Not In Our Name: A Declaration of Concerned Protestant and Catholic Clergy and Laity, with a Ten Point Program to Bring the Church to Justice and Protect the Innocent

Baby Prayer Hands

We are a group of clergy and former clergy of both Protestant and Catholic faiths who are united in our fundamental rejection of the genocidal legacy of Christendom, which is an empire of conquest and violence arising from the fusion of church and state under the later Roman emperors.

Christendom operates today through wealthy, state-protected church organizations which are legal corporations answerable neither to God nor to their own congregations of believers.

Christendom is a heresy and a denial of the supremacy of Christ and his sacrifice. For we owe our allegiance to God, not to church bodies deriving their power and legitimacy from state and temporal powers, and worldly wealth.

As Christ is manifest in every man and woman, since the kingdom of heaven is within us, and his kingdom is not of this world, then any church claiming to represent him is fraudulently denying Christ as Lord, and the ultimate sanctity of the human person.

We are compelled to make this declaration now because of the reign of lies and violence that predominates in the church, and of the history of brutality, genocide and destruction enacted over millennia by both Catholic and Protestant churches on non-Christians and the innocent.

This slaughter began over fifteen centuries ago, at the beginning of Christendom, and continues today.

The killing of millions of women and dissident Christians under Inquisitions, the Crusading ethic of Indulgence – which promised spiritual cleansing to anyone who killed Jews, Muslims and other “enemies of the faith” – and the eventual genocide of untold millions of indigenous nations around the world: all of this arose from the Church’s belief that it has the power to kill and conquer in the name of the non-violent Jesus.

The Vatican is responsible for the greatest slaughter of humanity in history because of two papal bulls (Romanus Pontifex, 1455, and Inter Catera, 1493) – proclaimed and still operative under so-called Canon Law – that sanctioned and encouraged the destruction and enslavement of all non-Christian peoples: the majority of humanity. The wealth of the Vatican today rests upon the stolen and unreturned lands of many of those nations.

Is it surprising, then, that for just as long, the Church has sanctioned the torture, abuse and even murder of innocent children in its orphanages, sweatshops, and “residential schools” around the world? Are we surprised that such a violent organization places its own material survival ahead of justice for the innocents it has wronged? Or, that under the canon law known as Crimen Solicitationas, every priest is expected to hide the evidence of the rape of children and allow this abomination to go unpunished, or face expulsion from the church?

We are aware that Protestant churches as well are guilty of these crimes, and regularly shelter rapists and other criminals in their ranks. The example may be set by Rome, but it is actively copied by others.

These facts are irrefutable, and yet Christians continue to give their attendance, money and allegiance to the church corporations with such blood on their hands and lies on their lips.

All of these crimes against God and humanity have been done in our name. We have, by commission and omission, given our support to the anti-Christ in our midst and allowed ourselves to be used to commit the worst of all sins: violence against the sacred holy spirit of God and the innocent.

For this reason, and to cleanse ourselves of this enormous apostasy and wrong, we are issuing the following Ten Point Program. We believe that these measures are required for the church to be brought under public control so that it no longer operates as a secret, criminal body preying on the innocent.

1. The Church must issue full reparations to all of its victims according to their wishes and needs. The Church must pay for all of the costs incurred by their damage to these victims, including all medical, counseling and retraining costs, and all loss of income caused by their disability or grief and suffering.

2. The Church must return all land and property taken from its victims, and restore and return all of the wealth generated by their exploitation of their victims to them, including the wealth gained through forced, unpaid or low paid labor.

3. The Church must surrender for a proper burial, unconditionally and at its own expense, the remains of all those who died in their institutions or under their care.

4. The Church must surrender to secular authorities without conditions all the evidence, and all the perpetrators and their accessories, connected to such deaths and to any other crimes against children and others under church care. The Church must participate unconditionally in any legal or human rights inquiries into their crimes and freely disclose their records to such investigations.

5. Those responsible for crimes against children and others in church facilities, including the Pope, must be arrested and tried in civil or international courts of law, and cannot be shielded from prosecution by any form of immunity or by so-called “canon law”.

6. All clergy and church employees must be licensed and monitored as public servants, and be legally compelled to swear a public, binding oath to protect the rights and sanctity of children, and disclose any harm done to them, if need be against the orders of the Church itself.

7. All tax exemptions, immunities, legal safeguards and special privileges enjoyed by the Church must be abolished.

8. Diplomatic recognition of the Vatican and its status as a so-called “state” must be annulled.

9. All special concordats and financial agreements with the Vatican must be annulled, and all public funds and taxes given to the Vatican must be returned to their respective governments.

10. The wealth and property of all church bodies larger than a single congregation must be nationalized and placed under public ownership, so that the Church may function as a servant of the community.

We, the founding clergy of the Protestant and Roman Catholic faiths united in our group Not in Our Name, do solemnly pledge ourselves to this program and allegiance, and call upon all Christians and clergy to do the same.

Henceforth, and until this Program is enacted and the Church is disestablished as a corporate, self-governing, criminal body, we will conduct ourselves and our pastoral duties separate from and in opposition to corporate Christendom and its existing churches.

Duly signed and ratified this Tenth Day of March, 2012

(Names to follow)

Please share this with clergy and laity and sign it. You can reach us at thecommonland@gmail.com.