I have recently published a substantial entry (some 30 pages) on Pope Michael which forms part of the important World Religions and Spirituality Project (WRSP), an online resource focused on new and emergent religious groups, edited by Professor David G. Bromley at Virginia Commonwealth University.

David Bawden (1959–2022) was elected Pope Michael I in a 1990 conclave in Kansas.  He was neither the first nor the last man to become an alternative pope during the twentieth century. There have been dozens of others who claimed that they, not the vastly more recognized pope in Rome, are the true leader of the Catholic Church. Generally, they argue that we live in an era of general apostasy and that the modern church, particularly after the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965), has nothing to do with true Catholicism. Several of the latest Roman pontiffs were antipopes and leaders of a new non-Catholic religion. Most alternative popes assert that they were elected through direct heavenly intervention, and David Bawden was the first elected in an alternative conclave. He claimed the pontificate for thirty-two years, leading a small group of followers.

My text is found here

3 thoughts on “New Article on Pope Michael

  1. Stafill-Benns later split from Pope Michael. Am unsure why. Gordon Cardinal Bateman was an Australian who took part in Pope Michael’s election. He too, later left Pope Michael’s group. I’ve read he returned to Australia and reconciled with the SSPX. I do not know if he ever married. Think I read he was a manual worker of some type. I live in New Zealand and wrote to Pope Michael and he sent me his literature. I also telephoned him and his mother answered and said “Do you want to speak to the Pope?”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gordon Bateman did not take part in Pope MIchael’s election, but in the 1998 conclave that elected Lucian Pulvermacher Pope Pius XIII. Bateman left, and if I got it right one of the reasons was that he Pius XIII defended the use of the pendelum for divination purposes!


      1. Yes. You are right. I am in error. My memory did not serve me well. I should have checked. Feel free to delete my previous comment.


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