I’m a Catholic, but one thing that makes me a little nervous about the Church is all of the statues all over the church when God said thath Thou Shall not make any graven image or likenes of anything living or in heven. So wouldn’t it be a sin to pray to the statue of Mary or Jesus. Isn’t it better to actually pray to them without statues? Please explain.
You aren’t praying to or worshipping a statue or an icon or a crucifix. You are praying to God. Sometimes the statue or icon can help focus. I like my icon for that purpose. If I focus on the icon I can keep my brain focused on prayer. If I’m just sitting around, pretty soon my mind wanders. It’s just a help not a diety IMO
You have to know how to interpret that part of Scripture. The ancient Hebrews were in the habit of making statues of gold or whatever and worshipping them. Mosaic Law forbid them from doing so.
We do not worship statues. Statues and classic stained glass - and iconography in the Byzantine Catholic Churches - brings to us a representation of Jesus Christ, His holy mother Mary and the saints.
Religous art is and has long been a part of Catholic tradition. Be careful not to fall into the fundamentalist trap of “idol worship”. Some of them worship a book, without understanding its meaning.
Thou Shall not make any graven image or likenes of anything living or in heven.
Photos of family members are likenesses of things living. Are they forbidden?
God also commanded that golden cherubim (angels) be put on the ark of the covenant. They are images of things in Heaven? Would God contradict Himself?
The Protestants for some reason remove the thing about graven images from the first commandment and make it into its own commandment. The commandment is to not make graven images and then worship them as gods. It goes with the commandment to not have any other gods beside God.
It is said that when Holy Mass is celebrated, all the saints and angels attend. The statues, paintings and windows remind us of this.
Think: Communion of Saints!