Worship of the devil

Don Wills and Dick Canne, neighboring teenagers in suburban Denver, say they have started their own Satanist church, the Blessed Gathering of the Repressed. They maintain a website and rally followers on social media. They are applying now for 501(c)(3) nonprofit status. “Satan, evil spirits, demons, horned gods, female gods, half-human monsters, grotesque creatures of darkness, and other instruments of Satan,” they say on their About page, “keep the spirit fierce, yearning for freedom, preserve fearlessness, daring, fight for the terrible beauty of reality against the bland, sanctimonious, accepted, and harmless faiths that seek nothing but obedience.” The parents of the young men are on record that they honor their sons’ personal beliefs and admire their ingenuity and hard work in putting this together. “What do you get in return when you sell your soul to the Devil? Don’t pretend it’s only misery. Saints in their blind blissfulness have all here is of misery, dwelling a bit too much on stigmata and hair shirts.” Mrs. Canne said she doesn’t know where Don or Dick got that idea about saints, since Dick was raised as a Baptist, and so was Don as far as she knows. Their latest Tumblr post says, “Sell your soul and gain magic, joy, eyes wide open, edges that sharpen senses.” When confronted by accusations that Satanists have been found to be child abusers and sadists, Don, in an email, replied, “A criminal, Nazi, or murderer may use Satanism as a cover, but a true Satanist would only harm himself.”