Mr. Hay to Mr. Sampson.

No. 81.]

Sir: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 103, of the 15th ultimo, reporting your intervention with the Government of Ecuador in behalf of certain American missionaries of the Protestant faith, whose lives and property have been threatened in consequence of inflammatory utterances in the pulpit by priests of the Roman Catholic faith.

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The Department is gratified that your representations were effective in securing proper police protection for the lives and property of American citizens. The reported utterances of the ecclesiastics of the Roman Church seem to have gone far beyond the liberty of speech which exists in republican communities, and, inasmuch as the church in Ecuador is a State institution, it was proper to call the attention of the responsible Government to the incendiary provocations of the the clergy. The Ecuadorian Government appears to admit and accept its disciplinary function in the premises.

I am, etc.,

John Hay.