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Catholic sect holds funeral rites for Nazi war criminal
Former SS officer Erich Priebke died October 11. His burial is a source of controversy in Rome.
October 15th, 2013
02:07 PM ET

Catholic sect holds funeral rites for Nazi war criminal

By Daniel Burke and Hada Messia, CNN

ROME (CNN) - The Italian branch of a Catholic sect with a history of anti-Semitism held funeral rites on Tuesday for a convicted Nazi war criminal, despite protests from Jewish groups and the local mayor.

Crowds packed the streets outside San Pio X Church in Albano, a small town south of Rome, chanting "Executioner!" and kicking the hearse carrying Erich Priebke's body as entered the church compound on Tuesday.

A funeral Mass was celebrated for Priebke but his casket was kept outside, according to a priest from the church who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.

The absolution rite, which includes a prayer for clemency for the deceased, was also given outside the church, in the courtyard inside San Pio X's compound, the priest said.

Priebke's body is now being held in a military airport outside Rome.

The church funeral plans for Priebke sparked an outcry in the United States.

"Erich Priebke was a monster," said Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League.

"He does not deserve the dignity and respect of a proper church burial. His body should be cremated and his ashes scattered at sea, without further ceremony.”

Priebke, a former SS captain sentenced to life in prison for his role in an Italian massacre in 1944, died on Friday.

Priebke was convicted by Italian court in 1998 for helping organize the execution of 335 men and boys in retaliation for attacks on German troops. The former Nazi was unrepentant, denying the Holocaust in his final statement, according to the Associated Press.

After World War II, Priebke escaped to Argentina, where he lived for nearly 50 years. He had planned to be buried near his late wife there, according to his lawyer, Paolo Giachini. But Argentina's foreign minister said it would not accept the remains.

MORE: Nazi war criminal Priebke, dubbed the 'butcher,' dies at 100

Burying Priebke in Rome has proved nearly as difficult.

The Diocese of Rome said in a statement that Priebke's lawyer was asked to hold a "small, private" funeral in the Nazi war criminal's home rather than in a church.

"The prayer for the deceased was not denied," the diocese said in a statement, "but rather a different manner for the ceremony was decided." Pope Francis is the titular head of the Rome diocese but has little involvement in its daily affairs.

Priebke's lawyer rejected that proposition, according to the diocese.

Instead, the conservative Society of St. Pius X stepped in, agreeing on Tuesday to hold a funeral Mass in their church for the former Nazi. The society has no official status within the Catholic Church.

The Italian chapter acknowledged in a statement Tuesday that Priebke was "controversial" but said he had already been convicted by Italian courts and has the right to a Christian funeral.

"A Christian who has been baptized and who has received the sacraments of the Confession and the Eucharist, regardless of what have been his crimes and sins, as he dies reconciling with God and with the Church has the right to have a Holy Mass celebrated at his funeral," the group said in a statement.

The society also said that it "reaffirms our repudiation to any form of anti-semitism and racial hatred."

But the Society of St. Pius X, whose leaders were once excommunicated from the Catholic Church for ordaining bishops without Vatican approval, has a long history of controversial statements about Jews.

Its founder, the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, sharply disagreed with the Roman Catholic Church's softened stance toward other faiths, including Judaism, after the Second Vatican Council in 1962-65. It also objected to other modernizing reforms such as celebrating the Mass in local languages.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, the Society of St. Pius X is "mired in anti-Semitism."

“The Society of St. Pius X never fails fail to shock," Foxman, a Holocaust survivor, said Tuesday. "First, they denied the Holocaust, and now they’re denying the acts of a perpetrator.”

"Jews are described in SSPX documents as being cursed by God for the sin of deicide" (killing Jesus), the ADL says in an online report.

"Jews are accused of being in control of world financial and cultural institutions and of plotting to create a 'world empire' or obtain 'world dominion,'" the ADL report continues.

Under Pope Benedict XVI, the Catholic Church tried to reconcile with the ultra-conservative society, lifting the excommunication of several bishops and allowing for wider celebration of the Mass in Latin, a favored practice of SSPX.

One of those bishops, Richard Williamson, was later found to have denied elements of the Holocaust, including its death toll of 6 million Jews.

Williamson was convicted of Holocaust denial in a German court and expelled from the society in 2012.

MORE: Holocaust-denying bishop loses court battle

Former Pope Benedict XVI wrote in 2009 that the Society of St. Pius X "does not have canonical status in the Catholic church" because of doctrinal, not disciplinary reasons.

It doesn't look like the breach will close any time soon.

The Bishop Bernard Fellay, the society's Swiss-born leader, reportedly said on Saturday in Kansas City, "The situation of the church is a real disaster, and the present Pope is making it 10,000 times worse.”

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity • Death • Italy • Judaism • Pope Benedict XVI • Pope Francis • Vatican

soundoff (787 Responses)
  1. drako

    Meine ehre heisst treue. abschied kameraden

    October 15, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
  2. Doris

    Most named stars have Arabic names. More recently named stars rarely have Arabic names. Why is this?

    (Hint: the reason is easily correlated to something Thomas Jefferson said:

    "[If] the nature of... government [were] a subordination of the civil to the ecclesiastical power, I [would] consider it as desperate for long years to come. Their steady habits [will] exclude the advances of information, and they [will] seem exactly where they [have always been]. And there [the] clergy will always keep them if they can. [They] will follow the bark of liberty only by the help of a tow-rope." )

    October 15, 2013 at 7:30 pm |
    • AE

      Does the government name stars? Or astronomers?

      October 15, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
      • AE

        "Stars that are discovered today are in general named for where they are in the sky or the person who found them, which gives them really ugly names like:
        Luyten 726-8A
        BD +5deg 1668
        Kruger 60 A "

        October 15, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
      • Doris

        During a few hundred years, where Baghdad was the intellectual center of the world, The Arab world had "naming rights" on stars. There were huge advances there in the same period in engineering, biology, medicine, mathematics, and celestial navigation. This intellectually fertile period was open to people of all or no faiths.

        Not long after, the Arab world became fundamentally more religious – where mathematics was sometimes seen as the work of the devil. Openness in belief dwindled. And we see that the situation has never recovered. I believe Jefferson was speaking directly to that kind of phenomenon.

        October 15, 2013 at 7:48 pm |
        • AE

          Sure.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:59 pm |
  3. Common Sense

    Regardless of our past we are all human beings no one is perfect. If im mistaken correct me but weren't half these "Nazis" forced to join and do the deeds they did and was punished by death or death of a loved one?
    And didn't we have a draft back then and if you didn't join you could face jail time?
    I didn't read the whole article due to my short attention span but maybe this guy had no choice to do what he had to do in his past.
    Like I said correct me if im wrong I fell asleep most of the time in history.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
    • JustICE

      No, SS members were volunteer only. To be in the SS, you had to show the utmost loyalty to Hitler and his position on the Jews. Normal enlisted men of the German army were mostly like you and I but this wasn't the same for SS. Most SS were recruited through the Hitler Youth (HG) program or through direct training which only 15% passed. They are branded evil because they didn't question orders and many times even enjoyed carrying out brutal acts on their own accord.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:43 pm |
  4. Maybe one day

    My race will be considered "Human" nothing more and certainly nothing less

    October 15, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      One day "human" will encompass a lot of things. You may not agree with all of them.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
  5. Maybe one day

    The tribe I belong to will be a tribe called "earth"

    October 15, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
  6. Maybe one day

    Talking to an invisible guy won't make me part of a group...maybe one day we won't need groups.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • Ray

      Nature made human groups. They're called "races."

      And they don't get along, in case you haven't noticed.

      Jews have certainly noticed, which is why they've used their poltiical, media and financial muscle to force these incompatible groups together. It's "good for jews," you see.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:28 pm |
      • TheBob

        "Race" is a bulls#%& term made up by Europeans to justify atrocities committed on arbitrary groups of humans. There is no such thing as "race" in biology. And if you had ever bothered getting a proper college education you would know that.

        October 15, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
        • Ray

          College "liberal" arts = Marxist mindwashing. Yeah, real "educated" you are.

          Tell any East Asian that race doesn't exist. They'll laugh in your face.

          And they'll continue to sh-t on those Southeast Asians they consider inferior, without any encouragement from the Evil White Man.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:39 pm |
        • Target

          Europeans?

          October 15, 2013 at 7:41 pm |
    • TheBob

      I'm afraid it does, and always will. The group is called "schizophrenic paranoids". Seek help.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:30 pm |
  7. Maybe one day

    No one will care what invisible being I talk to in my spare time.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
  8. Ray

    A rare example of non jew-whipped Christians. We'll see how long this lasts.

    Vatican II was a humiliating concession to jewish power, and a shameful repudiation of the clearly supersessionist viewpoint of the New Testament.

    And to be fair, retaliatory violence is sometimes an unfortunate necessity in warfare.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
  9. Tom

    Only God knows who will or will not go to Heaven. Even Hitler could go to Heaven. No one has even sinned too much to go to Heaven.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
    • bacbik

      Too much unnecessary capitalization.. too boring.. too much BS.. but not too long!

      October 15, 2013 at 7:14 pm |
    • Topher

      "No one has ever sinned too much to go to Heaven."

      Amen!

      October 15, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • larper2

      It also goes that a single unforgiven sin could not let a person get into heaven. What does it matter that this man is buried or given a Christian funeral because the people who are gripping are not Christians.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      "No one has sinned too much..." We are asked to believe. A lot of people have not. In the book of your warped God that matters more than any evil thing someone could do.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:28 pm |
  10. Doris

    One of the greatest thinkers of our age tackles one of the most important questions of our time: why people believe in God and how religion shapes our lives and our future. In this lecture, based on his new book of the same title, Dr. Dennett shows that for the vast majority of people there is nothing more important than religion. It is an integral part of their marriage, child rearing, and community. Dennett takes a hard look at this phenomenon and asks: Where does our devotion to God come from and what purpose does it serve? Is religion a blind evolutionary compulsion or a rational choice? In a spirited investigation that ranges widely through history, philosophy, and psychology, Dennett explores how organized religion evolved from folk beliefs and why it is such a potent force today. Deftly and lucidly, he contends that the 'belief in belief' has fogged any attempt to rationally consider the existence of God and the relationship between divinity and human need.

    Dr. Dennett is a professor and director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University.
    (YouTube published 4/24/13.)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZYv2WYbK1o

    This is both enlightening and entertaining. Dr. Dennett gets a warm reception at Cal Tech.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
  11. peick

    What's kind of funny (meaning strange, not humorous) is that where this Catholic sect sees a conspiracy of the Jews, there are fringe Christian groups who see a conspiracy of the Catholic church.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
    • Catie

      Stress makes people prejudiced and paranoid.
      All those bizarre conspiracies and splinter groups seem irrational. But humans get irrational when they are under pressure.
      The US Military has studied the stressed brain for decades.
      I read some of the released reports online, with a sick feeling in my gut. It is useful knowing that we can be driven into intolerance, but it's not okay to drive people to that point for the sake of research.
      The Nazi's were horrid. Humans are responsible for every crime against humanity.
      I worry that we have learned nothing from the past. Modern life makes it easy to repeat mistakes before realizing the ramifications.
      He was horrible. We could be horrible, as well.
      I'm glad he had a funeral. We shouldn't judge.

      October 15, 2013 at 8:06 pm |
  12. TheBob

    This is no surprise. The Catholic church was always in support of Nazi atrocities.

    October 15, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • Johnny

      The Germans should be ashamed they let Hitler govern them, and now they are letting anti-free speech thugs bully them. What an embarrassment of a country.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
    • Target

      Caucasians supported Hitler.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
    • Read It

      The Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) is not part of the Catholic church. This CNN article says it's a "sect" and that the "society has no official status within the Catholic Church." It is not representative of the Catholic Church, even if they use the word "catholic."

      October 15, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
      • TheBob

        Nitpick much? Hitler was a devout Catholic. Read Mein Kampf. So were all the Nazis. They signed a treaty with the Vatican, which gave the Nazis its unwavering support in their "efforts". You can spin it all day long. At the end of the day, the Catholic church was 100% in support of the Nazis. Facts are stubborn things.

        October 15, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • Mrs. Cartman

      Heck no, Blame Canada! Shame on Canada!

      October 15, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
  13. For the regular crowd on CNN

    http://www.logicalfallacies.info/presumption/no-true-scotsman/

    http://www.fallacyfiles.org/adnazium.html

    I just thought I'd save both sides a little time see links above.

    October 15, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
  14. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    Bury him?

    No.

    l want him stuck on a cactus...

    reduced to flies and ants.

    l don't....

    l don't want him in...

    the same ground with the Bear.

    l don't!

    (Paul Newman as Judge Roy Bean)

    October 15, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
  15. Dyslexic doG

    so Christians: if the evil Erich Priebke declared his love for jesus and god, will he go to heaven?

    then if another truly good man who spent his life doing good deeds, but was gay, were to die ... would he go to heaven?

    then what of another man who was genuinely a good man but worked on sunday, or was divorced, or ate the wrong food, or coveted his neighbor's wife ... will he go to heaven?

    October 15, 2013 at 6:45 pm |
    • Topher

      Dyslexic doG

      "so Christians: if the evil Erich Priebke declared his love for jesus and god, will he go to heaven?"

      No. He must repent of sins and put his trust in Jesus Christ.

      "then if another truly good man who spent his life doing good deeds, but was gay, were to die ... would he go to heaven?"

      Was he continuing to be active in that lifestyle? Has the person also lied, stolen, looked with lust, etc.?

      "then what of another man who was genuinely a good man but worked on sunday, or was divorced, or ate the wrong food, or coveted his neighbor's wife ... will he go to heaven?"

      Again, it doesn't matter what happened in the past if he repented and put his trust in God. Side note on these things ... you can work on Sunday, could be divorced (if he met the Biblical standard) and can eat any food you want.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        so based on your side note, you are choosing to disregard sections of the bible

        the bible is the word of god. how do you think god feels about you saying that he is wrong about all those things? don't insult me or slide out of this ... if the bible is the word of god then you must obey every letter. if it's not the word of god, then why quote it endlessly and why follow it ... it's just the word of bronze age religious fanatics.

        October 15, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
        • QS

          Every contradiction and convenience religious people use is intended to be used in the way they do as to make it appear that they are being rational while still claiming that what they believe is true...even though they themselves can cherry-pick the parts they want to follow.

          Kind of like how conservatives shut down the government and then freaked out when they realized the things that were being closed because of it and decided that they would cherry-pick the parts of government that THEY like and wanted to open.

          It's all very self-reinforcing and circular.

          October 15, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
        • Topher

          Dyslexic doG

          "so based on your side note, you are choosing to disregard sections of the bible"

          Not really. Those things, such as food or what to wear were under a different covenant. See Mark 7 and Acts 10 for specifics on why we can now eat anything.

          "the bible is the word of god."

          Exactly right.

          "how do you think god feels about you saying that he is wrong about all those things?"

          As I said, it's a different covenant. Jesus himself told us we can eat stuff now. I'm not saying He was wrong at all.

          "don't insult me or slide out of this ... if the bible is the word of god then you must obey every letter. if it's not the word of god, then why quote it endlessly and why follow it ... it's just the word of bronze age religious fanatics."

          I have no intention of insulting you. Why would I want to do that? It is the word of God and the OT is just as valid as the new ... but some of those things in the OT just aren't part of the new covenant.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
        • Observer

          Topher

          "Has the person also lied, stolen, looked with lust, etc.?"

          It's likely EVERY human CONTINUES to look with lust and without feeling repentent.

          Get serious and into the real world.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
        • Topher

          Observer

          Topher

          "It's likely EVERY human CONTINUES to look with lust and without feeling repentent."

          I'm sure you're right about MOST people. But those of us who are born again and have a "wondering eye" do repent when it happens.

          "Get serious and into the real world."

          I'm quite serious.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
        • Observer

          Topher,

          So God supposedly created s3x to encourage mating and then immediately condemns anyone who finds anyone other than their spouse attractive.

          And Christians wonder how others can find the Bible to be irrational and ridiculous.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
        • Topher

          Observer

          Topher,

          "So God supposedly created s3x to encourage mating and then immediately condemns anyone who finds anyone other than their spouse attractive."

          You're being a bit fallacious there. You can find someone attractive. It becomes sin when you're "undressing someone with your eyes" or the thoughts involve se.x with them.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:31 pm |
        • Observer

          Topher

          "You're being a bit fallacious there. You can find someone attractive. It becomes sin when you're "undressing someone with your eyes" or the thoughts involve se.x with them."

          Yeah, sure. When you see a beautiful girl in a bikini, you usually just think of them as "attractive".

          Why is facing reality and being honest with themselves such a problem for Christians.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:36 pm |
        • Topher

          Observer

          "Yeah, sure. When you see a beautiful girl in a bikini, you usually just think of them as "attractive"."

          If that's a problem for you, don't go to the beach. Look, I'm just like any other man. I want to look. But I choose not to because I understand what it means if I do. I've turned from my sins. Would it be so terrible for you to do the same?

          October 15, 2013 at 7:40 pm |
        • Observer

          Topher,

          "I've turned from my sins. Would it be so terrible for you to do the same?"

          Yes. Like everyone else, I don't believe or support much of what the Bible advocates, which makes me a "sinner". I could never support slavery or discimination against women, gays and the handicapped. I could never support forcing marriage on people who might hate each other or telling people they could never divorce. I could never advocate beating helpless children.

          Could I ever be "repentent" for such thinking? Never. Those are "immoral".

          October 15, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
        • Topher

          Observer

          "Yes. Like everyone else, I don't believe or support much of what the Bible advocates, which makes me a "sinner"."

          Humble yourself and repent. You'll start to believe it. You won't find Him unless you seek Him.

          "I could never support slavery or discimination against women, gays and the handicapped. I could never support forcing marriage on people who might hate each other or telling people they could never divorce. I could never advocate beating helpless children."

          You don't have to support slavery. Discrimination of women? Where else are women considered equals? How are people not getting divorced a bad thing? Instead of fighting, they should reconcile. It's better for everyone that way. And where are children beaten in the Bible?

          "Could I ever be "repentent" for such thinking? Never. Those are "immoral"."

          They only seem immoral because you stand as an enemy of God.

          October 15, 2013 at 8:04 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          Topher, if I don't act on a desire to have s3x with a person I find attractive, is it still a sin to imagine having s3x with them? If yes, why?

          October 15, 2013 at 8:21 pm |
        • Topher

          HotAirAce

          "Topher, if I don't act on a desire to have s3x with a person I find attractive, is it still a sin to imagine having s3x with them? If yes, why?"

          Yes. Jesus said if you look with lust, you've committed adultery already with them in your heart. That's how high God's standard is. He knows your thought-life and will judge it accordingly.

          October 15, 2013 at 8:33 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          Topher, please provide specific references to what you allege jesus said along with corroborating evidence that he in fact said whatever you claim he did.. Of course, I'm betting you have no direct evidence – just the end product of a great big "telephone game."

          October 15, 2013 at 8:58 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          And what if the other person is my wife and she genuinely likes me to think of her that way?

          October 15, 2013 at 9:00 pm |
      • ?

        Topher. I mean how really fvcking retarded are you? You really believe that some nutcase can commit mass murders, crimes against humanity, and then honestly repent and find jesus and all is forgiven? What disgusting sins do you have in your past that lets you believe such nonsense? No matter what you do in this life is washed away if you think like you do, disgusting belief system you have there.

        October 15, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
        • Topher

          ?

          "I mean how really --- ---are you? You really believe that some nutcase can commit mass murders, crimes against humanity, and then honestly repent and find jesus and all is forgiven?"

          With God it is. He'd still have to answer to man. Of course that would be a problem in this case.

          "What disgusting sins do you have in your past that lets you believe such nonsense?"

          I've broken all 10 Commandments. But that isn't why I believe the Bible is true.

          "No matter what you do in this life is washed away if you think like you do, disgusting belief system you have there."

          Disgusting?! I'd say it's wonderful! It just proves God's love, mercy and grace that no matter what you've done, He will wipe that sin away!

          October 15, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        and based on the rest of your answers, your religion is a nasty, judgmental, miso gyn.istic, ra.cist, hom.opho.bic cult. shame on you. you have long since lost sight of what is good and what is evil.

        October 15, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
        • Target

          You seem nasty yourself. Can you demonstrate a better way to act? Or can you just talk about it.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
    • anybody

      I don't think straw men can go to heaven. But my guess is only God knows who goes to heaven or why.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
      • Rett

        I think you are right that only God knows who will get to heaven......but the why is made pretty clear if you believe the Bible....i was told once there will be three surprises in heaven.....you will be surprised at who is there, who is not there, and perhaps that you are there....

        October 15, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
  16. JCS

    Good for him. God forgives no matter what. This nazi will be warmly embraced by Jesus in Heaven. Praise allah.

    October 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
    • TheBob

      He was doing Yahweh's work here on earth. Yahweh loves a good bloodbath. And burnt offerings.

      October 15, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Rett

      Grace is an amazing thing.....

      October 15, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
      • Major Tom

        Even more amazing is the Easter Bunny. Truly magical.

        October 15, 2013 at 7:16 pm |
  17. TheTruth

    Erich Priebke's is still a human being he deserves a proper service ... It does not matter what any Jew or J.D.L. thinks.. Whos being racist when the JDL wants this man to be cremated an his ashes sent into the sea ..

    October 15, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      His body should be sold to a university. They always need cadavers.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
      • Common sense

        It would be a good idea but due to the economy and the lack of funds for burials many of the Universities are turning bodies away.

        October 15, 2013 at 6:42 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      his remains should be treated with the same complete disrespect he showed other people in his life. they should be left in the street for the dogs and the rats.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
      • anybody

        No they shouldn't. One can only imagine that someone would truly be sorry for crimes (no matter how horrific) that they committed 60 years ago. Most sects of Judaism believe in forgiveness and redemption the same as most other humans christian or otherwise do. If a church doesn't recognize forgiveness not sure who would be able to be bried in a church at all...

        October 15, 2013 at 7:04 pm |
  18. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    Since the man is dead, what 's done with his body has only symbolic value. Feed him to pigs if you will, or bury him in consecrated ground. It can't matter to him. Anyway, there are worse things in consecrated ground, I'm sure.

    October 15, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
  19. Ed

    The Nazis were all Christians.

    Hitler was a devout Catholic

    The first Nazi treaty was with the vatican.

    October 15, 2013 at 6:31 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      so when the Christian religion passes itself off as a force for good, that's just another facet of their mass delusion.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • WBUR

      Hitler was not a devout Catholic, after his adolescence. In fact, he became increasingly disdainful of traditional forms of Christianity. Nazi tenets, even on abstract matters, were markedly inimical to Christianity. As people like Churchill and Pius XI rightly saw, Nazism was a modern form of pre-monotheistic neo-paganism.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
    • dupledge

      Ed,
      I think you need a history lesson. Some Nazis may have been Christians and good ones at that, Some may have called themselves Christian but by their actions they were not. Hitler may have been baptized a Catholic but was never a practising Christian and denounced a belief in God. So live out your "A Priori" ignorance if you will however, it is always best to get the facts correct before making assertions.

      October 15, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        dupledge: thanks for your revisionist history. you are a fraud.

        October 15, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
      • GodFreeNow

        "My feeling as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded only by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was his fight against the Jewish poison. Today, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed his blood upon the Cross. As a Christian, I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice."

        -Adolph Hitler Munich April 12, 1922

        What I can't distinguish here is how Hitler differs from the god-ordained genocidal murders of the bible, or the christians who carried out brutal attacks in Alexandria in order to quell knowledge, or the christians who carried out the crusades, or the witch trials, or the burning of "heretics", a.k.a., scientists. Is your argument that anyone who does bad things like this could not possibly be a christian? And if so, by what authority do you make the claim?

        October 15, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          well said!

          October 15, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
        • QS

          All part of those religious conveniences that have been solidified over the centuries.

          They claim that their religion (whichever one you want to insert) is all about love and compassion, but when one of their own does something irrational or even violent they want to say that they can easily distance themselves from that person due to that person being an "extremist".

          How convenient that they can simply declare "evil-doers" of any kind to be not of their religion, or that those people simply "misunderstood" the "message" that their religion professes to teach.

          What I don't get is how so many conservatives who rant and rave about personal responsibility also claim to be of a religion that refuses to accept responsibility for any of the wrongs it has created and caused over the course of history.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
        • AE

          “The fact that the Ja.panese have retained their political philosophy, which is one of the essential reasons for their successes, is due to their having been saved in time from the views of Christianity.”

          – Adolf Hitler circa 1941

          October 15, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
        • GodFreeNow

          @ AE, Please cite your source.

          Also, I am in the unique position of actually living in Japan. I can tell you that in Edo, an earlier era, there was very little tolerance for christianity to begin with, so if this is indeed an actual quote from Hitler, it's historically inaccurate.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:51 pm |
        • AE

          "Hitler's Table Talks"

          Yes, Ja.pan, like Hitler, had little tolerance for Christianity.

          October 15, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
        • GodFreeNow

          @ AE,
          "Yes, Ja.pan, like Hitler, had little tolerance for Christianity."
          This is historically inaccurate. There were many christian nazis. Hitler did nothing to end christianity. If you have evidence supporting that he did, please share it.

          In case you didn't know about the Table Talks:
          "Although considered authentic, contentious issues remain over particular aspects of the work, including the reliability of particular translated statements within the French and English editions,[5] the questionable manner in which Martin Bormann may have edited his notes,[11][14][15] and disputes over which edition is most reliable.[5][6] As a result, a high level of critical awareness of its potential drawbacks as a source is advisable when using Table Talk.[16][17][18]"
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hitler's_Table_Talk

          October 15, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
    • anybody

      No actually they weren't all Christian and Hitler was not a devout Catholic which is more than obvious based on prim efacie evidence. Regardless, this church which is not catholic but is some form of Christanity is doing something quite understandable despite wether your irrelevant claims are true or not. Not only do most judeo based religions believe in forgiveness and redemption, it is reasonable to allow someone who has committed crimes and served their sentence to be forgiven if they are sorry in any society

      October 15, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
    • Rett

      What do you base that on? I spent a lot of time in the principals office as a kid.....it did not make me the principal.......

      October 15, 2013 at 7:10 pm |
    • Read It

      The Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) is not part of the Catholic church. This CNN article says it's a "sect" and that the "society has no official status within the Catholic Church." It is not representative of the Catholic Church, even if they use the word "catholic."

      October 15, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
  20. JJ

    Nazis were Christian so I don't understand the big deal. Christians are always trying to reinvent their history. I can understand why. I would be embarrassed and appalled as well.

    October 15, 2013 at 6:28 pm |
    • Common sense

      This evil man is a poster child for why it is wrong to categorize people based on a religion. Do you feel that Dr. Martin Luthor King is responsible for the works of Hitler because they have the same imaginary friend?

      October 15, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.