|S. Genovefa, Parisiorum Patrona|
The glory of France is identified with the Catholic religion. Her power, greatness, renown, art, civilization, chivalry, glorious deeds, recollections, — all that is a spell upon the heart of the Frenchman, and makes him proud to belong to France, to call himself her son, — is redolent of Catholicity, inseparable from Catholic faith and piety. Divest France of what she owes to Catholicity, and she is a byword and a mockery.
Her shame, her disgrace, the foul deeds for which she blushes and all her friends blush, she owes to her forgetfulness of the true source of her glory, to her neglect of Catholic faith and piety, to her Huguenots, Jansenists, and infidel philosophers, and infidel rabble. These have torn her bosom, stripped her of her fair ornaments, cast her out in nakedness and shame, wounded, bleeding, and half dead.
The Catholic Church made her a kingdom, gave her her rank among the nations, her noble sentiments, her lofty and refined civilization; inspired her chivalry and heroism; covered her soil with the monuments of art and charity; sent forth her armies of missionaries and martyrs, more glorious in their conquests than those led on by her unrivalled military heroes. O, base and degenerate is the Frenchman who would rob her of this her true glory, who would sever her from the Church, bid her spurn the Catholic religion and seek to be glorious by denying her whole past, and becoming a feeble infant of yesterday, without recollections, without ancestors, without parents, — a mere foundling, to be nursed by the tender charities of an infidel and blaspheming world!
O gentlemen, are you mad? In the name of patriotism, as well as of religion, if you love your beautiful country, if you would not sink her so low that there shall be none so poor as to do her reverence, labor day and night with all your zeal and power to bind her, soul and body, to Rome. Link her fortunes to the Eternal City, her glory to the Holy See, and long as the world stands shall she flourish, be loved, be honored, and revered. Separate her, and she is gone; France of the past, France of the Middle Ages, France of Chivalry, France the leader of modern civilization, France the great, the renowned, to whom even the foreigner is compelled to do homage, is no more, and her place in history is henceforth a blank for ever.