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A collection of brief but interesting
articles on a great variety of subjects
relating to the Roman Catholic Church :

"How can a billion
people be so wrong?"

Here's one of the ways that the Roman Catholic Church got so many people to sign up:
        "From island to island, small and large, throughout the Caribbean,  wherever he went, Columbus reported that he planted a cross, "making the required declarations," and claiming ownership of the land for his royal patrons back in Spain.  Despite the fact that Columbus noted in his own journal of the voyage that "the people of these lands do not understand me nor I them," it seems to have been of particular satisfaction to him that never once did any of the onlooking Arawak-speaking islanders object to his repeated proclamations in Spanish that he was taking control of their lands away from them.  Ludicrous though this scene may appear to us in retrospect, at the time it was a deadly serious ritual similar in ways equally ludicrous and deadly to the other famous ritual the Spanish bestowed upon the non-Spanish-speaking people of the Americas, the requerimiento ( a sort of "Miranda Rights Statement" in reverse, made by the criminal to their victims).

The punishment for not recognizing "the One True Faith" :


"They built a long gibbet, low enough for the toes to touch the ground and prevent strangling, and hanged thirteen [natives] at a time in honor of Christ Our Saviour and the twelve Apostles.  When the Indians were thus still alive and hanging, the Spaniards tested their strength and their blades against them, ripping chests open with one blow and exposing entrails, and there were those who did worse.  Then, straw was wrapped around their torn bodies and they were burned alive."

Thank God the use of force to make or keep converts is no longer allowed in the modern world! Or is it? When I tried to inform Marc Aupiais, who seems to be a semi-official media representative of the Catholic church in South Africa, of the realities of Roman Catholicism, he not only eliminated my posting from his blog - which Catholics often do, because of their inability to respond to my posts - but he sent me this threatening email, with the subject "Warning" :

"If you have no fear of South African Law: maybe continue your graffiti: but under the law of the publishing area of this online source: you are, or could be violating my Country's constitution: whenever you spread hate against Catholicism: I can have you extradited, to stand trail: or have your church tried locally."

to which I can only respond as the great philosopher Plato did so long ago: "We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy is when adults are afraid of the light."
        or as Jesus said several centuries later:

(Evil) " people love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God."

{John 3:19 – 21}

Following Columbus, each time the Spanish encountered a native individual or group in the course of their travels, it was a "requirement" that they read to the Indians a statement informing them of the truth of Christianity and the necessity to swear immediate allegiance to the Pope and to the Spanish crown.  After this, if the Indians refused or even delayed in their acceptance (or, more likely, their understanding) of the requerimiento, the statement continued:  )

The Requerimiento,

"We certify to you that, with the help of God, we shall powerfully enter into your country and shall make war against you in all ways and manners that we can, and shall subject you to the yoke and obedience of the Church and of Their Highnesses. We shall take you and your wives and your children, and shall make slaves of them, and as such shall sell and dispose of them as Their Highnesses may command. And we shall take your goods, and shall do you all the mischief and damage that we can, as to vassals who do not obey and refuse to receive their lord and resist and contradict him."
        [ another version read: "If you do not do this, however, or resort maliciously to delay, we warn you that, with the aid of God, we will enter your land against you with force and will make war in every place and by every means we can and are able, and we will then subject you to the yoke and authority of the Church and Their Highnesses. We will take you and your wives and children and make them slaves, and as such we will sell them, and will dispose of you and them as Their Highnesses order. And we will take your property and will do to you all the harm and evil we can, as is done to vassals who will not obey their lord or who do not wish to accept him, or who resist and defy him. We avow that the deaths and harm which you will receive thereby will be your own blame, and not that of Their Highnesses, nor ours, nor of the gentlemen who come with us . . ."

# See much more about this Roman Catholic approach to "saving souls" at www.ColumbusNoHero.Org (the Catholic Church sent conquerors, not converters to the "new World", not to win souls, but to win silver and gold.

# See also how the Catholic Church had its own holocaust going during the Nazi holocaust, offering non-Catholics the choice of "the true faith" or death : shame-on-the-Roman-Catholic-hierarchy.website/CroatianHolocaust.html.

# See also how the Catholic Church kept its members from straying from the true faith for centuries through the use of torture, execution and the threat of all kinds of fearsome punishments : shame-on-the-Roman-Catholic-hierarchy.website/PopesvsChrist.html
        Subscribers to the Irish Times can also read "Ireland's government agencies colluded in reign of terror" at
www.IrishTimes.com/newspaper /ireland/2009/0521/1224247036413.html .

Religion in the U S A

This is a great article about the unusual religiosity of Americans in general, and on beliefs regarding Mary in particular.
Believe It, or Not
by Nicholas D. Kristof

" Today marks the Roman Catholics' Feast of the Assumption, honoring the moment that they believe God brought the Virgin Mary into Heaven. So here's a fact appropriate for the day: Americans are three times as likely to believe in the Virgin Birth of Jesus (83 percent) as in evolution (28 percent).
        So this day is an opportunity to look at perhaps the most fundamental divide between America and the rest of the industrialized world: faith. Religion remains central to American life, and is getting more so, in a way that is true of no other industrialized country, with the possible exception of South Korea.
        Americans believe, 58 percent to 40 percent, that it is necessary to believe in God to be moral. In contrast, other developed countries overwhelmingly believe that it is not necessary. In France, only 13 percent agree with the U.S. view. (For details on the polls cited in this column, go to www.nytimes.com/ kristofresponds.)
        The faith in the Virgin Birth reflects the way American Christianity is becoming less intellectual and more mystical over time. The percentage of Americans who believe in the Virgin Birth actually rose five points in the latest poll.
        My grandfather was fairly typical of his generation: A devout and active Presbyterian elder, he nonetheless believed firmly in evolution and regarded the Virgin Birth as a pious legend. Those kinds of mainline Christians are vanishing, brief-articles-about-the-RCCd by evangelicals. Since 1960, the number of Pentecostals has increased fourfold, while the number of Episcopalians has dropped almost in half.
        The result is a gulf not only between America and the rest of the industrialized world, but a growing split at home as well. One of the most poisonous divides is the one between intellectual and religious America.
        Some liberals wear T-shirts declaring, "So Many Right-Wing Christians . . . So Few Lions." On the other side, there are attitudes like those on a Web site, dutyisours.com/gwbush.htm, explaining the 2000 election this way:
        "God defeated armies of Philistines and others with confusion. Dimpled and hanging chads may also be because of God's intervention on those who were voting incorrectly. Why is GW Bush our president? It was God's choice."
        The Virgin Mary is an interesting prism through which to examine America's emphasis on faith because most Biblical scholars regard the evidence for the Virgin Birth, and for Mary's assumption into Heaven (which was proclaimed as Catholic dogma only in 1950), as so shaky that it pretty much has to be a leap of faith. As the Catholic theologian Hans Küng puts it in "On Being a Christian," the Virgin Birth is a "collection of largely uncertain, mutually contradictory, strongly legendary" narratives, an echo of virgin birth myths that were widespread in many parts of the ancient world.
        Jaroslav Pelikan, the great Yale historian and theologian, says in his book "Mary Through the Centuries" that the earliest references to Mary (like Mark's gospel, the first to be written, or Paul's letter to the Galatians) don't mention anything unusual about the conception of Jesus. The Gospels of Matthew and Luke do say Mary was a virgin, but internal evidence suggests that that part of Luke, in particular, may have been added later by someone else (it is written, for example, in a different kind of Greek than the rest of that gospel).
        Yet despite the lack of scientific or historical evidence, and despite the doubts of Biblical scholars, America is so pious that not only do 91 percent of Christians say they believe in the Virgin Birth, but so do an astonishing 47 percent of U.S. non-Christians.
        I'm not denigrating anyone's beliefs. And I don't pretend to know why America is so much more infused with religious faith than the rest of the world. But I do think that we're in the middle of another religious Great Awakening, and that while this may bring spiritual comfort to many, it will also mean a growing polarization within our society.
        But mostly, I'm troubled by the way the great intellectual traditions of Catholic and Protestant churches alike are withering, leaving the scholarly and religious worlds increasingly antagonistic. I worry partly because of the time I've spent with self-satisfied and unquestioning mullahs and imams, for the Islamic world is in crisis today in large part because of a similar drift away from a rich intellectual tradition and toward the mystical. The heart is a wonderful organ, but so is the brain." [ from http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/15/opinion/15KRIS.html?
ex=1061956996&ei=1&en=ac8d7a6978c28365 ]]

        Was George W. Bush the U.S.'s first "orthodox" Catholic president?

Catholic church complicity
in drug trafficking :

According to Mexican Bishop Ramon Godinez, donations from drug traffickers to the Catholic Church in Mexico are not unusual and it's not the church's responsibility to investigate.  He argued that the money is "purified'' once it enters the church.  See Religion News blog.
        There were several known instances of Catholic Church complicity in drug trafficking that have come out in Mexico reported in the Seattle Post Intelligencer, which are no longer online.

Catholic diocese in Austria
stung by porn found at seminary :

Bishop fights calls for his resignation
By William J. Kole, Associated Press | July 13, 2004
Vienna - A vast cache of child pornography and photos of young priests having sex has been discovered at a Roman Catholic seminary, officials said yesterday, leading politicians and church leaders to demand a criminal probe and the resignation of the bishop in charge.

Bishop Kurt Krenn, who oversees the diocese, refused to step down, dismissing the images as a "childish prank."
        Leaders of the Catholic diocese of St. Poelten, where the seminary is located about 50 miles west of Vienna, spent much of the day in an emergency meeting.  The seminary's director, the Rev. Ulrich Kuechl, resigned along with his deputy, Wolfgang Rothe, the diocese said after the meeting. It did not elaborate.
        As many as 40,000 photos and an undisclosed number of films, including child pornography, were found a year ago on computers at the seminary, the respected news magazine Profil reported.  It published several images purportedly showing young priests and their instructors kissing and fondling each other, and said others showed them engaging in orgies and sex games. The child pornography came mostly from websites based in Poland, the magazine said. . .
        Krenn, a conservative churchman, told Austrian television he had seen photos of seminary leaders in sexual situations with students, but he described the images as part of an elaborate prank that "had nothing to do with homosexuality."  His nonchalance drew swift and scathing reaction across the overwhelmingly Catholic nation. . . Asked whether he intended to resign, Krenn said bluntly: "No." [ from www.boston.com/news/world/articles/2004/07
        But he DID.

Germany's R.C. churches
in decline over
pedophilia scandals:

Berlin - - The number of people leaving the Roman Catholic Church in Germany jumped by nearly 50 percent in 2010 as an abuse scandal widened, new data showed Friday. Some 181,000 people quit their memberships last year, up from 124,000 in 2009, official numbers released by Germany's Roman Catholic Church showed.
        Deaths and people turning away from the church heavily outnumbered baptisms, which reached a record low, putting one of the world's wealthiest and most influential Catholic Churches further in decline. Over the past twenty years, the number of members of Germany's Roman Catholic Church has fallen from 28.3 million to 24.6 million or 30.2 percent of the country's population in 2010, the data showed."

"Germany's R. C. church
has said that it will pay
almost $5m in compensa-
tion for its role in Nazi-era
forced labour schemes.

The church has admitted that during World War II up to 1,500 people were forced to work for the church."
[ from http://www.propeller.com/viewstory/2008/04/09/roman-catholic-church-admits-aiding-nazis-in-ww2/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fnews.
bbc.co.uk%2F2%2Fhi%2Feurope%2F7337748.stm&frame=true ]

" R. C. church's
pedophile investigator
jailed for possessing
thousands of
child porn images."

[ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2054674/Roman-Catholic-churchs-paedophile-investigator-jailed-possessing-thousnds-child-porn-images.html#ixzz1cDmXGcgC ]

U S states with
the most Roman Catholics :
State Number Percent
Rhode Island 633,427 63.1
Massachusetts 2,961,359 49.2
Connecticut 1,374,747 41.8
New Jersey 3,189,315 41.3
New York 7,280,488 40.5
Louisiana 1,369,154 32.4
Wisconsin 1,554,278 31.8
Illinois 3,611,033 31.6
Pennsylvania 3,375,250 30.9
New Mexico 467,356 30.8
[ from http://www.adherents.com/largecom/com_romcath.html ]

Contrary to what the G.O.P. would have
Catholics believe, Democrats in Congress
support R. C. church positions
much more often than do Republicans !

Research challenges bold G.O.P. boast
by William V. D'Antonio and Jacqueline Scherer
( Special to the highly regarded National Catholic Reporter )

The Republican Party's "Catholic Task Force" has made a far-reaching claim: that of all political parties, the Republican Party's agenda best reflects Catholic teaching. Specifically, in a mission statement revised in January, 2000 the task force said, "We have studied the political record of all major political parties and we believe that the Republican Party is closest to the teachings of the Catholic church."
        The party's claims are unusually bold, given that most people who follow national politics would say that since the 1930s, the Democrats have more consistently reflected the social teachings of the Catholic church.  Further, for most of that time, the majority of the Catholic vote has gone to Democratic candidates.
        If there were a change in the historic alignment between Catholics and Democrats, it would be a dramatic, surprising shift.  And if Catholics believed the recent Republican claims, and voted accordingly, it could have significant electoral results.. . .
        As researchers who have examined the religious factor in the U.S. Congress, we decided to examine the Republican claims.  Our extensive analysis, which included consulting many experts on Congressional votes in relation to Catholic teaching, shows clearly that, aside from the Republican Party's antiabortion stand, and its support for educational vouchers and funds for Catholic schools, the party's claim to best represent Catholic views is greatly exaggerated.  In virtually every other area of concern to Catholic leaders and to Network, the Catholic social justice lobby, support by Democrats in Congress for positions aligned with church teaching far outranks support by Republicans.
        The bottom line of all of the research is that, contrary to the propaganda of the G.O.P., Democratic Congress-people are three to four times as likely as Republicans to support the various positions of the Roman Catholic Church!

See the results that research in the Tables below
(The source is no longer available at www.natcath.com
/NCR_Online/archives/081100/081100a.html )

overall summary :

Table 1
Breakdown by Year & by Legislative Body :
Table 2

Table 2

Table 2

Table 2

Table 2

See much more demographic research
relating to ALL religious groups in America.

Why the G.O.P.  is not   GOD's Party
a sermon on behalf of the people in the pews
addressed TO the Roman Catholic Hierarchy

"Bones reveal
chubby monks aplenty",
by Martin Wainwright

England's Guardian Newspaper 
- July 15, 2004 :
       "The full truth about one of Britain's favourite historical fatties has been tracked down by a three-year study of overweight medieval monks.
        Robin Hood's companion Friar Tuck had hundreds of real-life counterparts, according to a newly published analysis of skeletons in three monastic burial sites in London.
        Suet, lard and butter were wolfed down in 'startling quantities' by the closed communities, whose abbots often depended on arranging large and regular helpings to keep their flocks under control.
        'The way to a man's heart is through his stomach and this seems specially to have been the case with monks,' said Philippa Patrick, of the Institute of Archaeology, at University College, London. 'They were taking in about 6,000 calories a day, and 4,500 even when they were fasting.'
        Arthritis in knees, hips and fingertips showed that the often under-employed monks were seriously obese.
        Ms Patrick, whose findings were revealed to the International Medieval Congress, meeting in Leeds, said: 'Their meals were full of saturated fats. They were five times more likely to suffer from obesity than their secular contemporaries, including wealthy merchants or courtiers.'
        The reckless scoffing was in clear breach of St Benedict's austere rules laid down probably in 530, which warned: 'There must be no danger of overeating, so that no monk is overtaken by indigestion, for there is nothing so opposed to Christian life as overeating.'
        Critics, such as Peter the Venerable, who slated monks for 'wearing furs and eating fat', were advised however that Benedict had also warned about grumbling: 'Brethren would indeed grumble if deprived of the food to which they are accustomed.'
        The skeletal data, from 300 sets of bones found at Tower Hill, Bermondsey, and Merton abbeys, includes information on a medical condition known now as Dish (diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis) triggered by overeating and a rich diet. 'The marks of Dish keep appearing on their skeletons. It forms a coating on the spine like candlewax dripping down the side,' said Ms Patrick. . .

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