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interests of life, the purely transitory and inferior elements of education. But if an immediate co-operation be impossible in the matter of religious education between Catholics and Protestants, is there no form of mediate or less close cooperation that would be acceptable 2 As a matter of fact, such a co-operation does exist in Germany and Austria, in Ireland and elsewhere. The schools are national and common, the pupils, Catholic and Protestant, attend the same scholastic courses and are taught by the same teachers, who are legally appointed without regard to religious preference, and after fulfilment of all civil requirements. But the religious instruction is furnished according to the expressed wishes of the parents, by ministers of their faith, at fixed hours, and all children are required to attend the instructions of their own religious denomination. In some places, as at Frankfort, there are occasionally two professors of history, so that in this important matter, the delicacy of the child's conscience need not be violated. In places where the political and social contact of Catholics and Protestants has been and is very close, ways have been found of co-operation for the common welfare in the matter of religious and moral education. The attitude of the Catholic authority is not so absolutely uncompromising as has been sometimes stated. In all those delicate questions that belong to the borderland between the Roman Catholic Church and the civil society, her supreme authority will always be found quite moderate and conciliatory, bent on saving the essentials of Catholic interests, but willing to go a long way in order to encourage and confirm national and municipal concord and amity in all temporal matters. In the present temper of the great majority of our American people we shall all have to go on as we are going, thankful that there is nothing in our written constitutions or in the habits of our people to interfere with the natural and rightful liberty of the parent-citizen to educate his children as he sees fit, without any interference from a doctrinaire bureaucracy. We can emphasize our many points of agreement among the broad and fundamental considerations that confirm this general thesis of the great need of scholastic reform in the sense of religious and moral education. We can habituate ourselves to recognize a common peril in a dechristianized American soul, equipped as man never was before, with all the powers and opportunities that our mighty State has called forth and developed, or rather has only begun to call forth and develop. We can teach with more earnestness the common and traditional Christian doctrines concerning God, the soul, the moral law, sin, moral responsibility, prayer, divine providence, the divinity of Jesus Christ, and the traditional character of the Scriptures.
We can insist upon the worth of a Christian discipline of character, even for the affairs of this world, on the sacredness and seriousness of human life, on the Christian constitution of the family, on the duties of parents in general and in detail, on the obligation of a public worship and the Sunday rest. We can instruct ourselves first, and then instruct others, on the true and solid reasons why abortion, suicide, divorce, corrupt conduct in business and politics, inordinate greed of wealth and distinction, personal arrogance and contempt of the poor and lowly, are wrong and conducive to the detriment of the State and society,
We owe Dr. Shahan a deep debt of gratitude for this lucid statement of our position and for the suggestions made anent possible arrangements, in view of the complicated conditions which we have to face in the United States. It is very helpful to have the truth brought home to the thinkers of the country that a solution of this problem is not only possible, but has actually been adopted in the leading nations of Europe.
The peculiar difficulties which beset boy life in our days received careful consideration, though the remedies proposed were of a somewhat hazy nature. How little the members knew of the effective methods adopted by the noble-hearted Catholic gentlemen of New York in their boys' clubs. An address that attracted notice was one upon “The Problem of the Country Boy," in which among other wise remarks the speaker said:
The electricity in him constitutes the boy problem, and this problem besets the village no less than the city. Self-reliant when lost in the woods, the country boy is awkward or terrorstricken in a crowd. His vitality suffers from scarcity of boyish avenues along which to travel ; and he is, in consequence, often an adult before his time. Peril comes to the country boy from the drifting possibilities of a nature where the physical has outstripped in development the imaginative and idealistic. He does not attempt enough things either good or bad. To save the country boy you dig new channels into which his surging strength can be directed. A badly started boy goes to the bad as readily in a sequestered valley as in a turbulent metropolis.
The most alarming feature of the country boy problem is that for the most part it is as yet a problem unattacked. The country boy has neither been systematically studied, nor has altruistic enthusiasm annexed him to its province. For him there are no boys' clubs, gymnasiums, game centres, free baths, juvenile libraries, social settlements, or trade schools. The towns are slower than the metropolis ; the majority of them neglect both grass and boys. Something or some person must be found capable of fulfilling the promoter function for the boy-power of our country towns. There are agencies already on the field, but they are not coping with the problem. Either new agencies must be devised, or else the now-existing agencies must be increased in efficiency.
It must be confessed that grave as are the difficulties attendant upon boy life in cities, the difficulties in remote and sparsely settled districts are far graver and call for the exercise of great ingenuity, vigilance, and self-sacrifice. The other speeches, while containing many excellent ideas, do not seem to warrant special notice in an article which purports to touch upon certain points only. In taking a general view of these meetings we cannot help regretting the fact that, as stated above, so little attention was paid to principle, and that the speakers seemed so indefinite with regard to the specific nature of the remedy against existing evils. These evils were frankly admitted and deeply deplored; but the reader will search the addresses in vain for a definite outline of a plan, or for practical suggestions for coping with present miseries. It was this vagueness, this uncertainty, that made Dr. Shahan's paper, in which everything was so precise, so luminous, so pointed, most welcome. For Catholics, however, the work of the association must, in general, bring joy. For its members are, in great measure, battling for the principles which are of so much moment to us, and they carry on their campaign under extremely favorable conditions. That Americans are strongly wedded to prevailing educational methods is so well known as to need no comment. To the majority it seems to be a perfect system, and the mere suggestion that it has grave defects, or that a better system could be devised, is sufficient to call forth a. volley of abuse, especially when the critic is a Catholic, who is sure to be saluted as a traitor, as a person about to undermine the basis of free government. The position of the majority of the members of the Religious Education Association saves them from this imputation. They are not directly connected with us, and hence their remarks are received without suspicion. On this account they are able to secure a friendly hearing and to give testimony where our own would be rejected. There is no point in which our people need to be educated so much as in the principles of a true and solid education. Turning aside from the natural and divinely appointed custodians of the child's welfare, the parents, many have come to regard the State as the sole authority in matters of education, as though the parents in this momentous matter had no voice whatever. Moreover, blinded by the display of a merely material equipment, and of inflated language, too many have come to regard these as of primary importance forgetting that after all nothing can take the place of a wellplanned systematic development of mind, body, and will, nothing can supply for a rigid training in sound reasoning, and in the general knowledge that must be the basis of all intellectual excellence. It is the peculiar mission of the Religious Education Association to unfold the defects of the national favorite, and to convince our people that not only is it not accomplishing its duly-appointed task, but that, as matters now stand, it is really a source of danger to the country. The immortal Washington left us a sacred legacy, when in his farewell address he said: “Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in the exclusion of religious principles.",
A FURTHER ANSWER TO DR. MCKIM.
BY THE REVEREND BERTRAND L. CONWAY, C.S.P.
outros N Dr. McKim's first letter to the New York Sun,*
he declares that the members of the late Convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church
"would also be in hearty agreement with your submenu (Cardinal Gibbon's) further statement that the only effective remedy is to go back to the Gospel.'” But as Dr. McKim belongs to a Church which officially t denies, as Luther did of old, the sacramental character of marriage, it follows logically that he also considers the marriage contract dissoluble. With regard to our Savior's teaching on this point, he writes: “But when your Eminence goes on to say that the Gospel prohibits all divorced men and women, who are validly married, from entering into second nuptials, they (i. e. the men who voted for the compromise, s divorce canon) would find themselves unable to follow you, because on two of the three occasions when our Lord spoke on this subject (recorded in the fifth and nineteenth chapters of St. Matthew's Gospel) it appears || that he laid down an exception to the rule of indissolubility, when he said: “Whosoever shall put away his wife, and shall marry another committeth adultery,” he added, they urge, this exception, "except for fornication."
Dr. McKim forgets that our Lord spoke on the subject of divorce not on three but on five occasions : Matt. v. 31, 32; Matt. xix., 3-9; Mark. X. 2-9, 10-12; Luke xvi. 18. This omission is especially suggestive, when we reflect that, in three of these instances, our Savior's testimony is clear and explicit regarding the absolute indissolubility of the marriage bond.
The words are these: “And the Pharisees coming to him, asked him: Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife ?
New York Sun, January 8, 1905.
The Living Church, November 26, 1904, and December 10, 1904, p. 204. || This does not appear to other Protestant Episcopalians—The Living Church, April 23, September 24, October 1, 1904