.- This week the Archdiocese of Burgos in Spain announced it has prohibited the use of church buildings and facilities by pseudo-religious sects that disguise or hide their true identity, in order to thwart their “chameleon-like strategy of proselytism.”
In a statement, the archdioceses denounced the “evil” and “fanatical” proselytism of religious sects “that employ the chameleon-like tact of toning down their own identity in order to resemble the religion of the majority in each place, which in Spain is Catholicism.”
Thus, the statement continued, “sects initially encounter little resistance. Once they have conquered someone’s heart, their ‘reasons’ obscure common sense and it becomes easier to make the person a follower.”
The archdiocese warned that one of the strategies of such groups is to use Catholic facilities (schools, diocesan centers, retreat houses) to hold their events. “It has been done and continues to be done despite the obvious manipulation intended to overwhelm the initial resistance of possible attendees and especially—if they are minors—of their parents or teachers, who in turn run the risk of concluding that such groups are compatible with the faith and with Christian morals simply because of the place where they are meeting.”
For this reason, the archdioceses said no Catholic facilities would be allowed to be used by pseudo-religious sects associated with movements and philosophies such as the New Age, Yoga, transcendental meditation, Rei-ki, Dianetics, and others.
If “the nature of a particular group that is requesting use of Catholic facilities is not known, the statement indicated, efforts must be made to obtain the essential information about the group that will enable officials to determine its purpose and goals. Even if authorization is granted, “individuals capable of discernment may be asked to attend the meetings” to witness first-hand the group’s activities.