Excerpt about Jesuits from “Sweet Land of Liberty” by Charles C. Coffin (1879)

“…Ignatius Loyola, who founded the society of the Jesuits…
inspired others with his own lofty zeal.

“The members of the society went forth to convert the world,
to thread the jungles of India, traverse the deserts of Africa and
the steppes of Asia; uphold the Cross on the banks of the Amazon,
and plant it upon the peaks of the Andes; to rear churches amidst the fertile vales of Mexico;

“make their home in a palace or the hut of a savage; brave every danger, suffer every hardship; endure every privation; to die of hunger, thirst, cold or heat, disease or violence; to labor without reward except that which the Virgin Mary would extend to them, through their sacrifices to save souls from the clutches of the devil.

“They were to persuade men where persuasion was available; employ force where force was possible.

“It was their province to spy out the actions of men—meddle in all their affairs; fathom the secrets of human hearts; interfere in households, in cabinets, in halls of justice and legislation; set father against son, and son against father; stir up strife between husband and wife, mother and daughter.

“All earthly relations, all human considerations, all the ties which men deem sacred, were subordinated to the idea that baptism into the Church was of more value than anything else; that they were commanded by the Virgin to rescue men from perdition.

“To bring about that end by any means were justifiable. Each member was to watch every other member; report their faithful-
ness or unfaithfulness. They had one watch word—’Obedience.’

“With a zeal such as the world had never before witnessed, the Jesuits went forth upon their missions.

“Their history is interwoven with that of every nation—a record of self-denial, hardship, suffering, martyrdom; of burning zeal, fiery energy, tireless activity, unquenchable ardor; of religious devotions, worldly wisdom, benevolence, and charity; deceit, falsehood, hypocrisy, cruelty, and despotism.

“If they have been charitable and kind, they have also blackened history by the darkest of crimes. If they have lifted men to higher and nobler lives, they have also sent myriads to prison, and burnt hundreds of thousands at the stake.

“Time has not quenched their zeal; and though three hundred and fifty years have passed since their organization, they are still making their power felt in every country, controlling the consciences and actions of men.

“The tomahawk and scalping-knife, at the bidding of the Jesuits, will do bloody work from the Penobscot to the Ohio, and the lurid light of burning dwellings will illumine the midnight sky…” [ p. 49–51]

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