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Pius IX.

The correspondence between President Davis and the Chief of the Catholic Church, published some time ago in these columns, cannot fall to be followed by moral effects of great importance and value to the Confederate cause. We are aware that the secular power of the Holy See is small, but its spiritual and moral power is so great that the proudest potentates of the earth are solicitous to secure its power, as has been often enough manifested in the reign of Louis Napoleon, at the head of the first military empire in the world. The great majority of Christendom acknowledge the Pope as their ecclesiastical head, and regard him as the successor of Peter, and the Representative upon earth of the Divine head of the Church. An appeal from such a source to the Christian world in behalf of peace and justice, cannot but array in our behalf the sympathy and friendly wishes of a large portion of Christendom, and diminish to a great extent the influence of our enemies in enlisting the Catholic population of Europe under the banners of this infernal invasion. The pacific counsels of the Pope may not dissuade the more ignorant and turbulent of his spiritual flock in Europe from accepting the large Yankee bounties, but it will seriously curtail their number. In another point of view, the friendly position of Pius IX. may prove of great practical value. The successor of Bishop Hughes cannot be a man of the same political stamp as that belligerent prelate. His Holiness was compelled to put a hook in the nose of that Leviathan before his death, and the comparative quiescence into which he subsided in the last six months of his Episcopate was due to the serious ad monitions that he received from Rome. No tool of Seward can hereafter stir up the foreign Catholics of New York to a bloody war, nor refrain from using the influence of his office in favor of peace and good will among men.

If Pius IX had consulted the dictates of worldly policy he would have looked on the contest with the stolid indifference which other potentates of Europe have displayed, or perhaps have even added fuel to the flames which Archbishop Hughes had kindled. The mass of the Catholic population lies in the North, whereas the South is almost entirely Protestant. Notwithstanding this fact, he, alone of European potentates, has addressed the chief of the Confederate States as "President," reciprocated fully and cordially the courtesy and politeness which have marked the conversation of our own Executive to foreign powers, and quietly and firmly set at defiance the prejudice and displeasure which such a recognition might excite in the Northern mind. The Confederate people cannot but regard with profound respect and gratitude this truly Christian and manly conduct of the Head of the Catholic Church, which is only the more conspicuous and brilliant from its contrast with the callous and inhuman indifference manifested by the other rulers of Europe to this most bloody and barbarous war.

The letter of President Davis to the Pope is a master piece of composition, one of the very happiest efforts of a pen which "touches nothing that it does not adorn."

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