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1. Your paternal blessing to the members, inmates and benefactors of the "Ephpheta Mission for the Deaf" and of the "Ephpheta School for the Deaf," both in the city of Chicago.
2. Your paternal blessing to all the members of the conference known as the Catholic Deaf-Mute Conference.
3. A plenary indulgence at the hour of death to all who die within the year during which they work for the salvation of the deaf, and also to those who during their lifetime have at least for one year, in schools or missions worked for the salvation of the deaf.
4. To all the deaf who have enrolled themselves at a Catholic center or mission for the deaf a plenary indulgence at the hour of death, to be gained by any interior or exterior act of faith.
5. That the eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, on which is read the gospel of the cure of the deaf and dumb, be for the deaf their patronal feast, and that on that day, the deaf and any benefactor of the deaf may gain a plenary indulgence by going to confession and receiving Holy Communion.
6. That the favors asked extend also to those deaf who have learned to speak or retain some use of their former speech.
7. An indulgence of 300 days to all who recite the following prayer: Lord Jesus Christ who doing all things well hast made the deaf to hear and the dumb to speak, graciously grant to these thy beloved children patience, and steadfastness in the Faith, so that finally full of merits they may eternally hear and speak the divine praises. Who livest and reignest with God the Father in unity of the Holy Ghost God world without end. Amen.
Recommending the petition for favors,
HENRY MOELLER, Archbishop of Cincinnati.
Translation of the Pope's autograph letter:
In accordance with the petition we most lovingly bestow the Apostolic Blessing on the loved ones named in the memorial, the privileges and indulgences we most readily grant, and we pray the Lord may bestow upon all who in any way lend their services to this work of eminent charity every prosperous and salutary gift.
At our Vatican residence, June 13, 1910.
PIUS PP. X.
A CALL TO ACTION
A Plea For Deaf-Mutes
REV. THOMAS A. GALVIN, C. SS. R.
Knowledge is a call to action. When that action is indispensable for the supreme cause-God and the salvation of souls— then hesitation becomes a crime. That crime becomes the more deplorable the higher the rank, and the greater the responsibility of those who have been commissioned to sound the call to action. The Catholic clergy in this country, like a valiant army of Crusaders with the Bishops at their head, have been fighting nobly for the cause of God and souls. Confident of success in the conflict, with the strength of God in their arms, they have met the enemy in every field; and, to-day, the banner of the Catholic Church, the Cross of Christ, is planted on thousands of fortresses, on our churches, our schools, our universities, our seminaries, our institutions. The glory of triumph, like noonday splendor, sheds a golden lustre about the Catholic Church in America, so that today we enjoy the admiration and respect of the world. To our gallant Bishops-the commanders-in-chief-be the laurel wreath of victory! To their lieutenant-generals, our noble-hearted priests, be immortal honor! And high up, in golden letters, on the Roll of Honor, be written the names of our self-sacrificing Brothers and Nuns for their apostolic share in this wonderful achievement!
But, amidst the century-long turmoil of the terrific battle, the heart-wailings of our silent deaf-mutes have not been heard. The enemy was quick to perceive their awful predicament, en
compassed them on all sides, and now more than half of the Catholic deaf-mutes, who constitute a large portion of our army, are prisoners of war in the hands and under the satanic power of a relentless enemy. From this cruel thraldom they, of themselves, cannot escape. We have a certain knowledge of this. Knowledge is a call to action. What shall this action be?
IN THE COUNCIL.
Before defining the nature of this action I humbly crave your indulgence for a necessary explanation.
Rt. Rev. and Illustrious Members of this Association: I wish to declare right here that I am intensely conscious of the delicacy of this deaf-mute question. This matter is so momentous and far-reaching that I feel like a child "amidst the doctors" or like an humble scout before his officers. But because we of the Deaf-Mute Department have been admitted into the council of America's educational warriors we have loyally thrown ourselves heart and soul into the confidence, power and influence of the Catholic Educational Association. You, gentlemen, are either generals or lieutenant-generals, or belong to the official staff of the various diocesan armies. At any rate, you are gathered here, if not in a council of war, at least in a cabinet meeting of the most illustrious dignitaries in the country. You are assembled in behalf of Catholic education. We of the Deaf-Mute Department are only scouts sent out or authorized by the Bishops to labor in their battlefields, and to gather the information that will assist them in their deliberations for the common welfare.
We now humbly lay before you the knowledge we have gleaned from friend and foe, from field and fireside. We know that our Bishops desire those whom they authorize to labor as missionaries or scouts in their dioceses to acquaint them with the true state of this important question; not childishly to conceal from them the dangers that they could and would avert had they been opportunely and dutifully advised. If, therefore, through puerile timidity, we would withhold from our Bishops-the commanders-in-chief and their official representatives-the facts and dangers which they, depending on our integrity of character, expect and have a right to know, we should be branded as untrust
worthy scouts, untrue to duty, undeserving of episcopal confidence, disloyal to the cause of Catholic education and unworthy to appear before this illustrious assembly of the Catholic Educational Association.
Our knowledge of the deaf-mute question assures us that the time has come for a call to action in every diocesan battlefield; the time for deliberation and hesitation has passed. The bugle call should be sounded, and the rank and file, as well as the officers, must rise up and hurry to the rescue of our helpless fellow-soldiers, the Catholic deaf-mutes of America.
LIKE LEAVES IN AUTUMN.
What are the facts? If you have tears to shed, prepare to shed them now. The condition of our Catholic deaf-mutes is most deplorable, the most saddening of any class of people in this country. The condition of incurable lunatics is not so heartrending; for our Catholic deaf-mutes are intelligent, quick of perception, remarkable for their hearty good will and their appreciation of favors, whereas lunatics possess none of these noble traits of character, and, therefore, do not realize the sadness of their condition, nor of their isolation from the rest of human kind. It is quite different, however, with our Catholic deafmutes. They know what ought to be done for them. They are willing to remain Catholics. For years they have been pleading for priests, for schools, for recognition; but their pleading, as I have said, has been unheard in the din of battle. They are intelligent readers of newspapers and periodicals, both Catholic and non-sectarian. They are, therefore, kept well informed about things general and Catholic. They see rising up all around them Catholic institutions for every human indigency, but nothing being done for them.
Collections are taken up for seminaries, universities, orphan asylums, parochial schools, for negroes and Indians; they even contribute their share to these collections; but it is a pang to their hearts that, in spite of their affliction, in spite of their pleadings, nothing has been undertaken by any recognized public educational organization or relief bureau in their behalf. There are, it is true, a few Catholic institutions for our Catholic deaf
mutes; but they are so few and far away that the vast majority of Catholic deaf-mutes scattered all over the country cannot be benefitted by their existence. There are bureaus of relief for many needy people; but look through the Catholic Directory, ask the representatives of the various dioceses, and you will discover that there is not yet any federated society, bureau or organization in behalf of this portion of our Lord's afflicted ones. As I have said, the Catholic deaf-mutes are keen and quick of perception. They have recognized their deplorable condition. It has stared them in the face like a forlorn hope for years.
What has been the consequence? Discouragement and demoralization have spread amongst them like a contagious poison, leaving them these intelligent, affectionate, good-hearted peopleleaving them weakened in faith, forlorn in hope, and ready to fall victims to the first evil influence. In this sad state of affairs the enemy, the marauding Protestant minister, pounced upon the camp, and, to-day, the appalling fact stares us in the face, like the pointed finger of reproach, that 30,000 deaf-mutes have lost the Faith; and of the other 10,000 who are considered Catholics, half of them are so weakened by Protestant influence that they also will be lost to the Church in a few years.
We read that St. Theresa, in a vision, beheld souls falling into hell like leaves in autumn. We need not wait for such visions, nor do we need them, to prove to us that our Catholic deaf-mutes are falling away from the Church like leaves in autumn.. We may not close our eyes to this horrible fact, nor shut out from our minds this appalling conviction without the reproach that withers our very manhood.
Ah, listen to their heart-piercing cry, the echo of their forlorn hopes! "We Catholic deaf-mutes are falling away from the Church like leaves in autumn, and will the Catholic Church, now so prosperous, stand idly by and see us, their helpless brothers and sisters, lost to the Church! Like leaves in autumn we are lost to the Church; lost to the joys and glories and triumphs of Catholic education! But ah, now, thanks to a merciful Providence, the Catholic Educational Association, our savior, has come! Ah, Catholic Educational Association, we now bow before thee! Thou art the hoped-for savior, come to us after the