Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
August 12, 1954
NUMBER 14, PAGE 4-5b

"Conspiracy Of Silence"


Hundreds of readers of this journal will by this time have read "People's Padre," the story of Emmett McLoughlin, the Franciscan priest who broke with the Roman Catholic Church about six years ago. His book, the story of his life in the priesthood and the incredible mental and spiritual stagnation such a life produced, together with the thrilling story of his break with the evil forces of a totalitarian religious dictatorship, came from the Beacon Press last March. It had received advance notice from some of the most prominent writers and thinkers in the nation, and was destined to create a sensation in both literary and religious circles. One would have supposed that every paper and magazine in the nation which carried book reviews and news of publications would have carried discussions of this highly controversial, yet thoroughly documented and interesting life story.

But what happened?

The following letter from Mr. McLoughlin to this writer is quite revealing:

Dear Mr. Tant:

I wish to thank you very much for your kind letter about my book "People's Padre." It was my hope that this story might be of help to other people and your letter indicates that you also feel that it can be helpful.

Undoubtedly you have noticed that "People's Padre" has received no reviews at all in the nation's major newspapers or magazines. This has been attributed to a "conspiracy of silence" on the part of the Catholic Hierarchy and the members of the press who are either subservient to it or afraid of it.

If the message of "People's Padre" is to have an effect on the people of America, its story must be spread by word of mouth ....

Very sincerely yours, Emmett McLoughlin

Once again the mighty Catholic Church has demonstrated her power over the American press. A book inimical to her interests has been shunted to the background; efforts to prevent its wide-spread reading and discussion have been fairly successful; and Catholicism behaves in her traditional and age-long pattern: "If you cannot meet the argument, suppress the book, persecute the author, terrorize those who would read it — keep the people ignorant of it!"

Catholicism has her greatest strength in those areas of the earth where she is most successful in getting the people NOT to think or read anything contrary to her. Where ignorance and superstition are greatest, there 'Catholicism is strongest. She cannot stand the searching light of truth; she shrinks and diminishes in proportion as truth and enlightenment come to a people. Observe Europe, and see where Catholicism has her greatest hold. Is it England? Scotland? Denmark? Switzerland? the Scandinavian countries? No; she is strongest in 'Spain and Italy — the two most illiterate and backward nations on the whole continent of Europe. And she is stronger in Spain than in Italy. Spain is more illiterate and backward than Italy.

On our own side of the Atlantic the same story is evident. It is in Mexico that Catholicism has her strength — and in some of the more backward and illiterate Central and South American nations. Canada, the United States, and all those areas where enlightenment is greatest have a relative and discernibly weaker Catholicism than do the other nations.

There is something here to give pause to any honest man. Why is there this high correlation between ignorance and Catholicism, between illiteracy and allegiance to the hierarchy? Is it not clear that the superstitions of the Catholic worship and liturgy are such as to awe and impress the unlettered? Her strength lies in direct proportion to her ability to prevent thinking, study, and investigation.

That is why a book like Emmett McLoughlin's is dangerous to the Roman Church. It opens the eyes of the honest man, and permits him to see in its true light the weird superstition and idolatry of Romanism. It tears the mask from the pious front of those who claim to serve God, and yet in reality serve only the Papacy; it shows the horror of mental and spiritual slavery to a system — a system that is morally as well as religiously rotten.

We ask our readers to follow Mr. McLoughlin's suggestion. By word of mouth tell your friends of his book; urge them to read it. Especially should this book be read by those who are contemplating marriage with a Catholic man or woman. It may save wrecked lives and broken hearts. Give the book to Catholic friends who are willing to think for themselves; perchance it may be the means of bringing many of them out of the darkness of slavery and terror, and into the light of freedom. Once they have broken with Catholicism, they perhaps can be taught the truth of, Christ's simple gospel.

If you do not have "People's Padre," we will be glad to send you a copy. The price is $3.95. — F.Y.T.