Ecclesiastes 3 had it just about right:
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
Worshippers at New York City’s iconic St. Patrick’s Cathedral learned the meaning of those words first hand when a group of sacrilegious animal rights protesters loudly interrupted Easter Sunday mass.
On the other hand, the protesters could brush up on their Bible study, especially the part about “a time to be silent and a time to speak.”
A group of six animal rights protesters abruptly leaped up from a pew in the middle of the service and shouted, “Easter is a time for love! No more shedding animal blood!” while holding up signs of animals pleading for their lives.
About 20 minutes into the Rev. Damian O’Connell’s noon Mass, protester Jacob Martin, 23, rose out of his seat in the center of the church and started to walk down the aisle while shouting into a bullhorn that “only the devil” could create “animals capable of love and joy just so humans can make them suffer and die.”
Martin, who is a former University of North Carolina student and identifies as a Christian, also had a camera strapped to his chest, which worshippers believed was an explosive.
Martin was arrested and charged with interrupting a religious service, according to police.
“I was terrified,” said Cindy Calitri, 52. “I thought it was a bomb. There was something on his chest with lights flashing.”
Police and security promptly rushed over and hauled Martin out the door while the remaining protesters followed with signs of pigs, chickens and cows that read, “Will You Let Me Live?”
“Ham is a big thing on Easter, so that’s why we decided to bring those voices to the public,” explained protester Raffaella Ciavatta, 31, who also organized a protest outside Chick-fil-A’s grand opening in New York City last fall.
Meanwhile, O’Connell recited a prayer for the protesters, saying how “Pope Francis calls us to interact peacefully with those who oppose us.”
The disturbance came about two hours after Cardinal Timothy Dolan celebrated the 10:15 a.m. Mass there.
You have to wonder if the protesters would have interrupted a Native American ritual or an Islamic service. No doubt, they could have found plenty of opportunities to do so in New York City if they were so inclined.
But they weren’t. Instead, they committed what Roman Catholics believe to be a sacrilege by debasing their most holy ritual.
For what purpose? Evidently the protesters were demanding that everyone believe as they do, live as they do, and eat as they do. Sort of like the Nazis but without the swastika or leader with the comical mustache.
I hope some judge has the stones to throw the book at these louts and give them a month or two in jail.