In his new year message, pope Francis controversially called for us all to adopt non-violence in our dealings with others. Very nice that would be, but he’s got an uphill task in front of him. The governments of western ‘Christian’ countries have killed between 50 million and 55 million people around the world since the end of World war 2 in 1945. (i)
Over the last few centuries the churches’ own armies have butchered millions too. (ii)
The schism that Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation produced plunged Europe into a state of almost continuous warfare. From 1524 to 1648, there was the German Peasants’ War, the Schmalkaldic War, the Eighty Years War, the Thirty Years War, the French Wars of Religion, the Irish Confederate Wars, the Scottish Civil War, and the English Civil War, many of them raging simultaneously. This is not to neglect the Spanish Inquisition, which began in 1480, or the War of the Holy League from 1508 to 1516. The Thirty Years War alone killed one third of Germany’s population.
As far as I recall from my school history days, they were killing each other over the issue of Transubstantiation versus Consubstantiation – look it up.
No church leader, protestant or catholic, has ever apologised for this slaughter.
It seems the pope based a lot of his speech on the case for Christian pacifism made by John Dear (iii) someone quoted at length by Zingcreed in the past (see the index). Interesting, as Dear was expelled from the Jesuits for his views. The pope is a Jesuit. The crows , hyenas and vultures within the Vatican are licking their lips waiting for the downfall of Pope ‘Francis’ Bergoglio. The rest of us, whether RC or not, should support this brave man.
(i) Noam Chomsky and Andre Vltchek ‘On Western Terrorism’ Pluto Press (2017)
(ii) Nate Silver ‘The signal and the noise’ Penguin (2012)
(iii) John Dear ‘Put down your sword. Answering the gospel call to creative non-violence’ Eerdmans (2008)