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Questions about Catholicism

Discussion in 'One Bread, One Body - Catholic' started by ChristianForCats, Aug 19, 2019.

  1. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats God Seeker

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    Hi everyone! I hope none of you think any of these questions are attempts to bash Catholicism because that is not my intent. The faith is just confusing to me so I am curious about it.
    1. Do you worship Mary when you say, "Hail Mary!" and call her Our Lady?
    2. Why do you use Mary and the saints as intercessories when you pray?
    3. Does the Bible say you must confess your sin to a priset to be forgiven?
    4. Tell me what the rosary is, what it symbolizes, and why it is important.
    5. Why do you believe the wine is Jesus' blood and the bread is His body?
    6. Why aren't priests allowed to get married and have their own children?
    7. What is the purpose of Mass being spoken in Latin? Is that still a rule?
    8. How important is kneeling at pews during Mass, and when do you do it?
    9. Why do you believe you must obey the Pope even though he also sins?
    10. Why do you believe liturgy is very important to do at Mass? What is it?
    11. Why are services called Mass? Are there any services not called Mass?
    12. What are purgatories and why are they important to Catholic people?
    Correct me if I am wrong about any of these questions. I might have some more later.
     
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  2. zippy2006

    zippy2006 Dragonsworn

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    The etymology of the word "liturgy" is public service or public worship. Thus any form of public worship could reasonably be referred to as liturgy, including the Mass, vespers, exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, etc. (Read more)

    "Mass" is just an artifact from the concluding formula of the older Roman Rite in the Latin language, "Ite, missa est." It refers to the sacrificial liturgical rite of the Church. Other services are not called "Mass" (e.g. liturgy of the hours, stations of the cross, penance services, etc.).
     
  3. thecolorsblend

    thecolorsblend If God is your Father, who is your Mother?

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    Hello.

    That's understandable.

    We do not. It would be breaking a commandment to worship her. In fact, obviously it would break a commandment to worship anything or anyone except God.

    I won't speak for anyone else. But I refer to the Blessed Mother usually as Our Lady unless there's some pressing need to use her name. The reason for this is that it's simply an issue of respect for me. I would no sooner refer to Our Lady by her name than I would call my parents by either of their first names. It's a question of respect. Others may have their own reasons. But those are mine.

    I should say though that similar logic goes into my preference for referring to her Son as Our Lord. It's a respect thing. But it's not something which I'm prepared to demand of others. If they wish to refer to the mother and the Son by their names... well, that's not my business.

    I ask my living friends to pray for me sometimes. I also ask the faithful departed to pray for me as well... because they're more alive than we are.

    1 John 5 says, among other things, that there are sins which bring death and there are sins which do not bring death. The Church teaches that sins which bring death (i.e., mortal sins) are usually to be confessed to a priest.

    Oh boy, that's a big 'un. I'll circle back to it. Or maybe someone else can tackle it.

    I take St. John 6 literally when Our Lord says we must eat His flesh and drink His blood. The Catholic Church takes that passage literally as well. Historically, the Church has always interpreted this passage in literal terms.

    That's a discipline enforced in the Roman Rite. And not entirely in the Roman Rite, as there are occasionally priests who are ordained who are married.

    Deacons may also marry, at least in some circumstances.

    However, Eastern Catholic clergy are permitted to marry.

    Also, Anglican ministers may convert as well and become part of the Ordinariate. These Anglican ministers who have converted can still be ordained as priests in the Roman Rite even if they are married.

    For example, I sometimes attend Mass at a nearby Ordinariate parish. The clergy there are obviously entirely Anglican ministers but, to my recollection, they're all married. And they're still official Catholic clergy, no problem.

    But for the sake of discussion, the discipline could change. For instance, tomorrow it could be announced that Roman Rite clergy might be permitted to marry from now on. Understand, this is not a matter of dogma. People seem to think that it is. But it isn't. This could change at any moment, in theory, and there would be no contradiction or conflict.

    It is not still a rule. But the Traditional Latin Mass is offered in ever increasing numbers across the United States.

    On a personal level, I adore the Latin. I like languages. I also love beauty, elegance and sophistication. And it's tough to get much more beautiful, elegant or sophisticated than the Traditional Latin Mass.

    I see the Latin as a unifying experience for the faithful. Latin is likely a foreign language to everybody. So everybody can participate no matter what their native tongue might be.

    I'm not denigrating Mass offered in vernacular. It's not my business to ever denigrate the Mass. I'm only saying that as a matter of individual preference, I'll choose the TLM every time. But I absolutely understand if somebody else might prefer Mass in vernacular.

    My recollection is that the faithful should genuflect when the Host is in the tabernacle. And it usually is. I welcome correction from others on this point. Me, I usually take the easy way out and genuflect on the assumption that the consecrated host is in the tabernacle.

    The reason for the genuflection is a show of worship to Our Lord, who is present in the Mass. I think a proper genuflection is one where my right knee touches the floor. That is me giving something to the Lord that is rightfully His.

    One might kneel before a priest. However, it is important to note that it should be one's left knee which hits the floor. You bend the right knee as an act of worship for God. That's His and His alone. And you bend the left knee as a show of respect to spiritual authorities.

    When the Pope speaks on matters concerning faith and morals, yes. But if a Pope expresses a political (or other) opinion, we are not obligated to agree with him.

    On a personal level, one thing I appreciate about Pope Francis and his pontificate is that he is by no means a Tea Party Patriot. He obviously falls somewhere on the left on certain issues. I look to him as a constant reminder that I am in serious error if I ever associate the Christian faith with Republican Party politics.

    Christianity is bigger than any political party and Pope Francis challenges subconscious prejudices I never even knew I had.

    The concept of papal infallibility does not depend on papal impeccability. Any pope sins. They're only human.

    Everybody has a liturgy. The issue is that Catholics are simply willing to commit their liturgies into writing.

    But if you walk into an evangelical community, you will find that each service is conducted in more or less the same fashion each time. They may not define that as an actual liturgy. But it is a liturgy in fact even if it's not a liturgy in name.

    Pass. I'll let somebody who actually knows what they're talking about handle that one. Never thought about it before, tbh.

    The Church understands Purgatory as the final purification of the faithful prior to their entry into Heaven.

    I reserve the right to be wrong about this but to my knowledge the Church has very little official teaching about Purgatory. Primarily, she teaches that there is such a thing as Purgatory and she teaches the purpose of it. Otherwise, there aren't many other specifics to be known.

    It's important to understand that it's possible for the faithful to bypass Purgatory entirely. Purgatory is a possible detour; not a mandatory destination. Not everybody will necessarily end up there.

    But for those souls which do end up in Purgatory, we believe that God will refine and purify their souls to prepare them for Heaven. This mortal must put on immortality. Purgatory is a modality whereby this mortal puts on immortality.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2019
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  4. JohnAshton

    JohnAshton Active Member

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    Thank you, thecolorsblend.
     
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  5. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats God Seeker

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    What are Roman Rites?
     
  6. thecolorsblend

    thecolorsblend If God is your Father, who is your Mother?

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    Directly from Wikipedia: "The Roman Rite is the main or Western liturgical rite of the Roman Catholic Church, the main particular church sui iuris of the Catholic Church. It is the most widespread liturgical rite in Christianity as a whole. The Roman Rite gradually became the predominant rite used by the Western Church, developed out of many local variants from Early Christianity on, not amounting to distinctive rites, that existed in the medieval manuscripts, but have been progressively reduced since the invention of printing, most notably since the reform of liturgical law in the 16th century at the behest of the Council of Trent (1545–63) and more recently following the Second Vatican Council (1962–65)."

    Roman Rite - Wikipedia

    There are quite a few other Rites though, but the Roman Rite is the largest. You can find a lot of information at Catholic particular churches and liturgical rites - Wikipedia.

    But in a nutshell, they are:

    Latin liturgical tradition:
    Latin Church

    Alexandrian liturgical tradition:
    Coptic Catholic Church
    Ethiopian Catholic Church
    Eritrean Catholic Church

    Antiochian liturgical tradition:
    Maronite Church
    Syriac Catholic Church
    Syro-Malankara Catholic Church

    Armenian liturgical tradition:
    Armenian Catholic Church

    East Syriac or Chaldean liturgical tradition:
    Chaldean Catholic Church
    Syro-Malabar Catholic Church

    Byzantine liturgical tradition:
    Albanian Greek Catholic Church
    Belarusian Greek Catholic Church
    Bulgarian Greek Catholic Church
    Greek Catholic Church of Croatia and Serbia
    Greek Byzantine Catholic Church
    Hungarian Greek Catholic Church
    Italo-Albanian Catholic Church
    Macedonian Greek Catholic Church
    Melkite Greek Catholic Church
    Romanian Greek Catholic Church
    Russian Greek Catholic Church
    Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church (also known in the United States as the Byzantine Catholic Church)
    Slovak Greek Catholic Church
    Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church

    Those are all equally Catholic and they're all equally in communion with the Pope.

    In fact, that's partly why some Catholics get their noses a bit out of joint when people say Roman Catholic Church. The Church itself has occasionally referred to itself that way but these pickier Catholics object to that term because it kind of ignores how dynamic and diverse the Church actually is.
     
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  7. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats God Seeker

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    The name Roman Catholic is not totally accurate because the Pope lives in Vatican City, which is legally a separate soverein nation - the smallest in the world. Its ruler is the Pope. St. Peter's Basilica got its name from being the supposed burial place for the apostole Peter and is the biggest cathedral in the world. But, interestingly, a basilica in Rome itself - St. John's Archbasilica - is officially the most important church. So in that sense "Roman Catholic" is not totally wrong.
     
  8. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    The Pope has been the Bishop of Rome for many centuries, though, and Vatican City was only created in the 20th century.
     
  9. Snoder

    Snoder Member

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    The Vatican City State was created in the 20th Century after the conquest of all the kingdoms and states of Italy in the 19th Century. The Roman Empire tried desperately to keep what is now Italy. After the fifth Century, what was once the Roman Empire was now an Empire of the Greeks situated in Constantinople/Istanbul.

    The Pope was the spiritual leader of the Church but also found himself the temporal or government leader of Rome and the surrounding areas. This can be a bit confusing. What was the Empire of the Romans abandoned Italy and became a Greek Empire. The Pope became a 'secular' ruler and a spiritual ruler.

    The Papal States lasted for thousand years. The Pope had been both a spiritual leader and a leader of a government. There was a movement in Italy to unite the country under a single government. This created a question of what to do with the Pope and the conquered Papal States. It was agreed to give the Pope parts of what was owned in Rome to form a government state.
     
  10. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Exactly. Some may be ordained after they marry. But once ordained they may not marry.
    Deacons may be chosen from among married men. Once ordained a deacon one may not marry.
    No. Eastern Catholic clergy may be chosen from among married or single men. Once ordained they may not marry.
    Yes. I've met some of them.
    True. But what is more likely to change is allowing married men to be priests. Much less likely is allowing priests to marry. The wisdom of either is debatable as it's not a doctrinal thing.
     
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  11. thecolorsblend

    thecolorsblend If God is your Father, who is your Mother?

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    Important clarifications, thanks.

    Actually, rereading my post now and I think I made a boo-boo.

    Don't the vows the priests took still stand? Their vow of celibacy, for example? I guess it doesn't matter since it looks like ordained men cannot get married anyway once they are ordained. But either way, I think their vow is binding no matter what policy changes may occur.
     
  12. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It's actually the 'Catholic Church'. I am a member of the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church. But there are millions of others who are Catholic but not of the Roman Rite. Post 6 above has a list of all of the other Rites that are equally Catholic but not Roman. There are other Rites too that are not on that list like the Dominican Rite and the Ambrosian Rite, and there are ancient Rites like the Sarum Rite which are occasionally used.

    I think the Church you are referring to is the Basilica of St. John Lateran, the official church of the pope, which was built in 324 AD.
     
  13. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The vows a priest took would stand unless they petitioned to be released from a particular vow and a release was granted, probably by the pope. I think such a thing is unlikely even with pope Francis.
     
  14. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The name is from the closing of the service 'Ite missa est' which means literally 'Go, it is the dismissal.' How that got to be the name of the service is just a curious historical circumstance.

    There are other services like Stations of the Cross, penitential services, morning or evening prayer, but often things like funerals, weddings, baptisms, and ordinations are done inside of a mass.
    There is only one purgatory, and it is a place for those already saved but not finished with their sanctification to be cleansed by the fire of God's love so they are ready to stand before God. Purgatory is a place of ... purgation, where saved people get to release their bad habits which they held on to all of their lives.

    It's important to Catholics, as it should be important to all Christians, because we get to pray for those going through the process, to assist them on their way.

    Purgatory is not a second chance as it is ONLY for those already saved by Jesus. It is also not a back door as Jesus is the only door to salvation.
     
  15. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats God Seeker

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    Why does it make a difference whether a priest is ordained or not if he can get married?
     
  16. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I presume you really are asking why a priest cannot marry but that a married man may become a priest depending on the rite or the circumstance.

    It's just been that way for the longest time. The Orthodox do allow a married man to be a priest but do not allow a priest to marry. If a guy wants to be both a priest and be married as an Orthodox he marries first and then becomes a priest. So nobody is forbidden to marry. Same with Catholics. Anyone may marry. Some men who choose not to marry can become priests in the Latin Rite. For other Rites they can marry and then become priests. That's true too for former Anglican priests who were married and now are Catholic priests. They can be married and then become Catholic priests.

    Why does it matter? It's just been that way for all of Christian history as far as the records go. And we respect that. Anyone who wants to can marry. And for the most part priests are chosen from those who have committed to being celibate.
     
  17. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats God Seeker

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    It matters if a priest must choose between his job and girlfriend. I assume all prospective priests know to get married first, but life happens. Can he quit his job to get married, then later be a priest at another RC church?
     
  18. Michie

    Michie Human rights begin in the womb. Supporter

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    No. All perspective priests have a time of discerment where they can date in seminary until it is time to be ordained as permanant Deacon. After that, it is a year until they are ordained a priest. My understanding is the decision is made when they become a permanant Deacon. Becoming a priest in the RCC means celibacy which they freely choose. I do know the Eastern Rite of the Church has married priests. But if they took these vows of celibacy, they are binding unless laicized. Other RC's can correct me if I am wrong. But there is no hopping to one Church or another outside the vows they took for the purpose of being able to marry. I do know there are exceptions for qualified converts already married. Fr. Longenecker is one. And then there are the widowed that decide to take the leap of pursuing priesthood after their beloved wives have passed. Even laymen that feel called to be deacons promise to never marry again should their wives go before them. And it's an informed decision they make voluntarily.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2019
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  19. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A priest does not have to choose between his job and his girlfriend because that person already decided one way or the other BEFORE being ordained. If he went ahead to be a priest in the Latin Rite it is because he also decided to be celibate. His choice. In the Eastern Rites

    For the most part one has to choose one or the other, to be married OR to become a priest. It's a free choice. And like many choices in life, picking one means not having the other.

    A priest who has vowed celibacy and then marries would be laicized (prevented from acting like a priest), and not be allowed to serve as a priest in any Catholic Church, even one which allowed married priests by ordaining married men. I think the thing for you to realize here is that a Catholic ordination is a sacrament that results in a permanent change in the person ordained. It's not like a person being called by a particular congregation, then leaving, doing something not allowed, and being called by another congregation.
     
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  20. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Jesus said "Do as they say, not as they do" in Matthew 23:3. And so we respect and follow and even obey sinners when they do have authority over us. We obey sinful police, sinful judges, sinful priests and sinful bishops, and a sinful pope. We obey Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Peter and Paul too, even though they were all sinners.
    We are not autonomous libertarians as are some Protestants. But then not all Protestants are autonomous libertarians either. See also Matthew 16:19 and Hebrews 13:17. Does this help?
     
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