Brothers From Abroad

News: Commentary
by Church Militant  •  •  August 8, 2023   

'Strength & Honor' welcomes Catholics from India, Brazil

You are not signed in as a Premium user; you are viewing the free version of this program. Premium users have access to full-length programs with limited commercials and receive a 10% discount in the store! Sign up for only one day for the low cost of $1.99. Click the button below.

DETROIT ( - Faithful Catholic men from across the United States and Canada converged on Detroit this past weekend to attend Church Militant's 2023 Strength & Honor Conference. From Maine in the East to California in the West, this eclectic band of brothers represented 25 states — half those in the union — as well as Canada's largest province, Ontario.

As impressive as these transcontinental treks were, they paled in comparison to those of two attendees visiting from abroad: Milagres Pereira, who traveled some 8,200 miles from Goa, on the west coast of India, and Vinicius Adamo, who journeyed roughly 5,100 miles from Brazil's largest city, São Paulo. Their participation was made possible by the generosity of another Church Militant supporter.

Church Militant spoke with Pereira and Adamo about their respective pilgrimages to Detroit.

Milagres Pereira

Milagres Pereira works as an artist, a farmer and a lay evangelist in the state of Goa — a region first evangelized by the Portuguese more than 500 years ago.  

Milagres Pereira

Pereira has been following Church Militant for the past four years. He said he was first drawn to the apostolate by its efforts to shed light on corruption within the Church in India. 

"Sometime back, an article was written about certain things that were happening in Goa, and Church Militant endorsed what is right and said a lot of things that made sense," he recalled. 

"Since then, I've been watching Michael Voris and am quite impressed with his vigor, his desire for defending Church orthodoxy and conservative faith and tradition. I think today no one has been as vociferous and as emphatic in reporting on the things that are so important," Pereira added.  

When asked if he had benefitted from the conference, Pereira replied that although his journey had been long, "the whole thing was worth the effort."

"I am an itinerant preacher," he continued. "I preach and write books on things, and we have to use certain authorities and certain sources to back up what we say. I don't think there is anyone who has come across as powerfully as Church Militant."

The apostolate, he added, "is a very vocal, prophetic voice. That's a good thing."

Reflecting on the challenges the Church in India is facing, Pereira pointed to the sectarian campaign of oppression directed against the nation's faithful. Indian Catholics have been suffering persecution at the hands of Hindu radicals for decades.

Since the Hindu nationalist government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in 2014, the persecution of Catholics and other religious minorities has dramatically escalated.

In recent months, the violence has reached a crescendo, with Hindu fundamentalists seeking to "cleanse" Christians of all denominations from the northeastern state of Manipur. In response, top Catholic prelates have cultivated a policy of appeasement towards Hindu nationalist groups and politicians. But this approach has done nothing to stem the bloodshed.

Pereira noted that the greatest threats to the Church in India are internal, not external.

"We are more concerned with placating the Hindu majority government," Pereira said. "I'm afraid that if we continue like this, we may become something like the communist-controlled church in China — losing our integrity just to save our skin because of persecution."

In spite of the dangers posed by sectarianism, Pereira noted that the greatest threats to the Church in India are internal, not external. The greatest danger to the country's faithful, he said, is compromised clergy.

In the 1960s, Church authorities adopted a policy of not seeking to actively evangelize or convert Indians to the Faith; partially as a result of this, the Church in India is now largely pluralistic, with many clerics incorporating elements of Hindu worship into Catholic liturgy.

Rome Dispatch: Mixing Up Mary

Pereira scorned such developments, noting they have severely curtailed the growth of the Church in India. "This does not come close to the mandate spoken by Jesus Christ. He said go into the whole world and baptize and teach and do all the things I have taught you to do. Now, we are going back and suggesting Jesus was false."

"Our worship is decaying," he continued. "We are going down, and we are not really doing anything."

These challenges are compounded by the encroachment of what Pope Francis has termed, "ideological colonization." 

"All these LGBT issues and the whole thing about the gay agenda, those things are slowly filtering down even into the Church in India," Pereira states.

Pereira asked American Catholics to pray for their brethren in India.

All this, he observed, underscored the need for apostolates like Church Militant. Indian Catholics need to be equipped to combat the decay "in a very strong, very powerful manner," he said. "We need to train people, to alert them that many things are going wrong in the Church and are not going to be good for our children and grandchildren." 

Pereira asked American Catholics to pray for their brethren in India.

"Every Catholic should discover his faith and his roots in God and deepen his conviction. Where the convictions are deeper, that community will be self-sustaining because God will sustain," he stressed. "Please pray that every Catholic in India will really go back to the metanoia, to discovering God and living the Faith. Then we will be very powerful witnesses."

Vinicius Adamo

Retiree Vinicius Adamo hails from Brazil's (and South America's) largest city, São Paulo.

Like Pereira, he's been following Church Militant for several years. He describes the work of the apostolate as "so enlightening, so formative — helping to form me as a good Catholic."

Vinicius Adamo

Adamo described his ability to participate in the conference as a blessing. "I came because someone made it possible financially for me to come," he said, noting that he would not have been able to afford the trip without such assistance.

"I was wondering if I would someday meet you guys," he added, "especially Michael Voris."

When asked about the condition of the Church in his country, Adamo grew wistful, explaining that like its counterparts in the United States and India, Brazilian Catholicism is in an advanced state of decay.

Brazil has been a spiritual battleground for generations. In the late 1960s, Marxist-inspired Liberation Theology began to encroach upon the Church there, to devastating effect. Soon after, neo-pagan environmentalists claimed the country as a pet project of sorts — a progressive infiltration that helped spark the 2019 Amazon Synod.  

In all this, the country's hierarchy has been complicit. The Brazilian conference of bishops, Adamo noted, acts more like a secular nongovernmental organization than a vehicle to catechize and evangelize the nation.

Amazon Synod Report: Mother Earth

"It's very similar to what's happening here in the United States," he lamented. "The bishops are preoccupied with climate change and social justice. Faith formation is very, very poor."

Statistics on religious affiliation in Brazil confirm the decades-long unraveling. In 1970, 90% of Brazilians considered themselves Catholic; by 2020, that figure had plummeted to just 54%. According to some estimates, the country's Catholics are a minority.  

Adamo noted that the crumbling of the Church in Brazil has been accompanied by a destabilizing tilt toward the Left, both socially and politically.

"The state of the Church and the state of the country — they're interconnected," he observed. "It's so similar in Brazil to what you are facing here in the United States. Everything is so leftist, and the leftists in the Church are making the leftists in the government stronger."

Adamo is seeking ways to help stem the collapse — a key reason, he said, for making the long journey from São Paulo.

"I have a dream: to bring Church Militant to more Brazilians. I know how much good it would do for Brazilian Catholics to become aware of this apostolate. That's what I'm wanting to know — what can we do to make Church Militant available to Brazilians who don't speak English?"

--- Campaign 31877 ---


Have a news tip? Submit news to our tip line.

We rely on you to support our news reporting. Please donate today.
By commenting on you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our comment posting guidelines

Loading Comments