Monday, September 7, 2020




 Having been raised in France as a Catholic 1789 means, the confiscation of all Catholic Church properties, the Civil Constitution of the Clergy, and the abolition of tithes.By these acts the revolution was doing a straight attack on the Church, this was followed by a motion to force the clergy to take an oath to the revolution. Some priests took the oath, but many fled the country in order not to do so.Many remained and faced the terrible retribution of the government. This led to many Catholics becoming very discontent with these moves and starting a movement of resistance.



For French Catholics this is the worsening part of the revolution for them. Commonly called the reign of terror, (it was to last 3 bloody years) . Unfortunately historians, often for very partisan reason, prefer to concentrate on the events that happened in Paris, and almost completely overlook the genocide of Catholics in western France, and the Rhone Valley.Close to one million Catholics were killed by the infernal columns of the revolutionary armies, burning entire Villages, killing women and children, bayoneting elderlies, throwing people in deep wells and rivers, shooting anything that moved. Actions that would have made Hitler's SS squads, or the hoodlums of ISIS blush.

This was the first time in modern history that Catholics came under such savage attacks, not even seen during the so called religious wars of the 17th century, it made the bolshevik revolution look like a bunch of choir boys.

While French Catholics were physically wiped out, on the other side of the Atlantic, the newest country of the World, namely the United States of America, free citizens, were enacting one of the most brilliant legal document ever written: the United States Constitution.    (1789-1791)

How did a country like France, which the Church recognized as the oldest daughter of the Roman Catholic Faith, arrived to such a state of decomposition, as to have a revolutionary movement, which would lead to genocide, civil war and a permanent state of War for almost a quarter of a century all throughout Europe, bringing devastation unseen since the 30 years war, and unequaled until the rise of communism?

Historians differ on the immediate causes, but most agree, that this decomposition took effect over half a century period, prior to the immediate causes of said revolution.In many ways it was a perfect storm of events that converged to create the perfect environment  for that cataclysm, which many consider like the first communist and anti-religious movement of the next 250 years.

It is hard for Catholics today to reconcile these events with what is happening today, around the world  but also here on our island. Frankly it is just not being taught at all. From 1789 to 1791, the world was both a very different place, but also a very similar one. Europe was in full technological and financial transformation, while Asia powers like China and India had started a long decline of their once glorious  past. France, Spain and Austria were the most powerful Catholic States,Austria was the largest Empire in Europe, Spain had still the largest empire in the World, and after losing its northern American empire France was looking to expand elsewhere in Africa and Asia. While France had the largest population (25 millions), Great Britain had less than 8 millions and the USA had less than 4 millions in 1790. Guam was still part of the Spanish Empire, and would remain so until 1898.

So, what does all this have to do with Catholicism, you might ask?

Catholicism had been  the major Religious denomination in Europe, since the Orthodox Schism of the middle ages, and remained so despite the reformation movement led by Calvin and Luther in the 16th century. As an organization it had brought stability and security to Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire in the 6th century. Most western countries had adopted the three ways (or tripod) social organization, which had stabilized the Medevial world, The Nobility (the lords and Kings) was in charge of safety, security and justice, while the Clergy was in charge of the spiritual and moral side of the society. Finally the People were in charge of the production of goods and products. The Clergy as the moral guarantor was also the Arbiter of conflicts between groups or corporations. Every one's right were codified and guaranteed with the help of charters, and everyone's duties were also determined in advance. The stereotype of Lords and Kings as all powerful tyrants is just that, a stereotype, born mostly in the industrial world of the 19th century. One thing that was at the center of this arrangement was the very Catholic notion of duty and responsibility, towards others.

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