Three Creeds


#1

So I am minding my own business on another thread, when I get an e-mail from someone (we’ll call him “Joe”). It reads (in its entirty):

Why in the world do you need three creeds? Isn’t one enough? See this is my problem with Lutheranism. Not content to follow one religion or reform it from within such as Teresa of Avila di- you see, she was a reformer- she had the Pope’s ear, while Luther alienated the man and Lutherans have been alienating Catholics ever since- Not content to follow one church, one religion , one man, one God, but many. Why? Then Lutheranism, while professing one god, the father almighty, maker of heaven and earth in all THREE CREEDS denies God is powerful enough to speak infallibly through one man. It is mind boggling. Lutheranism is a great mystery to me.

Upon closer inspection, I noted that I had sent someone else (Catholic) an e-mail in which I pointed out that Lutherans and Catholics both subscribe to the same three ecumenical creeds; she forwarded it to Joe, and Joe sent me the message above.

I replied that the three creeds (Apostles, Nicene, Athenasian) are not “Lutheran” at all; that they predated the Lutheran Church by over 1000 years; that the Catholic Church subscribes to, and uses, the same three creeds. I quoted both the Vatican web site and Catholic Encyclopedia Online.

Is this attitude about the three creeds typical among Catholics?


#2

[quote=RonWI]So I am minding my own business on another thread, when I get an e-mail from someone (we’ll call him “Joe”). It reads (in its entirty):

Upon closer inspection, I noted that I had sent someone else (Catholic) an e-mail in which I pointed out that Lutherans and Catholics both subscribe to the same three ecumenical creeds; she forwarded it to Joe, and Joe sent me the message above.

I replied that the three creeds (Apostles, Nicene, Athenasian) are not “Lutheran” at all; that they predated the Lutheran Church by over 1000 years; that the Catholic Church subscribes to, and uses, the same three creeds. I quoted both the Vatican web site and Catholic Encyclopedia Online.

Is this attitude about the three creeds typical among Catholics?
[/quote]

The creeds are answers to heresies. They have built upon themselves and over time have added and clarified Catholic teaching to combat heresies of the time.


#3

Now, I don’t profess to know everything :rolleyes:, but I do know that we Catholics believe everything in the Nicene and the Apostles’ creeds. We say the Nicene creed at every Mass (sometimes substituting the Apostles’ creeds at children’s masses), and we say the Apostles’ creed in the rosary. I’ve heard the name of the Athenasian creed before, but don’t know what it says nor have I ever heard anyone talk about it in my time in the Catholic faith. This e-mail from “Joe” doesn’t make any sense to me. I think that it was uncalled for the lady to forward your message to someone else without your knowledge or approval, and it was even more uncalled for for this mystery man to email you! I personally don’t think that Luther ever envisioned the effect he was going to have on the shape of the Christian Church. I am sorry you were treated this way and hope you don’t think that all Catholics are out to attack non-Catholics that way! :frowning:


#4

From the Vatican’s web site:

“Through the centuries many professions or symbols of faith have been articulated in response to the needs of the different eras: the creeds of the different apostolic and ancient Churches,8 e.g., the Quicumque, also called the Athanasian Creed;”

From Catholic Encyclopedia Online, on the Athanaisan Creed:

“One of the symbols of the Faith approved by the Church and given a place in her liturgy, is a short, clear exposition of the doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation, with a passing reference to several other dogmas.”

The Athanasian Creed can be found here:

bookofconcord.com/creeds.html

It concludes:

“This is the Catholic Faith, which except a man believe faithfully and firmly, he cannot be saved.”

Obviously, this could be considered less than consistent with the proposition that one can be saved outside the Chuch if “through no fault of his own” he never came to know of Christ.

In this age of “we all worship the same God” theology, the Church needs to teach its ancient creeds more than ever!


#5

The Episcopal Church also uses all three Creeds. I think they’re common to the small “c” catholic church.


#6

[quote=a_cermak]The Episcopal Church also uses all three Creeds. I think they’re common to the small “c” catholic church.
[/quote]

Any creed of the Catholic Church before 1530 or so would be common.


#7

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