Monday, February 16, 2009

The Dolcinists: Condemned Greed, Gave Equal Rights to Women

My my, no wonder they were hunted to extinction by the early Roman Catholic Church! Just read about all of their horrible "sins!" Here is some interesting information on this sect from Barbara Walker's "The Woman's Enclopedia of Myths and Secrets." Dolcinists Medieval heretics formerly called the Apostolic Congregation, founded by a peasant named Segarelli, who tried to join the Franciscan order and was rejected. Believing himself nevertheless a true spiritual son of St. Francis, he gathered disciples and preached against the worldly wealth of the church. He was caught and burned, but the Congregation continued under Fra Dolcino, who preached the oncoming doomsday, the fall of the sinful church, and the triumph of the poor and simple over the theocracy. Dolcinists admitted women to their ranks, and granted their "sisters in Christ" the same right to preach and lead prayers as the men, one of the worst manifestations of their heresy. Dolcinists claimed to renounce sexual relations; so when Dolcino's particular "dearly beloved sister in Christ" Margherita di Trank bore him a child, it ws brought about through the miraculous agency of the Holy Ghost, they said. The Inquisition harassed the Dolcinists until they took refuge in the high mountains. Three crusades were preached against them. In the winter of 1307 they were finally reduced to starvation, trapped, and slaughtered. Dolcino was captured alive, unfortunaely for him. After watching his Margherita burn, he was torn to pieces by red-hot pincers on a cart rolling slowly along the roads for all to watch. Despite this edifying example, Dolcinism persisted for another century. Two Dolcinist Apostles were captured and burned in Germany in 1404.(1) Notes: (1) Lea unabridged, 614-23.

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