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Catholic Harvard students, alumni rally against 'black mass'


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BRAINTREE -- The Catholic community on campus and alumni of Harvard University have rallied against a planned so-called "black mass" scheduled to be reenacted there next week.

Controversy erupted earlier this week when it was reported that the Harvard Extension Cultural Studies Club will host the reenactment to be held May 12 at Queens Head Pub in Memorial Hall, on campus. The Satanic Temple, a group known for promoting controversy such as pushing to have a Satan statue built outside the Oklahoma Capitol, will perform what it called a reenactment -- said to be an "inverted" recreation of the Catholic Mass.

A statement from the Archdiocese of Boston had encouraged prayer and dialogue to ask that Harvard disassociate itself from the event.

The Harvard Catholic community and alumni responded as the statement word of the event hit social media and the press May 7.

Senior Catholic chaplain on campus at Harvard, Father Michael E. Drea, condemned the event and invited the Catholic community of the university to a Eucharistic Holy Hour and Benediction at St. Paul's Church, at the same time of the evening as the reenactment was to take place.

"As we celebrate these beautiful days of the Eastertide and give thanks for the gift of redemption that our Lord Jesus Christ won for us by conquering sin and death once, for all, it pains me to write to you today in order to comment on some distressing news," Father Drea said.

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