The city of Napa is traditionally known as California’s leading wine center. Now it is known for what Catholics across the country consider blasphemous anti-Catholic “art” displays.
For this reason, the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) with its America Needs Fatima campaign organized a protest of reparation at the American Center for Wine, Food and the Arts (COPIA) on March 17 where an exhibit of defecating figurines includes the Pope, a bishop and a nun.
When controversy over the exhibit “Active Ingredients” became national news, the recently inaugurated $55 million dollar center refused to remove the offensive figurines.
The American TFP alerted its members who sent protests to the center. TFP representatives together with supporters and friends began organizing a demonstration in front of the museum itself.
On Sunday, March 17, about 75 faithful Catholics met in Napa in rainy weather and abnormally cold temperatures to protest the outrageous blasphemy. Some had driven over nine hours from Los Angeles to be there. As the 20-foot protest banner was unfurled and standards raised, TFP Vice President Thomas McKenna began the protest by welcoming the protesters and reminding them that their efforts and sacrifices truly honored God.
“We are in the Lenten season which is a good time to remember the words of Our Lord in the Garden of Olives: Is there not one who will watch with Me?” Mr. McKenna said. “Be sure that Our Lord is pleased that you are here today standing up for His Church as She is once more blasphemed.”
A banner which read “The American TFP and its America Needs Fatima Campaign Protest Blasphemy and Sacrilege at COPIA” was positioned near the entrance so all entering the center and passing cars could read the message. Local TFP organizer Philip Calder led the program and began by introducing Msgr. William Serado who inspired all with his presence and led the rosary and other prayers. Religious and patriotic hymns were sung intermittently and the crowd shouted protest slogans.
Several participants told the crowd why they had come and local people exclaimed how they were encouraged by the fact that something had finally been done.
“We are here to vent our indignation at this terrible display,” said local resident Francis Crotty. “One man and his vulgarity of art has cast a blight over the whole region.” Others stated that COPIA owed a public apology to the community and the Church.
The warm spirits and convictions of the faithful were not dampened by the light showers and strong winds that threatened to disrupt the rally. By the end of the protest, the dark clouds were replaced with bluer skies and sunshine. Msgr. Serado gave his final blessing and all joined in singing “Holy God We Praise Thy Name.”