The Inevitable Crimes of Celibacy: The Vices
of Convents and Monasteries,
Priests and Nuns.
But where robbery has disguised itself as Law, and one class has aimed the law-making machine
at the others, saying "Stand and deliver
!" whole regions have become deserts
, and great peoples have been blotted out.
, the highwayman, the cattle-lifter and the pickpocket have never in the least affected
the destinies of nations. The pirate and the buccaneer
have never been able
of the seas, beggar
provinces, and change noble
harbors into neglected
It is when the robbers intrench themselves in Parliaments, Reichstags and Congresses, and the robbery takes the form of "Law," that spoliation becomes destructive
. Bank laws and money-contraction laws beat down more victims than armies. Protective Tariff "laws," infinitely more ruinous
than all the Lafittes and Captain Kidds, drive
the American flag
from the seas, while on land they make a thousand Rockefellers, Carnegies, Morgans, Guggenheims, McCormicks and Armours, at the same time that they are casting millions of the despoiled out of house and home.
There are realms where religious
mendicancy keeps to the primitive
forms of the beggar
's bowl and pouch. It is the free-will offering.
In these countries of voluntary
feeling has branched [Pg 4]into the fewest channels, has lost
the least of its original force
, and maintains today its most impregnable
position. But where the priestly caste
to intrench its mendicancy in Law, and arrogantly say to the laity
, "Pay me one-tenth of all thou hast!" religion
was first to well-nigh lose its beauty and its strength
, and like, the Rhine, almost disappear
into the intricate
morasses of subdivisions.
Ten thousand virulent
disputes about tithes ushered in the diabolisms of the French Revolution; and many of my readers will remember
how Charles Dickens, when a Parliamentary reporter
, dropped his pencil in tears, unable to go on, as Daniel O'Connell described one of the tragedies of a tithe
-riot in Ireland.
When Religion went forth as Christ sent it forth, it demanded nothing for the priest
. Yet, the same religion
into an episcopacy, afterwards wrote the tax of one-tenth upon the statute-book, and sold the widow
to pay the priest
for his prayer. In those days, it must have been a gruesome spectacle
as the burly parson
, a picture of physical
fullness, stood in the background
, personifying Law and Religion, while the bailiff
raided the cotter's wretched premises
, pounced upon pigs and poultry
, or dragged household
goods off to public
sale. Yet, during centuries of outrage
, pain and starvation
, this sort of robbery disguised itself with a double domino
of Law and Religion.
Forgive me, if I digress
briefly to mention
how vividly I was reminded of all this, by the thrifty
, business-like manner in which Bishop P. J. Donohue, of Wheeling, West Virginia, sold out a laboring man, S. W. Hawley, for rent
, in the year of our Crucified Lord, 1913.
due to this most worshipful Bishop of God, the following personal property
was seized, and advertised for sale, to-wit: 3 bed springs and 3 beds, 3 mattresses, 1 stove, 2 tables, 10 chairs, 3 pictures, 1 broom, 4 comforts, 2 blankets, 3 quilts, 4 pillows, and some dishes.
(It was further stated that Hawley's back was broken, while working in the coal mines.)
George Alfred Townsend, who was so well known to journalism
as "Gath," wrote a novel
which he called "The Entailed Hat." The book would have lived gloriously, had it not been for the hat: the sternly absurd
conditions which this[Pg 5] idea about the Entailed Hat fastened upon the author
, killed his novel
But there was in it one passage
which lingers yet in my recollection
, after the lapse
of more than 30 years. There were two brothers, shrewd
, pushing, flinty Jews, who drove hard bargains, hard collections, and filled a store
-room with household plunder
sold for debt
, and bought in by the Jews, to be resold at a profit
. "Gath" gave tongue to each article
of this pitiful domestic
furniture, torn from the homes of the poor, and auctioned at public
The old rickety cradle spoke
of the babes that had lain in it, and of the mother-songs that had been sung over it, as the foot which moves the world softly pedalled the wooden rockers.
and the spindle
had their stories to tell: the table
and the dishes spoke
of the plain
meals and unpretentious
hospitalities of the lowly: the chairs remembered the humble hearth
and fireside, and many a circle of bright faces they had helped to form around the cheerful glow
of the burning logs.
The silent clock, with no life of moving hands on its dust-covered face, spoke
of how the short and simple annals
of the poor had been measured by it, how it had timed the marriage
and the funeral
, the birth and death; and how it had missed the toil-hardened hands that used to wind it up, every night.
And so on-the dirge
of the Household Goods!
As my eye ran over the items of the poor man's goods ordered to sale for the most worshipful Bishop Donohue-the consecrated disciple
of Christ who didn't even have as much of a home as the foxes and the birds-I might
of one or two blistering
passages in the glorious
old Code of Moses; I might
have recalled some of the bitterest of the words of Jesus Christ, against those rich, haughty
, unmerciful lordlings who grind
the faces of the poor.
But I did not: on the contrary
, that passage
in "Gath's" novel
rose out of the mist of 30 years, and brought back the plaintive lament
of the household
goods, seized, carried away, and sold into strange
hands to pay a trifling debt
. "Gath," following literary tradition
, most canonically chose Jews to act as shylocks: it would never have occurred to him that a consecrated
Bishop of Jesus Christ could sell the poor Christian's blanket off the bed, sell the bed itself, sell the table
at which the family ate, and the chairs that they sat on. Not[Pg 6] only the mattress on which the tired
limbs of labor
stretched themselves to rest, and the pillows upon which the aching
head had lain, but the very broom which swept the floor, had to be seized to satisfy
of this godly landlord
, the Bishop of a homeless Christ!
To make this picture perfect
, the family Bible ought to have been levied on-and this Catholic Bishop ought to have bought it in. Having acquired the Book in that manner, a natural curiosity might
have prompted him to read it.
One thing, however, the most worshipful Bishop might
yet do: he might
take the proceeds
of the sale of Hawley's beds, mattresses, pillows, stove, dishes, comforts, blankets, chairs and broom-and contribute
the whole sum
to Foreign Missions.
"Thou shalt not commit adultery
All Christians take their laws and their religion
more or less from the Jews. Who the Jews took it from, is another question. Skeptical scholars say that they took it from the older peoples of the East, of the Nile, the Euphrates: orthodox
Christianity maintains that they took it by revelation
direct from Jehovah. Therefore, every sect
in Christendom stands committed
to the proposition
that God Almighty, clothed in all His terrors, with the clouds darkening the skies, the thunders for His heralds and the lightenings for the flaming swords that went before His face, came down to Sinai, and wrote upon the everlasting tablets,
"Thou shalt not commit adultery
(Doway Bible: Deut. xx:14. I will hereafter
use this Roman Catholic version
as the true one, thus
avoiding any dispute
with papists as to the accuracy
of my quotations.)
In this Doway, or Douay, a version
of the Book, we are somewhat patly told that the first thing which Adam did, after having been dispossessed of Eden, was to know "Eve his wife, who conceived and brought forth Cain, saying, I have gotten a man through
Then she brought forth Abel; and before six other verses are ended, we learn that the brothers are at enmity
because of religion
, and that one has killed the other.
How Adam and Eve were to have propagated the human
race, had Eve not listened to the snake; or whether they were to have propagated it at all, is a mystery
which our finite
minds were evidently not expected
. Nevertheless, Saint[Pg 7] Augustine made a heroic effort
to answer the riddle
; and his classic theological
work, "The City of God," contains his theory
, still discreetly veiled in the original
Latin, which, being interpreted, is considerably nastier than any other English that I ever perused in a classical theological
"And God blessed Noe and his sons: and said unto them, Increase and multiply
, and fill the earth
It is true that Noe got drunk, soon after this; but the diligent
casuists, who follow every perilous passage
in the Douay Bible with their indefatigable
notes, tell us that Noe did not commit
a sin by getting drunk, "because he knew not the strength
of it," the wine.
(Thus does ignorance excuse
the sinner, when the casuists need
the Mosaic Code, breathes the same spirit
: it can fairly be summed up in the phrase
, Thou shalt marry!
is given to wedlock
and to large families: polygamy
itself, had its reason
, in those hot climates where puberty
is reached at so early an age, and where the child-bearing woman is so quickly aged into unfitness for mating with the robust husband
. It was partly because the Mosaic law gave so little excuse
, that adultery
was so cruelly punished. And the vigor
of the Jewish type, for so many centuries, amid so many barbarous
persecutions, and in spite
of such wide geographical dispersions, is the most splendid monument
to the eternal wisdom
of the command
Marry! Increase and multiply
! Fill the earth
with lawfully begotten
children! Honor the Home! Preserve your Race! Do not breed
promiscuously! DO NOT MONGRELIZE!
"Do not commit adultery
As Moses minutely
regulated the patriarchal household
,[Pg 8] making the nomad
Jew's wife the queen of his tent, so Paul the Apostle carefully instructed the model priest
, admonishing him to be content
with one wife, and to be watchful
over the conduct
of his family, "having his children in subjection with all chastity
(I may add that St. Paul lays down the law in a manner that condemns the Christian bishops who sell out their humble
fellows who are unable to pay rent
The priests of Assyria and of Egypt were married men. The priests of the Jews were married men: the priests of the Romans were married men. The Bishops, or Popes, of Rome were married men, during the first four hundred years after Christ.
(See Dr. Angelo S. Rappoport's "Love Affairs of the Vatican," 3rd Edition, 1912, p. 9.)
Let no one misunderstand me: I freely admit
that there are exceptional
men and women who voluntarily
choose the unmarried life. There have always been such exceptions to the rule, and there probably
always will be: the reasons need
not be discussed.
Those reasons do not necessarily imply
: some men simply prefer
not to take a wife; some women just naturally fear the loss of independence
, or they never meet the King who will take no denial
, or they nobly burden
their lives with duties which demand
The six Vestals of old Rome were voluntary
celibates: such men as Paul, Ben Zoma, Montaigne, Spinoza, were voluntary
bachelors. It might
have been far happier for John Wesley, Thomas Carlyle, and John Ruskin, had they persisted in the single state
priests, simply means adultery
, hidden behind walls and disguised as religion
. Therefore, when adultery
has to be tolerated, as an incident
to a certain
[Pg 9] form of Christianity, the crime eludes the law, the illicit
intercourse of the sexes identifies itself with a religious system
, and it becomes as impossible
as does the robber who gains control
of the machinery
. When the robber is the Law, who is to punish
? When adultery
is elevated into a system
which is recognized as a religion
, who is to punish
Robbery enthroned in the law, and advancing its demands too far, has to be dealt with by revolutions. Thus it was in England, when the Great Charter was won. Thus it was in the Revolution of 1688. Thus it was in Switzerland, in France, in the American Colonies, in Italy, in Germany, and even in Spain and Portugal-not to mention
South America, and Mexico.
Adultery, interwoven in a religious system
, was one of the main-springs of the Revolution in Germany, in England, in Holland and in the States of the libertine
The enormous popular support
given to Calvin, Luther, and Knox, to Henry VIII., to Garibaldi, to Bolivar, and to Juarez, was largely fanned and fed by the intense wrath
of the people against the pope-protected immorality
of the priests-the adultery
which could not be punished because it was interwoven into the system
But who made the system
? Not God, nor the Bible, nor the Apostles, nor the early Fathers of the Primitive Church: the system
was peculiarly the work of Hildebrand, Pope Gregory VII.
It was this Pope who formulated the dogma
of universal dominion
It was Gregory who said that, "The world derives its light from two sources, the sun and the moon, the former
symbolizing the Papacy, the latter
the Civil State."
In Gregory's mind
, the entire
Christian world was his Empire. The temporal
Princes were his vassals, every King[Pg 10]dom of Europe was his fief
, every crown, his to give and to take away. The keys of Heaven and of Hell were in his hands; he was the Infallible representative
of Jehovah; and when he spoke
, nations must shout, "The voice of the Pope, is the voice of God!"
such a power
its banners, a disciplined
soldiery was necessary
, the priests who could not take wives and have children. A family would divide
. Hence, also, the convent
and the confessional, to furnish
to the ungovernable natural
desires of full-sexed men.
During the three frozen winter days of 1077, when a barefooted Emperor of Germany stood outside the castle-gate at Canossa, in the snow, this Gregory VII. spent the time inside with his Mistress, the Countess Matilda of Tuscany. When the Pope finally professed himself satisfied
with the Emperor's penitence
, he figuratively
placed his foot upon the Emperor's neck. The Church had conquered the Civil State. The priest
was above the King. To Cæsar nothing was left, save what the Pope might
. The things that had been Cæsar's, in Christ's time, were now the Pope's. Thus, the Fisherman not only wore one crown, but three, the tiara
. He was lord of Earth, lord of Heaven, lord of Hell.
Under the Gregorian theory
, God had become a silent partner
in the government
of Creation, oppressed
by the logical necessity
of endorsing every decree
of the Infallible Italian priest
. Jehovah was become a sort of Roy Faineant: the Italian Pope was Mayor of the Palace. To vary
, the Almighty was become a King of England, and the Pope, Prime Minister. What the Premier tells the King to say, the King says; and then the Premier assures the world that what he has told the King to say is, "the King's speech
In the palace
of the Popes themselves, what was the result
Dr. Angelo Rappoport, of Rome, Italy, says in his book, published in 1912:
"For centuries the history of the Roman Pontiffs reminds one of the most depraved
times of Athens and pagan
Rome, rather than of Bethlehem and Jerusalem.
for their talent
and their beauty, their intrigues, and their gallant
love affairs, ruled the Church and[Pg 11] disposed of the tiara
. They raised and deposed the Pontiffs, imprisoned and assassinated them. * * * Their beds became the pedestals from which their lovers ascended the Pontifical throne
All these Popes were imitating the mode
of life of the Saracens, to whom they were paying tribute
, and like true heroes of a seraglio
, these chiefs of Christendom died by poison
or strangulation. They committed
of Oriental despots, and vied in their debaucheries with the Emperors of pagan
Rome. Pope John XXII. ordained priests in a stable
, and swore by Bacchus and Venus." (John the 22nd Papa of that name, began his Vicarship of God in the year 1316.)
Cardinal Baronius exclaims,
prostitutes ruled Rome, and their creatures and lovers sat on the throne
of St. Peter."
Bernard de Morlaix, monk of Cluny, writes in the 12th century
"Rome is the impure
city of the hunter
have fled its walls.
Alas! the Pontiff, or rather the King of this odious
city of Babylon, treads under foot the sanctity
of the Gospel and the morality
Matthew Paris, the historian
of the 13th century
city has become a place of infamy
, whose lewdness surpass
even that of Sodom and Gomorrha."
was the scandal
caused by the bestial
vices of the Popes and the Italian cardinals that the Catholic Parliament of England refused to allow
Pope Innocent IV. to come to the British Court. Why? Because, as the House of Commons roundly declared, "the Papal Court spreads such an abominable odor
that it should not be permitted in England."
(This was the Catholic Parliament of the Catholic King, Henry III., 13th century
Let me quote
the brutally frank
words of a Pope-
"Whoever," writes Pius II., "has not felt the fire of love is either a stone or a beast
Who is it, at the age of thirty, that has not committed
a crime for the sake of love?
Many women have I courted and loved: and as soon as I had possessed them, I was filled with loathing
(The Infallible Pius II. lived in the 15th century
Inasmuch as the courtesans raised one boy of eighteen, and[Pg 12] another of twelve, to the "throne
of Saint Peter," you can imagine
what sort of lives they led in that gilded
brothel, the Pope's palace
(Pope John XII. was 18 years of age. Pope Benedict IX. was a lad of 12 years. Both were monsters of lust.)
This being the general
picture of the Popes, after they quit
taking wives, we are not surprised to learn that their mistresses and their bastards were as well known, and as socially respectable
, as those of the kings and emperors, who married because it was a duty
, and Lotharioed because they found pleasure in it. The illegitimate
children of the Vicars of Christ were as undenied and undeniable
as were those of Henry of Navarre, Augustus of Saxony, Louis XIV. of France, and Charles II., of England. Don John of Austria, was not more proudly the "woods colt
" of Charles V. of Germany, than was Cæsar Borgia the son of His Holiness, Alexander VI. The Duke of Berwick was not better known as the bastard of James II. and Arabella Churchill, than were two of the reigning belles of Rome, not many years ago, recognized as the winsome
daughters in the flesh of His Holiness, Pope Pius IX.
the picture, history tells us that Pope John XII., who was made God-on-earth
at the age of eighteen, met his death by the hand of an outraged husband
, at the age of twenty-five. The furious husband
broke into the Pope's bed-room, in the Lateran palace
, and slew
the adulterer in the arms of the faithless
Even Platina mentions this horrible fact
, in his Lives of the Popes, written at the request
of Pope Sixtus IV., and published in the year 1479.
Platina was a devout
Catholic and was Superintendent of the Vatican Library, Rome, Italy.
In the biography
of Petrarch by Jerome Equarciafico, we learn that this poetic
dawn-bird of the Renaissance
had a beautiful sister, named Selvaggia. Upon this lovely girl, Pope Benedict XII. looked with the eyes of desire
. He made infamous
proposals to Petrarch, while the poet scornfully rejected. Then His Holiness caused it to be whispered to Petrarch that the Inquisition felt inclined
to question him concerning the orthodoxy
of his faith
. "The Question," meant torture
, and Petrarch fled from Avignon for his life. But a younger brother of Selvaggia was more of "a man of the world," as the world went in those days of all-powerful popery; and this[Pg 13] brother gave ear to the Pope's temptings. By his connivance
, the girl was seized one night, as she slept, and carried into the bedroom of the Vicar of Christ.
When this girl of sixteen realized what was intended, she fell on her knees, and piteously begged the Pope, the Holy Father, to take pity
The raging lusts of the Pope were only maddened the more by the sight
and the touch of her charms, and he threatened her with eternal
damnation if she persisted in her obstinacy
. The weeping, despairing child did persist
, and "he had recourse
("Love Affairs of the Vatican." Page 154.)
* * * * * * *
Petrarch, as I have said, may be fairly regarded as the dawn-bird of the Renaissance
, that marvellous Easter of Literature, when European Intellect, which popery had buried and set the soldiers of the Inquisition to guard
, heard the golden trumpet
of Resurrection sounded by the Byzantine scholars-fleeing from Moslem invasion-and threw off the shroud
of a degrading superstition
, defied the terrors of the stupid fanatic
, and said to all the world-
"I will be free again, even though I die for it."
Petrarch was the purest of ten thousand pure, a lover who lived in the glory
of the sentiment
, without even the temptation
the sacred torch
into the stream
of sensuality-a poet who sang as the bird sings, because Nature put music in his brain
Petrarch was a devout
Christian; and to be a Christian at that time, meant to be a Catholic. You may be sure that it was no heretic
whom the Romans publicly honored in Rome, in the year 1342, and crowned with the laurels that Virgil had not worn more worthily.
Surely, Petrarch's description
of the Pope's morals and the Papal Court will not be spurned as the libel
of an abominable heretic
"You find there the terrible Nimrod, Semiramis, armed * * * the scandalous monument
of the most infamous
Confusion, darkness and horror
and crime dwell
within these precincts. I am only describing to you what I have seen with my own eyes.
I shall not relate
that the husbands whose wives have been abducted, are forced to silence
. * * * I shall not dwell
upon the cruel insult
by which the outraged husbands are being compelled to receive
in their houses their wives who had been prostituted, especially when they carry
in their wombs the fruit of the criminal
Great God! What a picture of the Papal Court!
Petrarch adds, "The people are quite aware
of everything I know myself."
The people knew; the people murmured: the people were helpless. Adultery had interwoven itself into the very fabric
; and the people saw no way to attack
the adulterers without being accused of heresy
and delivered to the terrible Inquisition.
Luther had not yet come. When he did come, the adulterers said that he was not only a heretic
, but a drunkard and a libertine
William Hogan was born in Ireland, and was educated for the priesthood at Maynooth College. Coming to America to follow his calling, he was so shocked by what he learned
, in the Confessional and otherwise, that he abandoned
popery in utter disgust
When he landed on our shores, he brought with him letters of introduction
to DeWitt Clinton of New York. So favorably was he received that he was elected Chaplain of the New York legislature
, unanimously. Therefore, he was not a man with a grievance
. Every selfish instinct
warned him to remain
in the service
of popery. It was his native honesty
and his horror
that caused him to rebel
. Afterwards, he published books which reached an immense circulation prior
to the Civil War, but which were forgotten in that shock of armies. They are now seldom
seen even in the catalogues of Old Book stores.[Pg 15]
To that splendid
gentleman, Dr. John N. Taylor, of Crawfordville, Indiana, I was indebted
for a copy of the edition
of 1856. The volume
contains Hogan's book on "Popery," and also his "Auricular Confession and Popish Nunneries."
On page 247, Ex-Priest William Hogan says, in reference
to the popish school-teachers, so numerous
now in our Protestant schools-
"These ladies, when properly disciplined
by the Jesuits and priests, become the best teachers. But before they are allowed to teach, there is no art, no craft, no species
, no refinement
in private personal
indulgences, or no modes or means of seduction, in which they are not thoroughly
I may say with safety, and from my own personal knowledge through
the Confessional, that there is scarcely
one of them who has not been herself DEBAUCHED BY HER OWN CONFESSOR.
The reader will understand
that every nun has a confessor; and here I will add, for the truth must be told at once, that every confessor has a concubine
, and there are very few of them who have not several
Remember that this fearful charge against celibacy
was made in 1856, in the edition
of Hogan's work which was the 76th thousand. Therefore, the ex-priest
who had brought the best letters of introduction
from Europe, and who had been unanimously elected Chaplain of the New York legislature
, had hurled this hideous indictment
at popery and its priest
What answer was made to him? None!
abused him, but did not dare
to either prosecute
or reply. He had been a priest
, and he knew too much.
Popery has never dared to prosecute
, or an ex-nun, where there was any chance to lift the veil
that conceals the rottenness of life inside the convents, and the monasteries.
"Shall they own, by law and charter
, places where to bury
, hidden from the public
eye, the victim
of their lust, AND THE MURDERED OFFSPRING OF THEIR CONCUPISCENCE?"
Speaking of Albany, New York, Rev. Hogan, on page 268, of "Nunneries," says-
"As soon as I got settled in Albany, I had of course to attend
to the duty
of Auricular Confession; and in less than two months found that those three priests, during the time they were there, were the fathers of between 60 and 100 children, besides having debauched many who had left the place previous
to their confinement
Many of these children were by married women, whose husbands and brothers, and relatives were ready, if necessary
, to wade
knee-deep in blood for the holy immaculate infallible
church of Rome."
And why were these American Catholics willing to wade
in blood for popery? Because they did not know the truth about it.
The same reason
holds good today; and that's the reason
the priests are frantically
trying to violate
our Constitutional right
of free speech
and free press.
Above all things, the priests dread
the day when American fathers, husbands, sons and brothers find out what it is, that these devilish
they have a right
to say, and to do, in their secret intercourse with Catholic wives, sisters and daughters.
The priests will murder
any man, if they can, to prevent
HIM from uncovering THEM.
On page 283, Hogan continues-
"Priests, nuns, and confessors are the same now that they were then-15th century
-all over the world.
Many of you have visited Paris, and do you not see there a lying-in hospital attached to every nunnery in the city? The same is to be seen in Madrid, and the principal
cities of Spain.
I have seen them myself in Mexico, and in the city of Dublin, Ireland.
What is the object
of these hospitals? It is chiefly
for the illicit offspring
of priests and nuns, and such other unmarried females as the priests can seduce through
But, it will be said, there are no lying-in hospitals attached[Pg 17] to the nunneries in this country. True, there are not; but I know from my own experience
the confessional, that it would be well, if there were.
There would be fewer abortions; there would be fewer infants strangled and murdered.
It is not generally known to Americans that the crime of procuring abortion, is a common
crime in popish nunneries.
It is not known to Americans, that strangling and putting to death infants, is common
in nunneries throughout
It is done systematically
and methodically, ACCORDING TO POPISH INSTRUCTIONS."
The modus operandi is this-and then the ex-priest
describes how the priest
, the father of the child, baptises it, and thus
insures its passage
to Heaven, as per popish belief
; and how the abbess
, or Mother Superior, then shuts off the breath of the babe, at the nose: after which the poor little body is thrown into the lime-pit to be consumed.
Father Hogan also describes how the priests and monks give desired children to wives whose husbands are not productive
. The woman is easily led to believe that God's will is enlisted in her behalf
, and that He has commissioned the priest
what the husband
failed at: result
, happy wife, bouncing babe, rapturous husband
, chuckling priest
Father Hogan tells it all; and the rancorous
papists never dared to hale
him into court