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CPuwtt'B Intuerattg 




Free (Christian Schools 


By His Grace Archbishop Tache. 

' Standard " Book and Job Printing Entablisbment, 

18 7 7. 

F50 [?> 

Denominational Schools 

To the Editor of the Standard. 

Sir, — While publishing your views on th^ ques- 
tion' of Public Schools, you kindly expressed the 
satisfaction you experienced on seeing that others 
likewise giv* their opinion on the subject. This 
persuades me that you will liberally grant space 
in your columns, for a series of articles I intend to 

I regret to have to say, in the first place, that 
my convictions might be (da metrically opposed to 
yours, nevertheless, I am convinced that, animated 
with a liberal spirit, and friendly to loyal and frank 
discussion, you ^ ill not be averse to fair play, and 
that yon will afford your readers the opportunity 
to find in your own paper the reasons others have 
not to share the opinions you have therein expressed. 
Articles ably written have treated the subject more 
lengthily and more cleverly than I can venture to 
do ; but as they may not have come to the notice of 
your readers, the latter, so numerous in the Pro- 
vince, and yourself, sir, will be generous enough to 
receive, if not with pleasure, at least with courtesy, 
the counterpart of your own assertions. 

Before mentioning the sphere intended for my 
observations, I beg leave to take a glance over our 
actual law of education. 

The first Parliament of Manitoba, during its 

first session, passed an Act that was sanctioned 

on the 3rd of May, 1871. An amendment of 

detail received force of law on the 21st of Febru- 



ary, 1872. The 8th March, 1873, sanction was 
given to amendments so considerable, that the Act 
enclosing them was sty ltd "The Amended School 
Act." The second Parliament added to the great 
amount of work accomplished during its first 
session, "An Act further to amend the Act to es- 
tablish a system of E lucation in this Province," 
and on the 14th May. 1875, the twenty nine clauses 
of the said Act received, in the name of the Queen, 
the sanction of the Lieutenant-Governor. 

Moreover, on the 4th February, 1876, His Honor 
sanctioned the forty -five sections of "An Act to 
amend the School Acts of Manitoba, so as to meet 
the special requirements of incorporated cities and 
towns." All this legislation evidently proves that 
the legislators of Manitoba have been earnestly 
pre-occupied concerning the question of education, 
to which they have devoted a large share of their 

The above laws have been enacted, either with 
the unanimity, or at least, with the majority of the 
Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly. 
They have all been sanctioned by the Lieutenant- 
Governor, in the name of the Queen, none of them 
have been disavowed by the more immediate repre- 
sentative of the Sovereign. 

Therefore the said laws are duly ami lawfully 
the code that governs the Province of Manito 1 a, 
with regard to the education of its children, I he 
actual laws of education admit and protect the 
principle of denominational schools, and, in tact, as 
well as in name, make them either Protestant or 
* Catholic, entirely distinct and independent among 
themselves and respectively submitted tmly to the 
section of the Board of Education to which thei/ be- 

The Protestant section of the Board of Educa- 
tion has under its control the management of the 
Protestant schools. Tt lias the power to make, from 
time to time, such regulations as may be deemed 
fit for their general management and discipline ; 
to arrange for the proper examination, graduating, 
and licensing of its teachers, and for the withdrawal 
of the license on sufficient cause ; to select all the 
books, maps, and globes to be used in its schools ; 

and to approve of plans and dimensions for the 
erection of school houses under its control ; the 
flame Protestant section of the Board, has the pow- 
er to erect, divide, and subdivide Protestant school 
districts where it thinks proper throughout the 
Province ; all school taxes and assessments, paid by 
Protestants' are exclusively J or the maintenance of 
Protestant schools. The money voted by the Leg- 
islative Assembly for educational purposes, is di 
vided in proportion to the school population 
of each section. Therefore, the Protestants 
have the half, the two-thirds, the three-fourths of 
the Government grant, if they have the half, the 
tw« .-thirds, the three-fourths, &c, of the school 
population. In a word the Protestant schools are 
Entirely under the control and jurisdiction of Pro- 
testants ; they receive all the money paid by Pro 
testants for assessments, and they have their due 
share of public funds. 

The Catholics having nothing to do with the Pro- 
testants schools have no action in them, and 
consequently tliey can in noway impede their suc- 
cess, welfare, and prosperity. The law, in granting 
such independence to the Protestant schools, • and 
in protecting them against the intrusion of Catho- 
lics, even were the latter inore numerous, secures 
similar independence to Catholic schools against 
the interference ot Protestants, notwithstanding 
the latter being the majority in the Province. 
Such is the fundamental principle of the School Law 
of Manitoba. 

Defective as this law may be in other respects, 
it is, nevertheless, true to say that the principle on 
which it is based is commended by a host of dis- 
tinguished statesmen and publicists, together with 
other eminent men of all countries, ranks and de- 
nominations. The same priuciple has made the 
prosperity of certain nations, while placing them 
foremost in civilization ; and without seeking il- 
lustration abroad, every one knows that the two 
most important Provinces of the Canadian Confe- 
deration have separate schools, and are satisfied 
with the system ; while, respecting the rights of 
all, this system opens a wide field to noble and ge- 

nerous emulation, which, as a general rule, secures 
more ample and better results. 

On the other hand, we see the same principle 
opposed by men who think they h;ive a right to 
lead public opinion. But; Allow me to say that 
mere opposition to a system of education does nob 
prove that the same is contrary "to the more eu- 
liglfteJied spirit of the present aire." Ir, is mrely a 
mist ike to think that " the triumph of the princi- 
p'e of justice" consists in replacing the system 
adopted here by the very improperly termed " Un- 
sectarian public school system*" 

I have no knowledge of Catholics having any 
desire to biing a radical charge in our school laws. 
I am not even aware whether the Protestant po- 
pulation, left to itself, and not agitated by extreme 
wen, momd by sectarian views, or political ambi- 
tion, would ever think of bringing about the pro- 
posed charge, or of forcing it upon their fellow 
citizens. On the event, of the Protestant popula- 
tion not being satisfied with the actual conditio i 
of things, I will take the liberty to respectfully 
make the following suggestions : 

Allow the Catholics to enjoy the liberty 
you would ceitaiuly claim, were yon in their place; 
do not meddle with their schools, otherwise nor more 
than you would wish them to do, were they the 
majority in the Province. Jf your own 

school regulations do not meet your approbation, 
you can easily bring a remedy without agitating 
our Province, and injuring the ju^t susceptibilities, 
and the concientious convictions of others. You 
are. masters of your own position, make your own 
schools what you wish them to be, but leave to 
Catholic Schools the character held dear by their 

I have already fully stated", and every one knows, 
that the Protestants have the control of their schools 
by the actual law ; they teach only what they like, 
they can leave off, in their teaching, all that dis- 
pleases them; they can, if they choose, exclude ail re- 
ligious teach inL r ; that concerns themselves, the law 
secures them that right ; and I do not think the 
Catholics will ever object to it. On the other hand, 
I see neither liberality nor justice, on the part of the 

3 7 

majority, to endeavor to control the Catholic 
Schools, or to destroy their autonomy, in order to 
govern tlieni. — Instead of. setting forth an -irritat- 
ing, useless, and dangerous question, that Iras... al- 
ready occasioned such deplorable results, even with- 
in out" young Confederation, why do hot the 
friends and advocates of this pretended reform, 
turn their zeal towards what is naturally, and by 
the lew, under their authority ?. It' the proposed 
change he the result of divergence of opinion among 
the different Protestant s <ts, and if the latter agree 
to it, let the Piotestant section of the Board of Ed- 
ucation accomplish the change in the schools under 
its control and they will then have nnsectarian 
schools for their children. — If it he the wish of 
Protestants, let the Board exclude from their schools 
everything Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Methodist 
&c. and. if they choose, all that is Christian ; let 
them make the experiment in their midst, and in 
what concerns them'. When a generation will have 
reaped the fruits thereof, and proved by ex|*rience 
the efficiency of the system to secure the moral and 
intellectual improvement of its partisans, then, 
indeed, you will have no trouble in obtaining, the 
co-operation of the Catholics, who, naturally, will 
be only to happy to secure, for themselves, the bene- 
fits enjoyed by others. Then, but not till t/t&n, peo- 
ple will see the realization of the hope, expressed by 
the Free Press in its issue of the 25th. August lasr. 

'• We have little. doubt that the 

prelates of that Chinch (Catholic) will see the wis- 
dom and justice of c implying with public opinion 
in a reform that will conduce to the general well 
being of the people." In my opinion, the prelates 
of the Catholic Church have the well being of the 
people sufficiently at heart to willingly and prompt- 
ly adopt any system of education that experience 
would prove them to be the most advantageous. 

So far the thing is merely being ventilated in 
our young Province, and unfortunately the result 
of the trial elsewhere is far, \eiy far ironi being 
Satisfactory, so without any uneasiness as to what 
the prelates of the Catholic Chinch will say hereaf- 
ter, I take the libert* , and I do so without hesito- 
tion, to affirm that the system termed '• unsect- 


rian public schools " meets with no sympathy on my 
part, and, in order not to appear unreasonable, allow 
me to say what I think of the system, in a legal, re- 
ligious, and social point of view. 


The first question that presents itself to the mind 
in the actual controversy is this : has the L< gisla- 
bure of M mitob i power to repeal the present educa- 
tional laws an I to replace them by asysteua repugnant 
td the minority of this Pwincd? f do not hesi- 
tate in saying that our legislature has no such pow- 
er. The minority of the Province having rights or 
privileges acquired an I acknowledge I, such rights 
or privileges are under the safe-guard of a superior 
authority; and. consequently, the power of the legis- 
lative Assembly ot M mitoba, does not extend so 
fir as to violate such rights or privi.eges. Any 
law enacted in the above sense, would be ultra vires 
null, and certainly disallowed at Ottawa. 

I understand the magnitude and delicicy of 
the task imposed upon a tribunal called upon 
to decide on the Validity of a legislative Act. 
I understand the importance and lucidity of 
the proofs that such a tribunal would require, to 
become convinced that the highest legal authority 
in the Province had failed and gone beyond the 
limits assigned to its legislative power. 

I know all this, but 1 am equally aware that in 
the case of usuipttiou of power, the superior au- 
thority has the /bligatioil to discountenance such 
proceedings, and to grant to those who are unjust- 
ly dealt with, the protection to which they me en- 
titled by the laws that govern them. Legislative 
independence, warranted to the different Provinces 
of the Canadian confederation, is justly precious to 
every Canadian, and no one should act in a 
way to diminish such an important prerogative. 
On the other hand, it is the duty of the Provincial 
Legislature not to attempt anything beyond the 
restrictions expressed in the Imperial Acts that 
constitute the same legislature. It is y cause of 


legitimate pride for the inhabitants of a Province 
to know and feel that they are tree ; »>ut it is 
equally necessary to their happiness to know and 
to feel that they are protected. Protection is as 
necessarv as freedom, of which it is the comple- 
ment". Without the protection for some the free- 
dom of others may easily degenei ate into license. 
Citizens would lose the respect and reliance on 
the noble institutions that govern the country, 
should the protection to which they have a right 
be, in their estimation, inferioi to the freedom they 

The theory of absolute power vested in the Pro- 
vincial Legis'ature in all cases, is entiiely inadmis- 
Bfthfcj, as the Imperial Acts that establish such 
legislature, have limited their action in a char and 
precise manner. It is obvious that the question of 
education is among those on which it is not lawful 
to enact without certain )estrictions. 

Before proceeding any luither on the matter, I 
wish to review the objection that has been impro- 
perly raised, as based on the sub section I of section 
92 of ''The British North America Act, 1807." 
To invoke the said sub-clause hs a pi oof that each 
province has an entire, absolute and uni estrained 
power lelative to education, denotes a very supeifi- 
cial study of the Act itself. " The British North 
America Act" classifies the matters of which it 
treats under XI titles, within XI principal divi- 
sions, some of which are subdivided. 'I he follow- 
ing synoptic table of matters contained in the said 
Act will show, at first sight, the futility of the ob- 
jection I combat : 


I. Preliminary. 
IT. Union. 

III. Executive Power. 

IV. Legislative Power. — The Senate ; The House 

of Commons. 1. Ontario. 
2. Quebec 3. Nova Sco- 
tia. 4. New Brunswick. 
Money Votes. Royal As- 


V. Provincial Consti- Executive Power. Le- 

tu Lions. — gislative Power. 1. Onta- 

rio. 2. Quebec. 3. On- 
tario and Quebec. 4. No- 
va Scotia and New llrniis- 
wick. 5. Ontario, Quebec 
and Nova Scotia. 6. The 
four Provinces. 

VI. Distribution of Powers of Parliament. 

Legislative Exclusive Powers of Pio- 

Powers. — vincial Legislature. Educa- 

tion. Uniformity ot Laws 
in Ontario, Nova Scotia 
and New Brunswick. Agri 
culture and Immigration. 

VII. Judicature. 

VIII. Revenues, Debts, Assets, Taxation. 

IX. Miscellaneous Pro visions — General, Ontario 

and Quebec. 

X. Intercolonial Railway. 

XI. Admission of other Colouies. 

Such are the divisions and subdivisions of the 
'• British North America Act." It is certainly an 
elementary rule of interpretation to Say that, when 
an Act has divisions under certain titles, the. very 
woids used as titles of the divisions, when employed 
in any section of the said Act, mean the masters 
contained in the division to which such words are, 
prefixed as title. Theiefore, the words " Constitu- 
tion of the Province" us^d in the clause 92, must 
necessarily refer to what, and to nothing but to 
what is contained within the division V under the 
title Provincial Constitutions. 

The clause 92 belongs to division VI, and its 
fist sub-section reads as follows : 1. '• Tue Amend- 
ment from time to time notwithstanding anything 
in this Act of the Constitution of the Province, ex- 
cept as regards *he office of Lieutenant-Governor." 

One must close his eyes to the evidence and to 
the clearest and most natural sense of the words, not 
to read in the above mentioned sub-section, the verv 
title of the division V, 4 - Provincial Constitutions." 
And the division V being the only part of the Act 
that fixes the Provincial Constitutions, is the only 


part of the said Act referred to, by the Said sub- 
section of the clause 92. On the contrary, " Educa- 
tion" being neither Constitution of the Promxoe, nor 
even mentioned in the division V, cannot be aimed 
at by the subsection which now occupies me, and 
which treats only of amendments of the Constitutions 
of the Iruv'mce. 

The division VI of our " British North America 
Act" show* the distribution of legislative powers, 
and determines the limits of the Federal as well as 
of the Provincial Legislatures, indicating to the one 
as well ;is to the Others, what, is and what is not 
subject to their jurisdiction. The clause 93, which 
forms by its*? if the subdi virion entitled '• Education," 
is the only one that indicates the cxt< lit, as well as 
the limits, of the powers of the Provincial Legisla- 
ture, relative to this important subject. 

Instead of leferring exclusively to the makers 
contained in the division V, under the title " Pro- 
vincial Constil utions," if anything in the clause 92 
could affect the dispositions of the clause 93, it. would 
with equal reason affect the clause 91, and, with the 
same Stroke, annul all the restrictions that the Im- 
perial Act intended to put, and did put, to the 
powers o£. Provincial Legislative. Such cannot be 
tlie case. "The British North America Act" has 
divided and classified the matti-is of. which it treats 
in a manner too evident and too lucid to have room 
for such confusion of ideas. 

It is therefore evident that the section 93, while 
stating that " in and for each Province the Legisla- 
ture may exclusively make laws in relation to edu- 
cation," affirms at the same time, that such laws 
shall be "subject ami according to the provisions" 
set forth in its subsections ; provided always, that" 
the inhabitants of each Province, be in such le^ftl 
conditions, as would secuie to them the benefit, or, 
if you like the word better, the i est rain t indicated 
by the said sub-sections. 

Enough for the objection. 

What now remains for me to examine, are the 
limits that the Imperial Act set to the powers of 
the Executive and Legislative authorities of the 
Province of Manitoba, in relation to '.he educational 
laws "affecting any rights or privileges of the Pro- 


testant or Roman Catholic minority of the Quern's 
fcubjects in this Province. 

Nobody, I am |ure, will doubt of the nullity of 
a Provincial Act that would be in direct opposition 
to one or several Imperial Acts ; especially, wh«°n 
those Imperial Acts are the same that have consti- 
tuted the Provincial Legislature, stating what it 
should do, or 1-ave undone. 

In relation to Education, '"the Protestant or 
Roman Catholic minority of the Queen's subjects" 
in the Province of Manitoba, are uuder the protec- 
tion of two different Acts; the one beiiiij properly 
ftn Imperial Act, and the other, ah hough a Federal 
Act, having received, from an Imperial Act, the 
Confirmation which guards it, not only against the 
Provincial Legislature, but even deprives the Fede- 
ral Parliament, that has enacted it, of the light to 
repeal or amend it. Yes, the Imperial Act 34 and 
35 Victoria Chapter XXVItl cited as the British 
North America Act 1{S71" was passed to validate 
the Manitoba Act an I protect the lights conferred 

Follow certain clauses of the Imperial Act last 
mentioned : 

(3.) "The Pai liament of Canada may from 'time 
"to time with the consent of the Legislature of any 
■"Province of the said Dominion increase, diminish or 
"otherwise alter the limits of such Province upon 
" such terms and conditions, as may be agreed to by 
"said Legislature and may W,ith the like consent, make 
''proVi.sioi.ia respecting the effect and operation of any 
"such increase or diminution, or alteration oflVrri- 
*' torv in relation to any Piovince affected there- 

(•").) "The following Acts passed by the said Par- 
" liament of Canada, and entitled respectively, ' An 
" Act for the Temporary Government of Rupert's 
" Land and the North-west Territory, when united 
" with Canada,' and ' an Act to amend and continue 
"the Act 32 and 33 Victoria, Chap. 3, and to es- 
" tablish and provide for the Government of the 
" Province of Manitoba,' shall be deemed to have 
"been valid and effectual for, all purposes whatsoever, 
41 from the date at which they respectively received 


"the assent, in tl)e Queen's name, of the Governor- 
" General of the said Dominion of Canada." 

(<).) " Except, as provided by the third section of 
lr this Act, ir. shall not be competent for the Parlia- 
" nient of Canada to alter the provisions of the 
"last-mentioned Act of the said Parliament in so 
u fir as it relates to the Province of Manitoba, or 
"of any other Act hereafter establishing new Pro- 
" vinces in the said Dominion, subject always to 
" the right of the Legislature of the Province of 
" Manitoba, to alter from time to time the provi- 
" sions of any law respecting the qualification of 
" electors and members of the Legislative Assembly, 
" and to make laws respecting elections in the sard 

I have made this lengthy quotation, in order to 
prove that the so-called Act of Manitoba is on the 
same footing with the " Act of British North Ame- 
rica, 1867," consequently, the Federal Parliament 
can alter nothing relative to education, either in 
the one or the other of these Acts ; and the Legis- 
lature of Manitoba cannot over-ride ihe limits as- 
signed to it by the same laws. Let us see at present 
whan guarantee the same Acts give to the Catholic 
minority of \ he Provinc • of Manitoba, against the 
endeavors to deprive it of its separate schools, by 
substituting, for the actual laws, a system o f ' educa- 
tion styled : " Non sectarian Public Schools." 

We lead as follows in the " British North Amer- 
ica Act, 1867": 

93. " In and for each Province the Legislatue 
"may exclusively make laws in relation to educa- 
" tion, subject and according to the following pro- 
" visions : 

(1.) "Nothing in any such law shall piejudicially 
" affect any right or privilege with respect to deno- 
"minatiaal schools, which any class of persons have 
"by law in the Province at the Union. 

(2.) " All the Powers Privileges and Duties at 
" the Union, by law conferred and imposed in 
" Upper Canada on the Separate Schools and Sehool 
" Trustees of the Queen's Roman Catholie subjects, 
"shall be and the same are hereby extended to the 
" Dissentient Schools of the Queen's Protestant and 
" Roman Catholic subjects in Quebec. 


(3.) " Where in any Province a system of sep- 
" parate or dissentient schools exist by law at til*- 
" union, or is thereafter established by the Legis- 
" lature of the Province, an .appeal shall lie to the 
"Governor-General in Council, from any Act or J)e- 
" cision of any Provincial authority affecting any 
" right or privilege of the Protestant or Roman Ca- 
" tholic Minority of the Queen's subjects in i elation 
" to Education." 

(4.) "In case any such Provincial law as from 
" time to time seem to the Governor-General in 
" Council, requisite for the due execution of the 
tl provisions of this section is not made, or in any 
" case any decision of the Governor- Gem ral in Coun- 
"cil, or any appeal under this section is not duly 
" executed by the propi r Provincial authority in 
"that behalf, then and in every such case, and as far 
"only as the circumstances of each case require, the 
"Parliament of Canada may make remedial laws for 
" the provisions of this section, and of an\ decision 
"of the Governor-General in Council under this 
" section " 

The ordinary power conferred upon the Provin- 
cial Legislature by this section ( J3, may be lessened 
by its four sub-sections, or by some of them, as the 
Case may he. 

The first sub-section being liable to different in- 
terpretations, I agree to take no advantage of it; 
and to leave to opponents all they can claim. I will 
r.ote\e. mention tlis protection that Catholics c^h 
claim under such proviso. 

The second sub s> -ction being exclusively for the 
Provinces of Ontario and Quebec is, in no way, ap- 
plicable to Manitoba, exc pt, perhaps, to aid in con- 
vincing the enetni-s of our system of education, 
that the House ot Commons in England, the Lords 
Sjiiritual and Temporal of the United Kingdom, 
and our Most Gracious Sovereign Herself are of 
opinion that the Provinces of the Canadian confed- 
eration, may have separate or dissentient schools, 
without impeding the "triumph of the principle of 
i ust ice," and without moving too far, " from the 
more enlightened spirit of the age," otherwise they 
would not have enacted such legislation. 

The third sub section suffices, by itself, to baffle 

any attempt contrary to the fundamental principles 
of the School Law of Manitoba. People may say 
what they like, for or against tfte system, but no- 
body can deny its existence. 

Yes, every one knuv s that a •' system of separate 
or dissentient schools exists by law in the Province 
of Manitoba, and that all our schools are either 
Protestant or Catholic, and such system has been 
'■ established by the Legislature of the Province." 
This is a right or privilege acquired by the Catholics 
and " appeal shall lie tip the Governor-General in 
Council trom any Act or decision of any Provii cial 
authority affecting any lights or privileges" thus 
Conferred by law. 

Should an a tempt be made, in violation of this 
Imperial Act, no doubt, the Catholics of Manitoba, 
members or not, of the Legislative Assembly, and, 
helped by the Catholics of the Federal Parliament 
and of the Dominion shall lie their appeal, and that 
appeal being a right, the Governor General in Coun- 
cil, cannot overlook it. It is impossible to elude 
this sub-section and, S;ive the case of deplorable and 
dangerous blindness, every one should understand 
that it is an insuperable barrier, erected by the .Im- 
perial Parliament, to stay all efforns, tending to de- 
prive the Roman Catholic minority of Hei Majes- 
ty's subjects in Manitoba, of the rights or privileges 
they enjoy, in relation to education. 

The fourth sub-section gives power to the Feder- 
al P:fliam« nr, to enact remedial laws, should the 
Provincial Legislature neglect to comply with the 
decisions of the Governor General, relative to the 
appeal above mentioned. 

'1 hat shows that the appeal is not an < mpty word, 
and that the law shall protect those to whom it 
grants a right, and make good the maxim ubi jus ibi 

'Therefore the British North America. Act," in- 
stead of giving to the Provincial Legislutre an un- 
limited power in relation to education, confines it 
to certain dispositions, and any action contrary to 
law, and intended for a Statute would be ultra vires 
and consequently null. 

\n order to complete conviction on the subject, I 
will enquire of the opponents of Cr.tbolic Schools 


of Manitoba what they would think, what advice 
they would give and what action thev would take, 
supposing the Catholic majority of Quebec deprive 
the Protectant minority ot th«' same Province, of 
their Educational Rights or .Privileges. 

What noise would result not only in Quebec hut 
throughout ihc Dominion and perhaps more in 
Manitoba than anywhere rise ! 

What an amount of reproach and result would 
l»e lavished on the Car holies of Quebec! From 
every quarter an energetic appeal would go t > the 
Governor in Council. Undoubtedly His Excellency 
would feel, and WO'.dd in le'ality be bound ro recall 
to the Legislature of Quebec, the Dispositions of 
Section 93, to prescribe the remedy to such an abuse 
of power, and if, after that, the Legislature df Que- 
bec did not hasten the enadfiijg of the remedial law, 
the Parliament of Canada would not be slow in so 
doing, and such would tic its duty. 

The Catholic majority of Quebec will never com- 
mit such a fault, nor dteani of such an injustice to 
the Pro' estant minority, whv then shcmld the Pro- 
tectant majority of Manitoba be suspected of hav- 
ing such a disposition towards the Catholic minori- 
ty in its mfolsti In a eountrv like ours when all ci r i- 
zens enjoy equal rights, there cannot be two weights 
and two measui es. 

What the Protestant minority in Quebec is en- 
titled to, the Catholic minority of Maniioba is equal- 
ly entitled to. W h-'«t would be unjust, sectarian, 
illegal and unconstitutional on the pact of the Cath- 
olic majority «>f Quebec, is equally unjust, sectari- 
an, illegal and Unconstitutional on the part of the 
Pi-wtcstant major tv of Manitoba, or lather on the. 
part <>f tit »se who wish to />r- pare and excite the ma- 
j..ri'y to depart from the path of justice and honor. 

Should an\ one be inclined t" think that the 
" British North America A<t 1867" applies merely 
to the four Provinces origifnaliv united by the said 
Act and not at all to the Province of Manitoba, 
that wa> es ablished and admitted into the Confed- 
eration four • years lat«*r; 1 would invite him to. 
peruse th-- second section of the " Manitoba Act" 
tliat reads as fbUoWS : 

(2.) "On, from and after the said day on which 


" the order of the Queen in Council shall take effect 
" as aforesaid the provisions of the 'British North 
"America Act 18b7'' shall, except these, pai ts there 
" of wbvh'h are in terms made, or by reasonable 
"intendment may be specially applicable to, 
l- or only to affect one or more, the Dornin- 
11 ion, and except so tar as the same mav but 
"not the whole of i he Province now composing 
"be varid by this Act. be applicable to the Province 
" of Manitoba, in the same way, and to the like ex- 
" tent as they apply to the several Provinces of 
" Canada, and as if the Province of Manitoba, had 
" been one of the Provinces originally united by 
" the said Act. 

Do- bthss the above Section is too clear and ex- 
plicit to need comment. It of course prevents the 
application to Manitoba, of the second sub-clause of 
clause 93 of the " British America Act" that refers 
exclu-i\ely to Ontario and Quebec; but. on the 
other hand, it applies to Manitoba, the other dis- 
positions of the *• British North America Act" in 
relation to education, and consequently lessens the 
power of the L-gislatcre of Manitoba, gives right 
of appeal to the minority, binds the Governor Gene- 
ral to remedy the evil, and in case of necessity au- 
thorizes the Canadian Pariiment to enforce by re- 
medial laws the decision of the Governor-General 
upon such appeal. 

It cannot be objected that the Province of Mani- 
toba is not entitled to the dispositions of the " Brit- 
ish Nordi America Act," relative to education, be- 
cause the Act ol Manitoba enacted subsequently, on 
the same subject. Such pretension is quite inad- 
missible, it would be equally t» ue to say that the 
6th clause of the " Manitoba Act" relative to the 
Leutenant-Governor, being identically the same as 
the 58th seci ion of the ''British North America 
Act," all the dispositions of the latter relative to the 
Lieutenant Governors of the different Provin. es, do 
not apply to the Lieutenant-Governor of Manitona. 

Tl e dispositions of one law cannot annul the dispo- 
tions of the other except when contradictory; bntsnch 
can not occur when both Acts say the same thing, 
or when the one amplifies on the contents of the 


The relation between the two Acts in question is 
as follows : The 93id section of the " British 
Nostb America Act" recognizes the j'tower of the 
Provincial Legislatures to pass laws relative to edu- 
cation, hut subject to the dispositions mentioned 
in its mi b sections, and that, I repeat, is the law in 
Manitoba as well ;»s in other Provinces, while the 
22nd section of the Manitoba Act recognizes to the 
Legislature of this Province, the power to pass law 
relative to education, but subject to the dispositions 
mentioned in its own sub-sections ; and please ob- 
j>erve that rhese last dispositions, far from being in 
opposition to those of the " British North America 
Act," are merely an extension and development of 
the same, consequently both Acts concur in grant- 
ing protection to the Catholic minority of Manitoba, 
and justify the assertion that the minority of the 
Prairie Province is better safeguarded than that of 
the old Provinces. 

The fact is obvious to any one that takes the 
trouble to read the 22nd clause of the Manitoba 
Act, whil" bearing in mind that the said Act has 
all the force of an Imperial Act. 

22. " In and for the Province, the said Legisla- 
"ture may exclusively make laws in relation to ed- 
" ucatioii, subject and according to the following 
" provisions : 

(1.) " Nothing i;i any such law shall prejudicial-' 
" Iv affect any right or privilege with respect to de- 
" lioininatioiud schools which any class of persona 
"have by law or practice in the Province at the 
" Union. 

• (2.) " An appeal shall lie to the*Governor-Gen- 
" eral in Council from any Act or decision of the 
<l Legislature of the Province, or of any provincial 
" authority, affecting any flight or Privilege of the 
"Prot.stant or Roman Catholic minority of the 
" Queen's subjects in relation to Education. 

(3) " In case any such Provincial Law as from 
" time to time seems to the Governor-General in 
*' Council requisite for the due execution of the 
" provisions of this section, is not made, or in case 
" anv decision of the Governor-General in Council 
"on any appeal under this section is not duly ex- 
pedited by the pioper Provincial authority in that 


i execution of the provisions of this section, 
any decision* of the Governor-General, in 

" behalf, then, and in every such case, and as far 

"only as the circumstances of each case require, the 

" Parliament of Canada may make remedial laws for 

"the 'due 

"a ml 'of 

" Council under this section. ' 

In perusing the above section it is easy to ob- 
serve its resemblance with the 93rd section of 6he 
" British North America Act," What now re- 
mains to discern is the different wordings of the 
two laws, and then decide if the diff'e eitct tends to 
diminish or toamplify, on theguaranteeof protection 
given to the minority of Manitoba. The difference 
is as follow s : 

Act of 187a. 

Act of ISGZ. 

93. In and for each Pro- 
vince the Legislature . . . . 

(I ) Nothing in any such 
Law shall prejudicially af- 
fect, any Bight or Privilege 
with respect to henomina- 
tional Schools, which any 
class of per- on s have by 

(2.) (Only for Ontario and 
QueU-c ) 

(3 ) Where in any Pro- 
vince a system of S,' pa rate 
or 1 'issentient School ex- 
ists iy Law at the Union, or 
is thereafter established b> 
the Legislature of the Pro- 

22. In and for the Pro- 
vince the smd Legis ature . 

(1.) Nothing in any such 
Law shall prejudicially af- 
fect any Pight or Privilege 
with r.-spect to I) nomi na- 
tional Schu »Js. which any 
cla-s of persons have bV Law 


(2) An aj)peal shall lie to 

vince. an appeal shall lie to't»>e Governor General in 
the Governor- General m Council f>-r any Act or I)e : 
Council from any^Act or De- Icision of the LEGISLATURE 
cision of any PROVINCIAL OF. TH" PR»VlNCEOR <) ANY 
Authority affecting an# Provi cial Authority af- 
Right or Privijege of tiie|f. cting aM\ Ri«;ht ><r Privi- 
Protestant or kom.ui • 'atho-jlegi of the Protestant or iio- 
In- niiii"rit\ of tin- Queen's man Cat b olio minority of the 
subjects in relation to Edu- yuet-n\s subjects in relation 
cation. to Education. 

(4.) v - . . ! (3.) . . . 

Tin-re is not the slightest doiiht that what precede* 
proves that the Manitoba Act. amplifies on the pro- 
tection granted to tin* imiwrih s bv the Imperial 
Act of 1867, instead of diminishing it. By the 
law of 18G7 the Le^isla u.e of each Province is 
obliged t> safeguard any Right or Privilege with 
respect to Denominational Schools which any class 

©f, persons liave by law. while, by the Act of 187$ 
the Legislature of the Province of Manitoba has the 
same obligation concerning the rights and privileges 
held by law or practice, 

. By the Act of 1867 an appeal shall lie bo the 
Governor -(ieneral in Council, but solely when a sys* 
{em, of separate sch' els by Imc ; while the 
Manitoba Act authorize* the same appeal in any 
cane affect'tnti any ritjlit or privilege '-re, i without 
a, systew of education previously established by 

Tin- Manitoba Act extending and amplifying 'he 
protection, lessens, in the same nioportion, the 
power of the Provincial Legislature on the subject. 

I am iki; the only one that, views the matter in this 
light, but among other testimony in corroboration, 
1 could subpitt the appreciation of three important 
newspapers of the Province of Ontario, t he k ' 'Toronto 
J)aily (Ho «•■"'' the ■•(>//,, icn Free Press" ami the 
"Hamilton Evening Times" 

1. The / oronto Daily Globe. This paper had at 
first countenai ced the movement hostile to Denom- 
inational Schools of Manitoba., Mature considera- 
tion «>f the subject, and sense of justice subsequent- 
ly prevailed as it appears in the issue ol 27th 
November. 1876., of which I give the following ex- 
tract- : 


''We noticed recent lr the movement in Manito- 
" ba having for its obiect the reform, or improve- 
\* ment of the Public School law of that Province, 
''and leteried to the. efforts made in other parts of 
'•the Dominion to effect such arrangements as, 
" while securing the practicable system of educa- 
" tion, are designed to protect the rights and con- 
u suit the conscientious scruples of minorities. But 
" it. must not be understood from this that in Man- 
" itoba, any more than elsewhere, the rights of nii- 
" norities can be overridden or ignored. 

'•The Local Legislature in ay, of con » se, effect any 
" changes in the administration of the school laws 
" and not violate existing rights and privileges, but 

can do no more than this. The Manitoba Act, 
" which is the constitutional charter of the Pro- 
fi vince of Manitoba, contains the same provisions. 


" that are to be found in the British North Ameri- 
" ca At-t in regard to the ri^li t s of minoi ities in the 
11 other Provinces in this respect. 

'• Tlie 22nd section itsely, as well as the sub-sec-' 
" tions, adopt literally the text of the British North 
"America Act. It may be supposed, however, 
" that the Manitoba Act having emanated from Do-' 
" minion Parliament and not b< ing, as.was the Brit- 
" ish North America Act, a product of the Imperi- 
"al Legislation, might be altered or amended by' 
" t lie same authority that Originally eVi acted it. But 
" this has been provided against by an Imperial! 
" Act, 31 and 35 Victoria, Chap. XXVIII, passed 
"for the express purpose, a lining other object*', of 
'■ giving the Manitoba Act Validity and protecting 
"the rights thereby conferred fiom the danger above 
" suggested. 

"The Parliament of Canada has no power to 
"make the smallest change in the terms guaranteed 
" by the Manitoba Act ; and that the Local Legis- 
" lature can only do so in respect of such matters 
"as Mre specially CO h tided to its jurisdiction, of 
"which as the quotation we have given fiom the 
" 22nd section shows, the right of minorities as ex- 
" istent at the tune Of the union is not one.'' 

2. " The Ottawa Free, J'ress." Tin* journal of 
the Capital before perusing the above article of the 
Globe and under the unfavorable impression caused 
by another issue of tin- same organ, wrote as follows 
on the 1st o December, 1876 : 


"A discussion is going on in the Province of 
" Manitoba just now on 'he subject of the school sys- 
" tern of that Province. The agitation which is now 
"sought to be raided, apparently more by the Toron- 
"to Globe than by the people of tle j Prairie Province, 
"looks ostensibly to the fo. lowing objects, \iz: the 
"abolition of the present Board of Education and the 
"estaolishue nt of a non-sectarian system, compulsory 
"use of English text books in the schools, all public 
■" schools to be subject to the same r gnlatioDS ; the 
"appointment of inspectors; establishment of a 
" training school for teachers, and a new. plan for 
"the allotment of school moneys. This moans, in short, 
" the total abolition of separate school system and 


" considering the nature of* the subject, and the de- 
" lieate character of the interests affected, it appears 
" to us that it would lie the wiser course ion the part 
"of our "Toronto contemp -rary to have, the agita- 
" tion to those more immediately interested. 

" Tiie only p ).ssible result can be to stir up sec- 
" tarian strife and heart burning's such us unhappily 
" prevail in New Brunswick, and which are most 
"undesirable elements to introduce in a young and 
" growing community comprising mixed population, 
" both as to language and religion. 

'•it is an agitation that could not tail to he attend 
"ed with a considerable degree of asperity, trenching 
'•upon dangerous ground, which it would be well to 
" avoid and which it is no part of the people 
" or journals in this part of the Dominion to 
" assist in bringing about. 

"The discussion is more injudicious, as there is 
" no possisible means of attaining the object sought 
" professedly by this agitation. The Manitoba Act 
" under whose authority separate schools exist in 
"that, Provinc-, and which forms a portion of the 
" constitution of the coyutry. Was bv Imperial Act 
"established beyond the power of the Parliament 
" of the Dominion or Legislature of the Province to 
" alter. 

" Separate schools in Manitoba can only be dis- 
" established by the Act of the Catholic b >dy itself, 
"ami we may rest assurer!, from the well-known 
"policy ot that denomination, that such action will 
"never be intiated by them. Under all these cir- 
" cumstiances, as we have pointed cut before, the ag- 
" it at ion of the subject and especially irs agitation 
"irmi outside the Province can lead to no result so 
" far as its professed object is concerned, while it 
" may be productive of very undesirable results, by 
"stirring up sectarian strife, discord, producing ir- 
"litation and creating heartburnings and animosi- 
"ties which would disturb the harmony and might 
"seriously injure the welfare of the FiVvince." 

3. The Hamilton Kvenyng Times. Tne above ar- 
ticle of the '■•Free i^'ress, and that of the Globe 
which it combats, suggested the fallowing remarks 
which I read in the Hamdtou Evening Times of 
the 9th Dec. 1876: 


"The Globe is urging that the schools rn Manifco*- 

* ba should he made lie i sectarian, while the Ottawa 

* Free Press shows very clearly that it is Impossible 
K tlmt they wouM be s ,i:le withoit Imp-rial 

* Legislation. Manitoba has r 'if anything a'strong- 
" er Imperial guarantee for the continuance of its 
"sepuate schools tJun the older Provinces, so that 
" the discussion in Mumooa of the question raised* 
" bv the UJobe can only do mischief without any 
" possibility of good results of any kind arising, The 
" example of Ontario proves that it would be a good 
"thing if all the Provinces had separate schools, and 
'•and it is most certainly *n uniuiii Jed e\ ll to raise 
1 ail agita ion to tak^ them from Provinces that al- 
'• ready have them, more especially, if those who 
*' agitate for this cm only have the agitation for 
*' their pains/' 

The thive above journals, together with many 
others, some of which, although hostile'. to separate 
schools, are of my opinion that the establishment 
in Manitoba, of a system of education opposed to 
that now existing, is impossible. 

The antagonists of ill ■ Catholic schools of our 
Province feel encouraged in their endeavours' to 
overthrow them, because i he ''Common School Act, 
1871," of New Brunswick was not disallowed, ard 
that, ms yet, the catholics of that Province have to 
abide bv it Evidently, prejudice blindfolds, other- 
wise it is impossible not to Bee the < s-ential d rf* r- 
ence between the position of the Catholies of Mani- 
toba, in 1877, and that of theii co-reli<*ionisis of 
New Brunswick in 1871. All the 'arguments em- 
ployed against the Catlmlics of New Bruhswick 
and the legal opinions adverse to ih in. may be re- 
sumed ms follows : the la to having confer red no right 
or privilege to the Catholics before or after the union., 
the// do not enjoy that of Appeal, consequently the 
Legislature of Xew Brunswick ht>s an open field for 
legislation on education. 

Even with the supposition that this opinion be 
correct, who can fail to discover (hat it is impos- 
sible to apply »t to Manitoba, the position being en- 
tirely different. 

New Brunswick had no law establishing. separate 
schools, while, on the contrary, Manitoba has laws 


establishing them. The privileges enjoyed by the 
Catholics of New Brunswick were hot conferred 
by law ; in Manitoba it is the law thai confers on 
Catholics the rights and privileges they enjoy. The 
subjections of section 93 having no application in 
New Brunswick, the Imperial Act did not in any 
wav restrict the powers of the Legislature of that 
Province in the enactment of its educational laws, 
nor grant to the minority the right of Appeal, while 
the 3rd and 4th subsections having their entire ap- 
plication in Manitoba, the Imperial Act lessens, in 
as much, the power of the Local Legislature and con- 
fers the right of Appeal. In a word, as lonu as 
yes will not mean no and no mean yes, the argu- 
ments brought against the Catholics of New Bruns- 
wick have ad their force ito favor of the Catholics 
of Manitoba; and that, let it be remembered, even 
without considering anything else than the British 
N«»ith \merica At, and adopting the interpreta- 
tion of the same Act, as given by. those who placed 
the Catholics < if New Brunswick in the situation 
they so relu«ctanly undergo. 

The impossibility to abolish separate schools in 
Manitoba, becomes still more apparent when, after 
examining the Act of 1867, we ie consider tliat of 
1870. By the latter, which is that of Manitoba, 
it is not necessa y. as already shown, that the rights 
or- privileges enjoyed by the minority be conferred 
by the law; it siilHces that they be so by practice. 
Tlii- last word alone, had it been found in the Act 
of 1867. would have saieguaided the Catholics of 
New Brttnsw ck. 

By the Act of 1870. the ri-ht of Appeal is not, 
as in the Act of 1867, sufrj^et to the condition of the 
pn-' xistmce of a syst m of separate or dissentient 
txhools established oy raw. No. by the Act o*' 1870, 
there is ulitfuys rooinfr Appeal; from any viola' ion 
of right, rt en without the pie-esla'dishmei/t by law 
of o system of Denotniiiatio at schools ; for it must 

1 hservrd thai, the clanse do<-s not determine 

what must l-e tue origin of su ;h r ght; it. suffices that 
tiit v have i e J - ., and are, enjoyed either by law, by 
practice, by treaties or in any way whatsoever. 

Without having ever been in the councils of those 
who diew up the law of 1870, it is easy to see why 


the same Act in its section 22 repeats, while modi- 
fying it, the section 93 of the Act of 1867. The 
storm that broke out in New Brunswick in 1871 
had already had its forebodings the year before. 
The iramers of the Confederation noticed that they 
had involuntarily left an ou.ission in the law of 
1867, relative to education; and in order not expose 
the Province of Manitoba to the difficulties they 
foresaw, but too late, for New Brunswick, they re- 
solved to complete the Act of 1867 by that of 1870. 
This explains how the two Acts differ while resemb- 
ling each other. 

Whatever may have been the motive ot this dou- 
ble legislation on the same subject, both Acts exist; 
they both safeguard the minority, and come to par- 
alyze any effort made to deprive it of its acquired 

I had just finished what precedes when I receiy; 
ed the " Daily Free Press' ot the 19th January, 
1877, in which I find that the Protestant section of 
the Board of Education had assembled on the eve 
at Winnipeg, and that an Executive Committee of 
the same had submitted the draft of a bill, which 
they were instructed to prepare bj a resolution 
passed Oct. 14th, last. 

In November, 1876, the "Toronto Globe" had al- 
ready disclosed the mystery, and made known to 
the public in Ontario what had been withheld from 
the public in Manitoba, notwithstanding the pecu- 
liar interest the latter should take in transactions 
that concern themselves alone. 

The measure proposed and now published by the 
Protestant Section ot the Board of education is. as 
it appears, based on nine points of which the two 
principal are, "The establishment of a purely noii- 
Bectarian system of public schools," and " the aboli- 
tion of the Board of Education it. its present sec- 
tional character, and the appointment of a new 
Board without sections." 

In the pieceding pages I have opposed the scheme 
in question, but I must conf« ss that I opposed it 
without being either able or willing to believe that 
it had been formed oy a Board including men of 


learning, high standing in society and deservedly 
enjoying respect and esteem. I did not think that 
a plan bearing such a taint of illegality could lie 
the fact of a Board established by the law and act- 
ing officially in its name. 

The few oetails furnished by the press concern- 
ing the meeting of the 19th hist., have a signifi- 
cance that will escape no one. 

The Protestant section of the Board is composed 
of twelve members, only Hie were present, and «»ne 
of them could not refrain from observing that he 
" considered the presence of only five members 
when so imn ortant a matter wis to came into con- 
sideration as very discouraging." 

" The Reverend President and the Reverend 
Secretary expressed a doubt as to the policy of dis 
cussing the proposed measure when there was only 
a btre quorum of the Board present." 

Another Reverend member " expressed his per- 
son d views as strongly oppose*! to the teaching of 
religion iti the public schools," while a lay member 
favored the inculcation in the public schouls of fun- 
damental religious principles." 

As it often occurs e pltiribus unum " it was final- 
" ly resolved that the Board adjourn till Friday, the 
" 2nd prox , at 2 p.m , and that the draft of the 
u proposed bill be revised and printed, and copies 
" sent to the Members before that date." 

The above meeting, and the circumstances that 
characterize it, fur nish abundant matter for com- 
ment, and such will certainly be given later-. For 
my part, I must just now, keep within the bounds 
of the legal question. I am quite convinced, and I 
think I have proved, that the law is contrary to the 
proposed change, and [ have not the slightest 
doubt that the Legislative and Executive authori- 
ties whose combined action is requisite to the pas- 
sage and enforcements of our statutes, will Stand to 
their duty, repulse the injustice that threatens the 
minority and not suffer such a stain to soil the his- 
tory of our Province. 

1 shall only add a few words to explain the rea- 
son of my extreme surprise, on seeing that the Pro- 
testant section not only ask for a thing illegal 
in itself, but, moreover, asked for it in a manner 


contrary to the spirit of our Provincial statutes and 
implicitly condemned thereby. 

Our Provincial laws create a General Board of 
Eud cation and invest it with power to make such 
regulations as it may think proper for tile general 
organization of schools. Tins Board lias conse- 
quently the duty to consider the general interest of 
education, and is composed of twenty-one members, 
twelve Protestants, and nine Catholic*, 

The same Provincial law requires that the Gene- 
ral Board shall resolve itself into two Sectional 
Boards or committees, the one composed of the Pro- 
testant, and the other of the Catholic members, of the 
said General Board, and that to eacli of those re- 
pectively be refem d the administration of the schools 
belonging, to the section. 

The sectional Boards have consequently the duty 
to coi sider the particular interest and mamtyement 
of the schools of their respective denominations. 

The General Board* may perhaps be styled a Fed- 
eral Senate of Education and the sectional Boards 
are the executive* committees of their respective 
sections. This is not at all unusual, and is exem- 
plified in numerous organizations, anionyj others in 
the case of certain universities that have their Sen- 
ate, and besides that, distinct Facilities enjoying 
complete independence among themselves, ai d 
even with regard to their Semite except in matters 
concerning the general organization. 

I fail to become convinced that it needs an un- 
usual amount of intelligence to detect the difference, 
that exists betveen tfye dunes of the General Board 
and those of the Sectional Boaids no more than 
that it needs an extraordinary amount of good will 
to allow these different Boards to act side by side 
without encroach ui£i it or uneasiness. 

One must have never studied our law of educa- 
tion, or else faintly endeavored to facilitate its op- 
eration, t » say that : '• under the present law we 
have virtually two systems covering the same 
ground, which are both impraeticetl and ineffici- 

We have but one s;/ stem of education, which like 
all other organizations, at the while, Legislative 
and administrative, cmnpi ehends different ramiii- 



cations, that is to say ; the General Board, Sectional 
Boards, the Superintendents, the Board of Trustees. 
&c. &c. As many distinct branches graftal on the 
«ame tree, the Law, whence they derive the sap 
that imparts them life and maintains their strength 
and vigor, provided each branch remain in its own, 
place. Unfortunately, the last condition was dune 
away with, in the Oi currence I take objection to. 

What was considered in the meetiug of the 19th 
inst , is undoubtedly a question of general interest 
in education, therefore according to the snirit and 
even to the letter of law, becomes the province of 
our General Board. To treat such question of 
general interest in a Sectional Board is to make lit- 
tle of it, and to reduce it to the proportion of a de- 
nominational oi rather of a Sectarian object. 

Since members of the Board of Education thought 
proper to agitate a question of such magnitude and 
universal interest, why did they not bring it before 
the General Board 1 

Would it be, penhance, that feeling the proposed 
change to be so offensive to Catholics it was thought 
more advisable to work underhand, and to not even 
mention the object in view to the nine Catholic 
mem l»ers of the board ? 

If, on the contrary, the intended scheme was sup- 
ported by good and solid reasons, its authors should 
have been glad to make it known to their Catholic 
colh-agues. Reason is always at home among sen- 
sible people. Who knows but that the Catholics 
themselves might have something reasonable to say 
on the subject '■ It is with the strike of ideas, as 
with that of flints ; it may give light, and such light 
as may sometimes modify opinions. This was the 
case with the Toronto Globe m the month of Nov- 
ember, when, after expressing its views in favor of 
the plan, soon after ueclaied that the same was an 

It was considered, with reason, as " very discour- 
aging that so important a matter" should be refer- 
red to the tribunal of ''five" Judges, that had no 
right to decide officially on the matter. A little 
More dissuasion might have brought light, certainly 
not prejudicial to the subject. 

Still more, Protestants have the majority in the 


Board ; even with the supposition, although such' 
seems impossible, that they had no good reasons in 
support of their views, or that the Catholics had 
none to oppose to them ; or, what is better still, 
that the convictions on both sides are so firm that 
it would be useless to atcempt to modify them, the 
advantage was still siding with the number- ; and 
as twelve exceed nine, if the twelve be as unani- 
mous as the nine, they would have carried the mea- 
sure in the General Board. 

Had the whole transaction been conducted in 
that way, the measure would appear to me equally 
illegal in itself; but I could not, and I would nob 
blame the mode of action. It would be simply a re- 
gular aathordii acting officially in matters of its 
ordinary competence, aud in the marine)' provided 
by the law. 

Unfortunately, quite the reverse took place, one 
section only was invited to meet ; some of its mem- 
bers answered the call ; others abstained, and there, 
under the pretence and the name of an official position 
five gentlemen examined and decided on a question 
not belonging to them as a body, though they may- 
claim the right to examine it as individuals, and 
they decided, in the name of the Board, that the 
endeavor must be made to crush the Catholic sec- 
tion. Instead of busying themselves, about and for 
themselves, as to the changes that might satisfy those 
that are said to be dissatisfied with the actual man* 
agement of their schools, why do they endeavor to 
throw on the Catholic seetion the responsibility 
that does not belong to it, and that, in matters which 
by the actual law, are beyond its control 1 

What a queer idea to fancy that all that is said 
against the administration of schools will he stopped 
by pronouncing against the Catholic section the 
famous sentence : " Let it be destroyed /" " Delenda 
est Carthago.*' 

It is with words as with drums, the emptiest are 
the most sonorous, and vice versa. Reform is spo- 
ken of, and with that bitj, very big word, it is 
thought that the population is to be startled, that 
the Members of the Legislature will be influenced 
by the fear of losing their seats at the next general 
election ; and with the aid of the stratagem, per- 


sonal views and secret animosities are expected to 
prevail against Catholics. Evidently, this last re- 
sult, though not professedly, is, in reality, the sole 
object in view. 

In the name of law and of justice, let me be 
permitted to make an appeal to the good sense of 
the Protestant population and to tin? Members that 
represent it in the Legislative Assembly, to beg 
of them not to forget that the section of the Board 
that exclusively governs their schools, has the right 
to do by itself, and for them, all that is necessary 
for their good administration, and that the re- 
form spoken of is merely in view to injure Catholic 
schools. The new scheme affords no new facility 
Jor the success of Protestant schools, while it would 
largely impede that of the Catholic schools. Above 
all, the s -heme that is intended is illegal in its"lf, 
and in the manner it has been prepared by the 
Sactional Board. 

I say the Sectional Board, notwithstanding my 
convictions that theie aie men in that Board wor- 
thy of my respect, and animated with such broad 
views that they would not wilfully mingle in a 
manoeuvre so narrow and unworthy of them. 




In the foregoing article is shown that the pro- 
ject of replacing- the actual school law in Manitoba 
by another system was a project illegal and uncon- 
stitutional. The task assumed was not a difficult 
one, the Constitution is so explicit on the point that 
its attentive perusal suffices to conviuce of the ille- 
gality of the proposed scheme. 

I now come to the second part of my thesis and 
examine the |>lan from a religions standpoint. 
Here again I have no hesitation in affirming, that [ 
am not in sympathy with the socalled system of 
" Non Sectarian Public School-," and my reason is, 
because the system is essentially anti-religious and 

I beg of the reader not to become over-excit.ed at 
the announcement of a few reflections on a subject 
so deli'-ate and on widen it is so easy to arouse the 
susceptibilities of those who differ with us in opin- 
ion. My intention is not to enter upon irritating 
Controversy. Far from me the slightest desire to 
offend any one ; what I wish is, to draw attention 
to a question deserving the most serious co> sidera- 
tion of all the religious denominations that compose 
our population. 

No doubt theology plays a part here, for the sub- 
lime science embraces not only all that relates to> 
the supernatural but. as Wrll, all the duties of man, 
ami viewed in this light, is the resort of all, and I 
may say is relished by all those that form the popu- 
lation, I now address. Canadians being a religious 
people can hear mention made of duty >wtbout tak- 
ing oMense and will not find fault with a well-wish- 
er coming forwaid to point out, with resj>eet and 
affectionate interest, ihe dangers towards which the 
present generation is ushered. All our people 
comprehend the necessity of knowing God, of loving 


him and serving him. All are well aware that 
there alone can be found the securities needed by 
society and the pledge of final happiness that indi- 
viduals aspire to. 

At ease on this wide and firm platform, I freely 
repeat, the System of n on Sectarian Schools is a sys- 
tem essentially anti-religious and one that must 
needs be repugnant to the conscience of every chris- 
tian. In proof of what I advance I will say : 1st, 
That the system disguises its tendencies and deceives 
by assuming a name that does not define it proper- 
ly ; 2nd, That it is impossible with us ; 3rd, That 
were it possible / it is not desirable ; 4th, That the 
system is not desired. 

1st, The name given to the "non-Sectarian system" 
is inaccurate and does not convey an exact idea of 
what the system really is ; a name that discloses 
neither the origin, the principles, the tendencies nor 
the result of the system. 

The abuse made q£ words is astonishing. They 
as well as language were intended for man to ex 
press their ideas, but how often does it not occui 
that the use of a word — entirely void of the sense 
given it and having in reality quite a different 
meaning — deeeives the unguarded and leads them 
in a direction they would otherwise carefullv avoid. 
Thus in the name of religion men have often been 
spurred on to the greatest crimes ; in the name of 
liberty, the utmost subjection has been imposed ; in 
the name of protection slavery has been proclaimed ; 
in the name of justice acts of the most crying injus- 
tice have ceen perpetrated ; in the name of equal 
rights, the most rediculous and the most contradic-* 
tory distinctions have been established. In like 
manner, under the protection of the word " non sec- 
tarian-" sectaries arises, sectarian in the widest 
sense of the word, sectarian not only in their en- 
deavors to maintain their own principles, but ex- 
tending their sectarianism to the degree of forcing 
others to submit to their plan, and even of making 
them pay for its diffusion. Thus in fact sectarian- 
ism is the consequence of a system of education pre- 
tended to have been established purposely to do 
away with sectarianism. 


It is unfair and injudicious to play with words, 
especially when the same words tend to mislead the 
public mind, to deceive a great uumber of those act- 
ing in good faith and with the most sincere inten- 
tions, and to serve the designs of others not equally 

The mere mention of Sectarianism, Sectarian In- 
stitutions or Schools often suffices to excite mistrust 
and disturd even honest minds, it even dictates the 
most unjust and arbitrary measures that in such 
circumstances, easily obtain assent. While, on the 
oth^r hand, for many, it is enough to hear the word 
" non-Sectarian System," to relieve and convince 
them that there is perfection, and that every one 
should be takei> with enthusiasm for a system inju- 
rious to no one. Amidst such a confusion of ideas 
provoked by misrepresentation and abuse of words, 
it is easy to overlook what should be done and what 
should be avoided. 

I say that the word " non-aec ( arian " applied to 
the system in question is necessarily deceptive and 
the ground of my assertion is quite simple : The 
system is the doctrine, or, if you like the word bet- 
ter, the opinion of persons united in the same con- 
viction and consequently opposed to the opinion 
or doctrine of other persons differing with them. 

The system is therefore sectarian, for it is the 
teaching of a class and opposed to the system advo- 
cated by other classes of individuals. It is well 
known that the word sect comes from the latin secta 
and the latter derives from the verb seco to cut off, 
# separate. Well, now, I ask, if, perchance, those 
i who speak of establishing their socalled " non-sec- 
tarian " system, do not separate from those that re- 
ject it. Is it not their aim to have opinions pre- 
vail, opposed to their adversaries 1 Do they not 
assume that they are in the right, and that their 
views ought to be endorsed 1 Is not all this Secta- 
rian ? 

A system, to be non-sectarian, would have to be 
neither in conformity with nor opposed to any sect 
whatsoever. Every one, it is true, discovers secta- 
rianism in a teaching in conformance with the doc- 
trin of a teaching body ; it should be equally evi- 


■dent to all that Sectarianism prevails in the Body 
that opposes the teachings of another. If I am 
looked upon by my neighbor as Sectarian because I 
maintain my own convictions, my neighbor becomes 
equally sectarian in my eyes, the moment he oppo- 
ses them. If I am Sectarian, because I say a child 
should be taught " there is a God," you are equally 
Sectarian if you deny chat a child should be taught 
" there is a God." If I am Sectarian while affirm- 
ing that the divinity of Jesus Christ should be con, 
fessed in schools, you are at least equally Sectarian- 
if you maintain that such teaching should be avoid- 

A number of individuals united in the same be- 
lief form a sect and while one disowns the convic- 
tions of other s it aims solely at the establishment of 
its own. Others differ with us only because we 
wish to differ from them. 

The exclusion of all religious teaching does not 
prevent a school system from being sectarian. 
Every one knows of the sxistence of a sect whose 
fundamental principle is to abolish and abstain trom 
all religious teaching. The same sect has its teach- 
ers, its 'tribunes, its journals, its adepts, and, in fact 
its entire organization. If you do away with relig- 
ious instruction in schools, you may indeed make 
them neither Catholic nor Protestant but for all that 
you would not make them " non- sectarian " because, 
while rejecting every other doctrine, you would 
adopt that of the sect that rejects the teachings of 
any religion. While there is divergency of opinion 
a " non-sectarian " system cannot exist, because the 
training of children according to the views of some 
would be disapproved of by others. One sect is put 
aside merely to adopt another. 

John C. Spencer, Secretary of State and Super- 
intendent of Schools in the United States, made a 
report to the Legislature of New York, in which 
I read the following paragraph which comes per- 
fectly to my subject: — " To the plan' (Denomina- 
tional Schools") objections have been made "that 
" it would enable different religious denominations 
" to establish schools of a Sectarian character, and 
" that thereby religious dissensions would be aggra- 
" vated, if not generated. The objettion itself pro- 


* ceeds on a sectarian principle and assumes the 
" power to control that which is neither right nor 
" practicable to subject to any denomination." 

"It is believed to be an error ta suppose that the 
" absence of all religious instruction, if it were prac- 
" ticable, is a mode of avoiding sectarianism. On 
1 ' the contrary it would be in itself sectarian, because 
" it would be consonant to the views of a particular 
" class and opposed to the opinions of other classes. 
"Those who reject creeds and resist all efforts to 
" infuse them into the minds of the young before 
" thev have arrived at the maturity ot judgment 
" which omy enable them to form their own opin- 
" ions would be gratified by a system which so fully 
" accomplishes their purposes. But there are those 
" who hold contrary opinions, and who insist on 
" guarding the young against the influence of their 
" own passions, and the contagion of vice by im- 
"■ planting in their minds and hearts those elements 
" of faith which are held by this class to be the in- 
" dispensable foundation of moral principles. This 
" description of persons regard neutrality and in- 
" difference as the most insidious form of hostility. 
"It is not the business of the undersigned to ex- 
" press an opinion on the merits of those views. His 
" only purpose is to show the mistake of those ^vho 
" suppose they may avoid sectarianism by avoiding 
" all religious instruction." 

Even the non-Sectarian system had no other 
affinity save that which every one can discover with 
the sectarianism of no religion, it would be sufficient 
to show how inconsistent it is with the appellation 
given it. 

Of all the aberrations of the huma» mind, the 
most deplorable and the most degrading is 'hat of 
the foolish sect which hath said in its heart, " There 
is no God," and it is to the schools of such a sect 
that we would be compelled to send our children ! 
and to settle parent's minds, they are told, " Our 
Schools are non-Sectarian" 

Truly if such sectarianism were the only reason 
that renders the system inconsistent with its name, 
it is obvious that it would not have so many adepts, 
because any man calling himself a christian, would 


?spurn at a plan of education that is a constant ne- 
•gation of God and of His Christ, a system so per- 
nicious to the little ones so dear to the Divine 
Saviour, and of whom he said, " Suffer the little 
•children, and forbid them not to come to me," and 
exposing the same children to incur the very sug- 
gestive sentence of the Son of God, " He that is not 
with me is against me • and he that gathereth not 
with mescattereth." 

It is evident that the sectarianism of no religion 
is not the only one concealed under the qualifica- 
tion of " non-sectarian" given to schools that would 
be forced upon us. No, they who advocate the 
system have other views, they are, I hope, too much 
of fathers to wish their children to be brought up as 
infidels, without God, without faith, without re- 
ligion. It needs very little perspicacity to detect 
the aim of certain upholders of the scheme, and to 
become convinced of their inmost thoughts. Some 
of them have had the courage to openly make 
known their aspirations. 

A Reverend Doctor Clark of Albany, in a pam- 
phlet that received the endorsement and approval 
of a great number of distinguished members of 
different Evangelical Denominations, who take an 
active part in the direction of the non-sectarian or 
common schools of th# United States, the Rev. Dr. 
Clark says : "It has been a matter of congratula- 
" tion in years past on the part of many Protestants 
"that so many Roman Catholics are coming to this 
" country, that they might be brought thereby un- 
"der evangelical influence, and the most effectual 
'* agency in this work is our admirable Public School 

Here lies the secret of the zeal displayed for the 
establish ment of "non-sectarian schools" and the 
proof of the inaccuracy of the qualification given 
to the system. If instead of "non-Sectarian" peo- 
ple said " non-Catholic" it would be truer and call- 
ing things by the right name. 

Persons versed in this matter know the words of 
the Rev. Nicholas Murray, a Presbyterian clergy- 
man, spoken at a meeting in New York, to the 
effect that " while it was useless for the Protestants 
" to trouble themselves about the conversion of the 


V adult emigrant Catholics, between the two stones of 
" the mill the Bible and the Common Schools, they 
"would grind Catholicity out of their children." 

As for one of " the two stones of the mill" the 
Holy Bible, Catholics do not fear it • on the con 
trary, they revere and love it because it is true in 
fact and in name. It is the Biblion, the Book 
par excellence : it is the stone of the first water, the 
water that flows from the fountain of Eternal Truth. 
It is the Word of God in whose love Catholics wish 
their children to be taught in school. No, the ines- 
timable gem of the Bible will never "grind Catholi- 
city out of the hearts of children." The stone is as 
smooth as it is true. 

Such is not the case with the other " stone of the 
mill," non-sectarian schools, they are the grinding 
agency, because they are as rough as their name is 
Jalse, and the system hurtful throughout. Such 
agency will necessarily shake the convictions of the 
children, because the whole plan under the cover of 
" non-sectarianism" is " the most insiduous form of 
hostility." . 

The falsity of the qualification given to the sys- 
tem becomes still clearer when we come to consider 
that its supporters not only select it for themselves 
but would force it upon others whether they choose 
it or not. Hundreds, thousands, millions of men 
unite in an opinion with regard to the education of 
their children. They say to the partisans of " non- 
sectarian schools :" We cannot approve your sys- 
tem, keep it for yourselves and for those under 
your control, we want liberty to educate our dear 
little ones. Since you boast of being "non-sectar- 
ian" be consistent with yourself and allow others 
to choose what they like better. 

No, reply the upholders of the proposed plan, 
we call our schools " non-sectarian" that suffices, 
and " the plea of conscience urged against non-sect- 
arian schools is fallacious." We are determined to 
have ®ii.r own way. If you do accept it we shall 
create agitation ; we shall arouse fanaticism ; we 
shall raise a cry against sectarianism ; then we shall 
come to the polls, and if a majority even of one side 
with us you shall abide by the law that annoys you. 
We shall be your masters, and we shall teach what- 


ever we think proper. We shall' force you to give 
us your children to he taught — not according to 
your views — but according to the programme de- 
termined by our sect. One vote in our favor, and 
your children no longer belong to you, but they be- 
long to us for we are the State. So much the bet- 
ter for us if you are not pleased, we will have all 
the Government Grant for ourselves, we will have 
for the benefit of our own children, all the school 
assesments on your real and personal property. If 
all this does not ease your conscientious scruples, 
build school houses of your own. But mind, we 
will assess them, it will be so much added to your 
school taxation, in favor of our children, because our 
schools are "non-sectarian." 

Such language sounds more like a dream than a 
reality, and seems impossible in a country where 
religious liberty is proclaimed for all ; nevertheless, 
it is the sad story of the countries in which prevails 
the system so disingeniously called " non-sectarian." k 
Such is the lot reserved by that arch-sectarianism; 
for those who rely on the right of thinking other- 
wise, and comply with the obligation to follow the 
dictates of a conscience which does not agree with 
the views of the non-sectarian " schoolism" sect. 

In order not to appear a prey to a delusion I 
will cite proofs in figures : 

It is in the United States that the so-called 
"non-sectarian" system spread the most widely. 
So it is there that it is easier to judge how far it 
stands to its name, and if, in reality, the system is 
such as to inspire confidence in all. 

There are in the United States about 6,200,000 
Catholics, having the same claim as others to citi- 
zenship ; who pay their taxes, and moreover the 
school assessments ; who, consequently, bear all the 
charge imposed on their fellow-citizens. Well, 
strange to say, the system is so sectarian that 
Catholics cannot be benefitted by it. While con- 
tributing largely for the erection of magrificent 
public schools ; for providing the most complete 
apparatus and largely paid teachers, the same Ca- 
tholics cannot help thinking and saving : That's 
the Institution where they wish ' ; to grind Cato- 
licity" from the hearts of our " children." We are 


forced to give them our money and we have done* 
so, but we cannot give away the faith of our fathers 
and the souls of our children, and we will not give 
them. Notwithstanding the injustice and the hard- 
ship we will build another school. And, .side by 
side with the grand public school — partly supported 
by them — the Catholics have gone to work and 
built other schools, where their children receive 
sectarian instruction if you like, but, at all events, 
sectarian according to the wish and the choice of 
parents ; and that to avoid the sectarianism of no 
religion and the other forms of sectarianism taught 
in the " non-sectarian schools. There are, just 
now, over 500,000 children in the Catholic schools 
of the United States, whose parents have to bear 
the burden of double school expense. 

I beg of the reader to consider with attention 
the following passages taken from a public lecture 
delivered on the 8th December, 1871, by the Right 
Rev. B. J. McQuaid, D.D., in his episcopal city of 
Rochester : 

" Catholics have put forth their strength in be- 
" half of their poor children. These need religion 
" and all its helps in the church and at the iire- 
" side, but still more in the school which is the child's 
" church. 

" There are at the present time not far from 
" 100,000 Catholic children in the Christian Free 
" schools of the State of New York, and there are 
" over 4,000 children in the Catholic schools of 
" Rochester. These children are the children of the 
" people ; among them are children whose fathers' 
" bones lie bleacking on the battlefields of the late 
" war. Among them are many whose mothers' 
" little earnings can ill be spared from the family's 
" support. 

" A plan or system of schools which in one State 
" alone excludes one hundred thousand children of 
" the very classes in whose behalf Free schools are 
" supposed to be maintained, cannot be said to be a 
" success. Schools that are carried on upon a basis 
" so truly defective as those in this city or Roches- 
" ter, which are able to gather within their walls 
" no more than ti /e thousand five hundred children 
" in daily average attendance, whilst a porion of its 


" citizens, who are unwilling to separate religion 
" from education, can show an average daily atten- 
" dance of 4,000 in special schools of their own, 
" can scarcely be called common schools for all. 

" It is, we know well, the system which the ma- 
" jority of our fellow-citizens have adopted, but we 
" have yet to learn that majorities, even if all- 
" powerful, are infallible, or that minorities have 
" no rights, or that a system that falls back in its 
" ultimate defence, when logic, sound sense and 
" fair play have stormed all its positions, on the 
" mere power of numbers, is a system that can, or 
" that deserves to be permanent." 

After dwelling lengthily on the subject, the elo- 
quent Prelate, resumes as follows : 

" After what you have heard from me this even- 
" ing, many may be anxious to know what do those 
" Catholics really mean, and what is it thev want. 
" What are their views upon this great subject of 
" education 1 In the first place, we are in favor 
" of education for the people. We are in favor 
" of the most general system of education that can 
" be devised. We favor a system that will bring 
" in all the children of the State. But we do not 
" favor a system that gives them a defective, inju- 
" rious, poisonous education. Hence, since under 
" the present system formed by the State we can- 
" not take our stand upon the platform with our 
" fellow-citizens, we retire to one of our own. We 
" build school-houses and establish schools. I think 
" that here, in the city of Rochester, rue need not 
"fear comparison with the public school-houses of 
" the city. Here are the two school-houses of St. 
" Joseph's, the largest school-honses in the city ; 
" the school house of the cathedral on Frank street; 
" the very large and beautiful school-house of St. 
" Peter's congregation ; and the not so large but 
" more beautiful school -house of the Immaculate 
" Conception. We build school-houses, large, spa- 
" cious, roomy, well ventilated, well provided with 
" all the appliances for inifmrting instruction. We 
" supply teachers and books. And I would not 
" fear, although in these schools religion holds the 
" first place, like a beautiful goddess presiding over 
" all, I would not fear to bring out the children of 


* all these schools and place them side by side with 
" the children of any other schools in the city for 
" examination in those secular branches which we 
" are told are so valuable. We know their value. 
" And while these branches are studied in our 
" schools, we wish to bring in the beautiful hand- 
" maid of religion to help the child and improve its 
" mind, to mould its young heart, and to draw the 
" mind and heart to God. Our cchools furnish the 
" children all the other schools do, and furnishing 
" this education, doing the very thing for which the 
"State collects taxes and supports schools, we ask, 
" and rightly and justly we ask, why is it that the 
" money must all go in one direction and none of 
" it come where so many of the children are to be 
" found receiving the education the State means 
" they shall have, and receiving at the same time 


" But while we claim these rights for ourselves 
" we are equally strong in our convictions that the 
" same rights belong to others. That whilst we 
" bring religion into our schools and mean always 
" to have religion there, we say to our non-Catholic 
" fellow-citizens, bring into your schools whatever 
" of religion you have, bring in prayer and religi- 
" ous singing and Bible reading. These means of 
" good you hold as sacred and precious; we would 
"much prefer good Protestants of any kind to in- 
" tidels and deniers of all revelation. "We thank 
" God for any and all truth wherever we find it. 
" Jf but the beginning of truth to-day, we pray God 
" that this small beginning of truth may grow into 
" the fullness of all truth." 

It is a fact somewhat worthy of attention that in 
the city of Rochester, State of New York, there 
were in 1871 over 4,000 children in the Catholic 
schools, and that the parents of these children be- 
sides building and supporting the only schools to 
which they could send their children, had to furnish 
their full share for the erection and support of the 
so called "non-sectarian" schools for the instruction! 
of 5,500 children of non-Catholic parents. No won- 
der that, under such circumstances, Catholics are 
" touchy" on the u non-sectarian school system." 

Leaving the neighboring Republic, and coming 


home to our dear Dominion, we find proofs of the 
falsity of the name given to the same mode of edu- 

According to the census of 1871, New Bruns- 
wick had a population of 285,594, of which 96,016 
were Catholics, that is to say they formed a little 
more than one third of the whole population ; and 
that third was deprived of all held sacred and dear 
in their schools and compelled to bear all amount 
and any kind of sectarianism it might please the 
other two thirds to impose upon them. The Ca- 
nadian Parliament felt the injuctice and — notwith- 
standing its large Protestant majority — remonstra- 
ted with the Executive of New Brunswick, but to 
no avail. Sectarianism is in the hearts, the law 
and the schools of the two thirds and the Catholics 
must abide by the consequences. In a locality of 
the same Province the Catholic population was 
3,032 whilst the non-Catholic numbered only 79. 
Well, the " non- sectarian" law passed by the two 
thirds against the one third, is such that 3,032 
Catholics were left at the mercy of the 79 non- 

Is all this " non-sectarian V 

In the town of Portland, as in the whole of the 
Province of New Brunswick, Catholics form the 
one third of the entire population. They pay their 
share of taxation for the support of the schools in 
which the children of the other two thirds are in- 
structed, but their conscience forbidding them to 
send their own children to such schools, they had 
to erect others, and these were assessed to the 
amount of three hundred dollars, for the support 
of "non-sectarian schools," and lately good Bishop 
Sweeny's carriage was seized to pay the said tax. 

All these hardships imposed upon the Catholics 
of New Brunswick are said by some to be nothing 
but " fair play," " equal rights," etc., so the good 
people of Prince Edward's Island thought they 
could do no better than follow such example. Out 
of a population of 94,021, Catholics number 40,- 
442. The non-Cotholics took advantage of the 
small difference in nnmbers, the whole Island was 
agitated on the school question, fanaticism was 
aroused, war declared against Catholic schools, and 


as one and one third are more than one the "non 
sectarian system" prevailed. But to show how 
false is its name, only a few weeks ago the pupils 
of the school were furnished with a text book that 
a Catholic parent can not find in the hand of his 
child without being grieved and even insulted. 

Besides the text books there are others that come 
to prove the deceitfulness of the name given to the 
plan of education I oppose. The latter are found 
in public libraries connected with the school sys- 
tem in question. Without mentioning the impious, 
infidel and immoral productions which have been 
found in such libraries, the choice of other books 
looked upon by some persons, as unobjectionable, 
indicates the most exclusive spirit and the ut- 
most " sectarianism " As a general rule, not 
only almost all the books are Protestant, but 
moreover, a great number are written by the 
most violent and least scrupulous opponents of Ca- 
tholicity. In such books the religion of nearly 300,- 
000,000 christians is shamefully reviled, its teachings 
grossly misrepresented and the countries where it 
is practiced set forth an unenlightened and inferior 
in every way. Infamous calumnies — a thousand 
times refuted — are repeated over and over again 
as a matter of course. Catholics are pointed 
out as worthless citizens, their pastors as angry 
wolves, the Sovereign Pontiff as the curse of the earth 
and Catholicism as the enemy of liberty and learn- 
iug. The immense services rendered to humanity, 
to science, to arts and civilization, are ignored by 
the greater number of the readers of " non-sectarian" 
libraries. They are, as it were, wrapped in a thick 
cloud formed by the ignorance of certain modern- 
ists, who get rid of the trouble of searching in the 
past, by terming "dark ages" a period during which 
there existed a host of eminent men reaping a rich 
harvest of science and virtue. A period during 
which Europe was covered with monuments of such 
grandeur and perfection, that they elicit to this 
very day the admiration of the most distinguished 
artists. Monuments of piety and also of genius, 
science and arts. Monuments impossible had the 
mediaeval epoch been one of ignorance and deserving 
the appellation, " dark ages." 


The most profound and deplorable ignorance, 
with regard to Catholicity, is remarkable in those 
who seek information in " non-sectarian" libraries, 
and read nothing else. Every day we are aston- 
ished to find men — otherwise well informed — en- 
tirely ignorant of all that belongs to the religion of 
their fellow countrymen. This ignorance is so com- 
plete, that there is many an " Israelite indeed" who 
like Nathaneal of old say, in speaking of all within 
the pale of the Catholic Church : " Can anything 
of good come from" that quarter ? The basest as- 
sertions against what is pureet and most sacred, 
are stereotyped in books found in such libraries. 
41 Non-sectarian" teachers recommend them ; non- 
sectarian pupils read them ; and a whole generation 
is embittered and nourishes feelings of contempt 
on the mere strength of falsehood. 

The very history of our young country evinces 
proof of what I advance. Anything favorable to 
Catholicity is left aside or carefully lessened ; and 
many Canadian pupils of what they call " non- 
sectarian schools," and readers of " non-sectarian 
libraries," have not the slightest suspicion of what 
has been done and endured by the French colonists 
and the French Canadians, in the discovery and 
settlement cf this our common country ; in defence 
of the British flag, and for the maintenance of our 
constitutional rights and liberties. Somewhat ac- 
customed to the injustice of many of our fellow 
countrymen on the subject, truly refreehing were 
the just appreciation and noble words of Lord 
Dufferin with regard to the first French settlers 
and French subjects of Her Majesty in Canada. 

Many students in the sacalled "non-sectarian 
schools" have never pronounced the word "Catholic" 
but with disregard, and the word " French " but 
with contempt, and the word " Priest " but with 

Such is the result of the system, it is therefore 
evident that its qualification is spurious and the 
plan essentially sectarian. How often the ingenui- 
ty of some of those with whom we were brought in 
contact, has led us to discover the unpleasant picture 
drawn of ourselves, and the astonishment experienc- 


ed on finding out the difference between the picture 
and the reality. 

To a number of pupils, teachers, inspectors &c of 
" non-sectarian " schools T would say : Recall, my 
good friends, what you have heard, said, and 
thought yourselves about Catholics : what you 
read in your schools and libraries and after a pause 
of a moment, I leave to yourselves to judge if the 
system practiced in such schools is in reality " non- 

I do not wonder at the erroneous impression 
made by the term " Non-Sectarian," many people 
have been caught in the snare before the system 
was unmasked by experience, it deceived a certain 
number who, later, have had reason to deeply re- 
gret the harm it had done to their children. The 
tree is known by its fruit, and the fruit produced by 
what many call " our admirable Tystem of Public 
Schools " has been, in cases too frequent alas, for- 
getfulness of God and of Revelation, or the Sectari- 
anism of no Religion. In other cases, where the 
logical and ulterior consequences were not drawn, 
the end aimed at was obtained and resulted in- the 
Sectarianism of a particular Denomination and in 
both cases the institution has incited hatred or at 
least indifference for Catholicism. Therefore the 
reader should not wonder that Catholics who prize 
their faith above every earthly consideration,. op- 
pose the establishment of a sygtem manifestly inju- 
rious to their dearest interests. It is nothing sur- 
prising that the love of such parents for their child- 
ren prompts them to do all in their power to see 
that their faith shall be in safety against tendencies 
of a systen the very name of which is evidently 


2. A system of schools, if really " non-sectarian," 
would be impossible in our midst and such impos- 
sibility would be owing to the character of our peo- 
ple, and to the nature of the system in itself. 

The very fact of our being a christian and free 
people elucidates the proofs of tne relative impos- 
sibility of the system, for a christian people can 
neither desire nor maintain a plan of which the 
ulterior and unavoidable result would be forgetful- 


ness or ignorance of God no more than a free peo- 
ple can become the supporters of a scheme, by its 
nature, odious and tyrannical. 

To discover the fundamental idea of the system 
in question, we must go back to the old Lacedamo- 
nian plan which substituted the State for the fa- 
mily which it destroyed, snatching the child from 
the arms of its mother to train it from its infancy 
for a soldier or a slave of the Republic. Cruelty 
on the one hand, ignorance on the other were the 
natural fruits of the laws established by Lycurgus. 
But if the domineering plan of Lacedsemon — the 
same that brought about its ruin — seems a. source 
too distant and indirect of the system of Public 
Schools, no one can deny its affinity with what has 
cone to pays in civilized countries for a century. 
Voltaire, the enemy of God, and of his fellow-beings 
undertook to wage war against the christian re- 
ligion which he called " V In fame. ' The monster 
found many admirers in France, in England, in 
Germany and elsewhere. Allured by the novelty 
and still more by the passions it favored, the north- 
west Oi Europe acclaimed Voltaire, and the impi- 
ous sect of which he was the corypheus, at one time 
thought they had the mastery of minds and hearts. 
Sovereigns readily acquiesced to a system that fa- 
vored, at the while luxury and oppression, and the 
people easily round therein an incitement to revolt 
and plunder. "La belle France" whose misfortune 
it was to have fostered the monster suffered more 
than any country from the pestiferous utterances 
falling from the filthy lips ot the foul fiend. The 
French followers ot Voltaire, with their impetuous 
nature, logical minds and facility to draw the na- 
tural results of a doctrine for which they had be- 
come impassioned, rushed into the area of destruc- 
of destruction, inspired by their leader, with a fury 
that was not to be arrested. Voltaire was the soul 
of 93. A saintly king was beheaded. The mar- 
tyrdom of the rich, the nobility and the clergy re- 
newed the scenes of pagan ampitheatres where the 
blood of Christians freely flowed. The altars of the 
true God were trampled upon and an infatuated and 
senseless people knelt before a prostitute thej' styl- 
ed " la Deesse Raison," (Goddess Reason). 


Weary with destroying, glutted with blood and 
plunder, it is no wonder that the disciples of Vol- 
taire became the followers of Lycurgus, and as such 
violated the sacred precinct of family, and with a 
display of brute force, proclaimed themselves the 
State Omnipotent, with absolute power to lay hold 
on youth and divert it from all religious instruction 
in order to mould it according to the horrid morals 
they had just proclaimed, and which was subsequ- 
ently known as Socialism and Communism. They 
awoke the notion that the State can be the sole 
judge of the instruction to be given to children. 
Masses become as tyrannical as individuals ; in that 
respect number signifies nothing, except it may be 
said that the tyranny of the multitude is often 
blinder and more cruel than that of the indivi- 

Napoleon the first appeared among the ruins 
heaped up by the tyranny pf the multitude. A 
despot himself, he thought that he could rule more 
freely keeping a fast hold on youth, hence his sys- 
tem .of " universitaire" education without religion 
or " non-sectarian.'" The genius of Napoleon I. 
restored many ruins and shined brightly as a sol- 
dier ; unfortunately, he nourished the poisonous 
seed planted by Voltaire. This fault hurried his 
downfall as well as that of the two dynasties which, 
after him and like him, were not wise enough to 
smother the modern hydra of instruction without 

Napoleon III. at a later period, found at Sedan 
the proof of the folly of a Sovereign who believes 
that a rising generation can be edue'ated without 
God. Soon after, the " Communards" educated 
by the International in schools without religious 
instruction, the '■ Communards," readers of infidel 
newspapers, partizans of the "Educational League" 
whose motto is, "spread of education without re- 
ligion," the hideous Communards of Paris came by 
the blazing light of the finest capital of the world 
in flames, to prove the real value of the system of 
enlightenment of the age and the influence of mo- 
dern civilization on those trained in " non-sectarian'* 
schools. For, it must be remembered, they did 
act in a way to strike the universe with horror, not 


because they could not read as it has been said. 
No, such is not the case ; they had, on the con- 
trary, accepted the teaching of the " Educational 
eague" which says through one of its organs : " Re- 
ligion is useless as an instrument for forming the 
minds of the young.' 1 

A few non-sectarian schools having caused such 
misfortunes in France, it is easy to foresee that the 
ruin would have been complete had the system 
been generalized. What saved France and per- 
mitted restorations still more astonishing than its 
downfall, is that by far the greater number of chil- 
dren arc educated in christian schools. Meanwhile 
the misfortunes of that great nation are a lesson 
for itself and for others of the awful c msequences 
entailed by the pernicious system, which tend* to 
develop the intellect without strengthening the 
heart and preparing it for the struggles awaiting 

The Solidaires of Belgium, the Oarbonaries o 
Italy endeavor to drive their respective countries 
towards the abyss in which the. philosophers have 
.sunk in France and of which the International 
threatens Europe and America. 

Such is ihe origin and such are the oonsequences 
of the famous modern system of schools called 

France is not the only country that reaps the 
disastrous consequences of studying in a false dir- 
ection. The friends of Germany are truly afraid 
of the spread of Rationalism and irreiigion in the 
father-land, and that among the higher classes, who 
receive their education in schools from which re 
Jigious teaching is banished. In Germany the 
Common ami Elementary Schools are cfenomitKir 
tional, so the body of the nation receive religious 
instruction and are not exposed to the misfortunes 
of the upper classes. 

Modern England has been guarded against na- 
tional commotions, because its people are not so eas- 
ily fascinated by empty theories; and kind Provi- 
dence rewards the country, because they who gov- 
ern it, willingly and publicly affirm thesr religious 
eonvictious. Nevertheless, we must confess that 


aristocracy of learning as well as of rank and for- 
tune, are also stepping fast towards infidelity. 

The misfortunes of France have naturally awa- 
kened a feeling of alarm among its noble neighbors 
and determined an enquiry into the mode of educa- 
tion given to the sons of those who now direct pub- 
lic affairs and public minds. 

The House of Lords appointed a Select Committee 
" to enquire into the condition of English Univer- 
" sities. The Marquis of Salisbury was the chair- 
" man. The evidence taken before that committee 
u reveals the appalling fact that infidelity or doubt 
" as to the first principles of religion, nay, of belief 
" in God, is widespread in the univei'sities of Eng- 
" land, and especially among the most intellectual 
" of the students ; and that this sad result is due 
"ina great measure to the teaching and examina- 
" tions. In the first report of the session of 1871, 
" in the evidence of the Rev. Professor Leddon, 
"'D.D., Canon of St Paul's and Professor oi Exe- 
" gesis in the University of Oxford, we find the 
" following passage, in answer to question 706 : 
" Cases have come within my own experience of 
" men who have come up from school as Christians, 
" and have been earnest Christians up to the time 
" of beginning to read philosophy for the Final 
" School, but who, during the year and a-half or two 
" years employed in this study, have surrendered 
" first their Cristianity, and next their belief in 
" God, and have left the university not believing in 
■'" a Supreme Being" 

Such a revelation with regard to the high edu- 
cation in the Mother Country naturally recalls the 
words of the Royal Prophet : " And now, O ye 
" kings, understand : receive instruction you that 
"judge the earth." 

From the above mentioned facts it is easy to ar- 
gue as follows : If such are the results of a partial 
education among certain classes of European society, 
what can be expected if the entirely secular system 
were imposed on our school population % The elite* 
of English students, after all the instruction given 
at home, at school and at church, cannot resist the 
deleterious influence of one or two years of the 
study of philosophy without God, in the university 


of Oxford and others, and become infidel. How 
can it be expected that American youth will resist 
the pernicious tendencies of the system, if its whole 
education be based thereon, and if all classes of 
society be educated in accordance with it in all the 
branches o£ learning ? 

True, an ocean separates America from Europe ; 
but what has shaken European communities on 
their basis, that is to say, education without reli- 
gion, cannot help being felt on this side of the At- 

I will say in another article what the system has 
already produced in the social line in America. 
Suffice, just now to show the relation of the general 
system of " non-sectarian" schools in the United 
States with the one which has been so hurtful to 
France — though only partially applied — and which 
seems to gradually prepare the ruin of other coun- 

It is an error to believe that the actual school 
system of the neighboring republic is as old as the 
Republic itself, the cause of its prosperity and the 
secret of the prodigious development of the United 
States. Such is not the case. For more than half 
a century the " Stripes and Stars" protected Deno- 
minational schoos. 

The strong-minded men who gave to the United 
States of America the start and direction that have 
made them so prosperous, had acquired in Denomi- 
national schools the knowledge of secular branches 
of education, a onq with that reigious instruction 
which is indispensable to form good citizens and 
true patriots. 

Mr. O. A. Brownson, in his book " The Convert," 

gives the following information on the origin of 

the Public Schools in the United States : 

" Fannv Wright was born in Scotland and in- 
to . 

" herited considerable property. She had been 
" highly educated, and was a woman of original 
" powers and extensive and varied information. 
"She was brought up in the Utilitarian principles 
" of Jeremy Bentham. She visited the United 
" States in 1824, and returned to England in 1825. 
" She came back the next year to try an experi- 
" ment for the emancipation of the negro slave. 


" Fanny Wright, however, failed in her negro 
" experiment, but decided on a radical reform of the 
" American people themselves. 

" The first step to be taken for this purpose, was 
" to rouse the American mind to a sense of its 
" rights and dignity, to emancipate it from super- 
" stition, from its subjection to the clergy, and its 
" fear of unseen powers ; to withdraw it from the 
" contemplation of the stars or imaginary heaven 
" after death, and fix it on the great and glorious 
" work of promoting maris earthly well being. 

" The great measure, however, on which Fanny 
" and her friends relied for ultimate success, was 
" the system of Public Schools. These schools were 
" intended to deprive, as well as to relieve, parents 
" of all care and responsibilitv of their children af- 
" ter a year or two years of age. It was assumed 
" that parents were, in general, incompetent to 
" train up their children, provide proper establish- 
" ments, teachers and governors for them, till they 
" should reach the age of maturity. 

" The aim was, on the one hand to relieve mar- 
" riage of its burdens, and to remove the principal 
" reasons for making it indissoluble ; and. on the 
" other hand, to provide for bringing up all chil- 
" dren, in a rational manner, to be reasonable men 
"or women, th&t is free from superstition, free from, 
" all belief in God and immortality ; free from all 
" regard for the invisible, and make them to look 
" upon this life as their only life, this earth as their 
" only home, and the promotion of their earthly 
" interests and enjoyments as their only end. The 
" three great enemies to earthly happiness were 
" held to be religion, marriage, or family and pri- 
" vate property. Once get rid of these three insti- 
" tutions, and we hope soon to realiza our earthly 
" paradise. For religion is to be substituted science, 
"■ that is, science of the world, of the five senses 
" only; for private proper tg, a community of goods, 
" and for private j amilies, a community of xoives. 

" Fanny Wright and her school saw clearly that 
" their principles could not be carried into practice 
" in the present state of society. So they proposed 
" them to be adopted only by a future generation, 
" trained and prepared in a system of schools fonnd- 


**■ ed and prepared by the public, They placed their 
*' dependance on education in a system of Public 
*' Schools, managed after a plan of "William Phique- 
•*• pal, a Frenchman, and subsequently the husband 
" of Fanny Wright. 

" In order to get their system of schools adopted, 
*' they proposed to organize the whole union, se- 
*: cretly, very much on the plan of the Carbonari of 
41 Europe. The members of this secret society were 
" to avail themselves of all means in their power, 
*\ each in his own locality, to form public opinion 
" in favor of education by the State at the public 
M expense, and to get such men elected to the Legis- 
" lature as would be likely to favor their purposes. 
" This secret organization commenced in the State 
xt of New York, and was to extend over the whole 
" Union. Mr. C. A. Brownson was one of the 
" agents for organizing the State of .New York, 
" He however became tired of the work and aban- 
i( doned it after a few months." 

Such was the aim in preparing the plan of the 
Public ScJiools of the United States. My readers 
as well as myself have the " fear of unseen powers ;" 
they have no desire " to withdraw their minds from 
the contemplation oj stars or heaven after death ;" 
they have no inclination to rear their children "free 
from all belief in God and immortality." So I am 
satisfied that it suffices for them to know the real 
object of this system to repudiate it. 

Even the famous system would show me '• all 
the kingdoms of the word and the gory of them," 
and say : " all this will I give thee . . . . " I would 
answer : " Peg one Satan, for it is written : The 
Lord thy God thou shalt adore, and him only shalt 
thou serve"' 

Thank God, I am a Christian ! I repulse the 
views of Fanny Wright, as I do away with those 
of her grand -father, Voltaire; of her cousins and 
friends, the " philosophers," the " Solidaires," the 
" Carbonari," the " International," the " Commu- 
nards," etc.. etc. I have no sympathy for a system 
praised by all those miscreants, though by them all 
termed " n on -sectarian. " And as I know my 
fellow citizens also, thank Heaven, for being 


Christians, I have no hesitation in saying, the sys- 
tem is impossible in our midst. 

Another reason of the impossib ility of the said 
system is that we are free. Yes, Canadians, we 
cannot rejoice too much, knowing and feeling 
that we are in a free country, in a country where 
true and real liherty is enjoyed perhaps to a fuller 
extent than in any other country of the world. We 
have surely more real liberty than our neighbors 
across the line ; and in some respects we are more 
free here than the English people are on the banks 
of the Thames. 

The Treaty of Peace of 1763, was for Canada the 
starting point, the basis of the religious liberty it 
enjoys ; liberty of which Canadians of all origins 
are so proud and so jealous. Ever since, Canadians 
have achieved one by one all th9 civil and politick 
rights theyenjoy. 

The above insertion is nothing new for those who, 
together with the knowledge of the history of our 
country enjoy the faculty possessed by all serious 
minds to notice the connection between consequen- 
ces and their principle, and to turn back from the 
effect to the cause. At all events, the fact of our 
liberty exists and is highly appreciated by every one. 
We are free and being so I do not fear to be mis- 
taken in saying that the permanent establishment 
of the system of education which I disscuss is im- 
possible amongst us. 

The most populous Province had to modify the 
attempts made in that direction ; and it is easy to 
foresee that the momentary success in the establish- 
ment of said system in other Provinces cannot be 

The very word, religious oppression is repugnant 
to Canadians. The State itself must respect the 
conscience of even one ^individual. This is his 
birthright, and cannot be voted away for the sup- 
port of public schools or of public churches. 

Observe that the introduction of the so-called 
" non-sectarian " system, violates the conscience not 
only of an individual, but of the half of the popula- 
tion of the Dominion. The Catholics, and many 
others with them, consider the system as dangerous, 
opposed to their faith and of a nature to shake that 


of their children, therefore they repudiate it on con- 
scientious grounds The conviction is so widy known 
that it is astonishing to find men endowed with 
common sense, denying that such is the case. 

I do not discuss, just now, the reason of such 
conviction on the part of the opponents of tlie sys- 
tem. I merely establish its existence as a matter 
of fact. 

The last official censuses of the different pro- 
vinces, with the exception of British Columbia, 
show the Catholic population of the whole Domin- 
ion to be 1,527,923, and the non-Catholic 2,050,010. 
So, in the Dominion, taken as a whole, Catholics 
are in a proportion of 3 to 4 non-Catholics ; that is 
to say, not very far from the half of the whole 
Christian population of the country. Besides, that 
denomination numbers three times as the most nu- 
merous of the other denominations in the Domin- 
ion. Well, is it possible to force upon such a large 
portion of ihe community a system of education 
declared by the same — and they are the only judge 
of their conviction — as contrary to their conscience, 
and in the meantime, to boast of praising religious 
freedom f No, such a course is impossible except 
with those who are ready to say in one way a'nd 
act in another. 

Religions liberty is not the only one at stake in 
the matter. Civil liberty has also a close connec- 
tion with the subject. Opponeuts to the proposed 
scheme are citizens as well as its supporters. The 
former contribute their share to the prosperity of 
the country, supply the treasury, bear public charges 
and are ready to give their lives for the defense of 
the national flag. Again I repeat, they are citizens 
as well as » thers. Why then think of depriving 
them of the benefit of a public s) stern of education ? 
It is well known that the Catnolics, as a body, will 
derive no advantage from the proposed scheme, and 
the plan depends for its maintenance on the sup- 
port of public money in which Catholics contribute 
as well as their fellow-citizens, and on the very as- 
sessments levied on Catholic property as well as on 

Is there any justice in all that? Ts there any 
i otion of civil liberty in creating a system such, 


that nearly the half of the population can derive no- 
advantage from it, and forcing the same population 
to incur the half of the expenses of the system 1 

Suppose a district where there were ten uphold- 
ers of your system and ten Catholics on an equal, 
standing, but the latter repudiating the system. 
What will be the result? The ten upholders, the 
law in hand, will erect school houses of their taste 
and choice, receive the government grant propor- 
tional to their number and have their taxes. But 
the advanthge siding with them does not end here. 
They will, moreover, get the government grant pro- 
portional to the number of Catholics in the district, 
they will compel the same Catholics to pay their 
scohol taxation and the whole of the above money 
will be at the disposal and for the benefit of the 
upholders of the system, while the ten Catholics 
who, on conscientious grounds, cannot profit by the 
plan, will have neither schools nor their share of 
the public funds, nor even their own assess- 

Is all this the liberty of which all are so jealous X 
Is all this the application of the principle of " Equal 
Rights V Is all this fair play which all the sub- 
jects of Her Majesty, without distinction of creed 
or nationality can claim 1 

Read, please, what Judge Taft of Ohio said re- 
ferring to the wrong done to Catholics who cannot, 
in conscience, send their children to the so called 
" non- sectarian schools :" 

" This is too large a circumstance to be covered 
" by the Latin phrase " De minimis non curat lex." 
'•These Catholics — paying their proportion of the 
" taxes — are constrained every year, on conscien- 
" tious grounds, to yield to others their right to one 
"third of the school money, a sum averaging at the 
" present time about $200,000 ev«*ry year. That 
" is to say, these people are punished every year, 
" for believing as they do, to the extent of $200,- 
" 000 ; and to that extent those of us who send 
" our children to these excellent common schools 
" become bene ficiaries of the Catholic money. What 
" a shame for Protestants to have their children* 
" educated from money robbed from Catholics I 
" Mercantile life is supposed to cultivate in some, a 


" relish for hard bargains. But if it were a busi- 
" ness matter, and not a matter of religious concern, 
" could business men be found willing to exact such 
" a pecuniary advantage as this ? I think it would 
" shock the secular conscience." 

Observe, please, that while repelling the injust- 
ice, W3 ask for no privieje nor favor. We ask to 
remain free in our religious convictions, and to not 
be deprived of our rights as citizens " on the plea" 
that some consider such convictions as 'fallacious." 
We are confident that they who breathe the same 
atmosphere of liberty as we do, they who are sin- 
cere while proclaiming equal rights for all, will 
unite with us in pronouncing the system which 
would hinder the benefit of education for nearly the 
half of the population, an impossibility in our 

I go still further and say that a system of edu- 
cation which would be in reality as well as in name 
" non-sectarian," which would neither affirm nor 
deny any notion whatever of any belief, which would 
contain nothing in conformity with or against 
christianism, I say that such a system is a radical 

To have the pretention to instruct without teach- 
ing either directly or indirectly, even in an inciden- 
tal manner, anything religious or irreligious, is one 
of those whims or Utopias aimed at only by unsound 
minds, worked upon by people with special views 
such as Fanny Wright, and accepted solely by those 
who are deceived by the name, or who do not de- 
tect the result. 

How can any one educate without inculcating 
something partaking of the supernatural or oppos- 
ing it? Instruction in all the branches of know- 
ledge, to the exclusion of the one which ought to 
direct all others is an impossibility. People may 
dream as long as they like, without finding a way 
to educate a child while leaving it in suok ignor- 
ance and indifference that it could neither affirm 
nor deny the existence of a Supreme Being, the end 
of man, the wisdom of Providence or any religious 
theory. It is impossible even to conceive a whole 
system of instruction so inert as to allow such ig- 
norance, otherwise instruction would result in ren- 

dering those under its nurture more stupid than 
those deprived of any culture whatsoever. 

Such an endeavor would be an effort to develop 
intellect by depriving it of the breath of intellec- 
tual life imparted by the Author of our exist- 

Once more, I repeat, the scheme is an impossi- 
bility, simply because the teacher is a rational 
being ; that children themselves are endowed with 
reason; and that it is impossible to bring an intelli- 
gent youth in contact with the visible world with- 
out inspiring reflections that lead 'to one of the con- 
victions believed and taught by some one of the 
sects that claim to direct human intellect. 

To educate is to perfectionate. But man is crea- 
ted to the image and likeness of God. and how can 
any one perfectionate the image without, awproach- 
iug it to the model? 

What is science, except a participation, in a very 
inferior degree it is true, but to a certain extent, of 
the knowledge God has of Himself, of what He has 
done, of the laws He has prescribed for sensible 
beings and imposed on inanimate nature. There- 
fore, far from. God there is no real knowledge. 
" For of Him, in Him and bij Him are all things.'* 
Any teaching exhibiting the marvels of creation,. 
without any mention of its Author, without looking 
for the first cause of what is seen and learned, with- 
out any religious notion, such a teaching is not only- 
dangerous and criminal, but is so incomplete that 
it cannot be called the culture of intellect. 

The Journal of Commerce of New York, form- 
erly a violent opponent of Catholics views with re- 
gard to education, although as staunch a Protest- 
ant as ever says in its issue of 11th May 1870 : 

"Where the Common School system won its 
" chiefest laurels, and achieved its highest success,, 
"all scholastic learning was based upon the funda- 
" mental truths ol religion, because without the 
"sanction of religion there can be no proper traiu- 
" ing of the y.oung in any branch of instruction. It 
" is all in vain to say that geography, arithmetic, 
"grammar, history, botany etc., may be taught as 
"sciences without any necessary connection to re 
" li gion true or false ; and that the baptism of faith 


4i can be given to all these acquirements by the ex- 
41 ercise in the family and at the church, having no 
41 mutual relations with the school room. 

" The mind is not governed by laws which allow 
** for such separation and distinctions. Good men 
" will come to acknowledge this in time." 

To educate, a teacher must have ideas, apprecia- 
tions, convictions on what he teaches. He cannot 
be an automaton, a scientific mechanism, able to 
turn out so many words by the hour, without con 
necting the ideas expressed, and without even look- 
ing for the sense of the words ; without s ferintring tAiwk. 
or feeling, or without imparting to others what he 
does or does not believe. If he has no conviction 
he is not what he ought to be ; if he has convictions 
without expressing them, he is mocking at himself 
or at those who employ him. 

I append the following quotation from Doctor 
Anderson, one of the prominent men of the Baptist 
Chuich in the United States : 

*' It is impossible for an earnest teacher to avoid 
♦? giving out constantly religious and moral im- 
*' pulses in thought. He must of necessity set 
" forth his notions about God, the soul, the con- 
*' science, sin, the future life and Divine Revela 
' tion." 

" If he promises not to do so, he will fail to keep 
" his word or his teachings in science, or literature, 
" or history will be miserably shallow and inade- 
" quate. Our notion of God and the moral order 
"form, in spite of ourselves, the base line which 
" affects all our movements and constructions of 
" science, literature and history. Induction in 
" physics, classification in Natural History, neces- 
" sitate a living law, eternal in the thought of God 

" All instruction enfolding the 

" laws of science, literature and History should 
" be permeated with the warmth and light and 
" glory of the Incarnate Redeemer." 

" Incidental instruction in morality and religion 
" ought to be the main reliance of the Christian 
" teacher. The ends of a Christian school while 
" working by its own laws and limitations, ought 
" not to be essentially different from a Christian 
" church." 


" The principles we have thus indicated are uni- 
" versal in their application. If the Christian 
" teacher must make the elements of his religious 
" faith color all his teaching, the same must be true 
" of the unchristian teacher. It parents wish their 
" children educated in Christian principles, they 
" must seek out honest Christian men to be their 
" teachers." 

There is not a single educated and sincere Catho- 
lic, from His Holiness the Sovereign Pontiff down 
to the humblest village school-master, who does not 
agree with the above opinion ; or rather, the learned 
Doctor is among the numerous intelligent Pro- 
testants who take the Catholic views with regard 
to education, and who say with us, a system purely 
and entirely un sectarian is nothing but a delusion. 
The Reverend A. A. Mayo, Unitarian minister 
of Cincinnati, does not hesitate to ridiculize as fol- 
lows the ideas of those who believe in the possibility 
of such a plan : 

" It is easy to elaborate a secular theory of edu- 
" cation in the closet, where an ideal boy can be 
" placed in a spiritual vacuum, and developed ac- 
" cording to an exclusive mental system. Now, 
" the effort to control and educate such a miniature 
" republic on secular or purely intellectual princi- 
" pies, is a job compared with which harnessing 
" Niagai-a to turn the spindles of a cotton mill 
" would be a cheerful enterprise. To say that the 
" teacher does not need every resource of religious 
" " and moral power to govern and educate children 
11 is to mock at all educational experience and de- 
'* clare ourselves utterly ignorant of human life." 

All things speak so loudly of God as having been 
made by Him, that it is impossible to study outside 
of Him without sliding towards the abysses into 
which materialists and atheists have sunk. For a 
Christian country such as ours everything is con- 
' nected with Christian doctrine. The very atmos- 
1 phere we breathe seems to be embalmed with the 
■ sweet perfumes of faith. l"o silence that faith is to 
v fall into Rationalism, and to try to avoid both in 
'teaching is to reduce the sublime art to an impos- 


But sorae of the supporters of the system will 
8ay: All this is nonsense. The system exists, there- 
fore it is possible, and reason teaches that "ab actu 
ad posse valet consecutio." No, gentlemen, your sys- 
tem exists nowhere, because here is what occurs in 
practice : 

In the countries where the system has been es- 
tablished there are three broad currents of thought ; 
the Catholic, the Protestant and the Infidel thought. 
Now, I say that your system, as inicated by its 
name, is so radically impossible, that where its es- 
tablishment has been attempted it has necessarily 
fallen into one of the three currents of thought here 
i mentioned. The system cannot fail to bring about 
one Of the results that it pretends to avoid. 

In school districts of the United States, entirely 
Oataolic. the trustees having the choice of teachers 
and of books as well as the direction of the school, 
such institutions become in reality, and for all pur- 
poses, Catholic schools while retaining the name of 
" Common schools," and this accounts for Catholics 
not opposing the system under such circumstances. 

A similar fact, but of more frequent occurrence, 
is observed in purely Protestant distrcts ; and in 
certain States, most of the schools become in reality 
and for all purposes Protestant schools, while re- 
taining the name of " Common" or " non-sectarian 
schools," and this explains the zeal displayed for 
the establishment and maintenance of such schools. 

Where the " Common schools" are neither Catho- 
lic nor Protestant, they are so many nurseries of 
infidelity ; and the United States reap the bitter 
fruits of the system, viewing, as every one does, 
the alarming increase in the number of those who. 
have no practical religion. 

Therefore there is nothing real in the teaching 
in an unsectarian sense, because the scheme in that 
light is an impossibility. 

3. Even if the system were possible it is not de- 

After what has been said above, it is undoubtedly 
shown that the system in question is not desirable. 
I will, however, add a few reflexions under this 
head,, for the subject is far from being exhausted. 


I said in tiie first paragaaph of this article that 
the name given to the system is essentially false. 
But even were it proposed, as it should be, under 
the qualification non-Catholio or non-Christian, that 
would not render it more desirable. Because the 
new appellation, while indicating the tendencies of 
the scheme, would merely coiroborate what has 
been said in opposing it, and would be, as it were, 
the synthesis of the whole of my argument. 

I have subsequently said that a plan of education 
really and absolutely outside of any sect whatso- 
ever would, by its nature, be radically impossible. 
But, from this it cannot be concluded that, should 
the working of the system be made possible by rally- 
ing it now to one sect and then to another, such pos- 
sibility would make it desirable. I go still further 
and say that, even if the relative impossibility 
which I have pointed out, would disappear-, and 
the system be accepted, this would 'not make me 
desire to see it thrive. I would not relish the sys- 
tem any better, but 1 would dread it still more, 
were our population so unchristian as to favorably 
accept it ; and if the feeling and love of liberty 
weakened to such a degree that the majority would 
advocate the servitude. 

It is to the family and not to the State that the 
education of youth is confided. From the begin- 
ning God established the family among men : 
" male and female he created them. And God 
blessed them saying, Increase and multiply." To 
the husband and wife he commanded love and in- 
dissoluble union : " This now is bone of my bones 
and flesh of my flesh" and " They shall be two in 
one flesh," and "What therefore God hath joined 
together let no man put asunder." To children he 
commanded obedience, love and respect for patents. 
" Honor thy father and thy mother." To parents 
heads of families, he gave imprescriptible rights, 
together with obligations which no power can 
lessen. And among these obligations is that of 
parents to provide for, and direct the education of 
their children : li Hast thou children, instruct them" 
and " He that teacheth his son maketh his enemy 


This is the personal obligation ot parents ; they- 
can entrust it to another only when they are cer- 
tain that the instruction given will be in accord- 
ance with what it requires of them ; and that the 
souls of their children, for which they must answer, 
will not be exposed to any noxious influence, nor 
deprived of any o/ the helps to be expected fiom 

Such is the established order, and such order ne- 
cessarily rejects the theory that ascribes to the 
State the right to invade the sacred precinct ot fa- 
mily and then to exercise absolute power. This 
theory is a relict of paganism, the principle of sla- 
very, and cannot We countenanced among those 
who enjov the liberty of the children of God. 

If the State should be master of the child, why 
should it not be that of the mother 1 If it has 
right to become a .substitute for the father, who will 
prevent it from replacing the husband? If it has 
the right to compel parents to send their children to 
a special school, it may also hinder their being in- 
structed at all. riiis is what Lycurgus did. If 
the State has the absolute control of the school, it 
can also claim that of the church, just as the Czar 
of Russia and the Chancellor of Prussia pretend 
and endeavor to do. if the State has the right to 
prohibit religious teaching, it has an equal right 
to prescribe irreligious teaching. Such is t .he case 
iu certain universities of Europe. If the State has 
a right to pie vent children from acknowledging the 
true God, during a certain number of hours, days 
and years, it has also the right to enjoin the adora- 
tion of fal-e gods, and this the State did ordain for 
centuries, by condemning to the most cruel tortures 
millions of the disciples ol Jesus Christ whose only 
ciime was to believe that they who govern., as well 
as they that are governed, should submit to the 
King of Kings. 

What is said and written every day shows clear- 
ly that what 1 advance here will be easily miscon- 
strued. Strange (one cannot affirm the rights of 
God without being accused by certain parties, of 
being hostile to the State, just :is though God and 
State were irreconciiiable enemies and the two mas- 
ter s that cannot be servect at a time. On the con- 


trstry, one is so much the more loyal to the State 
that he is more mindful of his duties towards his 
Maeer. Society has nothing to fear from those 
who uphold the rights of God and ot truth. Be- 
cause any society well established will find its se- 
curity in the conviction of all its members that they 
are dependent on God as their s^ole and absolute 
master, and that there is no true liberty without 

Christian teaching alone can effectually check 
the natural tendency of man to the abuse of power 
as well as of liberty. To establish the rights of 
God is, no doubt, to define the duties of man. But 
it is in the meantime, teaching the latter his rights 
to the noblest freedom. Christian doctrine guards 
society against the thraldom into which it had been 
plunged by pagan Csesarism ; and guards it also 
against socialistic licence which is wore than pagan 
ism itself. 

The religion I profess teaches me " There is no 
power but from God, and those that are, are ordain- 
ed by God" This doctrine surrounds all authority 
lawfully established and lawfully exercised, with a 
prestige which no worldly consideration can inspire 
in the same degree. 

But, :n the meantime, the same doctrine, reminds 
me that all men are created to the image and like 
ness of Him who is the Being infinitely free and 
independent, and who decks the brow of all those 
redeemed by the blood of the Saviour, with a halo 
of glory peculiar to the enjoyment of the freedom of 
children of God. 

It was while studying and witnessing the appli- 
cation cf the above doctrine that the celebrated 
Protestant Guizot said : " Catholic Church is the 
greatest school of respect." Respect to every human 
being, respect to every legitimate authority. 

Having myself been brought up in that school, 
it is far, very far, from my desire to fail in the re- 
spect due to the State ; and even to the respect due 
to any fellow-men. Because, in the State I see a 
ray of the supreme dominion of God, and in every 
man a type of His infinite freedom. This respect 
for others I have for myself, and while I aui the 
obedient servant of the State I decline to become 


its slave. This doctrine, if well understood, can 
surely displease neither the State nor my fellow-sub- 
jects. If, on the one hand. I repudiate the pagan 
teaching whicH finished by the aptheoses of Caesar, 
I cordiailv adhere to the Chri'stfan teaching which 
savs : " Render to Caesar the things that are 

Having established the principles by which I am 
guided, I hope not to be misunderstood when I say 
that it is not desirable that the State should dis- 
turb the peace and freedom of families, in coercing 
in one way or another the surrender of the children 
to be educated according to the dictates of the State, 
and against the wish and desire of parents who 
have at heart the accomplishment of their duty. 
To impose in the matter a system which grieves the 
conscience, is undoubtedly a tyrannical act. 

The followers of John Knox have preserved to 
the present day, some of the ideas he had retained 
of his Catholic training. Not only have they strug- 
gled in the old countries, to prevent the encroach - 
meut of the State, endeavoring to submit them to 
the religion established by law, but, in many in- 
stances, even in America, they have raised an ener- 
getic protest against the State endeavoring to im- 
pos- upon them schools established by law. Among 
others the Rev. John C. Lord, Presbyterian clergy- 
man of Buffalo made use of the following language : 
** (jrod has not committed to governments the work 
" of education. The civil magistrate has other 
" duties to perform, has no divine warrant to turn 
44 teacher. or to superintend education. This is not 
*' a matter to be passed at the polls. What right 
4< has the State to educate my child 1 The State 
" may administer justice, build canals and railroads, 
" incorporate banks and perform civil functions, 
" but it has no right to establish a system of Public 
" Schools which compels in fact, the great mass of 
*' the community to have their children educated, 
*' there or not at all. I wish my children educated 
*' ' in the nurture and admonition of the L »rd' and, 
*' not in the nurture of the State. So do Christians 
" in general if the truth were known. But the 
*' State throws obstacles in the wav by its taxation 
i *' and its great public establishments." 


On the same subject, and to show that it is not 
desirable that the State dictate in matters of -edu- 
cation, ths Honorable Garritt Smith expresses him- 
self as follows: 

** It (the State) is certainly no more fit to have 
" a part in shaping and controlling the school, than 
" in shaping and controlling the church, aud the 
\ sound arguments against its meddling with the 
" church are in the main, sound arguments against 
" its meddling with the school * * * * No 
" less is it the parents right to choose the kind of 
" school than the kind of church for his children. 
" Many Protestants are content with no school 
" which- is not positively and directly a religious 
" one. Hence their opposition to the government 
" school which rests on an evil compromise, a cora- 
" promise requiring the elimination from the school 
" of all religion and use of all Bibles. * * * * 
" Just here let me say that the school is far worse 
"than worthless, which taking a child in its most 
'• plastic age, declines nevertheless to have a part in 
''framing its religious character." 

It is not only undersirable that the State assume 
the duties of parents in controlling the schools, in a 
way offensive to the convictions of such parents, 
but it is moreover certain that such control has the 
most deplorable results, because the system, in- 
stead of preparing the heart and the mind of the 
children to look to the end for which they are made r 
on the contrary, predisposes them to busy them- 
selves solely about material pursuits and renders 
them very unscrupulous as to the means to be em 
ployed in securing what they desire. 

The New York World says : — " The truth is that 
" the mistake of means in our system of education 
" arises from a perversion of ends. Our school sys- 
" tern answers much more nearly than those of older 
" countries to what are considered by modern men 
" the chief end of man in our time. That end is to 
"get on in life, to make money, and to gain what 
" money brings. To that purpose the present sys- 
" tern is entirely adequate." 

The State, while assuming the duty of educating 
children and forcing, at least by taxation, parents 
to accept its views, acknowledges its own incompe- 


"tency. It elairas no control over the soul and, 
nevertheless, it wishes to get hold of all the facul- 
ties which are the handmaids of the soul. The 
avowal that the State has nothing to do with the 
direction of religion, is the best proof that it is not 
desirable to submit the instruction of a rising gen- 
eration to its absolute control. Fortunately, here 
in this our country, every one admits the necessity 
of religious training to model the heart and to 
strengthen the will. But the State declines having 
any desire or authority to impart that religious edu- 
cation though instructing the child at the very and 
only time at which it is possible to do so. There- 
fore it must be admitted that it is not desirable 
that the State go so far as to hurt the consciences 
of parents, who are anxious for the religious instruc- 
tion to be given to their offspring. 

It seems to me that it does not requiie very 
close observation to become convinced that a youth, 
who would have gone through all the course of 
instruction, which it is claimed ought to be given 
in public schools, and who in the same schools 
would never have heard a word about religion, 
would be in reality completely ignorant of what he 
ought to know, and, in many instances, averse to 
it. As the opinion I oppose is said — though im- 
properly — to be one dear to Protestant, I know the 
reader will not find fault with me for quoting freely 
from eminentt Protestants of the United States, 
the only place where the experiment has been tho 
roughly made. • 

Rev. Mr. Young, pastor of the Presbyterian 
congregation in Warsaw, New York, wrote to Mr. 
Morgan, Superintendant of common schools : "The 
" Presbyterian congregation in this town, regarding 
" the State plan of common school education as in- 
" competent to secure that moral training of their 
" children, which is indispensable to a proper di- 
" rection and use of intellectual faculties — estab- 
" lished, some eighteen months since, within the 
" bounds of School District, No. 10, a parochial 
" school, to be instructed by such teachers only as 

u profess religion In the progress of our 

" schoools we find that evangelical religious truths 
" sanctifies education as well as all other things 


•* with which it is connected ; and that our children 
'" have made aiore rapid and effective progress in 
" intellectual attainments than formerly — but the 
" * Free School Law' passed by our last Legislature 
" has invaded our sanctuary, and we fear is about 
" to thwart our purposes. 

" We might have supposed that these principles 
" of toleration would secure to the religious deno- 
" minations respectively the privilege of worship- 
M ping God according to their respective views, and 
" which excuse them from supporting those of a 
4 ' contrary belief; that these principles would at 
" least allow them the same toleration in the edu- 
" cation of our children. But such toleration is 
" now by legislative enactment denied us ; while 
" we are subjected to such onerous taxes for the 
" support of common schools, as are equivalent to 
" an actual prohibition from carrying out our views 
" conscientiously entertained." 

A Rev. Mr. Jones, of the Methodist Church of 
llion, says : " .... The teacher should not have 
'* to deal with the intellect alone. The State, in 
" assuming to act in loco parentis, could not refuse 
" to take care of the spiritual education of the chil- 
" dren. Teachers must not be allowed to substi- 
" tute the demoralizing doubtings of irreverent 
" speculation for the grand saving truths of divine 
" inspiration." 

In a report of the Superintendent of public In- 
instruction t^ a general assembly in Iowa, the Hon. 
A. S. Kissell discussed as followe : " The painful 
" fact is, that the great mass of instruction now 
*' provided our youth — except perhaps the rambling 
" and imperfect methods adopted in our Sabbath 
" schools — is a practical denial of our national reli- 
" gion. We may listen all day to the exercises of 
** any of our most efficient schools, and hear often 
" enough excellent advice given to the pupils with 
'• reference to the importance of a generous, noble 
i( and virtnous character ; we may be satisfied that 
" the rulas and discipline of the school are admin- 
i( istered in such a way as to secure habits of order, 
™ industry and good behaviour ; but we cannot help 
" feeling that essentially the same feat have been 
" achieved at ancient Athens, as in our modern 


** Boston which stands so conspicuously as a repve- 
■" sentative city of Christendom. Somehow here, 
*• in this nursery cf our nation, in the public schools, 
" a perpetual libel is filed against the religion we 
" adopt. Must these schools have no higher stan- 
" dard than refined heathenism could furnish ? . . . 
" will it not be ill-timed and futile to urge upon 
" the adult, that of which, during all the years of 
*' his early training, he heard nothing, and which 
"" was so effectually denied or ignored in the course 
" of his training, that he would not have known 
" that the foi-mation of his character had any con- 
" ceivable dependence on such an influence." 

All such opinions — which as far as our subject 
is concerned are but one with mine — can surprise 
nobody, even had it never been previously express- 
ed in every way. A reflecting Christian may easily 
become convinced how defective and undesirable a 
system of education is, which shuts the doors of 
schools against leligion, both for teachers and pu- 
pils. The result must necessarily be fatal to the 
very intellect you wish to develop. The child is 
an intelligent being ; his supple and plastic mind 
is perfectly adapted to receive any teaching, even 
in the most incidental mode. A wink, a smile, a 
motion of the head or of the lips, anything in fact 
on the part of the teacher is apt to produce a deep 
impression on the mind of an intelligent child. 
What, on the other hand, would be the fate of the 
game child, if, instead of even an indirect teaching, 
he observes in his master the most complete re- 
serve or the most entire indifference with regard to 
Religion ? 

The breath of the Supreme Intelligence has en- 
dowed the children of men with " a living soul." 
Thai, soul, to live and develop itself, requires food, 
ftnd the food of the soul is the " teacching of the 
mystery of God the Father, and of Christ Jesus, in 
whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and 

As far as your system goes you deprive the young 
of those divine treasures of knowledge and wisdom. 
You shut their eyes to " the true light, which en- 
lighteneth every man that cometh into the world." 
You place the youthful intellect in a " spiritual 


vacuum," where everything is darkness, doubt, ig- 
norance. And what will you give it as a compen- 
sation 1 Human knowledge. Alas ! " But all men 
are vain in whom there is not the knowledge of God." 
What is your human knowledge or secular instruc- 
tion 1 Arithmetic, history, geography, etc., etc 

Well, let us try the teaching of such branches 
without any reference whatsoever to anything reli- 
gious : 

Teacher— What is Arithmetic 1 

Pupil — The science of numbers. 

T. — Give the first numbers. 

P. — One, two, three, four, five, six, etc. 

T. — Give examples of the use of numbers. 

P. — There is one God, there are two testaments, 
the are three personsinGod. 

T. — Mind what you say, my child, that is sec- 

P. (disturbed) — There are three sacraments. 

T. — Hush ! that also is sectarian. 

P. (still more disturbed) — There are seven sac . . . 

T. (hastily) — You are getting confused, my child; 
you are a new comer ; you have received sectarian 
instruction ; the next will show you how to an 

Another pupil — There is one horse in the stable, 
there are two buggies in the shed, three eggs in my 

T. — That's the boy that understands the system. 
And once for all let it be remembered that you are 
in a " non-sectarian" school, and that nothing of 
religion can be heard within these walls 

(Apart) — Pcor children ! that's the first blow to 
their faith. 

Yes, many a Christian became an infidel, their 
faith having received the first blow in a class of 
arithmetic, or the teaching of the positive sciences, 
which seem, at first glance, the least capable of 
diverting a reasonable being from the knowledge 
and love of God. 

Is it desirable to teach history without the men- 
tion of God 1 "In the beginning God created 
heaven and earth." This is the beginning and the 
origin of all history. What will the teacher do 
who cannot make mention of the Crea'tor of all 


things ? Fearing to be sectarian, his embarrassment 
will iucrease when, coming to another period of the 

history of the human race he reads : " the 

" angel said to them ... This day is born to you 
" a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord." 

Pleease, Mister Teacher, a boy may say, what 
is au angel? What is a Saviour? Why call him 
Christ 1 

Teacher — Silence ! this school is not sectarian. 
I have already told you not to expect I will teach 
you religion. 

Strange, deplorable teaching of history, which 
will meution the adorable name of God with the 
j-iame indifference as that of Jupiter ; which has no 
more to say about the sweet and beloved name of 
Jesus, true son of the. Eternal, than about that of 
Mars, fictitious sou of the imaginary king of Olym- 

How hurtful the teaching of history has been 
without the help of revealed truth ! 

Geography is a description of onr globe, of its 
inhabitants and its productions. To be complete, 
this science must make mention of the origin of the 
earth. 'ef the formation of seas and rivers. It can- 
not remain silent about the lessons which necessa- 
rily flow from the study of the variety of the pro- 
ducts we admire. Geographers cannot be satisfied 
with the mere mention of the names of different 
nations. They must describe their moral and reli- 
gious condition. Well, all this is impossible on a 
just and true stand-point, unless the Spirit of God 
move over tho intelligence of those who seek such 
information, as He in the beginning, moved on the 
surface of the deep,, from which He formed what 
constitutes the principal object ot geography. 

The undesirability of the system that excludes 
religion from its teaching, becomes still more ap- 
parent when we advance in our studies. Without 
the help imparted through divine knowledge, men 
may partly acquire what they call science, but they 
cannot help having false and unenviable notions. 
From the first to the last word of any science there 
is room for divine truth and revealed learning. 
Even the very knowledge of the alpliabet is conducive 
to render more comprehensible one of the divine 

attributes: "I am Alpha and Omega" Many 
children have experienced a sweet an I delicious 
impression, on finding out that the first reading 
fesson in Greek may help them to acknowledge 
God, as the first principle and the last end of every- 

To remove all objections we are told that religious 
instruction ought to be given in the family and in 
church. To this I reply, instruction at home, es- 
pecially for those who attend school is often a real 
impossibility. 4sa rule, the public schools are in- 
tended for the children of parents who are not in 
exceptional good circumstances. Well, in such fa- 
milies, generally speaking, the father is at work 
from morning to night. Weary, harassed, it can- 
not be expected that he will have time — even if 
sufficiently edncated — to go over all the lessens 
given at school during the day, to point out to his 
children the relt^ious teachings which, naturally,, 
must accompany and direct such lessons. On the 
other hand, the good mother, up early in the morn- 
ing, having hardly time to breathe before the child- 
ren leave for school, busy as she is with all her 
household duties, has little leisure at her command. 
The fact is that many children come late to school 
just because their mothers had not time to get them 
ready. Let us remember, the schools we speak of 
are seldom for the children of the rich, but for those 
of the main body of the people, farmers, mechanics, 
laborers etc. These classes are as fond as any other 
of theii children, and as anxious to give them a 
good education, and to prepare them for the strug- 
gles of life. But we must admit that said classes' 
have not the same means as others to secure their 
children complete religious instruction. If the 
school be Christian it will help the parents to per- 
form their duty and to do justice to those they love- 
so tenderly. If yon deprive parents of this reliance 
you embitter their existence more and more, while 
adding to their many trials. Who is not aware 
of the anxiousness experienced by a good christian 
mother, when she believes that her children are ex- 
posed to pernicious influence ( Even the fear of 
bad company often determines parents to keep their 
children at home, and thousands of men have been 


beprived of all sort of secular instruction for that 
very reason. Give this feeling the name you choose, 
for my part, I thiuk any real conscientious convic- 
tion is entitled to regard, and I respect it. 

Undoubtedly it is the duty ot parents to attend 
persoiiHlly to the religious instruction of their child- 
ren. But even supposing they do so, I say that it 
is not desirable that such instruction be confined to 
the paternal roof. It must (Vct-etoH to the school, 
Otherwise the teaching in the family would soon be 
looked upon by children as a thing to be left at 
home ami of no use elsewhere. They would not 
hold such teaching in the same esteem. Indifference 
at first, and contempt soon after, would be the in- 
evitable result of the contest between the domestic 
and school teaching. The child must look upon 
those who educate bird as the guardians selected by 
the love of parents for his advantage. Teachers, to 
succeed, need to captivate the attention and even 
the affection of their pupiis. The latter must be 
enabled to notice in their teachers not only learning 
but also virtue, otherwise they will despise them 
and even theirimprovement m their studies will 
be hindered. 

But how can a christian child whose religious 
instruction is well attended to at hom-% regard with 
respect and confidence the teacher who seems to 
ignore everything about religion? The lessons of 
tin- father and the mother ought to be corroborated 
by the lessons of the person to whom they entrust 
the tuition of their child, otherwise the lessons of 
parents will turn to naught, or be at least singular- 
ly diminished. A father will tell his sou to re- 
member that God is everywhere, tint we should 
walk in His presence, and work under His divine 
eye, in order to please him and secure his help. 
But if, on arriving at school, God must be left at 
the door, and the intellect not to b'^ busied about 
His remembrance, the strongest ittdtive for the 
child to study a?id behave well, disappears. Use be- 
comes unconscious of the want of divide assistance. 
In fact the most manifest contradiction pre ails in 
the mind. Children think more deeply than people 
generally believe. The Contrast between the do- 
mestic hearth and that of science, between the 


lessons of parents and of their representatives, pro- 
duces a very baneful impression on the minds of 
youth. If a child is virtuous and well inclined he 
will of course prefer domestic training, but if he ia 
impetuous and of a nature difficult to control, he 
will easily put aside the inculcations of religious 
training and aim solely at pleasing himself. But r 
in all cases, he will be less studious, less respectful 
to his teacher, less dutiful to his parents, and lose 
many of the qualities that grace the good pupil and 
the young christian. Experience, and the vety na- 
ture of the human heart, prove that such is the un- 
avoidable result of the boasted system. 

Under the christian system the religious teach- 
ing given at home is strengthened at school ; the 
duties proclaimed by the father are extolled by the 
teacher, all those who have any influence over the 
intellect and heart of the young, agree among them- 
selves and assist each other, the lessons are much 
more efficacious, the impressions more lasting, and 
the ultimate result incomparably more satisfactory. 
The pupils are more earnest in their studies, behave 
themselves better, people have, what they ask for : 
Education. That is to say. the bringing forth all 
the moral and intellectual faculties of the child for 
its own benefit, and developing the good disposi- 
tions of the young with advantage. 

The greatest misfortune of those who study is 
when their .studies drtw them from God and from 
faith. Such an awful result is unfortunately of too 
frequent occurrence though it ought to be avoided. 
For, as it has been very properly said by a great 
genius: " If a little science draws from God, much 
science brings back to Him." The habit of study- 
ing without reference to God has deceived many 
men of mature years ; the deplorable result is much 
more to be dreaded for unguarded youth. Ca( ho- 
lies are justly alarmed at the great number of in- 
fidels ''turned out" by certain public schools. 

With too many laus, religions instrction is hardly 
good enough for young children, nothing of the 
kind being found in schools. And the school being 
the house of learning, these lads believe themseives 
"the learned." So, in the estimation of many, 
aeligion and learning are no longer the inseparable 


guide of the soul, but have become irreconcilable 
«nemies ; and as the young man sees in knowledge 
the means of making his way through life, religion 
becomes, in his estimation, an impediment to sue 
•cess and undesirable baggage. Such are the fruits 
of the system in irself, 

Now, some one will say : Such is not the case ; 
I was educated in common schools, and I am as 
religious as any, and in fact more than many that 
were trained in Denominational Schools. So much 
the better if you form the happy exception. I do 
not argue on exceptions but «»n the rule, and there 
are exceptions to every rule. Besides, obseive, 
please, that 1 do not even argue against Common 
or Public Schools, as such ; but me^eiy against 
schools being called and pretending to be " non- 
sectarian." No doubt — and I have already estab- 
lished the fact — that in many instances a great deal 
of religious instruction is imparted in Common or 
Public Schools ; evidently the strength of my ar- 
gument is not with these last schools, which are in 
fact what T wish every school to be, viz., institu- 
tions to secure religious instruction along with the 
knowledge of secular branches. 

An unmistakable proof of the undesirability of 
education without religious instruction, is the fact 
that all infidels of every shape, name and color, all 
miscreants of every tribe and country, are zealous 
promoters of the system, and regard it as the only 
way to secure in time the negation of all teligion. 
And, strange to observe, in many instances th r se 
very supporters of the scheme send their own chil- 
dren, especially their daughters, to religious insti 
tutions, lightly judging that they will not only be 
well educated, but that their morals will be safe- 
guarded under the protection of religion. A man 
may be a practical infidel himself, but there are 
few, if any, who like to see their daughters brought 
up under Godless tuition. 

The church is undoubtedly a place of religious 
instruction ; but a child will have but very meagre 
teaching if he receives no other. It is well known 
that Sunday schools cannot give complete religious 
instruction, and that they ate but little attended, 
if at all, by those who are in greater want of them, 


notwithstanding the endeavors, in many instances, 
of both parents and teachers to send children there. 
Preaching is better adapted to adults than to chil- 
dren, and cannot replace the incidental instruction 
which may be given in school without effort as 
without contention ; and which finds its natural 
place on the lips and in the manners of a Christian 
teacher .; in the explanation given, and which pene- 
trates more easily into the mind of the child, be- 
cause it is more frequent and in accordance with 
its mental advancement. Without being felt, this 
kind of instruction establishes in the soul of the 
child dependence of everthing on God, and con- 
vinces him of the necessity to have religion every- 
where. Consequently renders him more moral 
more honest, more of all he should be, not only at 
home and during divine service, but in all circum- 
stances of life. Everywhere he will make use of 
the knowledge he has acquired in school. Other- 
wise, religion would seem as if wrapped up with the 
Sunday dress, and put aside for the week, as of no 
use excent when going to church. 

Of all the arguments against those who oppose 
the system, the following is, in my estimation, the 
weakest : " The plea of conscience sometimes urg- 
" ed against non-sectarian schools is fallacious 
" since such schools only fail by defect to teach re- 
'Uigion." This is exactly the point, and -the very 
reason that shows how undesirable the system is. 
Such schools " fail by defect to teach" the thing 
most indispensable, and such defect is so fatal, that 
nothing cnn remedy it. The defect to teach what 
ought to be taught — as the sole sure guide of any ac- 
quirement — is precisely the justification of all the 
opposition made against the system, and the proof 
of its undesirability. 

A few comparisons may show the weight of the 
argument. Darkness only fails by deject to give 
light, still no one thinks it is bright. Starvation 
oxily fails by defect to give food, still no one esteems 
its nourishing. Light clothing, during winter, only 
fails by defect to keep warm, stiii people can safely 
say the dress is cold. 

Suppose a man in a state of starvation and ex- 
posed to freeze to death on a dark night. Do you 


think you could save, help or satisfy hirn by stoic- 
ally saying : " Don't complain, my friend, you onlg 
Jail by defect to have food, light and clothing. Hun- 
ger will "not interpose obstacles"to your appetite when 
you will have the chance of a meal. Darkness will 
rest your eyes and prepare them to enjoy light. Ex- 
posure will make you prize the comfort of warm 
clothing. So don't be uneasy/' 

And to say that this is exactly similar to what 
we are told about religious instruction in schools \ 
While such instruction is unquestionably the purest 
and brightest light ot the intellect, the true and 
wholesome food of the heart, and the divine mantle 
which protects the soul against the cold wind of 
indifference, and the freezing blast of infidelity, both 
leading to eternal death. 

On what ground can any one expect to satisfy 
earnest christians by the utterance, our "schools 
only fail by defect to teach religion." 

Such an argument reminds me of what happened' 
in the small town of Atheopolis near one of the 
numerous Devil's Lakes of the Western States. 
People there decided on building a new school- 
bouse. Just in the heart of the town there was a 
slightly elevated point surrounded with all sort ot 
attractions. The summit was planted with beauti- 
ful trees, a delicious stream bathed the fooc of the 
hill, pleasantly cooling the atmosphere during sum- 
mer, and used as skating rink during winter. The 
gentle slope of the hill and high rocks in the rear, 
seemed to offer every facility for gymnastic exercise. 
A' better site for a school house could not be ima- 
gined, and it was secured by the unanimous vote of 
all the rate-payers of the locality. The trustees 
accepted a tender of an architect of great renown. 
Nothing was spared to have a first class establish- 
ment. A line large house was erected. The laws 
of acoustics made all the apartments sonorous, with- 
out excess, and deadened all outside noise. The 
most learned dioptrics disposed the lights in a way 
to rendei it abundant, pleasant and unhurtful. 
Patented desks of the best style, were ordered from 
Philadelphia. Globes, maps, and all appliances to 
impart learning, were provided at great expense, 
and a first class teacher engaged at a large salary. 


The whole population, parents and children were 
really enthusiastic, the new school house was the 
topic of the day, and every one longed to see it open. 
The architect, not content with the praise received 
from all around him, was proudly drawing attention 
to a certain apparatus he styled the " best system of 
ventilation" and of his own invention. It served, 
at the while, as an ornament and a sort of cupola 
on the top of the building, communicated with all 
the apartments and was set at work by the weight of 
those attending school. Every one was seized with 
admiration. An old architect who had great 
experience and success in the erection of large edu- 
cational establishments, was the only one who dared 
to express a doubt as to the fitness of the structure. 
On the day appointed by the trustees, the school 
opened, and it was a real day of joy. . 

The whole proved satisfactory, and according to 
expectation, for a while Bui winter set in. Doors 
and windows had to be closed, and a very unplea- 
sant change followed. Children, as well as master. 
became uneasy. A certain dullness was noticeable 
with most of those attending school. Parents be- 
gan to be apprehensive about the symptoms of v\ eak- 
ness observed in their children. In the middle of 
winter the thing got worse. Phthisic, dyspepsia, 
diphtheria and many other diseases which had never 
been known among the children of the place began 
to spread rapidly. Medical men ware consulted, 
but they could not ascertain the cause of the evil. 
Finally a commission was appointed to make clo-e 
ooservations. The commissioners repaired to the 
school, called parents and children and began the 
enquiry. But to their great astonishment, they, 
themselves, soon began to feel weak and sick. The 
whole was found to proceed from the scarcity of at- 
mospheric air. At last they discovered that the 
famous 'ventilator was nothing but an Air-Pump, 
which was the harder at work as those present be- 
came more numerous, for it was moved by the very 
Weight of their bodies. 

The doors and windows were immediately opened 
to save the huge gathering from suffocation. The 
discovery startled the people of the town, they be- 
came as much against the architect as they had 


avored him in the beginning. Many parents sued 
him before a magistrate as having done so much 
harm to their, children. The poor man could not 
deny the fact, it was of public notoriety, but lie 
gave the following explanation : " I'eople always 
" complain of the difficulty oj ventilating a school 
" room arid keeping perfectly clear of all unpleasant 
" and injurious gas and air. I imagined that an 
" Air Pump would be the very thing to suit the pur- 
11 pose and unobjectionable, as the school would only 
u fail by defect to have air, but, at all events, be free 
"from all noxious vapors. 1 ' 

Such is the whole system of unchristian educa- 
tion. T> avoid some of the thousand miseries in- 
herent to human nature, and unavoidable under any 
circumstances, the system adopts the most deplor- 
able counterpart, in encouraging tuition that fails 
by defect to teach the only remedy to human misery, 
and may be justly termed a sort of pneumatic engine, 
by means of which, all the religious dispositions of 
children may be exhausted from their hearts. 



This last affirmation may seem extraordinary, 
and perfectly groundless on the part of one who 
opposes the desire expressed to establish the system 
in Manitoba. So I beg of the reader not to get 
under the impression that I pretend to ignore, that 
b certain number of the inhabitants of the Pro- 
vince have expressed their sympathy for the sys- 
tem, nor that I overlook their opinions. But I 
Wish to point out in this number the reasons which 
prove that the system is so little patronized and 
meets with so much opposition, that we may justly 
say — in a general way — that it is not desired. To 
support what I here advance, I must naturally ex- 
tend my observations outside of certain localities,, 
and also of classes of individuals, even were they 

I am satisfied that our young Province, while 
animated with the just desire to work for itself, has 
not such pretension to superiority as to believe that 
it can receive no lesson from elsewhere. Young 
countries, as well as young men, need to study and 
to know what has been done by their elders, to be- 
nefit by their experience. 

The question of education is so important, that 
it would be follv to voluntarily ignore the pas<£ in 
order to judge what ought to done or avoided in 
future. Superficial men alone dispose with de- 
plorable facility of an opinion contrary to their 
own ; while men of learning and sense always 
weigh with calm consideration the opinions of others 
before repudiating them. 

I address serious minds, and they, I am sure, 
will not find fault with me for going as far as po ■• 
sible, with regard to distance and time, to ascer- 
tain, if in reality, the scheme I oppose is desired. 
Therefore, to show that the immense majority of 
those who have dealt with the question of educa- 
tion have manifested no desire for the system, I 


will briefly examine what has been thought of it 
bv those of the different persuasions that profess 
Christianism : how it stands in various Christian 
countries ; and add a few remarks on the subject 
with regard to the Dominion, without excepting 
our young Province of Manitoba. 

Having to mention the views of Christians, I 
will follow chronological order, and, consequently, 
begin by Catholics. It cannot be denied that they 
are the oldest as well as the most numerous of all 
Christian denominations ; I will even say the one 
which has given most education. I know this is 
saving a good deal ; still it is the least that can be 
said to be true to facts and to history. Now-a-days 
evevy one knows the opinion Catholics have always 
had concerning religious instruction in schools. Its 
necessity is for them a belief in which they all 
unite, and it may be safely said that there is not 
even one amongst them who desires the establish- 
ment of a school system without religious teaching. 
Not only the Sovereign Pontiff and his thousand 
Brother Bishops repudiate the idea of such teach 
inir, hut the clergy of all other orders, as well as 
every layman, have but one opinion, and there are 
not two convictions among Catholics on the point. 
They who pretend " that there are thousands of 
strict Catholics who are advocates of" the. "non- 
sectarian system," do not know what a strict Ca- 
tholic is, no more than they know what Catholics 
consider as " fallacious" or not. It would be a vain 
effort to search for one single sincere and educated 
Cuholic that would advocate the system. All 
C ttholics, of whatsoever rank or condition in Eu- 
rope, Asia and Africa, as well as those ot Ocean ica 
and America, reject it. There is in this very fact 
sufficient matter for reflection, and, at least, the 
proof of an opinion of some weight. They who lay 
so much stress on the supremacy of numbers, ought 
to tiud in this an argument against the system, 
because Catholics are not only the most numerous 
of Christian denominations, but they alone number 
more than all other Christian denominations toge- 
ther. Moreover, in this instance, the weight of 
the " argument of numbers" is increased by the 
weight of the " argument ot time." I will surprise 


nobody by stating that the Catholic Church is as 
ancient as Christianity ; consequently, that it has- 
dealt with every century through the whole Chris- 
tian era. The experience of nineteen centuries i» 
something in the estimation of thinking men : and 
the unanimous conviction which prevails through 
the whole Catholic body in 1877, with regard to* 
the necessity of religious instruction for youth in 
school, has prevailed during the eighteen hnndred 
years which Christian history allows us to compute. 
I know that the number of men and the number 
of years a^e not always, and in all matters, a crite- 
rion of certitude; but, to ascertain a fact, such 
numbers have alwavs great weight. When mil- 
lions and millions of Christians are unanimous, 
during eighteen centuries, in repudiating a system,, 
it surely proves, at least, that such a system is not 
desired. Any one anxious to frame a plan of edu- 
cation suitable for Christian youth, in a Christian 
country, cannot wisely consider such a fact as of 
no importance. It is well known how far preju- 
dice and ill-will can mislead, but there are facts- 
which necessarily command attention. And that 
of the unanimity and perseverance of Catholics, in 
not desiring schools that fail by defect to teach 
religion, is worthy of the mast serious consideration 
of those who prepare schemes they intend for Ca- 
tholics as well as for others. 

The number of men as well as of years is not the 
only reason that gives weight to the Catholic idea 
on the subject. Even — swithout taking into consi- 
deration what is most precious to Catholics them- 
selves, and viewing merely what any reasonable 
man cannot refuse to admit — that body, with re- 
gard merely to the number of its members and to 
the number of centuries through which it has ex- 
isted, has necessarily greatei experience than any 
other concerning education. Pagan Rome subju- 
gated the world without educating it. Christian 
Rome made the noblest of conquests by the educa- 
tion of the world. Lombards, Franks, Saxons, 
Britons, Celts, and so many other barl>urous nations 
became the most civilized of the world in the Chris- 
tian schools established by Christian Rome. 


When implanted in Italy, Gaul, Great Britain, 
^Germany, and elsewhere, Catholicity founded 
schools, academies, colleges and universities, and 
formed the legions of heroes, of saints, and of scholars, 
that have thrown so much lustre on civilized Eu- 
rope during fifteen centuries, and of whom so many 
thousands elicit the just admiration of all truly 
learned men of the present age. Yes, legions of 
great men, in all branches, received their edu- 
cation in the Christian schools of the time. There- 
fore Catholicism, which, during the above period, 
was the only religion of Europe, has a right to 
claim experience in educational training. Such ex- 
perience, joined to the number and to the length 
of time, already alluded to, renders so much the 
more worthy of attention the fact that Catholics 
have no desire for Godless schools. 

The fact of the successful training, due to the 
experience of Catholicity, is very easily established. 
It has, nevertheless, been repeatedly denied by 
men, whose erudition in some other matters should 
direct better. 

Archeology and Statistics — so much appreciated 
at the present time — have largely contributed to 
put the thing in its true light. Some of the strong- 
est opponents to Catholicity are foiced to render it 
an unlimited tribute of praise, and to acknowledge 
it as far the laryest nursery oj teachers, not only in 
matters of faith, from its rudiments to the sublime 
summits of sanctity, but also of teachers in secular 
branches, from the rudiments of language to the 
grandest and highest conceptions of genius. 

May I be permitted to corroborate my statement 
by the opinion of one, who has lately shown great 
hostility to the Catholic Church, but who is suffi- 
ciently learned to feel the' impossibility to conceal 
what history records : 

Mr. Gladstone, himself, is my authority. In 
his " Studies on Homer" Vol. 2, pg. 631, he says 
that the Roman Catholic Church " has marched for 
" fifteen hundred years at the head of human civili- 
" zation, and has driven, harnessed to its chariot, 
" as the horses of a triumphal car, the chief intellec- 
" tual and material forces of the world ; its learn- 
" ing has been the learning of the world ; its arts 


" the arts of the world ; its genius the genius of the 
** world ; its greatness, glory, grandeur, and ma- 
"■ jesty have been almost, though not absolutely, all 
" that, in these respects, the world has had to boast 

So much for fifteen centui ies. Since that time 
competition in the field has only served to stimu- 
late the efforts. 

This important quotation is but one among so 
many others supplied by Protestants, in justification 
of Catholicism, against the undeserved accusations of 
its being a body of only poor experience in the art 
of teaching. Such testimonials as that just quoted, 
ought to be, for every sensible man, a reason not 
to reject a priori the unanimous conviction of the 
Catholic body. Surely I am not in the wrong when 
I maintain that the system I oppose is not desired 
by the most numerous, the most ancient, and the 
most experienced of all christian denominations. 

Catholics are not the only christians that repu- 
diate the system. The Greek Church is equally 
adverse to it ; and the millions of " orthodox" < f 
that church are as many adversaries of the ;«nti 
christian scheme. The Czar of Russia has shown 
to the world, and especially to his subjects, that 
his government is not always of the most exquisite 
tenderness. Still he h&a new** gone so far as to try 
to eradicate all christian notions from the heart of 
the nation by forcing, on its school population, the 
dire trial of irreligious schooling. While mention- 
ing that the Greek Church has no desire for the sys- 
tem, I perfectly undei stand that I cannot remain 
there long, for neither the adversaries nor the sup- 
porters of the system, in Manitoba, have any idea 
to take either in Russia, or in some of the Turkish 
Provinces, the plan of education we want ; but 
having to speak of all christian denominations, I 
eould not help mentioning the Greek Church, which 
counts so many millions of adherents. 

Having stated that Catholics and Greeks have 
no desire for the abolition of religious tuition in 
schools, I naturally come to examine the views of 
Protestants on the subject and here, again, I see in 
the numerous body of Protestants, taken as a whole, 
great opposition to the system, the scheme Wing 


mot a Protestant, but an anti-christian inslitvZion. 
I term Protestants those who separated from the 
Roman Catholic Church in the sixteenth century, 
4ind the various sects into which they have since 
■subdivided. With this explanation, I say that the 
immense majority of Protesta'hts have never had 
the desire to see their children educated in schools 
deprived of religious teaching. My assertion is 
based on the fact that from the very establish merit 
of their creed, the Protestants of Europe have been 
anxious to have their children trained under reli- 
gious tuition, and in schools where religious teach- 
ing and religious exercises were freely practised. 

That the Protestants of the United States sin<e 
the foundation of the English color. y in America, 
until 1840 or al>out, had established and supported 
denominational schools and no other. That even 
to day, in many localities of the United States, where 
schools are exclusively conducted by Protestants, 
the religious character of such schools is ]>erfectly 
distinct. So much so that a Presbyterian divine of 
Rochester said in a sermon preached on the 17th 
Dec. 1871 : " There is a great deal of religion in 
41 our schools * * * * from the ringing of 
* the bell up to the recitation in the Anabasis, 
"there is scarcely one thing that is not toned and 
u shaped by the religion of our blessed Lord." 

That the Protestants of Canada as well as those 
of the Mother country have always thought it ad- 
visable to secure religions education in schools, and 
wherever the godless system was attempted, pastors 
and parents multiplied private institutions to ob- 
viate the disastrous consequences. If there were 
no Catholics to be injured by the establishment of 
" non-sectarian schools," Protestants would never 
have thought of it in Canada no more than in the 
United States. As ?, body they are adverse to the 
system in itself, as clearly demonstrated by a close 
investigation. Infidels alone like (he system for 

A glance over countries known as well educated, 
will bring the conviction that the scheme is not 
patronized to the extent that is sometimes imagined. 

It has been repeatedly, but falsely affirmed, that 
a " non-sectarian" school system had been long since 


established in Prussia, and that such was the cause 
of its advancement of late. The truth is that old 
Frederic King of Prussia, although an unbeliever 
himself, and the intimate friend of Voltaire, felt 
it a duty to enjoin religious instr action in the 
schools of his kingddm ', and the regulations he pub- 
lished on the 12th August 1763. prescribing re- 
ligious instruction in schools, were fully preserved 
until persecution broke out under Bismarck in 
1872. True, after the disastrous campaign of 1806, 
the system of education was remodelled, but nothing 
was attempted to impede religious instruction. Far 
from that, it was continued to the schools of every 
denomination, and placed under the supervision of 
their respective pastors Not only Protestants had 
their schools, but Catholics had also theirs, and 
even the Rabbins had the right and duty to look 
after the schools, established for the children of Is- 
rael. Tn small localities, where more than one 
school could not be supported, the different deno- 
minations came to an agreement, but always in a 
way to preserve religious instruction. The whole 
goes to show that the " non-sectarian system" was 
neither practiced nor even desired in Prussia. 

They who consider the school organization of 
that country as the cause of its late success, ought 
to be convinced that in this, as in preceding centuries, 
religious instruction in schools does not prevent the 
prosperity and the aggrandizement of a nation The 
German army, which invaded France in 1870, 
counted about one third of Catholics, and I am not 
aware that it has been said that they, princes, offi- 
cers, or even privates, were inferior to others, al- 
though they 1 ad received religious instruction in 
accordance with their faith. 

The Swiss Republic has an organization some- 
what similar to that of Germany, and religious 
instruction is not banished from schools. 

The Revolution of 1830, placed a disciple of 
Voltaire on the throne of France. The son of 
" Philippe Egalite" was, naturally, an enemy of 
liberty of teaching. He insisted on the absolute 
control of the Government on the high education 
of the land, according to Napoleonian views. The 
days of his reign were about the same as those of 


the two Napoleons, and ended in like manner ; he 
also having become a victim of the system. But, 
notwithstanding the hostility of Louis Philippe to 
any competition with the State in relation to Uni- 
versities, Lyceums, Polytechnic Schools, etc., his 
Government never dared to abolish religious in- 
struction in the Common Schools. Such teaching 
was maintained in the law passed in 1833. The 
Bill was introduced " a la chambre des Deputes" 
by the ptotound Protestant, Guizot, who made the 
following remarks: "The teacher is summoned 
" by the parent to share his authority; this au- 
" thority he must exercise with the same vigilance 

" and almost with the same affection You 

'• know that virtue does not always follow in the 
" train of knowledge, and that the lessons received 
*' by children might become dangerous to them 
" were they addressed exclusively to the under- 
" standing. Let the teacher, therefore, bestow his 
" first care on the cultivation of the moral qualities 

"of his pupils Nothing, besides, is more 

•' desirable than a perfect understanding between 
"the minister of religion and the teacher ; both are 
" in possession of moral authority ; both require 
" the confidence of families ; both can agree in ex- 
" ercising over the children committed to their 
"care, in several ways, a common influence." 

Had the idea expressed with regard to common 
schools prevailed in the establishments of high 
education in France, the country would not have 
received the humiliation it has undergone. 

In England, the Committee of Council on edu- 
cation selected, for its secretary, Doctor James 
Philip Kay. Doctor Kay is well known for the 
services he has rendered to education. He was 
even knighted by Her Majesty on that account. 
He, travelled through the European continent to 
study various school systems. He planned differ- 
ent measures which were adopted by the Committee 
of Council on education, and, subsequently, sanc- 
tioned by the English Government. His nanit; is 
an authority, and his views on education are con- 
sonant with the public opinion of England and the 
Parliament. I believe that a Canadian would not 
show himself unworthy of a British subject, and 


hostile to oui young Province, in adopting the 
ideas expressed by Dr. Kay : " The parent should: 
w not be led to regard the school as the privilege of 
w the citizen, so much as another scene of house- 
" hold duty. The communities are neither most 
" prosperous, nor most happy, in which the political 
" or social relations of the family are more promi- 
V nent than the domestic. To make the households 
" of the poor scenes of Christian peace, is the first 
" object of the school. Wnv then should we substi- 
" tute its external relations for its internal — the 
" idea of the citizen for that of the parent — the 
* sense of political or social lights for those of do- 
** mestic duties — the claim of public privilege for 
" the personal law of conscience V 

Doctor Kay knew perfectly well the reglious 
character that the desire of the English people had 
imparted to the forty Normal schools of England 
and Scotland. Twenty-seven of them being con- 
nected with the church of England, two- with the 
established church of Scotia d; two with the Free 
Church in Scotland ; one with the Roman Catholic 
Church, one with the Weslyan etc., etc., and in 
speaking of these Institutions he says: — "The 
" Eng'ish National Training College has thus re- 
ceived a definite consideration, in harmony with 
" the separate religious organization of elementary 
" schools, and forty such establishments have been 
" incorporated into a scheme of administrative ac- 
"tion, in which the education of tne future school 
" master commences in the infant, is pursued in the 
" elementary school, developed during its appren- 
" ticeship, and completed as a Queen's scholar in 
" the Training College. In every part of his- 
" career, he is subject to the direct and independent 
" influence of the religious communion to which he 
"belongs, through the managers of the schools or 
" college." 

It is clear, therefore, that England established a 
general system of National schools not excluding' 
religious teaching. I conclude that England hid 
no desire for your " non- sectarian" system, perfect- 
ly satisfied that religious training will never prevent 
the development of the intellect, nor throw any dif- 
ficulty in the way of educating the young. Even 


should Manitoba retain denominational schools, I 
think it would hurt nobody. 

The following is a curious occurrence ; just at 
the time that Gteat Britiain was studying continen- 
tal system of education. The United States of 
America were making similar enquiries. But, 
strange to say, with an quite contrary result. 

In 1837, the Massachusetts Board of Education 
was formed and their agents sent to Prussia, Horace 
Mann accomplished his mission but in a way very 
different from what was done by the English dele- 
gates. Instead of reporting the full system of 
Prussia he exposed a mere skeleton of it. He pre- 
served the dimensoins in showing its universality 
and — if I may use the expression — the bones of the 
system, in the government grant and private asses - 
ment. But the soul, the moral life of the system 
was left to those across the Atlantic. Until then, 
the American schools had been christian, but the 
organization established by Fanny Wright in 1827 
was at work among the American people, and 
urjred by the- idea of hurting the Catholics, whose 
number began to be felt, had prepared the way for 
the Report of Horace Mann. The Report was re- 
ceived and the system accepted as a genuine Prus- 
sian Institution while, in fact, it was nothing but a 
natural produce of the French Revolution ami of 
infidelity. There begins, as an exception, the de- 
sire m a pro tes taut community, to have Godless 

The system has prevailed there but the following 
quotations prove that it is not in perfect harmony 
with the views and desires of all American Protes- 

Governor Seward, New York, in his message to 
the Legislature in 1840, speaks as follows of the 
children excluded from Public Schools, by the new 
system : — " I do not hesitate, therefore, to recoui- 
*' mend the establishment of schools in which they 
" be instructed by teachers speaking the same lan- 
" guage with themselves and professing the same 
" faith. 

The following year the Secretary of State, 
Spencer, reported as follows : " No officer, among 
" the thousands having charge of our common 


" scliools, thinks of opposing by an authorative 
" direction, respecting the nature or extent of moral 
" or religious instruction to be given in our schools. 
"The whole control is left to the free and unre- 
" stricted action of the people themselves, in their 
" several districts. The practical consequence is, 
" that each district suits itself, by having such re- 
" ligious instruction in its schools as is congenial to 
" the opinions of its inhabitants." 

Thirty Presidents of American Colleges at Ober- 
lin, Ohio, passed among other resolutions, the fol- 
lowing : 

" Resolved, that we note with pleasure, the evi- 
" dences of increasing interest in the literary, scien- 
" tific, and especially the religious education of the 
" youth of our land ; believing as w 5 do, that 
" education not based upon Christian truth, is of 
" questionable value." 

" Resolved, that we commend these interests to 
" the sympathies, prayers, and liberality of Christ- 
" ian people and congregations, that our schools 
" may be increasingly useful as fountains, not only 
" of sound instruction, but also of earnest, elevated 

Doctor Anderson, of the Baptist Church, ad- 
dressing the Baptist Educational Convention, in 
New- York, says : " Happily, I need not say much 
" on the moral and religious education in Colleges. 
" By far the larger part of our colleges have been 
"founded by religious men, and by prayer and 
" faith, consecrated to Christ." 

Rev. Doctor Clark, with the warm approval of 
many influential men of different persuasions, say s: 
" If we are to have a Christian nation, it must be 
" by force of Christian ideas instilled into the 
" hearts of the young. * * * It is clear from 
" the history of the Free School system of America, 
" that it had its origin in the desire to maintain the 
" truths of the Bible in the hearts of all the people. 
"The Bible, in fact, is its source. To remove, 
"therefore, the Bible and its sacred piinciples from 
"our system of education, would be to take from 
" that system its very soul, its life giving power." 

The Presbyterians of America, in their general 


assembly in 1848, passed the following : 

" Resolved, that this General Assembly, believ- 
"ing that the Children of the Church are a trust 
*' committed to the Church, by the Lord Jesus 
'■ Christ, and having confidence in the power of 
" Christian education to train them, with the 
" divine blessing, in the way they should go, do cor- 
" dially recommend their congregations to establish 
" primary and other schools, as iar as may be prac- 
" ticable on the plan, sanctioned by the last assembly, 
" of teaching the truths and duties of our holy re- 
" ligion in connection with the usual branches of 
" secular learning." 

In a convention of Baptists held in Marion, 
Alabama, on the 12th April 1871, the following 
opinion was expressed: "The tendency of the 
"common school system is to foster infidelity, the 
"only hope is christian education in our own 
" schools." 

According to the Right Reverend Doctor Coxe, 
Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church in New 
York, these are the positions to be held by church- 
men : 

1st. " Secure to every human being the best edu- 
" cation you can provide for him." 

" 2nd. Where you can do no better, utilize the 
" common schools and supplement them by addi- 
" tional means of doing good." 

" 3rd. But where you can do better, let us do 
"our full duty to our children, and to all children, 
" by gathering them into schools and colleges truly 

Rev. Doctor Peck, President of the Board of 
Trustees of the Syracuse university said : " The 
" hope of our country is the christian religion, the 
" putting of it where it is not and the allowing no 
" man to take it away from where it is. Our in- 
stitution is for positive Christianity, such as comes 
'* fiom the Holy Bible, such as Methodists approve ; 
" that which will influence your children to come 
"to Christ. If you want anything else don't put 
u me on the Board of Trustees, nor ask me to give 
" anything. These are your principles. God for- 
" bid that you should change them or seek to 
"adjust them to the liberal religion of the day." 


All the above opinions of leading clergymen of 
different denominations shew, that the " non-sec- 
tarian" system is not universally desired in the 
United States. Its prestige lessens every day, as 
may be learned from the superintendent of educa- 
tion in Buffalo, in his report of 1870: "Thein- 
" crease of the number and attendance of pupils at 
"private schools, during the past ten vears, is a sub- 
ject of serious consideration. Formerly the Pub- 
" lie (schools monopolized almost entirely the educa- 
" tion of our youth ; but at the present time, pri- 
" vate and religious schools are attended by nearly 
"25 per cent of those who are of the school 

The annual report of the Board of Education in 
the city of New Yo»k for 1870, establishes that the 
same year, out of 155,603 children attending school, 
46,049 were in private religious schools. 

A communication sent to the Missouri Republi- 
can of St. Louis, 22nd Feb. 1872, by E. H. Shep- 
ard, after proposing to apportion to each denomina- 
tional school in existence, the assessments levied 
from their respective supporters, says: "Should 
" action on this subject be much longer delayed. 
" while we see such crowds flocking to parochial 
" schools of different denominations, we may ex- 
" pect to see a combined opposition formed against 
" the present taxation that will endanger the labors 
"of so many years." 

Such a number of quotations mav be unpleasant, 
and I will not multiply them, but resume my argu- 
ment concerning the United States, by affirming 
that, it is not exactly, a Herculean task, to bejome 
convinced that, the "non-sectarian" system is not 
universally desired by Protestants of diifesent deno- 
minations, even among our neighbors; nor is it 
difficult to show that, in many instances, it is very 
different from what it is believed to be. 

A word now about the Dominion. I say that a 
system, purely secular, and without any reference 
to religion, is not congenial to the desire of the 
great majority of Canadians. Upper Canada has 
been the field of many battles, and of immense 
agitation on the school question. Gigantic efforts 
were made, for many years, to secure secular edu- 


-cation, having but little connection with religion 5 
although the Rev. Mr. Ryerson, himself, styles his 
a " Christian System." Notwithstanding all the 
efforts made to prevent the establishment of sep- 
arate schools, they are nevertheless, recognized. 
The concession has quieted minds, restored har- 
mony, and given, to the intercourse between Pro- 
testants and Catholics, a friendly tone, which the 
school question seemed, at one time, to have' ren- 
dered utterly impossible. The volcano which vo- 
mited flames enough to burn everything " popish'' 
and lava sufficiently abundant to bury alive all that 
was " Romish," is extinguished. Now and then, 
the cratera sends forth a little smoke, but nothing 
compared with what took place at the time of the 
School question. I am inclined to think that the 
people 01 Ontario are better satisfied now than they 
were then. 

In the Province of Quebec, the Protestants have 
their schools and the Catholics likewise. The 
" non-sectarian" system is unanimously repudia- 

I ignore what the future has in store for the Ca- 
tholics of the Province of Nova Scotia. I am not. 
prepared to say if they will long continue to enjoy 
what practice has secured for them ; but, so far, 
religion is not excluded from schools. The Pro- 
vince of Nova Scotia, as well as those of Ontario 
and Quebec, does not move in favor of a system so 
much the less desirable as it is the more offensive 
to the conscience of so many Canadians. 

There remain New Brunswick, Prince Edward's 
Island, and British Columbia. It is evident that 
in these three Provinces, non-Catholics have de- 
cided in favor of the system ; as it is equally clear 
that the Catholics reject it. The latter being the 
less numerous, have been defeated, and bear the 
application of the old proverb, " voz victis" " (Woe 
to the vanquished)." 

This result, considered from a sectarian point of 
view, is a source of jubilation for the enemies of 
Catholicity. Their joy is so much the greater, as 
the grief imposed upon their fellow-countrymen is 
more bitter. The triumph, as well as the defeat, is 
recent. God alone knows how long this state of 


things will last. But it has certainly given rise to 
undesirable strife, and bitter fruits have already 
been produced. A body is never made healthy by 
keeping open and irritating a sore. Besides, the 
success achieved is not exactly what it seems to be. 
If we come to a close investigation of the circum- 
stances of the case, we will easily find out that, 
after all, there is not a very great difference, even 
in those provinces, in the number of those who re- 
pudiate the system, and those who realy and prac- 
tically voted on its merit. First, Catholics form 
more than ore third of the population, then take 
from the system the support of Protestants who are 
not willing to make use of it for their own children, 
under the conviction that it is hurtful ; count after- 
wards those who voted for the system through mere 
opposition to Catholicity, and because the " non- sec- 
tarian" system had been made a sectarian question, 
as well as those who voted tor it merely on political 
grounds, as a question of paity. In a word, leave 
the system to its real value and to the sympathy it 
commands by itself and for itself and you will find 
that the apparent sympathy will singularly dimin- 
ish. It is a strange phenomenon to see the educa- 
tion of youth used as a political engine, by political 
parties ; and the phenomenon is still more astonish- 
ing when we consider that the hottest religious ani- 
mosity is developed 4 o establish or support a sys- 
tem which boasts of having no connection whatsoever 
with religion. 

For people who always speak of the power of 
numbers, it is not consistent to believe that the 
three smallest Provinces outside of our own, repre- 
sent the Canadian opinion equally as well as the 
three largest. Besides, the experience of three 
smaller Provinces is but recent, and generates great 
uneasiness in their While the experience of 
the three largest Provinces is more ancient, has re- 
stored and maintained harmony among the different 
sections of their respective populations. 

The two Political parties who tight for power in 
Ottawa, seem to have come to the same conclusion 
on this question of education. The late administra- 
tion, in providing for the organization of Manitoba, 
did all they thought necessary to secure a system of 


separate schools for the new Province. The actual 
administration, in organizing the government of 
the North-west Territories, has enacted in the same 
sense, and granted separate schools to said territo- 
ries. When succeeding to power, both parties ral- 
lied large majorities in votes expressing their regret 
at the condition of things in New Brunswick. It is 
impossible not to see in all this, that Canadians are 
rather in favor of a system of education which would 
leave full liberty to follow religious convictions on 
the subject. 

In beginning this number, I said I would go as 
far as possible with regard to time and distance. I 
think the tour I have made is long enough to ful- 
fil my promise, and it is time to come back to Mani- 

What does Manitoba think on the subject 1 ? — 
every man sees with his own spectacles; and, even 
at the risk of being accused of being blind, I cannot 
say that I see, on the part of the people of Manito- 
ba, the desire to repudiate all religious instruction 
in the schools for their children. Almost every 
session our Legislature is modifying the school- law, 
and every year the action of the Legislature is in 
the same direction ; that is to say, the recognition, 
more and more explicit, of the system of seperate 
schools. In fact, Protestant and Catholic schools 
are no where more separate and distinct than in 
Manitoba. Two Superintendents, one Protestant 
and one Catholic ; two sections of the Board of Edu- 
cation, one Protestant and one Catholic, each with 
entire jurisdiction over the schools of their denomi- 
nation, and none atall over those of the other see- 
not even the right, for the members of either 
<m to visit, officially, the schools of the other; 
>wer of each section, to, respectively, establish 
di crs within the same limits. The Government 
gi i alloted to both sections of the Board, accord- 
in o the Protestant or Catholic population. In 
a t. the most complete and entire separation, 

v ut any idea of dependence or of exceptional 

| Li. Thi^ very year the law for the creation of 

a isitv iii Manitoba, explicitly recognizes the 

1 actual system of education. An 

exj lanation of our present laws, 


leaves no room for ambiguity about the levying of 
assessments for our common schools, as it says i 

" In no case a Protestant rate-payer shall be 
" oMiged to pay for Catholic schools, and a Catholio 
" rate-payer for a protectant school." Our school 
law shows clearly that our people are not, after all 
so averse to denominational or christian schools, con- 
sequently, that they are not in earnest about the 
" non-sectarian system." The Members of the Leg- 
islature knew what they were about, and their per- 
serverance in voting in the same sense, for seven 
years, is congenial to the views of the population. 
Moreover, our statutes have incorporated as de- 
nominational, the three colleges which exist in the 
Province, and two others intended to be established 
at a later period ; as they have also incorporated 
Denominational Institutions for the education of 
young ladies. 

What is the meaning of all this, except that all 
the different denominations of Manitoba, all those 
under their respective control in the Province, all 
those who aid in their support from abroad, that all 
have the sincere conviction that the religious future 
of families depends, not only on the instruction that- 
children receive at home and in church, but on 
that which they receive in schools; That young 
people will be what they will have been taught to 
be' in school. Why all such distinctions if — as. 
" some say : — "a good strong secular education is all 
" our people want for our school population V 

If a religious establishment is a proper place — 
and it is — for college students, such qualification 
renders it also desirable for other pupils. If it is 
good for those who attend colleges to have religious- 
tuition, it is just as good for those who attend com- 
mon schools. The latter schools are intended for 
the main body of the people. Why then deprive 
the main bod\ of the children of the people, of the 
advantage that other can secure for their children, 
by educating them in colleges 1 Riches and rank 
are not exceptional titles to the benefit of a christian 

If it is desirable for young gentlemen and young 
ladies to receive a refined education, in religious- 
establishments, it is equally desirable that every 


christian* boy and christian girl receive a christian 
education, in the only schools they can attend. It 
is cruelty to refuse religious institutions to children, 
because their parents are not in such circumstances 
as to enable them to send them to colleges or boarding 
schools. I fail to conciliate the manifest contradic- 
tion on the part of men, who would not send their 
own children to schools, where there is no religious 
instructions ; who do all in their power for the suc- 
cess of establishments in which they, themselves, 
teach religion along with secular branches, and who 
at the same time do all they can to deprive common or 
public schools of a similar advantage, in endeavoring 
to establish a system of education such, that infi- 
delity or, at least, indifference for religion be the 

The college student needs the help of strong con- 
victions and solid religious instruction, to be guard- 
ed against the seductions of the high condition, to 
which he aspires; but others, in the ordinary classes 
of society, have an equal want of religious convic- 
tion, to enable them to endure the toils and afflic- 
tions of life, the temptations, which naturally fol- 
low the sight of the riches of others, and to' be 
through all their life, useful to society and to them- 

These my convictions are those of most of the 
people of Manitoba, and as the result cannot be se- 
cured without religious instruction, accompanying 
teaching of secular branches in schools, I say in con- 
clusion : The people of Manitoba as other Cana- 
dians, as a large proportion of Americans, as the 
whole of christian Europe, have no desire for God- 
less or nonsectarian schools. 




The object of education is to improve the person 
who receives it so that it may be useful to himself, 
to his family, and to society in general. It is un- 
deniable that instruction not tending to have this 
result, or unfit to secure it, is absolutely defective 
and more dangerous than useful. A school system 
which excludes all religious teaching becomes, ne- 
cessarily, a nursery of infidels, and is, consequently, 
the enemy of social order. What I advance, is 
said, I know, not to be in accordance with the 
"spirit of the age" but I kno \ also, that the same 
spirit of the age is, unfortunately, opposed to the 
spirit of Jesus Christ, and for me, as for every 
u christian " Jesus Christ yesterday, and to-day : 
and the same for ever/' So, I repudiate any teach- 
ing which lessens the knowledge of Divine Wis- 

The greatest social danger of our age is the de- 
ehristianization and the demoralization of the rising 
generation. And, no doubt, the quickest aud the 
surest way to deehristauize and demoialize a peo- 
ple, is to instruct them as a pagan nation, by the 
complete neglect of religious .instruction. I said 
that the non-sectarian system has not my sympathies 
from a teligious standpoint; becaus-. instead of 
forming the heart to virtue and religion, the tend- 
ency of its very nature is, to paralyize and stifle 
every religious disposition. Another natural con- 
sequence of the system is, a tendency to the d< struc- 
tion of social order. I consider religion •» the sole 
solid foundation ol society. Any thing prejudicial 
to religion is also dangerous to society. Therefore 
even fiom a mere social point of view, I reject any 
school system which excludes religious teaching. 
I need not say, 'once more, that I do not oppose 
common or public schools, as such, for the fact is. 


that public schools owe their first establishment in 
the world to a religious sentiment and religious au- 
thority As early as Anno Domino 529, a Council 
of the Catholic Church (Vaison), recommended the 
establishment of Public schools. A Synod at 
Mentz, held in 800, ordered that the parochial 
priests should ha\e schools in the towns and villa- 
ges; in order, said the Synod, that, ''the little 
u children of all the faithful should learn lettei$froni 
"them. Let them receive and teach these with the 
u utmost charity, that they themselves may shine 
" as scars for ever. Let them receive no remunera- 
tion from their scholars, jnless wjiat the parents, 
" through charity, may voluntarily offer." A coun- 
cil, held in Rome in 836, describes the different 
kinds of schools to be established through Christen- 
dom ; not only in towns and villages, but wherever 
there could be found place or opportunity. 

The spirit of the church has not changed, and as 
the church likes schools so do I. Public schools. 
Common schools, schools for the rich and for the 
poor ; but L like them all to be christian schools; 
and I repudiate pagan or godless schools, as I re- 
pudiate the spirit of the aye, which tends to in-' 
culcrtte the doctrine that Go I has nothing to do 
with the things of this world, and that His teaching 
is m>t the sole guide of society, as well as of the in- 

The end of education is to develop the faculties 
of the soul. And in so doing, becomes, as it were, 
another faculty at the service of those who have 
the ad vantage of being educated. But this faculty 
may be pernicious as well .m it may turn to be use- 
ful. To be advantageous,even socially, edxic&twn must 
be directed by religion. Giizot says: "Popular 
" education to be truly good and socially useful, 
" must be fundamentally religious." Experience 
shows that knowledge without religion is exceed- 
ingly baneful : those who have done most harm to 
humanity were learned men. The same conviction 
is expressed as follows, by T.ord Derny ; «• Reli- 
" gion is not a thing apart from education, but it 
" is interwoven with its whole system ; it is a prin- 
" ciple which controls and regulates the whole 
" mind and happiness of the pople." The un-sec- 


tarian system is quite contrary to these views, and 
opposed to the welfare of society, because it does 
not prepare the heart for the duties of life. Hear 
the Protestant Bishop of Tennessee : — " The secular 
" system took no notice of God or of Christ, or of the 
" church of the living God, or, except in the most 
" incidental way, of God's Holy Word. The intel- 
" lect was stimulated to the highest degree, but the 
" heart and the affections were left uncultivated. It 
" was a system which trained for the business of 
" life, not for the duties of life." Nobody then 
ought to wonder at the disastrous consequences of 
the system. 

Governor Brown, addressing the seventh Natio- 
nal Tea.-hers' convention in St. Louis, did not hesi- 
tate to say : " It is a very customary declaration 
" to pronounce that education is the gre Uest safe- 
" jruard of republics against the decay of virtue and 
"the reign of immorality. Yet the facts can scarce- 
" ly bear out the proposition. The highest civiliza- 
" tions, both ancient and modern, have sometimes 
" been the most flagitious. Nowadays, certainly, 
" your prime rascals have been educated rascals. 

" And it is at least doubful whether education in 
" itself, as now engineered, and confined merely to 
" the acquisition of-knowledge, has any tendency to 
*' mitigate the vicious elements of human nature. 
" farther than to change the direction and type of 

" This is not alleged, be it understood, of moral 
" culture or religious instruction but simply of the 
" edncation of the intellect." 

The thing is so clear and so manifest, that many 
organs of publicity in New York, through New 
England and elsewhere, readily acknowledged that 
the corruption which is spreading, at an awful rate, 
in the United States, is the result of the Suppression 
of religious instruction in the Public schools of the 
country. It cannot be otherwise, because if, in the 
culture of man you neglect, a part of himself, you 
destroy the just equilibrium b< tween his natural facul- 
ties. The culture of the intellect, at the cost of 
moral and religious feelings, is nothing but a dan- 
gerous tx>l that your pupil will use against himselt 
and against society. Suppose a two edged weapon, 


pointed at both ends, but having no handle with 
vvhieh to use and direct it. Such a weapon could 
not be employed without being hurtful, and so 
so much the more so as it is sharpened 
all aiound with greater care and perfection. 
This extraordinary instrument would be an 
image of the intellect cultivated without the 
aid of religion. Such tuition is so much the more 
dangerous, as it seems mote :etined and per- 
fect ; while, in reality, there is nothing to guide and 
direct it. 

An illiterate individual may ignore the law of 
God, and be wicked enough to do evil. But, as a 
rule, all the harm he does is on a small scale ; while 
a large field for mischief is at the disposal of an 
educated man, who has neither the knowledge nor 
the love of the divine Law. Peter Chrysologus 
culls teachers of youth, the " substitutes of angels." 
There is no exaggeration in such a sublime appella- 
tion, provided the teacher is a real " messenger of 
God," one who brings the good tidings, one who 
guides the heart, one who enlightens and directs 
the soul in the way to praise God, to pray to Him 
and to please Him. Teaching is a sublime aposto- 
late, a noble mission, provided always, it contributes 
to form the heart of the young and follows the in- 
junction of the Divine Master : " Suffer little child- 
dren to come to me." 

On the other hand, the noble profession loses its 
sublime character in receiving little children to 
hand them back to society, without that which must 
guide them through life. This is refusing the little 
ones the bread of divine knowledge : " The little 
on< s have asked for bread, and there was none to 
break it unto them." 

Unsectarian schools forget that the Saviour says : 
" Whoever shall receive one such little child in my 
name receiveth me." Such a system has, necess- 
arilv, an influence over the hearts of the children 
committed to its guidance. And, as it does not 
help in bringing them to God, it is sure to take 
them fiom Him. Consequently, it scandalizes the 
children, at least, by defect to teach them what they 
need for themselves and for society. And this 
scandal is denounced very severely by God, who 


says : " But he that shall scandalize one of these 
" little ones, it were better for hirn that a mill stone 
" were hanged about his neck, and he were drowned 
" in the depth of the sea." 

We all ki ow what paganism gave to society. 
Why then endeavor to establish a system of educa- 
tion, having for its inevitable result, the bringing 
back to paganism, countries civilized by christian 
teaching 1 

Social order requires mutual confidence between 
different ranks and conditions. But what kind of 
confidence can be reposed on one who has no re- 
ligious instruction 1 Outside of religious considera- 
tions, egotism is the sole motive of those who act- 
And such motive of action makes of all the mem. 
bers of society, so many enemies of its general wel- 
fare ; because the individual, resuming all his as- 
pirations in self, will turti against society whenever 
it may suit his interests. And we may safely say 
that the refinement of irreligious Public Schools 
can do no better than render the people refined 

The system of education without roligior., tern is 
to nothing less than to poison the happiness of fa- 
milies ; and a child under its guidance, is greatly 
exposed to lose respect and obedience for its pa- 
rents. Suppose an adolescent, in unfavorable cir- 
cumstances, whose intellect has been very highly 
stimulated in godh ss schools; what do you think 
he will be at, home? His parents may not have 
received the same degree o instruction, or may 
have lost it amidst the toils and troubles of a life 
of labor. Poverty does not, by itself, take away 
the sensibility and tender feelings 'of the heart; but, 
too often, it singularly diminishes the pleasant 
countenance and amenity ot manners And then 
it is of daily occurrence, to see young men of un- 
sectarian education, despise their poor mother ; for- 
get her tenderness and affectio' , and merely call 
her with indifference and f I isrespect, " t/te old wo- 
man" The father, who has nothing to give but 
his labor and the sweat of his brow, is often stvled 
by his learned son, " the cross old mat/.." Religious 
instruction would have counterbalanced the propen- 
sity of slightly educated youth, to believe themselves 


superior to their parents, who have encountered thft 
sad realities of life, and who have amassed no for- 

The culture of the intellect without that of th<* 
heart, develops the spirit of vanity in children of 
the poorest classes. Associated in school, with 
children in better circumstances, the child of the 
poor bears, in that respect, a pression which has 
the most deplorable consequences. Such a child 
ofVn becomes insolent towards his parents, on a 
mere question of dre«s. It is not enough tor him 
to see his father hard at work earning bread for the 
family, and his mother worn out with fatigue ; the 
yorng man who receives instruction not interwoven 
with feeling, becomes the torment of a poor family, 
and becomes more and more troublesome, as he ex- 
pects, thereby, to force his parents to sati>fv his 
vanity. How many mothers have slied the bitter- 
est tears, how many fathers have over-worked thein- 
selves and injured their health to have peace with 
their unfortunate sous, who had received instruc- 
tion without being educated ! ! 

A great difference is found in children who re- 
ceive the education of the heart; i-eligious instruc- 
tion along with the culture of their understanding. 
Buch education makes the child remember one of 
the reasons for bearing with patieho \ and even with 
a certain amount of satisfaction, the hardships and 
humiliations of poverty, for he has often heard the 
words : " Blessed are the poor in spirit, for thews 
is the kingdom of heaven." He lovingly recalls the 
wo'ds : *' He that honore h his father shall enjoy 
Ion.; lite. H« j t! at hom-reth his mother is as one 
that laveth up a, treasure." And, should the im- 
petuosity of youth be menacing, christian teaching 
will remind him "of what an evil fame is he that 
" forsakcth his father? and he is cursed of Uod that 
" angereth his mother." 

These lessons, nio re profitable to society than any 
profane acquirement, would keep peace, harmony, 
and happiness under the roof of the poor as well as 
as of the rich, ami throughout the whole social body. 
The teacher who inculcates such principles in the 
hearts of his pupils, largely contributes to the pub- 
lic welfare, and in particular, to the comfort of pa- 


rents who have entrusted their children to his care. 
The young man who has received such instruction 
from a learned and respected teacher, will find no 
weariness in the company of his parents ; and a 
shabby dress will less hurt his pride when he re- 
members it is written : " The son of man hath not 
where to lay his head." 

Besides the examples of the Divine Redeemer, 
religious teaching of history will offer, for the ad- 
miration and imitation of pupils, a number of illus- 
trious personages who, amidst the greatest and most 
complete destitution, extended the culture of their 
mind to the highest degree, and formed their hearts 
to the most heroic virtues. Children of christian 
education, will console and honor their parents, 
while those trained under the other system will 
despise, desert and abandon them. Yes, there is a 
vast difference between good and bad instruction ; 
between religious and irreligious training ; between 
the mere culture of the intellect andthe develop- 
ment of all the good dispositions of the human soul, 
in a word, between Christian and Godless schools. 

The Pagan system cannot fail to favor the pas- 
sions, but fails to render virtuous. It neither af- 
fords a remedy against evil inclinations, nor gives 
what is necessary to strengthen the will against 

All the " learned " of unchristian schools, cannot 
obtain situations coiresponding with the instruction 
they have received, and, much less, with the ambi- 
tion it has excited. What then is to be the social 
fate of a young man who, through all his school 
training, received neither religious nor moral in 
strnction, who, consequently — as far as his school- 
ing goes — is perfectly ignorant of divine law and of 
his obligations towards society 1 He daily witnesses 
the comfort and luxury of the rich, sometimes his 
inferiors with regard to instruction. What motive 
can encourage him to endure poverty or prevent him 
from using illegitimate means to get money 1 He 
feels strongly inclined to enjoy absolute freedom 
and independence ; what motive can determine him 
to submit to any authority or law ? 

The strength of the police is the only means at 
the command of society, for its protection. But 


woe to society if the police be weak and unvigilant ! 
It would be a poor defein-e against a crowd of eru- 
dite without position or resourse, without even the 
desire of honest but humble labor, the latter be- 
ing considered, by them, as unworthy of the instruc- 
tion they have received. 

Crime is, by no means, the result of ignorance in 
reading or writing : but it is, by all means, the re- 
sult of ignorance or neglect of the law of God. 
Consequently, human knowledge, without religious 
knowledge, tar from being a prevention of crime 
is, in too many instances, a source of temptation, 
so much the greater as human knowledge itself af- 
fords the means of satisfying the passions and of con- 
cealing the faults committed. 

This ought to be kept in mind, in order to judge 
fairly of the social results of the " non-sectarian " 
school system. Some twenty years after it had 
been established in the United States, the "Church 
Journal," in an article bended ; " The Common 
School System a Failure," said, " The Common 
" School System is proving a disastrous failure. It 
"has grown up on the pledges it has given of its 
" ability to make crime less frequent, to confer 
"greater security to life and property, and to give 
" elevation to the tone of national morality. But 
" it does not at all fulfil these promises. The whole 
"system, we regret, is proving a lamentable failure. 
" The prevailing system is lamentably 

"defective ; in that it does not aim at the training 
"of the whole man ; neglecting as it does, the moral 
"and controlling powers of human nature, and 
" concentrating all its force upon the development 
" of the intellectual powers. The prevalent notion 
" that-maukind are vicious because ignorant, and 
" that to make them weretii] it is only necessary to 
" make them intelligent, is contradicted alike by 
" sound philosophy and universal experience. 

The " Richmond Examiner," another Protestant 
paper, published at the same time the following : — 
" The worst of all the abominations, because, once 
" installed, it becomse the hot-bed propagator of all 
" — is the modern system of Free Schools." 

No wonder that a report of the Prison Associa- 
tion of New York, revealed a " most alarming in- 


crease of erime, since the introduction of the Com- 
mon School System into the country. " 

What shall I say now of .the awful consequence* 
of the system, with regard to its deplorable neglect 
in the training of the female portion of the com- 
munity'? Without i| -ivfcig my own appreciation, I 
will approach tlie subject by the following, written 
by a distinguished American Lady. (M. M. page 
119,. " Aibove all you c»n notice in the young 
"women of the present day a madness beyond de- 
" scription for dress, for balls, theatres, and all 
•' kin Is of worldly amusements. The chief mental 
"agony of the masses of the young women of the 
*' present day seems to be, who shall have the laig- 
" est waterfall, the smtllest bonnet, and make them- 
" selves the greatest fright, Wore it not for their 
"vain daughters, hundreds of parents at this mo? 
" rneut would have a happier countenance, and not 
" that careworn wretche I look that we so frequent- 
" ly see when honest people get in debt, inclined 
"by living beyond their means. 

" In Boston, a short time ago, one hundred and 
"eighty unfortunate girls were artvsted in one 
" night ; and 1 doubt n>t that the greater portion 
"of them could have once been respacoable servants, 
" but considered the office and name too louo ! It i* 
" this delusion, this false i>ride. that crowds the 
" streets nightly with pretty y amg girls, some of 
"vfrhem count only twelve short summers. With 
"Hamlet, £ exclaim, 'Oh, horrible! most horri- 
" ble." 

"The truth is, that after a girl is fifteen yens 
"old, in this c iiintry, <me considers hers J f a person 
" of sound jul'j merit. These girls are simply living 
" pictures walking about the earth, deriding eVery- 
" thing they are iucapibleof understanding. And 
" who could be charmed with such women 1 — with 
•' ' Grecian bends,' ' Grecian noses V " 

I naturally leave the responsibility of the picture 
to the one who has drawn it. I have no personal 
knowledge of the moral and social c m lition of the 
young women of the eastern cities of the United; 
States. In travelling, I sometimes witnessed tilings- 
I would have liked to see different ; but I am not 
inclined to judge a people, or a portion of them, by 


observations, necessarily superficial and void of ail 
that, i»i my estimation, is requisite lo judge sound- 
1\\ It is quite averse to my disposition to fellow 
tlie course of travellers wlio pass seyeie condemna- 
tion on tilings, persons and Dimmers they are per- 
fectly unacquainted with. Noble countries and 
moral populations have been, too often, victims of 
the levity and unfairness of judgment on the part 
of tourists. I will not fall into the same error, i or 
assume such responsibility. Nevertheless, as I 
oppose a svstem I believe dangerous, nobody can 
find fault with me for searchi. g for proofs in the 
very ami only country where the system has been 
tried for a certain period. Meanwhile, having to 
mention very grave affirmations, I shall avoid any 
quotation from parties who might, be suspected of 
being animated by national prejudice. I shall, 
merely, quote from American authorities ; from 
• newspapers, avowedly and truly, devoted to the ho- 
nor and welfare of their country. 

A work entitled " Satan in Society," and pub- 
lished by a well known American physician, not 
satisfied with statements that corroborate what I 
have just cited, does not hesitate to attribute to the 
" non-sectarian school system" the horrible revela- 
tions it contains A great deal cannot be repro- 
duced here. The following is sufficient (page 194) : 

"The evils and dangers of the prestnt system of 
"education, and bringing up the boys and girls of 
"our country, are too obvious to require minute 
" description. Irreligion and infidelity are' pro- 
" gressing pari passu with the advance guards of 
" immorality and crime, and all are fostered, if not 
"engendered, by the materialistic system of 'school 
"instruction, and the consequent wretched training 
"'at home and on the play ground; The entire ab- 
u pence of all religious instruction from the school 
" room is fast bearing fruit in a generation of inti- 
" dels, and we are becoming worse even than the 
" Pagans of old, who had at least their positive 
"sciences of philosophy, and their religion 1 , such as 
" it was. to oppose which was a criminal offence. 

" But we have not only the removal of the salu- 
" tary restraints of religious influence from our 
* popular system of education : we have the pro- 


" miscu us intermingling ot the sexes in our public 
" schools, which, however much we may theorizfi to 
" tlie contrary, is. to say the least, subversive of 
"that modest reserve and shyness which in all 
"ages have proved the true aegis of virtue. We 
"are bound to accept human nature as it is, and 
"not as we would wish it to be, and both Christian 
" and Pagan philosophy agree in detecting therein 

" certain very dangerous elements Nour- 

" ished by languishing glances during the hours 
"passed in the school room, f lined by more inti 
"mate association on the journey to and troin 
"school, fed by stolen interviews and openly ar- 
" ranged festivities — pic nics, excursions, parties and 
"the like — stimulated by tlie prurient gossip of the 
" newspaper, the Hash novels, sentimental weekl es 
" and magazines, the gallant of twelve years is the 
"libertine of fourteen. That this picture is not 
"overdrawn, every experienced physician will bear 
" witness. 

" And as for the Public School girls, they return 
"from their ' polishing schools — these demoiselles 
" — cursed with a superficial smattering of every- 
" thing but what they ought to have learned — phy- 
sical and moral wrecks, whom we, physicians, are 
"expected to wind up in the morning tor the hus- 
" band-hunting excitements of the evening. And 
" these creatures are intended for wives ! But 
" wbes only, for it is fast going out ot fashion to 
" intend them for mothers — an * accident' of the kind 
" being regarded as 'foolish' ! 

" We assert, then, that the present system of 
" education, by its faults of omission and com- 
" mission, is directly responsible, not, it is true, for 
" the bare existence, but for the enormous preval- 
" ence of vices and crimes which we deplore ; and 
" we call upon the civil authorities to so modify the 
" obnoxious arrangements of our schools, and upon 
" parents and guardians to so instruct and govern 
" their charges, that the evils may be suppressed, 
" if not extinguished." 

After reading the above, it is more regrettable 
than surprising that Mr. W. H. Storey was forced 
to publish, in his paper, the Chicago "Times," and 
to sustain the assertion that : " The Public 


" School System in Chicago had become so corrupt, 
" that any schoolboy attending, who had r. itched 
•"fourteen years of age, was whistled at by his 
"companions as a spooney, if he had not a liaison 
" with some one or more of the public school girls !" 
The Daily "Sentinel," of Tndianapolis, onored 
Mr. Storey's articles, and added that: "It was 
" only too true of Indianapolis, also, judging by 
" the wanton manners of troops of the girls at- 
tending public schools in Indianapolis." 

The disasterous social results of the unsectarian 

school system are plainly lamentable, as shown in 

the following editorial article of the Boston Daily 

•Herald." of October 20th, 1871: "Year after 

4 year the Chief of Police publishes his statistics of 

• prostitution in this city, but how few of the citi- 

• zens bestow more than a passing thought upon 

• the misery they represent ! Although these 
' figures are laige enough to make every lover of 
' humanity hang his head with feelings of sorrow 
' and shame at the picture, we are assured that 
' they represent but a little, as it were, of the 
'aciual licentiousness that prevails among ail 
' classes of society. Within a few months, a gen- 
' tleman, (Prof. Agassiz), whose scientitic attain- 
' ments have made his name a household word in 
'all lands, has personally investigated the subject, 
'and the result 1ms tilled him with dismay ; when 
' he sees the depths of degradation to which men 
'and women have fallen, he has almost lost, faith 
' in the boasted civilization of the nineteenth 
'century. In the couis^ of his inquiries, he has 
' visited both the well-known ' house of pleasure' 
'and the 'private establishments' scattered all 
' over the city. He states that he has a list of 

• both, with the street and number, the number of 
' inmates, and many other facts that would per- 
' fectly astonish the people if made public. He 
' freely cow versed with the inmates, and the life- 
' histories that were rvvealed were sad indeed. To 
' his utter surprise, a large proportion of the 'soiled 
'doves' traced their fall to influences that met them 
' in the Public Schools; and although Boston is 
'justly proud of its schools, it would seem, from 
' his story, that they need a thorough purification. 


" Tn too many of them, tlie most obscene and soul- 
" poJluting books and pictuies chculate among 
"-both sexes. The very secrecy with which it is 
" done, throws an almost irresistible chaim mIm ut 
"it ; and 1o snch an extent has the evil gone, that 
" we tear a large proportion of both boys and girls 
" possess some of the artich s, which they kindly(?) 
" lend to each other. The natural result folio vis, 
" and frequently the most debasing ?>nd revolting 
" practices are indulged in. Ami the evil is not 
" confined alone to Boston. Other cities suffer in 
" the same way. It is but a fewyeais suet the 
"second city in the commonwealth was stimdal- 
" most to its foundations by the discovery of an 
"association of boys and girls who wire wont to 
" indulge their passions in ore of the school- 
" houses of the city ; and not long ago, another 
" soniewhat similar affair was discovered by tlie 
f l authorities, but hushed up for fear of depopulat- 
" ing i he schools." 

Enough on a subject so painful and so delicate. 
Pespect for the r< ader does not allow me the repro- 
duction of numerous testimonies I have at hand, 
based on multiplied facts which show how far the 
non-sectarian p-cbool system has been prejudicial lo 
the nations tljat have adopted it. Persons versed 
in statistics, cannot help being horrified at what they* 
establish* on the subject, Let those who take an 
interest in this mighty social question, compute the 
official figures gjiven in public documents, and they 
will soon become con \ inced that, education, even 
when largely diffused, hut not based on iehg on. is 
never beneficial to society; and that philanthropists 
have every reason to join with christians in the 
adoption of a mode of education capable of r* medy- 
ing the evil. The very nature of the too well known 
evil ibices me to be reticent ; but I am sure to be 
understood by those who are expected to guide 
public opinion. 

Alluding to the same subject, the eloquent Bishop 
McQuaid, in a public lecture on schools says: 
" Down to I his depth of religious degradation have 
" the christian people of this state (New York) 
"fallen. We, Catholics, believe that they forsook 
u their earlier system of education to keep us from 


" its advantages and to hurt our church. They 
" have hurt ihemselves as christians and honest men, 
" th -v have ema scul tted education of ail that gives 
" it vitalizing power ; they have helped to place the 
" cauker-wor.n of intioelity in the body p ditic, 
"through the childrm ; we have stfflfered in a pecii- 
" niary way, and Because, like good citizens, we suf- 
" tei- when taV country suffers." 

I will take the liberty to sav to the people of 
M mit »ba. Be per>aude I that the propose I system 
would be still more pernicious to Protestants than 
to Catholics. Citholies repudiate the scheme, 
its establishment woil I throw obstacles in 
the way of e hieatiOu of their children 
and drive them awav from the Public 
schools; then parents woul I hive to establish 
scuools of th<«ir ovn. So CVholies would suffer 
pecuniarily, being deprived «d' the advantage to be 
derived from a liberal syst an of education, but the 
v.-rv supporters of the non sectarian system would, 
here as tdsewhere. reap its bitterest fruits, its social 
d'-in >ralizatiou. Our loss would be external, theirs 
wo lid be internal; Tue journal of commerce, al- 
rea iy cit ; I, alftr us as follows; '* Vs Protestant, 
" from the m >st earnest conviction, we believe tint 
" nothing lias contributed so much to the extension 
"of the R)ntn Catholic o'rgiiiiz itioa and inHumee 
" in bliis country, as the. partial persecutions it has 

There is not the slightest doubt that the Public 
sch ad system has obliged the Catholics of the Uni- 
te I States to take an exc option tl p>sitiou an I has 
rallied theai closdy together, and tmallv hastened 
their deVeloptne it and strengthened them as a b > ly. 
Tlie'r school organization, we ik and despised at first 
is sueli now, that several religious denomin -ttious 
are following the example in establishing schools 
of their own. It is not the first time that vexarion 
has turned to the ad vantage of the vexed and to 
th ,j disappointm ait of the vexers. 

There cari be uo real social advintaye to compen- 
sate for the real social disadoant uje of Godless 

L 't us examine the pretexts under which it is 
proposed as being socially advantageous : It is said 


that a system allowing freedom of education, in- 
creases materially the expenses. lam very far from, 
endorsing such an idea, and I am certain that a 
system of Public Schools whicli allows fall jreedorti 
about religion, naturally satisfies the religious feel- 
ing of the people, and that very feeling is the abun- 
dant source from which liberalities flow, largely 
contributing to promote education. It is the same 
religious feeling that inspires thousands of persons 
with the desire to devote themselves entirely to the 
noble task of educating the young r without laige 
pecuniary remuneration. The establishment of 
" non-sectarian schools" would put a stop to the 
resources flowing from christian charity, and, con 
sequently, throw on taxation the whole burden of 
supporting schools The prohibition of religious 
teaching shuts the door of the schools to the clergy 
of all denomination^ to the religious bodies who 
devote their whole existence to the instruction of 
youth. This is, indeed, the object infidels have in 
view, but it is surely not desirable on economical 

The moment you shut schools against the reli- 
gious sentiment, you open them to a sentiment of 
cupidity. Hear what Muller says in his book on 
" Public school education" page 171 : "There is 
" one view in which the public will agree in re- 
"gard to the Public Schools, it is that they cost too 
"much money. For the management ol the god- 
" less Public Schools there is a costly array of 
"Commissioners," and " Inspectors," and "Trus- 
" tees," and Superintendents," and "Secretaries of 
" Boards," and "Central Officers," all in league 
" with "Contractors," to make " a good filing," — 
" so-called — out of the plan. We have, now, con- 
" tractors for buildings and repair's, contractors for 
" furniture, contractors for books, contractors for 
" furnaces, contractors for fuel, contractors even* 
"for pianos, and all making money out of it. The 
" ' Boards" that give the contracts do not make any 
" money by way of commissions, do thev % Ah !" 
" you know full well that hundreds of thousand* 
" of dollars are annually spent or squandered iru 
" running these Public Schools, and which are re* 


" corn mended, in a particular manner, for their 
M economy! " 

As expressed above, there is in the administra- 
tion of godless schools, abundant room for im- 
mense gain and undesirable speculations. And 
who will pay all the profits made out of the school 
organization? The Public Treasurey or rather the 
rate payers. It is for the latter not to allow them- 
selves to be deceived by promises of economy, while, 
in fact, the system proposed is essentially and 
necessarily more expensive than the other. From 
the statistics I have before me, I find that the public 
unsectarian schools of the United States, cost year- 
ly from twenty to thirty dollars for every child at- 
tending them ; while the denominational schools, 
in the same country, merely cost trom six to seven 
dollars per child. 

I have already reported the public challenge 
made by the Bishop of Rochester, "to bring out all 
"the children of these denominational schools and 
" place them side by side with the children of anv 
" other schools in the city for examination," and 
the assurance that the Catholic schools of that city 
are in no way inferior to others. Nevertheless-, in 
that very city of Rochester, the Public Schools that 
gather within their walls between five and six 
thousand children, cost yearly from $100,000 to 
$120,000. The fact is ? that one-fifth of the whole 
municipal taxation of several cities, is expended for 
the Public Schools even when, — as it occurs in 
some instances — no more than the half of the 
school population of the same cities, are attending 
the same Public Schools. 

The more "crippled" the recources of the Pro- 
vince aie the more desirable it is to leave to all re- 
ligious denominations, the most complete freedom 
in education. 

It cannot be expected that people will be earn- 
est in the support of a system offensive to their 
conscientious convictions. Consequently, those 
who believe that the hearty co-operation of the 
people is required to raise the character of the ed- 
ucation given to our people, ought to avoid, in their 
scheme, the very thing that would prevent this 
hearty co operation. 


No doubt,' there is a difficulty in thinly peopled 
localities where the inhabitants are divided with 
regard to religious convictions, but the way to ad- 
just the difficulty is not to inioose -a system against 
the will of the interested parties. In exceptional 
circumstaaces, it is <reneiaily possible to come to art 
agreement ; and parties- will always agree more- 
easily, with the managers of a school that openly 
shows its tendencies and its means of securing them, 
than with man igers of a school which, under the 
pretext of teaching no religion, practices, in reality,, 
the most dangerous hostility. 

Some say that it is a crime for the State not to es- 
tablish such school as would in 

fact please themselves. Were the opinion of such, 
casuists adopted, the State would soon become a cri- 
minal not to be tolerated. The obligation of the 
State in reference to education is identical with its- 
obligations in reference to the other necessities of 
its subjects. The State is obliged to educate, to the 
same extent that it is obliged to lodge, feed, clothe,, 
doctor and warm people, that is to say, the State is 
obliged to make such laws and incur such expenses,, 
as would protect and help the people in their rea- 
sonable efforts to'lodge. feed, and clothe themselves. 
But it could not be a crime for the Si ate to refrain 
from obliging — by taxation — every one to resort to 
such or such lodging, to use peculiar diet, or to dresa 
in a certain attire. 

The question of education presents itself under 
the same aspect. The State is bound to protect and 
facilitate teaching, but it is not its" duty, nor even* 
its right, to take hold of education in an arbitary 
way, by disregarding the reasonable wishes of parp- 
en ts. 

How can it be a crime for the State to abstain 
trom doing wrong and oppressing the people.] 

With high sounding words, people express very 
empty theories, and treat the question of education 
in a manner that would be perfectly ridiculous if 
applied to the most ordinary necessaries of life. 

It is, undoubtedly, desirable that all citizens- 
know their rights, as they are all bound to know 
their duties. It is quite proper that everyone use,. 
with intelligence, all the advantages conferred by 


the free and noble institutions which govern the 
■country ; hut to obtain such a result, it is in no 
way necessary or even desirablethat a "non-sectarian 
system of Public English schools," be substituted to 
the one we possess. I put the word Knglith in 
italics because it is employed by the parties I op- 
pose, in a way antagonistic to the use of the French 
language. By the constitution of the Province, as 
well as by tliat of tlie Dominion, both languages 
■are on the same footing, and the abolition of either 
of them would be anti-constituiional and illegal. 
Such a course is not necessaiy "for fulfilling the 
" duties of social life, for preserving the rights of all, 
4t and for carrying on successiullv the affairs of the 

How unacquainted some Canadians seem to be 
with the history of their country ! The public men 
of Canada so warmly praised by Lord Lhiflerin in 
a public speech at Windsor, were all educated in 
French Catholic Institutions, and His Excellency, 
alluding to Krench Canadians, said : " It is not to 
" be foi gotten that it is to their elevation of mind, 
" to their love of fivedom and to their due ajprecia- 
"" tion of civil lights contained in germ in the .Con- 
" stitnticn first granted by England to Canada, that 
41 we are indebted for the parlementary autonomy of 
"which the country is so justly proud." 

1 would now say but one word to repudiate the 
assertion that, we oppose the n on- sectarian system 
because we wish to keep people in ignorance. Such 
an asseiticn is too mean to deserve any refutation, 
but, without hesitation, I will say to the detractors: 
do for education, with means equal to those at my 
command, more than I have done for the sac- 
red cause, and I promise to acknowledge that 
you are in the right. But until then, please do not 
insult persons who have nothing more at heart 
than the enlightenment and the prosperity of the 
country. Please, do not utter an assertion that 
any one acquainted with us would repudiate as 
groundless and deceitful. 

It cannot be maintained that hostile Jeelingst&re 
the result of chiistian teaching, whose main object 
is to inspire charity. Hostility under the pretence 
of religion, is nothing but an abuse of the latter 


word, and its cause ought to be seached for, outside 
of christian schools. 

Writings, secret associations, discourses, such as 
could not be tolerated in christian schools, are the 
sources from which hostility flows. Our schools are 
very little known by men like him wno wrote the 
following to the " Manitoba daily Free Press" on 
the 10th of January 1876 : , " There are very 
" strong reasons to suspect that^the Roman Catho- 
lic schools, hatred to Protestants as heretics, is 
"taught as a duty." 

As it is of the utmost importance that the Protes- 
tant population be informed exactly of what Catho- 
lic school teaching is concerning them, I will take 
the liberty to give my personal experience in the 
matter, and hope to be forgiven for drawing atten- 
tion to myself personally. Born of pious Catholic 
parents I received from my infancy religious catho- 
lic instruction;and witnessed, at home, even the most 
minute practices of catholic piety. At the age of 
five years, I began to go to school, and the same 
school was catholic with daily religious instruction, 
and under the direction of the parish priest. At 
the age of ten I left home and school to go as board- 
er to a college, whose entire staff of directors and 
teachers, are ecelesiastics. I remained there eight 
years,to complete the classical course and the study of 
philosophly. I then determined to join ihe church, 
and began the study of theology and other ecclesias- 
tical branches. This lasted four years and at the 
age of twenty-two, I was ordained priest. I do 
not wonder at hearing some one say — what business 
has the public with a sketch of your life? — just a 
moment of patience, please. I am writing this pass- 
age for those who have sufficient leisure to read all 
the injurious accusations brought against catholic 
institutions and catholic training ; and to prove to 
them, that I have " very strong reasons" not only 
" to suspect" but even to firmly believe " that hatred 
"to Protestants is" not "taught" either in Roman 
Catholic families or in Roman Catholic Institutions. 
J here solemnly declare, and " God knowieth that I 
lie not," that, through all my training at home, at 
school, at college and in the theological seminary, 
/ never received a lesson that could in tlie least, in- 


duce me to hatred to Protestants or, in /act, to any 
human being, and J may add that, faithful to the 
teaching] I received, I have never experienced a feel- 
ing of hatred to any one on account of his religon. 

I am not an exception in this respect. The edu- 
cation I received is the same given in all Catholic 
Institutions. The men ^who direct the state, who 
compose the clergy, the Bench and the learned pro- 
fessions, in the Province of Quebec, received educa- 
tion similar to mine, iu one or another of the six- 
teen classical colleges in that Province (all in 
chargo of ecclesiastics. )and in which 4,000 pupils are 
yearly educated. I have no hesitation in saying 
that they have all made the same experience as my- 
self, and would willingly endorse my assertion. 

The fact is, that in almost all the classical and 
industrial colleges of Quebec, as well as in all the 
convents for the education of young ladies, there 
are Protestant pupils, and I would uot dread to 
call them as witness* s <f ihe tiu h of what I *ffiirm. 

I am even exceedingly surprised at people ex- 
pressing different views. " God is charity" and 
how can th^ knowledge of God dispose the s:>ul or 
heart to hatred 1 We claim the privilege of teach- 
ing, in our schools, the commandments of the Lord, 
and the Catechism daily taught in our schools, and 
pointed out by some people as objectionable, gives 
the following instruction, which I copy from lesson 

Question — To how many commandments may 
the ten commandments be reduced? 

Answer — To these two principal commandments: 
Thou shaft love, the Lord thy God, with thy whole 
heart, and, with thy lohole soul, avd with all thy 
strength, and with all thy mind, and thy neighbor as 
thys°lf. This do and thou shalt live. Luke X. 
Mark, XXI. 

Q. — And who is my neighbor ? Luke X., 29. 

A. — Mankind of every description, and without 
any exception of persons, even those who injure us, 
or differ from us in religion. 

Q. — How am I to love my neighbor as myself? 

A, — As you would, says Ohrist,that men should do 
to you, do also to them iu like manner. Luke, VI. 36. 


Q — What particular duties are required of me 
by that rule? 

A. — Never to injure your neighbor by word or 
deed, in his peison. property, or character ; to wish 
well to him, and to pray tor him ; and always to 
assist him, as far as \ on are able, in his spiritual 
and corpoial necessities. 

Q — Am I also obliged to love my enemies? 

A. — Most certainly. Lore you entmies, savs 
Christ do qood to tlam tltat hate you, blets ihem 
that curse you, and / ray for them that jjersecute aiid 
cahirmiiae you. luUe \ 1. Math. V. 

Such are the teachings to be found in the hands, 
on the lips, and, as far as leachers can command, in 
the hearts of pupils of Catholic schools. 

Mr. Editor, 1 began tins publication by the asser- 
tion that the s\stem termed " non-sectarian Public 
Schools" meets with no sympathy on my part, and, 
in order to give my reason, I begged of you to be 
kind enough to allow me lo publish in your columns 
what I think of the s>sUm fiom a ]e«.nl, religious 
and social point of view. I have ace< mplish* d my 
task, and I can safely answei for the double feeling 
I have expei ienced during the couise of these long 
— perhaps too long — series of obsenations : 

1st. My only desire is to help in tie great and 
sacred cause of education, lo ) r« mote the wtllare 
of this Province, my only home, and to secure a 
perfect understanding among the diffeient sections 
of its people, my countn men. 

2nd. I feel very thankful tor your condescension 
in publishing such a lengthy document, perhaps not 
always in accordance with your own views and 
those of a certain number of your readers. Accept, 
therefoie, my sincere thanks and 1 est wishes. 

Yours respectfully, 
f Alex. Arch, of St. Boniface. 
O. M. 1 . 

P.S. Three articles having? appeared in the Win- 
nipeg news-papers, relative to the first part of the 
above letter, I beg leave to ask further space to ex- 
amine them. 

The first article is an editorial of the " Manitoba 
Free Press"31st Jan. J thank the editor for the kind 
appreciation of my work, as well as for the clear and 


fair analysis of the same. I must, however, confess 
that I cannot understi ml when the author says: 
" we need but refer to the disin/eniousness of the 
" the parallel, in the letter which has elicited 
" these remarks, sought to be drawn by the 
" writer between a supposititious attempt to de- 
" prive the Protestant majority of the Province 
" of Quebec of their educational rights or privileges 
"ami the agitation began in this Province." 

" Protestant majority of the Province of Quebec" 
is, undoubtedly, a typographical error. As to the 
parallel I have established, I will repeat it, and 
show its ingeniousness in the following form t 


The Protestant minor- 
ity of Quebec lias educa- 
tional rights. 

The Legislature of 
Quebec cannot modify 
the schol system of the 
Province in a way re- 
pugnant to the educa- 
tional rights of its Pro- 
testant minority. 

Should the Legisla- 
ture of Quebec attempt 
to deprive the Protest- 
ant minority of its edu- 
cational rights such at- 
tempt would be illegal. 

Should the Legisla- 
ture of Quebec eu-ict in 
violation of the educa- 
tional rights of the Pro- 
testant minority of that 
Province, an appeal shall 
lie to the Governor-Gen- 
eral ttec., &c. 


The Catholic minority 
of Manitoba has educa- 
tional rights. 

The Legislature of 
Manitoba cannot modify 
the school system of the 
Province in a way re- 
pugnant to the educa- 
tional rights of its Ca- 
tholic minority. 

Should the Legislature 
of Manitoba attempt to 
deprive the Catholic mi- 
nority of its educational 
rights, such attempt 
would be illegal. 

Should the Legislature 
of Manitoba enact in 
violation of the educa- 
tional rights of the Ca- 
tholic minority of that 
Province, an appeal shall 
lie to the Governor-Gen- 
eral <fec, &c. 

It seems impossible to imagine a parrallel more 
ingenious and more complete than the above. 

Protestants and Catholics may not, and do not, 
agree on what they consider as prejudicial to their 
respective educational rights, but both sections be- 


ing on equal footing before the law, it is for each of 
them to pronounce what is, and whac is not, contrary 
to its conscientious convictions. 

Certainly "all the childrdu would " not " meet in 
the schools upon an equal footing," when such 
schools are condemned by the religion of some of the 
children, while approved, of or at least tolerated, 
by the religion of their school mates. 

Two correspondences have appeared in the Stan- 
dard. The first dated Dec. 31*t, i.e., January 31st 
1877, signed " One of the ' Five,' " and compre- 
hending fifteen paragraphs. 

The second pal dished in the Standard of March 
10th, by "Libertas " and republished under the form 
of a Pamphlet. 

These two correspondences greatly differ; still, a» 
they have a common object, I shall examine them 
both together. 

" One of the ' Five ' " says that I am " fighting 
u behind the mask." " Libertas " says : " when an 
* Archbishop writes a book, there are a number of 
" people quite overcome by it." The fact is, I nei- 
ther concealed my name nor invoked my title. I 
was wiiting a letter and, according to general prac- 
tice, I was awaiting the end ot it to sign my 

" One of the 'Five' " says that, in the part of 
my letter he opposes, " the writer is generally clear 
"enough ," and "Libertas " afnims " that there are 
"points on which the pamphleteer is strong." May 
I sa\ that tins is the most L expected even from 
friends. Among other reasons, the way I have 
employed many of my best years, has persuaded me 
that I have no claim as an elegant writer, and I 
have no such pretension even in my mother- 
tongue, much less in the English language, in 
which I am so little versed. But 1 confess that in 
writing on the important question of education, I 
accomplished a duty, with the desire of being " clear 
enough " to be generally understood, and to bring 
some " strong points " in support of my opin- 

I will neither trouble the reader nor mysslf 
about certain amiabilities from my opponents to- 
wards " Catholic doctrine," and " Catholics " and 


" servile parliaments " and Government House in 
"Winnipeg making snarling attacks from behind" 
and " weak-kneed members of Parliament " and 
" those who are willing to be cajoled by the sight 
" of a mitre and a shepherd's crook " and " Quebec 
" constituencies going to the dogs," &c, <kc. 

I took the liberty to criticise the way a portion 
of the Protestant Section of the Board of Educa- 
tion had acted. I also stated that most of the 
members were not present at a certain meeting, 
but, I too highly respect the Board to say with 
" Libertas : " " the heels of a few refractory mem- 
" bers of the Board of Education were nipped " and 
" those dear good men . . . have no care for 
(Education) such matters." Nor will I say with 
" One of the ' Five ' :" " Protestants may well ask 
" in what sence they represent them." 

It is a proof of weakness of t argument, on the 
part of those who argue, to stray from the question 
at issue, to be led by immagination. Both corres- 
pondents have done so. 

u One of the ' Five ' " exclaims : " Is such a 
" country to be cursed with a system that argues and 
** necessitates inferior and ill-furnished school-hou,ses, 
" poorly paid unintellectual and uneducated teach- 
" ers, skeleton schools, and ignorant people ! " Lib- 
ertas " adds, in his usual strain : " Would we have 
" our people the ignorant tools of designing men, 
" would we have the country retarded in the indus- 
" trial arts, would we have political charlatans ris- 
" ing to hold the chief places in the state, will we 
" have a large mass of the rising j'outh of the coun- 
M try absolutely ignorant, unable to read and write." 
You are too intelligent, gentlemen, not to notice 
that you deviate from the point under discussion. 
Nobody is so stupid as to aim at what you men- 
tion, and, to use your own words, " reason and 
common sense " do not lead to such an unfair ap- 
preciation of my desires and sayings. 

My two contradictors agree on the propriety of 
agitating the country on the subject ; making of 
education, a political and sectarian concei n. "One 
of the ' Five ' " says : " your correspondent may 
" say what he pleases, but the Protestant popula- 
" tion feel deeply on this question and members of 


" Parliament must give pledges to their constituents 
" when they seek re-election. 

" Libertas", always warmly toned, makes the fol- 
lowing appeal : " Friends ! sweet friends, worthy suc- 
cessors of Cranmer and Knox, will ye not forget 
"the past 1 will you not ally yourselves with the 
"gentle, lamb-like successor of Gardiner and Bon- 
" ner 1 " To secure the politico-religious excitement 
desired, the " putting to death of the unfortunate 
" Scott " is one more alluded to. Parties using 
such language will not easily persuade thinking 
men that they Lave no sectarian views, in advocat- 
ing the so-called — unsectarian system ! 

To atone for such appeals to excitement and 
passions, the appealers admit that "Catholics are at 
" liberty to establish and maintain schools," hut on 
the condition of " public money — their (Catholics) 
" money to some extent — being used," for the ex- 
clusive benefit of non-Catholics ; with the under- 
standing, no doubt, that the assessments on Catho- 
lic property would also go to the benefit of schools, 
Catholics cannot be benefited by. 

The use of "guillemets" is very important, as it 
appears in the two following instances : "One of 
" the ' five' " pronounces a part of my " translation 
"particularly, faulty," and ohjects especially to my 
using the words " personal views." These words 
are vot mine as may be easily found out in the re- 
port of a meeting of the Protestant Section of the 
Board of Education, held on the 19th January 
last. " Rev. Mr. Robertson expressed his per- 
" sonal views as strongly opposed to the teaching 
" of religion in the Public Schools." I copied the 
words without suspecting they were unintelligible, 
and, unintentionally, omitted to mark them with 
inverted commas. Hence the fatal error ! A 
similar omission, on ray part, has misled " Libertas," 
who affirms that, while endeavoring in my " intro- 
duction" to show that separate schools are in ex- 
istence in this Province. I am " plainly nervous," 
I am nervous indeed, because that part of m\ letter 
is full of nerve and strength, being almost exclusive- 
ly, the history of our school system copied from of- 
ficial documents and the very text of our school 
laws, as expressed in our different statutes ; as, for 


instance, in 36 Victoria, Chap., XXII. Having 
no suspicion that our school laws could be so com- 
pletely ignored, I neglected to place quotation 
marks. Hence, the error with " Libertas," who 
qualifies the mere reproductiou of our school laws, 
a fit of nervousness. No wonder that he after- 
wards affirms that my statements " are not in ac- 
cordance with facts," when I say that the Pro- 
testant schools are entirely under the control and 
jurisdiction of Protestants. Is " Libertas" in Man- 
itoba? and if so, how is he so completely unaware 
of the condition of the schools in the country 1 The 
two sections of the Board of Education, all the dif- 
ferent Borrds of Trustees, everyone connected in 
any decree whatsoever with the management of 
our schools, know perfectly well that my above 
statement is in accordance with facts. 

The two correspondents who know how to agree, 
know also how to disagree. 

One ot fhe " five" 

" The result was that 
the Bill — for towns p,nd 
cities — was eviscerated 
and mutilated, so as to 
be scarcely recognizable. 

" When your corres- 
" pondent denies that 
" two systems cover the 
" ground is he not quib- 
" bling, hair splitting or 
" dwivellinff. 

" Protestants object to 
"public money — their 
" money to some extent 
" — being used to dise- 
'• minate views they re- 
ject and which they 

" Libertas." 

" The Board of Edn- 
" cation is one ; last year 
" unitedly devised the 
" schools law for towns 
" and cities." 

" The Government 
" grant is voted for one 
fi system of schools." . . 
•' Catholic and Protes- 
tant schools are simply 
" the result of differen- 
" tiation as to adminis- 
" tration, while forming 
" part of one organic 
" whole. The writer of 
" the pamphlet, by the 
" use of generalities very 
" smoothly slips over this 
" question." 

" The Government 
" grant is divided accord- 
ing l o the population 

of children- 
rights are 

no special 



" think prejudicial to the 
" best interests of the 

" State 

" Protestants think it is 
" an injustice to pay for 
" them — Catholic schools 
" with public funds." 

" The schools of the 
" Catholic section are 
" Roman Catholic schools 
" maintained to teach 
" the principles of Ro- 
"man Catholic religion. 

" either Catholics or 
" Protestants — all mon- 
" eys are equitably dis- 
" tributed — even thetax- 
"esof corporate bodies 
li being divided accord- 
ing to school population. 
Schools in Manitoba 
" are in no sense sepa- 
rate schools." They are 
" called for convenience 
" Roman Catholic and 
" limits of language cor- 
" respond almost entire- 
" ly with those of 
| " religion in this Pro- 
j " vince." 
I am at a loss to reconcile the above contradic- 
tory statements of my two opponents ; but between 
them both I find enough to corroborate some of my 
own assertions. 

" Libertas" forgets that in the Province of Que- 
bec, some of the Disentient Schoolls are Roman Ca- 
tholic, and his whole theory to prove what does not 
exist, is necessarily defective. The word seperate 
is perfectly adapted to express the distinction which 
exists between Protestant and Catholic schools in 
our Province. They are, undeniably separate and 
distinct in a religious point of view, and " Libertas" 
fails in his endeavor to prove that they are not so, 
and that the distinction is made merely on account 
of difference of language. The Catholic section of 
the Board of Education is not exclusively French'; 
it counts, and has always counted, members who 
do not speak French. Some of our Catholic schools 
teach more English than French, and in all the 
localities where there are a few English-speaking 
Catholic families, the English language is taught in 
Catholic schools. 

The most important part of " Libertas' " pam- 
phlet is his attempt to prove thai the Catholics 
have no rights with regard to education in this 
Province ; and that the Legislature of Manitoba 
has, consequently, "carte blanche" to do as it 


chooses. I studied that part of the pamphlet at- 
tentively. I have read it over again and again, and 
I do not know why I can find it neither clear nor 
strong. Fearing that it might be due to obtuse- 
ness on my part, I consulted others- — some of whom 
will surely not claim to be French or Catholics, 
and, in all cases, their opinion agreed with mine. 
Far, then, from modifying my views on the legal 
aspect of the question, I remain convinced, more 
than ever, of what follows. 

1st. The B. N. A. Act, 1867, gives a right of 
appeal, etc., to the minority of any Province in which 
a system of Separate Schools exists by law at the 
union, or is thereafter established by the Legislature 
of the Province. Well, the Legislature of the Pro- 
vince oj Manitoba, since the union, has established a 
system of Separate Schools. Therefore, the Catholic 
minority of the Province of Manitoba has the right 
of appeal, etc., and is safeguarded, by the Imperial 
Act of 1867, against any attempt of the Provincial 
Legislature to deprive it of its rights. 

2nd. The Act of Manitoba, 1870, gives to the 
minority of this Province right of appeal from any 
act or decision of the Legislature of the Province af- 
fecting any right or privilege of the minority in re- 
lation to education. Now, it is undeniable that 
the Catholic minority of the Province of Manitoba 
enjoys certain rights or privileges which would be 
affected by a radical change in our system of edu- 
cation. Therefore, the Catholic minority of Mani- 
toba has a right of appeal, in virtue of the Manitoba 
Act, 1870, against any action of the Provincial 
Legislature affecting such rights and privileges. 

3rd. The Imperial Act of B. N. A , 1871, gives 
to the Manitoba Act the value of an Imperial Sta- 
tute ; and the Act of Manitoba itself extended to 
the Province it constitutes, the provisions of the 
B. N. A. Act, 1867, which I invoke 

" Libertas" camioi be serious when he pretends 
that, " by my own reasoning," the claims of the 
Catholics of Manitoba are assimilated to those of 
the minority of Prince Edward's Island. There is 
an essential difference, which prevents the decision 
in one case from being considered as a " precedent" 
in the other. Prince Edward's Island, as well as 


British Columbia and New Brunswick, had no 
system of Separate Schools established by law after 
the union, while Manitoba had such a system thus 
established, and the difference is perfectly apparent. 

Before agitating the whole Province, I am sure 
that all well-meaning men will weigh the danger 
and uselessness of such agitation. 

" One of the ' Five,' " in advice to Protestants, 
says : M Listen not to the siren song from across 
" the river." No, sir, my letter has none of the 
dangerously fascinating powers of damsels sirens ; 
because, when "the French idiom is not quite 
eliminated," it is not likely that English people 
will be charmei to fascination; and when a writer 
acts on a 1 strong conscientious conviction, and with 
the desire to be useful, his endeavors should not 
be qualified an attempt to deceive an inteiligent 

t A. of St. B. 
St. Boniface, April 13, 1877. 

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