AMBASSADORS OF GOD Selected by Woolsey Teller, 4A General Secretary _ The following men ar

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AMBASSADORS OF GOD Selected by Woolsey Teller, 4A General Secretary _________________________________________ The following men are heroes of religion. Some are Roman Catholics; others are Protestants. Take your choice, according to your denominational preference. CATHOLICS TOMAS DE TORQUEMADA. Tortured thousands. "In 1483 the pope appointed Torquemada, who had been an assistant inquisitor since Feb. 11, 1482, Grand Inquisitor of Castile...Much has been written of the inhuman cruelty of Torquemada. Llorente (secretary of the Inquisition) computes that during Torquemada's office (1483-98) 8,800 suffered death by fire and 96,504 were punished in other ways (_History of the Inquisition_, IV, 252).'' -- _Catholic Encyclopedia,_ vol. 14, p. 783. POPE ALEXANDER VI. Kept a mistress. "About the time of his election as `Vicar of Christ' he took a new mistress, Giulia Farnese, a golden-haired child of fifteen. She remained his mistress throughout his pontificate, from his fifty- eighth to his seventy-second year.'' -- Joseph McCabe, _The Popes and their Church,_ p. 76. POPE GREGORY IX. Approved burning heretics. "When in 1224 Frederick II ordered that heretics in Lombardy should be burnt at the stake, Gregory IX, who was then papal legate for Lombardy, approved and published the imperial law.'' _Catholic Encyclopedia_, vol. 6, pp. 797-798. POPE JOHN XII. Ran a divine institution of prostitution. "But we read with some surprise, that the worthy grandson of Marozia (Pope John XII) lived in public adultery with the matrons of Rome: that the Lateran palace was turned into a school for prostitution and that his rapes of virgins and widows had deterred the female pilgrims from visiting the tomb of St. Peter, lest, in the devout act, they should be violated by his successor.'' --Edward Gibbon, _History of Christianity_, p. 753. POPE INNOCENT VIII. Lived licentiously. "After a licentious youth, during which he had two illegitimate children . . ., he took orders and entered the service of Cardinal Calandrini . . .'' -- _Catholic Encyclopedia,_ vol. 8, p. 19. POPE BENEDICT IX. An infamous criminal. "Rome had still to see Benedict IX, A.D. 1033, a boy of less than twelve years, raised to the apostolic throne. Of this pontiff, one of his successors, Victor III, declared that his life was so shameful, so foul, so execrable, that he shuddered to describe it. He ruled like a captain of banditti rather than a prelate. The people at last, unable to bear his adulteries, homicides, and abominations any longer, rose against him.'' -- John W. Draper, _The Intellectual Development of Europe,_ vol. 1, p. 381. "He was a disgrace to the chair of Peter.'' -- _Catholic Encyclopedia,_ vol. 2, p. 429. PROTESTANTS MARTIN LUTHER, Founder of Protestantism. Endorsed bigamy. "Philip of Hesse besieged Luther with requests to give his sanction to taking a second wife while his first was still alive. Luther's weakness brought the second blot on his career. The document SANCTIONING THE BIGAMY . . . was signed by . . . Luther and is a humiliating paper.'' -- _Encyclopedia Britannica_, vol. 17, p. 139. JOHN CALVIN. Burned Servetus at the stake. "On an eminence, at some distance from the city, Servetus was fastened to a stake, surrounded by heaps of oak-wood and leaves, with his condemned book and the manuscript. he had sent to Calvin attached to his girdle; and, amid his agonizing cries, the fire was kindled, and the wretched man expiated his heresy in the flames. Whatever apologies may be urged for this memorable crime, it must remain a mournful and scandalous blot on the history of the Reformation. The disgrace of it has particularly attached to Calvin, and with much justice, from the special and unhappy relation which he bore to the whole transaction.'' -- _New International Encyclopedia_, vol. 4, p. 62. COTTON MATHER. Fostered witchcraft persecution. "He used his great influence to bring the suspected persons (witches) to trial and punishment. He attended the trials, investigated many of the cases himself, and wrote sermons on witchcraft . . . , which increased the excitement of the people.'' --_Encyclopedia Britannica_, vol. 17, p. 883. JOHN KNOX, Father of Presbyterianism. Intolerant. "Knox, appealing to the Old Testament, declared that those who were guilty of idolatry might justly be put to death.'' -- W. E. H. Lecky's _Rationalism in Europe_, vol. 2, p. 16. JOHN WESLEY, Founder of Methodism. Superstitious. "The giving up of witchcraft is in effect giving up the Bible.'' -- Wesley's _Journal,_ 1768. JONATHAN EDWARDS. Preached infant damnation. Referred to babies as "vipers'' in the eyes of god. See Jonathan Edwards' _Original Sin._ Cited by Lecky, distinguished historian, as "one of the most revolting books that have ever proceeded from the pen of man.'' -- W. E. H. Lecky, _Rationalism in Europe,_ vol. 1, p. 134. For information, write to: The American Atheist General Headquarters P.O. Box 140195 Austin, Texas 78714-0195 Copyright American Atheist Press. All rights reserved. Printed copies of this pamphlet can be obtained from: American Atheist Press P. O. Box 140195, Austin, Texas 78714-0195. Stock #8330. Please refer to current catalog and price list for pricing and availability. *********************************************************************** * * * American Atheists website: http://www.atheists.org * * PO Box 140195 FTP: ftp://ftp.atheists.org * * Austin, TX 78714-0195 * * Voice: (512) 458-1244 Dial-THE-ATHEIST: * * FAX: (512) 467-9525 (512) 458-5731 * * * * Atheist Viewpoint TV: avtv@atheists.org * * Info on American Atheists: info@atheists.org, * * & American Atheist Press include your name and mailing address * * AANEWS -Free subscription: aanews-request@listserv.atheists.org * * and put "info aanews" in message body * * * * This text may be freely downloaded, reprinted, and/other * * otherwise redistributed, provided appropriate point of * * origin credit is given to American Atheists. * * * ***********************************************************************

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