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“In the end, we have chosen to not celebrate Mass. In view of Christmas, we will be meeting kids to for a Christian prayer, accompanied by some time dedicated to collective reflection. It is still a liturgical act. Mass is the sacrament of Eucharist, for some it may be an act of worship that is too strong”. The one who says it is not an anticlerical  headmaster, a proponent of an alleged ideological “neutrality” in the name of inter-religious dialog. The decision not to celebrate Christmas Mass at a Catholic school in Monza, the Catholic organization of vocational training, because it is an “act of worship that is too strong”, was taken by a priest, the parish priest of San Biagio, Don Marco Oneta.

The news was given in an interview with Voxnews, spread by Libero and confirmed to In Terris via telephone by the pastor, who has chosen cover-up after the controversy provoked by these statements. Don Oneta refers to what is explained on the institutional site of the Archdiocese of Milan. Here, by the way, specifying that he had made this choice two years ago, he says: “90% of the students are not Christian or not Catholic, or even says to be distant, if not hostile, from religious practice. Mass, which is the highest form of Christian celebration, had difficulties in involving them. Thus, we thought of forms of celebration, I repeat Christian, more satisfying for the young people we have in front of us”, such as reading from the Gospel. The goal is to “help students meet the Christian fact in ways that are more appropriate in their moment of life”.

In the past few days, even the Bishop of Padua, Monsignor Claudio Cipolla, has certainly raised controversy for his statements that seemed to support the choice of the headmaster of the school of the Institute Garofalo of Rozzano, Marco di Parma, and prohibit the traditional Christian songs, such as “Adeste Fideles” or “Tu scendi dalle stelle” (You Come Down from the Stars)  for the Christmas concert, for “do not disturb the sensitivity” of the children of other faiths or of their parents. The Bishop said it was “prepared to take a step backwards in the name of fraternity” even about the nativity scenes. In Turin, the headmaster of the “Anne Frank” school, Piero Bottale, has denied permission for the nativity scene inside the school “for reasons of safety and respect for everyone’s culture”. A slap in the face of the Christian people.

In the name of the inter-religious dialog and peace, in short, they are violating the very principle they pretend they want to defend, that is freedom of faith and worship, the protection of their cultural identity. Whereas Pope Francis opens the Holy Door and the door of God’s and men’s heart with the beginning of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, there are those who slam the door in Jesus’ face, forcing Christians to profess their faith in closed churches, sacristies, and houses. Christ is being chased from the cave of the nativity scene to be confined in the ghettos of religious celebrations. It is a step backwards in the civilization of human rights.

Yet, even the secular European Court of Human Rights sustained the crucifix in the classrooms of public schools, deciding on the appeal of an Italian citizen who asked for it to be removed.  “You can therefore be used to support – it is law in Judgment – that, in the current social reality, the crucifix is to be regarded not only as a symbol of a historical and cultural development, and therefore the identity of our people, but also as the symbol of a system of values of freedom, equality, human dignity and religious tolerance, and therefore also of the secular state, these principles which innervate the our constitutional Charter”.

Put otherwise, the constitutional principles of freedom have many roots, and one of these is undoubtedly Christianity, in its very essence. It would therefore be subtly paradoxical exclude a Christian sign from a public structure in the name of secularism that certainly has one of its far sources precisely in Christian religion”.

It would be “paradoxical” – says the High Court – to exclude a Christian sign from a public place in the name of secularism. Even more paradoxical is that those who do this are Christians or even priests or religious men. This is an attack on Christianity that is much more dangerous and insidious than fanatics’ destructive promises in the name – in vain – of  God. This is the “bomb” inside the Church.

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