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. bid

    Dyslexic doG

    The Legend of King Arthur is not evidence for Merlin.
    The Greek Myths are not evidence for Heracles.
    The Epic of Beowulf is not evidence for Grendel.
    The American Folk Tradition is not evidence for Paul Bunyan.

    The New Testament is not evidence for Jesus.

    that's a blatant lie

    The Old Testament is not evidence for Yahweh.

    that's a blatant lie

    The miracles happened ... in the story.
    The prophesies were fulfilled ... in the story.
    The character was emotionally appealing and morally right ... in the story.
    Get out of your stories.

    u lie. u cannot assert that miracles didn't occur

    October 16, 2013 at 6:05 pm |
    • Lisa

      No need to prove that they didn't occur because there isn't anything to prove against. If some Hindu claimed a miracle like someone living a long time without food you'd simply dismiss it out of hand, right? Why should your claims be treated any differently?

      October 17, 2013 at 12:40 am |
      • okanaduh

        isn't amazing how people preach the love of God then spew hatred and bigotry, can't we just get along

        October 18, 2013 at 3:13 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Miracles are things that can only be caused by God. Faith, you can assert that there is a God if you can come up with evidence of miracles. Otherwise not.

      October 17, 2013 at 12:59 am |
  2. Neo Agnostic

    Prayer changes nothing.

    October 16, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
  3. Lionly Lamb

    Nothingness was beforehand and now is, yet forever will be but Nothingness, the Holy Spirit of God...

    October 16, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
  4. Cy

    I would have loved for him to be buried in Israel. Imagine, no one would visit. And his grave would be on the land of the people he tried to destroy. The irony is delicious.

    October 16, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
    • AngryJew

      Only if the grave were within the 1948 borders as defined by the UN. The bigger irony is that today's so called "hebrews" have become the new war criminals. Go figure. 🙁

      October 19, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
  5. shirley

    Atheist is just a word for a non believer. That is not to say these people are not good people. We are all created equal in Gods eyes. And God is the same in any language. They just call him a different name. God is forgiving , he would have to be. Look at the morality of the people now a days.

    October 16, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • Lisa

      Everybody is a non believer on some level, or other. You likely don't believe in any of the other gods, right? If you can just understand that we share most of the same reasons for disbelieving in gods then you'll come to understand us as we really are.

      October 17, 2013 at 12:33 am |
      • shirley

        You know changing my mind will not wash. Regardless of who you are, believing is part of the human in us. We all believe in something regardless of what it might be. I was brought up to respect the beliefs of other people as you should respect mine. Respect these days seems to be situated at the back of the bus People are out for themselves and the all mighty dollar. One thing you won't change in me is my beliefs. And you sure can't take money to heaven. Money is for earthly things. And it has become the greed of the masses. We all sin but some see it as breaking mans law. We choose to follow one or the other or both. For sure we are punished for breaking mans law. We know this. But breaking Gods law comes with believing in him. That in the end you will atone for your sins. People create problems because they can. Saying negative things about the church only makes you look bad in peoples eyes. And some will be angered. Yes I am going on and not making much sense. I just know I was born to believe.

        October 17, 2013 at 1:20 am |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          Were you born to have unfounded beliefs? Do you want to have them? Or are you willing to examine where your beliefs come from and discard them when there's nothing holding them up? Too many questions? I've one more. If you believe only because of a lie someone told you, is that belief the sort your God is looking for?

          October 17, 2013 at 1:29 am |
  6. Apple Bush

    Give the body to science.

    October 16, 2013 at 11:16 am |
    • ?

      AB, did you know that a liver can make as much as $37,000 but probably a much younger one than that old monsters.

      October 16, 2013 at 11:59 am |
      • AngryJew

        I read somewhere that some Rabbis could arrange to have you sell your liver if you like. They will pay a good price. 🙂

        October 19, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
  7. Universe

    off the topic..

    “The example of Jesus, as far as GOD is concerned, is the same as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him, "Be," and he was.” Quran [3:59]

    It does not befit God that He begets a son, be He glorified. To have anything done, He simply says to it, "Be," and it is. [19:35]

    “No soul can carry the sins of another soul. If a soul that is loaded with sins implores another to bear part of its load, no other soul can carry any part of it, even if they were related. ... [35:18]

    “They even attribute to Him sons and daughters, without any knowledge. Be He glorified. He is the Most High, far above their claims.” Quran [6:100]

    “Recall that your Lord said to the angels, "I am placing a representative on Earth." They said, "Will You place therein one who will spread evil therein and shed blood, while we sing Your praises, glorify You, and uphold Your absolute authority?" He said, "I know what you do not know." [2:30]

    “They say , "We live only this life; we will not be resurrected. If you could only see them when they stand before their Lord! He would say, "Is this not the truth?" They would say, "Yes, by our Lord." He would say, "You have incurred the retribution by your disbelief." [6:30]

    “We have honored the children of Adam, and provided them with rides on land and in the sea. We provided for them good provisions, and we gave them greater advantages than many of our creatures.” Quran [17:70]

    “O children of Adam, when messengers come to you from among you, and recite My revelations to you, those who take heed and lead a righteous life, will have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.” Quran [7:35]

    “O children of Adam, do not let the devil dupe you as he did when he caused the eviction of your parents from Paradise, and the removal of their garments to expose their bodies. He and his tribe see you, while you do not see them. We appoint the devils as companions of those who do not believe.” Quran [7:27]

    “Losers indeed are those who disbelieve in meeting God, until the Hour comes to them suddenly, then say, "We deeply regret wasting our lives in this world." They will carry loads of their sins on their backs; what a miserable load! [6:31]

    Thanks for taking time to read my post. Please take a moment to visit whyIslam org website.

    October 16, 2013 at 10:59 am |
    • Pete

      Anyone can quote from a book, but does doing so somehow prove that these are truthful sayings?

      October 16, 2013 at 11:22 am |
    • Which God?

      Sheer nonsense, and proxy threats thrown in. Total BS.

      October 16, 2013 at 11:36 am |
      • bananas


        October 16, 2013 at 5:20 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      The Legend of King Arthur is not evidence for Merlin.
      The Greek Myths are not evidence for Heracles.
      The Epic of Beowulf is not evidence for Grendel.
      The American Folk Tradition is not evidence for Paul Bunyan.
      The New Testament is not evidence for Jesus.
      The Old Testament is not evidence for Yahweh.

      The miracles happened ... in the story.
      The prophesies were fulfilled ... in the story.
      The character was emotionally appealing and morally right ... in the story.

      Get out of your stories.

      October 16, 2013 at 11:48 am |
      • Responding to the Pride

        To an extent, I beg to differ. Much of the NT is written as a first person account–i.e. Paul's letters–the same Paul who testified to being a direct witness to Christ's resurrection. His first person account is in fact evidence. You may disagree with Paul's veracity, but it isn't a "story." Moreover, the historical context of what was taking place in NT times has never been found disputed as it is represented in the Bible (unlike your other extra-biblical examples). Herod did exist. Rome was in charge. People were crucified. The places mentioned existed–some even today. Christianity was spreading. And on and on.

        October 16, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • bananas

          These are the same "scholars" who claim Jesus is a combo of numerous historical figures. The boys writing the n.t. stole their true biographies -no evidence supports a word of it- and blended them to create Jesus to influence the roman empire 4 centuries later.

          October 16, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
        • R.M. Goodswell

          "Much of the NT is written as a first person account–i.e. Paul's letters–the same Paul who testified to being a direct witness to Christ's resurrection. His first person account is in fact evidence. You may disagree with Paul's veracity, but it isn't a "story"

          First hand account? you sure? because the Paul you speak of was born 5 years AFTER the supposed Crucifixion.

          October 18, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
      • Gol

        "The New Testament is not evidence for Jesus."

        Evidence is anything presented in support of an assertion. So yes, the NT is evidence for Jesus existing.

        October 16, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • bananas

          It is impossible for athies not to try to be cute here. Watch their answers. What is the new testament if not evidence of Christ's life?

          October 16, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          But evidence must be evaluated before it is considered factual or true. There is not sufficient evidence to conclusively establish that some desert dwelling dude called jesus was divine as alleged, assuming he existed at all.

          October 17, 2013 at 1:16 am |
        • dimblar

          But evidence must be evaluated before it is considered factual or true. There is not sufficient evidence to conclusively establish that some desert dwelling dude called jesus was divine as alleged, assuming he existed at all.

          October 17, 2013 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |

          where was it alleged?

          October 17, 2013 at 2:44 am |
        • dimblar

          he can prove to you right now he is real. this very moment. if you want to no

          October 17, 2013 at 2:47 am |
      • bananas

        Ahh matey, failed math once again!

        If a=b and b=c, then d=c is incorrect. you have used the wrong equation

        October 16, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
    • Reality # 2

      And why is Islam a religion of terror and horror? See below:

      http://www.muslimaccess.com/quraan/arabic/005.asp et al
      o "Believers, take neither Jews nor Christians for your friends." (Surah 5:51)
      "Believers, when you encounter the infidels on the march, do not turn your backs to them in flight. If anyone on that day turns his back to them, except it be for tactical reasons...he shall incur the wrath of God and Hell shall be his home..." (Surah 8:12-)

      "Make war on them until idolatry shall cease and God's religion shall reign supreme." (Surah 8:36-)

      "...make war on the leaders of unbelief...Make war on them: God will chastise them at your hands and humble them. He will grant you victory over them..." (Surah 9:12-)

      "Fight against such as those to whom the Scriptures were given [Jews and Christians]...until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued." (Surah 9:27-)

      "It is He who has sent forth His apostle with guidance and the true Faith [Islam] to make it triumphant over all religions, however much the idolaters [non-Muslims] may dislike it." (Surah 9:31-)

      "If you do not fight, He will punish you sternly, and replace you by other men." (Surah 9:37-)

      "Prophet make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites and deal rigorously with them. Hell shall be their home." (Surah 9:73)

      "Believers, make war on the infidels who dwell around you. Deal firmly with them." (Surah 9:121-)

      "Say: 'Praise be to God who has never begotten a son; who has no partner in His Kingdom..." (Surah 17:111)

      "'How shall I bear a child,' she [Mary] answered, 'when I am a virgin...?' 'Such is the will of the Lord,' he replied. 'That is no difficult thing for Him...God forbid that He [God[ Himself should beget a son!...Those who say: 'The Lord of Mercy has begotten a son,' preach a monstrous falsehood..." (Surah 19:12-, 29-, 88)

      "Fight for the cause of God with the devotion due to Him...He has given you the name of Muslims..." (Surah 22:78-)

      "Blessed are the believers...who restrain their carnal desires (except with their wives and slave-girls, for these are lawful to them)...These are the heirs of Paradise..." (Surah 23:1-5-)

      "Muhammad is God's apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another." (Surah 48:29)

      "Shall the reward of goodness be anything but good?...Dark-eyed virgins sheltered in their tents...They shall recline on green cushions and fine carpets...Blessed be the name of your Lord..." (Surah 55:52-66-)

      October 16, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
    • shirley

      Christ died for our sins. He did not take our sins onto himself. There is a difference.

      October 16, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
      • perry

        "He himself bore our sins" in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; "by his wounds you have been healed."

        October 17, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
  8. Roger that

    Just bury it already before this turns into a Weekend at Bernie's.

    October 16, 2013 at 10:37 am |
  9. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    Pius X was one of the greatest Anti-Semites of recent times. It does not surprise me that a church belonging to a splinter group named for him would be willing to host a funeral for a participant on the Holocaust.

    October 16, 2013 at 9:19 am |
    • Pete

      Hitler was a Catholic, so why not?

      October 16, 2013 at 10:23 am |
      • Bill Deacon

        Did he have a funeral mass?

        October 16, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        • Pete

          There was nothing left to his body, supposedly, but who knows what rites were performed for him. For all we know, old Adolph could have found Jesus in that bunker and could be looking down from heaven as we speak. That's possible, right?

          October 16, 2013 at 11:19 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Hitler killed himself and therefore went straight to Hell (if you believe that sort of thing).
          It's not like he could have confessed his final mortal sin and been forgiven....

          October 16, 2013 at 11:27 am |
        • Real Deal

          "For all we know, old Adolph could have found Jesus in that bunker and could be looking down from heaven as we speak."

          Yep. As I understand it, the Mormons do not believe it's over even at the moment of death - they think that there's some kind of other phase in there (after death). That's why they go around baptizing people who have long-since died.

          The deal is: We don't know what, if anything, happens after death. Those who say that they do are fantasizing.

          October 16, 2013 at 11:38 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          He would have been Baptized as an infant.

          October 16, 2013 at 11:57 am |
        • OKfine

          BD, you can do the search if you like just a few clicks but I did it for you, Hitler was confirmed into the RCC and even sang in the choir as a boy. Whether he got the priestly reach around we will never know. I hope you find this information useful.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          It just shows that the Mormons would have had no cause nor justification to perform whatever it is they did after his death.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
        • Real Deal

          Bill Deacon
          "He would have been Baptized as an infant."

          Ah, jolly good show, then. Maybe "God" and "Jesus" have him up there in a rehabilitation/education/reparation phase. Or maybe they've sent him back down here as a co.ckroach or as a missionary. Or maybe.... well, anything. WE. DO. NOT. KNOW.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Maybe he's in purgatory waiting on the remission of his temporal punishment before he enters the merciful presence of God

          October 16, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD, do you think the neo nazis could buy a few indulgences to get him sprung? Didn't Frankie bring back the practice at the last world catholic youth day, you should know all the details, being you?

          October 16, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
        • Pete

          Too many suicides of late were the victims of bullies and the other tragic circu mstances to honestly believe that they all deserve more punishment. Surely a good God wouldn't punish the victims, would they?

          October 16, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Indulgences have never stopped being a part of Catholic practice. Anyone and everyone can pray for the dead but God alone decides how the indulgence is applied. It brings up an interesting question though. Who do you think will forgive Hitler first, mankind or God?

          October 16, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
        • Pete

          Surely, the born agains wouldn't turn away a lapsed Catholic, right? I've heard it said that the declaration of taking Jesus as your personal Savior is all that is required. Demonstrations of good works aren't even required, so why would you doubt that he could have made such a deathbed conversion?

          October 16, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
        • Bill Marvel

          Deacon, I signed onto this blog last night, not knowing what I was getting into. Now I'm signing off. The flow of bile and vitriol is overwhelming.
          But before I do I want to add that as a lifelong practicing Roman Catholic I find your comments, while occasionally correct, narrow, self-righteous and probably not at all helpful to the Church in its mission of proclaiming the Word. I imagine you were raised in the old days of Catholic education when so much emphasis was placed on apologetics, in arguing unbelievers out of their unbelief. I've spent a lot of electrons doing the same thing, but I've come to believe that doing so is an exercise in pride, not piety.
          I implore you, think before you blog again.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Pete

          Why would either forgive him at all? From my point of view, however, if anyone declared that God had forgiven Hitler that would be a human expressing their own feeling that Hitler deserved forgiveness, as all thoughts of God originate in human minds. God faithfully does whatever his followers believe he would do. It's the tail wagging the dog, not the other way round.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD When your dead, that's it you are dead, no forgiveness needed. Hitler's infamy will live in history along with such notables as Pope Alexander VI, Pope Steven VII, Pope John XII, Pope Julius III (the notorious pedophile) and lets toss in Stalin for balance.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Cam

          Yes, I think that it says more about those who fantasize about monsters like Hitler escaping what they deserve than the monsters themselves.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Pete, I think you are conflating elements of Protestantism with Catholic doctrine. If we're going to evaluate Hitler as a Catholic, which he was, let's stick to the catechism shall we? Again, Hitler didn't have a deathbed so he couldn't have made a deathbed confession or conversion. His final act was suicide which the Church has pronounced a mortal sin, in defiance of the grace of God. Also, I am not saying that any man claims God has forgiven Hitler. In fact, I have said that only God knows how the dispensation of grace occurs. What I am questioning, given the recurrence of a topic which is approaching one hundred years old, is whether God or man will decide to release Hitler from his temporal sin first. My guess is that mankind will hold Hitler hostage to judgement longer than a merciful God will. You seem to think that no forgiveness should be forthcoming from either, which, take note ME II, I find a peculiarly atheistic attiitude given that atheists claim Christians are more judgmental than secularists.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Bill, I tend to agree with you in principle. But, no I am a convert late in life to the faith. I understand your impulse to refrain from conflict about the faith but I am not content to allow others to patronize and smear Holy Mother Church through ignorance and bigotry. You may find me all the adjectives you use to describe me but can you point to any occasion where I have misrepresented the catechism or presented information that is not correct?

          October 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD. I think Bill said it better than anyone else. It seems that even your fellow catholics think that your pompous, arrogant holier than thou posts and atti.tude are over the top and you should just shut the fvck up. Mea maxima culpa on not having read the RCC BS but have you read the whole Koran, every Watchtower printed, the Book of Mormon, the Vedas, the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, neither have I, so why should I read the RCC propaganda. Please continue to post as is your right but thankfully you are doing more harm than good as Bill pointed out.
          PS: I will be here as much as possible, I promise.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          "take note ME II,"

          Wow, I wasn't even on this thread, I don't think.

          "You seem to think that no forgiveness should be forthcoming from either, which, take note ME II, I find a peculiarly atheistic atti[]itude given that atheists claim Christians are more judgmental than secularists."

          Actually from my perspective, not Atheism's, I would disagree with what apparently would be the judgement of God, i.e. eternal punishment in hell.
          I don't know if that is forgiveness or not, but He certainly wouldn't stop punishing before humans, which likely won't be around for more than a few billion years at most, due to either extinction or evolution.

          October 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
      • AngryJew

        I read somewhere that Hitler was of Jewish ancestry. So was Goebbels. Go figure. 🙂

        October 19, 2013 at 11:33 pm |
  10. Honey Badger Don't Care

    Why wouldnt they get a catholic funeral? Most of the population of Germany in the 30s and 40s were catholic, so it is no surprise that these guys were too. They are xtians so they get an xtian funeral. Non-story here.

    October 16, 2013 at 9:09 am |
  11. Joe

    Mass man slaughtering is convicted and should be punished severely wether it was targeting Jews or other groups from other ethnic and religious background. I wonder though, Did the creators of the Atomic bombs that where thrown on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, The pilots who done it and the officers and soldiers who participated in the 1st use of a nuclear weapon on civilians had a decent burrier or no ? and what was the position of NGOs by then ? we can not deal with thing as a double standard. Killing any human in the world is a crime that its punishment shouldn't differ according to your nationality of if you won or lost the war.

    October 16, 2013 at 8:19 am |
  12. Apple Bush

    I am a firm believer that all corpses should be buried or cremated.

    October 16, 2013 at 7:07 am |
    • OKfine

      Good morning AB.
      How about they find out how the 335 bodies he helped to lead to the slaughter were disposed of and have his corpse be treated in the same manner? Seems fair to me.

      October 16, 2013 at 7:53 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        My comment was not directed at Catholics.
        You'll note I explicitly said "Not Christ, of course". I'm referring to The Father – the vengeful, smitey God of the Jews.
        Your statement regarding the "atheist belief system" (which is, of course, a misleading term since atheism is a negative statement that describes only what one does NOT believe) was a sweeping generalization with the implication that its antonymn – Theism – is inherently morally superior.

        It isn't.

        October 16, 2013 at 9:48 am |
        • Pete

          "God's justice" would then be a form of spiritual revenge, wouldn't it? Do you take some kind of comfort in thinking that God would punish all those you believe deserve it? Some of the Eastern religions would identify that as a character flaw that needed to be overcome. What do you think?

          October 16, 2013 at 11:13 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Pete, I take no comfort in that scenario.Which is why I think the Church offers every possibility to reconcile. It seems from the tone of these comments that some people would prefer the Sacrament of reconciliation be withheld from the "wrong" types and are willing to castigate the church when it exercises mercy. What do you think?

          October 16, 2013 at 11:18 am |
        • Pete

          "Reconciliation" from what? I really couldn't care less about whatever crimes you think people commit against God, but how much emphasis does the Church place on people reconciling with those they've hurt? Seems to me that one could live as hedonistically as one chooses to, hurting whomever gets in the way, and all is fine for the Christian as long as they periodically maintain their "state of grace" by asking the priest to forgive them with nary a worry for having to work at getting anyone else's forgiveness. For all practical purposes it's a system that's all about forgiving yourself, making it utterly selfish.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
        • OKfine

          That is how Billy got sucked into the scam, desperately seeking redemption for his mult.itude of "sins", the golden crutch, just wish he could shut up about it.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Interesting that ok wishes I would shut up about a topic he admits he has no knowledge about in a cordial conversation between two people that he was not part of until he interjected.

          Pete, you sound as if you accept the standard misconception of the Sacrament of reconciliation that views it as "rubber stamp" on past sin or a license to sin or some such. If you've never received the Sacrament, that is understandable but I can assure you that a deep contrition, a repentant heart and a desire to make restiitution are paramount to the efficacy of the Sacrament. That may explain why, in the case of Priebke, that the Bishop of Rome refused a funeral mass. He may has discerned that Priebke wasn't truly repentant and thus only made a false confession, if any. I think you err when you conclude that a devout person enters the confessional with a smirk and an attiitude of complacency

          October 16, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD My mission is to disrupt any of your statements that try and convince or defend your delusion in the RCC to anyone that may be sucked in by your nonsense, your god does not exist never could have so all that follows is BS. That is my contrary view to yours and I have every right to point that out ad nauseam and will continue to do so. Hallelujah.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
        • Pete

          A "desire" may be required, but actual rest itution isn't, and that's the problem. What if we had civil courts that pardoned folks simply based on their being sorry and wanting to pay back their victims? Pure licence for bankrupt people to cheat whomever without any risk of actually having to pay something in return. It simply does not cure people of poor behavior when all you think you need do is appease some notion of a god in your head, and never face those you've actually hurt. That's what deathbed confessions are all about, right? The Prodigal Son being "worth" more than 99 relatively good people?! Very poor moral teaching, that one.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          I'm about to decide my friend Bill Marvel is right, or at least I'm willing to take his advice. Given that Ok has admitted that he is nothing more than a disruptive antagonist and that Pete can't sort Catholicism from Protestantism or the parable of the prodigal son from the parable of the lost sheep, it seems I am casting pearls before swine.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD. Now we are getting somewhere, it took a long time to be rid of the Chad but it happened. I will miss you, not much, because I can move onto AE, LofA, Topher, etc. Bye now, it has been fun making a fool of you.

          October 16, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
  13. beloved

    it is their proselytizing, their right to vote and that they can work with our kids and the elderly that is truly devastating. personally, i find them funnier than any act in history. they just need to be silent about their faith

    October 16, 2013 at 3:55 am |
  14. Aaron

    Are Anti Defamation league (ADL) committee members actually jews or are they atheists???? If they are truly Jews, they will know that ALL corpses must be respected (proper funeral rites) and God is the final and ultimate decider in any man's fate, whether war criminals or pious individuals.

    October 16, 2013 at 2:28 am |
    • lannie

      Most are Khazar and not true biblical hebrews.

      October 16, 2013 at 2:46 am |
    • nino

      You are right that all corpses must be respected but that doesn't mean that they had to have a catholic funeral rite.
      Priebke should have a civil funeral without any public relevance, he should be buried in his birth town not in Italy or Argentina.
      You should inform yourself about this issue because he is not the only one rejected by the church. Read the Code of Canon Law and you will see that a catholic funeral rite is also deny to other people (non baptized, dead by medical euthanasia, ecc)

      October 16, 2013 at 3:44 am |
      • Bill Deacon

        This was not a Catholic funeral. The Society of Pius X is not legally tied to the Vatican. That's kind of the point of the article.

        October 16, 2013 at 9:12 am |
        • Sara

          It is not Roman Catholic. I don't know that one group can claim the fairly common word Catholic, but they certainly aren't affiliated.

          October 16, 2013 at 9:16 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Sara, I think when most people hear the word Catholic, they intuit the proper as sociation which is in communion with the Holy See under the auspi ces of the Bishop of Rome. Other groups who may call themselves Catholic are in error.

          October 16, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
        • Sara

          Bill, When I lived down south many "Christians" would say the same for the misuse of the label Christian by Catholics.

          October 16, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • aldewacs2

      Lookie here, Aaron, what made you drag 'atheists' in this issue?
      This is all about what various religions perceive to be 'fair, right, proper, etc'... atheists as a group have no involvement at all – except that you seem to want to smear their name somehow.

      October 16, 2013 at 9:08 am |
    • AngryJew

      The ADL are a bunch of terrorists. No different from Neo-Nazis. They believe in a master race.

      October 19, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
  15. joesense

    We should bury him and give him a church funeral. This is the only way it shows the difference between good and evil. We will as civilized people give him a proper send off as per rites, let whichever other world his soul goes to judge him or deal with him appropriately.

    October 16, 2013 at 2:18 am |
  16. shawbrooke

    Who was it that informed the public about the site of the funeral and burial? Isn't there some law they can be charged under, such as inciting a riot? The deceased should have disappeared with no fanfare. Why does he get more publicity even after death??? He does not deserve it.

    October 16, 2013 at 1:43 am |
  17. Johnny L

    On June 8, 1967 the state of Israel attacked the unarmed United States navel vessel, USS Liberty in international waters killing 34 American sailors. Since the ADL is not strong on forgiving, I feel to be fair in this matter all Israeli's who participated in this heinous butchery of their so-called "Allies" should likewise be treated as the war criminals they are and as such should be cremated and have their ashes scattered at sea in total disgrace. Or course we could walk the hard road and forgive people for pass mistakes.

    October 16, 2013 at 1:10 am |
    • Observer

      Johnny L

      "I feel to be fair . ."

      lol. If you were concerned about being fair at all you'd mention that both countries investigated and decided it was a case of mistaken identification. Israel apologized and has paid millions to the families and to the US for damage. Ooops. So much for "fair".

      October 16, 2013 at 1:21 am |
      • shirley

        I didn't say it was fair. I thought it was a solution.

        October 16, 2013 at 1:25 am |
      • bananas

        Talk to the s snake dorothy

        October 16, 2013 at 7:31 am |
    • shirley

      You are what is called a radicle . No amount of discussion is going to pacify you. SioI shall leave you with yourself to discuss it further.

      October 16, 2013 at 1:39 am |
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About this blog

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.