More ?'s from a Southern Baptist


#1

I just want to thank everyone for all the helpful insight and answers from my first post. I just have a few new questions.

  1. How does the church explain indulgences?

  2. (yet another Mary question) If Mary is all that Catholics profess her to be, why isn’t she mentioned more in scripture? How early in Church history was she mentioned as being prayed to or taken into Heaven?

  3. (This question doesn’t really have anything to do with apolegetics, or anything else for that matter, but…) How are Catholic priest’s compensated? Are they paid or do they get a place to live for free, etc.

You guys are the best and I appreciate all you’ve already done.

Be Gods,

Matt


#2

[quote=Manphibian]I just want to thank everyone for all the helpful insight and answers from my first post. I just have a few new questions.

  1. How does the church explain indulgences?
    [/quote]

This should give you a starting point: catholic.com/library/myths_about_indulgences.asp

Have a look and then come back with any further questions.

[quote=Manphibian]2. (yet another Mary question) If Mary is all that Catholics profess her to be, why isn’t she mentioned more in scripture?
[/quote]

Actually, she is mentioned more than any other woman in the Bible. Her name appears around 20 times in the New Testament. This is more than the Apostle Philip (12) or Andrew (13) or Matthew (5). . . .

[quote=Manphibian]How early in Church history was she mentioned as being prayed to or taken into Heaven?
[/quote]

Asking the intercession of Mary comes under the same heading as asking the intercession of the saints. Try here: catholic.com/library/Intercession_of_the_Saints.asp

Can’t put my finger on it right now, but I believe the earliest recorded prayer to Mary dates from around 230 A.D. Help, anyone?

I leave it to others to deal with how clergy are paid. One point though – diocesan clergy do not take a vow of poverty, so If you’re a rich kid and become a priest, you can keep your villa on the Italian Riviera. :stuck_out_tongue:


#3

[quote=Manphibian]3. (This question doesn’t really have anything to do with apolegetics, or anything else for that matter, but…) How are Catholic priest’s compensated? Are they paid or do they get a place to live for free, etc.
[/quote]

Our priest lives in the Rectory, a house the Church owns. He also gets a small salary to pay for his food, car and insurance.


#4

[quote=Manphibian]I just want to thank everyone for all the helpful insight and answers from my first post. I just have a few new questions.
[/quote]

It would be better for all involved if you would start a different thread for each of these questions. (One question, one thread, works best in these forums). :slight_smile:


#5

priests who join religious orders (Jesuits, Franciscans, etc.) take vows, always vows of chastity and obedience, sometimes vows of poverty, fidelity, and/or stability depending on the order. Poverty is interpreted differently by different orders. In general it means that when the priest is employed (such as at a parish, college, hospital or other institution) his salary is paid directly to his order, and he is given a stipend to cover room, board, car or mileage, personal expenses etc.

A diocesan priest takes vows of chastity and obedience but not poverty. He is ordained “for the Diocese of Brownsville” or wherever, and that Bishop may assign him to any parish or other work, such as pastor, assistant pastor, school principal, hospital chaplain, college professor, director of vocations, and so on. The stipend or salary all priests of the diocese is the same, and those that do not have a home (rectory) provided usually live at the seminary, the bishop’s house if it is large enough or other facility owned by the diocese. They have a separate medical plan and pension plan from other diocesan employees. They may also be released for other jobs, such as military chaplain (who then comes under the jurisdiction of the Archbishop for Miltary Affairs in Washington), official of a Catholic college, hospital, charitable organization or other institution. In that case he will be paid a salary by the institution according to their policies. For instance Fr. Frank Pavone has been given permission by his bishop to serve as director of Priests for Life, I don’t know if his salary comes from that organization, or if he receives a stipend from the diocese. Any priest (or religious) who is paid a salary also pays into social security, so becomes eligible for those benefits when he retires, like any American.

The money for stipends and expenses for parish priests comes from the contributions of Catholics in that diocese. The parish generally provides the rectory and its upkeep. The priests usually purchase a car out of their own money and receive a mileage allowance, especially if they have another assignment that requires travel (service in a diocesan office or mission, for example).

While some priests may seem to live at a level of comfort above what one might expect, bear in mind not all take a vow of poverty, and many share the prevalent view of many Protestant congregations, that the pastor should live in a style similar to that of his parishioners. Many priests also may have money from their own family, which they are allowed to keep if they do not belong to a religious order. Many priests also have personally decided under spiritual direction to follow a more austere lifestyle and live very humbly.

Our former pastor was given the gift of a new car, subscribed to by all the parishioners, on the occassion of his 30th anniversary as a priest, because he travels over 100 thousand miles for his parish and diocesan responsibilities, and we wanted him to have a safe vehicle.


#6

Here is a link to the CCC on indulgences. scborromeo.org/ccc/para/1471.htm
It makes a lot more sense as you take in the whole of Catholic faith in understanding, Communion of Saints, praying for each other, praying for those who have passed on, them praying for you. The Church as a body as one, one family helping each other, praying for each other.

I like to think that the New Testament is more focused on Jesus and how He organized and founded the Church. How it spread and developed. Mary was alive for most this time so they didn’t need to pray to her.

As others have said it depends on the vows they take and what order they are a part of in regards to Priests. My brother who was the only one who cared for the Church as we were growing up actually went to seminary and at one time gave up all his possessions. I was a little peeved as he gave a lot of it to charity and not to me! (I was about 16 years old at the time)
There is a retired priest community close to where I live where about 4 elderly priests live in a small building with a chapel on about 1/2 an acre of land. My Dad just volunteered to go clean it up after visiting as it is very simplistic and a little old.

God Bless
Scylla


#7

You might want to check out Bible Truth for Baptists


#8

Hi Matt,

The links that others have provided regarding indulgences will give you a start—be sure to ask if you need more information.

As someone has already mentioned, Mary actually is mentioned quite a lot in the NT. But don’t forget the important role that the Queen Mother played in the OT—an honored role (look at the difference in how Bathsheba approaches King David, her husband, in 1 Kings 1, and how she approaches Solomon as the Queen Mother (1 Kings 2:19-20). Notice the intercessory role as well. It’s interesting to note that when the Kingdom divided, the northern kingdom had no Queen Mother and eventually was destroyed; the southern kingdom did and survived (possible Catholic/ Protestant typology?). At any rate, it is also worth noting that Jesus’ public ministry was begun because of his Mother’s request.

As for priests: well, it looks like others have covered it pretty well. I just wanted to add a little item from this weekend’s Mass that gives an indication of how some priests sacrifice: the priest had some “housecleaning” items to talk about before the homily. This had to do with much-needed repairs on an old convent that some sisters were going to be moving into. The project was going to cost $80,000. The priest mentioned that half had alreadyt been raised: $30,000 from parishioners (after just one mention in the bulletin, not from the pulpit) and $10,000 from him. He was going to give up $9,000 from his budgeted $15,000/year salary, and was going to write out a check for another $1000. That’s putting your money where your mouth is.

Oh, and one suggestion: investigate the authority of the Church FIRST. You can drive yourself nuts asking questions about a gazillion doctrines, but the question of authority is so fundamental that once you understand the role of the Church it will help with all the other questions you have.

By the way—I mailed those CDs to you last Friday. I hope they arrive in good condition—enjoy!

J. Sherlock


#9

[quote=Manphibian]…2. (yet another Mary question) If Mary is all that Catholics profess her to be, why isn’t she mentioned more in scripture? How early in Church history was she mentioned as being prayed to or taken into Heaven? …
[/quote]

Gods peace be with you Mat,

Please do not take this wrong. You are looking at this from a Protestant (i.e. Baptist) point of veiw. Take a step back and lay out a neutral mind with no bias either Catholic or ‘re’-formed.

How much does somebody have to be mentioned in Sacred Scripture (i.e. Bible) for you to think the person is special?

Is St. Stephen special? How many times was he mentioned? He was our first known martyr you know?

How many times was each apostle mentioned? Are some special and others not?

How many people in Scripture are mentioned fewer times then Blessed Mary? Are they less special?

I think your question is bias because it was something you were taught that was anti-Catholic - even at the expense of the mother of our God. (OK, just one person of God anyway!:wink: )

A person is special for their "F"aith and their works prove this. Some people have done more then others. All laborers recieve the same wage by God whether they started work in the field in the morning or late in the afternoon. Blessed Mary is special in her own way for the works that have come forth from her "F"aith. Of all the women to have ever been born, of all those yet to be born, she alone was chosen BY God to be the ark of His only Son, our Lord and Savior, the Messiah, the Master, the Nazzerian, Jesus Christ. She was chosen to care for Him by God. She was chosen by God to nurse Him, to change His dirty diapers, to hold Him at night, to teach Him right and wrong. She commanded Jesus to perform His first miracle against His will. She was chosen to suffer at His death in a way I can never understand.

Now lets see if we should ask the question again: “Why is she special?” If a person cannot ‘see’ why she is special then they need to get another Bible because the one they use they may read but they do not understand. "F"aith makes her special. The "F"aith she gave us. The "F"aith she is a part of.

To take the special spot in our “Faith” away from Blessed Mary, is, well, “re”-formed, bias, wrong and just plain Protestant?

You and I were never asked to raise Jesus. Your preacher wasn’t, my old preachers weren’t, Jack Chick wasn’t, and our Pope wasn’t. Mary was. She IS special because God made her special by her Faith.

Hope this helps. Comming into the Catholic Church like I did from a Baptist sect was hard too for me. Much of what I was taught to hate about the Catholics by the Baptist sects I was in I learned was just plain wrong. I was bias too in how I looked at the Catholic "F"aith. When I stepped back and looked at the Catholic Church and the Baptist sects in a neutral way, I found the Catholic Church to be Christs body on earth. A body I will NEVER be seperated from again!

A prisoner of Christ,


#10

[quote=Manphibian]I just want to thank everyone for all the helpful insight and answers from my first post. I just have a few new questions.

  1. How does the church explain indulgences?

  2. (yet another Mary question) If Mary is all that Catholics profess her to be, why isn’t she mentioned more in scripture? How early in Church history was she mentioned as being prayed to or taken into Heaven?

  3. (This question doesn’t really have anything to do with apolegetics, or anything else for that matter, but…) How are Catholic priest’s compensated? Are they paid or do they get a place to live for free, etc.

You guys are the best and I appreciate all you’ve already done.

Be Gods,

Matt
[/quote]

Ouch. I nearly dented my mouse clicking on this one. :wink:

Everyone answered the questions pretty well, so, that joke aside, God bless and good luck (on your path to understanding).


#11

Here is an early prayer to Mary.

“O noble Virgin, truly you are greater than any other greatness. For who is your equal in greatness, O dwelling place of God the Word? To whom among all creatures shall I compare you, O Virgin? You are greater than them all O (Ark of the) Covenant, clothed with purity instead of gold! You are the Ark in which is found the golden vessel containing the true manna, that is, the flesh in which Divinity resides.” (Athanasius of Alexandria, Homily of the Papyrus of Turin)


#12

[quote=RobNY]Ouch. I nearly dented my mouse clicking on this one. :wink:

Everyone answered the questions pretty well, so, that joke aside, God bless and good luck (on your path to understanding).
[/quote]

argh, i just got this.

how much of an idiot can i get?:o


#13

[quote=Manphibian]2. How early in Church history was she mentioned as being prayed to or taken into Heaven?
[/quote]

The earliest known prayer is the**The Sub Tuum Praesidium ** (ca. 250 A.D.)

*The Prayer (composed at or before 250 A.D.): "We fly to your patronage, O Holy Mother of God, despise not our petitions in our necessities*, *but deliver us from all dangers, O glorious and blessed Virgin!*"

Note that 250 A.D. is much earlier than 382 A.D., when the New Testament was officially cannonized (i.e., before Christians had Bibles). Also note that the Apostle John died circa 100 A.D., so this is within about 2-3 generations of his personal teachings. Also note that this is never condemned, even though many Early Church Fathers are writing about all sorts of heresies. Finally, this is the earliest one we have found *so far.
*

Assumption:
Read the end of Rev 11 and the beginning of Rev 12:

19 Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail.
1 Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. 2 Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth.
3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. 4 His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born. 5 She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron.

Couple of things:

  1. The Ark of the Covenant had been missing for a few centuries, so any pius 1st century Jew reading this would have given his immediate attention.
  2. Rather than the Ark of the OT, we find the heavens open and the true Ark of the Covenant appears - a woman; nay, the Woman (Gen 3:16). The Ark of the New Covenant, who bore Christ inside of her (OT - manna (Eucharist), Aaron’s rod (Priesthood), and ten commandments (Word of God) - mere shadows of Christ).
  3. Some might object that the “woman” is the Church, and while not incorrect, cannot be the primary meaning of the text. The reason is simple - every other image is a person. The dragon - satan. The Child - Christ. The Woman - Mary. To mix interpretations is to be dishonest with the text.

For further understanding, you may want to read this:
Ark of the New Covenant
Mary’s Assumption
and especially
Munificentissimus Deus

God Bless,
RyanL


#14

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