Pope suggests ‘better to be atheist than hypocritical Catholic’

Pope Francis delivered another criticism of some members of his own Church on Thursday, suggesting it is better to be an atheist than one of “many” Catholics who he said lead a hypocritical double life.

In improvised comments in the sermon of his private morning Mass in his residence, he said: “It is a scandal to say one thing and do another. That is a double life.”


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“There are those who say ‘I am very Catholic, I always go to Mass, I belong to this and that association’,” the head of the 1.2 billion-member Roman Catholic Church said, according to a Vatican Radio transcript.

He said that some of these people should also say “‘my life is not Christian, I don’t pay my employees proper salaries, I exploit people, I do dirty business, I launder money, (I lead) a double life’.”

“There are many Catholics who are like this and they cause scandal,” he said. “How many times have we all heard people say ‘if that person is a Catholic, it is better to be an atheist’.”

Since his election in 2013, Francis has often told Catholics, both priests and lay people, to practice what their religion preaches.

In his often impromptu sermons, he has condemned sexual abuse of children by priests as being tantamount to a “Satanic Mass”, said Catholics in the mafia excommunicate themselves, and told his own cardinals to not act as if they were “princes”.

Less than two months after his election, he said Christians should see atheists as good people if they do good.


Evangelicals (White Freemasons, Christian Zionists) are ready to speak for Israel in Trump’s Washington

TEL AVIV (JTA) – Evangelicals, who have been advocating for Israel for years, have historically let the Jews take the lead.

Laurie Cardoza-Moore, for one, is excited that they are poised to take on a prominent role. An evangelical TV host and activist, Cardoza-Moore backs US President Donald Trump’s pick for ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, a supporter of the settlement movement who is deeply skeptical of the two-state solution.

And she is confident Trump will make good on his promise to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

“I am excited to see this development. It further illustrates the commitment of this [incoming] administration,” she recently told a Christian news service. “And God willing, Friedman will be the one who helps orchestrate that transition.”

Donald Trump and attorney David Friedman exit the Federal Building, following an appearance in US Bankruptcy Court on February 25, 2010, in Camden, New Jersey. (Bradley C Bower/Bloomberg News, via Getty Images / JTA)

Donald Trump (right) and attorney David Friedman exit the Federal Building, following an appearance in US Bankruptcy Court on February 25, 2010, in Camden, New Jersey. (Bradley C Bower/Bloomberg News, via Getty Images / JTA)

Cardoza-Moore was in Israel last week filming a new episode of “Focus on Israel,” which is widely syndicated on Christian television. In an interview at a Tel Aviv café last week, she said in over 15 years of pro-Israel work as the president of Proclaiming Justice to the Nations, she has seen evangelicals rally to the cause.

“After the 9/11 attacks, a lot of Christians were ready to hear our message,” she said. “Having read the Bible, they felt we were under a curse and the way to change that curse was to make sure we supported Israel. I always knew if we could get the information to the Christians, they would respond and they would stand up.”

But while that support is undeniable and certainly welcomed by a Jewish state that could use all the friends it can get, it still discomfits many in the pro-Israel camp, especially liberals. They worry evangelicals’ Bible-based views are too right wing, both on social issues as well as Israel affairs.

A Christian Evangelical supporter waves her national flag during the annual parade in Jerusalem, marking the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, or the Feast of the Tabernacles, on September 24, 2013. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A Christian Evangelical supporter waves her national flag during the annual parade in Jerusalem, marking the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, or the Feast of the Tabernacles, on September 24, 2013. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

“There’s a real danger because most evangelicals are very hawkish and hard-line on Israel,” said Dov Waxman, a political scientist at Northeastern University who studies American Jews and Israel. “The more they get involved, that risks alienating more liberal Jews from pro-Israel advocacy and from Israel.”

Cardoza-Moore’s commitment to Israel is unquestioned, and often indistinguishable from what mainstream Jewish groups might take on. In 2013, she gained national attention with a campaign against a geography textbook being used in her Tennessee school district that asked students to consider whether a Palestinian suicide bomber who kills “several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant” is acting as a terrorist or as a soldier fighting a war.

Cardoza-Moore spoke at school board meetings, gathered hundreds of signatures and appeared on Fox News to advocate against using the book. The local Jewish federation took her side. In the end, the school board concluded the book was not biased, but the publisher removed the offending line from electronic and future print editions.

Perhaps Cardoza-Moore’s biggest victory came in 2015, when at her urging, the Tennessee legislature passed a resolution condemning the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel, the first of its kind in the nation. Although the resolution took no action against BDS, it labeled the movement “one of the main vehicles for spreading anti-Semitism and advocating the elimination of the Jewish state.”

Since then, Cardoza-Moore has pushed for similar resolutions in other states. Ten states have now passed them, and three more are considering doing so. Governors in 15 states have signed laws that prevent the boycott of Israel.

It likely helps that the Republican Party in recent years has been dominant in state politics. The GOP has increasingly become the pro-Israel party. Evangelicals, who make up more than a quarter of the American population and overwhelmingly vote Republican, have shaped the party’s identity on Israel in many ways.

“If we look at why the Republicans tend to take pro-Israel positions, I think a major reason for that is evangelical Christians,” Waxman said. “In red-state America, it’s the views of evangelicals that really matter when it comes to Israel.”

And with Trump’s victory, red-state America is in control of the executive branch. Christians United for Israel, or CUFI, has been ramping up its activities in Washington, DC. The Israel lobby claims 3.3 million mostly evangelical members. By contrast, the mostly Jewish AIPAC has approximately 100,000, though it is more experienced and better funded.

After long deferring to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, CUFI founder and board member David Brog said his group planned to get “a little more aggressive” in pushing its policies in the Trump era, when it has clout and connections, including to evangelical Vice President Mike Pence.

“At a time when we have a Republican in the White House and Republicans control the House and Senate, we see CUFI as able to play a leading role in speaking to governing majorities that know they owe their election in large part to our base,” he said.

President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Senators on his Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. (AP/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Senators on his Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. (AP/Evan Vucci)

Brog described CUFI as “within the mainstream” and respectful of AIPAC’s history of bipartisanship. But he acknowledged that CUFI’s members tend to be “right of center” and “skeptical of the two-state solution.” The group, he said, would not necessarily sit out debates or avoid criticizing ideological opponents in an effort to keep them in the pro-Israel camp.

“We need to draw clear lines and be clear about where we stand,” he said. “That does not necessarily damage bipartisanship. Drawing clear lines may help define what it means to be pro-Israel.”

As Bloomberg’s Eli Lake pointed out, CUFI has not taken a position on the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which AIPAC officially supports, and has backed legislation to defund the Palestinian Authority, which AIPAC has not. CUFI has also thrown its weight behind Trump’s pro-settlement pick for ambassador to Israel, David Friedman.

Some Jewish observers have suggested that growing evangelical involvement in Israel advocacy could turn Israel into a right-wing Republican issue. Aside from concerns about the implications for Israel, they say, that could make it less attractive to more liberal Jews, who already are drifting away from the community and are increasingly critical of Israel’s policies.

“It’s like a brand. If Israel is associated with right wing and ‘reactionary’ forces, then it’s going to be a turnoff to younger American Jews,” Waxman said. “It may be superficial, but we’re talking about public perceptions.”

Brog, who is Jewish, argued Israel and its supporters could not afford to apply a “religious test” on the issue.

“I got involved in Christian advocacy because I can count,” he said. “If the pro-Israel community is limited to the Jewish community, it’s too small. The reason the American government is pro-Israel is because the American people are profoundly and overwhelmingly pro-Israel. But we can’t take that for granted.”

A senior official at a dovish Israel advocacy group said he thought American Jews and Israel would ultimately define their own relationship, regardless of who else was in the picture.

“I’d be foolish to say evangelical Christians don’t have an effect. But I don’t really care what they say,” said the official, who asked to remain anonymous. “At the end of the day, it’s a homeland for the Jewish people. So it’s how we choose to express our love for Israel that really matters.”

The Oath of the Knights of Columbus, Knights of Malta and Rhodes Scholars is based upon the Oath of the JesuitsS



“When a Jesuit of the minor rank is to be elevated to command, he is conducted into the Chapel of the Convent of the Order, where there are only three others present, the principal or Superior standing in front of the altar. On either side stands a monk, one of whom holds a banner of yellow and white, which are the Papal colors, and the other a black banner with a dagger and red cross above a skull and crossbones, with the word INRI, and below them the words IUSTUM, NECAR, REGES, IMPIOUS. The meaning of which is: It is just to exterminate or annihilate impious or heretical Kings, Governments, or Rulers. Upon the floor is a red cross at which the postulant or candidate kneels. The Superior hands him a small black crucifix, which he takes in his left hand and presses to his heart, and the Superior at the same time presents to him a dagger, which he grasps by the blade and holds the point against his heart, the Superior still holding it by the hilt, and thus addresses the postulant:”


“My son, heretofore you have been taught to act the dissembler: among Roman Catholics to be a Roman Catholic, and to be a spy even among your own brethren; to believe no man, to trust no man. Among the Reformers, to be a reformer; among the Huguenots, to be a Huguenot; among the Calvinists, to be a Calvinist; among other Protestants, generally to be a Protestant, and obtaining their confidence, to seek even to preach from their pulpits, and to denounce with all the vehemence in your nature our Holy Religion and the Pope; and even to descend so low as to become a Jew among Jews, that you might be enabled to gather together all information for the benefit of your Order as a faithful soldier of the Pope.”

“You have been taught to insidiously plant the seeds of jealousy and hatred between communities, provinces, states that were at peace, and incite them to deeds of blood, involving them in war with each other, and to create revolutions and civil wars in countries that were independent and prosperous, cultivating the arts and the sciences and enjoying the blessings of peace. To take sides with the combatants and to act secretly with your brother Jesuit, who might be engaged on the other side, but openly opposed to that with which you might be connected, only that the Church might be the gainer in the end, in the conditions fixed in the treaties for peace and that the end justifies the means.”

“You have been taught your duty as a spy, to gather all statistics, facts and information in your power from every source; to ingratiate yourself into the confidence of the family circle of Protestants and heretics of every class and character, as well as that of the merchant, the banker, the lawyer, among the schools and universities, in parliaments and legislatures, and the judiciaries and councils of state, and to be all things to all men, for the Pope’s sake, whose servants we are unto death.”

“You have received all your instructions heretofore as a novice, a neophyte, and have served as co-adjurer, confessor and priest, but you have not yet been invested with all that is necessary to command in the Army of Loyola in the service of the Pope. You must serve the proper time as the instrument and executioner as directed by your superiors; for none can command here who has not consecrated his labors with the blood of the heretic; for “without the shedding of blood no man can be saved.” Therefore, to fit yourself for your work and make your own salvation sure, you will, in addition to your former oath of obedience to your order and allegiance to the Pope, repeat after me:-”

(The following material contained in Congressional Record, House Bill 1523, Contested election case of Eugene C. Bonniwell, against Thos. S. Butler, February 15, 1913, pages 3215-3216. The oath appears in its entirety, in the book, THE SUPPRESSED TRUTH ABOUT THE ASSASSINATION OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, by Burke McCarty, pages 14-16).

The Extreme Oath of the Jesuits

“I, ……….., now, in the presence of Almighty God, the Blessed Virgin Mary, the blessed Michael the Archangel, the blessed St. John the Baptist, the holy Apostles St. Peter and St. Paul and all the saints and sacred hosts of heaven, and to you, my ghostly father, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, founded by St. Ignatius Loyola in the Pontificate of Paul the Third, and continued to the present, do by the womb of the virgin, the matrix of God, and the rod of Jesus Christ, declare and swear, that his holiness the Pope is Christ’s Vice-regent and is the true and only head of the Catholic or Universal Church throughout the earth; and that by virtue of the keys of binding and loosing, given to his Holiness by my Savior, Jesus Christ, he hath power to depose heretical kings, princes, states, commonwealths and governments, all being illegal without his sacred confirmation and that they may safely be destroyed.”

“Therefore, to the utmost of my power I shall and will defend this doctrine of his Holiness’ right and custom against all usurpers of the heretical or Protestant authority whatever, especially the Lutheran of Germany, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and the now pretended authority and churches of England and Scotland, and branches of the same now established in Ireland and on the Continent of America and elsewhere; and all adherents in regard that they be usurped and heretical, opposing the sacred Mother Church of Rome. I do now renounce and disown any allegiance as due to any heretical king, prince or state named Protestants or Liberals, or obedience to any of the laws, magistrates or officers.”

“I do further declare that the doctrine of the churches of England and Scotland, of the Calvinists, Huguenots and others of the name Protestants or Liberals to be damnable and they themselves damned who will not forsake the same.”

“I do further declare, that I will help, assist, and advise all or any of his Holiness’ agents in any place wherever I shall be, in Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, England, Ireland or America, or in any other Kingdom or territory I shall come to, and do my uttermost to extirpate the heretical Protestants or Liberals’ doctrines and to destroy all their pretended powers, legal or otherwise.”

“I do further promise and declare, that notwithstanding I am dispensed with, to assume my religion heretical, for the propaganda of the Mother Church’s interest, to keep secret and private all her agents’ counsels from time to time, as they may entrust me and not to divulge, directly or indirectly, by word, writing or circumstance whatever; but to execute all that shall be proposed, given in charge or discovered unto me, by you, my ghostly father, or any of this sacred covenant.”

“I do further promise and declare, that I will have no opinion or will of my own, or any mental reservation whatever, even as a corpse or cadaver (perinde ac cadaver), but will unhesitatingly obey each and every command that I may receive from my superiors in the Militia of the Pope and of Jesus Christ.”

“That I may go to any part of the world withersoever I may be sent, to the frozen regions of the North, the burning sands of the desert of Africa, or the jungles of India, to the centers of civilization of Europe, or to the wild haunts of the barbarous savages of America, without murmuring or repining, and will be submissive in all things whatsoever communicated to me.”

“I furthermore promise and declare that I will, when opportunity presents, make and wage relentless war, secretly or openly, against all heretics, Protestants and Liberals, as I am directed to do, to extirpate and exterminate them from the face of the whole earth; and that I will spare neither age, sex or condition; and that I will hang, waste, boil, flay, strangle and bury alive these infamous heretics, rip up the stomachs and wombs of their women and crush their infants’ heads against the walls, in order to annihilate forever their execrable race. That when the same cannot be done openly, I will secretly use the poisoned cup, the strangulating cord, the steel of the poniard or the leaden bullet, regardless of the honor, rank, dignity, or authority of the person or persons, whatever may be their condition in life, either public or private, as I at any time may be directed so to do by any agent of the Pope or Superior of the Brotherhood of the Holy Faith, of the Society of Jesus.”

“In confirmation of which, I hereby dedicate my life, my soul and all my corporal powers, and with this dagger which I now receive, I will subscribe my name written in my own blood, in testimony thereof; and should I prove false or weaken in my determination, may my brethren and fellow soldiers of the Militia of the Pope cut off my hands and my feet, and my throat from ear to ear, my belly opened and sulphur burned therein, with all the punishment that can be inflicted upon me on earth and my soul be tortured by demons in an eternal hell forever!”

“All of which, I, ………., do swear by the Blessed Trinity and blessed Sacraments, which I am now to receive, to perform and on my part to keep inviolable; and do call all the heavenly and glorious host of heaven to witness the blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist, and witness the same further with my name written and with the point of this dagger dipped in my own blood and sealed in the face of this holy covenant.”

(He receives the wafer from the Superior and writes his name with the point of his dagger dipped in his own blood taken from over his heart.)


“You will now rise to your feet and I will instruct you in the Catechism necessary to make yourself known to any member of the Society of Jesus belonging to this rank.”

“In the first place, you, as a Brother Jesuit, will with another mutually make the ordinary sign of the cross as any ordinary Roman Catholic would; then one cross his wrists, the palms of his hands open, and the other in answer crosses his feet, one above the other; the first points with forefinger of the right hand to the center of the palm of the left, the other with the forefinger of the left hand points to the center of the palm of the right; the first then with his right hand makes a circle around his head, touching it; the other then with the forefinger of his left hand touches the left side of his body just below his heart; the first then with his right hand draws it across the throat of the other, and the latter then with a dagger down the stomach and abdomen of the first. The first then says Iustum; and the other answers Necar; the first Reges. The other answers Impious.” (The meaning of which has already been explained.) “The first will then present a small piece of paper folded in a peculiar manner, four times, which the other will cut longitudinally and on opening the name Jesu will be found written upon the head and arms of a cross three times. You will then give and receive with him the following questions and answers:-”

Question:- From whither do you come?

Answer:- The Holy faith.

Q.:- Whom do you serve?

A.:- The Holy Father at Rome, the Pope, and the Roman Catholic Church Universal throughout the world.

Q.:- Who commands you?

A.:- The Successor of St. Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus or the Soldiers of Jesus Christ.

Q.:- Who received you?

A.:- A venerable man in white hair.

Q.:- How?

A.:- With a naked dagger, I kneeling upon the cross beneath the banners of the Pope and of our sacred order.

Q.:- Did you take an oath?

A.:- I did, to destroy heretics and their governments and rulers, and to spare neither age, sex nor condition. To be as a corpse without any opinion or will of my own, but to implicitly obey my Superiors in all things without hesitation of murmuring.

Q.:- Will you do that?

A.:- I will.

Q.:- How do you travel?

A.:- In the bark of Peter the fisherman.

Q.:- Whither do you travel?

A.:- To the four quarters of the globe.

Q.:- For what purpose?

A.:- To obey the orders of my general and Superiors and execute the will of the Pope and faithfully fulfill the conditions of my oaths.

Q.:- Go ye, then, into all the world and take possession of all lands in the name of the Pope. He who will not accept him as the Vicar of Jesus and his Vice-regent on earth, let him be accursed and exterminated.”

The Oath of the Knights of Columbus, Knights of Malta and Rhodes Scholars is based upon the Oath of the Jesuits

(This is an extract of the Congressional Record of the House of Representatives dated February 15, 1913, where the oath is entered as purported to be of the Knights of Columbus).


“I, …………, now in the presence of Almighty God, the blessed Virgin Mary, the blessed St. John the Baptist, the Holy Apostles, St. Peter and St. Paul, and all the saints, sacred host of heaven, and to you, my Ghostly Father, the superior general of the Society of Jesus rounded by St. Ignatius Loyola, in the pontification of Paul the III and continued to the present, do by the womb at the Virgin, the matrix of God, and the rod of Jesus Christ, declare and swear that His Holiness the Pope, is Christ’s vice regent and is the true and only head of the Catholic or Universal Church throughout the earth; and that by virtue of the keys of binding and loosing given His Holiness by my Savior, Jesus Christ, he hath power to depose heretical kings, princes, States, Commonwealths, and Governments and they may be safely destroyed. Therefore to the utmost of ray power I will defend this doctrine and His Holiness’s right and custom against all usurpers of the heretical or Protestant authority whatever, especially the Lutheran Church of Germany, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway and the now pretended authority and Churches of England and Scotland, and the branches of same now established in Ireland and on the Continent of America and elsewhere, and all adherents in regard that they may be usurped and heretical, opposing the sacred Mother Church of Rome.”

“I do now denounce and disown any allegiance as due to any heretical king, prince, or State, named Protestant or Liberals, or obedience to any of their laws, magistrates, or officers.”

“I do further declare that the doctrine of the Churches of England and Scotland, of the Calvinists, Huguenots, and others of the name of Protestants or Masons to be damnable, and they themselves to be damned who will not forsake the same.”

“I do further declare that I will help assist, and advise all or any of His Holiness’s agents, in any place where I should be, in Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Ireland, or America, or in any other kingdom or territory I shall come to and do my utmost to extirpate the heretical Protestant or Masonic doctrines and to destroy all their pretended powers, legal or otherwise.”

“I do further promise and declare that, notwithstanding I am dispensed with to assume any religion heretical for the propagation of the Mother Church’s interest to keep secret and private all her agents’ counsels from time to time, as they intrust me and not divulge, directly or indirectly, by word, writing, or circumstances whatever but to execute all that should be proposed, given in charge or discovered unto me by you my Ghostly Father, or any of this sacred order.”

“I do further promise and declare that I will have no opinion or will of my own or any mental reservation whatsoever, even as a corpse or cadaver (perinde ac cadaver), but will unhesitatingly obey each and every command that I may receive from my superiors in the militia of the Pope and of Jesus Christ.”

“That I will go to any part of the world whithersoever I may be sent, to the frozen regions north, jungles of India, to the centers of civilization of Europe, or to the wild haunts of the barbarous savages of America without murmuring or repining, and will be submissive in all things whatsoever is communicated to me.”

“I do further promise and declare that I will, when opportunity presents, make and wage relentless war, secretly and openly against all heretics, Protestants and Masons, as I am directed to do to extirpate them from the face of the whole earth; and that I will spare neither age, sex, or condition, and that will hang, bum, waste, boil, flay, strangle, and bury alive these infamous heretics; rip up the stomachs and wombs of their women, and crush their infants’ heads against the wails in order to annihilate their execrable race. That when the same can not be done openly, I will secretly use the poisonous cup, the strangulation cord, the steel of the poniard, or the leaden bullet, regardless of the honor, rank, dignity, or authority of the persons, whatever may be their condition in life, either public or private, as I at any time may be directed so to do by any agents of the Pope or superior of the Brotherhood of the Holy Father of the Society of Jesus.”

“In confirmation of which I hereby dedicate my life, soul, and all corporal powers, and with the dagger which I now receive I will subscribe my name written in my blood in testimony thereof; and should I prove false or weaken in my determination, may my brethren and fellow soldiers of the militia of the Pope cut off my hands and feet and my throat from ear to ear, my belly opened and sulphur burned therein with all the punishment that can be inflicted upon me on earth and my soul shall be tortured by demons in eternal hell forever.”

“That I will in voting always vote for K. of C, in preference to a Protestant, especially a Mason, and that I will leave my party so to do; that if two Catholics are on the ticket I will satisfy myself which is the better supporter of Mother Church and vote accordingly.”

“That I will not deal with or employ a Protestant if in my power to deal with or employ a Catholic. That I will place Catholic girls in Protestant families that a weekly report may be made of the inner movements of the heretics.”

“That I will provide myself with arms and ammunition that I may be in readiness when the word is passed, or I am commanded to defend the church either as an individual or with the militia of the Pope.”

“All of which I, …………, do swear by the blessed Trinity and blessed sacrament which I am now to receive to perform and on part to keep this, my oath.”

“In testimony hereof, I take this most holy and blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist and witness the same further with my name written with the point of this dagger dipped in my own blood and seal in the face of this holy sacrament.”

The Oath administered to the Illuminati is based upon the Oath of the Jesuits

Before the Oath is administered it is said —a sword is pointed at the breast:

“Shouldst thou become a traitor or perjurer, let this sword remind thee of each and all the members in arms against thee. Do not hope to find safety; whithersoever thou mayest fly, shame and remorse as well as the vengeance of thine unknown brothers will torture and pursue thee.”

Then in the Oath which follows he swears:

“. . . Eternal silence, and faithfulness and everlasting obedience to all superiors and regulations of the Order. I also renounce my own personal views and opinions as well as all control of my powers and capacities. I promise also to consider the well-being of the Order as my own, and I am ready, as long as I am a member, to serve it with my goods, my honour, and my life . . . If I act against the rules and well-being of the Society, I will submit myself to the penalties to which my superiors may condemn me . . .”

“In the name of the son crucified (i.e. the Pentagram, the illuminised man), swear to break the bonds which still bind you to your father, mother, brothers, sisters, wife, relatives, friends, mistresses, kings, chiefs, benefactors, and all persons to whomsoever you may have promised faith, obedience, and service. Name and curse the place where you were born, so that you may dwell in another sphere, to which you will attain only after having renounced this pestilential globe, vile refuse of the heavens! From this moment you are free from the so-called oath to country and laws: swear to reveal to the new chief, recognised by you, what you may have seen or done, intercepted, read or heard, learned or surmised, and also seek for and spy out what your eyes cannot discern. Honour and respect the Aqua Tofana (i.e. an imperceptably slow poison) as a sure, prompt, and necessary means of purging the globe by death of those who seek to vilify the truth and sieze it from our hands. Fly from Spain, Naples, and all accursed land; finally fly from the temptation to reveal what you may hear, for the thunder is no prompter that the knife, which awaits you in whatsoever place you may be. Live in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (The Trinity of Illuminism—Cabalistic and Gnostic. The Father—the generating fire; the Holy Spirit—the Great Mother Nature, reproducing all things; the Son—the manifestation, the vital fluid, the astral light of Illuminism).”

Unknown to the members of these various secret societies seeking “Illumination” and “deification,” their masters are the Cabalistic Jew, the originator of Gnostic mysticism. (Please see the text that follows).

Go to  Superiors General of the Society of Jesus
Go to  History of the Jesuits
Go to  Initial Membership List of the Knights of Malta

“The three forms of initiation—individual, group, or universal—all lead to conscious or unconscious control by a central power, who in some mysterious way makes its influence felt; often clairvoyantly and clairaudiently seen and heard, but never physically present or visible. the system in all three is the same—cabalistic. Secretly here and there individuals are prepared; these again form groups or centres from which influences spread until they form a network covering the entire world. Like rays from a hidden sun these groups are apparently divergent and detatched, but in reality all issue from the same central body. The system is seen to be an insidious and secret dissemination of ideas, orienting and breaking down all barriers of family, religion, morality, nationality, and all self-initiative thought, always under the cloak of a new and more modern religion, new thought, new morality, a new heaven and a new earth; until it evolves a gigantic robot merely answering to the will and commands of a secret Master Mind. They dream they are free, original, self-determining individuals; they are but the negative moon reflecting and reproducing the light from the same hidden and cabalistic Sun. It is called regeneration by the Illuminati; it is in truth individual death and disintegration, followed by a resurrection as negative “light-bearers” of this cabalistic dark Sun whose Luciferian “Grand Plan” is world domination.” (Anonymous, Light-bearers of Darkness, The Christian Book Club of America, p105).

The Jewish Encyclopaedia points out that Gnosticism “was Jewish in character long before it became Christian,” and quotes the opinion, “a movement closely connected with Jewish mysticism.” The Freemason Ragon says: “The Cabala is the key of the occult sciences. The Gnostics were born of the Cabalists.”

Rabbi Benamozegh says, “Those who will take the trouble to examine with care the connection between Judaism and philosophic Freemasonry, theosophy, and the mysteries in general . . . will cease to smile in pity at the suggestion that Cabalistic theology may have a role to play in the religious transformations of the future. . . . It contains the key to the modern religious problem” (Anonymous, Light-bearers of Darkness, The Christian Book Club of America, p11).

“Chaldean thought acted powerfully upon orthodox Judaism and determined the growth of a sect in its midst which was to transform Israel. . . . This sect was that of the Pharisees. . . . What they borrowed (from the Chaldeans) in fact . . . was the essence of the Pantheistic doctrine . . . It was then that was formed from these borrowings that Kabalah of the Pharisees which was for long transmitted orally from Master to disciple, and was, 800 years later, to inspire the compilation of the Talmud, and found its completest expression in the Sepher ha Zohar. . . . This religion of the ‘Deified Man,’ with which they were impregnated in Babylon, was only conceived as benefiting the Jew, superior and predestinated being. . . .” (M. Flavien Bernier, Les Juifs et le Talmud, 1913).

The Jewish writer Bernard Lazare said, “It is certain that there were Jews even at the cradle of Freemasonry—Cabalistic Jews, as it is proved by certain existing rites . . . The Jew is also a builder: proud, ambitious, domineering, he tries to draw everything to himself. He is not satisfied with de-Christianising, he Judaises; he destroys the Catholic or Protestant faith, he provokes indifference, but he imposes his idea of the world, of morals, and of life upon whose faith he ruins; he works at his age-old task—the annihilation of the religion of Christ!”

Mrs. Nesta Webster in Secret Societies and Subversive Movements, writes:

“The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion have been marvellously correct as prophecy, foreshadowing all of this in a remarkable way, whatever their first origin, before Maurice Joly used part of them in 1864.”

“Dr. Ranking, who has devoted many years of study to the question . . . in a very interesting paper published in the masonic journal, Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, observes: ‘That from the very commencement of Christianity there has been transmitted through the centuries a body of doctrine incompatible with Christianity in the various official Churches. That the bodies teaching these doctrines profess to do so on the authority of St. John, to whom, as they claimed, the true secrets had been committed by the Founder of Christianity, that during the Middle Ages, the main support of the Gnostic bodies and the main repository of this knowledge (Johannism) was the Society of the Templars.’ And he further said, ‘The record of the Templars in Palestine is one long tale of intrigue and treachery on the part of the Order’.”

In his History of Magic, Eliphas Levi informs us:

“The Templars had two doctrines: one was concealed and reserved to the leaders, being that of Johannism; the other was public, being Roman Catholic doctrine. . . The Johannism of the adepts was the Kabalah of the Gnostics, but it degenerated speedily into a mystic pantheism carried even to idolatry of Nature and hatred of all revealed dogma. . . They fostered the regrets of every fallen worship and the hopes of every new cultus, promising to all liberty of conscience and a new orthodoxy which should be the synthesis of all persecuted beliefs. They went even so far as to recognise the pantheistic symbolism of the grand masters of Black Magic . . . they rendered divine honours to the monstrous idol Baphomet.”

The mystic affiliations under the Pyramids of Egypt, the esoteric sect of Pythagoras, the astrologers or mathematicians of Rome in the time of Domitian, the House of Wisdom in Cairo, the Ismailis or Assassins, Companions of the Old Man of the Mountain, the Templars, the Rose-Croix (Rosicrucians), the Carbonari, the Jesuits, Freemasons, B’nai B’rith, Knights of Columbus, the Souffrants, the Chercheurs, Lodges of St. John, of Melchisedek, Royal Priests, Masters of the Wise, the Asiatic Brethren . . . all appear to form an uninterrupted chain of these superior affiliations . . . under the name of the Illuminati, under the Directing Power of the Invisibles—Earthly beings—Masters working on the Astral, whose self-appointed role was to be the arbiters and Masters of the World. jesuits.htm

Trump Vows to ‘Destroy’ Law Banning Political Endorsements by Churches

WASHINGTON — President Trump vowed on Thursday to overturn a law restricting political speech by tax-exempt churches, a potentially huge victory for the religious right and a gesture to evangelicals, a voting bloc he attracted to his campaign by promising to free up their pulpits.

Mr. Trump said his administration would “totally destroy” the Johnson Amendment, a 1954 law that prohibits churches from endorsing or opposing political candidates at the risk of losing their tax-exempt status.

“Freedom of religion is a sacred right, but it is also a right under threat all around us,” Mr. Trump told religious leaders at the National Prayer Breakfast. “That is why I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution.”

Repealing the law would require approval by Congress, which could prove challenging given that Democrats, and even some Republicans, would resist what many view as an erosion of the separation between church and state.

Still, Mr. Trump’s promise to repeal the law fulfills a campaign pledge — one that became a centerpiece of his effort to mollify the religious right, which was slow to warm to his insurgent candidacy. Eliminating the measure has been a goal of many social conservatives, who argue that it unfairly restricts clergy members from expressing themselves by endorsing, or speaking out against, political candidates.

Many see government persecution in limits on their official religious activities at work, and complain that the Internal Revenue Service — an agency that the right views with a special ire — singles out churches dominated by Christian conservatives.

It was one of several checklist items that religious conservative leaders told Mr. Trump were important to them. And they reacted to his announcement with delight.

“Americans don’t need a federal tax agency to be the speech police of churches or any other nonprofit groups, who have a constitutionally protected freedom to decide for themselves what they want to say or not say,” said Erik Stanley, senior counsel for the Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian legal defense group that has opposed the Johnson Amendment.

Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian group, called Mr. Trump’s pledge “outstanding — right on target.”

“Pastors should be held accountable to God alone for what they say behind the pulpit, not the I.R.S.,” he said.

Many clergy members, however, say they see no reason to lift the prohibition, because making political endorsements could divide their congregations. They say the law in effect shields them from pressure by advocacy groups and politically active congregants to make endorsements.

“It would usher our partisan divisions into the pews,” said Amanda Tyler, the executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, a group that advocates a strict separation of church and state.

Few Americans had even heard of the Johnson Amendment when Mr. Trump turned it into a rallying cry during the campaign. He told a crowd at the Iowa fairgrounds last August, “It denies your pastors their right to free speech, and has had a huge negative impact on religion.”

No one lobbied Mr. Trump to make the amendment an issue, said Johnnie Moore, a Christian publicist who serves on the president’s evangelical advisory board. He said Mr. Trump himself fixed on it in his first campaign meeting with the board members last June at Trump Tower.

Mr. Trump asked them why they did not have the courage to speak out more during elections. When the pastors informed him that they could lose their tax-exempt status, Mr. Trump declared the law unfair.

In meetings since then between Mr. Trump and pastors, whether in public or private, Mr. Moore said, Mr. Trump consistently says, “Everybody in this country has freedom of speech, except for you.”

Churches and clergy members are free to speak out on political and social issues — and many do — but the Johnson Amendment was intended to inhibit them from endorsing or opposing political candidates.

Separately, the Free Speech Fairness Act was introduced in the House and the Senate on Wednesday. The bill would modify the Johnson Amendment by allowing churches and other charities to engage in political expression.

However, most Americans, and even most clergy members, say they do not want churches and houses of worship to engage in partisan politics. Nearly 80 percent of Americans said it was inappropriate for pastors to endorse a candidate in church, and 75 percent said churches should not make endorsements, according to a survey released in September by LifeWay Research, an evangelical polling group based in Nashville.

Moreover, 87 percent of pastors said they should not make political endorsements from the pulpit, according to a LifeWay survey conducted in 2012 of pastors in evangelical and mainline Protestant churches. (Clergy members who were Republicans were slightly more in favor of endorsements than those who were Democrats or independents.)

Pastors and churches that endorsed candidates have seemed to have little to fear from the I.R.S. The overburdened agency has little capacity to investigate every report of a violation — and there have been many.

But only one church is known to have ever lost its tax-exempt status for partisan politicking, and that was in 1995, those on all sides said. It is impossible to know how many churches the I.R.S. has investigated. The agency does not make public when it investigates a church for violations, and an I.R.S. spokesman declined to answer questions related to the Johnson Amendment on Thursday.

For years, pastors have openly defied the law on “Pulpit Freedom Sunday,” organized by the Alliance Defending Freedom. Many participating pastors send their sermons to the I.R.S. afterward.

Watchdog groups like Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the Freedom From Religion Foundation have occasionally reported violators to the I.R.S. and have regularly sent warning letters to pastors before elections reminding them of the law.

In a freewheeling speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, the president defended his immigration policy, brushed aside concern about his harsh phone calls with foreign leaders and ridiculed Arnold Schwarzenegger for his poor ratings in replacing him as host of “The Celebrity Apprentice.”

He did not mention any potential executive order on religious freedom, which critics said would restrict the rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people; a draft has circulated, but administration officials have denied that it will be adopted.

Mr. Trump talked about the influence of faith in his life, referring to the family Bible, which was used when he took the oath of office. His mother, he said, read to him from that Bible during his childhood.

“America is a nation of believers,” he said. “The quality of our lives is not defined by our material success, but by our spiritual success.”

“I tell you that as someone who has had material success,” he added, before noting that many rich people are “very miserable, unhappy people.”

The breakfast with religious leaders featured the usual homilies and testimonials to the power of faith. But the proceedings took a show-business turn when Mark Burnett, the Hollywood producer, stepped to the podium to introduce the president.

Mr. Burnett recalled the influence Mr. Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal” had on him as a recently arrived immigrant from Britain. He later produced “The Apprentice” as a reality television vehicle for Mr. Trump.

The president opened his remarks with an extended reminiscence about the show, recalling that he fired an agent who had rejected Mr. Burnett’s pitch for the program. He also needled Mr. Schwarzenegger, the former governor of California, for failing to maintain his ratings. “We know how that turned out,” Mr. Trump said. “The ratings went down the tubes.”

“I want to just pray for Arnold, for those ratings,” he said.

Trump’s Right-Hand Man Steve Bannon Called for Christian Holy War: Now He’s on the National Security Council



Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump’s right-hand man, made what was essentially a call for a Christian holy war in a speech in a international conference only a few years ago.

Bannon, chief strategist and senior counselor to Trump, is notorious for his extreme right-wing views. He previously served as the CEO for the far-right president’s campaign, and now sits on the National Security Council.

In remarks to a 2014 conference at the Vatican, Bannon warned his Christian audience, “We’re at the very beginning stages of a very brutal and bloody conflict.”

“We are in an outright war against jihadists, Islam, Islamic fascism,” Bannon continued. He likewise condemned “the immense secularization of the West” and the increasing secularism among millennials.

Bannon stressed that “the people in this room, and the people in the Church” must “bind together and really form what I feel is an aspect of the Church militant, to really be able to not just stand with our beliefs but to fight for our beliefs against this new barbarity that’s starting that will literally eradicate everything that we’ve been bequeathed over the last 2,000 and 2,500 years.”

In his speech, Bannon articulated a view of the world as a constant conflict between the capitalist “Judeo-Christian West,” which is a benevolent force of “enlightenment,” and the malevolent forces of socialism, atheism, and Islam.

Trump’s chief strategist, who will now play a crucial role in crafting U.S. foreign policy and sit in on meetings of the National Security Council Principals Committee, has been described even by hard-line conservatives as an extremist.

Ultra-right-wing pundit Glenn Beck compared Bannon to the Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels, a close ally of Adolf Hitler, and said the Trump campaign was “grooming Brownshirts,” in reference to Nazi paramilitaries. According to Beck, Bannon is “quite possibly the most dangerous guy in all of American politics.”

Republican strategist John Weaver, who worked on Republican John Kasich’s 2016 presidential campaign, likewise warned that, with Bannon as Trump’s chief strategist, “The racist, fascist extreme right is represented footsteps from the Oval Office.” (The Ku Klux Klan and American Nazi Party praised Trump for appointing Bannon to his top positions.)

Bannon made these holy war remarks in a speech—which has previously been reported on by BuzzFeed—at the 2014 International Conference on Human Dignity, the third annual meeting organized by the Rome-based Christian organization Dignitatis Humanae Institute.

The Dignitatis Humanae Institute is a religious group that advocates for “the active participation of the Christian faith in the public square.” It promotes what it calls “authentic human dignity” by, in its words, “supporting Christians in public life, assisting them in presenting effective and coherent responses to increasing efforts to silence the Christian voice in the public square.”

A glowing endorsement from Bannon is conspicuously featured at the top of the Dignitatis Humanae Institute’s website, in which President Trump’s right-hand man calls the group’s founder Benjamin Harnwell “the smartest guy in Rome” and “a very tough guy.”

The religious organization uploaded footage of Bannon’s speech at its 2014 conference to YouTube. The video had only a few thousand views at the time of the publication of this article.

When he made his remarks, Bannon served as chairman of the far-right media company Breitbart, which is infamous for publishing racist and sexist material. Bannon has identified Breitbart as “the platform for the alt-right,” a popular euphemism for the growing white supremacist, neo-fascist movement in the U.S. and Europe.

In a guide Breitbart published on the alt-right, it noted that the movement was founded by neo-fascist leader Richard Spencer, who declared “Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail victory!” at a white supremacist conference in November, referencing the Nazi slogan “Sieg heil.”

Bannon kicked off his 2014 speech warning that “the world, and particularly the Judeo-Christian West, is in a crisis.”

“It is really the organizing principle of how we built Breitbart News to really be a platform to bring news and information to people throughout the world—principally in the West, but we’re expanding internationally—to let people understand the depths of this crisis,” he explained.

Bannon noted that, exactly 100 years before his speech, Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo, in a shot heard round the world that prefaced World War I. This war heralded in the bloodiest century of human history.

The 20th century, Bannon argued, constituted a kind of second Dark Age. He described its conflict as “the Judeo-Christian West versus atheism.”

“But the thing that got us out of that… was just not the heroism of our people,” Bannon continued. “The underlying principle was an enlightened form of capitalism,” he explained. “That capitalism really generated tremendous wealth.”

Bannon stressed that the absolute basis of this civilization is capitalism. “I’m a very practical, pragmatic capitalist. I was trained at Goldman Sachs; I went to Harvard Business School. I’m as hard-nosed a capitalist as you can get,” he explained.

Yet Bannon criticized the libertarianism of figures like Ayn Rand, however, for “taking away from the underlying spiritual, moral foundations of Christianity and really Judeo-Christian belief.” He added, “That form of capitalism is quite different, when you really look at it, to what I call the enlightened capitalism of the Judeo-Christian West.”

In the early years of the 21st century, nevertheless, Bannon argued, “I believe that we’ve come horribly off track.” He went on, claiming the time marked “the very beginning stages of a very brutal and bloody conflict.”

Bannon spoke of the increasing secularism among young people in the West as a dangerous problem. “The overwhelming drive of popular culture is to absolutely secularize this rising generation,” he lamented.

The Breitbart head also alarmed his Christian audience about the wave of extremist Islamism. “We’re now I believe at the beginning stages of a global war against Islamic fascism,” he said. “And this war is I think metastasizing far quicker than governments can handle it.”

Bannon discussed the heinous atrocities committed by the violent extremist group ISIS, which has received support from close Western allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

“We are at the very beginning stages of a global conflict,” he continued. “If we do not bind together as partners, with others in other countries,” Bannon added, then “this conflict is only going to metastasize.”

Ben Norton is a reporter for AlterNet’s Grayzone Project. You can follow him on Twitter at @BenjaminNorton.

Pope calls for Holocaust remembrance to prevent repeat

Pope Francis visiting Auschwitz. (Screenshot from YouTube)

ROME (JTA) – Pope Francis said it is important to remember the Holocaust so that it never happens again.

The pope met on Friday, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, with a delegation from the European Jewish Congress. The Secretary of the Pontifical Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, Fr. Norbert Hofmann, who also attended the meeting, told Vatican Radio that the pontiff had stressed the need for Christians to recall the Shoah.

The Pope, he said, “began the dialogue by mentioning the importance of this Day for the Jews, but also for us, because remembering the victims of the Holocaust is important so that this human tragedy never happens again.”

On his official Twitter feed, @pontifex, the pope also on Friday recalled the Shoah, tweeting “Today I want to remember in my heart all the victims of the Holocaust. May their sufferings and their tears never be forgotten.”  The tweet did not mention Jews.


Today I want to remember in my heart all the victims of the Holocaust. May their sufferings and their tears never be forgotten.


At the same time, the Vatican’s permanent representative to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, or OSCE, Msgr Janusz Urbanczyk, told an OSCE Permanent Council meeting Friday that “the Holocaust teaches us that utmost vigilance is always needed to be able to take prompt action in defense of human dignity and peace.”

January 27, the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz in 1945, is observed as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The pope visited and prayed in silence at the former Nazi death camp, which is now a memorial museum, during a trip to Poland last summer.


President Donald Trump on Friday signed an executive order that will limit immigration and refugees from some Muslim-majority countries and he separately said he wanted the United States to give priority to Syrian Christians fleeing the civil war there.

Trump had promised the measures, called “extreme vetting,” during last year’s election campaign, saying they would prevent militants from entering the United States from abroad. But civil rights groups have condemned the order as harmful and discriminatory.

The details of the order were not immediately available but were expected to be released by the White House on Friday night.

Republican Representative Michael McCaul, the House Homeland Security Committee chairman, said on CNN that Trump’s order would include a 30-day suspension of visa applications from seven countries designated as “high-threat areas” and a suspension of the refugee program.

“I’m establishing new vetting measures to keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the United States of America. Don’t want them here,” Trump said at the Pentagon.

“We only want to admit those into our country who will support our country and love deeply our people,” he said.

The move was immediately condemned by Democrats, civil rights groups and aid groups such as Oxfam and others, even before full details emerged.

“‘Extreme vetting’ is just a euphemism for discriminating against Muslims,” American Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Anthony Romero said in a statement.

“Identifying specific countries with Muslim majorities and carving out exceptions for minority religions flies in the face of the constitutional principle that bans the government from either favoring or discriminating against particular religions,” Romero said.

Separately, Trump said that Syrian Christians will be given priority when it comes to applying for refugee status, a policy that would likely be challenged on similar grounds.

“If you were a Muslim you could come in, but if you were a Christian, it was almost impossible and the reason that was so unfair, everybody was persecuted in all fairness, but they were chopping off the heads of everybody but more so the Christians,” Trump said in an excerpt of an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, discussing the Syrian refugees.

Statistics provided by the Pew Research Center last October do not support Trump’s argument. Pew research found that 38,901 Muslim refugees entered the United States in fiscal year 2016 from all countries, almost the same number, 37,521, as Christian refugees.

Stephen Legomsky, a former Chief Counsel at US Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Obama administration, said prioritizing Christians could be unconstitutional.

“If they are thinking about an exception for Christians, in almost any other legal context discriminating in favor of one religion and against another religion could violate the constitution,” he said.

But Peter Spiro, a professor at Temple University Beasley School of Law, said Trump’s move would likely be constitutional because the president and Congress are allowed considerable deference when it comes to asylum decisions.

“It’s a completely plausible prioritization, to the extent this group is actually being persecuted,” Spiro said.

Senior Russian lawmaker: Jews still seeking to destroy our churches

(JTA) — The deputy speaker of the Russian parliament intimated that Jews are using their positions in the media and government to continue the work of ancestors who “pulled down our churches.”

Peter Tolstoy at a news conference Tuesday on plans to move a cathedral in St. Petersburg appeared to blame Jews for anti-religious persecution under communism. He referred to the descendants of people who on 1917 “jumped out of the Pale of Settlement” in the churches statement.

The Pale of Settlement was an area of western Imperial Russia beyond which most Jews were not allowed to settle. This changed after the 1917 Bolshevik revolution, in which Russia became a communist country until 1991.

The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia, one of the largest Jewish groups in the country, deemed Tolstoy’s statements anti-Semitic.

“Such statements usually come from irresponsible instigators of anti-Semitic campaigns,” Alexander Boroda, a Chabad rabbi and president of the federation, told Interfax Tuesday. “When we hear this from the mouth of the State Duma vice speaker at an official press conference, this is a direct undermining of interethnic coexistence in the country, and it stirs up tension.”

Boroda added that he expects officials “will address” the statement by Tolstoy.

Separately, a district court in the city of Yekaterinburg last week sentenced a taxi driver to 350 hours of community service after convicting him of incitement to hatred against Jews online. The defendant, Artemyu Podkorytov, set up pages on the Russian-language equivalent of Facebook in which he inveighed against “Jewish domination” of Russia and the world.

Across the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, many hold Jews responsible for communist oppression, even though the Jewish minority of these countries was among the groups most heavily targeted by communist regimes.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in 2013 that at least 80 percent of the members of the first Soviet government were Jewish.

Putin, who is often accused of limiting civil liberties and violating human rights, is widely credited with cracking down on anti-Semitism and facilitating unprecedented growth among Russian Jewish communities.

Philippines President Says Catholic Church Is “Full Of Shit”

Philippines President Says Catholic Church Is

The Philippines President issued a scathing attack on the Catholic Church, calling it corrupt, “full of sh*t” and accusing priests of sexual abuse.

Rodrigo Duterte said on Tuesday that he had been abused by a priest when he was a student of Ateneo de Davao University and also said three Cabinet secretaries had been molested.

RT reports:

Speaking to the families of Special Action Forces who died in Mamasapano in 2015, Duterte advised the crowd to read “Altar of Secrets” by Aries Rufo to discover the truth about church officials, saying he would resign if its allegations were untrue. He added he might pen his own book about the Church, entitled “Hypocrisy.”

“I challenge the Catholic Church,” he said. “You are full of sh*t. You all smell bad, corruption and all.”

He accused the Church of corruption, and slammed it for previously asking the government for a Pajero car. “Shouldn’t you be ashamed of yourselves?” he said. “That’s so expensive and so many people have nothing to eat.”

“Son of a b*tch, the jerks accepted it,” he added.

It wasn’t all hate, however, Duterte pointed out that he and the Church have something in common: womanizing. He told the audience that Bishop Teodoro Bacani had two wives, like him.

Was Jesus a Roman Hoax to Trick the Jews?

Joe Atwill purports to have discovered proof that Jesus of Nazareth was merely a fabrication of first-century Romans, who created his gospels as a way to quell the messianic fervor of the Jews.

Joe Atwill has pissed off a lot of Christians and historians, which is understandable considering that he’s making claims that undermine the foundation of the former’s beliefs and the latter’s widely accepted truths. Joe purports to have discovered proof that Jesus of Nazareth, the man we read about in history books and in the New Testament, was merely a fabrication of first-century Romans, who created his gospels as a way to quell the messianic fervor of the Jews. Joe, who authored and self-published Caesar’s Messiah: The Roman Conspiracy to Invent Jesus back in 2006, claims to have research material that he believes will make even his most ardent critics accept the theory that Jesus was a tool of psychological warfare to get the Jews to stop causing trouble and love their Roman overlords.

Personally, I don’t have much skin in the game as to whether or not Jesus was in fact a dude with super powers, or even a dude at all. I blame organized religion for most of the awful things humans do to each other and the only time I go to church is on Christmas and Mother’s Day—strictly out of respect for my momma. So, I’m pretty open to any critiques off the fantastical aspects of Christianity. However, despite being a proud heathen, I think the claims made by Joe about a Roman hoax being at the center of Christianity sound as ridiculous as the claims that the US government flew planes into the World Trade Center on 9/11. It’s not that I don’t think the Romans or the US government wouldn’t do such things, I just don’t think they could pull them off without everyone knowing about it.

Joe has stirred up intrigue around the web for years because of his outlandish findings and canny press releases, and he organized a big, one-day symposium in London to unveil his new research. So I figured this would be as good a time as any to figure out whether he’s a total nut job or a visionary who’s cracked a code that has eluded scholars and historians for centuries. Here’s what he had to say.

VICE: Can you tell me about yourself and what credentials you have to make theories that challenge the pervasive beliefs held by prominent religious scholars?
Joe Atwill: I’m an independent scholar. I have no academic training in what would be considered traditional Bible scholarship.

OK. How’d you start studying the origins of Jesus?
I attended a Jesuit military academy as a kid that studied the gospels. Although I drifted away from the church, later on in life, I retained an interest in the character Jesus Christ.

What intrigued you about Jesus?
Jesus had a more pacifistic and cosmopolitan view of things than the messianic movement of his day, which was very xenophobic. The Jewish perspective of the time was that it wanted the Romans out to have a religious state.

How do you know this?
To get an informed perspective on the gospels you have to read a guy called Flavius Josephus. He lived in Judea, wrote a history of the time and place when Jesus supposedly lived, and documented the war between the Romans and the Jews. If you read his work, you will notice there are parallels between the events in the war and events in Jesus’s ministry that occur in the same sequence.

I have no idea what you are talking about. But give me some examples, please.
For example, Jesus says to his followers, “Follow me and you’ll fish for men.” In the war, a Roman general says to his troops “Don’t be afraid. Follow me” and then he sends them out into the Sea of Galilee where they sink the Jewish fishing boats. The Jews try to swim to safety and then the Romans “fished them” with spears, according to Flavius’s account.

So what does stuff like that mean to you?
Flavius was the basis for Jesus’s ministry. Jesus had the political perspective the Romans were hoping the Jews would adopt.

Why would the Romans care about indoctrinating the Jews into a new political perspective?
The Romans were always fighting with the Jews over who could be called God. The war between the Romans and the Jews is really a war to be divine because the caesars wanted to be worshipped as gods and the Jews refused. So, they created a character, Jesus Christ, to embody what they wanted in a messiah for the Jews.

Sounds like a leap. Is this Roman plot written somewhere explicitly in some ancient text?
What you have is called prefigurement. The Jesus character in the gospels has all of these events in his life that come from the Old Testament. The story of Jesus describes Joseph going to Egypt, the pharaoh massacring the boys, then he returns from Egypt, gets baptized, and goes to the wilderness for 40 days and has his three temptations. In the Old Testament, in Genesis, Joseph goes to Egypt, the pharaoh massacres the boys, then he returns from Egypt to Israel, where there’s a baptism. Then he goes into the wilderness for 40 years. When you see the pattern, it is all fiction.

OK. I get what you’re saying. But you are talking about more than Jesus’s superpowers being part of a fable or whatever. You are saying Jesus was created as a plot by the Romans. Is there any text that explicitly corroborates that?
Yeah. It’s in the “Cannibal Mary,” a famous passage in Josephus. It contains an allegory about Jesus Christ. To understand it you have to go through some analysis. I mean, I can’t sit here and show you how it is an allegory. But, I can assure you it, it would just take quite a bit of time.

Try me.
According to the New Testament, Jesus is the human Passover lamb. And in the passage of Cannibal Mary, they say that the human Passover lamb is a myth for the world whose killing is going to be seen as an atrocity by gentiles and that will create bitter hatred against the Jews. It’s a clear-cut description of the invention and intent of Christianity, which was a curse the Romans put on the Jews for their constant rebellion. It’s a confession, really.

OK, how would the Romans go about indoctrinating the Jews in this fake religion? Pulling off a ruse like this seems kind of far-fetched.
The authors would have been the Jewish intellectuals and the Roman caesars. The Romans had the top Jewish intellectuals in the world on their payroll. All the disciples’ accounts are fake and all the names are fake.

Seems like the plan backfired—there are plenty of Jews around today. And if this was the plan, how come Christians are worshiping a Jew and not Titus Flavius today?
Well, actually they are. Pope is another title for caesar. The Vatican is located where the caesars had their palace. The important thing is that you have to have some sort of explanation for who the son of man is. Some people say it’s Jesus, and he’s talking about himself, but the problem is he doesn’t come back after the war when he makes these pronouncements. There would have been some record it, so the only candidate for this comeback after the war is the Roman caesar. At the end of the war Titus Flavius tried to get the Jews to call him God. At that time, Titus was known as the “son of God.” That title was written on his sacred arch in Rome. What they wanted the Jews to think is that the son of man guy that Jesus was predicting was actually a caesar. It just never caught on.

Are you saying that Jesus, a man who most scholars agree walked the Earth, didn’t exist at all?
Jesus is a fictional character. If some guy had a duck living next door to him whose name was Donald and then he invented the character Donald Duck? Is that guy a historian? Well, not when he says the duck is talking. There are all sorts of individuals who could have been a Jesus Christ. But the actual historicity of the Christ, whoever he was, wasn’t a passive cosmopolitan guy. He was a kick ass Jewish messiah warrior who wanted to drive the Romans out. The guy we read about however, is a prefigurement—a fictional character. And despite popular belief, the “son of man” who was predicted is Roman Caesar Titus Flavius.

Why do you think this sort of perspective on the gospels hasn’t been something that has been voiced over the years?
That’s a question for a psychologist. The parallels I pointed out are well established by scholars, they just haven’t noticed that they occurred in the same sequence. That’s the key to it. Sequence is the most important thing. You noticed this exact perfect pattern just gets bigger and bigger and bigger and you notice that Jesus’s whole ministry comes from the war. You don’t need to be a Bible scholar; you just need your common sense to figure this out.

OK. Thanks.


Less confused interviews by Wilbert L. Cooper: