Is prayer to saints necromancy?

This was brought to my attention - that we are not to contact the dead - and it seems pretty clear. So, is talking to saints necromancy, and if not - why?

The saints are not dead…:nope:



Generally, things like necromancy, divination, etc. requires two things:

*]A desire to know the future and/or gain some sort of “power”
*]Bring the dead back “to life”
Generally, none of these things happen when praying to Saints who have passed on. :shrug:

These things (the ones on the list) are done, whether the person knows it or not, by recourse to Satan and his fallen angels. And it ends up backfiring on the person. Always.

In necromancy, the person is looking for some perceptible (to the senses) communication from the spirit of the dead - verbal or visual. Often it is to learn of future events.

Neither of the above are the purpose (or manner) of prayer to the saints.

The person who brought this to your attention needs to have an understanding of the words they use.

Necromancy is summoning the dead to raise them bodily or summoning their spirit in order to gain knowledge of the future or some other hidden knowledge, or to use the dead as a weapon.

That’s not the same as the Intercession of the saints. The saints are physically dead but spiritually alive. Whomever brought this to your attention needs to read the Bible.


As others have said…no.

This Catholic practice, Intercession of Saints, actually has OT and Jewish roots.

More below, and please share the article with your friend.

Brown challenged my view that the place of saints and relics in the church was a mere holdover from paganism, and that the practice was somehow peripheral to true Christianity. Instead, Brown painted a picture of ancient Christianity and paganism in which relics were indispensable to the former, and repulsive to the latter. Far from a holdover from paganism, the place of relics in the Church appeared as something intensely Jewish, Hebraic, and Old Testament. Pagans, like Julian-the-Apostate, found the practice revolting and legislated against it. (Paganism, with its notions of ritual purity, had strictly delimited the realm of divine worship and neatly separated it from the realm of corpses and the dead.)…As I explored this conundrum, the first thing I began to appreciate was just how biblical the practice really was. I realized that the veneration of relics, belief in their miraculous powers, and in the intercession of departed saints and angels was deeply Hebraic and Jewish. We find testimony to it in such places as 2 Kings 13:20-21, 2 Maccabees 15:12-16, and Tobit 12:12-15, considered especially in comparison to Revelation 5:8. (At this point, it was immaterial to me whether Maccabees and Tobit should be considered canonical texts. It was enough that they expressed a historic Jewish belief in these concepts.)

So, would asking a Saint for a ‘sign’ then stray into the necromancy thing? Interesting question!

No, although that’s not generally the reaction to being visited by a glorified saint (as opposed to those still alive on earth). Having a heavenly being appear to a person is usually sign enough. The only instance that comes close that I can recall was of St. Bernadette, who, at the urging of others and not of her own volition, tossed holy water in the direction of the Lady she saw in the grotto. The Lady good-natured laughed at the attempt to excise a demon, for she knew who had instigated and why–a couple of ladies who had come with Bernadette who were filled with superstition about the dead. It had no bearing on Bernadette’s relationship with the Lady, nor on the messages the Lady gave her, which were mainly of penance.

This topic is discussed in the Catholic Answers tract, “Praying to the Saints” in the section entitled, “No Contact with the dead.”

The topic of necromancy is briefly touched upon in the section on “Divination and magic” in the Catechism of the Catholic Church’s discussion on the First Commandment, paragraphs 2115-2117.

It seems pretty clear…yet Jesus did it while here on earth. At His Transfiguration, He spoke with Moses. But Moses died before entering the Promised Land (see Deuteronomy 34:5).

Did Jesus sin? No. Did He engage in necromancy? No.

As other posters have earlier stated…talking to saints isn’t necromancy.

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