Habsburg Emperor Joseph II tried to reform Austria into "ideal Enlightened state". He abolished serfdom, removed restrictions against Jews, gave religious freedom to Protestants and Orthodox and tried to weaken power of Catholic church. But as soon he died all his reforms were abolished en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos…
In State v. Linkhaw, the North Carolina Supreme Court reversed the conviction of a man who sang so badly in church that a jury had found him guilty of "disturbing a religious congregation." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sta…
Despite the efforts from the Catholic church, the hallucinogenic San Pedro cactus' name is attributed to the belief that just as St Peter (San Pedro) holds the keys to heaven, the effects of the cactus could allow its users to reach heaven while still being on earth. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ech…
Nancy Cartwright, voice of Bart Simpson on "The Simpsons", is a decorated Scientologist, and has donated 10 million dollars to the church. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nan…
Today I learned of the New Cult Awareness Network, which provides information on cults, is owned and operated by associates of The Church Of Scientology en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
Joan of Arc wanted to fight the Hussites, a Czech-based Christian sect deemed "heretical" by the Catholic Church. In a letter to the Hussites, she said that were she not busy fighting the English, she would march to Bohemia to relieve the Hussites "of either their heresy or their lives." archive.joan-of-arc.org/j…
Ethiopia adopted Christianity in 330 AD, just 17 years after the Roman empire. Despite the rise of Islam, fall of the Byzantine Orthodox Church, and being cut off from all other Christians for centuries Ethiopia remained Christian. They remain the only majority Orthodox Christian African nation. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chr…
In 1942, the Luftwaffe dropped three bombs on the church of Mosta, Malta. Two of them deflected without exploding, but one 500kg high explosive bomb pierced the dome and entered the church, where more than 300 people were awaiting evening mass. The bomb did not explode and was later defused en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rot…
In Medieval Europe, church bells were sometimes punished for their misdeeds. For example, if a bell fell and killed someone, it would be taken down and filled with thorns youtu.be/mw7AmuwrCx0?t=16…
Abraham Lincoln's religious views are highly ambiguous and a matter of debate. He never joined any Church, and was a skeptic as a young man and sometimes ridiculed revivalists. Many friends and family of Lincoln rejected that he was a believing Christian. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rel…
There is a prefabricated cast iron church in Istanbul. Cast in Vienna, barged down the Danube , across the Black Sea, and bolted together in 1871, iron was chosen instead of concrete due to the unstable ground. The Bulgarian St. Stephen Church represents independence from Greek Orthodoxy. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bul…
Today I learned of the Saint Gallen Group, a group of liberal-minded bishops and cardinals that held yearly secret meetings from 1996 to 2004 to discuss church policy, and were rumored to try to block Benedict XVI from being elected as pope. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sai…
The Russian admiral, Fydor Ushakov, is considered a saint in the Russian orthodox church and is the patron saint of Nuclear Strategic Bombers en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fyo…
The Catholic Church allows beaver to be eaten on Fridays during Lent fieldandstream.com/blogs/…
Although the Mormon Church has banned hot coffee, they do actually allow caffeinated soda. Medical marijuana is also acceptable if its used as prescribed by a doctor. latimes.com/world-nation/…
Conservatives in the Presbyterian Church passed the Doctrinal Deliverance of 1910 that included "Five Fundamentals". Those in favor became known as the Fundamentalists. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fun…
The Catholic Church owns 177 million acres of land making it the largest non-governmental land owner in the world. realestate.nd.edu/researc…
The Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria is elected by writing the names of the top three candidates, putting them in a box and having a five-year old child draw blindly one of the names. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pop…
The Medici Family build a elevated walkway in Florence in 1565 just to avoid contact with the common people. They even connected it to their private lodge at the Felicica Church and moved the Ponte Vecchio meat market to avoid the smells. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vas…
Devils advocate was a real job within the catholic church. the Devils advocate was called upon to deliberate on behalf of the devil for any claims of sainthood, and would argue for why someone should not be made a Saint of the catholic church. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dev…
The anti-religious song Megalomania by Muse features Matt Ballamy playing the organ at St. Mary's Church in Bathwick, England. The church insisted on seeing the lyrics before allowing him to use the organ. Bellamy quickly wrote some different "positive" lyrics out and the church accepted. musewiki.org/Megalomania_…
Today I learned about the Erfurt Latrine Disaster of 1184, when a number of nobles from across the Roman Empire met in the Church of St. Peter to settle an argument. Instead, the floor collapsed beneath them, opening into the latrine. This resulted in 60 people drowning in liquid excrement. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erf…
Malta has a total of 359 churches, nearly one for every day of the year. With an area of only 316 square kilometres, the country's "church density" is slightly more than 1 church per square kilometre. It's difficult to get lost in Malta because a church will lead you to its village centre. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
In the year 1200, all of France was placed under Interdict - a punishment from the Catholic Church banning rites like communion, marriages, communion, etc. - because King Phillip II took a second wife while still legally married to (and imprisoning) Ingeborg of Denmark. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ing…
In the Catholic church, if a child is in peril of dying during delivery, the midwife may perform an emergency baptism. If the midwife is in doubt if the child still lives, she baptises the child saying: "In case you are able to receive the baptism, I baptise thee in the name of the Father etc" dutchgenealogy.nl/emergen…
The Church of Scientology (β€œDianetics”) sponsored a car in the 1988 Indy 500- it was the first time a religious faith sponsored an IndyCar entry, however, it crashed on the second turn of the first lap autoweek.com/racing/indyc…
After L. Ron Hubbard's death in 1986, the Church of Scientology officially claimed that he voluntarily abandoned his physical body after it became an impediment to his work, and that he had left Earth to do scientific research on another planetβ€”having "learned how to do it without a body". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L._…
Isaac Newton wrote a list of his sins at 19, including: β€œThreat[e]ning my father and mother Smith to burne them and the house over them.", striking many, beating Arthur Storer, punching his sister, reading the History of the Christian Champions on Sunday, and eating an apple at Church. mentalfloss.com/article/3…
The Church of Scientology tried to take over the city of Clearwater, Florida, in the 1970s. When mayor Gabriel Cazares criticized this, the Church tried to concoct a sex scandal and stage a false hit-and-run accident involving Cazares, calling the operation "Speedy Gonzalez." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gab…
After his death, a SF church worshipped John Coltrane as God Incarnate. This led to the painting of a 3000 square foot, Byzantine-style mural of Coltrane depicted as a saint. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…
Today I learned of St. Patrick's Battalion. They were a group of immigrants and expatriates that fought for Mexico against the U.S. in the Mexican-American war. There is a plaque with their names on a church in Mexico City en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sai…
The English Reformation of the 16th century, that resulted in separating the Church of England from Vatican authority, was initiated because Pope Clement VII did not approve of King Henry VIII's wish to annul his first marriage to Catherine of Aragon. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hen…
There's a historical period officially referred to as the Pornocracy. 904 AD-906 AD was a super corrupt time for the Papacy and later scholars called it the Pornocracy, the Hetaerocracy, or the Rule of Harlots. (The Catholic Church refers to it as the saeculum obscurum, or dark century.) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sae…
Today I learned of "temple garment", also referred to as Mormon underwear, which is a type of underwear worn by some members of the Latter Day Saint church, both day and night as a symbolic reminder of the covenants made in temple ceremonies and as a source of protection from the evils of the world. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tem…
During the restoration of Paisley Abbey, a 13th century church in Scotland, a stonemason erected a gargoyle resembling a Xenomorph from Ailen (1979). bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotlan…
Edith Piaf was denied a funeral mass due to her lifestyle, and it took half a century after her death until the Church in France recanted and gave her a funeral mass in her hometown. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3…
Today I learned about Cadaver monument, a type of church monument to deceased persons featuring a sculpted effigy of a skeleton or an emaciated, even decomposing, dead body en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cad…
Despite being a symbol of counterculture, Andy Warhol was a devout Byzantine Catholic who went to church almost daily. His brother said he was "really religious, but he didn't want people to know", and Andy Warhol even enthusiastically financed his nephew's studies for the priesthood. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/And…
The Church of the SubGenius is a parody religion that satirises better known belief systems. Church members seek to acquire β€œSlack” through sex and avoidance of work. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chu…
Alec Guinness played detective-priest Father Brown in a movie. While filming he met a French child and although unable to speak French, Guinness was impressed that the child was so friendly and decided that the Church had an unfair reputation. He later converted to Catholicism. catholicculture.org/cultu…
Today I learned of Iranian painter Mohamed Sciddel who was commissioned to paint murals in the main church in Uruapan, MichoacΓ‘n and decided to live the rest of his life in Mexico to promote art in the region after being exiled from Iran following the 1979 revolution elsoldezamora.com.mx/cult…
Pocahontas is buried in St George's Church, Gravesend, England, UK. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poc…
Around 1270 in Europe, the Oublie guild was formed. This guild was primarily responsible for making communion wafers for the Catholic Church, but they also made β€˜light pastries,’ which included waffles. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waf…
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, commonly known as the Mormons, has a nuclear warhead proof vault built deep into a mountain in Utah, USA. This vault contains genealogical records on hundreds of millions of people. newsroom.churchofjesuschr…
The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, the home of two of the most holy sites in Christianity, has had the same Muslim family as its Custodian of keys since the 12th century. reuters.com/article/us-re…
Today I learned about Rex Beaver, a private investigator hired by the Church of Scientology in 1968 to spy on Rupert Murdoch who had published unflattering stories about the church in his newspaper. After passing his security check Beaver went to Murdoch and offered to work as a double agent. abc.net.au/news/2016-11-0…
"Plan 9 From Outer Space," sometimes called "the worst movie of all time," was funded by the Baptist Church of Beverly Hills. The plan was to make a cheap science-fiction movie then invest the profits in a religious film. thedissolve.com/features/…
Today I learned of Alfredo Ormando who was a gay writer from Palermo who died as a result of setting himself on fire outside Saint Peter's Basilica. His self-immolation was an act of protest against the Roman Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alf…
The Puritans viewed marital sex as a fundamental right. One man, James Matlock, was excommunicated (exiled from the church) after denying his wife sex for two years. tampabay.com/archive/2002…
The Church of England co-owns the rights to Beyoncé’s β€œSingle Ladies,” Rihanna’s β€œUmbrella” and Justin Timberlake’s β€œSexyBack.” nypost.com/2020/10/17/chu…

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