FROM OUR REGULAR FRENCH CORRESPONDENT.
PARIS, June 17, 1852.
MESSRS. EDITORS:— It may perhaps interest you to know that we of the East have got lately, some representative of that most strange of all your western products—Mormonism. I had heard of that American socialism before, but had not until lately come in contact with any of its devotees. It is a New Yorker of the name of Bolton who first showed me in his own person not only a Mormon, but an elder of the Church. I was struck with the resemblance between Mor- monism, as expounded by the above-named gen- tleman, and the system of Popery,—I mean the religious part of it. Except in the use of very few terms, my instructor spoke exactly as a Ro- mish priest would have done. The materialist idea of the unity of the Church, the continuation of the priesthood through which men must come to God, the importance of outward ceremonies as means of salvation, the submission to the priest before being fully initiated into the mysteries of the Church,—in short the whole concern of Pa-pistic Babel. As I had heard from eye-witnesses accounts of their doings "out there” in Utah, which, to us, are far from edifying, I took the liberty of asking a few questions about it. On the heaviest charges, especially that of polygamy, I met with a positive denial at first; but when I insisted to know what could have caused disin-terested witnesses to believe that such a thing existed among the Mormons, he said he could not answer me, or I could not understand him, being a Gentile, if he told me the whole truth; which answer, I confess, shook very much my confidence in his first denial of the charge. We had some time ago, with Mr. B., another gentle-man, an apostle by the name of Taylor. They have published a translation of the Mormon Bi- ble, with the title of Sacred History of the Abo-rigines of America, also a monthly paper called the Star of Deseret. To complete their system of means of propaganda they have regular preaching in one of the Faubourgs de Paris. But their suc-cess thus far has been small. An English Mormon paper states that the number of Mormons in Paris, —and if I recollect right, in France, is not above twenty. The story of the plates is hard to swal-low, for the unbelieving Frenchman, and they resemblance to Popery, of the Mormon reli-gious system, is not calculated to attract those who have learned justly to hate the religion of the Pope. I cannot help, however, being sur-prised at their little success. For it seems to me, Mormonism, with its promises of earthly comfort, and its Pope Brigham Young dancing with the whole church in the days of the festivi-ties of the saints, would be for many a French-man "just the thing." And also, in these mis-erable days, when any monstrous error and blas-phemous doctrine is preached, there is every reason to believe that many who have despised the truth and who love iniquity will be deluded into it. The greatest obstacle, I believe, to the progress of Mormonism among us is not in the absurdity of the story upon which it is based; it is in the great distance of the place where its blessings are to be enjoyed. If the abundance and riches of the Mormon settlements, their milk and honey, were not so far off, thousands of Frenchmen who believe first and above all in Mammon, would at once declare themselves for Mormon and go thither. But we Frenchmen, however easily we can believe lies, and be hum-bugged, are not colonists; we don't like to emi-grate, and think little of all that can be gotten only far away from the blue and sunny sky of la belle France.
From Mormonism to Popery, there is but one step; they are kindred. Last Sunday was, all over this country, a day of exhibition and tri- umph for the Church of Rome. The occasion was "the feast of the wafer," one of the most splendid of the Romish calendar. Although well known, the origin of that feast is worthy of remembrance. In the year 1230 at Liege a woman named Juliana had a vision, and in that vision she saw the moon,—the full moon. Thus far nothing strange; but in that full moon she saw a notch too, and there was the mystery. Anxious to know what might be the meaning of the notch in the moon she prayed to the Virgin Mary; she did not wait long for an answer; the Virgin told her that a feast was wanting in the Church,— but what feast? The Virgin, like all heathen oracles, had given an obscure answer. Juliana then went to another visionary woman who straightway declared "that the wanting feast was that of the holy sacrament which had been from eternity in the decrees of God, and that the angels had never ceased to pray that it might be at last granted to the world." It was the time when the superstition of the bodily pres- ence of Christ in the bread was gaining ground; the blood flowed from the wafer in the hands of the priests, and the wafer took the shape of a human being, &c. &c. Urbinus the Fourth, Pope, compelled by the wonderful vision of the moon and the subsequent revelations and prodigies, established the great day I spoke of, and from that time down to the present day, in all Roman Catholic countries a great procession takes place every year to honor the priest-created god. If one has never seen a procession, of that kind, let him take up any book of ancient history and read there an account of the processions of Cy-bele or Diana; a few names to be changed make all the difference between these ceremonies of an- cient and those of modern heathenism. After the revolution of 1789, public exhibition of religion in the streets was forbidden. In 1815, it was per-mitted again, and our people could see, in that time of shameless hypocrisy, the magistrates fol- lowing the priests in the processions. Even Marshal Soult, who had most scandalously rob- bed the Spanish churches of their gold and paint- ings, was there,—keeping, of course, all that he had robbed,—but making penance for it in burn-ing publicly a candle to the honor of the Church. In 1830, the priests were again compelled very justly to perform their ceremonies within the walls of the churches. But of late having re- gained their power over the Government, our devout chief, against all existing laws, has again yielded the streets to their mummeries and exhi-bitions. In very many cities the government officers, the troops, with their orchestras, have been seen behind the wafer, and the firing of muskets and guns has been heard in its honor. How long that triumph will last? We shall see. However sorry I may be for all such violations of the law and right, I am glad of those encroach-ments of Popery. The re-action which ended in the revolution of July 1830, was caused by the insolence of that Church of Rome which knows no stopping point between the most abject sla- very and the proudest tyranny.
In politics, the trial on the seizure or confisca-tion, by M. Bonaparte, of the Louis-Philippe-fam-ily-property, and the new taxes put upon the nation, are the only topics of interest. You know already something of the first affair. The poor old king had managed, although the times were hard, to gather for his children, among other property, about sixty millions of dollars' worth of real estate. The other day another gentleman, and a prince too, finds himself in the place of old King Philippe, and being of opinion first, that it is not safe for him to let the princes of the house of Orleans be the owners of 60 millions worth of property in France; second, that a part of it belongs to the nation, he thinks fit to lay his hands upon a part of it—the largest—and to compel the other princes to sell off the remain- der. Hence the trial pending now, before the Council of State. Such measures are common among us. In 1816 something like that was done by the Bourbons against Napoleon's family; in 1832 by Louis Philippe against the Bourbons; and now M. Bonaparte gives the latter's family measure for measure,—and here they are, quar-reling, and speaking to each other through their lawyers of right, of honor, and so forth.
"Earth is sick
And Heaven is weary, of the hollow words
Which States and Princes utter when they talk
Of truth and justice."
The sentence of the Council of State is not yet known. The Orleanists on the one side and the Bonapartists on the other await it anxiously, but the common people are repeating to each other the common French saying: "When one thief robs another thief, the devil laughs."
I shall say little of the new taxesI have men-tioned. Every government among us, adds some-thing to the burden which crushes down the nation. The great problem of all our statesmen seems to be to ascertain how much money can be taken out of the people without starving them quite to death. True, with a part of the money thus got from us, our republican President is sur-rounded with the magnificence of an Asiatic despot; palaces are built, and the beauties of the French capital win the admiration and make the delight of strangers. Meanwhile the nation covered with that foolish dream glory, is also covered with rags, and hundreds of thousands are starved by taxes whose products build theaters and fill galleries of fine arts for the refined. God save, a long time, your noble country from our taxes, our glory, and our wretchedness. Hence-forth we will have to pay taxes upon paper, car- riages, and an increase on the transmission of real estate. The poor will suffer by the first, the rich by the second, all by the third.
The French papers have spoken a good deal of the adventures of our too faithful representa- tive in Washington, Monsieur de Sartiges. One of them, the Univers, a Jesuit paper, a French Freeman’s Journal, says: "When an ambassador is a bachelor, nothing is more natural than his trying to amuse himself out of his annoyances by killing rats on Sunday, and paying witty com- pliments to the young ladies." They are the same everywhere.
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