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Posted by struggle4progress in Religion/Theology
Fri Apr 06th 2007, 12:50 AM
From The Times
April 5, 2007

Tomas Catán in Madrid

... Along with his two collegues, Fathers Javier Baeza and Pepe DÍaz, Father de Castro has been threatened with “serious punishment” by the Church for his defiance. He says that he will simply move sites if he is denied entry to his church. “The parish is not the building, it’s the people,” he said ...

According to the archbishop, known for his staunch conservatism, the parish “does not conform to Church doctine” and must close. Many in the neighbourhood, however, have rallied round the priests, saying that the Church has lost touch with the poor. In keeping with its unorthodox methods the parish was yesterday allowing graffiti artists from all over Madrid to paint its walls with slogans urging resistance. Many parishioners say that they will refuse to go elsewhere. Some of those housed by the church say that they would have to live on the streets ...

The parish is certainly unconventional. Christians and nonChristians mill around, smoking and chatting about their latest social projects. The parish offers free legal counselling for people in trouble with the law as well as advice on jobs, housing and drug counselling. “What we have here is unique,” said Carmen DÍaz Bermejo, who organises a group called Mothers Against Drugs at the parish. “The damage they would do by closing it is incalculable.”

A mural of Jesus painted on the church wall bears the slogan “Free the prisoners!” — a reference to the parishioners who have previously been in jail. The priests perform Mass in street clothes and hand out Spanish doughnuts called rosquillas during communion. “We’ve tried to adapt our teaching to people’s real circumstances,” said Father de Castro ...

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/worl...
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