What About the Waldensians?

The following is an email response by a Waldensian Minister to the question about Waldensian Sabbath-keeping. The Waldensians are reportedly the ones who kept the "Sabbath Truth" and were persecuted for it from the 16th through the 19th centuries. We have concealed the name to protect identity.

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My name is
T. , Waldensian Minister in Italy, in charge - by our Board, to answer to your letter.

If you are interested in the Waldensian Churches in Italy (North, Center, and South Italy) and in Uruguay and Argentina, in past and present you can try to find and study the following books:

1) Giorgio Tourn, You are my witnesses - The Waldensians across 800 years , Claudiana Editor 1989 - Distributed in North America by P.O. Box 37844 - CINCINNATI, OH 45222 (USA).
2) Prescot Stephens, The Waldensians Story - A study in Faith, intolerance and survival, The Book Guild Ltd - Lewes, Sussex, 1998.

The Waldensian Churches are Reformed Presbyterian Churches: they were called in Latin: Mater Reformationis (=Mother of the Reformation) as they were before an old Middle Ages movement, but NOT a Church . They adopted the Huguenot Confession of faith, so called "De la Rochelle" of 1559 (but really of the Paris Synod, their first Huguenot General Assembly), but in 1655 the Waldensian Churches had its own Confession of Faith, hurriedly drafted in Italian immediately after the massacre of the Waldenses called "Piedmonts Easters". This was simply a shortened version in Italian of the Huguenot Confession of faith of 1559: it confirmed that in theology the Waldenses were in the mainstream of Presbyterian Calvinism . It is still the basis to this day of Waldensian beliefs, which the Candidates have to undersign in front of the General Assembly before becoming Ministers in our churches.

The Waldensians did not keep the Sabbath and were not guardians of the "Sabbath Truth" as you call it. The Waldensians never followed the Seventh-day Adventist but they follow more: Romans 14,5-8 then other truths.

We can therefore say very clearly that the Waldensians were not Seventh-day Sabbath keepers and they were not persecuted for keeping Saturday as the Sabbath! They were persecuted, from 1535 (when they joined the Reformation) to 1848 (when they received religious freedom), because of their Reformed-Calvinistic (Protestant) faith in Christ.

With my best regards, yours,

T . - Waldensian Minister in Italy

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