Cardinal Bourne's Views
From THE LATE CARDINAL BOURNE'S PRIVATE SECRETARY
SLR,—In connection with our difficulties in Palestine, I call to mind accompanying Cardinal Bourne in 1919 to that country, when he paid a visit to the Grand Mufti in Jerusalem. The Cardinal told me that when they discussed Jewish immigration, the Mufti incisively repeated the threat : " We do not mind the Jews who always lived in this country; but if any others are forced on us, we shall cut their throats ... We shall cut their throats . . . and we shall cut their throats until there be none left
to cut." He hissed out his menaces as though he meant what he said. On returning to England, the Cardinal stopped in Paris to give a report of this interview to Mr. Balfour. He listened to the account and then exclaimed : " But this is very drastic!" When the Cardinal asked him why he considered himself obliged to embark on such a hopeless scheme, Mr. Balfour explained : " We had to find some place for the Jewish overflow " (or some such word) " and Palestine seems to be the more likely one." " This," retorted the Cardinal, " is a counsel of despair." It looks as if the Grand Mufti were keeping his word.
Holy Rood, Watford.
NAZISM AND THE MISSIONS
SIR,—You merit much gratitude for showing the peril threatening the Missions in Tanganyika, especially those run by Germans, should that territory be handed back to Germany. The danger cannot be
stressed too much. For eleven years I have, as directress of the Bath Centre of Our Lady's Missionary League, been in touch, first with Peramiho and later with Ndanda. Both these stations are in the charge of Missionary Benedictines, priests and nuns, who, with a few exceptions, are German or Austrian. Under the Nazi regime of religious persecution, none would suffer more than these.
At both Peramiho and Ndanda they have formed leper settlements. Here are some extracts from letters from the Irish Reverend Mother at Ndanda which will give some idea of the arduous work there: " There are sonic lepers who have no home or relations and glad to remain at the settlement, helpless cases of course. Others come with the intention to be cured, but they are few. There are others who are restless and run away.. .. There is another class of lepers, and they are lepers from childhood; nobody wants them, and if it were not for the settlement would die in the wilderness... • Many come to us crawling days and days. Some arrive after two months on the road. Food they have none, and pick up on the road what they can find to eat.
" I love the lepers very deeply. I humbly beg you to pray that not one will die without baptism. Some are very, very ignorant, yes, like animals. And it takes a lot of care and attention to draw their minds away from what is sinful.
" The fanatic Islam makes a lot of trouble before he is converted. He stops at nothing. To get the wife of another man he will poison him. . . . They don't know any better. All their lives they have seen such dreadful things done. (yet) Many a poor leper is in Heaven today through the great grace of Holy Baptism'before death. Here the natives have a very, very low standard; and if the missionaries did not use all their effort, few would become Christians.
" (It is not like Peramiho.) In Peramiho the natives are hungering for the Faith.
" The way to the Conversion of the poor heathen and Islam leper is often through the healing of their bodies and listening to their many troubles, indeed sometimes for hours. Gradually they realise the missionaries are their true friends and through the great mercy of God are won to the true Faith."
KATHARINE CHOLMELEY. Emberton House, Bathwick Street, Bath.
YOUNG CHILDREN AND ART
Ste,—In answer to Mr. F. C. Tilney, Editor of Art and Reason, who writes to complain of the methods of teaching Art which are now in vogue in kindergartens— let us first get out of our heads the idea that Art can be taught.
Art is something which is either in one or is not, and if it is not then no amount of
teaching will bring it out. But the old methods could very easily stifle any artistic leaning in a child and prevent it from developing. How much better to leave the child with no restraint—he will in time, I am sure, impose his own discipline. One natural artist is worth a thousand embryonic Academicians. Surely children should be taught to enjoy drawing, and painting; the enjoyment that one gets out of creative work is a vital element for its success.
I have never been in the fortunate position of having to teach Art to children (I use the word " teach " advisedly), but if I had a class under me I don't think I should want to turn them all into competent craftsmen; but 1 should hope that they would all enjoy themselves doing things in their own way, and if one of them—only one—began to show something that was obviously the work of an instinctive artist, then I should be more than satisfied. But then I should not be what Mr. Tilney calls a " competent
and qualified teacher." Don't misunderstand me—we are discussing quite young children; I'm not suggesting that with older children one would not have to instruct them in technical matters.
I think it peevish to suggest that because the boys design their own ties and girls their own dress materials they are being treated to indulgences which have no relationship with the qualifications necessary for a wage-earner. I should have thought that the opposite was the case. Anyway, they are only children under twelve: let us leave them for a while to their own dreams and fancies (which are not all " bestial absurdities ") before confrontine them with the hard facts of life.
D. F. Pf TTUCK.
50, High Street, Old Headington, Oxford.