Bishop labels massacre in Paris “blasphemy”

Carolyn Webb

A Catholic bishop has urged 1200 people at a Melbourne mass for vic­tims of the Paris massacre to reject hatred and anti-refugee sentiment and embrace peace and love.

Melbourne Auxiliary Bishop Terence Curtin asked the congrega­tion at St Patrick’s Cathedral on Wednesday [18 November], including French hon­orary consul Myriam Boisbouvier-Wylie, to pray “for all those suffering in France”.

The booklet for the bilingual ser­vice adopted the social media logo of the Eiffel Tower as a peace sign, with the French flag as a backdrop.

It stated it was a “Mass in memory of those who died and suffered in the Paris tragedy” of 13 November 2015. A note inside added: “we also pray for those who died recently in terror attacks in Beirut and Egypt”.

In his homily, Bishop Curtin said those who had slaughtered in Paris, and those who sent them, had claimed to do so in God’s name. But he said “this is not religion but its opposite. As Pope Francis pointed out, it’s blasphemy.”