My desire is that France should be happy and prosperous, and, for that reason, that divisions should cease as far as possible, and that there no longer be amongst Frenchmen the merely sterile quarrels which tend but to weaken France. My conviction is that all French citizens ought to re-unite on constitutional grounds. Each one, of course, can keep up his personal preferences, but when it comes to political action, there is only the government which France has given to herself. The Republic is a form of government as legitimate as any other. I have just received the president of the Committee of Organisation for the Chicago Exhibition, who has come to ask of the Holy See its sympathy and its participation in that great American enterprise. The United States, in their republican form of government, despite the possible dangers of a liberty almost boundless, grow greater and greater every day, and the Catholic Church has developed itself there without having any struggles to sustain against the State. The two powers agree there perfectly well, as they ought to agree everywhere, on the condition that the one does not infringe the rights of the other. That which is suitable to the United States is suitable also, and even more so, to Republican France. I hold to all Frenchmen, who come to see me, the same language. I wish that it may be known of all. It is by a constitution solid in the interior that France, in spite of whatever enemies, can recover herself completely. I am happy to learn that France is resolute in her wish for peace, despite the abundance of her military resources and the bravery of her sons. If she keeps without fail that wisdom and that patience, if she knows how to avoid those divisions which check her development and paralyse her influence, if she is determined to abstain from vain enterprises and from persecutions, she will soon regain the important rank and the glorious place which belonged to her in the world.


Source: κ
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