pal States were not allowed to employ Cliristian servants, not onrnantiscniitic gronnds but preeiscly to avoid the types of problemsrnraised by the Mortara case. F^or Pins IX to endure what he didrnfor the sake of one child, knowing the international storm hernwould unleash, he must have had a compelling reason. To putrnit blunth, he was cither insane or a saint.rnIn his recent book Pio IX (Piemme), Prof. Roberto dc Mattelrn(who holds the chair of modern histor)’ at the University ofrnCassino and is the president of Centro Culturale Lepanto, arnRome-based organization of la’ Catholics) finally sets thernrecord straight. Pius’s beahficahon, de Mattel believes, presentsrna perfect opportunit} to revisit the history of his pontificate.rnMoreover, his beatificahon vindicates his memor’, prosing himrnright and his detractors wrong.rnPius IX decried the evils of his hme as the seeds that wouldrneentually grow into what Pope John Paul II calls the “culturernof death.” Diorce, abortion, and euthanasia are the visible resultsrnof the sweeping de-Christianizahon that Pius IX steadfast-rnIv fought riiroughout his pontificate. This same secularizationrngave rise to the totalitarianisms of the 20th century, with theirrngenocides, gulags, and concentration camps. While Pius IXrnma’ have lost the initial battle, his xision may, in die long run,rnhelp win the war b proiding guidance for a fuhire restorationrnof the principles and institufions of Christian civilization.rnDe Mattel’s biography of Pius IX, combining the rigorous approachrnof the professional historian with clear and forcefiil language,rnis suitable both for the expert and the layman. It alsornhelps to correct the impression left bv Fr. Giacomo Marfina, arnJesuit who composed a firree-volume biography of Piirs IX, on-rn1 to end up opposing Iris beatificahon.rnWhile the tribulations that characterized Pio Nono’s ponfifieaternare well known, the theological and moral implicafions ofrnhis teachings are not. As de Mattel points out in his introducfion,rnPius IX’s vision of histor}’ and soeiet}’ was profoundlv eounterrernolufionar’. He iewed the Renaissance, Protestantism,rnthe Krench Rev’olution, and the Risorgimento (the Masonic-inspiredrnmovement that led to the unification of Italy) as differentrnstages of a centur-long revolution that was attempting to replacernChristian civilizafion with an anarchical and egalitarianrnuniversal republic.rnInspired by St. Augustine, Pius IX iewed contemporaryrnexents through a “theolog)- of histor” that saw human life inrnterms of two cities destined to fight each ofiier until the end ofrntime: the “Civitas Dei,” namely, the Catholic Church; and tiiern”Civitas DiahoU,” represented in his day bv the F’.uropean andrnItalian revolutionaries. But Pius IX did not limit his vision tornopposing contemporary evils: fie presented the papac as thernonl force able to defeat the forces of anti-Christian reolutionrnand pa’e the way for the revival of an authentic Christian civilization.rnPius’s tenure as Pope coincided with the height of tiic clashrnbchveen the Catholic Church and the modern civilization thatrnarose during the French Revolution. The strife erupted in unprecedentedrn’irulencc during the first tiiree years of his pontificate,rnforcing him to choose between the principles he incarnatedrnand the new ideas with which he initially sympathized. Inrnfact, lie started his pontificate by granting amnest)’ to politicalrnprisoners and promoting reforms, but he soon backtrackedrnwhen he realized that his moves, far from appeasing the radicalrnnationalists, aetnalK helped them to pursue an increasinglyrnhold agenda, which included insurrections and assassinations.rnA statue of Blessed Pope Pius IX in front of St. Peter’srnBasilica, Vatican City.rnFollowing the revolntionar}’ upheavals of 184S, Pius IX realizedrnthat no reconciliation was possible heheen the di ine Church,rnfounded In Jesus Christ and entrusted witii the mission to aiinouneernHis Gospel, and those revolntionaiv’ forces hell-bent onrnundermining this mission under the pretext of the Risorgimento,rnwhich was tantamount to an anti-Gospel based on a denialrnof natural and Christian law. Once Pius became fully aware ofrnwhat was at stake, he devoted himself to opposing and reversingrndie resolution with Hie full might of his pontificate.rnIn the leftist newspaper II Manifesto (June 30), P’ather Martina,rnthe Jesuit biographer of Pius IX, claimed that his oppositionrnto Pio Nono’s beatificafion was motivated by a belief that thernPope vxould not enjoy a sufficient degree of popular devotion.rnYet a thousand faithfiil from around the world flocked to thernBasilica of San Lorenzo in I.ucina on September 2, the ee ofrnflie beatification ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica, for a solemnrnpontifical Mass m honor of Pius IX, which featured plainchantrnsung by the Cappella Musicale Choir of St. Peter’s. After thernMass, in a nearby sc[iiare, a military band plaved national andrnpopular anthems of ItaK’s states from before the Risorgimento.rnBy comparison, an anticlericalist demonstration, protesting thernDECEMBER 2000/23rnrnrn