The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
7 Points

The Catholic Church is a bad thing

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/28/2016 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 275 times Debate No: 85719
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (7)
Votes (2)




I will be arguing for why the Catholic Church is a source of great evil and horror (a bad thing).

The format for this debate will be

Round 1: Acceptance and questions
Round 2: Arguments
Round 3: Rebuttals
Round 4: Counter Rebuttals and closing statements

Please be polite and respectful

The premise is the title

Taking another stab


I will accept the argument for Con, arguing that the Catholic Church is not a bad thing. Because it was not specified in the rules, I'm assuming the BoP us on pro.

In saying the Catholic Church is a source of evil, are you also saying that all religion and churches are bad? By the Church are you saying the leaders, members, or the idea itself is evil?
Debate Round No. 1


I would like to answer my opponents questions before I get started. When I say the Catholic Church I mean to entail the priests, nuns, ideology, and everything that makes the Catholic Church the Catholic Church. TO better clarify the premise, I could restate it as, "The Catholic Church is the cause of much suffering and death."

Which is exactly the point I want to confer, The Catholic Church is the cause for the suffering and death and maltreatment of millions of people all through history and even today.

To go back to early examples, we can say the crusades. The children's crusade is one where children were suited up and taken to the middle east to fight and were raped and slaughtered by the droves. Another example is the rest of the crusades actually. We can also look at the Inquisition where thousands of Jews were burned at the stake simply for not converting to Catholicism. The sack of Constantinople which all of these I must point out were the result of a divine warrant.

The torture of Galileo. Thanks to Catholic fundamentalism, Galileo was tortured relentlessly until he "admitted" that he was wrong. The Church's role in the African slave trade, The burning of protestants at the stake after the protestant reformation, the injustices against women, the silence of the church during the holocaust, Catholic contempt for religious and ethnic groups, and the sex abuse cases against aboriginal children. All these things that I just mentioned were apologized for by pope Ratzinger, but it does not change that they happen, nor mend the families afflicted by the evils of the Catholic Church.

Let's fast forward in time a little to the 1920's-30's, and have a look at The Church's role in the rise of fascist dictators. The church was well in cooperation with Mussolini, but they also cooperated with Hitler in his rise to power by giving the church a monopoly over German schools in exchange for a straight shot to political power for the Nazi regime.

The Churches tendency towards antisemitism until the 60's.

One of my particular problems with this establishment is the concept of Limbo. A place that was described as the outer part of hell where unbaptized children went. Tell me how this is moral teaching? For centuries, parents were told that since their child wasn't baptized early enough before it died, that it was in place of horrible torture. This wicked teaching was the cause of emotional unrest and distress for centuries, until the Church said, "oops, we were wrong about that." And then go back to calling themselves infallible and have no problem doing it, but will never make up for the damage wrought in the families afflicted by the horrible teaching.

The Catholic Church also played a role in the genocide in Rwanda. 800,000 people in Rwanda slaughtered and working with the heads of it all? The very priests and nuns that claim to represent this "infallible" institution.

The Church's role in the Yugoslavia holocaust during WW2. Again 800,000 men, women, and children slaughtered mercilessly in an event headed by members of the Catholic church.

The Catholic Church opposes contraception. And it does this with outrageous claims such as Ratzinger's assertion that Condoms are worse than AIDS and that was his official stance.

Finally, I want to detest rape and maltreatment of countless children by the members of the church and the covering up of these happenings by people such as Cardinal Law.

I believe I have made it very clear that the Catholic Church is not good thing, but indeed a bad thing, or as I stated in my introduction, "the cause of much suffering and death."

I look forward to my Opponent's arguments.

Vote Pro


Firstly, the Children's Crusade was made of the children's own accord, not with the approval of the Church. The Church sent priests to bless them, to give them courage and grace of God, but they were not "suited up and taken to the middle east." Stephen (the leader of the Children's Crusade) rallied followers on his own.

The Crusades were in response to an actual Muslim threat, and they were trying to defend hundreds of thousands of Christians and other citizens who faced danger.

Jews and Christians lived in peace before the Moorish invasion, the Jews then opened the invasion to Muslims and betrayed the Christians. The Inquisition was not inherently evil, as the Jews essentially sided with the Muslims in the Moorish Invasion. Initially, after Spain was reconquered, Jews were given the chance to leave with their property. In most cases in history, they would have been executed immediately. As for the methods used during the Inquisition, in 350 years, any from 3,000-5,000 were executed. This number is far lower than many believe. As for the use of torture, it was used very infrequently and only in extreme cases.

As for Galileo, it's only a myth that he was tortured. He met with the Pope to discuss his ideas, and the Pope made an agreement that he could talk about them, just not declare them to be fact. Galileo had inconclusive evidence and his belief in the heliocentric solar system was only a theory. The Church wanted Galileo to refrain from proclaiming his theory as truth until he had more conclusive evidence to support his theory.

While there were of course Catholics who owned slaves, so did Jews, and Muslims, and all other religions during the time of the slave trade. You cannot condemn only the Catholic Church for a practice used by any religion. As for the burning of Protestants, this was a time of conflict between all Protestants and Catholics. The Protestants also engaged in acts of hunting down Catholics as well as sacking and destroying some of the most beautiful of the time that was held in Churches. The English Persecution of Catholics is one example.

World History Patterns Ch. 17

I don't know what you mean when you say "injustice of women", however, the Gospel of Luke helped to advance Women's Rights as it shows the Birth of Jesus from Mary's perspective and emphasizes them as just as valuable as men. Pope Pius XII actively worked against the Nazis, such as employing democracy to save victims, and urging the Church to aid all victims and saved another hundreds of thousands of lives. As well as keeping contact with the German Resistance to give information to the Allied Powers and publicly speaking against anti-semetism. As before, you cannot accuse the Catholic Church with intolerance against ethnic groups without also accusing Muslims and Jews, however, Catholics have a far more diverse range of ethnic adherents than both Islam and Judaism. Aboriginal children did experience abuse, however it was only sexual in the most extreme cases, and the Pope himself condemned the members who did this. These situations were not worldwide, they were centralized in Canada.

The Church was not active in Mussolini's rise to power, however Mussolini did try to work with the Church in order to gain validation. The Church never advocated for Mussolini or act for his rise to power in Italy, but if they had, Mussolini would have attacked the Pope and destroyed the head power of the Church. As for Hitler's rise to power, I already made my point about Pope Pius XII.

I would like to say first, the idea of Limbo was never one of doctrine or dogma, it was speculation as to where souls who had never had the chance to choose God, or who had never been washed of Original Sin would go. It was never said for certain that limbo was a place. As for infallibility, the Church has never said it had perfect knowledge of events. The idea of the Pope's infallibility is only in very specific cases on the subject of faith and morals. So the Church does not say it is outright infallible and never stated the concept of Limbo as dogma.

As for the Rwandan Genocide, how is it that the Church can be blamed for this? They never, for any reason, approved of this kind of horrific murder. The Yugoslavia Holocaust was essentially an expansion of the German Holocaust, so I must again reference Pius XII action against such an event.

I looked at Pope Benedict's (Ratzinger's) position on condoms, and he was saying condoms were not a solution to the problem of AIDS, not that they were worse. As for the opposition of contraception in general, contraception is essentially preventing the life of a human being. Contraception inherently disgraces human dignity by keeping such beautiful life from being created.

I want to make a point, you and I both agree that any form of abuse against children is detestable, yet so does the Church. I want to make a point that it is very difficult to find evidence to support claims like these, and in an institution as large as the Catholic Church, it becomes difficult to tell what is real and what is simply media propaganda.

I just want to make the point that the Church often comes under unwarranted attacks by the media, this makes it very difficult to actually be able to find real instances of abuse and where people are simply stirring up trouble.

Sorry if my argument is a little long to read, I was trying to clarify a few points, which makes it seem more than a little wordy. I appreciate the chance to voice my argument and eagerly await your rebuttals.
Debate Round No. 2


TheEpicTricycle forfeited this round.


Ok, I'm just going to touch on a few things here, mainly having to do with how other religions also must be considered evil if the Catholic Church is evil. I would like to clarify that I do not believe any religion is inherently evil, just that if the Catholic Church is evil than all religion must be evil. I'll try to keep this one shorter than my last argument.

I'll stick to the three most well-known religions: Judaism, Islam, and Protestantism.

Firstly, Judaism. A common stereotype of Jews is that they are selfish and obsessed with money, where this stereotype is not necessarily correct, all stereotypes come from somewhere. This comes from a message in the Torah reading "The possessions of the righteous are as dear to them as their bodies." In all religions, verses from Holy Scripture can be contorted massively. What this verse is trying to say is that people who have rightly earned what they own, should hold those things closely. This teaching is obvious, if you rightly own something, then it ought to be yours. However, this passage was taken to promote miserliness and led to a good percentage of that population to be associated with greed. I would like to clarify, I do not believe Jews are obsessed with money, but it has been a problem before. I would not take this flaw of some Jews and use it to condemn the whole religion.

Let's move on to Islam. Islam can be considered a religion in the modern age for obvious reasons, radicals rape, murder, and steal from innocents every day. Again, I believe many modern-day Muslims are very good people, only these extremists have butchered their name. However, Muhammed himself married a six-year-old girl, and consummated the marriage when she was only nine. He did this roughly around when he was 44. Muhammed had sexual relations with a prepubescent girl, as a middle-aged man, this certainly make Muhammed seem of questionable morality. However, the followers of his religion should not be automatically considered evil for this.

Lastly, Protestantism. It may seem odd that I include Protestantism as this group of religions is also Christian. However, as I have previously stated, I do not believe any of these religions are inherently evil. Protestants were responsible for the deaths of thousands of Catholics, and the destruction of hundreds of churches and thousands of pieces of art in those churches. Due to Protestants (Puritans to be precise) Massachusetts, hundreds of people who were believed to be involved in Satanic worship, were executed by the court at Salem. And beyond that, Catholics were persecuted in England for hundreds of years after Henry VIII instituted the Church of England. William Shakespeare himself is believed to have been a Catholic, yet secretly because of persecution. Henry VIII had his friend and advisor, Thomas More, executed for not accepting Henry VIII as the head of the Church of England. And Henry himself only wanted to form the new Church because the Pope would not approve of his divorce.

Now I would just like to clarify, I do not think these religions are evil, in fact I know great people in these religions. My point was just that if you are going to accuse the Catholic Church of being evil, then you also have to accuse these religions of being evil.

I wish the best of luck to my opponent, and eagerly await his responses to my primary argument as well as my newly stated arguments.
Debate Round No. 3


TheEpicTricycle forfeited this round.


Given that my opponent has forfeited this round, I will finish with my closing statements. The Catholic Church is no more evil than any other wide-spread religion, and even further, the Catholic Church is not inherently evil. The Inquisition and Crusades are taken to be the evil doings of the Church, yet they are in reality, responses to dangerous events. Muslim invasion of the east put thousands of Christians in danger of persecution, and the Crusades were an attempt to help them. The Inquisition was an attempt to find traitors within Spain. These events are based on actual concerns faced by Catholics. I must conclude that, due to my opponents forfeitures, he is unable to find suitable arguments as to how and why the Catholic Church is evil. I would like to thank my opponent for the chance to argue my point, and appreciate his etiquette during the debate itself. I ask the audience to read carefully through the debate and vote for how they genuinely feel the debate went. I give my sincerest thanks to both my opponent and to the audience.
Debate Round No. 4
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by TheEpicTricycle 8 months ago
oh well i lost, but it was fun when i could act
Posted by TheEpicTricycle 8 months ago
Posted by TheEpicTricycle 8 months ago
i implore you to take full advantage of my absence
Posted by TheEpicTricycle 8 months ago
I didn't forget I've just been working like a dog
Posted by Rooster-Mond 8 months ago
Dude... Seriously? How did you forget again?
Posted by harmoniesophie 9 months ago
The Catholic Church is not a bad or evil thing.. Again.. what are you portraying to as bad? the lay people, the Pope? Priests? This is the part of your argument that I am confused on... see the catholic church is like any other religion.. I am not quite sure where your negative aspect comes from.. but the Catholic Church has also changed a lot over the years.. many of the rules that once made the Catholic church are abolished. But let me leave you with this.. a church is like a hospital for the sick... people who go to church are not perfect... that is the entire reason for church... to get rejuvenated to go back out into the world again facing crime, deceit, hatred...etc.
Posted by TheEpicTricycle 9 months ago
Here Let's try this again
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Reeseroni 8 months ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: FF, Con provides more arguments and sources than Pro, and pro concedes through forfeiture
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 8 months ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:01 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro ff many times, so conduct to Con.