Better Marxist than Catho-Satanist

Authored By: Giovanni Ricciardi

Better Marxist than Catho-Satanist

The activities of satanic-type sects are nothing new but it is only in the wake of fateful 1989 that they seem to have spread attracting large numbers of Catholics, both lay and clergy

by Giovanni Ricciardi

The going price for a consecrated host on the Italian "market" at the moment is between $30 and $200. The price is high but the market can stand it, and there's no shortage of customers.

Clearly, many of these customers are to be found among the participants in satanic rites. And that's not all. Even the clergy seem to have been involved the case in Catania where the tombs of monks in the crypt of San Nicolo l'Arena were desecrated, black masses said and occult rituals and orgies organized. The phenomenon is more widespread than one might think.

And some people are already taking safety measures. In the Roman Prenestino quarter the parish priest will no longer leave the pyx containing the body of the Lord in the tabernacle overnight. He hides it in a safe place in the presbytery he shares with his curates. "Not that anything unpleasant has happened," he prudently explains, "but we want to do our best to prevent anything happening to the Eucharist."

The crime of profaning the host is known as "real sacrilege" since according to the Catechism the Lord Jesus Christ is really present in body, blood, soul and divinity in the sacrament of the altar. Real sacrilege, therefore, against a reality, a .

A rising tide of groups and sects is now attempting to drown this reality. The presence of a consecrated host to be profaned is an essential element in their rites. And curiously, Efrem del Gatto, the charismatic leader of the most famous satanic "church" in Rome, the Luciferian Confraternity, has stated that the hosts are supplied by willing Catholic priests. The point he wants to make is that they are not stolen.

In , the March 18 1980 letter promulgated by John Paul II on Holy Thursday when the Church solemnly remembers the instituting of the Eucharist, the Pope wrote: "Reports have reached us of cases of deplorable lack of respect toward the Eucharistic species, lack that weighs not only on those culpable of such acts, but also on the pastors of the Church who may have been less than vigilant about the behavior of the faithful".

The activities of satanic sects are certainly nothing new. But only since the fateful year of 1989 do they seem to have moved out of the restricted circles of middle-class elites and now threaten to become a widespread phenomenon involving many Catholics, both lay and clergy. Is this yet another result of the fall of the Berlin Wall? Odd though it seems it does look likely. As Massimo Introvigne points out in his , satanic sects have existed in the past. However, the enormous spread of materialistic ideology of a Marxist kind in the 20th century had almost eliminated the phenomenon. Re-imported from the United States in the 1970s, it exploded along with the crisis of Communism, not least because circles in the US were no longer concerned to finance organizations that proposed to stem the Red tide and shifted the targets of their financial aid.

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Profile: Orphic rituals

WHAT CULTURE CONCEALS

Who on earth was Orpheus? It might look like one of those idle questions that remain restricted to the confines of scholarly treatises on mythology or to highschool classrooms. In fact the legendary harpist of Thrace whose music moved rocks and persuaded Persephone, Queen of the Underworld, to allow him to attempt to bring his beloved Eurydice back to the surface, is part of a long esoteric tradition that has endured to our own day.

In the Greek world Orpheus' descent into the Underworld was already given a symbolic interpretation in terms of the journey undertaken by the soul to achieve knowledge of its real divine nature. The myth gave rise to a religious tradition that saw man as a principle, a divine spark, that was to be nurtured through a process of initiation, and which called on the soul to rid itself of the dross of its "material" element and rise again in its true nature. This process of coming to awareness was known to the Greeks as gnosis and gave its name to Gnosticism, the great heresy that in early Christianity and even more so today - is trying to hollow out the reality of the Catholic faith from the inside.

And that is not ail. During the Renaissance a great many people found inspiration and nourishment in the ancient Orphic tradition. During the 16th century an Orphic theology proper was devised of the kind to be found in the writings of Johannes Goropius Becanus into which the bishop of Antwerp, Laevinius Torrentius, was initiated.

The notion re-emerged powerfully in the Romantic period. Some of the greatest European poets of the time, Holderlin, Keats, Shelley and even Goethe, drew on Orphic themes. According to the Romantics the figure of Orpheus gives backing to a philosophy of the spirit in which the mythical Thracian bard represents both the poet and the magician who offers himself as enlightened guide to mankind.

In his 1829 Orphee Ballanche presented the mythical figure as theologian and pontiff, called to teach the truth to men. It is no accident that already at the end of the 16th century Bartolomeo del Bene had set Orpheus at the center of an illustration representing the Temple of Intelligence in his treatise , which calls to mind Augustine's contrasting City of God and which was published by his nephew, Alfonso del Bene, bishop of Alby.

in short, Orphic notions are strongly present in the spirit and culture of the modern period down to our own day and provide material and inspiration for the adherents and priests of the occult. It is possible that present-day satanists and necrophiles look on the figure who first found a way into the world of the dead as an illustrious teacher.

One question remains: Is this just a matter of cultural knowledge or does so much interest in the spirit conceal ritualistic orgies and associations with power?

This article was taken from the No. 5, 1996 issue of "30Days". To subscribe contact "30Days" at: Subscriptions Office, 28 Trinity St., Newton, NJ 07860 or call 1-800-321-2255, Fax 201-579-5541. Subscription rate is $35.00 per year.

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