The Brownsville Herald, TX
July 17, 2005 — The pope has criticized them, churches have burned them.
But the books are still being read.
The “Harry Potter” series, which released its sixth volume Saturday, has inspired three blockbuster movies and millions of young readers around the world.
Educators call the books a gateway to reading.
Religious leaders call them a gateway to the occult.
“Just like marijuana is a gateway drug that leads us to try stronger drugs, ‘Harry Potter’ novels and ‘Star Wars’ can be gateway experiences to the occult that lead children in later adolescence to seek deep and dark occult powers to guide them or to exercise control beyond human power,” said Robert Maher, vicar general of the Brownsville diocese.