What do these objects
have in common?
Mouse over images to find out
Killer Pet food
Date Rape Toys
and ... Crucifixes?
What do they have in common?
They're all Made in China.
These days Just about everything, it seems, is Made in China.
Why? Chinese imports are cheap. And that translates into greater profits for American businesses. Even Catholic businesses.
Aside from the hidden dangers - lead-based paint, poisonous substances, etc, there might be another danger.
A danger to our souls.
A Prayer for China.
Oh Lord, comfort China and those persecuted for Christ in that great country. Grant them joy in their communion with the universal Church. Bless them so that the seed they plant during their years of sufferings, patience and love will be richly harvested. O Lord, to those brothers and sisters who chose to be separated from You, may they return to one fold and one Shepherd.
Click on the image above to enlarge and print.
Something to Think About:
After the horrifying story about Aqua Dots and the glue-like substance that converts into the date rape drug ... we recalled a problem we had a few years ago with rosaries Made in China. There were colored images inset into the Paters and these kept popping off. We couldn't help but wonder what might be in the glue.
Do you kiss your Rosary? We do.
While you're praying, please pray for the aborted babies here, but also in China.
Here are prayers to the Guardian Angels of aborted babies in China.
And prayers for the persecuted Priests in China.
CATHOLIC MARKETING NETWORK:
MAMMON OVER MORALITY
In August 2008, by an overwhelming majority, Congress passed the Consumer Product Safety Act, largely to address issues in Chinese produced products in the American market and their impact on the health and welfare of Americans, especially children. Fittingly, this act does not address what should be a severe concern for every Catholic: financial support of a nation that has institutionalized forced abortion and infanticide. It "merely" addressed the safety of our children. That's good news, isn't it? Catholic Marketing Network didn't think so. A bit of a long story, but important to read. The end might make you weep. Read more
A Hoax? Sadly, No!
Aborted Babies Are
Sold as Health Food!
Read The Seven Sorrows of China to learn the truth about Catholic persecution and Fetal Soup at $40 a bowl and then let us know if you think Catholic gift shops should carry products Made in China.
Sweatshop Crucifixes and the Cathedral
Is Everyone Missing the Point?
On November 20, 2007, Catholics were stunned to learn that Saint Patrick's Cathedral was selling Crucifixes manufactured under horrific conditions in Chinese sweatshops. The press release quoted a worker who endured a typical 19 hour shift:
“Jesus, take pity on me!
I’m going to die of exhaustion.”
The press coverage was extensive, with citations from the 73 page report. The gift shop at Saint Patrick's Cathedral, a popular tourist spot, pulled the items from their shelves, pending investigation.
There's a sure-fire way alienate the Church hierarchy: hold a press conference about a problem with the Church and don't tell them about it. That's just what the National Labor Committee did. And the results were as expected. The spokesperson for the Archdiocese accused the NLC of exploiting the Cathedral and then formally gave them the old heave-ho. Ouch! As a former public relations professional, we think there might have been a better way around this. So did the NLC although they decidedly neglected to recognize what a powerful ally the Church might have been.
Was that the end of it? No, no and no. Not with the Christmas gift season underway and close to $5 billion at stake. Even the little guys were afraid to go up against a China-friendly giant like CBA and joined in distributing the spin. So, were they made in sweatshops. Weren't they made in sweatshops. It appears as though they were according to the documentation provided.
But we think they're all missing the bigger (bloodier) picture. China has an institutionalized program of forced abortions and sterilization. In fact, they use U.N. funds to do it. Not enough? (Ironically China has banned RU-486 as unsafe!)
Aborted babies are sold as a "health food" in China. Warning: these links are very disturbing. Note: some photos circulated on the internet depict an "artist" eating a baby and various sources have debunked it. The link we have provided is from a Chinese news source. See also scholarly research on this precedent as regards famine and cannibalism: Chen, T.S, Chen P.S., Medical cannibalism in China: the case of Ko-Ku. Pharos Alpha Omega Honor Med. Soc. 1998 Spring, and China Through the Sliding Door.
China has also institutionalized the persecution of Christians. Especially Catholic Priests. And they like to blow up Marian Shrines. Not enough? How about China's "nuclear option" for destroying the U.S. economy? Or their new friendship with the Communist oil-rich Venezuela? Or organ harvesting from prisoners - sometimes living prisoners killed in the labor camps for their parts.
Cartoonist Bruce Tinsley gets it. His Mallard Filmore 12 Days of Christmas pricked our consciences with mention of our celebration of Christmas with gifts Made in China - a country that tortures Christians. Even the Jewish World Review gets it.
We think you get the picture. So why is it such a problem for the bigger institutions to get a grip on it? Especially Catholics? Why would any respectable manufacturer of Catholic devotional items go to China? Why would any respectable Catholic organization defend that practice? And why would any individual Catholic refuse to stand up and say something about it?
What are you going to do? Let us know.
What have we done? We gathered up all of the inventory we had from Autom - the DiGiovanni and Milagros lines that are Made in China, not Italy and the San Francis inventory - and donated it to our (now former) parish and asked that they would use it to raise money for the Right to Life movement in our area. Did they? No. I was told the items were used as gifts to "special parishioners". Then I learned the truth: they were given to a Catholic goods shop that had ties to their former deacon so that he could get discounts. I found a few more Made in China pieces, and gave them directly to a Pro Life group. We are a small company and it was a major financial blow, but it had to be done.
|Not Just Cheap Goods But a Moral Issue
Catholic Home and Garden earns its keep by selling Catholic books, rosaries, statues and other devotional items. If you've read "How We Started," you know that our initial inventory consisted of exclusively vintage devotionals. Before long, we realized that if we were going to survive, we'd have to expand our product line. We began the process of sourcing items for sale.
Not surprisingly, we found that many of the items we purchased in wholesale lots were Made in China. At first it didn't seem to be much of an issue. We learned which items and vendors to avoid. There were resin based statues with hand painted details that gave male saints the appearance of wearing lurid make up and female saints the look of trollops. Rosaries with cheap colored insets that fell off were immediately sent back. The product lines continued to disappoint, and eventually we stopped buying them.
In 2004 one of our favorite vendors announced a new line of exquisite holy cards and greeting cards. Those of us who run Catholic businesses were very excited and pre-ordered before they were available for shipment.
The cards featured traditional designs, rich colors and were embossed. And they were reasonably priced. How did they do it? They were a small family run business with their own printing press here in the United States - but the embossing? They must have gotten very sophisticated.
We turned the cards over and saw "Printed in China." That told the entire story.
I will never forget a conversation I had with another Catholic business owner about this line. It had to do with the "Made in China" designation. She was outraged. "China has a policy of forced abortion. As a Catholic, I cannot in good conscience sell these products. I'm going to return them and tell them why."
A hour later she called me back, quite annoyed. The holy card vendor was defending herself by claiming that they outsourced the printing to China as a form of evangelization! Talk about spin. She didn't buy the story and neither did I. That's where we parted ways. She returned her inventory. I didn't. Today I'm sorry I didn't.
Until recent months, the popularity of cheap Chinese goods continued to soar. The American consumer was addicted. Those with the financial ability to resist low prices were often hard-pressed to find alternatives - if they bothered to give it a second thought at all.
Today, we can no longer afford to look the other way for reasons of health and safety. More importantly we, as Catholics, need to take a close look at the morality of supporting the Chinese economy.
Many Catholics have engaged in boycotts of companies that support abortion and activities contrary to Catholic doctrine but don't think twice about supporting a nation that arrests Priests, imposes forced sterilization on women who have become pregnant with more than one child, and that practices infanticide. Each dollar we "save" by buying cheap Chinese goods is a dollar that fuels an inhumane and immoral government.
While our government cannot afford to impose sanctions without running the risk of complete economic collapse, we as Catholics can act.
Look at the labels. If it says Made in China, don't buy it. If you can't find an alternative, let the shop manager know that you won't buy Chinese products and why.
When you visit your local religious goods store, look for the labels and ask the store owner to stop carrying these products.
Contact the larger religious goods suppliers and let them know that you object to their support of the murderous Chinese economy.
As for Catholic Home and Garden, we will no longer carry any goods manufactured in China regardless of the economic impact on our future.
1 To receive alerts on these issues visit the American Family Association site.
What are your thoughts on this issue? Email us.
One of our friends suggests that we should all write to our representatives in government to ask that all items containing materials from China should be labeled. Let the buyer beware.
Catholic Companies Who Manufacture in China
Each individual must make his or her own personal decision about goods Made in China - whether it's frozen shrimp or flip flops for summertime. However, there is one area that we believe needs to be addressed: religious goods from China.
How can we validly pray the rosary on beads that fund a cruel government that kills the most innocent among us? Or send a greeting card with a note of encouragement for those trying to conceive printed in a country that practices infanticide? Every dollar we spend on religious goods Made in China funds the persecution of Catholic priests and the propagation of heinous practices that are an abomination in the eyes of Our Lord.
Make your own decision. Here are a few of the big companies. If you have any to add, let us know.
Autom - With the exception of a limited line of rosaries made in Italy, virtually all of their products are Made in China.
San Francis Imports - The word import says it all
Trademark Catholic Stationery - This is the first that claimed they were "evangelizing" in China.***Update*** I wrote to them on July 1, 2008 to ask if they were still printing in China. The answer was yes.
Thanks to Christopher J. who added to the list:
Malhame located in Melville, NY (Florentine resin statues made in China)
Demetz Art Studio located in Ortisei, Italy (Demetz Classico resin statues made in China)
Roman, Inc. located in Bloomingdale, IL (Joseph's Studio resin/stone mix statues made in China)
OFF THE LIST
Our apologies to RosaryMart. They do NOT sell Rosaries Made in China
10/29/2009 - This morning I received this email from the owner of Rosary Mart:
Hi Christine, My name is Svilen Svilenov, I am the owner of US BEXT Ltd. DBA/ Trade Name RosaryMart. Today, I found the following published on your website:
“ Rosary Mart - One of the biggest rosary businesses. Not everything is Made in China. As you look through their inventory you'll see many marked Made in Italy. If they're not - they're from China”
I am pleased that you call my business “ One of the biggest rosary business”. Looks like for 12 years I did manage the business well.
However, what I do not like is the following claim that doesn’t represent the truth: “ Not everything is made in China …. If they're not - they're from China”.
Since it looks like you didn’t put enough efforts to make your research let me tell you briefly about my products.
90% of the products listed on rosarymart.com are made in Italy. Also about 90% of my manufacturers are located in Italy. Every Year I go there and I’ve seen where they are located. I can assure you they are in Italy, not China.
Now, about the other 10%. The 10% of my product comes from France, Brazil, India (pouches) and USA (books and pouches). Almost forgot I have 1 rosary made in Mexico. Also turns out that the pouches that I buy here are made in downtown Los Angeles.
I would like to ask you very politely to revise the above sentences to represent the truth or removed it. If you would like to be helpful to the society and not just promote your website you should tell the truth.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
I immediately wrote to Mr. Svilenov and thanked him for the information. I did ask him one question:
Do you sell any rosaries that are made in China?
He replied that they do not.
Now why did I think they did? I do my research. I am certain that at some point, perhaps years ago, I called them as a potential vendor. Whoever answered the phone told me that some of the rosaries were from China. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe I called another company by mistake. Whatever the case was, we are grateful that they do not carry Chinese products. And I apologize for giving that information out.
|Catholic Marketing Network is a trade organization that brings together manufacturers of Catholic goods and the stores that sell them at their trade shows. Their logo says that they are "under the patronage of Our Lady of Guadalupe". I wonder what Our Lady thinks of that. When you're done reading this, you probably will, too.
In 2007 many of the network investigative news programs picked up stories on the dangers of good made in China. Many complaints were filed with government agencies about the dangers of these goods. Some of those included concerns about religious items. In August 2008, Congress and the FDA finally began to pay attention and the result was the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA).
That's a good thing, isn't it?
Well, Catholic Marketing Network president Alan Napleton didn't think so.
On January 22, 2009, I received an email from them that started like this:
"Overzealous politicians enacted a poorly written piece of legislation that is causing plenty of confusion and angst for Catholic stores and manufacturers of children products."
Really, Mr. Napleton? Confusion and angst for Catholic stores and manufacturers of children's products? What about the confusion and angst of parents of children maimed and sickened by these products? What about the angst of Chinese women who endure forced abortions?
The notice went on:
"Passed by overwhelming Congressional majorities and signed into law last summer, this sweeping law governing the manufacture and sale of children's products has profound implications for many Catholic book and gift stores as well as for many Catholic suppliers. During the past several days our office has received numerous calls from both Catholic store owners and manufactures concerning the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and how it might affect their businesses. Unfortunately, there is a great deal of confusion and misinformation about this new law. With the rules and regulations of the first phase of the law scheduled to take place in just three weeks it's important that both stores and suppliers know how they might be impacted."
First the bad news:
If you or your company is involved in either the manufacturing or selling of children's items it's likely the new law will affect you. If the law goes into effect under it's present format, your life is probably going to get more complicated over the next few weeks. After last year's scare over contaminated toys made in China, Congress passed this law in August requiring all products (not just toys) aimed at children under age 12 to be certified as safe and virtually lead-free by independent testing at a Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) accredited lab."
"Retailers, especially small independents like Catholic book stores, are equally concerned that they may be stuck with inventory that is suddenly illegal to sell. And it's no comfort to either group that the law carries stiff penalties that includes minimum fines of $100,000 and possible felony prison time for each violation of the law."
"Stuck with inventory"? Throw it out! Write it off!
This is a problem when children are being poisoned? Concerned about the legal penalties? Good grief! Why aren't you concerned about your souls?
Now if this doesn't make your hair stand on end ... read the rest here
Needless to say, I wrote to CMN. I didn't mince words.
"It is so disturbing that CMN is terribly concerned about the consumer protection act pertaining to goods imported from China, and not at all concerned about Catholic companies importing cheap goods from a country that has institutionalized abortion and murders over 13 million souls every year. What is wrong with you people? Clearly you are worshipping at the blood drenched altar of Mammon and not at the Altar of the Crucified Lord."
Guess what? No one wrote back.
But the next day, January 23rd, I received a condensed version of the same message. This time it had a nice photo of Alan Napleton who was smiling under the logo that now had the slogan, "Where the Catholic Industry comes together."
Yup. It's an industry.
We're not done. I wish we were, but we're not.
On February 2, 2009 I got another email with the headline:
Government Calls "Time-Out" on CPSIA
Plenty of Questions Still Remain
What a relief, CMN!
No need to be stuck with that Chinese inventory and no profit.
Here are highlights from their "good news" with my highlights and comments.
"Responding to numerous requests by industry organizations and a grass-roots onslaught of emails, phone calls, and letters to their legislators, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) on Friday took the extraordinary step of enacting a one-year limited stay of enforcement of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act or CPSIA. The law, passed last August, enacted stringent new testing and certification requirements for total lead content and phthalates limits on children's items and was to go into effect February 10, 2009. "The action we are taking today puts in place a limited 'time-out' so that the Commission and the Congress can address the issues with the law that have become so painfully apparent," Nancy Nord, the Commission's acting chairwoman, said in a written statement."
Please note the limited "time-out" - that means these business had a FULL YEAR to stop selling and manufacturing these dangerous Chinese items.
Nord went on to say, "The stay of enforcement provides some temporary, limited relief to the crafters, children's garment manufacturers and toy makers who had been subject to the testing and certification required under the CPSIA ...
|(continued from column on the left)
Yes, we are talking about children's garments and toys. All sane individuals whether they are Catholic or not surely want these to be safe without a moment's delay ... don't they? Maybe not.
A reprieve of sorts:
Although the stay of enforcement removes the specter of rendering inventories of toys, books, garments and other children's items valueless after February 10th, there still remain plenty of questions concerning testing and certification requirements. On the one hand, the stay gives the Commission extra time to set guidelines for testing children's products and also gives businesses temporary relief from paying for some testing.
It also gives you time to dispose of Made in China products and claim a loss! Or to make the manufacturers responsible for reporting.
The Congressional finger pointing begins with some promise of sanity as lawmakers address important issues:
And CMN jumps in to join the finger pointing.
When the CPSIA came up for a vote last August, elected representatives were falling over themselves to show how concerned they were for protecting America's children by passing the legislation with little debate and no concern or understanding how CPSIA would affect small businesses.
Please read the above statement again. They were "falling all over themselves to show how concerned they were for protecting America's children ... with no concern ... how (it) would affect small businesses."
It gets worse:
The poorly written law passed overwhelmingly in both houses with votes of 89-3 in the Senate and an incredible 424-1 margin in the House.
Well, for once I can say, HOORAY for CONGRESS! CMN doesn't agree.
"Faced with a groundswell of confusion, panic, misinformation concerning CPSIA and an outcry that hundreds of thousands of small businesses will be harmed, many politicians are running for cover while Congress and the Commission are trading assertions of who's more responsible for the murk surrounding the new law."
No concern for the children who might be harmed. CMN have you read about the date rape drug in children's toys made in China? Who's responsible for the "murk" with regard to Catholic manufacturers and retailers? CMN.
"For Catholic stores and suppliers, the stay enacted on Friday does not solve the problem of complying with CPSIA, but it does allow for some much needed breathing room to address the many issues surrounding the law. The delay gives our businesses much needed time to fully understand and comply with this complicated new product safety law. It also allows our lawmakers time to provide some common sense amendments and realistic guidance for businesses while providing for the necessary protection of our children."
CMN members are urged to contact the offices of both Congressman Waxman and your particular state representatives letting them know your concerns over the implementation of CPSIA. You can access a list of your state senators and congressman along with their contact information by clicking here.
I certainly contacted Congressman Waxman and my representatives. But I suspect I didn't respond the way CMN wanted me to.
You can view the entire newsletter here
Still More .. Sad to Say
On July 21, 2009 I received another email from CMN about their trade show to be held in Somerset, NJ on August 4th - 7th. I looked at the announcement which was celebrating the Year of the Priest and saw this:
This year's event will have as its theme "The Year of the Priest" and we will be honoring our priests at a special luncheon on Thursday, August 6th with a musical presentation by International Recording Artist DANA and special guest speaker Fr. Frank Pavone, founder of Priests for Life. Tickets for the luncheon can be purchased for $25 by contacting the CMN offices at 800-506-6333.
Maybe I'm like a hound dog with an old bone he just doesn't want to give up, but I was hopeful. Father Pavone would surely have the courage to stand up and say something. I called the office. No answer. I wrote:
Dear Father Pavone,
I noticed that you will be speaking at the CMN show in Somerset, NJ. This is a great opportunity for you to speak out about the sanctity of life and how Catholic retailers have directly supported the death of 13 million innocent souls annually.
Shocking? Yes, but it is a reality.
The Catholic retail business is largely driven by cheap products that are made in China, a nation that has institutionalized abortion and infanticide.
This year, speakers will address the concerns about the Consumer Protection Safety Improvement Act which focuses on lead and dangerous chemicals found in many religious articles manufactured in China and how it affects their bottom line.
I guarantee that none of them will touch on the subject of the recent Reuters report enumerating the horrifying number of abortions – 13 million – performed each year in that nation. This does not disturb any of these manufacturers to the extent that they will step up and cease to manufacture in that nation, thus supporting these horrid murders.
Will you have the courage to address this travesty? Will you have sufficient love of Christ in your heart to help Catholic retailers stop worshipping at the bloody altars of mammon, and begin to worship at the Sacred Altar of Our Crucified Lord?
If this message doesn’t come from the pulpit, who will awaken the consciences of these retailers?
I have written about this on my website, and while the page is in need of an update, I think you will see that my message is clear.
God bless and keep you,
Father Pavone did not respond.
|John Z. writes:
The issue of Chinese products is truly problematic for Catholics, and some Super Patriots, who refuse to buy their products. Something to think about is, The Chinese People, who, like it or not, are our Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
They are converting to Catholicism, and other Christian denominations in record numbers, and little by little, The Chinese Government is weakening the reigns on the people. There are still serious problems with the Government restrictions and abuses, especially in the matters that do not support 'Life' issues. Hopefully, as Christianity takes hold, they will embrace The Culture of Life. This will only take place after much Fasting and Prayer for their Complete Conversion.
Personally, I buy most of my religious articles from a small shop in Belair, Md., called Mary's Garden. Most of their inventory comes from The Holy Land. Families in Jerusalem who make the items are struggling greatly with unemployment in that area, and I believe they deserve our patronage. With The Franciscans who oversee the Holy Sights, Churches, Shrines in Jerusalem, need our support to keep Catholic Families there, so that others do not take over The Birthplace o Christianity.
Christopher J writes:
The best religious statues are manufactured in Italy and Spain. I have not and will not buy a statue made in China. I have previously bought statues that were imported from Italy by Columbia National Corporation in Foxboro, MA but they are no longer in business. I think the owner retired. They imported Italian composition statues ... that were the best in plaster that I have seen. They were in business 50 plus years. Some of their line has been taken over by Mazzolini Artcraft Company in Cleveland, Ohio.
I have also purchased statues from Conrad Moroder in Italy... They are wood carved and hand painted but very expensive due to their exceptional quality... There are a lot of companies in Italy that manufacture statues but the vendors do not import them because the CEO's of these vendors can make a lot of money on poor quality statues made in China.
The Catholic Shop that I shop at carries only a few statues made in China (statues by Joseph Studio from Roman, Inc.). They stock statues from Mazzolini Artcraft Company, Conrad Moroder, Bernardi Wood carvings, Moshy Brothers, W J Hirten Company, etc which import statues from Italy. They also carry beautiful statues imported from Spain. I thank you for not supporting companies in China.
GOD Bless, Chris
Our Note: W.J. Hirten does manufactures in China. I know this from a note from the owner several years ago in which he mentioned a trip to China and Thailand for that purpose.
Kim S writes:
Thanks so much for the article 'Made in China'. I have been a longtime fan of Trademark Catholic Stationary and wondered if their cheap, cheap prices reflected overseas production - sure enough! And to think that they justify it by saying they are evangelizing !
I'm stunned and somewhat disappointed at that line of rationale. I haven't bought with them in years but occasionally have a look around on their website.
I do know that EWTN carries their line of cards. They have a whole catalog of goods to buy - one can only wonder at the amount of things sold on EWTN that are made in China. I think I just may place a call to them.
Thanks for keeping us aware!