings for which Ireland is indebted to English civilization.
He has shown that the Irish supported the clergy respectably before the institution of tithes: and he has also established beyond contradiction, that when tithes were instituted, they were appropriated to the purposes of repairing and building churches, and in support of the poor; and that the innovation pompously, but erroneously, styled the "Reformation," took from the
poor that benefit, whilst it threw upon them all the expenses of church repairs. (Hear, hear hear.) The wicked insinuation that Catholic leaders had endeavoured to instigate a rebellion, it was unnecessary for him (Mr. O'Connell) to say how triumphantly he (the author of the pamphlet) had refuted. If the Catholics were a slavish race, and suffering under their bondage, was it rebellion to tell their oppressors they felt the weight of their chains
Was it, in Ireland, false, unfounded, or wicked, to tell the people they were persecuted, oppressed, and unhappy !-or was the information new to them ? (Hear, hear.) Are they not rather the promoters of disturbance who daily proclaim their privilege to irritate and insult the population of Ireland, and threaten them with extermination should they seek to emerge from that debasement ? Are they not the disturbers of Ireland who seek to perpetuate her grievances? (Hear, hear, hear.)
The Catholics were charged with wishing to oppose the progress of education. It was a peculiarity of the English character, that liberality was an attribute said exclusively to belong to the Protestant religion, and that the Catholic was the reverse. But did those who argued so forget that a Catholic state was the first to proclaim liberty of conscience (Hear, hear.) Did they forget Catholic Maryland ? Did they forget that Catholic Hungary, first gave emancipation to Protestants, who, though but one-third of the population, enjoy equal privileges, and are frev from tithes to the Catholic Church ; whilst at the same
time, their ministers are paid by the state in proportion to their flock? That, as an example, might be praised by Protestants ; but remained unimitated. (Hear, hear.)
Do the exclusively liberal Protestants forget that in Catholic France the Protestant clergyman has one-fifth more salary than the Catholic ; for where the Catholic clergyman has about £80, the Protestant has £100, upon the liberal feeling that the latter, being privileged to marry, may have a family l--and do they forget that in Catholic France Protestants are eligible to fill every public situation ? (Hear, hear.)
Do they forget that in Catholic Bavaria, the Protestants were emancipated ? Do they forget that in the history of any Protestant state, there are no such instances of liberality to be found, and that wherever the Protestants have the upper hand, the Catholics are a persecuted race. Oh, but in Protestant London, they tell you there is liberty of conscience; for there every one has permission to embrace any form of religion he pleases. Why, it is true ; but the same privilege exists at Constantinople, in China, and even in Madrid, where, by the supineness and criminal apathy of the English ministry, the Inquisition was re-established. If such were called the liberty of conscience, he considered it the groundwork of fanatic bigotry.
The Orange press was not sufficiently strong already, but they must have an additional ally in a new newspaper ; but certainly one whose weapons were also new, for in it there was a decency of expression, and some references to facts, of which the other Orange papers were entirely destitute. In that paper it was stated that the cause of the Catholics opposing the Kildare-street Association was, because they could not exclude the Scriptures entirely from the schools. Now, that was a gross misrepresentation, for the Catholics never required any such unreasonable concession : all they asked was, that Bibles should not be forced upon Catholic children, contrary to the consent of their pastor's (hear, hear); and he would then pledge himself to the Kildarestreet Association (here he hoped he should be reported correctly, for some papers in Ireland were singularly inaccurate in that respect), that if they did not FORCE upon Catholic children the Bible without note or comment, and against the consent of the Catholic clergy, he would bring them a phalanx of subscribers and supporters !
To every unprejudiced person it must be evident that the tender, uninformed minds of children were ill-calculated for the perusal of a work that frequently caused distraction and deig.
sion in the adult, and which, if given to children to read as task punishments, must, instead of respect, create in them disgust for a work that should never be alluded to but with affectionate reverence and admiration. (Hear, hear, hear.) Mr. O'Gorman here exclaimed, the practice was realiy impious.
Upon every point, Doctor Doyle, in his pamphlet, had alıly met and refuted their opponents ; and so eagerly was it read, and so high was its character, that (what was very unusual. in Ireland) the first edition had met such a sale as not to leave one unsold in the hands of the publisher; and such was the force and overpowering weight of its arguments, that their opponents were reduced, as a last experiment to prevent its circulation or coming before the English eye, to proclaim it not worth reading.
There was, however, one passage in it which might be an exception to its general merits—the compliment paid to him (Mr. O'Connell) ; but if the author seriously intended to compliment him, that was a sufficient recompense for the ridicule of his (Mr. O'Connell's) Orange panegyrist ; and he would desire no better character from his country than the approbation of such a man as Doctor Doyle. It might be a good subject for laughter that he had praised the pamphlet, because the pamphlet had praised him ; but the pamphlet was as much above his praise as he despised the ridicule of a press that never rose above Billingsgate phraseology but to tell an unvarnished falsehood.
Mr. O'Connell then moved the resolution of thanks to the author of the pamphlet “In vindication of the Catholics of Ireland.”
The motion was then put and carried unanimously.
MR. O'CONNELL said, the subject of the burying ground, though not next in order, he should bring forward, because the necessity for its adoption was more pressing than the others.
Since the last day of meeting, he had looked into all the law authorities upon the subject, and he was happy to inform them, that neither by the common, statute, nor ecclesiastical laws. were there any obstacles opposed to their having a piece of sround where their remains might be deposited without the
éternal recurrence of insult to which they were at present subject. He did not wish to make it exclusively Catholic, for as the Catholics were desirous not to be separated in this life from their brethren of other persuasions, neither did they wish to be divided from them in their passage from this to another world. It was intended to be open to the deceased of every sect, where perfect freedom of religious rites might console the living, and, according to his (Mr. O'Connell's) creed, assist the dead.
The knowledge that those rights would be obtained might render death itself less terrible to those who know that even to the grave they are prevented by sectarian intolerance. The fact was very well known and felt, that burial fees were excessively exorbitant. In the case of Mr. D'Arcy, his friends paid no less a sum than ten pounds burial fees, for which, indeed, they had the privilege of seeing his remains insulted. The immense revenues arising from that source of emolument, the Catholics might divert from the pockets of their enemie
Those revenues might be applied to the liquidation of the necessary expenses, in the first instance, and the surplus go to the formation of a fund for the support of Catholic and other charities—a consideration which could not fail to be grateful to the benevolent mind and soothe the agonies of a sick bed, There was no legal obstacle to carrying their object into effect; there was nothing to prevent their having a burying-ground out of the precincts of a town. It was true, there was a statute preventing the opening of a new burying-ground within the city, but that had no relation to particular religious sects. For very obvious reasons it applied to objects of health, and no clergyman could complain of the diminution of his revenues.
In the reign of King James I. a clergyman, in a parish in London, brought an action against the friends of a person who died in his (the clergyman's parish), but was buried in another, when it was decided by the Ecclesiastical Court that the suit should not go on, and the Court of King's Bench granted a prohibition against the suit. He had reason to know that some very respectable and influential persons interested themselves in the present project, in order to prevent, as much as lay within their power, that constant irritation which it was the object of their enemies to create.
One gentleman had waited upon him (Mr. O'Connell), and had offered him the fee simple of twenty acres of common, near Clondalkin, and there might to that be attached a chapel, where the dead in that burying-ground would be prayed for, and