The good news about Harvard’s  “black mass” event is that there were protests, and several hundred Catholics, fellow Christians, and other supporters participated in a more uplifting celebration that included scripture reading and signs reading “Jesus, I adore you.”

Photo by The Harvard Crimson’s George J Lok.

The student editors of The Harvard Crimson took the administration’s position to “to condemn the actions but allow the students to exercise—however tastelessly—their right to express and assemble themselves.”

It is in times of distress, however, that we must hold firm to our culture’s beliefs of free expression. Urging the University to forcefully shut down the event would run counter to Harvard’s principles of tolerance and open discussion. Instead, we support the Catholic and Christian students in their peaceful response, which will consist not of violence or ad hominem attacks, but rather of prayer. We also appreciate the administration’s commitment to an open forum for diverse ideas.

However, it must be noted that the Catholic students were not feeling much “tolerance” for their faith or “sensitivity” to the fact that the school was allowing the sacrilege to occur. Harvard Catholic students Aurora C. Griffin, former President of the Harvard Catholic Student Association, and Luciana E. Milano ’14,co-founder of the Harvard Daughters of Isabella, noted that the petition drive to cancel the event collected over 40,000 signatures in the brief time it was posted.

In an op-ed, they reject the grape-leaf of “educational pretenses” and note the hate speech they have endured on social media.

As Harvard Catholics, we completely reject the educational pretenses under which this event has been sanctioned. The Cultural Studies Club and the Extension School’s original statement emphasized that, as part of a series of events including “a Shinto tea ceremony, a Shaker exhibition, and a Buddhist presentation on meditation,” the club is presenting an educational effort to “explore different cultures.” The Satanic Temple, which is really behind this particular event, is a religious community guilty of greater fundamentalism than any group it intends to mock. Any notion that the Satanic Temple is simply a cultural group is nonsense.

Many of our friends and the leaders of various campus fellowships, such as Harvard Christian Faith in Action, the Latter-Day Saint Student Association, Christian Impact, and the Harvard Islamic Society, have shown support for us in the Catholic community at this difficult time. For that, we are unspeakably grateful. Others, like responders over House lists and trolls on Facebook, have only added insult to injury by saying that that the Church deserves this hatred. As followers of Christ under the leadership of Pope Francis, we can only hope that such responses come from ignorance rather than malice.

Read the original article:
Hatred at Harvard (The Harvard Crimson)