A Brief History of the Early Church of Satan and The Church of Satanic Brotherhood

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“On April 30, 1966 E.V., Howard Stanton Levey, acting under his pseudonym of Anton Szandor LaVey, founded the Church of Satan.

1. On September 25, 1971, Wayne F. West the leader of Babylon Grotto, Detroit, Michigan, dissolved that organization in disgust.

2. Fall, 1971, Steve Foster was removed as leader of Nineveh Grotto, Louisville, Kentucky by Michael Aquino for refusal to conform to Church policies.

3. On February 11, 1972, the Stygian Grotto, Dayton, Ohio, was dissolved by the Church of Satan for allegedly violating Church policies.

4. April 2, 1972, the Nineveh Grotto, now under the leadership of Solomon Weir, was dissolved by Michael Aquino for consorting with expelled members.

5. July, 1972, the Belphegor Grotto, Detroit, Michigan, allowed its charter to lapse, citing the hypocrisy of continued membership.

6. June 10, 1975, Michael Aquino denounces LaVey and founds the Temple of Set.

7. April 30, 1984, Diane LaVey leaves her ‘husband’ Anton LaVey.

8. April 30, 1990, Zeena LaVey Shreck denounces her father.

On October 29, 1997 Howard Stanton Levey died. His legacy, such as it is, is represented by The Satanic Bible and The Satanic Rituals. Other works, by him or about him, are of little interest, with the exception of Aquino’s The Church of Satan.

On Walpurgisnacht 1970, three Detroit members of the Church of Satan met to celebrate the event. One of these was Wayne Forest West.

West’s legacy consists of the body of ritual material he created and in the other grottos he helped to form: Belphegor, led by Doug Robbins, and the Stygian, led by John DeHaven. Both of these were chartered in the July of 1971 E.V.

In late 1970 E.V. members from Dayton came in contact with West, who soon encouraged them by organizing them as the ‘Dayton Extension’ of the Babylon Grotto. In February, 1971 E.V., one John DeHaven was initiated into Babylon and soon proved his worth to West. In fact West installed him as leader of the Dayton Extension by the end of May and, no doubt, helped in securing him a charter as the Stygian Grotto of the Church of Satan by July, 1971 E.V.

Believing the accusations of two malcontents that the Grotto was running a theft ring, LaVey and Aquino dissolved the Stygian Grotto on February 11, 1972 E.V. and expelled DeHaven and three other members. The accusations were stoutly denied by Mr. DeHaven; but his protests were totally and arrogantly ignored by the Church of Satan.

The Council of the Church of Satanic Brotherhood adjourned sine die on March 9, 1973 E.V. The CSB has since been run on the de facto authority of its High Priest John DeHaven.”

– T. Flavius Apollonius, A Brief History of the Early Church of Satan and The Church of Satanic Brotherhood

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