Some are doing it because they are morally exhausted; others
In 1648 a change came over everything. Don Gregorio Hinestrosa was removed from Paraguay, and a new Governor, Don Diego Escobar de Osorio, appointed in his place. Immediately the news reached Cardenas he set out for Paraguay. Arriving at Asuncion, his friends all met him and took him in procession to the Cathedral. His first thought was to renew his persecution of the Jesuits. Most unfortunately for them, Don Juan de Palafox, Bishop of Puebla de los Angeles in Mexico, who had himself in Mexico had many quarrels with the Jesuits, wrote begging Cardenas and all the Bishops of South America to join against them.
This Palafox was afterwards beatified, and even in his lifetime enjoyed the reputation of a saint, so that his letter greatly strengthened Cardenas. Notwithstanding this, Palafox in subsequent works of his during the time that he was Bishop of Osma (in Spain) said many things in praise of the work done by the Jesuits in Paraguay.
The new Governor, himself a member of the Supreme Court of Charcas, had never been before in Paraguay, and therefore resolved to treat the Bishop (as Don Gregorio had done) with every respect due to his station. The Bishop wanted nothing better, and saw at once he had another fool to deal with. Therefore he made no secret of his intention of not complying with the citation of the court at Charcas, and set himself at once to preach against the Jesuits, and stir up popular resentment against them. Unluckily, proof was wanting of the crimes he alleged they had committed, so he resorted to the device of getting a petition signed by all and sundry, asking for the expulsion of the Order from Paraguay. Like all petitions, it was largely signed by women and by children and by those who had never thought before about the matter, but liked the opportunity to write their names after the names of others, as sheep go through a gap or members give their votes (out of mere sympathy) in the high court of Parliament.
This device having taken too much time, blank documents were passed about for all to write upon whatever they imagined to the disadvantage of the Jesuits. By an untoward chance, a bundle of these, sent to the agent of the Bishop in Spain, was taken on the voyage by an English corsair. The worthy pirate (no doubt a Protestant) was, if we can believe the Jesuits, extremely scandalized at the bad faith of those who used such means of wreaking their malevolence.
So all seemed once again to smile upon Don Bernardino, who no doubt resumed his flagellations, his midnight services, and his saying of two Masses, and once again became the idol of the people of Asuncion.
But in the north, in the wild district of Caaguayu, hard by the mountains of Mbaracaya, close to the great `yerbales',* the Jesuits had formed two towns amongst the Indians. These two towns were destined to be the outposts of the country against the incursions of the wild Indians from the Chaco.
-- * A `yerbal' is a forest chiefly composed of the `Ilex Paraguayensis', from the leaves of which the `yerba mate', or `Paraguayan tea', is made. --
The Bishop prevailed upon the Governor to let him turn out the Jesuits and replace them by priests of another Order. This being done, the Indians all deserted, leaving the district quite uninhabited.
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