Traditions of men - us vs them

I know that there are differences in the worship in the Catholic Church and other churches. The Catholic Church has Liturgy and other churches have services. I also know that some / many non-denom churches say they follow the Christians of the early Church in their faith services. But I am wondering if any of them even take a look at the history of the early Church and what they did in their worship. The Catholic Church emphasizes the Eucharist and non-Catholic ones do not. It seems they are more into preaching, and other things that might entertain and make people feel comfortable. My question is if they do not know the forms of worship Christ wants from His Church then are they making their own “traditions of men”. What determines what traditions are appropriate and ones that are not. I ask this because some friends of mine have left the faith and gone to a more so called bible based church. Do I explain to them about “traditions of men” and do we in the Catholic liturgies have any of them also. How should I proceed ??

mdcpensive1

We certainly have “traditions of men” in our Liturgy. Things like lectors, altar servers, ushers, and extraordinary ministers are all “traditions of men.” The language we use is a “tradition of men,” as is the choice of music.

The Church provides guidelines on these issues, and then the local Conference of Bishops provides further direction. The local bishop will issue directives to the parishes in his diocese, and the final say (as long as it doesn’t go against any of the higher directives) falls on the pastor.

I wouldn’t focus on “traditions of men” with your friends. If you really want to engage in a discussion with them about faith, start by asking questions until you get to the heart of why they have left. Really try to understand them before making any challenges to their faith.

If you challenge them anywhere, the first place I would start is with the idea of “Bible-based” church. What does that mean to them? Point out, as they come up in discussion, the places where Catholic beliefs are demonstrated in the Bible.

Excellent point, and one that I explore in the following blog post. :thumbsup:

What Was Authentic Early Christian Worship Really Like?

You might also want to pick from…

Who REALLY Preaches “A Different Gospel”?
How Is A Catholic Saved?

SS threads
“If anyone teaches/preaches something that is not in scripture”
It’s NOT in the Bible, okay? (Part II)
It’s NOT in the Bible, okay?

“I Find No Sacraments In the Bible” he said.

Traditions OF men means traditions established from men.
Traditions OF God (or OF Jesus) means traditions established from God.
Kingdoms OF this world means kingdoms (or societies) established from men.
Kingdom OF God means the Kingdom established from God when he anointed Jesus as its King.
Being in the world and OF the world means living in the world and seeing you are a product of the world.
Being in the world but NOT OF the world means living here but knowing you are not from here, living in America but knowing you are not from America, but from God, an alien here.

You have to look all the way back to the beginning of a tradition to see where it came from. Catholics have always baptized, back to the first Catholics (Peter, James, John, Paul, and the King, Jesus, who commanded it) Therefore it is a tradition of God, established from God. The tradition of the Eucharist, Mass, has been practiced by Catholics way back to the first Catholics (Peter, James, John, Paul, and Jesus who introduced the covenant sacrifice and participation in it by Catholics). Therefore it is a tradition of God, established from God.

Mary prophesied that all generations would call her “blessed”, and from the beginning of the Catholic Church, when Jesus blessed Mary by giving her as mother to the disciple, all Catholics have continued the tradition of calling her “blessed” in fulfillment of this prophecy. Therefore it is a tradition of God, established from God.

A tradition of the Catholic Church is that the Holy Spirit would lead it into all truth and not let it be overcome by false teaching. So it teaches under that assumption, with authority. This tradition of trusting the magisterium and pope again goes all the way back to Jesus’ promises about the Comforter he would give us. Therefore it is a tradition of God, established from God.

So, where did the traditions of not baptizing, not knowing the body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist, not honoring and praying to Mary, not being obedient to the Church superiors come from? God? or Men?

Your friends, either directly or in their ancestors, were at one time Catholic, and they no longer wanted to grant “obedience” to Catholic leadership and teaching. It is a tradition. And they deceived themselves into calling it a tradition of or from men. But, we do not obey our pope or bishops as if they were somehow really great leaders and not obey if we don’t think specific ones are good, but instead we are subject to them because we have it from tradition that they are appointed directly by Christ to lead us, which he did do with Peter and the apostles. They are divinely commissioned to baptize and teach us, not humanly commissioned.

I agree with what you have written but just to clarify, the husband left the Church because he said he wasn’t getting the message of scripture and his wife finally quit because she found more religious teaching and opportunities to learn theology (at least their theology).

Protestants regardless of name or stripe, are all 100% manmade traditions. They also make up one of [FONT=Arial]The Great Heresies of all time.[/FONT]

the best teacher of all time is giving a face to face theology lesson to His followers. John 6:48-70 . Most left Jesus over His teaching on the Eucharist. Just like those friends of yours left Jesus. Did Jesus fail to get His point accross here to His followers? Of course not. He was crystal clear. But notice, Jesus didn’t change His message, nor did He go after those that left. :eek: He let them go.

Your friends have made a HUGE mistake. [FONT=Arial]They left Our Lord and His Church for one of [FONT=Arial]The Great Heresies in history, and as a result, they put their salvation in jeopardy [/FONT][/FONT][FONT=Arial]846 . [/FONT]What are they thinking?

Further warnings against what they did
[/FONT]Romans 16:17-20 , [FONT=Arial]Galatians 5:19-21 , the word [/FONT]διχοστασίας*[FONT=Trebuchet MS] dichostasia** = division / dissension / factions /sedition,*is used in both Rom 16:17…. And Gal 5:19-20. The consequences for one who dies in that sin, they will not inherit heaven. [Gal 5:21] as in they go to hell. Note there is no expiration date to those warnings.

Your claims contradict your own Pope Emeritus:
“heresy’s characteristic is pertinacia, the obstinacy of him who persists in his own private way. This, however, cannot be regarded as an appropriate description of the spiritual situation of the Protestant Christian. In the course of a now centuries-old history, Protestantism has made an *important *contribution to the realization of Christian faith, fulfilling a *positive *function in the development of the Christian message and, above all, often giving rise to a sincere and profound faith in the individual non-Catholic Christian, whose separation from the Catholic affirmation has **nothing **to do with the pertinacia characteristic of heresy. Perhaps we may here invert a saying of St. Augustine’s: that an old schism becomes a heresy. The very passage of time alters the character of a division, so that an old division is something essentially different from a new one. Something that was once rightly condemned as heresy cannot later simply become true, but it can gradually develop its own positive ecclesial nature, with which the individual is presented as his church and in which he lives as a believer, not as a heretic. This organization of one group, however, ultimately has an effect on the whole. The conclusion is inescapable, then: Protestantism today is something different from heresy in the traditional sense, a phenomenon whose true theological place has not yet been determined.” (Benedict XVI, The Meaning of Christian Brotherhood, p.88, emphasis added)

Your friends have made a HUGE mistake. They left Our Lord and His Church for one ofThe Great Heresies in history, and as a result, they put their salvation in jeopardy 846. What are they thinking?

Actually, that paragraph of the Catechism states, “they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.” Since they are seeking God elsewhere, they clearly **know **no such thing.

Further, Catholic Canon Law states,
Can. 748 §1 All are bound to seek the truth in the matters which concern God and his Church; when they have found it, then by divine law they are bound, and they have the right, to **embrace **and **keep **it. §2 It is never lawful for anyone to force others to embrace the catholic faith against their conscience.” (emphasis added)

Evidently, given mcdpensive1’s description, they are seeking the truth and following their consciences, which Catholic Canon Law specifically grants as their right. So, your claims actually contradict Canon Law, too.

διχοστασία, division / dissension / factions /sedition, is used in both Rom 16:17…. And Gal 5:19-20. The consequences for one who dies in that sin, they will not inherit heaven. [Gal 5:21] as in they go to hell. Note there is no expiration date to those warnings.

To be frank, I would be very careful about pointing that finger, in part because of the extent to which your claims are divided from your own church’s expressed position on this, and in part because you are taking it upon yourself to judge who goes to Hell. I was not aware that the last was an authority which the Catholic Church conferred upon its followers.

I do not believe that any of this is nearly as black-and-white, or that the Catholic Church teaches that it is nearly as black-and-white as you are painting it here.

Well, actually, some of us have liturgy too, most especially the Orthodox.

I also know that some / many non-denom churches say they follow the Christians of the early Church in their faith services. But I am wondering if any of them even take a look at the history of the early Church and what they did in their worship.

Often, they do, although the depth of detail of such considerations does vary a lot.

The Catholic Church emphasizes the Eucharist and non-Catholic ones do not.

See, now that particular claim could be really offensive if I imagined that you actually knew what happened in our churches.

It seems they are more into preaching, and other things that might entertain and make people feel comfortable.

In some cases, this is apparently true. In others, it is most definitely not. Please, do not imagine that, just because someone does not belong to your particular version of faith, their commitment to Christ and to their fellow creatures is any less than yours is.

My question is if they do not know the forms of worship Christ wants from His Church then are they making their own “traditions of men”. What determines what traditions are appropriate and ones that are not.

Um, you do realise that you are essentially asking, “What does God think?” That’s not a question which mortals can defensibly answer.

Certainly, from a Catholic perspective, the Catholic Church is the one most approved, but many other churches will say the same about themselves.

I ask this because some friends of mine have left the faith and gone to a more so called bible based church. Do I explain to them about “traditions of men” and do we in the Catholic liturgies have any of them also. How should I proceed ??

Very carefully. As noted in my comment to steve b, below, this is not such a simple issue. Also, I would strongly advise against describing their faith or their new church in the fashion used above.

From what you have said here, it seems that your friends are honestly seeking God elsewhere. That is not, in itself, a bad thing. If God is good, then God will honour that sincere attempt (q.v. 2 Chronicles 30:18-20, John 7:17, et al).

So, I would further suggest 1/ praying, 2/ continuing to talk with them about it, and 3/ praying.

Mystophilus, I apologize for not thinking of the Anglican Church. I was thinking more of the non-denominational ones. I know the Anglican liturgies are very special and historically based. My apologies. (and others maybe?)

Everyone who claims that they are worshipping in the authentic manner of “the early Church” should read your first linked blog post. :thumbsup:

Thanks Mike. :slight_smile:

Thank you for the apology. :slight_smile:

My point was really that their new, “non-denominational” church might also place considerable importance upon “communion”, too, might care about the history of Christianity, and might well focus its preaching not upon entertainment and comfort but upon repentance and revival. Protestantism is such a hodge-podge that you never know what you are going to get.

First note, it was Elizabeth and Gabriel that said Mary would be blessed, not Mary (Luke 1:28, 42).

On your other point, Paul preaches a lot on self-responsibility. 2 Timothy 2:15 (show yourself), 1 Thessalonians 5:21 (Prove all things). Catholicism relies on the pope and bishop’s guidance.

Also, a small tip. Most non-Catholics reject the claim that the early church was 100% Catholic. Unless you have somewhere that the Apostles referred to themselves as Catholic, you have no way to prove that they were.

I know what you mean. The friends I was talking about invited me to come and I saw things that were good, but nothing like the Mass. New comers had a breakfast given to them of pancakes and eggs and were invited to just talk with them. The main event was a musical introduction that lasted about 15 minutes. The minister gave a talk that was something I call moralizing, hitting points that most good people would agree with. They had people then stand in front and people from the audience came up to them and asked for prayers for problems.

All in all it was a good thing but not the worship that Jesus would want us to have. We had no chance to offer ourselves along with Christ to the Father in the “perfect” sacrifice that we know the Father accepts.

They do good things and I wish other Catholic Churches did some of the things they do for the poor. However, I know that the Church speaks for Christ here and has the authority to determine what Liturgy is proper to God as public worship.

Mary did prophecy. See Luke 1:46 - 1:48.

Ed

It strikes me that, if you take what you saw as useful in their service and talk to people in your parish about utilising ideas from that, and if they take what they know from your service and talk to people in the other church about utilising ideas from that, everybody benefits.

After all, the rosary was not originally Christian (it’s ultimately Buddhist, having reached Christianity via Islam), and that has been put to good use, hasn’t it?

Individual churches can always do better than we are at caring for the poor. But keep in mind that the Catholic Church as a whole provides food, clothing, shelter, medical care and education to more people in the world than any other organization. In 2011, Catholic Charities USA provided more than 3 million meals to the homebound through their own efforts and partnerships with local programs like Meals on Wheels. In 2013, they served more than 9 million people with a variety of services including food, housing, healthcare, adoption services, and more.

So yes, we can and should do more - especially at the parish level - than we’re doing. But just because you don’t see it, don’t think it doesn’t happen. It just happens in a different way in each community. Some are more public than others, and some rely more on established groups like their local Catholic Charities chapter.

I know what you mean but I had a new pastor and I politely asked him to get his approval to continue the door to door evangelization work that I had been doing under the previous pastor. I said I wanted to get more people into the RCIA program. I had been doing this type of evangelization for years and I thought his approval would be automatic but it wasn’t. I have since done as much as I can in other parishes. So I agree, there is a lot to do in our parishes.

I am glad that Pope Francis has been doing things to show the real way to practice Catholicism.

Then Card Joseph Ratzinger (not Benedict) is not saying to Protestants, just be a good protestant and they will be okay.

The quote you use does not contradict what I said. And Ratzinger when he was head of the propogation of faith, doesn’t contradict the CCC that he had a hand in the writing of, under JPII.

Let’s use an example

Since you are Anglican, and you’re using Card Ratzinger’s quote above in the way you do,
Here’s 2 questions. I’ll answer question 1, would you please answer question 2

Q:1 would then Card Ratzinger or later pope Benedict XVI, give me a Catholic, permission to worship in your Anglican Sunday service in place of my obligation of going to Sunday mass? Y or N. (it’s NO)

To followup on that

Q:2 given all the nice ecumenical language used by Card Ratzinger in that quote you gave, and the conclusion you arrived at in your understanding of that quote, why then is the answer to Q: 1, NO? Why is it not yes?

providing one’s ignorance is completely innocent, then ignorance is a mitigating factor. Re: ignorance, consider these quotes from the CCC,
[LIST]
*]1791 it’s not presumed ignorance is always innocent. And note conscience is also mentioned
*]1859feigned ignorance is not ignorance at all.
[/LIST]

I don’t disagree. Have I ever mentioned forcing anyone to embrace the Catholic faith? Never

So let me ask you, speaking of scripture, when Paul, writes the following,
Titus 3:10
“As for a man who is factious ( [FONT=Verdana]αρετικν[/FONT] heretic ), **after **admonishing him once or twice, have nothing more to do with him, 11 knowing that such a person is perverted and sinful; he is self-condemned.”

Considering the consequences

If one agrees to change after 1 or 2 admonishments, does it mean they did so because they felt “bound” to change or does it mean one felt “forced” to agree because of the consequences Paul mentioned?

iow, do the consequences for actions motivate action or force action

A conscience must be properly formed. And I said nothing in my response that contradicted canon law

I quoted copiously. I did not express my opinion, therefore it was not my finger that was doing the pointing.:wink:

You said that Protestantism is a heresy. He said that it isn’t.

given all the nice ecumenical language used by Card Ratzinger in that quote you gave, and the conclusion you arrived at in your understanding of that quote, why then is the answer to Q: 1, NO? Why is it not yes?

The answer is in your Catechism, and it is not about “heresy”:
1400 Ecclesial communities derived from the Reformation and separated from the Catholic Church, “have not preserved the proper reality of the Eucharistic mystery in its fullness, especially because of the absence of the sacrament of Holy Orders.” It is for this reason that, for the Catholic Church, Eucharistic intercommunion with these communities is not possible.

To appreciate this better, one must also read what the Catechism says about these “separated communities”:
817 In fact, “in this one and only Church of God from its very beginnings there arose certain rifts, which the Apostle strongly censures as damnable [Your quotation from Titus is relevant there]. But in subsequent centuries much more serious dissensions appeared and large communities became separated from full communion with the Catholic Church - for which, often enough, men of both sides were to blame.”
Note the explicit avoidance of blame: the references to how the communities “became separated”, rather than actively “separated”, and to how it was not simply a matter of one party splitting from the other.

Further, be aware that
“818 However, one cannot charge with the sin of the separation those who at present are born into these communities [that resulted from such separation] and in them are brought up in the faith of Christ, and the Catholic Church accepts them with respect and affection as brothers . . . . All who have been justified by faith in Baptism are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as **brothers **in the Lord by the children of the Catholic Church.”

So, according at least to the Catholic Catechism, Protestants have a right to be called Christians, to be accepted with respect and affection, and not to be accused of heresy. Your own expressed views are quite different.

providing one’s ignorance is completely innocent, then ignorance is a mitigating factor.

Thank you, so we agree that they are **not **putting their salvation in jeopardy merely by going.

If one agrees to change after 1 or 2 admonishments, does it mean they did so because they felt “bound” to change or does it mean one felt “forced” to agree because of the consequences Paul mentioned?

The question is unanswerable, as it asks what others feel. It is also irrelevant to the canon law statement that they have the *right *to seek the truth, and which does not limit *where *they can seek it.

I said nothing in my response that contradicted canon law

Except for the part where you claimed that they were “putting their salvation in jeopardy” by doing something which canon law affirms is their right.

I quoted copiously. I did not express my opinion, therefore it was not my finger that was doing the pointing.:wink:

Actually, you quoted selectively and interpreted personally, regardless of what your Canon Law, your Catechism, and your Pope Emeritus have to say, and so the whole thing was your opinion, not your church’s.

Now, being an Anglican, I’m fine with people expressing opinions at variance with their church hierarchy’s, but it is always good for such people to at least be aware that they are doing so.

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