Students from the Harvard Extension School at Harvard University are hosting a "Satanic black mass," which will take place tonight in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
"A black mass ceremony is a ritual performed by satanic cults to parody the Catholic Church Mass. Historically, the ceremony features a ritual of sacrilege of the Catholic host, or the sacred bread used in the Eucharist, which becomes the body of Jesus Christ upon consecration," the Harvard Crimson explains.
The performance, which will take place Monday night at Cambridge Queen’s Head Pub in the basement of Memorial Hall, is organized by the Extension School’s Cultural Studies Club with help from the New York-based Satanic Temple.
The ceremony will model the script of the black mass articulated in novelist Joris-Karl Huysmans’ work “Là-Bas,” although a consecrated host will not be used. In addition, Christopher Robichaud, an ethics and public policy professor at the Kennedy School of Government, will speak at the demonstration to frame the event in terms of religious liberty and tolerance, according to the club.
The event has been condemened by the Archdiocese of Boston.
The Archdiocese of Boston, which oversees Catholic churches and schools in the area, also denounced the event.
“This activity separates people from God and the human community, it is contrary to charity and goodness, and it places participants dangerously close to destructive works of evil,” the Archdiocese wrote in a statement earlier in the week.
A Harvard grad student emails to say, "Can you imagine them using a Koran or Torah and getting away with this?"
President Obama came into office on a promise to end divisiveness and suspicion and other things that blind us to our common humanity. It was a nice idea which he has since discarded in favor of stigmatizing and demonizing his political enemies and, when that doesn't work, using the powers of the state to intimidate them.
In an interview that aired this morning, President Obama was asked whether he'd have too much influence over an American pope. He didn't answer the question, but he did say he hopes the next pope carries the "central message of the Gospel":
Cardinals will not allowed to access their Twitter accounts during conclave, according to Catholic News Service. This restriction is applicable to the 9 cardinals who have Twitter accounts. In all, there are "117 red-vested princes of the church who are eligible to vote for a new pope."
Although not widely noticed, Mitt Romney seems to be on his way to capturing as much of the white evangelical vote as George W. Bush famously did in 2004. Bush got 79 percent. A Pew poll conducted before the first presidential debate had Romney getting 74 percent of white evangelicals versus 19 percent for Obama.
Addressing a largely Catholic audience Monday night at an event sponsored by the John Carroll Society in Washington, D.C., Cardinal Timothy Dolan emphasized the non-sectarian, non-partisan—catholic with a small “c”—nature of the fight for religious liberty. “It is not some far right, extremist cause,” Dolan said, but an “American human rights issue.”
On May 7, 2012, the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA), the largest organization of rabbis in the United States, approved a resolution recognizing that the Health and Human Services (HHS) regulation that mandates employers provide access to contraceptives, abortifacient drugs, and sterilizations forces many employers to “violate the injunctions of their religion.” The RCA, which represents more than 1,000 Orthodox rabbis, urged the Obama administration to amend the regulation to protect the religious liberties of all employers.
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has taken a bold stand for religious freedom. In a recent statement, titled “Our First, Most Cherished Liberty,” the bishops call for repeal of contraception coverage mandated by the Department of Health and Human Services. The clarified position sets up a dramatic confrontation with the Obama administration—and would, if the bishops prevail, help preserve the religious liberty of all Americans.