Mary’s 1947 Triumphal Entry into America
Fr. Pavone Defends
Charges at Arch of Triumph Banquet
Christian Wire Service
November 16, 2004
Father Frank A. Pavone, Director of Priests
for Life, was honored for his dedication to the pro-life cause at a banquet held
near Buffalo, NY on Sunday, Nov. 14, by the Association for the
Arch of Triumph of the
Immaculate Heart of Mary and International Shrine of the Holy Innocents, a
lay Catholic association that is working to erect the world's tallest monument
as a tribute to Mary, and the triumph of her Immaculate Heart which she
prophesied at Fatima in 1917.
The evening commenced with a reenactment the
Coronation of the Western Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima, which
occurred in Buffalo's cathedral on December 8, 1947. That statue had been
commissioned by Fatima seer Sister Lucia, and sent by her with Blue Army
founder, the late John Haffert, to travel across America. According to Haffert's
autobiography, "To Shake the World," Cardinal Spellman of New York did not want
the statue to enter America through New York City. Haffert therefore brought it
through Ontario and into the Buffalo Diocese. Buffalo's then Bishop John O'Hara
placed a golden crown upon the statue, enthroned upon a special altar in the
cathedral, in a colorful ceremony attended by thousands. At the banquet, as in
1947, a Knights of Columbus color corps processed with a replica of the original
statue, placing it beneath a triumphal arch of flowers. It was crowned, while
the banqueters sang "Hail Holy Queen," by Marlene Behr, wife of Laurence D.
Behr, the Buffalo, NY attorney and pro-life activist who heads the Arch of
Behr then explained the origins of the Arch
project in a compelling dream he had in September 2000, of a "Shrine of the
Golden Arch of St. Mary." He defended the Church's special veneration of Mary,
and proposed that Mary's revelation at Fatima, Portugal in 1917, "Jesus wishes
to establish in the world, devotion to my Immaculate Heart," is consistent with
many biblical prophecies concerning Mary's important part in God's plan for the
salvation of the world, beginning in Genesis and Exodus and running throughout
Scripture, up to the "woman clothed with the sun, with a crown of twelve stars
upon her head and the moon beneath her feet," of Revelations 12:1.
Behr said that the proposed triumphal arch's
purpose is to promote awareness of and devotion to Mary's Immaculate Heart, as a
means to lead the world closer to Christ and bring about the end of abortion,
just as the appearance of Our Lady of Guadalupe to St. Juan Diego in Mexico in
1531 swiftly ended the Aztec practice of human sacrifice. Behr claims an
increasing number of supporters for the proposed Arch shrine, across the U.S.A.
and Canada, and worldwide.
Addressing the overflow crowd of over 500,
Father Pavone responded to charges filed with the IRS against Priests for Life
and other Catholic groups, as well as two archdioceses (Denver and St. Louis),
by the group calling itself "Catholics for a Free Choice," claiming that such
activities amount to partisan politicking, and asking the IRS to revoke Priests
for Life's tax-exempt status.
Father Pavone commented, "I continue to be
amazed that some people seem to think it is inappropriate for the Church to
speak up against baby killing - dismembering a child. I am not ashamed to appear
to be opposed to a party that says it is okay to crush the heads of babies.
Something is very wrong when one's loyalty to a political party is greater than
one's loyalty to God and fundamental human rights." Pavone stated: "We have a
message that goes far beyond any political party—we have a message that is
eternal and reaches from one end of the universe to the other: That every human
life is a manifestation of the glory of God, and that an attack on any human
life is an attack on God Himself."
Respecting the proposed Marian Arch of Triumph
and Holy Innocents shrine, Pavone said, "One reason I have wanted to support the
Arch of Triumph project from the beginning - a very simple reason - is that the
pro-life message in the many different ways it is conveyed is often very easy to
ignore. We will never reach the numbers of people we have to reach and convert,
if reaching them depends on their voluntary consent. We have to go beyond that.
Imagine once this massive structure is standing there, and so many people who
have no intention of thinking about life and the sacredness of life, or the
Blessed Virgin Mary, or even God Himself, nevertheless will be confronted with
this massive structure. We have to reach the unwilling audience, because there
are things they need to know that they may not even know that they need to know,
but they need it nevertheless."
Behr presented Father Pavone with an award in
recognition of his "selfless, courageous and persevering advocacy on behalf of
the weakest and most vulnerable members of society - the unborn, the sick, and
Clippings from 2004