Page images

“I entreat you, my lord, to accept my decla. "ration of it, and to impart it to your worthy family.

" I am, with the highest esteem,
“ your most humble servant.





It was unanimously resolved,

That the conduct of the Romish clergy of this town, in compelling the parents of such children of their religion, as were pupils at said school, to withdraw those children, under pain of excommunication, excites our surprise. .

That the reason assigned by the Rev. John Corrin, parish priest of Wexford, for their being withdrawu, viz. “that attempts had been made " to seduce them from their religion,” appears to us to have no other foundation than a too easy belief of the misrepresentations of prejudice, and the fictions of calumny ;-- and we call upon Mr. Corrin to substantiate the charge, by naming the persons who attempted such seductions, and producing the children on whom it was practiced

That, had such attempts been made, they would not justify the mode of conduct which has been adopted; as it does not appear that complaint was ever made thereof to any governor or governess, or at any general quarterly meeting; nor does it appear that the interests of their religion could possibly have been injured by deferring this violent measure one week longer, when the general quarterly meeting of this day would have afforded an opportunity of complaint and redress.

That the female school of industry was established at a time of universal scarcity and distress; and that the children of the Romish religion were admitted into said school, and therein educated, and in part clothed and fed ; not, as is falsely asserted, to induce them to barter their religion for the supply of their wants; (of such baseness the governors and governesses of that school are incapable,) but to prevent those wretched children from falling the immediate victims of poverty and vice, to enable them to earn their daily bread by honest industry, and to teach them virtue.

That, when this subject, if cause of complaint did actually exist, could have been so easily adjusted by a temperate conduct, and a proper representation, on the part of the Romish clergy, of any grievance or defect, which occurred to them in the arrangements or conduct of this

infant institution, we lament the precipitancy which compels us to order, that the resolutions be three times inserted in the Dublin Journal, and that two hundred copies of them be printed for circulation here."

(Signed, by order)

JOHN MONTGOMERY, Sec. Wexford, Feb. 1, 1802.

· WEXFORD POOR SCHOOL OF INDUSTRY. · Rev. John Corrin, parish priest of Wexford, having been particularly censured by the governors and governesses of the Wexford poor school of industry, in their resolutions of the 1st. inst. published in the Dublin Journal, and in hand bills, deems it incumbent on him to lay before the impartial public, the principal reasons which induced the Roman catholic clergy of Wexford to admonish the Roman catholics to withdraw their children from the female poor school of industry therein.

Among the regulations for the government of the school, it was a fundamental one, that no person whosoever should be permitted to interfere, in any manner, with the respective religion of the children ; and to prevent any jealousies, or suspicions of such interference, it was resolved, that the protestants; should be sent to the

church, and the Roman catholics to the chapel, . to be instructed in the catechism. Those regu.


lations have been notoriously violated. On the day the children got new clothes, the Roman catholics were conducted in procession from the school to the church, where they remained during divine service, although to a message from one of the governesses, by Miss Jane Sutton, to Mr. Corrin, requesting to know whether the Roman catholic children would be permitted to appear in church on that day, it was answered, that the rules of the Roman catholic church forbid its members to join in any religious worship but its own on any account whatsoever. 2dly. The protestant catechism was taught publicly in the school. The Roman catholic catechism was not. The consequence of this was that the Roman catholic children, when questioned concerning the christian doctrine, answered from the protestant catechism, and knew more of it than their own. 3dly. They were compelled every day' to join the protestants in prayer. 4thly. Four of the children, viz. Eliz. Elliot, Eliz. Murphy, Mary M‘Namay, and Bridget Doyle, since they frequented the school, quitted the chapel, and went to church; and Mary M‘Namay, and Bridget Doyle are become protestants. 5thly. The Roman catholic children were compelled to work on the days commanded to be kept holy by the Roman catholic church.

The undernamcd, who appear to be the best informed of the Roman catholic children of the

scliool, the youngest of whom is, at least, twelve years old, some of them fourteen and fifteen, viz. Elizabeth Breene, Mary Whitty, Margaret Pierce, Ann Clements, Mary Barret, Ann Synnot, Mary Cuzens, Elizab. Hilfoy, Catherine Kirvan, Margaret Walsh, Mary Walsh, Mary Pierce, Judith Gall, have solemnly declared, that Mrs. Gibson, one of the mistresses of the school, Miss Hannah Jacob, and Miss Charlotte Turner, the two most frequent visitors of the school, sợ frequently attacked them on the different points of their religion and of their clergy, that scarcely a day passed, especially since the death of Mrs. Parker, but they heard something said to excite in them -a detestation of their religion, and of their clergy.

They particularly remember that Mrs. Gibson told them they were all idolators; that they kept but nine commandments; that they paid divine worship to images; that priests had no more power to absolve from sins than other men ; that the virgin Mary was no more than any other woman; that she ought not to be called blessed; that it was a fine thing to go to church, where they would understand what the minister said ; and Mary Cuzens declares, that Mrs. Gibson endeavoured to prevail on her particularly to go to church, which she believes she would have done, had she not been withdrawn from the school. Mrs. Gibson told them the Pope kept a Miss, or lewd woman. She

« PreviousContinue »