Reparation for the Sacrilege and Blasphemy at Harvard

Reparation for the Sacrilege and Blasphemy at Harvard May 12, 2014

Fr. Rob Johansen writes:

No doubt you have heard about the “Black Mass” scheduled to take place at Harvard today. This is, of course, a blasphemy and affront to all Catholics.

Thomas More College in New Hampshire is taking action to respond to this sacrilege. They are offering three days of prayer and reparation for the Harvard Black Mass.

It would be very helpful and welcome if you could mention this at CAEI.

In related news, President (I am not making this up) Faust of Harvard writes to condemn this ugly bigotry.

I’m particularly amused by the complaint from the passive-aggressives putting on this cowardly act of blasphemy and Catholic hatred (who last week were demanding that everybody like them and believe their song and dance about “respect for all religions) that the Catholics who are the butt of this insult are “intolerant” for doubling over after being kicked in the groin.

Our marching orders, of course, come from Jesus: turn the other cheek. Pray for those who despitefully use you. So: Father, bless these poor souls whose idea of a good time is to spit at your Son who died for them and to bravely insult people who will not retaliate. They need your mercy desperately. Give it to them and pour out your love on them through Christ our Lord.

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  • Cypressclimber

    I also pray that none of this foolish people suffer spiritual oppression because of their reckless dabbling with forces of evil. May their guardian angels protect them!

  • IRVCath

    The Jesuit chaplain at Mass yesterday where we were pretty much said the same thing. The Golden Arrow Prayer is a good standby for such a purpose.

    • SteveP

      Thank you — I did not know of the Golden Arrow Prayer but for your reference.

  • Mariana Baca

    Eucharistic Procession from MIT to Harvard at 7:00, followed by Holy Hour at 8:00 at St. Paul’s in Harvard Square for those who live in the area.

  • Rosemarie


    Looks like the “Black Mass” was cancelled:

    The group that was going to perform it still intends to do so at some “undisclosed private location” somewhere, but Harvard isn’t sponsoring it anymore.

  • Satori

    I find it offensive that Christians regularly talk about how I am “damned” and deserve to go to hell so it is hard for me to care about Catholics getting upset by this. I’m not gay, but I feel the same way about any religion that claims homosexual relationships are disordered too.

    Your own views repulse many people and you make claims about the way they live. Why should you be immune? Grow up.

    • TomD

      In these supposed tolerant and sophisticated times, when someone else “offends” us, we should immediately expect that they get offended right back in return. That’s “grown up?”

      If you really believe that orthodox Christianity is untrue, then why get so deeply and personally offended that you feel the need to respond to its so-called intolerance with an intolerance all your own? Grow up.

      • Satori

        As soon as the power of Christianity is broken in the West perhaps I will stop paying attention to it……

        • Adolfo

          What power? Same sex marriage is largely legal, abortion is legal, no fault divorce is an institution, etc.

          • Satori

            The Catholic Church has helped lead the fight against marriage equality and abortion rights in the United States. I find these positions unacceptable because I do not think public policy should be based on fairy tales. When it gives in and no longer tries to influence public policy we can talk.

            • Barbara

              So, what you mean by power is the ability to participate in the democratic process according to one’s conscience. You would see that broken? Do you realize what you are actually saying?

              • Hezekiah Garrett

                Yes, he is saying that if your political positions do not coincide with his/her metaphysical framework, you should not have any voice in society and should be disenfranchised and silenced.

                Be happy this one bigot is honest enough to trumpet it.

                • Barbara

                  The ability to influence public policy is a right given to every citizen in a democratic society without exception. What has happened to the progressive movement that has made it so totalitarian? It wasn’t like this when I was a progressive undergrad 10 years ago. Their whole thing was “live and let live”. Now it’s “we own the public sphere and we will drive you out”. Maybe it was always like this and just how the mask is coming off.

                  • Archaeopteryx

                    What happened is they own the public sphere. The mask is indeed coming off.

            • Hezekiah Garrett

              Then until then, we won’t ne hearing from you? Pardon my doubts, please.

            • TomD

              You don’t really believe in democracy or freedom, do you? According to your own words, those with whom you disagree don’t ultimately have rights and freedoms, they don’t even have the right to try to influence public policy. That’s authoritarianism, bordering on totalitarianism, when an idea has such power that those who oppose it can not be permitted influence or a voice against it.

    • Dennis Mahon

      Because the point of our religion isn’t to piss off people who actually believe
      their religion; for Satanists, the point of their “religion” is to piss off people who actually believe
      their religion. It’s the metaphysical equivalent of burning a cross on someone’s lawn.

      • Satori

        I do not care about your intentions. They mean nothing to me.

        Satanism can be said to have a higher purpose though, it reveals the absurdity and nonsense of traditional religious doctrines.

        • LSpinelli

          You need as many prayers as these misguided people do. Not because you want them, but because you need mercy.

    • Joejoe

      Please. If that’s what you think you’re only choosing to hear (far less than) half of the message. Repentance is possible up til death. You therefore need to drop the illusion that we are calling you “damned.”

  • kenofken

    Groups like these stage these public events for no other reason than to get Christians riled up. You go for it like a dog for a skunk every time. Why do you keep giving them the satisfaction and notoriety they crave?

    • Mariana Baca

      The procession and holy hour were really beautiful — hundreds ( more?) of people walking down a busy street with the Eucharist, praying, an overflowing church in Harvard square with beautiful chant…. Good can come out of evil.

      • SteveP

        This is good news. Thank you for sharing it.

    • Joejoe

      The Black Mass failed to occur and a bunch of people went to Adoration and walked in procession with Our Lord. This is not a victory for the hateful.

      • kenofken

        They got exactly what they came for, a rise out of the Christian establishment and huge publicity and notoriety. The Black Mass was entirely beside the point and as has been pointed out, was probably more a bit of amateurish performance art than religious devotion. They played you all like Guitar Hero and when the next goofballs come up with the next scheme to scandalize you, you’ll give them a quadrillion more social media hits and the celebrity and reaction they crave.

        • TomD

          So when some lowlife KKK wannabes propose a public cross burning, complete with white hoods and robes in the very best spirit of “amateurish performance art,” we should expect you, progressives generally, and those who control the modern media/culture, to just ignore them, rather than give them the “celebrity and reaction they crave,” not to mention the “quadrillion more social media hits” that a negative reaction would generate, so as not to be played like Guitar Hero.

          • kenofken

            If we had any brains, we wouldn’t give nutjob extremist more than their due, and we would tell the story on our time and terms, not dance where they tell us every time they announce one of their freak shows. I have no expectation that any media, liberal or conservative, will do this because they thrive on shock value, not news value. Do you think Westboro Baptist has any real existence beyond its ability to command the media spotlight?

            Conservative Christians are not the only ones to get played by media manipulators, but you make it just so sadly easy to do. Every pop star, every reality show “celebrity”, every hipster artist, every “Satanist” knows you’ll guarantee them national media exposure and sales. All they have to do is shed their clothes for an act, Tweet something you don’t like, announce some new conspiracy theory about Jesus or Mary, or create some graphic depiction of either, or say they have a consecrated host, and you’ll take care of the rest.

            • Barbara

              I think you’re right, in part. The Catholic blogosphere seems to churn out the histrionics far too much Some things are worth getting upset over, like the HHS mandate, other things not so much. This, however, was not some kind of Wiccan ritual, it was is pretty much the equivalent to the Quran burning proposed by that pastor a few years ago. It involved a desecration of a sacred element of someone’s faith. It’s the desecration part that bothers people. If idiots want to get drunk and call on the dark lord for shits and giggles, that’s their business.

              I do wonder, though, if there would have been a better way to respond. I mean, rolling over and letting them piss on our sacraments is not a viable option in my opinion. But cranking the hysterics up to 11 does just play into their hands.

              • kenofken

                The histrionics gave a handful of undergrad provocateurs more media buzz and and outrage than Boko Haram, and they didn’t have to kidnap anyone or consign themselves to certain death by drone. They didn’t, it turns out, even have to perform an amateurish bit of shock theater. They only had to threaten to do so.

                Satanists, whatever we may think of their religion (not much, personally), have the same constitutional rights as the rest of us. If they had the money to do so, they would be well within their rights to open their own church across the street from St. Paul’s in Harvard Square.

                It’s not clear the event in question involved desecration. They said at one point they had a consecrated host, but never offered any credible evidence that they had obtained one, and almost immediately backed off of the idea once the suggestion accomplished its goal of uproar. Without a consecrated host, anything they would have done might have been mockery, but not desecration.

                As a Wiccan, I appreciate that you don’t conflate my religion with Satanism, as they are unrelated. Wicca is not about emulating nor mocking Christianity. We have groups and regular rituals on many college campuses these days, and they do their thing without incident or the manufactured media storm that defined the Harvard Satanists.

                • Barbara

                  Please don’t misunderstand. I wasn’t comparing Wicca to Satanism. I was making a rhetorical contrast. A Wiccan ritual is a thing by itself which is designed to worship nature. It doesn’t set out to offend anyone. A Satanist ritual on the other hand is explicitly anti-Catholic. I used to be Wiccan myself so I know what it is and what it isn’t. There is a question of whether Wiccan rituals might be calling up demonic spirits unwittingly when they invoke elemental spirits. But that’s another discussion.

        • Mariana Baca

          We aren’t doing this out of damaged pride. We don’t care if they think they made us into fools… We did something good and their opinion of us is their concern. You are making it out like the court of public opinion is all that matters (what people think of us, or them, or who gets “more attention”) Those things don’t matter and aren’t real.

    • SteveP

      I’m guessing there were as serious as you were at your “un-baptism.” If the event had been what you say it was, they would have called it a “Gay Black Mass.” You know, to press as many buttons as possible and obtain the maximum “oppression” narrative from media sources.

      • kenofken

        What’s a “Gay Black Mass” and how did I become personally responsible for hosting/promoting such a thing?

  • Arizona Mike

    Had the proposed ceremony involved the ritual burning of a Quran, held sacred by one religion, as opposed to the defilement of the Eucharist, held sacred by my religion, the reaction by all involved, especially Harvard, would have been quite different. This is the world we live in now.

    • Obpoet

      You expected (not hoped) that somehow it was going to be different?

  • Edel, convict from downunder

    Perhaps Catholics need to roar louder, stage a protest march, and offer Masses for this outrage. Oh yeah sorry… we are too busy catching up with world youth day reunions to do anything really Catholic, aren’t we???

    • chezami

      You seem to be too busy sitting in judgement of other Catholics to know what actually happened.