As the Church reels, is an even larger scandal building?

As the gap widens between what the hierarchy says about Islam and what ordinary Catholics can see in the news or encounter in their own lives, many Catholics will become alienated from the Church.

(Photo: Muhammad Nouman | Unsplash.com)

The Church has been deeply damaged in recent weeks by revelations of widespread clerical sex abuse in Chile and Honduras, the further revelation that Cardinal McCarrick’s predatory behavior had been hushed-up, and now claims by an archbishop that Pope Francis knew about sanctions imposed on McCarrick by Pope Benedict XVI but repealed them.

It may seem that things couldn’t get much worse for the Church, but it almost certainly will. More revelations of abuse and cover-ups at the highest levels are likely to come, and the level of distrust and discouragement among ordinary Catholics is bound to grow.

Persecution of Christians and Islamization of Europe

But there is another scandal waiting in the wings which may prove larger and more devastating than the current one. The looming scandal concerns the Church’s facilitation of an Islamic takeover of much of the Western and non-Western world. If the term “Islamic takeover” seems overblown, then you may not be paying attention—to the escalating persecution of Christians in Iran, Egypt, Pakistan, and Indonesia; to the genocide against Christians in Iraq, Syria, and Nigeria; and to the gradual submission of European nations to Islamic demands.

Is the Church knowingly facilitating the persecution of Christians and the Islamization of Europe? No, but its semi-official policy toward Islam, nevertheless, has that effect. Ever since Vatican II, Church policy has been one of turning a blind eye to the violent and aggressive nature of Islam while declaring “esteem” for Islam as a fellow monotheistic religion.

For years now, Catholic leaders—the pope, bishops, priests, Catholic media, and Catholic educators—have covered up the large gap that divides Islam and Christianity. Instead they have poured all their energies into emphasizing the similarities between the two faiths, while simultaneously decrying “Islamophobia”—a term which seems to refer to any criticism of Islam.

As the gap widens between what the hierarchy says about Islam and what ordinary Catholics can see in the news or encounter in their own lives, many Catholics will become alienated from the Church. The priestly sex abuse scandals that broke in 2002 had that effect. In those areas that were hardest hit by the scandals, Church attendance dropped off dramatically. The same is likely to happen as the realities of Islamization put the lie to the Church’s Pollyannaish view of Islam. Only this time, the disaffection will be on a greater scale.

Why? For two reasons. First because the addition of this second scandal to the sex abuse scandals will have a compounding effect—the straw-that-broke-the-camels-back. Second, this new “straw” is potentially a good deal heavier than all the previous straws combined. The number of victims of sex abuse by priests is difficult to estimate; it could amount to tens of thousands worldwide. But the victims of worldwide Islamization will be numbered in the tens of millions.

I’m not talking here about killings and massacres, but about the daily humiliations and persecutions that non-Muslims suffer in Muslim lands. If present demographic and cultural trends continue it is quite possible that several European nations will fall under Islamic control within the next twenty years. Sweden, Belgium, and the Netherlands are prime candidates. Germany, France, and the UK are also vulnerable. As sharia law spreads through Europe, so will the abuses that accompany it. And many of these abuses are sexual or sex-related such as honor killings, child marriages, wife beating, and female genital mutilation.

Although they are hardly identical, the two scandals resemble each other in two important respects. Both involve widespread sex abuse and both involve a cover-up. In Europe the abuse of vulnerable women and vulnerable minors, both Muslim and non-Muslim is now widespread. Sweden has the second highest incidence of rape in the world. Thousands of teen-aged girls in English towns such as Rotherham, Rochdale, and Telford have been victimized by Muslim rape gangs. Twelve hundred women were sexually assaulted on a single night outside the Cologne train station on New Year’s Eve 2016. Meanwhile, the number of Muslim girls and women in Europe who have been subject to FGM is estimated to be well over 500,000.

The silence of Church leaders

Priests and bishops, of course, are not committing these crimes, but they are strangely silent about them. They do not speak out about them the way they do when an incident of “Islamophobia” hits the news. Perhaps they don’t speak out, because they are, in part, responsible for the increased presence in Europe of all those additional rapists, wife-abusers and FGM practitioners.

It’s no secret that Church leaders have been at the forefront of those calling for a more welcoming attitude toward migrants. A recent National Post headline tells the story: “The loudest opponent of Italy’s new anti-migrant policy? The Catholic Church.” The voices of opposition range from the Pope, who has said that migrant security is more important than national security, down to the village priest. The Post report cites one priest who said that the anti-migrant party “cannot call themselves Christians.” And it quotes an Archbishop who says, “The Church can’t stay silent. I can’t stay silent.”

Yet the Church has stayed silent about the massive crime wave that has swept Europe as a result of the open-borders policies it has lobbied for. The Post article mentions a pro-migration statement by the Italian Bishop’s Conference” illustrated on its website with the photo of a weak migrant who had been clinging to flotsam in the Mediterranean before her rescue.” But where are the photos of the rape gang victims? The victims of car and knife attacks? The bruised and bloody faces of the elderly couple attacked in their apartment by Muslim migrants? And where are the photos of the acid-scarred babies and children? The city of London now has the highest per capita rate of acid attacks in the world, but such statistics seem of little interest to Church leaders.

Church’s leaders have not only been guilty of encouraging mass migration of a type that would predictably result in a wave of horrific crimes, they have been guilty of looking the other way when the crimes occur. And when a terror attack is too big to ignore, they assure us that such acts have nothing to do with Islam.

These daily cover-ups of Muslim criminal activity are part of a much larger cover-up—the cover-up of the full truth about Islam. As mentioned earlier, Church authorities and educators have presented a one-sided picture of Islam—one with all the scary parts left out. For example, in Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis asserts that “authentic Islam and a proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.” Not surprisingly, he has been thanked on several occasions by top Muslim authorities for his defense of Islam.

Like the sex abuse scandal, this sugar coated portrayal of Islam constitutes a betrayal of the shepherd’s duty to protect. It misleads Catholics on an issue vital to their security. For example, the only threat from migrants that Pope Francis will admit to is “threats to our comfort.” The hierarchy’s misleading assurances on Muslim migration can be summed up by a banner that “welcomers” in European countries sometimes display. It proclaims: “They’re not dangerous, they’re in danger.” However, as more and more Europeans come to realize that a significant number of the migrants are indeed dangerous, their feelings of betrayal will increase. More and more European governments are now tightening their immigration policies. If the Church remains the last and “loudest” voice calling for the importation of cultures that are misogynistic, anti-Semitic, and anti-Christian to the core, the result may well be a final falling away from the Church on the part of those who already have their doubts.

If the church persists in its pro-Islam policy, several consequences will likely follow. For one thing, the Church will be further discredited. As more Catholics come to realize that Church leaders have been misleading them about Islam, distrust will grow. Almost everything that Church leaders say will become suspect, and the exodus from the Church—particularly in the West—will likely accelerate.

The “evil twin brother” hypothesis

Another consequence is the development of what I call the “evil twin brother” hypothesis. As Church leaders continue to emphasize their solidarity with Islam, many—both inside and outside the Church—will be prompted to ask some obvious questions. Why would anyone want to declare solidarity with a faith that considers jihad obligatory? That denies the equality of men and women? That prescribes stoning or whipping for adultery, and death for apostasy?

Here’s what I had to say about the matter six years ago:

It was precisely by claiming that Christianity and Islam are essentially the same that atheists were able to make so much hay in the aftermath of 9/11. The atheist argument is not that Islam is bad apple among world religions, but that it is just like all religions—irrational, cruel, and unjust. Atheists such as Hitchens and Dawkins made a particular point of portraying Islam and Christianity as evil twin brothers… When Christian clergy identify themselves with Muslim clerics, it serves only to strengthen the atheist argument that there is little difference between the two faiths.

What is especially problematic is that many Catholics—including some prominent conservative Catholics—extend the “common ground” claim to include sexual values. Some have argued that Catholics and Muslims are natural allies against immodesty, pornography, homosexuality, promiscuity, and so on. But, as Nonie Darwish has demonstrated in several books (particularly in Wholly Different), Christianity and Islam are miles apart when it comes to sexual ethics. Islam sanctions polygamy, easy divorce for men, child marriage, and, in times of war, sex slavery. In Afghanistan, the dancing boys (“bacha bazi”) are practically a cultural institution, and in Iran it is considered perfectly legitimate for seminary students to enter into “temporary marriages”—essentially a form of prostitution. Most of these practices—especially child marriage—are strongly defended by Muslim clerics. In other words, what the West considers sexual misconduct is just business as usual in many parts of the Muslim world. As the non-Muslim world learns more about these practices, the claim by Catholics that Islam is their ally in upholding sexual morality may prove particularly damaging.

If one invites comparisons, comparisons will be made, and in one respect transgressions by Catholic clerics suffer by comparison with similar transgressions by Muslim clerics. At first glance, both seem to be guilty of hypocrisy. But the Imam with two wives, the Muslim clerics who lobby for lowering the age of marriage to twelve, and the seminary student who pays for sex, are all within the letter of the law. They know better than most what Islamic law allows. They can’t very well be accused of hypocrisy.

It’s another matter with the Catholic cleric who violates his vow of chastity. People in the Western world are typically more outraged by hypocrisy than the actual sin committed by the hypocrite. Individuals who are forthright about their sexual activities are often celebrated in Western literature and Western media for their bravery and authenticity. The hypocrisy of Catholic clergy may lead to more defections from the Church and, ironically, to more conversions to Islam which will be seen by some as the more honest of the two religions.

Progressive enablers

But Christian defections to Islam is another story for another article. Let’s conclude with a very brief discussion of how both scandals—the cover-up of sexual abuse and the cover-up of the threat presented by Islam—might be dealt with. Since many others have written extensively about solutions to the first problem, let’s focus on the one suggestion (other than prayer and fasting) that seems most likely to set the Church on the right path in regard to both scandals.

Many have suggested that what is needed is a thorough housecleaning at the upper levels of the Church. A clean sweep is probably not a practical goal but a housecleaning is certainly in order. It’s difficult to see how the people who allowed the sex abuse problem to metastasize are suddenly going to turn around and solve it. There’s a good deal of truth in the adage, “personnel is policy”. You can create new policies on paper, but if the old personnel is in charge of implementing them, nothing will happen.

Interestingly, the people who enabled the first scandal (clerical sex abuse) are most probably the same people who are facilitating the second scandal (the cover-up of Islam’s aggressive nature). Those Catholic leaders who subscribe to “progressive” views on sexual morality, likely subscribe to the “progressive” view that all cultures and religions are essentially the same. The relativistic and non-judgmental thinking that Pope St. John Paul II criticized in Veritatis Splendor can be used to excuse both sexual sins and cultural sins. The same false virtues of tolerance and inclusivity that allowed the first scandal to grow, have now become the rationale for overlooking the many problems with Islam.

There is some anecdotal evidence that those who are “progressive” on sexual matters are also inclined to minimize the Islamic threat. Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Chairman of the German Bishop’s Conference, who has raised the possibility of blessings for same-sex unions, has also been among the chief “welcomers” of Muslim migrants. Cardinal McCarrick, who symbolizes the current abuse crisis, may also stand as a symbol of Catholic clerics who naively trust in the good intentions of Islamic clergy. After returning from an official visit to Iran, he applauded the disastrous Iran nuclear deal in an essay for the Washington Post and reassured his readers that they could trust the Iranians because Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei had issued a fatwa against the possession of nuclear weapons (a fatwa that proved non-existent).

The Iran deal greatly boosted Iran’s ability to sponsor terrorism worldwide, and, in that sense, McCarrick could be considered an enabler of Islam. But, then, the USCCB itself was a strong supporter of the deal, and Bishop Oscar Cantu, the head of the Committee on International Justice and Peace warned Congress not to “undermine” the deal.

In any event, bishops whose sense of sin is limited to man-made climate change and the building of border walls are less likely to notice the approach of other types of evil. It is probable that clerics who saw no danger in the rise of homosexual networks in the Church will also see no danger in the spread of a supposedly “peaceful” fellow religion—even though that religion has a long history of subjugating other cultures and religion. By the time that they do notice the danger, a great deal of—possibly irreversible—damage will have been done.


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About William Kilpatrick 56 Articles
William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Psychological Seduction, Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right from Wrong and, most recently, Christianity, Islam, and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West. Professor Kilpatrick’s articles on cultural and educational topics have appeared in First Things, Policy Review, American Enterprise, American Educator, The Los Angeles Times, and various scholarly journals. His articles on Islam have appeared in Aleteia, National Catholic Register, Investor’s Business Daily, FrontPage Magazine, and other publications. Professor Kilpatrick’s work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation. For more on his work and writings, visit his website, turningpointproject.com.

20 Comments

  1. The problem in a nutshell re Islam is this:
    The Church can tell us that “Islam is a religion of peace” as often, loud and long as it wishes; but the real-world evidence that Islam is anything but that is overwhelming.
    Thus either we believe Church ‘dogma’ on this point or we accept reality.
    Not a tough call in my mind, at least unless one’s position in the Church insulates you from the effects (from check-in times at airports, through vehicle barriers and on).
    And if the Church hierarchy insists on maintaining a self-evident fiction, then it loses all credibility.

    • The most important islamic belief nobody talks about is this : The Jesus (Isa) ,which they so proudly tell us that they venerate him, is NOT our Jesus. He is supposed to come back at the end (like we believe) but he is going to fight with the Mahdi against all unbelievers.
      Who are these unbelievers you might ask. First he tells the world that he is muslim and that he was never crucified.(!)Then he will say that he is going to break all the crosses(!) and spread sharia over the the whole world (!)Then there will be peace.
      When you hear this you know enough.

    • And the church is also harboring some of these people in their churches while helping them to come over the US borders illegally.

  2. Dear Professor Kilpatrick, thank you so much for this essay. Indeed you are so right. I can see some of the things you describe here. As an European living in Switzerland, but very often crossing over to Germany and France in the weekends, what you describe is accurate. Actually in Germany there is a university dedicated to the study of Islam. In Freiburg, Switzerland, there is a islamic study in the local university. The ignorance of Islam among Europeans is incredible. Have you heard of the German politician and writer Thilo Sarrazin? He also writes extensively on the dangers of the ongoing islamisation of Europe. He believes that in 30 years, Europe will be completely islamic. But I am more of opinion that it will happen in 2 decades, as you also believe it to be the case. If this trend is not stopped, and it may be too late now, it will be fairly easy for Christianity completely disappear in an already de-Christianized western world. The young generations do not possess the spiritual tools and the Church’s moral teaching necessary to fight it.

  3. The primary rift existing in the Church is the abandonment of what exists as our “social contract,” our “ecclesial bond,” WHO IS JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, but whom we always encounter concretely in the way we communally order our lives in our shared understanding of Holy Scripture, the Apostolic Tradition which is the perennial Magisterium of the Church.
    That understanding has been jettisoned by “professionals,” by “academics.” The abandonment of the perennial Magisterium has been joined by priests, religious of both sexes, and by the episcopate in an attempt it appears to recover legitimacy and relevancy in a world that has undergone enormous change do to multiple factors. Ecumenism and interfaith accommodations are merely an attempt to befriend the world, the flesh and the devil. The nature of reality ultimately does not permit of that.
    It does not work as we have tragically been made aware. You can’t have a two tiered Church of the enlightened clergy class who cling to power subscribing to an eviscerated shell of demythologized, deconstructed post-Christian notions, while dosing out children’s portions of piety to the laity. The clergy class has decomposed into secular materialism, abandoning the simple loving devotional faithful spousal relationship to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
    What is the place of asceticism and personal mortification in their lives? Our lives?
    A new awareness of the state of our ecclesial reality came to my mind when there was no small nor underpublicized rebellion of the ordained upon the announcement that Pope Benedict was to announce a broader provision of St. John Vianney as patron of ALL priests [not only parish priests]. Thus it was revealed that the humble confessor prone to acts of personal mortification and characterized by deepest devotion and common sense though impoverished of “intellectual” acumen. The Curé of Ars wasn’t up to snuff for our clergy class. They find their pride in academic relevancy at the cost of sanctity.
    You can’t give what you don’t have. Can an informed laity emerge from the instruction of ignorant and obstreperous priests? Selling out Chinese Catholicism to the totalitarian state, the abandonment of Middle-Eastern Christians to the Islamic horde, as well as “James Martin” and Jorge Mario Bergoglio, et al., are symptomatic of a priesthood built on polluted notions substituted for the perennial Magisterium. Indeed the entire Bergoglian administration of the Church is now constituted by such characters. The bold admission of the existence of sexual license and pathology within the body of the priestly caste need be accompanied by the confession of its consubstantial reality – virulent heresy rooted in malevolent theological and moral formation.

  4. It’s an evil ideology (expressed in numerous unacceptable ways) that has invaded, infested and infected the RCC hierarchy, and only a true sterilization will rid us of this pestilence – the sterilization that only the light of Jesus Christ can provide.

    We will pray; and we will also act, as is required.

  5. “It would take too long to tell you all the stories about this famous impostor (…) Mohamed’s religion consists of a monstrous mixture of Judaism, Paganism and Christianity. Mohamed propagated his religion, not through miracles or persuasive words, but through the force of arms. [It is] a religion that favors every sort of licentiousness and which, in a short time, allowed Mohamed to become the leader of a troop of brigands. Along with them he raided the countries of the East and conquered the people, not by introducing the Truth, not by miracles or prophecy; but for one reason only: to raise his sword over the heads of the conquered shouting: believe or die.” (St. John Bosco)

  6. I lived in a muslim country where the Catholic church was desecrated, the priest and parishioners threatened. The Koran requires muslims to kill all those of opposing faiths once they have the population numbers to do so.
    Our years of “Comparative Religion” classes in Catholic schools have just taught our children to think that all faiths are equal.

  7. About the “Dancing Boys”, it is not said they are pre-pubescent boys, so the the “girlish: pretense can (?) ve “valid”. As soon as they grow any kind of facial hair and so, out they go. They have done “their part”.

  8. About the “Dancing Boys”, it is not said they are pre-pubescent boys, so the the “girlish” pretense can (?) ve “valid”. As soon as they grow any kind of facial hair and their penises and testes start to develop, and so on, out they go. They have done “their part”.

  9. Kilpatrick summarizes: “Ever since Vatican II, Church policy has been one of turning a blind eye to the violent and aggressive nature of Islam while declaring ‘esteem’ for Islam as a fellow monotheistic religion.” Then he recounts the growing record of sexual aggression by immigrant-Islam into Europe, and anti-Christian violence elsewhere.

    Peeling back his parallel between Islam and the post-Christian world (“the evil twin-brother hypothesis”) we might say that early-on Islamic belief strangled reason in the cradle, while Enlightenment rationalism then guillotined Christianity. What keeps coming back to me as a novice in all this is Jean Guitton (a lay commentator during the Second Vatican Council) and his insight into historic Islam’s particular contradictions:

    “Islam has not wanted to choose between Heaven and Earth. It proposed instead a blending of heaven and earth, sex and mysticism, war and proselytism, conquest and apostolate. In more general terms, Islam proposed a blending of the spiritual and the temporal worlds which neither in Islam nor among the pagans have ever been divided” (Great Heresies and Church Councils, 1963/5).

    Sounds like the secularist and post-Christian West today. Sounds like so many millennials and others who claim to be “spiritual but not religious.” Sounds like the life issues alongside “the culture of death,” and now sounds like authentic sexual morality awash in the utter formlessness of so-called gender theory.

    What about those clerics who (like Muslim imams?) by their ambiguity either enable sexual corruption or more expediently have looked the other way? (After all, Cardinal Cupich’s more important priorities average things out for the good.) Catholic morality still may be solidly proclaimed in writing, as by even Fr. James Martin in his recent America article, but then by discernment it is pastorally set aside. The technology of the written language is eclipsed by the primitive symbolic language of Martin’s rainbow flag and privileged sound bites as at the Dublin microphone (“homophobes”).

    Within the West, how much alike are the pre-modern and blood-line nepotism of some Renaissance popes, and the post-modern, clique-nepotism of the non-procreative Lavender Mafia? Both have uncles (McCarrick) and “nephews”. No fatherhood, as is also lacking in Muslim theology (the divine Fatherhood is absent from the Qur’an).

    But, in the long run, do all religions still converge—or not? Are they equal?

    Maybe yes for natural religions, but in light of the unique and supernatural Incarnation any theology of such multicultural convergence—the presumptive kitchen-blender theology of both Islam and modernity—is a deception. Sounds almost like a theological analogue to homogenized gender theory. No distinctions allowed. A far cry from truly spousal commitment to the “other”, i.e., of Christ to his Church, or of a man and woman to each other in real “marriage”.

    The ultimate sticking point for “fellow monotheistic” Islam is that Islam does not accept the gifted sacredness of each distinct human person—-as revealed by a triune God in the unique, historical and divine person of Jesus Christ. “Christ the Lord…by the revelation of the mystery of the Father and His love, fully reveals man to himself and makes his supreme calling [personal and face-to-face deification in heaven] clear” (The Church in the Modern World, n. 22).

    As an eclectic religion, all-engulfing Islam is, in a sense, a religion of peace, but this peace comes only after everyone is Muslim, either by conquest or multi-century assimilation—and setting aside Sunni and Shi-ite sectarian violence! A futile act to parse Christian political institutions out of the Qur’an.

  10. There are prophecies about the Moslems rising up against the Church and all peoples.
    Venerable Bartholemew Holzhauser, a parish priest in the 1600s in Germany had visions of the 20 th century and beyond, stating: “These are evil times, a century full of dangers and calamities. Heresy is everywhere, and the followers of heresy are in power almost everywhere… But God will permit a great evil against his Church: Heretics and Tyrants will come suddenly and unexpectedly… and destroy everything.” Ven. Holzhauser continues: “Are we not to fear during this period that the Mohammedans will come again, working out their sinister schemes against the Latin Church.”
    Also, Our Lady of Peace appears at Anguera , Brazil : “The day will come when the furious Lion (Mohammedans) will lay at the feet of the dragon. A union of beasts will bring great suffering to my poor children.” “In the Iberian Peninsula is the nest of the beasts, (Mohammedans) which will bring great suffering to mankind.”
    This was part of the research that I was led to do, by the Holy Spirit through his anointing, to put together, over the last twenty some years, into a book called, “After The Warning To 2038”. It is an accumulation of prophecies from Venerable, Blessed, and Canonized saints; including the major apparitions of Mary and the prophecies given to those visionaries of our time. It includes prophecies that our Lord has confirmed to me, such as Mary appearing at Anguera, Brazil.
    I have been able to place the unfolding of the 10 secrets or events of Medjugorje, in some kind of a time frame, and in an order, of these events, about to unfold. The web site is, After The Warning to 2038 . com . These prophecies give us valuable awareness, available for priests and laypeople, to prepare us to get through these major “Storm” events that God intends to unfold on this planet.

  11. Hearing such obvious truth today is such a joy it brings tears to the eyes – our Orwellian culture has tried to destroy clear and compelling reason. Thank you for these words.

  12. Islam is going to dominate the West in a way many of you still blue-pilled wont expect: they’re going to take our women, fair and square, with their superior testosterone. Our soy-ingesting, video game-playing lads won’t have a ghost of a chance. The women will be there one day … and gone the next.

  13. Thank you for a most well-written and factual assessment of the current state of Catholicism as it relates to Islam. While I’m not a Catholic and never have been, I have several friends who have left the Church because of the very problem Prof. Kilpatrick has accurately described. I would offer a solution to any Catholic: come out from under Church dogma and the works salvation prescribed therein (such a work’s righteousness is also Islam’s demands) and simply come to Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior alone. He paid the full price of your sin when He died once for all. Come, believe, accept. Romans 4:5 “But to him who is NOT working but is believing on Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

    • You might want to look at Revelation 20:12-15:
      *
      12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Also another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, by what they had done. 13 And the sea gave up the dead in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead in them, and all were judged by what they had done. 14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire; 15 and if any one’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
      *
      Pay close attention to people being judged by what they had done.

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