Archbishop Christie, Letter to Archbishop Hanna, January 27, 1923


The National Catholic Welfare Conference was officially established by a resolution of American bishops in 1919. It had grown out of The National Catholic War Council which was founded through the initiative of Father John J. Burke during World War I. Archbishop Christie of Oregon City wrote this letter to Archbishop Edward Hanna, asking for the assistance of the National Catholic Welfare Conference in fighting the recently passed Oregon School Law. Christie's letter reflected the opinions of the bishops in his province who had met to discuss the issue. It was the assistance of the NCWC that enabled Oregonians to bring their appeal to the Supreme Court, which eventually overturned the law.



  • What does the Archbishop mean when he says that this case affects all American Catholics?
  • What, specifically, is meant by the "expensive undertakings" mentioned here?
  • Do you agree with Archbishop Christie's statement that as a result of the law "the faith is being strangled in our innocent children?" Explain why you think this statement does or does not accurately reflect the effect of the Compulsory Education Law on the Catholic children of Oregon?