Saturday, April 29, 2006

Holy Office, Holy Boycott

As you all know, it takes a lot to get the Vatican to address any given topic. But when it comes to the DaVinci Code, the trend's indicated that the designated point-man speaking for the Holy See is the Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Last year, in Rome's first counter-offensive, the former holder of CDF's #2 post, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone of Genoa, characterized the book as "rotten food," "a sack full of lies" and said of author Dan Brown that "Great writers did not behave this way." (Bertone also makes cameo appearances as a soccer commentator on Italian television, where he's just as colorful.)

As the 19 May release of the Code movie nears, Bertone's successor at the Palazzo del Sant'Uffizio, Archbishop Angelo Amato, has taken up the torch.

In speaking before a conference in the city, Reuters reported that Amato expressed his hope that "you all will boycott the film."
Amato said the book, written by Dan Brown, had been hugely successful around the world thanks in part to what he called "the extreme cultural poverty on the part of a good number of the Christian faithful."....

In his address to the group, Amato said Christians should be more willing "to reject lies and gratuitous defamation."

He said that if "such lies and errors had been directed at the Koran or the Holocaust they would have justly provoked a world uprising."

He added: "Instead, if they are directed against the Church and Christians, they remain unpunished."

In the piece, Reuters Rome correspondent Phil Pulella doesn't exactly note the venue where Amato gave his remarks.

However, the archbishop was slated to address a 27-29 April conference in Rome on church communications.

The organizer of that gathering? Opus Dei, of course.

SVILUPPO: It's confirmed -- Amato gave the address in question to the above-mentioned conference, held at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross.

How on earth the crucial contextual detail was left out that a senior Vatican official called for a Code movie boycott at Opus Dei's Roman university beggars belief. Must be a conspiracy....