By Henry McRandall
As thousands of Catholic from around the world gather in Rome for tomorrow’s last public service by departing Pope Benedict XVI, it is timely for all Christians – and all other persons of faith – to give some thought to how not only the Roman Catholic Church but all organized religions have declined over the centuries to what today can only be considered dens of iniquity.
Although the focus of this article will, of necessity, be primarily the Catholic Church, much of what will be addressed applies equally to just about every organized religion – not just other “Christian” religions but also every major organized religion in the world – including also the Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Mormon, Jehovah’s Witness and Bahai faiths.
The Catholic church today is greatly reviled not only by most non-Catholics but also by many, many people who were raised as Catholics but have abandoned the religion either because they were victims of physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse by Catholic clergy or because of other glaring inconsistencies between New Testament reality and modern-day church practices.
The Vatican’s biggest problem today, of course, is the never-ending procession of victims coming forward to report often violent sexual assaults – rapes, if you like – by Catholic priests who stole their innocence when they were defenceless children.
Most of these child rapes are, of course, an essential byproduct of the Vatican’s rigid demand that priests and other church functionaries – such as nuns – take a “vow of celibacy” before they can begin their formal “service” to Jesus Christ within the church.
Celibacy, of course, was never mandated by Jesus Christ and was not even promoted by the four New Testament “gospels” – those according to the Apostles Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. It was only more than one thousand years after the death of Jesus Christ that the Catholic church – the only Christian religion at the time – passed its ecclesiastical laws requiring on celibacy.
The reason? In the early centuries of Christianity, believers actually did “tithe” – giving a full ten percent of all their income to the church. Most “tithers,” of course, were men since in the primitive, rural-based economies of the time, very few women had any involvement in the formal economy – essentially performing massive amounts of labour on the family farm but receiving no financial compensation for it – and had no real income. And because virtually all men “tithed,” in any village that had even as few as just 11 men, the Catholic priest was automatically the richest man in the village. And since very few villages – or “parishes” – had just 11 men, priests tended to become visibly wealthy as their villages grew.
By early in the second millennium after Jesus Christ, various popes were becoming quite resentful that so many priests were dying and leaving their considerable economic assets to their widows and children, rather than to “Holy Mother the Church.” These popes had already forgotten that Jesus Christ was what we today would call a “socialist” who totally detested what we today would call “capitalism.”
These popes had apparently forgotten that Jesus Christ’s very first public action was to violently evict the capitalists from the Jewish temple that he attended. They had forgotten that you “cannot serve both God and Mammon (financial profit)”. They had forgotten that it was “harder for a rich man to get into heaven than for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle.” And they had forgotten that Jesus Christ had urged moral humans to “give up your riches and come follow me.” Continue reading “How Satan took over the Vatican”
By Henry McRandall