After all the hay Republicans made during 2008 of President Barack Obama’s former church, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) likely expected this.
In a post to the website of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod — parent organization to Bachmann’s home church, Salem Evangelical Lutheran in Stillwater, Minn. — the Pope is named “the antichrist,” in a revelation that’s sure to cause some discord among religious conservatives.
The claim was first spotted by The Atlantic‘s Joshua Green, who explains that Bachmann belongs to one of the most conservative forms of Lutheranism that believes Catholics are Pagans and a perversion of holy scripture.
“Since Scripture teaches that the Antichrist would be revealed and gives the marks by which the Antichrist is to be recognized, and since this prophecy has been clearly fulfilled in the history and development of the Roman Papacy, it is Scripture which reveals that the Papacy is the Antichrist,” the church’s website explains.
Confronted on this very issue in 2006 during a public debate, Bachmann denied her church’s doctrine and said she does not believe the Pope to be “the antichrist,” insisting that she loves Catholics.
Bachmann is no longer a member of the church and reportedly requested her separation from them in writing. A church spokesman told Green their belief that the Pope is “the antichrist” has never been one of their “driving principles.”