Irish Hierarchy’s Resolutions on Catholic Education (1873)
The following resolutions were adopted by the Irish hierarchy at a meeting in Dublin on 15th and 16th October, 1873:
Resolution No. 1. That, with a view to the improvement of Catholic Education, and in order to make our University a great centre of Catholic education throughout Ireland, we will take immediate steps to affiliate to it the several Colleges, Seminaries, and higher schools of our respective dioceses; that we approve and adopt the scheme proposed to our meeting relative to examinations for Matriculation and Degrees in Arts, Philosophy, and Theology; and that we sanction the arrangements for the creation of Bourses and Exhibitions, and authorize the University Council to complete and carry out this scheme in all its details.
Resolution No. 2. That we pledge ourselves to have the prescribed collection for the Catholic University made every year on the third Sunday of November, in every parish of our respective dioceses, giving it precedence of all local claims.
Resolution No. 3. That, whilst earnestly exhorting our flocks to support the Catholic University by their generous contributions, and to sustain by their influence our Catholic Educational Institutions, we renew our most solemn admonitions to Catholic parents to keep their children far away from all condemned colleges and schools.
Resolution No 4. That, whilst we sympathise with our people in every legitimate effort to ameliorate the condition and to promote the temporal welfare of our common country, we, as Bishops, call upon them to use all constitutional means to uphold the cause of Catholic Education, and we pledge ourselves to support, and exhort our people to support, as candidates for Parliamentary honours, only those who will, in Parliament and out of Parliament, strenuously sustain our Educational Rights, which are inseparably bound up with the best interests of religion.
Resolution No. 5. That the administration, financial and disciplinary, of St. Patrick’s House of Residence, Stephen’s Green, be confided to the Jesuit Fathers.
Resolution No. 6. That the erection of a new School of Medicine and University Hall, on the University site in Stephen’s Green, shall be commenced without delay, the plans to be previously approved by the University Council; and that a Committee be organised by the Rector to aid in collecting funds for that purpose.
Resolution No. 7. That the Rector be authorized to engage the services of competent gentlemen as lecturers on the following subjects for the present year, eight lectures to be delivered on each subject, viz.: English Language, English Literature and Poetry, Fine Arts, Geology, Irish Antiquities, Evidences of the Christian Religion, Modern Irish History.
Resolution No. 8. That we will use our best efforts to establish and maintain Classical Schools in the principal towns of our diocese.
Resolution No. 9. That we earnestly call upon our clergy throughout Ireland to exert all their vigilance and zeal in repressing drunkenness, which is one of the great evils of the day, demoralizing and impoverishing the people, and destroying in thousands the souls which Christ died to save. Amongst the means which may be usefully employed we recommend the “Association of Prayer” and the establishment in every parish of Temperance Societies, based upon the principles of the Catholic Religion.
Resolution No. 10. That we see with deep sorrow the continued sufferings of Our Most Holy Father Pope Pius IX, and the persecution to which Religion is subjected in Rome, the centre and capital of the Christian world; that we also deplore the evils by which, in Germany, Switzerland, Spain, and Italy, the Bishops of the Church, their Clergy, and Religious Orders, are afflicted; and, therefore, we exhort our flocks to put on the spiritual armour of Faith, and to approach the throne of God in fervent prayer, that in His mercy He may look down upon His children, and restore peace to the Head of His Holy Church, and to its members.
Signed on behalf of the meeting,
+PAUL CARDINAL CULLEN.