Languedoc Topics
Mysteries of the Languedoc
The Roman Catholic Church


Here are a few things that may surprise you about the Roman Catholic Church.

We have no reason at all the believe that Peter was ever bishop of Rome - in fact the earliest list of bishops of Rome omits his name. The bishop of Rome, once there was one, was a relatively minor figure for many centuries. Christian emperors and other bishops felt, and were, free to decide important matters without him for many centuries.

By any objective standards the Roman Catholic Church is a schismatic faction of the Orthodox Church.

Even the Orthodox Church has questionable claims to represent the earliest form of Christianity. It is clear that there were many contending factions already when the books of the New Testament were written (they are full of jibes at other factions). If you visit the holy places in Jerusalem you will be surprised to find the Roman Catholic Church treated like a Johnny-come-lately, almost like the Anglican Church. All of the ancient sites belong to the Orthodox Church, the Armenian Church, the Coptic Church, or some other faction that long predates the Roman Church.

The Roman Catholic Church does not represent the most reliable link to the practices of the early Church. We know as a simple matter of fact that the Orthodox Churches have introduced for fewer innovations than the Roman Church. There is also considerable evidence that the Cathars represent an even older tradition. So did the Arians.

The Roman Church started executing heretics (including Priscilian, an Arian and one of its own bishops) as early as the fourth century.

In its attempt to re-write history, we know beyond all doubt that it has tried to destroy and suppress information it did not want to hear, and that it has produced a very long string of deliberate forgeries. The Donation of Constantine, the pseudo Isadoran Forgeries and the False Decretals or just three notable examples.

By contrast the Cathars have a strong claim to represent the survival of an a Gnostic strand of belief within the Early Christian Church , and to have preserved early Christian beliefs and practices. This has been confirmed in recent years by the discovery of so-called Gnostic Gospels, some of which, like the Gospel of Thomas predate the so-called canonical gospels. They represented a Dualist strand of belief.

The Roman Catholic Church played a key role in many of the important events in the Languedoc, including the Crusade against Count of Toulouse for failing to persecute the Cathars, the burning alive of Cathar Perfects as Dualist heretics, the foundation of the Dominican Order which in turn created the first Papal Inquisition. It was also responsible for sieges such as the siege of Carcassonne and massacres such as the massacre at Montsegur. A century later the Roman Catholic Church was responsible for the burning of the Knights Templar on trumped up charges of heresy, and disolution of the Order.

More speculatively the Roman Catholic Church is supposedly involved in the Priory of Sion and the mystery of the Abbé Bérenger Saunière at Rennes-le-Château, and also features in fantasy fiction such as the The Da Vinci Code.


If you are more interested in the Cathars of the Languedoc, you might be more interested in Cathar Country Tours.



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