Tragic events in Paris have revived a dramatically distorted use of religion. They want us to believe that horrible crimes can be committed in the name of a faith, but as Pope Francis said, “using the name of God to justify the path of violence and hatred is blasphemy”. Yet, provocation against religions has become continuous, constant, strategic.
These days in Tuscany happened some preposterous cases. The Matteotti primary school in Florence, in order not to discriminate against students belonging to religions other than Christian, cancelled a visit to the prestigious exposition “Divine Beauty” at the Palazzo Strozzi. In another city, Lucca, in a few days will be inaugurated the Fotolux Festival, an international biennial festival of photography which had in program the exposition of a picture taken by the American artist Andres Serrano, titled “Piss Christ”. It shows a crucifix immersed in a jar filled with the author’s urine. On the same occasion, will be exposed also Rhein’s work, depicting the Virgin Mary who is portrayed with a generous neckline down her breasts and with a provocative gaze.
Irreverence has no limits anymore, especially when it comes to Christianity. Still in Tuscany, the well-known artist Marilyn Manson burned a Bible on the eve of the Holy Father’s visit. It looks like blasphemy for Christian symbols is supposed to be absolutely tolerated, to the point of reaching the apex of human vileness with the desecration of the Sacred Scripture and of the crucifix.
The silence of many Catholics is deafening this time. Perhaps they are frightened or confused by constant and vicious attacks on the Church. On the one hand, Pope Francis’ massive commitment is certainly admirable, but on the other hand it awakens the “ancient dragon”, Satan, unleashing all his legions of filthy spirits which taint the Mystical Body of Christ.
It is naive to think that systematic scandals, perpetrated on a weekly basis for some time now, are not orchestrated by the “great instigator” who works through his servants.
From the human body to relationships, from conception to the creation of the family, from suffering to death, even current educational institutions show scandalously their aversion towards the sacred, which is Christianity in its specificity.
How can the institutions that profess carefulness not to discriminate or affect anyone’s sensitivity, become themselves discriminating against Catholics? This apparent contradiction seems to be desired rather than random. The sad reality of our times is betrayal and denial of Christian values. The consciences of young people are no longer formed but deformed to the subculture of degradation and debunking.
In the past few days I cried, together with other people of good sense, my outrage at the impiety in program at the exhibition in Lucca. We have invited the organizers to apologize and withdraw the blasphemous work. The goal was achieved and “Piss Christ” has been removed from the catalog. Whereas the question on the Florentine front is still open. Therefore I want tolaunch an appeal to the teachers of the Matteotti primary school: take all the children to visit the exhibition “Divine Beauty”, with no worthless fears. Florence, the cradle of culture, cannot fall so low. Division and separation are the terrain where hatred grows. Now, more than ever, we need to learn from Paris’ terrible lesson.