Thursday, 15 May 2014

The Twice-Defaced Temple

During the night hours between the 14th and 15th of May, unknown thugs defaced the external façade of the Waldensian temple in Piazza Cavour, Rome. The façade had just recently been restored to its beautiful, original color. These feckless thugs defaced the lower part of the external, lateral wall of the temple. On the main entrance, which faces nearby family dwellings, they traced a swastika and three Celtic crosses in red paint, along with the words “no faggots”. The main temple door was also splashed with black ink, or something similar to black ink. This act has been overwhelmingly condemned by local community leaders – from Rome Mayor Ignazio Marino, to the President of the Jewish community in Rome, Riccardo Pacifici, to the leaders of various gay associations, along with many others. We, too, absolutely and overwhelmingly deplore and condemn this thuggish act.

However, we sadly witness a new defacement to the temple – and this one, by the hands of neither unknown, nor extraneous, persons.

Today, what dominates the great façade of the Waldensian temple - built approximately a hundred years ago, thanks to the generosity of a U.S. donor - is a political symbol, adopted in particular by the extreme left, by ideological pacifists, and by gay associations: that symbol is the rainbow flag. This further defacement, while certainly not a crime as the former was, is to us very grievous, because it is displayed by the very Waldensian leadership. This defacement cannot be easily removed with some simple elbow grease, because the hearts and minds behind that display want it there. In other words, the "official" Waldensian church believes that ideological wars are more worthy and relevant than the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The original, carved Waldensian emblems alongside the front windows are nothing more than a tiny aside, overwhelmed by that sprawling political flag – and not just an aside: tragically, they can actually be viewed as a support measure to this political creed. May God have mercy.

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