Catholic Popes and LDS Prophets

One of the most humorous things Mormons do when faced with the plethora of failures of their prophets is to

  1. Compare their “prophets” with Catholic Popes
  2. Compare their “prophets” with Biblical prophets.

And when anyone responds with reasons why they can’t compare, Mormons will dodge those issues.

The most glaring problem is that js and the other LDS “prophets” allegedly speak to God and in some cases, speak to God face-to-face. No Pope claims that.

In religion, a prophet is an individual who is claimed to have been contacted by the supernatural or the divine, and to speak for them, serving as an intermediary with humanity, delivering this newfound knowledge from the supernatural entity to other people.

The Pope is the Bishop of Rome and the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church. The importance of the Roman bishop is largely derived from his role as the traditional successor to Saint Peter, to whom Jesus gave the keys of Heaven and the powers of “binding and loosing,” naming him as the “rock” upon which the church would be built.

See the difference?

When a Mormon compares the two, he is either elevating the Pope to a title and position the Pope does not claim, or he is demoting the LDS prophet.

But Mormons do not comprehend this. They do not seem to understand that when someone claims to talk to and for God, their comments and doctrines will be held to a different standard. So when Mormon prophets spew such things as Adam-God, racism, blood oaths, etc, it is as if those things are coming straight from God, especially when folks like BY claim it so.

As to OT prophets, Mormons are quick to point out that prophets are not perfect and several OT testament prophets made mistakes. This is true. However, OT prophets did NOT teach false doctrine, They did not teach confusing doctrine. They did not contradict earlier prophets. Sinning is one thing. We are all sinners. But teaching false doctrine is something God would NEVER allow from His prophets.

Yes, when these issues are raised, Mormons dodge. It is as if they know the weakness of their positions and that they really do not believe their own weak apologetics on these issues (among others).

I join with the Holy Father in praying for them, as we are to pray for unity with our other lost brothers and sisters.

:amen: now its time for some :popcorn:

Essentially, the Mormon Prophet is pretty much the Mormon Pope, except I feel that more
expectations would be place upon him. The infallibility of the Pope can often be over-exag-
gerated a bit, Popes I believe have kinda made some boo-boos in history. The Pope is not
a prophet, but the Mormon Prophet IS supposed to be a prophet, a prophet, seer, and rev-
elator. Popes can make mistakes, like when Pope Gregory I messed up Mary Madelene’s
reputation by accidentally correlating her with an unnamed prostitute/adulteress. Brigham
Young(!), however, declared doctrinally that Adam was/is God. Funny though, the Mormon
Church pretends that it NEVER taught that, though we have proof to the contrary.

Popes are infallible, but their reach can only go so far, as guided by the Holy Spirit.

Oh also, to bind and to loose means two different things between Catholic and Mormons.
In the Catholic Church, which actually cares about the original text, reads “bind” as in to
“forbid” and “loose” as in to “permit.” Mormons take “bind” and “loose” as in referring to
marriage, like to bind a couple for all time and eternity. Do we really need to go through
why the Mormons are wrong there?

OOO, here’s a fun fact: Joseph Smith Jr. actually declared that HIS SON, Joseph Smith III,
would be his successor. After Smith’s death, his wife Emma and his son Joe Jr Jr had ran
away from Young and his sect when he came to power, and went to found the Reorganized
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
NOT ONLY THAT . . . in 1880 lawsuit, an Ohio court found the Reorganized Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS Church, since renamed “Community of
Christ”) was the lawful successor to Smith’s original Church of Christ and that the
son of Joseph Smith was indeed the legitimate heir! :eek:

Even the example of Mary Magdalene does not truly work for Mormons. Yes, Popes make mistakes. But, again, they do not have the advantage of LDS prophets of speaking directly to God. Remember, several, including js, claim to have spoken to God face to face.

What you do NOT see from Popes is incredible errors regarding God and the Nature of God.

You do not have doctrine such as Adam/God, or doctrine like God having actual sex with Mary. Or the God was once a sinful man, or that Jesus and Satan are brothers, or that God will turn black people white.

The Catholic Church is not without its warts, but if you are going to claim that God talks to you and that you, in turn, speak FOR God, you expect the doctrine to be true and clear and not confusing. And if doctrine about God is true, then it is always true. God does not change, so neither should the doctrine ABOUT God. The proof that the lds church leaders are false prophets does not solely lie in the plethora of false prophesies, but in the myriad of false and confusing doctrine about God.

And let us not forget that our Popes have never said we will become gods and the whole you-get-a-planet scheme!

Yikes, you know, I don’t want to be a god, who would really want that if they knew what it was like to be God?!

Not me.

Isn’t it odd that most cults have beliefs where the members achieve some level of godhood?

And I certainly don’t want to become a divine consort to a god. I would hate to be pregnant for eternity and cat fight with all the other divine consorts for my position.


as I predicted, Mormons are afraid to touch this

As usual, tey do not mind using the weak apologetics…but when confronted about them, they suddenly disappear

This thread seems a little antagonistic towards the Mormon religion. Also, it is Catholic teaching that upon entering heaven, we will be in Gods “friendship” and will be " like God forever". CCC. 1023.

TexanKnight, if one pre-supposes that the LDS prophets are wrong and if fact not prophets, then I suppose under your reasoning that one is to believe that Christ is guiding his church through Catholic Popes. A Pope is not the same as a prophet. I agree. As a member of the LDS faith, I have substantially more difficulty believing that Christ is guiding his church via Popes then LDS Prophets. Even if I was not LDS I would have this difficulty. I personally view the blacks and LDS priesthood issue (that was talked about on another thread and is where this thread is coming from) as a misinterpretation of scripture and racism on the part of past LDS leaders. I understand that others can see it as more problematic. However, I see this as significantly less of an issue when it is compared to what was done by past Popes.

 Another poster on this site quite a while ago said the following:

“Let me speak plainly. There is no way on God’s green earth that the Catholics didn’t screw things up.
You just have to look at the middle ages, the terror, death, genocide, torture and wars that the Catholics spawned. These were not just some renegade priests that did this. It was Roman Catholic Church practice and policy for hundreds of years. It was done at the behest of hundreds of cardinals and priests and dozens of popes.
That my friend is Satanic and a blind imbecile can recognize it. There is absolutely zero chance that Christ had anything to do with organizing and directing the affairs of the Roman Catholic Church. I am sorry you can’t see it. It doesn’t take much thinking to recognize how hollow your pronouncements are about any religious doctrine matters. I apologize for offending you but you just won’t let it alone no matter how respectful I try to be.”

After thinking about this you can understand where someone of the LDS faith is coming from.

When Aaron the High Priest and a prophet in his own right built the cow to be worshiped did he teach false doctrine? Most people would say yes. It becomes an even more complex task of determining who is a prophet when we consider the example of Balaam the prophet in the Old Testament. Not every prophet was like Moses or Elijah.

The other things (digs) on this thread have been discussed previously at length can be found from the LDS perspective on the FARMS or FAIR websites. I have better things to do with my time than spare with other posters about these things.

In general, this website is for Catholics looking for answers to their faith questions. It is not for LDS apologetics to proselytize. I respect this understanding of the website use. There is a fallacy in thinking that if no LDS responds to what I has been asserted by a poster it has to be true. This fallacy is called argumentum ad logicam. Look it up.

If you are actually interested in bringing the LDS into the Catholic faith I think that you should know that the tone of comments in this thread and threads like this puts us off. When you fail to accurately represent what the LDS believe it calls into question everything else that you have said from an LDS perspective. Sure, you are allowed to say what you want, but sometimes it is a matter of how you say it. I generally ignore threads like this since it appears that many posters are only interested in making digs at the LDS. It comes off that way even if not intended on the part of posters.

I only occasionally look through this website for articles about religion that I might not find somewhere else. I think I found out about this site while I was looking into married catholic priests.

I have had conversations at work with a coworker who is pagan (& Unitarian at the same time) about religion with whom I share no religious beliefs, but I can have interesting, civil, and respectful conversations about religious matters. Actually, I can have similar types of conversations with my Catholic coworkers about religious topics, too. It’s a shame that this frequently can’t happen on this site.

I would agree with the last commenter that this line of discussion on the LDS faith lacks critical sympathy and understanding; also, it does not really seem to be an invitation to dialogue, despite some (ironically, when you think of it) complaining that no Mormons were entering the discussion.

Now, I find Mormonism pretty far from persuasive, and am strongly suspicious of Joseph Smith, but we should maintain a level of respect for Mormons and Mormonism I think, if only because Mormons tend to make better Catholics than a lot of the Catholics I know; that is grounds for respect, not agreement, but respect is important.

And I don’t think anyone would really disagree with any of the foregoing; I just say it so that our LDS friend understands that he was walking into a discussion that was sort of light-hearted, and not entirely serious (I am sure).

I agree, to an extent. I just wanted to address the fact that in almost debate, Mormons try to compare their “prophets” to popes…somehow putting them on the same level. It makes no sense to me.

I thought about this a lot over the weekend. I realized that the Catholic Church follows the pattern set out in the OT more so than the LDS church. In the OT, there was the ecclesial leadership and then there were the prophets (individuals who had mystical experiences and spoke on behalf of God or angel). Occasionally, a prophet was a priest or even had political leadership, but the roles didn’t always overlap. There really aren’t very many OT prophets who were on record as being priests or Levites or even having much in the way of political power. Some OT prophets ended up in prison or banished because they ruffled the feathers of the political and religious leaders. The prophetic roles of Moses and Samuel overlapped with their religious and political leadership roles, but a lot of prophets were from outside the political and religious leadership of the time. There were even prophetesses. :eek: How do the LDS deal with the fact that there were female prophets?

Compare this to “modern” times in the Catholic Church. There have been prophets, people who have had visions or other mystical experiences and shared a message from that supernatural entity. The few I know of are St. Bernadette, St. Faustina, the children at Fatima and Juan Diego. They all had obscure and humble backgrounds yet delivered powerful messages from their mystical experiences. No pope or even bishop claims to be a prophet because of their ecclesial role. In fact, the local religious leadership is often skeptical of the prophets’ experiences and message at first. That doesn’t mean that popes or bishops cannot be prophets. It is simply that their role as bishop or pope does not automatically mean they are prophets.

The LDS church claims that the role of prophet lies with their top religious leadership and that their church is in line with the OT and apostolic Christianity. This is simply not the case. Their model does not follow the pattern laid out in the OT. It doesn’t even allow for female prophets which we know existed in OT times.

The LDS church likes to claim they are the restored original Christianity along with ties to Judaism. They do this by claiming they have modern-day prophets and temples. If we look at the OT, we can see that the LDS church does not follow the OT pattern of who prophets are and what they do. Comparing the Jewish temple to the LDS temple is a topic for a different thread.

Exactly. That’s how I view this issue. One of the reasons that caused me to leave the LDS Church was the fact that the prophets weren’t really functioning like the Biblical prophets. They seemed to be Prophets In Name Only. In contrast, the Catholic Church has numerous examples of men and women called as prophets and prophetesses, receiving Heavenly visions and visitations, performing miracles, and many of the other functions of the Biblical prophets. Quite simply, I don’t see how Thomas Monson and the other prophets, seers, and revelators are doing anything different than the non-prophet leaders of various other churches and religions. In contrast, Catholic leaders are not regarded as prophets per se, unless they demonstrate it. This however does not take away from our belief in the Spirit guiding the Church.

I also find LDS comparisons of the Prophet to Catholic Popes as undermining their own argument of a supposed apostasy.

And yes, the comparison of the LDS temple to the tabernacle and temple(s) in the Bible is very interesting. I find Catholicism to be much more in continuity with ancient temple/tabernacle practices than the LDS temple.

Something that I’ve been thinking about is the way that God creates according to His nature. Christ, being fully human and also fully divine is very much like his Church, the Catholic Church.

It would not be possible to go up to Jesus and isolate the divine parts from the human parts. They are one integrated union.

The same goes with the Catholic Church. If the Pope was the “God part” of the Church, and the rest of the Church was the “human part”, then it would contradict the nature of God, and therefore would not be a church that God would create. I believe that in the Church’s history, there have been times when the laity has spoken with a unified voice to prevent an error from occurring. I recall hearing about this in a vague form, I can’t recall any of the details. But, that type of thing would make sense to me (meaning, it is in keeping with the nature of Christ.)

As I understand it, the LDS version is distinct in that there are “God parts” and “human parts” to the LDS Church. For example, the LDS laity (I’m not sure what the proper phrasing is for the general body of the faithful) cannot participate in the divine nature of the Church.

As for the Catholic Church, saints can come from any sector - regardless if they are a Pope, nun, or child.

LDS Prophets and Apostles declare eternal truths and doctrine contained in official statements, unlike Popes. I mean, just look at the latest official statement responding to same-sex marriage…

“Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established. God expects us to uphold and keep His commandments regardless of divergent opinions or trends in society…”

It’s good to know civil law and social trends don’t influence God’s decisions and that he stands by difficult doctrines like polygamy and blacks and the priesthood :rolleyes:

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