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have been regarded as their protectors have been lending their aid to destroy the bulwarks of the constitution, which ought to have been upheld and strengthened. That the alteration proposed in the Mortmain Laws, the Act and Oath of Supremacy, and the protective provisions of 1829, will expose this country more and more to the aggressions of the Church of Rome. And that, as every Roman Catholic nation of Europe has found it necessary to provide laws and regulations to protect them from the interference of Rome, so is it, in a more especial manner, necessary that the enactments framed by the dear-bought wisdom of our ancestors, be not removed or altered till a full inquiry has taken place before Parliament as to the real nature and tendency of the principles of the Church of Rome ; and how far her principles and practices are compatible with the safety and prosperity of this Protestant country.
“ That the following Petition be therefore adopted, and that the Earl of Winchilsea be requested to present the same in the House of Lords, and Mr. Plumptre in the House of Commons :“ To the Honourable the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain
and Ireland in Parliament assembled.
The humble Petition of " Sheweth,
“ That your Petitioners have heard, with deep regret and alarm, of
Bills now before your Honourable House, having for their object to repeal, amongst others, certain provisions which were enacted by their ancestors, not for the purpose of religious persecution, but to protect the Crown, the judicature, and the people of this country from the influence and dominion of the Court or Church
of Rome. “ Your Petitioners would venture to remind your Honourable House
of the distractions and divisions which were created in this country in former times, by the political principles and treasonable practices of the Papacy, and that, in the present day, the spiritual power of the Court or Church of Rome, unaltered in its tenets and principles, is exercised for temporal objects, and has been arrayed,
in more than one instance, against the power of the State. “ Your Petitioners would further desire to draw attention to the fact,
that various laws against the interference of the Church or Court of Rome, were enacted at a time when the Sovereign, the Church, and the people of this country were Roman Catholic, and that some such laws are still more requisite to protect the Institutions of a Protestant country. “Your Petitioners earnestly entreat your Honourable House, that before any alterations are made affecting the Oath of Supremacy, the Mortmain Laws, and other protective provisions, especially those of an Act, passed in the 10th of George IV., entitled 'An Act for the Relief of his Majesty's Roman Catholic Subjects, prohibiting public Romish processions—the assumption of the titles of Protestant Archbishops, Bishops, and other dignitaries – the appearance in public processions of Romish ecclesiastics in the dress of their order, and the institution of Jesuit and other monastic orders, bound by religious vows — Your Honourable House will pleased to appoint a Committee of Inquiry, directed to ascertain what are the real principles, tenets, and doctrines of the Church of Rome, and how far they are compatible with the principles of the British Constitution, and the peace, safety, and prosperity of this great empire.
“And your Petitioners will ever pray, &c."
MAYNOOTH COLLEGE ACT.
London, July 22d. SIR,—You will oblige me by inserting this letter in your valuable paper, as I know no better channel of communication to our Protestant friends in the country as to the present state of the Maynooth College question.
Before Easter I gave notice in the House of Commons of my intention, after the recess, of moving for leave to bring in a Bill for the repeal of the Act of the last session, by which that college was to be rebuilt and endowed at the expense of the British public. After Easter I fixed a day for the discussion of the question, and gave notice of it in the House of Commons. I was in my place in the House, and proposed to bring the question forward on the day fixed. But before I was called upon by the Speaker, and during the discussion of a previous question, on the motion of one of the Members present, the House was counted, and forty Members not being in the House, it was, as a matter of course, adjourned. I gave notice, in consequence, of another day for the discussion ; but, when that day arrived, very shortly before it would have fallen to me to address the House, the same process of counting the House was resorted to, and with the same result.
The 21st of July was the third day fixed upon by me for the consideration of the question, whether the obnoxious Act of last Session should be repealed. I was accordingly in my place yesterday, and ready to proceed, but no House was formed, twenty-six Members only being present at four o'clock, when it became the Speaker's duty to declare the House adjourned. I feel, therefore, that it is useless to urge the attempt further.
If forty out of 658 Members will not come together, or will not continue together for the consideration of a subject which I cannot but hope and believe the great mass of the Protestant population of this country yet regard as one of vast importance, may not that Protestant population be well appealed to, to adopt some vigorous measures, in order that their feelings and principles may be better represented in that new Parliament, which may be very near at hand, and cannot be very far off ? As an individual, I make no complaint of the absence of Members from the House of Commons on the occasion I have referred to. I am well aware of the feebleness of my advocacy of any cause that I may feel called upon to take in hand, and that I have not the power to draw or to fix the attention of the House of Commons. But I mourn, that in matters in which the Christian character of this country is involved, there should be such apparent indifference, at least, among those who are sent to Parliament to represent and to maintain those high and important principles which, I trust, the great body of Protestants in this country yet bind about their hearts, and with the maintenance of which, I firmly believe that, under God, the safety and dignity of the Monarch, and the liberty and happiness of her subjects are intimately connected.
I remain, Sir, your faithful servant,
JOHN P. PLUMPTRE.
THE RECENT CHANGE OF THE MINISTRY. The change of Ministry which has taken place, during the past month, was the almost necessary consequence of the abolition of the Corn Laws. The conduct of Sir Robert Peel, in again betraying the party who confided in him, led to his overthrow as a Minister, and to the disruption of the powerful Conservative party by which he was supported. These are startling and portentous events, and the country ought to know that the Repeal faction, consisting of the Irish Members nominated by O'Connell, have been mainly instrumental in bringing them about. The number of these Members was sixty, Sir Robert Peel's majority ninety-seven. Had they voted as their own interests, or the interests of their country, prompted, Sir Robert would have been placed in a minority of thirty-seven. Had they remained neutral, the majority would only have been thirty-seven, and it is most probable that the House of Lords would have rejected the measure. Thus it is evident that the Repealers and Romanist faction have been the most efficient class of the enemies of British agriculture and British industry. The abolition of the Corn Laws may fairly be attributed to Popish intrigue, by which, also, there can be little doubt that Lord John Russell and the Whig-Radical party, the well-known allies of O'Connell, have been brought back into power. Indeed a Mr. Turnbull, chairman of the Romanists at the Edinburgh election, said, “ There never had been a Ministry so favourable to Roman Catholics as the present, or from whom the Roman Catholics might expect a more cordial distribution of PLACE, POWER, and PATRONAGE."
A Repealer, a Mr. Clements, has received an appointment in the Colonies. Messrs. Sheil and Wyse have official situations. In the Ministry are those well-known enemies of the Irish Church, Earl Fortescue, Earl Grey, and Mr. Ward, known by the name of appropriation Ward. Lord Ebrington, a member of the Government, uttered at Plymouth the alarming declaration, that he was quite prepared to divide the revenues of the Irish Church with the Church of Rome, or words to that effect.
Surely it is high time for Protestants to awake out of sleep, and to organize themselves in opposition to an Administration which has evidently been constructed under Popish influence and direction.
An Old MEMBER OF THE PROTESTANT ASSOCIATION.
THE BISHOPS, DIGNITARIES, AND CLERGY OF THE CHURCHES
OF ENGLAND, IRELAND, AND SCOTLAND. THE apathy which seems to prevail amongst Protestants of all ranks and denominations—not less amongst the dignitaries and clergy of the Church of England and Ireland—with reference to the giant strides of Popery, and her twin-sister, Puseyism, is making in the land, is one of the most marvellous and lamentable signs of the selfish times we live in.
Nor does the Church of Scotland stand excepted from this deplorable falling off from that cause, and forgetfulness of those times when Wishart and Hamilton laid down their lives for the truth. The glorious Revolution of 1688, when both kingdoms, with one voice, declared for civil and religious liberty, casting from them the cords and superstitions of Popery, seems to be entirely forgotten.
Ambition and the lust of power (those vices by which the devil and his angels fell, and were cast out of heaven) seem to be feelings more cherished now than ever, by all ranks and conditions, to gratify which, they hesitate not to barter away our dearest rights, and pander to a power, more deeply imbued, if possible, with these unchristian aspirations than themselves. Need I mention the Pope of Rome, with his dupes, his satellites, and slaves ? Let the electors, when the time arrives (now not far off), look to this, and for the future, as they value their dearest rights here, and their eternal happiness or misery, shun being partakers in the heinous crime of betraying their country, and delivering it bound hand and foot to the tender mercies of the Man of Sin, and his coadjutors, for a mess of pottage.
Judging from the progress which Popery has lately made in these realms, and foreign dependencies, is there not a possibility, at least, that Papists may once more gain the ascendancy, and if so, would not our bishops and church dignitaries, to say no more, be under the necessity a second time, of leaving their native land to save their lives, when they might not have a Geneva to flee to, unless, indeed, the great majority are prepared, as formerly, to follow the humiliating example set by so many in the reign of the Stuarts, and our magnanimous Elizabeth. The Church, in its present palmy state, may view a reverse of fortune as impossible, but let us look at what is taking place in Switzerland, and let them take warning.
No one can tell what a union of Papists, Radicals, and Sceptics may do in Parliament. A Resolution may be passed there as in the Canton de Vaud, which may, as with the ministers there, render it impossible for them to hold their office. But if they would avoid such a painful catastrophe, it is high time that they should be up and doing, and no longer to sit with folded arms, in ominous silence.
When the enemy is thundering at the gate, all must share in the defence of the fortress, or take the consequences of the approaching storm. The way is pointed out to us in Scripture by the Lord himself. To our prayers we must unite personal exertions, if we would hope to retain our manifold blessings, or escape from the manifest dangers which threaten us both individually, and as a nation. In Scripture, in the Exodus, we read, “ The Lord said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me ? Speak unto the children of Israel that they go forward." Go forward, that although He could at once have wafted the whole host over by a word, yet it pleased (as it almost always has been) his will that his responsible human beings should join with his Holy Spirit in using the desired means. I would, moreover, beg to remind the dignitaries of the Church, of the denunciation pronounced in Scripture against the lukewarm, “I will spue thee out of my mouth.” I would adjure the whole sacred body not to allow the candle, lit by Latimer and Ridley, to be extinguished, but to remember, and to rest assured, that if there be any truth in history, if there be any meaning in prophecy, the same power which dragged the abovementioned Protestant Bishop martyrs to the stake, with many others, in the reign of bloody Mary, only waits its time, and the acquirement of power to evince, that it is still as deeply as ever imbued with the same persecuting spirit, with the same unquenchable hatred to Protestantism ; and that not having the love of the truth, it (the man of sin, &c.) will continue to cherish this hatred of the truth until the end ; until “ consumed by the breath of the mouth of the Lord, and destroyed by the brightness of his coming."
I remain yours,
WISHART AND HAMILTON.
TO THE ROMAN CATHOLICS OF IRELAND.
ENGLISHMEN pity your condition. They desire to be of use to you. But neither their law, nor their Gospel, nor their charity can do you any real and permanent good, unless you will be true to yourselves as men, and as free men.
“ Hereditary bondsmen, know ye not
Who would be free, himself must strike the blow?" Who are the slaves ? You, the Roman Catholics of Ireland, you are the slaves in body and mind, compelled to act and even to think at the bidding of another.
Who are the slaveholders ; the men who not unfrequently make use of horsewhips to frighten, if not to smite you as beasts of burden ?
Who are the slaveholders, who have possession of your consciences, so that you cannot have peace of mind till they choose to absolve you
? Who are the slaveholders, who have possession of your pockets, so that you cannot feed and clothe your wives or your children, or yourselves, till you have paid them the station-money and the Liberator's rint ?
Who are the slaveholders, who have possession of your wives and daughters, so that no family secret can be kept from them ; and so that, if you wished to enjoy the common liberty of man, to read the holy word of God, you dare not let your own flesh and blood see you, for fear they would tell in the Confessional, and bring you into trouble ?
Who are the slaveholders, who have possession of your votes, so that, if you voted for a good landlord, who is no repealer, you would not get your child christened, your wife churched, or yourself anointed, if you were at the point of death.
Who are the slaveholders ?
Hereditary bondsmen, know ye not