Necessity of saints and rituals, versus going directly to Jesus on your own


#1

From my previous thread, here's questions 5-7 which I'm separating here:

  1. Could it be true that Catholics overemphasize rote rituals (and don't even really know why they do them!) instead of developing a personal relationship with God? After all, that's a **very common **complaint of Catholic converts to Protestantism.

  2. All the time that Catholic priests spend preaching to "Come to St. Mary," couldn't they better spend their time saying "Come to Jesus"?

  3. Why even bother with asking saints to pray for you, when you can just go to Jesus directly?


#2

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:1, topic:281474"]
From my previous thread, here's questions 5-7 which I'm separating here:

  1. Could it be true that Catholics overemphasize rote rituals (and don't even really know why they do them!) instead of developing a personal relationship with God? After all, that's a **very common **complaint of Catholic converts to Protestantism.

[/quote]

Maybe, but in the book of Revelation--specifically chapters four, five, seven, and eight--one sees that worship in heaven will be purely liturgical. If Catholics understood what was occurring during the Mass (most have received terrible catechesis in the past few decades), they would be able to appreciate far better all of its "rote ritual".

  1. All the time that Catholic priests spend preaching to "Come to St. Mary," couldn't they better spend their time saying "Come to Jesus"?

In my experience, Catholic priests don't spend much time exhorting their flocks to "come to St. Mary". Do you have some statistical data to back up the contention that this is actually the case?

  1. Why even bother with asking saints to pray for you, when you can just go to Jesus directly?

They're much holier than we are and already in heaven. From James 5:16 we learn that the prayers of such people are particularly effective; the writer of the epistle goes on to offer Elijah as one illustrative example: he was so holy, after all, that God assumed him into heaven. Do you see that happening often nowadays?


#3

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:1, topic:281474"]
7. Why even bother with asking saints to pray for you, when you can just go to Jesus directly?

[/quote]

Why do Proetstants bother with all the prayer-requesting they do to each other, to fellow Christians, church-members, prayer warriors, to TBN and God TV and all those ministries featured on television?- Why bother at all when you can just go to Jesus directly?


#4

[quote="Marybeloved, post:3, topic:281474"]
Why do Proetstants bother with all the prayer-requesting they do to each other, to fellow Christians, church-members, prayer warriors, to TBN and God TV and all those ministries featured on television?- Why bother at all when you can just go to Jesus directly?

[/quote]

Amen.


#5

[quote="Trebor135, post:2, topic:281474"]
Maybe, but in the book of Revelation--specifically chapters four, five, seven, and eight--one sees that worship in heaven will be purely liturgical. If Catholics understood what was occurring during the Mass (most have received terrible catechesis in the past few decades), they would be able to appreciate far better all of its "rote ritual".

[/quote]

But there are references to God and Jesus being one's friend, refuge, strength, everything, healer, provider, and all these other superlatives. Even Jesus had a personal interaction with God when He was on earth. Doesn't that mean that our God is a personal God? Isn't this one big distinguishing point between Christianity and other religions?

[quote="Trebor135, post:2, topic:281474"]
In my experience, Catholic priests don't spend much time exhorting their flocks to "come to St. Mary". Do you have some statistical data to back up the contention that this is actually the case?

[/quote]

In heavily Catholic areas such as Poland, there are statues of saints with the inscription "Come to me". It may not be done in your parish, but it is preached in other parishes, including the one that my Arizona friend visited.

[quote="Trebor135, post:2, topic:281474"]
They're much holier than we are and already in heaven. From James 5:16 we learn that the prayers of such people are particularly effective; the writer of the epistle goes on to offer Elijah as one illustrative example: he was so holy, after all, that God assumed him into heaven. Do you see that happening often nowadays?

[/quote]

I know that Catholics use Revelation 4 and 5, which mention prayers of the saints and the prayers of the martyrs. But Revelation is about the end times in which everyone is gonna know that Jesus is Lord (not necessarily that they'll be saved). From the context of Revelation, all believers are saints. We are all saints! Why do we need to turn to particular canonized saints? Just cause the Vatican canonized them?


#6

[quote="Marybeloved, post:3, topic:281474"]
Why do Proetstants bother with all the prayer-requesting they do to each other, to fellow Christians, church-members, prayer warriors, to TBN and God TV and all those ministries featured on television?- Why bother at all when you can just go to Jesus directly?

[/quote]

Exactly. Protestants pray for themselves and each other, and we'll pray for you too if you ask. Why do we have to ask a canonized saint to pray for us???


#7

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:6, topic:281474"]
Exactly. Protestants pray for themselves and each other, and we'll pray for you too if you ask. Why do we have to ask a canonized saint to pray for us???

[/quote]

Because the Book of James said...the prayer of a righteous man availeth much....scripturecatholic.com/saints.html

1 Tim 2:1-2 - because Jesus Christ is the one mediator between God and man (1 Tim. 2:5), many Protestants deny the Catholic belief that the saints on earth and in heaven can mediate on our behalf. But before Paul's teaching about Jesus as the "one mediator," Paul urges supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people. Paul is thus appealing for mediation from others besides Christ, the one mediator. Why?

1 Tim 2:3 - because this subordinate mediation is good and acceptable to God our Savior. Because God is our Father and we are His children, God invites us to participate in Christ's role as mediator.

1 Tim. 2:5 - therefore, although Jesus Christ is the sole mediator between God and man, there are many intercessors (subordinate mediators).

1 Cor. 3:9 - God invites us to participate in Christ's work because we are God's "fellow workers" and one family in the body of Christ. God wants His children to participate. The phrase used to describe "fellow workers" is "sunergoi," which literally means synergists, or cooperators with God in salvific matters. Does God need fellow workers? Of course not, but this shows how much He, as Father, loves His children. God wants us to work with Him.


#8

Jesus indulged in and helped celebrate an awful lot of rituals - circumcision, the ritual of baptism, the wedding ritual at Cana, ritual worship at His synagogue in Nazareth, ritual worship at the Temple in Jerusalem, the Passover rituals, and I daresay many others that are not recorded.

Moreover, He commanded His disciples to do some too - baptism and the Lord's Supper just for starters. And without His specific asking, they did others anyway, such as attending te Synagogue for worship.


#9

[quote="pablope, post:7, topic:281474"]
Because the Book of James said...the prayer of a righteous man availeth much....scripturecatholic.com/saints.html

1 Tim 2:1-2 - because Jesus Christ is the one mediator between God and man (1 Tim. 2:5), many Protestants deny the Catholic belief that the saints on earth and in heaven can mediate on our behalf. But before Paul's teaching about Jesus as the "one mediator," Paul urges supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people. Paul is thus appealing for mediation from others besides Christ, the one mediator. Why?

1 Tim 2:3 - because this subordinate mediation is good and acceptable to God our Savior. Because God is our Father and we are His children, God invites us to participate in Christ's role as mediator.

1 Tim. 2:5 - therefore, although Jesus Christ is the sole mediator between God and man, there are many intercessors (subordinate mediators).

1 Cor. 3:9 - God invites us to participate in Christ's work because we are God's "fellow workers" and one family in the body of Christ. God wants His children to participate. The phrase used to describe "fellow workers" is "sunergoi," which literally means synergists, or cooperators with God in salvific matters. Does God need fellow workers? Of course not, but this shows how much He, as Father, loves His children. God wants us to work with Him.

[/quote]

Thanks... I've read ScriptureCatholic.com as well. But this bolsters my position that we are all saints. Why do we have to turn to canonized ones?

By the way, the Catholic Church needs better PR, cause right now everyone thinks Catholics "worship the saints" as gods. They're not clear that you are asking them to pray for you. Just saying.


#10

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:5, topic:281474"]
But there are references to God and Jesus being one's friend, refuge, strength, everything, healer, provider, and all these other superlatives. Even Jesus had a personal interaction with God when He was on earth. Doesn't that mean that our God is a personal God? Isn't this one big distinguishing point between Christianity and other religions?

[/quote]

Catholics are not, or at least should not, be instructed to treat God as a remote, transcendent master. Why can they not talk to him like a friend and treat him as their strength and their refuge in the midst of a liturgy? I do these things all the time, and take umbrige at the suggestion that liturgy detracts from my relationship with Jesus; it actually helps to make our connection stronger. When I hear the bells, and smell the incense, and participate in and listen to the chanting, I feel as though I am being pulled up into the presence of God.

In heavily Catholic areas such as Poland, there are statues of saints with the inscription "Come to me". It may not be done in your parish, but it is preached in other parishes, including the one that my Arizona friend visited.

Then the Catholic priests there may have to work on their homilies and the artisans may have to reevaluate the inscriptions on their statues.

Even so, Protestants should be open to looking at the spiritual world through Catholic and Orthodox eyes. We're part of a family where everyone is supposed to be on good terms with one another, not in an abusive marriage where having anything to do with someone other than one's spouse must be regarded with great suspicion. :p

I know that Catholics use Revelation 4 and 5, which mention prayers of the saints and the prayers of the martyrs. But Revelation is about the end times in which everyone is gonna know that Jesus is Lord (not necessarily that they'll be saved).

Will the saints in heaven only be praying for those still on earth when the end of the world is at hand? What are they doing now in heaven?

From the context of Revelation, all believers are saints. We are all saints! Why do we need to turn to particular canonized saints? Just cause the Vatican canonized them?

The meaning and use of words change over time. In a sense we are all saints, but in another sense we vary in the level of holiness which we have achieved individually. Can one honestly say that the two of us are as righteous as Elijah?


#11

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:6, topic:281474"]
Exactly. Protestants pray for themselves and each other, and we'll pray for you too if you ask. Why do we have to ask a canonized saint to pray for us???

[/quote]

Why do you assume that when Catholics ask the same of the saints they are not, as you put it, "praying for themselves and each other"? I mean who do you think the saints are, Jews, Hindus?


#12

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:9, topic:281474"]
Thanks... I've read ScriptureCatholic.com as well. But this bolsters my position that we are all saints. Why do we have to turn to canonized ones?

[/quote]

Why not turn to canonized ones if you turn to all the other ones? I mean, we're all saints, right? What/where is the rule and verse that tells us which saints we can turn to for prayer requests and which ones we can't?

By the way, the Catholic Church needs better PR, cause right now everyone thinks Catholics "worship the saints" as gods. They're not clear that you are asking them to pray for you. Just saying.

You mean the dishonest polemics that many Protestants have done against us for centuries? Don't worry. Jesus was accused of being Beelzebub and all manner of things. We are not loosing sleep over it. ;)


#13

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:9, topic:281474"]
By the way, the Catholic Church needs better PR,

[/quote]

I agree. But Protestants are still under a moral obligation to do their homework and make sure to avoid misrepresenting the beliefs of others. They will have to stand before God and explain their conduct in light of the law of love, exemplified by the Ten Commandments.

cause right now everyone thinks Catholics "worship the saints" as gods. They're not clear that you are asking them to pray for you. Just saying.

It bears noting that Protestants often confuse veneration with worship--two actions that are completely different. We read in the twenty-ninth chapter of First Chronicles:

[20] Then David said to all the assembly, "Bless the LORD your God." And all the assembly blessed the LORD, the God of their fathers, and bowed their heads, and worshiped the LORD, and did obeisance to the king.
[21] And they performed sacrifices to the LORD, and on the next day offered burnt offerings to the LORD, a thousand bulls, a thousand rams, and a thousand lambs, with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance for all Israel;
[22] and they ate and drank before the LORD on that day with great gladness.
And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and they anointed him as prince for the LORD, and Zadok as priest.
[23] Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king instead of David his father; and he prospered, and all Israel obeyed him.
[24] All the leaders and the mighty men, and also all the sons of King David, pledged their allegiance to King Solomon.
[25] And the LORD gave Solomon great repute in the sight of all Israel, and bestowed upon him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.

The Israelites gave their king great honour and offered God fervent praise--at the same time! In doing so they were committing no idolatry, and neither the king nor God seemed to regard their conduct as even potentially problematic.


#14

Communion of saints (See Creed)

'They have no wine'

'Sir, we would like to see Jesus'

'Lord, the one you love is ill'

’He deserves this for you because he is friendly towards our people; in fact he is the one who built the synagogue’

...


#15

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:9, topic:281474"]
Thanks... I've read ScriptureCatholic.com as well. But this bolsters my position that we are all saints. Why do we have to turn to canonized ones?

By the way, the Catholic Church needs better PR, cause right now everyone thinks Catholics "worship the saints" as gods. They're not clear that you are asking them to pray for you. Just saying.

[/quote]

The short answer to the first question is that we don't have to turn only to canonized ones. You can be morally certain that people were praying to the late Mother Teresa and the late John Paul II well before any canonisation proceedings were started in their cases, and would still be praying to them if they never did commence anything.

The short answer to the second is ... one in six people on the PLANET is Catholic. When you can say the same for whatever religious community you belong to, then we'll talk about who has the better PR :shrug:


#16

[quote="LilyM, post:8, topic:281474"]
Jesus indulged in and helped celebrate an awful lot of rituals - circumcision, the ritual of baptism, the wedding ritual at Cana, ritual worship at His synagogue in Nazareth, ritual worship at the Temple in Jerusalem, the Passover rituals, and I daresay many others that are not recorded.

Moreover, He commanded His disciples to do some too - baptism and the Lord's Supper just for starters. And without His specific asking, they did others anyway, such as attending te Synagogue for worship.

[/quote]

:thumbsup:


#17

[quote="LilyM, post:8, topic:281474"]
Jesus indulged in and helped celebrate an awful lot of rituals - circumcision, the ritual of baptism, the wedding ritual at Cana, ritual worship at His synagogue in Nazareth, ritual worship at the Temple in Jerusalem, the Passover rituals, and I daresay many others that are not recorded.

Moreover, He commanded His disciples to do some too - baptism and the Lord's Supper just for starters. And without His specific asking, they did others anyway, such as attending te Synagogue for worship.

[/quote]

Preach it, sister, preach it! :)


#18

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:5, topic:281474"]
Bu

I know that Catholics use Revelation 4 and 5, which mention prayers of the saints and the prayers of the martyrs. ** But Revelation is about the end times in which everyone is gonna know that Jesus is Lord (not necessarily that they'll be saved). **From the context of Revelation, all believers are saints. We are all saints! Why do we need to turn to particular canonized saints? Just cause the Vatican canonized them?

[/quote]

That is one viewpoint....there are certain parts of Revelations that may point to that...there are certain parts that show a glimpse of heaven...like the winged creatures praising God at all time.

There is also a view the Revelation shows the Catholic mass.....see Hahn's The Lamb's Supper.

Canonized saints means we are certain they are in heaven. Vatican canonizes them to serve as models for us here on earth...we can learn about how they lived their lives...and help us on our earthly journey.


#19

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:9, topic:281474"]
Thanks... I've read ScriptureCatholic.com as well. But this bolsters my position that we are all saints. Why do we have to turn to canonized ones?

By the way, the Catholic Church needs better PR, cause right now everyone thinks Catholics "worship the saints" as gods. They're not clear that you are asking them to pray for you. Just saying.

[/quote]

Actually, think about it...ordinary protestants do not know about it...but have you even thought where this worshipping saints polemics come from?

From their pastors....who continue to propogate such lies about the Catholic church...and to think they are pastors...don't you think they should know better?

Let me ask you...do you think propogating such lies is an offense against their fellowmen...therefore an offense against God?


#20

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:5, topic:281474"]
But there are references to God and Jesus being one's friend, refuge, strength, everything, healer, provider, and all these other superlatives. Even Jesus had a personal interaction with God when He was on earth. Doesn't that mean that our God is a personal God? Isn't this one big distinguishing point between Christianity and other religions?

[/quote]

The Church teaches a very personal relationship with Jesus for each of us.

I can find nothing more personal than receiving Him in the Eucharist. We are not just symbolically united at that point, but physically, as well.

We spend time in prayer outside of Mass; morning, noon, evening, night, anytime. We can use free form prayer or use the prayers of the Church.

Praying and worshipping, however, are different things. The Mass and the other Sacraments are special time spent in worship of God.

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:5, topic:281474"]
In heavily Catholic areas such as Poland, there are statues of saints with the inscription "Come to me". It may not be done in your parish, but it is preached in other parishes, including the one that my Arizona friend visited.

[/quote]

Please identify which saints. Here is a virtual tour of St. Albertus Detroit

Welcome to Historic St. Albertus Church, the mother church of the Detroit-area Polonia.

We thank you for spending this time within the walls of Detroit’s oldest Polish Church.

None of the statues of Saints have an inscription of 'Come to me.'

[quote="PraizThinkr, post:5, topic:281474"]
I know that Catholics use Revelation 4 and 5, which mention prayers of the saints and the prayers of the martyrs. But Revelation is about the end times in which everyone is gonna know that Jesus is Lord (not necessarily that they'll be saved). From the context of Revelation, all believers are saints. We are all saints! Why do we need to turn to particular canonized saints? Just cause the Vatican canonized them?

[/quote]

Yes, we are all saints, little s. Capital S (canonized) saints have performed miracles that prove that they are in Heaven with Jesus. It is a rigourous, lengthy process. One of the criteria is that you have to be dead, so no living person can be declared a Saint. The Church has always stated that there are many more Saints in Heaven than have been canonized. They are just the ones we know about.

Since we are all saints, the Saints are part of our unity in the Body of Christ. You have no trouble asking those around you to pray for you, why not ask those close to Christ?

Why not turn to them? Why should we not avail ourselves of their help?


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