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New Orleans

ARCHDIOCESE OF NEW ORLEANS (NOVÆ AURELIÆ).

Erected 25 April, 1793, as the Diocese of Saint Louis of New Orleans; raised to its present rank and title 19 July, 1850. Its original territory comprised the ancient Louisiana purchase and East and West Florida, being bounded on the north by the Canadian line, on the west by the Rocky Mountains and the Rio Perdito, on the east by the Diocese of Baltimore, and on the south by the Diocese of Linares and the Archdiocese of Durango. The present boundaries include the State of Louisiana, between the twenty-ninth and thirty-first degree of north latitude, an area of 23,208 square miles. The entire territory of Louisiana has undergone a series of changes which divides its history into four distinct periods.

I. EARLY COLONIAL PERIOD

The discoverers and pioneers, De Soto, Iberville, La Salle, Bienville, were accompanied by missionaries in their expeditions through the Louisiana Purchase, and in the toilsome beginnings of the first feeble settlements, which were simply military posts, the Cross blazed the way. From the beginning of its history, Louisiana had been placed under the Bishop of Quebec; in 1696 the priests of the seminary of Quebec petitioned the second Bishop of Quebec for authority to establish missions in the west, investing the superior sent out by the seminary with the powers of vicar-general. The field for which they obtained this authority (1 May, 1698), was on both banks of the Mississippi and its tributaries. They proposed to plant their first mission among the Tamarois, but when this became known, the Jesuits claimed that tribe as one already under their care; they received the new missionaries with personal cordiality, but felt keenly the official action of Bishop St-Vallier, in what they regarded as an intrusion. Fathers Jolliet de Montigny, Antoine Davion, and François Busion de Saint-Cosme were the missionaries sent to found the new missions in the Mississippi Valley. In 1699 Iberville, who had sailed from France, with his two brothers Bienville and Sauvolle, and Father Du Ru, S.J., coming up the estuary of the Mississippi, found Father Montigny among the Tensus Indians. Iberville left Sauvolle in command of the little fort at Biloxi, the first permanent settlement in Louisiana. Father Bordenave was its first chaplain, thus beginning a long line of zealous parish priests in Louisiana.

In 1703, Bishop St-Vallier proposed to erect Mobile into a parish, and to annex it in perpetuity to the seminary ; the seminary agreed, and the Parish of Mobile was erected 20 July, 1703; and united to the Seminary of Foreign Missions of Paris and Quebec. Father Roulleaux de la Vente, of the Diocese of Bayeaux, was appointed parish priest and Father Huve his assistant. The Biloxi settlement being difficulty of access from the sea, Bienville thought it unsuitable for the headquarters of the province. In 1718, taking with him fifty men, he selected Tchoutchouma, the present site of New Orleans, about 110 miles from the mouth of the Mississippi, where there was a deserted Indian village. Bienville directed his men to clear the grounds and erect buildings. The city was laid out according to the plans of the Chevalier Le Blond de La Tour, chief engineer of the colony, the plans including a parish church, which Bienville decided to dedicate under the invocation of St. Louis. The old St. Louis cathedral stands today on the site of this first parish church, and the presbytery in Cathedral Alley is the site of the first modest clergy house. Bienville called the city New Orleans after the Duc d'Orléans, and the whole territory Louisiana, or New France.

In August, 1717, the Duc d'Orléans, as Regent of France, issued letters patent establishing a joint-stock company to be called "The Company of the West", to which Louisiana was transferred. The company was obliged to build churches at its own expense wherever it should establish settlements; also to maintain the necessary number of duly approved priests to preach, perform Divine service and administer the sacraments under the authority of the Bishop of Quebec. Bienville experienced much opposition from the Company of the West in his attempt to remove the colony from Biloxi. In 1721 Fr. Francis-Xavier de Charlevoix, S.J., one of the first historians of Louisiana, made a tour of New France from the Lakes to the Mississippi, visiting New Orleans, which he describes as "a little village of about one hundred cabins dotted here and there, a large wooden warehouse in which I said Mass, a chapel in course of construction and two storehouses". But under Bienville's direction the city soon took shape, and, with the consent of the company, the colony was moved to this site in 1723. Father Charlevoix reported on the great spiritual destitution of the province occasioned by the missions being scattered so far apart and the scarcity of priests, and this compelled the council of the company to make efforts to improve conditions. Accordingly, the company applied to the Bishop of Quebec, and on 16 May, 1722, Louisiana was divided into three ecclesiastical sections. The district north of the Ohio was entrusted to the Society of Jesus and the Priests of the Foreign Missions of Paris and Quebec; that between the Mississippi and the Rio Perdito, to the Discalced Carmelite Fathers with headquarters at Mobile. The Carmelites were recalled, not long after, and their district was given to to Capuchins.

A different arrangement was made for the Indian and new French settlements on the lower Mississippi. Because of the remoteness of this district from Quebec, Father Louis-François Duplessis de Mornay, a Capuchin of Meudon, was consecrated, at Bishop St-Vallier's request, coadjutor Bishop of Quebec, 22 April, 1714. Bishop St-Vallier appointed him vicar-general for Louisiana, but he never came to America, although he eventually succeeded to the See of Quebec. When the Company of the West applied to him for priests for the lower Mississippi Valley he offered the more populous field of colonists to the Capuchin Fathers of the province of Champaigne, who, however, did not take any immediate steps, and it was not until 1720 that any of the order came to Louisiana. Father Jean-Matthieu de Saint-Anne is the first whose name is recorded. He signs himself in 1720 in the register of the parish of New Orleans. The last entry of the secular clergy in Mobile is that of Rev. Alexander Huve, 13 January, 1721. The Capuchins came directly from France and consequently found application to the Bishop of Quebec long and tedious; Father Matthieu therefore applied to Rome for special power for fifteen missions under his charge, representing that the great distance from the Bishop of Quebec made it practically impossible for him to apply to the Bishop. A brief was really issued (Michael a Tugio, "Bullarium Ord. FF. Minor. S.P. Francisci Capucinorum", Fol. 1740-52; BLI., pp. 322, 323), and Father Matthieu seems to have assumed that it exempted him from episcopal jurisdiction, for, on 14 March, 1723, he signs the register "Père Matthieu, Vicaire Apostolique et Curé de la Mobile ".

In 1722 Bishop Mornay entrusted the spiritual jurisdiction of the Indians to the Jesuits, who were to establish missions in all parts of Louisiana with residence at New Orleans, but were not to exercise any ecclesiastical function there without the consent of the Capuchins, though they were to minister to the French in the Illinois District, with the Priests of the Foreign Missions, where the superior of each body was a vicar-general, just as the Capuchin superior was at New Orleans. In the spring of 1723 Father Raphael du Luxembourg arrived to assume his duties as superior of the Capuchin Mission in Louisiana. It was a difficult task that the Capuchins had assumed. Their congregations were scattered over a large area; there was much poverty, suffering, and ignorance of religion. Father Raphael, in the cathedral archives, says that when he landed in New Orleans he could hardly secure a room for himself and his brethren to occupy pending the rebuilding of the presbytery, much less one to convert into a chapel ; for the population seemed indifferent to all that savoured of religion. There were less than thirty persons at Mass on Sundays ; yet, undismayed, the missionaries set to work and saw their zeal rewarded with a greater reverence for religion and more faithful attendance at church. In 1725 New Orleans had become an important settlement, the Capuchins having a flock of six hundred families. Mobile had declined to sixty families, the Apache Indians (Catholic) numbered sixty families. There were six at Balize, two hundred at St. Charles or Les Allemandes, one hundred at Point Coupée, six at Natchez, fifty at Natchitoches and the other missions which are not named in the "Bullarium Capucinorum" (Vol. VIII, p. 330).

The founder of the Jesuit Mission in New Orleans was Father Nicolas-Ignatius de Beaubois, who was appointed vicar-general for his district. He visited New Orleans and returned to France to obtain Fathers of the Society for his mission. Being also commissioned by Bienville to obtain sisters of some order to assume charge of a hospital and school, he applied to the Ursulines of Rouen, who accepted the call. The royal patent authorizing the Ursulines to found a convent in Louisiana was issued 18 September, 1726. Mother Mary Trancepain of St. Augustine, with seven professed nuns from Rouen, Le Havre, Vannes, Ploermel, Hennebon, and Elboeuf, a novice, Madeline Hauchard, and two seculars, met at the infirmary at Hennebon on 12 January, 1727, and, accompanied by Fathers Tartarin and Doutreleau, set sail for Louisiana. They reached New Orleans on 6 August to open the first convent for women within the present limits of the United States of America. As the convent was not ready for their reception, the governor gave up his own residence to them. The history of the Ursulines from their departure from Rouen through a period of thirty years in Louisiana, is told by Sister Madeline Hauchard in a diary still preserved in the Ursuline convent in New Orleans, and which forms, with Father Charlevoix's history, the principal record of those early days. On 7 August, 1727, the Ursulines began in Louisiana the work which has since continued without interruption. They opened a hospital for the care of the sick and a school for poor children, also an academy which is now the oldest educational institution for women in the United States. The convent in which the Ursulines then took up their abode still stands, the oldest conventual structure in the United States and the oldest building within the limits of the Louisiana Purchase. In 1824 the Ursulines removed to the lower portion of the city, and the old convent became first the episcopal residence and then the diocesan chancery.

Meanwhile Father Mathurin le Petit, S.J., established a mission among the Chocktaws; Father Du Poisson among the Arkansas ; Father Doutreleau, on the Wabash; Fathers Tartarin and Le Boulenger, at Kaskaskia ; Father Guymonneau among the Metchogameas; Father Souel, among the Yazoos ; Father Baudouin , among the Chickasaws. The Natchez Indians, provoked by the tyranny and rapacity of Chopart, the French commandant, in 1729 nearly destroyed all these missions. Father Du Poisson and Father Souel were killed by the Indians. As an instance of the faith implanted in the Iroquois about this time there was received into the Ursuline order at New Orleans, Mary Turpin, daughter of a Canadian Father and an Illinois mother. She died a professed nun in 1761, at the age of fifty-two, with the distinction of being the first American-born nun in this country. From the beginning of the colony at Biloxi the immigration of women had been small. Bienville made constant appeals to the mother country to send honest wives and mothers. From time to time ships freighted with girls would arrive; they came over in charge of the Grey Nuns of Canada and a priest, and were sent by the king to be married to the colonists. The Bishop of Quebec was also charged with the duty of sending out young women who were known to be good and virtuous. As a proof of her respectability, each girl was furnished by the bishop with a curiously wrought casket; they are known in Louisiana history as "casket girls". Each band of girls, on arriving at New Orleans, was confided to the care of the Ursulines until they were married to colonists able to provide for their support. Many of the best families of the state are proud to trace their descent from "casket girls".

The city was growing and developing; a better class of immigrant was pouring in, and Father Charlevoix, on his visit in 1728, wrote to the Duchesse de Lesdiguières: "My hopes, I think, are well founded that this wild and desert place, which the reeds and trees still cover, will be one day, and that not far distant, a city of opulence, and the metropolis of a rich colony." His words were prophetic; New Orleans was fast developing, and early chronicles say that it suggested the splendours of Paris. There was a governor with a military staff, bringing to the city the manners and splendour of the Court of Versailles, and the manners and usages of the mother country stamped on Louisiana life characteristics in marked contrast to the life of any other colony. The Jesuit Fathers of New Orleans had no parochial residence, but directed the Ursulines, and had charge of their private chapel and a plantation where, in 1751, they introduced into Louisiana the culture of the sugar-cane, the orange, and the fig. The Capuchins established missions wherever they could. Bishop St-Vallier had been succeeded by Bishop de Mournay, who never went to Quebec, but resigned the see, after five years. His successor, Henri-Marie Du Breuil de Pontbriand, appointed Father de Beaubois, S.J., his vicar-general in Louisiana. The Capuchin Fathers refused to recognize Father de Beaubois's authority, claiming, under an agreement of the Company of the West with the coadjutor bishop, de Mornay, that the superior of the Capuchins was, in perpetuity, vicar-general of the province, and that the bishop could appoint no other. Succeeding bishops of Quebec declared, however, that they could not, as bishops, admit that the assent of a coadjutor and vicar-general to an agreement with a trading company had forever deprived every bishop of Quebec to act as freely in Louisiana as in any other part of his diocese. This incident gave rise to some friction between the two orders which has been spoken of derisively by Louisiana historians, notably by Gayarré, as "The War of the Capuchins and the Jesuits ". The archives of the diocese, as also the records of the Capuchins in Louisiana, show that it was simply a question of jurisdiction, which gave rise to a discussion so petty as to be unworthy of notice. Historians exaggerate this beyond all importance, while failing to chronicle the shameful spoilation of the Jesuits by the French Government, which suddenly settled the question forever.

In 1761 the Parliaments of several provinces of France had condemned the Jesuits, and measures were taken against them in the kingdom. They were expelled from Paris, and the Superior Council of Louisiana, following the example, on 9 July, 1763, just ten years before the order was suppressed by Clement XIV, passed an act suppressing the Jesuits throughout the province, declaring them dangerous to royal authority, to the rights of the bishops, and to the public safety. The Jesuits were charged with neglecting their mission, with having developed their plantation, and with having usurped the office of vicar-general. To the first charge the record of their labours was sufficient refutation; to the second, it was assuredly to the credit of the Jesuits that they made their plantation so productive as to maintain their missionaries; to the third the actions of the bishops of Quebec in appointing the vicar-general and that of the Superior council itself in sustaining him was the answer. Nevertheless, the unjust decree was carried out, the Jesuits' property was confiscated, and they were forbidden to use the name of their Society or to wear their habit. Their property was sold for $180,000. All their chapels were levelled to the ground, leaving exposed even the vaults where the dead were interred. The Jesuits were ordered to give up their missions, to return to New Orleans and to leave on the first vessel sailing for France. The Capuchins forgetting their differences interfered on behalf of the Jesuits ; and finally their petitions unavailing went to the river bank to receive the returning Jesuits, offered them a home alongside their own, and in every way showed their disapproval of the Council's action. The Jesuits deeply grateful left the Capuchins all the books they had been able to save from the spoilation.

Father Boudoin, S.J., the benefactor of the colony, who had introduced the culture of sugar-cane and oranges from San Domingo, and figs from Provence, a man to whom the people owed much and to whom Louisiana today owes so much of its prosperity, alone remained. He was now seventy-two years old and had spent thirty-five in the colony. He was broken in health and too ill to leave his room. They dragged him through the streets when prominent citizens intervened and one wealthy planter, âtienne de Boré, who had first succeeded in the granulation of sugar, defied the authorities and took Father Boudoin to his home and sheltered him until his death in 1766. The most monstrous part of the order of expulsion was that, not only were the chapels of the Jesuits in lower Louisiana -- many of which were the only places where Catholics, whites and Indians, and negroes, could worship God -- levelled to the ground, but the Council carried out the decree even in the Illinois district which had been ceded to the King of England and which was no longer subject to France or Louisiana. They ordered even the vestments and plate to be delivered to the king's attorney. Thus was a vast territory left destitute of priests and altars, and the growth of the Church retarded for many years. Of the ten Capuchins left to administer this immense territory, five were retained in New Orleans; the remainder were scattered over various missions. It is interesting to note that the only native Louisiana priest at this time, and the first to enter the holy priesthood, Rev. Bernard Viel, born in New Orleans 1 October, 1736, was among the Jesuits expelled from the colony. He died in France, 1821. The inhabitants of New Orleans then numbered four thousand.

II. SPANISH PERIOD

In 1763 Louisiana was ceded to Spain, and Antonia Ulloa was sent over to take possession. The colonists were bitterly opposed to the cession, and finally rose in arms against the governor, giving him three days in which to leave the town. (See LOUISIANA.) The Spanish Government resolved to punish the parties which had so insulted its representative, Don Ulloa, and sent Alexander O'Reilly to assume the office of governor. Lafrénière, President of the Council, who chiefly instigated the passing of the decree against the Jesuits from the colony, and the rebellion against the Government, was tried by court martial and with six of his partners in his scheme, was shot in the Palace d'Armes. O'Reilly reorganized the province after the Spanish model. The oath taken by the officials shows that the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception was then officially recognized in the Spanish dominions. "I __________ appointed __________ swear before God. . . to maintain . . . the mystery of the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady, the Virgin Mary."

The change of government affected ecclesiastical jurisdiction. The Province of Louisiana passed under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Santiago de Cuba, the Right Rev. James José de Echeverría, and Spanish Capuchins began to fill the places of their French brethren. Contradictory reports reached the new bishop about conditions in Louisiana and he sent Father Cirilo de Barcelona with four Spanish Capuchins to New Orleans. These priests were Fathers Francisco, Angel de Revillagades, Louis de Quitanilla, and Aleman. They reached New Orleans, 19 July, 1773. The genial ways of the French brethren seemed scandalous to the stern Spanish disciplinarian, and he informed the Bishop of Cuba concerning what he considered "lax methods of conduct and administration". Governor Unzaga, however, interfered on behalf of the French Capuchins, and wrote to the bishop censuring the Spanish friars. This offended the bishop and both referred the matter to the Spanish Court. The Government expressed no opinion, but advised the prelate and governor to compromise, and so preserve harmony between the civil and ecclesiastical authorities . Some Louisiana historians, Charles Gayarré among others, speak of the depravity of the clergy of that period. These charges are not borne out by contemporary testimony; the archives of the cathedral witness that the clergy performed their work faithfully. These charges as a rule sprang from monastic prejudices or secular antipathies. One of the first acts of Father Cirilo as pastor of the St. Louis Cathedral was to have the catechism printed in both French and Spanish.

The Bishop of Santiago de Cuba resolved to remedy the deplorable conditions in Louisiana, where confirmation had never been administered. In view of his inability to visit this distant portion of his diocese, he asked for the appointment of an auxiliary bishop, who would take up his abode in New Orleans, and thence visit the missions on the Mississippi as well as those in Mobile, Pensacola, and St. Augustine. The Holy See appointed Father Cirilo de Barcelona titular bishop of Tricali and auxiliary of Santiago. He was consecrated in Cuba in 1781 and proceeded to New Orleans where for the first time the people enjoyed the presence of a bishop. A saintly man, he infused new life into the province. The whole of Louisiana and the Floridas were under his jurisdiction. According to official records of the Church in Louisiana in 1785, the church of St. Louis, New Orleans, has a parish priest, four assistants; and there was a resident priest at each of the following points: Terre aux Boeufs, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, St. James, Ascension, St. Gabriel's at Iberville, Point Coupee, Attakapas, Opelousas, Natchitoches, Natchez, St. Louis, St. Genevieve, and at Bernard or Manchac (now Galveston ). On 25 November, 1785, Bishop Cirilo appointed as parish priest of New Orleans Rev. Antonio Ildefonso Morenory Arze de Sedella, one of the six Capuchins who had come to the colony in 1779. Father Antonio (popularly known as "Père Antoine") was destined to exert a remarkable influence in the colony. Few priests have been more assailed by historians, but a careful comparison of the ancient records of the cathedral with the traditions that cluster about his memory show that he did not deserve on the one hand the indignities which Gayarré and Shea heap upon him, nor yet the excessive honours with which tradition had crowned him. From the cathedral archives it has been proven that he was simply an earnest priest striving to do what he thought his duty amid many difficulties.

In 1787 a number of unfortunate Acadians came at the expense of the King of France and settled near Plaquemines, Terre aux Boeufs, Bayou Lafourche, Attakapas, and Opelousas, adding to the already thrifty colony. They brought with them the precious register of St. Charles aux Mines in Acadia extending from 1689 to 1749 only six years before their cruel deportation. They were deposited for safe keeping with the priest of St. Gabriel at Iberville and are now in the diocesan archives. St. Augustine being returned to Spain by the treaty of peace of 1783, the King of Spain made efforts to provide for the future of Catholicism in that ancient province. As many English people had settled there and in West Florida, notably at Baton Rouge and Natchez, Charles III applied to the Irish College for priests to attend to the English-speaking population. Accordingly Rev. Michael O'Reilly and Reverend Thomas Hasset were sent to Florida. Catholic worship was restored, the city at once resuming its own old aspect. Rev. William Savage, a clergyman of great repute, Rev. Michael Lamport, Rev. Gregory White, Rev. Constantine Makenna, Father Joseph Denis, and a Franciscan with six fathers of his order, were sent to labour in Louisiana. They were distributed through the Natchez and Baton Rouge districts, and were the first Irish priests to come to Louisiana, the pioneers of a long and noble line to whom this archdiocese owes much. In 1787 the Holy See divided the Diocese of Santiago de Cuba, erected the bishopric of St. Christopher of Havana, Louisiana, and the Floridas, with the Right Rev. Joseph de Trespalacios of Porto Rico as bishop, and the Right Rev. Cirilo de Barcelona as auxiliary, with the special direction of Louisiana and the two Floridas. Louisiana thus formed a part of the Diocese of Havana .

Near Fort Natchez the site for a church was purchased on April 11, 1788. The earliest incumbent of whom any record was kept was Father Francis Lennan. Most of the people of Natchez were English Protestants or Americans, who had sided with England. They enjoyed absolute religious freedom, no attempt to proselytize was ever made. On Good Friday, 21 March, 1788, New Orleans was swept by a conflagration in which nine hundred buildings, including the parish church, with the adjoining convent of the Capuchins, the house of Bishop Cirilo and the Spanish School were reduced to ashes. From the ruins of the old irregularly built French City rose the stately Spanish City, old New Orleans, practically unchanged as it exists today. Foremost among the public-spirited men of that time was Don Andreas Almonaster y Roxas, of a noble Andalusian family and royal standard bearer for the colony. He had made a great fortune in New Orleans, and at a cost of $50,000 he built and gave to the city the St. Louis Cathedral. He rebuilt the house for the use of the clergy and the charity hospital at a cost of $114,000. He also rebuilt the town hall and the Cabildo, the buildings on either side of the cathedral, the hospital, the boys' school, a chapel for the Ursulines, and founded the Leper Hospital.

Meanwhile rapid assimilation had gone on in Louisiana. Americans began to make their homes in New Orleans and in 1791 the insurrection of San Domingo drove there many hundreds of wealthy noble refugees. The archives of the New Orleans Diocese show that the King of Spain petitioned Pius VI on 20 May, 1790, to erect Louisiana and the Floridas into a separate see, and on April 9, 1793, a decree for the dismemberment of the Diocese of Havana, Louisiana, and the Provinces of East and West Florida was issued. It provided for the erection of the See of St. Louis of New Orleans, which was to include all the Louisiana Province and the Provinces of East and West Florida. The Bishops of Mexico, Agalopi, Michoacan and Caracas were to contribute, pro rata , a fund for the support of the Bishop of New Orleans, until such time as the see would be self-sustaining. The decree left the choice of a bishop for a new see to the King of Spain, and he on 25 April, 1793, wrote to Bishop Cirilo relieving him of his office of auxiliary, and directing him to return immediately to Catalonia with a salary of one thousand dollars a year, which the Bishop of Havana was to contribute. Bishop Cirilo returned to Havana and seems to have resided with the Hospital Friars, while endeavouring to obtain his salary, so that he might return to Europe. It is not known where Bishop Cirilo died in poverty and humiliation.

The Right Rev. Luis Peñalver y Cárdenas was appointed first bishop of the new See of St. Louis of New Orleans. He was a native of Havana, born 3 April, 1719, and had been educated by the Jesuits of his native city, receiving his degree in the university in 1771. He was a priest of irreproachable character, and a skillful director of souls. He was consecrated in the Cathedral of Havana in 1793. The St. Louis parish church, now raised to the dignity of a cathedral, was dedicated 23 December, 1794. A letter from the king, 14 August, 1794, decreed that its donor, Don Almonaster, was authorized to occupy the most prominent seat in the church, second only to that of the viceregal patron, the intendant of the province, and to receive the kiss of peace during the Mass. Don Almonaster died in 1798 and was buried under the altar of the Sacred Heart.

Bishop Peñalver arrived in New Orleans, 17 July, 1795. In a report to the king and the Holy See he bewailed the indifference he found as to the practice of religious duties. He condemned the laxity of morals among the men, and the universal practice of concubinage among the slaves. The invasion of many persons not of the faith, and the toleration of the Government in admitting all classes of adventurers for purposes of trade, had brought about disrespect for religion. He deplored the establishment of trading posts and of a lodge of French Freemasons, which counted among its members city officials, officers of the garrison, merchants and foreigners. He believed the people clung to their French traditions. He said that the King of Spain possessed "their bodies but not their souls ". He declared that "even the Ursuline nuns, from whom good results were obtained in the education of girls, were so decidedly French in their inclination that they refused to admit Spanish women who wished to become members of their order, and many were in tears because they were obliged to read spiritual exercises in Spanish books". It was a gloomy picture he presented, but he set faithfully to work, and on 21 December, 1795, called a synod, the first and only one held in the diocese of colonial New Orleans. He also issued a letter of instruction to the clergy deploring the fact that many of his flock were more than five hundred leagues away, and how impossible it was to repair at one and the same time to all. He enjoined the pastors to walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, and in all things to fulfill their duties. This letter of instruction bearing his signature is preserved in the archives of the diocese, and, with the call for the synod, forms the only documents signed by the first Bishop of New Orleans.

Bishop Peñalver everywhere showed himself active in the cause of educational progress and was a generous benefactor of the poor. He was promoted to the See of Guatemala, 20 July, 1801. Before his departure he appointed, as vicars-general, Rev. Thomas Canon Hasset and Rev. Patrick Walsh, who became officially recognized as "Governors of the Diocese".

Territorially from this ancient see have been erected the Archbishoprics of St. Louis, Cincinnati, St. Paul, Dubuque, and Chicago, and the bishoprics of Alexandria, Mobile, Natchez, Galveston, San Antonio , Little Rock, St. Augustine, Kansas City, St. Joseph, Davenport, Cheyenne, Dallas, Winona, Duluth, Concordia, Omaha, Sioux Falls , Oklahoma, St. Cloud, Bismark, and Cleveland.

Right Rev. Francis Porro y Peinade, a Franciscan of the Convent of the Holy Apostles, Rome, was appointed to succeed Bishop Peñalver. But he never took possession of the see. Some old chronicles in Louisiana say that he was never consecrated ; others that he was, and died on the eve of leaving Rome. Bishop Portier (Spalding's "Life of Bishop Flaget "), says that he was translated to the See of Terrazona. The See of New Orleans remained vacant many years after the departure of bishop Peñalver.

In 1798 the Duc d'Orléans (afterwards King Luis-Philippe of France ) with his two brothers, the Duc de Montpensier and the Count de Beaujolais, visited New Orleans. They were received with honour, and when Louis-Philippe became King of France he remembered many of those who had entertained him when in exile, and was generous to the Church in the old French province.

III. FRENCH AND AMERICAN PERIOD

By the Treaty of San Ildefonse, the Spanish King on 1 October, 1800, engaged to retrocede Louisiana to the French Republic six months after certain conditions and stipulations had been executed on the part of France, and the Holy See deferred the appointment of a bishop.

On 30 April, 1803, without waiting for the actual transfer of the province, Napoleon Bonaparte by the Treaty of Paris sold Louisiana to the United States. De Laussat, the French Commissioner, had reached New Orleans on 26 March, 1803, to take possession of the province in the name of France. Spain was preparing to evacuate and general confusion prevailed. Very Rev. Thomas Hasset, the administrator of the diocese, was directed to address each priest and ascertain whether they preferred to return with the Spanish forces or to remain in Louisiana ; also to obtain from each parish an inventory of the plate, vestments, and other articles in the church which had been given by the Spanish Government. Then came the news of the cession of the province to the United States. On 20 April, 1803, De Laussat formally surrendered the colony to the United States commissioners. The people felt it keenly, and the cathedral archives show the difficulties to be surmounted. Father Hasset, as administrator, issued a letter to the clergy on 10 June, 1803, announcing the new domination, and notifying all of the permission to return to Spain if they desired. Several priests signified their desire to follow the Spanish standard. The question of withdrawal was also discussed by the Ursuline nuns. Thirteen out of the twenty-one choir nuns were in favour of returning to Spain or going to Havana. De Laussat went to the convent and assured them that they could remain unmolested. Notwithstanding this Mother Saint Monica and eleven others, with nearly all the lay sisters applied to the Marquis de Casa Calvo to convey them to Havana. Six choir nuns and two lay sisters remained to begin again the work in Louisiana. They elected Mother St. Xavier Fargeon as superioress, and resumed all the exercises of community life, maintaining their academy, day school, orphan asylum, hospital and instructions for coloured people in catechism. Father Hasset wrote to Bishop Carroll, 23 December, 1803, that the retrocession of the province to the United States of America impelled him to present to his consideration the present ecclesiastical state of Louisiana, not doubting that it would soon fall under his jurisdiction. The ceded province consisted of twenty-one parishes some of which were vacant. "The churches were", to use his own words, "all descent temples and comfortably supplied with ornaments and everything necessary for divine services. . . . Of twenty-six ecclesiastics in the province only four had agreed to continue their respective stations under the French Government; and whether any more would remain under that of the United States only God knew." Father Hasset said that for his own part he felt could not with propriety, relinquish his post, and consequently awaited superior orders to take his departure. He said that the Rev. Patrick Walsh, vicar-general and auxiliary governor of the diocese, had declared that he would not abandon his post providing he could hold it with propriety. Father Hasset died in April 1804. Father Antonio Sedella had returned to New Orleans in 1791, and resumed his duties as parish priest of the St. Louis Cathedral to which he had been appointed by Bishop Cirilo. After the cession a dispute arose between him and Father Walsh, and the latter, 27 March, 1805, established the Ursuline convent as the only place in the parish for the administration of the sacraments and the celebration of the Divine Office. On 21 March, 1804, the Ursulines addressed a letter to Thomas Jefferson, President of the United States, in which they solicited the passage of an Act of Congress guaranteeing their property and rights. The president replied reassuring the Ursulines. "The principles of the Constitution of the United States " he wrote, "are a sure guaranty to you that it will be preserved to you sacred and inviolate, and that your institution will be permitted to govern itself according to its own voluntary rules without interference from the civil authority. Whatever diversity of shades may appear in the religious opinions of our fellow citizens, the charitable objects of your Institution cannot be of indifference to any; and its furtherance of the wholesome purpose by training up its young members in the way they should go cannot fail to insure the patronage of the government it is under. Be assured that it will meet with all the protection my office can give it. "

Father Walsh, administrator of the diocese, died on 22 August, 1806, and was buried in the Ursuline chapel. The Archiepiscopal See of Santo Domingo, the metropolitan of the province, to which the Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas belonged, was vacant, and not one of the bishops of the Spanish province would interfere in the New Orleans Diocese, though the Bishop of Havana extended his authority once more over the Florida portion of the diocese. As the death of Father Walsh left the diocese without anyone to govern it, Bishop Carroll, who had meanwhile informed himself of the condition of affairs, resolved to act under the decree of 1 Sept., 1805, and assume administration. Father Antoine had been accused of intriguing openly against the Government; but beyond accusations made to Bishop Carroll there is nothing to substantiate them. He was much loved in New Orleans and some of his friends desired to obtain the influence of the French Government to have him appointed to the Bishopric of Louisiana. However, there is in the archives of the New Orleans cathedral a letter

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Nélaton, Auguste

Famous French surgeon; born in Paris, 17 June, 1807, d. there 21 Sept., 1873. He made his ...

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Nève, Felix-Jean-Baptiste-Joseph

Orientalist and philologist, born at Ath, Belgium, 13 June, 1816; died at Louvain, 23 May, ...

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Nîmes

(NEMAUSENSIS) Diocese ; suffragan of Avignon, comprises the civil Department of Gard. By the ...

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Na 60

Nabo

( Septuagint, Nabau ). A town mentioned in several passages of the Old Testament, v.g., ...

Nabor and Felix, Saints

Martyrs during the persecution of Diocletian (303). The relics of these holy witnesses to the ...

Nabuchodonosor

The Babylonian form of the name is Nabu-kudurri-usur, the second part of which is variously ...

Nacchiante, Giacomo

(Naclantus). Dominican theologian, born at Florence ; died at Chioggia, 6 May, 1569; he ...

Nacolia

(Nacoleia). A titular metropolitan see in Phrygia Salutaris. This town, which took its name ...

Nagasaki

(Nagasakiensis). Nagasaki, capital of the prefecture ( ken ) of the same name, is situated ...

Nagpur

(Nagpurensis) Diocese in India, suffragan to Madras. Formerly the north-western portion of ...

Nahanes

"People of the Setting Sun", a tribe of the great Dene family of American Indians, whose habitat ...

Nahum

One of the Prophets of the Old Testament, the seventh in the traditional list of the twelve ...

Nails, Holy

The question has long been debated whether Christ was crucified with three or with four nails. ...

Naim

(NAIN). The city where Christ raised to life the widow's son ( Luke 7:11-17 ). The Midrash ...

Name of Jesus, Religious Communities of the

(1) Knights of the Name of Jesus, also known as Seraphim, founded in 1334 by the Queens of Norway ...

Name of Mary, Feast of the Holy

We venerate the name of Mary because it belongs to her who is the Mother of God, the holiest of ...

Names of Jesus and Mary, Sisters of the Holy

A religious congregation founded at Longueuil, Quebec, 8 December, 1844, under the patronage of ...

Names, Christian

" Christian names", says the Elizabethan antiquary, Camden, "were imposed for the distinction of ...

Names, Hebrew

To the philosopher a name is an artificial sign consisting in a certain combination of ...

Namur

Diocese of Namur (Namurcensis), constituted by the Bull of 12 May, 1559, from territory ...

Nancy

DIOCESE OF NANCY (NANCEIENISIS ET TULLENSIS). Comprises the Departments of Meurthe and Moselle, ...

Nantes

Diocese of Nantes (Nanceiensis). This diocese, which comprises the entire department of Loire ...

Nanteuil, Robert

French engraver and crayonist, b. Reims, 1623 (1626, or 1630) d. at Paris, 1678. Little is ...

Naples

The capital of a province in Campania, southern Italy, and formerly capital of the Kingdom of the ...

Napoleon I (Bonaparte)

Emperor of the French, second son of Charles Marie Bonaparte and Maria Lætitia Ramolino, b. ...

Napoleon III

(Charles-Louis-Napoléon). Originally known as Louis-Napoléon-Bonaparte, Emperor ...

Napper, Venerable George

(Or Napier). English martyr, born at Holywell manor, Oxford, 1550; executed at Oxford 9 ...

Nardò

(NERITONENSIS) Diocese in southern Italy. Nardò was already an episcopal see, when, ...

Nardi, Jacopo

Italian historian; born at Florence, 1476; died at Venice, 11 March, 1563. His father, Salvestro ...

Narni and Terni

UNITED DIOCESES OF NARNI AND TERNI (NARNIENSIS ET INTERAMNENSIS) Located in Central Italy. ...

Narthex

In early Christian architecture a portion of the church at the west end, separated from the nave ...

Nashville

The Diocese of Nashville comprises the entire territory of the State of Tennessee. From its inland ...

Nasoræans

Sometimes called M ANDÆANS, S ABIANS, or C HRISTIANS OF S T. J OHN. ...

Natal

(Vicariate Apostolic of Natal) The history of the Catholic Church in South Africa goes back ...

Natal Day

Both the form natalis (sc. Dies ) and natalicium were used by the Romans to denote what we ...

Natalis, Alexander

(Or NOEL ALEXANDRE). A French historian and theologian, of the Order of St. Dominic, b. at ...

Natchez

DIOCESE OF NATCHEZ (NATCHESIENSIS) Established 28 July, 1837; comprises the State of ...

Natchitoches

Diocese of Natchitoches Former title of the present Diocese of Alexandria (Alexandrinensis), ...

Nathan

Nathan (God-given), the name of several Israelites mentioned in the Old Testament. (1) Nathan, ...

Nathanael

One of the first disciples of Jesus, to Whom he was brought by his friend Philip ( John ...

Nathinites

Or N ATHINEANS ( hnthynym , the given ones; Septuagint generally o‘i dedoménoi ...

National Union, Catholic Young Men's

This association was organized on 22 February, 1875, at a meeting held in Newark, New Jersey, at ...

Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Feast of the

The earliest document commemorating this feast comes from the sixth century. St.Romanus, the ...

Natural Law

I. ITS ESSENCE In English this term is frequently employed as equivalent to the laws of nature, ...

Naturalism

Naturalism is not so much a special system as a point of view or tendency common to a number of ...

Nature

Etymologically (Latin natura from nasci , to be born, like the corresponding Greek physis ...

Naturism

Naturism is the term proposed by Réville to designate the worship of nature. It differs ...

Nausea, Frederic

(Latinized from the German Grau .) Bishop of Vienna, born c. 1480 at Waischenfeld ( ...

Navajo Indians

Navajo Indians, numbering about 20,000, constitute the largest group of Indians belonging to the ...

Navarre

The territory formerly known as Navarre now belongs to two nations, Spain and France, according ...

Navarrete, Domingo Fernández

Dominican missionary and archbishop, born c. 1610 at Peñafiel in Old Castile ; died ...

Navarrete, Juan Fernández

Spanish painter, b. at Logrono, 1526 and died at Segovia, 1579 (at Toledo, February, 1579 or 28 ...

Navarrete, Martín Fernández

Spanish navigator and writer, b. at Avalos (Logrono), 8 November, 1765; d. at Madrid, 8 October, ...

Nave

Architecturally the central, open space of a church, west of the choir or chancel, and separated ...

Nazarene

( Nazarenos, Nazarenus ). As a name applied to Christ, the word Nazarene occurs only ...

Nazareth

The town of Galilee where the Blessed Virgin dwelt when the Archangel announced to her the ...

Nazareth, Sisters of Charity of

Founded Dec., 1812, by the Rev. B.J.M. David (see D IOCESE OF L OUISVILLE ). Father David, ...

Nazarite

(Hebrew, " consecrated to God "). The name given by the Hebrews to a person set apart and ...

Nazarius and Celsus, Saints

The only historical information which we possess regarding these two martyrs is the discovery of ...

Nazarius and Companions, Saint

In the Roman Martyrology and that of Bede for 12 June mention is made of four Roman martyrs, ...

Nazarius, John Paul

Dominican theologian, b. in 1556 at Cremonia; d. in 1645 at Bologna. He entered the order at an ...

Nazarius, Saint

Fourteenth abbot of the monastery of Lérins, probably sometime during the reign of the ...

Nazianzus

A titular metropolitan see of Cappadocia Tertia. Nazianzus was a small town the history which is ...

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Ne 66

Neale, Leonard

Second Archbishop of Baltimore, b. near Port Tobacco, Charles County, Maryland, 15 Oct., 1746; ...

Nebo

( Septuagint, Nabau ). A town mentioned in several passages of the Old Testament, v.g., ...

Nebo, Mount

( Septuagint : Nabau ). A mountain of the Abarim range east of Jordan and the Dead Sea, ...

Nebraska

Nebraska, meaning in English, "shallow water", occupies geographically a central location among ...

Necessity

Necessity, in a general way, denotes a strict connection between different beings, or the ...

Neckam, Alexander of

( Or Necham.) English scholar, born in Hertfordshire, 1157; died at Kempsey, Worcestershire, ...

Necrologies

Necrologies, or, as they are more frequently called in France, obituaires , are the registers ...

Necromancy

( nekros , "dead", and manteia , "divination") Necromancy is a special mode of divination ...

Nectarius

( Nechtarios ), Patriarch of Constantinople, (381-397), died 27 Sept, 397, eleventh bishop of ...

Negligence

( Latin nec , not, and legere , to pick out). The condition of not heeding. More ...

Nehemiah, Book of

Also called the second Book of Esdras (Ezra), is reckoned both in the Talmud and in the early ...

Neher, Stephan Jakob

Church historian ; b. at Ebnat, 24 July, 1829; d. at Nordhausen, 7 Oct., 1902. His family were ...

Nemore, Jordanus (Jordanis) de

The name given in manuscripts of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries to a mathematician who ...

Nemrod

Also N IMROD ( nmrd of uncertain signification, Septuagint Nebród ). The name of ...

Neo-Platonism

General survey A system of idealistic, spiritualistic philosophy, tending towards mysticism, ...

Neo-Pythagorean Philosophy

The ethico-religious society founded by Pythagoras, which flourished especially in Magna ...

Neo-Scholasticism

Neo-Scholasticism is the development of the Scholasticism of the Middle Ages during the latter ...

Neocæsarea

A titular see, suffragan of Hierapolis in the Patriarchate of Antioch sometimes called ...

Neocæsarea

A titular see of Pontus Polemoniacus, at first called Cabira, one of the favourite residences ...

Neophyte

Neophyte ( neophytoi , the newly planted, i.e. incorporated with the mystic Body of Christ), a ...

Nephtali

(A.V., N APHTALI ) Sixth son of Jacob and Bala ( Genesis 30:8 ). The name is explained ...

Nepi and Sutri

Nepi and Sutri (Nepsin et Sutrin), united sees of the province of Rome, central Italy, in the ...

Nepveu, Francis

Writer on ascetical subjects, b. at St. Malo, 29 April, 1639; entered the novitiate of the ...

Nereus and Achilleus, Domitilla and Pancratius, Saints

The commemoration of these four Roman saints is made by the Church on 12 May, in common, and ...

Neri, Antonio

Florentine chemist, born in Florence ln the sixteenth century; died 1614, place unknown. We have ...

Neri, Saint Philip Romolo

THE APOSTLE OF ROME. Born at Florence, Italy, 22 July, 1515; died 27 May, 1595. Philip's ...

Nerinckx, Charles

Missionary priest in Kentucky, founder of the Sisters of Loretto at the Foot of the Cross, born ...

Nero

Nero, the last Roman emperor (reigned 54-68) of the Julian-Claudian line, was the son of Domitius ...

Nerses I-IV

Armenian patriarchs. Nerses I Surnamed "the Great". Died 373. Born of the royal stock, he ...

Nerses of Lambron

Born 1153 at Lambron, Cilicia; died 1198; son of Oschin II, prince of Lambron and nephew of the ...

Nestorius and Nestorianism

I. THE HERESIARCH Nestorius, who gave his name to the Nestorian heresy, was born at Germanicia, ...

Netherlands, The

( German Niederlande ; French Pays Bas ). The Netherlands, or Low Countries, as organized by ...

Netter, Thomas

Theologian and controversialist, b. at Saffron Waldon, Essex, England, about 1375; d. at Rouen, ...

Neugart, Trudpert

Benedictine historian, born at Villingen, Baden, 23 February, 1742; died at St Paul's ...

Neum

(Latin, neuma, pneuma, or neupma, from Greek pneûma, a nod). A term in medieval ...

Neumann, Johann Balthasar

Born 1687 at Eger; died 1753 at Würzburg, master of the rococo style and one of the ...

Neumayr, Franz

Preacher, writer on theological, controversial and ascetical subjects, and author of many ...

Neusohl

Diocese of Neusohl (Hung. Beszterczebànya; Lat. Neosoliensis), founded in 1776 by Maria ...

Neutra

(Nitria; Nyitha) -- Diocese of Neutra (Nitriensis). Diocese in Western Hungary, a suffragan of ...

Nevada

A Western state of the United States , bounded on the North by Oregon and Idaho, on the East ...

Neve

Titular see of Arabia, suffragan of Bostra. Two of its bishops are known: Petronius, who ...

Nevers

(Nivernum) Diocese ; includes the Department of Nièvre, in France. Suppressed by the ...

Neville

(1) Edmund Neville ( alias Sales), a Jesuit, born at Hopcut, Lancashire, 1605; died in ...

New Abbey

The Abbey of Sweetheart, named New Abbey Pow, or New Abbey, in order to distinguish it, from ...

New Caledonia

VICARIATE APOSTOLIC New Caledonia, one of the largest islands of Oceania, lies about 900 miles ...

New Guinea

The second largest island and one of the least known countries of the world, lies immediately ...

New Hampshire

The most northerly of the thirteen original states of the United States, lying between 70°37' ...

New Jersey

One of the original thirteen states of the American Union. It ratified the Federal Constitution ...

New Mexico

A territory of the United States now (Jan., 1911) awaiting only the completion of its ...

New Norcia

A Benedictine abbey in Western Australia, founded on 1 March, 1846, by a Spanish Benedictine, ...

New Orleans

ARCHDIOCESE OF NEW ORLEANS (NOVÆ AURELIÆ). Erected 25 April, 1793, as the Diocese of ...

New Pomerania

New Pomerania, the largest island of the Bismarck Archipelago, is separated from New Guinea by ...

New Testament

I. Name ; II. Description ; III. Origin ; IV. Transmission of the Text ; V. Contents, History, ...

New Testament, Canon of the

The Catholic New Testament, as defined by the Council of Trent, does not differ, as regards the ...

New Year's Day

The word year is etymologically the same as hour (Skeat), and signifies a going, movement ...

New York (Archdiocese)

ARCHDIOCESE OF NEW YORK (NEO-EBORACENSIS). See erected 8 April, 1808; made archiepiscopal 19 ...

New York (State)

One of the thirteen colonies of Great Britain, which on 4 July, 1776, adopted the Declaration of ...

New Zealand

New Zealand—formerly described as a colony—has, since September, 1907, by royal ...

Newark

(NOVARCENSIS) Diocese created in 1853, suffragan of New York and comprising Hudson, Passaic, ...

Newbattle

( Neubotle , i.e. new dwelling). Newbattle, in the ancient Diocese of St. Andrews, about ...

Newdigate, Blessed Sebastian

Executed at Tyburn, 19 June, 1535. A younger son of John Newdigate of Harefield Place, Middlesex, ...

Newfoundland

A British colony of North America (area 42,734 square miles), bounded on the north by the Strait ...

Newhouse, Abbey of

The Abbey of Newhouse, near Brockelsby, Lincoln, the first Premonstratensian abbey in England, ...

Newman, John Henry

(1801-1890) Cardinal-Deacon of St. George in Velabro, divine, philosopher, man of letters, ...

Newport (England)

(NEOPORTENSIS) This diocese takes its name from Newport, a town of about 70,000 inhabitants, ...

Newton, John

A soldier and engineer, born at Norfolk, Virginia, 24 August, 1823; died in New York City, 1 May, ...

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Ni 70

Niagara University

Niagara University, situated near Niagara Falls, New York, is conducted by the Vincentians. It ...

Nicéron, Jean-Pierre

A French lexicographer, born in Paris, 11 March, 1685, died there, 8 July, 1738. After his ...

Nicaea

Titular see of Bithynia Secunda, situated on Lake Ascanius, in a fertile plain, but very ...

Nicaea, First Council of

First Ecumenical Council of the Catholic Church, held in 325 on the occasion of the heresy of ...

Nicaea, Second Council of

Seventh Ecumenical Council of the Catholic Church, held in 787. (For an account of the ...

Nicaragua

(REPUBLIC AND DIOCESE OF NICARAGUA; DE NICARAGUA) The diocese, suffragan of Guatemala, is ...

Nicastro

(NEOCASTRENSIS). A city of the Province of Catanzaro, in Calabria, southern Italy, situated ...

Niccola Pisano

Architect and sculptor, b. at Pisa about 1205-07; d. there, 1278. He was the father of modern ...

Nice

(NICIENSIS) Nice comprises the Department of Alpes-Maritimes. It was re-established by the ...

Nicene Creed

As approved in amplified form at the Council of Constantinople (381), it is the profession of the ...

Nicephorus, Saint

Patriarch of Constantinople, 806-815, b. about 758; d. 2 June, 829. This champion of the orthodox ...

Nicetas

(NICETA) A Bishop of Remesiana (Romatiana) in what is now Servia, born about 335; died ...

Nicetius, Saint

A Bishop of Trier, born in the latter part of the fifth century, exact date unknown; died in ...

Niche

A recess for the reception of a statue, so designed as to give it emphasis, frame it effectively, ...

Nicholas Garlick, Venerable

Priest and martyr, born at Dinting, Derbyshire, c. 1555; died at Derby, 24 July, 1588. He ...

Nicholas I, Saint, Pope

Born at Rome, date unknown; died 13 November, 867. One of the great popes of the Middle ...

Nicholas II, Pope

(GERHARD OF BURGUNDY) Nicholas was born at Chevron, in what is now Savoy ; elected at Siena, ...

Nicholas III, Pope

(GIOVANNI GAETANI ORSINI) Born at Rome, c. 1216; elected at Viterbo, 25 November, 1277; died ...

Nicholas IV, Pope

(GIROLAMO MASCI) Born at Ascoli in the Rome, 4 April, 1292. He was of humble extraction, ...

Nicholas Justiniani

Date of birth unknown, became monk in the Benedictine monastery of San Niccoló del Lido ...

Nicholas of Cusa

German cardinal, philosopher, and administrator, b. at Cues on the Moselle, in the Archdiocese ...

Nicholas of Flüe, Blessed

(D E R UPE ). Born 21 March, 1417, on the Flüeli, a fertile plateau near Sachseln, ...

Nicholas of Gorran

(Or GORRAIN) Medieval preacher, and scriptural commentator; b. in 1232 at Gorron, France ; ...

Nicholas of Lyra

( Doctor planus et utilis ) Exegete, b. at Lyra in Normandy, 1270; d. at Paris, 1340. The ...

Nicholas of Myra, Saint

( Also called NICHOLAS OF BARI). Bishop of Myra in Lycia; died 6 December, 345 or 352. ...

Nicholas of Osimo

(AUXIMANUS). A celebrated preacher and author, b. at Osimo, Italy, in the second half of the ...

Nicholas of Strasburg

Mystic ; flourished early in the fourteenth century. Educated at Paris, he was later on lector ...

Nicholas of Tolentino, Saint

Born at Sant' Angelo, near Fermo, in the Hermits of St. Augustine -- a star above him or on his ...

Nicholas Owen, Saint

A Jesuit lay-brother, martyred in 1606. There is no record of his parentage, birthplace, date ...

Nicholas Pieck, Saint

(Also spelled PICK). Friar Minor and martyr, b. at Gorkum, Holland, 29 August, 1534; d. at ...

Nicholas V, Pope

(TOMMASO PARENTUCELLI) A name never to be mentioned without reverence by every lover of ...

Nichols, Venerable George

(Or NICOLLS). English martyr, born at Oxford about 1550; executed at Oxford, 19 October, ...

Nicholson, Francis

A controversial writer; b. at Manchester, 1650 ( baptized 27 Oct.); d. at Lisbon, 13 Aug., 1731. ...

Nicodemus

A prominent Jew of the time of Christ, mentioned only in the Fourth Gospel . The name is of ...

Nicodemus, Gospel of

(Or the Gospel of Nicodemus.) This work does not assume to have written by Pilate, but to have ...

Nicolò de' Tudeschi

("abbas modernus" or "recentior", "abbas Panormitanus" or "Siculus") A Benedictine canonist, ...

Nicolaï, Jean

Celebrated Dominican theologian and controversialist, b. in 1594 at Mouzay in the Diocese of ...

Nicolaites

(Also called Nicolaitans), a sect mentioned in the Apocalypse (ii,6,15) as existing in ...

Nicolas, Armella

Popularly known as "La bonne Armelle", a saintly French serving-maid held in high veneration among ...

Nicolas, Auguste

French apologist, b. at Bordeaux, 6 Jan., 1807; d. at Versailles 18 Jan., 1888. He first studied ...

Nicolaus Germanus

(Often called "Donis" from a misapprehension of the title "Donnus" or "Donus" an abbreviated form ...

Nicole, Pierre

Theologian and controversialist, b. 19 October, 1625, at Chartres, d. 16 November, 1695, at ...

Nicolet

(NICOLETANA) Diocese in the Province of Quebec, Canada, suffragan of Quebec. It comprises the ...

Nicomedes, Saint

Martyr of unknown era, whose feast is observed 15 September. The Roman Martyrologium and the ...

Nicomedia

Titular see of Bithynia Prima, founded by King Zipoetes. About 264 B.C. his son Nicodemes I ...

Nicopolis

A titular see, suffragan of Sebasteia, in Armenia Prima. Founded by Pompey after his decisive ...

Nicopolis

(NICOPOLITANA) Diocese in Bulgaria. The city of Nicopolis (Thrace or Moesia), situated at the ...

Nicopolis

A titular see and metropolis in ancient Epirus. Augustus founded the city (B.C. 31) on a ...

Nicosia

A city of the Province of Catania, in Sicily situated at a height of about 2800 feet above the ...

Nicosia

Titular archdiocese in the Province of Cyprus. It is now agreed (Oberhummer' "Aus Cypern" in ...

Nicotera and Tropea

(NICOTERENSIS ET TROPEIENSIS) Suffragan diocese of Reggio di Calabria. Nicotera, the ancient ...

Nider, John

Theologian, b. 1380 in Swabia; d. 13 August, 1438, at Colmar. He entered the Order of Preachers ...

Nieremberg y Otin, Juan Eusebio

Noted theologian and polygraphist, b. of German parents at Madrid, 1595; d. there, 1658. ...

Niessenberger, Hans

An architect of the latter part of the Middle Ages, whose name is mentioned with comparative ...

Niger, Peter George

(NIGRI, German SCHWARTZ) Dominican theologian, preacher and controversialist, b. 1434 at ...

Nigeria

A colony of British East Africa extending from the Gulf of Guinea to Lake Chad (from 4° 30' ...

Nihilism

The term was first used by Turgeniev in his novel, "Fathers and Sons" (in "Russkij Vestnik", Feb., ...

Nihus, Barthold

Convert and controversialist, b. at Holtorf in Hanover, 7 February, 1590 (according to other ...

Nikolaus von Dinkelsbühl

Theologian, b. c. 1360, at Dinkelsbühl; d. 17 March, 1433, at Mariazell in Styria. He ...

Nikon

Patriarch of Moscow (1652-1658; d. 1681). He was of peasant origin, born in the district of ...

Nilles, Nikolaus

Born 21 June, 1828, of a wealthy peasant family of Rippweiler, Luxemburg ; died 31 January, ...

Nilopolis

A titular see and a suffragan of Oxyrynchos, in Egypt. According to Ptolemy (IV, v, 26) the ...

Nilus the Younger

Of Rossano, in Calabria; born in 910, died 27 December, 1005. For a time he was married (or ...

Nilus, Saint

( Neilos ) Nilus the elder, of Sinai (died c. 430), was one of the many disciples and ...

Nimbus

(Latin, related to Nebula, nephele , properly vapour, cloud), in art and archaeology signifies ...

Nimrod

Also N IMROD ( nmrd of uncertain signification, Septuagint Nebród ). The name of ...

Ninian, Saint

(NINIAS, NINUS, DINAN, RINGAN, RINGEN) Bishop and confessor ; date of birth unknown; died ...

Nirschl, Joseph

Theologian and writer, b. at Durchfurth, Lower Bavaria, 24 February, 1823; d. at ...

Nisibis

A titular Archdiocese of Mesopotamia, situated on the Mygdonius at the foot of Mt. Masius. It is ...

Nithard

Frankish historian, son of Angilbert and Bertha, daughter of Charlemagne ; died about 843 or ...

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No 65

Noah

[Hebrew Nôah , "rest"; Greek Noah ; Latin Noah ]. The ninth patriarch of the ...

Noah's Ark

The Hebrew name to designate Noah's Ark, the one which occurs again in the history of Moses' ...

Noailles, Louis-Antoine de

Cardinal and bishop, b. at the Château of Teyssiére in Auvergne, France, 27 May, ...

Nobili, Robert de'

Born at Montepulciano, Tuscany, September, 1577; died at Mylapore, India, in 1656. He entered the ...

Noble, Daniel

Physician, b. 14 Jan., 1810; d. at Manchester, 12 Jan, 1885. He was the son of Mary Dewhurst and ...

Nocera

DIOCESE OF NOCERA (NUCERINENSIS) Diocese in Perugia, Umbria, Italy, near the sources of the ...

Nocera dei Pagani

(NUCERIN PAGANORUM; dei Pagani ="of the Pagans") Diocese in Salermo, Italy, at the foot of ...

Nocturns

( Nocturni or Nocturna ). A very old term applied to night Offices. Tertullian speaks of ...

Nogaret, Guillaume de

Born about the middle of the thirteenth century at St. Felix-en-Lauragais; died 1314; he was one ...

Nola

(NOLANA) Diocese ; suffragan of Naples. The city of Nola in the Italian Province of Caserta, ...

Nola, Giovanni Marliano da

Sculptor and architect, b., it is said, of a leather merchant named Giuseppe, at Nola, near ...

Nolasco, Saint Peter

Born at Mas-des-Saintes-Puelles, near Castelnaudary, France, in 1189 (or 1182); died at ...

Nollet, Jean-Antoine

Physicist, b. at Pimpré, Oise, France, 19 November, 1700; d. at Paris, 25 April, 1770. His ...

Nominalism, Realism, Conceptualism

These terms are used to designate the theories that have been proposed as solutions of one of the ...

Nomination

The various methods of designating persons for ecclesiastical benefices or offices have been ...

Nomocanon

(From the Greek nomos , law, and kanon , a rule) A collection of ecclesiastical law, the ...

Non Expedit

("It is not expedient"). Words with which the Holy See enjoined upon Italian Catholics the ...

Non-Jurors

The name given to the Anglican Churchmen who in 1689 refused to take the oath of allegiance to ...

Nonantola

A former Benedictine monastery and prelature nullius , six miles north-east of Modena ...

Nonconformists

A name which, in its most general acceptation, denotes those refusing to conform with the ...

None

This subject will be treated under the following heads: I. Origin of None; II. None from the ...

Nonnotte, Claude-Adrien

Controversialist; b. in Besançon, 29 July, 1711; d. there, 3 September, 1793. At nineteen ...

Nonnus

Nonnus, of Panopolis in Upper Egypt (c. 400), the reputed author of two poems in hexameters; ...

Norbert, Saint

Born at Kanten on the left bank of the Rhine, near Wesel, c. 1080; died at Magdeburg, 6 June, ...

Norbertines

(C ANONICI R EGULARES P RÆMONSTRATENSES ). Founded in 1120 by St. Norbert at ...

Norcia

(NORSIN). A diocese and city in Perugia, Italy, often mentioned in Roman history. In the ...

Norfolk, Catholic Dukes of

(Since the Reformation) Under this title are accounts only of the prominent Catholic Dukes of ...

Noris, Henry

Cardinal, b. at Verona, 29 August, 1631, of English ancestry; d. at Rome, 23 Feb., 1704. He ...

Normandy

An ancient French province, from which five "departments" were formed in 1790: ...

Norris, Sylvester

( Alias SMITH, NEWTON). Controversial writer and English missionary priest ; b. 1570 or ...

Norsemen

The Scandinavians who, in the ninth and tenth centuries, first ravaged the coasts of Western ...

North Carolina

One of the original thirteen States of the United States, is situated between 33° 53' and ...

North Dakota

One of the United States of America , originally included in the Louisiana Purchase. Little was ...

Northampton

(NORTANTONIENSIS) Diocese in England, comprises the Counties of Northampton, Bedford, ...

Northcote, James Spencer

Born at Feniton Court, Devonshire, 26 May, 1821; d. at Stoke-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, 3 March, ...

Northern Territory

(Prefecture Apostolic) The Northern Territory, formerly Alexander Land, is that part of ...

Northmen

The Scandinavians who, in the ninth and tenth centuries, first ravaged the coasts of Western ...

Norton, Christopher

Martyr ; executed at Tyburn, 27 May, 1570. His father was Richard Norton of Norton Conyers, ...

Norway

Norway, comprising the smaller division of the Scandinavian peninsula, is bounded on the east by ...

Norwich, Ancient Diocese of

(NORDOVICUM; NORVICUM). Though this see took its present name only in the eleventh century, ...

Notaries

( Latin notarius ). Persons appointed by competent authority to draw up official or authentic ...

Notburga

Jean-Baptiste Belgian statesman, b. 3 July, 1805, at Messancy, Luxemburg ; d. at Berlin, 16 ...

Notburga, Saint

Patroness of servants and peasants, b. c. 1265 at Rattenberg on the Inn; d. c. 16 September, 1313. ...

Nothomb, Jean-Baptiste

Jean-Baptiste Belgian statesman, b. 3 July, 1805, at Messancy, Luxemburg ; d. at Berlin, 16 ...

Notitia Dignitatum

(Register of Offices). The official handbook of the civil and military officials in the later ...

Notitia Provinciarum et Civitatum Africae

(List of the Provinces and Cities of Africa). A list of the bishops and their sees in the ...

Notitiae Episcopatuum

The name given to official documents that furnish for Eastern countries the list and hierarchical ...

Notker

Among the various monks of St. Gall who bore this name, the following are the most important: ...

Noto

(NETEN). Noto, the ancient Netum and after the Saracen conquest the capital of one of the ...

Notoriety, Notorious

( Latin Notorietas, notorium , from notus , known). Notoriety is the quality or the ...

Notre Dame de Montreal, Congregation of

Marguerite Bourgeoys, the foundress, was born at Troyes, France, 17 April, 1620. She was the ...

Notre Dame, School Sisters of

A religious community devoted to education. In the United Sates they have conducted parish ...

Notre Dame, Sisters of (of Cleveland, Ohio)

A branch of the congregation founded by Blessed Julie Billiart. In 1850, Father Elting of ...

Notre Dame, University of

(Full name is the University of Notre Dame du Lac ). Notre Dame is located in Northern ...

Notre-Dame de Namur, Institute of

Founded in 1803 at Amiens, France, by Bl. Julie Billiart (b. 1751 d. 1816) and ...

Notre-Dame de Sion, Congregation of

Religious institute of women, founded at Paris in May 1843, by Marie-Théodore and ...

Nottingham

(NOTTINGHAMIEN) One of the original twelve English dioceses created at the time of the ...

Nourrisson, Jean-Felix

Philosopher, b. at Thiers, Department of Puy-de-Dôme, 18 July, 1825; d. at Paris, 13 June, ...

Nova Scotia

I. GEOGRAPHY Nova Scotia is one of the maritime provinces of Canada. It forms part of what was ...

Novara

(NOVARIENSIS). A diocese and the capital of the province of Novara, Piedmont, Italy, noted ...

Novatianism

Novatian was a schismatic of the third century, and founder of the sect of the Novatians; he ...

Novatus, Saint

St. Novatus, who is mentioned on 20 June with his brother, the martyr Timotheus, was the son of ...

Novello, Blessed Agostino

(Matteo Di Termini), born in the first half of the thirteenth century, at Termini, a village of ...

Novena

(From novem , nine.) A nine days' private or public devotion in the Catholic Church to ...

Novice

I. DEFINITION AND REQUIREMENTS The word novice , which among the Romans meant a newly acquired ...

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Nu 19

Nubia

Located in North-eastern Africa, extending from Sennar south to beyond Khartoum and including the ...

Nueva Cáceres

(NOVA CACERES) Diocese created in 1595 by Clement VIII ; it is one of the four suffragan ...

Nueva Pamplona

(NEO-PAMPILONENSIS). Diocese in Colombia, South America, founded in 1549 and a see erected by ...

Nueva Segovia

(NOVAE SEGOBIAE) Diocese in the Philippines, so called from Segovia, a town in Spain. The town ...

Nugent, Francis

Priest of the Franciscan Capuchin Order, founder of the Irish and the Rhenish Provinces of said ...

Nugent, James

Philanthropist, temperance advocate and social reformer b. 3 March, 1822 at Liverpool ; d. 27 ...

Numbers, Use of, in the Church

No attentive reader of the Old Testament can fail to notice that a certain sacredness seems to ...

Numismatics

(From the Greek nomisma , "legal currency") Numismatics is the science of coins and of ...

Nun of Kent

Born probably in 1506; executed at Tyburn, 20 April, 1534; called the "Nun of Kent." The career of ...

Nunc Dimittis

(The Canticle of Simeon). Found in St. Luke's Gospel (2:29-32) , is the last in historical ...

Nuncio

An ordinary and permanent representative of the pope, vested with both political and ...

Nunez, Pedro

(Pedro Nonius). Mathematician and astronomer, b. at Alcacer-do-Sol, 1492; d. at Coimbra, ...

Nuns

I. ORIGIN AND HISTORY The institution of nuns and sisters, who devote themselves in various ...

Nuptial Mass

"Missa pro sponso et sponsa", the last among the votive Masses in the Missal. It is composed of ...

Nuremberg

(NÜRNBERG) The second largest city in Bavaria, situated in a plain on both sides of the ...

Nusco

(N USCANA ) Diocese in the province of Avellino, Italy, suffragan of Salerno ; dates from ...

Nussbaum, Johannn Nepomuk von

German surgeon, b. at Munich 2 Sept., 1829; d. there 31 Oct., 1890. He made his studies in the ...

Nutter, Robert, Ven.

English martyr ; b. at Burnley, Lancashire, c. 1550; executed at Lancaster, 26 July, 1600. He ...

Nuyens, Wilhelmus

Historian, b. 18 August, 1823, at Avenhorn in Holland ; d. 10 December, 1894, at Westwoud near ...

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Ny 4

Nyassa

Vicariate Apostolic in Central Africa, bounded north by the Anglo-German frontier, east by Lake ...

Nympha, Tryphon, and Respicius

Martyrs whose feast is observed in the Latin Church on 10 November. Tryphon is said to have ...

Nyssa

Vicariate Apostolic in Central Africa, bounded north by the Anglo-German frontier, east by Lake ...

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