Now, I don’t mean to pick on any one religion—well, actually I do—but if I had to be anything, a Catholic would be the last thing I would choose. The Catholic faith is so hypocritical, egotistical, elitist yet self-deprecating, sexist, avaricious, mercenary, superstitious, judgmental, intolerant, vindictive, arrogant, bigoted, narrow-minded, bullying, controlling and chauvinistic, as well as misogynistic. In the following paragraphs I intend to illustrate and validate all of these claims.
For the last few hundred years the President of the United States has been the highest position in the land and one to which many white men aspire. But there was a time when the Pope was the guy who many wanted to be. The Pope had more power and influence than most kings, and he was allowed to make monumental decisions for the entire world, whereas a king has only limited, regional jurisdiction. In those early days all of western civilization and Society in general were ruled and controlled by the Catholic Church. The Pope excommunicated Henry VIII because he would not allow the King to divorce his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, as if their marriage, or anybody else’s marriage, was any of his business. I will have more to say about that particular Pope a little later.
When a man gives an account of something that involves both sexes but makes him the prime element over all else, I tend to be rather dubious. It appears that my personal theory about female predominance over the male is not mine alone. My convictions have been confirmed after reading The Da Vinci Code. Although a work of fiction, much of its historical background is based on fact, which I have verified from other sources.
It’s true that the ancient pagans were proponents of goddess and nature worship, Mother Earth and all that. It was the early Christians, and especially the Catholic Church, who successfully converted the world from matriarchal divinity to patriarchal preponderance by waging a campaign of propaganda that demonized the “sacred feminine,” obliterating the goddess from modern religion forever. Their three-hundred-year conspiratorial crusade to “reeducate” feminine-worshipping religions was brutal and horrific, to say the least.
The Catholic Inquisition published an evil book called Malleus Maleficarum, or The Witches’ Hammer, which indoctrinated the world to “the dangers of freethinking women” and instructed the clergy how to locate, torture and destroy them. Those deemed witches by the Church included all female scholars, priestesses, gypsies, mystics, nature lovers, herb gatherers and any women “suspiciously attuned to the natural world.” Midwives also were killed for their heretical practice of using medical knowledge to ease the pain of childbirth—a suffering, the Church claimed, that was God’s rightful punishment to women for Eve committing the Original Sin, which is a major indication of their misogynistic attitudes. But Adam committed the exact same sin as well, so where is the men’s painful punishment? In that they are basing this action on a ridiculous myth, makes it even more inexcusable. During these witch hunts, the Church burned at the stake over five million women! Why, they are just the Christian Taliban! How are they any different than that Afghani militant movement or ISIS that are so greatly maligned and feared nowadays?
But as there is always an exception and being the hypocrites that they are, there is one woman that the Catholics think really highly of. And that’s Jesus’ mother, Mary. They just love them some Mary, don‘t they? She gets as much attention (maybe even more) as her Son. There are countless images and statues of her as well as churches and other edifices, colleges and universities, even cities all over the world are named in her honor. Anything called “Our Lady” or “Notre Dame” refers to her. There is much music written about her as well. There are numerous settings of “Ave Maria” and “Stabat Mater,” for example. Remember, they gave her that special Immaculate Conception distinction (See my Nativity Redux blog for the explanation). They even made her a saint. When Catholics go to Confession, they appeal to Mary to absolve them of their sins. In Titanic (1997), as well as other movie versions, when the ship is sinking, they show some passengers praying to Mary! I thought, What are they praying to her for? Do they think that she is going to save them?
I was watching some religious channel on TV one day, where a theologian was discussing Catholic tenets with a priest. This guy made the observation to the priest that the people of his faith worship Mary. The priest denied it by saying that they didn’t exactly worship Mary. It was more of an honor or “veneration” to her, he said. I thought, Uh, isn’t that the same thing? He’s just mincing words. The definition of worship is “to show religious devotion or reverence for; to adore, venerate (hello?!) or idolize; devotion, love or admiration of any kind.” So, why can’t they just go on and admit it? They worship Mary! Incidentally, if Heaven is supposed to be off-limits to all persons of the Jewish faith, according to the Catholics and other Christian sects, how did Mary, a practicing Jewess, get to be the “Queen of Heaven” (aka Regina Coeli)?
The Catholic Church was and still is to some extent the component of power and world control, and at some point in its notorious past also even went so far as to put to death anyone who would not convert to Catholicism. Their imposed Spanish Inquisition, which lasted from 1478-1834, campaigned to convert not only Jews, Muslims and other non-Christian sects, but even baptized Christians were considered heretics, and many thousands more were burned at the stake for refusing to convert. Isn’t that the same thing that some of our political leaders accuse certain Muslim fanatics of doing? I suppose that they hadn’t forgotten how only a few centuries before, the Catholics themselves were held in abject lowest esteem to the point of genocide, by being fed to the lions as public entertainment. So now that they have acquired some degree of power, I guess they decided to take mortal revenge on others, as if that is the Christian thing to do. That’s their vindictiveness.
Even when they weren’t killing everybody, there were your proselytizing missionaries who went all over the world attempting to make everybody Catholic. They pretty much succeeded in much of Europe by making Catholicism the primary religion in several countries, like Andorra, France, Ireland, Italy, Monaco, Portugal and Spain, but which subsequently spread to Central and South America, the Philippines and other island nations throughout the world as well.
The Church has a worldwide organization that they call Opus Dei, which means “God’s Work” in Latin. That is so arrogant. They can, and do, make that anything they want it to be, and say that they are merely operating on God’s behalf. God doesn’t need them to do Its work. It can manage quite well without their help. Do your own work, why don‘t you?! Their goal is to inspire everyone towards sanctification, that is, to live your life according to Catholic mores and beliefs.
Besides that, they even meddled in the Hollywood film industry during the ‘30s and ‘40s when they created a watchdog committee that monitored every movie that was produced, to decide if it was suitable for public viewing or not. Yes, they just have to be in everybody’s business! As most movies already tend to be unrealistic as it is, this group considered practically every aspect of normal life to be taboo. There could be no premarital sex on screen, certainly no extramarital sex, no depicted or even suggested sex at all, if they got their way. Of course, they preferred that all visual images and dialogue be positive and non-offensive. Sure, just take all of the fun and interest and controversy out of all movies, why don’t you? That sounds just like the world of “Big Brother” in George Orwell’s 1984 or even South Africa’s Apartheid era. Fortunately, the studios ignored these strict pooh-pooh naysayers when they could and managed to get by the censors and produce their films like they wanted to.
I was surprised to learn that there are native black people in Ireland. Well, they are of mixed race, actually, as a result of African and Irish interbreeding. But the thing is, after these often unwanted children are born, they are given up, abandoned and subsequently taken in by the local orphanage, which was established and is maintained by the Irish Catholics. The place is run more like a Dickensian workhouse, however, where the children in their care are mistreated and abused by the nuns and priests in charge. So much for your “Christian charity.” There is never any chance of adoption for any of these interracial kids, so they are doomed to remain there and suffer the abject indignities until they age out of the system and are allowed to leave, but even then are still subject to prejudicial disrespect and social apathy by the gentry.
So, do you think that the Church condemns homosexuality? Well, maybe they do now, or claim that they do, but that hasn’t always been the case. Actually, as I will illustrate in a moment, they don’t really condemn it even now, they just want us to think that they do. The fact that they will outwardly protest it while they are actually guilty of it themselves shows you what hypocrites they are. They and other Christians haven’t always been against same-sex marriage either. As early as the 12th and 13th centuries, churches not only sanctioned unions between partners of the same sex, but some of their wedding ceremonies were actually performed in the Vatican, by the Pope himself! It was probably only when the Nazis came into power that this practice was looked down upon and outlawed thereafter.
And how do they explain and justify their several Popes (only nine are cited here, but there probably were many more) who were notoriously queer and/or corrupt besides? How is this for your papal infallibility? Pope John XII [937-964], aka “John the Bad,” ran a brothel out of St. Peter’s, ordained a 10-year-old boy as bishop, used the papal treasury to pay off his gambling debts, and was finally murdered by a jealous male lover.
Party animal Pope Benedict IX [1020-1055] held lavish homosexual orgies in the papal palace. He also was a murderer who dabbled in bestiality, witchcraft and Satanism. His riotous conduct was considered appalling, however, and he was eventually deposed. This also points out the fact that the current sexual indiscretion among your Catholic priests is not a new occurrence either. It’s been going on for centuries.
Pope Sixtus IV [1414-1484] took his beautiful young nephew as his lover and made him a millionaire by plundering the papal treasury. He is best remembered for appointing Torquemada as inquisitor-general for the Spanish Inquisition. Hey, now that was a real Christian gesture, wasn’t it?
Pope Paul II [1417-1471], known to his cardinals as “Our Lady of Pity” for his tendency to cry at the slightest provocation, had a fondness for glitter and finery; he even wore an expensive papal tiara. He allegedly died of a heart attack while being sodomized by one of his favorite altar boys. So I guess he was literally fucked to death!
Pope Alexander VI [1431-1503], the father of Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia, had a lifetime history of murder and corruption. He even killed members of his own family. He died as the result of ingesting the poisoned food that he had intended for someone else. In the words of Shakespeare’s Hamlet: “Hoist with his own petard.”
Pope Leo X [1475-1521] acquired the reputation of being wildly extravagant. This dude would play cards with his cardinals, allow the public to sit in as spectators, and would toss huge handfuls of gold coins to the crowd whenever he won a hand. His expenses for both cultural and military endeavors, along with his taste for increasingly ornate papal gowns, drove the papal treasury into bankruptcy.
Pope Julius III [1487-1555] was lovers with his two sons (Aha! Pedophilia and incest, too? Quel scandal!) and made both of them, as well as numerous other handsome teenage boys, cardinals. He allegedly enjoyed bringing them all together for orgies where he would watch them fuck each other. Giovanni Della Casa’s poem In Praise of Sodomy was dedicated to him.
Pope Paul III [1534-49] is best known for excommunicating Henry VIII. Paul also poisoned several of his relatives, including his own mother, to gain control of a family inheritance and enjoyed an incestuous relationship with his daughter. He killed a couple of cardinals and a Polish bishop over a theological point and was the greatest pimp in Rome’s history. He kept a stable of 45,000 prostitutes, who paid him a monthly stipend.
Now, you know that I’m not one to gossip, but… I have it on pretty good authority from a guy who lives in Rome near the Vatican. I recently learned that one of the reasons why Pope Benedict XVI [2005-2013] was asked to step down, is because he became a disgrace to his office. He was spotted on many occasions frequenting the gay bars in town and picking up young men. It appears that today’s Pontifical College is not as lenient or forgiving as they were in the past, at least on the surface. They used to tolerate and excuse all sorts of criminal and immoral behavior and indiscretions, including murder, but now mere bar cruising is grounds for termination? Tsk, tsk! The rule is not to display your controversial activities out in the open but to operate on the down-low, like any good Catholic.
The current Pope Francis recently gave gay Catholics permission to be gay. Wasn’t that white of him? Man, they don’t need your permission! That’s like when Anita Bryant first told us by TV commercial that orange juice is not just for breakfast anymore. Really? You mean that we can drink it any time that we want to? I would think that the Pope should embrace gay acceptance, since he took his name, after all, from St. Francis, a sissy.
Other popes have advocated, even participated in, major wars and the killing of their so-called enemies. I thought that Christians were supposed to love their enemies. For one, the papacy ordered the complete annihilation of the Knights Templar because they had become more powerful than the Church, when they once had been revered by it. I told you what they did to all the women who threatened their indoctrination and authority. How dare these modern Catholics sit back in moral judgment of anybody!
Just as the local police departments anywhere tend to protect their own, unlike them, the Catholic Church does not employ an Internal Affairs unit to investigate, reprimand and punish those in the diocese who do something criminal or merely unethical. The Catholics, as a rule, like to settle any wrongdoing in-house, without any outside interference. That way they have managed to get away with all sorts of underhanded shit over the centuries. I just told you what some of their popes were guilty of. But sexual hanky-panky goes on everywhere, not just at the Vatican.
Their biggest and most inexcusable indiscretion, however, is the acceptance and cover-up of their rampant molestation of children, mostly boys but girls as well. These priests use their influence and position to seduce innocent, lonely youngsters, and their actions go unreported because of fear, shame, guilt and intimidation on the part of the victims. When these predators are eventually discovered, they are never prosecuted or convicted, but merely transferred to another parish, where they are allowed to continue their deviancy.
This issue is given a great, comprehensive treatment in the critically-acclaimed, Oscar-winning film Spotlight (2015), when a Boston newspaper team sets out to expose the true events of the local scandal and cover-up by the Catholic Church. What was found out during their investigation is staggering. The news guys were so shocked. I, however, was not surprised at all, since I already knew what was going on. Practically everyone involved, too, knew what was going down, including various lawyers, the press, even the kids’ parents, but nobody did anything about it. One mother wrote a letter to her parish priest, telling him that she knows all about her seven sons being molested. But she will keep quiet about it, so as not to cause any trouble for the priest. What?! Is it any wonder that this activity has occurred for as long as it has? The conspiracy of silence is a regular and constant perpetuator.
The Church does not want any of its members to think for themselves either. There was a time when practitioners of the faith were forbidden to read the Scriptures. Their local clergy would tell the folks what they needed to know, you see. To confuse and keep the people in the proverbial dark even further, they conducted their masses in Latin. I can’t imagine attending regular church services for years and not knowing what the hell anybody is saying! What is the point of that? Even today every decision that they make in life has to be approved and cleared by the Almighty Pope (infallible, indeed!) and his Chain-of-Command of assorted cardinals, monsignors, archbishops, bishops, priests and nuns. They lay down a whole set of life rules for you to follow, and if you don’t, you have sinned and “you will burn in Hell.”
But that doesn’t stop them from doing anything themselves that they want to do, however. You know, it’s do as we say, not as we do. They like to hang heavy guilt trips on everybody, too, especially the children, to keep them in line. I have heard many horror stories from my Catholic-raised friends about growing up in parochial schools with those frustrated, sadistic, deranged nuns they had for teachers. They often resorted to severe corporal punishment on their charges, which now is considered child abuse, but which the Church and the public allowed to go on for many years. Maybe they still do in some places. It seems as if anything goes with them, as long as they keep quiet about it.
But wait, there is always a convenient escape clause! As long as you confess your sins (not to God Itself, mind you, but to a mediating priest), you may be absolved of any wrongdoing. So the Catholics learn that they can do anything that they damn well please, because they can go to Confession, admit their misdeeds, say a couple of “Hail-Marys,” the priest will absolve them, and all is forgiven.
There is a movie (one of several with a similar plot) about a Catholic priest trying to track down a local serial killer. At the end, when the killer, during a fight, falls to his death, the priest bends over him to give him his Last Rites and to absolve him of his sins. I thought, What are you doing?! The man was a despicable, remorseless mass murderer! Why are you blessing him?! Why don’t you damn his soul to Hell instead? If anything they do is forgiven, including murder, why even be righteous and law-abiding in life?
Ignoring the Ten Commandments is a common Catholic infraction. With the various Italian crime syndicates, therefore Catholic, the taking of human lives is a regular occurrence, for example. So is stealing and covetousness (extortion and procuring for themselves what others have), among other vices.
In Cop Out (2010) a Latino character, therefore purportedly Catholic, but is a gang leader and drug runner, is in the church praying when one of his gang members shows up and tells this head guy that he botched an important drug deal. The guy prays, “Father, forgive me, for I am about to sin.” Then he turns and shoots the other guy dead right there in the sanctuary! What is the point of confessing? There is such gross hypocrisy involved.
And why do you need to tell some man, who is not a licensed therapist, mind you, all your business and personal secrets and such? You can deal with the Lord directly; you don’t need a middle man to intervene for you. I think that they set up this whole Confession thing just so they can keep tabs on what everybody in their parish and see is doing. And what is preventing any priest from using or revealing the information that they receive from their confessors for their own ends? Of course, they are not supposed to reveal anything they learn in the confessional, but just like with doctors and lawyers, you will pardon me for not being that trusting. They may not willingly divulge somebody’s secret, but everyone has their price for betrayal. Would a young parish priest, for example, be willing to give up his life to protect the secret that some errant stranger told him in the confessional? Who is that noble?
We already know how they manage to get around everything. He doesn’t have to say outright what he knows. He could leave some incriminating clues lying around for the police to find for themselves. Then the priest is off the hook. “I didn’t tell them anything. They figured it out for themselves.” And now that the Church’s scandal about pedophilic priests has finally come to light, I expect that their general trust quotient has been lowered even further. I might mention that this confidentiality proviso applies only to the actual church confessional, by the way. If you are anywhere else, however, anything that you tell a priest is not protected and could be divulged without his breaking any self-imposed restrictions. See how they manage to circumvent any limitation that they impose upon themselves?
Of course, there are priests who actually do honor the sanctity of the confessional by keeping everything that they learn from their parishioners secret. They cover up the most heinous of misdeeds, like murder, incest and child molestation. With the aforementioned serial killer, for instance, the local priest knows who it is but won’t help the police, out of his sense of moral duty to secrecy. He also knows about the young girl who confessed to him that she is having regular sex with her own father against her will but keeps quiet about it. When the girl’s mother eventually finds out what’s going on, she goes to the priest and blesses him out. “You knew, didn’t you, Father? You ought to be ashamed of yourself!” Excuse me, but how is any of this the priest’s fault? She is your daughter. Why don’t you know what is going on under your own roof? Don’t be blaming him. He did advise the girl to tell you. You expect him to keep your secrets, but he is supposed to divulge everybody’s else’s then? You can’t have it both ways. It’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t.
Catholics even take liberties with the institution of marriage. They tell joined couples that marriage is forever, but they allow their followers to divorce if they desire. Then if they want to get married again to someone else, the Church allows them to get an annulment first, so that they can have a church wedding. This is being done with people who have grown children and even grandchildren! An annulment signifies that the previous marriage never took place, and the kids don’t even exist. What did I tell you about their always finding a way out of anything?
Catholics always manage to justify everything that they do, too, no matter how unsavory. Take, for instance, the centuries-long practice of castration for the alleged purpose of serving God in song. A Catholic dictum declared, “Let women keep silent in the churches.“ None of them had anything important to say, apparently. “Just sit there and keep your mouths shut!” So since no women were allowed to sing in the church choir (or the stage) during the 16th century, their high pitch of voice had to be provided otherwise. Young boys could do so, but they eventually grew up and their voices changed. (So why not just replace them with other young boys?!) But somebody got the bright idea that by cutting off their balls, they could preserve these boys’ precious soprano voices for “the glory of God,” you see.
There soon opened up a number of “eunuch factories” in France, which supplied these castrati to the Roman church choirs and stages of Italy and Spain. I suppose that the wealth and fame that these young men achieved outweighed their genital sacrifice, because nobody seemed to mind or thought that anything was wrong with this barbaric practice. So this went on for about 300 years (!), until Pope Clement XIV woke up one day in 1770 and thought, “Hey, you know what? Instead of mutilating all these boys, why don’t we just let women sing in their place? What‘s the harm?” (Well, duh! Gah, I coulda had a V-8!) But the practice still was not outlawed completely until another hundred years later.
By the way, I refuse to address any priest as “Father.” I am not being disrespectful. It’s just that I am not Catholic, so their conventions don’t apply or mean anything to me, and I consider the epithet to be inappropriate besides. He is not my father, or anybody else’s (presumably), so why should I call him thus? It makes no sense for a 75-year-old person to call a 30-year-old man “Father.” I have known some who are young enough that they should be calling me Father! I don’t at all object to terms like “Pastor,” “Reverend” or “Rabbi,” which means “teacher,” but I think that it’s rather elitist and arrogant to adopt hierarchical titles like “Father,” “Monsignor” (which means “my Lord”), “Excellency” and “Mother Superior” for themselves, being mere mortals like everybody else, and, ironically, alleged childless celibates besides. It could prove to be confusing and ambiguous at times, too. When someone prays to “Our Father, who art in Heaven…” are they referring to God, to Jesus, to their parish priest or to their pious, biological parent who just died?
A more appropriate and less chauvinistic term for priests would be “brother,” just as their counterpart nuns are called “sisters.” To me it comes off more humbling as one’s peer rather than their superior, and I would not have a problem with that. “How are you today, Brother Patrick?” The Episcopalian priests that I know, on the other hand, don’t mind at all being called by their first names. The mere fact that Catholics still won’t allow women to have any real major authority in the Church is one indication of their sexist chauvinism. From what we have read, Jesus welcomed women into his fold, and some accounts even have Mary Magdalene as the one that he appointed to succeed him and carry on his ministry.
The highest rank that a woman can ever attain in the Church is the Mother Superior of a sexually-segregated convent. But she is still merely a nun. They are not allowed to be priests, bishops, cardinals or popes, for example. At some point, however, this position must have gotten a promotion (or demotion? in name only), because in The Bells of St. Mary’s (1945) the head nun, played by Ingrid Bergman, is referred to as “Sister” Superior. Why do the men object so strongly? What’s their problem? For years now the Episcopal Church has welcomed women in authoritative positions.
I have often wondered what would possess a young, fertile woman to want to become a nun anyway. What a life’s sacrifice that is! In The Nun’s Story (1959), starring Audrey Hepburn, we are given a glimpse of what it is like to become a nun. The novitiates have to give up all worldly desires. Anything that derives any kind of pleasure is a mortal sin. In essence, life is not to be enjoyed at all. They must give up the notion of self-worth and pride and learn abject humility. They are taught to consider themselves to be worthless creatures, not deserving of any respect. They are made to denounce their families and friends and give up all personal possessions. It’s like a captive cult.
They also participate in a ceremony where they get married to Jesus Christ, a long-dead Jew! It’s a multiple wedding, too, and the novices are all wearing white bridal gowns! But doesn’t that make Jesus a polygamist, which is supposed to be against their own moral law? What is so silly about it, is that it is merely a symbolic marriage anyway. Their being Jesus’ wives compels them to be sexually faithful, even though they know that they are not really married and that their “husband” is already dead. But I guess it helps them to justify their carnal sacrifice. See how absurdly ridiculous that all is?
There is another scene in the film which shows Audrey’s hair being cut off before fitting her in a habit. But isn’t that one of the inexcusable “abominations” cited in Leviticus that I mentioned before? (See my For the Bible Tells Me So blog.) So it’s all right for them to cut their hair, which is a definite no-no, but I am not allowed to “lie” with my boyfriend! I think that a woman who will willingly subject herself to such a life, does not hold herself in much high regard. She is controlled by men and is not allowed to think for herself or enjoy any of life’s vices, but must do whatever she’s told to do and must not mind the disrespect afforded her. No wonder so many of them are frustrated and angry. If she wants to be a teacher or nurse or just wants to help people, why not do just that? She doesn’t have to be a nun to pursue a career in public service.
The men, too, put themselves into a sacrificial situation when they enter the priesthood. They cloister themselves away in abbeys and monasteries, cutting themselves off from the outside world. What purpose are they serving humankind? How are they helping anybody in their seclusion? Some orders of monks don’t speak, some don’t eat for long periods of time, don’t laugh and deprive themselves of all earthly pleasures. Some even indulge in self-flagellation for penance. Penance for what, I ask? They never do anything to be sorry for! It’s as if they feel the need to be punished merely for existing. And as with the nuns, they all choose this life voluntarily, since nobody has to do any of that. They make up these ridiculous and restrictive rules for themselves and others and then willingly abide by them without question or protest.
Oh, by the way. This same Roman “dirt” source of mine tells of an order of nuns, whose convent is located just across from the Vatican and consists entirely of sapphists! They enter the order as couples and live together, two to a room. It must not be a secret, since more than a few people know about it, including the person who told me, and now you know, too.
I find most of the Catholics’ Eucharistic rites—like genuflecting and bowing to the altar every time they pass it, prostrating and crossing themselves to make the Sign of the Cross, and especially washing people’s feet during Holy Week—to be pointless and stupid. But that’s me. Who are they doing all of that for? What do they think will happen if they don’t? Here is where the superstitious aspect of the religion comes into play. Do they actually think that God chides and scolds them if they forget or neglect to cross themselves when they pass the altar? “Aha! You did not genuflect, my child! I shall now sentence you to eternal damnation!”
They also apparently believe that the rite of christening is a sure guarantee for personal salvation. Some are firmly convinced that by sprinkling or pouring water on a baby’s forehead will guarantee their place in Heaven. And not to do it, then that person is doomed for Hell. Of course, the Baptists are just as bad with their full immersion ritual. Why do people believe such inanities? And what about that so-called “holy water”? They take plain ol’ tap water, and a priest says a prayer and blessing over it, and it then becomes holy. The water itself doesn’t know that it is special, but it will severely scald a vampire when it’s thrown on them. How silly is that?
Many, if not all, of the Christian religions practice a little ritual known as Communion, which commemorates the so-called Last Supper of Christ. In my home church and in other Protestant services that I have attended, Communion is taken only once a month, usually the first Sunday of each. Once a month, every four or five weeks, that seems reasonable to me. But not every day! The Catholics and most Episcopalians hold Communion at every service, every time they get together, even at weddings and funerals. I mean, come on! Isn’t that overdoing it a bit?
Whatever the ritual is supposed to accomplish, it must not have any lasting effect. It’s apparently only good until the next time they get together. I consider the ritual itself to serve no real purpose and is a complete waste of time. I mean, really, what’s the point? “Do this in remembrance of me”? Did Jesus really say that? The whole thing is based on some accepted myth. But even if he did say it, he was talking to his disciples there with him. What does it have to do with any of us these many centuries later? If it is meant to be some kind of solidarity thing with them and us, then why don’t they all allow themselves to be crucified in remembrance of him?! Go all the way, why don’t you, or don’t do it at all.
Somebody told me that he knew of a Catholic man who brought his dog to church with him one Sunday and then took him up to receive Communion! They do try to be accommodating, don’t they? Did that guy actually think that his dog knew what he was doing, or even cared?
Mercenary, too, I did say? A man approached a Catholic priest requesting that he do a Mass for his dog who had just died. The priest flatly refused. “I can’t do that, sir. That is simply unheard of.” The man then said, “But I am willing to give the church $5000 for the service.” The priest replied, “Oh, well, my son. You didn’t tell me that your dog was Catholic!” So that changes things, then? Not that it should have made any difference. For that amount of money, that priest wouldn’t have cared if the dog had been Atheist!
Now consider for a moment this aspect of cannibalism and vampirism that is at the heart of Communion, which is what caused much of the criticism and disapproval from the early non-Christians. Of course, the act is merely symbolic, but transubstantiation is the Catholics’ belief that the wafer and wine actually turn into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. “Eat of my body, drink my blood”? Yeah, it’s easy for them to say that and go through the ritual because they know that it’s really bread (or wafer or matzo crackers) and wine (or grape juice) that they are consuming.
Did you know that the term “hocus-pocus,” commonly used by magicians and conjurers, is said to be based on the Latin phrase, “Hoc est corpus meum–This is my body”, which is uttered during Communion in masses conducted in Latin? So they even have associated magic and witchcraft with the ritual. “Good people, I will now turn this bread and water into the body and blood of Jesus Christ! Hocus-pocus! Abracadabra!” “Wow, that’s amazing! How did he do that?”
I wonder what their attitude would be if actual blood and human flesh were used for the Eucharist? Would they all be so eager to partake then? Somehow I doubt it. The main characters in Armistead Maupin’s More Tales of the City certainly were horrified when they discovered a group of worshippers engaging in that very thing. One guy shocked himself into self-imposed amnesia because of the traumatic experience.
I don’t care much for their modus operandi either—everybody sipping from the same vessel, exposing themselves to each other’s germs and diseases. At my home church, for one, they used grape juice, in individual little bitty shot glasses, and crumbled matzo crackers. Then only after everyone had been served, would we partake all together, like a toast. “Here’s to King Jesus! Long may he reign!” (::gulp!::) To me, this seems to be a more “communal” way to do it than the other way.
And then they have the nerve to be restrictive about it. If you are not Catholic, you cannot receive Communion in their church, as they consider only their taking of Communion to be valid. The ministers of all those other sects, including the Episcopal church, are not properly sanctioned by “The Big Guy” (the Pope) to administer Communion, so none of them count. I’ve heard it said, “Giving Communion to non-Catholics would imply that there is some union between religions, which does not exist.” But Jesus was a Jew. These people have changed the man’s religion and have claimed him solely as their own! Can they stop?!
(# When I survey the wondrous Cross… #)
Did you ever think about the fact that “Christians” have adopted an instrument of torture (the cross) as a worshiping icon? There are a number of love songs written about it. At some churches during Holy Week services, they include a “Veneration of the Cross” ritual, where they bow to, touch adoringly, and even kiss an old dirty plank of wood! Who knows where that thing’s been? I would no more do that than I would touch my lips to the Blarney Stone!
I suppose that if Jesus had been executed in 18th-century France, devotees would be wearing little guillotines around their necks! And I wonder then if the common trinket that corresponds to the Crucifix would depict Christ without his head? But then I guess they would have to leave his head (face up) in the bucket so that we would know that it’s supposed to be him. How morbidly absurd, you may be thinking, as if any of that other stuff makes any practical sense!
Most religions are maintained on tradition and rituals and such, and Catholicism is no exception. And whereas everything is for a reason, certain Catholic conventions, too, had to have gotten their start somewhere. Why are the Catholic clergy not allowed to be married and, moreover, required to take vows of celibacy? It was a matter of economics, but don’t most decisions in life ultimately have to do with money in some way? This “vow of poverty” stipulation was set up so that any and all monies collected from the people would go directly to the Church, that is, the Vatican. If any of these priests were married, they would probably have children, grandchildren and their in-laws’ families to support. They would also own land and property. So when a priest dies, who gets his estate, his family or the Church? Naturally, the Church would want it. “Instead of paying all those clerical salaries, let’s give everything that we get to the Pope himself.” Think of all the money they save. So then, since they are not married, it follows that they are not allowed to have sex either. You do know that one cannot have sex unless one is married, right? At least, if they are having sex, His Eminence certainly doesn’t want to know about it.
(# Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great; If a sperm is wasted, God gets quite irate #)
So in order to keep the Papal coffers brimming, as it were, they opted to put the monetary responsibility and obligation on the common gentry instead. They needed to sanction a way to breed as many Catholics as they can by outlawing every type of birth control and convincing their followers that marriage and procreation are next to Godliness, and that every sexual union must produce issue, or else, why bother? There is no such thing as recreational sex, heaven forbid!
This is another case where the Pope needs to get with the times. The Church has enough money now. Let your priests and nuns and everybody else get married, those who want to. What’s the harm? Religious reformer Martin Luther [1483-1546] was a rebel. He was a Catholic priest and his wife was a former nun. He probably said, “To hell with this celibacy bullshit! I like sex. If I have to quit the church and start my own religion, I’ll do just that.”
Even if the Catholic clergy choose not to marry, they should be allowed to have sex with whomever they want (they’re doing that anyway, behind each other’s back, of course), and be permitted to raise families, too. This was not always the case, as I have told you that many of your past Popes were fathers and some probably even married. It’s hypocritical for the modern-day Popes and their minions to insist that their followers keep having more and more children when they are not having any themselves. I don’t see them helping that poor family with ten children, when the husband dies suddenly and the mother, who is unskilled in any kind of lucrative endeavors, is forced to go on welfare. What is Father O’Malley’s position now, the one who encouraged them to have all those damned kids in the first place?
The Church imposes upon their parishioners several Days of Obligation throughout the year, like Christmas and Easter but some other days as well, when they are required to attend Mass. If they fail to show up on one of these compulsory days, they have to go to Confession and beg for forgiveness. They tend to be flexible and very accommodating, too, as I said. Many Catholic churches hold an extra service on Saturday early evening to accommodate those parishioners who just can’t make it to Mass on Sunday, due to a hangover, perhaps, from Saturday night carousing, just wanting to sleep in, or whatever.
Also, I know of a Catholic church in the Bronx that holds their St. Patrick’s Day Mass the night before, because the priest thinks that very few of his Irish members and revelers will show up for the holiday service. Why should they care if somebody does not come to Mass or not? What’s in it for them? My guess is that they don’t want to miss out on that offering that they don’t receive when people don’t go to church. I suspect, and try to prove me wrong, that they’ve always been more concerned with taking people’s money than about their so-called salvation. That again exemplifies the mercenary aspect of the religion. Of course, all religions take up a collection in their services–after all, the church does have weekly expenses with which to honor–but the others don’t demand that everybody attend church. It’s completely voluntary. They have to get what they can whenever.
What about the burning of incense during the Mass? How did that come about? I believe it was a matter of diplomacy. In the olden days, before there was deodorant and attention to personal hygiene (bathing was a rarely-done activity), can you imagine the rampant B.O. that must have permeated through the church during services? But even as stinky and dirty as they were, the clergy still wanted people to attend Mass regularly. So in order not to offend anybody, you see, somebody got the idea to start burning a fragrant incense as part of the Eucharist ritual, to help blot out the bodily odors that they had to endure previously. That makes a lot of sense to me. Otherwise, what does incense have to do with anything sacred?
Of course, to justify it, they came up with something about the smoke rising up as a symbolic sacrifice to God or some such nonsense. Then to elaborate further on the use of incense, at some point a queen must have been put on the case. “So if we’re going to use this stuff, let’s really work it!” If anything, the Catholics are resourceful and adaptable, as closet gays tend to be. (Oops! Did I say that?) There is an Episcopal church in midtown Manhattan, called St. Mary the Virgin, that uses so much incense on a regular basis that the church has acquired the epithet of “Smoky Mary.”
(# Soldiers of Christ, arise, and put your armor on… #)
The Catholic religion also practices other anti-“Christian” attitudes. By our Biblical accounts Jesus Christ was a humble, itinerant peasant. The Catholic Church operates on wealth, power and control. The clergy wear elaborate vestments and put on a spectacle of a show in the form of their Mass services, while Jesus went about wearing the basic dress of the common folk of his day and preached on the street, on country hillsides, wherever people would gather publicly. He was more like an errant evangelist. He preached about loving your fellow man and that those who made peace with their enemies are the blessed ones. He was a confirmed pacifist. His disciples were not “soldiers” on his behalf.
The Catholics and other so-called Christian groups have been involved with war and persecution and genocide for all time. The Knights Templar and the Crusaders, for example, were real soldiers who went to war in the name of Christianity. Francis Duffy [1871-1932], whose statue stands in Times Square in Manhattan, was an Irish-Canadian Catholic priest who served as a soldier and chaplain in the Fighting 69th Regiment during the Spanish-American War and World War I and was highly decorated for his service. The fact that he willingly participated in those wars must mean that he condoned the fighting and killing that occurred. A chaplain can work anywhere. He doesn’t have to be on the front lines of a battlefield, unless he chooses to be.
They say that they are against abortion and murder but they don’t seem to mind killing those whom they deem heretics, who don’t follow the same religion that they do. They support all sorts of human punishments, capital and otherwise. Avowed “Christian” former President Bush’s purported preoccupation with global terrorism activity and making it his personal mission to combat it was not what Jesus was all about.
The name Peter, or the Greek “Petrus,“ means “rock.” So when Jesus purportedly told his disciple Peter, “Upon this rock I shall build my Church,” most likely it was his intention for Peter to carry on his ministry in his, that is, Christ’s name. The Catholics arrogantly and with disregard of the Greek pun, proceeded to build a cathedral over the spot of Peter’s purported grave, developed it into an entire complex, The Vatican, and made it the seat of the entire Roman Catholic Church. But as Jesus and his minions were all Jewish, why wasn’t a massive synagogue/Temple built on that same spot instead? They didn’t honor Jesus’ wishes but their own. He meant his church, not yours!
So whether you are Catholic or not, I don’t think that anyone can refute any of the claims that I have made about the religion. As unbelievable as some of it appear to be, I have not made any of it up. Everything I have said has been thoroughly researched and can be verified. Catholic practitioners may not like what I have said about you, but the truth needs no justification. I just calls ‘em as I sees ‘em! Try to prove me wrong. If more practitioners knew the history of the Church as I have just laid it out for you, maybe they wouldn’t be so accepting and devout.
[Related articles: For the Bible Tells Me So; Gender Issues and Sexism; Heaven and Hell; I Believe…; Jesus H. Christ!; Nativity Redux; Oh, God, You Devil!; Sin and Forgiveness; The Ten Commandments]