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

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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 ...
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2answers
946 views

Which of Luther's 95 Theses are still potentially valid critiques of Roman Catholicism?

Pope Leo X enumerated 41 positions that he required Luther to recant from in order to be restored to communion with the Latin Church. Presumably, he wasn't all that excited about some of the other ...
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1answer
167 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 ...
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2answers
547 views

Do Priests, Cardinals, and Popes have a confessional to which they themselves can/should/must go?

The confessional is a standard practice of the Roman Catholic Church where church members may (or must) go to confess their sins to a priest. As I understand it, the priest then decides whether or ...
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1answer
383 views

What is the Catholic concept of grace?

This question reminded me of a question I've had for a long time: What is the Catholic concept of grace? A look at the dictionary says: grace [greys] noun favor or goodwill. Synonyms: ...
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444 views

What are indulgences and when and why were they used?

I seem to recall that indulgences had something to do with Roman Catholics doing something to receive forgiveness of sins prior to committing the sins. So, is that what indulgences were? When did ...
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5k views

Why is bread and wine used to represent the body and blood of Christ?

I don't know about other churches, but in the Catholic church you have communion, in which you receive the body and blood of Christ in the form of bread and wine. Why was bread and wine chosen to ...
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139 views

Doctrinal significance of the tense and subject of “Adored and Glorified” in the Nicene Creed

So, I was working out a UML diagram to expose holes in every attempt to analogize the Trinity, and I came to: adored and glorified (formerly, worshiped and glorified) everything else in the ...
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334 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 ...
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341 views

What is the Catholic stance on Embryo Screening?

Embryo Screening is the process of fertilizing multiple eggs, checking their DNA makeup, and then screening out the eggs that do not meet the requirements. These requirements can be anything from ...
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1answer
306 views

What is the difference between Magisterial teaching and Sacred Tradition in Roman Catholicism?

In an answer to another question, @PeterTurner wrote: Good answers from a Catholic perspective should be able to stand on all three legs of Sacred Scripture, Magisterial teaching and Sacred ...
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424 views

Is it biblical to burn the heretics?

This article has a list of people burned as heretics by the Church in the past. Is there any Biblical basis for burning the heretics? Which specific verse was used for the judgement on the heretics, ...
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516 views

Does Roman Catholic Church recognize some Eastern Orthodox Saints?

I heard that in some of Catholic churches (I mean parishes) in Europe there are icons of Russian Saints, such as Seraphim of Sarov, for example (may be I'm wrong, I personally haven't seen this). So ...
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319 views

What is the origin of the story of the penitent thief as a young boy?

During the Easter sermon our priest told a small story. It goes somewhat like this: 'When Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus fled to Egypt, on the way there was a little boy who was given the task of ...
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348 views

What substitutes for prayers for the Pope's intentions during sede vacante?

One of the requirements one must meet to obtain an indulgence is to pray for the intentions of the pope. When there's no pope, what's the substitute? I guess it's the conclave and the next pope, but I ...
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769 views

Orthodox churches recognized by Catholic Church

Which Orthodox churches are recognized by the Catholic church? Are there any churches older than the split that are not recognized by the Catholic Church and that are still active? Edit: "recognize" ...
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6answers
3k views

What exactly was the original sin?

I always used to consider the original sin committed by Adam and Eve as eating the forbidden fruit from a particular tree. But recently my husband commented that Adam and Eve had sex with each other ...
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393 views

What is the biblical basis for and against the “filioque”?

In order to contextualize the question I add the following quote from the wikipedia article concerning Filioque clause: Filioque, Latin for "and (from) the Son", is a phrase found in the form of ...
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136 views

What is the Biblical basis the for Immutable Nature of God?

Dei Filius sayeth this: God cannot deny himself, nor can truth ever be in opposition to truth. The appearance of this kind of specious contradiction is chiefly due to the fact that either the ...
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544 views

When (and why) did the empty cross v.s. crucifix split happen?

Today, we have Catholic and Orthodox churches (and a few others) using the crucifix whereas most Protestant denominations have an empty cross. Did this empty-cross split happen around when Martin ...
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2answers
164 views

How can a particular trade of modern times get a patron saint?

In days of yore, tradesman and guilds had patron saints. These days patrons seem to only be attributed to profession in vague ways via papal declaration (i.e. St. John Vianney is the Patron of all ...
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173 views

Does the Roman Catholic church consider HIPAA to be an unjust law?

HIPAA, the United States Health Care Privacy Law has been in effect for nearly two decades. It's the law that makes people all nervous about talking about other people's well being with their doctors ...
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4answers
360 views

What's our afterlife really like?

I've heard and read that when we die, and we go to heaven, we won't have bodies. We'll be spirits only, but so happy that we won't need bodies or objects. In School we were taught that when we go to ...
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558 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 ...
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4k views

Do Catholics officially recognize Protestants as Christians?

I have always thought that the Pope did not recognize the validity of the faith of those outside of the Catholic church, but in comments from a different post I am surprised to find out I may be ...
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258 views

What's wrong with the Summa Theologica?

I've heard that there were two points of Catholic doctrine in Aquinas' Summa Theologica that were later successfully defended to the contrary. One, I think is the Immaculate Conception of Mary ...
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132 views

What makes a confession sacramental?

In the Catholic tradition, confession to a priest is treated with special protection as a sacred rite. The priest is charged with maintaining the confidential nature of the confession, something they ...
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333 views

Where do Catholics believe the historical narrative of the Bible begins?

I heard on the Relevant Radio recently that the Genesis account of the deluge is prehistorical. Meaning, it wasn't really recorded in histories the way other more specific accounts of historical ...
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157 views

Where did the Petrine title of “First Among Equals” originate?

Contrary to the Roman Catholic assertion that Peter and his successors are the Supreme Pontiff, the Orthodox Catholic Churches assert that Peter and his successors hold the honorary title of the First ...
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394 views

What is baptism by Desire?

Again, this is one I've never heard of. Inspired by Peter Turner's comment. If you had a plane full of people's consent to be baptized if they miraculously survived the flight but they died ...
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93 views

What different acts do Catholic priests require of people who go to confession?

I understand that when people go to confessional in the Catholic Church, the priest will often prescribe certain things for them to do for penance in order for their sins to be forgiven. I have heard ...
6
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1answer
170 views

Biblical basis for Catholic blessings

What is the Biblical basis for the catholic blessings? And what are those blessings? Being a evangelical, I do not understand from the Bible, the reason for papal, priestly, or other blessings. How ...
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135 views

What isn't spiritual communion?

Spiritual communion is a prayer one can pray if they can't receive communion at Mass and it's a good prayer to pray if you're making a visit to a tabernacle outside of Mass. Sacramental communion can ...
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104 views

Was “love your enemies” ever included among the evangelical counsels?

In Institutes of the Christian Religion, John Calvin accuses his scholastic opponents of considering the commandment "Love your enemies" to be optional. Specifically, he says that they call it an ...
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3answers
366 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 ...
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2answers
805 views

Why was eating meat on Fridays forbidden in the Catholic Church for so many years?

I understand that the Catholic Church forbade people from eating meat on Fridays for many years. It seems that it is no longer every Friday, but just during Lent. Also, it is not all meat, but all ...
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285 views

Why did the authors of the London Baptist Confession of 1689 callout the pope as being the antichrist?

In chapter 26 paragraph 4 of the 1689 LBC, the authors called the pope the antichrist: neither can the Pope of Rome in any sense be head thereof, but is that antichrist, that man of sin, and son ...
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199 views

Did Pope Benedict XVI grant permission for hetrosexual couples to use artifical birth control methods?

In a book of interviews by Peter Seewald "Light of the World" the Pope is quoted as saying something to the effect that homosexual prostitutes would be better off if they used condoms than if they ...
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3answers
6k views

What is the difference between Natural Law and Divine Law?

In Catholic understanding, there is a divine law and a natural law. Based on my reading, it seems like Divine Law = Revelation (as a Protestant would call it) and Natural Law = what you could deduce ...
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529 views

What is the Little Office of Our Lady in connection to the Scapular Devotion?

This is particularly confusing and the wikipedia entry is not helpful. I've worn a scapular since going to World Youth Day in 2005, but I've never asked a priest to consecrate my devotion. The ...
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267 views

Do Catholics really believe in contemporary miracles?

I know beatification requires a miracle. And, I keep reading statements like this, "On 19 December 2009, John Paul II was proclaimed venerable by his successor Pope Benedict XVI and was beatified ...
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195 views

What is latae sententiae?

I heard that some things (like getting an abortion or attacking the pope) have the penalty of latae sententiae excommunication. What is that?
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1answer
378 views

According to Roman Catholic Doctrine, does everyone spend time in purgatory?

As I understand it, the Roman Catholic Church teaches that there is place of suffering called Purgatory where people spend time being purged of the sins they committed on earth. However, it seems ...
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122 views

Do Catholic children near death recieve the Eucharist as Viaticum

Canon law says that anointing of the sick is to be done to someone having attained the age of reason, same as reception of the Eucharist and the Sacrament of Penance. However, as "Food for the ...
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3answers
8k views

What does the Church have to say about the Pope's latest statement?

This is the latest statement that the Pope Francis made There Is No Hell Fire; Adam & Eve Not Real. What does the Church have to say about it?
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3k views

Difference between Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox

What is the difference between Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox in Christian religion? Kindly explain. Thanks in advance :)
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182 views

Can a non-Catholic be Canonized by the Catholic Church?

While listening to Peter Kreeft talking about Thomistic personalism [PDF], he joked that C.S. Lewis isn't "canonized on earth yet." I know it's a joke, but it seems it would only be funny if it is ...
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Is there any connection between the country of origin of Popes and nearby large gatherings of Catholics or Councils?

Not that a run of 2 means anything (or Rio is in Argentina like I mistakenly assumed It is just down the road) and given there were hundreds of years of Italian popes to skew this statistic, but it ...
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419 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?
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Why don't Catholics divide the blood of Christ into individual cups?

This question deals with pouring the wine into one chalice instead of many individual small cups for the congregants to consume. In my experience, I've observed that the wine is always poured into a ...