Page 9, 14th April 1939

14th April 1939
Page 9
Page 9, 14th April 1939 — PESSIMISM UNJUSTIFIED
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PESSIMISM UNJUSTIFIED

—SAYS BISHOP OF GALWAY

" To-day the world in overcast with gloom and despair," said the Bishop of Galway, preaching at the Easter ceremonies in the Cathedral, Galway. " There is to-day a wave of intense pessimism because men have pinned their faith to the notion of Material progress, of having a good time. Now all the visions of material prosperity based on the goodness of man have collapsed. "There is not for the Chrietian any ground for pessimism. We do not base our hopes on man's intellect or will, on his rectitude or pOwOe over nal

We base them on the love of God. Who has sent us the Divine Son to be our Redeemer.

"He has conquered sin and death definitely and for ever. It shall not have dominion over Christ or those who believe in Him. We can share in Christ's victory if we believe in Him."

The Church and " Pacifism" Dr. Browne also visited the Renoyie Barracks and addressed the National Army officers. One of the most striking results and justification of the recovery of Irish independence, said his Lordship, was the transformation effected in the status of the soldier. People had come to expect a high standard of conduct from the soldiers of the army, and to have a corresponding respect for them. Many thought that modern weapons were evil In themselves, and the profeseion of a soldier not lawful for a Christian. That would be true if weapons and armies were used only for aggression. Unfortunately that was the role which was too often associated with the soldier. But there was another picture of the soldier—it was the Christian soldier of defence. The Catholic Church taught that the use of weapons was lawful for defence. This need of defence could be most effectively reconciled with the preservation of world peace if there were only one international army to keep peace between nations, but the world seemed a.a far away from the possibility of that as it was a century ago. In the absence of such an international police army every nation had to provide its own defence, and the Catholic Church taught that citizens were not merely Justified, but were bound to take up the award to defend their homesteads and their altars.

MEMORY OF THE DEAD Gaelic Prayers at Graves

Easter always must be a patriotic, as well as a religious sea-son, in Ireland; and this year the national observances were heightened in importance by the world crisis, At Arbour Hill, Mr De Valera laid a wreath at the graves of the patriots executed in 1916, and Senator Miss Margaret Pearce, sister of Padraic Pearse, led the Rosary in Irish. Salutes were fired by a squad of the comrades of 1916, among whom were members of the Government. The Old I.R.A. paraded before the General Post Office and read a declaration which called for complete Irish neutrality in the expected war, the proclamation of the Republic for the whole territory of Ireland, and conscription for the defence of neutrality. A break with Sterling also was demanded.

The Left Wing Demonstrates

The Left Wing held many demonstrations, and expressed support to the I.R.A. campaign, At ceremonies in Thurles, Miss Mary MacSwiney said that an Irish Christian Democratic State could not be achieved in association with the British King, the ally of Communistic and atheistic Russia. Speaking at the patriot graves in Glasnevin, Mr Brian O'Higgins—author of many devotional books, for one of which he received Papal commendation —said that the gathering must send a message of praise and congratulation to their living comrades who were fighting Ireland's battle in England. They were as proud of them as of the Republican soldiers in the past.

In Cork, the son of the murdered Lord Mayor MacCurtain, said that the battlefield had been transferred to England.

Throughout the North, there were commemorative Masses for the patriot dead, and I.R.A. contingents defied the police and paraded in military formation.

" THAT GANG"

From these pieces of news, it will be seen that sympathy is swinging over to the lads who, in such large numbers, have suffered what all Irish people regard as vindictively severe sentences in England. The remarks of Mr Justice Humphries at the Old Bailey, when he sentenced a man who disclaimed all connection with the I.R.A. campaign, have given bitter offence to all Nationalists and may be the subject of official protest. The judge's record In Ireland has been published, and various supporters of Mr De Valera's Government have passed resolutions demanding action by the Minister for External Affairs " inasmuch as those statements (by the judge) are a direct insult to the Irish nation," to obtain en apology from the British Government and the immediate release of the prisoner Wharton.

A Bulletin issued in Dublin points out that the Judge's references to "that gang which committed murders of British officers up to 1922," condemns " the legitimate Army of the Irish nation acting under the control of a Government which had been elected by the overwhelming majority of the Irish people," and asks whether similar language would be used of Washington who repelled Cornviallis, or of General Smuts and General Hertzog, who also have been in arms against Britain, Thus: "A Judge of the King's Court deviates from the routine of his duty to insult the Irish nation and its Government, every member of which served with honour in the 'gang ' to which hie Lordship adverted."

Nearly all Mr Cosgrave's chief supporters come into the same category.

Further oil has been poured on the flames of resentment by Serjeant

Sullivan's letter The Times, reprinted in part in the CATHOLIC HERALD, which describes Irish Catholics as corrupters of the use of the Sacraments; and by his infamous statement in a.n interview with the CATHOLIC HERALD that Irish schoolteachers enrol pupils in revolutionary organisations --a statement impossible to substantiate; or, in shorter terms, a lie.

RUMOURS OF COMING SETTLEMENT What Will Mr De Valera Say to President Roosevelt ?

While this angry trend is so evident (bearing out what I foretold in January), there is much sae over a report that the Unity of Ireland may be negotiated after Mr Do %, aieraa visit to Washington next month, simultaneously with an Anglo-American entente. It is argued that President Roosevelt's desire for Anglo-American agreement would be facilitated if Mr De Valera could tell him tend Irish America) that England had made peace with Ireland. The suggestion is that Britain will cede the Reserved Powers which she exercises in part of Ireland to the Government of Ireland, so that Ireland will become a unit for defence. In return for a joint Anglo-American guarantee of Irish freedom, Ireland will enter a defence pact, lending her harbours to American ships in a war in which America is involved. In other words, the American part a the alliance will receive the facilities which are necessary for the command of Western waters, and will lend Ireland the weapons required for air defence. Under the Federal Parliament of Ireland, the Six Counties will remain an autonomous area. The muter attachment to the United States is regarded as favourable to such a plan of AngloIrish-American entente. This scheme was published in the Sando.y Tin! PS. from a Conservative Irish source. and is being debated at home with lively interest; but I do not propose to comment upon it until something better authorised is released. It must suffice to say that a movement for Irish unity, on the Federal plan, is afoot, and is thought to have been the theme of Mr De Valera's recent talk with Mr Chamberlain at Chequers. People of goodwill must pray that eomething will come of the move quickly, before Anglo-Irish relations plunge back to the Fenian years.

Irish Daily Blames Mr Eden

The international conflict has stirred Ireland as deeply as other lands. The Irish independent is true to its titles in its efforts to promote a just view of the Mediterranean issue. "In Britain to-day," this organ writes, "the Rome-Berlin axis is denounced as a menace to European peace. Mr Eden, the ex-Foreign Secretary, is among the principal assailants of the alliance between Germany and Italy, but it was his policy as Minister that allienated Dilly from Britain and threw her into the arms of Germany. Denunciation of the Rome-Berlin axis involves condemnation of the disastrous British decision in 1935, which Thai Tablet describes as the root of the present troubles.

"'Ph,, Irish Indcpcndent maintained in 1935 that Mr Eden's attitude to Italy was high-handed and indefensible, and when Italy threw in her lot with Germany we pointed out that her action was the consequence of the British stupidity for which Mr Eden was responsible.",




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