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Leo XIII’s Old World Order – “the best and strongest support of morality is religion”

One of the last voices crying in the wilderness.

I’ve just been having a very interesting read of an encyclical of Leo XIII that even most traditionalists have never heard of. “Longinqua Oceani” was addressed to the American Catholic Church in 1895. It proposed something that to  modern ears would sound outrageous… even traditionalist ears: that separation of Church and state is a Bad Thing.

While most Catholics – particularly American Catholics – would vehemently oppose such a wild and dangerous idea, most Traditionalist Catholics would have at least heard of it as something popes used to say, even if they dismiss it as a possibly imprudent “prudential judgment,” something best hushed up for the sake of our non-believing brethren.

But of course it’s funny you should mention this urge to shut up on these topics that seem weird and outlandish, even to modern novusordoist Catholics. Because that self-silencing was exactly what Pope Leo was writing against, both in Longinqua and later in the more famous Testem Benevolentiae.  (It is also very positive about the state and general run of things in the Church in America, dispelling the mythology that Leo just didn’t really approve of y’all or had some Europhile prejudice.)

To wit:

Nor, perchance did the fact which We now recall take place without some design of divine Providence. Precisely at the epoch when the American colonies, having, with Catholic aid, achieved liberty and independence, coalesced into a constitutional Republic the ecclesiastical hierarchy was happily established amongst you; and at the very time when the popular suffrage placed the great Washington at the helm of the Republic, the first bishop was set by apostolic authority over the American Church. The well-known friendship and familiar intercourse which subsisted between these two men seems to be an evidence that the United States ought to be conjoined in concord and amity with the Catholic Church. And not without cause; for without morality the State cannot endure-a truth which that illustrious citizen of yours, whom We have just mentioned, with a keenness of insight worthy of his genius and statesmanship perceived and proclaimed.

I’m going to be writing about this today – my next bit for the Remnant – and will let y’all know when it’s available in full. But I think it’s worth a read all by itself – think of it as a homework assignment –  if for nothing else just to see what popes sounded like before the Church lost her way. Here is a pope not afraid or ashamed of the Faith and the Church established by Christ to promulgate and preach it to all the nations.

Leo is one of my favourite encyclicalists, even more than Pius X, and as a peek into Catholic history he is recent enough to be a good history teacher. We can see, reading him, much more clearly what happened to our civilization … what, exactly, happened.

Here is a pope speaking from the heart of a Church that has not lost its compass by the wayside, full of authority and joyful surety.

the best and strongest support of morality is religion. She, by her very nature, guards and defends all the principles on which duties are founded, and setting before us the motives most powerful to influence us, commands us to live virtuously and forbids us to transgress. Now what is the Church other than a legitimate society, founded by the will and ordinance of Jesus Christ for the preservation of morality and the defence of religion? For this reason have We repeatedly endeavored, from the summit of the pontifical dignity, to inculcate that the Church, whilst directly and immediately aiming at the salvation of souls and the beatitude which is to be attained in heaven, is yet, even in the order of temporal things, the fountain of blessings so numerous and great that they could not have been greater or more numerous had the original purpose of her institution been the pursuit of happiness during the life which is spent on earth.

Now read this, and think about what happened next. Think about how, just under 20 years later, the vile, anti-human, anti-rational secularist, freemasonic powers that grew like a poisonous carbuncle out of the Protestant Revolt, would set fire to the whole world.

This is a hundred years. Almost a hundred years ago, the Bolshevik Revolution convulsed Russia and turned her into a monster that is still eating the world. Almost a hundred years ago, Our Lady came to visit and warned us what was coming. And it came. It has never stopped coming since then.

I think this is going to be a most interesting year.


19 thoughts on “Leo XIII’s Old World Order – “the best and strongest support of morality is religion””

  1. Evangeline says:

    I love Leo XIII. His words are shocking because we are all of us at least somewhat accustomed to insults and apostasy from our pope and clerics now.

    Isabel, I don’t agree there is “hatred from Anglo Americans to Hispano Americans”. Every culture has a natural affinity for it’s own, that is just human nature. This fact of human nature tends to get criticized when it comes from the community of Americans who descend from Europe, but not in Hispanic or African or Asian communities. It is a double standard that is patently unfair. At this time, many Americans feel over-run by our neighbors to the south and Central America, and in fact, we have been, but most Americans are very familiar and comfortable with our Latino brothers and sisters, and you must admit there is no noticeable cultural tensions between the groups in the US. I think most Americans recognize the common thread that connects Latinos and Americans of European descent, many common threads but certainly, a tendency toward Christian values and faith, love of family, and a recognition of working hard, as a cultural value.
    Give groups like “La Raza” a listen. See if you detect some anti-Anglo sentiment with that group. These types are always among us but do not speak for the group at large.
    Viva Cristo Rey! Happy Easter all.

  2. Alan says:

    Of Course, Pope Leo XIII was not referring to just any religion or prayer group when he said Church. He was speaking specifically of the Catholic Church – The Church – full stop. Anything else is simply a sect or a cult. That is the basic issue with “religious freedom.” Without understanding the word “Church,” one could argue a satanic “church’ could have the right to join with the state. (I think this is called “secular” nowadays).

    And the Church is above the state, as the Kingdom of God is above the world. So where the church is led and inspired by the state, it is disordered. Where the state is inspired and led by the Church, it is right ordered, and so follows society, economy, public activities, institutions, and so forth.

  3. Brian G says:

    “the best and strongest support of morality is religion”
    Morality could not survive when the Church led fervently with a “Grand Silence” of the salvific message since v2.
    The mantra “Can’t we all just get along” that has replaced the narrow road to our Lord has led us to today…

  4. louiseyvette says:

    “For the morals enforced by the Church are the guarantee of freedom.” – Hilaire Belloc

  5. louiseyvette says:

    “But of course it’s funny you should mention this urge to shut up on these topics that seem weird and outlandish, even to modern novusordoist Catholics. Because that self-silencing was exactly what Pope Leo was writing against, both in Longinqua and later in the more famous Testem Benevolentiae.”

    Excellent. I will read this, ASAP. To me, the separation of Church and State is obviously stupid. I mean, there is a distinction between the two, but if we think about the divorce laws in any Western state, it’s clear they are completely incompatible with the Faith. The laws themselves create all kind of anomalies. Who can stand this stuff?

    The state is always confessional, that’s what most people don’t realise. In a secular state, the confession is “Secularism” complete with its own set of doctrines. If I were Anglican, I would want to live in Britain as it was a few decades ago, with the Established Church. If I were a Hindu, I would want to live in a Hindu state. If I were an atheist, I would want to live in a secular state. Since I am Catholic, I would prefer to live in a Catholic state. I consider this to be uncontroversial. I also think we need to be up front about this teaching, and we need to find a way to make it at least understandable to any reasoning person.

    A religiously neutral state is a complete fiction. It does not exist anywhere.

    And yes, 2017 is a momentous year. My spirituality was never very Marian, but current events have had me running to my Mother.

  6. Douglas Valenzuela says:

    Government derives its power from God and has the obligation to encourage virtue and to suppress vice.
    Unity of Church and State has worked best when the Catholic Church is faithful to its Founder, Our Lord Jesus Christ.
    The bishops of the United States of America, per Cardinal Gagnon, have been in de facto schism for decades now.
    Their apostasy has enabled them to suckle up to the New World Order and President Obama rewarded their union with
    his Alinskyite State to the tune of over $400,000,000.00 during 2016. This brand of apostate church & state alliance does
    not exalt the standard of Christ the King. Catholic clergy have repeatedly betrayed Catholic laity who have rallied to the
    public defense of the Rights of God. Examples abound over the years in France, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Cuba, and in the United States. The chronic betrayal by the clergy does not relieve the laity of their obligation to witness for the Rights of God. Whether the clergy understand that evil governments that usurp the Rights of God are ipso facto illegitimate does not excuse the laity from being champions of Christ the King in the public arena.

  7. Thomas Augustine says:

    If you look at the USA you will find that the American people have repeatedly voted against modernism from a moral perspective, but the court system has rammed it down their throats. Even liberal California voted to amend their state constitution to keep marriage one man and one woman, but the courts threw it out. This story is repeated for abortion, pornography and even prayer in school etc.

  8. Johnno says:

    Separation of Church and State?

    I’m pretty sure the current climate is more like a form of Ceasaropapism. Just replace ‘Caesar’ with the leftist party of your choice.

    The State now runs the Church. They do so via tax exemptions and tax money for all the Frankenstein Church’s various outreach programs.

  9. Isabel says:

    Catholic Spain and France (although the latter much tainted by other currents) did support the American side, although they have gotten little thanks mostly because they were Catholic. Well, the French some, the Spanish almost none. The Anglo American hatred of Hispano America defies description, partly at least because the Spanish were here first and actually the British colonists spent a lot of their time trying to drive the Spanish out of what is now the Southern US. But let bygones be bygones.

    That said, in terms of a state church, this can be good or bad. An official church is fine if it does allow for others and allow them full participation in civic life, doesn’t impose penalties, collect special taxes, etc. If it’s a living church (the Catholic Church) it will survive even being a state church, but if its based on a failing ideology (most Northern European Protestant churches, as well as the Anglican Church), it won’t survive even though it receives state support. This is because the Protestant churches all adapted to the secular ideology, which is exactly what Francis wants the Catholic Church to do now.

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  12. Aaron Traas says:

    @KM — The church should oppose the state when the state strays from Christ. The church shouldn’t blindly cooperate or be silent, like it’s wont to do now.

    We’re in a position where the church heirarchy and most western states subscribe to the same errors. That Democratic rule is good is one of those errors.

  13. Michael Dowd says:

    Given the situation in the Church today can you just imagine the damage Pope Francis and President Obama could do together? Or wait, maybe they already have.

  14. Mike says:

    I love it when Leo XIII says outright that not only individuals but states fall under the authority of Our Lord. First, because it’s true, and second, it short-circuits V2ers in a flash.

  15. Italian in Quebec says:

    I am a newcomer to Quebec (I moved to Montreal few months ago), but I dare to say that whatever might have been the past Throne&Alter alliance is certainly better of the current disaster.

    On a different note: Hilary, I started reading you regularly as soon as I discovered your blog. May I ask you what’s is your take on the “AnonimidellaCroce”? Fake news or real whispers ?

  16. Hilary White says:

    Yes, politics and human evil…

    But not only that.

    There are specific issues with regards to our particular times.

    “I heard that Lucifer (if I do not mistake) will be freed again for a while fifty or sixty years before the year 2000 AD. Some other demons are to be freed before Lucifer, in order to chastise and tempt mankind.”

  17. Andrew Dunn says:

    The problem with democracy is that eventually, the wrong people will be elected and when that happens, it is very, very, very rare that the mistakes they implement will ever be reversed. Case in point, morals in the United States have gotten progressively worse (pun fully intended) since, oh ironically around the same exact time as Vatican II, but that’s another topic. Sure the mistakes of 1960s and 70s America were brought to us by the likes of policies implemented under pressure by the Johnson and Carter administrations via their friends in Congress but why weren’t those policies not only stopped during the more family-friendly Reagan and Bush administrations? Because… in a democracy, even a minority political party of no-gooders can block, cause stalemate and even worse, compromise legislation with the opposition in order to not only maintain their diabolical policies but strengthen those policies. Very few of us in this world understand how totally satanic the French Revolution was and how the societal collapse we see now with morals ties right back to the seeds the Revolution successfully planted. I long for the day when I will spend eternity living under Christ THE KING in the KINGdom of Heaven.

  18. Hilary White says:

    The mistake is to blame the Catholic teaching – as the anti-Catholic secularists have schooled us to do – when there were a myriad of other factors to be blamed.

  19. KM says:

    What’s that supposed to look like in practice? Being originally from Quebec, my knowledge of how “Church and State working together” actually plays out in real life is: “It’s a disaster.” For that matter, it didn’t work out too well in Ireland either, who are now doing the Quebec-style apostasy thing with much vigour. The Church in Poland was strong when it was in opposition to the government; now, not so much.

  20. philip johnson says:

    Hilary.Once again you are a true witness to the Truth.This Apostasy is being played out under our very eyes as The Bergoglio gets worse and worse.His constant tirade of abuse against good Catholics,and his astonishing verbals assaults on Our Blessed Lord ,leaves no doubt as to what is coming.He will be the first to experience the prophecies of Our Lady-over many apparitions.This year is pivotal for the world.God Bless.

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