Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

ism, and so, because the business office rules, the journalist pandiers to the passions of the mob.

I would not have you believe that this is the universal condition of journalism. What I mean to say is, that such is its dominant character. Whát a magnificent field there is here for a journalist of worthy ideals ! How he could uplift his fellows to the knowledge and the love of truth and justice! How he could turn the searchlight of withering scorn upon the evil and the base, and drive the fawning sycophant and skulking criminal to their merited oblivion !

I have in mind a journalist, a graduate of this college, who, seizing his opportunities as a staff correspondent of a great metropitan laily, has done more in the last decade than any other man to purify the Augean stables of this State's government; who, without fear or favor, has been a veritable scourge to evil doers of high and low estate. I think that Detroit College should be proud to know that the man who exposed the military scandals of this State's government ten years ago and the mal-administration of our penal institutions within the last year claims her as his Alma Mater. One honest, earnest man, inspired by an ideal of righteousness, has produced two sweeping revolutions in our State's affairs; as his fellow alumnus, I mention with pride the name of Hugo A. Gilmartin, of the Detroit Free Press.

This is an age of unrest. This unrest, in my judgment, is the product of false ideals. Within the pale of the law, and as respectably as possible, the modern world has put into practice the homely philosophy of the outlaw clan MacGregor:

“And let him take who has the power

And let him keep, who can.' l'hat is needed nowadays is a regeneration of sacrifice, a suppression of selfishness, and a consecration to the common good. The scholar, as the priest and the prophet of his race, must point and lead the way to the consummation of this ideal. It has been given to him to know more and better than other men so that he might help other men to the achievement of their highest good. If we are to have genuine contentment and happiness amongst the sons of men, it will come to pass only through the recogni

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

tion of the brotherhood of man and the fatherhood of God. This recognition is manifested externally by obedience to the moral law. It has been given to the Christian scholar to learn, to know and to love this law as the way to humanity's highest good. This knowledge and love he must communicate to his less fortunate fellows, both by precept and example; fearless to speak it, zealous to live it, his elevation to the dignity of scholarship will not result in the crushing of his kind, but in their uplift to the level upon which he stands. He must strive to destroy the false ideal of the times; that ideal which measures a man's greatness by his wealth or his fame, or his learning; he must set up in its place his true ideal, that that man is greatest who gives greatest service to his race and he is not great but little indeed who serves not his race, but himself. Such, I believe to be the ideal worthy of the dignity of Christian scholarship, and as such I commend it to Catholic graduates in professional life.

THE HOME AND THE SCHOOL

MOST REV. JOHN J. GLENNON, D. D., ARCHBISHOP OF ST. LOUIS.

After the question of the Church and religion there is none of more importance or more worthy of discussion than the School and the Ilome. Their place and purpose have been before the world of thought and action from the beginning. They antedate in some form or other all civilization. They were at the beginning of our present civilization, and their progress and prosperity marked its progress. They have to do with the child of the present; with the citizen of the future: hence for the parent, the schoolman and the patriot they must have a perennial interest; and because I am to address parents, schoolmen and patriots, I selected the subject for this evening's discussion.

A trite subject—some will say—and I will admit it. As, for instance, has not your week been given to school talk, and as a background the frequent reference to home life as con

a

comitant and associated with successful school work? But though it be trite yet it is most opportune, indeed more than opportune; it is a subject to-day of vital importance; for to-day the right idea of School and Home is losing ground with some, by others it is modified, by many attacked with a bitterness and a vigor worthy of a better cause.

We begin to hear on every side “The home is not what it used to be," and paralleling it the statement that "Schools are not what they should be, or what we hoped they would be". L’nder the leadership of false prophets, of cheap pedagogues, of sensational socialists, the public of to-day are being led to believe that the home may be treated as mere incidental, a corner to fight from, a place to sleep in, a trifle to be traded.

But what is the right idea, the true definition of the home and the school? What are the constituent elements of the home? You may answer, the house itself of brick or stone, the garden and the fence rows by which trail the vine, the arbutus and the rose. I will agree with you these things are closely associated with the home, but for a true idea of a home we rise higher than brick and mortar, 'even when such is ornamented with vine and rose tree; a home is first of all builded of those who dwell there, and its ornaments are their love and devotion. The home should be the father and mother and children; these are, after all, its constituent elements. The father to represent protection and power; the mother to represent sacrifice and devotion, and the children to represent obedience and duty. And in the rounding out of this family circle that which binds them all together and makes for the unity, stability and blessedness of the home is their mutual affection and devotion one for the other. Where there is in the husband and father the prudence, justice and consecration that St. Joseph of old represented; where there is in the mother the goodness, sacrifice, immaculate purity that Mary represented long ago, and where the children grow in wisdom, age and grace before God and men, there you find the Christian home.

While you may admire the days of old with their heroes and their gods: vou may look back with pleasure to the civilization of Greece with all its beauty and its art; to the civilization of ancient Rome with all its laws and power; yet the tinsel show soon passes. Greece, the beautiful, soon vanishes and Rome, the powerful, soon declines because their people never knew the beauty of a home, nor the strength that comes therefrom in a nation's building. The home that we know did not come from Greece or Rome. In its upbuilding there is first of all, the strong foundation set there by Christ, Our Lord, when he made of marriage a sacrament, and set over the married couple the blessing of an indissoluble union. Pagan Rome and Greece claimed for the husband and father absolute power in the house where he lived, a power that extended to the wife and children, making him master of their fate and their future; giving to him the power to drive them from that house where they dwelled, and divorcing them from his support and protection and name.

The Christian Church, following the teaching of Christ and the example of Nazareth and the welfare of humanity, did teach and assert throughout its history that the home once builded, and the marriåge once performed, lawfully entered into, binds until death; that what “God has joined together no man can put asunder”. And on this foundation deeply set under the aegis and protection of the Church there slowly rose before the world the beauteous form of the Christian home, where husband and wife, united in that permanent bond, worked under God's benediction to make the place of their lives a place of beauty, and the expression of their lives a reflection of the love of God which they merited. And so the home grew in beauty and strength until this Christendom of ours, representing whatever there was of civilization and progress and power, has as its brightest blossoming the homes that we love.

The Christian home (and it is of the Christian home that I speak) is distinctly the outcome of the Christian faith working in and through our civilization. It is the background whence our Lord hoped to draw, as from a fountain, the life and love of the people who dwell there, and who from such a sanctuary became thereby the better fitted to walk to the sanctuary of their God. That Divine Providence so thoughtful, and so helpful, in moulding our civilization and bringing out of it the best that it has, not satisfied to make the sanctuary of the home replete with goodness and gentleness and virtue (as He made the sanctuary of the Church the shrine of the living God), would also have the child on his journey from the home, to the home of God, pass by the way where God's benediction may accompany him, His presence be recognized, and His name venerated.

Now the way from the home to the Church is the school, and the solicitude of our Savior for Church and home applies to the school also. And so, to complete this trinity, the school, whence the child should go on its way to God through life, should be the Christian school. Neither Greece nor Rome may give what the school of Christ has to offer, namely, the knowledge of Him, "who is the way, the truth and the life.”

For the home, then, as Christ founded it, as Christendom protected it, the Christian home; and for the school that commenced at Nazareth, and still remains under the Master's care, it is for these we stand to-night.

So runs the tide of the times, away from the home; orphanages multiply, our juvenile courts work overtime, the philanthropist is abroad, but vain his efforts, vain your charity if the Christian home is undone. For my part, while I believe the civilization we have inherited from our Christian fathers is not perfect, yet it is the only civilization possible, and it will fall if the home falls, and to-day the home is tottering under the repeated assaults of libertine, legislator and social reformer.

As for the school, the amount of time and thought expended on it to-day is only equalled by the silly and shallow conclusions arrived at. The modern child is experimented on in your schools to-day, somewhat as the guinea pig or the rabbit in your schools of medicine. Every new poison is administered, its effect noted, and the result tabulated. A dead rabbit, a spoiled child are generally the results, but "science advances and the world is more and more.”

I hold aloft two flaming symbols, oriflammes of our civilization, the Christian School and the Christian Home. Do we want them to remain? A strange question you say, yet if you will pause for a moment, if you look to the conditions of modern life, if you

a

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »