Some Men of Religion Do Disagree

Commentary by Joan Hough

After reading Jeff Davis’ commentary on the Catholic Bishop’s attack on Robert E. Lee, I spent the night staring at my moonlit ceiling. My anger at the words of the good Christian Bishop was such that "I would’ve if I could’veâ€Â thrown him in the proverbial tub and out with the baby’s bath water. His prejudices against my South erased for me a long-held belief that all modern Catholic priests were among the world’s best-educated human beings.

Perhaps, however, I am unfair. Perhaps, I should not be so harsh in my condemnation of a man’s failure to recognize his own abysmal ignorance. After all I, for too long, was ignorant of the truth–that brainwashing, via a slow ongoing over a hundred year process, has been a successful accomplishment in America’s government-smiled-upon schools’ curriculum. The victors, after all, do write the history. All their lies become the politically correct truths of the future–that future was several generations of yesterday, is now and, in all probability, will be all our tomorrows.

I am absolutely positive that there are large numbers of well-educated Catholic priests in Louisiana and elsewhere who would hasten to prove that Bishop wrong, that is if their feet still trod our South’s rich soil and their lives still continued. They, as witnesses of the Yankees’ dastardly deeds, would in very loud voices tell that bishop of the desecration of their churches by those Yankee invaders a century ago during that UnCivil War.

They would tell that bishop that many of those invaders were unable to even speak a word of English or French. They would tell the good bishop that he is mistaken if he thinks those mercenaries (hired gunmen) came to America to free slaves. They would tell him that even those soldiers, who were Northern born, did not come south to free slaves. The war was half over before Yankee soldiers even heard anything about freeing slaves. In fact, the North was losing when that idea was introduced. In fact, the North was losing–that’s WHY that idea was introduced. Slavery was never the reason for that war.

Evidently the good Bishop thinks highly of the soldiers of the Union, who drank booze from the chalices of Southern Catholic and Episcopal churches, donned priests’ cassocks and performed lewd dances and other obscene acts in the houses of God.

The Bishop, in casting aspersions on Robert E. Lee, excuses the Union soldiers who dug up even Catholic’s graves, or broke up the above ground vaults in Catholic and Protestant church cemeteries, and scattered the bodies of the dead about, sometimes before the horrified eyes of bereaved families.

He has chosen to heap scorn on a brilliant man who lived his Christianity. Where is the chastisement the bishop should have accorded Mr. Lincoln’s men who destroyed Bibles, prayer books, rosaries, pulpits, crosses and deliberately burned the cathedrals, small churches, big churches, seminaries, and convents of the South? Where is the bishop’s condemnation of an army that deliberately tortured, murdered directly, exposed to death from the elements, or starved to death innocent civilians–mothers with babies at their breasts, children, old folks, the sick, the wounded, the handicapped, and the helpless?

Where is his sorrow for the war against civilians–a true genocide approved by Mr. Lincoln, waged by General Sherman, and others of Lincoln, the great emancipator’s Generals?

The pure in heart Bishop must admire those men who performed horrific actions if he condemns all who sought to prevent such. These horrendous behaviors of the invaders and their generals were witnessed and reported in sworn testimonies by civilian folks in my Louisiana, many of whom were Catholics. Some foreigners from England and France foreigners filed suits against the Republican government afterwards.

Should the good bishop respect truth and desire to add it to his knowledge, I suggest he read THE CONDUCT OF FEDERAL TROOPS IN LOUISIANA DURING THE INVASIONS OF 1863 AND 1864: COMPILED FROM SWORN TESTIMONY, edited and annotated by David C. Edmonds.

I suggest that he attend to the actions of Mr. Lincoln’s soldiers in New Iberia where they stole the sacred vessels from the St. Martinville Catholic Church, struck with the flats of their sabers and kicked the venerable priest who ministered at the altar and violently forced him to give up the carriage he used to take him to the bedsides of his dying parishioners. What would the good bishop’s opinion of Father Ange Marie Jan, who sued the Federal Government for damages after the war?

In Alexandria, a fuse was set to blow up the Episcopal Church, but it went out, the powder did not explode until the building burned down to it and scattered the fire which had been set.

In Columbia, Virginia, the Methodist Church was burned. In that church, four hundred black folks had been given the sacrament the Sabbath before it was burned. The Ursuline convent, also, was deliberately torched and destroyed. Drunk soldiers blew smoke in the sisters’ faces saying "Holy! Holy! O yes, we are holy as you!: And: "What do you think of God now? Is not Sherman greater?" (Myria Avary. Dixie After the War, 4) One of the sisters died as a result of that horror.

The incidents mentioned here are but a few of the thousands upon thousands of horrors civilians were forced to endure because Southerners refused to give up their belief in a U.S. Constitution that was completely ignored by a dictator claiming to follow its words. Southerners, remembering their own grandfathers’ secession from the British kingdom because of excessive taxation, chose not to kowtow to Lincoln and his Marxist-Republicans. Instead, they chose to leave–to "divorce" Lincoln. They sought not to engage in a Civil War by the original definition of such–had no desire to take over the U.S., but asked only to be left alone. Following in the footsteps of their Revolutionary War grandfathers, they seceded.

The South had already begun the process of freeing slaves. Even Saint Lincoln knew that, just as he knew that no other nation in the world had required a war in order to eliminate slavery. His Republicans knew that also, just as we know that they did business with and continued to do business with a South American nation which held on to its slavery long after America’s South was smashed to near non-existence.

Thanks be to the good Lord that not all men of the Church have minds that work like that of the good Catholic bishop’s. Every Sunday for a number of years I looked upon the face of one, with a far different view of the Confederacy, a wonderful, blessed man who gave his all for the Confederacy and is remembered by his church for his sacrifice. I saw his face depicted in a gorgeous stained glass window in a beautiful Southern church. His name is Leonidas T. Polk. He was Bishop Polk of the Episcopal Church.

Only now, today, can I, who have had an opportunity to learn the truths concealed from me throughout all the days of my formal education, really appreciate the lives sacrificed by Bishop Polk and by my children’s great great grandfather, Brigadier General Leroy Augustus Stafford of Louisiana, who was slain at the Battle of the Wilderness, leaving behind him a wife and ten children. Only now can I truly grieve over the tortures my cousin, Pvt. Samuel T. Mullinax of Louisiana, experienced before dying in the Yankee hell hole prison, Camp Douglas,. He may have been thrown with thousands of his fellows into a hole in a swamp outside of Chicago. He certainly had no Christian burial. Only now am I beginning to understand the agonies suffered by my North Carolina great, great grandfather who walked home from prison (probably Point Lookout) and the pain of my Mississippi great grandfather, as he hobbled home on bloody bare feet.

I will never forget, nor will my children and grandchildren. All Americans with Southern roots should remember. None of us will ever condemn the good Catholic bishop for his church’s systematic burning of thousands of innocent Cathars, nor will we condemn him for the Catholic Inquisition which resulted in the deaths of untold numbers of innocents. All of these horrors were recorded by European historians, so it would be generous of him to refrain from drawing conclusions about Robert E. Lee and other Southerners when those conclusions are based totally on information, proven incorrect by eye witnesses–many of them of the bishop’s own faith.

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