Friday, 25 October 2013

Film about the "Israel of the Alps" - The Waldensians

This is a stilted but still admiring film "Israel of the Alps" about the Waldensians' historical stand for the faith of Jesus Christ against the many onslaughts of the Catholic Church.

It is a story so heroic in relation to the principle of freedom of religion and belief and the courage of a small Christian community in withstanding centuries of persecution, that one is tempted to call it one of the greatest stories ever told. There are some genuine shots of the beautiful Alpine valleys of these ancient peoples.

The medieval Waldensians always held that the Catholic Church ceased to be the church of Jesus Christ, at the time of the Emperor Constantine. The Papal and Catholic church tried, aided by monks, generals and hired criminals, throughout the Middle Ages and after the Reformation, to massacre the Waldensians again and again. Yet the Popes and their pawns, the Kings of France and princes of Savoy,  failed to achieve the aims of their bloody purposes. This astonishing outcome was partly due to the geography of the mighty Alpine stronghold, Pra Del Torno. It was also due to the sheer heroism and reliance on prayer of the Waldensians themselves.

The first two parts are faithful to "The History of the Waldenses" by Rev J A Wylie:

Israel of the Alps: Part 1
Israel of the Alps: Part 2

We do not recommend watching Part 3 of this film. It correctly reflects the official Waldensians church's worldly and spiritual compromises over the course of the 19th-21st centuries, but Part 3 makes unjustified claims about who the Waldensians' spiritual successors are -  which we disagree with.

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