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reply from the orthodox Prelates of Ulster would prevent any apparent discrepancy that might appear in individual answers. This reply should be forwarded to Rome as soon as possible. The Archbishop of Tuam concurs in every sentiment I here express, and I must trouble your Lordship to have accurate copies of this letter written out and forwarded without delay to every Prelate in Ulster, who entertains our opinion on the Colleges question. His Grace writes to the provinces of Munster and Connaught on this subject, and begs me to present his affectionate regards. Dr. Nicholson is expected daily. He is the bearer of some intriguing documents, so that we are likely to be kept busy.
* W. O'HIGGINS.
IRISH COLLEGE, ROME, June 18, 1848. My Lord, I write one line to say that Dr. Ennis has presented to the Propaganda the corrections which have been made in the system of the godless Colleges. The Cardinal has determined to send to each bishop a copy of this document, in order that each person may make his remarks on the case. There appears to be no sort of protection for the Catholic religion in the new regulations. A few words in reply to them will be enough. Dr. MacHale is anxious that an answer should be sent as soon as possible. Write to the other Bishops, and get them to reply without delay.
In Rome we are very quiet. The Pope declared, and declares, that he will not have war with any one; the ministry that has usurped the power is carrying on war most actively. The object of some of those who are
engaged in this business seems to be to destroy the property of the Church. If they can keep on the war for the present year, it will absorb all the Church property of those States. The Pope now has little or no authority; the ministry is acting as it wishes. There are two governments here—the Pope and his ministry. Things will not remain much longer so. There will be a re-action in favor of the Pope, and things will be right again. The arms of the Italians have been very unsuccessful in Lombardy.
Excuse the shortness of this scroll, which I send by hand. I have the honor to be, with profoundest respect, Your devoted, obedient servant,
PAUL CULLEN. Right Rev. Dr. Maginn, &c.
IRISH COLLEGE, ROME, September 5, 1848. My Lord,—I beg to inclose a few lines which His Holiness wished to write in reply to the letter which you inclosed to Dr. Kirby. I translated for him a portion of your letter to Dr. Kirby, in which you spoke of the affairs of Rome. He was so much gratified with it, that he ordered the Secretary to write you a line in return. The extract of your letter was published in the Roman Journal of the 29th of August. I hope you will publish the pastoral address, of which Dr. Kirby wrote to you. It will be gratifying to His Holiness to see distant Bishops take an interest in his welfare, and to learn that he has the support of the most distant churches. At the same time such an address will rouse the spirit of the Catholics, not only at home but abroad.
In Rome we have been rather quiet for the last few weeks. The great mass of the people is for the Pope, but the young Italians are bold and organized, and though few in number, they can keep everything in confusion. I dare say there are not more than fourteen or fifteen hundred such gentlemen in Rome, and still they have been able to keep everything in disorder, and to put the Pope at defiance for the last six months. I believe there is no great danger of a revolution. The people might be roused to action, if anything violent were attempted against the Pope. Several times matters appeared quite ripe for a change of government; but after a few days' noise, things settled down again. However, the Pope has not that freedom or independence of action which would be necessary for him, in order to manage the affairs of the universal Church. This would be a thing to be insisted on in any address, that the Pope must be kept independent not only of sovereigns or foreign States, but also he must not be swayed in his spiritual capacity by his own unruly subjects.
Some of the young Italians are now endeavoring to propagate Protestantism in Italy. They were displeased with the Pope for not declaring war on the Austrians. They wish now to revenge themselves by promoting heresy. The Pope mentioned this fact last Sunday in an address, which he delivered at the church of S. Pantalio, when publishing the decree for the beatification of the Jesuit Father Claver. The young Italians, or Italian liberals, are showing a very bad spirit. Their efforts to promote Protestantism will have no effect.
I will now mention a circumstance which is to be entre nous. The Pope told a prelate the other day that when Lord Minto was here, he spoke to His Holiness about pensioning the Irish clergy, and begged of him to interfere to induce the clergy to accept the favors of government. The Pope said he could not think of doing so; but if the matter be left to me, I will make a proposal which ought to appear reasonable to Government, and I will pledge myself to induce the Irish to accept it. Minto said he would be very happy to hear the project. The Pope replied that the Irish Catholic Church was formerly very rich. Restore half the property of which they were stripped, the Catholics will absolve you from the restitution of the remainder, and let things be thus settled. Lord Minto said in return, that the Queen would consent to lose the last jewel of her crown, rather than entertain such a proposal. After this conversation Lord Minto never spoke any more about pensioning the clergy. If the project should be proposed by Government, perhaps some similar proposal would have the effect of turning the thoughts of our rulers to some other matter, and make them forget so dangerous a scheme as that of pensioning the clergy.
I fear you must be all in a sad way in Ireland. What will the poor people do if the potatoes fail? I hope God and the Blessed Virgin will protect them. There is some talk that His Holiness will define or declare the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception on the 8th of December next. A great number of Bishops from every part of the world have petitioned him to do so. I wish the Irish Bishops would join the petition. It might be the means of gaining protection for poor Ireland. We want a powerful intercessor.
Drs. Machale and O'Higgins have written a long answer to Dr. Ennis. They have crushed the poor man. He will get little thanks for his mission. There is no doubt but that the former decree of the Propaganda will be confirmed. The Pope himself has a similar contest here in his own states. The young Italians want to shake off all independence from the clergy in matters of education. The Pope has determined to support the rights of the clergy. He must do the same in Ireland. Dr. Kirby desires to be remembered to you. He is at Tivoli, with the Irish. I am at the ancient Tusculum with the students of the Propaganda. I expect to get back to the Irish College very soon, as the affairs of Rome will probably allow the Jesuits to return. At all events, I could not remain in the Propaganda. I have not strength enough for a very laborious office.
I hope your nerves are getting on well. It is a glorious thing to see religion triumphing in the strongholds of heresy, notwithstanding all the difficulties of the times. The nuns, when once properly established, will be a great blessing to Derry. I beg you will have the kindness to acknowledge the receipt of His Holiness' letter. I have the honor to be, with profoundest respect, your devoted, obedient servant,
Irish COLLEGE, ROME, September 14, 1848. My Dear Lord,—Your Lordship's kind letter of the 26th