Catholics in the US are fighting to stop a Satanic monument being erected in a veterans memorial park, CNS reports.
Fr Brian Lynch, of Our Lady of the Prairie parish in Belle Plaine, Massachusetts, gathered for prayer in the park last month with more than 50 Catholics. Two days later, about 40 Catholics joined Fr Lynch as he testified against the proposed monument before the Belle Plaine City Council.
Meanwhile, more than 30 Catholics, including members of the Archdiocese of St Paul and Minneapolis’ Catholic Watchmen initiative, attended Mass and prayed in Eucharistic Adoration at the parish.
“Sometimes these things which are evil can really, maybe, wake some people up. We really have to take our faith seriously and live it,” Fr Lynch told The Catholic Spirit, newspaper of the Archdiocese of St Paul and Minneapolis.
Commissioned by the Massachusetts-based Satanic Temple, the proposed monument consists of a 60cm-by-60cm black steel cube engraved with inverted pentagrams on each side. On top of the box sits an upside down soldier’s helmet, which memorialises fallen soldiers and serves as an offering bowl.
The Satanic Temple describes the bowl as a place for visitors to leave cards or flowers, but also calls it a “Baphometic” bowl, relating it to an occult idol that has roots in medieval paganism.
The Belle Plaine Veterans Memorial Park attracted the Satanic Temple’s interest after accommodating the placement of another monument that included a cross in a public park.
A Freedom From Religion Foundation member in Belle Plaine considered the statue too religious for public land, so she reported the issue to police. The foundation persuaded the city council to have the cross removed and the vet’s club did so. After the public protested its removal, council members voted to allow the cross to be displayed again. The designated space permits anyone of any religion to apply to place a memorial.
The Satanic Temple learned about the opportunity to place a monument in Belle Plaine through the foundation, which also hopes to place a memorial in the park.
Catholics lead resistance to Satanic monument (CNS/Catholic Herald)