Thursday, July 4, 2019, was the annual celebration of the “independence” of the United States of America from the then-named Great Britain (today’s United Kingdom). It is good to review a few facts about what led to the American founding, which itself established a country that had no public cult of piety other than the veneration of itself and its own false, naturalistic, Pelagian, religiously indifferentist and Calvinist/Judeo-Masonic principles.
This is all relevant again as the American “exceptionalism” and apologist and stooge of international Zionism, President Donald John Trump, extolled the “virtues” of the American way in a display of military might and grandeur in Washington, District of Columbia, last evening. Although the president is well-intentioned and, unlike so many other world leaders who are committed to the euphemism for world domination that is “globalism, is a patriot in the sense that he truly loves his country, an authentic love of one’s country must be premised upon the willing of her good, namely, her Catholicization.
Donald John Trump does not understand that public policy must be premised on fostering those temporal conditions that foster the sanctification and salvation of the souls of a nation’s citizens. The common temporal good must be premised upon man’s Last End, the possession of the glory of the Beatific Vision of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost for all eternity in Heaven. A true patriot puts love of God as He has revealed Himself to us exclusively through His Catholic Church first before love of one’s country, which is, of course, a requirement of the Natural Law and, as such, is one of the binding precepts of the Fourth Commandment.
Despite all the celebrations in honor of “American freedom,” which has never been so “free” as most people believe, most Americans, including most Catholics who live in the United States of America, do not understand that thuman liberty is not an end in and of itself. It is a means to an end, which is nothing other than to use our free wills responsibly in accord with the dictates of right reason informed by the binding precepts of the Divine Law and the Natural Law. We are not morally free to do everything we are physically capable of doing. We are only morally free to do that which is right in the eyes of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Who does not bestow His blessing on men who sin wantonly in the name of “liberty,” thus sowing the seeds for discord, disorder, chaos and even, as we have seen so much of recently, overt street violence against those who dissent from what is considered to be “politically correct.”
A nation founded on principles that admit of no higher law other than the falsehood of the “sovereignty of man” will be reduced to a pile of rubble under the weight of errors that lead men into becoming rebels whose only god is their belly and whose glory is their shame.
Moreover, most Americans believe in the Pelagian falsehood of self-redemption by embracing the the American “exceptionalist” myth that “Americans can do anything they want to do as long as they set their minds to a given enterprise, a lie believed by such disparate figures as President Trump and a man who is not noted to be one of his supporters, Howie Rose, the lead radio broadcaster of the New York Mets, who said in public remarks on the occasion of the celebration of the 1969 World Championship team at Citi Field, 41 Seaver Way, Flushing, Queens, New York, on Saturday, June 29, 2019, the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, that the 1969 Mets “proved” that you can do “anything” you want to accomplish. Not even Catholics care about the simple words of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ Himself, “Without Me, you can do nothing.”
There is a particular irony in all of this as “constitutionalists,” “federalists, “originalists” and “conservatives talk and write incessantly about adhering to the true meaning of the plain words of the Constitution of the United States of America without realizing that a document that admits of no higher authority than its own text will be as easy for legal positivists, relativists and institutionalists (see, Roberts, John Glover) to distort, misinterpret, misrepresent, deconstruct or ignore altogether as it has been for Protestants and Modernist Catholics to distort, misinterpret, misrepresent, deconstruction altogether the plain words of Sacred Scripture, to say nothing of doing the same with Sacred (Apostolic) Tradition.
Catholics must be good citizens. Granted. However, it is very important to remember that the American founding was the secular byproduct of the Protestant Revolution and the subsequent rise of the naturalist ideologies that continue to serve as the sterile substitute for the true Faith as the only guiding light and common bond for men and their nations.
The abuses of power by English monarchs, including the subjugating of Ireland and the persecution of Catholics in the Land of Saints and Scholars who refused to defect from the true Church, a persecution that would last until 1921 and still persists in Northern Ireland, led to all manner of social unrest in England, especially as those Anglicans who were followers of John Calvin sought to eradicate all remaining vestiges of Catholicism from Anglican "worship" and "doctrine" (removing Latin from certain aspects of the heretical Anglican liturgy, smashing statues, eliminating high altars in favor of tables, things that have been undertaken in the past forty years in many formerly Catholic churches that are now in the custody of the counterfeit church of conciliarism). This unrest produced the English Civil Wars of the 1640s and the establishment in 1649 of what was, for all intents and purposes, a Calvinist state under the control Oliver Cromwell that became a Cromwellian dictatorship between the years of 1653 to 1660 until the monarchy under the House of Stuart was restored in 1660. Oh yes, King Charles I lost his head, quite literally, in 1649 as the "Roundheads" of Oliver Cromwell came to power in 1649 following seven years of warfare between "parliamentarians" and "royalists." Revolutions always wind up eating their own. The English monarchy itself was eaten up by the overthrow of the Social Reign of the King of Kings by Henry VIII of the House of Tudor in 1534.
King James II, who had converted to Catholicism in France in 1668 while he was the Prince of York under his brother, King Charles II of the restored monarchy, acceded to the English throne o n J u n e 6, 1885, following his brother's death, which occurred after Charles II himself had converted to the Faith on his deathbed. Suspicious that the property that had been acquired and the wealth that had been amassed as a result of Henry VIII's social-engineering land grab of 150 years before would be placed in jeopardy, Protestant opponents of King James II eventually forced him to abdicate the throne in 1688, his rule having been declared as ended on December 11 of that year. The abdication of King James, whose second wife, Mary of Modena, had been assigned Blessed Father Claude de la Colombiere as her spiritual director when she was the Princess of York, is referred to by Protestant and secular historians as the "glorious revolution," so-called because it ushered in the penultimate result of the Protestant Revolution, the tyranny of the majority.
It was to justify the rise of majoritarianism that John Locke, a Presbyterian (Calvinist) minister, wrote his Second Treatise on Civil Government. Locke believed, essentially, that social problems could be ameliorated if a majority of reasonable men gathered together to discuss their situation. The discussion among these "reasonable men" would lead to an agreement, sanctioned by the approval of the majority amongst themselves, on the creation of structures which were designed to improve the existing situation. If those structures did not ameliorate the problems or resulted in a worsening of social conditions then some subsequent majority of "reasonable men" would be able to tear up the "contract" that had bound them before, devising yet further structures designed to do what the previous structures could not accomplish. Locke did not specify how this majority of reasonable men would form, only that it would form, providing the foundation of the modern parliamentary system that premises the survival of various governments upon the whims of a majority at a given moment.
In other words, England's "problem" in 1688 was King James II. The solution? Parliament, in effect, declared that he had abdicated his throne rather than attempt to fight yet another English civil war to maintain himself in power as the man chosen by the parliamentarians to replace him, his own son-in-law William of Orange, who was married to his daughter Mary, landed with armed forces ready to undertake such a battle. The parliamentary "majority" had won the day over absolutism and a return to Catholicism.
Unfortunately for Locke, you see, social problems cannot be ameliorated merely by the creation of structures devised by "reasonable men" and sanctioned by the majority.
All problems in the world, both individual and social, have their remote causes in Original Sin and their proximate causes in the Actual Sins of men. There is no once-and-for-all method or structure by which, for example, "peace" will be provided in the world by the creation of international organizations or building up or the drafting of treaties.
There is no once-and-for-all method or structure by which, for example, "crime" will be lessened in a nation by the creation of various programs designed to address the "environmental" conditions that are said to breed it.
The only way in which social conditions can be ameliorated is by the daily reformation of individual lives in cooperation with the graces won for men by the shedding of the Most Precious Blood of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ upon the wood of the Holy Cross and that flow into our hearts and souls through the loving hands of Our Lady, she who is the Mediatrix of All Graces. And to the extent that social structures can be effective in addressing and ameliorating specific problems at specific times in specific places, those who create and administer them must recognize their absolute dependence upon God's graces and that there is no secular, non-denominational or inter-denominational way to provide for social order. Social order and peace among nations depend entirely upon the subordination of the life of every person and the activities of every nation to the Social Reign of Christ the King as it is exercised by the Catholic Church.
The modern state is founded on the specific and categorical rejection of the Social Reign of Christ the King as it is exercised by the Catholic Church. There is thus the need for modern man for find sterile ideologies or philosophies to substitute for the true Faith so as to guide "him" in the course of daily life. The failure of the social structures fashioned after the Lockean model to effect an amelioration of the problems they were intended to address does nothing to deter "true believers" from continuing to persist in the blindness that led them to reject the true Faith and to trust in their own cooked-up schemes.
No, the "true believers" in liberalism or conservatism or capitalism or socialism or communism or fascism or Nazism or utilitarianism or pragmatism or positivism (or any and all other brands of secular "isms") must spend their entire lives searching for a "better way" to realize the goals of their particular ideology or philosophy or economic system. It cannot possibly be, they have convinced themselves, that their initial premises were wrong from the outset. No, the problem must be in the implementation and/or in the communication of their ideas, not in the false nature of the ideas upon which they have based all of their truly delusional hopes.
The Lockean construct for the resolution of social problems is but one part of the Revolution, as it was termed by Popes Pius VI, VII, VIII, Gregory XVI, Pius IX, Leo XIII, and Saint Pius X, against the Faith. The Lockean construct preceded the rise of contemporary Freemasonry in England by twenty-nine years, fitting in nicely with the Judeo-Masonic desire to obliterate the necessity of subordinating all things in personal and social life to the reality of the Incarnation by stressing the conviction that the "universal brotherhood of men" can put aside "denominational differences" to pursue the "common good." Locke's belief that men can resolve their social problems by the creation of structures, in essence the self-redemptive heresy of Pelagianism, also dovetailed into the Judeo-Masonic belief that men can pursue "civic virtue" on their own without belief in, access to or cooperation with sanctifying grace. These false beliefs lead men and their societies into complete and utter chaos, which is the goal of the chief revolutionary, the devil himself, who desires the minds of men to be locked up by the blindness engendered by their narcissism and pride.
The Lockean construct leads to many mutations, all of which have one common theme: the ability of man to better his lot in life on his own without subordinating himself to the Deposit of Faith that the God-Man has entrusted to His true Church.
In the United States, for example, the Lockean construct has produced a situation where liberalism had to give way to the socialism that has been creeping up on us in the past century since the administrations of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Thomas Woodrow Wilson.
The failure of incremental, structural "reforms" to improve social conditions led to an increase in the size and the power of government at all levels (state, local, national) and a reduction in the legitimate natural law rights of citizens to be free from the tyranny of governmental leaders possessed of the notion that secular salvation comes from the state.
Thus, the New Freedom of Woodrow Wilson was actually a descent into statism, especially as represented by the creation of the Federal Reserve System, expedited by the New Deal of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (and by many of the policies of his immediate predecessor, Herbert Clark Hoover), and expanded by Lyndon Baines Johnson's "Great Society" and "War on Poverty" programs. The attempts to "engineer" the better society through government programs has reached such a stage that even thought itself is being punished at the state law (and laws are pending on the national level to make criticism of the behavior of certain people a "hate" crime). A land born in the delusional belief that man can ever be "free" without Our Lord and His Holy Church produces all to logically and inexorably a new caste of slaves, most of who are so diverted by bread and circuses that they protest nary a bit as their legitimate freedoms and property are taken away from them bit by bit under one pretext or another. All of this, however, was but a prelude to the socialism of the present moment, including stimulus packages and ObamaDeathCare and the pork-barreling that squanders so many billions of taxpayer dollars (pork-barreling goes by the more commonly-known name of "earmarks" today).
Elsewhere, however, the Lockean construct leads to a degree of violent frustration. That is, the failure of structural reforms to, say, "end" poverty or to "end" wars convinced a number of visionaries that violent, bloody revolutions were necessary to overthrow the remaining vestiges of Catholicism in order to replace it all at once with a man-made paradigm for peace and justice on earth. The French Revolutionaries, the Mexican Revolutionaries, the plotters of the Italian Risorgimento, Otto von Bismarck's Kulturkampf in Germany, the Bolshevik and Maoist Revolutionaries--and scores upon scores of others--believed that their revolutions would bring about a new age for mankind. The failure of even those "once-and-for-all" revolutions, however, to produce their expected results led to attempts to revitalize the revolutionary zeal, a "reform of the reform," if you will. And thus it will ever be with minds that have rejected the simple truth that Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order as they have been shaped by the demonically inspired naturalistic, religiously indifferentist, semi-Pelagian delusions of Modernity.
The violent street protests in various countries of Europe that have seen overgrown urchins of all ages complain about any threats to their precious entitlements are simply the natural, logical byproducts of a world steeped in the aftermath of one violent revolution after another against the Social Reign of Christ the King as It must be exercised by the Catholic Church, outside of which there is no salvation and without which there can be no true social order. Men must give vent to anger and outrage, yes, even in violent ways, when their immortal souls are not enlightened by the light of the Deposit of Faith and enlivened by Sanctifying Grace. Chaos is the only thing that can result when men believe that they can be "free" of Christ the King and His Holy Church.
The Protestant Revolution that engendered all of the social revolutions of Modernity is indeed a recipe for tyranny. That tyranny can take many forms (one man, a ruling elite, a military junta, a particular political party, popular or legislative or judicial majorities). However, the Protestant Revolution is indeed a recipe for all contemporary forms of statist tyranny, which now includes requiring Catholics and others who oppose sodomy to submit the new order of things or risk some kind of penalty, including the closure of their very businesses.
Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order:
Everyone should avoid familiarity or friendship with anyone suspected of belonging to masonry or to affiliated groups. Know them by their fruits and avoid them. Every familiarity should be avoided, not only with those impious libertines who openly promote the character of thesect, but also with thosewho hide under the mask of universal tolerance, respect for all religions, and the craving to reconcile the maxims of the Gospel with those of the revolution. These men seek to reconcile Christ and Belial, the Church of God and the state without God. (Pope Leo XIII, Custodi di Quella Fede, December 8, 1892.)
From this it may clearly be seen what consequences are to be expected from that false pride which, rejecting our Saviour's Kingship, places man at the summit of all things and declares that human nature must rule supreme. And yet, this supreme rule can neither be attained nor even defined. The rule of Jesus Christ derives its form and its power from Divine Love: a holy and orderly charity is both its foundation and its crown. Its necessary consequences are the strict fulfillment of duty, respect of mutual rights, the estimation of the things of heaven above those of earth, the preference of the love of God to all things. But this supremacy of man, which openly rejects Christ, or at least ignores Him, is entirely founded upon selfishness, knowing neither charity nor self-devotion. Man may indeed be king, through Jesus Christ: but only on condition that he first of all obey God, and diligently seek his rule of life in God's law. By the law of Christ we mean not only the natural precepts of morality and the Ancient Law, all of which Jesus Christ has perfected and crowned by His declaration, explanation and sanction; but also the rest of His doctrine and His own peculiar institutions. Of these the chief is His Church. Indeed whatsoever things Christ has instituted are most fully contained in His Church. Moreover, He willed to perpetuate the office assigned to Him by His Father by means of the ministry of the Church so gloriously founded by Himself. On the one hand He confided to her all the means of men's salvation, on the other He most solemnly commanded men to be subject to her and to obey her diligently, and to follow her even as Himself: "He that heareth you, heareth Me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth Me" (Luke x, 16). Wherefore the law of Christ must be sought in the Church. Christ is man's "Way"; the Church also is his "Way"-Christ of Himself and by His very nature, the Church by His commission and the communication of His power. Hence all who would find salvation apart from the Church, are led astray and strive in vain.
As with individuals, so with nations. These, too, must necessarily tend to ruin if they go astray from "The Way." The Son of God, the Creator and Redeemer of mankind, is King and Lord of the earth, and holds supreme dominion over men, both individually and collectively. "And He gave Him power, and glory, and a kingdom: and all peoples, tribes, and tongues shall serve Him" (Daniel vii., 14). "I am appointed King by Him . . . I will give Thee the Gentiles for Thy inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for Thy possession" (Psalm ii., 6, 8). Therefore the law of Christ ought to prevail in human society and be the guide and teacher of public as well as of private life. Since this is so by divine decree, and no man may with impunity contravene it, it is an evil thing for the common weal wherever Christianity does not hold the place that belongs to it. When Jesus Christ is absent, human reason fails, being bereft of its chief protection and light, and the very end is lost sight of, for which, under God's providence, human society has been built up. This end is the obtaining by the members of society of natural good through the aid of civil unity, though always in harmony with the perfect and eternal good which is above nature. But when men's minds are clouded, both rulers and ruled go astray, for they have no safe line to follow nor end to aim at. (Pope Leo XIII, Tametsi Futura Prospicientibus, November 1, 1900.)
Just as Christianity cannot penetrate into the soul without making it better, so it cannot enter into public life without establishing order. With the idea of a God Who governs all, Who is infinitely wise, good, and just, the idea of duty seizes upon the consciences of men. It assuages sorrow, it calms hatred, it engenders heroes. If it has transformed pagan society--and that transformation was a veritable resurrection--for barbarism disappeared in proportion as Christianity extended its sway, so, after the terrible shocks which unbelief has given to the world in our days, it will be able to put that world again on the true road, and bring back to order the states and peoples of modern times. But the return of Christianity will not be efficacious and complete if it does not restore the world to a sincere love of the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. In the Catholic Church Christianity is Incarnate. It identifies itself with that perfect, spiritual, and, in its own order, sovereign society, which is the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ and which has for Its visible head the Roman Pontiff, successor of the Prince of the Apostles. It is the continuation of the mission of the Savior, the daughter and the heiress of His Redemption. It has preached the Gospel, and has defended it at the price of its blood, and strong in the Divine assistance and of that immortality which has been promised it, it makes no terms with error but remains faithful to the commands which It has received, to carry the doctrine of Jesus Christ to the uttermost limits of the world and to the end of time, and to protect it in its inviolable integrity. Legitimate dispenser of the teachings of the Gospel It does not reveal itself only as the consoler and Redeemer of souls, but It is still more the internal source of justice and charity, and the propagator as well as the guardian of true liberty, and of that equality which alone is possible here below. In applying the doctrine of its Divine Founder, It maintains a wise equilibrium and marks the true limits between the rights and privileges of society. The equality which it proclaims does not destroy the distinction between the different social classes It keeps them intact, as nature itself demands, in order to oppose the anarchy of reason emancipated from Faith, and abandoned to its own devices. The liberty which it gives in no wise conflicts with the rights of truth, because those rights are superior to the demands of liberty. Nor does it infringe upon the rights of justice, because those rights are superior to the claims of mere numbers or power. Nor does it assail the rights of God because they are superior to the rights of humanity. (Pope Leo XIII, A Review of His Pontificate, March 19, 1902.)
Here we have, founded by Catholics, an inter-denominational association that is to work for the reform of civilization, an undertaking which is above all religious in character; for there is no true civilization without a moral civilization, and no true moral civilization without the true religion: it is a proven truth, a historical fact. (Pope Saint Pius X, Notre Charge Apostolique, August 15, 1910.)
This history is very important to understand: that there was indeed quite a contrast between the settlement of the English colonies up and down the Atlantic seaboard of what became the United States of America and the settlement of colonies by Spain and France in the Americas. Although it was not without difficulties and crimes against the indigenous peoples in some instances, the Spanish and the French sought to plant the Cross of the Divine Redeemer, the only true standard of human liberty, deep in the soil of the Americas. And it was within a short time of Our Lady’s apparition to Juan Diego in 1531 that a thriving new Christendom had arisen in Mexico and Peru.
The Protestant Revolution thus predestined, if you will, the English-speaking colonies of North America to the social decay and statism of the present time as the only force on earth that can keep people from reverting to barbarism and to keep the civil state from becoming tyrannical is a force that is of Divine origin, direction and sustenance: the Catholic Church.
Sure, this is a point that I have made many times before on this website, much to the consternation of many. However, truth it is what it is.
Even a Protestant writer of the Nineteenth Century, William Cobbett, who remained a Protestant until his death at the age of seventy-two on March 9, 1835, noted in his superb A History of the Protestant Reformation in England and Ireland, that the Protestant Revolution spawned each of the revolutions that followed in its sorry wake, including the American Revolution, which turned the principles of the Protestant Revolt in England and Ireland against its inheritors in Great Britain:
350. In the foregoing chapters it has been proved beyond all contradiction how the “Reformation," as it is called, was engendered, how established in hypocrisy and perfidy, and cherished and fed by rivers of innocent English and Irish blood. Those who pretend to answer these contentions only rail against the personal character of priests and cardinals and popes, and against rites and ceremonies and articles of faith and rules of discipline, matters with which I have never meddled, and which have very little to do with my subject, my object, as the title of my work expresses, being to show that the " Reformation" has impoverished and degraded the main body of the people of England and Ireland. I have shown that this change of religion was brought about by some of the worst, if not the very worst people that ever breathed; I have shown that the means were such as human nature revolts at. So far I can receive no answer from men not prepared to deny the authenticity of the statute-book. It now remains for me to show from the same sources the impoverishing and degrading consequences of this change of religion; and that, too, with regard to the nation as a whole, as well as with regard to the main body of the people.
351. But though we have now seen the Protestant religion established, completely established, by the gibbets, the racks and the ripping-knives, I must, before I come to the impoverishing and degrading consequences of which I have just spoken, and of which I shall produce the most incontestable proofs, I must give an account of the proceedings of the Reformation people after they had established their system. The present number will show us the Reformation producing a second, and that, too (as every generation is wiser than the preceding), with vast improvements, the first being only "a godly Reformation," while the second we shall find to be " a thorough godly "one. The next (or thirteenth) chapter will introduce to us a third Reformation, commonly called the "glorious" Reformation, or revolution. The fourteenth chapter will give us an account of events still greater, namely, the American Reformation, or revolution, and that of the French. All these we shall trace back to the first Reformation as clearly as any man can trace the branches of a tree back to its root. And then we shall, in the remaining chapter or chapters, see the fruit in the immorality, crimes, poverty, and degradation of the main body of the people. It will be curious to behold the American and French Reformations, or revolutions, playing back the principles of the English Reformation people upon themselves, and — which is not less curious, and much more interesting — to see them force the Reformation people to begin to cease to torment the Catholics, whom they had been tormenting without mercy for more than two hundred years. (William Cobbett, A History of the Protestant Reformation in England and Ireland, written between 1824 and 1827 and published by Benziger Brothers, pp. 289-290.)
As we know, however, the American founders believed that the “religious liberty” they granted to Catholics would lead to their acceptance, if only by acquiescence to the supposedly “irreversible” nature of their circumstances in this country, of a de facto religious indifferentism and a full-throated acceptance of democracy, civil liberty, unfettered freedom of speech, press and conscience, egalitarianism and majoritarianism. The founders were right as Catholics by the end of the Nineteenth Century had begun to look at Holy Mother Church through the eyes of the world and Americanism rather than looking at the world through the eyes of the Holy Faith.
The history of Catholics in the United States of America is thus shaped by their living in an environment of the rationalism of Protestantism and of the naturalism and religious indifferentism of Judeo-Masonry, which is far, far different from the spirit that permeated the Americas following the landing of Christopher Columbus on the island of San Salvador on October 12, 1492.
However, Catholics cannot ignore false premises promoted by the founders, some of whom hated Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and His true Church with a fanatical intensity, or to believe that it might be possible, somehow, to produce the “better” society as men sin wantonly.
It thus important for us to remember that anti-Catholicism played a major role in the two years leading up to the approval of the Declaration of Independence on July 2, 1776, and its promulgation on July 4, 1776. The British began to increase taxation and other revenue-raising measures after the end of the Seven Years’ War in Europe in 1763. The North American extension of that war was known as the French and Indian War (1756-1763), during which New France was lost to Great Britain after the defeat of the French forces in the Battle of Quebec, fought on the Plains of Abraham (and also known, therefore, as the Battle of the Plains of Abraham) on September 13, 1759 (the French surrendered New France on September 8, 1760 after the British had captured Montreal). There would be no Christendom in New France as had developed in New Spain. Although the vestigial remnants of Catholicism would remain in New France as rivers and cities would continue in most, although not in all, cases to retain names given in honor of Our Lord and Our Lady and Saint Joseph and of the Holy Faith, the Faith itself would no longer be the foundation of social life.
The British eventually decided to extend religious “toleration” to the Catholics of Quebec in the Quebec Act, which was approved by King George III on June 22, 1774. Being unwilling to see the denizens of the recently captured New France show any allegiance to the English colonists to their south who had been complaining about excessive taxation and royal measures that were believed to curb legitimate human liberties, the British government wanted to secure the cooperation and allegiance of the Catholics in Quebec. It is necessary to contrast the Quebec Act, which was made as a matter of sheer political expediency, with the forcible breakup of families and the cruelty visited upon them as occurred with the faithful Catholics of Acadia in 1755.
Acadia, when it was part of New France until was captured by the British in 1710, was renamed Nova Scotia (New Scotland, the home of John Knox’s Scottish brand of Calvinism, Presbyterianism). Governor Charles Lawrence of Nova Scotia ordered the forcible deportation of those Acadians who would not swear allegiance to the British Crown and also renounce the Catholic Faith. This exercise in English social engineering, which had been employed in Ireland to kill and repress Catholics in the island of saints and scholars, occurred without complaint or protest by the colonists in the territory that became the United States of America, including by the Catholics living there at the time.
Here is an account of the terrible story of the Grand Derangement:
The British "Final Solution" for the Acadians was deportation. It all started at 3 PM on September 5, 1755 at the Catholic Church in Grand Pre. Following the orders and plan of the Lieutenant General, Governor Lawrence, following the decree of the King of England, the British Council at Halifax unanimously decided to begin deporting the Acadians immediately to various British Colonies outside of Canada. The vessels needed for this were to be commandeered in the King's name. By this time, the Acadians numbered some 13,000 on the Acadian peninsula alone. More and more British troops had been arriving and the Acadians were acutely aware that big trouble was brewing.
A proclamation was issued accordingly to "all the inhabitants of the district of Grand Pre, Minas, River Canard, etc. ..... to attend the Church at Grand Pre on Friday the fifth instant, at three of the clock in the afternoon, that we may impart to them what we are ordered to communicate to them; declaring that no excuse will be admitted, on any pretense whatever, on pain of forfeiting goods and chattels, in default of real estate. - Given at Grand Pre 2d September, 1755."
That Friday, 418 of the residents presented themselves at the Church as ordered. Colonel John Winslow, having tricked them into this assembly, announced to them that they were to be immediately deported outside of the Province and that all their properties and goods with the exception of their cash monies and personal belongings were hereby confiscated by and to the benefit of the British Crown. Soldiers surrounded the church to prevent any escapes.
The news of this spread quickly and those who could escaped to the woods, but in vain. Their country was laid to waste. Deported from Grand Pre alone were 2,242 Acadians. The Acadians were lined up and driven to the transport ships. Women and children were loaded on boats as fast as could be provided. As if to deprive the exiles of even the hope of return, the British burned to the ground 255 of their homes, 276 barns, 11 mills, and one church while the transport vessels were still in sight. Despite the promises of Colonel Winslow to keep families together, most families were separated immediately - parents from their children, wives from their husbands, children from their siblings - many to never see each other again. The Acadians were placed under arrest and were loaded on the ships with no choice in the manner. They took only what they were wearing and what little monies they had on their person at the time. Some of the ships used as transports were not seaworthy. Consequently, two of the ships, the Violet and the Duke William, with two groups of 650 Acadians went to a watery grave in the icy mid-Atlantic on December 10 of that year.
Only one lifeboat with 27 survivors lived to tell what happened. "I do not know," observes 19th century American historian George Bancroft, "if the annals of the human race keep the record of sorrows so wantonly inflicted, so bitter and so lasting as fell upon the French inhabitants of Acadia."
How ironic it must seem for the living descendants of those expelled Acadians who now live in
the town of Winslow - a town so named in honor of the same British officer, General John Winslow, who was directly responsible for carrying out those dastardly deeds in the darkest hour in the history of the Acadians.
About 2,000 Acadians managed to escape arrest and they wandered through the woods like hunted animals, half-clad and half-starved, in ever search of some near relative. Some made it safely into Quebec where they established new lives in such towns as l'Acadie, Becancour, Nicolet, and others. Of those escapees was one of my own 6th generation paternal ancestors,
Laurent Doucet, son of Paul Doucet (a direct descendant of Acadia's first governor, Germain Doucet) and Anne LeBrun. How they survived this terrible ordeal is almost miraculous. Today, the direct descendants of these escaped Acadians number over 230,000 souls, including one-third of the present population of New Brunswick.
The deportation continued unabated over a period of 8 years. Between 1755 and 1763,
Governor Lawrence kept unloading the Acadians along the American coast - over 2,000 to
Boston, where the Bostonians treated them like slaves, 700 from Grand Pre and Port Royal to Connecticut, and about 250 poor, naked, and destitute to New York. New York rid the major part of her Acadian exiles by persuading them to emigrate to Santo Domingo, where most of them perished miserably from the torrid sun. Lawrence exiled 754 to Philadelphia where, being held captive aboard the ships in the harbor for three months, smallpox killed 237 of them. Some 2,000 more were removed to Maryland where several hundred of them escaped to Louisiana, Quebec, and the West Indies. To North Carolina, Lawrence sent 500, and to South Carolina, 1,500 Acadians. The Carolinians cleverly enticed them to leave in some old boats for Acadia. Of these, only 900 arrived at the River St. John. Another 400 were banished to Georgia where, preferring death anywhere in the tropics to slavery with the blacks in the cotton fields and sugar plantations, they fled. Wherever they went, the Acadians were unwanted, shunned, cheated, despised, and heartlessly allowed to die without even the care and affection given to pet animals. Only Connecticut was prepared to receive the exiles sent to her and treated them as a group humanely. In all, nearly 3,700 Acadians were dispersed along the coast in the British colonies of America. There is no doubt that every Acadian would have preferred exile in France to banishment to any other place.
The method of dispersing the Acadians has scarcely an equal in history. Said Edmund Burke, "We did, in my opinion, most inhumanely, and upon the pretenses that, in the eye of an honest man, are not worth a farthing, root out this poor, innocent, deserving people, whom our utter inability to govern, or to reconcile, gave us no sort of right to extirpate." How right was his judgement. There were many pitiful separations in families. One case is particularly wellknown. Due to the small number of transports, Rene Leblanc, notary-public of Grand Pre, his wife, and their two youngest children were put on one ship and landed in New York, but their eighteen other children and 150 grandchildren were loaded aboard different ships and dispersed among the colonies. There were deliberate separations of husbands from their wives and fathers from their children. Men would come back home from their work in the woods or fishing boats only to find their families gone, their homes burned to the ground, and the British soldiers waiting to arrest them and force them aboard ships for permanent banishment from their lands. Yet others were taken to various ports in England as prisoners of war and placed in concentration camps such as at Liverpool. (Acadia and the Acadians, by Robert Chenard.)
Readers will notice that the men noted for their devotion to “liberty” in the thirteen colonies of what became the United States of America did not believe that “liberty” extended to the Catholic refugees from Acadia, enslaving some and persecuting the rest. It was this hatred of Catholics that caused colonists to consider the Quebec Act as “intolerable” as it was a sign, at least to them, that the British were beginning to slacken in their resolve against “popery” when the truth of the matter was the act demonstrated British pragmatism in the face of a populace more numerous and prosperous than were the Acadians who were dispersed in Nova Scotia.
Robert Leckie described the flames of hatred that were fanned by anti-Catholic propagandists in the colonies in the immediate aftermath of the Quebec Act:
This piece of legislation had not only confirmed the French in the free exercise of their religion and the practice of their native law, it had also granted the Quebec government those lands in the west which the English colonies claimed. Now, the colonists fancied themselves surrounded by French-speaking Catholics, the old enemy of former years, and their rage was so unbounded that on October 21, 1774, the [First] Continental Congress addressed a letter to the British people admonishing them for tolerating in America a religion which “has deluged your island in blood, and dispersed impiety, bigotry, persecution, murder and rebellion through every part of the world.”
One again, it was popular to quote Samuel Adams, who had said six years earlier [that is, in 1768]: “I did verily believe, as I do still, that much more is to be dreaded from the growth of popery in America, than from the Stamp Act or any other acts destructive of civil rights. . . .” Once again, the popular press picked up the old anti-Catholic cudgels, and one journal went so far as to predict: “We may live to see our churches converted into mass houses and our lands plundered by tythes for the support of the Popish clergy. The Inquisition may erect her standard in Pennsylvania and the city of Philadelphia may yet experience the carnage of St. Bartholomew’s Day.” Others, misrepresenting the truth of the Quebec Act, insisted that it actually established Romanism as an official religion, and warned: ‘If Gallic Papists have a right To worship their own way Then farewell to the liberties Of poor America.’
Ministers, of course, were in full voice once more, but so also were John Adams, apparently recovered from his momentary lapse into tolerance, Patrick Henry, Richard Henry Lee, the inevitable Samuel Adams, and none other than Washington’s protégé and confidante, Alexander Hamilton, who thundered: “If [Parliament] had any regard to the freedom and happiness of mankind they would not have done it. If they had been friends to the Protestant cause, they would never have provided such a nursery for its greatest enemy . . . They may as well establish Popery in New York and the other colonies as they did in Canada!”
More than the Stamp Act, perhaps more than any other act by Parliament or any British minister, the Quebec Act was a direct cause of the American Revolution. It so inflamed colonial hatred of the mother country that even that staunch and solid Protestant, King George III, was accused of being a Jesuit in disguise, and his statues, from which the rebels later were to melt so many serviceable bullets, were adored with mocking rosaries.
Meanwhile, patriots such as Paul Revere did a brisk business in scurrilous engravings which depicted His Majesty and his Ministers clothed in the livery of the Pope of Rome. To the Catholics of colonial America–who actually represented no more than 1 per cent of the total population of three million persons–it appeared that it was time to pull tight the shutters again, and it was this furor of anti-Catholic sentiment that rose about the ears of Father John Carroll when he returned to his native Maryland in 1774. (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, Doubleday, 1970, pp. 45-47.)
Look at those names. John Adams. Samuel Adams. Alexander Hamilton. Paul Revere. These are not men to admire. They hated Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and His true Church, she that is the one and only means of personal salvation and social order.
They had little to fear, however. Eager to be accepted by their fellow colonists, the leading Catholics of the colonies did not want to convert them to Catholicism. They simply desired the “freedom” to practice their Faith without persecution which is the only thing that the Quebec Act had guaranteed French Catholics in Quebec. Indeed, one could say that the Quebec Act was an incubator of the heresy of “religious liberty” just as much as had been the approach taken by the first Catholics who had arrived in Maryland in 1634 and the pragmatic tack taken by William Penn, who was no friend of Catholicism, in the Colony of Pennsylvania.
Caught in the Devil’s Trap
To be sure, Catholics in the colonies, few in number though they were in the eighth decade of the Eighteenth Century, were in a very untenable situation. Indeed, they were in a trap that had been laid for them by the devil, finding themselves torn in a situation where they were not being killed, as had been the case for so long in England, but were still a hated minority in the land where some of their ancestors had lived for over one hundred forty years. A very small number of Catholics remained loyal to the British Crown as the first shots in the Revolutionary War were fired in Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts, on April 19, 1775. Most Catholics, however, were to be found on the side of the self- styled “patriots,” that is, colonists who desired to break from the mother country, Great Britain.
The “religious liberty” desired by Catholics came at quite a price: their fidelity to the Social Teaching of Holy Mother Church. There was never a time in the one hundred eighty-six years between the Declaration of Independence and the beginning of the “Second” Vatican Council on October 11, 1962, that the American “bishops” sought to teach the necessity of converting their land to the true Faith. To do so, obviously, would be to jeopardize their own acceptance and to disturb civil peace, they believed. Rather than seek to convert their fellow countrymen to the true Faith, the American bishops presided over the conversion of their fellow Catholics to the “republican spirit” of “freedom” and “democracy” and “independent thinking” that would lead most Catholics in the United States of America to come to view Holy Mother Church over the course of time through the lens of republicanism, “freedom” and “democracy.”
Such a spirit of independence from Roman “interference” had developed amongst Catholics in the colonies that Father John Carroll defied Bishop Richard Challoner (after whom the Challoner Douay-Rheims Bible is named)after he had been assigned to oversee the dismantling of the Society of Jesus following its suppression by Pope Clement XIV on July 21, 1773:
Although shocked by the enmity which passage of the Quebec Act had unleashed against his faith, Father Carroll nevertheless sided with the Patriots in their dispute with England. He proudly followed the career of his famous cousin, Charles, sympathizing with his republican convictions and becoming so independence-minded himself that he refused his obedience to Father John Lewis, acting as Bishop Challoner’s vicar-general. By this act, like so many of his fellow priests in America, he made it clear that he had no wish to submit to ecclesiastical authority based in England. Nevertheless, John Carroll was far from enthusiastic when his cousin Charles approached him with the astounding invitation to help win the Catholics of Canada to the Patriot cause (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, Doubleday, 1970, p. 48.)
Anti-Catholics though the leading colonists may have been, they were also as pragmatic as their
British overlords. Some of those leading colonists believed that a way could be found to win over Catholics to the “patriot” cause, an invitation that suited the purposes of the Carrolls of Maryland in order to win acceptance and thus general “tolerance” for their co-religionists in each of the colonies when they became states in an independent United States of America.
The late Mrs. Solange Hertz described the Masonic background of Charles Carroll, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, who had enlisted his cousin, Father John Carroll, to accompany the libertine Freemason Benjamin Franklin and Samuel Chase on a mission to Canada to win over the very people who had been the object of such hatred after the Quebec Act to the cause of American independence:
Charles Carroll, born in Annapolis in 1737, had become very active politically on completing his education abroad. He served 23 years in the Maryland legislature as well as in the U.S. Senate until it became illegal to hold both offices simultaneously. At the t i m e of the Revolution he was probably the richest man in America, owning some 80,000 acres in Maryland alone. Enjoying a reputation as a somewhat eccentric, but affable money-grubber, he was invaluable in managing the finances of the Continental Army. It has been pointed out that he stood most to lose should the Revolution fail: “There go a few millions!” exclaimed one onlooker who watched him sign the Declaration of Independence. But this was to lose sight of the fact that he also stood the most to gain if the Revolution succeeded and English taxes thereby abolished. His gamble paid off gloriously.
He was the only Catholic to sign the Declaration, whose language a true son of the Church would have held under the deepest suspicion. Although he never denied the Faith and was sober and disciplined in his personal habits, he was not noted for any outbursts of piety. His birth may have been illegitimate, inasmuch as his parents’ marriage certificate bears a date some twenty years after he was born. His wife died young, a victim of opiates, and he never re-married. All his children died out of the Church, his only son Charles of Homewood renouncing the Faith, taking to drink and never holding any position worth mentioning.
The Masonic builders of liberty had the utmost confidence in Charles Carroll. He not only helped win Maryland to the Articles of Confederation and later to the hotly resisted Constitution, but through his connections abroad, smoothed Franklin’s path in Paris to seal the French Alliance whereby France threw her weight against the English king. In February 1776 the Continental Congress resolved “that a committee of three–two of whom to be members of Congress–to be appointed to repair to Canada, there to pursue such instructions as shall be given them by that body.” Those named were the dean of American Masonry, Benjamin Franklin, together with the Maryland Protestant Samuel
Chase–and Charles Carroll. This despite the fact that he was only an observer at the
Congress, Catholics being barred from serving as delegates. (Solange Hertz, The Star Spangled Heresy: Americanism: How the Catholic Church in America Became the American Catholic Church, Veritas Press: Santa Monica, California, 1992, pp. 36-37.)
The mission to Quebec that Father John Carroll undertook with his cousin, a Master Mason, and the chief of the Masons in the English colonies, Benjamin Franklin, began the official co-opting of leading Catholics by men who had no use for the Faith other than to use Its adherents for their purposes of promoting the “new science of politics” represented by their false ideas. This is not an exaggeration. Leading American “patriots” sought to do this very explicitly, something that Robert Leckie demonstrated (without understanding that he was doing so) in American and Catholic:
After its first outburst against the Quebec Act, Congress [the First Continental Congress] had second thoughts about Canada. On the very same day that it had excoriated King George for tolerating in America a religion which “has deluged your land in blood,” they addressed a quite dissimilar letter to the people of Quebec, inviting them to join the fight against tyranny and declaring:
We are too well acquainted with the liberality of sentiment distinguishing your nation, to imagine, that difference of religion will prejudice you against a hearty amity with us. You know, that the transcendent nature of freedom elevates those, who unite in her cause, above all such-low minded infirmities.
The Canadians, however, were also “too well-acquainted” with the true religious sentiments of the Protestants to the south, and they angrily spurned the overtures of what they called “the perfidious Congress.” Moreover, Bishop [Jean-Oliver] Briand of Quebec deeply distrusted the Americans, and forbade any of his flock to join them under penalty of excommunication. Thus, Canada remained loyal to the British crown, and in 1775 Congress, despairing of diplomacy, authorized a two-pronged military assault on Montreal and Quebec under Richard Montgomery and Benedict Arnold. Although this expedition ultimately ended in failure, Congress flip- flopped back to diplomacy again. Already aware that the traditional American hatred of Catholicism was going to have to be muted during the war against England, it authorized a diplomatic mission to Canada charged with impressing upon the Canadians its new-found tolerance of Popery. Benjamin Franklin was the obvious choice to lead the embassy, along with Samuel Chase, known to have Catholic friends, and the Catholic Charles Carroll. A few weeks later the British-born
General Charles Lee wrote to his friend John Hancock: “I should think that if some Jesuit
of Religieuse or any other Order (he must be a man of liberal sentiments, enlarged mind and a manifest friend of Civil Liberty) could be found out and sent to Canada, he would be worth battalions to us.” The same idea had occurred to John Adams, who wrote to a friend: “We have empowered the Committee to take with them, another gentleman of Maryland, a Mr. John Carroll, a Roman Catholic priest, and a Jesuit, a gentleman of learning and Abilities.” Obviously, John Adams, could he swallow his hatred of priests, and especially Jesuits, to the extent that he could praise one, Catholicism was once again in good odor in Philadelphia. (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, Doubleday, 1970, pp. 48-49.)
Only a corrupted version of Catholicism displays “liberal sentiments” with an “enlarged mind” and is a “manifest friend” of “Civil Liberty.” In other words, the Catholicism desired by Charles Lee and his fellow anti-Catholics was a “safe Catholicism.” Although it took much time and many struggles of one sort or another, the “safe,” “acceptable” brand of Catholicism that emerged after the Revolutionary War was a prophetic harbinger of the “safe Catholicism” that now exists in the entire world. It is called the counterfeit church of conciliarism that most people in the world believe is the Catholic Church but is in fact her counterfeit ape.
It was on that mission to Quebec in 1774 that the colonial elite began to realize that they could neutralize “popery” by extending leading “papists” some baubles of recognition, thus convincing them that they could all live together in peace and brotherhood while they, the Catholics, surrendered any claim to seek the conversion of the country to the true Faith. Furthermore, the colonial elite believed that the Catholics could be convinced to “stand up” to any kind of “Roman interference” in their “internal affairs” in an independent American nation the way that they were standing up to King George III and the military might of the British Empire.
It was a year after the Treaty of Paris that formally ended the Revolutionary War and resulted in concessions by England to France and Spain that Father John Carroll was selected to be the de facto superior of the approximately 25,000 Catholics who lived in the new country, the United States of America. Benjamin Franklin personally recommended his old friend from the Quebec mission to Pope Pius VI’s papal nuncio to France for the position. Some of the American priests, having worked for so long without a superior, were resentful at the mere notion of the sudden appearance of a hierarchy, no less one established by “Rome.” Father Carroll himself was so concerned about the appearance of “foreign interference” that he wrote to Leonardo Cardinal Antonelli, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith from May 2, 1780, to June 25, 1784, to request him to phrase his appointment in such a way so that Protestants would not be frightened:
In the official letter to Carroll, Cardinal Antontelli confirms that he was chosen because “it is known that your appointment will please and gratify many members of that republic, and especially Mr. Franklin, the eminent individual who represents that republic at the court of the Most Christian King [Louis XVI of France]. Accepting the appointment, Carroll urged the Cardinal to find some method whereby in future it would not appear that the American Church was receiving its authority from a foreign power! He had petitioned the Pope not to leave American Catholics under the jurisdiction of their prelate in England, alleging that this could not be done “without open offense at this supreme magistracy and political government.” (Solange Hertz, The Spar Spangled Heresy: Americanism: How the Catholic Church in America Became the American Catholic Church, Veritas Press: Santa Monica, California, 1992, p. 38.)
Father John Carroll was sincerely concerned about the growth of the Faith in the United States of America. He simply believed that a way could be found to do this without appearing to threaten the Protestants.
An admirer of Father Carroll, Jay P. Dolan, quoted Carroll at length on the matter:
I consider powers issued from the Propaganda not only as improper, but dangerous here. The jealously in our Governments of the interference of any foreign jurisdiction is known to be such that we cannot expect, and in my opinion ought not to wish, that they would tolerate any other, than that which being purely spiritual, is essential to our Religion, to wit, an acknowledgment of the Pope’s spiritual Supremacy, and of the see of S. Peter being the center of Ecclesiastical unity. The appointment therefore by the Propaganda of a Superior for this Country appears to be a dangerous step, and, by exciting the jealousy of the governments here may lend much to the prejudice of Religion, and perhaps expose it to the reproach of encouraging a dependence on a foreign power, and giving them an undue internal influence by leaving with them a prerogative to nominate to places of trust and real importance, and that ad scum beneplacitum [at their own pleasure]. (Quoted in Jay P. Dolan, The American Catholic Experience, Doubleday, 1985, p. 106.)
The future proto-bishop and archbishop in the United States of America, John Carroll, also believed passionately in what Pope Saint Pius X would term a thesis absolutely false, separation of Church and State, a thesis that was condemned repeatedly by pope after pope in the Nineteenth Century. No matter Archbishop John Carroll’s becoming a bit more “conservative” in his later years, especially concerning the necessity of Church discipline and the retention of Latin in the Sacred Liturgy despite having supported the use of the vernacular thirty years previously (in the 1780s), he remained a champion of the falsehoods of “separation of Church and State” and “religious liberty” until the day he died on December 3, 1815. This was no mere pragmatic concession to the reality of the situation in which Catholics found themselves. This was a complete and total commitment to these insidious falsehoods as a matter of firmly rooted principle, thus preparing the way for the triumph of conciliarism in our own days:
In addition to being independent and American, a third dimension of the republican blueprint of Catholicism was an insistence on the separation of church and state. In the seventeenth century, Lord Baltimore had implemented this practice when he refused to allow the Jesuits any special privileges; at the time, it was a pragmatic decision rooted in the necessity for religious toleration in a Catholic colony populated by Protestants. With the Protestant takeover in Maryland, religious toleration became an orphan. Only with the [American] Revolution, did this republican idea became actualized once more. This time it emerged not as a pragmatic concession to a religiously plural environment, but as a fundamental human right endorsed by the Revolution. Catholics accepted this rights-ofman philosophy and enthusiastically supported the concept of a free church in a free society. Such thinking placed American Catholics squarely in the mainstream of Catholic Enlightenment thought. (Jay P. Dolan, The American Catholic Experience, Doubleday, 1985, p. 108.)
Such a description could have been written by Antipope Emeritus Joseph Alois Ratzinger/Benedict XVI himself, who does indeed see the events of the American Revolution as decisive in shaping the ethos of the “Second” Vatican Council:
In the meantime, however, the modern age had also experienced developments. People came to realize that the American Revolution was offering a model of a modern State that differed from the theoretical model with radical tendencies that had emerged during the second phase of the French Revolution. (Joseph Alois Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, Christmas Greetings to Members of the Roman Curia, December 22, 2005.)
The model of the “modern State” “offered” by the American Revolution was no less radical than the one that emerged during the “second phase of the French Revolution.” Although many Catholic apologists of the American founding have sought to portray it as different than the radicalism of the French Revolution, the differences are matters of degree, not of kind, as the principle root is the same: the belief that men and their nations could be well-organized absent a due subordination to the Sacred Deposit of Faith as It has been entrusted by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ exclusively to the Catholic Church in all that pertains to the good of souls, upon which is hinged the totality of social order. The devil had to attack France with the violence and bloodshed that began to be unleashed on July 14, 1789, as the Cross of the Divine Redeemer had been planted firmly into the French soil; he used more subtle–and hence more insidious–means to co-opt American Catholics into becoming just as hostile to the Social Reign of Christ the King as were the Jacobins of the French Revolution.
There are others who claim that the “independent” spirit that has long characterized Catholicism in the United States of America is the reason that the traditional movement had a much larger following, relatively speaking, than in Europe. One may concede that point, only to note, however, that there would be no need for any kind of traditional movement anywhere in the world if the virus of Americanism had not incubated during colonial days and then began to spread following the end of the American Revolution and the ratification of the Constitution of the United States of America, which, as will be seen in volume two of this book, would later infect the entirety of the world and become the very foundation of the conciliar church’s embrace of separation of Church and State and religious liberty and of false ecumenism itself.
Jay P. Dolan came to this conclusion in an admiring, not critical, way in The American Catholic Experience:
For Roman Catholics, modernism is a term generally associated with a theological controversy that surfaced in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries. But the rise of historical-mindedness, or what can be called the modernist mentality, clearly predated this controversy. As regards European Catholicism, the evidence for this is extensive. Even though the evidence is not so extensive for American Catholicism, a definite modernist impulse can be discerned in some leading American Catholic thinkers. Though they did not call themselves modernists, nor did the self-conscious think of themselves as such, they were thinking and acting according to a modern perspective that theologically viewed the church as historically conditioned–unlike the classicist or neo-Scholastic mentality, which viewed it as unchanging and immune to the influence of history.
John Carroll was an intellectual heir of the Enlightenment, and his thinking on the nature of the church leaned in the modern direction. As previously noted in the chapter on republican Catholicism, John Carroll wanted to adapt certain practices of the church to the American environment. These included the training of priests, an English liturgy, friendly relations and cooperation with Protestants, and a church independent of foreign interference. In this manner he envisioned a church in the United States distinct from Roman Catholic churches in other countries. Such a program of adaptation to the American cultural situation clearly pointed in the modernist direction. Though these types of adaptation were more external and would not alter the intrinsic meaning of the church, Carroll did go further. He advocated the separation of Church and state, and promoted the idea of religious liberty. This touched on the very meaning of the church. According to the institutional model, the church was the one perfect society, and the state or civil society was subject to the rule of the church. Carroll promoted a different point of view, and in doing so modified the institutional model of the church as the one perfect visible society. Though he never fully explained how church and state would be separated and the consequent relationship between the two, his advocacy of the general concept of separation according to the American model clearly put him at odds with the prevailing model of the church as the one perfect society. In addition, Carroll celebrated religious liberty, not as a pragmatic concession to a religiously pluralist society, but as a natural human right. This, too, challenged the prevailing Roman Catholic position that said error had no rights and false religious beliefs could not be tolerated. The logic of Carroll’s position suggested that, in a religiously pluralist society, Roman Catholicism could not claim to be the one and only visible church.
In advocating these positions on religious liberty and the separation of Church and state, Carroll was implying that the understanding of the church should be adapted to the cultural context, in this case the United States. Such thinking reflected a historical consciousness, a modern mentality in other words, when it came to defining the meaning of the church. This does not mean that Carroll self-consciously was adopting a historical, modern perspective in place of the classicist point of view. Nor was Carroll alone. During the Republican era, other American Catholics advocated religious liberty and separation of church and state. Unlike in Europe, such thinking did not result in a new school of thought or a new theology, but it did set a precedent. The precedent was the need of the church to adapt itself to the American context, not just in externals, but even in its very definition. (Jay P. Dolan, The American Catholic Experience, Doubleday, 1985, pp. 304-305.)
The process of converting Catholics to an acceptance of the secular state of Modernity began with the arrival of Catholics in Maryland in 1634. It became institutionalized in the decades thereafter, anchoring itself upon the mooring provided by the Constitution and the “founding principles.” The process of adaptation used by John Carroll has become that of the conciliar church. Unfortunately, for John Carroll, however, his desire to adapt the Faith to the American experience resulted in the precise thing he feared: Catholics becoming more and more Protestant in their mentality over the course of time:
Obviously, American Catholicism did not seem to have a promising future [in 1785], and Father Carroll’s report reflects his deep concern for its chief problem of “leakage.” By then, the country contained an estimated quarter-million lapsed Catholics, ordinary people who, unlike the wealthy planters of Maryland, and farmers of Pennsylvania, had found it exceedingly difficult to practice their religion. With the shortage of priests continuing, and the immigrant tide rising daily, many more were to be lost irrevocably. Even today , the presence of so many Protestant Irish in the South testifies to the mass defection of their ancestors. They lost their faith, wrote Father Carroll, not only because they found no place to practice it or found hostility to the public profession of it too much to bear, but also because of “unavoidable intercourse with non-Catholics.” This produced moral laxness, or at least a relaxing of comparatively stricter Catholic morality, and what the prefect apostolic considered a greater danger: mixed marriages. Again and again, Carroll was to complain of this problem and his helplessness against it. In 1798 he wrote to a friend in England: “Here our Catholics are so mixed with Protestants in all the intercourse of civil society and business public and private, that abuse of intermarriage is almost universal and it surpasses my ability to devise an effectual bar against it. No general prohibition can be exacted without reducing many of the faithful to live in a state of celibacy.” In other words, if one Catholic family was set down in a community of, say, thirty Protestant families, where would the Catholic children find partners? And if they accepted reality and chose them from among the Protestants, would it be very likely that the offspring of the dominant majority would embrace an abhorred minority faith? If one is to judge from so distinguished a Catholic as Charles Carroll of Carrollton, here is the answer: all of Carroll’s children married non-Catholics; and apparently none of his grandchildren were raised as Catholics. Another outstanding Catholic, Dominick Lynch of New York, one of the pillars of the Church who signed the letter to Washington, fathered a family of thirteen children, but within a few generations almost all of his descendants were lost to the faith. (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, 1970, p. 64.)
Archbishop John Carroll found himself in a quandary as he never wavered in his support for the very thing that made it possible for the pluralism about which he complained to flourish and thus to take hold of the minds, hearts and souls of Catholics in the United States of America: the founding principles expressed in the Declaration of Independence and the very framework of the American Constitution that enshrined the principles of separation of Church and State and religious liberty without ever using those exact words. And it would be the rotten fruit of those principles that was to plant insidious seeds for the rise of a counterfeit ape of the Catholic Church headed by men who believed that the expression of Church teaching is indeed historically conditioned and must be adapted to the circumstances of time and place.
Behold the results that are upon us today, both in the United States of America and the rest of the world.
A Few Words About My Repeated Criticisms of the American Founding
This reflection has been prepared at the same time I am preparing Volume Two of Restoring Christ as the King of All Nations, and I have done so to help readers understand that it is important not to accept the Americanist myths of “exceptionalism” and not to believe that there is anything short of Catholicism that can secure the good of men temporally and, more importantly, eternally.
Indeed, William Cobbett, provided an apologia of his own hard-hitting history of the Protestant Revolution in England and Ireland by noting that he had not done so to curry favor with the rich and power or for the sake of “popularity.” He wrote, he said, for the cause of truth, which, sadly, he saw only dimly given the fact that he never converted to the true Faith and joined the numbers of those whose sufferings he had documented so very well:
479. I have now performed my task. I have made good the positions with which I began. Born and bred a Protestant of the Church of England, having a wife and numerous family professing the same faith, having the remains of most dearly beloved parents lying in a Protestant churchyard, and trusting to conjugal or filial piety to place mine by their side, I have in this undertaking had no motive, I can have had no motive, but a sincere and disinterested love of truth and justice. It is not for the rich and the powerful of my countrymen that I have spoken; but for the poor, the persecuted, the proscribed. I have not been unmindful of the unpopularity and the prejudice that would attend the enterprise; but when I considered the long, long triumph of calumny over the religion of those to whom we owe all that we possess that is great and renowned; when I was convinced that I could do much towards the counteracting of that calumny; when duty so sacred bade me speak, it would have been baseness to hold my tongue, and baseness superlative would it have been, if, having the will as well as the power, I had been restrained by fear of the shafts of falsehood and of folly. To be clear of self-reproach is amongst the greatest of human consolations; and now, amidst all the dreadful perils which the event that I have treated of has at last surrounded my country, I can, while I pray God to save her from still further devastation and misery, safely say that neither expressly nor tacitly am I guilty of any part of the cause of her ruin. (William Cobbett, A History of the Protestant Reformation in England and Ireland, written between 1824 and 1827 and published by Benziger Brothers, p 408.)
Well, I have tried over the years to the defend the truth about the falsehoods of the American founding since coming to learn in the late-1980s that, despite teaching my American government courses with a great deal of the information about the Protestant Revolution as a rejection of the legacy of Christendom and the rise of John Locke as the harbinger of political ideology as Catholicism’s worthless “substitute,” the American founders did not have the true interests of their country at heart. There is little more that I can write to restate what has been stated so many times before but continues to be lost on those caught up in the agitations of the moment.
All I know is this: Catholicism is the necessary precondition, although not an infallible guarantor, of all social order and it is the sole means of human sanctification of salvation upon which social order must be based.
Well, I know something else as well, namely, that the true might of one’s nation comes in the devotion of its citizens to the true Faith and the their steadfast fealty to Social Reign of Christ the King and to His Most Blessed Mother, whose most Holy Rosary is more powerful than all the military armament displayed in the parades of any nation, including in the United States of America.
It is time to pray a Rosary now, is it not?
Viva Cristo Rey!
Viva La Virgen de Guadalupe!
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.