I was reminded of an old myth that still seems to permeate in Anglican, and other Protestant circles.
I was meeting with some good friends who are interested in the Catholic Church, and one of them
I remember my time as an Anglican did have similar conversations occur where individuals seem to have a general mistrust of information that the Vatican has, or is hiding. This paranoia was accentuated when Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code was on the bestseller list.
One of the reasons this accusation is made is due the existence of the Vatican archives, and how they are not public archives.
Seeing as I was reminded of this old myth that permeates in Protestant circles, and now being on the other side, I tend to think things are the other way around. The Catholic Church is going so far out of her way to bring truth to the world, and is suffering the consequences of it. The Catholic Church is rooted in history and contains the manuscripts that she has collected over the course of her time following the commission of Christ. As these manuscripts are so old, and contain so much wealth of knowledge, of course they are not available to the public.
That being said, to dispel myths, the Vatican has opened the doors of the archives before to the public. Also, the Vatican is creating a new digital library of manuscripts that are in the archives. So that is really the actions of an organization that isn't acting like they have much to hide, but more so much to preserve.
That being said, after being Protestant and then Catholic, it really was Protestantism that lied to me. I see it happening when I speak to Protestants and listen to them talk about what Catholics supposedly "believe" their faith teaches them. They hear sermons from their pastors that make the claim that Catholics worship this or believe that and how all of it is illogical- when more times than not I immediately know that this is not what Catholics actually believe. I have read books by Protestant apologists who do the same thing. None, zero, zip, absolutely nobody that I have heard preaching on their soap box has actually picked up the Catechism of the Catholic Church and read it to learn what Catholics believe, and WHY. This information is out there, for everyone to read- but hardly anyone is. That has led me to a truth that I have been slowly learning over the years- we humans really are afraid of the truth sometimes. We are suspicious of the truth. We look at it from afar, and rather it stay that way.
So, when I hear these suspicions in friendly conversation, I cannot help but laugh about it. Thankfully, I am quite happy to dispel the myth and seek to point out that our Mother Church is trying to bring the truth to us, if only we would open our hearts to accept it.