Pius IX. And His Time
466 Pages
English
Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer

Pius IX. And His Time

-

Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer
466 Pages
English

Description

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Pius IX. And His Time by The Rev. Æneas MacDonell Dawson This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at http://www.gutenberg.org/license Title: Pius IX. And His Time Author: The Rev. Æneas MacDonell Dawson Release Date: June 17, 2009 [Ebook 29143] Language: English ***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK PIUS IX. AND HIS TIME*** Pius IX. And His Time By The Rev. Æneas MacDonell Dawson. London: Printed by Thos. Coffey, Catholic Record Printing House. 1880 Contents Preface. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Pius IX. And His Time. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Footnotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 443 [i] Preface. The history of Pius IX. will always be read with interest. His Pontificate was, indeed, eventful. In no preceding age were the annals of the Church so grandly illustrated. The spiritual sovereignty, “with which,” to use the words of a British statesman, “there is nothing on this earth that can at all compare,” was crowned with surpassing glory. Doctrines which, hitherto, had been open to theological discussion, were ascertained and pronounced to be in accordance with the belief of all preceding Christian ages.

Subjects

Informations

Published by
Published 08 December 2010
Reads 30
Language English
Document size 2 MB

Exrait

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Pius IX. And His Time by The
Rev. Æneas MacDonell Dawson
This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost
and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy
it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project
Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at
http://www.gutenberg.org/license
Title: Pius IX. And His Time
Author: The Rev. Æneas MacDonell
Dawson
Release Date: June 17, 2009 [Ebook 29143]
Language: English
***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK
PIUS IX. AND HIS TIME***Pius IX.
And His Time
By
The Rev. Æneas MacDonell
Dawson.
London:
Printed by Thos. Coffey, Catholic Record Printing House.
1880Contents
Preface. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Pius IX. And His Time. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Footnotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 443[i]Preface.
The history of Pius IX. will always be read with interest. His
Pontificate was, indeed, eventful. In no preceding age were the
annals of the Church so grandly illustrated.
The spiritual sovereignty, “with which,” to use the words of
a British statesman, “there is nothing on this earth that can at
all compare,” was crowned with surpassing glory. Doctrines
which, hitherto, had been open to theological discussion, were
ascertained and pronounced to be in accordance with the belief of
all preceding Christian ages. The Church was enabled, through
the labors of her Chief and the zeal of her Priesthood, to extend
vastly the place of her tent. The life of Pius IX. himself was a
marvel and a glory. None of his predecessors, not even Peter,
attained to his length of days.
On the other hand, the venerable Pontiff, and, together with
him, the Catholic people, were doomed to behold and lament the
loss of the time-honored patrimony of St. Peter. The Papacy,
however, unlike all temporal sovereignties, was able to sustain
so great a loss. More ancient than its temporal power, it still
survives;“not a mere antique, but in undiminished vigor.”
[005]Pius IX. And His Time.
John Mary Count Mastai Ferreti was born at Sinigaglia, on the
13th of May, 1792. At the age of twenty-two he came to Rome.
Anxious to serve the Holy Father, and yet not aspiring to the
priesthood, he resolved to become a member of the Noble Guard.
This the delicate state of his health forbade. Repelled by the
Prince Commandant, he sought counsel of the Pope. Pius VII.
pronounced that his destiny was the Cross, and advised him
to devote himself to the ecclesiastical state. The words of the
Holy Father were, to the youthful Mastai, as a voice from on
high. He decided for the Church, and, as if in testimony that his
decision was ratified in heaven, the falling-sickness left him. His
studies were more than ordinarily successful, and he already gave
proof of those high qualities which were afterwards so greatly
developed. The distinguished Canon Graniare, his professor,
little dreaming of the exalted destiny which awaited him, held
him up as a pattern of excellence to his fellow-students, saying
that he possessed the heart of a Pope.
Whilst yet a student, Mastai interested himself in an orphanage,
which was founded by John Bonghi, a charitable mason of Rome.
He spent in this institution the first seven years of his priesthood,
devoting himself to the care of the orphans, who were, as yet,
his only parishioners. The income which he derived from family
resources was liberally applied in supplying the wants of these
destitute children, and even in ministering to their recreation. [006]
It now became his duty to accompany, as a missionary priest,
Monsignore Mazi, who was appointed Vicar-Apostolic for Chili,
Peru and Mexico. These countries had thrown off the yoke
of Spain and adopted Republican forms of government. The
Vicar-Apostolic and his companions suffered much in the course4 Pius IX. And His Time
of their voyage to America. They were cast into prison, at the
Island of Majorca, by Spanish officials, who took it amiss that
Rome should hold direct relations with the rebellious subjects of
their government. Their ship was attacked by corsairs, and was
afterwards in danger from a storm. A single circumstance only
need be mentioned in order to show what the faithful ministers
of the Church had to endure when traversing the inhospitable
steppes of the Pampas. Once, at night, they had no other shelter
than a wretched cabin built with the bones of animals, which still
emitted a cadaverous odour.
In those arid deserts, they suffered from thirst as well as from
dearth of provisions. Great results can only be attained by equally
great labors. If, after a period of privation, the travellers enjoyed
no more luxurious refreshment than the waters of the crystal
brook, it might well be said, “de torrente in viabibet propterea
exaltabit caput.” (They shall be reduced to quench their thirst
in the mountain stream, and therefore shall be exalted.) The
delegates of the Holy Father were received with enthusiasm
by the South American populations. Meanwhile, the narrow
governments that were set over those countries raised so many
difficulties that the mission was only partially successful.
This mission, however, was not without benefit to the
Reverend Count Mastai. It had been the means of developing
the admirable qualities which he possessed. It had afforded him
the opportunity of seeing many cities, as well as the manners
and customs of many people. These lessons of travel were
not addressed to an ordinary mind. His views were enlarged,
elevated and refined by contact with so many rising or fallen
civilizations, so many different nationalities, and by the spectacle
[007] of Nature, that admirable handmaid of the Divinity, with her
varied splendors and her manifold wonders, astonishing no less
in the immensity of the ocean than in the vast forests of the New
World.
The mind appears to grow as the sphere of material lifePius IX. And His Time. 5
extends. Vast horizons are adapted to great souls, and prepare
them for great things. The Abbe Mastai had thus received in
his youth two most salutary lessons, which are often wanting to
the best-tried virtues of the sacerdotal state—the lesson of the
world, which Mastai had received before the time of his vocation
to Holy Orders, and the lessons of travel, which disengages the
mind from the bondage of local prejudices. Both of these teachers
he admirably understood. He had, indeed, drank of the torrent
which exalts.
Leo XII. now filled the Apostolic Chair. This Pontiff, highly
appreciating the good sense and penetration of which Mastai
had given proof in the difficult mission to Chili, appointed him
Canon of Sancta Maria, Rome, in via lata, and, at the same time,
conferred on him the dignity of Prelate. Never was the Roman
purple more adorned by the learning and genuine virtue of him
on whom it was bestowed.
There is at Rome an institution of charity, the greatest which
that city or even the world possesses, the immense hospital of St.
Michael a Ripa Grande. A whole people dwells within its vast
precincts. It is at once a place of retreat for aged and infirm men,
a most extensive professional school for poor girls, and a sort of
workshop, on a great scale, for children that have been forsaken.
The greater number learn trades. Some, who give proof of higher
talents, apply, at the expense of the hospital, to the study of the
fine arts. This hospital is, in itself, a world, and its government
requires almost the qualities of a statesman. Pope Leo XII.,
anxious to render available the rare abilities of Canon Mastai,
named him President of the commission which governs this great
establishment. There was need, at the time, so low was the state
of the hospital budget, of the nicest management, unremitting
care, and the highest financial capacity. These qualities were all [008]
speedily at work, and in the course of two years all the resources
of the institution were in admirable order. The fear of bankruptcy
was removed, deficits of income made up, and receipts abundant.6 Pius IX. And His Time
It had not been the custom to allow to apprentice-workmen any
share in the fruits of their labors. Herein Mastai effected a great
and certainly not uncalled-for reform. Far from impoverishing
the hospital, this liberal measure only showed, by its happy
results, that justice is in perfect harmony with economy, and that
the best houses are not those which make the most of the labor
of their inmates, but those which encourage industry by allowing
it what is just. The orphans were thus, in two years, enabled to
have a small sum, which secured to them, so far, a mitigation of
their lot. Meanwhile, the proceeds of the hospital were doubled.
This was remarkable success. Count Mastai's reputation for
administrative ability was now of the highest order.
In the Consistory of May 21st, 1827, Canon Count Mastai
was named Archbishop of Spoleto. Thus did Pope Leo XII.
signalize his solicitude and affection for the city of his birth.
The appointment came not too soon. It required all the influence
of a great mind to maintain peace at Spoleto. Party spirit ran
high. One side clamored against abuses: the other, dreading all
change, clung pertinaciously to the past. Wrath was treasured
in every bosom. If civil war had not yet broken out, it raged
already in the breasts of the people. Spoleto resembled two
hostile camps, and vividly recalled the state of these cities of the
Middle-Age, where stood in presence, and armed from head to
heel, the undying enmities of the Ghibellins and the Guelphs.
The slightest occasion would have sufficed to cause the hardly-
suppressed embers of deadly strife to burst into a flame. Through
the zeal and diplomacy of the Archbishop, such occasion was
averted. Spoleto may yet remember, and not without emotion,
how earnestly he studied to appease wild passions, with what
delicacy and perseverance he labored to reconcile the terrible
[009] feuds that prevailed, to calm the dire spirit of revenge, to bury
the sense of wrong in the oblivion of forgiveness. At length,
in 1831 and 1832, a hopeless rebellion unfurled its blood-red
banner. It was speedily and pitilessly repressed. Such an occasion