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Italian court asked to prove Jesus existed

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  • Italian court asked to prove Jesus existed

    Italian court asked to prove Jesus existed
    By NICOLE WINFIELD, Associated Press writer

    ROME -- Lawyers for a small-town parish priest have been ordered to appear in court next week after the Roman Catholic cleric was accused of unlawfully asserting what many people take for granted: that Jesus Christ existed.
    The Rev. Enrico Righi was named in a 2002 complaint filed by Luigi Cascioli after Righi wrote in a parish bulletin that Jesus did indeed exist, and that he was born of a couple named Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem and lived in Nazareth.
    Cascioli, a lifelong atheist, claims that Righi violated two Italian laws by making the assertion: so-called "abuse of popular belief" in which someone fraudulently deceives people; and "impersonation" in which someone gains by attributing a false name to someone.
    Cascioli says that for 2,000 years the Roman Catholic Church has been deceiving people by furthering the fable that Christ existed, and says the church has been gaining financially by impersonating as Christ someone by the name of John of Gamala, the son of Judas from Gamala.
    He also asserts that the Gospels, the most frequently cited testimony of Jesus' existence, are inconsistent, full of errors and biased, and that other written evidence from the time is scant and doesn't hold up to scholarly analysis.
    "Ne invoces expellere non possis"
    (Do not call up what you cannot put down)

    "It's better to be hated for who you are, than be loved for who you're not" - Van Zant