People have become immune to the dangers of questioning rules, and the media capitalizes on this ignorance. Jesus freed her from a death sentence and instituted a rule to keep her safe from any and all forms of death; sin. Catholicism was, and has always been, about structure built by faith and for faith. We put a man on the moon. Ultimately, rules give shape to a given thing. He frees her of this capital offense, but then tells her not commit sin ever again. (John 8:1-11 NAB) This crime was punishable by death (stoning). Guy. “If you love me, you would let me live my life my way!” Heard that before? I must start off by acknowledging that the personal opinions of Catholic apologists are not binding in conscience on any Catholic, and conscientious apologists will do their best to distinguish for inquirers between what the Church teaches and what is their personal opinion. He remains close to them as Pharaoh pursues. Those Catholics would be in ignorance of the many saints who stressed the. -----If your occupations and condition of life allow you, make a daily meditation for at least a quarter of an hour or half an hour. Like the other sacraments, marriage is not just for the good of individuals, or the couple, but for the community as a whole. The declaration must be binding on the whole Church III. The Catholic Church is mentioned in conversation and all anyone can say is, “The Church is about rules! As a teacher, I became aware of this underlying sense of loyalty early on. How is that possible? We find countless examples where God gives us freedom before He institutes rules. He earned his M.A. There are surprisingly few official rules about decorating churches, much to the chagrin of those who have been crowded out by Christmas poinsettias or engulfed by Easter lilies. 861, part 2. Instead, they see rules as an infringement upon freedom (No rules = true freedom). My mother died of breast cancer. (Look it up if you’re confused! I don’t believe in the soul. Accept and believe all that the Catholic Church definitively and authoritatively teaches. My response to this dilemma was informing my students about the Bible. While there is indeed room for legitimate diversity of opinion in how Church documents should be understood, Catholics should be wary of falling into a quasi-Protestant. I see where you stand. Does the Catholic Church have "too many rules"? The difference is that, in most civilized societies, the abortion is legal but the killing of the fetus against the will of the mother, including by killing the mother, is illegal. Therefore, the catholic man can't marry a divorced Methodist woman. (Exodus 14:21-31 NAB)  It is later on that God presents Moses with the 10 Commandments. A Catholic apologist should also be open to admitting when he is in error, to being willing to accept and consider carefully constructive criticism, and to continue to learn and grow in his own knowledge of the Faith. Most people donate because Catholic Online is useful. Of all the bishops and archbishops in the world he is the leader. The Catholic Church teaches that marriage between two baptized persons is a sacrament. Abortion and killing a pregnant woman both usually involve taking the life of a fetus. (Matthew 5:48 NAB). “A woman should have the right to choose what goes on in her body.” Yes, she should, but when she is carrying another life, with another soul and DNA, she has no right to dispose of it. The Church has always recognized the necessity for rules (and always will). There is a heartbeat a 3 weeks. Neither you nor I, or anyone else for that matter, can tell a woman what her rights are when it is her body, not yours, mine or anyone else’s. The apologists here at Catholic Answers seek to provide people with the documentation they need to consider, and to help in applying the principles to given situations, but the final decision is left to them. Now let’s examine the New Testament. Still, Catholicism isn't averse to changing with the times. Attendance at a different rite fulfills the Sunday obligation. He inquires if anyone has come to condemn her. The Roman Catholic Church is a BIG HOAX because it teaches the TRADITIONS of men instead of the commandments of God. Canon 919 of the Code of Canon Law states, "One who is to receive the Most Holy Eucharist is to abstain from any food or drink, with the exception of water and medicine, for at least the period of one hour before Holy Communion." Catholics are called, yes, to engage with the society around them, but not to adapt ourselves to the popular sentiments of our time. If a person is terminally and wants assistance in dying, it should not be denied. Even becoming a nun doesn’t get you the boon of the sacrament of Holy Orders — only men can be ordained. The Church will always be attacked by those, determined to undermine (and question) her authority. Observe the Precepts of the Church: The Precepts 1) You shall attend Mass on Sundays and on holy days of obligation and rest from servile labor. Isn’t it?) Many Catholic teenagers struggle today with this idea of going against the culture. To those who do not need to ask why the Catholic Church follows a path, contrary to the world, no answer will ever be necessary; and for those who do no answer will ever suffice. To hear them tell it, a Catholic dare not let out a wayward squeak for fear of the Ruler of Doom being cracked across his knuckles by Sister Mary Ferocious of the Divine Wrath. Actually, this regulation merely reflects an ancient tradition in our Church, which is even rooted in Judaism. Jesus’ Way! Looking back, I see critical turning points. 1. All I will say is neither will happen!). Recognizing that many of its beliefs and practices are utterly foreign to Scripture, the Catholic Church is forced to deny the authority and sufficiency of Scripture. The “rules and regulations” of Catholicism no more stifle an individual’s personal relationship with God than the “rules and regulations” of a car’s owner’s manual stifle a driver’s personal freedom to drive his car. They're quite lengthy. 1980 The Old Law is the first stage of revealed law. Love your neighbor. Instead, Catholics are called to live in radical service to our God. He has served in Catholic education, youth ministry, the Chastity/Pro-Life movement, and other areas of the Church. Bill, I was born about the same time as you were, 1946. Kennedy was assassinated. As for DNA, I fail to see the concern. It is a necessary foundation for the erection of moral rules and civil law. Our secular culture enjoys portraying Catholics as those radical ‘kill-joys’, who lie in wait, as you express your means to happiness and the pleasures of this world, so they can rebuke you with, “NO! Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Thanks for cooperating. In principle he decides everything. Catholicism is a religion that places value on learning from people, not just from documents. My girlfriend had an abortion after I stopped seeing her. http://lifeteen.com/epic-pope-francis-quotes-world-youth-day-rio-2013/, This Week's Best in Catholic Apologetics | DavidLGray.INFO, Martyrs Read Joel Osteen Tweets - BigPulpit.com, The Ongoing Incarnation: A Christmas Meditation, Answering a World of Lies with the Fifth Advent Candle, Eugenics in America: The Legacy of Sanger and Gates, A Countercultural View About Women in the Church, Religious Life – A Gift to the Church and Society. Secondly, if a pregnant woman is murdered, the murderer is charged with a double homicide. Woodstock. Because Catholics believe that God created human beings in his own image and likeness and that he found everything he created to be "very good", the Church teaches that the human body and sex must likewise be good. (Genesis 2:17 NAB) God offers freedom to human beings (free-will) knowing we will misuse it. Making prostitution illegal is based on what the state considers to be in the public interest not sexual morality. In fact, the scholars of the law in Jesus’ day were so wrapped up in doctrine as an end in itself, they were unable to see that Jesus was leading people down a new and surprising path toward his glory, the pope said Oct. 13 during his morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives. The … More → Another example is found in Exodus, when God leads the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt. Why is prostitution illegal in 49 states if a woman has a right to choose what is done with her body? I can honestly say that living by the rules never hurt me and not living by them did. The Church will always be attacked by those, determined to undermine (and question) her authority. What is the role of the Pope in relation to the Bishops (and previous Popes)? Meditate especially on the four last things; the Life and Passion of our Blessed Lord; the virtues, privileges, and sorrows of our Blessed Lady; and on feast days, on the mystery or Saint of the day. States have all kinds of laws regulating vices like gambling, drinking, marijuana use, etc. Those are two entirely different worlds to me. Rules provide guidelines, the same as boundaries do in sports. Your email address will not be published. As a Catholic, basically you’re required to live a Christian life, pray daily, participate in the sacraments, obey the moral law, and accept the teachings of Christ and his Church. The Pope must be making a decree on matters of faith or morals II. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. We are a fallen people. Following are the minimum requirements for Catholics: Attend Mass every Sunday and holy day of obligation. He is the Vicar of Christ in that he guides the Church in faith and morals. The rules that express it remain substantially valid. There’s nothing modern –or moderate –about that. John Lennon boasted (or many people took it that way) that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ. It’s been always burning since the world’s been turning. Rules, rules, rules!” This comment is usually made by someone who feels they are perfectly capable of making decisions without the interference of religion. Roman Catholicism - Roman Catholicism - Beliefs and practices: The idea of faith shared by all Christian churches is rooted in the New Testament. Every created being, even creation itself, is subject to the rules (whether they be scientific or moral) that shape its being. One of the common complaints about the Catholic Church, which can be heard from Catholics and non-Catholics alike, is that the Church is chockablock with rules, rules, rules. Texas set it at 20 weeks. Some Catholics may believe that the idea of a personal relationship with God is a Protestant invention that they should spurn. Bill answers that question in a new set of videos in the CATHOLIC BASICS series. Learn how your comment data is processed. A: Love God. (Genesis 1:28-30 NAB)  He even tells them, “You are free to eat from any of the trees in the garden…”. According to the Catholic tradition, the history of the Catholic Church begins with Jesus Christ and his teachings (c. 4 BC – c. AD 30) and the Catholic Church is a continuation of the early Christian community established by the Disciples of Jesus. MORNNG OFFERING 1-----MORNNG OFFERING 2-----BASIC CATHOLIC PRAYERS III. (http://lifeteen.com/epic-pope-francis-quotes-world-youth-day-rio-2013/) Deacon Mike would agree. Roman Catholics believe that, under certain circumstances, the pope is infallible (that is, he can not make a mistake). Cremation has been permitted in the Catholic Church since 1963, but many Catholics don't know there are also many rules surrounding the choice. The present day process for selecting a pope is through election. My faith left, returned, left, returned and left for good. Canon 844 (c.671 in the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches). 314. and now lives and works down south. In John’s Gospel, the scribes and Pharisees present an adulterous woman to Jesus. The Catholic Church is ruled by an entirely dysfunctional hierarchy. Show the volunteers who bring you reliable, Catholic … This is a good example that also includes compassion and love. I met my future wife. in Theology from Catholic Distance University (Thank you, St. Joseph of Cupertino). Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The term Church, in this connection, can only denote the teaching Church, as is clear from the passages already quoted from the New Testament and the Fathers. Bill, it is another life in her body. Her response is, “No one, sir”, to which Jesus exclaims, “Neither do I condemn you. Yes, the Catholic Church is radical, but in a good way. We didn’t start the fire. Catholic ministers may licitly administer the sacraments to Catholic members of the Christian faithful only and, likewise, the latter may licitly receive the sacraments only from Catholic ministers with due regard for parts 2, 3, and 4 of this canon, and can. That is why He instituted rules. 3. Your email address will not be published. Much the same can be said of priests and other teachers of the Faith, up to and including the pope. Its moral prescriptions are summed up in the Ten Commandments. The Catholic Church claims seven sacraments, the Lutheran Church only two: baptism and the Lord's Supper. We in the USA live according to rules (laws) too. We live in a society that promotes indulgence, and everyone feels entitled to their way. The Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has issued new guidelines for cremation for Catholics. All the rites of the Catholic Church are of equal dignity and equally valid. In so doing, the Vatican has created a non-spirit based religion that offers faithless heathens a structured system of religion from the cradle to the casket. Actually, although it may not appear so, the Church is remarkably quiet on a great many issues that face people in daily life. Throughout its long history, the Catholic Church has been rocked by scandals ranging from the dissolution of the Knights Templar to Galileo’s trial to Mother Theresa’s questionable donors.Over the course of the 20th century, many more scandals have come to light—no matter how much the Church would like to keep them secret. Everything in our world needs to be regulated, especially our behavior (and for good reason). We believe in a God who lived among us, died for us, and showed us the way to live lives of courage and conviction–whatever our culture. I realize I am on a Catholic blog so I might not have much support. To dismiss constructive challenges by informal and formal teachers of the Faith to one’s own settled opinions by labeling anything with which one disagrees as “personal opinion” is problematic, especially when one does so because of disagreement over how a Church document should be read. Imagine a baseball game where no foul balls or strikes were ever called. Prostitution is usually illegal because it draws other socially unacceptable elements such as drugs and other vices. I was born at a very interestng time in history. But, just as Jesus once said of the Sabbath, rules are for man, not man for rules. In the end, it is just Jesus and the woman. http://abitadeacon.blogspot.com/2013/02/wow-washington-post-article-that-gets.html. If the mother is not incapacitated, she is the only one who should be able to make the decision. First among equals. Q: What are the rules for being Catholic? 1. Maybe we should kill people who are bedridden who can’t live on their own. Though we are sinners, we are still called to persevere in righteousness. (John 8:11 NAB) Jesus shows compassion. It is a shame that many in society do not. The Catholic Church teaches that human life and human sexuality are inseparable. They do not want to betray the other (and many times, the other is a family member or close friend). BillS-You are one of God’s tools in bringing me back to Him. He wants to help us remain truly free. What you or I think is morally acceptable or not is irrelevant. He is a proud family man and has a passion for all things Catholic. The sacraments make Christ present in our midst. Many seem to forget that second part. Life and growth entails all forms of life and growth of your beloved (intellectual, physical, emotional, and spiritual). Jesus says the one without sin may throw the first stone, and as He begins to write on the ground, each man leaves the area. Pius XII was pope and the Catholic Church provided the moral compass for what seemed to be the whole world. While he himself is the bishop of the diocese of Rome, he is the leader of the entire Christian flock as commissioned by Jesus (John 21:15-19). NEW VIDEO EVERY FRIDAY (Exodus 20: 1-17)  Again, they were given freedom first, then rules. Therefore, Catholics always stand in good company. I will concentrate on three specific examples from Sacred Scripture that prove this point. Even if I were to maintain a “personal relationship” with God (I know, that’s a Protestant term that is sometimes ridiculed by Catholics), I would be concerned that my children would view the Church as a mountain of rules and eventually fade into apostasy. Why does the church teach that marriage is a sacrament? Nonetheless, now that I am approaching senior citizenship, I feel I don’t need too many rules anymore. (3) The Catholic Doctrine Touching the Church as the Rule of Faith. They are constantly inundated with so much ‘pleasure’, they fear ridicule if they question any of it, or hesitate to participate. Deacon Mike Talbot (www.abitadeacon.com) said it best in an article written in response to a piece that appeared in the Washington Post about Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s retirement: Our call to live counter-culturally is as old as the church itself. When I was teaching at previous high school, I would often run into this issue about rules (especially when it came to moral theology). Pingback: This Week's Best in Catholic Apologetics | DavidLGray.INFO, Pingback: Martyrs Read Joel Osteen Tweets - BigPulpit.com. At the beginning, God gives Adam and Eve dominion over all the earth; the plants, animals, all living things. Required fields are marked *. Being counter-cultural “includes letting go of pleasures as the path to happiness.” Rules also build self-control. If Catholic Online has given you $5.00 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. What the woman does with her body is not illegal. In accordance with the structure of each church and legitimate local customs, the Most Blessed Sacrament should be reserved in a tabernacle in a part of the church that is truly noble, prominent, conspicuous, worthily decorated, and suitable for prayer. The Catholic Church does likewise. Rules ensure this. Many women play active roles in the Catholic Church, but few of them have sanctioned titles. Or a football game where there was no out of bounds. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Fr. VATICAN CITY (CNS) — God’s laws are meant to lead all people to Christ and his glory, and if they do not, then they are obsolete, Pope Francis said in a morning homily. We divide time between BC and AD, but I could easily divide it between pre and post 1972. Oftentimes, people want to know, “What does the Church say about this?” or “Does the Church forbid me to do that?”—and are disappointed that there is no “official document” allowing or proscribing certain actions, only general guidelines that they must use their best judgment to apply to the action in question. (They just can’t explain where.) As someone considering conversion to Catholicism once said to me: Should I ever make the move to Catholicism, I would hate for my perception of God to recede from a God who created me and continually directs my footsteps to a God who stands behind a gray wall of do’s and don’ts. Worship - As to the manner of worship, Luther chose to retain altars and vestments and prepare an order of liturgical service, but with the understanding that … Are my arguments for atheism so unconvincing that they increase your faith? The Catholic Church defines three conditions under which the Pope is infallible: I. Is the mother the only one who can kill her fetus? If she is, someone should be authorized to make it on her behalf, especially if her life is in danger. But the New Testament idea of faith is not simple; indeed, it possesses a breadth of meaning that has led to varying understandings, even within a single Christian communion. Is the mother the only one who can kill her fetus? The reason women can’t be priests goes to the establishment of … The Pope does not even have a cabinet. The level of value placed on the opinion of a fellow Catholic should increase based on that person’s fidelity to the Church, his education and spiritual maturity in the faith, and (if applicable) on the reception of the sacrament of holy orders. So. Telling the Church they need to be more lenient, more modern, or more progressive is like trying to persuade the residents of Mackinac Island that they need a full service gas station. We need rules so our lives can correspond with God’s original plan for us. The Catholic Church wants you to be happy and only by being in the state of Grace a.k.a being baptized in the Catholic Church can make you truly happy. But why should there be any rules at all? At times, admittedly, the altar looks like it’s been attacked by a rioting mob of florists. Go (and) from now on do not sin any more”. We can only aid discernment and help to inform consciences; we cannot be anyone’s conscience. Copyright © A.D. 2018 Catholic Stand | Powered by Astra. During the last World Youth Day Pope Francis told the youth of our world: “…be revolutionaries” and “swim against the tide”. Follow him on twitter @4RealCatholic for encouraging and inspiring stories, scripture passages, and thoughts from the saints. Jesus says in Matthew’s Gospel: “So be perfect just as your heavenly Father is perfect”. THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY Why Pope, Bishops and Priests? Catholicism is a religion that places value on learning from people, not just from documents. A lot, actually. The pope is the head of the Church on earth. To those who do not need to ask why the Catholic Church follows a path, contrary to the world, no answer will ever be necessary; and for those who do no answer will ever suffice. She is indeed (and unapologetically) counter-cultural. Damaged lives when love goes wrong remind us why the Church has such stringent standards when it comes to sexual sin. But I do support death with dignity. God knew we would misuse our freedom. I lost my virginity. It is illegal to kill a 2 year old. The level of value placed on the opinion of a fellow Catholic should increase based on that person’s fidelity to the Church, his education and spiritual maturity in the faith, and (if applicable) on the reception of the sacrament of holy orders. It has been over 45 years since this document was written and people still believe he was wrong. Then you admit that abortion is killing. Analogously, the Church lays out the principles of faith and morals; Catholic Answers, among other Catholic apostolates that provide similar outreaches (e.g., EWTN), demonstrates how to apply those principles to some of the problems our supporters ask us about; it is now up to you to use the knowledge you gain from Church documentation and the examples demonstrated for you by our apostolate to solve the problems you and your family face in your everyday life. When I was teaching moral theology, my students learned a definition for love, composed by Eric Fromm: “Love is the active concern for the life and growth of that which we love.” Active concern means you always care. That is a metaphysical concept for which there is no supporting evidence. How many times have you heard this statement before? Believe me I would know–I’m a Catholic and very, very happy. This might seem fun at first, but it will eventually get really old, really boring, and really frustrating! And civil law woman to Jesus the Doctrine of the faith has issued new guidelines cremation! Not spoil all the Bishops ( and question ) her authority of all the fun, as I thought! Following are the rules for being Catholic and thoughts from the saints blog so I might have..., PA ( go Phillies! ) fail to see the concern of videos in the,. Offering 2 -- -- -BASIC Catholic PRAYERS III and growth entails all forms of death ; sin follow on! Is based on what the state considers to be in ignorance of the faith has issued new for... Kill a 2 year old on earth a shame that many in society do.! ) the Catholic Church is radical, but then tells her not commit sin Again! Gambling, drinking, marijuana use, etc another example is found in Exodus, when leads! The Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ given thing how many times, admittedly, the as. One of God ’ s been always burning since the world ’ s original plan for us have all of! 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