By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, Latin America Correspondent
BRAZIL, September 17, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A Brazilian pastor is being threatened with "legal measures" by government officials following a sermon condemning the ruling party’s support for decriminalizing abortion, the homosexual agenda, and infanticide committed by indigenous tribes in the Amazon rain forest.
In a YouTube video that has now been viewed over 1.6 million times, Pastor Paschoal Piragine Jr. of the First Baptist Church of Curitiba, warns his flock that the ruling Brazilian Labor Party (PT) is seeking to create "institutionalized evil" in Brazil.
"We need to take a stand and say: ‘we don’t want this in our country,’ and look for people to represent us to say, ‘I will vote against such things.’ Otherwise, evil will be made official, and God will have no other option but to judge our land," says Piragine.
"And I would not only ask you to pray — I think we should all pray — but to take a stand, and when you vote, to vote for people who take a clear stance against these things and make a commitment to fight in the national Congress, and in the institutions of government, against the legalization of evil," he adds.
After showing his flock a video presentation on the pro-abortion and anti-family political movements that threaten to legalize abortion and destroy traditional marriage, Piragine notes that the PT "has made a commitment on this issue."
"During this year’s meeting, where they select their representatives, [President Luiz Lula] made them pass an agreement on these issues. In other words, if a PT representative or senator, votes against any of these laws in accordance with his conscience, he is expelled from the party. Two federal representatives were expelled from the PT for expressing their opposition to abortion."
Noting that some Catholic bishops had already urged Brazilians to vote against the PT, Piragine adds, "I would tell you the same thing. Some people won’t like what I am saying, but I am saying it very clearly."
"As a pastor I have never done this. I am not telling you to vote for A or B. I am going to tell you whom not to vote for: for people who are working in favor of evil in our land. Otherwise, my dear ones, God will judge our land."
Apparently alarmed by the massive distribution of the video, high officials of President Luiz Lula’s regime have been lashing out at Piragine.
In an interview on Brazil’s CBN Radio, PT member and federal congressman Enio Verri expressed outrage at the video.
"With his own words he committed a great sin and will have to respond to his own community," said Verri. "But the PT is going to take the appropriate legal measures as quickly as possible, be sure of that."
The Leader of Government of the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies, which is the rough equivalent of the Speaker of the House in the United States, has responded with a public letter denying Piragine’s accusations and claiming that members of the PT have the right to dissent from the party line based on their consciences.
"It is not true that the deputies of the PT were expelled for opposing abortion," writes Deputy Gilmar Alves Machado. “It is true that they had conflict with women’s movements over issues related to abortion, but they were not expelled. Because of those problems, they were punished by the PT, which led them to change parties."
Embassy of Brazil in the USA
3006 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Phone: (202) 238-2700
Fax: (202) 238-2827
Embassy of Brazil in Canada
450 Wilbrod Street
Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6M8
Phone: (613) 237-1090 or (613) 755-5160
Fax: (613) 237-6144
Embassies of Brazil to other Nations: http://www.embassyworld.com/embassy/Brazil/Brazil1.html
The First Baptist Church of Curitiba (Portuguese)