What a Protestant thinks about Fatima

Hi,
I am a Evangelical and I posted some stuff on my blog lately about the Pope and Fatima.
Then I had a Catholic friend ask me if I believed that stuff.
Well I had to go thru a thinking process…
Here are the results of that…

qandablog.typepad.com/questions_and_answers/2005/04/what_a_protesta.html

I would greatly appreciate your feedback.

Thank you
qandablogger

I’ll just deal with your sticking point:

Then we run into the parts about praying the rosary and the devotion to Mary. Ouch, this is the hard part for a Protestant. As an evangelical I believe that when Jesus died on the cross and the curtain of the temple was torn from top to bottom that we as Christians were now given free access into the Holy of Holies and to God the Father. We no longer need the High Priest as our intermediary. We can go directly to the father, and we should.

First of all, you are asking, in essence, what the rosary and devotion to Mary is and what it is not. Yes? Second of all you do not know what the true teaching of the Catholic Church is concerning the Communion of Saints, which is understanable. And thirdly, you misunderstand the role of the ministerial priesthood. also understandable. All of these topics are worthy of their own threads here on the forum. So, which one would you like to tackle in this thread?

So is it possible that we do not understand this part of the message? I must say my logic is painting me into a corner here. Bible says, “pray to God alone” but a Spirit being from heaven says pray the Rosary. Is it possible that praying the rosary is not praying to Mary?

Where does the Bible say to “pray to God alone”? Are you sure that’s what it says or is that what you are reading into it? And what do you mean by the word “pray”? Do you mean simple supplication or do you mean worship? It makes a big difference, you see. :wink:

Catholics do not pray to Mary.

I pray to God, and God alone.

If one were to marry someone, wouldn’t you want to get to know his family? Getting to know Mary helps us better understand her son.
So you believed everything else except for the fact that the being was Mary and she told the children to pray the rosary? Is that a pride issue?

[quote=StratusRose]Catholics do not pray to Mary.

I pray to God, and God alone.
[/quote]

Well, most of us do pray to Mary. Don’t confuse prayer and worship. When we pray the Hail Mary we are praying to Mary. Asking her to pray for us is prayer in itself. I always pray to Jesus and then I also pray to Mary and ask her to also pray for me.

When Catholics recite the twelve prayers that form a decade of the rosary, they meditate on the mystery associated with that decade.
With the exception of the last two, each mystery is explicitly scriptural. There are 4 Mysteries in total. Please see this site for a full description (a very nice description at that):

medjugorje.org/rosary.htm

So you see, when we pray the Rosary, we are meditating on the events of Christ’s life. The prayers help us to focus on the meditations…

Hope it helps!

[quote=qandablogger]Hi,
I am a Evangelical and I posted some stuff on my blog lately about the Pope and Fatima.
Then I had a Catholic friend ask me if I believed that stuff.
Well I had to go thru a thinking process…
Here are the results of that…

qandablog.typepad.com/questions_and_answers/2005/04/what_a_protesta.html

I would greatly appreciate your feedback.

Thank you
qandablogger
[/quote]

H Qandablogger, I think you need to look deeper into what the rosary is and how it’s prayed.

I am afraid I don’t have time to respond much, except to point out that much of the confusion between Catholics and Protestants boils down to a different vocabulary. While, as a new Catholic, I can’t say I spend much time on meditation concerning Mary, I can say that the communications with her are not classified as “prayer” as a Protestant understands it. To put it one way, you migh say it is more akin to speaking to a friend or a relative. It is communication, or a form of prayer, but the worship is (or should) always be directed to Christ, Mary’s redeemer. You may be interested in an essay I wrote on the topic of Mary in the Church at the link below…

home.earthlink.net/~karlerickson/writer/id16.html

[quote=Genesis315]Well, most of us do pray to Mary. Don’t confuse prayer and worship. When we pray the Hail Mary we are praying to Mary. Asking her to pray for us is prayer in itself. I always pray to Jesus and then I also pray to Mary and ask her to also pray for me.
[/quote]

Protestants and increasingly more Catholics are great believers and participants in Prayer Circles. They are in essence asking others to pray to God for us, for a special problem or intention, which we as Catholics also call an intercession. Nothing unusual there. With Catholics and their relationship with Mary as the Mother of God, we are asking her to pray/intercede for us when we pray the Rosary. Prayer means to a Catholic to have a dialogue, to converse. Worship and Adoration is reserved to God alone. It’s hard for some people to understand the concept since often people equate prayer with Worship, Praise, and Adoration.

Just an aside: Have you read the recent Time Magazine article about the return to the importance of Mary in some of the various Protestant denominations? It is a very interesting read and I highly recommend it.

[quote=Michael C]H Qandablogger, I think you need to look deeper into what the rosary is and how it’s prayed.
[/quote]

You forget, my background is Catholic. I prayed the Rosary for many years. I know the mysteries of the Rosary by heart.

Ooooppppsss, now we have some new ones.

My point is that it is indeed prayed to Mary.

I think it is indeed a fine idea to meditate on the on the mysteries of the Rosary because they are indeed remembering things that Christ did.

As I go thru scripture I can not find one single example of a person praying to someone other than God, that is deemed correct prayer. There are all kinds of examples of the heathens praying to some unknown God. So, why would we start praying to someone other than God now? If you can find an example I would greatly appreciate it.

There are also examples of people asking prophets etc to pray for them. Maybe this is where the Mary request in coming from.

[quote=MarilynIN] Prayer means to a Catholic to have a dialogue, to converse. Worship and Adoration is reserved to God alone. It’s hard for some people to understand the concept since often people equate prayer with Worship, Praise, and Adoration.
[/quote]

I think if you were honest you would have to admit that some or even many of the very reverent in the Mary movement are indeed worshipping Mary. If you do not believe this, you have not been to any of the Mary conferences.

No, I have not read the article but I would believe it is true. I think Mary is important. But no more inportant than Paul or Elijah or any other human. Now I am really going to get myself into trouble. She is just a human. I know that is heritical, but it is true.

[quote=qandablogger]You forget, my background is Catholic. I prayed the Rosary for many years. I know the mysteries of the Rosary by heart.
[/quote]

Naw…we didn’t forget…you never told us…

[quote=qandablogger]There are also examples of people asking prophets etc to pray for them. Maybe this is where the Mary request in coming from.
[/quote]

I believe that you just answered your own question :thumbsup:
Peace

[quote=qandablogger]Hi,
I am a Evangelical and I posted some stuff on my blog lately about the Pope and Fatima.
Then I had a Catholic friend ask me if I believed that stuff.
Well I had to go thru a thinking process…
Here are the results of that…

qandablog.typepad.com/questions_and_answers/2005/04/what_a_protesta.html

I would greatly appreciate your feedback.

Thank you
qandablogger
[/quote]

As a former Evangelical before my family (and in-laws, too) converted, you might find my article on Mary at the link below helpful. It doesn’t really address the rosary, but it does explain why she is so important to us, and it also warns us when we may have gone too far. I’m glad to see that you’re on the Forums exploring what your other brothers and sisters in Christ believe. Remember, Mary’s importance to Christianity, and Catholics in particular, is utterly anchored in her and our redeemer, Jesus Christ.

home.earthlink.net/~karlerickson/writer/id16.html

[quote=qandablogger] She [Mary] is just a human. I know that is heritical, but it is true.
[/quote]

Mary is just human, how is this heretical?

Believe me; I drive both evangelicals and Catholics crazy. I seek truth and I question anything that seems to be “silly human tricks” put in place of worshipping the one true God of the universe, in spirit and in truth.

BTW, I have read several of Scott Hahn’s books detailing his journey to Catholicism and find many of his arguments spurious at best. At the same time, I believe that Scott Hahn is are real “born again believer” and as a true believe of Jesus Christ he has freedom to worship God pretty much wherever he feels most comfortable.

What I found in the Catholic world is that so few Catholics were really “Born again” in the biblical sense. They went to church as a cultural commitment, just like going to the golf club or maybe they went for fire insurance. This is not a sign of a health Church.

While is do have real theological issues with the Catholic Church, the practical issues are much more important.

  1. Teaching has been weak and un-scriptural, scriptural illiteracy has run rampant even at a time when the people are reading everything but scripture.

  2. Wickedness has not been removed form church leadership - note the huge priest scandal.

  3. Liberalism has been allowed to run rampant to the devastation of much of the church.

So, I find myself as a follower of Jesus Christ not overly comfortable in any church, worshipping in an evangelical church, longing for heaven.

[quote=qandablogger]What I found in the Catholic world is that so few Catholics were really “Born again” in the biblical sense. They went to church as a cultural commitment, just like going to the golf club or maybe they went for fire insurance. This is not a sign of a healthChurch.
[/quote]

You know I read so much “Catholics don’t go to church,” “Catholics aren’t born again,” "Catholics go to as a ‘cultural commitment’ " You know what I propose? Let’s take a look at how many people never step foot in a Catholic church or in any Protestant church. Let’s look at the number of those who say they believe in God but never, ever pray, worship him, think of anything other than themselves–secularists, atheists, etc. Let’s look at every one of them (figuratively speaking) and their family’s religious affiliations. Because I’d just bet every secularist and atheist indeed comes from some “assigned” faith, whether they’ve ever practiced or not.

Now, out of all these non-practicing whether-a-believer or wheter-a-non-believer, how many are Catholics? So you see this same argument DOES apply to Protestants. If you pulled every secuar person off the street, wow golly, I’d bet many, if not most, come from a Protestant background. So that means I can say, "I don’t think Protestants have been ‘born again’ "

So unless you really believe that those people who practice no religious and are secular-humanists were all from Catholic heritage, then I’d suggest people stop trying to spin it like Catholics are so not “born again” and so cold in their faith. I do believe that goes across the board to all faiths.

And one more thing–my husband’s family is Methodist (at this point although they’ve been several different things) and one branch goes regulary to Methodist services. They snipe, talk about each other behind their backs, and basically act like any other sinner…I see more faith and Christian kindness in the people I attend Mass with than I do in these particular Methodists I see regularly.

I’m sorry…I digressed from the thread about Mary, Fatima…we don’t, repeat don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t pray to Mary. Geesh.

Penitent

Your ‘issues’ are far too wide and various to be addressed in a single thread. Most of them appear to be personal and centered on pet issues with the personal sins of others. And you have made many statements that are based on poor catechesis.

My suggestions to you…

With generous ammounts of grace and humility - ask one specific question at a time.

Be careful to not insult Our Lord and CA members by reducing his mama to an incubator. Yes, she is a human and not divine, but is very worthy of your respect and honor.

And … obtain a better education on the communion of the saints, and what catholics believe about it. Not what you think you know, or what those hostile to catholics believe. Also, don’t think that you have all the answers already. You will not learn anything that way.
Asking a saint to pray for you is not worshiping them, or idolizing them, it is the normal function of a family - and is similar to me praying for you - only they do a better job.

Read 2 Maccabees.

Remember the Lords prayer. "Forgive us this day our tresspasses, as (in the same way that) we forgive those who trespass against us.

I was an evangelical for 15 years before becoming a catholic 5 years ago, so I have a feeling for where you are at. So if you ever want some support - send me a PM. I’m no theologian, but I know my way around pretty good for an old cowgirl. :wink: God Bless.

I guess we will have to admit that all of our darn churches are VERY fallen, or maybe it would be better to say that those that attend and do not attend are very fallen. And that is certainly true of all demoninations etc.

About the praying to Mary, all you can say is that you and maybe some you know do not pray to Mary, many I know do indeed pray to Mary and Worship mary. Frankly some of the most Godly/Holy peole I know do this.

[quote=qandablogger]I guess we will have to admit that all of our darn churches are VERY fallen, or maybe it would be better to say that those that attend and do not attend are very fallen. And that is certainly true of all demoninations etc.

About the praying to Mary, all you can say is that you and maybe some you know do not pray to Mary, many I know do indeed pray to Mary and Worship mary. Frankly some of the most Godly/Holy peole I know do this.
[/quote]

Thank you for the admission in your first paragraph. If I had to pick only one person whether still militant or triumphant, to pray for me, no matter how godly/holy the militant is, I’ll ask for the triumphant’s prayers. And I know a handful of godly/holy people who truly believe visiting Disneyland and amusement parks will wind them up in hell…I’d prefer they prayed to Mary for her intercession. So we all have our misguided folks.

Penitent

About the praying to Mary, all you can say is that you and maybe some you know do not pray to Mary, many I know do indeed pray to Mary and Worship mary. Frankly some of the most Godly/Holy peole I know do this.

You give yourself way too much credit and I probably contribute to it by even responding to it. Your intellectual arguments are weak which doesn’t drive me crazy but your lack of knowledge presented as if it is factual is frustrating.

However, for the sake of clarity, any person who worships the Virgin Mother of God is violating the Teaching of the Catholic Church. While I know numerous people who have a devotion to Mary, none of them worship her. They only worship the Trinity. Intellectually, you should know the difference between venerate (which is what Catholics do to Mary and the Saints) and worship (which is solely reserved for God).

Prayer has multiple dimensions beyond making Prayers of Praise to our Creator, Savior and Paraclete.

Prayers of Petition (essentially making a request) can be to God, Mary, the Saints or even my neighbor to intercede on my behalf. There is nothing wrong with asking my neighbor to mow my yard during my vacation, asking Mary, my wife or the hospital janitor to pray for me at the hour of my death, or asking God for guidance or Peace. For me though, it is trivial to ask God to help me sell my house but I have no trouble asking my friends, neighbors and even St. Joseph to help me get my house sold. Just as I don’t ask God to mow my yard, I guess for me the distinction is God should be asked only for the most important things and leave the rest to the rest. If you think it appropriate to ask God for the big things and the little things, go for it.

Prayers of Thanksgiving can be done to God but they can also be done to Mary and the Saints as we express our gratitude for their intercession on our behalf (similar to expressing gratitude for my neighbor who mowed my yard).

Prayers of Contrition (request for forgiveness) are not only done to God but we should also request forgiveness from our neighbors against whom sin.

It is so tiring to listen to people who say that we should have a personal relationship with Christ yet think it is ok for us to ignore and even disrespect his Mother. My relationship with my wife is enhanced by me loving, respecting, and intimately getting to know her mother. When I pray to Mary, I am sometimes reflecting on her life as a perfect Disciple of her Son, am sometimes asking her to petition to her Son on my behalf (sometimes when I want something from my wife, it is better to work thru my mother-in-law. Keep in mind that Jesus did as Mary ordered Him to do at Cana despite the fact that “His time had not yet come.”), and am sometimes just “visiting” with the mother of my Savior (not only does my mother-in-law have insight into my wife but I respect her wisdom on other matters. Similarly, Mary has insight into her Son as well as great wisdom into Christ’s desires for me).

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