Sodalitium, December, 1997, n. 46, p. 64-76.
In the small Italian "counter-revolutionary" catholic
world, who doesn't know the association Alleanza Cattolica? Alleanza
Cattolica is held in high regard for its reliability, for the position
covered by some of its members, for almost three decades of activity serving
the catholic movement and, finally, for its close connection with the creature
of the late Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, namely Tradizione, Famiglia
e Proprietà (TFP). During the Vatican Council II (1),
the latter played a strong role in the defence of the doctrine of the Church.
In Sodalitium, I've frequently talked about various members of this
association (since 1993, exactly) - particularly about the well known sociologist
Massimo Introvigne (2) and the new positions emerging
in this background (3) - reporting the danger of collusion
with the Freemasonry and its principles. In the face of catholic associations
and their leaders, such a hard accusation needs to be provided with relevant
documentation. We've done it in the past. Unfortunately, we have to do
it again and to such an extent to legitimate the provocation contained
in the main title of this present article: is it still right talking about
Alleanza Cattolica ["Catholic Alliance"] or is it now better writing
Alleanza Massonica ["Masonic Alliance"]? Our readers will judge...
Through its column "segnalazioni bibliografiche", following an interesting review concerning Julius Evola (4), the "magazine of the Grand Orient of Italy" recommends a dozen books to its venerable readers; among Masonic or esoteric titles, there surprisingly appears a book by Massimo Introvigne about satanism which is well accompanied by another book about New Age by PierLuigi Zoccatelli, another activist of Alleanza Cattolica (and also a popolarizer of Introvigne's thesis on Messaggero di Sant'Antonio). At this point, the Freemasons of Palazzo Giustiniano are not supposed to include Mr. Introvigne and Mr. Zoccatelli among their most dangerous enemies seen that they recommend their works: you can tell a man by the ones who praise him.
But there's something even worse! Indeed, in the "letter of Emmanuel Ratier containing confidential information" Faits & Documents (n. 27, May 15, 1997, p. 5) we read: The Direction of Cesnur France, an association which studies "new religious movements" (also called 'cults') and a branch of Cesnur Italia, managed by the catholic sociologist Massimo Introvigne, is believed to be controlled by the National Grand Lodge of France, its Board of Directors including the presence of Professor Antoine Faivre - Executive Editor of the Cahiers Villard de Honnecourt - of Advocate Olivier-Louis Séguy and of Professor Roland Edighoffer.
To whom it may not be clear enough, these three Messers perform three different activities: they are professors, they are members of Cesnur's Board of Directors and they are big fishes of the National Grand Lodge of France, the "right wing" Freemasonry. Is it a coincidence?
Does Massimo Introvigne ignore a fact known to Emmanuel Ratier? What measures does he think to take in this respect? Or does he connive? His previous relations with Freemasonry & Co. bring towards the last assumption (2).
At this point, the problem shifts from Introvigne to his superiors and friends of Alleanza Cattolica.
As it has been already said, Introvigne is a leader
of Alleanza Cattolica, an association closely connected (as well
as the Centro culturale Lepanto and other associations) with the
Brazilian organization Tradition, Family and Property (TFP), founded
by Dr. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira. Recently, the magazine Orion
(5) has maliciously pointed out that Cesnur "is surely
not a sister branch of TFP although all Cesnur's activities are listed
on Cristianità [official organ of Alleanza Cattolica]
in the column La buona battaglia…" ["The good fight"]
(6). That means that Alleanza Cattolica considers
Cesnur like a sort of its creature, more over controlled through
the same Massimo Introvigne. The above item, written by Emmanuel Ratier,
shows that not only is Introvigne personally in collusion with the Freemasonry
(like Sodalitium has widely proved), with Alleanza Cattolica,
Lepanto or TFP having nothing to object, but also that Cesnur
is infiltrated by (or infiltrates some) Freemasons.
Indeed, following the reports published by Sodalitium,
Alleanza Cattolica, TFP and some other friendly associations
neither took any measure against Introvigne, nor did they desolidarise
from his initiatives. Quite the contrary! "Alleanza Cattolica's
founder and national regent Giovanni Cantoni didn't hesitate to publish
a book with the same Massimo Introvigne (7). The book,
which is extremely interesting, was quoted by Roberto de Mattei (8)
in the biography of Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira and by the Roman Office
of Tradition, Family and Property in the panphlet La mano che
estingue, la voce che addormenta (a short TFP's commentary on a slanderous
libel), published in 1996 in reply to the Italian version of the "Joyeux's
report" edited by Pietro Parenzo (9). In this panphlet,
the Roman TFP attacks the "lefebvriani/sedevacantisti" (sic) [Monsignor
Lefebvre followers/vacant Papal see believers] who, in their opinion, are
guilt of having made a foulish Pact with the "social-communists" against
TFP so that they made a an in sixteenmo new version of Ribbentrop-Molotov
Pact"! In order to support such an imaginative thesis, a long quotation
of the "well known scholar in matter of cults Massimo Introvigne" is included
(p. 3, note 4). TFP forgets to specify that, at least in this case, the
"well known scholar" is party to the case, since he manages a TFP's satellite
association, Alleanza Cattolica.
TFP panphlet refers to the last event that hit the debated Brazilian movement like a bolt from the blue. The investigative report about cults issued by the French National Assembly on January 10, 1996 (the so called Guyard's Report) contains a list of the cults to be kept under control, including TFP! Paradoxically, the "well known scholar in matter of cults", Massimo Introvigne, is believed to belong, at his turn, to a cult's satellite movement! That doesn't look to please TFP, particularly following: the judicial mishaps which forced this association to close its school at Saint-Benoît in 1979; its latest troubles in Spain (1995); its older ones in Venezuela (1984); the condemnation of the Brazilian episcopacy in 1985, etc. Face to these difficulties, TFP and its satellites join together. So, to defend TFP and the Opus Dei (quite equally beloved by the "counter-revolutionists") they need:
1) to attack anti-cult movements (which dare include TFP and Opus Dei among cults);
2) to defend with drawn sword the religious freedom of the most incredible cults (if they escape, why don't we?);
3) to take revenge against the "lefebvriani/sedevacanti", supposed to be guilt of having reported against TFP and Opus Dei, pretending they are sectarian and quite clearly waiting to see their entry in the next updated "Guyard's Report".
And who's better than the "well known scholar in
matter of cults" Massimo Introvigne to do the job?
"Sette" e "diritto di persecuzione": le ragioni di una controversia ["Cults" and "right of persecution": the reasons of a dispute]. This is Introvigne's contribution to the above mentioned book written together with Giovanni Cantoni. Through this intervention, Introvigne accomplishes the trhee tasks he has been assigned. His critical essay is straight against the "Guyard's Report". Introvigne could easily sink the report by pointing out, like his friends of Lectures Françaises have previously done, that the reporter, Guyard, is a Freemason himself, thus a member of a secret society which the Catholic Church considers "The Cult" par excellence. But nothing of the like. Introvigne prefers to attack what has inpired the report (the Renseignements généraux and also the French intelligence service), that's the "anti-cult" movements (laicists) or the "against-cults" movements (religious) . In this way not only does he oppose to the most scoundrel and laicist among these groups but also to "very catholic" movements such as GRIS (Gruppo di Ricerca e di Informazione sulle Sette) [Information and Research Group on Cults], to which Introvigne once belonged too. There would be a lot to discuss about this question. Cantoni and Introvigne appeal to the Council declaration Dignitatis humanae personae in order to legitimate a wider freedom of thought and corporation for all the "new religious movements", even the most repugnant. Of course, we don't agree upon this assumption, although we also deny to the State (particularly the present lay State) the right to establish the limits of orthodoxy, and we are afraid that Catholicism may be persecuted on the pretext of eradicating the "cults".
The second Introvigne's task includes difending any kind of cult in order to save, in the mass, also TFP.
An official document, called Instaurazione di un diritto di persecuzione? Una risposta al rapporto della Commissione d 'Inchiesta sulle Settewas, was issued by the Turin and the U.S. CESNUR (January 29 - February 6, 1996) and published as a supplement of the above mentioned book. Underlying various mistakes in the Guyard's Report, the above document defends (pp. 120-126) the New Age, Moon, the Lectoriam Rosacrucianum, Wicca, The Family (the former Bambini di Dio/Children of God) (10), the Church of Universal God, the Aumist religion, the Soka Gakkai and the Raelians up to, finally, TFP (followed by Scientology). The document, undersigned by Eight scholars, whose first is Introvigne, ends by invoking nothing less than "the motto by which France is proud to be represented all over the world: Freedom, Equality, Fraternity!" Not bad for being the worst enemies of the French Revolution...
The third task, that's reporting against the hated "lefebvriani/sedevacantisti", is accomplished by the "well known scholar" in para 4 of his Breve analisi critica del 'rapport Guyard' [A short critical essay on 'Guyard's Report'] (pp. 105-106): it is an abstract of these two pages that the Roman TFP also quoted in its panphlet. The para above is called Le strane omissioni del rapporto [The strange omissions of the report]. It has already been said that Lectures Françaises, a magazine founded by Henri Coston - who's a popular scholar in matter of Freemasonry - had already pointed out an evident omission of the report: the one about Freemasonry (11). Introvigne is not at all scandalized for that. On his opinion, the "strange omissions" are by far others. The first, that a good agent of Mossad wouldn't never miss to point out, refers to "some radical islamic groups, whose connection with terrosism are well known" (p. 105) (12). Following the "islamic terrorists", Introvigne reports against the "lefebvriani/sedevacantisti": "Another odd omission concerns the groups [to which Introvigne has belonged in the past! author's note] which due to the schism broke their relations with the Catholic church. Among these, there is the Fraternity of Saint Pio X, founded by the late Monsignor Marcel Lefébvre and a number of other 'sedevacantisti' groups located in France and considering the position of the Faternity of Saint Pio X too much moderate, the papal see in Rome 'vacant' and John Paul II not 'really' the Pope". After having thrown the stone, the delator hypocritically hides his hand away specifying he's not willing to increase the number of cult movements included in the report: "be it clear: I definitely don't want that the 'cult' label, which is particularly unpleasant in the sense the commission intends it, be applied to an even greater number of movements exceeding the already huge number of movements mentioned by the report. However..." (pp. 105-106). However, it's clear he cannot stand the fact "that TFP is mentioned - although its representatives and members have never been excommunicated - (...) while ultra-traditionalists or sedevacantisti are not mentioned although they have often been excommunicated" (p. 106). Then, in the event of a new edition of said Report, Introvigne quite straight invites the French Parliament to cut TFP from the list and paste traditionalists and sedevacantisti at its place (and, may be, also Sodalitium, the magazine which bothers him so much), in the name of the "wojityliana" orthodoxy.
Introvigne (and his clients) shift from rage to... raving (for a while the "plotter" is him). Please note the following sentence, which was also quoted by the Roman TFP Office in the reply to Pietro Parenzo and by Roberto De Matte in his biography of Plinio (13): "but there is a more alarming or, may be, more malicious assumption. In the last years, particularly - but not only - in France, various 'lefebvriane' and 'sedevacantiste' pubblications have been leading very hard campaigns against 'cults' (14). There would be nothing to be surprised if it were just - or mainly - a question of defending the traditional catholic doctrine. But, indeed, that literature uses the arguments of the movement created by the anti-cult laicists...". But when on earth, dear Introvigne? Noone of us adopts such arguments! Following the reply of the red (15) sociologist: "and very often it labels as 'cults' initiatives of the catholic world such as TFP and the Opus Dei". There's the real crime! Attacking TFP and Opus Dei! There's the slander of Introvigne who, after having so much attacked the 'plotting' of those who see satanists and Judaic-freemasons even under their beds, all of a sudden turns his head to look back and imagins the fanciful made-in-Brazil scenario which follows: one may legitimately suspect that the anti-cult movement uses certain ‘lefebvriani’ e ‘sedevacanitisti’ as advance-guard troops or sappers to be thrown in the fight for the first charge to the bayonet; and, of course, to be sacrified at need, given that - adopting the ordinary criteria of the anti-cult movements - these groups, in turn, are likely not to be recognized as 'cults' at the time and to the extent that will be required" (p. 106). And like Introvigne kindly suggested, we add that he has already included the 'lefebvriani/sedevacantisti' in the list of 'cults' (or 'new religious movements', as he elegantly wrote).
Reality, dear Massimo, is by far easier and doesn't
need such 'malicious' assumptions. May be Introvigne forgets that the 'Guyard's
Report" has also attacked the "traditionalist catholic movement" in the
same way as TFP. It was precisely the CRC (Contre-Réforme Catholique)
of the abbé de Nantes to fall into the trap and, as a
consequence, the relations of the abbé with his local bishop
were seriously affected. Introvigne and Cesnur, that defend the 'Bambini
di Dio' [Children of God) and Wicca, don't even say a word in favour
of the Catholic of Nantes, who was, indeed, very close to TFP in different
ways. So, no protection is assured to the "traditionalists" by Guyard &
Co.: or may be it's just an omission (which has been well pointed out by
Cesnur: heartfelt thanks!). If de Nantes fell into the trap is simply because
some former members of his movement had accused him (if wrongly or not,
this is not relevant to this article) for his evident sectarian doctrines
and behaviours. The same thing occurred to TFP and Opus Dei. There's
- simply - why TFP, Opus Dei and CRC are included in the report,
while the Fraternity of Saint Pio X is not included. Not even the Mater
Boni Consilii is included (at least so far) in the list of cults (may
be, because there not exist litanies by Don Ricossa's mother, while there
are plenty of by Doctor Plinio's mother). But, since years, Mater Boni
Consilii is at the top of a more threatening list of the report on
antisemitism . As you can see, dear Massimo, no protection is granted to
us from the high places, while "maliciously" the readers of Cristianità's
pubblications are let to believe.
President (of theTransylvanian Society of Dracula) Introvigne and Marco Respinti
In the course of this article I'll go back to Marco Respinti and his strange catholic social doctrine, which Gianfranco Morra would name "cattocapitalismo" [cathocapitalism] (16). Respinti writes for Alleanza Nazionale's daily newspaper, Il Secolo d'Italia, but he's also an activist of Alleanza Cattolica. Seen that Massoneria oggi recommends the books by Introvigne and Zoccatelli, what about Respinti, who's also an activist of Alleanza Nazionale? The answer is obvious.
Now, let's see what Respinti writes in his review of an Introvigne's book (17). The activist of Alleanza cattolica spares no praises to his Hierarch: Introvigne's books are "highly scientific", his studies on satanism are "monumental". He is an "indefatigable investigator... a detective who goes beyond what appears to be impossible". His studies "provide the best - the unique - explanatory means"; his creature, Cesnur, is "a network of international academic organizations". So, there's nothing to be surprised if "Cesnur and its director" have lavished a "colossal intellectual, cultural and scientific effort". Are so many praises made just to advertise Introvigne's book on Dracula - a subject of which he is "a great expert" - because he is "President of the Italian branch of The Transylvanian Society of Dracula"? Sure, they aren't. Respinti shifts from Dracula to the Bambini di Satana [ Children of Satan] (once called by mistake - Freudian slip (?) - Children of God) by Marco Dimitri - paying compliments - to Cesnur - for the acquittal ordered by the Court on June 20 of the current year. In fact, Respinti writes that if one starts to persecute them "there can result a lot of confusion, like in the case of certain recent cultural trials focusing on very important Catholic initiatives such as Opus Dei, TFP, Focolarini's movement, Comunione e Liberazione and even Mother Theresa from Calcutta and her sisters". It's quite the case to say: these things always end up in TFP.
Defending TFP is the real target of Respinti, as well as Introvigne's, in this kind of articles. The Brazilian movement is skilfully included in a long list of "respectable" catholic movements so that readers cannot notice the real aim of the two activists of a TFP satellite movement.
1) Cf. Storia del Concilio Vaticano II. by Giuseppe Alberigo, Peeters, il Mulino, Bologna. 1996. Vol. II pp. 222 e 226, and Roberto De Mattei. Il crociato del XX secolo, Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, Piemme, Casale Monferrato, 1996, pp. 263-310 (where it's explained the role plaied by TFP in the crisis arised during and after the Council).
2) Cf. Sodalitium n. 35., pp. 13-18 (Massimo Introvigne e la Massoneria); n. 38, pp. 44-47 (Introvigne; dalle messe nere alla Gran Loggia); n. 39, pp. 20-28 (La "smentita" di Massimo Introvigne); n. 42, pp. 65-68 (Tra esoterismo e devozione, ovvero: relazioni pericolose di alcuni devoti…); n. 43, pp. 46-52 (Tra esoterismo e devozione. Le relazioni pericolose continuano…)
7) It is Libertà religiosa, 'sette' e 'diritto di persecuzione', published by Cristianità, 1996. In the bio-bibliographical notes, Cantoni recalls, and doesn't disclaim, the translations and introductions (dating back to the years 1966-68) of some works showing a clear esoterical influcence (i.e., a tendency to spread the theory of a transcendental union of religions) such as Servier's and Mircea Eliade's ones. That's meaningful.
8) R. De Mattei, op. cit., p. 242., n. 105. In this case, it's evident that Introvigne (of Alleanza Cattolica) and De Mattei (of C.C. Lepanto, but also a former leader of Alleanza Cattolica) are TFP's followers.
9) Tradizione Famiglia Proprietà. Associazione cattolica o setta millenarista? It's a Report written by a group of TFP's former activists who were also former students parents and priests of the St. Benoît school. Pro manuscripto, May 1996.
11) On pp. 89 and 92 Introvigne explains the question about his study. On p. 64 of the Report the ritual and esoterical structures in general are clearly excluded from the list of cults. Only one (of Egyptian rite), out of ten irregular lodges existing in France, has been included in the list.
12) Sodalitium doesn't sympathize with Islam, and even less with the Islamists, be they radical or not. But we are against the Anti Palestinian and Anti Arab campaign led by fake "traditionalist catholics" […]
14) It's an Introvigne's gratuitous statement which is not supported by facts. In the note he quotes two studies against the Opus Dei and one against TFP. The panphlet against the Opus Dei, written by Arnaud de Lassus and quoted by Introvigne, doesn't come from "ultra-tradizionalisti" or "sedevacantisti" excommunicated circles, like readers are let to believe. De Lassus is faithful to John Paul II as much as Massimo Introvigne. […]
16) I refer to an article by Morra on Michael Novak which is precisely called il cattocapitalista, published by the Giornale on April 1, 1997, p. 19.