Friday 26 October 2007

When giants walked the earth: the pre-suppression Jesuits

St Ignatius of Loyola

It is but little known that immediately the New World was discovered, the Spanish monarchy established laws to protect the native Indians - the very opposite of what happened in Protestant North America where slavery was accepted and then made legal in the new colonies (e.g. in Massachusetts in 1625).

Lying secular and Protestant propaganda tries to pretend the opposite but the facts reveal otherwise.

In fact, when, in the 18th century, the higher echelons of government in many Catholic countries were infiltrated by anti-clericals and Freemasons, these same anti-clericals were notable for their re-introduction of the abomination of slave-trading.

The anti-clerical Marquess of Pombal, Freemasonic Prime Minister of Portugal, re-introduced it into the Portuguese territories in Latin America, clean contrary to the laws of the Church and of the former Portuguese monarchy.

Yet Pombal is lauded by secularists, atheists, anti-clericals, Catholic-haters and baiters as a great "reformer" and "thinker" and "social activist".

The "Devil's reformer" would be a better description!

But so runs the hypocrisy and falseness of this fallen world.

Needless to say, it was a Freemasonic conspiracy of Pombal and his Masonic allies in other countries that led directly to the suppression of the Jesuit missions in the Reductions and eventually to the suppression of the whole Jesuit Order in 1773 on the orders of an intimidated, threatened and oppressed Pope, Clement XIV, who thereby became the tool of the Freemasonic powers of Europe.

Count Aranda in Spain, the Duke of Choiseul in France, Prince Kaunitz in the Empire and others all conspired to destroy the Jesuit Order which, by then, had become the most Catholic Order in the world and probably the most Catholic that has ever been.

The suppression of this Order drew down the most terrible wrath and vengeance, permitted by heaven, against those nations who had conspired to bring it about or allowed such infamy in their midst. The French Revolution was let loose less than 20 years later, brought about by the very Freemasons who had conspired to destroy the Jesuits. Europe and the world has even now not yet quite recovered from that most bloody and terrible cataclysm.

From humble beginnings these most extraordinary of men, the Company of Jesus, had set out to conquer the world - but not with arms but with the love of God. And they had nearly succeeded.

The reached China, Japan, India, the Americas, the East and West Indies, Russia and all points East and West - they even reached Ethiopia and 4 Jesuits almost converted the whole country.

They taught themselves the local languages, lived with the people, respected their culture and government and taught them Christianity, remaining their servants and chaplains at all times.

Truly Giants walked the earth in those days!

In Latin America, the Jesuits famously created Reductions or cities in the jungles for the Guarani and other Indian tribes.

Map of the Reductions

The Jesuit Reductions were part of the Spanish colonial strategy of building reductions (reducciones de indios) in order to civilise and catechise the native populations of South America. They were supported by the Spanish Church and monarchy but resisted by the rogue slave-traders, free-booters, Freemasons and thugs that sought to exploit the Indians contrary to the laws of both Church and State.

They were created in the Tupi-Guarani areas of Portuguese Brazil and Spanish America and became famous for their resistance to enslavement by the enemies of the Church who had but recently infiltrated and captured the government of most of the Catholic countries of Europe.

Having first landed in South America in 1550, the Jesuits protected the Guaraní from the raids of the slave-hunters from Portugal and Spain. They founded several missions or reductions and developed a kind of evangelisation that was possibly unique in Christian history.

The first settlement was founded in 1609. The Freemasons and anti-clericals having suppressed the Reductions later tried to make up for their infamy by claiming, falsely, that the Reductions were a kind of utopian egalitarian democracy which they certainly were not.

Even now people think that's what they were. They simply weren't.

The Reductions were organised along the lines of a typical Spanish town or village except that all the chiefs and leaders were native Indians, not Spanish, and the customs of the Indians were kept save insofar as they were incompatible with Christianity. The Jesuits were their chaplains.

The Indians were taught to be loyal to the monarchy and so they were - both to their own chiefs and kings and to the Spanish and Portugese kings.

The Jesuits founded free public services for the poor, public schools, and hospitals, and abolished the death penalty. The inhabitants of the Reductions worked communal land, and all the products they produced were distributed by fair rules. They worked only a 6 hour day and used their leisure to create and to pray.

This was NOT Socialism, still less Communism as some ignorant nincompoops still try to maintain. It was Catholic monarchy and Catholic Distributism.

And what a huge success it was! In time the Indians, who were skilled craftsmen and musicians, were able to perform whole choral works and some Indian composers even began to compose choral works and Baroque masses of their own. Yes, truly! Astonishing though it sounds! And this from a people who, not long before, had been living like primitive, bloody savages in the jungle, worshipping demons.

This is what Christianity achieves. This is the gigantic cultural and spiritual heritage that Western man now wants to throw away. Fools!

The Indian workshops made such soundly crafted musical instruments that they were sold for the best prices in the markets of Europe among the work of the very best of European instrument makers. Again - astonishing but true!

The Freemasons and their slave-trading friends could not tolerate this. It interfered with their profits from slave-trading and exploitation. It also annoyed them that this was a Church enterprise and not a Freemasonic one and above all they hated the fact that it had been set up by the Jesuits who were so Catholic and so loyal to Pope and King.

The devilish Masons plotted the downfall of the whole Jesuit Order and with it the fate of many around the world who depended upon the Jesuits, hung in the balance

A treaty handed over the missions in Spanish territory to the Portuguese who, thanks to the odious and despicable Pombal, had now legalised slaving and slavery. The treaty caused surprise and indignation in the Spanish colony of La Plata. The Viceroy of Peru, the royal Audiencia of Charcas, and the secular and ecclesiastical authorities unanimously sent protests of the most emphatic nature to the Spanish Cabinet. They were as unsuccessful as the earnest petitions of the Jesuits, who declared that it was impossible to approach the Indians with the cruel demand to give up their home and their possessions, solemnly granted them by so many royal decrees, and to surrender them without any cause or provocation to their enemies and oppressors, the Portuguese.

It was all of no avail. Ignazio Visconti, the General of the Society, over-compliant to the wishes of government, issued a strict command to the members of the order to yield to the inevitable and to prevail upon the exiled Indians to submit, a task which they performed, at first indeed without success. In begging earnestly for a respite and in making every effort to have the cruel measure revoked the Jesuits merely performed their Christian duty; to present their conduct as insubordination, as has been done, is unjust.

Their position was infinitely aggravated by the imprudent and domineering behaviour of the Spanish and Portuguese plenipotentiaries, and especially by the impassioned attitude of the commissary of the order, Fr Luis Altamirano, S.J., who treated as rebels his own brethren, who advised him to proceed with care and moderation. In spite of all the appeals of the Fathers, the Indians, goaded beyond bearing, rose in arms, but having no leader and lacking unity, were defeated in battle in February, 1758. Those who did not submit fled into the forests, where some of them carried on an unsuccessful guerilla warfare.

Ruins of a reduction Church

The greater part of the Indians, following the advice of the Fathers, emigrated and settled in the Reductions on the Rivers Paraná and Uruguay (right bank). In 1762 there were still 2497 families, numbering 11,084 souls, scattered there in 17 Reductions; 3052 families, numbering 14,018 souls, had returned to their old home in 1781. For in that year had cancelled the unfortunate treaty of 1750, acknowledging thereby the mistake that had been made.

This War of the Seven Reductions was made to serve as one of the principal points of accusation advanced by the enemies of the Jesuits. A flood of defamatory pamphlets, falsified documents, and ridiculous fables, as, for instance, the tale of a king, Nicholas I of Paraguay, went out from an unscrupulous press which Pombal controlled, and was spread broadcast over Europe by the anti-Jesuit faction. Although their absolutely unhistoric character has long been clearly proven, these publications continue even now to vitiate the historical presentation of this period.

The rest is known. On 2 April, 1767, Charles III of Spain, weak and duped by his evil Masonic ministers, signed the edict which decreed the exile of the Jesuits from the Spanish possessions in America. It was the death-warrant of the Reductions of Paraguay. The expulsion was carried out by force by the Governor of La Plata, the Marquess of Bucareli, in the most brutal manner.

"The Jesuits in Paraguay, at least, by their conduct in their last public act, most amply vindicated their loyalty to the Spanish crown.... Nothing would have been easier, depleted as the viceroyalty was at the time of troops, than to have defied the forces which Bucareli had at his disposal and to have set up a Jesuit State, which would have taxed the utmost resources of the Spanish crown to overcome" . . . [but] "they made no fight, nor offered any resistance, allowing themselves to be taken as the sheep is seized by the butcher" (Cunninghame Graham, loc. cit., 267).

The followed their divine Lord in so doing who "was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb without voice before his shearer, so openeth he not his mouth" (Acts 8:32).

As the Jesuits were led away in chains by the soldiers under orders from Freemasons like Pombal and Aranda, the simple and devout Indians lined the river banks and, so faithfully remembering what they had been taught by their holy Jesuit chaplains, they called out encouragement to their imprisoned spiritual fathers.

"Remember, O my Fathers, Jesus also died upon the Cross!" cried out these humble and holy souls.

The Jesuit fathers must have been touched to the bottom of their manly hearts by these pious cries.

But soon the Indians would be reduced into slavery by brutal, anti-Christian forces or killed if they resisted - martyred for the God whom they had come to love and imitate so much more than many Europeans who should have known better.

The Jesuit Province of Paraguay numbered at that time 564 members, 12 colleges, 1 university, 1 novitiate, 3 houses for conducting retreats, 2 residences, 57 Reductions, and 113,716 Christian Indians. The leave-taking from the Indians was heart-rending. In vain they pleaded in the most fervent manner to be allowed to keep their Fathers or to be assured that they would return. They never returned.

The first fruits of the expulsion was the keenest disappointment to the Freemasons who had expected to find hidden gold. Except the splendid decorations of the churches, of which entire wagonloads were carried away, none of the hoped-for treasures were found.

The spiritual administration of the Reductions was transferred to the Franciscans and others, the public administration to Spanish civil officials. Attempts were made to retain most of the institutions introduced by the Jesuits, which had previously been so severely censured -- a fact which sheds a characteristic light upon them -- but the rapid decline of the Reductions (in 1772 the Guaraní Reduction numbered 80,881 souls; in 1796 only 45,000; soon after there were only a few remnants left) showed that their vitality had been destroyed.

The beautiful mission churches fell to pieces; the magnificent economic institutions stood forsaken. Terrific uprisings, the revolution, and its accompanying battles, and finally the despotic rule of the first republican presidents, Francia and Lopez, destroyed in less than fifty years what the spirit of Christian sacrifice had laboriously built up during a period of one hundred and fifty years.

Ruin of the great mission Church of San Miguel

Today only beautiful ruins mark the place where once this great Christian commonwealth stood. But "the memory of the missionaries still continues to live in blessing among the Indians, who talk of the rule of the Padres as of their Golden Age" (Stein-Wappaeus, loc. cit., 1013). "The fact is," says the famous German traveller and ethnographer, Dr. Karl von der Steinen, "that the expulsion of the Jesuits was a severe blow for the native inhabitants of La Plata and the Amazon territories, from which it has never recovered."

Martyrs of the Reductions

Saints Roque Gonzalez de Santa Cruz, Alphonsus Rodríguez and Juan del Castillo were three martyrs of the Rio Plate.

Roque Gonzalez de Santa Cruz (1576-1628) was one of the main architects of the Jesuit reductions in Paraguay along the Rio Plate. A native of Paraguay, Gonzalez was born in its capital, Asunción in 1576 and studied with the Jesuits but became a diocesan priest whose first assignment was working with native peoples near the capital. He was so successful that the bishop made him pastor of the cathedral. Then in 1609 he joined the Jesuits who sent him as a novice to work with the Guaraní people who lived on the banks of the Paraguay and Pilcomayao rivers. He was sent to convert them to Christianity, thus assuring Spaniards of safe passage on a shortcut to Peru. Gonzalez became fluent in the Guaraní language and his preaching became effective. Although few Guaraní asked to be baptized, they became more friendly and ceased attacking Asunción.

After two years in this first mission, Gonzalez was transferred in 1611 to the mission of St. Ignatius, which also flourished under his care. The missions were known as "reductions" from the verb, "reducir," because they were based on leading people back together to live in towns.

At St. Ignatius, Gonzalez laid out the public square, supervised the construction of houses, founded a school and built a church. Beyond creating a place for people to live, he also taught them the essentials of farming and raising sheep and cattle. And of course, he continued to preach, using colour, music and displays such as processions to attract them.

The four years Gonzalez spent at St. Ignatius set the pattern for the 12 years that followed his stay there. He founded a series of missions, or reductions, throughout what is now part of southern Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and north-eastern Argentina. He was successful as a missionary because he was multi-talented, able to be architect, mason, farmer and physician as well as pastor. It also helped that he lived as the people lived and ate what they ate. When famine hit the settlement, he endured it with them.

In 1619 Gonzalez became the first Jesuit to enter the territory that became Uruguay when a chief from the jungles came to an existing settlement and saw how well it had developed. He invited Gonzalez to come to his people. The Jesuit pioneer accepted the invitation and in 1620 founded the town of Concepción. Later he founded other missions including Candelaria, and the mission of the Assumption at Iyuí, a village of 400 people, which he left in charge of Father John del Castillo, a recently ordained Jesuit. Gonzalez set out for Caaró with Father Alfonso Rodríguez to found a new mission.

The two Jesuits arrived at the new mission on November 1 and named it All Saints. Within a few days they baptized three children, and their success threw them into conflict with Nezú, the local religious leader, who begrudged the influence the missionaries were beginning to have on people.

He determined to kill the missionaries in his area. Father Gonzalez left the chapel on the morning of 15 November after finishing Mass and noticed some men setting up a bell. As the Jesuit bent down to attach the clapper, one of Nezú's henchmen split the priest's skull with an axe. When Rodríguez heard the noise, he came out of the chapel and was immediately struck down. The bodies of both priests were thrown into the chapel which was then set on fire.

These were the calibre of men who became Jesuits in those days. These were the calibre of men that the Freemasons sought to destroy. These were the calibre of men who, in an evil hour, had their Order suppressed by the very man to whom they had sworn cadaver-like obedience, the very Pope himself, intimidated and threatened by the evil Freemasons, but yes the very Pope himself!

O God save and preserve us from the terrible ingratitude of men.

And how little is known today of those spiritual giants who were the early members of that Order founded by St Ignatius of Loyola - the Company of Jesus.

Any young man now reading these words and considering the example set by these extraordinary heroes will surely think to himself: yes, Lord, I too wish to imitate these giants of men!

"Now giants were upon the earth in those days..." (Gen 6:4)



Anonymous said...

I frequently come up against a virulent anti-Catholic on a Catholic discussion board in Australia and she frequently speaks about the 'persecution of the natives in South America.'

Could you please source for me your comment the Spanish monarchy establisahed laws to protect the native Indians -

I really like your posts but for them to be of use apologetically they really should be sourced.


Mulier Fortis said...

Such a shame that these days, the name "Jesuit" brings to mind dissent from Church teaching and left-feminist tendencies...

Tribunus said...

Dear Sharon,

I've done a post especially for you with the sources of 3 of the biggest sets of laws of the Spanish Americas set out there for you.

Hope that helps!

Ttony said...

I'm afraid I've just had to post about the modern Jesuits in Bolivia. Is it going too far to say that they are traitors to their tradition and to St Ignatius' inheritance?

Anonymous said...

Tribunus, thank you so much. This is great.


Tribunus said...

No question but that so many modern Jesuits are traitors to their own Order and founder.

Since Vatican II some of them seem to have gone slightly mad.

Indeed, I don't think they have ever REALLY been the same since the suppression in 1773.