3 Things Christians Should Know
About The Crusades
by Genevieve Perkins Apologetics, Controversial Subjects, History of the Church
“But the Crusades… Christians in the Crusades did such-and-such… Terrorists? Well, if the Crusades hadn’t happened… The Catholic Church is hypocritical—just look at the Crusades… Your Church started the holy war first…” Doesn’t it feel like you’re being attacked sometimes?
Using facts (and skewing them), you can create any version of history you want with anyone as the hero and anyone as the villain. When people approach you with negative views of the Church, remember Venerable Fulton Sheen’s words: “There are not one hundred people in the United States who hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they wrongly perceive the Catholic Church to be.” You are a representative of the Catholic faith, so how you respond to questions is important.
3 Main Points To Know About The Crusades
1. Just War is NOT conversion by the sword
2. The Catholic Faith as distinguished from imperfect Catholics
Templar Chant "Da Pacem Domine"
We seek to imitate those who imitate Christ, and we pray for those who failed to do so. We practice our Catholic faith while on earth. Don’t let others’ failure to follow Christ cause you to stop practicing. The world needs more sinners humbly aspiring to be saints; not more sinners parading themselves as saints. Maybe then, more people will turn to the Church with genuine interest in Christ’s salvation instead of pointing fingers.
3. Our forefathers’ robust faith compared to our own
Speaking of being good Catholics, look at our forefathers’ faith! They fought for the Holy Land, Christ, and each other’s lives to be safe. They came out with saints and sinners and won and lost battles. Their enthusiasm appears much greater than our own.
Myths of the Crusades
Now, look at yourself…
Would you cower and mumble if someone oppressed your faith or proclaim God’s glory and chant songs of His praise loudly?
Are you willing to help those persecuted across the world or do you just hope the problems stay away from you?
Do you answer the Holy Spirit when called, or do you avoid being enthusiastic about your faith?
History and Myths of the Knights Templar
June & July
On 25 June 1203, King John confirmed to the Templars the gift of Guy de Bonaincurt, which Hugh Balliol had confirmed, of the vill of Westerdale, and this was one of the estates for which free warren was granted to the Templars in 1248.
A critical trial was held at Poitiers between 28 June and 2 July 1308, where at least 54 Templars testified before the pope and his commission of cardinals. A considerable number of defendants confessed to one or more of the charges. When asked if their statements were freely given, many said that while they had been tortured or threatened, restricted to bread and water, and other forms of harsh treatments had been imposed on them, their confessions were not the results of any torture. In 1310 at least three said they had lied before the Pope and now wished to defend the order.
June, the Templars surrendered, their properties and treasure seized, and they were held at Khirokitia and later Yermasoyia, then finally Pano Lefkara, where they remained for three years.
1308 (February) Clement suspends proceedings (27 June) 72 Templars confess before Clement.
1311 (5 June) Papal hearings finally end.
1314 (24 June) Battle of Bannockburn, Robert the Bruce joined the Templars and Hospitallers into a new Order of the Temple and of St. John.
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Many of us have heard of the great feats accomplished by the knights and saints in medieval times; perhaps certain names come to mind: Robert of Molesme, Saint Dominic de Guzman, Saint Benedict of Nursia, Saint Bruno, Saint Francis of Assisi, or Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. Perhaps we have heard of their followers’ heroic battles, whether those won with cries of victory on the field or those won with silent courage and preserving sacrifice within a monastery. All of them were great saints whose way of Christian living captivated others and led to the formation of various religious orders. Each had its particular path but had the same goal: Christ.
Besides a moment of simple fun and perhaps one to learn more about the history of the Church, we hope that in learning more about these great men and their orders, each one might be inspired to live their Christian lives with even greater radicality and fervour. Albeit in our way, each of us is called to respond generously to the Lord’s call with our talents and in our particular situations as they did.
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What Medieval Times Religious Order Would You Belong To?
You, Rev. Eric Michel, would belong to the order of the Knights Templar
from Catholic Link (Try it)
The Knights Templars were the earliest founders of the military orders and are the type on which the others are modelled. In 1119, the French knight, Hugues de Payens, approached King Baldwin II of Jerusalem and Warmund, Patriarch of Jerusalem and proposed creating a monastic order for the protection of those pilgrims in the Holy Land.
The order owed its rapid growth in popularity to the fact that it combined the two great passions of the Middle Ages, religious fervour and martial prowess. Having renounced all the pleasures of life, they faced death with a proud indifference; they were the first to attack, the last to retreat, always docile to the voice of their leader, the discipline of the monk being added to the discipline of the soldier. As an army, they were never very numerous. A contemporary tells us that there were 400 knights in Jerusalem at the zenith of their prosperity; he does not give the number of more numerous sergeants. But it was a picked body of men who, by their noble example, inspirited the remainder of the Christian forces.
Templars were often the advance shock troops in key battles of the Crusades, as the heavily armoured knights on their warhorses would set out to charge at the enemy, ahead of the main army bodies, to break opposition lines. One of their most famous victories was in 1177 during the Battle of Montgisard, where some 500 Templar knights helped several thousand infantry to defeat Saladin’s army of more than 26,000 soldiers.
Rev. Eric Michel belongs to them because of his strength and desire for conquest. Rev. Eric Michel is willing to risk his own life for others and for the Catholic Faith.