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ABC-TV DISCOVERS “POPE JOAN”
Catholic League ^ | December 29, 2005 | Bill Donohue

Posted on 12/29/2005 11:45:43 AM PST by NYer

Tonight, ABC’s “Primetime” will air a segment, “On the Trail of Pope Joan,” that raises questions about the possible existence of Pope Joan.  Catholic League president Bill Donohue weighed in today:

 

“ABC has been busy questioning the divinity of Jesus for years, what with its infamous ‘Search for Jesus’ specials.  In May of this year, it went back to the well again with a ‘20/20’ episode questioning the resurrection of Jesus.  Correspondent Elizabeth Vargas told viewers: ‘Whether the resurrection proclaimed by the disciples was physical, metaphysical, or simply a hallucination—the dreams of grieving followers,’ is not known.  In other words, Christians have likely been duped.  And tonight we learn that we’ve been duped again—a woman pope ruled in the ninth century.

 

“Diane Sawyer not only wants us to believe in Pope Joan, she takes us to exact street where she processed.  ‘Fact or Fiction’ she exclaims!  Indeed, Sawyer tells us that Pope Joan gave birth while processing.  Pope Joan, she says, dressed in male garb, but this is not an historical anomaly: Sawyer shows us a picture of a woman dressed as a soldier in the U.S. Civil War and then proclaims, ‘Which brings us back to Joan.’  But of course.  Another segue could have been little girls dressed up as GI Joe on Halloween, but that might have unsettled the sure-mouthed Sawyer.

 

“Sawyer does not interview either Paul Johnson, the world renowned historian and author of ‘The Papacy,’ nor does she interview Eamon Duffy, the brilliant historian from Cambridge and author of the magisterial volume, ‘Saints and Sinners: A History of the Popes.’  Had she done so they would have laughed in her smug face.  So who does she rely on?  Donna Cross and Mary Malone.  Cross wrote a novel about the mythical Pope Joan and has no standing among scholars.  Malone is an ex-nun who lost her faith and hates the Catholic Church.  ‘I can no longer pray,’ she said in 1996, ‘because of the language, and because it seemed so essential as the core of the tradition that God be male.’

 

“In other words, ABC’s gospel has no room for Jesus but plenty of room for Pope Joan.  We could squeeze more truth from a used-car salesman than we could from these people.”


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Extended News; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: abc; abcnews; catholic; dianesawyer; jesus; pope; popejoan; resurrection; revisionism; urbanlegend
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1 posted on 12/29/2005 11:45:44 AM PST by NYer
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To: american colleen; Lady In Blue; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; ...

What is the Catholic League?
The Catholic League is the nation’s largest Catholic civil rights organization. Founded in 1973 by the late Father Virgil C. Blum, S.J., the Catholic League defends the right of Catholics – lay and clergy alike – to participate in American public life without defamation or discrimination.
 
Motivated by the letter and the spirit of the First Amendment, the Catholic League works to safeguard both the religious freedom rights and the free speech rights of Catholics whenever and wherever they are threatened.

ABOUT THE CATHOLIC LEAGUE

Catholic Ping - Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list


2 posted on 12/29/2005 11:46:55 AM PST by NYer ("Socialism is the religion people get when they lose their religion")
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To: NYer

Next week - a very special Prime Time Live about the curious story of Maria Monk.


3 posted on 12/29/2005 11:47:01 AM PST by wideawake
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To: NYer

*sigh*


4 posted on 12/29/2005 11:47:59 AM PST by big'ol_freeper ("Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought." Pope JPII)
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To: wideawake

Pope Joan's jig was up when she gave birth.


5 posted on 12/29/2005 11:48:12 AM PST by massgopguy (massgopguy)
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To: wideawake

bump for later


6 posted on 12/29/2005 11:48:16 AM PST by joe fonebone (Thin skinned people make me sick!!!)
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To: NYer
Same stuff, different day.

Next up on Prime Time--"Mohammad: Prophet of Allah, or Whacked-out Pedophile?"
7 posted on 12/29/2005 11:50:15 AM PST by Antoninus (Hillary smiles every time a Freeper trashes Santorum.)
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To: NYer

File it under 'Geeze, Not This ***t Again'. I'll be at a quilt shop spending money.


8 posted on 12/29/2005 11:52:36 AM PST by Jaded (The truth shall set you free, but lying to yourself turns you French.)
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To: Antoninus
Ooh, you'll never see the MSM question a single tenet of Islam in the same way the question Christianity. It'll be more like "Mohammed: Prophet of Allah, or Really Really Cool Prophet of Allah?"
9 posted on 12/29/2005 11:52:43 AM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: Antoninus

Not a chance that wouldn't be prudent.


10 posted on 12/29/2005 11:53:42 AM PST by airedale ( XZ)
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To: NYer
With the way the Papacy was handed out in extreme nepotism in the early years of the catholic church, a female pope is a possibility, but very unlikely.

The early history of the papacy is not a pretty thing. From being the controller of great amounts of wealth handed out for favors to holding orgies, its history is not what most would think it is.

11 posted on 12/29/2005 11:54:32 AM PST by Phantom Lord (Fall on to your knees for the Phantom Lord)
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To: NYer

Alright ABC.  You win.  The whole Jesus thing is a hoax, you've convinced me.  Now I'll sit quietly and watch your Desperate Houswives and whatever other garbage you want to feed me.

I'm just glad you dumped Monday Night Football, so I don't ever have to watch your stupid network again.

Owl_Eagle

"You know, I'm going to start thanking
the woman who cleans the restroom in
the building I work in.  I'm going to start
thinking of her as a human being"

-Hillary Clinton
(Yes, she really said that
Peggy Noonan
The Case Against Hillary Clinton, pg 55)

12 posted on 12/29/2005 11:54:56 AM PST by South Hawthorne (In Memory of my Dear Friend Henry Lee II)
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To: NYer

Why is this old legend so hot right now?


13 posted on 12/29/2005 11:55:22 AM PST by exile (Exile - Helen Thomas tried to lure me into her Gingerbread House.)
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To: NYer

It's an "Urban" myth...........


14 posted on 12/29/2005 11:56:06 AM PST by Red Badger (And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him)
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To: Owl_Eagle
I'm just glad you dumped Monday Night Football, so I don't ever have to watch your stupid network again.

How true is that. I almost stopped watching Monday Night Football all together thanks to the ubiquitous commercials for the rest of ABCs atrocious line-up. I couldn't sit there in good conscience and watch that cr@p (even for 30 seconds) with my little son in the room.
15 posted on 12/29/2005 11:57:35 AM PST by Antoninus (Hillary smiles every time a Freeper trashes Santorum.)
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To: Gordongekko909
What about Mohammed: Prophet or Child Molester?.........
16 posted on 12/29/2005 11:58:09 AM PST by Red Badger (And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him)
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To: Red Badger

Not in the MSM.


17 posted on 12/29/2005 11:59:23 AM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: NYer
>ABC-TV DISCOVERS “POPE JOAN”

Pope Joan (Diane Sawyer looks at FEMALE POPE)

ABC Pushes Anti-Catholic "Pope Joan" Tale

18 posted on 12/29/2005 12:00:07 PM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: exile
Why is this old legend so hot right now?

Feminism! The feminists are paving the way for the release of The daVinci Code.

19 posted on 12/29/2005 12:00:12 PM PST by NYer ("Socialism is the religion people get when they lose their religion")
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To: NYer

Guess the fact that it's not true won't stop them.


20 posted on 12/29/2005 12:01:53 PM PST by exile (Exile - Helen Thomas tried to lure me into her Gingerbread House.)
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To: Jaded
File it under 'Jeez, Not This ***t Again'. I'll be at a quilt shop spending money.

21 posted on 12/29/2005 12:02:24 PM PST by Bratch
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To: Phantom Lord
(1) Your claim of nepotism is highly exagerrated. It existed, certainly, but was not "extreme".

(2) The early history of the Papacy, from Peter to St. Gregory the Great, is incredibly awe-inspiring. The world's first system of leadership based on goodness, not military power.

(3) No Pope ever "held orgies" - that's a myth spread by uneducated idiots with an agenda. There isn't the slightest shred of evidence to support such a charge.

22 posted on 12/29/2005 12:08:41 PM PST by wideawake
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To: wideawake

It is well known that John XII threw wild sex parties.


23 posted on 12/29/2005 12:09:39 PM PST by Phantom Lord (Fall on to your knees for the Phantom Lord)
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To: NYer

Little Joan was not feelin' well...

She was afraid she might go to hell...

But she never gave up hope...

even when she became the Pope..

Said hey Joan, take a walk on the wild side.


24 posted on 12/29/2005 12:09:57 PM PST by Blzbba ("Shop Smart. Shop S-Mart" - Ashe, Housewares)
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To: Red Badger

>> It's an "Urban" myth...........<<

Funny you should mention that... I think Pope Urban was the real Pope. :^D


25 posted on 12/29/2005 12:11:33 PM PST by dangus
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Comment #26 Removed by Moderator

To: wideawake
John XII also basically turned the Lateran Palace into a brothel.

Sometimes history isn't pretty.

27 posted on 12/29/2005 12:13:26 PM PST by Phantom Lord (Fall on to your knees for the Phantom Lord)
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To: no_turnipseed

You are likely more correct in pegging the time frame. But I would say the fist 700 years of a 2000 year religion could be considered "early".


28 posted on 12/29/2005 12:14:27 PM PST by Phantom Lord (Fall on to your knees for the Phantom Lord)
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To: Phantom Lord
John XII was accused by his enemies of having sexual affairs with three different women at various times before and during his reign.

He definitely had an affair with one woman - the widow of one of his political rivals from his secular career, and this affair almost certainly continued during his Papacy.

He also supposedly played at dice and hunted and completely neglected his duties in favor of politicking.

In other words, he behaved exactly like a typical petty nobleman of his day, instead of taking his responsibilities seriously.

But not even his most dogged enemies accused him of holding orgies.

29 posted on 12/29/2005 12:14:43 PM PST by wideawake
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To: Phantom Lord
John XII also basically turned the Lateran Palace into a brothel.

No, he did not. His enemies referred to the Lateran as a brothel because he brought his mistress there - an absolutely disgusting display - but no one seriously claimed that actual prostitutes were plying their trade in the Lateran.

30 posted on 12/29/2005 12:16:33 PM PST by wideawake
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To: Phantom Lord
Sometimes history isn't pretty.

The actual facts of John XII life are extremely ugly - he was an immoral, irreligious slob.

There's no need to invent unattested tales of orgies and brothels.

31 posted on 12/29/2005 12:18:01 PM PST by wideawake
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To: NYer

Debunked here:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08407a.htm

Scroll down to "fiction 4", here:
http://www.love2learn.net/religion/samples/popefict.htm

I would suggest people complain:
http://abcnews.go.com/Primetime/story?id=131877&page=1


32 posted on 12/29/2005 12:18:33 PM PST by bnelson44 (Proud parent of a tanker! (Charlie Mike, son))
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Comment #33 Removed by Moderator

To: NYer

Actually I remember Paul Harvey telling this story when I was young.
There are segments of the old bible that are not allowed
because they refer to this incident.
I grew up believing this for 50 years.
may or may not be true but what an impression it made
in me.


34 posted on 12/29/2005 12:30:04 PM PST by squibs
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To: Phantom Lord
It is well known that John XII threw wild sex parties.

Gosh, I didn't know that! How did I miss it in my studies of history, it being so well known and all?

35 posted on 12/29/2005 12:32:46 PM PST by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done needs to be done by the government.)
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On Thursday evening, instead of watching Sawyer's revisionist garbage, read the work of a fellow freeper.


36 posted on 12/29/2005 12:33:46 PM PST by A.A. Cunningham
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To: no_turnipseed; Phantom Lord
The true ugly periods of the Papacy were really the 10th century and the 15th century.

In the 10th century the city of Rome fell under the control of a few powerful families who ruled the city like Mafiosi since the political order of Europe was chaotic and there were no external checks on these gangster families.

They used their power to coerce the clergy of Rome to elect their sympathizers to the Papacy.

John XII was one of these Popes.

Benedict VII tried to break the hold these families had over the Papacy and insituted some strong reforms in 981. In 999, Frenchman Gerbert D'Aurillac - the well-known scholar - came to Rome to set matters in order and the Cluniac reformers followed in his wake.

John XII was a sickening anomaly, not a typical Pope even for his time.

37 posted on 12/29/2005 12:39:11 PM PST by wideawake
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To: NYer
From what I've read about medieval life, hiding your gender for years would have been pretty much impossible.

Their privies had no absolutely no privacy back then. Bathroom habits for most people were pretty public. It wouldn't take too long before someone would noticed. I guess this fact eludes the MSM.

38 posted on 12/29/2005 12:41:22 PM PST by lizma
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To: wideawake

"But not even his most dogged enemies accused him of holding orgies."


From wikipedia:

"Much that is alleged about the pornocracy comes from the histories of Liutprand, bishop of Cremona. Liutprand took part in the Assembly of Bishops which deposed Pope John XII and was a political enemy of Rome; he is described by the Catholic Encyclopedia as "ever a strong partisan and frequently unfair towards his adversaries." The worst excesses of the time might be considered no more than ecclesiastic gossip."


39 posted on 12/29/2005 12:42:34 PM PST by Blzbba ("Shop Smart. Shop S-Mart" - Ashe, Housewares)
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Comment #40 Removed by Moderator

To: Antoninus
Next up on Prime Time--"Mohammad: Prophet of Allah, or Whacked-out Pedophile?"

That'll be the day when they say anything against mohammad...
(curses and pig p!ss be upon him)

It'd probably be something more like....
Mohammad: Savior of the Universe.
<sarcasm>

41 posted on 12/29/2005 12:46:50 PM PST by Fiddlstix (Tagline Repair Service. Let us fix those broken Taglines. Inquire within(Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: wideawake
"There's no need to invent unattested tales of orgies and brothels."

Agreed, esp. when the truth is stranger than fiction!!
Like the posthumous ecclesiastical trial of Pope Formosus
42 posted on 12/29/2005 12:50:56 PM PST by Blzbba ("Shop Smart. Shop S-Mart" - Ashe, Housewares)
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To: Blzbba
Liutprand had good reasons to hate John XII too. Thanks for that contextualizing quote.

Uses that interesting word "pornocracy" - rule by whores.

The "whores" in question were the women of the Theophylactus family of Rome. They were not actual wprking prostitutes, of course, they were women who slept around to gain influence and leverage over their families' political rivals.

I would imagine Theodora and her daughters were much like the Atia character in the series Rome.

43 posted on 12/29/2005 12:52:01 PM PST by wideawake
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To: Phantom Lord
"The early history of the papacy is not a pretty thing. From being the controller of great amounts of wealth handed out for favors to holding orgies, its history is not what most would think it is."

Sorry, but that is NOT the "early history of the papacy". They call them "the Middle Ages" for a reason.

44 posted on 12/29/2005 12:55:09 PM PST by Wonder Warthog (The Hog of Steel)
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To: wideawake

"I would imagine Theodora and her daughters were much like the Atia character in the series Rome."


My wife & I love 'Rome'. I'm hoping they're going to pick up the story of Octavian's rise to power. I also hope that, like other HBO shows, I don't have to wait 2 years before the next episode!


45 posted on 12/29/2005 1:01:15 PM PST by Blzbba ("Shop Smart. Shop S-Mart" - Ashe, Housewares)
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To: NYer

ABC did NOT "discover" anything new. The story of Pope Joan was aired on PBS a few years ago.

The Catholic church is purported to have erased any knowledge of Pope Joan from the church records. It is a story now told by the nuns.

A group of licensed genealogists attempted to determine who this "Pope Joan" was...to no avail.


46 posted on 12/29/2005 1:07:02 PM PST by Fruit of the Spirit
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To: NYer

The American Spectator had a blurb about this on their blog: http://www.spectator.org/blogger.asp#1293




ABC's Pope Joan - Thursday, December 29, 2005 @ 2:40:39 PM


Those naming the mainstream media as their Enemy of the Year (below) won't be dissuaded after learning about Primetime's segment tonight. Diane Sawyer will "report" (read: speculate) about a Pope Joan, a rumored female pope in the ninth century.

In a Video on Demand preview at the ABC News website, the anchorette asks the segment's producer, Ann Reynolds, what evidence exists of Pope Joan. Reynolds responds, "You're talking about the dark ages. t is almost impossible to prove anything. There's no sense of history as you or I would accept it. There's no sense of proof as a news person would accept it. But it's an amazing mystery." Hmmm... tabloids usually run their gossip yarns with more evidence than that.

But what do historians say? Reynolds answers, "They argue back and forth. There's so little hard evidence that I don't think anybody can say it's true. There are people who can say they believe it because of the preponderance of evidence. But we talked to all sorts of them and they have arguments back and forth."

In an email release, the Catholic League details Diane Sawyer's presentation:

Sawyer tells us that Pope Joan gave birth while processing. Pope Joan, she says, dressed in male garb, but this is not an historical anomaly: Sawyer shows us a picture of a woman dressed as a soldier in the U.S. Civil War and then proclaims, "Which brings us back to Joan." But of course. Another segue could have been little girls dressed up as GI Joe on Halloween, but that might have unsettled the sure-mouthed Sawyer.

Sawyer does not interview either Paul Johnson, the world renowned historian and author of "The Papacy," nor does she interview Eamon Duffy, the brilliant historian from Cambridge and author of the magisterial volume, "Saints and Sinners: A History of the Popes." Had she done so they would have laughed in her smug face. So who does she rely on? Donna Cross and Mary Malone. Cross wrote a novel about the mythical Pope Joan and has no standing among scholars. Malone is an ex-nun who lost her faith and hates the Catholic Church. "I can no longer pray," she said in 1996, "because of the language, and because it seemed so essential as the core of the tradition that God be male."

Maybe next week we'll get a segment about mainstream media integrity and how bloggers rely on shoddy sources.

It's a shame the Media Research Center has already compiled its media quotes of the year. Add these to the ballot for 2006.


47 posted on 12/29/2005 1:08:59 PM PST by slowhand520
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To: 2ndMostConservativeBrdMember; afraidfortherepublic; Alas; al_c; american colleen; annalex; ...


48 posted on 12/29/2005 1:14:58 PM PST by Coleus (Roe v. Wade and Endangered Species Act both passed in 1973, Murder Babies/save trees, birds, algae)
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To: NYer
ABC-TV DISCOVERS “POPE JOAN”

Next they will email all the people on their address books so Bill Gates and AOL will send them millions of dollars, they will get thousands of gift certificates to restaurants and they will have cute little animations pop up on their monitors for every ten emails they send.

The down side is that the United States Post Office will charge them $.05 for every email they send.

49 posted on 12/29/2005 1:15:18 PM PST by N. Theknow (Kennedys - Can't drive, can't fly, can't ski, can't skipper a boat - But they know what's best.)
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To: Phantom Lord
It is well known that John XII threw wild sex parties.

Was he a Kennedy?

50 posted on 12/29/2005 1:19:00 PM PST by N. Theknow (Kennedys - Can't drive, can't fly, can't ski, can't skipper a boat - But they know what's best.)
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