2003 Report on Anti-Catholicism

Executive Summary

In 2003, the Catholic League celebrated its 30th anniversary. Founded in 1973 by Jesuit scholar Father Virgil Blum, the league is dedicated to defending individual Catholics and the institutional Church against discrimination and defamation. That we spend much more time defending the Church against defamation than we do defending Catholic men and women... [Read more...]

Activist Organizations

January On its webpage, the Feminist Majority lists under “Feminist News” news articles of interest to its members. For instance, at the end of January it drew attention to articles titled “Women Sue AT&T for Contraceptive Coverage,” “Title IX Commission To Meet on Final Recommendations: Women’s Groups to Hold... [Read more...]

The Arts

January  Seattle, WA—An art exhibit at the Roq la Rue Gallery called “Gods and Monsters” featured a work called “Frankenkreist,” which depicted Christ as Frankenstein’s monster; and “Naughty Guadalupe,” which depicted a topless Our Lady of Guadalupe. Shortly after the show started, a piece depicting the Koran... [Read more...]

Business / Workplace

San Francisco, CA—Divine Interventions sells sex toys with a religious theme. On its website it offers sex toys that are in the shape of a crucifix, the Blessed Mother, baby Jesus, a nun, Judas, Moses and the Devil, as well as Buddha and the Grim Reaper. Product descriptions include: “Hail Mary! Virgin Mary, like most smart women, knows there... [Read more...]


This cartoon by Pat Oliphant (syndicated, 2/22/03) equates the charge of pedophilia against Michael Jackson with abuse by priests. Besides accusing all priests of being molesters, it continued the false perception that the abuse crisis in the Church involved pre-pubescent boys. Most of the abuse was homosexual, occurring with post-pubescent teenagers. This... [Read more...]


January Westfield, MA—Students at Westfield High School who were suspended in December 2002 for distributing candy canes with messages attached filed suit in federal court claiming school administrators violated their constitutional rights to free speech and expression. The message with the candy canes explained the candy canes’ shape and colors,... [Read more...]


January Hightstown, NJ—Town Councilman Eugene Sarafin, known for his atheism and inflammatory remarks about religion, twice used obscene terms to describe his Catholic critics. He labels them “Catholic s—.” After a complaint by the Catholic League, Sarafin was censored by the town council on March 3 by a vote of 5-1. January New... [Read more...]


Movies | Newspapers | Periodicals | Radio | Television |Internet | Books | Video Games MOVIES January 16 The Irish movie “Song for a Raggy Boy” made its United States premiere. Although billed sometimes as a true story, it is a fictionalized account of an Irishman who fights against Franco in Spain and returns to Ireland in... [Read more...]


January 4 Philadelphia, PA—The 2003 New Year’s Day Mummers Parade was to include a “parody” of the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. To be performed by the Slick Duck Comic Brigade, it was to feature men dressed as priests and young men dressed as altar boys; cops were to be shown chasing after the priests. The parade... [Read more...]

“The Passion of the Christ”

The following is a list of some of the more incendiary remarks made in 2003 about the Mel Gibson movie, “The Passion of the Christ.” We do not maintain that it is anti-Catholic to criticize a film, even before it has been released, but we do contend that the hostility to Gibson and to his work is unseemly. The campaign against him has been... [Read more...]