The Catholic Church has always acted like a state. Quoting: Anonymous Coward 25019022
Emperor Constantine was the first Roman
Ruler to combine the Roman State with
the Roman Church. They were one entity.
So basically when you tithed to God
the money went into Constantine's pocket.
He used religion as double taxation
on the populous. And before his death
Constantine declared that you could not
be a Roman Citizen without being Christian.
Being a Christian was later mandatory for the Roman
Legions under Constantine's rule. Meaning
even the Roman Soldiers were double taxed as well.