So, discussing the Catholic faith

I am wanting to learn the truth about the Catholic faith not what ppl have said about them.
I admit I know very little about the Catholic faith but I know that Catholics Pray to mary as to why I have no idea, I also know that the pope is an important person to Catholics but aside from that not much.

Now I have heard some Catholics say that Catholics are Christians but the thing is and trust me not many Christians even understand this is that the main mark of a true believer is love and this love is clearly seen as it is the one fruit above all others to discern a Christian by title only and a Christian by heart. Another just as important ingredient is the relationship with God and us the bond that ties his heart and ours into one the deep and intimate love shared between him and us.

Now is this true with the catholic faith as well?

Oh wow! Buckle your seatbelt! What a great question :smiley:

Most non-Catholics totally misrepresent what the Catholic Church teaches and believes. If you truly want to know, I’d suggest getting a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (often abbreviated CCC on CAF).

I’m not sure what background you are coming from but some great books and authors/speakers are:

Catholicism and Fundamentalism by Karl Keating
Rome Sweet Home by Scott and Kimberly Hahn
Crossing the Tiber by Stephen Ray
Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic by David Currie
The Protestant Dilemma by Devin Rose

Now, granted, these books are generally apologetic books. On their own, they won’t go into every single facet of what the Catholic Church teaches but rather, explain, brilliantly, what they learned about the Catholic Church in contrast to what they always assumed or had been taught.

Catholic Answers has several amazing Tracts that explain things such as The Eucharist, Purgatory, Saints, etc. That would probably be a good place to start.

Scott Hahn’s “The Fourth Cup”, “Understanding the Eucharist”, and “Why We Have a Pope” are all great audios that can be found on YouTube. Also, Steve Ray has a good many audios that are fabulous.

Catholic Answers also has a great many audios for purchase. Tim Staples is another author and speaker to familiarize yourself with.

And lastly, I’d start reading the early church fathers, the “forgotten gems” of the early church. I think you’ll find that the writings of Ignatius of Antioch, Clement of Rome, Justin Martyr, etc. are all definitely more *Catholicish *than Protestantish :slight_smile:

Great! I started out just like you…You are well on your way to becoming Catholic :smiley:

I admit I know very little about the Catholic faith but I know that Catholics Pray to mary as to why I have no idea,

Catholics ask Mary (pray to = asking her to pray for) to intercede for them with Jesus, her Son, who is our Mediator with God the Father. She DOES NOT mediate for us. Same as with any other Saint.

I also know that the pope is an important person to Catholics but aside from that not much.

He is important because he is the Vicar of Christ on earth (IOW, Christ’s earthly representative, His prime minister). This position was originally given to Peter when Jesus gave Peter the keys in Matthew. Peter’s power and position in the universal church transmits to his successors who sit on the See of Peter (the chair of Peter), which is the Bishop of Rome (a/k/a the Pope). That’s why he is important.

Now I have heard some Catholics say that Catholics are Christians but the thing is and trust me not many Christians even understand this is that the main mark of a true believer is love and this love is clearly seen as it is the one fruit above all others to discern a Christian by title only and a Christian by heart. Another just as important ingredient is the relationship with God and us the bond that ties his heart and ours into one the deep and intimate love shared between him and us.

Now is this true with the catholic faith as well?

Of course it is!!!

Catholics just put their love for God into action through charity and devotion. It’s not a inanimate “love” that has no actions to prove it. It’s a living, breathing, vibrant love of God that compels them to love those whom God loves (the least of these).

Throughout history, who do you think has fed, clothed, sheltered, and educated the poorest of the world the most? THE CATHOLIC CHURCH!

To a Catholic, the meaning of the term “Christian” is anyone who has received valid Christian Baptism. This includes most protestants. Once Baptized, a person is a Christian for life. Baptism is an indelible Sacrament.

The term “Catholic” refers to anyone who has been Baptized (or is seeking Baptism) and identifies himself as a Catholic.

It has nothing to do with beliefs, faith, works, behavior, love, laws, relationships, or any other thing. Without these, a person can still be considered a Catholic, though perhaps not a faithful Catholic.

Excellent. You’ve come to the right place. Always commendable to learn what people believe directly from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.

I admit I know very little about the Catholic faith but I know that Catholics Pray to mary as to why I have no idea,

Because the prayers of the righteous are powerful, and the saints in heaven present our prayers to God as we see in Rev 5 and 8. God is God of the living, and those in Heaven are a great cloud of witnesses who are part of the Body of Christ. They care for us and pray for us.

I also know that the pope is an important person to Catholics but aside from that not much.

Because he holds the keys to the kingdom, that were given to Peter and have been handed on to Pope’s since that time.

Now I have heard some Catholics say that Catholics are Christians but the thing is and trust me not many Christians even understand this is that the main mark of a true believer is love and this love is clearly seen as it is the one fruit above all others to discern a Christian by title only and a Christian by heart. Another just as important ingredient is the relationship with God and us the bond that ties his heart and ours into one the deep and intimate love shared between him and us.

Now is this true with the catholic faith as well?

Of course. St. James gave wonderful instruction on what true religion looks like, and the two great commands of Jesus tell us to love God, and love our neighbor. We will know them by their fruits. Of course you will find those in the Catholic Church (and in every other denomination) who do not live out their faith, but that doesn’t speak to the truth or falsity of the Catholic Church or a particular denomination.

Jesus gave us a new commandment: “Love one another as I have loved you.”

Catholics should live by that commandment, however many Catholics are impatient and rude with one another rather than loving and compassionate. There is even sniping and uncharitableness going on here, on this board. I am not pointing a finger at anyone or singling anyone out, but it goes on. If you look around enough you can see it. If we can’t even be kind to one another on a DB, what can we expect in face-to-face encounters. However, as I said, the Catholic teaching is that we should be loving and compassionate to all, no matter what.

I guess you ought to be more specific. I see no sniping or uncharitableness on this thread. :confused:

I don’t see any on this thread, either, but there is plenty on the board. If you look at the “Biden” threads or other political threads there are even moderator warnings that people are getting uncharitable.

It’s true also for the catholic faith Hungry4God.
You’ve said the right words when you say “the main mark of a TRUE believer is love…”.

And there you’ve hit the nail on the head. Every church is the same. Not everyone in the church is a true believer. Or they are but are just starting out. Or they’re just plain human and make mistakes. We’re all the same H4G. No matter what church you put foot in.

What you say with regard to our relationship with God is very important. Many protestants don’t even consider catholics to be christian. However, if anyone has that quality you speak of in your last sentence, and has a deep love for God, then in any church they can be considered to be saved and in that sense we are all brothers - in the love of Christ.

Keep studying. Many protestants have misconceptions about catholicism. Every religion has a “pope”. Whoever the head is of a denomination is that denomination’s pope! Whoever makes up the doctrines is the “pope”. We all have to accept some kind of authority. We can’t just make up our own little religion.

Mary is another story and will be a hurdle you’ll have to get through. You do have to accept, if you’re honest, that she is more than just another human being or a birthing vehicle for Jesus. She’s the Ark of the New Covenant. Read up on that a bit. She is not to be worshipped, as protestants think we do.

Keep studying and ask specific questions. Follow the H.S.

Fran

The Knights of Columbus have free courses that will teach you the basics of being a Catholic. I highly recommend also the YouCat, the Catechism of the Catholic Church written in plain language for young adults but good for anyone.

Many local parishes offer RCIA programs where you can go and learn the Faith and ask all the questions you want. There is no obligation to become Catholic after completion unless you feel it is right for you.

Often our love for God is shown by obeying the Ten Commandments and doing good for other people.

God bless you.

Hey everyone sorry I was gone for so long I had to baby sit some kids. So far i found fantastic responses and I do want to discuss some of the things said but at a later time when I have more free time. I also wanted to know something else, see in Christian faith there are hundreds of denominations and thousands of different doctrines based on each persons view of what the scriptures mean, is this also the same within the Catholic?

No, it is not the same in the Catholic Church, thanks to the great blessing Our Lord gave His followers when He established the papacy by giving to Peter (the first pope) the keys of His kingdom (the Church). (cf. Mt. 16:18-19)

The Catholic Church has doctrines that can never change. There may be further development of a previous doctrine - growth in understanding of it, expressed in additional doctrines - but this further development can never invalidate the previous doctrine. Official approval by the Pope is required before a particular teaching becomes an infallible doctrine (true and unchanging) of the Church.

Unfortunately, sometimes Catholics (even Catholic priests) will teach falsely and contradict official Church doctrines. That is why it is important for all Catholics to learn the official/true teachings of the Church. The Catechism of the Catholic Church is the main source today for finding out the true teachings of the Catholic Church.

Here’s some links that will give you good accurate information on our Marian beliefs.

[LIST=1]
*]The Perpetual Virginity of Mary
*]The Immaculate Conception in Scripture
*]Do Catholics Pray “Vain Repetitions?”
*]Mary: Ever Virgin
*]Mary: “Full of Grace”
*]Mary: Mother of God
[/LIST]

I also know that the pope is an important person to Catholics but aside from that not much.

These should help with this…

[LIST]
*]The Authority of the Pope: Part I
*]The Authority of the Pope: Part II
[/LIST]

Now I have heard some Catholics say that Catholics are Christians

These may help. The 2nd 2 are from my own blog.
Born Again - The Bible Way
How Is A Catholic Saved?
Who REALLY Preaches “A Different Gospel”?

but the thing is and trust me not many Christians even understand this is that the main mark of a true believer is love and this love is clearly seen as it is the one fruit above all others to discern a Christian by title only and a Christian by heart. Another just as important ingredient is the relationship with God and us the bond that ties his heart and ours into one the deep and intimate love shared between him and us.

Now is this true with the catholic faith as well?

:shrug: Is everyone you know who calls themselves a Christian living the life? It’s a human thing and shouldn’t be a surprise. Our Blessed Lord Jesus Christ plainly tells us in ***Matthew 7:[21] "Not every one who says to me, Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. [22] On that day many will say to me,Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ [23] And then will I declare to them, `I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.’ ***

We are in fact the original, New Testament, “full Gospel”, Christianity. Everyone else was founded by men who broke from us.

There is only one authority in Christianity This should give you a better understanding. “What’s Your Authority?”

I would also offer links to discussions/ debates I have been in that are relevant to that.
It’s NOT in the Bible, okay?
It’s NOT in the Bible, okay? (Part II)
“If anyone teaches/preaches something that is not in scripture”

At the bottom of my post is a book with different Catholic doctrines. Theirs bible verses that will help you understand why we believe what we believe.

Btw, we don’t pray to the blessed mother, we ask for her intercession.

This is an excellent question. First and foremost, there has been a phrase that has been use to define the Catholic Church (and most of the Orthodox churches actually) since the Council of Constantinople in 387 in which the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed (also known as the Nicean Creed) was concluded. “I believe in one, holy, catholic [universal], and apostolic church.”

The Catholic Church has one set of beliefs. These are the same beliefs that were taught by the Apostles, and have only put forth deepened understanding of these beliefs when they have been misinterpreted and misunderstood. The doctrine of the Catholic Church is cohesive and holds no contradictions. As such we don’t have doctrines based upon each persons view. Now, anything not specifically explained in the Catholic Church’s doctrine (and the entirety is compiled in a book called the Catechism of the Catholic Church) is open to personal interpretation as long as that interpretation does not contradict doctrine. There are varying degrees of doctrine, some of which you must actively believe to be Catholic and some that, while you may not understand the doctrine fully, you only need to give assent that you believe the Church correct in its doctrinal position. The personal interpretations, however, you can believe or totally discard. It is up to the individual believer.

Now, as to denominations, there are a few different areas in which the Catholic Church can be likened to. The Catholic Church does not have denominations per se, but they do have something called Rites. Each rite is a different ancient way the Church has celebrated and enacted the doctrines in their different cultures. There are currently 19 different Catholic Rites. Roman Catholic is just one of those rites. There are also many different religious orders and spiritualities that depict numerous ways to approach the personal relationship with God and the Church. My own religious order, the Clerics Regular Minor, is and order of priests and brothers who approach God through the Adoration of Christ in the Eucharist, the Liturgy of the Hours (a standardized set of prayers said at different times throughout the day), and service to the people of God (this can entail everything from parish work, to missionary work in Africa, to running schools, to working in the Church’s administrative offices at the Vatican). This is just one of hundreds of religious orders within the Church, and there are even more spiritualities. All of these, however, believe in the same doctrines of the Catholic Church and are first and foremost Catholic.

I hope that this has helped,
Br. Benjamin

St. Pio of Peitrelcina (Padre Pio) said: “Keep close to the Catholic Church at all times, for the Church alone can give you true peace, since she alone possesses Jesus, the true Prince of Peace, in the Blessed Sacrament.”

Once you acknowledge the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, everything else will soon make sense: archive.org/stream/theblessedeuchar00meuluoft#page/n5/mode/2up (‘The Blessed Eucharist, Our Greatest Treasure’ by Fr. Mueller)

“For one Communion," said St. Crescentia Hoess, "I would gladly suffer all the sicknesses of all mankind; and, with the exception of possession and vision of God, I would rather forego the enjoyment of the pleasures of Heaven, than miss one Holy Communion.” Are these the words of an idolater? I don’t think so. The Eucharist is Jesus Himself; this is the key to understanding the great sanctity and wisdom of the Saints.

If you are inclined to accept private revelations, it will be worth considering these words of Our Lady to St. Bridget of Sweden (d. 1273):
"Open your mouth and you will have good food! [Ps. 81:10-] This means: Open the intellect of your soul, and in the Holy Church you will find the sweetest of foods, that is, the very body of the Lord in the sacrament of the altar, the new and the old law, the teachings of the doctors, the patience of the martyrs, the humility of the confessors, the pureness of the virgins, and indeed the foundation of all the virtues. Accordingly, seek the holy faith in the church of St. Peter, keep in mind the sought-after faith, and then put it into practice.” (Mary; bk 4, ch 18)

God bless you on your journey!

Small correction: St. Bridget died in 1373.

As St. Paul said emphatically, there is ONE faith. And this ONE faith is contained in its fullness in the Catholic Church. Other denominations have some of the faith, to varying degrees depending on how much they differentiate from the CC’s teachings.

The Catholic Church has one set of doctrines that never change. Because they were handed to the Church by Jesus Himself. And Jesus promised to always protect the Church from teaching error.

Catholics do not believe that there is any other Mediator of Redemption than our SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST, “For there is no other name under heaven given to men, whereby we must be saved” than that of JESUS
Catholics do not believe that the blessed Virgin is in any way equal or even comparable to God, for she, being a creature, although the most highly favored, is infinitely less than God. Nor do they claim for her any power beyond that which she derives from Him; for she is entirely dependent on God for her existence, her privileges, her grace and her glory.
Catholics do not believe that there is any authority upon earth or in heaven that can give leave to commit any sin, even the least; or that a sin can be forgiven for money; or that a Priest can give valid absolution to a sinner who does not repent and truly purpose to forsake sin and amend his life.
Catholics do not believe that a man can by his own good works, independently of the Merits and Passion of Jesus Christ and of His grace, obtain salvation, or make any satisfaction for the guilt of his sins, or acquire any merit.
Catholics do not believe that Protestants who are baptized, who lead a good life, love God and their neighbor, and are blamelessly ignorant of the just claims of the Catholic Religion to be the one true Religion (which is called being in good faith), are excluded from Heaven, provided they believe that there is one God in three Divine Persons; *that God will duly reward the good and punish the wicked; that Jesus Christ is the Son of God made man, who redeemed us, and in whom we must trust for our salvation; and provided they thoroughly repent of having ever, by their sins, offended God.
When they call the Blessed Virgin or any other Saint a mediator, it is not in the sense of Mediator of Redemption attributed to our Saviour, but in the sense of intercessor or pleader, in which sense any Christian may be called a mediator, whenever he intercedes, or mediates between God and his fellow-man,

This is what I believe and other christian faiths try to say we don’t - they have just never really taken a close look at the Catholic faith and what we believe in - our faith is always twisted to look bad by some protestant groups - I don’t under stand why they do this because its not true.

Yes, love is the core of the gospel for a Catholic. Some non-Catholic theologies seem to place faith on a higher level, or in any case fail to emphasize the role of love, but in Catholicism love takes center stage.

The pope is the bishop of Rome. Bishops are mentioned in the New Testament in numerous places, such as Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:1-2; Titus 1:7. Bishops were and still are the authorized teachers and pastors of local Churches. Bishops were originally ordained by the Apostles and Paul and Barnabas (Acts 14:23), Timothy and Titus in the first century and since then ordained by other previously ordained bishops in what is known as apostolic succession. In addition to being the bishop of the local Church at Rome, a local Church whose faith has been “proclaimed in all the world” since apostolic times (Romans 1:8), the pope is also the leading bishop of the worldwide Church, succeeding Peter, the leading Apostle of the Church, who led the Church at Rome during his final years.

Since Jesus intended that Christians should “obey and submit” to their church leaders (Hebrews 13:17) and since he intended that “the powers of death shall not prevail against” his Church (Matthew 16:18), Jesus gave the the gift of infallibility to Peter individually (Luke 22:32; Matthew 16:19) and to all the Apostles collectively (Matthew 18:18). After the death of Peter and the other Apostles, this gift of infallibility passed to the popes individually who succeeded Peter at the Church of Rome and to all the bishops collectively. (See Acts 15:2-29) This gift of infallibility allows popes individually or bishops collectively, when they choose to exercise the gift, to teach the truths of the Christian faith without error, that “faith which was once for all delivered to the saints” by Jesus and his Apostles. (Jude 1:3)

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.