Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Bad News....





More than half of all U.S. couples live together before marriage.

There are 2.4 million marriages a year in the US and 1.2 million divorces a year. 

The US has the third highest divorce rate in the world.




70% of Christian men look at pornography.

Pornography is the number one export of America.

Americans spend $13. 1 BILLION on pornography each year, the same amount that we give in foreign aid.

More than 260 million Internet pages are pornographic, an increase in 1, 800% in the last five years.

One large study ten years ago showed that 56 percent of divorce cases involved one party having an obsessive interest in
pornographic websites. Another more recent and extensive research showed that in 2/3rds of all divorces pornography played a significant role.
That equates to well over 600,000 divorces each year in the US.

More than 1/3 of married Christian men commit adultery. 

But it gets worse:

35% of teen boys say they have viewed pornographic videos “more times than they can count.”

15% of boys and 9% of girls have seen child pornography.

32% of boys and 18% of girls have seen bestiality online.

39% of boys and 23% of girls have seen sexual bondage online.

83% of boys and 57% of girls have seen group sex online.

Many teenagers involved in a relationship are being pressed to engage in anal sex.

Okay enough! 

And the worse news is that is just the beginning.

So what do we do? Do we just watch tv and eat popcorn and allow the Lord to take care of it? Do we have a momentary sigh and wish there was something we could do? 

There is. You be holy. You be a saint. That is the very best thing we can do. We have the power of all heaven at our disposal if we get on our knees. Time to get serious. Time to watch. Time to listen. Time to fast and pray.

He's our only hope.


______________________

Sources:

http://www.charismanews.com

Some of these statistics were testified by Dr. Jill Manning (reported by Psychology Today Magazine) at a 2004 United States Senate Committee meeting as well as from the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

http://www.divorcesource.com/ds/main/u-s-divorce-rates-and-statistics-1037.shtml

As well as other sources

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Faithful Shepherds?


  I, [the Lord Almighty] will judge your leaders for ruining my vineyard and plundering the house of the poor. The bishops and priests and pastors who have been crushing God's people and grinding their faces. O my people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path.
Isaiah 3:1-12 updated for our times.
 As Christians, where did we get this idea that our bishops, priests and pastors were going to do the right thing, were going to be faithful to Christ? Certainly not from scripture:

His watchmen are blind, All of them know nothing. Allof them are mute dogs unable to bark, Dreamers lying down, who love to slumber; And the dogsare greedy , they are not satisfied. And they are shepherds who have no understanding; They have all turned to their own way, Each one to his unjust gain, to the last one. "Come," they say, "let us get wine, and let us drink heavily of strong drink; And tomorrow will be like today, only more so." Isaiah 56:10-12 
For the shepherds have become stupid And have not sought the Lord; Therefore they have not prospered, And all their flock is scattered. Jeremiah 10: 12
Many shepherds have ruined My vineyard, They have trampled down My field; They have made My pleasant field A desolate wilderness. Jeremiah 12: 10. 
"Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of My pasture!" declares the Lord. Therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel concerning the shepherds who are tendingMy people: "You have scattered My flock and driven them away, and have not attended to them; behold, I am about to attend to you for the evil of your deeds," declares the Lord. Jer. 23: 1-2 
Weep and wail, you shepherds; roll in the dust, you leaders of the flock. For your time to be slaughtered has come; you will fall and be shattered like fine pottery. The shepherds will have nowhere to flee, the leaders of the flock no place to escape. Hear the cry of the shepherds, the wailing of the leaders of the flock, for the Lord is destroying their pasture. Jer. 25: 34
My people have been lost sheep; their shepherds have led them astray and caused them to roam on the mountains. They wandered over mountain and hill and forgot their own resting place. Jer. 50: 6 
Woe to the shepherds of Israel who only take care of themselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock. You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bound up the injured. You have not brought back the strays or searched for the lost. You have ruled them harshly and brutally. So they were scattered because there was no shepherd, and when they were scattered they became food for all the wild animals....This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against the shepherds and will hold them accountable for my flock. Ez. 24:2-5, 10. 
My anger burns against the shepherds, and I will punish the leaders.... Zech. 10: 3

Jesus called Israel's leaders vipers and white-washed tombs. But His own disciples acted little different when in Gethsemane they all scattered at the first sign of trouble. Judas, the man who sold Christ for 30 pieces of silver was among His hand-picked! Peter, the betrayer, was the prince and leader of the leaders! Therefore we know that those who are called are often very weak men and the position as leader often calls them to courageously fight to become strong men of God. And some of them can and do fail in that struggle.

It's not just Israel's problem. After Christ ascended to heaven their were problems with the shepherds. (Jude 1: 12) 

The Bible doesn't tell us the shepherds anointed by God and set over the people are going to be faithful. Quite the opposite. The leaders are no better at following God then we are at following our leaders!

So where did this idea of looking to our Christian leaders to be faithful originate? In Christian history? No.

Christian History

Many popes and bishops failed the Bride. When King Henry VIII threatened England's bishops if they didn't support him as the head of the church,
St. John Fisher, Martyred by King Henry 8th
all but one or two of the bishops crumbled and cut themselves off from the pope. 

Throughout history God's sheep have been dazed by greedy, selfish, cowardly shepherds. Expect that it will be that way today. Somehow, miraculously the church is still here after two thousand years. Christ has kept His promise to never leave her. 

In Catholicism Today

The Church seems to be having its own Gethsemane moment where are bishops are falling asleep or sneaking behind a few bushes in order to avoid persecution. Hold on... just like the Apostles during Friday and Saturday, its going to get worse before it gets better, but know that the Body of Christ, His Bride, will remain even thought the great
Apostolic stars seem to fall. Remain steadfast within the Body. Sunday is coming. 

Where have I heard that?





Friday, October 3, 2014

Catholic Synod of Bishops on the Family


The Catholic question du jour is: Should Catholics who have been married, divorced and remarried be allowed to receive the Eucharist? 




In a couple of days, the Vatican will host a small but worldwide assembly of bishops will be discussing this at at an Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on topics related to the family and evangelization. There will be no dogmatic pronouncement, the USCCB reports that this synod is to "assist the Holy Father by providing counsel on important questions 

facing the Church in a manner that preserves the Church's teaching and strengthens her internal discipline." Don't expect any new "ex-cathedra" statements. However, there is still a lot of angst among some theologians that the bishops will influence the pastoral approach to Catholics. 

Here's my two pennies and that isn't worth much. First, what Christ wrote about the indissolubility of marriage: 
"Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her; and if she herself divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery." Mark 10:10-12
That's pretty straight forward. Yet Matthew records an exception to that rule. 

Sola Apostasion
The whole doctrine of divorce stands or falls with one word of Jesus stated on the Sermon on the Mount. Here's the whole passage that deals with marriage:    

"It was said, 'Whoever sends his wife away, let him give her a certificate of divorce' but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the reason of unchastity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. Matt. 5: 31, 32


Since "unchastity" is the sole and only reason a person can be divorced, so we better know what that word meant to Jesus' listeners. The original word in Greek is porneia, which can be broadly defined from anything from general immorality to an illicit marriage, specifically marrying a close relative or a civil union or a concubinage. 

So the liberal bishops are saying that the church should read this passage as broadly as possible so that annulments are more easily obtained. The conservatives want to keep in defined more specifically and historically to mean illicit marriages. 

Personally, my heart wishes mercy for those remarried and a broader interpretation of porneia. My head, however, worries about the consequences of broadening the definition. 

However the Synod goes, I will support the church for it was given the power to bind and loose. So if bishops keeps this bound, I will pray for those people whose expectations will be wounded by the ruling. If the synod liberalizes it, I will weep for joy for those who can now participate and pray that the overall tone will not be one of, "now that we have this one, let's go for the definition of marriage and the usage of contraception."

One more Biblical passage that will back up the bishops' authority to make a ruling on this. Look at  Jesus' words in the gospel of Mark 10: 

[The Pharisees asked Jesus,] "Why then did Moses command to give her a certificate of divorce and send her away?" Jesus
responded, "Because of your hardness of heart Moses permitted you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way." 

Moses had such powerful God-given authority that  he saw the hardness of Israel's heart and was able to loose the original intent of marriage and bring in divorce. Does the New Covenant Church not have as much power to bind and loose as Moses? 



Therefore, do not lose heart no matter what the church does or does not do. God will give you the grace to have a supernatural faithfulness to His Church even when we at times feel like despairing. Christianity is about carrying the Cross God has given us even when we are confused. Have faith that God will not abandon you nor His Church.




Friday, September 26, 2014

ABORTION AND ITS LINK TO WITCHCRAFT PART THREE by Teresa Beem


Part Three: The Reformation Till Today

"[C]ertain abandoned women, turning aside to follow Satan, being seduced by the illusions and phantasms of demons, believe and openly profess that in the dead of night they ride upon certain beasts along with the pagan goddess Diana and a countless horde of women and that in these silent hours they fly over vast tracts of country and obey her as their mistress, while on other nights they are summoned to pay her homage….
[unfortunately] an immense number of people (innumera multitudo) believe these things to be true and believing them depart from the true Faith, so that practically speaking they fall into Paganism. And in this account he says "it is the duty of priests earnestly to instruct the people that these things are absolutely untrue and that such imaginings are planted in the minds of misbelieving folk, not by a Divine spirit, but by the spirit of evil" (P. L., CXXXII, 352; cf. ibid., 284).

During the Reformation and Enlightenment

You will often hear scholars breathe a sigh of relief for the Renaissance and Enlightenment when they repeat the idea that it stopped the Inquisition and witch trials. Yet that is certainly a false claim. With the Reformation came a new madness to rush a person accused of witchcraft to trial and hanging or burning. Right in the middle of the Enlightenment you have the Salem Witch trials. But in America, things were quite different than in Europe. 

Catholic civil courts in Europe convicted an accused witch only upon proof
 such as dead bodies. This wasn't about a culture afraid of magic spells and spooky incantations. These trials were about people breaking the law: dispersing contraception and abortifacients as well as actively committing infanticide. These were people caught digging up dead bodies and stealing from graves, found stealing animals and committing animal cruelty. 


An example of a European trial was the 1782 case of Anna Goldi who was executed, not for being a witch, (which she was accused) but for the killing of her own child. 
The Protestant European witch trials and
Protestant American witch trials that ramped up considerably during the 16th and 17th centuries seem to have been more about the actual "magic" rather than illegal activities such as distribution of contraception and abortifacients. They saw the sin in the playing with the occult rather than directly as the use of contraception and abortion. 
The Salem Witch Trials, run by Puritans, in actuality sent to their death mostly good decent pious Puritans, not witches. If there was anything of the occult, it was in the accusers. The judges in the Salem trials allowed spectral evidence against the accused. Spectral evidence is dreams and visions. This spectral evidence was some of the main evidence used in convicting the accused. When the governor of Massachusetts made spectral evidence illegal, it was the end of the convictions and the end of the trials.


One last anecdotal piece of evidence for the connection of abortion and witchcraft before we go to modern times is this:


King Louis XIV considered himself the new Zeus, who is a type of Molech or Ba'al. His mistress, Madame de Montespan, was thought to dabble in the occult because so many strange and supernatural occurrences happened in her presence. Men were dying, appearing to be murdered, but with no evidence. Detective, Gabriel de La Reynie, the Lieutenant General of the police in Versaille tracked down a witch, la Voisin, who both admitted Madame de Montespan was a witch too and also handed over the poisons used to murder the men. Detective La Reynie also discovered something much more horrible, to provide for their satanic rituals, an underground abortion mill was being run. La Voison's daughter's testimony under oath:

"At one of Madame de Montespan's masses, I saw my mother bring an [premature, aborted] infant and place it over a basin over which its throat was slit, and its blood drained into the chalice. Then the cup filled with the baby's blood was lifted up to heaven and this invocation was given: Hail Ashteroth and Asmodeus, Princes of friendship, I conjure you to accept the sacrifice of this child in return for the favors asked of you."
Modern Connections between Abortion and Witchcraft

In 1933, one of the first things the occult-obsessed Hitler did upon gaining power was make abortion legal in Germany.

1960's sexual revolution led to the "fundamental right" of abortion. Child sacrifice comes to America, legally
During the 1970's feminism gained power in America and many of its most radical proponents dabbled in goddess worship and the new age movement. 
In a  National Abortion Federation, a speaker at the 1985 national convention, Episcopalian priest and radical feminist, Carter Heyward, was quoted as saying, "If women were in charge, abortion would be a sacrament, an occasion of deep and serious and sacred meaning."
The entire issue of Ms. Magazine (Dec. 1985)  explored the spirituality of feminism. One article was about goddess worship (Isis and Aphrodite) including child sacrifice. 
Patricia Baird-Windle founder of Florida's Aware Woman Center for Choice is dedicated to resisting the pro-life movement. In an interview she was asked about religion. Her answer: "My religion is a holy ritual of child sacrifice." The media thought she was kidding. Two of the founders of this group are also registered Wiccans. When confronted in the 1980's by Operation Rescue's aggressive tactics to protect the unborn, the Wiccans
responded publicly, "... steps are being taken to protect not only Aware Woman, but a woman's right to choose. Work is being done mundanely, financially, and magically, to help get through the next few months and beyond."

Wiccan's Open Circle promotes abortion activism of its subscribers and organizes "clinic escorts." The also have guidelines, "If you want to do magical work to protect the clinic, please, please, do it with perfect love and trust." Women involved in occult groups are known to be very politically active in demonstrations and counter demonstrations during pro-life rallies. Laurie Cabot, official witch of Salem, Mass. writes, "The current women's movement has inspired much of the political activism that some covens engage in.... radical feminism, including lesbianism, has found a place in Dianic covens...."

Though today's witches sharply deny animal bloodletting, they admit that they may use their own menses to "pour out libations." 

Today's Witches:

High Priest of Ordo Templi Astarte, Carroll Runyon, is dedicated to reviving the worship of the Canaanite goddess Astarte and her consort Baal (Molech).

The New York Coven of Welsh Traditional Witches was founded by Edmund Buczynski, Herman Slater, and Leo Martello. These men, although not directly known for abortion activism, were among the first in America to publicly defend the gay agenda openly as Pagans.
High Priest Wiccan, Alex Sanders claimed a magical ability to cause abortion just by pointing at a pregnant woman. He also was known as a abortion advocate and often took women to have abortions. But for those who could not afford the fees, he was known to do incantations to abort the child. 
Zsuzsanna Budapest has conducted ceremonies with her coven of lesbians where aborted babies were offered to the goddess.

Margot Adler is a Wiccan priestess, radio journalist and correspondent for National Public Radio (NPR) and pro-choice activist.

Wicca states that "more than any other religion, celebrates and exalts the divine feminism" and believe that had not Wicca "been around the Women’s Movement would not have survived, and indeed, flourished." 

Conclusion

One last thing to leave you with. Our precious Lord, giver and creator of all life warned the Church of Thyatira about Jezebel (a new Jezebel!): "But I have one thing against you, that you tolerate that woman Jezebel who calls herself a prophetess and she teaches and leads my bond servants astray so that they commit acts of immortality and eat things sacrificed to idols." (Revelation 2:20).

Jezebel was a witch known to force child sacrifice to Ba'al. We are in the time of another Jezebel who rules our country that claims to have a citizenry of more than 80% Christians. We are Thyratira. We are tolerating Jezebel. May God have mercy upon us.




ABORTION AND ITS LINK TO WITCHCRAFT PART TWO by Teresa Beem


Part Two: Witchcraft in the Christian Era

Christ and the Apostles's Time
The Greek word pharmakeia is often rendered in Bible translations as "sorcery" or "magic arts" but the
original meaning of the first century Greek is more directly "manufacturer of medicines." So what? Why is that necessary to know? Because Revelation 9:12 and 21:8 place those who practice pharmakon in hell. 

The placement of this word is important. Usually the sin of pharmakon is listed in with the sins of murder and sexual immorality. Placement of types together was important in first century writers, so it makes great sense that abortifacient drugs were placed between the words murder and sexual immorality.

Alvin Schmidt in his Under the Influence, (Zondervan Publishing 2001) relates that that both pagans and Christians understood that the word pharmakeia/pharmakon used by Paul and John refers to the practice of abortion. He continue that one of the main duties of the sorcerer was to manufacture potions and spells that would both prevent conception, implantation and/or expel the unborn from the mother's womb. 
It was well-known among the ancients:

  • Plutarch, a pagan, noted that pharmakeia was primarily used for contraception and abortion. (Romulus 22 of his Parallel Lives).
  • The Christian record, Didache, from the first century clearly states that the early Christians were known for their proclamation that abortion and exposure of babies was a sin. Keep in mind that three centuries before the church had clearly understood the nature of Christ and the Trinity, the church was explicitly clear that abortion was evil. The church was pro-life from its inception. 
  • The Epistle of Barnabas (1st c. Christian document) states, "Thou shalt not slay the child by procuring abortion neither shalt destroy it after it is born." 
  • Clement, bishop of Alexandria (155-215) writes that the biblical word pharmakeia directly refers to killing a child by abortion in The Tutor
  • Second century, Apocalypse of Peter, describes hell with a special punishment for women who procured abortions. 
  • Second-century was Athenagoras, Christian apologist, who wrote in A Plea for the Christians, "What reason would we have to commit murder when we say that women who induce abortion are murderers and will have to give account of it to God." 
  • Third century letter, The Epistle of Diognetus, written by a Christian records the well known fact that "Christians marry as do all others, they beget children, but they do not destroy their offspring." 
  • Minucius Felix in Octavius records how pro-life the early Christians were. 
Pro-life Fathers:
  • Bishop of Africa and attorney, Tertullian defended the Christians pro-life position in Apology (AD 197). 
  • As did Bishop of Carthage, Cyprian 
  • Ambrose, bishop of Milan, 
  • Zeno, Bishop of Verona, 
  • John Chrysostom, 
  • Augustin of Hippo, 
  • Basil of Caesarea
  • Bible translator, Jerome 

The Synod of Elvira in Spain in AD 305 and the Council of Ancyra in AD 314 were pro-life.
All record that the early church was universally, completely and totally against abortion. There is no early church father or apologist who wrote anything that disagreed with these, nor is there any arguments in favor of a pro-choice position. And this would again draw a direct tie between abortion and those who practiced making of potions or "sorcery/pharmakeia."



Early Church on Witchcraft:

The church scholars and even the church's regional councils often differed on the validity of sorcery and witchcraft. Some were skeptical of accusations of someone being a witch, others making it a serious spiritual crime. 

St. Augustine wrote about how we must not take much of this pagan sorcery with too much seriousness. Although the scholar also believe there were true powerful dark forces, he also explained much of what was regarded as
supernatural to be nothing more than the natural being manipulated by wicked men. (See City of God, Book 18, ch. 5, 9;  Book 21, ch. 6-8) This was to combat the Visigothic code that led to mobs burning witches. 

AD 306: The Council of Elvira (canon 6) excommunicated someone who killed a man by spell (aided by idolatry and the Devil). 
AD 324: Council of Anacyra (canon 24) Those who consult magicians must have a five year penance.  [Notice that both of these councils also affirmed the church's position on the protection of the unborn.] 
AD 643: The Edictum Rothari (Lex Rotharii) recorded,"Let nobody presume to kill a foreign serving maid or female slave as a witch, for it is not possible, nor ought to be believed by Christian minds." 
AD 672–754: St. Boniface pooh-poohed the existence of witches, and even warned that believing in them was unchristian. 
AD 692: Council of Trullo records sorcery as a crime with excommunication and penance as part of the punishment. 
AD 785: Council of Paderhorn relates that sorcerers are to be made serfs and given to the service of the church. But here is where the church starts clamping down on false reports of witchcraft: "Whosoever, blinded by the devil and infected with pagan errors, holds another person for a witch that eats human flesh, and therefore burns her, eats her flesh, or gives it to others to eat, shall be punished with death." 
775–790: The First Synod of St. Patrick anathematized those who believed in witches. 
AD 841: Archbishop of Lyons, St. Agobard wrote, "Against the foolish belief of the common sort concerning hail and thunder" which was against believing in magic.At this time civil courts allowed witches to endure the ordeal by cold water, where a witch was supposed to float on water. However at the same time clergy fought the pagan idea of witchcraft by down playing magic. One notable exception to this are the bishops of Paris.

AD 825: Council of Paris, rulers must "punish pitilessly” witches, diviners, and enchanters who practiced “very certainly the remains of the pagan cult.” However the Catholic encyclopedia records that many Catholic scholars agree that this was a local council and did not represent the church. However, you can see that not everyone agreed that the occult was simply silly tricks.

C. 9th century: French abbot, Agobard of Lyons, insisted no person could fly, cause weather changes or become shape shifters.
 
AD 825: Council of Paris, rulers must "punish pitilessly” witches, diviners, and enchanters who practiced “very certainly the remains of the pagan cult.” However the Catholic encyclopedia records that many Catholic scholars agree that this was a local council and did not represent the church. However, you can see that not everyone agreed that the occult was simply silly tricks. 
C. 9th century: French abbot, Agobard of Lyons, insisted no person could fly, cause weather changes or become shape shifters.
AD 866: Pope Nicholas prohibited torture in heresy/witchcraft trials. 
AD 906: See Abbot Regino of Prum, in his Warning to Bishopssection 364. 
AD 1020: the Decretum of BurchardCorrector, book 19, Bishop of Worms does recognize that are dark forces and powers, but utterly rejects the popular legend of witches and sorcery. If you even believe in such nonsense you were to go confess it as a sin and do penance. 

Catholic Kings Become Involved


When the secular arm of Christendom became involved, witchcraft was seen as a destructive force among the citizens and criminalized.
AD 873: Charles the Bald, King of France ordered witches to be hunted down and executed with "the greatest possible diligence."  
AD c. 880: Alfred the Great levied heavy fines, exile and even death for anyone dabbling in the occult. As did the subsequent kings Edward, Guthran, Ethelred. 
AD. 928: The king of England Ethelstan called witches to be burned at the stake. 
AD 970: English woman drowned as a witch at London bridge.
AD 1027: Count Guillaume of Angouleme claims to have been bewitched. (Not sure how it turned out but it is in the annals of court testimony.) 

At this same time the church still was not involved in Europe's witch trials.
 AD 1080: The pope wrote to the king of Denmark forbidding witches to be put to death on such evidence as "having caused storms or crop failure or pestilence."

It was the Germanic barbarian tribes that formed mobs against those involved in the occult (and often simply harmless herbalists or women practicing medicinal folklore). It was the Catholic Church that set laws against these attacks.

It is interesting to note that in many cases, women accused of witchcraft fled for "sanctuary" inside a cathedral and appealed for help to the bishop!
AD 1080: Witch Sagae executed by Wratislaw II of Bohemia and his brother, the bishop of Prague 
AD c.1100: Witches burned at Soest in Westphalia. 
AD 1115: 30 witches burned in eastern Austria. 
Up until this time, there is peripheral evidence that witches were criminalized directly from their practices of contraception and abortion, but at the time of the Inquisition, court testimonies survive that link the two. 
AD1140 Canon Lawyer Gratian declared in canon law that killing an unborn fetus was homicide and warrant identical punitive measures. 


Witchcraft and the Inquisition

With the instigation of the Inquisitions things decidedly changed on the shepherds' level of the church towards the power of the occult. The church began supporting the civil arm in bringing witches to trial, not as witches per se, but for heresy. Most of the time they were tried as criminals by their involvement in murder, abortion, infanticide, grave stealing, burglary. 
What was happening that made the tide turn?
The church really started seeing evidence of criminal activity in witchcraft that had been there all along that they just had ignored or was so rare that it was negligible? Or...

Perhaps something actually was happening. Is it possible that with the corruptions that would soon cause the revolt of the Protestants, there was a true revival of paganism and demonic forces? In any case, St. Thomas Aquinas is the first known church leader who openly taught that sorcery was related to fertility and abortion.
Some scholars maintain that it was Thomas Aquinas that codified the Church's change in direction or "emphasis" on witchcraft. In his Summa Theologia, Thomas saw the world as a dangerous place of demons. These scholars also write that Aquinas believed and taught that demons had the "habit of reaping the sperm of men and spreading it among women." And that sex and witchcraft were a real and dangerous association. And they even claim it was Thomas Aquinas who was instrumental in fomenting the witch hunts. And now with the Inquisition… the church had the power to try them in their own courts.

In 1233, a supposed bull was put out by Pope Gregory IX entitled, "Vox in Rama" in response to the inquisitor of Mainz who said he had uncovered a vast demonic cult. At first the pope issued a response in the bull to seek out and destroy them all. But the bull itself is considered inauthentic by many scholars. However, the pope sent an legate to the area to check it out and found that the inquisitor had been torturing the accused so violently that they all acquiesced and "confessed."

In 1245, Bernard de Caux tried a woman for sorcery.

1252, Pope Innocent IV sanctioned repression of heretics and sorcerers in the bull Ad extirpanda "to be exterminated". 
However, Pope Alexander the IV in 1258, told the inquisition that they could not try witches and sorcerers. Forty years later, canon lawyer, Johannes Andreae opened up a way for the inquisitors to get their way by adding to the inquisition law that, “Those are to be called heretics who forsake God and seek the aid of the devil.” So now the legends of wells being poisoned, blood libel, famines and other anomalies could be legally blamed on witches because they caused these things to happen by being in league with the devil. (Also, at this time both witches and Jews were accused of stealing Christian children and eating them! So anti-semitism and sorcery began to be mixed.) And like today, those who did not become Christian and continued their ancestor's pagan worship loudly bewailed their repression by the Church.

The Inquisitional manuals began to change: 1270, 1320, 1367. They show a growing concern with the occult.

Witch/heretic trials popped up more frequently in the Basque area and lowland Scotland. But as of yet, there is little in the way of trial evidence of witchcraft and abortion during this time. (Interestingly though, sodomy played a part in the trials.) However, we do know that legally there was no difference in an unborn and born. In 1283 a man was hung from assaulting a pregnant woman which ended in the killing of her unborn.

Let's take a moment to look at this in the Ba'al worship progression and compare it to earlier examples:

First sexual promiscuity. Now this time, what made news was the Cathar heresy that believed pro-creation was a sin. So, for those "weak" in faith, sodomy was allowed. While this may come at sexual perversion in an opposite way than in other cycles of Ba'al worship, it nonetheless has an outcome of abominable practices. Sodomy was used as a contraception. Next we should find the sacrifice of children.  And...We will find it…. 



Black Death and the 14th Century

All the sources I have studied agree that during the Black Death of 1348-1350, witch trials skyrocketed. Christians began to believe that the great enemy--Satan--caused this. And who could blame them with 40% of their population wiped out? Since priests courageously stayed with the dying to administer Last Rites, their group had a much higher mortality rate than the rest. Some stats are the 90% of priests died! Can you imagine what the church had to do to quickly replace these priests so the sacraments could be offered? Bishops on horseback often anointed men who the villages picked out, who had little to no knowledge to be clergy until the church could appoint new ones. It was mass chaos (deliberate pun!)  
Europe now in mourning over the dead, was in shock and trying to explain it. Charges of the Black Plague were levied upon Jews and witches…. Legends of the occult rites included incest and orgies and cannibalizing babies born and unborn. This was the newest tie between abortion and witchcraft. Scholars record, "The chief horror” that the medieval society had for witches was their supposed attack upon innocent small children (even in their cradles) as well as the unborn.
Now the historical evidence against witches was primarily for potions to prevent conception and abortifacients. (As well as magic love potions and spells.) Most often those guilty of distributing contraception were forced out of town. People began to complain to the church that sorcerers and witches were actively evangelizing others into goddess worship. 

August 22, 1380 in Florence, Laurentius Pini admitted to being a magician who repeated and successfully gave potions “apt to extinguish unborn life” but since there was no evidence to convict him on those charges, a woman came forward and gave evidence of a "dynamic" abortion (by violence) and the man's head was taken from his body. 
Protestant scholars claim that Popes Alexander V wrote against "forbidden arts" and Pope Eugenius IV wording of "magical harm-doing" meant contraception, abortifacients, abortion and infanticide, but those speculations are not confirmed by Catholics.  
Then came the most famous of all witch hunt documents supposedly written by the authority of the bishop or pope: the 1484 Malleus Maleficarum, which reports that witches purposely try to find very young victims because once they have been baptized they are no longer useful in pleasing the Devil because they do not go to hell. Hence the need for aborted babies and newborns. 
Pope Innocent issued the bull, Summis desderantes affetibus, which explained witches are known to have "slain infants yet in the mother's womb" (abortion) and of "hindering men from performing the sexual act and women from conceiving" (contraception).
Many court trial records include eye witness accounts or testimony of women and men being prosecuted for administering abortifacients. Such as the 1479 account of a guy named Barolotus  who was accused of giving an herbal abortifacient to the pregnant Berta.
There are many court records at this time to confer the abortion/witchcraft connection:
Bernardino of Siena writes of a lady he had examined who admitted, without coercion or torture, that she had killed, dismembered and drank the blood of over 30 babies as a sacrifice to the Devil. While we think this woman must have been crazy, she had been arrested for the murder of her own son. She freely admitted that she had made him into a powder and had given it over as part of a potion for other people to take. The Inquisitor, himself assuming she was making this up, had her make careful notes of exactly how she did this, where, when and to whom. They sent out investigators and everything turned out to be correct. Often the people who had lost their child had no knowledge of the woman and were utterly surprised to hear how their child had died.

Under oath a woman admitted being a witch and said that with her apprentice, she stole a baby, removed its blood, returned the baby and when the child was buried, they went back, disinterred the body and…. I can't write the rest. Hundred of children's bodies were found murdered with their blood removed. Thousands went missing. Many witches said they would eat not only other people babies, but their own as Eucharistic feasts to the demons.

It was also thought that witches became midwives in order to poison newborns.
Now whether or not thes stories are  true, at the time, these stories got out and you can imagine the horror that went through Europe!


There is being established a firm connection between the occult and contraception, abortion and infanticide. 
Molech rose with the Black Plague and was hungry. 





ABORTION AND ITS LINK WITH WITCHCRAFT by Teresa Beem


Part One: Ancient History


Introduction: Dismissing the Occult


When I think of witches I think of the line in The Princess Bride movie when Miracle Max's wife responds to his insult, "Get back, witch!" with "I'm not a witch, I'm your wife." I think most Americans relate the idea of a woman riding a broomstick with something "undark" like the old TV series Bewitched. Or for the younger crowd, a school of Hogwarts or a sexy mutant ninja
vampire. The supernatural is simply fantasy entertainment.

Today's wanna-be witches are drug-addicted, rockers who dress up in renaissance costumes (or run around naked) doing silly pagan rituals. These, by far, make up the whole of America's kooky occult. Not to say some of them do not engage in some really creepy and disgusting things. They tend to be incredibly promiscuous and promote a pantheistic, homosexual or bisexual lifestyle. Yet, they  are not generally dangerous people.
On the other hand, with last Sunday's black mass in Oklahoma, we were reminded that there are people serious about engaging the dark spiritual powers of the occult. 
So, while some Catholic scholars dismiss the church's history with witchcraft as the dark ages of superstitious, religious zealots misunderstanding and oppressing those with mental illness, quietly the Vatican is actively training hundreds of new clergy in exorcism. 
And with that in mind, very few have connected witches with the abortion industry. So that is the goal of this paper. To do this we need to begin with some ancient history. 
  

TAURUS, the Heavenly Bull

For most of human history, the constellation Taurus marked the Spring equinox, when most ancient cultures began a new season and a new year. Therefore, the bull was said to have pushed through and led the new year. It was the first calendar sign of the Babylonian and Hebrew zodiac as well as being the first letter of their alphabets. 

Taurus has been worshipped as a god of warfare and sexual potency throughout the world, even into our times. 

The Greeks, Druids, the ancients of Africa, the peoples of the Mediterranean areas and the far east as well as the Buddhists, Hindus and pantheists have celebrated festivals in honor of the sacred bull.

Taurus was Osiris in Egypt, but morphed into the Sumerian female deity of war and sexuality, Ianna. In Egypt, sacred Taurus would sacrifice himself once a year to the sun god as a renewal of the vitality of the land. Greek mythology has the Taurus 
constellation as Zeus or later as Zeus's mistress. As well as the Egyptian Mnevis. The Bull had gender issues, but was always associated with two things: war and fertility. Is it possible that the ancient demon-gods of violence and the begetting of offspring could possibly be the spirit behind the abortion movement?

There are ancient depictions of humans with a bull/cows head. Remember the human-eating Minotaur in the labyrinth on the Island of Crete? Almost any history museum will have examples of ancient Greek, Egyptian or Mesopotamian art with bull's heads upon human bodies. 
This starts to get interesting is when we connect the Biblical account of the demon,  
Molech. You remember Molech, the Ammonite god who demanded child sacrifice? 

Taurus, El, Molech, Ba'al, a Demon by Many Names


During the time of the Patriarchs, the world knew Ba'al (Molech) as "El, Son of Dagon." A very aggressive bull god depicted as holding a thunderbolt. 
After running from Sodom and Gomorrah, Lot's wife looked back and turned into a pillar of salt.  Lot lived in a cave with his two daughters who had been raised in the horrible Sodomite culture. They got their father drunk and became pregnant by him siring sons who become the Moabites and Ammonites. It is the Ammonites who began worshipping the bull, Molech. Later, scripture records that it was the Ammonites who enticed Israel to sacrifice their children to Molech. The Ammonites first introduced the horrible practice of gutting pregnant women: 
"For three transgressions of the sons of Ammon, and for four, will I not revoke its punishment, because they have ripped open the pregnant women of Gilead in order to enlarge their borders," (Amos 1:13). 

This bull may have been the god formed by Israel at the foot of Mt. Sinai when Moses was receiving the Ten Commandments.
Within the area of Israel, the fertility (and violent) god of the Bull now morphed into Molech who demanded infant blood.
This has a strange correlation to today. First, in the 1960's the sexual revolution encouraged promiscuity, sexual deviancy and orgies… (the fertility bull) and then eventually it moved into the demand of violence and warfare against child--a sacrifice because of that fertility--abortion! (Molech).  This, I do not believe is a coincidence. There remains an ancient demonic spirit who wants to confuse genders, confuse marriage, confuse sex, confuse the meaning and value of the lives of our children.
In ancient Israel and ancient history, Ba'al worship and Molech worship combined into one… 

Witchcraft and Molech/Ba'al Worship

Even though Ba'al/Molech was ubiquitously worshipped by the ancients, witchcraft itself-- sorcery--was outlawed by these same cultures. The Code of Hammurabi (c.2000 BC) recorded: 
If a man has laid a charge of witchcraft and has not justified it, he upon whom the witchcraft is laid shall go to the holy river; he shall plunge into the holy river and if the holy river overcome him, he who accused him shall take to himself his house.
They did not see idolatry and child sacrifice as witchcraft. For God's people though, the connection between idolatry and witchcraft was direct. See Exodus 22: 17-18 and Leviticus 20: 27). Israel was told that witchcraft carried a capital punishment charge: "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live," Ex. 22: 18.
During the time of King Solomon, Israel fell into Molech/Ba'al worship and began sacrificing their own children in the Valley of Hinnom right outside the temple in Jerusalem. Then again during the reign of Ahaz and Jezebel. It was Jezebel, a witch herself, who enticed Israel's king to offer the life of children to this horrific god. Later, King Manasseh associated with witches. (Exodus 7: 11; Daniel 2:2; II Kings 9:22, Manasseh’s idolatry 21:2).
Here is the first connections with witches and child sacrifice going back all the way to ancient Israel in the form of idolatry to Ba'al/Molech.

[Note: Some Jewish online sources suggest that fallen angels taught women witchcraft and that the first woman, Lilith, transformed herself into a witch. God smote her and replaced her with Eve. From medieval Jewish Rabbi Alef-Bet ben Sira.]

Jewish literature also strongly suggests that witches throughout the Old Testament were mostly engaged in practices that prevented pregnancy (contraception) and caused babies to be stillborn (abortions).  (Otzar ha-Geonim, Sotah 11) During Christendom, Jewish literature is filled with stories of courageous Jewish Rabbi's who confronted witches and drove them out. It is Jewish literature that first equate witches with werewolves and vampires! (For more information see the website of: Rabbi Geoffrey Dennis, Congregation Kol Ami in Flower Mound, TX.)

Conclusion: 

The bull god, always linked with violence, power and sexual virility throughout the ancient cultures found its way into Israel--the very people of God. How is this possible? Even Israel's Queen, Jezebel was instrumental in leading God's chosen to murdering their own children as a sacrifice to this bull, Molech/Ba'al. If it could happen to ancient Israel, we can make the same mistake today. And we have. 

Next: Witchcraft and Abortion in the Christian Era.

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