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

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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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1answer
173 views

Why do Catholics bow for icons of the Virgin Mary?

It doesn't surprise me when orthodox Christians bow for icons of the Virgin Mary, since they believe that she is present in the icon. But why do (some) Catholics also bow for icons of Mary? There are ...
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159 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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389 views

Under what circumstances is a priest supposed to deny forgiveness to a person?

As I understand it, in Roman Catholic practice, people regularly confess their sins to a priest, who then instructs them what they must do in order to be forgiven. However, it is apparently possible ...
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435 views

What is the sacramental principle at work with Anointing of the Sick?

Of the seven sacraments in the Catholic Church. I see how each of them are some form of Sacramentum, an oath between man and God. Marriage has a marital vow Holy orders is a vow to be a priest, ...
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164 views

What is the Biblical basis for the special mediatorial position of the Pope, Cardinals, etc in the Catholic church?

Following-up a previous question, what Biblical basis does the Catholic church claim for the special role of Priests, Cardinals, and Popes in the structure of the church?
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271 views

What is the strongest argument against the Eastern Orthodox view/rejection of the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception?

I am discussing and debating the various sublte doctrinal differences between Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy with a very close anonymous friend of mine. One question I've asked is, "How do ...
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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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128 views

What is the “General Magisterium” in Roman Catholicism?

I understand that there are three magisterium in Roman Catholicism. What is the General Magisterium according to Roman Catholic belief?
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221 views

Is there any connection between minimum age for marriage in Catholic Church and tradition about Mary's age at Annunciation?

According to Canonic law, the minimum age for marryage to be valid for girls is fourteen (it can be and usually is higher for the marriage not to be illicit): Can. 1083 §1. A man before he has ...
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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 ...
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236 views

Do spirits/souls make decisions/think?

Today I heard an instructor (a monk) saying: At The Third Council of Constantinople, counted as the Sixth Ecumenical Council by the Orthodox Church, the Catholic Church and other Christian groups, ...
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116 views

Why do Latino Christians treat their patron saint's day more importantly than their birthday?

Why do Latino Christians treat their patron saint's day more importantly than their birthday? Would a fifteen-year-old girl's Quinceañera be as important as a birthday or more important than a ...
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172 views

Old Roman Catholic Bibles having indulgence charts?

I just listened to a podcast of an Orthodox priest talking about his conversion into the Eastern Orthodox church. He mentioned something about how he once courted an irish Catholic girl who had a big ...
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144 views

Who believes the incarnation and resurrection wouldn't have happened without Mary's faith?

A group called the Steering Committee for the National Consecration of Ireland to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is, as the name suggests, seeking the consecration of the nation of Ireland to the ...
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98 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 ...
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81 views

What is a “Pentecostal Catholic”?

One of my new neighbors is a "Pentecostal Catholic" from India. I have heard of this denomination before, during an Evangelical Missiological Society conference, but didn't have a reason to ...
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70 views

According to Catholic law and rules, is postponing of the Rite of Acceptance OK?

This is a follow-up question for Are those instructed before baptism considered catechumens before entering the catechumenate formally? In Czech Republic the pre-baptismal formation is often called ...
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3answers
233 views

Do Catholics psychologists have a moral obligation to treat homosexuality as a perversion?

I was reading today about the Governor of New Jersey acting to ban "Gay Conversion Therapy", and wanted to know if this is just one more thing that Catholics would have a moral obligation to oppose. ...
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253 views

According to Roman Catholic doctrine, does the incorruptible body possess blood?

In my translation of a work by John of Damascus entitled Περὶ τοῦ ἀχράντου σώματος, οὗ μεταλαμβάνομεν, it is my understanding that John wrote, Even as his body prior to the resurrection of the ...
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228 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 ...
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4answers
234 views

Catholic view of Biblical saints

Saints are present throughout the Bible. In my understanding, Protestant use of this word applies to all believers, which I understand is the New Testament (and OT?) meaning of the word. In my ...
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4answers
177 views

Do Christians still make icons?

Do Christians still make icons? Typically, it's easy to find Christian icons from the Middle Ages. But are there any Christian icons in the modern age?
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240 views

Do holy relics lose power over time?

Do holy relics lose power over time? It seems as if holy relics account for fewer miracles than in times past. The handkerchiefs of Paul had incredible power to heal (Acts 19: 12). Today one seldom ...
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220 views

How does the Catholic church view Freemasons?

What are the historic and current views of the Catholic Church concerning Masons?
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177 views

What is the basis of the non catholic denominations to hold catholics as Idolaters

I was reading this article on an authoritative bible site . I was wondering what is the doctrinal bases to hold Catholics as Idolaters Here is the excerpt: Life Magazine, reporting the ...
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818 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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352 views

Does the Catholic Church consider abortion to be murder?

As a Catholic, I know that I am accountable to a higher law than human/positive law. The natural moral law is the guiding force behind the formation of my conscience and if human laws are not in ...
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3answers
1k views

Do they use icons in the Roman Catholic Church?

Do they use icons in the Roman Catholic Church like they do in the East Orthodox Church? In my limited experience, I've only seen statues in the Roman Catholic Church, but not icons. I don't just mean ...
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782 views

How does Pope Benedict XVI reconcile conscience and authority?

A recent talk by Father Bob Pierson 1 quoted Joseph Ratzinger (as he then was, now Pope Benedict XVI) as saying that the individual conscience must overrule ecclesiastical authority. I was intrigued ...
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272 views

How do Trinitarians explain verses where Jesus claims to have a God?

According to orthodox trinitarian doctrine, the Father is God, Jesus is God, and the Holy Spirit is God. Jesus is co-eqaul, eternally begotten, not made. With that in mind, how could Jesus have a ...
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3answers
133 views

If I was christened am I not Catholic?

I was christened as an infant in the Catholic faith. Due to where I lived, a Catholic church was not available, so I attended a Baptist church. I married a Catholic man, when we went to mass with his ...
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94 views

Why is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception treated differently?

I know that the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception is a seemingly immoveable feast. Unlike the other holy days the obligation is not transferred when it falls on a Saturday or a Monday (so you ...
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276 views

Does the Catholic Church teach that Jesus' Human Nature was created?

I think this is one of the reasons the we can call Mary the Mother of God. But I'm confused about the exact meaning of Human Nature and Human Soul. So my question is mainly this. What was created ...
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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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2answers
402 views

Should one avoid fasting during Easter?

Tomorrow is the first Friday in Easter and in the Catholic Church Fridays are days of penance. If a person usually does something small, like not continuously munch on things while at his desk, in ...
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139 views

Why Origen is considered a Church Father but not a saint?

Why Origen is considered a father of the church but not a saint by the Roman Catholic / Eastern Orthodox Church? I've heard and read in "Worlds Made by Words: Scholarship and Community in the Modern ...
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124 views

At what age and how do young Catholics know or be notified that they have committed a mortal sin or a venial sin?

At what age and how do young Catholics know or be notified that they have committed a mortal sin or a venial sin? Basically, do they tell the priest at Confession that they have committed a mortal sin ...
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305 views

Mary's painless birth

Where does the Catholic tradition that Mary's birth was painless come from? My wife just got home from a non-denominational study about Mary and she said she thought everybody knew this, but ...
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333 views

What non-Catholic Christian groups existed in Western Europe during the Middle Ages?

Between the fall of the Western Roman Empire and the Reformation, were there any Christian groups outside the Roman Catholic Church? Who were they?
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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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80 views

How (and by whom) are financial decisions made in the Catholic Church?

Coming from a denomination that doesn't subscribe to one earthly central Church authority, or a rigid structure, I find it very interesting to learn about denominations that do have such a structure. ...
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1answer
146 views

Is Catholicism a “works” denomination?

Catholicism venerates people's works as that is the only way to become a saint - you actually have to DO something. I understand that there has been a strong debate regarding faith or works (or ...
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2answers
232 views

Is *infallibilitas in credendo* a new or established doctrine within the Roman Catholic Church?

In Pope Francis' recent interview, he says: Thinking with the church, therefore, is my way of being a part of this people. And all the faithful, considered as a whole, are infallible in matters of ...
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410 views

Why does the Litany of Saint Joseph call him “terror of demons”?

A litany for Joseph, the husband of Mary, was approved by Pope St Pius X in 1909 (*). Most of the invocations are straightforward to understand, referring to his life (eg. "husband of the Mother of ...
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2answers
1k views

What is the difference between a dogma, a doctrine, an infallible statement, an ex cathedra statement, etc.?

There are a variety of terms used in the Catholic Church to refer to particular statements or beliefs. Here are a number of some such terms: Dogma Doctrine Infallible statement Infallible papal ...
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167 views

Why do Evangelicals like a spirituality book by a 16th century Catholic monk?

I recall in my early days as a Christian I remember reading a book called ‘The Practice of the Presence of God’ by a Monk called Brother Lawrence in France. It always baffles me a bit that this book ...
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174 views

When do catechumens go to confession?

I thought I'd answer a question asked here about non-Catholics receiving the sacrament of reconciliation by using the RCIA book, but in skimming all the steps, there doesn't seem to be much said about ...
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206 views

What is the Roman Catholic stance on levitation?

There are many stories of certain saints levitating or even flying. Many include reports of some particular saint seen hovering a few feet above the ground as they were deep in prayer. Does the Roman ...
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114 views

Is a bishop in Roman Catholic tradition equal in authority with the apostles?

According to an answer to this question When did Peter become the first Pope, according to Roman Catholic doctrine?, the Pope is the bishop of Rome. So this made me wonder - since Peter was ordained ...