Quotes Suitable for Framing: Leo XIII

More to explorer

4 Comments

  1. 1n the same year, 1890, with encouragement from Pope Leo XIII, Cardinal Lavigerie made a famous, not to say notorious, speech in Algeria, in which he said, “When the will of a people as to the form of its government has been clearly affirmed, and when, to snatch a people from the abysses which threatens it, unreserved adhesion to this political form is necessary, then the moment has come to declare the test completed, and it only remains to make all those sacrifices which conscience and honour permit us, and command us to make for the good of our country.”

    The Secretary of State, Cardinal Rampolla also wrote to the Bishop of Saint- Flour, urging Catholics to take part in public affairs. He drew a distinction between the form of government, which should be accepted and the laws, which should be improved.

    The reaction of the Catholic press was one of outrage; La Croix accused the pope, in calling on Catholics to “rally to the Republic,” of “kissing the feet of our executioners.”

    The spiritual mission of the Church was gravely hampered, during the period from 1870 to 1940, by the open hostility of most Catholics to the Republic, epitomised by their contemptuous reference to it, symbolized by Marianne, as « la gueuse » [The beggar woman/Slut]. This hostility was neatly matched the anti-clericalism of the bouffeurs de curé, the one fuelling the other. Indeed, old attitudes lingered on until 1959, when General de Gaulle and the Fifth Republic began to heal the divisions.
    The state of the Church in France today owes much to this bitter legacy of turning faith into faction.

  2. The spiritual mission of the Church was gravely hampered, during the period from 1870 to 1940, by the open hostility of most Catholics to the Republic,

    Hypercentralization, provincial and local government which deliberately neglected France’s historical particularisms, a political class shot through with freemasons in Grand-Orient lodges, effective suppression of regional languages, contrived efforts to suppress religious education, a madcap party system and constitutional practice which had ministries circulating in and out of office at 12 month intervals (and the effective migration of political authority to the civil service faux de mieux), and sinking resources into cheap campaigns for overseas dependencies of very limited utility (French West Africa), and interminable and costly campaigns for somewhat more utile territories (the Maghreb, much to the injury of the locals). I cannot imagine why anyone would have complaints about the 3d republic.

  3. Petain, who did not attend Mass much at that stage of his life, responded circa 1905 to an order to report all officers who attended Mass in his regiment, that he was unable to comply since he was always in the front pew at Mass and therefore was not aware of the other officers who attended.

  4. Art Deco wrote, “I cannot imagine why anyone would have complaints about the 3d republic.”

    Which is recisely what Cardinal Rampolla meant, when he drew a distinction between “the form of government, which should be accepted and the laws, which should be improved.”

    The prevailing attitude of Catholics resulted in the “Catholic Atheism” of Charles Maurras, the leader of the fascist l’ Action Française, whose thugs, the Camelots du Roi, found their spiritual home in the Milice of Vichy

    The religion of the Throne and Altar Conservatives was best described by Maurice Blondel: “A Catholicism without Christianity, submissiveness without thought, an authority without love, a Church that would rejoice at the insulting tributes paid to the virtuosity of her interpretative and repressive system… To accept all from God except God, all from Christ except His Spirit, to preserve in Catholicism only a residue that is aristocratic and soothing for the privileged and beguiling or threatening for the lower classes [aristocratique et tranquillisant, pour les privilégiés, berçant ou menaçant pour les inferieurs]—is not all this, under the pretext perhaps of thinking only about religion, really a matter of pursuing only politics?”

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: