Saturday, December 19, 2015

'Tragic Errors of Fr.Leonard Feeney' by Fr. William Most is based on the error of Cushingism

There is a report on line which is based on irrational Cushingism.It is important to read this ideological piece keeping in mind the following comments.



TRAGIC ERRORS OF LEONARD FEENEY 
by Fr. William Most
In the late 1940s Leonard Feeney, S. J. began to teach that there is no salvation outside the Church. He was correct in saying that there were official teachings, even definitions, on that score.
Lionel:
It was a dogma which was not interpreted with Cushingism.  The interpretation of the dogma was always Feeneyite i.e there are no explicit exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus. Cushingism instead says there are exceptions. In other words the baptism of desire etc refer to explicit cases for them to be exceptions to the dogma.

But his tragic error came when he adopted Protestant method, thinking that in that way he would be one of the only true Catholics! We spoke of his disobedience, refusing to go to Rome to explain his position. Then protestant method with good reason. First, he was excommunicated for the Holy Office, under Pius XII...
Lionel: 
The Letter of the Holy Office 1949  uses Cushingism as a theology. It assumes  the baptism of desire etc are explicit and so are exceptions to EENS. This is irrational and heretical.This is an innovation in theology.


in the very first paragraph pointed out what is obvious: we must avoid private interpretation of Scripture -- for that is strictly Protestant.
Lionel:
 Cushingism is something new in the Catholic Church. It is non traditional and based on an irrational  premise( persons are known in the present times without the baptism of water who are in Heaven) and inference ( these persons even though they are in Heaven are exceptions on earth to the dogma which says all need the baptism of water in the Catholic Church for salvation). This is a new , foreign theory it is something like the doctrines of Protestantism.



But then the letter said we must also avoid private interpretation of the official texts of the Church. To insist on our own private interpretation, especially when the Church contradicts that, is pure Protestant attitude.
Lionel:
 The magisterium in 1949 was teaching something  irrational and heretical it was new, like Protestantism.This was a new magisterium. It was a break with the pre-1949 magisterium which did not use the new premise and inference.

What the disobedient Feeney said amounted to this: he insisted that all who did not formally enter the Church would go to hell.
Lionel: This was stated in the text of the dogma defined three times. This was the teaching in the Catholic Church for centuries.It was objective truth taught by the Catholic Church.


Hence he had to say, and he did say, that unbaptized babies go to hell.Further, all adults who did not formally enter the Church - get their names on a parish register - would also go to hell, even if they western hemisphere during the long centuries before Columbus,never had a chance to hear there was a Church, e.g., those in thee.g., those in the western hemisphere during the long centuries before Columbus.
Lionel: 
This was the dogmatic teaching. All needed to enter the Church  formally for salvation.He was not saying something new or personal.

Therefore Feeney consigned literally millions upon millions to hell,even though He gave them no chance.
Lionel :
This was inferred by the dogma. Vatican Council II (AG 7, LG 14) also says all need faith and baptism for salvation. Most people do not have faith and baptism at the time of death. They are on the way to Hell according to Vatican Council II.

Not just the documents of the Church as interpreted by the Church should have kept him from this: merely common sense, and the realization that God is not only not a monster, but is infinitely good - that alone should have stopped him. We have, then, most ample deny that God is good. Feeney does worse than they reason for calling his error tragic. Even the sexually immoral do not deny that God is good. Feeney does worse than they.
Lionel: 
This is a rejection of the dogma and Vatican Council II  in agreement with the dogma.

In regard to the damnation of infants, tragically, Feeney cited a text of Pius IX (quoted below) saying that no one goes to hell without grave voluntary sin - babies of course have no voluntary sin. Feeney actually ridiculed the text of Pius IX and charged Pius IX with the Good Fight, Catholic Treasures, Monrovia CA. 1987, pp. 305-06): "To heresy of Pelagianism, saying (in Thomas M. Sennott, They Fought the say that God would never permit anyone to be punished eternally Pelagianism... . If God cannot punish eternally a human being who has unless he had incurred the guilt of voluntary sin is nothing short of not incurred the guilt of voluntary sin, how then, for example can He punish eternally babies who die unbaptized?"
Lionel:
We can hope these babies are in Limbo, a limbo, which is more like Heaven and less like Hell.

There is another feature of sound theological method we need to recall here. If we seem to have on hand two truths, which seem to clash head on, and they are there even after we recheck our work, we must not try to force one to fit with the other.
Lionel: 
Cushingism is a false theology. It is not Catholic. It is based on an irrational premise which is used to reject the old theology, Feeneyism.


No, we must faithfully state both points, hoping that sometime someone will find how to make them fit. The Fathers did very well on this matter. For on the human knowledge of Jesus, most of the Fathers made two kinds example, in dealing with the difficult texts of Lk 2:52 and Mk 13:32 of statements, one kind affirming ignorance, the other denying it.
Lionel:
This is some interpretation to try and reconcile the error of Cushingism with Scripture and Tradition.

Finally , on the Lucan text St. Athanasius found how to reconcile the statements; later, Pope St. Gregory the great did the same for the Markan text. (For details see Wm. G. Most, ).The same situation is found in regard to texts both of the Fathers and of the Magisterium on membership in the Church. One set of texts seems very severe, the other kind, very broad.
Lionel:
There is only one set of texts and the interpretation has  to be Feeneyite. Since it is rational and traditional.
or commentary on each text, please see. W. Most, , Appendix. a) Restrictive Tests of the Fathers

Lionel: 
By Restrictive Texts he means Feeneyite texts. There are no exceptions to all needing to enter the Church in these passages. There are no exceptions to the dogmatic teaching.

The Shepherd of Hermas, 9.16:(c. 140 AD) "The apostles and the teachers who preached the name of the Son of God, when they fell asleep in the power and faith of the Son of God preached also to those who had fallen asleep earlier, and they gave them the seal of and they gave them the seal of the preaching. They therefore went down into the water with them, and came up again."..
ibid. 36.79: "Baptism can exist... even among heretics... but it cannot be beneficial outside the Catholic Church."
Lionel: We see the same pattern, the same error.Hypothetical, theoretical, speculative cases are assumed to be real and known. 'Baptism can exist... even among heretics', refers to invisible cases for us human beings. It should not be mentioned with reference to the Feeneyite version of the dogma.


b) Restrictive Texts of the Magisterium
Pope Innocent III, (1208: DS 792): "We believe in our heart and confess in our mouth that there is one Church, not of heretics, but the Holy Roman Catholic apostolic Church, outside of which we believe no one is saved."
Lateran Council IV (1215: DS 802): "There is one universal Church of the faithful, outside of which no one at all is saved."
Pope Boniface VIII, (1302: DS 870): "Outside of which there is neither salvation nor remission of sins... . But we declare, state and define that to be subject to the Roman Pontiff is altogether necessary for salvation." [The second part merely means there is no salvation outside the Church, for it is quoted from St. Thomas Aquinas, Contra errores Graecorum 36. #1125 where context shows the sense].
Pope Clement VI, , 1351: DS 1051): "No man... outside the faith of the Church and obedience to the Roman Pontiff can finally be saved."
Council of Florence (1442: DS 1351): "It firmly believes, professes and preaches, that none who are outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can partake of eternal life, but they will go into eternal fire... unless before the end of life they will have been joined to it [the Church] and that the unity of the ecclesiastical body has such force that only for those who remain in it are the sacraments of the Church profitable for salvation; and fastings, alms, and other works of piety and exercises of the Christian soldiery bring forth eternal rewards [only] for them. 'No one, howsoever much almsgiving he has done, even if he sheds his blood for Christ, can be saved, unless he remains in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church. '" [Internal quote at end is from Fulgentius, as we saw above].
Lionel : The following Broad Texts of the Magisterium, refer to texts interpreted with irrational Cushingism. It is assumed there is known salvation outside the Church.It is assumed that theoretical cases are visible and known in the present times. It is inferred that we humans can see people in the present times saved without the baptism of water in the Catholic Church.
Broad Texts of the Magisterium
Pope Pius IX, (1863: DS 2866): "God...in His supreme goodness and clemency, by no means allows anyone to be punished with eternal punishments who does not have the guilt of the Catholic Church can be saved, and that those who are contumacious voluntary fault. But it is also a Catholic dogma, that no one outside are obstinately separated from the unity of this Church and from the against the authority of the same Church [and] definitions and who Roman Pontiff, and from the Roman Pontiff, successor of Peter, to whom the custody of the vineyard was entrusted by the Savior, cannot obtain eternal salvation."[emphasis added].
Lionel: 
'who does not have the guilt of voluntary fault ' refer to invisible cases. The writer infers they are visible and known and so are exceptions to the Feeneyite interpretation of the dogma.This is Cushingism.
Pope Pius XII, (1943: DS 3821): "They who do not belong to the visible bond of the Catholic Church... [we ask them to] strive to take themselves from that state in which they cannot be to the mystical body of the Redeemer by a certain desire and wish of sure of their own eternal salvation; for even though they are ordered wills], yet they lack so many and so great heavenly gifts and helps which they are not aware [implicit in the general wish to do what God which can be enjoyed only in the Catholic Church."
Lionel:
'they are ordered to the mystical body of the Redeemer by a certain desire and wish of  which they are not aware' and we do not know who these cases are according to Feeneyism.According to the writer these are known cases and so are relevant to the dogma. This the Cushingite premise and inference.
Holy Office, Aug 9, 1949, condemning doctrine of L. Feeney (DS 3870):
"It is not always required that one be actually incorporated as a member of the Church, but this at least is required: that one adhere to it in wish and desire. It is not always necessary that this be explicit... but when a man labors under invincible ignorance, God accepts even an implicit will, called by that name because it is contained in the good disposition of soul in which a man wills to conform his will to the will of God."
Lionel:
 'that one adhere  to it in wish and desire. It is not always necessary that this be explicit... but  when a man labors under invincible ignorance'. These are invisible cases and so are not exceptions to the dogma.The Holy Office made an objective mistake here.The Letter with the mistake was placed in the Denzinger.
Vatican II, #16: (1964 AD) For they who without their own fault do not know of the Gospel of Christ and His Church, but yet seek God with sincere heart, and try, under the influence of grace, to carry out His will in practice, known to them through the dictate of conscience, can attain eternal salvation."
Lionel:
'they who without their own fault do not know of the Gospel of Christ and His Church,'refer to invisible for us cases so they are not exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.
Here I am interpreting this passage with Feeneyism. For the writer LG 16 refers to an exception to the dogma. He assumes it refers to personally known cases who are exceptions to the Feeneyite version  of the dogma. This is Cushingism.


John Paul II, #10 (Dec. 7, 1990): "The universality of salvation means that it is granted not only to those who explicitly believe in Christ and have entered the church. Since all. But it is clear that today, as in the past, many people do not salvation is offered to all, it must be made concretely available to have an opportunity to come to know or accept the Gospel revelation relationship to the church, does not make them formally a part of the or to enter the church... . For such people, salvation in Christ is accessible by virtue of a grace which, while having a mysterious church, but enlightens them in a way which is accommodated to their cooperation..."
Lionel: 
'But it is clear that today, as in the past, many people do not have an opportunity to come to know or accept the Gospel revelation or to enter the church... . For such people, salvation in Christ is accessible by virtue of a grace which'. This is a reference to cases known only to God. They are not part of our reality. So they cannot be exceptions, for example in 2015, to all needing to formally enter the Church.Here a theoretical case is inferred to be explicit.In this way it is made relevant to the dogma. This is an error in reasoning.




Broad Texts of the Fathers
Pope St. Clement I, 7.5-7 (c. 95 AD): "Let us go through all generations, and learn that in generation and generation the Master has given a place of repentance to those willing to turn to Him. Noah preached repentance, and those who heard him were saved...
St. Gregory of Nazianzus, 18.5 [at funeral of his father, a convert]:(c. 374 AD): "He was ours even before he was of our fold.His way of living made him such. For just as many of ours are not with us, whose life makes them other from our body [the Church], so many of those outside belong to us, who by their way of life anticipate the faith and need [only] the name, having the reality."
Lionel :
'so  many of those outside belong to us, who by their way of life anticipate the faith and need [only] the name, having the reality,' and they would be known only to God. 
This is acceptable in itself.However to consider these cases as being relevant or an exception to the dogma would imply that these cases are known in real life.This is irrational. We cannot say that any particular person will go to Heaven or Hell. This would only be known to God.I cannot judge who will be saved without the baptism of water in the Catholic Church.
St. Augustine, 18.47: (413-26 AD): "Nor do I think the Jews would dare to argue that no one pertained to God except the Israelites, from the time that Israel came to be... they cannot deny that there were certain men even in other nations who pertained to earthly but by heavenly association..."
Lionel :
Fine in itself but it must not be postulated that these cases are known to us or can be known to us and so are relevant to the dogma on exclusive salvation in the Church, and all needing to formally enter the Church for salvation.
St. Prosper of Aquitaine, 2.5: (c. 450 AD): "... according to it [Scripture] ... we believe and devoutly confess that never was the care of divine providence lacking to the totality of men... . To these, however [who have not yet heard of Christ] that general measure of help, which is always given from above to all men, is not denied."
Lionel: 
The  Church says all need to formally enter with faith and baptism for  salvation. This is objective reality.Here objective reality is being denied. It is assumed that only those who 'know' need to enter the Church.This is a new theory.It came into the Catholic Church with the Letter of the Holy Office 1949.

St. Nilus, . 154:(perhaps c. 430 AD): "In every nation the one who fears God and does justice is acceptable to Him. For it is clear that such a one is acceptable to God and is not to be cast aside, who at his own right time flees to the worship of the blessed knowledge of God.
Lionel:
 This is a hypothetical, theoretical case for us. It is a general statement. It is not someone personally known. It is not someone who has  been saved outside the Church.Since we cannot and do not personally  know of someone saved outside the Church since humanly, physically  it is not possible to know it.

St. Cyril of Alexandria, 3.107: (433-41 AD): "For if there is One over all, and there is no other besides Him, He would be Master of all, because He was Maker of all. For He is also the God of hearts, which the Maker has engraved in the hearts of all [cf. Rom the gentiles, and has fully satisfied by laws implanted in their 2.14-16]. For when the gentiles, [Paul] says, not having the law, do of the Jews [cf. Rom 3.29] but also of the gentiles... He sees fit by by nature the things of the law, they show the work of the law written on their hearts. But since He is not only the Maker and God His providence to care not only for those who are of the blood of Theodoret of Cyrus, Israel, but also for all those upon the earth...."
Conclusions from the Above Texts
1. Following proper theological method, the Fathers and the  Magisterium saw two things:
a)the Church is necessary for salvation;1. Following proper theological method, the Fathers and the
Lionel: 
Yes formal membership in the Catholic Church is necessary  for salvation.

b)In some way God must make provision for those who do not find the Church.
Lionel : 
If God has made provision for someone as such, we would not  know about it. It would only be known to God. So it is irrelevant to the dogmatic teaching on the necessity of formal membership in  the Church for salvation. Even if there was a such a case it would have no bearing on the dogma in the present times.


This was already stated in Romans 3.29 by St. Paul. If He did not do that, He would act as though He were not their God- He would condemn millions to hell who never had a chance!. Such a God could not be a God at all, but a monster.
Lionel: 
The dogma, Vatican Council II and the Catechism of the Catholic Church (1992) indicate that the majority of people are on the way to Hell since they are not baptised with water in the Catholic Church.
Vatican Council II says all need faith and baptism for salvation.You and I do not and cannot know of any exception.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church (1257) says 'the Church knows of no means to eternal beatitude other than the baptism of water.' The Catechism indicates the millions of people are on the way to Hell every year since they do not have the baptism of water in the Catholic Church needed for salvation.
Most people die without the baptism of water.They are oriented to the fires of Hell.

2. In an effort to find how to fit the two together, most of them expressed a very broad concept of membership in the Church.
Lionel:
 Only if your using irrational Cushingism as a theology. With Cushingism the Catechism (1992) says all who are saved are saved through Jesus and the Church. It also says God is not limited to the Sacraments (1257).

Then one can say that there is no salvation outside the Church, but that the concept of membership is very broad, and covers even those who do not find the Church.
Lionel :
There is no salvation outside the Church since there  are no known cases of someone saved outside the Church, in the present times. No one could see any one in Heaven without 'faith and baptism' (AG 7, LG 14). So know one could physically see an exception to the Feeneyite version of the dogma. The Magisterium in 1949 made an objective mistake. The Holy Office 1949 was implying that we could see people in Heaven without faith and baptism.For them this was evidence of salvation outside the Church.
3. The early Magisterium texts at first seem very stringent. It is likely they had in mind those who culpably reject the Church - the words of Pius IX about those who are contumacious and obstinate fit with this and did not apply to those who through no fault of their own do not find the Church. The words of Romans 3.29 call for this.
Lionel: 
We do not know of any one who has culpably rejected the Church and is saved without 'faith and baptism'.So this should not be mentioned with reference to the strict interpretation of the dogma.

Later Magisterium texts speak of those who pertain to the Church or are joined to the Church by even an unconscious desire, contained in the will to do what is right. John Paul II spoke of a mysterious grace.
Lionel : Again to infer that these are known cases, objectively seen in  our reality is an error in reasoning. These are zero cases, says the apologist John Martignoni,so they are not exceptions to the dogma  extra ecclesiam nulla salus. There are no known exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus said Fr.S.Visintin osb, the Dean of Theology, at the University of San Anselm, Rome.
Archbishop Thomas E. Gullickson has said that the SSPX should accept Vatican Council II since there is nothing in Vatican Council II to contradict the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.Catholic priests in Rome also say that there are no known exceptions to the dogma on all needing to be formal members of the Catholic Church to avoid Hell.

 Our proposal, expressed above in our comments on LG 5 do not  contradict these things. Rather, they try to fill in, taking a lead  from St. Justin that some in the past could have been Christians  because they followed the Logos, who is in all. We attached the thought of St. Justin to Romans 2:14-16. This is not strained, for when we say the Logos, a Spirit is present, we really mean He is producing an effect: His presence is not spatial. What effect does He  produce?  He produces the effect of making known to them interiorly  what the law requires, so that the law is written on their hearts, as Rom 2:15 said, following Jeremiah 31:33. (All actions done by the Three Divine Persons outside the Divine nature are common work to all three. Cf. DS 800. Hence we may say God did it, or the Logos did it, or the Spirit of Christ - all mean the same).
Lionel :
O.K but we cannot infer that these cases can be personally known to us and that they are there in Heaven without 'faith and baptism'. So you can assume that there are some such theoretical cases 'out there' but don't connect them to the dogma.

Then, if, for example Socrates - explicitly mentioned by St. Justin - follows the law on his heart, Socrates does not know the source of  that law. It is really the Spirit of Christ who writes it. In accepting it, Socrates objectively accepts the Spirit of Christ.
Since he accepts and follows that Spirit, he of course follows the Logos. But in Romans 8:9 we hear that "If anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him." So then, one who does have and follow that Spirit, does belong to Christ . But to belong to Christ in St. Paul's language means to be a member of Christ - which is a member of the Church, by substantial membership, even though without formal external adherence.
Lionel : 
When one has the Spirit of Christ and is formally in the Church one is saved.
Someone who does not have the Spirit of Christ and is saved  is not known to us. Someone who does not have the Spirit of Christ and  is saved outside the Church is not known to us in the present times. 
We cannot see the person face to face. We do not know where he lives  in the present times.So this imaginary person should not be linked in any way with the dogmatic teaching on salvation in the Church. Hypothetical cases cannot be explicit exceptions to the dogma.
So people of this sort who follow the law on their hearts are members  of the Church, and as such, can be saved. This fits especially well with the words of Vatican II in LG 16.
Lionel :
 These are zero cases in our reality. Yet according to  Cushingism they are known cases and so they become exceptions  to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

We are not saying, of course, that the Baptist church, for example, is a component part of the Catholic Church. No we merely say that conditions given above, become substantially, not formally, members some who are Baptists (or other types) can, if they fill the of the Catholic Church as individuals, and so can be saved.
Lionel : 
Assuming there was someone saved as such, when he is in  Heaven he would be a Catholic. Since there are only Catholics in  Heaven according to the dogma.
When Feeney was old, some church authorities out of sorrow for him, let him be reconciled to the Church. As part of the unfortunate looseness we se so often today, they did not demand that he recant.
So he did not. As a result, some former followers of his came back to recantation meant Feeney had been right all along. Of course not. We the Church. Others even today insist that the lack of demanding a have proved that abundantly with official texts above and the texts of the Fathers of the Church.
Lionel:
 The texts here have been interpreted with Cushingism. These same texts can be interpreted with Feeneyism and the  conclusion will be traditional and in line with the dogma  extra ecclesiam nulla salus and the Syllabus of Errors.The 'official texts' and the 'texts of the Fathers of the Church ' can be interpreted with Cushingism or Feeneyism.
Let us add one more thing. In the parable of the talents, the man who hid his talent told the master he knew the master was a hard man. The master replied that he would judge him out of his own mouth, and God may not follow the pattern given in the parable and say: You
condemned him. So when a Feenyite comes up for judgment,we pray that God may not follow the pattern given in the parable and say: You insisted I was a monster. Very good, I will be a monster to you. Hell is your place.
Lionel :
 It is the Cushingite who will come before the Maker after  rejecting the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus with an irrational  premise and inference; with a lie.He will have rejected the Nicene  Creed with this lie and will have interpreted Vatican Council II  with this same lie. May be God will overlook all this and  God will have mercy on him.But then there will also be those  who now know all this, and yet will choose to go to their Maker -   as Cushingites?.
-Lionel Andrades


https://www.ewtn.com/library/SCRIPTUR/FEENEY.TXT


FR.LEONARD FEENEY: TRAGIC ERRORS BY JEWISH LEFT, TRINITY COMMUNICATIONS AND FR.WILLIAM MOST

http://eucharistandmission.blogspot.it/2010/08/frleonard-feeney-tragic-errors-by.html




Still no comment from the SSPX on the Vatican heretical document on the Jews


The Society of St. Pius X (SSX) has not issued any statement on the recent Vatican Document on the Jews which is based on the theology of Cushingism. Cushingism is also a theology used by the SSPX. The recent Vatican Document on acceptable Christian Jewish Dialogue, is theologically  based on Cushingism. It also states Jews do not need to convert in the present times and all who are saved, Jews included, are saved through Jesus and the Church.
So the old ecclesiology, on the necessity of membership in the Church for salvation, is discarded. This is also the position of the SSPX which interprets magisterial documents with Cushingism, instead of traditional Feeneyism.The SSPX bishops and priests also look at Vatican Council II with the new theology.
The SSPX takes its cue from Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre their founder, who did not notice the objective and factual error in the 1949 Letter of the Holy Office to the Archbishop of Boston relative to Fr. Leonard Feeney. The Letter infers the baptism of desire etc refer to explicit cases in the present times. So the baptism of desire is made relevant to the strict interpretation of the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus. It is considered an exception.This is also the innovative position of the SSPX.
There is no comment on the Vatican Document on the Jews from the SSPX since they perhaps did not want to offend the Jewish Left. In the past they would speak about the need for non Catholics to convert. Now they do not.
They are not also commenting on the possibility of interpretating Vatican Council II with Feeneyism ( there are no known exceptions to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus). Vatican Council II (AG 7, LG 14) would then be saying Jews need to formally enter the Catholic Church with 'faith and baptism' for salvation. It would also be affirming the old ecumenism and the need for all Christians to have Catholic Faith (AG 7,LG 14) for salvation.This would be offensive to the contemporary magisterium which is leftist.
So there is no comment from the SSPX on the recent Vatican heretical statement on the Jews and the reason could be political.
The community disassociated themself from Bishop Richard Williamson and avoided the anti-Semitic tag.
-Lionel Andrades

 
Popes since the time of Pius XII have in public used irrational, non traditional and heretical Cushingism as a theology - 2
 
Popes since the time of Pius XII have in public used irrational, non traditional and heretical Cushingism as a theology - 1
 
Ann Barnhardt interprets magisterial documents with Cushingism
 

Italian town puts up 'Christians only' signs

Italian town puts up 'Christians only' signs
The 'welcome' sign of Pontoglio. Photo: Comune di Pontoglio.

Italian town puts up 'Christians only' signs

The Local · 17 Dec 2015, 15:56
 
A controversial sign has been put up by a roadside, telling drivers approaching Pontoglio that the Lombardy town of almost 7,000 inhabitants is one of “western culture and profound Christian traditions”.
The sign goes on to say that anyone caught disrespecting the town’s deep-rooted culture and local traditions would be asked to leave.
 Mayor Alessandro Seghezzi was granted permission from the local council to erect the sign at entrances to the town, explaining in a letter that the move is intended to preserve the area’s values and culture, as well as keep citizens safe.
“Today we’re living in a transitory period,” he wrote.
“It’s our job to ensure that all comply with rules that govern civil life.”
Seghezzi told Corriere that the town’s culture is “based on mutual respect: from women and music to dress, customs and traditions”.
Local councillor Paolo Bocchi backed the move, insisting that there was "nothing racist about it".
"These are just the interpretations being made...this is purely information about our history, our tradition. I challenge anyone to say that Pontoglio’s story is any different."
But others lambasted the move, with Laura Castellletti, the deputy mayor of Brescia, saying: “I thought I lived in a secular state. I was also convinced that there was no state religion in Italy.”
In fact, Roman Catholicism ceased to be the state religion in 1984.
 Many people took to Twitter to criticize the sign, with one saying: "What a beautiful Christian welcome?"
Although the sign was not obviously directed at Muslims, areas of the north have been strongly opposed to accommodating refugees from Syria and other conflict zone. There have also been several indications of rising anti-Muslim angst in the wake of the Paris attacks.
But this isn't the first time Brescia towns have used public sign posts to express their message.
Authorities in Capriolo and Prevalle recently spread their views against "gender ideology" via official town hall outdoor digital signs.
 
The Local (news@thelocal.it)