Various reactions to the Da Vinci Code

Source: FSSPX News


In France, an Ipsos survey commissioned by the Catholic weekly Famille Chrétienne, has tried to assess the influence of the novel the Da Vinci Code on its readers. It reveals that only two out of ten French people believe in the Divine nature of Christ. Seven out of ten think that Christ makes no difference to their existence and one third of them do not believe He ever existed. It should be noted that amongst its readers, 48% think that Jesus was only a man, compared to 29% of those who have not read it. Likewise for Mary Magdalen. She could have been married to Christ for one out of two of those surveyed having read Dan Brown’s book. Compared with 26.4% of those who had not.

 According to a BVA survey carried out by the monthly magazine Science et Vie, almost a third (31%) of those who have read the book, or heard of it, think that this book is inspired, at least in part, by actual facts concerning the life of Christ. Amongst these, 24% are absolutely convinced that Dan Brown’s book is based on actual facts, and 7% deem it to be a mixture of facts and esoteric literature. Less than half (49%) of those interviewed considered that the book was not factual and 20% said that they did not know.


The weekly Famille Chrétienne is offering a free special series on the Da Vinci Code. Baptiste Fourtané, the director of distribution of Famille Chrétienne, recalls that the film is taken from a book which, playing on the ambiguity between fiction and history, has thrown up lots of questions from people, including Catholics: “Would the Church have lied to us on the real life of Jesus, the role of Mary Magdalen, the place of women in the Church…?” The debate which follows the release of the film risks being intense and disorderly,” he said. “This is why the editorial office of Famille Chrétienne wants to accompany this event by offering an editorial series spread out over four editions, with the aim of taking stock of the situation and of opening up routes to fruitful reflection and of showing the true face of the Church, “because we have nothing to hide and everything to make known.”

 The monthly revue Il est vivant!, published by the charismatic Emmanuel movement, is reviewing the errors in the Da Vinci Code and is offering a special edition. With a circulation of 350,000, this issue will be available free to parishes, chaplaincies and movements who want it. “It is a question,” explained the editor, “of responding ‘positively and without controversy’ to the errors concerning the Christian faith presented in the book and the film. To criticize without referring to historic reality and re-establishing the truth, is pointless.”


In the United States, Opus Dei launched a new campaign against the novel Da Vinci Code, a few days after the release of the film adaptation. “There is no definition or theory – whether academic or popular – that provides a basis for applying the pejorative terms “sect” or “cult” to Opus Dei,” protested the movement in a press release. “We would like to remind them that the Da Vinci Code is a work of fiction, and it is not a reliable source of information on these matters.”

 Conservative religious groups, such as “Concerned Women for America” (CWA), are not to be outdone. The organization has published a list of the “The Top Ten Da Vinci Code Distortions.” “The Da Vinci Code is a clever and dangerous book suffused with lies, distortions, Satanic imagery and historical inaccuracies, all designed to cast doubt in readers’ minds about the deity of Jesus Christ,” said a spokesman for CWA, Robert Knight.


 In Singapore, film censors have banned the film for those under 16, stating that an audience which had not been warned would be incapable of distinguishing fiction from reality. “The majority (of the board of censors) came to the conclusion that this film should be classed in the category of thrillers and fiction,” said a communiqué from the Media Development Authority (MDA). “The members have agreed that the film may be shown, but access to it should be restricted, because only an adult audience is capable of distinguishing between fact and fiction,” added the communiqué. The MDA, which oversees the board of censors, includes religious representatives and views the content of the traditional forms of media, as well as those of the internet.


In Greece, the Orthodox Church has asked its faithful to boycott the Da Vinci Code film. The Holy-Synod has produced a text which was read out on Sunday in Greek Orthodox Churches, according to the newspaper Ta Nea of Athens. Orthodox believers have been asked to “preserve their faith” by not reading the book and not seeing the film.