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February 4, 2009 at 11:47 pm #9067AnonymousInactive
Now this is how I understand it. I could be wrong, I think I was wrong once, but then again I could be mistaken about that….” title=”Very Happy” />
Well as Protestant Churches and sects are all founded by human beings, and not by God, as the Catholic Church was, (Look in the Bible, Jesus founds his Church on Peter, in other verses the Church we are told is founded on the Apostles, which does not contradict the supposition that it is founded on Peter, but simply supports the postion of the other Apostles as being sent by Jesus) So those organizations are not really in or out of communion, but the souls of the individuals are imperfectly connected to the Church.
As these Churches in a sense represent the members of their groups the Catholic Church deals with these groups, in the interest of the individual and corporate souls, and in an effort to bring them all to the fullness of the truth.February 6, 2009 at 12:10 am #9070AnonymousInactive
So would a formal heretic be someone that questions an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church? And if so, what are the true infallible teachings?February 6, 2009 at 5:34 am #9072AnonymousInactive
A formal heretic is someone who is already a Catholic, knows what the Church teaches as dogma, and goes beyond simply questioning, and denies the dogmatic teachings of the Church. All of us from time to time have doubts and questions, that is normal. Sometimes we don’t know what the Church teaches, and we have been duped by people who tell us something that is false about the Church, presenting it as Catholic teachings, leading people astray.
A good example of this is Ron, who used to come and bash here. He is the follower of an Anti-Catholic “minister” who’s entire focus is attacking the Catholic Church. He has published on his web-page many things that he says the Catholic Church teaches which it does not. Some Catholics who are not well schooled in the Faith believe what he says and have left the Church because of false information. While they have left communion with the Church and joined one or another Protestant sect, it is not because they denied what the Church teaches, but rather through their own ignorance have been misled about what the Church teaches.
The late Archbishop Sheen used to say, “In the United States there are a handful of people who hate what the Catholic Church teaches, and millions who hate what they think it teaches.”February 9, 2009 at 5:00 am #9075AnonymousInactive"LARobert":3favz2x7 wrote:While they have left communion with the Church and joined one or another Protestant sect, it is not because they denied what the Church teaches, but rather through their own ignorance have been misled about what the Church teaches.[/quote:3favz2x7]
Does this mean that those who do not join the Catholic Church or wish to leave do so because they are ignorant?February 9, 2009 at 6:30 am #9078AnonymousInactive
Not everyone. People do so for various reasons, some because they don’t want anyone to tell them what the truth is, some are scandalized by what they see others do, some because of pride. Many forget that the Church is the remedy for sin, and while we should all be stiving for sainthood, we are not all there yet. However many do leave the Church because they are ignorant of what the Church really teaches, and fall easy prey to false charges against the Church. Ignorant is not a dirty word, it is just the reality that some people are either uneducated about some of the basics of their faith or the history of the Church let alone the world in general. I would not be offended if someone told me I was ignorant of Astrophysics. I’d agree that I’m ignorant of it.
Now the Church distinguishes between vincible and invincible ignorance. Vincible ignorance is when someone remains uneducated about the faith through their own laziness. Invincible ignorance is when someone is either so prejudiced against the faith, or lives in a place where the Gospel is not readily available and they cannot hear the truth.
Many Protestants say Aborigines in Africa, or a Muslim in Iraq will go to hell because he never accepted Christ. The Catholic Church teaches that if someone never had the chance to hear the truth, and accept it, God will judge him based on natural law, and what he knew. The Church still believes that the graces that lead to his salvation are won for us by Jesus Sacrifice on the Cross, and the Graces that are applied to us by the actions of Church, in the sacraments and good works, and prayers of the faithful. Some theologians think that at the judgement of the soul of the pagan or Muslim or Jew, he will be informed that Jesus is the second person of the Trinity, and all that he needs to know to make a decision will be revealed to him, however that is not an official teaching of the Church but theological speculation. All we know is that we need to trust in God’s mercy.February 9, 2009 at 7:02 pm #9079AnonymousInactive
What if one were to be educated in the Catholic faith but denies some of its teachings?February 9, 2009 at 8:30 pm #9080AnonymousInactive
Give an example of some of the teachings you are talking about. Also exolain what you understand the teachings to be,February 9, 2009 at 10:49 pm #9081AnonymousInactive
Will it be ok if I am able to use hypothetical questions?February 10, 2009 at 1:54 am #9082AnonymousInactive
AbsolutelyFebruary 10, 2009 at 5:53 am #9083AnonymousInactive
Suppose that one thinks that saints are great role models but they shouldn’t be used to intercede for you when you pray to Christ.
Suppose a neighbor thinks that a rosary is an unnecessary form of prayer that only shows respect to Mary. (Keep in mind that this neighbor does believe that Catholics do not worship saints.)
Suppose a friend told me that God doesn’t judge on what a person knows but by the faith he had in Christ.
Suppose another friend told me that Catholics put too much emphasis on good works and that because of our sinful nature, we cannot complete a “bridge” to Christ. Therefore, we cannot totally base salvation on works alone.
Suppose one thought that because Luther and other Protestant reformers were considered heretics that if they did go to Rome to be tried of their doctrines, they would be given an unfair and biased judgement, then they would be executed.
Suppose that friends told me that the Pope is not the Anti-Christ but rather it is his position as pope that is. Since Catholics believe scripturally that Christ gave Peter power, and the pope is “infallible”, these friends said that the pope (position, not person,) somewhat took over the position of Christ and therefore is the Anti-Christ
I do not mean to offend you or anyone in these hypothetical questions.February 10, 2009 at 9:51 am #9087AnonymousInactive
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose that one thinks that saints are great role models but they shouldn’t be used to intercede for you when you pray to Christ.[/quote:1st73z37]
A Catholic does not need to use the saints to intercede for them, however when one has the option of having those close to God pray for us, why not use them? The fact is that Catholics believe that death does not exclude us from the Church, and that those who are alive and those who have passed from this life in God’s love constitute the Church, and those in heaven give Glory and Honor to God. Many who deny the intercession of the saints, also have an idea that the Church only exists here on earth.
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose a neighbor thinks that a rosary is an unnecessary form of prayer that only shows respect to Mary. (Keep in mind that this neighbor does believe that Catholics do not worship saints.)[/quote:1st73z37]
Again, the intercession of the saints including our Lady is not required, but then again, any friend of God’s is my friend too.
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose a friend told me that God doesn’t judge on what a person knows but by the faith he had in Christ.[/quote:1st73z37]
Would that friend also believe that a baby who died would not go to heaven because he or she did not make a “Choice for Christ” or that they did not have faith because they had yet to “accept Jesus”?
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose another friend told me that Catholics put too much emphasis on good works and that because of our sinful nature, we cannot complete a “bridge” to Christ. Therefore, we cannot totally base salvation on works alone.[/quote:1st73z37]
That friend would show by a statement that salvation is based on works alone does not understand what the Church teaches about Faith in Christ, and how works are not the sole basis for our salvation. They misrepresent the teachings of the Catholic Church on works.
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose one thought that because Luther and other Protestant reformers were considered heretics that if they did go to Rome to be tried of their doctrines, they would be given an unfair and biased judgement, then they would be executed.[/quote:1st73z37]
We will never know the answer because Luther and the others did not accept the offer of safe conduct. However if someone is going to propose some sort of conspiracy against Luther by the Catholic Church, he would also have to deny the historical fact that when Luther and Eck debated, and at other times and places in Germany, the big bad Catholic Church could have grabbed, imprisoned and killed Luther. The Council of Trent was not the only time he was summoned to defend his position, it is simply the highest ecclesiastical gathering that he was invited to. When he debated Eck, most historians would say that Eck won the debate, and Luther not having any reply made his famous, “Here I stand, I can do no other” statement.
Luther was used as a pawn by many German Princes, as they had much to gain in the area of power, and in taking the lands and posessions of the Church if the Church could be removed from power. The same thing happened in England after King Henry VIII supressed the Monastic orders and disbanded the convents. The secular power gained power, and when they destroyed and sacked the lands of the Monastaries started abusing the peasants who had been protected by the monks, taught by the monks, and had been treated for medical conditions by the monks. After the Monastic houses where supressed, elementary education became unreachable to the poor.
As for other Protestant Leaders… There was little unity among them. Calvin and Luther wrote horrible things about each other, and used rather base words when they condemned each other. In Calvin’s Geneva, people where executed who publically disagreed with him while he was in power.
[quote:1st73z37]Suppose that friends told me that the Pope is not the Anti-Christ but rather it is his position as pope that is. Since Catholics believe scripturally that Christ gave Peter power, and the pope is “infallible”, these friends said that the pope (position, not person,) somewhat took over the position of Christ and therefore is the Anti-Christ[/quote:1st73z37]
My impression would be they don’t understand the limits of the Pope’s office, and have been poorly instructed on what the Papacy claims. I’d also ask them what I asked you to do before you posed these questions, and explain what their understanding of Papal Infallibility is, as I can’t read minds, and based on the previous questions, find their understanding of the Catholic Church to be lacking, as well as tainted by at least some paranoia about the extent of temporal power the Church has.February 10, 2009 at 1:08 pm #9091About Catholics TeamKeymaster
To read a little more about “works” and their role in salvation I wrote up this article a few years ago: A Clarification of Good Works[/url:kvly0z9s]
Salvation is neither through works alone nor faith alone. It is faith and works as described in the book of James.February 10, 2009 at 4:23 pm #9093AnonymousInactive
Thanks Jon, once again, you are an example of how as Catholics our Faith is both individual and communal. How we all support each other in faith, just as Jesus is our individual and common Saviour.February 10, 2009 at 11:49 pm #9096AnonymousInactive"LARobert":1h0cogyr wrote:[quote:1h0cogyr]Suppose a friend told me that God doesn’t judge on what a person knows but by the faith he had in Christ.[/quote:1h0cogyr]
Would that friend also believe that a baby who died would not go to heaven because he or she did not make a “Choice for Christ” or that they did not have faith because they had yet to “accept Jesus”?[/quote:1h0cogyr]
I’m not quite sure what my friend said about that kind of death. Was this baby baptized before he/she died?February 11, 2009 at 12:11 am #9097AnonymousInactive
I made the assumption that your friend was asking from the point of view of many protestants that baptism is simply a symbol of ones faith, and had no effect on the soul.
Let’s say the child was not baptized. There is a concept (not a defined dogma of the Catholic Church) of Limbo. Limbo is a pious belief, that some theologians have proposed. In the concept of Limbo a child who dies before the age of reason, without baptism is granted perfect natural happiness. However there are other Catholic Theologians who say that the Child like a pagan or someone who had never been given the opportunity in life to know and accept Jesus is given the information about Jesus, and the plan of salvation and is then given the choice to accept or reject the truth.
Many Protestants say the only way to salvation is by accepting Jesus as ones Lord and Personal Savior. If you did not get the chance, (especially those who believe in absolute predestination) you go to Hell, no other options.
As Catholics we believe in God’s mercy, and that He will judge us based on what we know, not in an intellectual sense. but rather if we did not get a chance to hear the Gospel in this life, either we are informed of it before our Judgement, and make our determination then, or possibly we are judged based on natural law, (ie all societies believe stealing, murder and adultary are wrong).February 11, 2009 at 6:56 pm #9098AnonymousInactive
I’m not quite sure what my friend thinks. I’ll have to get back to you on that later.
Back to heresy, what if these friends and neighbors hold steadfast in these ideas? Are they considered heretics?February 11, 2009 at 7:30 pm #9100About Catholics TeamKeymaster
We don’t use the term “heretic” anymore. It has a lot of negative connotations and really does nothing to promote and build unity among the Christian faithful. In today’s ecumenical climate, it’s just poor taste to call other people heretics.February 11, 2009 at 8:10 pm #9101AnonymousInactive
I agree with Jon, it is a loaded term. As each individual has a reason why they may follow a church or sect that does not have the fullness of the faith, so too God and not us have the full knowledge of why. Even prior to Vatican II, the use of the term by the Church was technically applied to someone like Luther who started the Lutheran Movement, but those born into the Lutheran Faith where not termed as heretics, as they themselves did not start out as Catholics, and then reject the Faith. Most day to day people, Catholic or not, just go about their days with God as a part of it, (at least for an hour on Sunday) but not the focus of their day. They would not know what one Church teaches and how it differs from the next. There are some who do dedicate more time to God, and the Study of Scripture and the doctrines of their creed.
One of the unfortunate things we are seeing is a resurgence of Anti-Catholic polemics. There are quite a few individuals who make a good living off of writing Anti-Catholic tracts, books, speaking tours, and videos. They stir up some good church going people to believe that Catholics are not Christians, and need to be saved. They misquote the Catechism, and distort Catholic and Biblical teachings, recruiting there followers who buy their books, and videos, and pay for them to speak in their churches.
As an example there was an Anti-Catholic who used to quote John Henry Cardinal Newman, a former Anglican priest who became a Catholic, and as his name reveals became a Cardinal. Well Bottiner told people that Newman in his book. “Apologia pro vita sua” a book explaining why he became Catholic, that Newman wrote there was no reason for anyone to believe in the authority of the Pope, and the Catholic Bishops and priests where all corrupt. If someone had read the book they would have understood that what Cardinal Newman had really written was something like this. “When I was an Anglican I used to believe and wrote, “There is no reason for anyone to believe in the authority of the Pope, and the Catholic Bishops and priests where all corrupt.” But after investigating the issues myself, I now understand it to be the wrong position and recant what I have written in the past. Bottiner did not quote the entire text, just what supported his anti-Catholic position. This has caused many people in the past 80 or so years to believe that Cardinal Newman held a position that he did not. As they where misled, and don’t know it, they can hardly be held liable if nobody was around to correct their misconception.
All in all we have to be careful about judging other people when we don’t know the full extent of what they know, and how they learned it. What we can do is 1. Pray that all of us will one day be united, as our Lord seeing the divisions that would come prayed, “Ut unum sint” That they may all be one (united). 2. Do what you are doing here. Look for the answers, don’t just take an attack on the Catholic Church as being the correct position, but find out what the response is, or in the case of the Cardinal Newman quote, verify that something said is true. 3. Study the Faith, there are any number of good books, you may want to look at [url:1csuwlnk]http://www.scotthahn.com/[/url:1csuwlnk] He was an Anti-Catholic Protestant minister, one of a large group who became Catholic after they studied Catholic sources, in an effort to refute the Catholic Church. They where originally prompted by Anti-Catholic Liturature. Start with his “Apologia” Rome Sweet Home.February 11, 2009 at 11:04 pm #9103AnonymousInactive"Jon":2znpppjb wrote:We don’t use the term “heretic” anymore. It has a lot of negative connotations and really does nothing to promote and build unity among the Christian faithful. In today’s ecumenical climate, it’s just poor taste to call other people heretics.[/quote:2znpppjb]
Then what would you call someone who has studied the Catholic faith but denies some, or all, it’s teachings?February 11, 2009 at 11:14 pm #9104AnonymousInactive"LARobert":17ttumk4 wrote:Luther was used as a pawn by many German Princes, as they had much to gain in the area of power, and in taking the lands and posessions of the Church if the Church could be removed from power.[/quote:17ttumk4]
And the Pope didn’t have any political power at this time too? Come to think about it, the Pope in a way still has political power. The Vatican city isn’t exactly a city but it’s own country.
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