Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Satanism? In Lepaterique?

Be afraid; be very afraid!

There's a religious and Latin scholar in Lepaterique who knows how to use Facebook!

La Tribuna reported Tuesday on a shocking uprising of Satan worshipers in Lepaterique.

Most of the people consulted by La Tribuna's reporter said they had no direct knowledge about it, but that they had heard talk.

One anonymous informant said "there are few who want to talk about it" but that previously someone had tried and failed to force their way into the seminary in town as an attempt on the seminarian's lives.

According to the story, a group of youths are operating outside of the town as "satan worshipers".  Unnamed people of Lepaterique reported to La Tribuna's unnamed reporter that these youth shout words in the mountains in an unknown language.

They are clever, according to an anonymous informant:
it's very difficult  to infiltrate their meetings.  Those that form these groups are very wary [muy conservadores]  and some, we find, even attend churches to hide the existence of these satanic youths.

Fiendishly practicing Christianity in public as a cover for their satanism-- now that is diabolical.

But wait, there's more.

Other anonymous informants told La Tribuna's anonymous reporter that when these groups want to begin a ritual, they post prayers in Latin on Facebook. Highly suspect behavior.

The informant who mentioned the supposed attempt on the lives of seminarians specifically referred to a Latin prayer, "Hymnus Ad Galli Cantus", saying:
it appears, on the surface to be religious, sung at the time of Christmas and the birth of the baby Jesus, but the opposite of it is death, and as is obvious, the priests are considered pure, and this is why the satanists want to kill them.

La Tribuna helpfully reproduced what it said is the text of  Hymnus Ad Galli Cantus allegedly the prayer posted on Facebook.  Here's the Latin text they found demonic:
Aeterne rerum conditor
Noctem diemque qui regis
Et temporum das tempora,
Ut alleves fastidium.
Praeco diei iam sonat,
Noctis profundae pervigil,
Nocturna lux viantibus

If this actually were the Hymnus Ad Galli Cantus it would be an early (4th Century) Christian hymn, written by Aurelius Clemens Prudentius, a Roman from Spain, and a Christian convert. Said hymn was one of a suite of poems he wrote and published as Cathemerion, poems for each hour of the day and Christian religous festivals.  Hymnus Ad Galli Cantus is still used at Christmas time in the Catholic church.  Its actual first line is "Awake! the shining day is born."

That is not what "Aeterne rerum conditor" means.

The Latin text reproduced by La Tribuna, supposedly from a Facebook post by young satanists, is actually from another 4th Century Christian poet, Saint Ambrose, a Frenchman by birth who became Bishop of Milan.

La Tribuna actually reproduced the first several lines of Aeterne rerum conditor ("Maker of all, eternal King"). This was for centuries part of the Catholic service between Epiphany and Lent, and again from September 28 until November 26.

Here's a translation of the Latin above (with the last line of the stanza that La Tribuna omitted):
Maker of all, eternal King,
who day and night about dost bring:
who weary mortals to relieve,
dost in their times the seasons give:

Now the shrill cock proclaims the day,
and calls the sun's awakening ray,
the wandering pilgrim's guiding light,
[that marks the watches night by night.]

This hymn is even available as an MP3 download on Amazon and iTunes. Or you can buy it as a ringtone for your cell phone from other vendors.

So what's satanic about these hymns by early Christians? The article never makes that clear.

What La Tribuna's anonymous author does communicate is that the residents of Lepaterique are quaint country folk, who still believe in curers and go to them for health problems and love potions.

The reporter gives us this wonderful little gem:

The most exaggerated of this is the many who visit the dead Constantine, buried in his house, so that he can "illuminate" a problem.  The one who makes this connection is the widow Chavelita, of whom other townspeople are jealous because no one forbade her to bury her family member in the patio of her house, as most would wish.

Lepaterique was an indigenous community when the Spanish first came to Honduras. The implication seems to be that they've maintained non-Christian, backwards ways, wanting to bury their family members in the courtyard of their houses.

No wonder rampant satanism is on the loose there-- cleverly disguised as participation in Christian religious services, posting of Christian hymns, and general hell-raising of, luckily, completely undemonstrated form.

Even for the Honduran press, this article-- originally linked online in the "Nacionales" news section-- reaches a new low. It wouldn't be worth going through this, except for the echoes it raises of weird fears of religious otherness that break out from time to time in statements and actions by government officials, like Africo Madrid's denunciation of Halloween.

Promoting suspicion of the young also seems to be part of the overall hysteria, normally framed, of course, in terms of fear of gangs.

In place of the Brujos de Ilamatepeque, what we have here seems to be the Satanists of Lepaterique-- with equally poor justification.

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