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Pope Benedict XVI Supports Teacher Accused Of Showing Graphic Images Of Apocalypse

An Italian religious studies teacher has been suspended for depicting the Apocalypse so vividly that it shocked an elementary school girl to tears. The teacher wrote to the Pope, who has sent her an encouraging response.

Pope Benedict XVI (Sergey Gabdurakhmanov)
Pope Benedict XVI (Sergey Gabdurakhmanov)

ROME - Pope Benedict XVI has offered his support and blessing to an Italian elementary school teacher who was suspended for showing graphic images of the apocalypse to her students, leaving some in tears.

Cristina Vai, a religious studies teacher at Bombicci school in Bologna, gave a lesson to her mostly six-year-old students on the struggle between good and evil, showing graphic images of violent fights between angels and the devil, and God's punishments.

The parents of a pupil complained with the school director that her daughter had been shocked by that lesson, and Vai was subsequently suspended. The veteran teacher called for help from the very top. "At the end of November, I wrote to the Pope, to tell him my situation and to thank him for his heroic battle against the current nihilist Zeitgeist," she said.

A few days ago, she received an answer. In a letter from Peter Brian Wells, Assessor of the General Affairs of Vatican Secretary of State, the Pope is quoted giving his blessing to the teacher, and expressing his support for a profession "executed with commitment and dedication." Benedict does not specifically cite the controversy, but thanks Vai for her "faithful gesture and for the sentiments that have inspired you. He prays for a constant generous commitment to shape a young generation of Christians."

Fabio Garagnani, a member of the Italian parliament, who has backed the teacher from the beginning of the matter, said that now she should be reinstated in her job. "I hope that this letter from the Pope will finally clear that the teacher is in in perfect accordance with Catholic orthodoxy." He said.

Read the original article in Italian

Photo - Sergey Gabdurakhmanov


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We’ve heard about the plight of the soldiers-turned-prisoners from Mariupol. Here are some traces of the disturbing fate of a young female doctor who’s been taken away.

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Marianna Mamonova wrote these words to her family, among the text messages and short phone calls that are the only remaining fragments used to piece together her recent past. We also have a photo of her, posted on Russian websites, where she looks into the lens, gaunt and exhausted, signed with a number like a concentration camp prisoner.

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Until the Russian-Ukrainian war, Mamonova’s biography was available to anyone who wanted to know. She was born in 1991, studied at the Ternopil Medical University, and later at the Kyiv Military Academy. After completing her studies, she was sent to work in the coastal city of Berdiansk. Her mother says that this is where her daughter's dream came true: She’d always wanted to be a military doctor, and worked in Berdiansk for three years, receiving the rank of officer in the Ukrainian army.

Beginning in 2014, she’d worked stints as a front-line doctor in the Donbas region, and when Russia invaded Ukraine in February she went to war again. This time in Mariupol.

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