The Catholic Church claims that it has the
right to control how Catholics think . Some of its doctrines and
practices actually result in a form of mind
According to "The Catholic Encyclopedia ," a person's religious
belief should not be determined by his or her "free private judgment."
Rather, it should be determined by the Catholic Church. (This article
is available online.) [Note 1]
The same attitude is shown in the teachings of Saint Ignatius
Loyola , who founded the Jesuits in 1540 . He wrote " Spiritual
Exercises ," which are rules for the Jesuits. They include rules about
how to think. The first rule about thinking says that Jesuits should
set their private judgment aside. The thirteenth rule says that it is
a virtue to see things the way that the hierarchy of the Catholic
Church sees them, even if they are not true. It gives the example of
seeing something that is obviously white, but believing that it is
really black if the Catholic hierarchy says that it is black. (You can
read these rules online.) [Note 2]
According to Canon Law (the official laws governing the Roman
Catholic Church ), Catholics are required to submit their minds and
wills to any declaration concerning faith or morals that is made by
the Pope , or by a Catholic Church council. They are also required to
avoid anything that disagrees with such declarations. Furthermore,
they can be coerced if they don't
comply. (You can read these laws online. If you want to buy the book,
the Notes give information.) [Note 3]
The Catholic Church teaches that only the Magisterium of the Church
(the Pope and the bishops in communion with him) has the right to
interpret Scripture . People like us are not allowed to interpret
Scripture for ourselves. We are supposed to check it out with Church
authorities. (This is online.) [Note 4]
Catholicism teaches that Catholics are supposed to "receive with
docility" any directives given to them by Catholic Church authorities.
(This is online.) [Note 5]
This sounds like young children, who accept without question
whatever their parents tell them. In contrast, the Bible commends the
people of Berea, because they "searched the Scriptures daily" in order
to "see whether these things were so." (Acts 17:10-11) God wants His
people to check things out for themselves, using Scripture as their
In 1854, Pope Pius IX declared the dogma of the Immaculate
Conception of Mary. The Pope said that if people "dare" to even think
anything contrary to this dogma, then that disagreement will shipwreck
their faith, cut them off from the Catholic Church, and make them
become " condemned ." He said that people who outwardly express
disagreement could be punished for it. (This encyclical is online.)
The Pope's reference to legal penalties is significant, because a
man had been executed for heresy 28 years before this papal bull was
issued. [Note 7]
The Catholic Church has never renounced its past practice of
killing people who disagree with Catholic doctrine. On the contrary,
the Office of the Inquisition still exists. It is part of the Vatican
Curia. In 1965, its name was changed to The Congregation for the
Doctrine of the Faith. It is headed by Cardinal Ratzinger. [Note 8]
Some people have paid a high price for disagreeing with the
Catholic Church, or acting contrary to the wishes of the Pope. (See my
article, " Hunting Heretics .'")
MIND CONTROL AND POLITICS
Mind control is not limited to Catholic doctrine. Popes and other
high-ranking Catholic clergymen have also applied it to politics.
Following are two examples. One is from the Middle Ages . The other is
Pope Innocent III reigned from 1198 to 1216. In 1215, the " Magna
Carta " was signed. This was the beginning of democracy in England. It
established the principle that the King is not above the law . The
"Magna Carta" is one of the documents that influenced the men who
wrote the Constitution of the United States . Innocent said that the
"Magna Carta" was immoral. He declared it to be null and void. In
addition, he excommunicated everyone who supported it. (You can read
about this online.) [Note 9]
In 1962, the island of Malta had an election. The Catholic Church
strongly opposed a candidate named Mintoff . It was declared to be a
mortal sin to vote for Mintoff. Maltese Catholics who voted for him
were placed under interdict. Because they were placed under interdict,
they could not go to confession and have their " mortal sin " of
voting for Mintoff be absolved by a Catholic priest. They were also
denied a Christian burial . (This is online.) [Note 10]
The combination of mind control and spiritual coercion can cause
kings to do immoral things, and require their subjects to do them. For
example, Pope Clement V ( 1305-1314 ) wanted the King of England (
Edward II ) to have some men be tortured,,. The King protested. He
said that torture was illegal in England. The Pope said that Church
law took priority over the laws of England. In other words, he said
that the English law forbidding torture was wrong, because it
conflicted with the laws of the Catholic Church. The Pope ordered the
King to have the men be tortured, and he threatened to excommunicate
him if he refused. The King complied. He made his subjects torture
people, in spite of the fact that he believed that torture was wrong.
The laws of England were changed in order to allow the torture.
(Information about this is online.) [Note 11]
According to Canon Law, priests are required to have " reverence "
for the Pope. "Webster's Dictionary" defines "reverence" as "profound
respect mingled with love and awe." [Note 12]
Mind control can result in moral confusion . Catholics are taught
to accept , without question, everything that Catholic authority
figures teach them about faith and morals. The result is that you put
your conscience in the hands of other people. This can cause moral
The Catholic Church has done various things to make the Bible less
accessible to people, and to make it more difficult for people to
trust Scripture. (See my article, "Undermining the Bible.") Once
people lose confidence in the Bible, then they become far more
susceptible to mind control and moral confusion. Once Scripture is no
longer perceived as being a reliable guide for moral living, then
Catholics are dependent on Catholic authority figures to tell them
what is right and wrong.
An example of this is Pope Innocent III, who ruled from 1198 to
1216. He said that Catholic clergymen have to obey the Pope, no matter
what he tells them to do. He denied their right (and responsibility)
to make moral judgments and follow their conscience. He said that,
even if the Pope commands them to do something evil, they have to obey
him, because nobody can judge the Pope. (This is online.) [Note 13]
Jesus and Paul warned us that we need to guard ourselves against
deception. They said:
"Take heed that no man deceive you." (Matthew 24:4)
"Beware lest any man spoil [ruin] you through philosophy and vain
deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the
world, and not after Christ." (Colossians 2:8)
We all need to protect ourselves from deception . If we don't stand
on the Bible, then we can fall for anything. I will give some examples
from the lives of Catholics I know personally.
A friend of mine was a devout Catholic. She had a confessor, a
priest she went to regularly to confess her sins and to receive moral
and spiritual guidance. She had been through a painful divorce, and
relied heavily on the priest for guidance.
One day, she found out that her daughter had been sexually molested
by a monk. She asked her confessor what to do about it. He advised her
to tell the monk's superior, and to let the monastery handle the
My friend never reported the crime to the police, and I doubt if
she got any counseling for her daughter. She kept the matter quiet, in
order to protect the reputation of the monastery.
There is an appropriate place for expressing anger . That girl
needed to see her mother get angry at the man who had molested her.
Instead, her mother was quiet about it. When she told me about the
incident, she quietly spoke in psychological terms about the emotional
problems of the man who had violated her daughter. Not once did she
express outrage at what had happened.
For several years, I was involved in helping some needy people. One
of the people I worked with was a Catholic priest. He had been raised
to be a conservative Catholic. At first, he was circumspect in his
approach towards women. But one day, his confessor gave him a book.
Unfortunately, he had more confidence in his confessor than he did in
the Bible, so he never questioned the validity of the book.
The title of the book was, "The Sexual Celibate ." It was written
by a Catholic priest. (Information about this book is online.) [Note
According to the book, celibates need to express themselves
sexually , in order to be emotionally healthy . The book said that
sexual expression is morally right, and not contrary to their vow of
celibacy, as long as they don't actually have intercourse.
One of our projects was helping some Vietnamese refugees. They were
Buddhists . One of them was a lovely young lady . She converted to
Catholicism. After he baptized her, the priest continued to give her
religious instruction. Among other things, he taught her the theology
of "The Sexual Celibate."
The young lady trusted the priest. He was her source of moral
authority, her guide for understanding right and wrong. She believed
what he told her about celibacy. They became romantically involved .
The priest did not have intercourse with her, but he was passionate
with her. She was deeply in love with him. Her family found out about
it, and scolded her. The young lady confided in me. She was confused,
ashamed, and heartbroken.
SOME RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES
I know a religious community whose leader became heavily influenced
by Jungian psychology. Monks and nuns depend on their religious
superiors for spiritual direction, instead of using the Bible as their
primary source of guidance. As a result, every member of that
religious community was led into deception . When I visited the
community, I heard more about Carl Jung than I did about Jesus Christ.
The reference point for their thinking was Jung's writings, rather
than the Bible, or even Catholic writings.
I have heard of other religious communities whose superiors were
influenced by New Age practices and philosophies. Again, all of the
members of the religious community followed their leader into
People can be "sincerely deceived." They can sincerely believe a
deception that they have been taught by trusted authority figures .
They may teach that deception to other people, and think that they are
doing a good thing when they do it. That was the case with these
A FOUNDATIONAL PROBLEM
We should never put our conscience in someone else's hands. This is
a foundational problem with Catholicism. For obedient Catholics, their
primary source of moral guidance is the Catholic hierarchy, rather
than the Bible .
No person is good enough, or holy enough, or wise enough, to give
our conscience to. We have to discern things for ourselves. We have to
get to know the Bible, so that we can have God's perspective about
The Bible says that we cannot afford to be like children, whose
beliefs are at the mercy of other people. (Ephesians 4:14) We need to
grow up and take responsibility for our own beliefs , and for having
our consciences be based on Biblical principles. We need to be like
the Bereans, and test everything
against the Bible.
An old hymn says: "On Christ the solid rock I stand. All other
ground is sinking sand." The traditions of the Catholic Church are
sinking sand. We need to take our stand on Jesus Christ and the Bible.
1. "Inquisition," in "The Catholic Encyclopedia," Volume VIII, 1910
(online edition 2002). The quotation is from the second paragraph of
the article. The Office of the Inquisition is an ecclesiastical
institution for suppressing heresy. It is a permanent office with
headquarters in Rome (described on pages 1 and 23-24 of my print-out).
If this address doesn't work for you, then do an Internet search for "
Inquisition + Catholic Encyclopedia" and you should find the article.
This article may take a while to load. At first you will see a white
page. Then the text will suddenly come in.
2. Ignatius Loyola, "The Spiritual Exercises" (1521-1535). These
rules are quoted in Marvin Perry, Joseph R. Peden and Theodore H. Von
Laue, "Sources of the Western Tradition: From Ancient Times to the
Enlightenment," Volume I, 4th edition (Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin,
1999), pages 330-332. You can read these rules online. The addresses
below have the "spiritual exercises" that are called, "Rules to Have
the True Sentiment in the Church."
More addresses for the rules. These web pages have all of Loyola's
"spiritual exercises." The one you want is called, "Rules to Have the
True Sentiment in the Church." It is the last item on the list, at the
bottom of the page. Click on it.
If these addresses don't work for you, then you can search for
"Ignatius Loyola + Rules for Thinking with the Church," or for
"Ignatius Loyola + Rules to Have the True Sentiment of the Church," or
for "Ignatius Loyola + the True Sentiment which we Ought to have in
the Church." You can also search for "Ignatius Loyola + Spiritual
Exercises." However, that is a more indirect route, because he has
many spiritual exercises besides the "Rules for Thinking with the
3. "Code of Canon Law," Latin-English edition, New English
Translation (Washington, DC: Canon Law Society of America, 1999),
pages 247 and 409, Canons 752-753, and 1311-1312. The 1983 "Code of
Canon Law" was translated into English in 1988. It is available
online. The following web pages have the Index of the book. The Index
has links to the laws. Canons 752-753 are near the beginning of Book
III. Canons 1311-1312 are in the beginning of Book VI. If these
addresses don't work for you, then do an Internet search for "Code of
When you find the right place in the Index, you can search for the
laws by canon number. [Hit CTRL + F. Then type the number of the law.
Then hit ENTER.] If you search for a second number, and you don't find
it, then look at the place on the search menu that says "up" and
"down." Try the opposite direction.
Addresses of websites that have the "Code of Canon Law "are below.
Some of them take a while to load after you click on the links. If you
can't get through to the web page, then go to the home page and try to
find it from there. [To find the home page, delete everything that
comes after "com," "org," or "net."]
You can buy the "Code of Canon Law" from the Canon Law Society of
America. All of the laws are contained in one book. In October, 2003,
it cost $45. Their phone number is (301) 362-8197. Ask for the
Latin-English edition, New English Translation (text only). This
edition was printed in 1999. If they no longer have it, then ask if
there is a more recent edition. Be sure to get it in
English. The Latin-English edition has
both English and Latin. Some editions are only in Latin. Their website
address is below. If it doesn't work, then do an Internet search for
"Canon Law Society of America."
You can order the book by phone from Newman Book Store in
Washington, DC. (It is located near a number of seminaries.) They have
two phone numbers: (202) 526-1036 and (202) 526-1037.
The ISBN number for the book is ISBN 0-943616-79-4. It used to be
possible to order it through regular bookstores. However, in October,
2003, my local bookstores were no longer able to get it. If you want
to try ordering it through a regular bookstore, you will need to give
them the ISBN number.
4. "The Catechism of the Catholic Church," paragraphs 85, 100, 113,
891, 2051. It is online with a search engine. If these addresses don't
work for you, then do an Internet search for "Catechism of the
Catholic Church" and you should find some links for it.
5. "Catechism of the Catholic Church," paragraphs 87, 2037.
6. "Ineffabilis Deus" ("Apostolic Constitution on the Immaculate
Conception"). Encyclical of Pope Pius IX, issued December 8, 1854.
Near the end of this papal bull there is a section called "The
Definition." The statements that I described are in the last paragraph
of that section. If these addresses don't work for you, then do a
search for "Ineffabilis Deus." I have listed the last four addresses
9. Peter de Rosa, "Vicars of Christ: The Dark Side of the Papacy
"(Dublin, Ireland: Poolbeg Press, 1988, 2000), page 72. This tells
about Pope Innocent III's excommunication of people who supported the
"Magna Carta." De Rosa is a practicing Catholic and a former priest.
This article has a lot of information about Pope Innocent III,
including his excommunication of anybody who supported the "Magna
Carta." Go to the following web page and click on the time period
1200-1300. Do a search for Innocent III. [Hit CTRL + F. Type "Innocent
III." Then hit ENTER.]
This article tells how Pope Innocent III condemned the "Magna Carta"
as immoral. However, it does not mention the excommunication of people
who supported it. The article has information about many popes. Do a
search for "Innocent III."
Dr. Mark F. Montebello, "Civil Rights in Malta's Post-Colonial
Age," Part III, "Independence According to the British," first
subheading, "The Most Shameful Episode." The author is a Catholic
priest in Malta. The information is on page 1 of my print-out.
11. Dave Hunt, "A Woman Rides the Beast" (Eugene, Oregon: Harvest
House Publishers, 1994), page 246.
This article begins by talking about Islam, but it has good
information about popes coercing kings. It quotes the order that Pope
Clement V gave to King Edward II, requiring the King to torture some
men. You can find it quickly by doing a search on the web page for the
word "torture." [Go to the address below. Hit CTRL + F. Type
"torture." Then hit ENTER.]
This article describes the methods of the Inquisition. The pressure
on Edward II to torture some men is described about half-way down the
document. The easiest way to find it is to search for the word
The men who were tortured were Knights Templar. This Templar
website gives information about how Pope Clement V ordered King Edward
II to torture the Templars. The information is about a third of the
way down the document. (Search for the word "torture.")
I apologize for the tone and attitude of this article. However, the
quotation from Pope Clement V is accurate. It is what I have in my
source book. I don't have permission to quote it, so I'm making it
available to you online. The quotation is at the very end of the first
Some Knights Templar were tortured in England under the reign of
King Edward II. The Inquisitors complained to Pope Clement V that
torture was not allowed. The Pope intervened by putting pressure on
the King. As a result, special laws were passed in order to allow the
"They Didn't Think It Was Any Big Deal," in "Mission," July/August
2002. An article about sexuality at a Catholic seminary. It describes
the book, "The Sexual Celibate." To find the reference to the book in
the article, do a search on the web page whose address is below. [Hit
CTRL + F. Then type in "Sexual Celibate." Then hit ENTER. It will take
you to that place on the page.]
Information about three Dominican priests. Donald Goergen is the
third one (a little more than half-way down the page). In listing his
accomplishments, the article mentions his book, "The Sexual Celibate."
There is a modern book that deals with the theme of "The Sexual
Celibate." Keith Clark wrote, "Being Sexual…and Celibate" (Ave Maria
Press, 1995). It is out of print, but when I searched for it at
Amazon.com, they had copies for sale.
A description of the book. Many books are described in this
article. Do a search for "Keith Clark + Being Sexual" on the web page.
[Go to the address below. Hit CTRL + F. Then type "Keith Clark Being
Sexual." Then hit ENTER.]
An article by a nun. She tells of the influence that "Being
Sexual…and Celibate" had on her. She includes some quotations from the
book. You can find the information about the book by searching the web
page for it. [Go the the address below. Hit CTRL + F. Type "Keith
Clark." Then hit ENTER.]
Books such as these, and classes based on them, contribute to moral
corruption in modern Catholic seminaries. Michael S. Rose tells about
it in his book, "Goodbye, Good Men: How Liberals Brought Corruption
into the Catholic Church "(Regnery Publishing, 2002). There is some
detailed information about Rose's book in my article, "False
The Introduction to "Goodbye, Good Men "is available online. So are
feedback testimonials of seminarians and priests who have read the
book. There is a collection of excerpts from reviews. At the end of
each excerpt, there is a place that you can click if you want to read
the entire review.