This is part II of The Great Conspiracy in History That No One Talks About. Click here to read part I: The Protestant Reformation and its Legacy and here to read part III: If People Understood the Reformation Better, They Would Equally Understand the History of the Past Five Hundred Years Better
People’s Lives Depended on, and Benefitted from, the Monastic System
Of course, there were those who said, and still say, that the monasteries had grown fat and lax on their accumulated wealth (all of which, as I say, had been donated by the people of the country), and maybe there were instances where abuses had crept in. But, was brazenly confiscating all the monastic wealth and passing it round amongst the Reformers for their personal benefit, a suitable way of addressing any such problem? Added to which, was this wholesale destruction needed when there had been no clamour for reform amongst the people whose lives had depended on, and benefitted from, the monastic system?
In short, the Reformation changed everything in the countries where its effects were embraced. In the case of Britain, the devastation that it wrought was so extensive that the country became unrecognisable. In his BBC TV programme Europe’s Holy War (first broadcast on 3rd October 2017 [see video below ]), Dr David Starkey more than once calls the Reformation our very own “Jihad.”
Now the list of devastations that the Reformation wrought on Britain is probably nowhere better described than by William Cobbett in his History of the Protestant Reformation – Cobbett was a Protestant, by the way – and so I urge anyone wanting more evidence than this short chapter is able to provide, to buy a copy. It is the most extraordinary and revealing read – highly recommended.
With Cobbett’s resource still available I can shortly bring this brief exposé to a close but, before I do, I feel that I must mention three examples of the sheer and unremitting hatred that the Reformers had for the Catholicism on which Britain had been built over hundreds of years:
- The new religion, Protestantism, when it began to take hold in Britain after Queen Elizabeth I came to the throne, became a compulsory religion for everyone. Unless you, too, protested against papal power and authority and submitted to the new religion, you would be fined, and fined, and fined again. There was no freedom of religion under the Reformers. If you stayed true to the Catholic faith that had been the backbone of British religious life for one thousand years, and which Queen Elizabeth I had, at her Coronation, taken a solemn oath to uphold, you would probably lose all your personal wealth in fines.
- If you were a Catholic priest, that fact alone was enough to condemn you to death. And your execution would not be a case of a simple beheading; you would be dragged along the streets on a hurdle to the place of execution. You would then be hanged but not subject to the drop that would break your neck and kill you; instead you would be cut up while still alive and dangling, your heart and guts would be ripped out and burned before your eyes; then your body would be cut into four and the four parts displayed prominently around the town as a warning to others. This is where the expression “Hung, Drawn and Quartered” comes from.
- And if you want visible proof of the hatred that the authorities bore towards Catholic priests, all you need do is go to look at the priest holes in houses like Ufton Court in Berkshire or Harvington Hall in Worcestershire. These hiding places were only constructed because in Elizabethan England, if a Catholic wanted to hear Mass, such extreme precautions had to be taken to protect the priest from discovery and certain death – and to think we call her “Good” Queen Bess!
I personally find the above analysis a devastating indictment of the Reformation. In a world that pretends that evil doesn’t exist, the Reformation, like the events that we refer to as 9/11, is clear proof that evil is most certainly alive and kicking.
Another astonishing aspect of the Reformation is that twenty-eight years after starting the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther expressed his deepest regret at the utter disaster that he had achieved. This is the little-known but nonetheless startling confession that he wrote in 1545:
“Who among us would have thought of preaching as we have done, could we have foreseen how much misery, corruption, scandal, blasphemy, ingratitude and wickedness would have resulted from it? … Only see how the nobles, the burghers, and the peasants are trampling religion underfoot; how they are driving the preachers away by sheer starvation! … I have had no greater, or severer subject of assault (by the Devil) than my preaching, when the thought arose in me: Thou art the sole author of all this movement.”
In short, I could see no possible justification for the 2017 celebrations of the 500th anniversary of what is considered to be the start of the Reformation, but I can see a strong reason for remembering the Reformation and investigating it; so that more people understand the utter disaster that its criminal perpetrators deliberately inflicted on the world and especially in Britain; a disaster about which pupils are seldom properly taught at school.
Reformation Europe’s Holy War | BBC Documentary 2021 (Documentaries/YT):