“There are not one hundred people in this world who hate Catholicism, but there are millions who hate what they mistakenly believe Catholicism to be.”
– The late Archbishop Fulton Sheen
Do Catholics read the Bible?
Do Catholics believe that Scripture is the only infallible rule for faith?
It was approximately 50-100 years before the first four books of the New Testament were written down. It was not until 367 A.D that the complete list of books that we use today was cataloged and the Bible was not fixed definitively until the Council of Trent in 1545-1563.
Why the statement ” The Bible is the only infallible rule for Christian faith” is not true
- That idea itself is not found in the bible.
- There was nothing written down in the first century, only Church traditions.
- The 27 books of the New Testament were not cataloged in the first 4 centuries, only Church traditions.
- The Bible was not complete for the first 16 centuries, only Church tradition.
- The Bible was organized through Church tradition.
- ”Scripture is the only infallible rule for faith” had to become the rallying cry and justification for Protestants after the reformation.
- Without the unified tradition of the Church, interpretations of the Bible have created over 33,000 denomination of the Church.
Why Catholics Honor Saints ?
The Communion of Saints is the belief where all saints are intimately related in the Body of Christ, a family. When you die and go to heaven, you do not leave this family. Everyone in heaven or on their way to heaven are saints, you, me, my deceased grandmother, Mary the mother of Jesus, Mother Teresa, and Pope John Paul II. As part of this family, you may ask your family and friends living here on earth to pray for you. Or, you may also ask the Blessed Virgin Mary, Saint Andrew, or your deceased grandmother living in heaven to pray for you. Prayer to saints in heaven is simple communication, not worship. Asking others to pray for you whether your loved ones on Earth or your loved ones in heaven is always optional. Catholics share the belief in the Communion of Saints with many other Christians, including the Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, Episcopal, and Methodist Churches.
Can the Saints Hear Us?
Why do Catholics Ask Saints (Mary) to Intercede?
From Pope John Paul II’s 1987 encyclical, Mother of the Redeemer paragraph 38 of that chapter is as follows:
- The Church knows and teaches with Saint Paul that there is only one mediator: “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all.” (1 Tm 2:5-6).
The maternal role of Mary toward people in no way obscures or diminishes the unique mediation of Christ, but rather shows its power [Vatican II Constitution on the Church, # 60]: it is mediation in Christ.
The practice of invoking saintly people for their intercession before God in union with Jesus has roots in sacred Scripture. In this regard, Matthew 18:19-20 refers to saints on earth, and Revelation 18:20 refers to saints in heaven. In the early centuries of the Church, respect and prayers were offered to those martyred for Christ. The practice derives from the doctrine that the saints are united with Jesus in one mystical body (Rm 12:5).
Asking one person to pray for you in no way violates Christ’s mediatorship, as can be seen from considering the way in which Christ is a mediator. First, Christ is a unique mediator between man and God because he is the only person who is both God and man. He is the only bridge between the two, the only God-man. But that role as mediator is not compromised in the least by what room
The intercession of fellow Christians—which is what the saints in heaven are—also clearly does not interfere with Christ’s unique mediatorship because in the four verses immediately preceding 1 Timothy 2:5, Paul says that Christians should intercede: “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way. This is good and pleasing to God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:1–4). Clearly, then, intercessory prayers offered by Christians on behalf of others is something “good and pleasing to God,” not something infringing on Christ’s role as mediator.
Catholics do not pray to Mary as if she were God. Prayer to Mary is the memory of the great mysteries of our faith (Incarnation, Redemption through Christ in the rosary), praise to God for the wonderful things he has done in and through one of his creatures (Hail Mary) and intercession (second half of the Hail Mary). The latter is addressed to Mary not as to a vending machine but a support person helping us to discern the will of God in our lives. Mary is a volunteer, highly recommendable and recommended, but not a mandatory and inescapable passage.
Was Mary the Mother of God?
Do Catholics Worship Mary?
Was Mary without Sin?
Mary, whose conception was brought about the normal way, was conceived without original sin. Mary was preserved from these defects by God’s grace; from the first instant of her existence, she was in the state of sanctifying grace and was free from the corrupt nature original sin brings. She was in a state of sanctifying grace from the first moment of her existence. She was therefore redeemed by the grace of Christ, but in a special way—by anticipation. Thus when the angel Gabriel said, “Hail, Mary full of grace, the Lord is with you” (Luke 1:28) he was describing a permanent characteristic of her.
Do Catholics Worship Statues?
The Roman Catholic Church teaches that it is wrong, in line with the Sacred Scriptures as it states in Exodus 20:4-5, “You shall not carve idols for yourselves in the shape of anything in the sky above or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth; you shall not bow down before them or worship them”.
Is an Image Not an Idol?
God ordered His children to construct these statues and images, but He did not intend for His children to worship them. God was using the images to help them to recall situations, to see places as holy and set apart, and to help them to open their minds and hearts and turn them back to God.
When we look upon a statue as we meditate in prayer to God, our senses are illuminated. We are not worshipping the wood, plaster, plastic or paint. The image, though, appeals to our sense of sight, aiding in our visualization and helping us to focus on the pure, consistent and holy life lived by that saint…like the Blessed Virgin Mary, for instance.
Stained glass windows with images can work in the same way…but most people don’t seem to have a problem with those, because “they’re just pretty”.