"It is time now to give some details of the history of the progress of that work for which we were assembled in Rome. As I have observed before, his Holiness[Bl. Pope Pius IX] took care that each bishop, on his arrival in Rome, should be furnished with a copy of the answers which he had received from the bishops of the world, whom he had consulted by an Encyclical Letter, when he was in exile at Gaeta, on the question of defining the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin. ... About the 18th of November, each of the bishops received a printed copy of a brief Narration of what Pius IX had done, up to that time, respecting the question of defining the dogma of the Immaculate Conception; and also a rough draft of the Bull, which in certain particulars was to be submitted to their deliberation.
Amidst the profound attention of the vast assembly present, he began to read, in a clear voice, the decree of the Immaculate Conception. Having read the prefatory parts, and arrived at the decree itself, his Holiness, who was ever remarkable for his tender devotion to the Holy Virgin, overpowered as if by the sense of the favour which God was conferring on him, in vouchsafing that he should be the instrument of rendering such an honor to this most beloved Mother, burst into tears. He went on to read with a faltering voice, which betrayed the deepest emotion, the word declaramus, but for some minutes could proceed no farther. The effect on the vast auditory may be more easily conceived than expressed. It may be safely said, there were but few present who were not profoundly moved, and many wept like children. The Pope, having recovered from his emotion, finished the reading of the decree, and almost immediately after, the booming of the cannon of Fort St. Angelo began to echo through the vast dome of St. Peter's, and the bells of the churches through Rome rang a merry peal. The great act was consummated.