TELEPHONE WCRTH 158
Rt. Rey. M. J. GALLAGHER, D. D.
MICHAEL B. McGREAL
New Haven, Conn.
280 Broadway, New, York
Hon. FRANK P. WALSIL
Kansas City, Mo.
Hon. JOHN W. GOFF
New York, N. Y.
Rt. Rey. PETER J. MULDOON
Rt. Rey. THOMAS J. SHAHAN
Washington, D. C,
Rt. Rey. HENRY A. BRANN
New York, N. ¥.
Rt. Rey. GERALD P. COGHLAN
Rt. Rev. JAMES W. POWER
New York, N.Y.
Rey. THOMAS J. HURTON
: Philadelphia. Pa.
Mrs. MARY F. McWHORTER
Hon. O’NEILL RYAN
. St. Louis, Mo.
Rey. PETER C. YORKE
» . San Francisco, Cal.
Hon. JOHN J.. CURLEY
JOHN J. SPLAIN
. New Haven, Conn.
Hon. JOIN P. GRACE
. Charleston, S. C.
Hon. MICHAEL J. RYAN
Rey. FRANCIS X. McCABE
Hon. CORNELIUS F. COLLINS
New York, N. Y.
JONN A. MURPIIY, Chairman
. Buffalo, N. Y.
THOMAS HUGHES KELLY
- New York, N. Y.
THOMAS J. MALONEY
Jersey City, N. J.
RICHARD W. WOLFE
THOMAS F, COONEY
Providence, R. I.
RICHARD F. DALTON
New York, N. Y.
Chairman National Executive
New York, N. Y¥.
Vice-Chairman National Executive
P. A. MOYNAHAN
Frwnds of Brish Freedom
NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS: hae wedge aye :
280. BROADWAY i EES ge
NEW YORK CITY . .
To Be Read at Next Branch Meeting
October ‘7, 1920.
To THE SECRETARY OF EACH REGULAR AND ASSOCIATE BRANCH, AND EACH
MEMBER OF THE NATIONAL COUNGIL, F. O. I. F.
The latest development in the fight against those responsible for the direction of the Friends
of Irish Freedom has as a basis “‘Amendments to the Constitution,”
The National Executive, recognizes that this subject is in itself a proper: ene for con-
sideration at any time and resents the attempt to make it appear that the National Council and
itself are adverse to changes in the Constitution which can be considered as for the benefit of the
organization, The contention that no further progress can be made unless changes which would
alter the enlire structure of the F, O. I. F. be effected immediately, is, however, clearly based on
an imperfect knowledge of the situaticn as it actually exists throughout the country from an or-
The Executive, while appreciating the fact that this agitation about the Constitution is but
a side issue, considers that the time has arrived for the issuance of a statement dealing with the
important phases of this subject. In addition to presenting a basis for intelligent discussion of
the matter by the National Council, it is important that the members should realize the why
and wherefore of things and draw their own conclusions ‘therefrom:
(1) Prior to the 1918 Race Convention the Constitution was a mere skeleton of 8 small
pages. It was wholly inadequate and the Convention ordered a new Constitution’ drafted
which would form'a suitable basis on which to build up a large, well-disciplined organization.
(2) | The development of the Friends of Irish Freedom between May, 1918, and Feb-'
ruary, 1919, necessitated further changes and additions, and these were effected by the Phila-
delphia Convention last year.
(3) With the organization of new “Local Councils,” suggestions in the matter of the
basis of representation thereon reached National Headquarters from different parts of the coun-
try in May/June, 1919. As a result, Section (ce) of Article XVI was duly amended on
July. 11, 1919.
(4) With the further development of the organization it was evident towards the end
of last year that additional amendments to the Constitution were essential.---The matter was
brought before the meeting of the National Council held November 7th, 1919. It was urged
that a-large Committee representative of various States be appointed, the individual members of
which would draft amendments and additions to the Constitution which in their opinion were
necessary at that stage and submit them to the National Executive. No action was taken be-
cause of the strenuous objection raised by a prominent member of the Council to the changing
of the Constitution. between Conventions. This gentleman is now one of those who holds that
the Massachusetts amendments should be immediately adopted,
(5) The question of amending the Constitution having again come up recently, the mem-
bers of the National Council were requested to forward definite amendments for consideration
by the National Executive. The subject was a special order of business at the meeting of the
National Executive held September 14, 1920. Some of the amendments offered by the mem-
bers of the Executive and some of the other amendments submitted, were of a radical nature.
On the acceptance or rejection of any one of these radical amendments by the National Council
would depend the making of many additional changes in other Articles of the Constitution. It
was therefore considered best to await an expression of opinion on the part of the National
Council on each such radical change before attempting to formulate and submit a full list of
definite amendments. In addition to the changes proposed by the Massachusetts State’ Council
on August 30th, that body submitted further amendments which only reached members of the
National Council on September 16th. It was therefore impossible for the National Executive
to deal with the latter prior to the meeting of the National Council on September 17th; and
without previous ratification by the National Exccutive as provided for by Article XIX of the
Constitution, the National Council could not constitutionally adopt them. ;