Popes, cardinals, archbishops, abbots, bishops, priests, and monks kept concubines and pocketed church wealth.
When the bubonic plague stalked Europe in 1348, hysterical Christians concluded that it was caused by Jews poisoning wells.
In 1370 at Brussels, someone reported seeing a Jew break a wafer, and virtually all Belgian Jews were massacred.
St. Gregory called Jews “slayers of the Lord, murderers of the prophets, adversaries of God”. St. Jerome added “vipers”.
For century after century after century, the Christian church had designated the people to be despised: the religious believers called Jews.
Pope Urban II launched the First Crusade in 1095 to wrest the Holy Land from infidels. "Deus Vult" (God wills it) became the rallying cry.
When religion is the ruling force in a society, it produces horror. The stronger the supernatural beliefs, the worse the inhumanity.
The victim was required to confess that he was a heretic, but also to accuse his children, wife, friends, and others as fellow heretics.
Without religion, divisions would blur with passing generations; children would adapt to new times, mingle, intermarry, forget ancient wounds.
During the 1400s, the Inquisition shifted its focus toward witchcraft, and the next 300 years witnessed a bizarre orgy of religious delusion.
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