National Catholicism

National Catholicism (Spanish: Nacionalcatolicismo) was part of the ideological identity of Francoism, the political system with which dictator Francisco Franco governed Spain between 1939 and 1975. Its most visible manifestation was the hegemony that the Catholic Church had in all aspects of public and private life. As a symbol of the ideological divisions within Francoism, it can be contrasted to National syndicalism (nacionalsindicalismo), an essential component of the ideology and political practice of the Falangists.

Reinaré en España
An image of Christ King, with the expression "I Shall Reign in Spain" (Spanish: Reinaré en España) inscribed.
ValleDeLosCaidos Cross south side1
At 150 metres (490 ft), the crucifix at the Valle de los Caídos, built in 1940-59, is the world's tallest.[1][2]


In the 1920s France, a similar model of National Catholicism was advanced by the Fédération Nationale Catholique formed by General Édouard Castelnau.[3] Although it reached one million members in 1925, it was of short-lived significance, subsiding into obscurity by 1930.[4]

In Spain, the Francoist State initiated a project in 1943 to reform the university. It was called the University Regulatory Law (U.R.L.), which remained active until 1970.[5]

Valle de los caidos by forcy-cruz y basilica
Valle de los Caídos in El Escorial, exemplary building of the Francoist era-style.

The U.R.L. represented the clearest politicization of the university in the service of the new regime's National-Catholic precepts. While there was no explicit exclusion of women from higher learning, their presence at the university level was discouraged and not recognized during the two first decades of the regime.[5]

In the 1930s and 1940s, Ante Pavelić's Croatian Ustaše movement espoused a similar ideology,[6] although it has been called other names, including "political Catholicism" and "Catholic Croatism".[7] Other countries in central and eastern Europe where similar movements of Franquist inspiration combined Catholicism with nationalism include: Austria, Poland, Lithuania and Slovakia.[8]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Frank Tallett (2003). Catholicism in Britain & France Since 1789. Continuum International Publishing Group. pp. 152–154. ISBN 978-1-85285-100-2.
  4. ^ Maurice Larkin (2002). Religion, Politics and Preferment in France since 1890: La Belle Epoque and its Legacy. Cambridge University Press. p. 157. ISBN 978-0-521-52270-0.
  5. ^ a b Victoria Lorée Enders; Pamela Beth Radcliff (1999). "Gender Relations in the Francoist University". Constructing Spanish Womanhood: Female Identity in Modern Spain. SUNY Press. p. 59. ISBN 079144029X.
  6. ^ Stanley G. Payne (1996). A History of Fascism, 1914–1945. University of Wisconsin Pres. p. 406. ISBN 978-0-299-14873-7.
  7. ^ John R. Lampe (2004). Ideologies and National Identities: The Case of Twentieth-Century Southeastern Europe. Central European University Press. p. 102. ISBN 978-963-9241-82-4.
  8. ^ Stanley G. Payne (1984). Spanish Catholicism: An Historical Overview. Univ of Wisconsin Press. p. xiii. ISBN 978-0-299-09804-9.
  • BOTTI, Alfonso, Nazionalcattolicesimo e Spagna nuova (1881–1975), Milano, Franco Angeli, 1992 ISBN 88-204-7242-2 (Spanish trans. Cielo y dinero. El nacionalcatolicismo en España (1881–1975), Madrid, Alianza Editorial, 1992 ISBN 84-206-2717-8)

Further reading

Blueshirts (Falange)

The Blueshirts (Spanish: Camisas Azules) was the Falangist paramilitary militia in Spain. The name refers to the blue uniform worn by members of the militia. The colour blue was chosen for the uniforms in 1934 by the FE de las JONS because it was, according to José Antonio Primo de Rivera, "clear, whole, and proletarian," and is the colour typically worn by mechanics, as the Falange sought to gain support among the Spanish working class. In Francoist Spain the Blueshirts were officially reorganized and officially renamed the Falange Militia of the FET y de las JONS in 1940.

Catholic Church and politics

Catholic Church and politics aims to cover subjects of where the Catholic Church and politics share common ground.

Catholicism (disambiguation)

Catholicism primarily designates the faith, doctrine, practice and system of the Catholic Church. It may also refer to:

Catholicity, the core set of beliefs of various Christian denominations

Western Catholicism, or Latin Catholicism, particular denominational designation for the Latin Catholic Church

Eastern Catholicism, particular denominational designation for the Eastern Catholic Churches

Greek Catholicism, specific designation for those Eastern Catholic Churches that are following the Byzantine Rite (a.k.a. Greek Rite)

Syriac Catholicism (disambiguation), specific designation for those Eastern Catholic Churches that are following the Syriac Rite

Slavic Catholicism, particular ethnoreligious designation for the Catholic peoples of the Slavic group

Anglo-Catholicism, denominational designation for a particular religious movement of the Anglican Communion

Old Catholicism, denominational designation for the Old-Catholic Church

Affirming Catholicism, designation for particular religious movement within the Anglican Communion

Folk Catholicism, designation for particular religious and social movement within the Catholic Church

Liberal Catholicism, designation for the liberal branch within the Catholic Church

National Catholicism, designation for a nationalist branch within the Catholic Church in Francoist Spain

Political Catholicism, designation for political and social doctrines of the Catholic Church

Traditionalist Catholicism, designation for a conservative religious movement within Catholicism

Charles Maurras

Charles-Marie-Photius Maurras (; French: [ʃaʁl moʁas]; 20 April 1868 – 16 November 1952) was a French author, politician, poet, and critic. He was an organizer and principal philosopher of Action Française, a political movement that was monarchist, anti-Semitic, anti-parliamentarist, and counter-revolutionary. Maurras' ideas greatly influenced National Catholicism and "nationalisme intégral". A major tenet of integral nationalism was stated by Maurras as "a true nationalist places his country above everything". He was one of the few eminent and probably the most important of all French ethnic nationalists, being naturally opposed to republican universalism and liberalism. The common good was of higher value than popular will. A political theorist and a major intellectual influence in early 20th-century Europe, his views influenced several far-right ideologies; it also anticipated some of the ideas of fascism.


Clericalism is the application of the formal, church-based, leadership or opinion of ordained clergy in matters of either the church or broader political and sociocultural import.


Clerico-nationalism was a right-wing ideology current in Quebec from the years after World War I unit the end of the 1950s, (from the premiership of Maurice Duplessis until the Quiet Revolution.) Clerico-nationalism was a traditionalist, religious form of French Canadian nationalism focused on the Roman Catholic Church. In France, a similar ideology was referred to as National Catholicism.

FET y de las JONS

The Falange Española Tradicionalista y de las Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional Sindicalista (FET y de las JONS, Traditionalist Spanish Phalanx and of the Councils of the National Syndicalist Offensive) was the sole legal party of the Francoist regime in Spain. It emerged in 1937 from the merger of the Carlist Party with the Falange Española de las JONS and was dissolved in 1977 by Adolfo Suárez's transitional government.

Islamic monarchy

Islamic monarchies are a type of Islamic state which are monarchies. Historically known by various names, such as Mamlakah ("Kingdom"), Caliphate, Sultanate, or Emirate, current Islamic monarchies include:

Kingdom of Morocco

Kingdom of Bahrain

Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Sultanate of Oman

Monarchies of Malaysia

Nation of Brunei, Abode of Peace

State of Kuwait

State of Qatar

United Arab Emirates

Jean Ousset

Jean Ousset (28 July 1914 – 20 April 1994) was a French ideologist of National Catholicism born in Porto, Portugal. He was an activist of the Action française monarchist movement in the 1930s, and personal secretary of its leader, Charles Maurras. Under the Vichy regime during World War II, Ousset became the chief of the research bureau of Jeune légion, a structure dependent of the Légion française des combattants, the veterans' association created in 1940 and headed by Xavier Vallat.

Following the Liberation, Jean Ousset became one of the leader of Cité catholique, an integral Catholic group. The Cité catholique also included Marcel Lefebvre, who later founded the priestly Society of St. Pius X, free from neo-modernist and indifferentist currents. As the Cagoule had done before the war, the Cité catholique had as aim to infiltrate the Republic's elites in order to form a National Catholic state, on the model of Francoist Spain.Close to Lefebvriste's contacts, Jean Ousset published in 1949 Pour qu'Il règne, a title which was chosen by the Belgian section of the Society of St. Pius X as title of its newspaper. The preface of the book was signed by Marcel Lefebvre.

Ousset also wrote Le Marxisme-Léninisme in which he developed the new concept of "subversion" and argued that Marxists could only be combatted by "a profound faith, an unlimited obedience to the Holy Father, and a thorough knowledge of the Church's doctrines.". Its Spanish translation was prefaced by Antonio Caggiano, the archbishop of Buenos Aires and military chaplain, who would theorize counter-revolutionary warfare in Argentina (theories which were implemented by the military during the so-called "Dirty War").

Johann Lesinski

Johann Lesinski (1904–63) was the first and -to date- only bishop of Tingzhou, in the Ecclesiastical province of Fuzhou.

A German, Lesinski belonged to the Ordo Praedicatorum (the Dominicans). He was ordained into the priesthood in July 1932, before his 28th birthday anniversary. In May 1947 the Apostolic prefecture of Tingzhou (consisting mostly of the ROC's Changting Prefecture) was promoted to Diocesan standing and Lesiniski was named its bishop (consecrated thus in October of that year).

Movimiento Nacional

The Movimiento Nacional (English: National Movement) was the name given to the nationalist inspired mechanism during Francoist rule in Spain, which purported to be the only channel of participation in Spanish public life. It responded to a doctrine of corporatism in which only so-called "natural entities" could express themselves: families, municipalities and unions.

National syndicalism

National syndicalism is an adaptation of syndicalism to suit the social agenda of integral nationalism. National syndicalism developed in France, and then spread to Italy, Spain, Portugal ,Romania and Japan.

Political science of religion

The political science of religion (also referred to as politicology of religion or politology of religion) is one of the youngest disciplines in the political sciences that deals with a study of influence that religion has on politics and vice versa with a focus on the relationship between the subjects (actors) in politics in the narrow sense: government, political parties, pressure groups, and religious communities. It was established in the last decades of the twentieth century.

Religious nationalism

Religious nationalism is the relationship of nationalism to a particular religious belief, dogma, or affiliation. This relationship can be broken down into two aspects: the politicization of religion and the influence of religion on politics.In the former aspect, a shared religion can be seen to contribute to a sense of national unity, a common bond among the citizens of the nation. Another political aspect of religion is the support of a national identity, similar to a shared ethnicity, language, or culture. The influence of religion on politics is more ideological, where current interpretations of religious ideas inspire political activism and action; for example, laws are passed to foster stricter religious adherence.Ideologically-driven religious nationalism may not necessarily be targeted against other religions per se, but can be articulated in response to modernity and, in particular, secular nationalism. Indeed, religious nationalism may articulate itself as the binary of secular nationalism. Nation-states whose boundaries and borders are relatively recent or that have experienced colonialism may be more prone to religious nationalism, which may stand as a more authentic or "traditional" rendering of identity. Thus, there was a global rise of religious nationalism in the wake of the end of the cold war, but also as postcolonial politics (facing considerable developmental challenges, but also dealing with the reality of colonially-defined, and therefore somewhat artificial, borders) became challenged. In such a scenario, appealing to a national sense of Islamic identity, as in the cases of Pakistan and Indonesia, may serve to override regional tensions.

The danger is that when the state derives political legitimacy from adherence to religious doctrines, this may leave an opening to overtly religious elements, institutions, and leaders, making the appeals to religion more 'authentic' by bringing more explicitly theological interpretations to political life. Thus, appeals to religion as a marker of ethnicity creates an opening for more strident and ideological interpretations of religious nationalism.

Many ethnic and cultural nationalisms include religious aspects, but as a marker of group identity, rather than the intrinsic motivation for nationalist claims.

Religious police

Religious police is the police force responsible for the enforcement of religious norms and associated religious laws.

While most police enforcing religious norms in the modern world are Islamic and found in Muslim countries such as Saudi Arabia or Iran, some are not (for example in Vietnam, the religious security police monitor “extremist” religious groups, detaining and interrogating suspected Dega Protestants or Ha Mon Catholics).

Religious socialism

Religious socialism is any form of socialism based on religious values. Members of several major religions have found that their beliefs about human society fit with socialist principles and ideas. As a result, religious socialist movements have developed within these religions. Such movements include:

Buddhist socialism

Christian socialism

Hindu socialism

Islamic socialism

Jewish socialism

Sección Femenina

Sección Femenina (Women's Section) was the women's branch of the Falange political movement in Spain. Founded in 1934, it subsequently became an official institution in the Francoist era. Following General Franco's death and the beginning of the transition to democracy it was disbanded on 1 April 1977 together with all Movimiento Nacional institutions. Sección Femenina was led throughout its history by Pilar Primo de Rivera, the younger sister of Falange founder José Antonio Primo de Rivera.

Sinhalese Buddhist nationalism

Sinhalese Buddhist nationalism is a political ideology which combines a focus upon Sinhalese culture and ethnicity with an emphasis upon Theravada Buddhism, which is the majority belief system of most of the Sinhalese in Sri Lanka. It mostly originated in reaction to the colonisation of Sri Lanka by the British Empire and became increasingly assertive in the years following the independence of the country.

Spanish Athletics Championships

The Spanish Athletics Championships (Spanish: Campeonato de España de atletismo) is an annual outdoor track and field competition organised by the Royal Spanish Athletics Federation (RFEA), which serves as the Spanish national championship for the sport. It is typically held as a two-day event in the Spanish summer around late June to early August. The venue of the championships is decided on an annual basis.

The competition was first held in 1917 as a men's only competition. A separate women's began in 1931 but, following the onset of the Spanish Civil War, this was cancelled after 1935 and it was not until 1963 that women events were added alongside the men's programme. This made Spain the last large European country to provide a national championship for women in the sport and female participation in sport in general in Spain was low due to a lack of physical education, facilities and funding for women's sport. This stemmed from the policy of National Catholicism, which saw women's place as caregivers and physical feats by them as a challenge to morality.The championships has been held every years since its inauguration with the exception of 1922 and three years during the civil war (1937, 1938, and 1939). The modern event is used for the Spanish international selection for major athletics events, including the Olympic Games, World Championships in Athletics and European Athletics Championships.

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