The Wisdom Of The Popes

Pope Stephen V (885-891): The popes, like Jesus, are conceived by their mothers through the overshadowing of the Holy Ghost. All popes are a certain species of man-god? All powers in heaven, as well as on earth, are given them.

Pope Paul V (1605-1621): The doctrine of the double motion of the earth about its axis and about the sun is false, and contrary to holy scripture.

Pope Gregory XVI (1831-1846): From the polluted fountain of indifferentism flows that absurd and erroneous doctrine, or rather, raving, which claims and defends liberty of conscience for everyone. From this comes, in a word, the worst plague of all, namely, unrestrained liberty of opinion and freedom of speech? It is in no way lawful to demand, to defend, or to grant unconditional freedom of thought, or speech, of writing, or of religion, as if they were so many rights that nature has given man.

Pope Pius XI (1922-1939): Benito Mussolini is a gift of Providence, a man free from the prejudices of the politicians of the liberal school.
- John Dollison, Pope-Pourri

The Catholics have a Pope. The Protestants laugh at them, and yet the Pope is capable of intellectual advancement. In addition to this, the Pope is mortal, and the church cannot be afflicted with the same idiot forever. The Protestants have a book for their Pope. The book cannot advance. Year after year, and century after century, the book remains as ignorant as ever.
- Robert Ingersoll

If the Pope is infallible, how do you explain his choice of hats?
- Tim OʼBrien

The Popeʼs pointy white hat is nothing more than a designer dunce cap.
- Skip Church

Excerpts From “The Lost Encyclical Against Penicillin” (A Parody)

Beloved children, I [the Pope] write to you today to offer you loving guidance against the unnatural use of antibiotics. God created bacteria and viruses for the purpose of infecting organisms sometimes seriously, sometimes less seriously - and we must never presume to interfere with the right order of Godʼs creation. Just as all forms of birth control go against the natural purpose of conjugal relations - namely, procreation - so the use of all forms of man-made antibiotics interfere with the God-given design of bacteria and viruses and how He intends them to interact with the human body. Each and every bacteria-body interaction must remain open to the transmission of bacteria. It is immoral to impede development of a natural process. That is why we have so exhaustively spoken out against artificial birth control and now antibiotics. We cannot impede a process that God has created. No impeding, no impeding! God created syphilis to infect sexually immoral people, and cause them suffering and eventual death. In no way should a man-made antibiotic interfere with this God-given process. Also, the fear of syphilis is a natural encouragement toward marital fidelity, which could not otherwise hold its own in a free market.
- Christopher Durang, Free Inquiry, Spring 1996

My Mom and Dad were Catholics and used the rhythm method of birth control. At the end of eight years they had their own rhythm section.
- Steve Wolski

If God is Catholic how come he only had one child?
- Source unknown

Mother Teresa used to say, “God always provides. He provides for the flowers and the birds, for everything in the world that he has created. And those little children are his life. There can never be enough.” On the other hand, scientists who study birds have found that one-third of adult birds and four-fifths of their offspring die of starvation every year. (David Lack, “Of Birds and Men,” New Scientist, Jan., 1996).
- Frank Miele, “Mother Not So Superior?” The Skeptic, Vol. 4, No. 2, 1996

The Wisdom Of Mother Teresa (And Skip Church)

Mother Teresa On Aids: It is the retribution for “improper sexual misconduct.”

(Then what were the Black death, smallpox, influenza, measles, mumps, polio, and TB “retribution for?” - Skip)

Mother Teresa On Poverty: It is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot. The world is much helped by the suffering of poor people.

(And the more poor people who “accept” their suffering, the more rich people there will be who manipulate them to their own greedy ends. The rich complain that the poor want something for nothing. But the rich often stop at nothing to get everything. - Skip)

Mother Teresa On the Intense Pains of a Man with Cancer: You are suffering like Christ. Therefore Jesus must be kissing you.

(Mother Teresa, who happens to be against the use of anesthetics, told this story herself, during a taped interview, and even told the interviewer the suffering manʼs reply to her. After she said, “Jesus must be kissing you,” the man replied, “Then I wish heʼd stop.” - Skip)

Mother Teresa On Overpopulation: There is no problem of overpopulation, only of Godʼs will.

(So if you live in a developing country whose population growth is outpacing its food production and economic growth, then you ought to throw away those rubbers and birth control pills, and get down on your knees and embrace starvation and poverty, because according to Mother T. thatʼs “Godʼs will.” - Skip)

- Mother Teresaʼs statements are drawn from The Missionary Position by Christopher Hitchens

Now thereʼs the Vatican Bank, and all that money-laundering, and the Mafia. Jesus overturned all the tables in the temple, and now they have the Vatican Bank.
- Eddie Izzard, Dress to Kill (the book)

Millions of dollars are spent on each Vatican road show, money that could help the poor, who are rapidly inheriting the earth.
- Kate Clinton, Donʼt Get Me Started

Some 400 U.S. Catholic priests have been charged with child molestation in the past decade, and the church has paid an estimated $400 million in damages and costs. One priest, James Porter, is accused of abusing perhaps 100 victims in three states - including a boy with a full body cast who couldnʼt move to resist.
- James A. Haught, “The Moralizers: Crooks, Quacks, Kook, Creeps, and Cruds in the Clergy,” The Humanist

Pope Finally Apologizes After Two Thousand Years Of Catholic Atrocities

The Catholic Church is the single largest Christian denomination in the world today, larger even than the membership of all Protestant denominations combined. Not surprising considering the Catholic Churchʼs two millennia of political power brokering, heresy snuffing, book banning, Jew hating, witch burning, female subjugating, gay-bashing, war mongering, slavery-promoting (well, 1800 years of slavery-promoting), wealth stealing, genocidal vigor.

But the real topper came in March of the year 2000 when Pope John Paul II asked for the descendants of the multitudes who were hurt, enslaved, stolen from, and killed by Catholics to please forgive the one true church of Christ, the Catholic Church. How "big" of the Pope to repent for every Catholic atrocity in history, especially after two thousand years of stepping on peopleʼs toes has helped produce the biggest church the world has ever seen.

If only one of the earlier Popes had repented and tried to set things right sooner. Like in the fourth century when the first Christian to become a Roman Emperor was persuaded by Catholic bishops to issue a decree outlawing all rival Christian sects (“the Novatians, Valentinians, Marcionites, Paulians, Montanists,” etc.), and decree that they were “in league with the devil,” and “commanded all their houses of prayer be made over to the Catholic Church; that no facility whatever be left for any future gathering,” and had over 3000 Christians executed because their interpretation of the Bible did not agree with the Catholic one. Yup, that might have been a good time to begin apologizing.

Comedian Emo Philips provides the most apt analogy to the Popeʼs “forgive us,” speech. Emo once said, “When I was a kid, I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I realized that the Lord, in his wisdom, didnʼt work that way. So I just stole one and asked him to forgive me.”
- Skip Church

Popeʼs Mea Culpa - A PR Stunt

Exactly two years have passed today since Pope John Paul II launched his great apology drive for the past “errors” of the Roman Catholic church. One more reconfirmation of the new course took place last Sunday, when he celebrated public penitence in St. Peterʼs Basilica. Meeting with harsh criticism since the beginning, the papal apology has meantime developed somewhat more precise outlines. “We ask forgiveness for divisions between Christians,” the Pope said, “for the use of violence in the name of truth, and for the diffidence and hostility against followers of other religions.” According to a document by the Vaticanʼs international theological commission, the historical sins are classified into seven categories, including divisions within Christianity, proselytizing by force, the inquisition, anti-Jewish prejudices, sins against minorities, women and human rights.

The Popeʼs Mea Culpa successfully avoids too close contact with the historical truth and has to be taken as a mere PR stunt. Nothing was for example heard again of the conference, scheduled for last October and proudly announced by the historical-theological commission of the Vatican, for which allegedly 50 renowned historians had been invited to scrutinize the bloody work of the Inquisition in Spain. But the Popeʼs project to square accounts with history before the new millennium dawns is not just superficial, it is pure hypocrisy. While crocodile tears are shed about the victims of the Holocaust, John Paul does not hesitate to beatify his predecessor Pius XII who collaborated with German, Italian and Croatian fascists during the second world war and rescued them after their defeat.

But the Vaticanʼs soft spot for mass murderers does not end there. The recent case of Father Athanase Seroma, shows how little the papal Mea Culpa is worth. Father Athanase Seroma played a leading role in the 1994 genocide that devastated Rwanda and is currently hiding under the name Don Anastasio Sumba Bura in northern Italy. According to many eyewitnesses, he organized the Nyange genocide in which between 2000 and 2500 Tutsi refugees were killed from April to July 1994. The African Human Rights group which produced a 22-page report about the events in Nyange in which Father Seromba, among other priests, had been involved, found that several of them are now living in Italy. The African Human Rights group asked the Pope more than half a year ago to launch an inquiry into the matter, but never received a reply. Maybe, decades later, a new pope may appear with a new apology!
- Sanal Edamaruku, ed., Rationalist International, Bulletin #33, March 16, 2000

Aztec Extremists Cut Out Visiting Popeʼs Heart (Satire)

Mexico City - Exacting retribution for Catholic explorer Hernando Cortezʼs destruction of their civilization, Aztec extremists cut out visiting Pope John Paul IIʼs heart in a ritual ceremony Monday. “For nearly 500 years, we have been brutally oppressed by the Catholics, enduring slavery, inquisition, rape, disease, forced conversions and random terror,” said Aztec high priest Xalpatlahuac, holding aloft the still-beating heart of the pope, who was making his fourth trip to Mexico since ascending to the papacy in 1979. “In the name of all those who have died, I sacrifice this heart to the sun god Huitzilopochtli.” The 78-year-old Polish pontiff was riding through the streets of downtown Mexico City in his popemobile when the extremists seized him and carried him off to a nearby Aztec pyramid. He was then pinned down by four priests, and, after a brief struggle, his chest was carved open with a sacrificial obsidian knife. The Catholic Church has not responded to the extremistsʼ demand that $14 billion in plundered Aztec gold be returned.
- The Onion, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Jan. 27, 1999)


People who do not live in Rome
but pretend to
are called Roman Catholics.

And they have a great many fathers
who dress like ladies
and do not have children.

This is so that ladies who have children
without a father
can call them God.
- Edwin Brock, Paroxisms: A Guide to the Isms

The trinitarian believes a virgin to be the mother of a son who is her maker.
- Francis Bacon

The Vatican came out with a new rule. No surrogate mothers. Good thing they didnʼt make this rule before Jesus was born.
- Elayne Boosler

The Vatican recently admitted that Catholic churches in Third world countries are failing to inspire their parishioners to practice only Vatican approved methods of birth control. Isnʼt it about time the Vatican threw in the towel, or “the sponge” on this one? In fact, I think itʼs time for the Catholic Church to start selling condoms in the shape of the Popeʼs mitered hat with cross-shaped ribs running down the sides (for her pleasure, and an added “heavenly” dispensation).
- Skip Church

I would welcome from the Pope some appreciation for the goodness of sexual pleasure - any bodily pleasure, come to think of it. - Luke Timothy Johnson, “A Disembodied ‘Theology of the Body’: John Paul II on Love, Sex & Pleasure,” Commonweal, Jan. 26, 2001

The fact that women who endured twelve to sixteen years of Catholic schools are not all virgins or prostitutes is a miracle.
- Martha Manning, Chasing Grace: Reflections of a Catholic Girl, Grown Up

Catholics used to have this place called Limbo, for little babies who died before they were baptized. The nuns assured us that no one was mean to them in Limbo, that they were well taken care of. But you had the idea that they were taken care of in the hospital-nursery kind of way rather than the at-home-snuggling-with-people-who-love-you kind of way?

[Though Limbo no longer officially exists, Catholics still believe in a celestial waiting room called Purgatory where you have to spend centuries doing penance before being allowed into heaven.] You got time off from Purgatory by making the sign of the cross, which earned you three years - seven years if you used holy water. Repeating holy phrases (ejaculations) qualified for all kinds of reprieves, although it was hard for me to imagine that when my mother yelled, “JE-sus, Ma-RY, and JO-seph! Didnʼt I tell you kids not to swing from the railing!” she was actually accumulating grace.
- Martha Manning (see above)

Following the Vatican declaration that women cannot become priests because they do not resemble Christ, sources reported that Colonel Sanders declared he would not employ anyone who didnʼt resemble a chicken.
- Jane Curtin

What do a Catholic priest and a Christmas tree have in common?
Both have balls just for decoration.
- Source unknown

The Catholic Church is against birth control so the number of Catholics keeps growing. But fewer are becoming priests. Pretty soon theyʼll have one priest for every fifty-thousand Catholics, and only a priest can consecrate hosts (those unsalted Ritz crackers they serve at Mass). So Catholics will have to rent football stadiums to attend Mass with the ONE priest in their vicinity. The priest will be on the fifty-yard line with buckets of hosts to be consecrated. Then hot-dog vendors will haul the buckets around, shouting, “Get your hosts here! Hot Hosts! Get ʻem while theyʼre consecrated!” Maybe theyʼll fling ʻem across seats right into peopleʼs mouths. “One body of Christ on angelʼs wings, Over here!”
- Skip Church

Roman Catholics believe they drink blood and eat human flesh during Holy Communion. Protestants say the ritual is “symbolic.” But to the Roman Catholic, the bread miraculously becomes the flesh and blood of a dead Jew, i.e., the late Redeemer of Biblical fame. Why they wanna eat a dead Jew is another question…
- Robert Anton Wilson

A Catholic is a person who eats small pieces of bread on Sunday mornings and pretends to be a cannibal.
- Edwin Brock, “Catholicism,” Paroxisms: A Guide to the Isms

I was raised Catholic and received the Body and Blood of Christ every Sunday at Communion until the age of 30, when I became a vegetarian.
- Joe Queenan

I might have joined the Catholic Church if it was just a little different. If at Communion the Host was fudge, Iʼd be there for that. “Body of Christ, with or without nuts?”
- Rick Reynolds, Only the Truth is Funny

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