They end their e-mails with "88" after their signatures. They are mostly in their teens and twenties, and claim to be Traditionalists. Their nightstand has a statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus next to a copy of Mein Kampf, and a picture of Adolph Hitler. "8" represents the eighth letter of the alphabet (H), so "88" means "Heil Hitler!" Meet a strange new fringe group claiming to be Traditionalist Catholics. They are young historical revisionists who think the Nazis were "good guys;" they were anti-Communists and got "bad press" because of Jewish conspiracies lurking behind every door. I had the misfortune to know of one such young man; he wanted to be a Traditionalist priest, entered the seminary, and left to be an Eastern Schismatic. He descended into Neo-Nazism shortly thereafter. He always had a fascination with Nazis and Fascism.
Just as Pope Pius XI famously said, "No one can be at the same time a sincere Catholic and a true socialist," there is also a mutually exclusive stance between Traditionalist Catholicism and Nazism/Fascism. A phenomenal scholarly book was released earlier this year entitled Hitler's Monsters, by Eric Kurlander and published by Yale University Press. As the subtitle declares, it is "a supernatural history of the Third Reich." I would suggest that anyone claiming to be Christian, and flirting with the idea of Nazism, be given this book to read. It's 300 pages long, with myriad footnotes, but well worth the time to read. This is a serious work by a serious scholar. I will give but a small exposition below how Hitler and Nazi Germany were deeply rooted in the occult and wanted Catholicism wiped off the face of the Earth.
The Nazis and Paganism
People can make claims all they want. The crux of the issue is whether or not the claims are backed up by sound reasoning and sufficient evidence. One of the so-called "New Atheists," Dr. Richard Dawkins, enjoys quoting Hitler as saying, "...as late as 1941 he told his adjutant, General Gerhard Engel, 'I shall remain a Catholic forever.' (See The God Delusion, pg. 274). Was Hitler Catholic? Not by a long shot. Yes, he was baptized in the Church, but the "god" he worshiped was not the historical Jesus Christ Who founded His One True Church. Even Dawkins admits, "Hitler, oddly, was always adamant that Jesus himself was not a Jew."(Ibid, pg. 276). Why would the world's biggest anti-Semite worship a Man born of a Jewish woman as God? The answer is simple: he didn't.
On March 14, 1937, Pope Pius XI issued his encyclical letter Mit Brennender Sorge (On the Church and the German Reich). His words prove more true than ever, as greater evidence has been brought forth confirming his every contention. In paragraph # 7, His Holiness writes:
The believer in God is not he who utters the name in his speech, but he for whom this sacred word stands for a true and worthy concept of the Divinity. Whoever identifies, by pantheistic confusion, God and the universe, by either lowering God to the dimensions of the world, or raising the world to the dimensions of God, is not a believer in God. Whoever follows that so-called pre-Christian Germanic conception of substituting a dark and impersonal destiny for the personal God, denies thereby the Wisdom and Providence of God who "Reacheth from end to end mightily, and ordereth all things sweetly" (Wisdom viii. 1). Neither is he a believer in God.
There is also a "Goddess of Peace and a God of War." More significantly, there are numerous references to "Fate." For those unfamiliar with world religion and philosophy, Fate is a non-Christian term referring not to the personal God of the Bible, but to an impersonal force of unknown character. (See Keysor, Hitler, the Holocaust and the Bible, pgs. 87 et. seq.). In keeping with paganism, there is also evidence that the high ranking Nazis were sodomites. (See my post of 9/14/15, "Homo-Fascism").
Paragraph #9 of Pope Pius XI's encyclical reads:
Beware, Venerable Brethren, of that growing abuse, in speech as in writing, of the name of God as though it were a meaningless label, to be affixed to any creation, more or less arbitrary, of human speculation. Use your influence on the Faithful, that they refuse to yield to this aberration. Our God is the Personal God, supernatural, omnipotent, infinitely perfect, one in the Trinity of Persons, tri-personal in the unity of divine essence, the Creator of all existence. Lord, King and ultimate Consummator of the history of the world, who will not, and cannot, tolerate a rival God by His side.
Rival "gods" were all Hitler and his henchmen knew. According to the latest research from Eric Kurlander:
"The irony is that the evidence indicating an important link between Nazism and the supernatural has never been greater. In the mid-1920s Hitler almost certainly read Ernst Schertel's parapsychology tome Magic: History, Theory, Practice, underlining sentences such as 'Satan is the fertilizing, destroying-constructing warrior' and 'He who does not carry demonic seeds within him will never give birth to a new world.' ..." (See Hitler's Monsters, pg. x)
Kurlander also reveals how the Nazis held a seance on the night of February 26, 1933 using clairvoyant Erik Hanussen who "predicted" the next day's Reichstag fire, which helped justify the Nazi imposition of martial law. Deputy Fuhrer Rudolf Hess sponsored astrology, "cosmobiology," and other esoteric medical practices. SS Chief Heinrich Himmler encouraged research on the Holy Grail (the movie Raiders of the Lost Ark got their story-line from such records, albeit with great artistic license), witchcraft, and medieval devil worship (Luciferianism).
The Nazis were fascinated with "werewolves." Hitler revived belief in lycanthropy or "a magical change from man into wolf." While calling himself "Christian" or "Catholic"once or twice in his adult life, Hitler loved to compare himself to a wolf. "I don't need to be afraid of wolves, I myself am a wolf." He even named his headquarters Wolfschanze i.e., "Wolf's Lair." It is noted that while the Catholic Church may have associated werewolves with witchcraft and Satanism, lycanthropy was looked upon favorably and with awe in pagan Germany and Scandinavia.
In my personal experience, Fr. DePauw knew of a story, circulated by many high-ranking prelates, that circa 1941 Pope Pius XII called together all the cardinals of the Curia, and late at night in St. Peter's Basilica, attempted a "long distance exorcism" of Hitler and the Nazi officials. The story has never been proven (or disproven). Did Hitler submit to the teaching of Pope Pius XI in his encyclical as a good Catholic must? The answer is obvious.
Kurlander draws this conclusion:
Based on this evidence, I argue that no mass political movement drew as consciously and consistently as the Nazis on...occultism and "border science," pagan, New Age, and Eastern religions, folklore, mythology, and many other supernatural doctrines..in order to attract a generation of German men and women seeking new forms of spirituality..."
A State Religion Based on Racism
These pagan ideas would be incorporated into a National German Church, where exaggerated nationalism and evil racism would reign supreme. According to the New York Times of January 2, 1942, there was to be such a sect. I reproduce below the beginning of the article and the first 5 of the "30 point program" for the sect's establishment:
The Nazi religious concept is founded not on the worship of Wotan and Valhalla, dear to the memory of General Erich von Ludendorff, but surprisingly enough, in view of Dr. Rosenberg's past attacks on Christianity and its teachings, on a partial worship of God, whose works are “eternal.”
Briefly but succinctly he outlines the organization and teachings of the church in the following phrases—for which, as the Swiss Socialist newspaper Volksrecht of Zurich points out, “one needs to be no ecclesiast to draw his own conclusion”:
1. The National Reich Church specifically demands the immediate turning over to its possession of all churches and chapels, to become national churches.
2. The German people have no call to serve the National Reich Church, but that church itself is called to serve its single doctrine—race and people.
3. The domain of the National Reich Church is limited by the territorial frontiers of the Reich and its colonies.
4. The National Reich Church will oblige no German to adhere to it. It is, however, ready to do all in its power to include in its ranks every German soul. Other churches or religious associations, above all those based on international bodies or directed from abroad, will not be tolerated in Germany by the National Reich Church.
5. The National Reich Church is immutably fixed in its one objective: to destroy that Christian belief imported into Germany in the unfortunate year 800, whose tenets conflict with both the heart and the mentality of the German. (Emphasis mine)
Hitler, the Nazis, and fascism are incompatible with Catholicism. Anyone who thinks otherwise is deluding himself. It is based on all things not merely un-Christian, but decidedly ANTI-Christian. I wince when I hear that "nationalism" and "racial pride" (white, black or otherwise) are called compatible with the One True Church. Once more Pope Pius XI:
11. None but superficial minds could stumble into concepts of a national God, of a national religion; or attempt to lock within the frontiers of a single people, within the narrow limits of a single race, God, the Creator of the universe, King and Legislator of all nations before whose immensity they are "as a drop of a bucket" (Isaiah XI, 15).
Hitler and the new "Nazi Traditionalists" can call themselves "Catholic" but they fail the test of Our Lord Himself, "By their fruits you shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit, and the evil tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can an evil tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit, shall be cut down, and shall be cast into the fire." (St. Matthew 7: 16-19).