Tuesday, May 16, 2006

"Simply blasphemous!" — Catholic priests urge protest of "The Da Vinci Code"


Catholic clergymen and activists really really don't want you to see The Da Vinci Code.

The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, a distinctly Catholic organization, has garnered over 100,000 digital signatures to this letter, which they sent to the producers of The Da Vinci Code and Columbia Pictures:
Columbia Pictures
Attention: Producers of The Da Vinci Code

I am deeply opposed to your making a film out of Dan Brown’s novel The Da Vinci Code. Before you go any further with this project you should consider that millions of Catholics see this as Christ-bashing and insulting to the Catholic Church.
  • The book, written as fiction, attacks all I hold sacred — the Divinity of Christ, the Gospel, the Papacy and the holy mysteries of my Faith.
  • The novel is simply deceitful, replacing Our Lord Jesus Christ with an anti-Jesus Christ.
  • The Holy Catholic Church is misrepresented as a cruel power that betrays Christ and His teachings.
  • Furthermore, be sure that if you go ahead and produce the film, millions upon millions of Catholics will become engaged in the largest peaceful and legal protest ever seen.
On another webpage the ASDTFP brags that "if anyone knows blasphemy," it's the former prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Cardinal Jorge Medina Estevez. Cardinal Medina is the man who had the honor of announcing the new Pope last year.

Medina has proclaimed the assertion that Jesus and Mary Magdalene had sexual relations "simply blasphemous." There you go — case closed!

On April 28, Archbishop Angelo Amato, Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith (old name: The Holy Inquisition), criticized The Da Vinci Code book and film, and urged Catholics to organize protests worldwide, while speaking at a Catholic conference in Rome.

According to the news agency Ansa, the Archbishop said the book was, "full of calumnies, offences and historical and theological errors regarding Jesus, the Gospels and the Church."

He added: "I hope all of you boycott this film."

If you want to participate in a protest outside a theater, the ASDTFP has got you covered. You can download their "Protest Organizer Kit" and Protest Posters and Handouts. The Kit tells you what to say to reporters, what to chant through your bullhorn, and even reminds you not to get into verbal or physical fights with the blasphemous sinful movie-going public.

Father Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher to the pontifical household since 1980, managed to get in two swipes for the price of one last month in his Good Friday sermon at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.

Refering to the recently unveiled modern translation of the Gospel of Judas, he said, "There is much talk about Judas' betrayal, without realizing that it is being repeated. Christ is being sold again, no longer to the leaders of the Sanhedrin for 30 denarii, but to editors and booksellers for billions of denarii.

"We cannot allow the silence of believers to be mistaken for embarrassment and that the good faith of millions of people be crassly manipulated by the media, with raising a cry of protest, not only in the name of the faith, but also of common sense and healthy reason.

"No one will succeed in halting this speculative wave, which instead will flare up with the imminent release of a certain film. "The apocryphal gospels on which they lean are text that have always been known, in whole or in part, but with which which not even the most critical and hostile historians of Christianity even thought, before today, that history could be made," Father Cantalamessa said.

He said the Gospel of Judas, The Da Vinci Code and other works like them each have "a common explanation: We are in the age of the media and the media are more interested in novelty than in truth."

Not to be outdone in rhetoric, Archbishop Hector Aguer of La Plata, Argentina, during his Palm Sunday sermon accused the world of fomenting a "wave of hatred against Jesus Christ and the Church" that "bears the markings of a conspiracy."

Examples of this conspiracy include:"To all this one can add the numerous profanations of the Sacred Scriptures, the blasphemies against the Most Holy Virgin, and the growing, ubiquitous pressure to remove crosses and other Christian symbols from public places," the archbishop added.

Not content just to make his points above, the Catholic World News reported that he then whined about the "widespread condemnation and rejection of recently published cartoons depicting Mohammed, as well as the rapid activation of democratic mechanisms condemning discrimination and infringement upon religious freedom whenever there is the slightest attack against the Jewish community. And yet, he continued, 'the apathy, the leniency, the suspicious silence in response to attacks on the Christian faith stands out. It seems that Christianity, and specifically Catholicism, can be attacked with impunity,' Archbishop Aguer said."

Image: Cardinal Jorge Medina Estevez, center

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Isn't it a fact that the movie was based upon the book, which is a N-O-V-E-L????? Check out my post!
The Catholic Church has a proven track record of actually helping the sales of works it condemns. Yeah, my first reaction to any sort of anti-intellectualism and authoritarianism is to clench up spit fire at it. But the Catholic Church has been its own worst PR rep for decades.

If only the Vatican were as passionate about punishing its pedophile priests or ending the subjugation of women or its own widespread corruption.


Rather, it denounces a book that has never spent a moment on the Non-fiction shelf of a bookstore. The book has never purported to be anything but fiction. The film starring Tom Hanks is not a documentary. It is fiction, too.

My only hope is that my work might one day be as denounced by this beehive of bumblers.
The book that is fiction but labeled on the first few pages as "FACT" and then later when Dan Brown was interviewed and asked what would he change it he would of wrote it as non-fiction and he answered: nothing.

The Church is doing the right thing about protesting the blasphemy against Christ and the faith.

Check out my post

There is ignorance on the things that the Church has done for women. You can read some more on this document issued on the Dignity of Women.

How come your Big Book of Bible Stories is labeled "fact" when it spins yarns about people leaping out of their graves, weird flying contraptions, and unicorns?

Check out my posts

The DaVinci Code is fiction; however, the Jesus/Mary Magdalene connection has valid and deeply rooted evidence that has been suppressed by the Church.
Let the Church protest and posture and threaten and cajole! It will help spread the interest and intrique behind this subject and the public at large can make their opinion on what they believe.
That is free speech, comrade! Christians have been belittling pagans and gnostics for generations. They can now put up with some bashing from the other side.
I say let people decide for themselves. That's what makes America great!

F. Roy Dean Schlipp
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