This website was set up in the run up to Pope Benedict’s state visit to the UK in September 2010 as a direct response to the unprecedented level of hostility, ridicule and ill-will from certain public figures, sections of the press and blogs against the Holy Father and the Catholic Church. Simply put, Protect the Pope was set up to counter the lies, half-truths and misrepresentations of a coalition of aggressive secularists, atheists and homosexual activists going by the name, Protest the Pope.
After centuries of institutionalised anti-Catholicism one thing Catholics in this country are sensitive about is religious hate, and there are plenty of signs that this is rearing its ugly head again.
Protection by the Law
One of the purposes of this website is to provide Catholics with information about the law concerning incitement of religious hatred. The more of us that know about the protection the Law offers our Faith the better.
This site will also provide the addresses of local police forces so Catholics can report actions that offend and distress and may constitute incitement of religious hatred.
Its important to know that we no longer have to suffer religious hate in silence as we did in the past but can now call on the Law to protect us as believers.
Protection by the Truth
There is also a lot of misinformation and lies being peddled by sensationalist sections of the press and, lets be frank here, by enemies of the Church. Yes, we still have enemies, they didn’t go away after the Second Vatican Council.
The Holy Father has his own security team and the police to protect him during his visit. Our concern on this website is to protect the Holy Father’s reputation and the truth of the Catholic Church.
Therefore, this website will endeavour to challenge the lies with the simple truth, especially about the person and actions of Pope Benedict XVI.
Protection through Prayer
Finally, its important that all Catholics pray for the continued safety of the Holy Father during future visits to other countries, and for the good of the Church in this country. To this end a selection of prayers has been provided for people to print and use over the next couple of months.
About the author
Rev Nick Donnelly is a permanent deacon of the Diocese of Lancaster, and an author for the Catholic Truth Society. He holds a BA Divinity in Theology and a Masters in Spiritual Formation. Protect the Pope is a private initiative and is in no way officially associated with the Diocese of Lancaster.