Having long since declared themselves experts in all things hate, the Southern Poverty Law Center has recently updated their “hate map,” and — you may have guessed it — “the nation’s richest civil rights organization” (USA Today) continues to lie about the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
The SPLC’s Heidi Beirich was interviewed for an article in Seacoastonline.com, called “Hate groups on rise in U.S.” (I am told the article was on the front page of the Sunday Edition.) True to past performance record, Ms. Beirich made several errors of fact, and insinuated further misinformation in the relatively few words she said about us.
First, our community, the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, is not “estranged from the Vatican” — a horribly tortured expression showing crass ignorance of her chosen subject of pontification. We are Roman Catholics, and the officials of the Catholic Diocese of Manchester, New Hampshire, know very well that our members are Catholic. Neither do we “preach hard-core anti-Semitic ideology,” as the article asserted. We work and pray for the conversion of all Americans, including Jews, whom we love and wish to become Catholic. (Do a search of the thousands of pages on our site and find the hardcore anti-Semitic ideology.)
Ms. Beirich further says, “At one point, the archbishop of Concord denounced them.” There is no “archbishop” in Concord. In fact, there is no Catholic archbishop in all of New Hampshire. The only Catholic Diocese in New Hampshire is based in Manchester, and it has a bishop, not an archbishop.
We did not attempt “to take over the Board of Selectmen” in Richmond, as she said.
Further, we have no “compounds” in Richmond, New Hampshire, or anywhere. “Compound” is a rhetorically-charged “power word” meant to invoke dark and menacing cult images. We have a monastery, a convent, a school, and a chapel on our lovely parcel here in Richmond. Neither do we have any presence “in New York [or] Pennsylvania,” where Ms. Beirich claimed additional “compounds may exist.” (Why didn’t she ask us?)
The Southern Poverty Law Center makes a fantastic amount of money by profiling and denouncing organizations as “hate groups.” Many of those they profile (e.g., the KKK, neo-Nazis, etc.) are hateful people, bigots, racists, etc. But the SPLC unjustly tars other organizations (especially conservative Christian ones) with the same dirty brush. They major in sensationalism, not truth.
To learn more, readers may consult the following: