24 mai 2018










Nearly 2,000 years ago, a sectarian founder was born in Galilee, who ended up crucified about 30 years later. His penultimate words on the cross were "Give me something to drink". And yet ! The sect he founded would then become the greatest of all times. It will take political power in the Roman Empire, abolish freedom of religion, then pile up mountains of corpses: its members will slaughter millions of "infidels", "heretics", "witches" and others, then slaughter themselves between them by giving Europe the fiercest wars it has known. Such a story might encourage modesty, but Christians claim, on the contrary, a monopoly of ethics. They proclaim that they worship the one God, the god who is "love," and consider themselves better than the rest of humanity, whom they condemn as a horde of worshipers of false gods.

  The only ideology to share with Communism and Nazism, the podium dedicated to the deadliest ideologies in human history, Christianity remains a dominant ideology in many Western countries, including the world's policeman, the USA.

 It is time to open the Black Book of Christianity: 2000 years of terror, persecution, repression. Let us begin, modestly, with this Black Page of Christianity, which summarizes some of the worst atrocities committed in the name of this ideology which claims to promote the ‘love-your-neighbor’.


Year 1

"The gods were gone, and God was not yet." The Roman Empire guarantees freedom of worship. Atheism and reason dominate in cities. The gods are mythical figures, allegorical representations of forces of nature. It is at this time that a type is born who, say some Jews, loses his reason because he reads the Torah too young. He founded a sect which aims to forbid the worship of gods other than his own. The guy is finally put to death, but his cult is spreading with the success that we know.

The cult of the personality for the founder of the sect reaches, at the Christians, a level that even the Stalinism will not equal: the founder is proclaimed "really man and really God" ("Man-God", one would say in normal language). Those who doubt it are proclaimed bluntly heretical, and will later suffer the wrath of the inquisition. From the fourth century of our era will begin the killing of non-believers by Christians.

 50 -150

The Christian sect develops Greek texts, written by members of the sect outside Palestine ("The Gospels") tell the life of the founder of the sect: born of a virgin who would have remained virgin despite several other children, he would have cured sick but also cursed a fig tree that would have dried up instantly. He also reportedly rushed hundreds of pigs that did not belong to him in a lake.

This character, who defends the poor, but also states "those who have everything will be satisfied, and to those who have nothing, it will be removed the little they have", a little pathetic when cursing a fig tree or let crucify, is declared an incarnation of the "single God". The fact that, according to the "canonical" gospels, his penultimate words on the cross were "Give me something to drink" does not seem to trouble the followers of the sect, which soon spreads throughout the whole empire.

Around the year 50 there would be the first pyre of books: according to the Acts of the Apostles, a book of the Bible, Paul, one of the first Christian leaders, burns with his followers "for fifty thousand pieces of silver’’ of books. Religious intolerance of the Christians, which openly aims from the beginning to impose a ban on the worship of other gods than theirs, who, they insist, is the "Only God", soon attracts the wrath of them. Roman justice, which defends the freedom of worship, which is one of the pillars of this complex and multicultural society that is the Roman Empire of the first centuries of our era.

Christian propaganda skillfully returns the situation. Those who are condemned by the Roman justice are proclaimed "martyrs", their remains are venerated in the churches, the legend is invented that they were executed for "refusing to deny their faith", which of course is better than the naked truth, which is that they have been convicted of being troublemakers trying to impose religious intolerance in a multicultural society. Christians in the Middle Ages will develop a series of legends of ancient martyrs who chose death rather than deny their faith. Pieces of bones are kept in churches and venerated by faithful, frescoes and paintings tell stories as abominable as possible of frightened virgins preferring horrible deaths rather than the sin of the flesh, and courageous proto-Christians responding: « No, I do not deny my faith to the lion who threatens to devour them in the midst of the cries of the crowd of delirious pagans ».

Many Christians really believe in these myths, even when they are in complete contradiction to the known history. For example, in Switzerland, there is a Saint Maurice Monastery, in the city of the same name.

When you visit this monastery, you are told, showing you small bone fragments in beautiful reliquaries in support of the story, that the monastery was built on the site of the martyrdom of the Theban Legion: according to this Christian myth, invented by the first bishop of Martigny at the end of the IV century A.D, in these places, in 285, a legion, the Theban Legion, made up of Christian soldiers originating from Egypt and commanded by Maurice, a black Egyptian, refused to participate in a pagan worship, and the Emperor Maximian ordered the extermination of the legionaries.

Obviously, not only did not a chronicler of the time note this event, but in addition there was no legion called Theban Legion at the time. However, the massacre by decapitation of 5% of the Roman army could hardly go unnoticed. This did not prevent this saint who never existed to make a beautiful posthumous career, by becoming one of the two patron saints of the soldiers, with Saint Georges, white, on horseback. Saint Maurice is black and usually walks. It goes without saying that the other myths of ancient Christian martyrology are no more verifiable.

 300 (or 303, or 309, date uncertain)

The first council and the codification of Christian anti-Semitism: 19 bishops and 24 priests meet in Elvira, in southern Spain, and fix the first canons of the church who have reached us. These canons provide severe penalties for a series of "sins". For some, such as divorce, and the worship of gods other than the Christian god (idolatry) the definitive expulsion from the church is planned. For less severe sins, punishment is exclusion from communion for periods up to 10 years.


Among the offenses punishable by excommunications of several years, one finds, among other things: to let blessing its harvest by a Jew or to share a meal with a Jew. The council thus lays the groundwork for the canon law of Christian anti-Semitism, whose devastating effects will unfold in force as early as the fourth century and last until the twentieth century. It is also at this council that the Christian prelates officially decide that any Christian put to death for participation in the destruction of temples or statues of non-Christian deities is entitled to the title - obviously posthumous - martyrdom. Outside the councils too, Christian leaders will very quickly take very hard positions with regard to the Jews. Origen, the founder of the Egyptian monastic movement, writes that "The blood of Jesus falls not only on the Jews of the time but on all generations of Jews until the end of the world".

His contemporary Saint John Chrysostom wrote for him "The synagogue is a brothel, a den of impure beasts (...) never a Jew prayed to God (...) They are possessed by demons". It is in this period that the strange obsession of Christians for sex begins to unfold its devastating effects. The same Origen, unable to control his obsessions, takes literally the word of Jesus "because there are some who are eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven" and commits an irreparable act on his person. The eunuch Origen bases on his obsession with sex a great mass movement: the monastic movement which continues today: hundreds, then thousands of fanatics, some of whom, at first, will imitate the tragic gesture of Origen on their person, leave the cities of Egypt to settle in caves, then monasteries in the desert.


From the beginning, they will give refuge to their co-religionists wanted by the criminal justice, and will periodically leave their dens to bring terror in the city when the religious authorities ask them. These are the monks who will murder Hypatia.

One can imagine the terror of the urban populations when they saw arriving, emerging from the desert, these hordes of shaggy monks, dirty, dressed in shreds of animals, and ready for anything and all violence to fulfill the will of their so called God.

The tradition of using monks for acts of terrorism will continue in the Catholic Church: in the Middle Ages, it will appeal to the Franciscans and Dominicans for the inquisition. During the Second World War, Croatian Franciscans will come out of their lairs to work as guards, executioners and even heads of concentration camps.

This tradition of the monk returning to civilization to sow the terror of Christ thus has its roots in the very beginning of Christian history and continues today.

 312 - Taking power by Christians

At the end of a civil war, Constantine takes power. Shortly after, he officially converted to Christianity, and "authorizes" at first the worship of the single Christian god by the Edict of Milan: it is the beginning of the religious persecution in Europe. Little by little, the cults of gods other than those of the Christian god will be forbidden. Classical shrines will be destroyed, or converted into Christian churches. At the end of the 4th century, there will be no more pagan temple in the whole Mediterranean basin.


First antisemitic law in the Christianized empire: Jewish proselytism is forbidden, on pain of killing at the stake. Killing at the stake is a passion that Christians will cultivate for more than 1500 years of their history.


The Christian emperor Constantine orders the First Council of Nicea to change the date of Easter: "It is not fitting that in the holiest of our feasts we follow the customs of the Jews, henceforth we owe nothing to to have in common with this odious people ". The violent persecution of Jews by Christians, which will begin at the end of the fourth century, is the logical consequence of the anti-Semitic hatred of the early Christian church.

Christian anti-Semitism will remain anchored in Catholic rites until the 1960s and Vatican Council II. Until that time, every Mass in every Catholic church was repeated with the prayer "Oremus and pro perfidis judaeis: ut Deus and Dominus noster auferat velamen de cordibus eorum; ut and ispi agnostant Jesum Christum Dominum nostrum" (" We pray for the perfidious Jews our Lord and our God to remove the veil from their hearts, that they too may know our Lord Jesus Christ ").


The Christianization of Roman Law: In the years following his seizure of power, Constantine undertook to modify Roman law to bring it into conformity with the foundations of Christian ideology. Thus, the list of crimes for which the death penalty is provided is greatly increased. For example, the kidnapping (with the consent of the abductee) of a young woman to her family by her lover, which was a matter of civil law, becomes punishable by death for the abductor, kidnapper and also all the accomplices, including the slaves of the abductor's and the abductee's families.

Sex between a slave and his mistress is now forbidden and punishable by death. It should be noted that, on the other hand, the first Christian emperor makes the law continue to consider as lawful the sexual relations between a master and a slave woman. Putting into practice the teachings of the Bible, Constantine significantly hardens the condition of slaves: for example, killing a slave by striking him is no longer considered a murder unless it is proven that there was an intention to kill. Then the law becomes even more lenient for cruel masters when Constantine, in 326, forbids any investigation against a master whose slave died as a result of a physical punishment.

Fugitive slaves will now have their feet cut off or be put to death. Lastly, supreme hardness, Constantine not only forbade slaves recourse to justice, but provides that any slave or servant who would file a complaint against his master (except in the case of the following offenses: adultery, high treason, tax evasion) will be executed from subsequently, without witnesses and without investigation. The list of offenses for which the denunciation of the master by a slave is revealing of the scale of Christian values: murder is not included, nor theft or rape: these crimes are, for the Christian emperor, less important as adultery: there is again this strange obsession, so characteristic of Christianity, for the non-respect of sexual prohibitions.

It is also in this year 326 that the term "concubinage" enters into Roman law: cohabitants are subjected to administrative hassles unprecedented in Roman history: they are prohibited from acquiring real estate and their Roman citizenship is taken away from them. On the other hand, putting into practice what Christians willingly call charity to the poor, Constantine enacts a law that allows needy families to sell their children as slaves, which was obviously forbidden.


A murder to realize a prophecy In 361, the emperor Julien restores the freedom of religion in the empire. He could have gone down in history as Julian the Philosopher, or Julian the Soldier because of his military successes in Gaul and against Persia, but his decision to tolerate in the Empire the various Christian sects, as well as other religions, it attracts the lightning of Christians: after his death, he will enter history as Julian the Apostate.

Shortly after coming to power, he published several books to the glory of the old gods and others, polemics, against various philosophical sects and, of course, against Christianity. Note in this regard that his treatise "Against the Galileans" (= Christians) is almost totally lost. There are only bits of it that are difficult to exploit. Even the refutations made by contemporary Christians have disappeared, or have been expurgated citations of the work of Julian.

One of the rare excerpts that has come down to us says: "It seems good to expose to all men the reasons that persuaded me that the Galilean machination is only a human fiction, forged by vice.

This trickery has nothing divine, it has duped the part of our soul that loves the fables, which is childish and insane, and she made him believe these monstrosities "[Julien, Against the Galileans, translation of Christopher Gérard , Ousia editions, 1995].

Of course, Christians are quick to mobilize against this religious freedom that is intolerable to them. They therefore engage in provocative actions, hoping to trigger these "persecutions" which they are so fond of being able to have martyrs. Among others, Christians * desecrate, then set fire to the temple of Daphne, near Antioch, where the Emperor resided, sabotage the work of rebuilding the Temple of Jerusalem, and destroy the temple of Fortune at Caesarea of Cappadocia, destroy at Pessinonte, under the eyes of the Emperor, the altar of Cybele, mother of the gods, a deity to whose glory Julian had composed a treatise. However, Julien avenged himself of these crimes only by a pamphlet, entitled "The Enemy of the Beard", a biting satire, as directed against his own person as against the frivolous inhabitants of Antioch.

Julien will pay with his life for his excess of leniency towards Christians, especially against Athanasius, bishop of Alexandria. Athanasius was an individual with a criminal past who had been driven out of his episcopal see following disputes between Christian sects. The edict of 361 allows him to return to Alexandria, where he excites a crowd of fanatics who massacre the Arian bishop of the city of Cappadocia George and throw the shreds of his body in the Nile. Bishop George was also a questionable individual, who had plundered many temples in ancient Egypt, but this murder draws the Emperor's attention to the past of Athanasius, and he orders his banishment out of 'Egypt.

Without waiting for the intervention of the public force, Athanasius retires into the desert, hides among monks, and prophesies the death of the Emperor: "The Carpenter (= Jesus) prepares a coffin (for Julien)" as he tells to the crowds of fanatics who come to hear him preach in the desert.

But Athanasius is an intelligent man, who knows that sometimes it takes concrete actions to help fulfill prophecies. He promises the eternal glory, the forgiveness of all his sins and all the joys of Paradise to a Christian soldier who would accompany the Emperor on his great expedition to Mesopotamia.

On June 26, 363, during the decisive battle against the Persians, he murders Julien with a spear in his back. It is said that Julian, dying, would have thrown a few drops of his blood into heaven, crying: "You have conquered, Galilean!" No doubt these words are legendary, but Julian may have really had such a thought at the moment when he collapsed and died hit in the back by a traitor, because of religious tolerance.


Emperor Theodosius officially proclaims Christianity as the only "state religion". It will be 12 years before all other cults are permanently banned.


Theodosius, Christian emperor, launches the hunt for heretics: the heretics are Christians who do not recognize in certain points of detail the Christian doctrine. To these non-Catholic Christians it is forbidden to: meet, teach, discuss in public, ordain priests. Their churches are confiscated for the benefit of Catholic bishops. Heretics are also excluded from the public service. For certain "heresies", the measures are harsher: death penalty for the Manichaeans, and one takes the eyes off the Marcionite bishops (a Christian Gnostic sect). The sacred books of the Arians - a Christian sect that believed that Jesus was created by God the Father - are delivered to the flames in merry holocausts. In 15 years of rule, Theodosius will promulgate no less than 15 Persecution Edicts against any Christian heretical group.


Theodosius, Christian emperor, launched the hunt for apostates: a series of laws promulgated in 381, 383 and 391 provide for the social banishment of apostates. He who abandons Christianity for the benefit of any other religion, including Judaism: the apostate will be expropriated, he will be forbidden to inherit, to participate in social life and to move: the law clearly specifies that the apostate must to continue to live in the place where he lives, while being exiled from society, because it is harder than exile in distant lands.


Theophilus (now Saint Theophilus) is appointed Patriarch of Alexandria. He immediately begins a violent campaign of destruction of all temples and non-Christian sanctuaries. He has the support of the pious Emperor Theodosius. Theophile is responsible for the destruction, in Alexandria, of the temples of Mythriade and Dyonisius. This destructive madness culminates in 391, with the destruction of the temple of Serapis and its library. Stones from destroyed sanctuaries will be used to build churches for the unique new religion, Christianity.

Then, no doubt to show that he is able to persecute Christians too (to the extent that they are not 100% Orthodox), Theophilus personally commands the troops who attack and destroy the monasteries that adhered to the ideas of Origen, a Christian theologian who was declared heretical because he maintained that God was purely immaterial.

It is also in 385 that, for the first time, a heretic is condemned to be burned alive after suffering torture. This practice will be generalized from 447.


For the first time, a bishop dictates to an emperor the policy to follow: St. Ambrose of Milan, in the middle of the cathedral, rises and, with this sense of charity so particular that Christians have, forced the emperor to cancel the order that the latter had given to the bishop of Callinicum on the Euphrates to rebuild a synagogue that the bishop and his congregation had destroyed. The church thus took part, from its beginnings, for synagogues burners, which it will continue to support until the 1940s.


Emperor Theodosius, pious Catholic, introduces the death penalty for anyone who celebrates Passover at a date other than that imposed by the Council of Nicaea, and publishes an edict which definitively forbids the worship of gods other than the Christian god throughout the Roman Empire.

Beginning of the 390’s

Following the 390th edict of the pious Christian emperor Theodosius, non-Christian temples are gradually closed to worship, and "pagan" processions are forbidden. This suppression of the freedom of religion for the exclusive benefit of Christianity sometimes causes riots, like the one of the year 408 in Calama in Numidia.

As part of this campaign for the eradication of all that is not Christian in the empire, the emperor also, in 393, banned the Olympic Games. This interdiction campaign is the occasion of violent anti-pagan pogroms. It is in this context that Christians slaughter the temple of Serapis in Alexandria. In Gaul, the good Saint Martin, who had given half of his coat to a poor man in the middle of winter, roamed the countryside, accompanied by a horde of fanatical monks, destroying all the symbols of the ancient religion and converting the pagans. recalcitrant with clubs.

In Rome, Theodosius imposed, at the instigation of Pope Sirice, a solemn oath on the Roman senators. They had to solemnly renounce the worship of Jupiter and swear fidelity to Christ. The statue of Victory is removed from the Senate and replaced by a crucifix. It was at the same time that the first executions of non-Christians took place in Germany, a beautiful tradition that the church developed with the Inquisition and then perpetuated until 1826.


A crowd of Christians including many fanatic monks from the desert, guided by Saint Athanasius and Saint Theophilus, cut down the temple and the great statue of Serapis in Alexandria, two masterpieces of antiquity. The collection of temple literature is also destroyed. Many pagans are killed in the assault of the temple, the golden statues of the temple are melted, and the precious metal is incorporated into the treasure of the episcopate.


St. Augustine, Bishop of Carthage, Doctor of the Church, is considered the greatest thinker of the ancient church, and his ‘Just War Theory’ will later serve to justify the Crusades. But the church is careful today to be very discreet about the work of destruction of temples and statues to which the saint consecrated in his lifetime so much energy.

From 399, we begin in Carthage to destroy temples and pagan statues. St. Augustine applauds. Noting that the destructive enthusiasm of the Catholic populace may weaken, in June 401, Saint Augustine uses humor (a rare thing in Christian history), during a Sunday Mass, to relaunch the destructive madness: "Herculi Deo is written at the foot of a statue of Hercules, but why does he not speak? He is as silent as his epitaph ". The crowd of believers laughs. St. Augustine then launches, "In Rome, the temples are closed, the idols destroyed, as in Rome, so in Carthage". Bands of rabid Catholics then storm the statues and temples still standing in the city and destroy them.


The riots of Calama: intoxicated by his success in Carthage, St. Augustine demands the destruction of temples and statues also in provincial towns. Little by little the word of the holy man is spreading in North Africa, and hordes of Christians are attacking temples and statues. In Calama (today Guelma in Algeria), a riot breaks out when the Christians attack the temple of Hercules: 60 people, Christians and pagans, die in the fight.


Cyril (today Saint Cyril, Doctor of the Church), is named bishop of Alexandria and succeeds his uncle Theophilus. He excites diffuse anti-Semitic sentiments among the Christians of the city, and, at the head of a crowd of Christians, burns the synagogues of the city and drives away the Jews. He then encourages Christians to seize the property that the Jews had to leave behind.


Hypatia, the last great mathematician of the school of Alexandria, also daughter of Theon of Alexandria, director of the library, is killed by a crowd of Christian monks inspired by Cyril, patriarch of Alexandria, that the church canonize. After the lynching by the crowd, the body of the mathematician is dragged into the cathedral by a group of monks at the command of Cyril, and is torn to pieces with fragments of tiles.

The motivation of Christians is that Hypatia, a brilliant teacher of mathematics, posed a threat to the spread of Christianity because of her teaching of science and Neoplatonism. The fact that she was a woman, moreover, it is said, beautiful and charismatic, made her existence even more intolerable in the eyes of Christians. Her assassination marked a turning point: after her death, many scholars and philosophers leave Alexandria for India and Persia, and Alexandria ceases to be the great center of education and science of the ancient world. From now on, science will regress in the West, and will not return to a level comparable to that of ancient Alexandria at the dawn of the industrial revolution.

The work of the Alexandria School concerning mathematics, physics and astronomy will be preserved, in part, by the Arabs, the Persians, the Indians and also in China. The West, for its part, plunges into obscurantism and will start to emerge more than a millennium later. In recognition of his merits in the persecution of the scientific community and the Jews of Alexandria, Cyril will first be canonized, then promoted to "Doctor of the Church" in 1882.


The Emperor Justinian closed the Athens School of Philosophy, considered the last bastion of paganism. From now on, obscurantism and ignorance reign supreme throughout the Mediterranean basin. The teachers of the school must exile themselves in Persia.


Gregory I, known as Le Grand, today Saint Gregory, becomes Pope. He is considered the inventor of the crusade. Indeed, he sent Gennadius, governor of Africa for the Eastern Roman Empire, a long letter urging him to "engage in many wars" aimed at forcibly converting the populations of the conquered lands to Christianity.

St. Gregory is also active in the conversion of Jews to Christianity, offering them financial advantages, while approving the policy of forced conversion practiced at the time by King Visigoth in Spain. This holy man is also a fierce opponent of science and rational knowledge. He is known from a letter to the bishop of Vienne (France) where he writes: "We had voice of information which I can not refer without shame: it seems that in your congregation we teach grammar ". In addition to grammar, it discourages or forbids the teaching of Greco-Roman culture in general, including languages, science, philosophy and mythology.

Because of his action against culture and his encouragement of the holy war, Saint Gregory the Great is considered as the founder of the Christian social doctrine that will be realized during the Middle Ages in Europe.

7th - 15th century

The "Christian Middle Ages". Taking advantage of the disappearance of the large Roman libraries and the almost total absence of publishing activity in Europe, the church obtains a monopoly on the whole of writing and information. The people are voluntarily left in the dark, they are discouraged from reading the Bible in case they have access to a copy. As early as the 13th century, the Inquisition even banned the possession of Old Testament books. Gradually, the church imposes its flu on society.

The inquisition, the celibacy of the priests, the obligatory character of the marriage before any sexual relation, are all institutions which date from this time. It is also at that time that is developing what will become one of the richest Christian traditions: burning alive people. About 1 million "witches" will be burned during the Middle Ages. Cities compete to break the record for the number of witches burned in a year. A lasting record is set by the city of Bamberg, episcopal seat, which burns 600 witches in one year. Many members of the ecclesiastical hierarchy still regret today when the church dominated the life of society: Christian clerics regret the "spirituality" of the time, his art, which left a large place to death - a subject that has always fascinated Christians - and haunting music.


The Christian emperor Charlemagne converted many Saxons, proposing them the following choice: to convert to Catholicism, or to have the head cut off. Tens of thousands of heads fall, with the blessing of the church: the priests present participate in the game of the emperor.


A pope judges his predecessor. Stephen VI unearthed the corpse of his predecessor, Pope Formosa, several months after the burial. He dragged the corpse by the feet before a synod he had summoned. There, having solemnly condemned the deceased, he ordered him to cut off three fingers of his right hand, and had the corpse thrown into the Tiber. His body will be recovered and buried again secretly.

In 905, the new pope, Sergius III, had him dug up a second time. He has him put on pontifical clothes and sit on a throne and make him judge once more. Then the corpse was decapitated, three more fingers were cut off, and then thrown back into the Tiber. This time, nobody bothered to recover and bury the body.

11th century

Schism of Orient. The patriarch of Constantinople claims that it is necessary to use leavened bread for the Eucharist, the theophagous rite at the center of the Christian mass. The Pope, bishop of Rome, says that unleavened bread is needed. On this question of paramount importance, Christendom is divided, and the two patriarchs of Rome and Constantinople excommunicate each other.

Schism will cause deaths until the 1990s (civil wars in Yugoslavia, Catholics against Orthodox). XIth - XIIth century Faced with the growth of the population in Europe, the Church proposes a method of control of the "natural" population: the Crusades. The call to the crusade was launched in 1095. In 1099 Jerusalem is "liberated": when the crossed troops enter the city, the Muslim governor goes against the promise that the civilian population will be spared. Of course, the entire population (which includes mainly Jews and Muslims) was killed in the following hours, but the Crusaders took care to rape women and children before slaughtering them or opening their belly. . It is estimated that 70,000 civilians were massacred. The last phase of the massacre is played in the synagogues and mosques of the city, where the terrified inhabitants have taken refuge: they hope that the religious character of the places could inspire the pious cross to the clemency. There is of course nothing of it: the Crusaders enter, and transform the places of worship into vast mass graves. The massacre of thousands of civilians clustered in the grand mosque of the esplanade of the temple will last severalhours. "All that breathes" in the city was killed, report with pride the crusaders' commanders.

1090 - 1153

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church, Doctor Mellifluus Saint Bernard of Clairvaux is canonized from 1174, then promoted to Doctor of the Church in 1830 before being proclaimed Doctor Mellifluus in 1953 by Pope Pius XII. It is therefore an interesting example of what the Catholic Church considers, in the twentieth century, as exemplary behavior in the Middle Ages.

Indeed, the merits of St. Bernard are great: his sermons for the second crusade convince many young Europeans to go exterminate the heretics in the East. After having, in 1146, preached for the Second Crusade together with the King of France in person, he goes to Germany to preach the word with a simple formula: participation in the crusade is a good deal because it automatically gives indulgence plenary for all sins.

But the Germans are less easy to convince than the French, especially since at their borders live non-Christianized slaves, who could be exterminated while sparing themselves the perilous journey to Palestine. Saint Bernard, pragmatic, obtains from the Pope the authorization to extend the crusade, confirmed by the papal bull Divini Dispensatione. "Death or baptism" - Saint Bernard But the holy man has a fear: that the German soldiers are too soft with the Slavs. His sermons therefore become more precise. The purpose of the enterprise is the extermination (Vernichtung) of the "Gentiles on the other side of the Elbe". He insists: the goal is not the reconquest of land, as in Palestine, but a work of extermination. The armies of the Crusaders must offer to all the Gentiles met the following choice: "Extermination or Conversion" (Vernichtung oder Bekehrung).

Then the formula will become, for reasons of marketing & communication "The death or the baptism" (Tod oder Taufe). The message is very well understood by the Slavs of the East of the Elbe, who all hang on the door of their house crosses and declare to accept the new religion with enthusiasm. Saint Bernard will be disappointed with the little blood shed during this crusade, while the Pope and the Roman hierarchy will rejoice in the extension of the bishoprics of northern Germany. Another reason for satisfaction will be that this crusade will lead to the lasting establishment of orders of monk-warriors who will continue for several centuries to bring the Good News of Christianity by the sword in the Slav peoples of North-West Europe, so that Poland and a significant part of the population of the Baltic countries are now Catholic.

Not satisfied with having succeeded in exciting many Catholics to kill unbelievers, Saint Bernard also conflicts with several theologians of his time, including Gilbert de la Porrée, who is finally condemned and executed thanks to Saint Bernard, and Arnoldo da Brescia , whose ashes are, after execution in Rome, scattered in the Tiber. Many of Saint Bernard's sermons have come down to us, the most important of which seems to be the one entitled "The love of God".


The "Latin pogroms" of Constantinople. In the city of the pious patriarch who eats leavened bread, a colony of "Latin" merchants, mainly from Venice, Genoa, Pisa and Amalfi, was established in the early 12th century. But these people have everything to displease the Orthodox prelates: not only do they use unleavened bread for the rite of the Eucharist, but they make the sign of the cross in the wrong direction (from left to right, and not from right to left as the orthodox)!

The orthodox pop people excite the populace, and finally, in a radiant day of May 1182, the crowd led by the popes is thrown on the "Latin": several thousand "Latin" men, women, children are killed.


The Fourth Crusade makes a detour to Constantinople, at the time the largest city of Christendom. But Christians know how to make each other what they do to others: for three days, Constantinople is sacked in an orgy of unspeakable violence.


Crusade against the Albigensians.

During the second half of the twelfth century, the immorality of Christian clerics scandalized more and more European populations. One of the results of this scandal is the development of Christian churches alternative to the Catholic Church, of course immediately decreed heretics by the latter. The most important of these heresies are Waldensian heresy and Cathar heresy (or Albigensians). The Waldensians are Protestants before the letter that decides that we can do without priests to worship God. They are immediately chased by the civil and ecclesiastical authorities and have to take refuge in remote alpine valleys. The heresy of the Albigensians takes on a much greater importance: a good part of the population of the South of France adheres to this doctrine which preaches a strict observance of the principles of the Christian New Testament, and imposes in addition to its "perfect" rules of life very strict.

Pope Innocent III launched the call for crusade against these heretics in 1208, and soon after the military operations were launched.

On July 21, 1209, the crossed army, guided by Arnaud Amaury, Prior General of the Order of Citeaux, Chief Legate of the Pope, reached the Catholic city of Beziers. Amaury then gives the bishop of the city a list of 222 names of Cathar or Waldensian heretics, telling him to deliver them to the Crusaders, or to leave the city by abandoning the unfortunate 222. In case of refusal, threatens the general father of the Cistercians, Catholics will suffer the same fate as heretics. Only the bishop and some Catholics leave the city.

The Cistercian general father holds his promise: the next day, the Crusaders enter the city. Arnaud Amaury launches the order which assured his posterity: "Kill them all, God will recognize his own", and an immense carnage begins. About 1000 people take refuge in the church of Saint Madeleine, hoping that the crusaders will not dare to kill in this place. Vain hope, all, including Catholic priests, are massacred. The city is delivered to the flames. Arnaud Amaury celebrates a Te Deum to thank God for such an easy victory. It is indeed reason to rejoice, since it is estimated that 25,000 people were killed during the day, including 222 sought after heretics. The few survivors wandered for several days agonizing around the city, deprived of water and care.

Besides the famous case of Beziers, this war is the scene of countless massacres of civilians by the Crusaders. One example is Marmande: in June 1219 the city surrendered to an army of 20 bishops, 600 knights and 10,000 archers: the 5,000-person population was completely slaughtered, including women and grandchildren. The largest pyre of the crusade is apparently the one erected after the fall, May 3, 1211, Castle Lavaur (near Castres): 400 Cathars are burned on a single pyre! The chatelaine is delivered to the soldiers, who, once they have finished having fun, throw it alive in a well and then cover her with stones. Provence and the region of Toulouse are largely depopulated by this war, which is waged against the civil populations with unprecedented ferocity in Europe since the barbarian invasions. The population of many cities, including Carcassonne, is entirely exterminated. Entire regions of Provence are completely emptied of the autochthonous population, then Catholic peasants are imported from other regions of France. This war, which is coupled with a genocide, will stop only with the fall of Monségur, last Cathar stronghold, in February 1244.

The first March 1244, the triumphant catholic church burns alive 205 heretics on a only big pyre. The civilization of Oc is destroyed, the language of Oc will survive only by writings and by some troubadours. It was during the genocide of the Cathars that the Catholic Church created the institution of the Inquisition, which would continue to burn suspects of Cathar sympathies long after the end of the war. For example, Guillaume Bélibaste, a perfect Cathar lived hidden in Catalonia for decades. Stricken by the inquisition, he will be burned alive in 1321 in Villerouge-Termenès (Aude), whose castle belonged to the archbishop of Narbonne.

1224 - The legalization of the execution of heretics

Emperor Frederick II decrees that heresy must be punished by death or loss of language, the choice being left to the discretion of the judge. The idea of legalizing a long-standing practice has been pleasing to Christian lords, and a wave of legislation going in this direction is crossing Europe.

In 1231, the Sicilian constitution made the decree absolute to burn the heretics, to align with the practice then in force in Germany. In Venice, the ducal oath is modified: all new Doge must, from 1240, judge to burn all heretics. In 1255, Alfonso X the Wise, king of Castile and Leon, ordered to burn at the stake all Christians who would convert to Islam or Judaism. In 1270, a French law made it compulsory to punish heretics by the stake, although this punishment was already customary in this country for centuries. England, which already had an unfortunate tendency to adopt European laws and customs only at a late date, will not adopt a similar law until 1401. The practice of hunting heretics remains disparate and more or less severe. in different countries. So, while in Oxford, from 1166 the heretics are only branded on the face, they are already killed in large numbers on the continent. For example, in 1199, in Strasbourg, one burns no less than 90 heretics in one day. It is these many-time disparities in practice that will drive the church to create the Inquisition.

1228 - First Spanish antisemitic law

King James I of Aragon decides, after a meeting with several bishops (the bishops of Vich, Barcelona and Girona participated), to forbid Jews to have Christian servants.

1234 - The invention of the yellow star

The Council of Arles decides to introduce the "obligation for the Jews to carry on them distinctive signs". With an advance of more than 500 years on the Swiss and Swedish Customs administrations (which will ask the Germans in 1938 to affix a "J" on the passport of the German Jews), and on the Nazi administration (which will make the invention of the obligatory yellow star), the Catholic Church thus invents the concept of placing a mark on people to persecute. It must be said that this Christian invention will be little applied. But it helps to revive anti-Semitism in Europe, whose consequences will be tragic as early as 1391.

1226-1270 Louis IX King of France.

Finally, a well-known and trusted Catholic is granted access to the French crown. The church canonized in 1290, recognizing its merits, which, no doubt, are exceptional. Indeed, during his reign, Saint Louis launched two crusades, both of which ended in a catastrophic way: it does not matter, it is intention (to kill and to plunder) which counts in the eyes of the merciful catholic church! On the internal level, Saint Louis ensures that justice systematically punishes blasphemers: they will be pilloried, and will have their tongue pierced with a hot iron.

1225-1274 - Saint Thomas, Doctor of the Church, theoretician of the extermination of heretics and Angelic Doctor

Saint Thomas is still regarded today as the great Catholic philosopher. In particular, his Summa Teologica is the reference work of Catholic scholasticism and is widely and often quoted by Pope John Paul II in his encyclicals. St. Thomas justifies among others, in Summa Teologica, the necessity of killing heretics: As far as heretics are concerned, there are two things to consider, one on their side, another on the side of the Church. On their side there is sin. The one by which they deserved not only to be separated from the Church by excommunication, but also to be cut off from the world by death. In fact, it is much more serious to corrupt the faith that insures the life of the soul than to falsify the currency that serves temporal life. Therefore, if counterfeiters or other criminals are immediately put to death in good justice by secular princes, far more heretics, as soon as they are convinced of heresy, can they not only be excommunicated but very justly put to death. [Summa Teologica, Secunda Secundae Pars, Question 11, Heresy, Article 3] St. Thomas deals in detail with the question when to kill a heretic: if he denies heresy, he should not be killed, but if he reoffends, it is imperative to kill him: But when those who have been welcomed fall again, it seems to be the sign of their inconstancy in matters of faith. That is why, if they come back later, they are admitted to penance, not so much as to avoid the sentence of death.

[Summa Teologica, Secunda Secundae Pars, Question 11, Heresy, Article 4]

This practice will be institutionalized by the Inquisition. At the moment of going to the stake, the heretic will have the opportunity to repent, and to "die as a good Christian". The inquisition will bring his great charity to the point that the one who repents at the stake will be killed by strangulation and not by the flames.

St. Thomas also lays down the doctrinal bases of the persecution of which the converted Jews will be victims: The Jews, if they have not received the faith in any way, must in no way be forced to do so. But if they have received the faith, they must be forced into the necessity of keeping it

[Summa Teologica, Secunda Secundae Pars, Question 10, Infidelity in general, Article 8]

The Angelic Doctor explains that We must tolerate the rites of the Jews, and it is all to his credit, before writing: As for the rites of the other infidels, as they bring no element of truth or utility, there is no of reason that these rites are tolerated.

[Summa Teologica, Secunda Secundae Pars, Question 10, Infidelity in General, Article 11]

St. Thomas is today considered by the church as the great Catholic philosopher par excellence. Thomism is the official philosophy of the Catholic Church. To be convinced of this, it suffices to read the encyclical of John Paul II "Faith and reason" (which dates from 1998, available on the Vatican website), devoted to the relationship between philosophy and religion: the pope quotes from many times the Angelic Doctor and no other Catholic philosopher.

1231 - Foundation of the Inquisition.

Until 1231, the task of discovering, exposing and punishing heretics was the responsibility of the bishops. But with time, this task becomes too heavy for these shepherds of the good Christian people, who have so many other heavy tasks to assume. The pope therefore decides to create a separate institution, which will have the time and the means to devote itself solely to the eradication of heresy and witchcraft: the inquisition.

The Inquisition, during its history, burns more than one million people, mostly heretics, Jews and Muslims converted to Christianity and "witches". The last witch will be burned in 1788. The last "heretic" will have to wait until 1826. The inquisition and its Protestant imitators also burn doctors and scientists, when the opportunity arises. The church will never deny the inquisition, and will guarantee the historical continuity of the institution until today, limiting itself to changing its name: it was not until Pius X, in 1906, that the "Holy Office of the inquisition "is renamed" Saint Office ", and 1965 so that the said office is renamed" Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith ".

Finally, in 1997, the pope opened the archives of the Holy Office, and historians handpicked are allowed to conduct research. The estimates of the total number of inquisition victims are strongly revised upwards, the consensus now revolves around the million people executed, to which must be added countless tortured people whose goods have been seized. Often Christians today tend to argue that the inquisition would be a mistake that has nothing to do with true Christianity. They forget that the institution still exists, although under a different name. They also forget that the practices of the inquisition (torture and execution of heretics) had begun already shortly after the arrival of Christians in power in ancient Rome.

The inquisition as a practice and institution thus goes through the whole history of Christianity. They also forget that the foundation of the inquisition is to be found in the Holy Scriptures, especially in Leviticus and these two verses of chapter 22 of Exodus: Verse 18: You will not let the sorceress live ("the witch" in other translations). Verse 20: He who offers sacrifices to other gods only to the Lord alone will be destined for extermination. When the mode of execution, the stake, it is also the result of a careful reading of the Word of God: in the second book of Kings, it is explained the fate of King Josiah (which is said, in the same book (chapter 23, verse 25) "Before Josiah, there was no king who, like him, came back to the Lord with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his strength, according to all the law of Moses, and after him there appeared none like it. ") to the heretics of his day, who are priests who wanted to worship God on mountains other than the temple of Jerusalem (Ch 23 verse 20): "He sacrificed on the altars all the priests of the high places, which were there, and there burned the bones of men, and he returned to Jerusalem." The same good king Josiah himself, like the inquisition, was also busy with the "witches" of his time: (Ch 23, verse 24): "Moreover, Josiah made those who evoked the spirits and those who predicted the future, and the teraphim, and the idols, and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, in order to put into practice the words of the law, written in the book that the priest Hilkiah found in the house of the Lord ".

Today, some moderate Catholics and Protestants would distance themselves from the actions of the Inquisition and Protestant witch hunters, and claim that the execution by fire of heretics and witches is not Christian.

Alas, it is clear that the inquisitors and their Protestant imitators acted in accordance with the teachings of the founding texts of their religion, and many, undoubtedly the vast majority but in any case the most famous as Bernard Gui, Torquemada, and later the Cardinal Bellarmine, were men of great integrity and certainly of good faith, sincerely convinced to act for the good, even if that good was the cruel will of their cruel god.

Christians who today try to dissociate Christianity and inquisition also forget that the staff of the inquisition was provided essentially by two religious orders that still exist today, and that remain generally very popular in the Christian circles of the West to the dawn of the 21st century: Franciscans and Dominicans.

These two poor orders, founded at the beginning of the 13th century, already had several thousands of members in 1231. These two orders were as irreproachable as each other, leading a pure life, full of religious zeal, sheltered from any corruption(lol). Their basic principles are: poverty, work, humility and charity. It is therefore natural for the Pope to turn to these honest Christians to fight heresy and witchcraft.

From 1244, the two orders depend only on Rome. The bishops were obliged to give absolution to any Dominican or Franciscan who asked for it, except in the case of such enormities that ‘the pope alone could be judge’. The priors of the two mendicant orders are authorized to absolve their brethren of all the censures that might have been inflicted upon them, and even to raise the orders of excommunication.

In 1296, this autonomy of the mendicant orders was reinforced by a papal bull formally liberating the Dominicans and Franciscans from all episcopal jurisdiction and the statutes of the orders were declared to be the only laws by which they could be judged. The church had in its service a real army of men entirely devoted to its cause. The first inquisitors were all Dominicans, but in the decades that followed, the inquisitors were, in more and more countries, divided between the two orders.

As soon as it obtains the authorization to practice torture, the inquisition is entitled to judge and torture men as young as 14, and women as soon as 12. Later, the Spanish Inquisition will eliminate this discrimination, and in a concern for gender equality that is to his credit, allowed himself to judge and subject to torture children of both sexes from 10 years.

To torture and try younger children, the Inquisition developed legal schemes, the most common of which was to name a "guardian" who had the guardianship of the child, and then "assisted" the child during his trial. There have been cases of 7-year-olds accused, tortured and sentenced as heretics. Children of heretics were generally considered heretics themselves. If their age did not allow them to be tortured and judged, they were "asleep": they were placed in a basin of warm water, they were tied up, and their arteries were cut off their wrists. This method was considered particularly "merciful" by the inquisitors.


Corpses are unearthed and burned In Toulouse, while the war against the Cathar heresy is still in progress, the inquisition wants to show that even death does not put the heretic away from the inquisition. The bodies of several persons, including nobles, are exhumed and, after declaring that they have died in a state of heresy, they are dragged to the market place, where they are burned. The idea of unearthing corpses to burn them will be a great success, and will continue to be practiced both by the medieval inquisition and, later, by the Spanish inquisition.


Pope Innocent IV finally authorizes the inquisition to practice torture. Obtaining a confession of guilt is greatly facilitated. The inquisition can pronounce, on the basis of confessions torn by torture, sentences ranging from a simple prayer or a fast to the confiscation of property and even life imprisonment. However, she can not pronounce a death sentence. With a subtlety so characteristic of the Catholic Church, the Inquisition can "pass" a heretic to the secular arm of justice for a death sentence on the basis of confessions obtained under torture by the inquisition. This subtlety of procedure will allow the church to claim later that it did not kill anyone.

It should be noted that the killing of heretics dates well before the inquisition: it began in ancient times. The novelty of 1231, is the foundation of a specialized institution, specifically charged with the persecution of heretics. We must also beware of the confusion that the Catholic Church willingly maintains between "the three inquisitions": the medieval, the Spanish, and the "modern" or "Roman", the latter still existing today: it basically acts on the same principle: we identify heretics, we make them confess by torture, then we "abandon" them to the secular arm for life imprisonment or death. The differences between the three inquisitions are essentially details of procedure and hierarchy: the "medieval" inquisition responds to the bishops and the pope, the "Spanish" mainly to the Most Catholic Kings, the "Roman" inquisition, which dates from the counter-reform, only and directly to the Pope. It should be noted that the Spanish and "medieval" inquisitions will coexist with the "Roman" inquisition for several centuries after the counter-reform.

1310 - The Grand Autodafé of Toulouse

The Inquisitor Bernard Gui presides over a most impressive spectacle: during four terrible days, 18 people are burned on a bonfire in front of their fellow citizens. 65 are imprisoned for life, 3 with chains, while 20 are condemned to terrible pilgrimages to distant lands from which they are unlikely to return alive.

Two years later, the same Bernard Gui offers Toulouse a new great show, with a notable innovation: the bones of 36 dead are exhumed and burned. To complete the show, 50 people are condemned to carry cross and perilous pilgrimages, 86 are imprisoned for life. The innovation is of course to burn, in the same show, the bones of dead heretics and living heretics. Indeed, the fact of digging up bones to burn them was a Toulouse practice since 1237. Some figures on the condemnations of the Inquisition Christians of the 20th and 21st centuries have made great efforts to relativize the crimes of the inquisition. They insist that death sentences represented only a minority of convictions. This is true, but it must be borne in mind what were the other convictions: * The wearing of the cross consisted in having to wear for life, or for several years, the Sanbenito: a garment on which crosses were sewn. The condemned could only remove this mark of infamy in the privacy of his dwelling, and all his property was confiscated. Wearing crosses was therefore a condemnation to shame and social exclusion. * Imprisonment was usually life imprisonment. A very short life, given the conditions of the prisons of the time, of the order of a few weeks for the vast majority of cases. Often, defendants would die in prison during the proceedings.

This was the case, for example, of 10 prisoners who, in the great Toulouse autodafe of 1310, died in prison between the time when they confessed their heresy under torture and even before being convicted. * Pilgrimages, in those times when travel was very perilous, in practice amounted to death sentences: the returns of a pilgrim condemned by the inquisition were rare events. To these considerations we must add a commentary on the fate of those who were not convicted. A percentage that is not known precisely, but of the order of 10% of the accused escaped conviction. It involved resisting torture without confessing. These survivors were therefore crippled, who survived but were unable to work or have a more or less normal life.

The Register of Sentences of Bernard Gui, inquisitor in Toulouse, covering a period from 1308 to 1322, reveals the following figures concerning convictions:

Surrendered to the secular arm and burned: 40

Imprisoned: 300

Condemned to carry crosses: 138

Condemned to pilgrimages: 16

Banished in the Holy Land: 1

Houses destroyed: 16

Conviction of the Talmud: 1

Fugitives: 36

Bones exhumed and burned: 67

Bones exhumed Of those who should have been imprisoned: 21

Thus, out of a total of 548 live defendants, no less than 356 (65%) are sentenced to death or to the death penalty. The figure of 40 sentenced to death (7%) is therefore highly misleading.

1314 - The first Autodafe in Spain

Contrary to what is sometimes believed, the inquisition was not a Spanish invention. But this country, left late, work twice to catch up, then overtake other European countries. In Aragon on May 12, 1314, 6 living heretics and several exhumed corpses are burned in front of the delirious crowd. The Spanish autodafe is a complex spectacle: First, a religious ceremony takes place in a church, during which the heretics (those who are alive, not the dead!) Are "reconciled" with the Church. Then, the heretics were "abandoned to the secular arm" who took care of their execution. To perfect the hypocrisy, the secular civil servants did not participate in the religious ceremony. 40 days of indulgence were promised to every faithful person who attended the burning dinner. Very quickly, Spain becomes the country of the big autodafés: thus, in 1360, in Valence, one burns not less than 80 heretics in a single autodafé. The Spanish record, never beaten so far, is 107 heretics executed in a burnt out, in 1499 in Cordoba.

Autodafe - 400 years before the Nazis, Christians burn books that have the good fortune to displease them.

In Spain, the Inquisition burns hundreds of thousands of books in its history, mostly Old Testaments and Jewish prayer books taken from conversos.

Burning books is a centuries-old tradition of Christians. Saint Paul already burned books with his disciples. Proto-Christians, already, had the bad habit of burning down libraries, especially when they were attached to temples. Saint Gregory the Great inaugurated his pontificate by setting fire to a large library on the Palatine. At present Catholics have renounced this practice, but not Protestants in North America. At the dawn of the third millennium, the Southern Baptists, one of the largest Protestant churches in the United States, engage in frequent pounding of books. The Harry Potters are among their favorites for these exercises.


Throughout Europe rages Black Death, first major epidemic of plague of the continent. The Catholic prelates soon designated the culprits: Jews would have poisoned the wells. The noise is spreading all over Europe, and countless Pogroms follow one another.

In Germany, there are 350 Jewish communities totally destroyed by Pogroms in this period. In many cities, the entry of the city to the Jews is banned, and this prohibition will remain in force in many important cities (such as Nuremberg) until the 18th century.

In Italy, in Milan, the civil and religious authorities who executed at the stake of the "untori" (this is what is called in Italian the unfortunate suspected of poisoning wells) Jews, they raise a commemorative column to celebrate their feat. The column will go down in history under the name of "Colonna infame" when, in the nineteenth century, the novelist Manzoni will have, centuries after the fact, the courage to denounce this vile monument to religious perversion.

1391 - The beginnings of violence against Jews in Spain

During the rule of the Moors in Spain, the three Mediterranean monotheisms (Islam, Judaism, Christianity) coexisted peacefully for several centuries. But this coexistence of several religions on a soil now controlled by Christian kings displeases the Catholic prelates, who constantly spread anti-Semitism in the populace and also in the highest spheres of power.

In 1391, the populace excited by the prelates destroyed the Jewish ghettos of Seville, Barcelona, ​​Valencia, Toledo and other important centers. The destructive fury of this year culminates in Seville in June, when the crowd, excited by Archdeacon Martinez, kills more than 4,000 Jews.


In the 1390s, a priest from Prague began to preach in Czech rather than Latin: for this crazy idea of ​​speaking a language that the faithful understand, Jan Hus is accused of heresy. He flees Prague. When the Council of Constance is convened, the Emperor of Germany offers Hus a safe conduct to allow him to go to expose his point of view at the Council, but this is obviously a trap: shortly after his arrival, he is imprisoned and put in secret in November 1414. Follows a classic process of inquisition, which concludes to the culpability of Jan Hus, obstinate and unrepentant heretic: he is put to death at the stake on July 6, 1415.

1478 - Foundation of the Spanish Inquisition

Spain, now unified by the marriage of Isabella of Castile and Ferdinand of Aragon, is a country that defines itself, at that time, mainly in its opposition to Muslims, who still dominate at that time the South of Spain. peninsula. In order to fight heresy more effectively in their country, Isabella and Ferdinand get from Pope Sixtus IV the power to appoint the Great Inquisitors in Castile and Aragon. The decision has above all financial implications, since the Inquisition confiscates the property of the condemned. But the pope accepts, among other things, because he believes in the promise of the Spanish rulers, who have pledged to use the funds to finance the war against the Arabs, whereas, since Saint Gregory the Great, the popes have become fond of wars against the infidels.


Tomás de Torquemada is appointed Grand Inquisitor of Castile. This Dominican monk makes extensive use of torture and the confiscation of the property of his victims. Estimates of the number of people burned during his tenure vary, according to historians from around 2000 to 8800 burned alive to which should be added 9654 tortured or imprisoned for life.

Torquemada will become the living symbol of the inquisition. Pope Eugene IV will call him "defender of the faith". The Spanish Catholic historian Sebastian de Olmeda will call him "Light of Spain, Savior of his country, honor of his order". Some Catholics, eager to rid their church history of this cumbersome character, have invented and described a Torquemada eager to get rich and rape women.

But the reality is different. The man is unquestionably of great integrity. He will systematically refuse hierarchical promotions in the church and in his order. He will never seek a financial benefit for his order. He could have become a bishop and even a cardinal with ease. His personal property did not increase by a penny in his long years as inquisitor. He only used simple clothes made from hemp and cotton, refusing linen ones. Patriotic and Christian, he participates in the Spanish Christianization policy by implementing two precepts that appear in chapter 22 of the Exodus, one of the basic texts of the Bible:

Verse 18: You will not let the magician live ("the witch" in other translations).

Verse 20: He who offers sacrifices to other gods only to the Lord alone will be destined for extermination.

Torquemada considered his mission sacred. His cultural background was impressive, his mind broad and his intelligence open. He was not a fool or a criminal in the classical sense of the term, but a sincere, learned Christian, and at the same time a patriotic Spaniard, convinced that conversos and heretics were a danger to Spain and faith, and so he had to fight them. In the last years of his life, Torquemada will invest all his intelligence in writing an inquisitorial code, which he will continue to refine until one last edition in 1498, a few months before his death. This code contains many wise provisions, such as the fact that at least one, but preferably two inquisitors must always be present during the tortures of the accused.

Torture under Torquemada: Under Torquemada, torture is standardized, leaving little room for the evil fantasies of executioners and torturers. A precise procedure will now be followed: at first, the executioners, dressed in long black tunics, hoods lowered on the head with two holes for the eyes, one for the nose and one for the mouth, seize the heretic and the undressed to the waist. Then the inquisitors stand before the heretic and, on several occasions, beg him to confess his faults. If the heretic persists in denying it, then the inquisitors order that he be tortured, first warning the heretic who is going to be tortured that, in case of injury, fracture of limbs or death, the responsibility must be rejected only on the heretic himself, since the tortures are only the result of are recalcitrant stubbornness.

The first phase of the ordeal was that of the rope: the hands tied behind the back with a rope slipping into a pulley attached to the ceiling, the heretic was lifted and held in suspension for a while. Then unexpectedly the executioner let go of the rope and the body fell suddenly to about 20 cm from the ground: the joints were dislocated in shock, while the rope often cut the flesh of the wrists to the nerves. This torture lasted an hour or more.

Water-borne torture was the second phase: the person was tied tightly after spreading it on a kind of wooden easel with only a cross bar on which the body, falling backwards, bowed. , bringing the patient upside down, feet up and upside down. Because of this position, the breathing became extremely difficult and the movements that the heretic automatically made to find a little air caused the twist of the hands and feet bound, and the ropes wounded the tissues. A fine cloth soaked in water was then introduced into the mouth, bringing it to the bottom of the throat, so that it covered the nostrils entirely. It was then that water was poured into the mouth, drop by drop, so slowly that the tortured heretic drank about one liter an hour. The unhappy man had no opportunity at any time to breathe freely. In his efforts to suck air, he engulfed water, and the result was a rupture of the blood vessels of the throat: the rag was generally removed soaked with blood.

The third degree of torture, fire, was practiced by binding the hands and feet in such a way as to render any change of position impossible for the prisoner. Then one rubbed one's feet with oil, bacon, or other greasy matter and exposed to a fire until the skin cracks and the bones and nerves are completely uncovered.

It should be noted that the inquisitors knew that they sometimes tortured irreproachable Catholics. It is known that the thing had to be discussed inside the church, because Cardinal Jiménes de Cisneros wrote that the Catholics, if they were unjustly tortured, according to the laws of the inquisition, flew away directly to heaven.

The torture could be, in the Spanish inquisition, applied to the children from 10 years old and to the old ones until only 60 years old.

1485 - The Martyrdom of San Pedro Arbuès

On the night of September 15, 1485, the inquisitor of Aragon, colleague of Torquemada, Pedro Arbuès, knelt in prayer in front of the great altar of the cathedral of Zaragoza when eight killers arise: the man knows that he does not have only friends and wears a helmet and a coat of mesh, but nothing helps: a dagger crosses his neck entirely, he collapses and dies shortly after surrounded by the canons of the cathedral rushed to his rescue.

Immediately the inquisition is unleashed: it accuses the conversos to be behind the crime, From December 1485, and until 1492, we will execute "guilty" of the great conspiracy against Saint Pedro. The penalties for the alleged killers were severe: one of them with both hands sliced ​​and nailed to the portal of the House of Deputies, then was beheaded. His body was then quartered, and the pieces of his body hung along the streets of the city to serve as an example.

The poor Pedro Arbuès will be beatified by Alexander VII in 1664, then canonized by Pope Pius IX on June 29, 1867.

1486 (or 1487) - Publication of a ‘Manual of the witch hunt’

Two German Dominicans, Jakob Sprenger, Dean of the University of Cologne, and Heinrich Institoris (Kraemer by his real name), professor of theology at the University of Salzburg, publish the Malleus Maleficarum: it is a thick volume of more than 400 pages which is a "guide" "(of course approved by the ecclesiastical hierarchy) of the witch hunt: we learn how to identify them (eg, a woman who stroked a black cat while a person felt ill at a distance of a few hundred meters), torture them to make them confess, and how the inquisitors can absolve each other after the torture session. The book also asserts that denying the existence of witchcraft is in itself a very serious heresy (punishable by death at the stake). For over two and a half centuries in Germany, after the publication of Malleus Malleficarum denying the existence of witchcraft will be punishable by death. The manual becomes a Best Seller. The Malleus will be the object of no less than 26 editions between 1486 and 1600. It will become the reference work for witch hunters Catholics, and also Protestants. The action of the two learned Dominican scholars is approved by Pope Innocent VIII, who already charges them in 1484, by the Summis bulls desiderantes affectibus, to extirpate witchcraft from Germany. The text of the bull of His Holiness the sovereign pontiff is included in the preface of the Catholic editions of the book.

1492 - Expulsion of the Jews from Spain

The stake Ferdinand of Aragon and his very pious wife Isabella of Castile, kings of Spain, expel the Jews from their kingdom. Jews have the choice to convert, to suffer the wrath of the inquisition (which will burn many of them by accusing them of being "false converts"), or leave. More than 160,000 Jews leave Spain. The Catholic hierarchy does not remain indifferent to this measure of cruelty cruelty: it approves the measure, the Pope encourages other European sovereigns to be inspired by the Spanish example. Throughout Europe, bishops are mobilizing to urge governments to prevent the entry of expelled Jews into their territory. In 1494, the Pope grants the title of Kings Catholics to Isabella and Ferdinand to thank them.

The Jews who choose to convert will be persecuted by the Inquisition with an impressive determination: until the 18th century, the "Bacon Test" will be made to Jewish converts and their descendants: a bacon salad is proposed to " converted ": if one notes that he has discarded bacon while eating, it is burned as" false convert ". The method will also be applied to converted Muslims and their descendants.

If the expulsion of the Jews from Spain is the largest eviction of the kind that history has recorded, it was not the first. In France, the Catholic prelates had already obtained an expulsion of the Jews in 1306, which was then revoked, before being confirmed in 1394. England had already proceeded to the expulsion in 1290. In 1496, Portugal imitates its powerful neighbor by expelling the Jews from his territory.

1493 - The first American Indian in paradise

When Columbus, who took care to bring a monk in his luggage, arrives in America, he meets Indians, who, he writes, are friendly and helpful people . No doubt to show them how Christian Europe treats friendly and helpful foreigners, he removes twelve of them whom he brings to Spain. On arrival, one of them falls sick: before his death, he is baptized in speed, which allows the court of Kings Très Catholiques to exult, because a native of the New World was able to enter paradise Christian. This sad story will mark the beginning of the tragic Christianization of the American Indians, whose episode of the Paraguayan reductions and the persecutions of the Pueblo Indians will be just two of the most tragic episodes.


It is in this year that the biggest autodafe ("act of faith") that the Spanish history has recorded is recorded: in a single autodafé, the inquisitor Diego Rodrigues Lucero burns alive not less than 107 Jewish converts Christianity in Cordoba.

XVIth century - The drama of the castrati.

The church having decided that women can not enter the choir of churches, a tragic problem arises: how not to torture the ears of the pious prelates of Christ by depriving them of the high voices, so important in the chorus to praise the love of God? A barbarous solution is found: we will deprive of sexual organs young boys whose voice has been recognized as beautiful. The choruses of the Holy Catholic Church will never be lacking in sopranos and contralti.

This barbaric practice will not cease until 1878, on the orders of Pope Leo XIII. The practice is still very widespread during the nineteenth century, to the point that Rossini, when composing his "Little Solemn Mass" wrote, quite naturally, that it will be enough, to execute this one, "of a piano and of a dozen singers of the three sexes, men, women and castrati ".

1506 - The Pogrom of Lisbon

A large number of Jews expelled from Spain in 1492 had taken refuge in Portugal. Historians cite figures ranging from 90000 to 150000. This was an unparalleled chance for this country, because these refugees were largely educated people, doctors, bankers, traders, and some arrived in Portugal with part of their fortune. The feelings towards them of the population were therefore, initially, rather positive. But this new population displeases part of the clergy, and arouses the desires of the Spanish inquisition.

The latter therefore bribes Portuguese prelates to spread antisemitism. In a few years, a great success is achieved: in Lisbon, during a day of murderous madness that will pass to history as the Pogrom of Lisbon, 3000 Jews are killed by pious Catholics excited by the prelates. But the Portuguese clergy do not stop there. He asks for the creation of a Portuguese inquisition, on the model of the one that their Spanish neighbors are lucky enough to have. 1536 marks the official date of the creation of the Portuguese inquisition. In this country where life is good, the inquisition slowly enters into action, and the first Autodafé is celebrated only in 1540.

From 1540 to 1580 (date of the invasion of Portugal by Spain), the Portuguese inquisition will celebrate about 40 Autodafés, with a total of 2500 convictions including 170 at the stake. The arrival of Philip II, King of Spain, in power in 1580 finally accelerates things: the auto-daafes multiply, and in 20 years there will be 3200 convictions including 160 at the stake, an increase of the annual rate of nearly 100 %.

16th century

Julius II Pope Della Rovere. A skilful military leader, he wears armor for a mass, when an insolent monk points out to him that the dress is not appropriate. "When it comes to conquering land, God does not look at the habit, but the faith of his servant," he replies, and thus goes on to history. God indeed allows him to conquer Bologna, which is, as it should be, sacked.


Inspired by the Holy Spirit, who apparently had nothing else to do, a German monk, Martin Luther translates the "New Testament" in a few weeks. The devil comes to tempt him while he works: Luther finds nothing better to do than to throw him an inkpot that stains the wall! The spot has since been religiously preserved for tourists (Wartburg Castle), in the Land of Thüringen.

The event might seem insignificant. This is not so because it inaugurates the greatest schism of Christianity: in the centuries that follow, Christians will massacre each other with even more enthusiasm than they have massacred and burned the non-Christians, the heretics, witches, converted Jews and Muslims, etc.

Luther wrote and repeatedly said that the synagogues should be burned and the Jews driven out of the cities: it is thus in the tradition initiated by the fathers of the Catholic Church, and which will be perpetrated until the nineteenth century by the inquisition, and even until the twentieth by his imitators in brown shirt.

In 1543, this good monk published an anti-Semitic pamphlet entitled "The Jews and their lies". The brief quotations below give a general impression of Luther's level of love for the next practice:

"Their [Jews, translation note] breath stinks of the gold and silver of the Gentiles; There was never under the sun, and there is not and never will be more stingy than them, as it can be seen in their dishonest wear. So know, my dear Christians, that after the devil you are no more venomous, more vehement and more enemy than a true Jew who sincerely desires to be a Jew ... Does not their Talmud and their rabbis teach that he is not a Jew? sin to kill if a Jew kills a pagan, but it is a sin if he kills a brother in Israel It is not a sin for him not to keep a promise to a pagan. - as they do by lending money - a pagan is a divine service ... now, what are we going to do with these Jews, rejected and condemned? "

Luther gives his sincere advice on what to do with the Jews: Burn their synagogues, schools, bury and cover with dirt anything that does not burn (...) I recommend to shave and destroy their houses (...) I recommends that they take their prayer books, which contain such idolatries, lies, insults and blasphemies (...) That their rabbis are forbidden to teach under penalty of death (...) That the take their treasures of gold and silver (...) But if the civil authorities are reluctant to use force to restrain their diabolical vice, then the Jews should be expelled from their country and sent back to Jerusalem where they may lie, insult, defame, murder, steal, practice usury and mockery, and indulge in all these infamous abominations they practice among us.

[Translated from English by the undersigned: I have not been able to obtain a German or French version of the book] It should be noted that the German Protestant churches continue to date to consider Luther as a great man, to use his translation of the Bible, and to refer to his writings.

1524 - An ordinary year of witch hunting

No doubt to beat Bamberg's record of 600 witches burned in one year, no less than 1,000 witches are killed in the province of Como in one year. Then, for several years, we continue to burn a little over a hundred per year in this charming little town. These figures may impress, but it must be remembered that at the time Cologne regularly burned about 300 witches a year, and several European cities managed to maintain a quite honorable pace of 200 witches executions per year.


The sack of Rome: Protestant soldiers massacre the entire population of Rome, about 40,000 people, and plunder the city. The Pope is saved by the Swiss guards. He shut himself up with them at Castel Sant'Angelo while the population was massacred. He himself gets away with a big fright. Swiss Catholics are gaining a career abroad, which continues today.

1547 - La Limpieza - Racist laws of religious inspiration

We have seen that Spain was, under the Moorish rule, a multicultural society where the three Mediterranean monotheisms coexisted. When the Christians regained power in the Iberian Peninsula, they were eager to end this peaceful coexistence with a series of measures forcing Moors and Jews to convert. But this was not enough for the Catholic prelates, for they always suspected that under every convert, and even under every descendant of a convert, was in fact hiding a false Christian who continued to practice his religion of origin in secret. Catholic clerics thus invent the notion of Limpieza, or racial purity.

Little by little, voices are rising from the clergy so that the ecclesiastical and state offices are reserved for those who are descendants of Christians and not of Moors or conversos. First, the Athenaeum (future university) of Salamanca begins to demand a limpieza certificate from its students. These certificates are issued by the Inquisition. Then, in 1547, the Archbishop of Toledo, Juan Martinez Siliceo, made accept a Statute of Limpieza for all the ecclesiastics of the cathedral. The movement is expanding rapidly. From 1560, after having provided for a long time the certificates of Limpieza requested by other instances, the Inquisition decides to require it also of its own employees. Limpieza will also be required for all state offices, and even for certain professions that have been traditionally performed by Jews.

It will be necessary to await 1835 for the abolition of the Limpieza Statutes, but the certificate of limpieza will continue to be required to the aspiring officers of the army and the candidates to certain high positions of the state until 1865. Less than a century separates the end of the practice of the Spanish Limpieza from Nazi Nuremberg laws.


Calvin, who condemns the excesses of the Catholic Church, decapitates the free thinker and physician Michel Servetus, who had discovered the circulation of blood. He is never more than one of the more than 15 heretics that the reformer enforced during his dictatorship in Geneva.

Calvin plays a very active role in the arrest and then the death sentence of Michel Servet. He exchanged a correspondence with him first, then, when, fleeing the inquisition, Servetus arrived at Geneva, Calvin had him arrested. Calvin had told his friend Reformer Farel that if Michel Servet were to come to Geneva, he would not let him go alive again. He keeps his promise by intervening personally at the trial by pleading for execution. The only clemency he wants to concede to Servetus is execution by decapitation rather than the stake. After the execution, the body of Michel Servet is burned, with a copy of one of his books.


The invention of the printing press allowing an increasing number of people to inform themselves, the church reacts by publishing the Index (Index Additus Librorum Prohibitorum). For this publication to be kept up to date with care, the Special Congregation of the Index was founded by Pope Saint Pius V in 1571. This institution regularly publishes a list of forbidden books. Since the introduction of the Index, hundreds of Italian printers have fled to Switzerland and Germany. The last edition of the Index is published in 1961. Among the thousands of books that took place in this infamous list, we will cite the case of the Encyclopedia, published between 1751 and 1765: the Encyclopedia is not only put to the index, but anyone who reads it will be liable to automatic excommunication.

1566 -1572 - Pius V Pope.

This Saint of the Catholic Church publicly boasts several times of having, during his career of inquisitor, lit with his own hands more than 100 pyres of heretics that he himself had accused, confused and condemned.

In 1569, he ordered the expulsion of Jews from the states of the church. However, with a Catholic pragmatism, it will allow some Jewish traders to stay in Rome and Ancona, in humiliating conditions.

The Roman Jews are now locked in a ghetto, and in addition, a custom, which will remain in force until the fall of the states of the Church, is established: to publicly humiliate the Jews, each new pope passes the ghetto, where the Chief Rabbi of Rome hands him a copy of the Pentateuch (part of the Old Testament). After which the Pope restores to him the text accompanied by several pieces of gold, declaring that, if he respects the law of Moses, he disapproves the hard heart of the Jews. This ceremony wanted to mark the Christian belief that Jews should recognize their mistake and convert to Christianity.

Pius V also publishes a new edition of the official catechism of the church, in which love of neighbor and mercy of course have an important place.

At the end of his life, this Dominican stake will say regret especially for being too indulgent.

1568 - The first genocide order of the Modern Times

On February 16, 1568, the Holy Pope Pius V signs the first genocide order of the Modern Times. In recent years, the inhabitants of the Netherlands have adhered to the doctrines of Luther. Even more serious for St. Pius V, it seems that acts of iconoclasm have occurred. The Holy Pope therefore ordered Philip II, King of Spain and the Netherlands, to exterminate the entire population, that is to say about three million inhabitants, with the exception of a few people. expressly name in his order.

The pious Philip II asked the Duke of Alva 10 days later to execute the sentence. This skilful general has been, since the summer of 1567, in the Netherlands, with a small army of 10,000 infantrymen, 1,200 horsemen, and no less than 2,000 courtezans. He gets to work quickly, despite his limited means. In a letter to Philip II he claims to have already eliminated "800 heads" in the only Holy Week of the year 1568. Soon, the population revolts in arms against the small army responsible for the extermination.

How many people will die following the papal sentence? It is difficult to estimate. According to the Duke D'Albe himself, he will succeed in exterminating 18600 people in 6 years of genocide. After failing in his attempt to genocide in the Netherlands, the Duke will be recalled to Spain, and after a brief period of disgrace, he will be given new missions during the invasion of Portugal. He finally died in his bed, never having regretted any of his actions in the Netherlands.

1547-1593 Wars of religion in France

The Christian sub-sects are engaged in France in a merciless civil war, interrupted by several peace and temporary truces. During one of these takes place the massacre of 20000 Protestants, men, women and children, in one night (Night of St. Bartholomew, 1572). Upon hearing the good news of the massacre, Pope Gregory XIII is enthusiastic. Festivities are organized in Rome, and he commissions his favorite painter, Vasari, to prepare a large fresco entitled "The elimination of the Huguenots".

1591 - A second series of Autodafés in Spain

Having taken power in Portugal in 1580, Philip II, pious Spanish Catholic ruler, assured the Jews and conversos of this country that they could now freely move to Spain and Portugal. Alas, many Jews and conversos, seeing the new activism of the inquisition since the arrival of Philip II in Portugal, think they will be quieter in Spain. Evil takes them!

The Spanish inquisitors, who have had, for decades, practically only witches and some blasphemers to eat, see this arrival of Jews and conversos as a manna fallen from the sky. Immediately the denunciations accumulate among the inquisitors, who seize the opportunity to revive their activities.

In 1591, the first autodafé of conversos, "new series", takes place in Toledo: only one unfortunate climbs on the pyre, while thirty convicts see their property seized and must, for some, end their existence in prison, and for others undertake perilous pilgrimages by wearing the Sanbenito. Many Autodafés succeed one another, but here again we notice that the number of pyres is small compared to that of the convictions to the prison for life. This restraint of the inquisition will disappear on the death of Philip II in 1598, and things will not settle for conversos in Spain until the expulsion of the Moors in 1609.

End of the sixteenth - early eighteenth century - The conversion forced Pueblo Indians.

Going back to the Gulf of Mexico, the Spanish explorers, always accompanied by monks and priests, enter in 1598 in contact with the Indians "Pueblo" in the territory which is today the US state of New Mexico: different from the nomadic Indians of the northern plains, and also more militant Indians that the Spaniards have met in Mexico and South America, the Pueblo Indians live in villages (the "Pueblos") of 2-3-storey brick houses, are peaceful and practice agriculture.

They practice a religion in which they worship the "Father Heaven" and the "Mother Earth", fear demons (Skinnwalkers) who walk at sunset on the crest of the mountains, worship crows as reincarnations of their ancestors. They also have a rich pantheon of gods quite similar to the Greek gods, their main god being the spider-woman. The ceremonies are celebrated in small family churches, the Kivas. These peaceful farmers immediately became the focus of the Spanish priests, eager to replace the cult of Father Heaven and Mother Earth with that of the god whose blood is drunk during ceremonies: the Indian shamans are accused of "witchcraft" and executed.

The Kivas are destroyed by the Spanish military. Traditional religious ceremonies are forbidden, on pain of mutilation. Indians caught celebrating a traditional ceremony will have one arm or one foot cut off. Nevertheless, Indians will continue to practice their ceremonies, in secret, at night.

The Catholic priests will use this fact in sermons, which the Pueblo Indians still quote with bitterness today: the priests will declare that the Indian religion is that of the darkness, since the ceremonies are done by night, while Christianity is the religion of the light, since one eats the flesh and drinks the blood of the Christian god in broad daylight. Several bloody revolts punctuate the history of the Christianization of the Pueblos. The religious persecution of the Pueblo Indians will not cease until after the annexation of the territory by the USA in 1847.


giordano bruno

Giordano Bruno is burned alive in Rome, condemned for heresy. He had dared to define the universe as "infinite", and hypothesized the existence of life forms out of the earth. It was too much for the church. After eight years of trial, in which confessions are extracted by torture, he is sentenced to death as "obstinate and unrepentant heretic". He defends himself by trying to show that his ideas are not in contradiction with the Christian doctrines, in vain. It is burned in public in Rome, Campo dei Fiori. We will take care to gag him before bringing him to the place of execution, to avoid any risk that his words will disturb the crowd coming to watch the show. His chief accuser, Cardinal Bellarmine, a pious and learned Jesuit, who will give all his possessions to the poor, will later be canonized, and, in 1930, proclaimed "Doctor of the Church".

It is interesting to note that if, in the case of Galileo, the Catholic Church will express some regret at the end of the 20th century, and rehabilitate it even partially in 1992, it will never repent of the execution of Bruno. On the contrary, it will vehemently oppose the installation of a statue of Giordano Bruno in Rome in 1889.

In 1929, the pope asked Mussolini to destroy this statue, before canonizing, then to name "Doctor of the 'Church' Cardinal Robert Bellarmin, accuser of Giordano Bruno. More recently, in February 2000, when a conference on Giordano Bruno was held at the Theological Faculty of Naples, the Holy See sent a "message" to the president of the conference, signed by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Secretary of State at the Vatican. , where it is written that "The path of his thought [Giordano Bruno, editor's note] (...) led him to intellectual choices that were gradually revealed, on certain decisive points, inconsistent with the doctrine Christian. ". The message then assigns "the violent issue" to the "civil power": in other words the fault is not the sponsor, the inquisition, but the civil power, which executed the sentence requested by the inquisition (it is recalled that was the "secular arm" executing the sentences of the inquisition). To appreciate the value of this subtle distinction of the prelates of the year 2000 defending their colleagues of 1600, it must be remembered that Rome was in 1600 an absolute monarchy headed by the Pope, the head of the Catholic Church.

The Vatican document continues in the same tone, stating that "What emerges historically suggests that the thinker's judges were driven by the desire to serve the truth and promote the common good, while doing what was possible to save him. life". It must be realized that this text is an official and public communication of the Vatican dated February 17, 2000, available on the Internet (official website of the Vatican), and not an obscure medieval text.

1609 Expulsion of the Moors from Spain

After the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, the inquisition was bored a little in this beautiful country. She therefore launched the hunt for Morescos, the Arabs converted to Christianity. Are suspected to be false converts and executed all those who refuse to drink wine or eat pork, or who are too clean: indeed, Islam, unlike Christianity, prescribed periodic washes. Cleanliness has never been more dangerous than in the 16th century in Spain! Finally, in 1609, probably fearing to have missed "false converts", the inquisition gets the king the expulsion of the Morescos to North Africa. The number of expellees is poorly known: estimates vary between 300,000 and 3 million. Rural areas were depopulated. Expellees arrive on Islamic soil, and Islam provides the death penalty for anyone who denies Islam.

The inquisitor general Diego de Spinoza proclaimed after the expulsion that "Spain finally breathes with relief", and hailed the operation as the triumph "cleanliness on rot".


The Italian philosopher Lucilio Vanini is burned alive by the inquisition. His faults: he gave "natural" explanations to miracles, and hypothesized that man could descend from great apes, and, even more seriously, he would have denied the immortality of the soul. He must flee Italy, but the inquisition catches up with him in Toulouse. He appears before the Ecclesiastical Court where he is found guilty of atheism, and condemned to have the tongue cut before being burned alive.

1615 - Protestants hunting witches

It is often believed that witch hunting would be a Catholic specialty. Alas, the Protestants share, since the Reformation, this passion of their Catholic brothers. It is difficult to estimate the total number of persons burned alive for witchcraft by Protestants because there is not, for the many Protestant churches, a well-ordered central file comparable to that of the Holy Office of the Inquisition (today Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) of Catholics. But Protestants are stepping up the witch hunt that Catholics had begun before them. Particularly accused of witchcraft are those who, in Catholic countries, are considered to be endowed with special divine gifts, such as exorcists and other healers. For example, in Geneva, the murderous madness of Protestant clerics led to the execution of 21 witches in the month of May 1571.

To give an idea of the extent, over time, of the witch hunt practiced by the Protestants, in the absence of global numbers, we will take the example of the Pays de Vaud, a Bernese colony in French-speaking Switzerland, whose territory roughly corresponds to the current canton of Vaud in Switzerland. In this rural province, witch hunts kill 2,000 people in the 200 years after the Reformation, almost one person per month. The 90% of the defendants are sentenced to death - executed at the stake. In 1615, the folly of the witch hunt fell on the small village of Golion (Vaud): of its 200 inhabitants, 25 will be burned alive for "witchcraft" over a period of 16 years, from 1615.

One to one, each accused confesses to having met a devil, to have signed a pact with him, and then to have accomplished on his order various misdeeds such as the poisoning of cattle or the casting of bad spells. Diabolical marks, which may be a simple melanoma or scar, are found on the body of each accused. Each accused also confesses the name of other wizards and witches. There are among the victims men and women of all ages and conditions, with the exception of the nobles and clerics of the Reformed Church, because the nobles are often the performers of this hunt initiated by Protestant pastors.

Supplication of the rope, detail of the painting "The Trial" of Alessandro Magnasco, about 1710-1720

As is usual in Protestant country, the confession is obtained by the rope: the accused has the arms tied behind the back, after which the Executioner lifts him by the rope which holds his arms, and various fractures result. If the accused is recalcitrant and hesitates to confess, the rope is used with the weights: weights are attached to the feet of the accused, and then new lifts are made until the confession. Since confessions are considered complete only if the accused has denounced other witches, the diet of the repressive system protesting in human material to torture and then to burn is ensured, and the frequent executions make it possible to maintain in the population a healthy fear devils. It will be necessary to wait for the century of the lights so that the hunt witches finally ceases in Switzerland.

1633 Trial at Galilee.

For having doubted the geocentric theory of Ptolemy (who, by the way, was not a Christian!), Galileo Galilei is forced to retract: he is shown the instruments of torture, which would be used if he insists.

His works had already been blacklisted in 1616. He spent the rest of his life confined to his villa (house arrest). His international reputation as a scientist allows him to avoid more serious consequences, and only his retraction avoids torture.

The Catholic Church will be very slow to admit that the Earth is turning around the sun. Until 1757, the Congregation of the Index will prohibit the publication of works "dealing with the movement of the earth". The works of Galileo and Copernicus will remain on the Index until 1835.

It was not until Pope John Paul II that the Catholic Church spoke again of Galilee. In 1979, he promised the formation of a commission of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, charged with deepening "the examination of the case Galileo (...) in a loyal recognition of the damages of whatever side they come". The commission is actually set up in 1981.

In 1992, it will make its conclusions to the pope, who has many reservations: while admitting the errors of judges of the time, the pope indicates that neither Galileo, nor his judges, were able to make the necessary distinction between "the scientific approach of natural phenomena" and "the reflection on the nature of the philosophical order". Galileo, according to the pope, made a grave mistake in refusing the suggestion that he be made to "present as hypothesis the system of Copernicus, as long as it was not confirmed by irrefutable evidence".

The commission and the pope agree to leave Galileo with a great deal of responsibility, because he also made another mistake: he had believed that the tides were irrefutable proof of the movement of the earth. The church therefore finally absolves Galileo, while insisting that he is at least as responsible as himself for his conviction.

1618 to 1648 Thirty Years War.

The very Catholic Habsburg rulers forced their Protestant Bohemian subjects into conversion, triggering the greatest war that the European continent had known until then. The population of Germany is halved. Many cities are devastated. Plague epidemics devastate all central Europe, from Lombardy to Prussia.

It is indeed a religious war, even though the churches later tried to make it appear that it was a political conflict: the war is triggered by a religious conflict, later by the kings foreigners, like Gustavus II of Sweden, intervene on the basis of their religious convictions. The case of Gustavus II of Sweden is particularly significant. it forces its soldiers to sing Christian hymns every night, but these are also formidable looters: the Swedish army will be given the title of "Schrecken des Krieges" by the German population, who fear looting ( that is to say the cases where an army enters a city, slaughters adult men, rapes women and children before slaughtering all or part of them, and setting the town on fire even more than those of Sweden. the Habsburg army.

When peace negotiations finally opened in Westphalia in 1644, Papal legate Fabio Chigi, former Grand Inquisitor of Malta and future Pope Alexander VII, was instructed to ensure that the conflict between the Catholic powers (France against Spain and Empire) ceases, and that against the war continues against the Protestants. Chigi fails: exhausted by the war, the Empire concludes peace with the Protestants. Pope Innocent X then condemned peace, declaring it null and void in the bull Zelo Domus Dei (1648). Fortunately for the rest of the German population, the bubble is ignored by all the signatories, and the Thirty Years War will be the last great religious war in Germany.


The Archbishop of Ireland James Ussher uses the Bible to calculate the age of the earth: it was created on Sunday, October 23, 4004 BC. It can make you smile today. But we must remember that one year before (1649), Blaise Pascal built the first calculating machine: we are in the middle of modern times from the scientific and technical point of view, but the Catholic Church persists in seeking the truth about scientific questions in the Bible. Ussher's calculation is still used today by American creationists, who persist in denying anything more than 6,000 years old: continental drifts, ancient fossils, etc., are still today for these individuals, "works of the devil" intended to deceive us.

1652 - The last witch executed in Geneva

It must be recognized that the Spirit of Geneva, the spirit so much praised by the many masters of the world who have negotiated peace and disarmament agreements in Geneva, has its roots far in history. Geneva ceases the execution of witches decades before the other major European cities. The last unfortunate woman to die in Geneva because of a pact with the devil is a woman named Michée Chauderon, washerwoman of her state, from Boège en Faucigny.

The charge comes from a hysterical woman who claims to be possessed by the devil. Traditionally in Geneva, the court asked for a medical report, which provided evidence in the form of diabolical marks on the body: a scar, a mole, a melanoma, were quickly recognized as such, and it can be said that at that time skin cancer could kill very quickly, indirectly. But in 1652 the medical profession rebels: the two medical experts testify, with a courage that commands admiration, a report exonerating the unfortunate.

Pushed by theologians, the court asked for a second medical report. As there were no doctors in Geneva willing to contradict their colleagues, they went to Nyon for more malleable doctors: doctors from this little town on the banks of Lake Geneva agreed to find them on the body of the washerwomen. diabolical marks, and on April 6, 1652, Michée Chauderon is burned in the public square to the delight of Calvinist theologians.


First execution of witches in the new world. The Europeans export this tradition so important for Christians. In America, this tradition culminates in 1692, in the case of the witches of Salem, which ends with the execution of 19 people (18 women, one man), accused of being in contact with the devil.

Eighteenth century - Spain and the Enlightenment

As Europe slowly emerged from obscurantism, in Spain, the Inquisition completed its work of eradicating conversos. It is difficult to estimate the number of victims throughout the century, but it is known that, during the reign of Philip V (1700-1746), we will celebrate about 60 Autodafés, with a total of About 1,000 were sentenced, of whom 100 were executed and several hundred ended their lives in prison. The convicts are not only conversos, but also blasphemers, possessed and wizards and witches.


"Case of reductions" in Paraguay. This case is particularly interesting, Catholics massacring and excommunicating each other. The Jesuits, who arrived in Paraguay in 1604, had established in the 17th century a small private empire made of "reductions", that is, small fortified villages in the forest, where Indians converted to Catholicism live. From 1640, these Indians are armed with weapons provided by the Jesuits, who are, in these villages, both priests, mayors and administrators. Alas, a correction of the border bears many of these reductions in the Portuguese territory: and Portugal, a Christian and Catholic country, perpetuates at the time the tradition of slavery: the Portuguese think to take the Jesuits their Indians to sell them as slaves.

The pope intervenes, excommunicates the Jesuits from "cuts". Then an army, whose canons and swords are blessed by the service priests, attacks the reductions. The war will continue: in 1756, the Indians even get a decisive victory against the Portuguese. The war will end in 1767: a common army of the Portuguese in Spaniards massacres the Jesuits and takes the Indians like slaves. A Te Deum is celebrated for victory, as it should, and the Jesuits are expelled from the Spanish territories.

Shortly afterwards, in 1773, Pope Clement XIV forbade the Jesuit order, guilty of being too intelligent and rational, and especially of not having loyally served the family of Bourbon, kings of France and Spain, monarchs absolute and great friends of the Catholic Church. He imprisoned Father General of the Jesuits, who died prisoner at Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome.


In the full century of enlightenment, a young man of 19, the Chevalier de la Barre passes "twenty paces away from a procession without taking off his hat". He is arrested, subjected to torture. Finally, he is beheaded after he has been cut off. His body is then placed on a bonfire and burned together with a copy of Voltaire's "Philosophical Dictionary" in front of an enthusiastic crowd.


In the canton of Glarus, Switzerland, the last witch is burned. This execution is not the last of the inquisition, which will continue to burn heretics until 1826.


Kant, professor of philosophy in Königsberg and international "star" of modern philosophy since the publication of "Kritik der reinen Vernunft "publishes" Die Religion innerhalb der Grenzen der bloßen Vernuft "(" Religion within the limits of reason alone "), where he puts the Christian doctrines to the test of reason and" kategorische Imperativ ".

It is too much for the pious King of Prussia. Pushed by Protestant prelates, he intervenes and Kant is forced to retract publicly on pain of immediate dismissal from his professorship at the University of Königsberg. One by one, the other professors of the university must sign, under penalty of immediate dismissal, a document in which they undertake not to mention in their teaching of the writings of Kant relating to the religion.

As in the case of Galileo, Kant's international fame saves him from more severe consequences. Kant will think of going into exile, but at the end of this century there are few good heavens for thinkers who dare to criticize aspects of Christian ideology: he will end his life in Königsberg.


The last heretic is burned alive by the inquisition in Spain. A rich Christian tradition ends. From now on, the church will resort to more subtle means to kill, for example by prohibiting the assistance to the women who must abort, by sabotaging the family planning in the poor countries, by prohibiting the condom as a means to stem the AIDS epidemic, etc.

1832 - the liberty of conscience condemned

In 1830, all Europe is shaken by revolutionary movements: the peoples do not support the absolutist scape imposed by the restoration of 1815. In France, the king is driven out and replaced by Louis-Philippe, who proclaims himself Citizen King. These advances in freedom horrify the Catholic Church, to the point that Pope Gregory XVI publishes an encyclical, Mirari Vos, where he formally condemns freedom of conscience:

From this poisoned source of indifferentism, derives this false and absurd maxim or rather, this delirium: that one must procure and guarantee to each one the liberty of conscience; the most contagious error, to which the road clears this absolute and unrestrained freedom of opinion which, for the ruin of the Church and the State, is spreading on all sides, and that certain men, by an excess of impudence, do not fear to represent as advantageous to the religion. Hey! "What death more fatal for souls, than the freedom of error!" Said Saint Augustine (S. Aug. Ep. CLXVI).

The pontiff also expressly condemns freedom of the press, freedom of association, freedom of education, the sovereignty of the people and universal suffrage. In the struggle between progress and reaction, between freedom and obscurantism, the Catholic Church clearly chooses its side.

1847 Sonderbund war

Switzerland is torn apart by a war of religion. The Catholic cantons, whose governments are strongly influenced by Jesuit councilors, form a special military alliance (Sonderbund), which calls for the annexation to the Catholic cantons of the Catholic regions of the predominantly Protestant cantons. They call the Catholic monarchs of Austria to their aid and then engage in hostilities. Only the rapid victory of the federal / Protestant troops avoids an Austrian intervention, which would have provoked an extension of the conflict on a European scale.

Protestants are engaged for their part in fierce "Chasses Catholics" in the countryside of Geneva.

The Jesuits, considered responsible for the war, are expelled from Switzerland, and their expulsion will remain in force until the 1970s.


The population of Rome revolts against the papal dictatorship. Pope Pius IX is driven out. A republic is proclaimed and the walls of the ghetto of Rome are slaughtered. The Pope will be returned to power in 1849 by the French troops dispatched on the spot by Louis - Napoleon Bonaparte, President of the French Republic. Opponents are shot.

The state of the Church becomes an absolute monarchy whose sovereign is the pope. The ghetto is closed: the Jews of Rome will have to wait for the fall of the papal regime in 1871 to finally be able to circulate freely in the eternal city.

In 1849, during a debate in the French parliament, Victor Hugo poignantly describe the reality of the state of the Catholic Church: "For all legislation, a chaos of feudal and monastic laws, which produces barbarism criminal judges and venality of civilian judges Fourteen exceptional tribunals that operate permanently, no guarantee in these courts. The debates are secret. Oral defense is forbidden. Ecclesiastical judges judge causes and lay people. Jews were put on reserves and locked up every evening as in the 15th century, the clergy is involved in everything, even the police.

Financial people only report to God, Two censure weigh on the thought: political censorship and clerical censorship. One gorges opinion, the other gaggles conscience, and the inquisition has just been restored. "

Pope Pius IX will be beatified in September 2000.


The pontifical police kidnaps a Jewish child on the order of the Pope: A (Catholic) maid secretly baptized a Jewish child in her care. His motivation was that the child was sick, and he had to be saved before he went to hell when he died. Alas, this happens in the states of the Church: as soon as she is informed of the baptism, the pontifical police forcibly remove the child from the family. The child, Edgardo Mortara, is adopted by Blessed Pope Pius IX (beatified by John Paul II in September 2000), who raises him to become a priest.


Blessed Pope Pius IX publishes the Syllabus. This document is a census of the "errors" of modern thought, which the pope condemns without appeal. Among others are condemned:

Civil marriage, tolerance in Catholic countries of rites of other religions, freedom of religion, pantheism, liberalism, socialism, rebellion against a "legitimate" sovereign, criticism of the temporal power of pope, the possibility of progressing by reason, the non-intervention of the religious in the sciences and philosophy. In 1870, he will make Vatican Council I vote the infallibility of the Pope with retroactive effect, to ensure that his convictions are no longer in question.


The Pope, who is officially infallible with retroactive effect since 1870, excommunicates anyone who would participate in any election of the Italian state, which is defined as "diabolical" because it had deprived the popes of their secular state. This sentence of automatic excommunication will not prevent the pope from blessing a few years after a newly founded "Partito populare", catholic inspired, founded and directed by a priest.


The Russian Pogroms begin. Excited by orthodox prelates, spreading a false rumor that Tsar Alexander II was murdered by a Jew, crowds gathered in more than 200 Russian cities and destroyed the property of Jews. The Pogroms will become commonplace in the pious Tsarist Russia, especially between 1900 and 1907. The most violent of them takes place in Kishinev in 1903: the civil and religious authorities of the city excite the crowd, who attacks violently to the Jews For two days, the crowd kills 45 Jews, injures about 600, and loots 1,500 houses. Of course, officials (Popes and politicians) will never be worried by justice.


Civiltà Cattolica

Civiltà Cattolica, a Jesuit-controlled Roman newspaper, which will continue to publish articles on Dreyfuss's guilt years after his rehabilitation, publishes a series of articles accusing Jews of crucifying Christian children. Father Giuseppe Oreglia of San Stefano, Jesuit, puts an old accusation on the public square: Jews would practice ritual murders of Christian children. This is all too common, writes the good Jesuit father. In Eastern Europe, says the good father, the use of Christian blood is a general law weighing on the conscience of all Hebrews. Every year, he continues, Jews crucify a Christian child by killing him in torment. The tone and content of these articles are unfortunately quite typical for the Catholic press of the time. The Cross in France publishes articles of a similar nature at the same time.

To properly assess the weight of these words, it must be remembered that these articles appear while the people who will be in power in the 30s-40s of the twentieth century (including Pope Pius XII) are then children: they will grow up bathed in Jewish hatred, and will be able to put into practice during the Second World War what they have learned as children.


In a Rome liberated from the papal yoke, on June 9, a statue of Giordano Bruno is inaugurated at Campo dei Fiori, the very place where the thinker was executed. Pope Leo XIII, very pained, spend the whole day as a young man at the foot of the statue of St. Peter. The Catholic press is unleashed: it will speak of "satanic orgy" by describing the manifestation of inauguration, "triumph of the synagogue, archimbandrites, masonry, leaders of demagogic liberalism", "tintamarre of ignorance and anticlerical malignancy ". In the twentieth century, the church will deploy all its influence to bring down the statue.


The bias for dictatorships. The church actively supports the rise of totalitarianism in Europe, then defends their crimes in many cases, and renounces denouncing them in others.

In Austria, the support of the Catholic Church for Austro-fascism is total.

In Italy, the Vatican signs with the fascist regime a concordat, which makes Catholicism the state religion: the Italians can once again vote without being excommunicated, a pity that it serves little in times of dictatorship. The church largely sacrifices its own associations: all except the Catholic Action must integrate fascist organizations. The Vatican promises Mussolini to ensure that Catholic Action is not tempted by anti-fascist actions.

In 1929, Mussolini having signed the concordat called "Patti Lateranensi", he is qualified by the pope as a man of providence ("Uomo della provvidenza").

In 1932, the Catholic Action having been reorganized by the ecclesiastical hierarchy, according to the wishes of the dictator, Mussolini receives from the hands of the Pope the Order of the Golden Spur, which is the highest distinction that the State of the Vatican grants.

This beautiful harmony will resist even a moment of tension caused by the statue of Giordano Bruno. The pope took advantage of the concordat to ask his dictator friend to destroy the statue of this famous victim of the inquisition, erected in 1889 by the Liberal government. The dictator, one of whose sons is named Bruno, in honor of the thinker victim of the inquisition, defends, once is not custom, the free thinker, and will declare to the Chamber of Deputies "The statue of Giordano Bruno As melancholy as the fate of this monk will remain where it is, I have the impression that it would be a harassment against this philosopher who, if he was wrong and persisted in the error, nevertheless paid " . To show that she does not regret anything, the church will canonize Robert Bellarmin, accuser of Giordano Bruno, and will even name him "Doctor of the Church". The church will never acknowledge any error on Bruno's part, or express any intention of rehabilitating him.

In Germany, in January 1933, the Zentrum, the Catholic party, whose leader is a Catholic prelate (Prälat Kaas), votes full powers to Hitler: the latter can thus reach a two-thirds majority in the Reichstag to suspend the guaranteed rights by the constitution. With a truly Christian charity, the good prelate and his flock of the Zentrum also agreed to close an eye on the questionable procedural details of the Nazis, such as the arrest of Communist deputies before the vote.

Then the church begins to negotiate a new concordat with Germany: in this context, it "sacrifices" the Zentrum, then only significant party that the Nazis did not forbid: indeed, it helped them to come to power . On July 5, 1933, the Zentrum self-dissolves at the request of the Catholic hierarchy, leaving the field free to Hitler's NSDAP, now a single party.

The prelate Kaas leaves compatriots to cope with the dictatorship he helped to install, and moved to the Vatican, where he began a new career: while the world ignites, Bishop Kaas, now bishop, will conduct excavations under the Basilica of St. Peter which will lead to the discovery of the second skull of St. Peter.

Hitler proclaims himself Catholic in "Mein Kampf", the book where he announces his political program. He also states that he is convinced that he is an "instrument of God". The Catholic Church will never put "Mein Kampf" on the Index even before Hitler's accession to power. We must believe that the anti-Semitic program of the future Chancellor did not displease the church. Hitler will show his gratitude by making the prayer to Jesus compulsory in the German public school, and reintroducing the phrase "Gott mit uns" on the uniforms of the German army.

In 1938, the SS and SA organized the "Crystal Night": disguised as civilians, the Nazi militia attacks synagogues and stores belonging to Jews. The German population is both horrified and terrified. The bishop of Freiburg, Bishop Gröber, then, in response to questions about the racial laws and pogroms of the Crystal Night, said: "We can not deny anyone the right to safeguard the purity of their race and to elaborate the measures necessary for this purpose. "

In Spain, the republic was established in April 1931, following the bankruptcy of the conservative dictatorship of Miguel Primo de Riviera. Immediately, the Catholic Church declared war on democracy: on May 7, 1931, the Archbishop of Toledo, Cardinal Pedro Segura published a pastoral inviting the faithful to take up arms against the republic.

In response to this public call to the civil war, on May 11, angry crowds torch several churches, and the Catholic Church thus attains the rank of "martyr" of the republic, which will allow him to justify his role in the war. civil. Indeed, in 1935, a quarter of conservative generals attempted a military coup, which failed and degenerated into a civil war. The church supports the rebellion, priests and bishops bless the canons of the insurgents led by Franco, celebrate with great pomp Te Deum for his victories against the legitimate Republican government forces. The war killed over a million people, and Franco had the prisoners shot.

It is estimated that at least 200,000 people were shot during the war, and 200,000 after. The church supports not only war, but also the execution of prisoners. A few months before the beginning of the conflict, German and nationalist aviation destroys Guernica. Faced with this massacre, some Catholics begin to doubt the sanctity of the nationalist cause. The church comes to the rescue of Franco: not only does it justify the war once again, but the Catholic hierarchy takes official stand for the executions of prisoners: a letter signed by two cardinals, six archbishops, 35 bishops and five vicars general (almost the whole of the Spanish episcopate), is addressed "to all the bishops of the world". It defines civil war as a crusade and an armed plebiscite.

The signatories rejoice in the executions of prisoners because at the time of execution, the executioner is reconciled with God. On September 28, 36, the Primate of Spain, the Archbishop of Toledo Isidro Gomà, sends a message of support to the nationalists fighting in Toledo. He encourages them, he says, because they are fighting against "these cursed sons of Moscow, the Jews and the Freemasons, the occult societies controlled by the Semitic international".

Around the world, the Catholic Church is mobilizing to support Franco against the republic. The German bishops published on 19 August 1936 a collective pastoral that approves of the help given by Hitler to Franco. In the USA, Catholics manage to block any aid to the republic. Roosevelt renounces to support the republic not to lose the votes of Catholics. The Pope officially proclaims "martyr" any person killed by the Republicans, and recognizes Franco from 1937 (the war is then in progress, and will continue until 1939), sending an apostolic delegate to Franco, then May 18, 1938 by appointing Archbishop Gaetano Cicognani Apostolic Nuncio, while Franco sends an ambassador to the Vatican. The Archbishop of Westminster writes to Franco in 1938 "You are in my eyes the greatest defender of the true Spain, the country of Catholicism". Pope Pius XII salutes Franco's final victory by publishing a message entitled "With immense joy".

Franco will be grateful to his pious allies, entrusting national education to the Catholic Church. Each citizen is provided with a "booklet", where are annotated his political and religious options: he creates a system with two classes of citizens, and the church has the word of the end when to the class of each. Then, Franco appoints several members of Opus Dei to the government. The influence of Opus Dei will grow during the Franco dictatorship to the point where, in the last Francoist government, more than half of the ministers will be members of this venerable Catholic institution.

Much later, in March 2001, Pope John Paul II beatified 233 religious martyrs of the Spanish Civil War, sensing them as victims of terrorism, making an explicit parallel between the Spanish government of 1936-1939 and the ETA of the year 2001.

In France, the church declares since 1940 that "Pétain, it is France": it indeed prefers the Work-Family-Patrie of the French State to Liberty-Equality-Fraternity of the Republic, who have always horrified her.

During the Second World War, the Vatican is aware of the extermination of Jews by the Nazis. It will be known after the war that the pope has hesitated to launch a public appeal on several occasions, but has finally refrained from doing so, mainly because he is communist, and thinks that a Russian victory would be "worse". In 1942, he cried, however, among the ruins of bombed Rome and condemned the Allied bombing. Alas, he forgot to mention that his political ally Mussolini had asked Hitler "the honor of participating in the bombing of London" - it is true that the pope does not live in London …

In April 1941, the Germans invaded Yugoslavia. A Catholic fanatic, Ante Pavelic, proclaims the independence of Croatia, with the stated goal of making it a model Catholic state, according to the teaching of the Church. He immediately receives the blessing of the Archbishop of Zagreb, Monsignor Stepinac. During the war, Ante Pavelic, whom Hitler and Mussolini despised because they found him too violent for their taste, would send regular reports to Pope Pius XII on the progress of the Catholicization of Croatia.

The figures on conversions (more than 300,000 during the war!) Obtained by force or force from these reports to the Holy See are provided by Archbishop Stepinac, who will be beatified by John Paul II at the end of the wars in Yugoslavia in the 1990s. In the weeks following his arrival in power, Pavelic opened concentration camps for the Orthodox. Many of the guards and executioners of the concentration camps will be Franciscan friars. One of them, Brother Mirosav Filipovic, will even be the commander of the Jasenovac camp where more than 40,000 men, women and children are killed.

Throughout Croatia, forced mass conversions take place. Sometimes prelates and Ustashas celebrate these "conversions" with blood instead of water, to use a good Ustashi word. The clergy also actively participate in these killings. For example, Father Ivan Raguz launches a public appeal demanding to kill all Serbs (Orthodox), including children, "so that even the seed of these beasts does not remain" .. The genocide of Orthodox by the theocratic regime of Ustasha kills about 400,000 people.

In the summer of 1941, when the Axis armies progressed in the Russian steppes, the Vatican officially asked the Wehrmacht Command to send missionaries in the wake of the German troops to convert the Russian Orthodox peasants to Catholicism. Hitler will refuse, not for ideological reasons, but for purely logistical and practical reasons: with the sometimes caustic humor of dictators, he will tell his advisers who urge him to accept "If we let Catholics go, it will take allow it also to the other churches, and soon we will have in our backs missionaries of the different Christian sects who fight with crucifix ".

It should be noted that the pope persists in his bias against the Nazis for a long time during the war.

In September 1943, following the surrender of Italy to the allies, the Germans occupied Rome, and the raids of Roman Jews began. The German government is worried about the possible reactions of the Pope, and sends the Secretary of State von Weizsäcker to Rome to examine the situation.

On October 28, 1943, he communicated to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: "Despite pressure exerted on him from many sides, the Pope did not let himself be pushed to make any protest statement against the deportation of the Jews from Rome". Then, the Pope openly takes sides with the occupier against the resisters: on March 12, 1944, during the feast of his ascension on the throne, he launched an appeal against the popular insurrection against the occupier.

On March 23, 1944, while at night, in the distance, the allied artillery shelling the German lines was heard, resistance fighters killed 32 German soldiers. The following day, 335 Italians were executed: political prisoners and common law, as well as civilians. The execution takes place in the greatest secrecy, in a cave whose entrance then is dynamited.

When, the next day, the massacre is known and the corpses are discovered, the Germans spread the rumor that they had offered to resist to the massacre. This is false, of course (the execution of the 335 civilians took place the day after the attack, surrounded by the greatest secrecy), but that does not prevent the official newspaper of the Holy See, the Osservatore Romano, from publishing an editorial (unsigned), entitled Carità civile ("civil charity"), which literally attributes the responsibility of the 335 people murdered by the German SS to the resisters. The article then calls on the "irresponsible" leaders of the resistance, demanding that they no longer sacrifice human lives, and launches a vague call for moderation to "law-and-order leaders" (fascist and national-socialist authorities).

European Protestant churches do not behave much better than the Catholic Church in dealing with Nazi persecution of Jews. Only a few voices rise, not to defend the Jews, but only Jews converted to Christianity.

In 1942, the Dutch Protestant Church threatened the Nazis with protesting more loudly if Jews converted to Protestantism continued to be disturbed. The Nazis then offer the Dutch prelates a truly diabolical pact: in exchange for its silence, the Dutch Protestant Church gets Nazis they give up to deport Jews who converted to Protestantism before 1941. It goes without saying that those who converted after 1941, or who made the mistake of converting to Catholicism, are not spared.


The pope declares that any person who would vote Communist or who would help this political party, in any way whatsoever, will automatically be excommunicated. The measure divides families, causes socially intolerable exclusions for many, and forces many communists in rural areas underground.

The Italian priests hasten to translate this decision into reality, and call on their flock to vote for the great anticommunist party (DC - Democrazia Cristiana). The DC regime will then collapse into widespread corruption in the mid-1990s.


Latest edition of the index (Index Additus Librorum Prohibitorum), which cites as authors whose entire work is forbidden to read for Catholics among others: Jean-Paul Sartre, Alberto Moravia, André Gide. It was not until 1966 that the index was officially repealed by the Catholic Church.


After a period of apparent liberalization, Pope John Paul II arrives at the head of the largest sect in the world and reconnects with the most terrible traditions of the church.

His condom condemnation as a means to stem the fight against AIDS causes a death toll difficult to estimate. He practices an active policy of sabotaging birth control measures in the Third World: the consequences of this action are difficult to quantify, but are measured in terms of famine, misery, lack of medical care at the level of the poorest continents ( South America, Africa).

In the hunt for heretics, he suspends "A Divinis" two German theologians who dared to doubt, one of papal infallibility, the other of the immaculate conception of Mary.

1985 - The Theology of Liberation Facing the Holy Office

In the early 1980s, Brazilian Catholic theologians developed the concept of theology of liberation: they asserted that Christianity is supposed to be an advocate for the poor and oppressed, and that the church should defend human rights. This interpretation of the Gospels does not, of course, please the governing bodies of the Catholic Church, but it is more or less tolerated until one of these theologians, the Franciscan father Leonardo Boff, allows himself to write that the Church should also respect human rights.

Leonardo Boff

The reaction is not long in coming. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (the new name, since Vatican II, of the Holy Office), summons Leonardo Boff to Rome. The congregation holds its trials in the same room it used when it was called Saint Office for the Inquisition.

Leonardo Boff has the privilege of sitting on the same seat where Giordano Bruno and Galileo sat. Leonardo Boff will later relate that he made a bow to this chair as he entered, before thanking the head of the Holy Office for honoring him by allowing him to sit on it. The result is that Boff is banned from publication.

He can remain a priest but no longer has the right to publish anything.

As he remains active in the Brazilian church, participating in various symposia and conferences, he receives the order from Rome to leave Brazil, for your choice, a monastery in the Philippines or one in Korea, and to withdraw completely from any contact with the outside. He must choose between leaving the priesthood and cloistered exile: he finally chooses to leave the priesthood.

The story is interesting because it shows that the church and its Holy Office continue to operate with the same harshness as in the past. If Boff was not threatened with torture like Galileo, it was only because the church did not have the possibility. On the other hand, she had the opportunity to silence him or force him to leave his profession, and she made full use of this possibility. It also shows that Christianity is not compatible with human rights, as we understand it since the declaration of the rights of man and the citizen, and that these are officially and actively fought by the Catholic church.

This smiling character with a weird hat is Cardinal Ratzinger, president of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (ex Inquisition) since 1987, responsible for many excommunications and suspensions. This good man has now become pope under the name of Benedict XVI and has made a clear step back from his predecessor …

1987 - The fight against medically assisted procreation

The 1980’s saw significant progress in medically assisted procreation. Couples without children can now use donor sperm insemination and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Alas, these methods are likely to reduce suffering - in this case, infertile couples - and therefore can not please the church, which knows woe and despair are breeding grounds for Christianity, eschatological religion that promises happiness after death to those who suffer in life.

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (ex Inquisition) therefore publishes an Instruction, approved by the Pope, entitled Donum Vitae, which condemns, mixes up, all the new methods of procreation medically assisted. With obscure arguments resulting from interpretations of the Bedouin prophet's words in the Bible, written at a time when even artificial insemination of camels was inconceivable, the church casts shame on IVF and artificial insemination with donor sperm. One could laugh at this anathema launched in 1987 by a sect based on Bedouin texts from 3000 years ago, but unfortunately, not only Catholics follow the instructions of their sect and assume the suffering resulting from this, but above all the Catholic Church has in 1987 in many European countries of Christian-Democratic parties.

In the countries where these parties are the strongest, Switzerland and Germany, the church can not completely prohibit assisted procreation but still obtains very restrictive legislation is adopted: the preimplantation diagnosis (which allows couples to carry genes of serious inherited diseases such as cystic fibrosis) to have healthy children) is prohibited. Insemination by donor sperm is surrounded by so many interdicts that it is little used.

For IVF, the church obtains the ban on the freezing of embryos, which decreases the chances of success of the procedure. The fight against assisted procreation becomes one of the great fights of the church at the end of the 20th century. She fights, usually successfully, to ensure that donor sperm insemination is forbidden to same-sex couples. In Switzerland, she obtains that IVF is not reimbursed by health insurance and Catholic associations in 2000 support a popular initiative to prohibit IVF. The fight continues at the time when I write these lines: south of the Alps, the Catholic Church is agitated to obtain in Italy also a restrictive law on IVF, on the "model" German.

1990’s - Wars of religion in Yugoslavia

Yugoslavia was in the 1980s of our century one of the favorite seaside holiday lands for Europeans. The Yugoslav commercials of the time sell the multi-religious character of the country as a tourist argument, because it is true that one can see in Mostar and many other charming villages the mosque and the church at the same time. 'eye. Alas, the country collapses in a series of civil wars that we like to describe as "ethnic" when it is actually religious wars.

The case of the Croatian war is the most glaring. Serbs and Croats share the same ethnic origin, and also the same language, Serbo-Croat, which is called Croato-Serb when it is written in Latin characters. The most ironic is that the "Serbo-Croatian written in Latin characters", ie the Croatian-Serbian, is still the official language of the Yugoslav Army, which is fighting against NATO in Kosovo, after fighting against the Croats in the early 1990s.


Alas, religion separates Croats and Serbs: the "Croats" were Christianized by Rome, and are Catholics. The Serbs, who write Serbo-Croatian in Cyrillic characters, were Christianized by the Byzantines and are therefore Orthodox.

When Milosevich, the Serbian dictator, begins to wave the specter of "Greater Serbia", Croatia declares its independence. Immediately, the Vatican and the FRG (whose chancellor at the time proclaimed "überzeugter Katholik" - Catholic convinced) recognize Catholic Croatia as an independent state.

The Vatican will send its nuncios throughout the West to obtain the recognition of the new Catholic state. The pope multiplies calls, prayers and masses for the independence of Croatia. Meanwhile, the dictator of Croatia, a former senior officer under the communist regime and Catholic observant, fired all orthodox officials, or "Serbs".

He chose as the national flag the old banner of the Ustasha who, between 1940 and 1944, had genocide of about 600,000 Serbs. The civil war is triggered.



As the war comes to its end, the Pope beatifies Cardinal Stepinac, who had called Ante Pavelic, the Ustasha dictator of 1940-1944, a "gift of God" for Croatia and actively supported him. The war in Yugoslavia then continues in Bosnia, where members of the three religious groups (Catholic, Orthodox, Muslim) clash in a series of triangular fights, the civilian populations of which are the main victims. At the time of writing, the war is still going on in Kosovo, an agricultural province with no strategic interest, with ambitions for autonomy, which Belgrade does not want to let go because there are many Orthodox monasteries there. It goes without saying that the Orthodox Church is active in supporting by prayers and sermons the struggle of the Serbs against the Muslim Kosovars.

The wars of Yugoslavia are an emblematic case of the catastrophe of intolerance that is inherent to "revealed" religions: religious communities clash in the twentieth century, in the name of religions they have received at random from the expansion of various empires (Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman) between classical antiquity and the Middle Ages.

1994 - Sex, lies and repression

Since the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church has forced its priests to give up all sexual life at the time of their ordination. And, from time immemorial, she maintains monasteries of women, where live nuns who have also renounced all sexual life and declare themselves wives of Christ. The contacts between priests and nuns are inevitable, among others because the priests regularly confess the nuns. From this explosive situation inevitably arise problems.

The gravity of the potential problem and its causes have been known for ages, but the Catholic Church is long in denying it and no study is done on the frequency and extent of the problem. This situation of I do not see - I do not hear - I do not know begins to crumble in 1994: a nun, who is also doctor, Sister Maura O'Donohue, in charge of coordinating the campaign against the AIDS from an organization based in England, submits a report that lists cases of sexual abuse and repeated rapes by priests on nuns in no less than 23 countries.

Most cases are in Africa, but cases of rape and sexual abuse are also reported in Brazil, Colombia, the Philippines, the USA, Ireland and Italy. The report is overwhelming. Among the most shocking cases he cites is that of a mother superior, relieved of her duties because she had reported to her bishop the simultaneous pregnancy of 29 of her sisters, and the case of a priest who celebrated the Requiem Mass of a nun whom he had forced to abort after she became pregnant with him, and who died during the operation. The method that the Catholic Church uses to "solve" this kind of cases is exposed: usually, the pregnant sister is driven out of the convent, while the priest remains of course in office. According to the author of the report, two reasons explain the extent of the phenomenon in Africa: on the one hand, priests consider the nuns "safe" partners, while they fear to contract AIDS from prostitutes.

On the other hand, says Maura O'Donohue, in Africa, "it is impossible for a woman to say no to a man, especially to an elder and a priest". Of course, the church keeps the report in the greatest secrecy, and some of its contents will be revealed to the public only in March 2001 by a Catholic American newspaper, the National Catholic Reporter.

Maura O'Donohue

The report of Maura O'Donohue is not the only one that the Vatican receives denouncing the phenomenon, its magnitude, and the coverage by the Catholic hierarchy of the guilty. In 1998, another nun and doctor, Marie McDonald, Superior of the Missions of Our Lady of Africa, went in the same direction and denounced "the absence of inspection and the conspiracy of silence". During the 1998 Bishops' Synod of Bishops, which was held in Rome in 1998, Sidney's bishop, Goeffroy Robinson, states that "sexual abuse by priests has become the main obstacle to preaching. Gospel in Oceania ".

The Vatican will deny all problems until the publication of the National Catholic Reporter. Can no longer deny, he strives to minimize, and his spokesman said following this publication that we must not forget "the faith often heroic manifested by the vast majority of men and women religious orders and clergy ". It does not say whether the heroism displayed by the raped nuns who agree to remain silent once they are expelled from their community is part of this heroism to admire.

Thus, in 2001, we find the methods that the church has always used. The abuse of the weak by the strong - in these cases the priests - is tolerated, the victims are punished - in this case by expulsion from the monastery or by pressure to abort - and those who dare to denounce the case, even within the hierarchy of the church, they are also severely punished, such as the Mother Superior who was relieved of her duties for reporting to her bishop the simultaneous pregnancy of 29 of her sisters.

1994 - Assistance to the genocidaires of Rwanda

Honour to whom honour is due, we must recognize the Catholic Church the merit of forgiving those who have harmed others (especially if it is members of his clergy who have done evil ), and to know how to reach out to the neighbor in need, preferably if the neighbor is both a criminal and a religious. In 1994, the Catholic Church set up a vast network of aid to the religious accused of participation in the genocide of Rwanda.

It is estimated that 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were massacred by Hutu Power supporters in April 1994. Catholic clerics, it seems, behave differently than the rest of the population: some religious participate in massacres, others try to hide or defend victims. In July, the FRP Popular Front for Rwanda (Tutsi) troops enter Kigali and put an end to the massacre. The genocidal flee en masse to the neighboring country. The living conditions of these refugees are very harsh.

It is therefore with a well-understood charity that begins with itself that the Catholic Church sets up a vast network to allow its members who took part in the genocide to return to more lenient skies and escape international justice. The case will only become public in April 2001, when the stupefied Europe discovers on its television screens two Rwandan women accused of participating in a genocide in a Belgian court.

Sisters Gertrude and Kisito

Sister Gertrude and Sister Kisito were respectively Mother Superior and Intendant of their convent in April 1994 when hundreds of refugees hidden in a shed near their convent and were massacred and partly burned alive. The two sisters would have delivered the refugees hidden in their convent to the genocidaires, and brought themselves cans of gasoline to ignite the shed full of refugees. Sister Kisito would have even fueled the flames with dry grass.The course will recognize the guilt of the two sisters and condemn them to heavy prison terms. In August 1994, the Catholic Church gave refuge to the two sisters in a convent in southern Belgium.

The European public discovers with astonishment that the case of the two sisters is not isolated. In Belgium, but also in other European countries, there are many priests and religious accused of participation in the genocide who spend peaceful days away from Rwandan and international courts, with the help of the Catholic Church.

For example, the public discovered in early 2001 that Father Emmanuel Rukondo, priest officiating in the peaceful parish of Granges-Canal in Geneva, appears on a list of the Rwandan government of persons implicated in the genocide. This brave priest had been able to leave Rwanda after the genocide thanks to a purse offered by the Vatican. After studying at the Pontifical University, we find him chaplain at the Cantonal Hospital of Geneva, where his experience of death must have been useful to him.

Of course, the Catholic Church defends his priest: no one doubts that if he is guilty of what he is accused of, his god has forgiven him and therefore the church, chronically lacking a priest, defends him: in the calendar of Holy Week Easter 2001 of the parish of the accused of genocide, there is thus an astonishing release entitled "Infamous Rumor", and this press release was read at masses of March 24 and 25, which strongly condemns those who have dared to say that the priest is officially sought by the International Tribunal for Rwanda. . In the best tradition, the Catholic Church considers itself above the law - including international laws in this case. When finally the police arrested the priest in July 2001, his superior, the bishop of Lausanne-Geneva-Freiburg Monseigneur Genoud dares to assert on television Suisse Romande who questions him that he knew nothing and for him "c ' is consternation ".

As usual, the Church denies the evidence to the end. The case of the two sisters had already been denounced by the human rights organization Africa Watch in 1995.

1996 - Autodafes of condoms

Cardinal Maurice Otunga

On August 31, 1996, the Cardinal of Nairobi, Monsignor Cardinal Maurice Otunga, brought up to date a venerable Christian tradition: the Autodafé. But the Cardinal is a man of his time. As Africa is ravaged by the AIDS epidemic, the holy man does not deliver to the flames heretics, but boxes of condoms and little books on AIDS and how to protect themselves. A small crowd of 250 faithful attend this ceremony.

But the Cardinal is not at his first attempt. A year before, he had already demonstrated an unusual ecumenical spirit by conducting a first Autodafe of condoms with the Imam of the Jamia Mosque in August 1995.

Cardinal Maurice Otunga is not an insignificant person in the Catholic Church: he was considered a papal at the time of the election of Pope John Paul II, and his Autodafés do not attract him any reproach of the Vatican.

The works that the Cardinal throws into flames are not banal textbooks on the use of condoms, but booklets developed by local NGOs during a long two-year work funded by the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health of Kenya . These booklets offered The ABCs of AIDS Protection: "A for abstinence, B for being faithful and C for condom use". The C having had the good fortune to displease the catholic prelates, the books ended in the flames. Other African bishops also participate in the fight against condoms. For example, Monsignor Jean-Marie Untaoni Compaore, Archbishop of Ougadougou in Burkina Faso, launched in 1996 the slogan: "To fight against AIDS, let us first fight the condom because it prevents a comprehensive conception of sexual relations. ".

To grasp the seriousness of the Kenyan Cardinal's gesture, it should be recalled that at the time of the Autodafé of 1996, it was estimated that 1 million Kenyans (out of a total of 26 million) were carriers of the HIV virus. The Catholic Church being highly respected in Kenya, the NGOs that printed the burned books did not dare to attack the arsonists' sect head-on.

1999 - Against the victims of collective rape


In 1999, the long-standing situation in Kosovo, a province of Orthodox Serbia with a predominantly Muslim population, degenerated into a civil war.

In response to NATO's military intervention, Serbian militias retaliate by driving Muslims out of their homes.

Many women who reach Kosovo's borders claim to have been the victims of hateful mass rapes by militia. The aid agencies of the United Nations and the Red Cross of NATO countries then distribute to those women who ask for it the following day's pills.

The reaction of the church, which sees a unique opportunity to attack people in distress, is immediate: April 13, 1999, the moral theologian of the Vatican, Bishop Elio Sgreccia, vice-president of the Pontifical Academy for life, publicly condemns the distribution of tomorrow's pills to raped women and girls in Kosovo.

The prelate stresses that this pill has an abortive action and therefore it is unacceptable for Catholic morals.


2001 - Wicked Priests and Little Children

For a millennium, the Catholic Church has imposed celibacy on its priests. This obligation attracts, of course, people with "deviant" sexuality, including pedophiles. They often follow unconsciously - and only spiritually - the name of Jesus, who said that there are believers who become eunuchs to enter the kingdom of God.

Alas, the Catholic Church makes great efforts to indoctrinate children and priests are involved in these actions of propaganda for minors that we call the catechism. An explosive situation is thus created: one draws, by the possibility of "being eunuch", pedophiles, then one submits them daily or almost to the temptation.

The problem is old and welknown. Already in the Age of Enlightenment, Abbot Bernier, Baron of Holbach, wrote in his Abridged Dictionary of the Christian Religion, speaking of the "company of Jesus": "(...) commonly it is not against women but little boys do not fare so cheaply. "

But it was not until the end of the twentieth century that all the seriousness and the extent of the problem became visible and publicized by many sordid affairs in the second half of the 1990’s.

What strikes the public in all this stuff it is not so much the offense itself as the reaction of the Catholic Church: systematically, it is active to protect its clerics from the wrath of the secular arm of justice. A resounding first case of these years is that of the former Cardinal Archbishop of Vienna, a personal friend of John Paul II: the Catholic Church allows him to spend his retirement in a monastery of nuns in Germany, thus escaping the Austrian justice.

On April 9, 1998, while several cases of pedophile priests shake the Belgian public opinion, the justice finally treats, for the first time in memory of man, the catholic church like a legal person subjected to the same laws as the rest of society: the 34th chamber of the Brussels Criminal Court not only condemns a pedophile priest, Father André Vanderlyn, (Strangely, no photo of this scum is findable on the Internet) former parish priest of the Brussels parish of Jesus Worker in Saint-Gilles, guilty of several sexual abuses committed on several children to catechism, to a prison sentence, but also recognizes the civil responsibility of Cardinal Danneels and his Auxiliary Bishop Paul Lanneau. The two high prelates were aware of the actions of the pedophile priest, but not only did they remain silent, but they did not take any steps to avoid contact between the wicked and his potential victims.

At the time, the Belgians think that this judgment will make precedence, and that it will carry the church to curb the impulses of its perverse priests. All eyes are turned to Ghent, where another sordid affair is judged: a priest has recognized a homosexual relationship with a young parishioner, but claims that it began only when the victim was of age.

False, accuse the parents of the victim, who complain: the 14th Criminal Court of Ghent judge June 10, 1998 that the relationship began well when the victim was minor, with the aggravating circumstance that the pedophile priest abused his position of authority. The priest is condemned, but the court refuses to recognize the civil responsibility of the bishop, his direct superior, on the pretext that the priest's autonomy in his work is superior to that of an employee of his superior in another society.

This reality is not a recent fact. Obviously the Roman Catholic Church is 2000-year-old culprit of pedophilia and sex abuse.

In 2014, 796 infants and children buried in an unmarked mass grave in the septic tank behind St. Mary's Mother and Baby home in Tuam, Co were uncovered. Those children were the offsprings of priests, sisters and children unwanted of women of the region.

The cases of pedophile priests denounced multiplying, the French episcopate, back to the wall, proclaims in early 2001 that it will no longer cover the actions of pedophile priests.

Alas, in March 2001, a new case of pedophilia of a priest shakes the Francophonie, this time in Switzerland: in Vevey, we learn that the priest is on criminal charge for embezzlement of minors: he had sex with a 15-year-old at the material time. The parish council learns the facts, and immediately forgives him and decides to hide the affair from the parishioners who entrust their children to this individual during the catechism.

But Catholics are Catholics, they are always very quick to forgive the harm they made each other. The bishop orders to keep the secret on the case because the facts are probably prescribed: they date from the 1980s. Alas for the church, the parish where the priest is accused and will escape from prison only thanks to the prescription and has a second priest.

The latter is indignant that one does not inform the parishioners, and it seems that he passed to a third party a "communiqué" that the parish council had prepared then, after the pardon granted to the pedophile and the order of silence from the bishop, cautiously arranged in a drawer.

This time, the reaction of the church is immediate: the denouncing priest is dismissed: as he had an official status, he has no right to unemployment insurance, and, because of his professional experience and of his age, his professional reintegration looks difficult.

The church justifies its punishment by the fact that not only has the priest informed others of his colleague's criminal past, but he lives with a woman! The pedophile priest is comforted and protected. The hierarchy entrusts him with a new assignment so as not to force him to have to bear hostile looks, and renews his confidence, justified by the fact that the alleged facts are undoubtedly prescribed.

So we find the classic pattern: the pedophile is protected by the hierarchy and remains a priest, he will continue to ‘take care ‘ of the religious education of children, he is "forgiven for the moment of misguidance" (by the church, not by the victim), the whistleblower is severely punished.

To complete the picture, the Presidium of the Swiss Conference of Bishops splits a statement on April 5, 2001: it denounces ... the media that stammered the case! Without mentioning Vevey, the statement rebels against the fact that the media reportedly said that priests "would succumb to pedophile impulses, thereby abusing their authority over children". What about silence? There is no silence, says the communique, which dares: "Perhaps in some cases the communication will have gone wrong, perhaps the desire to protect an alleged innocent or a probable victim will have he urged not to inform enough ". Finally, the bishops reaffirm their full support to the priests who would be accused, and conclude "in cases of error [sexual abuse of a child is therefore a mistake and not a crime, according to the bishops, nd] committed by Churchmen and proven, the duty of the bishops is to implore the forgiveness of the victims, leaving to the justice the responsibility to punish the offenders in a fair way ": in other words: the pedophile priests can count on the bishops so that they try to push the victims not to complain.

Once the media storm has finally subsided, the bishop responsible for the diocese where the events took place, Monseigneur Genoud, bishop of Lausanne-Geneva-Friborg, gives a press conference on June 19 to condemn ... masturbation! From the height of his moral authority as protector of pedophiles, he explains the extreme gravity of the gesture. One can only conclude that for the bishop, it is more serious that a teenager masturbates than is sexually abused by a priest.

Today, the big old billy goats of the Jehovah's Witnesses in New York are pursued for pedophilia as well, although they made every effort that it remains an ‘internal matter’.

2001-2002 - The conspiracy of silence

10 million dollars! This is the sum that the archdiocese of Boston invested discreetly between 1997 and 2001 to silence the victims of an active pedophile priest, who acted in the course of his duties for several decades, until 1998. The case would have remained secret if it had not been revealed by the Boston Globe newspaper. The indignation is immense. Indeed, in 1992, the American Catholic Church had already been shaken by a similar fact: more than 100 victims of an obsessed pedophile priest, James Porter, of the diocese of Fall River, in South-East Massachusetts, had brought evidence that the pervert had been transferred from parish to parish to protect him from the wrath of parents of abused children, while his obsession and abuse of children was known to his superiors.

The Catholic Church then swore to its great gods that we would not take it back. At that time, she realized that the era of impunity for her clerics had passed. Already in 1985, an internal confidential report of the church warned the bishops that "the confidence we could have in the past about Catholic judges and prosecutors to protect the clerics of the diocese has disappeared" .

In 1993, the Archbishop of Boston announced the establishment of very strict guidelines on pedophilia, which included among other things that any priest suspected of pedophile should be temporarily removed from parochial activity.

In January 2002, it is the same Archbishop who must explain to the indignant public why he himself ignored the directives he had announced in 1993. In order to allow him to escape American justice and the popular vengeance, the church gives the archbishop a post at the Vatican in 2003.

This new business has a taste of déjà vu. The priest has molested more than 130 children in nearly 30 years. He will remain in office, and will change positions several times, until 1998, when in 1984 the Archbishop of Boston, Bishop Law, was warned by a letter of Father Geoghan's obsession.

In 1985, he is in possession of a report on the treatment of pedophilia, which warns against the very high risk of recidivism. But the Monsignor waits for 1989 to finally ask the evil priest to submit to a treatment of 3 months, after which he sends him back to the parish, where he is again in contact with children and will make new victims. The priest prefers to attack children from poor families: he gains the trust of the parents, buys ice cream for the children, after which he sexually abuses them. When families complain, the archdiocese buys their silence.

On July 24, 2004, the State Attorney General of Massachusetts issues a report investigating the sexual abuse of children by priests in the Boston Archdiocese: it reveals that more than 1000 children have been sexually abused. That the abuse of children was accepted and covered by the hierarchy for at least 6 decades, and that the abuse was "so massive that it is almost unbelievable". The report also indicates that the archdiocese has not taken and does not plan to take adequate measures to (1) determine the "systemic causes" of sexual abuse by priests (2) eliminate from the organization priests who have committed pedophile acts (3) take action following failure to prevent sexual abuse of children (4) provide information to civil justice and (5) take steps to prevent future cases of sexual abuse.

It must be said that the policy of keeping the secret at all costs that the Archdiocese of Boston followed in the case of Father Geoghan is in accordance with the rules of the Catholic Church.

Indeed, in a letter dated 2001, approved by Pope John Paul II, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith instructed the hierarchy on the appropriate method of treatment of pedophile cases: these cases are subject to the pontifical secret and treated exclusively by priests, in ecclesiastical courts of which prosecutors, judges and defenders are priests and whose procedure is obviously secret.



At the dawn of the third millennium, the Catholic Church is thus still a nest of pedophiles: clerics guilty of sexual abuse against children apparently continue to be protected: protected from justice, since any case must be kept secret and treated only internally.

And protected from the popular vengeance, since the church remains ready to invest millions of Dollars to impose the silence to the victims of each cleric pedophile.

Make yourself at home, join the Catholic Church and taste everything you may not. You will be highly protected in case of ‘skid’.



In this long text, the author forgets some cruel abuses of Christians, especially the numerous massacres due to the Spanish conquistadors, first within the Aztec empire (current Mexico), then within the empire Inca (Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, northern Chile). Tens of millions of deaths in a century and the widespread use of slavery, plus an epidemic of smallpox that killed many Indians. Who says better ? Moreover, the current crusade and the relentlessness of the Vatican against the right to abortion and the use of condoms is certainly not the greatest glory of the most recent successors of Saint Peter (yes, the one who had two skulls!) and shows only the obsolescence of their doctrine.



Curse you Catholic Church. Hell is yours.



Posté par Pat Burns à 11:55 - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
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