The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898—Volume 39 of 55
Author: Various
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In Camarines there are great controversies between the bishop and the Franciscans, whose commissary, Fray Ysidro de la Madre de Dios, made very sarcastic [saladas] remarks to the bishop who, it seems, does not relish so much salt. The former acted so that the bishop demanded from the royal Audiencia that they should send that friar to Espana. It is to be noticed that this good religious is so devout that his friars, on account of his modest behavior, call him "the Theatin" [i.e., "the Jesuit"]; but seeing himself accused on such a ground, he was furiously angry, going so far as to tell the bishop that everything was going to destruction since bishops so ignorant as his illustrious Lordship were appointed, etc. The royal Audiencia made no answer to the bishop's demand, except in general terms; for that religious has a well-established reputation, and it is acknowledged that he has cause [for what he says].

By a loyal decree the bishop of Troya was notified that he must raise the censures that he had laid upon the alcaldes-mayor, the collectors [of tribute], and the rest of the officers of justice throughout the bishopric of Cagayan. Up to the time of this writing, he has not replied; if he shall do so, I will add a note of it.

The royal court soon responded to the petition by Don Juan de Vargas, by a royal decree which was sent to the archbishop, to the effect that he should absolve Vargas ad reincidentiam, and send them the acts. It was doubted whether the governor would sign it, because he disliked lawsuits and controversies, and because this was to decide the point at issue; but he signed it. The secretary of the court went to make the decree known, and the good old man took the document for the ceremony of kissing it and placing it on his head—but, placing it in his breast, told the secretary that he needed time to reply to it; that those gentlemen [of the Audiencia] took their time for planning these decrees, and expected that he would reply in haste; and that he must send him stamped paper for a reply. The secretary replied that he had orders not to leave the royal decree with the bishop, and that his illustrious Lordship could answer that he heard it, and afterward reply by means of a long letter whatever he chose; but the latter was obstinate, [131] and refused to give back the decree, and told him to wait for his answer. Since this will be actually made by Fray Marron and Fray Verart, it will make much trouble. In fine, he has, however, already explained extra-judicially his intention—which is, that even if they cut off his head he will not lower a shred of sail; and if he posts the governor and auditors on the list of excommunicated persons, it will be [not only] what can be demanded, but what they deserve. It is expected that the contest will be renewed, [132] and affairs point to nothing less.

The archbishop has now replied to the decree, and his answer was to send a bunch, or olla podrida, [133] of papers which he calls "acts." Regarding the absolution, he says therein that he cannot absolve Don Juan de Vargas, since it is a matter which concerns the Inquisition. The Audiencia held a session on the first of the month, regarding the archbishop's reply; their conclusion has not been made public.

A military council was held to deliberate upon the reestablishment of [a fort at] Zamboanga, and all voted that this should be accomplished. The city was informed of this, as a command of his Majesty, in order that the citizens might aid the enterprise; but they were of a contrary opinion, for reasons which it is said, are frivolous. The truth is, according to report, that they do not like to be exiled [there]. The governor demanded the opinion of the Theatins, which they gave in accordance with that of the military council, very energetically demolishing the reasons adduced by the city. The whole matter, it seems, is going before the royal Council. Manila, June 8, 1685.

Occurrences during the term of government of Cruzalaegui

1. With the publication in Manila of the coming of Admiral Don Gabriel de Cruzalaegui in the ship "Santa Rosa," to govern these islands, was revealed the obligation which he brought from Mejico to restore the archbishop.

2. Before the said governor arrived, the bishop of Troya published a document with the title, "Advice to those who come newly to these islands, that they may not err in judgment regarding the banishment of the archbishop." In this writing there were propositions opposed to the Audiencia, the cabildo, and the royal decisions.

3. Reply was made to this by an anonymous writer, against whom Fray Raimundo Verart came out with drawn sword, issuing a manifesto that was full of assertions hostile to the royal jurisdiction and to the cabildo.

4. The governor entered Manila on August 24, 1684. There was an earthquake on that day, an unusual occurrence for that time; and soon after he had passed through the Puerta Real the balcony fell, and with it more than one hundred persons—of whom many were injured, some died, and others were crippled.

5. The governor soon manifested the partiality that he felt for the Dominicans, intriguing with Fray Francisco de Vargas and Fray Juan de Ybanez, who had been sent out of the city by the royal Audiencia, but had returned to it before the entry of the said governor; he did the same with Verart and Marron, who had been banished, but left their hiding-places and appeared [in the city] when he entered it.

6. Under cover of the favor which the governor showed to the Dominicans, they made impudent speeches in the pulpits against the royal Audiencia and the cabildo; and they refused to join them in public functions, regarding them as excommunicated. For the same reason, they would not go to the procession for the publication of the bull, even when they were commanded to do so by the commissary of the Crusade.

7. The cabildo rendered account to the governor, in a very learned document, of their government during the absence of the archbishop; the Audiencia also made him a very suitable report of what they had done. But the governor paid no attention to either of the two reports, in order to carry his own point, the restitution of the archbishop.

8. The governor endeavored to influence the auditors at his will, doing them some favors and making some approaches to them, which they, faithful to their king, resisted. Not being able to subdue them by this method, he arranged that a demand be contrived by means of Don Tomas de Endaya and Don Francisco de Atienza (both of them regidors and belonging to his faction), that the city should sign a letter of advice to the governor, in which they should represent to him the difficulties arising from the banishment of the archbishop, and the uneasiness of the people occasioned by their uncertainty as to what would be done in regard to the government of the cabildo, etc.; and request his Lordship to adopt such measures as should be most opportune to put an end to their anxiety. Those of the governor's following signed this paper very readily; those who follow the truth, reluctantly; and there was one who refused to sign.

9. The governor consulted the religious orders upon this point, and upon the excommunications which the Dominicans were [word blotted in MS.]. The Society of Jesus excused themselves from responding to such a consultation, because they observed the malicious design with which it was asked. The Franciscans at first excused themselves, but afterward answered in favor of the cabildo. The Augustinians were ready to suit the pleasure of the governor, on account of being very intimate with the Dominicans; and the same was done by the Recollects, who follow the Augustinians in everything.

10. With the said opinions, obtained by pressure, the governor ordered that the bishop of Troya should begin to rule the archbishopric, under the protection of the governor. This he did, one Sunday, which they fixed, October 22; and he was styled governor of the archbishopric, and personally went about posting in the churches certain edicts in which he summoned the entire cabildo to appear before the ecclesiastical court within the next three days, under penalty of being regarded as publicly excommunicated, to give satisfaction for having arrogated to themselves the government; and on the same day he took away Juan Gonzalez, who was a prisoner in his own house, and carried him to [the convent of] San Agustin; and to the persons whom he found there he intimated that they would have this man as provisor.

11. This so violent mode of proceeding caused much disquiet in the community; and if the cabildo, desiring to maintain the peace which the bishop of Troya and his friars were disturbing, had not yielded, some tumult among the people would have resulted, so great was their excitement.

12. The ecclesiastical cabildo repaired to the governor in regard to this case, and were coldly received by him. A session of the royal Audiencia was held; the fiscal set forth the right of the cabildo, and justified their government; but notwithstanding this the governor declared himself for the bishop of Troya, and displayed the [written] opinions mentioned above, with which he confirmed the former pretension of restoring the archbishop.

13. During the four days while the sessions of the Audiencia lasted, there were long debates in the palace, and much confusion among the people. The governor talked loudly, and expressed opinions that the cabildo must not govern. The fiscal stripped off his robe, indignant that the royal patronage was not respected. During those days, no receptor or court secretary was allowed to enter the session, so that no testimony of the proceedings should be taken. The Dominican friars [went] in crowds to the palace. Marcos Quintero, who is entirely for them, had offered to the governor, it is said, to pay whatever fine he might impose for this.

14. [The bishop of] Troya governed the archbishopric in the interval before the archbishop was restored to his see. Endaya went on this errand with a royal decree, obtained by the utmost violence, and given very reluctantly by the auditors, who were afraid, because the governor intimidated them by the language he used. He received the archbishop with [salvos of] artillery and muster of the troops.

15. The archbishop, instigated by his friars, began to take his revenge on November 22 of the same year. He sent notifications to the ecclesiastical cabildo, the religious orders, etc., of an act ordering that they should not admit into their churches the master-of-camp Don Juan de Vargas Hurtado, or the auditors, or many other persons and military officers who had a share in his banishment, or in the deportation of the Dominican provincial and other friars.

16. The cabildo wrote to the archbishop to inquire whether entrance to the church should be denied to the auditors if they came in a body as the Audiencia, as they go on communion days [dias de tabla]; and he replied that this should be done, in whatever manner they might go to church. In consequence of this, the Audiencia did not attend at two communion feasts; these were the commemoration of the blessed sacrament in the cathedral, and the day of St. Andrew the Apostle.

17. The governor showed a desire to settle with the bishop his relations with the Audiencia; and he arranged that on the sixth of December all the auditors should be present together in the palace, and that the archbishop should come to meet them, as if by chance, and talk with them, and thus have a sort of absolution conferred—a mummery [mogiganga] by which they could attend that day the feast of St. Javier, which was celebrated at the church of the Society of Jesus.

18. All those proscribed in the archbishop's act went to ask for absolution; and he commanded them to take oath that they would not obey the ministers of the king in matters pertaining to ecclesiastical persons. For others, the formula of the oath was, that they must swear to observe the sacred canons. This proceeding caused great disquiet in the minds of the citizens.

19. Some disturbances led to others. On the ninth of December notification was served on the dean and four dignitaries of the cabildo, with a canon, that they must be regarded as under censure as irregular, for having assumed the government of the church, and for having arrested Juan Gonzalez and Don Pablo de Aduna.

20. The cabildo found itself entirely defenseless against the manifest anger of the archbishop, without power to appeal either to [the ecclesiastical court of] Camarines—since its bishop, the head of that court, was of the Dominican faction—or to [the court of] Cagayan, since Troya was there; or to the Audiencia, since recourse to that body was prohibited, and the governor did not wish to interfere with the archbishop.

21. On the same day, the ninth of December, an edict of the archbishop was posted in which were annulled the sacraments of penance administered by the said prebends, and the licenses which they had given for hearing confessions, preaching, etc.; item, the marriages solemnized without the permission of his provisor, Juan Gonzalez—and they rained down censures, excommunications, and threats by the thousand, according to the fury of Father Verart, who directed all these. By another edict, dated January 8, all the legal causes and suits which had been tried before the cabildo and its provisor were declared null and void.

22. The said measures produced innumerable perplexities. Soon afterward, the archbishop attempted to deprive the said prebends of their appointments; and to this end he held a conference with the governor, proposing most unworthy persons in the place of those prebends. This proposal was considered in the session of the Audiencia, and censured as irregular and out of order; and it went no further.

23. The archbishop issued an act against the trumpet of Don Juan de Vargas, commanding that he conduct himself as an excommunicated person. Soon afterward (on February 10, 1685), he posted Don Juan on all the church doors as publicly excommunicated. The latter had recourse to the royal aid, and wrote an excellent document in his defense; but the governor did nothing for him, and only commanded him to obey the archbishop and be reconciled with him.

24. Seeing himself deprived of recourse, the poor gentleman did all that he could to procure a reconciliation with the archbishop and the Dominican friars. He was commanded to beg the pardon of all the aggrieved parties, even from the most inferior lay brethren; and he did this, at the cost of many rebuffs. After this, the archbishop obliged him to swear, declare, and attest that when he sent the archbishop in a vessel to his exile he had sent him away without supplies of everything necessary, although this was manifestly false, for provision was made as if for a royal person. Even when he had done what was demanded from him, the archbishop would not even take his name from the list of excommunicates, such was his hatred for Don Juan. Ab ira et odio et mala voluntate monachi dominici libera nos, Domine. [134]

25. The archbishop claimed that the senior auditor, Doctor Don Diego Calderon, should [not] be absolved from the censures which, the archbishop informed him, he had incurred because of the demand which he made, when he was fiscal, against Bishop Palu, [135] who landed in these islands, with whom the Dominicans had secret dealings. Calderon replied to the archbishop, setting forth the reasons which induced him to act as he did with Palu; and for the time the archbishop desisted from his intentions.

26. The prebends endured this persecution with incredible patience. Again the governor wrote a letter, [endeavoring] to mediate in the question of granting a dispensation [to the cabildo] for their irregular government, and engaged the bishop of Sinopolis as his agent. Ybanez went to the dean to tell him that all would be settled according to his satisfaction, but this was nothing but a falsehood and invention; for the dispensation [136] was conferred with the utmost ignominy for the cabildo and prebends, for the greater glory and triumph of the Dominicans, the managers of this scene-shifting.

27. They obliged the prebends to make certain declarations, which were fraudulent and misleading, so that it was difficult not to blunder in the replies, which were directed by Father Verart, the mainspring of all these plots. They made the prebends take an oath; the latter consented to this, and submitted to everything, in order to extricate themselves from so much annoyance and to be free from enemies so powerful and so persistent.

28. The archbishop commanded the prebends to make a statement of detestation [of their errors], in which were contained things prejudicial and inimical to the royal jurisdiction and prerogatives; and others, complimenting the archbishop and his friars and various private persons. On the same day a conference had been held in which it was asked whether the said prebends were worthy of being dispensed; it was decided that they were, because those who were following the current with the archbishop were very influential, but those who were more judicious and learned thought that there was no reason why the said dispensation was necessary. [137]

29. On the following day the archbishop again declared the members of the cabildo to be excommunicated, alleging that although the bishop of Troya had absolved them, he had done so only ad reincidentiam, for such time as the bishop should choose. In the said act he also commanded that in the afternoon of the same day they should go to the cathedral to receive absolution and dispensation; and on the next day they must all go to the church of Santo Domingo, to make amends to the friars for imagined injuries.

30. The function of the absolution and dispensation was celebrated with the greatest publicity, and in a very marked, offensive, and injurious manner. An enormous number of the lower class of people were called in, from the neighboring villages—and especially from Binondoc, which is a village in charge of the Dominicans; for that purpose, the sermons which would occur that afternoon in some churches were suppressed, so that all the people could go to see a performance that would so exalt the Dominican fathers.

31. The prebends went to the church, ignorant of the measures taken for exposing them to ignominy. They found two tribunals erected, one at the church door, and the other inside, at the great altar; and there was an enormous concourse of people. Of the religious orders, the Dominicans were there in great numbers; from the colleges, only the members of Santo Thomas [Tomistas]. The archbishop occupied his judgment-seat at the door of the church, and at either side were his beloved Juan Gonzalez and Aduna. He called the prebends and made them kneel before him in order to be absolved, as if they were heretics. He handled a ferule while the Miserere lasted, although he did not, on account of the entreaties of those who were present, strike the capitulars with it. Then he went inside the church, and after performing other ceremonies, took his seat on the second platform, where he made an address, in which he gave many and sharp stabs to those who favored the cause of the cabildo; and after that the performance came to an end, with much gossiping among the people, who regarded these actions as revengeful.

32. The archbishop prepared a feast in order to regale the prebends, quite contrary to his usual manner and harsh temper; the prebends attended it unwillingly, seeing that they had been treated like boys, and that this banquet was only a device to shut their mouths. He made them elect another secretary for that same cabildo's corporation, and afterward inflicted punishment on him who was secretary while they governed; this was a poor cleric, whom he declared excommunicated and suspended, [138] and seized his little property, for having acted officially in the proceedings brought against Don Juan Gonzalez by the dean as provisor.

33. Troya returned from Cagayan, where he had gone, on the pretext of administering confirmations, during the time of these transactions. There he deprived of their curacies, and loaded with censures, Licentiate Diego de las Navas and Bachelor Diego de Espinosa Maranon; and having sent them to Manila, he placed friars in their stead. Afterward he imposed excommunications on the alcaldes-mayor and collectors of tribute who might buy and sell goods with the Indians of those provinces.

34. Don Juan de Vargas, after his name had been on the list of excommunicates two months, and he had been interdicted for four months from entrance into the churches, solicited absolution, by a petition to the archbishop; the latter sent it to Troya, so that he might poison it. Troya pushed Don Juan farther toward ruin, and—paying no attention to the reasons which the said master-of-camp Vargas brought forward as having influenced him to banish the archbishop, in behalf of the prerogatives of the king our sovereign—he made answer furiously, that Don Juan must be absolved with publicity; and, although the governor advised him, the bishop paid no heed to this.

35. At Lent in 1685, the archbishop suspended three fathers of the Society, to whom the cabildo while it governed had given permission to preach and hear confessions; he did this not only because of the aversion which he had taken for the cabildo, but on account of the enmity which he had always felt toward the Society. The governor compelled two foreign ships to pay very exorbitant imposts, at which they were greatly dissatisfied.

36. Don Juan de Vargas was not ready for absolution. The archbishop called together the theologians, to tell him whether the absolution should be given privately; this was decided in the affirmative by the majority of votes, but the Dominicans opposed it. The archbishop, in order to defeat the resolution, decreed that Vargas must first perform the following penance: During an entire month, he must be present in the cathedral, from morning until high mass, clothed in sackcloth and in the garb of a penitent, with a halter round his neck; and for another month he must, in the same manner, attend the church of Santo Domingo; another, the hospital of San Gabriel; and another, the church of Binondoc. Then, the said penance being accomplished, he would be absolved by Domingo Diaz, a mestizo of infamous character. The said Don Juan de Vargas appealed, but the appeal was not allowed him, and he remains in the same condition up to the present time.

Paragraphs of a letter written from Manila, June 15, 1685, by Auditor Don Pedro Sebastian de Bolivar y Mena to his agent at Madrid, Don Diego Ortiz de Valdes.

In this ship came as governor of these islands Don Gabriel de Curuzalegui y Arriola, a knight of excellent abilities, very disinterested, and intent on the service of his Majesty—whose royal revenues from the department of customs, which were so impaired, have been enormously increased, of which he will, I doubt not, send statements to the Council. The trouble is, that this place is so corrupt that, even though a very good man comes here, with the best intentions, people make him fail in his duty. Even if I had not had a letter from you for the purpose, he would show indignation against me. For, having spoken to the governor at various times, and asked if you had hinted anything about me, either personally or through Don Tomas, he has replied that such was not the case; but this did not happen to Don Diego de Viga, for he carried the recommendations of Don Tomas, and therefore has a place in [the governor's] affection—although he shows all kindness to me also, and I endeavor to serve him as far as I can reasonably. As soon as this knight arrived, he made strenuous efforts to secure the restoration of the archbishop to his see—for which he made a proposition, or offered his opinion, to the royal court, finding occasion for this in one which the secular cabildo had offered on the same subject. And, although, in the private conferences which he held with each one of us upon this matter, it was represented to him that such a solution [of the difficulty] was impossible—since account of it had been rendered to his Majesty, and the acts therein referred to him; and also since the circumstances and facts which had given cause for the archbishop's banishment still existed; and that no restitution had been or would be made to the royal jurisdiction for the injury that he had done it, nor had he offered any betterment in the future—he nevertheless insisted that it must be done. And as here there is no [opportunity for any] will, save that of a governor, since he is absolute, we all had to acquiesce, under compulsion and pressure, in the restitution of the archbishop—and not only that, but also in accepting the bishop of Troya as governor ad interim until his illustrious Lordship came back. As soon as the latter arrived, he began to unsheathe the sword, against all the human race; for he declared that all three of us auditors had incurred the excommunications imposed by the bull of Cena [Domini; i.e., the Lord's Supper] and by the canon, commanding that we should not be admitted into the churches. This we reported to the governor, and reminded him of the inconveniences which, as we had represented to him, would follow from such restitution; and he, while acknowledging this, talked of availing himself of extrajudicial measures to hinder those that were judicial; consequently we were interdicted from the church for several days. At the end of that time, he sent to summon me, on an occasion when I was alone in the Audiencia, and told me that he had the matter settled; that the act [of excommunication] should be recalled—with only [the stipulation] that the archbishop should go to the palace at a time when we all were there together with his Lordship; and that, the archbishop entering with him, we should kiss his hand, and everything would remain settled. I informed my associates of this, and all agreed to it, provided that the word "absolution" should not be used, because if it were, all of us would leave the room; moreover, we supposed that Don Juan de Vargas would be included in this act, for, as he had concurred with us, as our president, it would be very proper that he should do the same as we. I gave this reply to the governor, and he told me that as for what concerned Don Juan de Vargas, he had already arranged it, and that for this he was responsible. In accordance with this [agreement], we assembled at the palace. The archbishop came, and we went forward to receive him, making the obeisance due to the prelate; with that, the prohibition was recalled, and we remained free to enter the churches. But it was continued with Don Juan; and to this day his name remains on the list of excommunicated persons. It is intended, as I understand, that his absolution shall be made in public, with all the ancient ceremonial forms.

He published an act declaring that all persons who had directed the cabildo during his absence were under censure as irregular; and annulling the marriages celebrated, the licenses given to confessors, and the confessions that had been made to them, and whatever else had been done during the time of his banishment. The prebends were regarded as irregular for more than three months; at the end of that time he erected a stage at the main doors of the holy cathedral church, and thereon publicly absolved them—having previously published an edict that at the said function should assemble all the Indians, Sangleys, mestizos, and negroes of the neighboring villages, which occasioned astonishing disturbances.

All affairs thus remain as they were, and these vassals are without any recourse, since they dare not interpose that plea before the Audiencia, as it is so powerless to exercise its functions; consequently, to state the case in few words, the archbishop does whatever suits his whim, without there being any one to restrain him.

These proceedings keep me in the utmost anxiety, as I fear that so unreasonable an act as this restitution will be very ill received in the Council, which will lose respect for the authorities here, as the matter was pending in that body. Accordingly, and on account of what may be carried to Espana, I give you this information, so that you may, if opportunity offers, make it known, as I dare not write to the Council about it, for my letters may not be sent forward—as happened to Don Juan de Vargas, while of the letters that were written against him copies were sent to the Council. If this should occur [now], it would result in ruining us all. Notwithstanding these difficulties, I am on very good terms with the archbishop, so much so that in any event, whatever I may do, they will stand up in my favor; and they have even gone so far as to tell me that they are writing this year to his Majesty, assuring him of my excellent mode of procedure, and how incorrect was the information to the contrary. Your Grace will inquire at the secretary's office, and let me know whether this is really so; for one cannot trust in friars, and, in order that they may not imagine that I distrust them, I have not asked them for the letter, in order to send [a copy of it to you].

The viceroy of Nueva Espana having appointed, in accordance with the permission given him by the Council, Don Juan de Zalaeta, the castellan of Acapulco, as judge of residencia for Don Juan de Vargas, he came here and presented all his credentials in the royal court—where, without any contention, it was ordered that they be put into force and carried out. Among the despatches came a royal decree forbidding this royal Audiencia from taking cognizance of anything belonging to the said residencia; but, this being granted, twelve days after its publication the said judge was challenged by the city on account of the entire case. As he had not been declared to be judge for that, but only an associate, the city hastened to the Audiencia in order that this court might declare the said judge to be thus challenged. Among other reasons that the city alleged for this proceeding was the statement that in the port of Acapulco, the viceroy having commissioned the said judge to seize the bales and merchandise which were going in the ships on account of the said Don Juan de Vargas and his servants and friends, the judge had not carried out the said seizure, on account of fifty thousand pesos which they had given him. Although it is certain that the reasons adduced were very forcible, the Audiencia, recognizing the force of the inhibitory decree, declared that they could not intermeddle by giving a decision on the said challenge; and that the governor should appoint associates [adjuntos] for him, in order that they might continue the said residencia with the said judge; and that the original documents connected with the said challenge should be sent to the Council. Although the residencia was prosecuted, the charges [against Vargas] have not yet been published. It seems to me that it is being settled very conformably to justice, although the proceedings cannot fail to show many defects on account of the judge's inexperience; for he is not a learned man, and here the lawyers are very few, and the conduct of [such] a case is exceedingly difficult.

As soon as the city brought forward in the court the challenge against the judge, Don Juan de Vargas challenged all three of us auditors; and in the course of the proceedings I introduced a document acknowledging myself as challenged; [I did this] not only on account of what Don Juan de Vargas had done for me, but because it was a brother-in-law of mine who was under residencia, and his advocate also bore that relation to me. They must have had good reasons for not regarding me as challenged, and so I had to vote. I give you information of all this, in order that if any reparation be proposed there, it may be in this; for I judge that the points and articles of this residencia will cause the utmost embarrassment in the Council, and that it will be necessary to command that it be taken again. I give thanks to our Lord that it has not reached me; for it would cause me the utmost injury and perplexity—partly on account of his wrong acts, partly because those who had written unpleasant letters to the Council now turn tail, and explain nothing. This, it may be, is attributed to the judge, who is not to blame—for here there are only false witnesses, now on one side and now on the other; and you will confirm this information by what goes there, which you will not fail to know. For it seems to me that in all the lands discovered [by Spaniards] there is no country like this, or where its inhabitants are so inconstant. Accordingly, I assert that here neither friendship nor enmity is permanent; for if now, for example, some persons are my enemies, and on that account my actions are pointed out in the Council, when [the news of] my vindication—through this or that accident—comes from there we become reconciled, and eat, as they say, from one plate; and the same on the other side. It is useless, therefore, to take notice of anything in this little edition of hell [abreviado infierno].

I have no other request or greater desire than to leave this place; and although (for since I arrived in these islands I have written to you at every opportunity) I have sufficiently wearied you regarding this, I cannot cease continuing [my efforts to go away]—without urging any fixed and assigned place, or where or how it shall be accomplished. For every day, Don Diego, I find myself more disconsolate, and I would by this time be desperate if I could not trust in the good opinion that I have of you; and therefore, hoping for your protection and stationed at your feet, I entreat you with the utmost earnestness [for a change in my position], without heeding whether or not it be a promotion. For me the best promotion will be to go away, wherever it may be; and if it cannot be accomplished in this way, [please] endeavor to secure for me permission, for such time as may seem proper to the Council, to pass over to Nueva Espana, in accordance with what I wrote last year, as there was no room for either of these expedients to secure my departure. I send a special power of attorney for you to make in my name surrender and renunciation of this post, for the causes and reasons which I will allege in the Council, either personally or by my attorney; I do not do so now, on account of the damage and risk which thus may be occasioned to me because I do not desire a post in which there is so much corruption as there is in this. And more, I would almost rather go to get a living by some petition or commission than to be auditor of Filipinas; and this, Don Diego, is the truth. Here there is no liberty for anything; there is no authority, no respect, and, above all, not an atom of profit. Then, what is such a post good for? It is only fit for ruining honor and reputation, and for this it is notorious. In case I shall get away from here by any of the aforesaid ways, you will ask that a judge of residencia may be appointed for me, so that he may take it before I shall go; for I do not wish to leave behind these sorrapas. You will previously challenge Don Diego de Viga and Don Esteban de la Fuente y Alanis; for these two gentlemen, each in his own way, are very malicious, and have very little affection for colleagues. I know them well, by experience of what they have done to other persons; and I do not wish that they do the same to me. It is also necessary to obtain for me a royal decree, so that I may not be hindered by the governor or any one else, that all the persons in my household, and those who came with me to these islands, may return in my company; and that I may be assigned a small room for storage of my provisions for the voyage. For here it is not the same as in the north, [139] where there are general accommodations for the passengers; but each one furnishes his own provisions; and, unless a place is assigned in which these may go, the transportation charges cost more than one thousand pesos; but, as those who ship bales pay for them at the rate of twelve and fifteen pesos, they have many advantages [over the rest].

Don Pedro Sebastian de Volibar y Mena

Extract from a letter written by Father Luis Pimentel to Father Manuel Rodriguez, procurator-general of Indias, from Manila, February 8, 1686.

Don Juan de Vargas was excommunicated and placed on the public list by Archbishop Pardo; he thereupon came before the Audiencia. That court demanded that the archbishop show them his acts, which he did not do. A royal decree was sent to him; he replied that he could not send the act that he had issued against Don Juan de Vargas, since he had to send it to a superior tribunal—that is, to the tribunal of the Inquisition. The auditors sent him a second decree; he replied that he was encumbered with affairs of more importance than those of Don Juan de Vargas, and could not make [formal] answer. They sent a third one, commanding him to send such answer; he replied that the doings of Don Juan de Vargas were public and manifest, so that it was not necessary to enact anything against him, and accordingly he had no documents to send them. The secretary of the Audiencia notified him of the fourth decree, and had orders to read it to the archbishop, but not to give it to him, because the three former decrees had remained in his hands without his making any answer. The secretary was told, however, that if the archbishop should demand a certified copy, he should give him one and bring back the royal decree; but the archbishop declared that if the decree were not surrendered to him he would not answer it. As he did not render obedience to the four decrees, his Majesty commanded, by his royal decrees, that the archbishop should be declared banished from the kingdoms. The governor went to talk with him, to start him, as they say on the road; and it is said that he found him obstinate.

Now follows the fiction that they made arrangements, in order that the governor might not consider himself obliged to undo what had been done, [140] by recalling the sentence of banishment, and bringing the archbishop to Manila. They ordered that all the estates of this community should go to entreat the governor that the archbishop should not be exiled; and the same persons went on this errand who [afterward] bemired themselves in causing the archbishop to return to Manila. These men went about talking and declaiming to everyone in the community about the great difficulties, both spiritual and temporal, which must follow from [the banishment]; but in reality all these were fantastical, since there would be no further difficulties than those which the governor chose—as there were none when the archbishop was banished the previous time; [141] for one would hardly believe how great is the hatred that most persons feel toward the archbishop and his officials, and to the Dominican friars. The Order of St. Francis was remiss in making this request, but an auditor brought them to terms, as well as the members of the cabildos, both ecclesiastical and secular. The most difficult thing was to subdue the Jesuits. A bishop who was a great friend of ours charged himself with this task, and easily persuaded the vice-provincial and the consultors; but I always have been of opinion that we ought to pursue an even course—for I immediately saw the trick, and that he was setting a trap for us, as actually happened. Finally the vice-provincial and another father went, because I excused myself from going in company with the other orders. With them went Don Fray Juan Duran, a religious of the Order of Mercy and bishop of Sinopolis; it was he who in the name of all the orders made the address, setting forth the serious difficulties that must ensue in spiritual and temporal affairs. This petition being ended, the snare began; the governor told them to draw up a paper in which they were to set forth the causes that led them to make the request, and that all the orders should sign it—which converted the petition into advice, and he did the same with the other estates, even with the military leaders.

The [preparation of the] paper which the orders were to sign was entrusted to one of the bemired ones, the provincial of the Augustinian Recollects; but what he wrote was so unsatisfactory that even the bishop of Sinopolis—who was active in carrying on this affair for the governor, on account of being his intimate friend—did not like it; and the bishop himself therefore drew up the paper, which was signed by all the orders except the Society. Ours preferred to make its own answer, separately; we did so, and I send [a copy of it] with this.

News since the year 1688

1. It is asked that the contents of this document may be read attentively; the writer asserts that it is not his intention that corporal injury shall come to the guilty, but only that the truth may be known and these many evils be set forth.

2. Early in January of the said year, very secret conferences were held in the palace, in which Bobadilla, Atienza, and Cervantes took part—all opposed to the auditors, to Zalaeta and Lezama, and to Don Juan de Vargas. They began to favor the designs of the archbishop, and the governor to act despotically, according to the dictation of Verart.

3. The result of the said conferences was the imprisonment of Zalaeta and Lezama, on the twenty-second of January. Their property was sequestered, and with great cruelty their papers were seized; and they were very closely confined in the fort. He [142] asked for a confessor from the Society, but the governor would not grant this, only consenting that he might confess to one of three fathers whom he designated; these were Juan Gonzalez, Don Esteban Olmedo—adherents of himself and the Dominicans—and Doctor Atienza, brother of the Atienza already named.

4. Toledo denounced Don Juan Zalaeta, saying that he gave him a pasquinade so that he could publish it, which was of the following tenor: The governor was seated on a chair, with his favorites Endaya and Verart at his side; at his feet lay the king, his head cut off, and his hands disjointed. This picture explains the state of affairs, which is expressed by the verses that appear below. [143]

5. The cause of Lezama's imprisonment was a paper which they attributed to him, although it was not known with certainty that he had written it; and both tribunals proceeded against him—the government with imprisonment and sequestration, the archbishop with censures; the two powers agreed very well.

6. Guards were placed in the house of Lezama, from which resulted some extravagant remarks by Dona Josefa, the wife of Bolivar; and these set in motion what will be hereafter related. The wife of Lezama presented a document to the governor, asking for what reason her husband had been imprisoned; he sent the paper to an alcalde-in-ordinary. The said wife had recourse to the Audiencia, who commanded the said alcalde to deliver up the documents under penalty of five hundred pesos, but he resorted to the governor, who forbade him to obey, and imposed a penalty of two thousand pesos if he should surrender the documents.

7. On the same day the governor summoned the auditors to a session and conference, and with language of anger and rage informed them that the alcalde was proceeding by his orders in the said imprisonments, and ever, that they were involved in the same charges. At this they were struck with great fear, with good reason dreading the governor's outrageous manner of proceeding; and to this fear that some calamity would happen to them also were added the reports that were current of the dungeons that were being prepared, of various persons whom he was arresting and examining, etc.

8. The auditors, now terrorized, secretly retired one night to the college of the Society of Jesus, and carried with them the fiscal, in order to consult as to the measures of which they should avail themselves to secure their persons from the tyranny of the governor, and whether they should remain in the said college in order to administer justice from that place, etc. They could not reach a decision in the matter, and with the same secrecy they returned to their houses; and afterward the fiscal sold them.

9. The reasons for the governor's hatred against Don Diego de Viga were: his having proposed that the ship which served for the armada should make a voyage in the year 1686, which was contrary to the governor's purposes; and his proposal in the Audiencia that a consultation should be held with the governor in regard to a packet of letters from the king which were said to have arrived, in which there were decisions of the utmost importance—which letters, it is supposed, the governor tried to hold back and conceal.

10. He entertained ill-will against Bolivar for having replied with independence and decision to an act of which he was notified on the part of the bishop, in which he threatened the auditor with fearful excommunications and pecuniary fine, because the said auditor protected the interests of the royal patronage in the suit which the Augustinians brought against the Society in regard to the village of Jesus de la Pena, and challenged the jurisdiction of the said archbishop in this case.

11. The governor [144] set spies on the steps and actions of the auditors, and seized a bit of paper, without signature, which Bolivar was sending to Viga, in which he informed the latter that they could not trust the fiscal, who had that very day taken dinner with the governor; and that he presumed the fiscal had betrayed them, disclosing their consultation above mentioned.

12. The governor conjured from this bit of paper many mysteries; he arrested the page who carried it, and commanded that the fiscal be summoned. He planned the exile of the auditors, with the seizure of their property and papers—in all of which meddled Cervantes, who was an enemy of the royal Audiencia, and known as such; and now was elevated to be the favorite of the governor by the favor of the Dominicans, in order to be judge in the most important lawsuits of this commonwealth.

13. On February 7 of the said year, the day following the above incident, they seized Don Diego de Viga, and conveyed him to Mariveles, a village in charge of the Dominicans, where he stayed in a mean hut. From that place he went to Lucban, a village belonging to the same friars, where he remained in close confinement and lacking the necessary comforts; they allowed him not even an Indian servant who had remained with him. All this severity was practiced on him, notwithstanding that (as was notorious) the said auditor was so burdened with sickness and infirmities that in the judgment of intelligent persons he could not hold out three months in Lucban. The commandant shamefully treated a brother of the Society, who accidentally passed through that place, because he gave the said auditor a little linen and some paper, which the prisoner entreated for the love of God—which it is said, was taken from him and sent to the governor; and that sacrilegious man even had the brother sent there a prisoner and in fetters.

14. On the same day and the following one, they searched for Bolivar in various houses; for, when he learned what was being plotted against them, he had concealed himself. They surrounded his house, with a large force of soldiers; and because Dona Josefa and her sister spoke some saucy words, in regard to certain questions that were asked them, they were banished with much severity, and conveyed to the village of Abucay, a village in charge of the Dominicans. [145] Dona Josefa was sent first, and afterward her sister Dona Ynes, on account of the latter being very ill when they carried away her sister.

15. The governor learned that Don Pedro Bolivar was in the college of the Society of Jesus, and availed himself of his good friend the archbishop to remove the auditor from sanctuary. The archbishop readily assented to whatever he demanded; indeed, he has left no stone unturned to injure the Society of Jesus. They surrounded the college of the Society with a great number of soldiers, within and without, who caused the religious incredible vexations and troubles during the nine days while this blockade lasted. The [archbishop's] provisor was on hand to incite the soldiers and make mischief; and he notified the rector of an act by the archbishop requiring him to surrender Bolivar.

16. The city and all the religious orders, except that of St. Dominic, showed great resentment at this performance and felt exceedingly scandalized. The governor, as obstinate as Pharaoh, said that he would not remove the blockade from the Society's house until Bolivar should make his appearance, if it lasted a year; and that he intended to destroy the auditor. The latter, seeing the constraint and uneasiness of the religious, and the obstinacy of the governor and the archbishop, gave himself up of his own accord; and they took him away from sanctuary in great haste, and carried him to the municipal building; and afterward, near midnight, he was sent by boat to Mariveles, with the same harshness which they had showed to Auditor Viga.

17. The convenient pretext and imaginary reasons which they gave for these seizures were that those auditors intended to depose the governor, and hand over his office to General Zalaeta. It was proved that this plan would not suit the actual condition of affairs, even in the judgment of a man of mediocre ability, much less in that of the auditors; and even if such a thing were intended, they would find it impossible to secure the means for its execution, since all the military leaders were of the governor's faction and opposed to the auditors.

18. Crafty actions, intrigues, seizures, and severities were employed with persons of various stations, in order to give some semblance of proof to the above fantastic idea; and they terrorized many persons to make them relate, if possible, what suited their purpose, and no more. Some they tortured; others were left without food for two or three days, and one they deprived of drink for seventeen days. Most of the persons thus examined had little courage, and were sons of fear, so they found it easy to tell lies; and if they were under compulsion they would say that Judas and Mahoma were in heaven.

19. The governor soon found himself embarrassed by the lack of an Audiencia; he therefore formed one in his own way, which was thoroughly accommodated to his opinions. It was composed thus: a fiscal so terrified and possessed by fear that, if he were commanded to flog an image of Christ, apparently he would not hesitate to do so; one Cervantes, as coadjutor to the fiscal, a young fellow of malicious disposition and perverse inclinations, who not many years before had been condemned to death; one Angulo, in everything a man after Cervantes's own heart—young and of little understanding; and of so little ability that neither when he was a receptor of the Audiencia, nor now when filling the office of attorney-general [promotor-fiscal], did he know what to do, etc.

20. Among the papers of Zalaeta was found one which was imputed to the cantor Herrera, in which he spoke ill of Endaya; and on this account the archbishop demanded aid from the governor, seized Herrera, [146] and placed him in the fort—treating him with ignominy unusual for [a member of] the cabildo, placing him under the guard of secular officials, and treating him like a highwayman. Yet the said archbishop had previously favored him, and regarded lightly other offenses of his—for no other reason than because Herrera had, to please the archbishop and his friars, drawn up documents expressing in positive terms, detestation of appeals to the royal Audiencia.

21. With these scandals and harsh measures, the city experienced profound affliction; the minds of the people were appalled, and they were so shut in by fears and terrors that no one considered himself safe even in his own house. No one opened his lips, seeing the two powers of the commonwealth thus jumbled together, and that in the greatest calamities there was no recourse except to God. The inhabitants could not communicate with one another, without criticism; nor was it even lawful to breathe, since rigorous scrutiny was made of the most trifling acts.

22. Great were the calamities which at this time came unexpectedly upon this commonwealth—epidemics, famines, vessels returning to port, [attacks by] enemies, losses of vessels. The governor the more pretended that his conduct was influenced by an imaginary conspiracy; for on the night of Holy Thursday, when he went to visit the stations [of the cross], a multitude of soldiers went with him as escort, besides his usual guard, and he was accompanied by the personages who were in league with him.

23. Royal decrees were despatched against the preachers who zealously proclaimed from the pulpits the arbitrary and malicious character of the recent acts, and the Dominicans alone had the privilege to utter whatever absurdities they pleased in the pulpits. There is no counterpart to the satire against the Society which a [father from] Santo Tomas preached one day.

24. Recourse to the royal Audiencia was entirely barred, as was seen in the case of Don Juan de Vargas, who thus far had been posted on the list of excommunicates, and all persons who held intercourse with him threatened with punishment. Tardiness and delay followed him until the fourth decree [was issued] in regard to his absolution, and it had no result—as little carried out as was the king's decree which he issued in regard to the banishment of the archbishop.

25. In Cagayan Fray Raimundo de Rosa killed Fray Juan Zambrano, his vicar and superior; but the archbishop has not made any demonstration [of displeasure], although he has so often done so in the more venial offenses of the clerics. The Order of St. Dominic has honored the Dominicans who were most rebellious against the king with the best offices in the provincial chapter; and those of their following, like Aduna, Gonzalez, Carballo, Cervantes, and others, are now in high favor, although they are hostile to the prerogatives of his Majesty.

26. No authentic statement of the evil deeds of these years can be sent to the court; for the scriveners are intimidated and will not give official statements of anything of what occurs, except what may be in favor of the governor and the archbishop. Item, [this] is written in much distrust and fear, on account of the numerous spies who go about prying into and noting everything that is done. One notary is in prison on account of a statement that he drew up; and another is in exile.

27. The governor causes many scandals in the matter of chastity, not sparing any woman, whatever may be her rank or condition; and he keeps some worthless women who serve as procuresses for conveying to him those whose society will give him most pleasure. In this scandal the zeal of neither the archbishop nor his friars is active.

28. The governor will hinder the voyage of the ship to Nueva Espana, on account of the fabulous ships which, it is reported, have been seen, according to the statement of an Indian, although there is no confirmation of such news. The great amount that was spent in the despatch of the armada, as the capitana of which the ship "Santo Nino" sailed, without having the desired result; the malicious purpose with which the said despatch was conducted, on account of his having had information by way of Yndia which caused this government to hasten.

29. As the archbishop would not absolve Don Juan de Vargas, the Audiencia again decided to banish him; but the governor kept the royal decree signed and sealed, without being willing that it be put into execution. Instead, he joined with the bishop of Sinopolis to convoke the religious orders, planning that they demand that he be not banished. An inquiry was made among his partisans, who swore that they knew nothing of it, and had not imagined it.

30. The archbishop prevented the confirmation of three prebends which his Majesty had presented—to Don Francisco Gutierrez Briceno, Bachelor Domingo de Valencia, and Doctor Pedro de Silva; the first-named for cantor, the second for schoolmaster, the third for treasurer. He refused to give them canonical installation, because they are not among his admirers; and the last two are graduates from the university of the Society of Jesus.

31. The Augustinians, in alliance with the archbishop and his friars, brought suit against the Society in regard to the administration of Jesus de la Pena, or Mariquina. The numerous disputes [dares et tomares] which have occurred in this lawsuit, and the great eagerness with which the archbishop has tried to favor the Augustinians; and finally, against all the right that the Society had to such ministry—by royal decree, by permission from Senor Arce, and by permit of the vice-patron, etc.—he has despoiled them of it with violence, and by the aid which the governor allowed him for tearing down and demolishing the church of the said fathers; and he has adjudged it to the Augustinians, because the hatred and aversion which he has to the said order [of the Jesuits] is implacable.

32. The archbishop mortified the religious of St. Francis; on account of regarding them as favorable to the royal patronage, he forbade them [to celebrate] the feast of the tears of that saint, and he has not granted them many permissions which they asked from him. He deprived them of the celebration of the feast of the Conception in the jail; and finally, on the day of St. Stephen the protomartyr, he gave them his congratulations on that feast by causing to be read an edict against them, in which he suspended their licenses to hear confessions and preach. All this caused great uneasiness in the minds of the people, and gave just cause for the murmur against the said archbishop that he had, by the measures here related, undertaken to revenge himself on all those persons who, as he fancied, had taken part in his exile, or had in any way approved it.

33. They attempt to absolve Auditor Calderon in the hour of death in what he replied, and what the Dominicans did, and how the governor pretended not to notice it. It seems as if the governor had come to the islands for nothing else than to encourage the Dominicans in their rebellious acts, to trample on the laws, to abolish recourse to the royal Audiencia, to sow dissension, to be a tyrant, to disturb the peace, and to enable the archbishop to secure whatever he wishes, even though he imposes so grievous a captivity on the commonwealth. [147]

Felipe Pardo as archbishop

[The Dominican side of this controversy is related by Salazar, one of the official historians of that order, in his Hist. Sant. Rosario, pp. 490-513 (chapters xviii-xxi); as this account is long, it is presented here partly in full translation, partly in synopsis.]

On the fourth day of August in the year 1677, dedicated to our glorious patriarch St. Dominic, a royal decree was received in Manila in which our Catholic monarch Don Carlos II appointed for archbishop of Manila father Fray Felipe Pardo—who that year had completed his second provincialate and now was filling the post of commissary of the Holy Office. In the latter office he had given, before this second provincialate, such proofs of good judgment that report of his abilities had reached Madrid; and these alone, without any other backing, had procured for him so high a dignity. The choice of him [as bishop] was received in this community with universal acclamation and applause, on account of the esteem that was merited by his abilities, accredited by the experience that all had of his success and discretion in government—not only in the two provincialates which he had obtained, but also, as I have indicated, in the commissariat of the Inquisition; all therefore confidently expected in him a prelate discreet and accomplished in all respects. Our father Fray Felipe Pardo alone, distrustful of his suitability for that office—either on account of his sixty-seven years of age, or in view of the difficulty of the task—was greatly perplexed about accepting it. Indeed, it was necessary at the end of two months, to make requisition on him, in accordance with the rules established by the councils regarding immediate acceptance by those thus appointed, under penalty of the appointment being annulled, and the see being again declared vacant. [He finally accepts (November 11 of that year) the dignity of archbishop, and by special decree of the king enters on his duties before being consecrated (which occurs on October 28, 1681), "the first archbishop who has governed this archbishopric without being consecrated, and the first who has been consecrated in these islands." Having spent thirty years in that country, he has much knowledge of it and of its moral and social conditions, and much experience in ecclesiastical government. "He was very learned in theology, whether speculative or practical, moral or scholastic; and very expert in the despatch of business." He is aided in his duties by Fray Raymundo Berart, very learned in canon and civil law, who has left great opportunities of advancement in Espana "to come to this poor province, to serve in the ministry of souls—as he actually learned the Tagal language, and spent some time in ministering to the Indians in the district of Batan."]

The church of this archbishopric was in great need of reform, being full of pernicious abuses, which had been introduced by vicious practices, shielded by permitted usage; so that now these alleged right of possession, and that which was public and practiced by many was regarded as lawful and allowable. False oaths were regarded, not heeding this despite to the holy name of God, as a matter of kindness, in exchange for not injuring another person by the denunciation of his sins; and the oath which the judges take not to engage in trade was regularly broken, without there being any one who had scruples in doing so. The friendships and intimacies between the two sexes were so prevalent that the excessive familiarity which was causing so many scandals was already no occasion for them [i.e., in public opinion]. Executorships were hereditary, despoiling minors of their property, and never rendering accounts [of those trusts]. Trading had found its way among the ecclesiastics, notwithstanding the ordinance [constitucion] of Clement IX recently published in these islands; and at like pace all the vices gained sway, without the least scruple or reparation, since established practice and custom had now rendered those vices tolerated. [To remedy these evils, the archbishop vigorously devotes his energies, notwithstanding his age.]

The first action with which his illustrious Lordship began to carry out this plan in the government of his archbishopric was, to reconcile his cabildo with the royal Audiencia in a certain controversy between them. This was, whether they should give the gospel to be kissed, not only by the auditor who then provisionally held the government of these islands (he was Don Francisco Mansilla), but also by his associate, Doctor Don Diego Calderon. As soon as the archbishop began to rule, he settled this dispute with great sagacity, and much to the satisfaction of both sides. Afterward another strife arose between the ecclesiastical estate and the royal officials, because, at the time of paying the former their stipends, these were curtailed on account of the exemption from the mesada which had been conceded by his Holiness to our Catholic king; and, the amount of what the ecclesiastics ought to contribute on account of this privilege not being liquidated, the official royal judges had acted illegally in the collection of the said mesada, making themselves judges in their own cause by explaining the bull of his Holiness without consenting to show it to the interested parties, although the latter had several times demanded this. But our archbishop, recognizing that what the royal officials were collecting was excessive, and that it belonged to his office and dignity to explain the doubts that might arise in the text of the apostolic bulls, compelled the royal official judges, by dint of monitory decrees and censures, to display that privilege; and when it was seen, it was found that they had collected more than they should for several years past. All this he made them restore, with considerable advantage to the ecclesiastics, who were extremely grateful for the zealous activity of his illustrious Lordship.

In almost all the Indias were being celebrated the masses which they call "masses for Christmas," [148] mingling with them certain abuses which contaminated these masses with practices that were superstitious, and contrary to the holy rites of the church. These were tolerated under the cloak of devotion, and, although to some they appeared mischievous, they did not dare to rebuke these rites in public lest they excite against themselves the pious feelings of the common people, and as this matter was one of those which belong to the zeal and foresight of the ecclesiastical superiors. Finally the holy Congregation of Rites, in consequence of the representations made by zealous persons, on January 16 in the year 1677 declared the said "masses for Christmas" to be not only opposed to the rubrics, but also cause for scandals, and of superstitious nature, on account of certain ballads that were interwoven with them, and other like abuses. This decree of the Congregation arrived in these islands in the year eighty; acting in conformity thereto, the archbishop prohibited the said masses in his archbishopric. They were no longer celebrated while his illustrious Lordship lived, although afterward they were again established, but with some abatement—I know not whether it was so everywhere—of the abuses which formerly were customary. He also prohibited under severe penalties the practice of bringing sick persons to the church to receive holy communion by way of viaticum—a custom introduced into these islands from the infancy of their Christian faith. It had never been entirely uprooted, although ordinances against it had been issued by various zealous prelates in their decrees, and by our Catholic monarchs in their royal cedulas—commanding that the holy viaticum should be carried to the houses of the sick, even though they were poor and of low estate, as are the natives of these islands. And because the previous ordinances of the king our sovereign on this subject had not had the desired effect, his Majesty again repeated his commands in a royal decree of July 28, 1681, in which he charged our archbishop to banish this abuse, the custom of carrying the sick to the church to receive the holy viaticum, on account of the difficulties which might follow from it. In accordance with this, our archbishop promulgated an edict throughout his diocese, dated September 5, 1682, commanding that all the parish priests should carry the viaticum to the sick, without permitting them to be brought to the church; and although he received from the parish priests entreaties and arguments on this point, his illustrious Lordship did not listen to them, but courageously proceeded in his holy undertaking.

Besides those exceedingly just measures, at the instance of the royal Audiencia of these islands his illustrious Lordship promulgated an edict—which was affixed to the doors of the churches, with penalty of major excommunication—that all executors of wills must within two months present before his tribunal the said wills, which had not been inspected for fourteen years past; and so numerous were those that were presented—not to mention others dating back to forgotten times, which were not yet accomplished—that they gave him work sufficient for several years. He issued other edicts and monitory decrees in regard to the denunciation of various crimes, and so many of these were continually disclosed that soon the ecclesiastical tribunal was tilled with cases, and the numerous officials in its employ could not make room for the legal proceedings therein. Very scandalous lives were revealed, and criminal suits were begun; but these could not be prosecuted on account of appeals and subterfuges which caused delay.

He who attempts to correct abuses and scandals finds it necessary to equip himself with courage to meet the hostilities which he will encounter; for abuses which have already become inveterate, and scandals favored by indulgence, cannot be overcome without strenuous efforts and repeated conflicts. Such was the case of a certain prebend whom the predecessor of his illustrious Lordship had tried to correct, but had never been able to do so on account of the support that the delinquent received from a certain potent personage; accordingly the archbishop's zeal contented itself with giving information of the whole matter to the king our sovereign—who issued on this matter a royal decree commanding the said archbishop to correct the scandalous acts of that prebend, without fear or regard for any power. As this royal decree arrived at Manila when the said archbishop was already dead, the king our sovereign despatched another decree to our archbishop-elect, Don Fray Felipe Pardo, very earnestly recommending to him the correction of the transgressions of the said prebend. [149] Notwithstanding the activity of our archbishop, he could not end the proceedings in this case for eight years, on account of the evasions of the culprit, and the protection that he found in the officials of the royal Audiencia, who at every step forbade our archbishop to take any further steps in the prosecution of the suits, thus preventing his holy zeal from successfully checking abuses and scandals.

This was made more plainly evident in the suit regarding another ecclesiastic, the cura of Bigan, against whom the provisor appointed by his illustrious Lordship (since the government of that bishopric pertained to him) began to institute proceedings in a criminal suit, in consequence of various denunciations and accusations. As the culprit was on intimate terms with one of the auditors, the latter managed the affair so dexterously that he caused the issue of a royal decree in which the royal Audiencia commanded the archbishop to remove thence [i.e., from Vigan] the said provisor and oblige him to reside in the city of Lalo all to the end that he should not proceed in the suit. This measure was ineffectual, on account of the reply and representations made by the archbishop; the provisor therefore proceeded in his suit. The delinquent, finding himself in a tight place, fled from Bigan and came to Manila; and, when he was arrested by the archbishop for this flight, he demanded to be released on bail—which his illustrious Lordship granted, by an act in which he designated the city as the prisoner's bounds until his suit should be ended. The culprit consented to this, thanking his illustrious Lordship for this concession, and therewith submitting to his tribunal. Affairs being in this condition, there came [in 1680], with proprietary appointment as bishop-elect of Nueva Segovia, a prebend of this holy church, who was an intimate friend of the culprit; the latter, availing himself of this opportunity, undertook to shake off the yoke of his illustrious Lordship's authority with an appeal to the new bishop-elect—who, desiring to shelter the other, demanded from the archbishop the acts [which he had issued]. As his illustrious Lordship did not choose to furnish these—as this suit was firmly established, by the consent of the delinquent himself, in his metropolitan tribunal—the new bishop had recourse to the royal Audiencia, asking them to command the archbishop to deliver the acts. In virtue of the representation made by the new bishop, a royal decree was despatched to Senor Pardo, in which he was commanded to deliver the said acts to the bishop of Nueva Segovia; his illustrious Lordship answered this by saying that the suit proceedings therein were already established in his own tribunal by the delinquent having accepted certain acts, and the law, therefore, afforded no occasion for removing this suit and the proceedings therein from the tribunal of the metropolitan, and restoring it to the culprit's ordinary judge. His illustrious Lordship well knew that all these were frivolous measures of delay, so that the case might not reach the point of sentence, and the scandals should be left without restraint, accordingly, although the second and the third royal decrees on this matter were served upon him, he never consented to yield his rights, or to acquiesce in the illegal commands laid upon him. For this cause the officials of the royal Audiencia issued a fourth royal ordinance and decree, condemning our archbishop to exile; this sentence was not executed at the time, but with occasion of the new emergencies which afterward arose, it was enforced with severity in the following year.

Now that the archbishop was on bad terms with the royal Audiencia, it was easy for the subordinates of his illustrious Lordship to have recourse to this supreme tribunal in order to challenge the jurisdiction or appeal from the proceedings of the ecclesiastical judge; and therefore royal decrees were continually emanating, forbidding our archbishop to prosecute suits and proceedings, and commanding him to deliver up the documents regarding them—by which the course of the suits was hindered or delayed. His illustrious Lordship answered these requisitions with so much clearness and proof that the officials who issued them often considered themselves vanquished, and did not follow up their efforts; and although they resented what they called rebellion and audacity, they found his opposition so justified by law that they did not dare to condemn him for disobedience, no matter how much they chose to give his conduct this title to outsiders—for these tribunals are not accustomed to hear "no" to what they ordain in the name of the king our sovereign. And knowing that the greater force of the replies and representations of the archbishop depended on the assistance of the consultor, father Fray Raymundo Berart, they strove to separate the latter from his side, in order that his illustrious Lordship, destitute of this aid, might be reduced with more blind submission to the decrees and despatches of the royal Audiencia; and therefore that court issued a mandate demanding and requiring our archbishop to remove from his side Father Berart, and another to the same effect, addressed to our provincial, to assign that father to a ministry among the Indians. Suitable reply was made to both these decrees, without causing any change, for the time, in the aspect of affairs—until, a new occasion and emergency arising, they again insisted upon this point.

At the first foundation of Manila, only two parishes were formed for the Spaniards—one for those who lived within the walls, and another for those who lived outside the city, this latter being located in a place where at that time most of them were wont to live. Afterward that site appeared to them unsuitable for the conveniences of human life, and so they went to live in another part of the city, and even on the other side of the river which washes it. Consequently, they lived very far from their parish church, and suffered great inconvenience in attending it, because it was necessary for the administration of the sacraments that the parish priest should cross the entire city, or make the circuit of its walls, and finally he had to cross the river. As this often had to be done at night, and at other times with the risk of being drowned through the fury of the winds and waves, it was soon evident how great difficulty there must be in giving prompt aid to the sick—especially as the distance of the parish church was so great that many parishioners lived half a legua from it. On this account the burials also were solemnized with extreme inconvenience, and without the processional order which is the custom of the church. Besides this, it caused great confusion that the Spaniard who was owner of the house should belong to the said parish, and the servants, whether Indians or negroes, to that of the territory in which they happened to be. The Spaniards also were ashamed of having a parish church so poor and in so wretched a condition, for it was only a shelter of bamboos covered with nipa. For these reasons the parishioners had at various times asked that they might be joined to the parishes in which they lived; and now, on the occasion of a controversy which arose between the said cura and another parish priest over the question, to which of them belonged [the interment of] a deceased person, the Spaniards publicly appeared before the ordinary, asking that he would assign the parish churches according to the territories, in accordance with the custom throughout the church. When this request was considered by his illustrious Lordship, he gave information of it, and a copy of the petition, to the vice-patron, to whom this matter pertained by law. The governor showed this to the fiscal of his Majesty, who approved the desired change; and with this decision the governor decreed that the parishes should be divided according to the territories. He gave commission for this to his illustrious Lordship, who divided and allotted the parishes in the suburbs of Manila, with the system and order which are observed to this day declaring that to each parish church belonged all the persons who dwelt in its territory, whether Spaniards, Indians, or negroes.

Notwithstanding that this arrangement was in every way so judicious, and had been made by the order of the vice-patron, with the approval and advice of the auditor fiscal, the former cura of the Spaniards considered it an injury and injustice, casting the blame for it all on his illustrious Lordship; and, making common cause with the clergy, he continued to disturb and disquiet their minds, until finally the cabildo arrogated to itself authority, interposing a letter to his illustrious Lordship that was very offensive to his dignity, complaining of the severity of his government, in terms that libeled his uprightness, and other expressions that were very unbecoming and inappropriate to the dignity of a cabildo. Accordingly, for the sake of their reputation, his illustrious Lordship was not willing to make the document public, and he only showed it privately to the governor of these islands—who was deeply irritated at what they had done, and promised all his protection to the archbishop for correcting his prebends. The archbishop did not choose to avail himself of this aid, because he intended to bring them back to sober judgment by means of kindness and gentle treatment. He therefore replied to his cabildo with another pastoral letter, couched in affectionate terms, and full of learning and paternal affection in which he gently admonished them to recognize and correct their error. Again they wrote to his illustrious Lordship, in more submissive tone, although it was apparently only to pay him compliments; for almost on the same day they appeared before the royal Audiencia with another document, making complaint against their prelate of injuries, and saying that although they had represented these to his illustrious Lordship, he had not answered them to the point. The effect of this petition was, that the royal Audiencia issued new commands, not only to the archbishop but to the father provincial of this province, that father Fray Raymundo Berart (of whom the cabildo bitterly complained) must leave his association with his illustrious Lordship, and depart to the ministries among the Indians; this was carried out (at the instance of the father himself), in order to wreak the wrath of those who were in power. On this occasion the royal Audiencia also ordered that a secret investigation be made of the lives and conduct of our religious, commencing with the archbishop; and, although a beginning was made in the fabrication of this information, the plan soon fell through on account of another and public report which was made, by command of the archbishop, in favor of the religious—in which their reputation was so well vindicated by testimony that those who undertook to blacken it through the secret inquiry were left confounded and abashed.

All these occurrences that we have mentioned were preludes and omens of some outbreak; for the minds of the people were disquieted, and jealousy of the archbishop was plainly evident on the part, not only of the clergy, but of the secular government. They were eager for some fresh opportunity to arise for them to take extreme measures at once against the archbishop, or at least against the religious of this province. This soon occurred, in a sermon that was preached in the cathedral by a certain religious, [150] in which he explained moral principles that were pertinent to the disorders then prevailing. The auditors, who were present, began to resent this; and one of them urged the governor to send a message to his illustrious Lordship, asking him to order the preacher to leave the pulpit. The governor did so, in fact: but he himself assumed authority to do this, before his illustrious Lordship's answer came, and ordered the preacher to stop his sermon, and proceed with mass—an act extremely injurious to the dignity of the archbishop, that in his own church, and before his eyes, the governor (a secular official, too) should interfere to give commands to the ministers of the church. But his illustrious Lordship was obliged to overlook this, in order not to cause greater disturbances or expose his episcopal dignity to the insults of those who had already, it appears, pronounced judgments in defiance of the courts of the church, and were only awaiting an opportunity to assail his jurisdiction and dignity. His illustrious Lordship did not choose to afford this to them, at that time, although zeal stimulated him to defend the honor of the mitre; for affairs were now in such condition that he would [by doing so] cause more injury than benefit.

Notwithstanding the tolerance and patience of the archbishop, on the second day after the sermon sentence was passed in the royal Audiencia, in accordance with the representations made by the ecclesiastical cabildo, against the preacher, condemning him to imprisonment and to banishment from these islands. This was carried out on the following day; Villalba was arrested in his convent of Binondoc and conveyed through the public streets, being finally placed on board a vessel, in which he was sent to a remote island until the time should come for embarking him for Nueva Espana. This was accomplished in due time, with great injury and hardship to that religious, and not less grief to the archbishop at seeing such dreadful disorders, and even his zeal powerless to remedy them; for these disturbances had now reached such a point, and his subordinates had now become so hard-hearted and rebellious, that they had already lost their dread of [committing] sacrilegious acts, and did not fear to lay violent hands on the persons of ecclesiastics and religious. Accordingly, foreseeing from these acts of violence that which might result to his own person if some new occasion should arise, his prudence caused him to prepare beforehand for what might occur in such an emergency, by an act which he drew up with the utmost secrecy, dated on the twenty-second of the same month of January in the year 1682. By this act he appointed, for any such occasion, as governor of the archbishopric the illustrious Don Fray Gines Barrientos, bishop of Troya and his own assistant; and made other arrangements—which were mild and reasonable, and worthy of his apostolic zeal, piety, and gentleness—that would tend to quiet the disturbances which would arise from any such act of violence, and to favor absolution from the censures which would necessarily be incurred by persons who should commit such acts of irreverence. All this was laid away and kept with great secrecy until the following year, in which occurred the imprisonment of the archbishop.

These melancholy events did not daunt the fervent courage of his illustrious Lordship; rather, with apostolic valor and zeal he proceeded in the correction of evil deeds, notwithstanding that he had reliable information that his case was already concluded in the royal Audiencia and sentence of banishment pronounced against him. He was continually menaced with the execution of this sentence, at every new difficulty which might arise—in this being like the great pastor Jesus Christ, who, the nearer He foresaw His arrest, so much the more freely rebuked vices. It is true that our archbishop in order to give place to wrath and avoid hostilities, judiciously dissimulated in some points which concerned his person or his privileges—for many were the incivilities shown to him at every turn by the members of his cabildo, who disregarded the customary forms of politeness toward him; and again, at critical moments in the controversies which arose between the governor and the archbishop, the latter tried to yield what was his right, or to overlook the lack of courtesy. But when offenses against God, or attacks on his church or his episcopal dignity, came in his way, his apostolic zeal did not allow him to overlook these—the more, as he was needed by the aggrieved party on account of points of justice intervening at the time. And of such character were the events which occurred in the course of this year, and were the final incentive to the acts of violence committed against his illustrious Lordship—his zealous attempt to restrain certain ecclesiastics from carrying on trade and traffic, to which they were greatly addicted and devoted, in contravention of the pontifical decrees, especially of a recent ordinance by Clement IX which prohibited the said commerce to ecclesiastics; and likewise his having endeavored to compel an executor to render an account of the estate which he had in his charge.

These were the chief motives for the arrest and banishment of our archbishop; for, the same persons [i.e., the Jesuits] being concerned in both of those incidents, they again disturbed people's minds, and stirred them up anew against his illustrious Lordship. Past disputes seemed lulled, and affairs had been smoothed over and adjusted, although anger against the firmness and activity of his illustrious Lordship remained alive; and now the unusual character of these incidents revived again the old complaints—those who were parties in this affair uniting with those who were angry at what had previously occurred. All joined in clamors against the archbishop, treating him as turbulent, seditious, prejudiced, contumacious, and the like; and from various speeches and conversations this opinion steadily grew—all regarding as already certain and evident what originated only in their mistaken prejudices, and with this basis easily reaching a conclusion (as occurred with the majesty of Christ)—that it was necessary to remove his illustrious Lordship from their midst, in order to quiet the anxieties and disturbances which had grieved all the estates of the commonwealth. So in the execution of this their undertaking they did not observe the method and plan which is prescribed in the laws for cases of so great importance—for there was now no disobedience or contumacy to a second or third royal decree, or interference with the royal patronage, or other like causes or motives which could justify so audacious an act. And solely at hearing the reply of his illustrious Lordship to two royal decrees, which at the very same time were communicated to him in regard to different matters—each one of these being the first one which was issued, in both cases—all the officials of the royal Audiencia were so irritated that immediately they proceeded to decree that the sentence of banishment and [loss of] secular revenues, [temporalidades] which had been pronounced against his illustrious Lordship in the preceding year, must be executed.

But the controversy of that year was now ended, and the parties now reconciled, and therefore the cause of this action was not past but present disputes. These were: that his illustrious Lordship had refused to absolve a contumacious executor whose name he had posted as excommunicate; and that he had replied to the royal decrees with apostolic freedom and liberty—in both these acts displaying his constancy, and zeal for maintaining his jurisdiction unimpaired. [On March 29, 1683, the Audiencia decree that the sentence of banishment be carried out, but it is suspended for two days, that the necessary preparations may be made secretly, in order to avoid disturbances like those connected with Archbishop Guerrero's banishment. Pardo is arrested at midnight, by a large body of officials and soldiers, and immediately deported to Pangasinan, [151] "where the alcalde of that province had strict orders to detain his illustrious Lordship there, without allowing him to leave the provincial capital, or to perform any act of jurisdiction [152] or authority pertaining to his episcopal dignity, or to correspond by letter with Manila." On the same day, various persons are arrested as officials or near friends of the archbishop. The provisor takes refuge in the Dominican convent, which is at once surrounded by soldiers, an auditor threatening to demolish it with artillery; at this, the provisor surrenders himself to the assailants, but "with certain precautions and securities," and is kept under guard in his own house. Guards are also placed "at the bell-towers of certain churches, so that the bells might not be rung for an interdict. All the household furniture and personal property [espolio] of the archbishop was confiscated, and placed in the royal magazines—scrutiny being first made of the most private papers of his illustrious Lordship, without finding in them anything by which his enemies could calumniate him."]

The bishop of Troya, Don Fray Gines Barrientos, who had been appointed governor of the archbishopric by his illustrious Lordship for this emergency, when he learned of the arrest of the archbishop immediately presented to the cabildo the document appointing him; but that body appealed to the royal Audiencia, and, with either their expressed or their tacit approval, took possession of the government of the archbishopric. They declared that the banishment of the archbishop must be construed as the vacation of his see, although their action might better be called a spiritual adultery—for, while the spouse of this church was still living, the cabildo intruded their presence in order to abuse her; and, although in reality they were but sons and subjects, they had the audacity to occupy their father's marriage-bed. At the head of this action was the dean, who with dexterity and artifice lured on the rest to consent to this monstrous deed; and because one, a racionero, would not consent, they thrust him out of the chapter-room. Government by the cabildo having been declared, it was an easy thing for this same dean to cause them to appoint him as provisor; and in virtue of this fantastical jurisdiction he went on undoing what had been done, and making blunders—liberating all those who had been imprisoned by the [ecclesiastical] tribunal, [153] giving permission to all the clerics to hear confessions, absolving ad cautelam the excommunicated (especially the executor [i.e., Ortega] who had been publicly posted), and promulgating an Octavian peace, like that of which the prophet says, Dicunt, "pax, pax," et non erat pax. [154]

Among this confusion of affairs, the perplexity that existed in the consciences of men was very noticeable: for some, endeavoring to flatter those who were in power, gave their approval to all that these had done, saying that they had not incurred any censure, and that the jurisdiction of the cabildo was valid; but others, with more pious judgment, regarded the said jurisdiction as either fanciful or monstrous, and therefore felt scruples regarding all their transactions—and not least in regard to intercourse with those persons who had taken part in the arrest of the archbishop and other ecclesiastics. This was the feeling of our religious, and therefore they endeavored to refrain from intercourse with [those] secular persons, that they might not incur danger from having communication with excommunicated persons. [155] This withdrawal being resented by the parties concerned, they began to calumniate us as inciters of sedition, saying that with our scruples we disturbed the peace which the cabildo and their dean had striven to introduce in this community. In consequence of this, the father provincial was notified, in the following year, of a decree by the royal Audiencia in which he was charged and commanded to banish three religious, the most prominent in his province, to the kingdom of Nueva Espana; and to send to the province of Cagayan two others, who were lecturers in theology—all because the Audiencia had concluded that the said religious, as being the most learned and serious, would persuade the rest to their own opinion. The father provincial replied to this that the said religious were not at all to blame, since he had ordered them to withdraw from intercourse with those who were excommunicated; [156] then they pronounced against him also sentence of banishment, which was executed with great severity on the father provincial and his associate, accompanied by the acts of violence which are mentioned in the first book. [157] ... The archbishop was very contented in that place of his banishment, but so poor and needy in temporal revenues that for his ordinary support he was confined to what was given him for food by the religious who was minister in that village; he therefore resided in the convent, like any private brother in the order, and practiced the duties of [a member of] the community as if he were a subordinate of the vicar of that house. But outside of food and clothing he had nothing even for almsgiving; and therefore in the letter that I have mentioned—written to a lay friend, a citizen of this city of Manila—his illustrious Lordship asks that, for the love of God, his friend will send him some rosaries, medals, and like articles, so that he can make some return for the little presents which the Indians give him. And by way of acknowledgment for the hospitality which they had showed him in the convent of Lingayen, he left in it his sole possession, a piece of the wood of the holy cross—which he valued highly because it had been sent to him by the supreme pontiff when the latter issued the bulls for his appointment to this see. In this exile our archbishop remained during a period of about twenty months, until at last a new opportunity arose, by which he was restored to his see by the royal Audiencia.

In the year 1684 a new governor came to these islands, and as soon as he entered upon his office he began, as an unprejudiced party, to recognize the blind way in which action had been taken in these proceedings, and the injuries and bad consequences which might be feared if affairs continued in this state, especially as the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the cabildo was losing repute [estando en opiniones]. For the remedy of so many evils, he made arrangements with the ministers of the royal Audiencia that the archbishop should be restored to his see; and this was actually carried out, by decree of that royal tribunal, in which the ministers of the royal Audiencia admit that the ecclesiastical jurisdiction had been snatched from the archbishop—as if this could be thus taken away, and especially by lay and secular officials!

Notwithstanding that the decree for the restitution of the archbishop had gone out from the royal Audiencia, it took much persuasion to make him acquiesce in returning to his see. One reason was, that he was not willing to return until his Holiness and the Council should decide his cause; the other, that he saw the affairs of his church in such a condition that it was almost impossible to set them right. But finally, at the entreaties of good men, and as persons very influential in this colony had gone to bring back his illustrious Lordship, he made the decision to return to Manila, where he was received with universal rejoicing and applause.... The holy pastor went about, looking up his flock, and when he saw it so injured and despoiled by the abuses, errors, and evil consequences which had been occasioned by the usurping jurisdiction of the cabildo—and, above all, by the censures in which so many were involved, affecting the liberty of their consciences, with disregard for our holy mother the Church—he undertook to procure the reconciliation of the accused persons, inducing them first to acknowledge their errors. First of all, through the intercession of the new governor absolution was given in private to the auditors (who had been active in his arrest and in those of other ecclesiastical persons), they humbling themselves to ask for absolution with certain demonstrations of reverence. The members of his cabildo he absolved in public, with all the customary preparations and ceremonies; and the same thing was done with other persons, laymen, who had been concerned in the said arrests—especially with the preceding governor [i.e., Vargas] the principal author of these acts of violence, who, being now a private person, was not on the same footing as the auditors, who were royal ministers and were actually governing this commonwealth. There was much to overcome in this point, in order that the said governor should humble himself; for he attempted by various means and pretexts to exempt himself from the jurisdiction of the archbishop—until, finding all paths barred, he was obliged to subject himself to that prelate's correction, and to make the necessary declarations in acknowledgement and detestation of his errors. But at the time of imposing on him public penance he showed that his repentance was feigned; for he never was willing to accept that penance, or to submit to the commands of his illustrious Lordship. On this account he had much to suffer—although the pain that he had inflicted on the holy archbishop was incomparably greater than this—seeing how rebellious was his heart, and how little regard he paid to the censures.

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