Pressure Groups Impede Church's Voice, Says Cardinal

Vatican Official Sees «New Inquisitions, Full of Money»

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VATICAN CITY, OCT. 19, 2004 ( If John Paul II and the Church is little heard today, it is partly due to «powerful cultural, economic and political pressure groups,» says Cardinal Renato Martino.

The president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace expressed this concern Monday at the Vatican press office when presenting the book «Pope John Paul II and The Challenges of Papal Diplomacy — Anthology (1978-2003), a collection of papal texts.

According to the cardinal, there are today «new holy inquisitions full of money and arrogance» that are motivated «by prejudice» against everything that is Christian.

Commenting on «the ambiguities present today in the claims of the rights of man,» Cardinal Martino noted that «the voices of the Holy Father and of the Catholic Church are little heard, especially in rich countries.»

«They are even made to disappear deliberately, submerging them in the uproar orchestrated by powerful cultural, economic and political pressure groups motivated predominantly by prejudice toward all that is Christian,» he said.

In their work against the Church, for these «new holy inquisitions … every method is licit if it serves to silence her voice: from intimidation to public contempt, from cultural discrimination to marginalization,» the cardinal added.

Cardinal Martino mentioned in particular the tenacity «with which these pressure groups promote the confusion of roles in gender identity, mocking marriage between man and woman, and attacking life which becomes the object of the most outrageous experimentations.»

Asked by journalists for examples of the pressure groups’ action, Cardinal Martino limited himself to highlighting the «adulterated democracy» that is based on the axiom «if you are not in agreement with us, get out!»

«We should not be surprised by cases such as those that have happened in Europe,» he said.

Last week, Rocco Buttiglione’s comments on marriage and women, and opposition to homosexuality, prompted a committee of the European Parliament to vote against his candidacy as EU commissioner.

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