The Catholic Church and its views and teachings on specific subjects.

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7
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2answers
660 views

Have different Popes ever contradicted each other?

I understand that Roman Catholics do not think that everything the Pope says or does is infallible. However, has a sitting Pope ever revoked or contradicted an infallible statement made by a previous ...
4
votes
1answer
213 views

Does intelligence or rationality belong to other animals by participation?

In the Summa Theologica, Question 108(5), St Thomas Aquinas writes: Therefore, if anything is to be called by a name designating its property, it ought not to be named from what it participates ...
6
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1answer
92 views

Why does any Archbishop get to decide if alligator is okay for Lent?

NPR ran an interesting piece about the saga of whether or not Catholics could eat alligator on Fridays during Lent. According to the story, an alligator merchant by the name of Jim Piculas advocated ...
9
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1answer
107 views

In Catholic understanding, did Paul speak/write ex cathedra while Peter was serving as Pope?

Catholic doctrine teaches that Peter was the first Pope and that Popes may speak "ex cathedra". When they do, that is considered infallible. However, while Peter was alive and presumably serving as ...
3
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2answers
92 views

What is “Traditionalist Catholicism”

Pure curiosity, I see that Mel Gibson is an adherent of Traditionalist Catholicism. Is this a part of "normal" Roman Catholicism, or some distinct branch? What are the differentiators here?
11
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1answer
1k views

What does the Catholic Church mean when it calls humans co-creators with God?

The Catholic Church says that human are co-creators with God. To human beings God even gives the power of freely sharing in his providence by entrusting them with the responsibility of ...
2
votes
2answers
255 views

Baptising someone without consent

Stemming from this question Is it valid to baptize multiple persons at once?, the question gives the scenario of one person baptising multiple people on a plane that is going to crash. The bit that ...
6
votes
1answer
127 views

Is life imprisonment in accord with Catholic social doctrine?

I recall hearing an old religious sister talking on Relevant Radio a few years ago about her experience in Mexican prison ministry. She said that life imprisonment is just as bad as the death penalty ...
5
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1answer
64 views

How is excommunication handled during the interregnum?

Not that I'm plotting anything heinous, but can one be excommunicated or have excommunication lifted during the interregnum? I think, but I'm not positive, that some offenses that carry ...
15
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1answer
204 views

Is the marital act of consumating marriage part of Sacred Tradition in the Catholic Church?

How far back does the idea of consummating a marriage go? Is it tied to the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony? Is it like going to confession, but not fully receiving the sacrament of reconciliation ...
5
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2answers
260 views

Is the Pope morally obliged to submit to every secular authority?

Among the Protestant faith a believer is to submit to the government: Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, or to ...
-1
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1answer
581 views

Why Christians wear some elaborate costumes which sometimes outshine those of the pre-Christian epoch? [closed]

What is the need to use elaborate costumes at services and on other occasions? Costumes of some Christian confessions much outshine those of some other religions, including the pre-Christian ones. ...
4
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2answers
2k views

In Catholicism, what distinguishes a priestly blessing from a lay blessing?

Lay Catholics are encouraged to bless their children [and homes?] using particular formulas or patterns. As I understand it, these ought to differ in "manner" and formula from blessings performed by a ...
6
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3answers
635 views

Can dogma ever be modified, and how does this relate to papal infallibility?

I have two questions related to the concept of dogma in the Catholic church. I appreciate any guidance. Also, references would be helpful. Is there any point in the history of the Roman Catholic ...
14
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1answer
2k views

Why did Rome and Constantinople split in 1054 AD?

The Great Schism represents the break between the Eastern and Western churches. I know that a primary bone contention that the East had with the West was Rome's insistence on Papal Supremacy. My ...
6
votes
3answers
270 views

What is the “Way of the Cross”?

Our local Roman Catholic church has started advertising the "Way of the Cross" for Easter. I think I have seen this mentioned at other places I have visited and isn't a just a local event. Is the "Way ...
6
votes
1answer
83 views

Why would popes choose the name Pelagius in light of the Pelagian Heresey?

I was checking out the list of pope names by frequency on Wikipedia in search of minutia to defend my assertion that Pope Francis was the first new Pope name a long time and noticed that there were ...
3
votes
1answer
371 views

What personal possessions did Pope John Paul II have at the time of death?

The pope recieves no salary, but from what I understand, popes do have some personal possessions. A personal possesion is something that you own. For example, Pope Benedict XVI, I believe, had a ...
2
votes
1answer
59 views

Do Catholics consider Job to be historical?

The Book of Job is taken by some Protestants to be an historical document, whereas others hold that its position in the Ketuvim (the Writings) never assumed that it was anything other than what we ...
8
votes
2answers
5k views

According to the Roman Catholic church, who can baptize a new believer?

As far as I remember, there is no rule in the Bible as to who can baptize a new believer. However, I'm almost certain that sometime in the early history of the Roman Catholic church, someone or some ...
1
vote
1answer
117 views

About statues and pictures [duplicate]

What is the catholic argument that justifies the usage of statues and pictures of Jesus Christ and saints?
4
votes
1answer
170 views

What happens to retired Popes like Pope Benedict?

Does the pope get paid for being the pope? The above question is answered very well and shows that the Pope genuinely has no personal assets. He is well cared for by the Vatican. But what about the ...
1
vote
0answers
71 views

Does the Prophecy of St. Malachy allow for any Popes between the Glory of the Olive and Petrus Romanus? [closed]

The Prophecy of St. Malachy was apparently supposed to have predicted the line of popes for that past few centuries. Recently, some have suggested that we were reaching the final pope in the prophecy ...
5
votes
1answer
81 views

Was the white smoke ever supposed to be miraculous?

With everybody waiting on a puff of white smoke to eminate from the chimney of the Sistine Chapel, the engineer in me is curious about the mechanics. I know in modern times that a special additive ...
5
votes
1answer
224 views

Is it valid to baptize multiple persons at once?

To take an extreme example, if a person is on a plane that's about to crash, and she wishes to perform a baptism that is valid according to the Catholic Church (and therefore valid according to the ...
3
votes
1answer
315 views

Which is more important to the Roman Catholic Church today: Church unity or the actual text of scripture?

I recently did some study on the fact that Augustine objected to Jerome translating the OT into Latin from the Hebrew instead of the Greek because there were significant differences in the texts. ...
5
votes
1answer
364 views

What is the Holy See and when is it appropriate to use this term?

Is the Pope, himself, ever referred to as the Holy See or is it simply the place where he lives? Wikipedia says, "Often incorrectly referred to as 'the Vatican', the Holy See is not the same entity ...
9
votes
1answer
112 views

Who calls the conclave?

There must be someone to oficially call the cardinals to a conclave. Who is it? It can't be the old pope - resignation is hardly the normal situation, so the old pope is supposed to be dead. I guess ...
0
votes
1answer
133 views

Why does the Catechism of the Catholic Church abridge the first commandment?

(This question came up while I was speaking with someone, and I don't think that I was able to answer it very well. Note that I am not asking whether the Church is right or wrong, just for a clear ...
3
votes
2answers
153 views

What does “Catechetical Formula” mean?

I ran across the phrase in this question, and a Google search just keeps bringing me to the Ten Commandments example found in the link on the question. I'm not finding a definition anywhere. So what ...
5
votes
1answer
804 views

What is the basis for the Catholic practice of only the priest drinking from the common cup during communion?

I've heard from a number of people that in most Catholic churches, only the priest drinks from the common cup in communion. Is this true? Assuming it is true, what is the basis for this teaching?
4
votes
2answers
434 views

According to Roman Catholic orthodoxy, is Jesus Christ a human person, a divine person, both, or none?

I'll give you an example of a divine person: God the Father. I'll give you an example of a human person: the apostle Paul. According to Roman Catholic orthodoxy (note: cite it), is Jesus Christ a ...
11
votes
3answers
949 views

What is the difference between “catholicism” and “catholic”?

In the Apostle's Creed, the term "catholic" is used in describing the reciter's belief: I believe ... in the holy catholic church This creed is used by a wide variety of denominations, and ...
9
votes
2answers
423 views

Why is Good Friday called Good?

My coworker asked "Why is Good Friday called good?" when I said we've got Good Friday off and I unfortunately don't know the answer to the question. Is there a very obvious way to explain to someone ...
4
votes
1answer
388 views

What religious significance is there in marriage for Catholics and Protestants?

To be clear: This is not a question about why Catholics and Protestants get married. This is not a question about the biblical support for or against marriage. (I am very much for marriage). I ...
7
votes
2answers
130 views

Is the choice of a new Pope inspired by the Holy Spirit?

Are Roman Catholics required to believe that the Cardinals choice of a new Pope is inspired by the Holy Spirit? If so, how do we explain "bad" popes?
11
votes
1answer
220 views

What Popes have resigned in the past?

Pope Benedict XVI recently announced his resignation. What other Popes have abdicated in the past? The media keep pointing to Gregory XII, but it is my understanding that he was deposed by the Council ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the significance of priest breaking the bread (Host) in a Catholic mass?

In a Catholic mass, just before the distribution of communion to people, priest breaks the Host in to pieces and people simultaneously acclaim: Lamb of God you take away the sins of the world, Have ...
9
votes
2answers
175 views

The Pope is resigning. How does a living pope confer his authority?

I read that Pope Benedict XVI is resigning. I don't know much about Catholic/papal authority as it relates to leading the Church, but as far as I can remember, a pope dies before another one takes the ...
7
votes
2answers
990 views

Why do Catholics believe that it is a priest's blessing that transforms the elements into the body and blood of Christ?

I understand that Catholicism teaches the doctrine of transubstantiation, that is, that the bread and wine of the Eucharist are transformed into the literal body and blood of Christ. This apparently ...
10
votes
1answer
303 views

How can a Pope be chosen from outside the conclave?

It is well known that the cardinals can choose any baptised male Catholic to be the new Pope, though they typically choose one of their own, and that the election is held under strict conditions of ...
7
votes
2answers
198 views

How are doxologies formed for common prayers?

I'm not sure of the exact definition, but a doxology seems to be a prayer tagged at the end which consists of some sort of invocation of the Blessed Trinity. I'm just wondering if the actual words ...
4
votes
2answers
120 views

Any dangers for the usage of sacramentals that are not-yet-blessed-by-a-priest?

I just bought a new Rosary, and I haven't asked our priest in the locality to bless it. Is there any danger when I pray the Rosary (or use of any "not-yet-blessed" sacramental for this matter) using ...
10
votes
2answers
359 views

Praying the Liturgy of the Hours in private; out loud

For the laity, when praying the Liturgy of the Hours in private, is it more in keeping with tradition to you pray out loud or silently or does it matter? Also, do you change the way you repeat ...
5
votes
1answer
268 views

What translation does the Catholic Breviary of England use for Psalms?

I've heard that in England the Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours uses a different translation for the readings from the U. S. (Specifically, the British use Jerusalem Bible in their liturgies ...
15
votes
1answer
139 views

Is the Pope allowed to publish books after resignation?

I've heard that after popes die (at least after Bl. John Paul II died) all their unpublished works and letters are burnt and I heard on the radio this morning that Pope Benedict XVI is pretty much ...
2
votes
2answers
355 views

The Godfather Baptism Killings

In The Godfather, can anyone that is more familiar with the Catholic faith, tell me if Michael would be considered absolved of his sins considering that he agrees to "renounce satan and all of his ...
7
votes
1answer
344 views

How long, and in what cases did Catholics participate in the Black Fast?

I ran across the term "Black Fast" and looked it up. The articles I'm finding indicate that it's extreme, and give some information about the types of foods allowed during it, but I keep expecting to ...
4
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2answers
425 views

What is the biblical argument used by Protestants against the Catholic doctrine of Penance?

The Catholic Church holds to the doctrine of Penance. As I understand it, this refers to various deeds prescribed by a priest to the confessing person that must do to make amends for his own sin, ...
5
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2answers
711 views

What is the basis for penance (satisfaction) in sacramental confession?

From the Catholic Encyclopedia, The Sacrament of Penance (Confession): As stated above, the absolution given by the priest to a penitent who confesses his sins with the proper dispositions ...