recognize the bigger picture. That’s why I trusted you from the beginning. I felt immediately that you have everything in you. You just can’t live it yet.”
Entirely unbidden, a sob caught in Shane’s throat. He took a few seconds to gather himself. “Sorry, but this isall a bit much for me right now. I’ve been looking on helpless for years, seeing where things were headed, and I always come back to the same point: I just don’t see anyone listening.”
Thomas shook his head vigorously. “It’s not about whether someone’s listening to you. If anything, it’s about whether they understand you. And that doesn’t start in the head, it starts in the heart. What the president just said is testimony to the return of understanding that is fed by the heart, by intuition.”
“The difference between Ryan and you,” Deborah said, “is that he hasn’t pulled himself back into his shell. You need to act the same way.”
Thomas became even more animated. “Right. And if you really know what I think you know, and are capable of what I think you are capable of, then you have an even greater responsibility.”
“That’s an awful lot to swallow, Thomas. Answer me this: what’s really the difference between the Christians’ beliefs and the Celts’ or the Druids’? In the end, isn’t everyone just looking for God?”
“The big difference has to do with the form and character of the pagan gods. The old culture’s way of life is manifested in their worship of nature and not in a god as the Christians have designed him. In the old culture, devotion, humility, and magic were a normal part of life. They are the mystical metaphors with which the pagans had access to the all-encompassing and permeating universe and its knowledge. They honored and used it for the common good.”
“One thing is certain,” Deborah added. “If the Christians had shown more tolerance, if they hadn’t attacked people of different beliefs with such brutal psychological and physical violence, not only would the Celts and the Druids have survived, but also the culture of the Native Americans and the tribes of Africa and Australia.”
Sadly, he’s right about that
, thought Shane. The scope of this false teaching was enormous, and more people were beginning to be aware of it. The dawning of a new age that he felt within himself was spreading. Maybe Thomas was right. Maybe he could help.
* * *
VATICAN CITY – NIGHT
Victor Salvoni walked through his office and looked out the wide-open balcony doors at the Sistine Chapel. It was a warm evening with a beautiful, starry sky. Salvoni sat down on a small bench in front of the door and let out a soft sigh. In Dublin, his men would have long since finished their work. Thinking about his discussion with Lambert, he realized that it couldn’t go on like this forever. One day, mistakes would be made that, in light of the Church’s diminishing importance in politics and society, couldn’t be covered up with the old methods.
With the number of people leaving the Church climbing at an alarming rate, and many distancing themselves inwardly, the pope had gotten carried away,and in addition to allowing the radical society of St. Pius X, he had also countenanced the statutes of the secret society “Opus Angelorum,” also known as “Work of the Angels.” The Church was bombed back into the Middle Ages. The Work of the Angels didn’t do anything partway: if there was even the slightest doubt about faith, they deemed it the work of the devil. Salvoni had been busier than he liked in the last several months, fending off media attempts to interview the victims of spiritual exercises or to ascribe responsibility to the sects for several suicides.
He’d had to silence the victims of abuse from Catholic schools and seminaries in Germany and Ireland, either with money or by other means. Yet the sheer number of victims made it a hopeless battle. He had set up a broadly based covert action to destroy