Appointed Apostolic Vicar of Dakar in June 1947, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre found himself at the head of a territory with a strong Muslim majority. There he learned what Islam truly is.
For fifteen years, I found myself in Dakar with three million Muslims, a hundred thousand Catholics and four hundred thousand animists, and if we managed to convert ten Muslims in those fifteen years, that was the most. I mean truly convert them, make them go from Islam to Catholicism. I am not saying there wasn’t a certain Catholic influence thanks to our schools, where we had up to 10 to 15% Muslims. I did not want more, or they would have imposed Islam in our schools. Once they are strong, they impose, they take charge of things, and try to convert the others. When they are weak, they listen and keep quiet. The young men who came to our schools were certainly greatly influenced, maybe some of them desired baptism, it is very possible.
But it is very hard for a young man to convert to Catholicism, for he is rejected by his family, he knows he may even be poisoned....Only those who are university students are able to convert because they are independent. They know that their future is safe, so they no longer need their family and they can leave for Europe, they can convert. But converting someone who is living with his family is practically impossible. By inspiring the Muslim religion, the devil has truly kept millions of men from converting.1
What Islam Really Is
A Muslim proverb says: 'Kiss the hand you cannot cut off.' Yes, only strength can have an effect. And when they are up against strength, they kiss the hand. But when they are the strong ones, they cut the hand off. It has always been that way.
Newspapers recently reported that Egyptian Muslim communities have decreed that any Muslim who converts to Catholicism will be executed. The representatives of these Muslim communities wish this decision to become a part of the constitution, or at least be enshrined by official agreements. That is how the newspapers published it, because it was official: any Muslim who converts to another religion will receive the death penalty.
Yes, we forget, but that is Islam. For the Muslims, Islam is all there is, and everyone must submit to it, either by becoming Muslim or by becoming a slave of Islam. One or the other. That is why they took everyone who would not submit into slavery. Remember the religious orders: the Trinitarians and the work of Our Lady of Mercy, which were founded to deliver captive Christians who were enslaved by the Muslims. They raided the coasts of France, Spain, and the whole Mediterranean, kidnapping Christians and making them slaves. And that is still a part of their mindset.
If you ask a French bishop if we should try to convert the Muslims, either in France or elsewhere, to convert animists and Buddhists…ah, no! We mustn’t convert them. No, we must encourage them in their religion, help them understand the beauties of their religion. It is unbelievable, but that is what they say.
Father Maurice Avril 2, who is in Salérans, was persecuted by the bishops and had all sorts of trouble because after the Algerian War, he took care of the Harkis who were lucky enough to escape and find refuge in France. The Harkis had fought to defend French Algeria and save it from the revolutionary grip.
Several tens of thousands of them were massacred when De Gaulle handed Algeria over to the representatives of the FLN. They, of course, could not stand the Harkis who had fought with the French troops to deliver French Algeria from terrorism and revolutionary control. Those who were unable to flee on the boats to France were tortured, massacred, buried alive, or burned alive. What an abominable crime on the conscience of those responsible for it! These people devoted themselves and were ready to die to defend French Algeria, just as some of them had come to fight in France in 1939-40, then during the Liberation, landing in Italy, Corsica, Provence, then against Communism in Indochina: we abandoned them to the hands of their cruel enemies who made them undergo to the most abominable tortures. A frightful tragedy. Many of their children remained in France; only the adults were sent back.
Fr. Avril, who had been a priest in French Algeria, welcomed over a hundred of them. He educated and raised them; he took good care of them. The children of these Harkis were in the hands of a priest who took care of their education, and who gently tried to convert them – without forcing them, of course – but with persuasion. And seeing the devotion of the priest and the people who helped him, they came to understand the beauties of the Catholic religion and most of them ended up converting. This did not please several bishops, who sent reproving letters to Fr. Avril: we must leave the Muslims, we must not convert them! But what are these bishops?3
The Islamization of France
In a press conference before the celebration of the sixtieth anniversary of his priestly ordination, on November 19, 1989, in Bourget, Archbishop Lefebvre warned against “the Islamization of France”:
Your women, your children will be kidnapped and taken to reserved districts like there are in Casablanca...and you will not dare to go find them.....And what will France be then? It is already like that in certain cities in England....Ask the government to stop Islam….The two religions cannot live together, it is impossible. They must stay in their own countries. If there are 500,000 more Muslims in France every year, you will see what will happen with the mosques….They mustn’t be allowed to organize, politically or religiously….When they kill Christians they save their souls, so why wouldn’t they? (see: www.ina.fr/video/CAB89048112)
These statements, reported by different media outlets, earned Archbishop Lefebvre a summons to appear before the 17th Correctional Chamber of the Tribunal of Paris, at the request of the LICRA (International League against Racism and Anti-Semitism).
His preliminary statement at the trial on June 21, 1990:
...So I answered very freely, giving my opinion on the danger of Muslim penetration into a country whose Catholic religion is violently rejected and despised by Islam. The Quran, which is the law of Islam, encourages discrimination, hatred, and violence.
Do not accuse me of what I denounce. The proofs of this hatred and violence are legion in the past and in the present. So long as the Muslims are an insignificant minority in a Christian country, they can live on friendly terms because they accept the laws and customs of the country that receives them. But as soon as there are many of them they get organized, they become aggressive and try to impose their laws hostile to European civilization.
The examples are abundant. Tomorrow they will be in charge of our towns and will transform our churches into mosques. We will have to become Muslim or leave the country or become their captives.
All of that is in the nature of Islam. I am not a racist by denouncing this racism.
As for the supposed defamation, I was only stating facts. The police know of the white slave trade, and that it still exists. Denouncing the kidnapping of our fellow countrymen is not defamation; it is a call to justice and to protection for our citizens. If you forbid sounding the alarm on the harmful consequences of Islam’s penetration into France and Europe, you become the accomplices of the violence committed by Islam in the name of the Quran in our Christian countries. Those who are suing us are the ones endorsing the deep-rooted racism of Islam against the French, the Jews, against every religion that is not Muslim.
I am not the one who is racist because I denounce racism. I have lived amidst other races all my life, thirty years in Africa, in the middle of animists and Muslims, striving to bring them spiritual and material goods: schools, clinics, and they were grateful to me and decorated me as Officer of the Equatorial Star of Gabon and High Officer of the National Order of Senegal, and the French government recognized my services oversees and made me an Officer of the Legion of Honor.
To condemn me as racist because I seek to protect my country that is threatened in her existence and Christian traditions would be to use justice for injustice, it would be to place justice at the service of the executioners against victims whose only right is to die in silence. It would be the height of injustice.
Econe May 12, 1990 4
+ Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre
Thought brilliantly defended by his lawyers, Georges-Paul Wagner and Dominique Remy, Archbishop Lefebvre was nonetheless judged, in appeal, on March 21, 1991, before the 11th Chamber of the Court, guilty of the crime of “public defamation against a group of persons by reason of (…) their religious affiliation”. Three days after the Court’s decision, Archbishop Lefebvre breathed his last. After his death, the Society of St. Pius X filed an appeal, but the Court declared the public suit terminated by the death of the accused.
Source: Le Rocher c’est le Christ n°106 – April/May 2017
- 1. C’est moi l’accusé qui devrais vous juger, édition Clovis, 1997, p. 208.
- 2. Born in 1923, ordained a priest in Algeria in 1948, in the Congregation of the Lazarists, he was named director of the smeinary of Oran. In 1962, he had to flee from Algeria with 130 children including his seminarians, and settled in Salérans (Hautes-Alpes). Founder of the work Notre Dame de la Sainte Messe in Salérans, he devoted his life to trying to convert the Muslim Harkis who had been abandoned by all.
- 3. C’est moi l’accusé qui devrais vous juger, édition Clovis, 1997, p. 305.
- 4. Cf. G.-P. Wagner et D. Remy, La condamnation, Ulysse, 1992.