|Malan's Peak from Weber State University
There is a wonderful history of the Piedmontese Saints who joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and came to Zion. The author, Diane Stoke, apparently a distant cousin of mine, makes her BYU Master's Thesis, The Mormon Waldensians, freely available on-line at her website. (Thanks, Diane!)
And there is another odd and poetic connection to my proto-Protestant heritage. My ancient Cavalier Cousin, Henry Vaughan, was a contemporary of the Poet John Milton. While Vaughan retreated to relative obscurity in his Welsh valleys, Milton was better known, connected as we was with Cromwell's Puritans. There was some serious religious sentiment in his poetry, particularly Paradise Lost. And there is also a Sonnet dedicated to my ancestors in the Piedmont who are some of the earliest Protestants documented at least back to the 12th Century, and some claims go back to an original Apostolic connection. Over the centuries, The Waldensians were the target of numerous persecutions including full-scale Crusades.
ON THE LATE MASSACRE IN PIEDMONT (1655)
John Milton (1608-1674)
- AVENGE, O Lord, thy slaughtered saints, whose bones
- Lie scattered on the Alpine mountains cold;
- Even them who kept thy truth so pure of old,
- When all our fathers worshipped stocks and stones,
- Forget not: in thy book record their groans
- Who were thy sheep, and in their ancient fold
- Slain by the bloody Piedmontese, that rolled
- Mother with infant down the rocks. Their moans
- The vales redoubled to the hills, and they
- To heaven. Their martyred blood and ashes sow
- O'er all the Italian fields, where still doth sway
- The triple Tyrant; that from these may grow
- A hundred fold, who, having learnt thy way,
- Early may fly the Babylonian woe.
|A Mountain Home above Torre Pellice, Italy.