ROME (AP) -- Descendants of a Jewish-born boy wrenched from his family
in the 19th century with the blessing of Pope Pius IX joined hundreds
in a candelight protest Saturday on the eve of Pius' beatification.
Pope John Paul II's planned declaration Sunday of Pius as among the
Roman Catholic Church's blessed "is the reopening of a wound.
There's no doubt about it," said Elena Mortara, the abducted boy's
Rome's Catholic noble families, meanwhile, celebrated the upcoming
beatification with a Saturday church vigil, band and shouts of "Viva
Pio Nono!," or "Long Live Pius IX!"
Sunday's beatification of Pius IX and the 20th century's John XXIII
places the two predecessors of John Paul to the last formal step before
Italian and international Jewish groups have protested Pius' beatification
in large part because of the 1858 taking of 6-year-old Edgardo Mortara
by papal guards. Church officials ordered the boy removed from his
Jewish family in Bologna after hearing he had been secretly baptized
by a Catholic housemaid.
Under Pius' patronage, Edgardo grew up a church ward and later a priest.
"That mother was deprived of her son," Giacomo Saban, an
Italian Jewish leader, told the crowd. "The injury is still alive.
It's still felt."
Other speakers read from passages of Pius' writing, including one in
which he allegedly wrote Jews were not citizens but "dogs."
The church's "glorification" of Pius is a disappointment
to those -- like the Mortara family -- who welcomed the dialogue John
Paul had fostered among religions, Elena Mortara said.
It is the opinion of The Sabbatarian Network that
the Catholic church has always exhibited its true goal to be the conquest
and subjugation of Sabbatarians all over the world. Whether it be the
taking of a small Jewish boy, the "Crusades" against Sabbath
Keepers, the "Inquisition" against Sabbath Keepers, the support
of Hitler against Jews (Sabbath Keepers) or her present goal of Ecumenism.
The Catholic church hates Seventh Day Sabbath Keepers!