Saturday, May 7, 2016

The Warrior Pope

Europe is struggling to live up to the vision of its founders, Pope Francis has said in a powerful speech that asked: “What has happened to you, the Europe of humanism, the champion of human rights, democracy and freedom?”

I could write yet another post on this current Pope’s destructive attitude toward Europe, individual freedom, cultural destruction, and economic barbarism; yet, this has grown too easy when he continually offers gems such as these:

“Their new and exciting desire to create unity seems to be fading. We, the heirs of their dream, are tempted to yield to our own selfish interests and to consider putting up fences here and there.”

“Time is teaching us that it is not enough simply to settle individuals geographically: the challenge is that of a profound cultural integration.”

This post won’t be a Pope-bashing, at least not for the speech he gave.  Instead, it is the occasion of the speech that interests me:

Speaking as he became the first pope to accept the prestigious Charlemagne prize for his work on behalf of European solidarity…

Charlemagne Prize

The Charlemagne Prize…is one of the most prestigious European prizes. It has been awarded annually since 1950 by the German city of Aachen to people who contributed to the ideals upon which it has been founded. It commemorates Charlemagne, ruler of the Frankish Empire and founder of what became the Holy Roman Empire, who resided and is buried at Aachen.

The Pope has accepted a prize named after the bloodiest murderer in early Medieval European history.


Charlemagne, also known as Charles the Great or Charles I, was King of the Franks. He united most of Western Europe during the early Middle Ages and laid the foundations for modern France and Germany. He took the Frankish throne in 768 and became King of Italy from 774. From 800, he became the first Holy Roman Emperor — the first recognized emperor in Western Europe since the fall of the Western Roman Empire three centuries earlier.

Charlemagne became king in 768, initially as co-ruler with his younger brother Carloman I.  Carloman died at twenty years-of-age under unclear circumstances in 771, leaving Charlemagne sole ruler.

Charlemagne has been called the "Father of Europe" (Pater Europae), as he united most of Western Europe for the first time since the Roman Empire.

In almost every one of the forty-two years of his reign Charlemagne summoned his “host” to campaigns beyond the borders of Francia.  If, by any chance, a year went by without a placitum generale, the chroniclers carefully recorded the fact, for it was a year to remember.

These were campaigns of empire – “beyond the borders of Francia.”  Charlemagne fought to unite Europe, or kill anyone who stood in the way of his objective.

[He] fought in turn against the Lombards, the Saxons, the Muslims of Spain, the Serbs, the Avars, the Byzantine provinces of Southern Italy, the Bretons, the Danes, and the Duchy of Benevento.  Charlemagne rules, by the end of his reign, over territory which included the whole of modern France, Belgium, Holland, and Switzerland, most of western Germany, a great part of Italy, a small part of northern Spain, and Corsica.

In Spain he fought against the Muslims, but it was the Christian Basques that annihilated Charlemagne’s rearguard in 778.  The Saxons, described as “heathen” who “still worshipped their primitive Germanic gods” by Davis, were an especially troublesome bunch.  Destroying “everything with fire and the sword” was not sufficient:

Henceforward, it was clear that a more radical policy toward the Saxons would be necessary…. What was needed was the conquest of the whole country and the subjugation of its people.

If ever they [the Saxons] were to live in amity with the Franks (‘the Christian people’) it was necessary that they should be converted to Christianity.  Accordingly, from 785, the Franks began a ‘thorough’ policy; the Saxons were not only to be conquered but also converted, if necessary by force.  In the first Saxon capitulary it was declared a capital offence to resist or evade baptism.

The heathen Saxon was put outside the law.

The Saxons revolted, often.  From the previously cited Wikipedia article:

In the Saxon Wars, spanning thirty years and eighteen battles, he conquered Saxonia and proceeded to convert the conquered to Christianity.

The conversion was almost never peaceful.  There were forced deportations of the more intransigent.  Further:

…at Verden in Lower Saxony, Charlemagne is recorded as having ordered the execution of 4,500 Saxon prisoners, known as the Massacre of Verden ("Verdener Blutgericht").

Meanwhile, the better connected Saxons went along – call them the connected elite.  The Church also took its share of the loot – such conversion by sword being the will of God, it was only right. one doubted for a moment that the interests of Christianity and the Franks were identical.

The church played the role of servant to Charlemagne:

The Church, as normally understood, was reduced to a department of state, as a sort of ministry of prayer, and the responsibility for education and the interpretation of the true Catholic faith was assumed by Charlemagne in his role of ‘David’, the Lord’s anointed.

As an aside, the coronation of Charlemagne remains surrounded in controversy – who did what to whom?  Interpretations – even at the time – varied widely: was it a coronation of the emperor by the Pope, or was the emperor taking control of the Church?


Then as now, uniting disparate cultures can occur gradually – through normal interactions of the market and other means – or much more quickly, by force and government intervention.  Then as now, force was the chosen path.  Then as now, the Church gave its blessing to the destruction.

Thus, the Pope receives the Charlemagne prize.


  1. The first recipient of Charlemagne prize was Count Richard Coudenhove-Kalergi, the weirdo activist for the genetic destruction of Europeans as a distinct racial/ethnic biological body. The traitor Pope won the Charlemagne prize in the service of helping carry out this plan.

  2. Kalergi was a total weirdo and an enemy of European civilization. Here is the famous quote from his "Practical Idealism":

    "The man of the future will be of mixed race. Today's races and classes will gradually disappear owing to the vanishing of space, time, and prejudice. The Eurasian-Negroid race of the future, similar in its appearance to the Ancient Egyptians, will replace the diversity of peoples with a diversity of individuals"

    1. Couple that ideology with Yankee Protestant Postmillenial Pietism and you got yourself a ticking time bomb for the destruction of civilization.

  3. This is available online, it is well worth the read:
    A Major Piece Of Buried History

    From Look Magazine, January 25, 1966, Volume 30, No. 2
    How The Jews Changed Catholic Thinking
    By Joseph Roddy, Look Senior Editor

  4. I wondered for sometime why so called patriots remain in the Catholic church. Some (the smart ones with critical thinking ability) have left and resigned their membership. Ditto for the liberal protestant churches promoting same agenda: multiculturalism. I have nothing to do with folks that lack consistency to incl family members. They seem to be mentally challenged. Time to purge out these losers from your social circle.

    1. The evil men at the top of the hierarchy within the Church are not the Church, let's first get that straight. The Church has been under attack from within and without for the entirety of its existence and today is no different. Do you think that anything founded by Christ wouldn't be? The faithful, a remnant anyway, know the difference and understand that human beings are imperfect and inclined to evil, yes even men that are supposed to be men of faith. Their existence within the Church's hierarchy has been a constant and always will be. That doesn't take away from the Church's holiness as Christ cannot be divided. "The gates of Hell will not prevail" against her. The faithful simply ignore their inanity and what doesn't comport with Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture. How else would the Church have been able to survive and thrive for 2000 years? These popes and cardinals can only do so much damage and it has usually been corrected by the calling of a general council, (ie Trent against the apostate heretic Luther). Read Aquinas if you are intellectually inclined. That would help clarify your presumptuous thinking.

    2. Dominus: Most all churches have become apostate. This includes most mainline denominations, incl. Baptists, which I left many years ago. Some have turned to home church or small groups in private facilities, not connected to any church councils. All denominations are man made. The redeemed people are the church body. Church denominational titles separates doctrinal teachings among the various churches, and people go where they agree the most with doctrines by choosing a denomination. Some like me, are fed up with corporate religion and choose to meet in a private facility with like minded and pastors who are not tied to a hierarchy, who have left the mainline Baptists.

  5. Your account of the forcible conversion of the Saxons seems to conflict with that of Dr. Richard Stark. He claims that the Church pretty much left the pagans alone after they stopped persecuting her. Perhaps he meant only before the fall of Rome?

    1. A link would be helpful, or a cite from a book.

  6. Sure thing. The site was down this morning; that's the only reason I didn't include it:

    1. Without going through each line in the attached, in general I agree that the Catholic Church gets a bum rap for its role during the Middle Ages.

      See this post for a view on the generally liberal world of medieval Europe, including religious tolerance by the Church:

      With that said, Charlemagne was Charlemagne, and it is clear from all I have read that his attempt at re-creating a New Rome, Holy, was bloody. What was before and after him was much more tolerant.