Do Catholics "worship" the Pope?

When I was a fundamental Baptist I was told that Catholics worship the Pope. The crowds of pilgrims with arms outstretched as if he was Christ manifest on earth.
How do I answer such charges when we see on TV the crowds gathering to him?
Again, I am not saying I still believe this, I am merely asking because I want to know what answer to give.

Very simple, NO!!!

You mean, like these people?

Viewing him as Christ manifest on Earth would be idolatry. I’m not saying that no one reacts this way. But Pope Francis would be the first to say “I am just a man” (as Peter did in Acts 10:25). So you see, even in the Bible, people reacted this way.

No, we dont worship the pope

The answer is no.

As you must surely know by now (since you’ve been here since July) that Catholics worship God the Father, God the Son (also known as Jesus Christ), and God the Holy Spirit. We call it the “Holy Trinity”. Three. No worship of Mary, Joseph, or ANY pope.

The pope is the successor to St. Peter - first among the Apostles. Studying up on “Apostolic Succession” should help on this.

What I tell Protestants (in an EXTREMELY oversimplified way) is that the pope is kind of like the pastor of your congregation; except that the pope is the pastor of a Church that has one billion (1,000,000,000) members and his Church and office were established by Christ almost 2,000 years ago. (see Matthew 16 and John 21)

I recommend John Salza’s “The Biblical Basis for the Papacy”. A magnificent book.

Of course Catholic don’t worship the Pope. They worship Mary.

All kidding aside, I see Catholic loving the Pope as a visible and tangible expression of the love they have for the Church - the church that administers the sacraments and preaches the gospel.

I have a fondness for my pastors that goes beyond their vocation because they are a physical reminder to me of the promise of salvation given to me in the name of Christ Jesus.

Nope… heck some Catholics don’t even personally like the Pope. Or rather to say they like different Popes to differing degrees.

To be honest I think for many it is more a celebrity thing. They want to embrace something greater than themselves. Since the Pope is the visible head of the Church they get all twitter-pated the same way that some do at concerts or award shows. It can also be like some evangelicals who feel an up welling of the Holy Ghost by being near someone who dedicates their life to God.

It’s natural for Catholics to be enthusiastic about seeing the Pope. One of Peter’s commissions from Jesus Christ is to “strengthen your brethren,” and the popes are the successors of Peter.

Just give them a polite no. If they then mention the crowds and outstretched arms, you could mention some of the other responses. Then just let it go. Short, sweet, simple, non defensive and non-confrontational. Now if only I could take my own advice :slight_smile:

People go to popular concerts, even Christian concerts by the thousands, cheer on the musicians, follow them on social media, raise their arms and wave them around, yet no one asks if they are worshipping the singer or group. People watch their favorite actors on TV and in the movies, follow them on FB and Twitter, form fan clubs, become groupies, yet no one accuses them of worshipping them. So why do they think Catholics worship the Pope when he comes around??? I don’t get it.

Perhaps whoever told you that will have done so because of hearing of the Catholic teaching on the Pope’s infallibility which is often misunderstood.
Here is an explanation from Catholic

Waving your arms at someone is not worship. It is an expression of emotion, but no matter how deep your emotions go toward someone, it doesn’t reach the point of worship until you want it to. Worship is an act of the will saying “I think this person or thing is greater than anything else.”

In times past, I have gone on long vacations, for a week or more, and when I came home, my dog would jump up on my and I would kneel down with the dog with hugs and kisses. Some people might even cry on such an occasion. They are pouring out all their emotion on that dog. But it is not worship. Pouring out your emotion, even to the last drop, is not an act of worship but an act of love. Love is only worship when it is offered by the will to the greatest being.

And I doubt that any significant number of people think of Pope Francis as God, so I don’t think they worship him by waving their arms at him and/or crying.


I thought we worshipped banners?

They don’t worship the pope , IFBs often make that ridiculous charge

I’d ask them how they would respond if Peter himself were making a visit to their city. Would they want to come out and see Peter?

I know I would. The Pope occupies Peter’s office.

There are plenty of examples of this sort of veneration or honor given to a holy man in Scripture…it is not worship. The Church worships the Trinity alone. For Catholics true worship involves sacrifice, and the only perfect worship that we can give to the Trinity is the holy sacrifice of Christ Himself to the Father which we Catholics participate in at each and every mass.
In Acts 5:15 we see the crowds scrambling just to be under St. Peter’s shadow as he passes hoping to be healed by God through him. In Daniel 8:17, Daniel falls prostrate before the angel Gabriel without being reprimanded. In Genesis we even see sons prostrating before their father to give due honour.
Kneeling, bowing, waving arms doesn’t have to equate worship.

LOL, I thought we worshipped beads and statues! ROFL :slight_smile:

Oooops … I thought it was chocolate :blush:

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