You never know what to expect on college campuses these days. Just after members of TFP Student Action set up their banners, said a prayer and started passing out literature at Millersville University, a visibly angry student with twitching face muscles began: “Why should you care? I love The Da Vinci Code. It doesn’t bother me. I have no religion. You should do something else like feed the poor. Go feed the poor.”
Maybe this spiritually impoverished student thought his words would dampen the enthusiasm of the nine TFP volunteers on his campus that bright Monday morning, September 19, as they protested the latest attack against the Catholic Faith, The Da Vinci Code. He was wrong. In fact, his remarks had the opposite effect. TFP Student Action members only redoubled their resolve and dedication to defend the adorable person of Our Lord Jesus Christ, even in face of bitter hostility.
A few hours later, the campaign against the blasphemous novel was in full swing. It was lunch hour. Hundreds of students filled the sidewalks. Dozens stopped to take a flyer, ask questions, enjoy live Scottish bagpipe music, or sign the TFP’s protest petition to Columbia Pictures, urging them not to make The Da Vinci Code into a movie.
Meanwhile, student reporters with MUTV of Millersville University, arrived, filmed the campaign and interviewed TFP Student Action director John Ritchie, which they planned to air on Friday. One of the reporters liked the topic he had found to cover: “This is great. When I ask questions, I get substantial answers. Your group [TFP] has intelligent things to say. So many times, I interview people who have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about.”
However, the Millersville University campus newspaper The Snapper was upset to see the TFP on their “diverse” campus again and printed an inflammatory opinion piece, calling the TFP: “lunatics, fringe, closed minded, obnoxious, esoteric, contemptible, abhorrent, wacky and repugnant.” Its sorry leftist author even thought the beautiful bagpipes were “irritable.”
Three Nonsensical Encounters
1) A middle-aged man approached TFP bagpiper Charles Sulzen. Pointing to the TFP flyer he said, “this is a very bad book.” Thinking he was referring to The Da Vinci Code, Charles Sulzen agreed: “yes, I totally agree with you.” Enraged, the man retorted: “No, no! Not that one.” Then he frantically pointed to the picture of the Bible and continued: “This one! It doesn’t say anything about dinosaurs… how can it be true and not mention the dinosaurs, those big animals. You can’t miss’em. It’s a huge part of history.”
2) Comments from a self-declared atheist: “I like the book [The Da Vinci Code] because there are no absolutes. Everything is subjective.” After being questioned by a TFP volunteer, he continued: “Who can define reality? In ultimate reality, I’m not sure I’m really a person. I could be a tree or a toad. In some sense, I may be a toad. I will never know and neither will you.”
3) Liberal: “It’s a great book. Free speech allows it.”
TFP member: “Is free speech absolute?”
Liberal: “Yes! Of course.”
TFP member: “Do you believe in the Ten Commandments.”
Liberal: “Yea, I’m a good Catholic.”
TFP member: “Then you should be willing to oppose free speech when it goes against the Commandments?”
Liberal: “Show me one Commandment that contradicts free speech.”
TFP member: “Thou shall not lie.”
Liberal: “No… That’s not true. You’re a bunch of bigots who want the world to be ruled by the Ten Commandments. Admit it.”
At the end of their day on campus, TFP volunteers closed with a prayer. They thanked the Blessed Virgin Mary for giving them the opportunity to defend publicly the honor of Our Lord Jesus Christ, because He deserves infinitely more love. The atheists will laugh, but their laughter will not hinder the advance of those who have Faith. If Our Lord suffered and died to redeem us, the least we can do is to suffer a little ridicule. After all, we should act to please God, not the atheists.