The succession of popes and their questionable behaviour

balshan

Well-known member
For centuries there has been a succession of questionable or evil popes. This site lists some of them:

https://xcjournal.org/the-errors-of-catholicism/bad-popes/ But there are so many sites where the evil acts of the leaders of the RCC can be found. It has made me question how can there be a claim of being the one true church when these popes have not suffered God's discipline.

Verses to support God disciplining are found:

Hebrews 12:5-7, Proverbs 3:11-12, Deut 4:36 and there are well over 70 verses that tell us about His disciipline.

Some even suffered death for disobedience starting with Adam and Eve. Cities of Sodom and Gormorrah, Lot's wife, Ananias and his wife, Moses not allowed to go into the promised land. The list is long, yet these popes are kept in power by the institution.

To me this is saying the RCC is not what it claims to be. My question is why are the evil popes not disciplined if they are truly believers and if they are not believers then why are they made popes.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
For centuries there has been a succession of questionable or evil popes. This site lists some of them:

https://xcjournal.org/the-errors-of-catholicism/bad-popes/ But there are so many sites where the evil acts of the leaders of the RCC can be found. It has made me question how can there be a claim of being the one true church when these popes have not suffered God's discipline.

Verses to support God disciplining are found:

Hebrews 12:5-7, Proverbs 3:11-12, Deut 4:36 and there are well over 70 verses that tell us about His disciipline.

Some even suffered death for disobedience starting with Adam and Eve. Cities of Sodom and Gormorrah, Lot's wife, Ananias and his wife, Moses not allowed to go into the promised land. The list is long, yet these popes are kept in power by the institution.

To me this is saying the RCC is not what it claims to be. My question is why are the evil popes not disciplined if they are truly believers and if they are not believers then why are they made popes.
Simple. The claim isn't that popes are saints, or that bishops are saints, or that priests are saints, or that the laity are saints. The only person who makes us holy is Christ Jesus.

The claim is that there is apostolic succession. Bad popes don't negate that.

As for the popes from the ummm not-so-unbiased site you linked, I'd have some questions: how does the election of some popes by prostitutes (e.g. Anastasius III - though I couldn't find for this claim) make the person a bad pope?; how is Pius IX guilty of kidnapping and "megalomania"?; the claim that some of those popes listed are "genocidal maniacs" is somewhat hard to sustain; and I love "greed and avarice" too numerous to list. This isn't serious historical evidence by a long shot. Plus, if the author could only list 10 or so out of over 250 popes, that's not such a bad run.

Regardless, no one is stating that popes are perfect and sinless.
 

balshan

Well-known member
Simple. The claim isn't that popes are saints, or that bishops are saints, or that priests are saints, or that the laity are saints. The only person who makes us holy is Christ Jesus.

The claim is that there is apostolic succession. Bad popes don't negate that.

As for the popes from the ummm not-so-unbiased site you linked, I'd have some questions: how does the election of some popes by prostitutes (e.g. Anastasius III - though I couldn't find for this claim) make the person a bad pope?; how is Pius IX guilty of kidnapping and "megalomania"?; the claim that some of those popes listed are "genocidal maniacs" is somewhat hard to sustain; and I love "greed and avarice" too numerous to list. This isn't serious historical evidence by a long shot. Plus, if the author could only list 10 or so out of over 250 popes, that's not such a bad run.

Regardless, no one is stating that popes are perfect and sinless.
Of course the evil popes do negate that, as God would not have evil men lead His church. It is not perfect but there is a list and most of them were correct. I wasn't doing a search for a perfect site. There evil fruit shows exactly who there father is and who they followed and it wasn't Jesus.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
Of course the evil popes do negate that, as God would not have evil men lead His church. It is not perfect but there is a list and most of them were correct. I wasn't doing a search for a perfect site. There evil fruit shows exactly who there father is and who they followed and it wasn't Jesus.
How do you know that God would never have evil men lead His Church? He certainly allowed evil men to lead the Davidic kingdom. At least one apostle Jesus chose could be described as evil and the rest weren't always crash hot on a moral level. I think if you can find 10/260 or so popes that were terrible, that's a better record than 1/12 of the apostles that was terrible.
 

balshan

Well-known member
How do you know that God would never have evil men lead His Church? He certainly allowed evil men to lead the Davidic kingdom. At least one apostle Jesus chose could be described as evil and the rest weren't always crash hot on a moral level. I think if you can find 10/260 or so popes that were terrible, that's a better record than 1/12 of the apostles that was terrible.
Really it is interesting that RCs only seem to like the OT and want it followed when it suits. Let me see Israel had the kings that pleased God not perfectly but the Northern Kingdom the kings that strayed far from God. They were the first of the two kingdoms to go into exile. Also these kings caused prophets and priests to fail. We see that it is a remnant that remains loyal. Yet even though the gate is narrow and the believers are the remnants you claim that most of your priests and popes are saints. Again not scriptural, the majority will be wolves.

The evil popes and there were more than ten show that they were not God's choices but man's. Otherwise you are saying that God gave you leaders than would show you bad examples, false teachings, take you away from God's will etc. Things like the crusades, the hiding of the evil priests show that people were taken away from following God's will by evil. Saul was not God's choice of king. God didn't want the people to have a king, it was their choice. God wanted to lead the Israelites. God wants Jesus to be the leader of His church. If we follow Jesus we don't need to follow men.

I know because God is my father and Matt tells us this:

Matt 7:11
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

So I disagree with your assumption that God would allow evil to be leaders in His Church, it is a different story in a man made church.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
Really it is interesting that RCs only seem to like the OT and want it followed when it suits. Let me see Israel had the kings that pleased God not perfectly but the Northern Kingdom the kings that strayed far from God. They were the first of the two kingdoms to go into exile. Also these kings caused prophets and priests to fail. We see that it is a remnant that remains loyal. Yet even though the gate is narrow and the believers are the remnants you claim that most of your priests and popes are saints. Again not scriptural, the majority will be wolves.

The evil popes and there were more than ten show that they were not God's choices but man's. Otherwise you are saying that God gave you leaders than would show you bad examples, false teachings, take you away from God's will etc. Things like the crusades, the hiding of the evil priests show that people were taken away from following God's will by evil. Saul was not God's choice of king. God didn't want the people to have a king, it was their choice. God wanted to lead the Israelites. God wants Jesus to be the leader of His church. If we follow Jesus we don't need to follow men.

I know because God is my father and Matt tells us this:

Matt 7:11
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

So I disagree with your assumption that God would allow evil to be leaders in His Church, it is a different story in a man made church.
I'm not really talking about the kings of Israel but the Davidic kings (those of Judah). Even David, who is called a man after God's heart, could be pretty evil. I mean, those things that were said about the popes could easily be said about Saul, David and Solomon.

How was Saul not God's choice for a king when he directed Samuel to anoint Saul? It's true that Ancient Israel was, at least from the perspective of some of the biblical writers, supposed to be something like a theocracy and not a monarchy, but that didn't stop God establishing and working through a monarchy. God uses human evil for his good ends, and that may very well include evil popes.

We do follow Jesus but he isn't exactly here to minister to us in an earthly sense. That's why he established a Church and directed his followers to that Church, e.g. "He who hears you, hears me..." "If any brother... take it to the Church" and so on.
 

balshan

Well-known member
I'm not really talking about the kings of Israel but the Davidic kings (those of Judah). Even David, who is called a man after God's heart, could be pretty evil. I mean, those things that were said about the popes could easily be said about Saul, David and Solomon.

How was Saul not God's choice for a king when he directed Samuel to anoint Saul? It's true that Ancient Israel was, at least from the perspective of some of the biblical writers, supposed to be something like a theocracy and not a monarchy, but that didn't stop God establishing and working through a monarchy. God uses human evil for his good ends, and that may very well include evil popes.

We do follow Jesus but he isn't exactly here to minister to us in an earthly sense. That's why he established a Church and directed his followers to that Church, e.g. "He who hears you, hears me..." "If any brother... take it to the Church" and so on.
I think you should stop defending the indefensible, and, then again you maybe you need to qualify what you mean. Suggest you read about the OT and this shows your lack of knowledge of the OT. It is clear that God did not want kings, he did not want Saul but gave into what the people wanted. I am not doing your research for you.

It is not hard to follow Jesus and He ministers to me on a regular basis in all senses. He certainly did not establish the RCC.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
I think you should stop defending the indefensible, and, then again you maybe you need to qualify what you mean. Suggest you read about the OT and this shows your lack of knowledge of the OT. It is clear that God did not want kings, he did not want Saul but gave into what the people wanted. I am not doing your research for you.

It is not hard to follow Jesus and He ministers to me on a regular basis in all senses. He certainly did not establish the RCC.
Okay, then I guess this conversation is at an end. I still don't see justification for the claim that evil priests - or certain evil priests - couldn't come into contact with God without dying.
 

balshan

Well-known member
Okay, then I guess this conversation is at an end. I still don't see justification for the claim that evil priests - or certain evil priests - couldn't come into contact with God without dying.
I see why they should in the past both OT and NT there is a case for it. A strong case for it. I mean even lying to the Spirit brought death in some cases, surely those priests that continual went to confession pretending to repent where lying to God, weren't they.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
I see why they should in the past both OT and NT there is a case for it. A strong case for it. I mean even lying to the Spirit brought death in some cases, surely those priests that continual went to confession pretending to repent where lying to God, weren't they.
I don't know what those priests did regarding confession.

The only example of lying to the Spirit that cause death is in Acts, as far as I recall. But there are lots of examples too of people who come into contact with God, and Christ specifically, who do not die irrespective of how sinful they might be. Anyway, we may both be speculating a little too much.
 

balshan

Well-known member
I don't know what those priests did regarding confession.

The only example of lying to the Spirit that cause death is in Acts, as far as I recall. But there are lots of examples too of people who come into contact with God, and Christ specifically, who do not die irrespective of how sinful they might be. Anyway, we may both be speculating a little too much.
Really I love the way you pretend to be clueless on this topic. Nothing in the news on things like Mcardle's statement to one of the commission or anything by any other priests. It was all under the carpet, no news on it at all.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
Really I love the way you pretend to be clueless on this topic. Nothing in the news on things like Mcardle's statement to one of the commission or anything by any other priests. It was all under the carpet, no news on it at all.
I don't really follow the news if I can avoid it. Did the priests tell the Royal Commission that they confessed it in the confessional?
 

balshan

Well-known member
I don't really follow the news if I can avoid it. Did the priests tell the Royal Commission that they confessed it in the confessional?
Sorry for doubting you. There were a number who did. Especially McArdle, he is the one I will remember.

There is a site that gives a rough outline of what he stated in a commission.

I am not sure whether it was one of the state commission or the royal commission. I know if you search you can find the original transcript from the commission. He said he made 1500 confessions, he said it was like a magic wand and he notes the places were the abuse took place. He went to jail.
 

balshan

Well-known member
Sorry for doubting you. There were a number who did. Especially McArdle, he is the one I will remember.

There is a site that gives a rough outline of what he stated in a commission.

I am not sure whether it was one of the state commission or the royal commission. I know if you search you can find the original transcript from the commission. He said he made 1500 confessions, he said it was like a magic wand and he notes the places were the abuse took place. He went to jail.
From the Broken Rites site:

Fr Michael McArdle,
Father Michael Joseph McArdle, of the Rockhampton diocese in Queensland, was sentenced in 2003 to six years jail (with parole possible after two years) after pleading guilty to 62 incidents of indecent dealings against 14 boys and two girls between 1965 and 1987. McArdle told a journalist that the church was aware of his offences but it never alerted police or parishioners.

I will try and find the link to his statement, I have posted it on the old carm before.
 

balshan

Well-known member
From the Broken Rites site:

Fr Michael McArdle,
Father Michael Joseph McArdle, of the Rockhampton diocese in Queensland, was sentenced in 2003 to six years jail (with parole possible after two years) after pleading guilty to 62 incidents of indecent dealings against 14 boys and two girls between 1965 and 1987. McArdle told a journalist that the church was aware of his offences but it never alerted police or parishioners.

I will try and find the link to his statement, I have posted it on the old carm before.
Christie Foster's statement to the commission citing McArdle:

https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/i...sions/Anthony__Chrissie_Foster_Appendix_6.pdf

I don't have a time to work out how to find the original but you can give it a try. When I search I mainly get how RC priests will not obey mandatory reporting.
 

Nondenom40

Active member
I don't really follow the news if I can avoid it. Did the priests tell the Royal Commission that they confessed it in the confessional?
And if they had? This was an old topic but the seal of confession shouldn't hide criminal activity. Priests or anyone else for that matter, should certainly seek forgiveness but at the same time if a crime has been committed the police should be called. I wonder if this is the reason most mobsters are portrayed as catholic? "Forgive me father i whacked someone today, he sleeps with the fishes." "Say 5 hail marys for your penance." Catholics should see a problem here.
 

balshan

Well-known member
And if they had? This was an old topic but the seal of confession shouldn't hide criminal activity. Priests or anyone else for that matter, should certainly seek forgiveness but at the same time if a crime has been committed the police should be called. I wonder if this is the reason most mobsters are portrayed as catholic? "Forgive me father i whacked someone today, he sleeps with the fishes." "Say 5 hail marys for your penance." Catholics should see a problem here.
Now it this country most states state abuse must be reported and the seal of confession can no longer hide it. It seems most priests etc are going to ignore the law.

Also, the catechism states:

1459 Many sins wrong our neighbor. One must do what is possible in order to repair the harm (e.g., return stolen goods, restore the reputation of someone slandered, pay compensation for injuries). Simple justice requires as much. But sin also injures and weakens the sinner himself, as well as his relationships with God and neighbor. Absolution takes away sin, but it does not remedy all the disorders sin has caused.62 Raised up from sin, the sinner must still recover his full spiritual health by doing something more to make amends for the sin: he must "make satisfaction for" or "expiate" his sins. This satisfaction is also called "penance."


This part of the catechism is totally ignored if they do not make the confessing priest report to police. To me it is the only way to make some sort of reparation by the priest involved. Otherwise they are not to receive absolution.
 

jonathan_hili

Well-known member
And if they had? This was an old topic but the seal of confession shouldn't hide criminal activity. Priests or anyone else for that matter, should certainly seek forgiveness but at the same time if a crime has been committed the police should be called. I wonder if this is the reason most mobsters are portrayed as catholic? "Forgive me father i whacked someone today, he sleeps with the fishes." "Say 5 hail marys for your penance." Catholics should see a problem here.
If I were a priest hearing such a confession, I would make it a condition of absolution that the person report themselves to the police. Priests can refuse absolution if they think it prudent. However, I think the seal of confession is essential, or else nobody would confess anything if they know their trust is possibly going to be violated.
 

Beloved Daughter

Active member
Of course the evil popes do negate that, as God would not have evil men lead His church. It is not perfect but there is a list and most of them were correct. I wasn't doing a search for a perfect site. There evil fruit shows exactly who there father is and who they followed and it wasn't Jesus.

Amen. This is what 'papal infallibility' results in. One bad deed after another.
 

Beloved Daughter

Active member
If I were a priest hearing such a confession, I would make it a condition of absolution that the person report themselves to the police. Priests can refuse absolution if they think it prudent. However, I think the seal of confession is essential, or else nobody would confess anything if they know their trust is possibly going to be violated.

This is where we it's better to be a protestant. See, we go directly to the the Source for our forgiveness AND we know there is only ONE unforgiveable sin.

God Speed.

P.S. Despite our differences, I really do appreciate your approach to us. It's refreshing. :)✝️
 
Top