Is Satan being downplayed within Catholicism

Satan sure to be, from when I was growing up. I do know that Pope Francis emphasized the role of Satan on the world, but that seemed to be an exception. I have often posted here on CAF about the large role Satan is having on the world, but it seems seldom that others do. What’s your opinion?

To an extent. I believe the Church, over the last several decades, has changed it’s focus from ‘Satan’ himself, to addressing his tactics–the things he uses to attract folks.

IOW, rather than going to the original source of various evils, the Church is addressing the practical source of those evils. Hence rather than saying ‘Satan is at work in promoting abortion’, the Church identifies Satan’s primary tool in that ‘battlefront’–culture–and addresses/attacks the ‘culture of death’. (note: still addressing the ‘source’, and not just the ‘symptom’, but identifying the ‘source’ practically, rather than in a way that would serve to compromise her own credibility, and thereby potentially undermine her own efficacy).

I would attribute this ‘change’ if you will, to rolling with the times. In a primarily secular world, in primarily secular times, discussing ‘Satan’ in the open market, does not resonate well; in fact, it comes off as hoaky (note: Satanists don’t even recognize ‘Satan’; they simply champion his cause–i.e.–the self, or living for the self–i.e. egoism).

So the Church is fighting the fight, where and how it is being waged, according to the temporal terrain as she finds it.

That’s how I see it anyway.

I don’t think so. The Church has always taught about him. A few times a year we renew our Baptism promises to reject satan and all of his empty promises.

So no, I believe the Church has always stood firm on the teachings.

I have been learning a lot lately about how Satan operates and how we can protect ourselves, and I agree that we downplay his role. I wish i had known a lot of this much sooner (having returned to the Church close to 20 years ago!) when my children were younger.

If anything, we place exactly the correct amount of emphasis. Satan is known for his lies and empty promises. These include his lies regarding his own power. The simple truth is that men and women are accountable for their own behavior, holy or evil. Satan cannot force people to commit evil; it must be freely chosen.

Ahem, did you miss everything that happened yesterday? While the Church is not being paranoid about Satan and certainly we need our bishops and priests to preach more about the strive of the Evil One against the Church, Catholicism tramples Satan underfoot time and again. In fact, it is perhaps Catholicism alone that teaches the reality concerning the devil and the apostate angels - that they are true, living spirits that prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls - and equips Christians with the weapons of light of spiritual warfare, especially the Holy Rosary.

Pax Christi!

There can certainly be more mention of the reality of hell and its denizens. There are warnings against abortion, but rarely against the evil one whispering in a woman’s heart, or speaking through a politician’s voice and vote.

Hell is for real. Our Lord spoke about it more than He spoke about Heaven.

God bless.

Even so, I think we could use more emphasis on avoiding sin from all three sources, as well as how the enemy operates. Sometimes people get so confused that they fall into sin because they don’t know what’s happening to them.

One of the advantages of being Catholic is our well-developed theology. Let’s not hide that under a bushel basket to the detriment of our own members.

As they say, “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn’t exist”

The unfortunate part about this is that I would guess many of those Catholics don’t understand what “rejecting satan” and his promises really means. This would be evident by the fact that there are those who are pro-abortion, pro-same sex marriage, etc etc. They’ve given into the culture of death whether they realize it or not. So are they truly renewing their Baptism? I would say not those who are in opposition of those things the Church teaches.

OTOH, the question was really about Catholicism and for that I would agree. The Church is doing what it can to help fight the evil tactics and the culture of death. I suppose we could hear more homilies about how giving in to the secular world and supporting what’s “popular” is how satan creeps into our lives and we get caught in his snare. Although I would imagine many pastors would want to avoid stiring up controversy. :shrug:

The most terrible part is that there is one baptismal vow most often violated in today’s life, and this violation springs forth from our forgetfulness that we have three enemies of our salvation: the devil, the flesh, and yes, the world.

Today we forget that the world - not intended as God’s creation but as all that turns man away from God towards vanity - is Satan’s playground. Not for nothing he is referred to as the prince of the world, though - as the Church Father Jerome teaches - he is so merely by usurpation.

Thus we are too quick to embrace the world and its ways, and to even bring worldliness within the walls of the Church, forgetting one of our fundamental vows: the renounciation of the pomps of Satan.

What are his pomps? In Latin, they are his seductiones. They refer to the riches of this world. The Baltimore Catechism teaches:

Q. 656. What do we mean by the “pomps” of the devil?

A. By the pomps of the devil we mean all worldly pride, vanities and vain shows by which people are enticed into sin, and all foolish or sinful display of ourselves or of what we possess.

No, the devil is not being downplayed within Catholicism.

The world, however, surely is.

As a child, I was woefully uninformed about anything pertaining to religion. My mother wouldn’t take me to church because I seemed to misbehave all the time. It wasn’t until I went to St. Raphael’s Catholic grade school that I learned anything. Upon running down the middle isle in church during Mass, pretending I was a train, the nuns certainly scolded me for that.

Anyway they taught us about the devil. It scared the daylights out of me. I was always afraid he would come up through the floor and carry me off. I was afraid to be alone in the dark. Hence, I became more reverent in church and tried to be more respectful to God.

Sometimes the devil can cause absolute terror in the hearts of many people, especially children. I always wished Sister in school wouldn’t tell us about ouija boards that would not work if you wore a blessed medal around your neck or mention the woman who was possessed back in Iowa. The idea of the devil making someone blow up like a balloon was distressing. It is supposed to be scary, I guess, although some people tell me that it is a little over their heads.:eek:

Satan * should *scare the daylights out if us though, right?

Indeed. Should we not instill in our children fear of boiling water, of a hot iron on a board, of getting close to the edge of the train station or of a cliff? We have physical nerves that send a shock through our body and mind when we touch something dangerous. Should our soul not be trained in her spiritual nerves to react in a similarly strong way before something which is even more dangerous, since it harms our immortal soul and places our eternal life at risk?

It should be a holy fear, though, keeping in mind that He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.

The fallen angels are powerful beings. To disregard this very basic truth is to endanger ourselves. To act as if they did not exist, as if they did not proactively try to assault us through ordinary and extraordinary means in order to drag us out of the Church and blot out the name of Christ from our heart is to be in a very dangerous position.

Holy fear of hell and of Satan has contributed to make many souls run away from the near occasion of sin, which often has meant the difference between salvation and damnation.

I can’t say that I’m afraid of Satan. I hate him, but I’m very respectful too.

LOVE! :heart:

Gangsters, kingpins & dictators will settle for 2 out of the 3 (fear and respect).

If fear and respect are in fact fear and respect of the Lord, and they move us to run away from rather than be submissive to evildoers, nothing wrong with that.

We must never forget that all that God created was good, perfectly good. And the fallen angels - especially the Light-bearer - were extremely beautiful, good, and wise beings, who however fell at the time of their trial. We must not forget that it is God who created them so powerful, and it is God who did not wipe them away when they fell in apostasy and rebellion, and it is God who allows them to tempt us to a degree, in order for us to be purified and in order for us to be justly chastised.

It is right to fear evil and it is right to respect angels. But it is also right to hate sin, to hate the fallen angels (given that they are unrepentant and thus are true enemies of Christ in perpetuity), and to remember that only Christ is the Holy and Terrible One before whom every knee bends and every power trembles. And since when in the state of grace He abides in us and we in Him, and we partake in His divine nature…well, do the math :smiley:

I am voting yes, because ordinary folk tend to ignore Satan.

Its an ancient problem, Church is consistent, you can always google…

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