Archbishop Alexander Christie, "The School Question In Oregon," ca. 1922


Archbishop Alexander Christie (left) was not a native of Oregon. Born and raised in Vermont, after his ordination in 1877 he served the church in Minnesota, Vancouver, and was Archbishop of Oregon City from 1899 until 1925. In this pastoral letter regarding the Compulsory Education Bill, Christie encouraged Catholics to unite in order to defend their constitutional rights which he believed were threatened by the bill.



  • According to the document, parochial schools play an important role in the development of a sense of citizenship in their students. What evidence does Archbishop Christie give in support of the parochial schools civic efforts?
  • Why would Archbishop Christie include the section "Non-Catholic Testimony?". Who was he trying to reach through this section?
  • Does Archbishop Christie believe that Catholic schools should organize and participate in political activism?
    Do you?
    Under what circumstances do you think Catholics should organize?
    (Give specific examples from the past or present)
    Explain why you think the campaign to defeat the Oregon School Law was or was not the right occasion to organize.