After almost a decade of answering questions here on this site, I will need to pivot and try something different. With the recent expansion in my teaching duties, I will need to slow things down. Hundreds of your great questions will be moved to an “archive” page. I will continue to answer pressing questions and provide spiritual guidance via email. That’s right, I’m going old school! Then, I will post the best questions/answers on a new page for all to view.
As always, I’ll do my best to give you an answer in plain English, with links to great resources too, if needed.
Webmaster, Licensed School Teacher, and Catholic Evangelist 🙂
What was the difference between ”James the major and James the minor”?
Saint James the Greater was one of Jesus’ first disciples. James was fishing with his father and John the Apostle when Jesus came to the shores of the Sea of Galilee and called for the fisherman, who were unable to catch any fish that day, to dip their nets in the water once again. The title “the Greater” was added to St. James’ name to help distinguish him from the Apostle James “the Less,” who is believed to have been shorter than James “the Greater.”
Is it theologically correct to pray “To Mary through Jesus”? It doesn’t sound right. Isn’t the proper prayer “TO JESUS,, through Mary”?
Yes. There must be a typo somewhere!
Is in vetro fertilization between husband and wife a sin?
Margaret, this question touches close to my heart. I have close family members that have gone through this. I’ll expand on that at the end of my reply. I’m sorry to say that it is a sin. There’s a couple big problems. For starters, God is taken out of the picture. But second, and very important, is that to do this, doctors create numerous embryos, but many are discarded or sold for research and embryonic stem cells, etc… AND it is very easy nowadays to see that these discarded embryos are live human beings. The heart starts beating in as little as 18 days. That’s another story I guess.
Here’s what they don’t tell you. Babies created this way inevitably have MAJOR health problems. I can personally attest to this too. And it is a painful process (sometimes the first or second try doesn’t even work).
In short, God is the Creator. Maybe He is calling you to foster care or adoption??? Maybe then, you will get your very own gift of life. You can’t out give God…
May God bless you,
Should a Catholic attend a gay wedding ceremony?
Linda, this post got away from me. I read the post when it came through and needed time to find the best response. Then the year got away from me. My appologies for not responding. Here is the best answer that I have ever seen to date, regarding your question. I would recommend the video as well.
Can a Roman Catholic receive the Eucharist at a Ukrainian Orthodox Church?
Jeff, great question, being the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The short answer is NO, a Roman Catholic would generally not be permitted to communion. The Orthodox churches are much more stringent on receiving the Eucharist. They have many rules that Roman Catholics do not adhere to. With that said, you could probably meet with the cleric and determine what you would need to do ahead of Mass to receive the Eucharist. Another note is that even if you didn’t receive the Eucharist, you would still meet your Sunday Mass obligation as a Roman Catholic. Here’s a little more information if you’d like – https://www.catholic.com/qa/catholics-and-eastern-orthodox-communion
Peace be with you,
was john the baptist a priest?
See the previous comment.
was john the baptist a aaronic priest
it is my understanding he was not
John the Baptist was definitely a priest. Here’s what it says in The Gospel of Luke, Chapter 1:
Announcement of the Birth of John.
5 In the days of Herod, King of Judea,* there was a priest named Zechariah of the priestly division of Abijah; his wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
6 Both were righteous in the eyes of God, observing all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blamelessly.
13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid,* Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall name him John.
14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth,
15 for he will be great in the sight of [the] Lord. He will drink neither wine nor strong drink.* He will be filled with the holy Spirit even from his mother’s womb,
16 and he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God
So that is actually both parents from the tribe of Levi. And only Levites were priests. And there were many Levite Priests. I heard someone on EWTN estimate over 20,000. You think they could have gone out and evangelized!
we (friends) had a discussion as to when did the Holy Spirit Take possession of Apostles: Was it when Jesus appeared to them after the resurrection and said, “Receive the Spirit”? or During Pentecost? Please help
This is the fun part of reading and interpreting the Bible. That’s one big reason why I like being Catholic, because the Doctors and Fathers of the Church have already done the work through their vast knowledge of scripture. But try not to get too caught up in the scruples of dealing with conflicting verses. Here’s what I can tell you:
After the Resurrection, the Apostles that were there (Thomas was not) received the Holy Spirit, and it is in reference to the forgiveness of sins. They also received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost along with their followers. Perhaps, there is some deeper meaning on the use of the phrase “Receive the Holy Spirit” that may vary in different contexts, but that will require some digging. And of course, we’ll have to rely on the interpretation of an “expert”. That’s the key in interpreting scripture. The REAL expert is one with countless years of reputable study in Theology and one who is wise in years, who knows the Bible inside and out, along with the various languages that were used and the way of life or context that is given. Thankfully, that is not me, lol. This would be a great question on one of those call in shows. Try http://www.RelevantRadio.com.
Good question, keep up your passion for the Truth!
I am going on vacation with my 47 year old daughter and my two grandchildren. My two grandchildren will be sharing one bedroom with me and my daughter and her boyfriend of one year will be sharing the second bedroom together. Will I be committing a mortal sin by allowing this arrangement? My daughter knows how I feel about her sharing a bedroom with a man who is not her husband but says that she is 47 years old and she does not believe it is a sin.
I feel your pain. Remember, a mother’s prayers for her children are very powerful. And that’s about all you can do. Let God take control. Offer up ALL your sufferings for her conversion (even when you stub your toe). Also pray for the boyfriend. You can also ask for Masses to be offered up for her – use your Googler to find an appropriate Order of Nuns or Priests/Brothers, etc…
For sin to be considered Mortal Sin, they need to be aware that they are doing it and that it is a grave sin. Of course, just because she doesn’t believe it’s a mortal sin, that doesn’t make her an expert. 99.9% of the time, it is definitely a Mortal Sin (there are some exceptions). She probably knows that it is, but just isn’t too concerned.
It’s sad, but our society drives it into everyone’s head that “hooking up” and “shacking up” is OK. TV and Movies especially. And the more “well-to-do” a society gets, the farther they drift from God. Folks just don’t care anymore when they are so distracted by the gizmos of this world. And we could talk for hours on that subject.
You’re good to go, though. I would go make a good heartfelt self-examination and confession so that your prayers are even more efficacious. Clear out any Venial Sins, and get to Mass as often as you can. You will see God’s power if you trust in Him fully. Check out the Divine Mercy chaplet on the Drew Mariani Show – http://www.RelevantRadio.com.
Are the Fatima Apparitions a part of the Tradition of the CC? Does it matter to the Church if a person believes in them or not? +
The short answer is “No, you don’t have to believe in them.” Of course, you are allowed to believe in them, they are Church approved. As a matter of fact, Pope Francis recently traveled to Portugal to Canonize two of the Children.
Now Medjugorie, that’s where it get’s interesting, lol.
I broke a mirrior on accident today. what can I do to make sure I am not with bad luck
I hope you weren’t driving at the time… Anyway, as Christians, we should not believe in luck – good or bad. God is in control. If you focus your mind on possibly getting bad luck, you may end up creating some. God is in control, but He does give us free will to choose the wrong way.
I would suggest (to keep yourself from being consumed by superstition) that you get some Rosary beads out and take this opportunity to pray and grow stronger in the Spirit of God. Ask for God’s Grace to overcome superstitions (we all have our weaknesses), ask for the power to rise above such things. Offer up some prayers to St Joseph, guardian of baby Jesus, or St. Micheal the Arch Angel, defender against the evil one.
Peace be with you,
Are/were Nephilim good or bad? My 8 year old daughter has asked me, after a reference was made to them on tv. I have found several references to them, but none that give a clue to whether they are/were good or bad? In anticipation of her next question did they exist on earth? Do they still exist in heaven or on earth?
Please answer in an email, as I found this site by accident and may not be able to get back to it. If it matters (on how you answer these questions) we are Catholic.
Thank you and may God bless you.
I’ll send this in email as well. According to Fr Echart at EWTN (Catholic tv and radio), the most accepted explanation for this strange scripture material is this:
The Sons of God represent the righteous family line of Seth and the Daughters of Men represent the “bad” line of Cain. The Good vs Evil motif. The Nephilim are the children representing the fallen nature of man.
I have no religious faith. But if Hell exists I don’t want to end up there. (Pascal’s wager.) According to Catholic teaching can I stay out of Hell by actions alone: e.g. attending mass, confessing, doing charity? Or is belief required?
Wow! What a deep question. This day and age, you are not alone. My brother in law is a Cradle Catholic and says “How can you believe those silly stories in the Bible?”
If you think about it, those who don’t live out their faith, do they truly believe? So many people go to church just because their parents did, or they’re searching for God, etc…everyone is on their own journey.
The best thing for you to do is Yes, go to Mass and Confession, but more importantly PRAY. Through prayer your eyes and your heart will be opened.
I’d love to send you a prayer book and a rosary. Just email me your address and favorite colors.
God Bless You!
Just wanted to check with you re: “Leaving mass after communion due to having to get to employment..I had a Msgr tell me I could not receive because I left mass after communion..Please give me your input on this.
It is sinful to leave Mass early for the wrong reasons. I’m almost positive it’s not a mortal sin though. At least on the surface. It can be a mortal sin though depending on the scenario.
The most important commandment of God is to “Love God with all of your heart, your soul, and your body.” Another one is to keep the Sabbath holy.
As part of your spiritual journey, ask yourself “Is there some way that I could avoid working on Sunday and focus more on Jesus that day?”
Technically, for a sin to be mortal and not a venial sin it has to be done on purpose, knowing that it is grave matter. You have to know that it’s bad and do it anyway.
Keep praying Grace, and it will work itself out.
Perhaps your boss would understand you being a little late on Sundays if you asked him/her. That’s good evangelizing!
Does this reply get sent to email as well?
im baptist a thirteen yr old i wonder one big thing how can i save my self from depression
email me on outlook the answer
From your email I see that you are a student at the school I teach at, lol.
There’s no short answer here, though. I’ve been pondering this question all week in hopes that I don’t give you a wishy-washy reply.
A lot of students go through horrible experiences. That can be a separate post if needed.
Nowadays, more kids suffer from anxiety and depression than don’t. It’s an epidemic. Rather than focus on the reasons, let’s focus on how to avoid depression altogether. Most people try to avoid depression by buying lots stuff to play with. Things to keep our minds occupied. The trouble with that is that things will never keep us happy.
The only way to avoid depression is to give your life over to Jesus and his ways. Most church goers “like” Jesus, but they really don’t love Jesus. When you truly love someone, you want to spend as much time as you can with them. You want to get to know them deeply. This is why I made this website. Spend time getting to know Jesus. Practice the cardinal virtues and learn as much as you can about the faith. Download podcasts at RelevantRadio.com.
We can keep this thread going, just reply with any further questions.
Here is one last piece of powerful advice that Baptists will probably never know about: we have a spiritual family that watches over us and can also help us. For starters, God the Father can give us power and grace to help us in any situation. When our mothers fall short, we have Mother Mary, the mother of Jesus. When our dads fall short or maybe aren’t around, we have Saint Joseph, the foster father of Jesus. Of course, Jesus himself is a perfect example and role model to guide us on our spiritual journey. Just read the Gospels, especially the Parables Jesus taught. Also the books of Wisdom and Proverbs teach us how to live a virtuous life.
The more we focus on Jesus, the happier we’ll be.
Holy Family of Nazareth, make us one with you. Help us to be instruments of peace. Grant that love strengthened by your power will guide us every day. May God be at the center of a hearts and homes, until were all one family again, happy in forever with you in heaven, Amen.
I am trying to answer my granddaughter who wants to know why God allows wars?
The short and sweet answer is that God gave us free will to choose the good, or the bad for that matter. Think about this – if we didn’t have free will to choose the bad (think about the original sin in the Garden of Eden), then we would still be in the Garden with God. There would be no sin if we didn’t have free will.
So, along with evil comes evil things.
I am a devout Catholic but I am long-distance dating an agnostic who was raised in the public school environment, so he’s used to fornication, cuddling, kissing etc. He respects my boundaries and understands the moral and practical reasons for them (and even agrees with many of them) However, there are some areas I am uncertain where to draw the line.
We’ve started a practice of voice chatting each other until we fall asleep because it helps us feel closer to each other; my question concerning this is if it’s morally right considering we can see each other lying in bed when the lights are on. I wear perfectly modest pajamas and he can really only see my upper arms-head (when I’m not using a blanket).
One day we began the call and I realised he was shirtless. This made me uncomfortable as I didn’t know if it was ok, and as soon as he heard this he put a blanket over himself. Is it morally ok for him to be shirtless when we videochat? Also, I must admit I find him attractive without a shirt, which makes me more wary of the morality of it.
If your conscience is telling you something, it’s usually right. Then, we start rationalizing those thoughts. Like the old tv shows with the good angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other shoulder pleading their cases.
This is what we Catholics call “the near occasion of sin”. It inevitably takes us down the wrong road.
Perhaps you will evangelize him and he’ll see the light. But in our society, it’s more of a trap. So watch your step. It’s a slippery slope.
I have two girls of my own and I constantly worry about this. I just have to pray for them, teach them well, and trust in Jesus.
The best remedy for your situation is to go have a good confession with a priest, ask for God’s power to overcome the temptations, and ask Him to guide you in the right direction. Don’t let the other fellow push you in the wrong direction.
I hope this helps. I was once that guy. It’s what our society (and TVs) barrage us with. Try to find a TV show that does not prompt us to “hook up”. I avoid those shows by listening to http://www.RelevantRadio.com. Give it a try.
God bless you with a wonderful spouse,
What do I tell a Protestant who quoted The Holy Bible saying that God was The ONLY One we were to pray to, but we Catholics pray to Mary and the Saints?
You could spend eternity arguing point after point, but the obvious move here is to use this opportunity to make THEM think. Always speak out of love. You can lead almost any argument into a simple statement to think about. Like – “Well, Jesus never wrote anything down. (or Jesus didn’t give us the bible.) It was the Catholic Church and the Church Fathers that gave us the bible… If you’re really serious about your faith, you should look into the history of the Church and where it all started.” You might also ask them “Who was it that started your church? And why do you trust that person?
You could even respond very simply to anyone – “Well, I sure don’t know the bible that well. It’s so huge, like 200 books almost, and like 2,000 pages! But I do know that the Catholic Church has been here since St. Peter, the first Pope. And that it was the Catholic Church that put the Bible together. So, I don’t think I can go wrong with the Church that was started by Jesus himself.”
Again, these are free opportunities for CATHOLICS to evangelize our faith. Our Protestant Brothers just don’t know. Believe me, I used to be one of them. But what would we do without them? Most Catholics don’t evangelize. But that’s another discussion. Imagine if we all could work together… like a spiritual ladder.
Peace be with you!
Is Saturday or Sunday the Sabbath? How do I give a simple answer to someone who observe the Sabbath on Saturday? I am a cradle Catholic and have a deep faith …. always want to share my faith!
I’ve learned a lot from Catholic Answers on the radio/drive time.
Keep up the good work!
Your sister in Christ.
Dot, thanks for your question. I’m not affiliated with the radio program but I’ve been inspired by the show. I was a long time listener, but always thought that they talked over the heads of regular folk. And they sometimes sounded quite snobbish. But nobody’s perfect. I’ll have to put in a plug for my favorite drive time show – the Drew Mariani Show on Relevant Radio. 3:00 to 6:00 Eastern time.
Anyway, is your friend in one of those Seventh Day churches? If so you have a wonderful opportunity to evangelize. However, evangelizing and winning a debate never work together. You should answer their questions delicately while steering a better question back to them. Like strategy in chess. It might go something like this:
“Well, the New Testament is filled with references to the “Lord’s Day” as Sunday, the 8th day. The Sabbath is no longer binding. Just like circumcision. I guess unless you’re Jewish, lol.
Alternatively, you could concede their question to put them at ease before you “lay it on ’em”:
“You know, I’m no scholar, but I do know that the Catholic Church dates all the way back to Peter the first Pope and the other Apostles. They were taught directly by Jesus. The Apostles set up the Catholic Church which, by the way, produced the Bible that you read… (No need for fanfare here, you don’t want to outright insult someone.) Who was it that started your church?”
Plant a seed to get someone thinking. They have to go down that path on their own, though. You can’t drag them down the path. It would also be prudent to say a prayer to the Holy Spirit together.
Prayer: “Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in us the fire of your love.”
Get the Relevant Radio app, you’ll love it!
What is the vision of Vatican II? Our Catholic Church has this in their prayer for our church, is this a good thing? I don’t want to be praying something that is in error!!!! I am a devout Catholic, I have 8 children, and I believe all that the church teaches, I don’t have time for opinions, and errors!!!!!!!!!!!!! It actually says, We pray for a church that continues to embrace the vision of Vatican II.
I’m sure that most people would say that you’re just imagining things or being crazy. But I wouldn’t be so sure, nowadays. I would look further into this with some experts on this subject like Patrick Madrid on Relevant Radio. You can call in on his radio show. Or Open Line on EWTN radio. Same thing. They’re both streaming online and on the app.
What is the name of your church and where is it located? You may want to get further clarification from your Bishop.
I am a catholic woman who married a divorced non-catholic man. We married in the Lutheran Church, we went to church together, and waited for children after we were married. My husband filed for annulment however it was not granted.
It is my understanding that I cannot take communion in my catholic church. if that is correct, I don’t understand why I am being punished by my church because of who I married and their divorce. Men and women who had a baby out of wedlock get treated better than I do in the Catholic Church, and I, myself, did not do anything wrong. I find it interesting that the Catholic Church will use me as a CCD Teacher for 6 years and I can go to confession however I cannot take communion.
I look forward to receiving your response by email. Thank You.
Fear not, God loves you. I’ve thought of three things that might help. First, remember the verses from scripture that support the Churches position on this: Jesus teaches us that there is no such thing as divorce (the annulment process seeks to see if maybe a couple was not legally married in the first place – see a canon lawyer for that one); James warns us sternly that anyone who takes the Eucharist unworthily, drinks damnation upon himself. That can’t be good!!! But we feel that it’s not politically correct for someone to be discriminated against. That’s the American way, lol.
Second thought, you wouldn’t be able to find the Eucharist in any Protestant church. Try focusing on Spiritual Communion and prayers during that time of Mass.
Third thought, Pope Francis is working hard on figuring out a solution to this dilemma. Here are MY thoughts: as a Catholic, we yearn for the Eucharist, so I feel your pain. Really. So what can we do right now? We might need some follow up emails, but here we go. So technically, your current marriage is not valid. By keeping up with the charade, they say you’re persisting in grave sin with no intent to stop. This is the heart of the problem. There are some solutions, though. So perhaps you’ve found a soul mate and live together as friends. You would have to give up the idea of marriage and try to live chaste. If you slip up, then you go to Confession. You’ll need a little humility and will have to swallow your pride, but it’s all because the Church loves you and wants you to be a Saint.
Be at peace,
Feel free to follow up in email.
I know the Hebrews were faithful to God and His commands, but is there a better reason why the Hebrews (Jews) were God’s chosen people. Awaiting your reply. Thanks and God bless.
This is a very deep question. I’ll give you a little insight, but there’s so much to consider and it would require much study. I’ll give you some nuts and bolts on the subject, but to fully understand you’ll need to delve into some history lessons to see how life was back then across the globe, as well as the spiritual underpinnings… even then you still may have to just wait and ask Jesus yourself.
Genesis would be a great book to read to get a feel for civilization in the early days. It’s one of my favorite Bible books, next to the Gospel of Luke.
Location, location, location – probably had a lot to do with it. You’d have to agree that [now] Israel, was a very central location with lots of natural waterways. I imagine it was more civilized, so to speak, than rural areas like the Americas, or Australia. And father Abraham, Noah, Lot… these were special people. Why did God choose these folks? Well,think about it – whoever he choose would have been the ones that history would write down, that we would read about in our Bible. Remember God’s perspective. Everything God does is absolutely perfect. He sees it from beginning to end.
Never stop learning about your faith,
I HAVE A QUESTION.
iS IT A REQUIREMENT TO TAKE CONFESSION BEFORE WE AS GODPARENTS BAPTIZE OUR GRANDCHILD?
I’m not sure if I have enough details, but here goes. Feel free to email back if you need more info. One of the sponsors need to be a Catholic in good standing. One of the requirements for Catholics is that you receive the Sacrament of Confession at least once a year. But no one really knows if you have a mortal sin weighing over you, do they? So if you go to Mass every week and are in God’s Grace, then you’re good to go. Sorry for the late response. I’ve been working on over 50 meetings for my students going to High School this August…
Peace be with you,
I am now 62 years old. I married at 18 years old in a Catholic Church. The woman constantly slept around while I worked nights. She divorced me. I remarried still young. That marriage didn’t work. I married for a third time, for 20 years now. She goes to her church and i go to mine. I want to receive communion. Are there 2 unforgivable sins? I had nothing to do with those divorces. Out of my hands. Proceeded without my consent. Main question:Are.there two unforgivable sins?
There are no unforgivable sins for God, aside from Sins against the Holy Spirit, which is another topic altogether. So be at peace on being unforgivable. Of course that doesn’t leave you in the clear though, either. So here we go. Divorce is not a sin. You can part ways with your spouse and simply live celibate lives. The Catholic Church holds that you are still married, as Jesus said in the Gospels – that you commit adultery if you divorce and marry another. With divorce being so huge these days, you are not alone.
Here are your options:
1. You could receive “Spiritual Communion” – there are prayers you could say during communion, on that end.
2. Look into an annulment of your first marriage. Your 2nd one would not have been sacramental. It sounds like you would qualify as not having a full understanding of the marriage pact at the young age of 18.
3. The Catholic Church doesn’t recognize your final “marriage”. You could accept that and try to live chastely. You could go to confession and release all your past suffering and heartfully intend to live chastely with this “friend”. Some priests are making this concession for those with same-sex attraction – check out the website for Courage.com.
Also, sorry for the late response. I’ve been working on over 50 meetings for my students going to high school this August. If you have any more questions, feel free to email.
Peace be with you,
P.S. the Pope is working very hard to figure out a solution to this dilemma. So hang in there!!!
Does a “Spiritual Communion” require some one to be in the state of Grace? What are the requirements for a Spiritual Communion?
Spiritual Communion is a way to communion for those who are not in the state of grace. Also, for our Protestant brothers and sisters who don’t have access to the Eucharist. Or even a Catholic who is in the state of grace, but is maybe sick and cannot attend Mass. There are many prayers for Spiritual Communion here’s a trusted site https://www.ewtn.com/devotionals/prayers/blsac4.htm.
Have a great day Marie. I’ll zip these comments back to you in an email.
When we talk of fasting in the church, it always seems to be about food. Then during Lent we give up meats on certain days. We also talk of giving up other things to. When we fast does it always mean food.? I am a diabetic and have given up most sugars when I can. I would like to participate in a complete fast but can’t due to being diabetic and other illnesses. Can you help me with this? Like I said in evey religion it is the same. I was raised Methodist and Baptist but married a Catholic. Always wanted to be one anyway. Thanks
I think we all need to fast from Hollywood. Give up TV for your fast, right? We need to stop making these people rich, lol. It is good to fast from many things, but when we talk about real fasting like Jesus talks about, it is food. Sadly, the Church has significantly watered fasting down. No meat on Friday is meaningless for most people. And eating bread (simple carbs) on a fast is counterproductive. There is a spiritual power that comes from denying your body food. If you can make it through a real fast, then you will begin to notice that YOU are in control. Through this self-mastery, you will find it easy to deny yourself anything. You’ll see things in a new light.
About diabetes – there are now clinics popping up that are using fasting to treat Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. I will link some great resources at the end of this message. The short of it – when you fast, your body switches to fat metabolism (ketones), as long as you don’t eat too much bread. Your body can live off of ketones and resistant starches. Resistant starches provide glycogen/glucose towards the end of digestion. Basically, you are training your body to not need insulin. If you do need something sweet, just exercise first. Warm muscles do not need insulin to grab that sugar. (My first undergraduate degree was in Exercise Science.)
https://www.amazon.com/Eat-Fast-Feast-Feeding-Christian/dp/006290521X (my favorite book)
Type 1 diabetes:
Type 2 diabetes:
what Old Testament books are suggested for middle school readers to read?
Claire, what a great question for a middle school teacher! I struggle with that question, and probably will continue that struggle until someone (maybe you) pulls out the good stories and publishes them into singular books or a collection of connected stories. Why am I saying this, you might ask? I would be very hesitant to throw my children into the Old Testament, without a lot of oversight, due to some of the explicit content. I like the approach of reading the stories together (mom and daughter/son). That way you can skip certain stories or at least have a deep discussion about them and steer them in the right direction. If I am confusing anyone reading this, let me explain further:
First, some of the stories are very gory, i.e. Judith who entices the opposing general, then gets him drunk and cuts off his head, and brings the head back to the Israelites. Boys would probably love stories like that, but you should know your kid, and whether it would give him/her nightmares. There’s a lot of killing and violence in the Old Testament. Personally, I avoid the story of Father Abraham attempting to kill his son (I don’t think young children have the whereabouts to make the connection with Jesus…). You have to be careful, but a lot of wisdom can be gained from these old stories. If you can get them interested in Proverbs and the Books of Wisdom, that will set them up for success in high school and beyond. Reading with your child (either separately or together) is a great way to start conversations about the virtues and cardinal sins.
Second, there’s many stories about polygamy, and even worse incest. Read the introduction to each book first and consider skipping those stories.
So, in short, I would recommend reading together (either reading aloud, or you both have identical Bibles), but if that’s not an option, start at the beginning. The first few chapters of Genesis might bore a middle school kid, but it quickly gets into some interesting stories. Watch out for Sodom and Gomorrah, though. If your kid’s in public school though, this is a conversation you need to have. Public schools teach immoral things (I work there… and my Rosary is on my neck everyday). If your kid is in private school, don’t plant too many seeds. Keep that conversation on morals and virtues. I’d be happy to answer any questions regarding public schools – just post a new thread. Email me if you have more questions about books to read. Take a look at one called “The Shack”.
Good luck with middle school. The most important thing you can do for your child is to pray for them – everyday, every night, every morning, every lunch…
Hello, Maybe you can answer me this question, someone asked? if Adam and Eve had only two sons, where did they find a woman to marry to have their kids if they were the first people on earth, was there incest involved? I thought this was a very good question. Thank You Very Much, Tom
This is a fun question. However, it may be a good opportunity to address the real question. The underlying question that prompts people to ask questions like this is – why do you believe these silly things? So, I’ll answer your question with this in mind to give you some ideas for responding to similar questions:
Well, first of all, it does say in Genesis 5 that Adam and Eve had many sons and daughters. It goes on to say that they lived hundreds of years. This now leads into hours of fun debate, no doubt, but you could steer the conversation into more meaningful analysis. This is one of those bible stories that has been passed down for eons through oral tradition. It’s unfathomable how this story came to be. We believe that it was inspired by God and became oral tradition. Remember, written language didn’t just happen over night.
You can take these stories literally as fundamentalist do, or you can take them figuratively as their main point is to teach a “truth”. I’m in both camps. I like to believe that these things happened as written, but more importantly it gives us an understanding of how God created the world. I hope this helps. Feel free to reply if you have more questions.
What does it mean to say that the role or contribution of godparents to the catholic church is holistic?
I’m not sure if I have enough information here, but here’s my two cents. Nowadays most Godparents are not much more than glorified gift givers. Either 1, the Godparent knows little about the faith, or 2, the family/child has little care for the faith. I’m assuming that you are the Godparent. So if you are in one of those categories here’s what you need to do. Category 1 – learn all about the faith and try to make some connection with the child in the area of faith – send him/her bibles, missals, Rosaries, etc. Category 2 – Pray for the child and the family, take it to adoration, offer Masses, fast, and give alms for their conversion. And send Bibles, missals, prayer cards, etc… Even if they’re not going to Mass – keep planting those seeds.
If I totally missed that question, feel free to email a reply back with more information.
Peace be with you,
1. In the Our Father, would “…and lead us away from temptation….” not be the simplest
2. Where does Jesus say — we must hate our body with its vices and sins?
1. Are you referring to the Pope talking about changing the Our Father? That’s been a hot topic on all the Catholic radio shows lately. There are lots of different opinions floating around out there. Myself, I hope that he doesn’t change it.
2. Jesus talks about hating lots of things, even your father and mother. But the meaning behind all of this figurative language is that nothing matters other than God. God is the only thing that matters. He wants you to hate those things that take you away from Him.
If you want to dig further on this send an email back.
In the 1994 addition of good news published by the Canadian Bible society and approved by the Canadian conference of Catholic bishops, it says in Matthew 2:25 “ But he had no sexual relations with her before she gave birth to her son. Please comment
Theresa, as I read this post Christmastime, there were a few calls on Relevant Radio asking about the perpetual virginity of Mary. I have been trying to get the right links to those shows but haven’t been successful. The nuts and bolts of it was that a bad translation is where this argument springs from. The Gospel writers were not implying that Mary did have sexual relations at some point.
The way I always think of it is this – How could the Mother of Jesus, the Mother of God, be soiled by human passions? (And celibacy isn’t as impossible as people think – many saints, priests, and nuns have done it.) Also, God did not pick Mary randomly out of a hat. She must have been prepared to help produce the offspring of God (the Immaculate Conception). And another thing to consider – DNA is passed between mother and child. Mary is no ordinary human. I guess those are my comments. Hope it helps.
1. Does Lord Jesus say that we must hate our body with its vices and sins?
2. Approx. how many priests have been charged with sexual assault on children in the USA?
3. What is the procedure in the following situation: A priest confesses to another priest
that he has sexually molested a child. Does the priest who hears the confession inform
Sorry for the 2 week response, I’ve been swamped with meetings. Anyway, here goes:
1. Jesus often speaks figuratively – in his parables and sayings. We don’t literally cut off our hands or pluck out our eyes if they lead us to sin. Rather, these verses are rich with meaning and are the foundations of many homilies. We could go on for hours…
2. As for priests charged with sexual assault, the instances are much lower than say, school teachers. They discus this a great deal on Catholic Radio, so call into one of the shows on http://www.RelevantRadio.com.
3. If a priest confesses such a sin, most likely his absolution would hinge on him turning himself in. Also, if that priest has no real repentance, than absolution is mute. Even if he receives absolution, it doesn’t matter if he doesn’t meet the criteria for being absolved.
What is the Church’s opinion/status on the Purple Scapular that was received from Marie-Julie Jahenny?
Hey Rosie, sorry for the late response, I’ve been on vacation. I believe that the Purple Scapular is not approved by the Church. I have been searching the Vatican’s website as well as the Catholic Conference of Bishops and have found no information on the purple scapular. Lots of info on the brown and black scapular and red too. If it was Church approved, they would have info about it.
I have worn a Celtic necklace for many years, and it has a design of 3 horses. The below article talks about the 3 horses representing Godesses. I know we are not suppose to worship false gods and I never thought of the necklace that way. My question is, should I stop wearing my necklace now that I have read this?
Horses were highly valued by the Celts. A man might well have been judged by the quality of the horses he kept and by how well he treated them. Evidence exists that shows a good horse was sometimes treated with the same respect and reverence due a chieftan. They were symbols of virility, strength, and stamina. “Inverurie Horses” is a copy of a design created by George Bain, which was inspired by a Pictish image of a horse he found carved into a stone in Inverurie, Scotland. It is also commonly thought to represent the three “Great Horse” goddesses of Celtic mythology: “Epona” (Gaulish), “Macha” (Irish), and “Rhiannon” (Welsh). The design is widely used by craftspeople and marketers alike, and is found on everything from tee shirts and blankets to glassware and pottery.
Rebecca, sorry to take so long to respond but I was on vacation. Your situation is similar to folks who unwittingly put a buddha statue in their home. Or those who practice yoga using those poses that were intended for worship of gods. Many folks are just clueless about the religious realm. But hopefully, we’re making progress. Now that you’ve realized what your wearing, you will continually think about those horse “goddesses”. You want to wear a Crucifix – that way you are continually thinking about Jesus’ wonderful sacrifice.
IS THERE A DIRECTORY OF ALL MEN ORDAINED AS PRIESTS IN AMERICA SINCE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE CHURCH HERE.
David, that’s a very large list. What you would have to do is start with a list of all the US Dioceses and each one will have a list of all their priests. Next, you would need to find all the religious orders and get a list from them. I guess that you could then publish that final list for interested parties. Good luck, Kevin.
I am a devoted Catholic, attend Mass regularly and more., pray much, etc. I also have a severe anxiety disorder, which I have tried to overcome for a long time with help, but still have it and have prayed about it, too. My question is, is it a sin for me not to belong to a Church Guild? I am on the parish prayer tree. I have agonized over this terribly. and it has raised my anxiety. Please answer me. thank you so much.
Susan, I have agonized over similar situations in the past. But the beautiful thing about “Jesus’ easy yoke” is that you can just sit back and let Him open the right doors for you.
I’ve learned over the years, that the trick is to simply give your life over to Jesus. Consecrate your life to Jesus’ Sacred Heart, or to Mary, or Joseph – to live every moment for Jesus. It sounds hard, but it actually is quite easy. Just do your best, but don’t try to hard. You don’t need to impress God. He just wants you to love Him with all of your heart, soul, and body.
Say a prayer of consecration everyday. Or simply pray, “Jesus I give You this day and everything in it.” Then just go about your day doing the best you can and Jesus will lead you. When there’s a problem, you ask for help – and you won’t be let down. It’s AMAZING!!! I teach Special Ed Middle School kids by day, and sometimes I feel like God is doing all the work. I could go on for hours…
Give it a try – it may take a little bit to get used to, but you get better at it day by day. And remember, if your agonizing over something, offer it up or ask for God’s divine assistance. It will transform your life. I guarantee it. I will pray for you right now. Peace be with you,
I don’t think there is anything wrong with men marrying men or women marrying women. In fact, I have a number of homosexual friends in the Episcopal Church who are priests and married to each other. In one case, the female priest and her wife adopted a son and fought for EQUAL RIGHTS for themselves as parents in the State of Mississippi. Thank God for the supreme court ruling which, coincidentally, happened around the same time as the ECUSA approved same sex marriage (with proper pre counseling, of course).
It cannot be denied that all the many hundreds (if not thousands) of cases of Catholic clergy abuse which continue to consume the time of the powers that be in the Catholic Church, and could potentially bankrupt the diocese in Pennsylvania, among other places, might not have happened had the priest been allowed to MARRY.
Celibacy be damned.
Bo,we could talk for hours on this topic, but let’s keep it simple (and family friendly).
I always try to look at the root of the problem. The main problem here is that you could make your own “Christian” church. You could preach whatever you want to interpret from the Bible. Just like those Epicopal priests. Then you tell your flock that your authority is from God, etc, etc. If anyone doesn’t agree with your interpretation of Scripture they simply go to another church. And you end up with just the folks that believe everything you preach. And you may be steering them down the wrong path.
Now, just because you believe something, that doesn’t make it true. If your faith is in Jesus, than you have to go look at the Churches set up by the Apostles and how those early churches operated and what they believed.
Relevant Radio has talked about this issue almost constantly. You can search their archives and hear some great debates on celibacy and this horrible scandal. http://Www.RelevantRadio.com. And check out the book No More Good Men which outlines the infiltration of the Church and how deep it runs. Don’t forget about Sodom and Gomorrah, sodomy is a health hazard for starters. And obviously God does not approve of it (just read the Bible story about Sodom and Gomorrah). If you’re concerned about your eternal soul and destiny, you have to be careful what you believe.
Never stop learning about the Faith,
Is there such a thing as the devil’s bible? I live in New Hampshire and a certain person is claiming they found such a thing and that there are only three in the world and the Vatican actually possesses one. I have never heard of such a thing.
Tlhank you and God Bless,
Pam, thanks for writing. You may want to stay away from that person. There is definitely a satanic bible though, and they’re growing in numbers. We need to stay far away from all of this. I’ll leave it there. Be careful and maybe offer a Mass for that individual.
Michael the Archangel defend us in battle,
Who is the patron saint of military personnel?
Kathy, thanks for writing. The most widely known and most powerful would have to be St Michael the Archangel. If you’d like I could send you a necklace medal or Rosary with St Michael on it. Just fill out the form on this site at the handmade Rosaries page.
if the Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life then why does the sacrament of confirmation come after the sacrament of communion?
Thanks for writing. You are correct, the Eucharist is so important. That is why we want to get the ball rolling as soon as a child is capable of understanding the sacrament of confession and the significance of the Holy Eucharist. Then, confirmation comes in 8th grade where they confirm their Baptism.
Can the ashes of a cremated body be “scattered”? Doesn’t the urn containing the ashes/remains have to be “buried” at sea or interred in a crypt or buried in the ground?
Mary, if you’re Catholic, you profess your belief in the resurrection of the body, every Sunday (at least). It’s in the Apostles Creed as well, so all Christians are bound to this whether you know it or not. This is one reason why the remains must stay together, interred at a church or proper cemetery. Also, scattering ashes is a new age religion belief and God will not like you doing that. Of course, many early Christians were burned at the stake and on poles (referred to as Roman candles). Their ashes were mostly scattered, but the motives were quite different. Take a look at a recent movie called Paul the Apostle.
God Bless you,
Can you explain what it means to “enter into God’s rest”. It is mentioned in Hebrews 4.
Elizabeth, thanks for writing. Hebrews 4 talks about the Sabbath day rest and alludes heavily to disobedient souls who will not enter into God’s rest (Heaven). So I would take great heed and stay obedient to God’s Commandments. This is one commandment that is often set aside. Keep in mind that some of us have to work on Sundays to feed our families or for the sake of another. But for the most part, many of us like to mow the lawn or clean the house on Sundays, rather than keep Sunday focused on God. Still, others like to go out to lunch or Sunday brunch after Church and therefor make others work on Sundays… That reminds me of a Seinfeld episode involving Putty telling Elaine to steal the newspaper… Anyway, great question.
Peace be with you,
Where do souls of aborted babes go
Great question Frank. There are two schools of thought on this and I believe that the Church has not weighed in on which one it is – we’ll never be as smart as God. They both can give us consolation though.
#1: The aborted babies go to a place of Limbo, where they don’t even realize that they are not with God. It is considered a wonderful place filled with joy.
#2: Some believe that these precious souls go straight to Heaven because they have not sinned.
The reason for the uncertainty is that these souls have not been baptized.
IMPORTANT – check this out – Baptism comes from God. We don’t necessarily have to ask to be baptized. We can, but the Bible tells us that baptism comes from above. Us Catholics usually get baptized as a baby and our parents request that. Because what if we were killed in an accident and not baptized? The Bible (and Jesus) says that you must be baptized to enter Heaven. Since we didn’t make Heaven or the rules to get into Heaven, we can’t preach that folks don’t need to be baptized, like some protestant denominations. We don’t want to take that chance.
Sooooo…. Mom or Dad could ask a priest to baptize their aborted child. You could even have a baptism ceremony and even a party to celebrate their entrance into heaven. At any rate, you’ll have a sinless one interceding for you before the throne of God.
I hope that helps. And pass it on if you know someone in this situation. I have heard wonderful witnesses to this idea of baptizing an aborted child.
God loves you!
I have a question: When and why was January 1 holy day of obligation changed from Circumcision Day to Mary, Mother of God Feast Day?
Romi, I just found this buried in my comments. I thought I sent a reply awhile back…
But in case I hadn’t…
The feast day was changed (in the Catholic Church)in 1960 from Circumcision or the Octave of Christmas (8 days after birth, a Jewish boy would be circumcised) to the Feast of Mary Mother of God. This is quite a web of tricky details, but here is my take: the Early Church celebrated the anniversary of the Mother of God on January 1. Since then, many other feast days have been named for the various aspects of Mary and January 1st was changed to the Feast of the Circumcision (or Octave of Christmas). At some point in the 1900’s, I believe, there had been a lot of push back from protestants about calling Mary the Mother of God. I have heard commentators, much smarter than I, relate that the “official” naming of the feast day, Mary Mother of God, would help put an end to these attacks that the Church never referred to Mary as the Mother of God.
Hope this helps,
Is the Orthodox Church Older than the Catholic Church. Was the schism in 1080 AD the beginning of Orthodoxy????
Donald, sorry for the month wait. I’ll send you a free Rosary if you like!
Anyway, the split you speak of is indeed the start of the Orthodox Church as we know it today. They split from the Roman Catholic Church (which was centered in Rome). The Catholic Church was the one started by Jesus and his Apostles. Technically, the Orthodox Church has apostolic succession, too though. Hope this answers your question.
What do I say to my friend who was just put in nursing home, the first time I visit. ? She is 78 and cannot walk by herself. With few other minor problems. Some thing clever, maybe !!
I’ve been hesitant to respond to this post, Janice. I don’t think I have enough information about your friend. Is she Catholic? Is she aesthetic, etc…
My only thoughts are that just being present and supportive would mean the world to her. Bring her some prayer cards or a good spiritual book, since she’ll hava a lot of time on her hands. Maybe invite her to be a prayer warrior for your family???
Feel free to return this email I’m going to send,
Did the early church have deaconesses and if they did what was their role
Mary, this is a very controversial issue. I lean on the doctors of the Church on these issues because they exhaust every possibility and detail because they devote their entire life to these things. Women were deeply involved in the early church, but after considering all related issues and details, the early church decided that these deaconesses were not part of the clergy. Something to keep in mind is that a priest is first ordained as a deacon. If women were deacons, perhaps they would then move up to priest status. And we honor the tradition that Jesus only ordained men in his ministry.
Hope this helps,
I recently posted in a facebook discussion an article from Catholic.com/magazine titled, “The Truth about Pope Honorius”. The date of the article is 9/1/94. A person in the discussion wants to know who the author is, and his background. Can you please provide me this information?
Here ya go:
I read on Lifesite news today that 8 consecrated Hosts from Germany were being offered for sale for satanic purposes to be sent from Germany. this may be legitimate and it may be a hoax, but my question is – Has any Catholic organization offered to buy these hosts if they are consecrated to avoid sacrilege? What is your recommendation in this case?
Marie, there was a host taken a year or two ago right here in America, and it was to be used in a black mass. We were able to get it back through the legal system, though. However, that may not work in Germany. I imaging that if the Catholic Church started buying these back, then so many more would be stolen for the purpose of getting free money.
Remember when Jesus was tortured and nailed to a cross? And descended into Hell, before rising on the third day? Maybe these consecrated hosts will suffer a similar fate and bring about the conversion of those involved. Time to pray, if you ask me. Nothing is more powerful than the prayer of a righteous woman, or man.
I heard it was 3 sets of nine. There was a great discussion about this on the Drew Mariani Show (www.RelevantRadio.com) you can search and download the podcast from 5/13/2019. One of the guests is a former Satanic “high priest” Zack King. He’s been on the show in the past, as well. Check it out.
I have recently obtained two St. Benedict medals. I have read that a St. Benedict medal requires a particular blessing. Is this true? Is it not valid if it does not receive this blessing? Also, there are special powers attributed to this medal. It is supposed to be a very potent ward against evil. Why would it be more powerful than a crucifix with the Lord’s body displayed on it? The need for a special blessing and the powers attributed to it (being a protection against poison, etc.) sound a lot like superstition. Is it superstition or is it appropriate to use a St. Benedict medal?
Jim, we always have to be careful about not allowing our spirituality become superstition. Our faith is in God’s power and not in a lucky rabbits foot or medal. It’s not the medal itself, but the God invoked by it. So to say… Here’s some great information from a very reliable source: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/astagnaro/the-st.-benedict-medal-when-the-church-is-no-longer-messing-around
Can you tell me anything about the author Brother Hemenegild, tosf?
Can he be trusted.
I thought I replied to this post, but just in case the web gremlins got it, here goes again:
St Hermenegild (of the Catholic Church) is considered a martyr as well. Here is a very trustworthy article from the NC Register:
Where is the bible is the phrase Eye has not seen, Ear has not heard what God has in store for those who love Him
1 Corinthians 2:9
I read Acts 1, 1-11. My question is “who are the two men in white?” I am a lector.
After Jesus is taken up into Heaven, the two men in white would most likely be Angels. If they were saints/Old Testament prophets/Moses, they would have been named, like elsewhere in the Bible.
Check out Genesis Chapter 18 where Abraham is visited by three men. It’s very interesting, and might tie in to what you are thinking about. Sorry for this late reply!
is defaulting on a loan a mortal sin
Defaulting on a loan is definitely a sin; however, there is a gray area as to whether it is a mortal sin. To be a mortal sin, you would have thought to some extent that you were not going to pay it back. If that is not the case and you were just unable to pay it back, (maybe due to medical issues) that’s another question. And it’s still a little gray, and questionable. Some folks will rationalize the situation and say, “I just can’t pay this back”, when maybe they really could have. It might take a long time to pay it back, but why not take the easy way out? I did just that when I was a young adult. So Francis, unless you lost your job, had some large medical bills, or something of the like, than I would consider it a mortal sin and take it too confession.
We all fall short of the glory of God. Don’t beat yourself up. Take it to confession and make restitution in some way, whether it be volunteering or giving to charity, or even paying back the debt if possible. Hope this helps,
At the Last Supper Jesus said “Take and eat of this” and “Take and drink of this, all of you”.
Why did he say “All of you”? Did he intend that for Judas since he knew he would betray hi , regret it, and commit suicide?’
Jim, sorry for the late response. I must have missed a couple notifications when I was on vacation this summer.
Think of God in terms of the worlds most powerful computer chess engine – He know’s every possible outcome for every possible choice that you might make in moving your pieces. The same goes for Judas. He didn’t have to commit suicide. Judas had free will. But our omniscient God knew all the outcomes from all of Judas’ choices. Judas could have repented and begged God for forgiveness, but it looks like he chose despair. Just think about how many of us have betrayed Jesus for money. I did. But I chose to repent and asked forgiveness. That’s not to say that perhaps Judas repented on his last breath???
Great thoughts, Jim. God’s peace be with you,
The Book of Revolations talks about the seven spirits of God. revelations chapter 4:5. what is the Catholic understanding of who or what these seven spirits of God are? How do these seven spirits factor into the
I cannot find any official interpretation from the Catholic Church on the seven spirits of God. Most commentaries point to either the Holy Spirit or Angels. And of course, the Holy Spirit is part of the Trinity. Try not to be too scrupulous as you read through the Bible. Passages like these really get us thinking. What about the seven Fruits of the Holy Spirit? Anyway, the Book of Revelation gives us very dramatic imagery. Some people avoid this book altogether being that it is simply too difficult to understand… but then, some protestant pastors preach fire and brimstone every Sunday using this book…
Apparitions of Mary in Heroldsbach, Germany. See website below. What can you tell me about this? Is it approved by the Church? Why have I never heard of it before?
Joe, there are hundreds of reported apparitions of Mary. That might be why you haven’t heard of this before. Here is the official word from the “official” Miracle Hunter (radio show on Relevant Radio) regarding Heroldsbach, Germany: 1998 – Archdiocese of Bamberg officially recognized as a “place of prayer” (no comment on supernatural character of the events).
God bless you!
What are the teachings of the Catholic Church on dream interpretation? In the Old Testament, God communicated with humans through dreams and allowed specific individuals the ability to interpret those dreams. Is this method of communication with God still available to us or is it simply contained in the Old Testament.
A specific dream that I have questions about is a reoccurring dream where I am about to receive the Eucharist, but accidentally drop it or the priest accidentally drops it. The dream feels so real that I am always left wondering if this actually happened.
Ashley, I’m not familiar with any official Church teachings on the interpretation of dreams. Throughout history, it is evident that God does communicate through dreams. I would just be careful as to who is interpreting. Start with your parish priest.
My thoughts are that, in general, our dreams mean something personal to ourselves and we could interpret them based on our personal view. However, if God sent the dream, he will also send someone to interpret it, perhaps your parish priest.
The Latin Mass is what all Christians all over the world experienced for almost 2000 years. It is gorgeous. It is so worshipful. It connects you with all that history and MOST of the Saints in heaven used this version! It will seem uncomfortable and foreign at first. But if you stick with it, and follow along in the English, you will eventually pick up a lot of Latin. Plus, you sing a lot of the responses in Latin (Creed, Agnus Dei, Sanctus, Gloria etc) You can always follow along with the Latin in the English by using the 1962 Missal.
It used to be that where ever you were in all the world, you could walk into a Catholic church and it would be the EXACT mass you experienced in your home town. Now, my Spanish speaking friend has to attend a different Mass than I do because we all have to have our own language. Such a shame! The Latin Mass united the Church, the new Mass divides it.
Here is an online version for free that you can download as a PDF:
This is a simplified version – Latin on the left, English on the right
3rd line down – “Text of the Extraordinary Form (Traditional Latin Mass / Tridentine Mass”
This one includes the music for the portions that the congregation participates in:
1st line “Text of the Ordinary Form (Mass of Paul VI / Novus Ordo Missae)”
You can buy a printed version of the basic Mass with the Latin on the left and English on the right on amazon:
And, if you REALLY get into it, you can buy the whole 1962 Missal here (expensive!) that includes all the readings, collects etc on Amazon:
And here is a website explaining the Latin Mass and how to celebrate it with the priest:
I hope you can look into these sources and learn more about the Latin Mass. I think you will find it a true blessing!!
Great information and very comprehensive! I like the smile.amazon charity link, too.
Have there been any instances in Church history where laymen have consecrated themselves to female saints in a manner similar to Consecrated Virgins consecrating themselves to Christ?
Ken, sorry for the late response. I was planning on doing some specific research on some examples but I just haven’t had the time. What does come to mind is the consecration to the Chaste Heart of Mary. But you don’t have to be celibate. Married men and women can do this. Have a blessed New Year!
So I went to confession years ago and would go to confess a sin, but would get worried about how detailed I needed to be- I would confess what the sin involved, but was unsure of how much detail I should go in to. I am worried that I intentionally withheld information. I felt that I had properly confessed the sin (impurity through technology), and I just didn’t have to be as precise as I originally thought. Regardless, I went to confession recently and told father flat out what the sin was. I mentioned that I had withheld that information fearing being too descriptive. He told me that it actually changed the type of sin and invalidated my reception of the Eucharist. The multiple confessions that I’d had before this most recent one, I felt that I had properly confessed the sin. Am I guilty of withholding information and invalidating my sacraments of communion and confession?
This sounds like a tangled web and you just need to get out and start fresh! I’ve heard from top apologists (I believe this question was posed to Patrick Madrid, a leading authority on the catechism) that the word “impurity” is good to use in confession; that the priest does not need/want to hear those types of details.
Keep in mind that confession covers items you have forgotten about. Also, for sins to be “grave” you need to do it knowing that it is a grave sin.
When you told the priest that you withheld that information, he may have thought you meant that you withheld all of the sin/information. Impurity of thought or action, through technology, etc. is fine for confession. If you forget something, that is covered, too. However, you can still bring something you forgot to confession if you like. To set your mind at ease, make a fresh confession (bring a list so that you don’t forget anything). Then on Sunday, receive the Eucharist.
Sometimes we get too scrupulous about things. Of course, that is better than being too absent minded and not caring. Here’s a great source for a comprehensive examination of conscience: https://www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/sacraments-and-sacramentals/penance/examinations-of-conscience.
In conclusion, if you are still having trouble with impure thoughts/actions, learn how to fast. Fasting and prayer will give you control over all of your desires. When I was able to deny myself food (water and electrolytes only) for an entire day (36 hours counting sleep), I regained control. This book is a game changer – https://www.amazon.com/Eat-Fast-Feast-Feeding-Christian/dp/006290521X.
Have a blessed day,
My husband’s older sister has been living with a man for a year. My husband and I were both raised Catholic and are raising our children in the Catholic faith. Obviously we don’t agree with her choice to live this way. We have decided that we don’t think it is a good idea to bring our youngest two children, who are still minors, into her home while she is choosing to live this way. It has not been much of an issue as there has not been occasion for us to go to her home as all holidays etc. have been held in our home or my husband’s parents house. Now my sister-in-law has decided that she wants to host Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings this year. We have made our position clear to her and she is livid with us! We have tried to explain that we are teaching our children that sex and co-habitation outside of marriage are wrong and we feel by spending time at her house while she is living that way would be showing them that we really don’t think it is a big deal. She is very angry with us and is accusing us of being judgmental. We don’t have any issue with seeing her and her now fiancé in any setting outside of their home but that is not acceptable. My husband parents are upset too and think we should set aside our beliefs for the sake of “family unity”. Do you think we are wrong to not want to expose our kids to that situation?
Dawn, I applaud you and your family for standing up for your faith! This thought popped into my mind – if you didn’t take your stance on this, perhaps they would not be engaged. When couples are supported in their cohabitation, many never get married. They have kids and then split up. As a teacher, I see the pain that these children have to carry…
Keep up your good example, but be careful and do everything out of love. Make sure that they know that you love them, but they should not force you to deny you religious beliefs. And pick up that Rosary. Pray a Divine Mercy Novena for the conversion of their hearts. Fast for them as well and offer up Masses for them. Use all of your spiritual weapons! Download the Relevant Radio app to get started.
Why EWTN has no free bible study on its web site. Can you provide a good free bible study on the web?
Ignatius Press has loads of online bible study classes on their website https://www.mycatholicfaithdelivered.com/home.aspx?pagename=Category-Page#adult_formation
Also, I would recommend listening to Fr Simon Says on the Relevant Radio app – his show is focused on bible study and it is one of my favorite shows. http://www.RelevantRadio.com
Happy New Year,
Can a Christian who is non Catholic, but believes in the true presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist, receive Holy Communion. Please explain.
Great question Linda,
The short answer is no. But then, there are probably many Catholics who should not be taking communion as well. You need to be in the state of grace to receive the true presence of Jesus. You cannot have mortal sins on your conscience (deadly sins such as anger or not obeying the 10 commandments). St. Paul says that taking the body and blood of Jesus unworthily will bring damnation on your soul. Priests take that pretty seriously.
The RCIA program (at every parish church) will walk you through all of the steps. Remember that the Catholic Church is 2,000 years old and this would be the best guide for spiritual direction. If you are a baptized Christian, you might talk to a priest who would fast track you to First Communion. Ours do a lot!
It’s a remarkable feeling, when you are being instructed by the successors of the Apostles – we have the same guidelines/practices as the early Church Fathers. That is not the case with other Christian churches. Just saying…
For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment* on himself.
That is why many among you are ill and infirm, and a considerable number are dying.
Again, great question.
Peace be with you,
Is it required by God and Catholicism to get buried in a Catholic cemetery if one is Catholic? or can Catholics be buried in a non-denomination cemetery so long as their niche or plot is blessed by a priest of deacon in that cemetery?
Is it right to hold a mass after the body has been cremated? or for Catholics does the viewing and mass services for the full body/deceased need to be done before being cremated? or can the deacon or priest be one of the witnesses in the crematorium to bless the body before direct cremation or before putting the body in for burning/cremation?
Is this viewing and mass services of full body/deceased the final of the holy sacraments for Catholics?
Elizabeth, sorry for the late reply. it’s been weird, to say the least, teaching remotely during these corona virus times… I’ll cc you a copy of this.
Here is an article that I came across which touches all of these questions. OSV, is a very reliable magazine that has been around for decades and is “Church approved”.
I hope all is well,
Wikipedia and several other sites that list “failed end of the world predictions” claims that Pope Sylvester II and Pope Innocent III both predicted dates for the end of the world (which of course have come and gone). Is that really the case? I couldn’t find the primary sources for these claims so I wondered if they were real or bogus. Also did other saints and even Protestant leaders like Martin Luther and John Wesley also predict the end of the world (second coming, battle of Armageddon, etc)? Thanks in advance!
Sorry to take a month to answer. The corona virus has changed my world a bit… anyway, these questions are probably too in depth to cover here in a forum, so let me steer you toward a great book and resources that should answer all of these questions.
First, a great book by a leading theologian Patrick Madrid, called Pope Fiction. He also has a call in show on Relevant Radio where you can call or write in your questions about the Faith. Another great resource would be the “Reverend Know-it-all” Fr. Simon, also on Relevant Radio – Father Simon Says.
Peace and safety,
As a practicing I am of course distressed that I am not longer able to go to Mass. I am 71 years old and a shut-in. A lady comes once a week to give me communion. She is elderly also and not coming right now due to the coronavirus outbreak. I live in a smaller rural community and we are strictly practicing stay-at-home mandates. Our church is very small and of course Father has closed it for the time being. Can I get confession by phone if Father will do It (I have not asked him yet) and would it be okay with the church? We only have 2 cases in our county and I’m praying that there will be no more. Hopefully we started the self-isolation in time. I pray that Italy’s problem abates and I pray for all the nuns, priests and especially the Pope.
What a beautiful sentiment! I am sorry to take a month to reply. The corona virus has thrown me and my family for a loop. All is well though. Sadly, though, you have to be present for confession. Here is a more drawn out explanation from Msgr. Stuart Swetland:
Peace be with you,
Can a Catholic women divorce her husband who turned out to be a pathological liar? Or is this still frowned upon?
Christina, sorry to take a month to reply, this corona virus has changed my world. All is good though.
Yes, sorry to say, divorce is “frowned upon”. Take a look at one of the best programs on the planet, Retrouvaille:
Stay the course and keep forgiving and praying,
In the Apostles Creed, what does it mean “He descended into Hell…”?
Anne Marie, this is a great question. Sorry to take a couple of weeks to respond, but the covid virus has changed my world. That and a tree crushing our cars, lol. All is good though. I was listening to Father Simon Says on Relevant Radio and this very question came up, maybe a week before you sent this. Fr. Simon knows all the ancient languages (which I don’t). He basically said that back when the Apostles Creed was written, the word they used for Hell meant the “bosom of Abraham”, the place where good souls went before Jesus’ time. Here’s a link to the podcast: https://relevantradio.com/2020/02/father-simon-says-february-19th-the-healing-of-a-blind-man/
Another caller asked this same question on the show “Go Ask Your Father” – https://relevantradio.com/2020/03/go-ask-your-father-march-26th-sewing-medical-masks/
Check them out. I missed the latter one, so I think I’ll give it a listen as well.
What would you say to your adult child if she has her young children doing Mindcraft Cosmic Yoga PE
She is either in one of two camps: either 1, she just doesn’t know any better; or 2, she doesn’t care much about spiritual things. In either case, the best thing you can do is pray, fast, and give alms to the poor. Personally, on Fridays, I fast, make Rosaries, pray, and many times donate to Mary’s Meals, or Cross Catholic Outreach.
If you feel comfortable talking about it, you could remind her that some of the poses are references to Hindu Gods. Most poses are not, but it is best practice to avoid possible danger…
Society is VERY powerful, good luck and get those Rosary beads out,
The Church has the responsibility to teach the laity about moral issues concerning them. I understand the Church has decided they are not able to teach the laity about some moral issues involving politics. We are told the reason for this is that the Church will loose it’s non-profit status if they do. I question whether this is a valid reason ( the loss of non-profit status)for the Church to comply.when we see through history the Jewish people and the Catholic Church standing against unjust laws.
I can’t wait for 2020 to heat up. President Trump has tried to get rid of the Johnson Amendment but hasn’t been too successful, yet. There’s no ban on preaching against moral issues, though. But we don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or get in any trouble, right? And our society has a strong influence. For example, I know a lot of self proclaimed Christians who love the show “The Bachelor”, which is highly immoral… People don’t realize that “we are what we eat”, and “garbage in, garbage out”.
Keep praying for those God puts in your life,
On EWTN live mass every morning there is a lot more people receiving communion than are seated. Where are all the extra people coming from?
Hi Paul, I imagine that they’re doing the same thing my church is doing. The overflow folks are watching Mass in their cars, then they come to the Chapel for communion.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF SOMEONE SENDS ME A SUGGESTIVE CARTOON ON FACEBOOK
Dorothy, you might consider “de-friending” them if they are not a super close friend or relative. Either that or just ignore. And pray for them…
Best of luck, Kevin
I’ve been struggling with a family situation for quite some time now. My younger brother most recently got into a relationship with a girl who has unfortunately started stripping him away from our family – it seems like she has a toxic father and has a pattern of creating co-dependent relationships. My brother and I faced the same issue in our childhood, so in him failing to seek therapy, has been doing the same thing with her (constant arguments, need to be communicating daily, anger if there’s late replies/a day of no dates). Unfortunately, when I met her, we didn’t click and I will own up to having previous judgements about her based on the codependency I had already witnessed and overheard. It’s now been about 8 months that they’ve been together, and it’s gotten worse + I’ve felt like I’ve sort of lost my sibling relationship as well. Most recently, I’ve caught them getting physical in our own household which has only made things worst in our dynamic. I’m at the point where I’m struggling between “turning a blind eye,” and staying in my lane to avoid involvement versus taking some sort of action, like prayer (something feels wrong about praying for someone’s break up, when its toxic nature feels like a subjective opinion that I have). I guess I’d like your advice, how could I (a) improve how I perceive my brother’s decisions regarding his dating life, (b) put my own judgements and feelings on his relationship outside of our sibling dynamic and (c) fight for a more positive, God-centered relationship for him without feeling like I’m wishing “bad” on their current relationship. Thank you in advance for your guidance, looking forward to it.
Ana, I’ve been stewing on your question for awhile. I have various family members that are leaving the faith and one that seems to be pulling another away from the family. Over the years, I’ve come to the conclusion that I cannot change other people. But I can pray for their conversion. Fast and give alms to the poor on their behalf. It’s amazing, what God and his army of Saints can do. Conversions tend to take awhile, though. Do your best to sacrifice for your brother. You want to see him in Heaven, so keep at it. Work on becoming a Saint yourself and you will see your prayers amplified and become more powerful. It would also set a good example for your brother and his girlfriend. One more thing I’ve learned over the years, people will be more acceptable to your ideas, if they LIKE/respect you. If they think that you are judging them, they will never listen to you. You have to be the upstanding role model that your brother will want to follow. Also, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in this journey, and never stop praying for your brother. I hope that I didn’t ramble on here…
Peace be with you,
In layman’s terms can you tell me if Jesus Christ was Yahweh incarnated.Thank you
Yes, Jesus Christ is Yahweh incarnate. That was easy. Are you looking for information to support that? I could go on for days. So just feel free to reply to the email with any other questions.
The famous pastor, John MacArthur has put out YouTube videos claiming that Catholics are not saved.
I’ve heard him use the lame
He quotes a pope saying “All who live a just life will be saved even if they do not believe in Jesus Christ.” I would have to disagree with the pope on this as well, based on scripture. However, I don’t think the pastor is right to suggest that therefore all Catholics are not saved.
The pope is quoted that “Those who live according to the Beatitudes will enter God’s kingdom.” Here again, it sounds like the pope is saying we’re saved by works not faith. If he’s right, then we must be saved by the whole law, which means nobody will be saved.
MacArthur mentions Papal infallibility in one video. Yet we have a pope apparently sympathetic to Socialism and Communinism.
Peter Kreeft quotes saying basically all good people are saved. Not Christians.
MacArthur says the pope is only affirming what Catholic theology has always believed.
Clearly works are expected according to the Bible, but MacArthur points to real false claims from our “infallible” pope and I’ve heard them from other Catholics as well.
As a protestant turned Catholic, it bothers me to hear some seemingly non-biblical ideas coming from bishops and even the pope. It seems they are re-writing theology to be politically correct and liberal.
Can we have some clarification. MacArthur has become a cultural icon on YouTube. He’s the author of 400 books, I believe, on theology. I’ve heard him suggest that Catholics are not saved because they are in a flawed system.
John MacArthur on Catholicism, and Billy Graham
Roger, I could write a book on these things you mention (and I’m sure quite a few Catholics have, lol). I have come back to this post almost a year later to make a simple statement. Let’s keep it simple and not feel the need to retaliate as an answer. Pray for them and do your part to debunk those theories. You can’t erase them from you tube. So, do your part to win people back. Win back some souls, brother. Some Catholic bigwigs will eventually debate these videos/Mr. MacArthur, but those videos will remain on YouTube. That’s the beauty of our free speech system, right?
I work at a Catholic parish and people call sometimes for financial assistance. I had a call yesterday where a man had a litany of “catastrophic” health problems and tragedies, but at the end, he threw in: “Oh, by the way, I grew up Catholic and ruined my knees as an altar boy.” By that time, I’d grown a little skeptical so I said, “how could a kid ruin his knees kneeling one hour a week?” He claimed that he had had to serve at 4 Masses every Sunday. I replied that I didn’t think that was allowed. Plus, upon thinking about it, unless he was in his 70s or 80s, altar boys spend more time standing and sitting than kneeling during Mass, right? Anyway, my question is this: are altar servers allowed to serve at more than one Mass a Sunday? Were they ever? Thanks!
Kerry, I cannot find anything that says a server cannot serve at more than one Mass. But, perhaps we can look at it from another perspective. You are only supposed to receive the Eucharist once a day or twice a day for occasions where you have to attend two Masses For example, going to morning Mass and then a wedding Mass later in the afternoon. That should apply to alter servers as well. It might be scandalous if a server does not take communion (because he/she already did). People in the parish would not know that…
Peace to you,
Is it stated anywhere in the bible that God gave us free will?
I’m going to point you to a wonderful book written by one of the smartest apologist in the nation, Patrick Madrid. It’s called “Where is That in the Bible?” https://shop.catholic.com/where-is-that-in-the-bible/
And here’s my short answer/insight:
Could you imagine what the world would be like if we did not have free will? We would be forced to love God, or love the devil, if we couldn’t freely choose. Does it even matter whether that is in the Bible or not?
My question is about what to do about all the holy cards, rosaries, pictures etc that we receive in the mail from various religious organizations. I recently was at a rummage sale and in a box of books I found several holy cards, small crucifixes and a beautiful Catholic Bible. What is the church’s position on the disposal of these items? On one of Fr Pacwa’s programs he indicated that it would be OK to recycle the old monthly Magnificat books but not to put them into the garbage. I have several containers full of the many, many items I have received over the years including cutting out religious images from envelopes and 8×10 pictures of the IH and SH. I can’t stand to see these items in rummage sales or in waste baskets. I realize most of them are not blessed but there seems to be something wrong with having these thrown haphazardly in rummage boxes. Thank you for your answer.
Kathleen, sorry to take so long to reply. My forum notifications must have gotten messed up, or maybe they got lost (I receive about 200 emails a day). Anyway, I would try to gather up those religious items and put them in with gifts to your Godson or someone. Also, they make great additions to the Box of Joy boxes (from Cross Catholic Outreach). I also like to leave extra holy cards at the gas pump and other places…
I asked our deacon if I could receive communion on the tongue. He said it was ok if I went at the end of the line. I went today and receive it on the tongue. I got a message from the priest that I could not do that. This is so important to me. I list my husband a year ago from cancer and I just felt like God was putting this on my heart to help me. I have received on my tongue before covid. I need prayers and to know if I just do not receive and just add this to my sufferings.
Laurie, sorry to take so long to reply. My forum notifications must have gotten messed up, or maybe they got lost (I receive about 200 emails a day).
Whatever you do, do not miss the Eucharist. If you absolutely must have it on the tongue than you might have to have some discussions on getting bigger hosts to help keep germs off a priests hands. You want to make sure that you are not being too scrupulous though. Ask yourself, what would Jesus want? Or, what would the apostle Paul do?
On the flipside, if I had a health concern (and many do) I would not want to receive the Eucharist after the priest just had his hand by someone’s mouth. So the real question is, is it more important to receive on the tongue, or not receive at all?
I hope you can work this out,
I teach CCE to grade schoolers and Middle Schoolers. The learn that God created them, and that they came from thier mother and father…and their grandparents…and great grandparents, ect….all the way back to Adam and Eve.
And though not stated directly, the question of incest inevitably arises.
How do I explain to children the prodgeny of Adam and Eve and marriage of brother and sister in light of the Catholic moral teaching and reason of genetic science?
It’s great to here from one of our awesome CCD teachers! This question of yours has come up tons of times on Catholic radio. Everyone has their take on how civilization got started with just one couple, Adam and Eve. So I’ll try to sum it all up. One school of thought is that God made others (maybe the Neanderthal line comes into play here). Another school of thought is that God is in control of everything, so any problems with the first relationships could be overruled by The Creator. I have also heard a doctor discussing the DNA side of this question showing that there was a common mother for everyone. That was on the Drew Mariani Show. Remember, these things happened long before there was any form of writing, and language was probably very basic.
Keep up the good fight,
Q1.In 2king 25 the king Nebuchadnezzar of Babylone destroyed Jerusalem, but in 1 Judith we see that king Nabuchadnezzar was from Assyria …so my question is whether he was from Babylone or Assariya?
Q2.Book of Judith is the story of isralite after Bablone deportation .So my question is in the time of nabuchadnezza the isralites were deported to Babylone and the again coming back from Babylon again King Nabuchdnezza attack judha as it is said in book ok Judith and Judith helped by killing the general Holofernes?
What a beautiful name! I just read the book of Judith maybe two months ago, small world… and what a gory tale… There is much debate as to whether the book of Judith is supposed to be included in the Bible (Old Testament) as well as Tobit, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, and Baruch. In a nutshell, the Jews couldn’t agree on these books (for centuries, till somewhere around 400 AD) and eventually, these seven books were nixed from the Jewish Canon. However, the Early Church Fathers referred to these books as Scripture. This is a huge topic and I will post some great articles at the bottom of the post for those who want to learn more. Now, back to your question…
The book of Judith spans a great timeframe. Back in ancient times, there wasn’t a whole lot of literacy, like todays age. Things don’t always match up when you look at various “copies” of the same text, and when you compare different authors, etc. Judith could be considered historical fiction, and in the story, she does go home with the head of the general. The story is probably referring to the same Nebuchadnezzar, however the story of Judith may be embellished and not entirely a historical event. Also, it seems that the term “Assyrian” was often used in a larger context, which included Babylonians. Here are some great posts on these subjects:
“I have a question that’s been troubling me for sometime, it concerns the blasphemy of the Holy spirit! what is the unpardonable sin? does it mean blasphemy thoughts against the Holy Spirit or the virgin Mary? some times Satan can put horrible thoughts especially during prayer thoughts against God, the trinity or even Mary! if a person has these sort of temptations can they be forgiven. I believe and trust in Gods mercy but I would like a good resource to help me?
I read some of the saints went through of the same temptations can you please put my soul at ease on this matter. I love my Lord and want to follow him as faithfully as I can.
Here is an excerpt from this website. It’s way down there though…
6 Sins against the Holy Spirit:
Despair – Complete abandonment of hope in your salvation
Presumption – presuming that God will save us with out any effort on our part (Protestants beware)
Impugning the Known Truth – willfully falsify spiritual matter
Spiritual Envy – Begrudging another’s hope of salvation.
Obstinacy in Sin – refusing to fight against our own vices
Final Impenitence – without regret, shame or remorse for our sins
A couple things to keep in mind: God’s mercy is above all. God has the final say, we never know what a soul is truly thinking, or where they stand with God. Also, for a sin to be mortal (and these six are pretty grim), a person has to be of right mind and understand what they are doing. I think that comes in to play here. For example, some preachers have taught their congregations that Jesus saves us and that there is nothing we can do on our part. Predestination comes to mind here. My thought is, that those parishioners who were taught these falsehoods, they will be able to purge their souls in Purgatory; however, the pastors who taught this to their congregations, they are in much more trouble.
Hope this helps Elizabeth, feel free to follow up via email.
What does it mean in the bible when Jesus says “Those who are well do not need a physician but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, I desire mercy and not sacrifice, For I came not to call the righteous , but sinners.”
Some people in Jesus’ time were trying to live righteous lives and do good to the extent of their knowledge. Not everyone was bad. Jesus came to save the lost. Those who didn’t/don’t know how to live a righteous life. Like myself. Jesus pulled me up from the ashes! Thanks be to God!
Why does the Catholic church continue, not do anything to reign in re: President Biden and House Speaker Pelosi as Catholics, who represent themselves, as the authority of women’s issues, promote pro-abortion legislation, act as a moral authority on the sanctity of life. I think the church and it’s American Catholic church hierarchy, are complicit, duplicitous and fork tongued, on life issues. They continue to, talk the talk but have failed to walk the walk. No different when the Jews, were sent to the death camps and some Catholic officials and citizenry, were within sight of the smoke stacks and the smell of stench from burning flesh and turned their collective heads and said nothing. I am really tired of hearing that, those Catholic official’s will be held accountable, upon their Judgement with God .
George, your preaching to the choir! I’m with you. Here’s my two cents:
The Devil’s advocate says that “who am I to judge?” or “who am I to push my religious beliefs on the citizenry?” or even “if you ban Biden and Pelosi, than you also have to ban everyone else who is cohabitating, etc…”
BUT, here’s what you have to keep in mind – before abortion was legal, there was a huge push to indoctrinate the public with the notion that your personal beliefs should not effect how you vote. That campaign has ripple effects to this day. This is how Biden feels. He believes abortion is wrong, but his religious life remains separate from his public duty. There is only one way to change this voting mindset – that is for the bishops to draw a line in the sand, so to speak. The only way to reverse this decades long mindset on voting is for an authoritative voice to “draw the line”. Half of the Catholics out there will not like it, but it has to be done. I am anxiously waiting to see what happens, as the bishops decide on this. They must have read your mind, George.
Have peace in these troubled times, and everyone – “Do more!”
Is the Q Anon conspiracy theory considered heretical, and idolatrous? Wouldn’t its belief fall into the categories of witchcraft, sorcery, or astrology? Why would any true, faithful Christian follower of Christ need to dabble in such conspiracy theories as Q Anon?
I am not well versed on conspiracy theories, so I found an article on NC Register (a super reliable and faithful resource). This will answer all of your questions: https://www.ncregister.com/blog/what-should-a-catholic-make-of-q
My question comes from my sister who was arguing in favor of abortion. She says that the Catholic Church is hypocritical on their stance concerning abortion. She asked me why does the church allow for abortions in the case of rape or to save the life of the mother? She says that if abortion is killing or murder, then why is it o.k. to kill the baby for the above reasons. I did not have an answer for her. I did look up the Catholic Answer reason why these circumstances would allow for an exception. However, I do not see how those reasons would justify taking the life of an unborn child, thereby, convincing her that the church is not hypocritical. I am in a pickle.
You are a little mistaken in your thinking. Politicians often use these exceptions (children conceived in rape, or the life of the mother is in jeopardy) in pro-life bills and agendas (in an attempt to appease the general public). However, the Church does not consider a baby conceived through rape as someone to kill. There is only one exception, which nowadays is quite rare, and that is – when the life of the mother is at risk. Some doctors will say that in today’s day and age, the mother’s life is in very capable hands. Given today’s knowledge and technology, the mother’s life is nary at risk.
But beware… a doctor could twist the situation and say that the mother is “depressed” and may die from the depression, or something to those lines.
I hope this helps.
Revelation 22:18-21 forbids anybody to edit the word of God. What does this mean for the Apocrypha? Is it sinful to read or practice anything from scripture that beyond Revelation? What does this mean for translating the Bible, or paraphrasing verses?
“18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. 19 And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.
20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
21 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen”
You have to be careful reading the apocrypha writings that have not been approved by the Catholic Church (Protestants refer to seven Catholic books as apocrypha based on Greek and Hebrew archaeological finds – which has since been debunked). There is a reason why those stories were not approved; however, they are interesting to read and can give you a look at life back then and what propaganda early Christians were being exposed to.
As for translating the Bible and ancient biblical scrolls it gets a little tricky. The scribes weren’t perfect in their scribing, lol. There are subtle variations in the various scrolls that have been found/passed on. That’s a different topic, though. I think you are mainly referring to the idea of people manipulating bible verses for personal gain, or to lead people astray. Jesus talks about that in the Gospels as well. The protestant reformers took away parts that didn’t fit their theology. That’s another area to beware of. Also, the “health and wealth” gospel – “give money to our ministry and you will be blessed with even more money and good health.” We could even talk about the “cafeteria Christians” who pick and choose what they like. Remember though, if you make your own Faith, you will also have to make your own heaven…
Jesus I trust in you,
Kevin [& Juan]
I am a devout Catholic, watch Ewtn as much as I can, saying the rosary, litanies and novenas with the wonderful Franciscan Friars of the Eternal Word, as well as many of their wonderful programs. They have been a God sent especially during the pandemic.
Having said that, I am in a bit of a quandary. I know as Catholics we are not to have anything to do with freemasonry. What does it say about living in a masonic retirement community? The community is beautiful with many wonderful living arrangements . It is open to people of all faiths and they are not requiring you to become a mason. They have a Grand Masonic lodge that is now used as the general meeting area and the location of onsite amenities. I was told that they have many Catholics living there already and they attend services at the Catholic Church in town.
I am so torn between wanting to retire here yet am afraid that I will be betraying my faith. All my friends tell me that I am crazy because it is not like I am becoming a mason. One of my friends is actually on the waiting list to move in.
I hope and pray you can anwer my question because I am so stressed out not knowing what to do. God Bless you, stay safe, stay healthy.
Mary, any apologist would cringe at your questions about retiring with the Mason’s. In the higher ranks of Masonry, they are extremely anti-Catholic. There is so much to be said here, but keep this in mind – like you have probably told your kids growing up, “if your friends were jumping off the roof, would you jump too?”. We need to start building Catholic Retirement Centers (like these Masonic retirement homes) across the USA. This has been on my radar for quite some time. We Catholics need to start buying up land to start building our own retirement communities based on the Mason’s model. My wife worked at one many years ago. They have apartment/duplex/small homes, a robust community center, and a full nursing home facility all together as one community.
Anyway, here are some great podcasts to learn the truth about Freemasonry:
Can any Catholic make their own Holy Water or must it be created by a priest?
Joseph, a priest makes the holy water using the the sacred chrism oil which was consecrated at the chrism mass. The chrism oil is consecrated for confirmation/chrismation at the Easter vigil. So, lay Catholics cannot make Holy Water. However, in an emergency (danger of death or possibly in a remote mission field), anyone can baptize with regular water (or Holy Water if they had it on hand). For example, if someone is in danger of dying, any Christian present could baptize him/her with their water bottle “in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – proper matter (water) and proper form (proper statement).
Did Jesus saved the Rite of Baptism for His priests?
“I have baptized you with water; he will baptize you with the holy Spirit.”
So did Jesus baptize?
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
When he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight.”
We have no scriptural writing specifically showing Jesus baptizing as far as I have read.
“Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him.
John tried to prevent him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me?”
Jesus said to him in reply, “Allow it now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed him.”
Did He baptize John as requested? Apparently not. But John wanted his cousin to baptize him!
A mystery—Jesus healed cripples, mutes, blind, raised the dead, multiplied fish and loaves of bread, forgave sins, but didn’t baptize?
Perhaps the answer lies herein: Jesus would not baptize because He would have to say:
“I baptize you in My Name, and in My
Name, and in My Name, Amen.”
But, as we all know, for the Rite of Baptism to be licit, the correct formula has to be used: “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.”
You are a deep thinker! I’m sure there are various answers/thoughts to this mystery, and your thought process is a wonderful sign that you are deeply into that spiritual journey. Don’t stop there though. Keep thinking, keep praying, and keep doing!
One thought that popped into my mind as I read your post – was how we humans tend to spin things from Bible times to our current times. Sometimes we’re too scrupulous in our faith. But that is part of the journey. Just make sure that you enjoy the ride – JOY (Jesus, Others, Yourself). Just some random thoughts…
Have a blessed day brother,
I’ve been on vacation and have dozens of questions to respond too, so I apologize for the late response. I’ve been pondering your question of “Did Jesus baptize?” and something finally popped into my head. Jesus’ ministry was different than the ministry he passed on to his disciples. We often over generalize when it comes to points of faith. The disciples were tasked with baptizing. That is part of the Christian initiation. Jesus came as God among us – that was his mission. Hope that helps.
if Jesus was circumcised on the 8th day in the temple did the family go back on the 40th day for the presentation
Dave, here is a comprehensive look at the presentation of Jesus at the Temple – https://www.ncregister.com/blog/what-s-happening-at-the-presentation-of-the-lord.
Who is God? Please no textbook answer like “God is Love”. Yes, He is Love, and that is fine and good, and right and true, but it is only a facet of the infinite gem that is God. It is not a sufficient answer at this point. I have asked this question to Catholics before, but I get the same answer a lot of the time: “It’s a mystery, and you will be asking that question your whole life”. Oh, nonsense! Surely someone in the greater Catholic community around the world knows something! You cannot seriously mean that there is not a Catholic anywhere in existence today who knows something.
I feel the pain with your question “Who is God?”. I have an answer for you, but first…
Our generation is very intelligent. And we want to know everything. However, we must be careful. This is how Atheists are born. Being so smart, we tend to fall into the trap of “If I can’t figure out the answer to something, then it’s hodgepodge.”. Or, “If I can’t understand God, then it can’t be true.”.
True – God is a mystery. How could we humans comprehend the creation of the universe? Who God is – we see that in Jesus. Jesus shows us “who” God is. The more we apply Jesus’ tenets of faith to our own lives, the more we will understand “who” God is. The Catholic Church mapped out these tenets of faith in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, but you could also learn these from the source – the Bible. Feel free to follow up on this post if I didn’t hit the mark!
Peace be with you,
My 26 year old daughter and I have always been very close until 2 years ago. She has always been the example of godliness and was raised to include her Catholic faith in all aspects of her life. Her desire to marry and have kids has always been strong in her, but she wouldn’t date (she was in a courtship with someone 6 years ago and then she found out he had a girlfriend at college) because she always found ways they were not Catholic enough, etc. The reason she does not include me in things anymore I think is because she started dating someone and he was the poster boy of what you don’t want in a husband. He drank, smoked, cussed, and was (as many people who were around him said “creepy”) slowly separating her from friends and family. He did not treat her well. I told her that I needed her to realize (since she always asked for our blessing to go out with someone – her rule not ours) that her father and I would not give our blessing on this person now or if it led to something. Well, 5 months into dating him, we get a call and have to go with her to the police station to file a restraining order after she broke up with him and he was stalking her and threatening. We never gave her the “I told you so” about it. This is all just background so you will understand why I don’t know what to do since I don’t feel I can talk to her about the following issue. I just found out that she and her female roommate have taken a guy in as their third roommate. They are not dating, but he is one of her best friends. He is also a fallen away Catholic. She was raised to know that this is unacceptable and can cause Scandal. I am stunned that the person I knew her to be all of her first 24 years would do this. My relationship with her is so fragile that I don’t feel like I can say anything. I have been praying earnestly for her all of her life, but even more so the past 2 years. This feels like a kick to the gut. I don’t know what to do. I don’t think she would listen to me. My husband told her that this is not okay , but she didn’t give him any response. I don’t want her thinking we are just going to ignore it, but I also don’t want to drive her away. I love her dearly, but am so ashamed of the choices she is making. I never thought I would have to worry about her in this way. I know to keep praying for her, but is there anything from the church to put in front of her? Please help and pray.
Carol, I’ve taken some time to think about this. I have two daughters of my own and experience similar anxieties. This culture we live in today reminds me of the Axis powers of World War 2 – we are being hit on all fronts. But God is in control. We have to do our best and we have to pray our best as well. Then, we have to trust in God – “Jesus, I trust in You, Jesus, I trust in You, Jesus, I trust in You.” We have to fight back on these three fronts – action, prayer, and trust. Get creative on your part. Make sure that every step of the way, your daughter (and her roommates) know that you love them with all of your heart. I would give them beautiful gifts – a beautiful statue of the Infant of Prague, and St Joseph. Show them all how to leave a prayer under St. Joseph. If you can, visit them often. Send all of the roommates mass cards on their birthdays and include a giftcard to their favorite restaurant and maybe a beautiful Rosary. Become good friends and a good witness to the faith. On the second front, prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Fasting is powerful! Learning how to fast has been the best part of my spiritual journey. However, fasting when you are on the typical American diet is very challenging (high carb diets with a constant flow of food). It helps if you change your diet to adapt to burning fat. Take a look at the book by Jay W Richards – Eat, Fast, Feast. It’s a game changer. https://www.amazon.com/Eat-Fast-Feast-Feeding-Christian/dp/006290521X Your prayers will be amplified. Pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet with Drew Mariani on Relevant Radio. The prayer ends with “Jesus, I trust in You, Jesus, I trust in You, Jesus, I trust in You.” https://relevantradio.com/listen/our-shows/the-drew-mariani-show/
You’re in a spiritual battle. God is on your side. If you want, reply to the email response with your address and I will send you some of my handmade Rosaries.
Peace be with you ALWAYS,
I will Thank You for listening in advance. I was born Catholic and over the years I have left the church a couple of times, but I always came back. I learned the Heart Prayer said with my breathing and I have struggled at this for 42 years. I am a widower, my beloved wife died at the age of 52. Since her death I have been struggling with purity (impure thoughts, …). I have been praying for help with never any help coming. My whole life God has never hear one prayer (of importance, such as this). I am faithful in saying my daily Rosary (and many days several). I spend much time in daily prayers. I am back at mass, confession and receiving the Holy Eucharist. This purity for me is a stumbling block and I have poured out my heart in praying for help, yet none comes, ever. I know I cannot solve this problem without God’s intervention, but it never comes. I am in great need of help, Thank You.
I just got back from vacation. Sorry for the delay. I know exactly where you are coming from, though. Lust is probably the toughest of the cardinal/deadly/mortal sins, and has been since the dawn of creation (just read Genesis). And I’ll let you know that I’ve found the solution. Mortal sins come from within you. Here’s how to fix that:
Fasting. Plain and simple. Once I figured out the trick to fasting and was I was able to fast on water only (and electrolytes) for 36 hours (half of that is sleeping), my life changed. I was now in control. If you can deny yourself food, then you will be able to deny anything. It’s self-mastery.
Get yourself a copy of the book “Eat, Fast, Feast” by Jay W Richards. He’ll show you that fasting doesn’t have to be hard. It’s the American diet that makes it difficult. You’ll also learn that intermittent fasting is the cure for numerous health problems. Maybe this is why Jesus said, “when you fast” and not “if you fast”. And how some evil spirits cannot be cast out by prayer alone, but prayer and fasting. For the trifecta, try fasting, prayer, and almsgiving (and make it a Friday).
To make this even more powerful – pray to the Chaste Heart of Joseph and Mary and ask them to keep your thoughts pure.
Feel free to email back if you need more info.
I love the pictures and statues. They help me in my meditations, I do not worship them, however I have been quoted where it says not to make any pictures or statues of any holy beings! How can I answer them?
This is a huge topic, but here goes my attempt at a simple answer. Keep it simple right? This way you can avoid long debates and arguments. As a teacher I’ve learned that you never want to “battle” with a student. Once you start arguing with a student, you’ve lost. The same thing goes for everyone else. If it’s an argument, no one is really listening. OK, so here goes my easy answer – try to turn it back on them with a clarification question. Jesus has a lot of friends in Heaven. We call them saints. How else are we going to remember them or visualize them without a picture or statue? Perhaps you have a picture or prayer card for a deceased loved-one? Remember the instructions the Lord gave Solomon for building the Temple? I always try to be general in my responses and just spin the conversation to plant a seed. Get rid of the question and maybe “witness” to how God has changed your live through the Catholic Church. If you want to further explore the topic of statues and graven images, here is a great article to start with – https://www.catholic.com/video/are-statues-in-catholic-churches-graven-images.
Your brother in Christ,
Is being a Vegan against the Catholic Church?
The short answer is no. You can eat a vegan diet and be a strong Catholic. However, beware of all the spiritual practices associated with veganism. Here is an eye-opener of an article from the National Catholic Register, one of the most trusted sources from the most intelligent Catholics of today.
Eat well and live well,
My friend invited me to stay with her at her parents’ house while I’m in town for another event. She told me that her boyfriend is currently staying with her there. I am unsure if it would look like I approve of her choice or if I would offend God by choosing to stay with her. She knows I am Catholic; she is agnostic though baptized Catholic. For context, we are all adults. Thank you for your help discerning this.
Kat, the jury is split on this topic. At the moment, I’m on the evangelizing side. If the boyfriend staying there is something new, you could casually let her know that it bothers you and maybe he would stay somewhere else during your visit. I think that it is important that you maintain that friendship and plant seeds of the faith whenever possible. Bring a gift with you when you go. Instead of a bottle of wine, make it a beautiful Rosary, or a statue of St Joseph. You can only lead by example if the other person knows what that example is. Share your faith, but don’t be too aggressive or off-putting. Plant those seeds of faith and God will water them. If you want to speed things up, add a little Miracle Grow – go to confession to make sure you are in a state of grace, then go to Mass, and finally, on a Wednesday or Friday, fast and pray for your friend’s soul. Better yet, the trifecta – prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Give $10 to a CrossCatholic.org charity. Fasting moves the heart of Jesus. Feel free to email back if you have any questions about fasting or anything else.
Peace to you,
If you please? In the Bible, Galatians 2:11, St Paul opposed Saint Peter to his face. How does this fit in with Saint Peter being the “Rock of the Church”.. thank you, Allan..
This is an interesting topic. Keep in mind that the entire chapter seems to be wrapped up in Paul’s point of view. The Council of Jerusalem resolved the issue of circumcision. Here in Galatians we see part of that debate. It looks like Paul’s view won, though, as Gentiles were not required to be circumcised. This was just the start of the church. They had quite a lot to iron out, I suspect.
Hello, I am a protestant, but I listen to Catholic Radio, EWTN, on my way too and from work. I have a question about the lectionary. In protestant churches (at least those that follow a lectionary that I have attended) we let David and Bathsheba, and David and Goliath, and David and Absolom be read, and therefore preached upon. But we skip over David and Tamar and Amnen, or Amnen and Tamar, or Amnen and Absolom. Does the Catholic Church in general follow a lectionary, and if so, do they also leave the untidy story of David’s daughter and son out of it? I think we do because the church does not know what to do with this story, so they just sweep it under the rug. I am curious as to how the Catholics treat this story.
You’ve got me stumped for the moment. This may take awhile longer to find. Let’s keep each other posted. I don’t see it in my missal, at the moment. I’ll have to do some further research when I get a chance.
Talking with an elderly priest with all due respect and I said stay true to the magistariam of the church and he snapped at me and was very mad that I asked that question I apologized and left.I am an elderly Lady and never had a priest react like this I am very upset over this what is your advice.
We need to pray for our priests. This priest probably just responded with a quick defense mechanism – a negative comment usually gets a negative response. Always start a conversation with something positive. And don’t let these things get to you. God is in control. Pick up those beads and take it to the cross!
These days are troubling times. I know quite a few Catholics who’ve left the Church over one sentence by a priest. It almost seems as if we are looking for something to use as an excuse to get away from church and live our own self-center lives. Don’t fall into that pit, Judy. Pray, pray, pray!
A friend of mine says, “If God loves me the way I am, gay or a sinner, or broken…then why change?”
I know the answer I will give him, but I wanted to get more ideas from you.
I’ve been chewing on this for a couple days. My initial thought was that, “Just because God loves you, doesn’t mean that you have a free pass to Heaven.”
Here’s a revelation that just came to me as I sat and pondered a few more minutes.
“God does love you. He even loves me, the biggest sinner of all I know. But… do YOU love God? God, your Father does not want you to keep sinning. Would you keep smoking if you had cancer? Should you keep drinking if you were an alcoholic?”
Rather than go on and on with your best sermon, just leave him with that to chew on. Then just encourage him. “I wouldn’t want to be the last one in line at the pearly gates, lol. (A little levity will help). Heaven is real, I can assure you. I’ve seen so many miracles.” Share a personal story with your friend. Let him know that yo genuinely care. Give him (or mail him) a rosary and prayer booklet; and of course, fast and pray for his soul. That’s your job!
You might even turn it back on him and ask him questions. “Do you believe in Heaven and Hell? What do you believe?”
Always with love,
Whats the Catholic Churches stance on the medjurgorje?
It’s not approved yet. But here’s some more information – https://www.catholic.com/qa/the-churchs-current-position-on-medjugorje.
I’d like to ask a question about Mary being a perpetual virgin. I’ve heard she must have taken a vow of perpetual virginity as this is explained by reason of Mary’s own reaction of surprise when the angel told her that she would conceive. Otherwise, why would she be surprised?This explanation makes perfect sense to me but for only one detail: why would a woman who took such a vow then get married?
Thanks for all your help and may God bless you.
Wow, Mark, what a deep question!
Here are my thoughts. Take them with a grain of salt.
Jesus needed a father to take care of him. The family unit is an important part of God’s message to us. On a lighter note, imagine the remake on the Hallmark Channel – Mary would have been a single mother. That’s the reality that we live in nowadays, which leads to questions like this. When I was young, I was raised more so by the TV than by the Church. I managed to turn that around eventually.
Have a very Merry Christmas and sorry to take so long to respond.
Is it morally acceptable to eat at Voodoo Doughnuts? Because of the word voodoo and the doughnut shop also sells raptor Jesus candles.
Anthony, You have to avoid things like this and not support their mission with your money. I do not know if the company has anything to do with voodoo, but still, we should not be helping to promote dangerous pagan ideas like voodoo. Nice to hear from a fellow Knight! God be with you.
8 years ago I “received” the sacrament of confirmation but now I am having doubts about its validity (I was very young that time and I didn’t have sufficient knowledge and resources). We (me and my parent) arrived late because we weren’t informed of a schedule change, and when we arrived the bishop and priests were already slapping the cheeks of the people who were to receive the sacrament. My parent insisted that I just go with the flow, so I lined up and got anointed with oil and slapped on the cheek despite not being able to attend the first half of the liturgy. In short, I missed three parts of the confirmation itself (Presentation of Candidates, Renewal of Baptismal Vows, and Laying on of Hands) but I was still able to get Anointed with Chrism (and slapped on the cheek) and attend the latter half of the mass afterwards. Is my confirmation considered invalid since I arrived late? Do I need to receive it again?
The former parish priest of the church where this situation happened has already passed away, and I am having trouble reaching out to the current parish priest. Another problem is my confirmation certificate was already issued long ago which will either solve or worsen everything.
I hope that I can put your mind at ease with a reference to the Catechism of the Catholic Church. I’m not a Canon Lawyer, but I think that this is pretty plain – http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/p2s2c1a2.htm.
If you have received the anointing, than you have received the final “part”. You would not have received the certificate if you were not baptized, received first communion and the sacrament of Confirmation. Think about this, sadly, most youngsters that are confirmed are not well formed in the faith. Finally, if you are still uneasy about it, contact your parish RCIA program, give them your baptism certificate, and redo your confirmation. I can say without doubt, that my parish priest would confirm you at the next available Mass, if you told him this. Reach out. Don’t be afraid. God is in control,
Hello. Are there any articles that show the Pope has recognized and approved of the purple scapular?
If so, do you know where an official (correctly made) scapular can be purchased?
Cathy, Here is a great website that I trust – the Mary Foundation prints out wonderful prayer pamphlets as well – https://www.catholicity.com/scapulars/purplescapular-FAQ.html. Have a great Lent!
Can you eat meat today since it is a feast day
You don’t HAVE to eat meat on a feast day. How about those apples?? I kept my fast going. In today’s world, I think the saints would appreciate that. Avoiding meat is not much of a sacrifice anyway, right? I hope the rest of your lent is a wonderful experience.
Question, why is Our Lady of Guadalupe nor wearing a crown? Or is it cut off by the frame?
Jimmy Akin might be the only sure source that would know this answer. Here is an article he wrote on OLG, with a link where you could email him. https://www.ncregister.com/blog/our-lady-of-guadalupe-6-things-to-know-and-share. Let me know what he says.
I was married at age 17. Both baptized believers, or so I thought. To a Pastor who had mental health issues…moral issues. He left the pastorate, in a Protestant church. He asked me to go. I left.
He divorced me in civil court.
47 years later, I became a Catholic.
Where do I stand? My choices? Reunite with him? He still does not believe.
Or stay alone?
Or remarry a believer? There is a believer who wants to pursue marriage but I do not know if this is permissible.
Would I need an annulment? Would I qualify for one?
Rachel, It sounds like an annulment would be in order. Here is some information from the US bishops – https://www.usccb.org/topics/marriage-and-family-life-ministries/annulment. I wish you the best. God loves you!
Do all marriages performed outside the Catholic Church, that end in divorce, require an annulment before a valid marriage can take place within the Catholic Church? An extended family member, through our son’s marriage, was recently brought into the Church (Easter 2021). She is scheduled to be married within the Church in September of this year. My wife and I have been invited to her wedding. I asked the priest, via email, who is scheduled to perform the sacrament, if an annulment was necessary. Someone from the parish office responded in a return email that it wasn’t.
Is that true?
It sounds wrong. I’m not inclined to attend this wedding if it’s not valid.
John, I imagine that this wedding has come and gone. I am sorry that I did not see this post. I hope that you were able to attend the wedding. An annulment is needed for those married in the Church that with to remarry. Feel free to follow up through email. Sorry again for the late response. Perhaps it was the Holy Spirit’s doing.
I just checked out the link provided by threeguitarz concerning the need for annulments. It would appear from the wording that a divorced person wanting to be brought into the Church needed an annulment before he or she could enter. If that didn’t happen, was this person actually confirmed in the faith? Is she now Catholic?
John sorry for the late response, I did not get notifications for quite a few comments.
I don’t remember the reference you are referring to, but a divorced woman would need an annulment to get remarried. The Catholic Church does not recognize divorce – she is still married in the eyes of the Church. That opens another can of worms. Feel free to respond back to my email.
People are lined up out the door at our Knights Hall for Fish Frys during lent. How is it a sacrifice to not eat meat on Fridays if people love going to fish frys MORE than giving up meat?? Doesn’t seem like a real sacrifice to me. Makes no sense!
John, I am sooo with you on this. As you probably know, American bishops of long ago decided that Americans wouldn’t fast if it was too hard. And I think they are right. You and I will need to fast extra just to make up for it, right?? What really bugs me, as a weightlifter, I would rather not worry about WHAT I was eating, but I would rather focus on not eating much if anything. I think everyone should do a water only fast, at least once a year. But alas, at least we can get some Lenten attention with those fish fry’s.
Be at peace with it brother Knight,
Please answer this for me. It is Holy Week and yesterday, our priests had us sing several Latin songs, with many verses. So many, like me, did not grow up learning the language, and neither do others entering the Church every year. We had no idea what the words meant, let alone try and pronounce them! I don’t understand why this is done. Sure, I can understand the love of the language by those who grew up with Latin and learned it, but it is not used anymore, (at least not by seculars) and it is not being taught in church. Why stumble through verses in a language we don’t understand? Seems to me we should understand what we are singing. It’s very frustrating. “Tradition” has its beauty, but Latin is not practical for today’s parishioners. We don’t know the language. Thanks for your thoughts.
I am with you. I feel the same way when they do the Lamb of God in Latin at my parish. And I know the words to that, lol. But my kids don’t…
Merry Christmas and sorry to take so long to respond. It’s been a hectic year, to say the least.
My siblings are born again Christians and they don’t believe Peter is the first Pope because it doesn’t say so in the Bible. They know Jesus said to alert that Upon this Rock I will build my Church but because the Bible didn’t say “Catholic Church” they believe he meant Christian Church. How do I answer that?
Great question! First, don’t get into an argument. Once you engage in a war of words, nobody wins. Just ask them to think about actual history (paraphrased from the book – The Churches the Apostles Left Behind). The Apostles set up churches, right? What ever happened to those churches? “I don’t know” is the usual answer. Well, some of those churches are still in existence today. And they are catholic churches. If you look at the writings from the Early Church Fathers, you will see the formation of the Catholic Church. Look for yourself. Wouldn’t it be nice to know the truth? As someone who grew up as a protestant believer, I was blown away by this. Here is a website that archives all of these writings with various translations and commentaries, if you don’t want to take the Churches word for it. https://libguides.stthomas.edu/c.php?g=88750&p=571530
Plant the seed and be sincere about it. If you are going to invest your life into something, make sure you get the best information.
Sorry for the late response, it’s been a hectic year,
Why and how does demonic possession happen to some people and not other?
Great question! Many are open to demonic forces for various reasons. Here is a couple: If you are not in the state of grace and have mortal sins weighing on you, you are open to these things. If your heart is pure, demons know it. They will stay away. However, that doesn’t mean you should start chasing them away – leave that to the trained exorcists. Another route is the occult. Many of us naively let spirits in with ouija boards, seances, or simply watching things like that on TV. Hollywood glorifies these things. You’ve got to be on your toes, nowadays. Trick-or-Treats has gotten out of hand in our quaint little neighborhood. The last straw was a teenager and her parents covered in fake blood, with the teenager trying to scare my 6-year-old girl.
Sorry for the late response Rod, it’s been a hectic year.
Where in the Bible is the statement?
“God will not be mocked.’ ?
Tom and Dawni,
Galatians 6:7. Just do a simple Google search. Be careful of which translation you use, though. Some have been “translated” by uneducated folks that don’t know any Greek, Hebrew, or Aramaic. Think about it. You could easily “translate” by simply removing verses that you don’t agree with and change other verses to fit YOUR message. Sad, isn’t it? People did it, though. Religion has been used for millennia as a means to keep the populace in line. So, if you’re not sure, stick with the original King James Version. My catholic bible, the New American Bible Revised Edition, sports an updated translation of the Old Testament along with the New Testament translation circa 1980’s. Why did they update the translation, you might ask? Well, there has been numerous archeological discoveries over the decades of early manuscripts that give more light to the use of ancient words and even missing pieces of ancient scrolls. There’s not a big difference, but you would be surprised how one little word could change the context. In my study bible version, the changes are noted and discussed. It’s pretty neat. For one example, in the famous birth story of Jesus, the Greek word translated to “inn” was not used in other writings of the time in referring to an Inn or hotel. The Greek word used actually referred to part of a home. Maybe they’ll update the New Testament one day. It’s no easy task. When deciding on a translation, look to see that it has been translated from original texts by numerous Doctors of Theology. The Old Testament translation that I referred to the New American Bible, Revised Edition (NABRE) is the culmination of nearly 20 years of work by a group of nearly 100 scholars and theologians, including bishops, revisers, and editors.
Such a simple question and such a large answer, sorry! Peace be with you both,
Is it theologically correct to pray “To Mary through Jesus”? It doesn’t sound right. Isn’t the proper prayer “TO JESUS,, through Mary”?
Oh dear, is there a typo on the site?? You are correct. We ask a lot of people for prayers, but it’s Jesus who is the ultimate goal. This is especially true if we are far from a “state of grace”. If we have a ton of sin weighing us down, we’ll need someone else to pray for us. We ask our friends, Mary the Mother of God, St. Joseph, etc… If you are in a state of Grace, the go straight to the Man Himself, Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior.
I have an odd question. Say you start reading a story, knowing nothing about its content. You find out in the middle that there is a sex scene that is pornography. You immediately either stop reading or try to skip all the pornographic parts. Is it mortal sin to unintentionally view pornography?
Sadly, this is one reason why I don’t read books anymore. As a father, I try to google everything first, before my kids see or read. The best option is to leave Hollywood behind. For me, it seems like the only safe option. As a family, we only watch carefully vetted movies. I read reviews, etc. on my kids’ books. Remember, you cannot “unsee” things that you see or read. However, you can pray to Saint Joseph to help your mind and body stay pure.
Good luck Conrad, and throw those books away. Also, report any books like that if you find them in your school library.
Who wrote the Old Testament and when did the Bible come existence?
This question will take a book to answer, lol. Great question. I will point you to one of my favorite books – The Bible Blueprint: A Catholic’s Guide to Understanding and Embracing God’s Word by Joe Paprocki.
I work with the Liturgy Committee at my parish and had a question regarding liturgical decor. This year, we had a stand-alone wooden cross built (not a crucifix) for Lent. We draped purple cloth across the wooden cross as part of our Lenten decor. A visiting priest told my pastor that only two crosses are allowed in the sanctuary: the crucifix hanging on the wall behind the altar and the crucifix mounted on the processional cross. I have not heard of this before. I have looked through my liturgy reference books, the Roman Missal, and the Ordo, but have not found any statements regarding the number of crosses allowed in the sanctuary. Will you please shed some light on this issue? Thank you.
I am not sure about the two cross limit, but maybe that’s why the extra cross was not a crucifix. Here is an article from Fr. Doyle. If you have further questions, he might be the one to ask. https://thecatholicspirit.com/faith/focus-on-faith/ask-father-mike/qa-rules-crucifix-mass-far-forgiveness-go/.
Hello Kevin and rest of CA team!
Background: I am 60, I have worked as a designer and project manager at the same architectural firm for almost 29 years. For all that time the firm has been involved mostly in educational projects, but also some retail and commercial. I was recently informed that our firm is going to get involved in a very lucrative new area of work – Design of Cannabis growing and processing facilities. There is also the possibility that the firm may eventually be sold to bought out by the Cannabis grower and operate as subsidiary of this NASDAQ traded Cannabis production corporation.
I am several years away from retirement (7-10), and I did not foresee having to change employment at this stage of my life. And the firm has indicated it would be acceptable if I refrain from working on these projects personally. However, I am in a supervisory position, and I suspect this area will become an ever-increasing portion of the firm’s workload.
1. Is it morally acceptable for a Catholic to work on the design of buildings that will be used for the production of cannabis products including psychoactive consumables?
2. Is it morally acceptable for a Catholic to work at such a firm as long as they are not personally or directly involved in Cannabis related projects?
3. Is it morally acceptable for a Catholic to work for a subsidiary of a corporation whose primary business is the production of sale of Cannabis products including psychoactive consumables?
I would appreciate greatly the thoughts on this from the CA team on my particular situation, and any resources you can recommend for further reading, especially any Church documents that bear on these questions.
Mario F. Nunez
It would appear to me that you would be far enough removed from the material participation in an evil act. Just don’t start working in product development or sales. Here’s an article concerning Walgreens workers selling Plan B drugs – https://www.catholic.com/qa/working-at-pharmacy-that-sells-plan-b-abortifacient. It’s a different situation but the same theory.
Sorry for the late reply,
The Nicene and Apostle’s Creeds state “on the third day He rose again from the dead”. What is the meaning of “again”?
Interesting question John,
I would think that “again” means that he also “rose” when he was born. Take that with a grain of salt.
Why are people of the Old Testament not referred to as saints? Examples: Abraham, Isaac & Jacob? Moses? Elijah?
Someone else asked this same question. Great minds think alike right? https://www.catholic.com/qa/old-testament-saints
Did Jesus travel to India to study with the religious masters? If not then why not? Thank you for your response.
Great question. We don’t know much about the early life of Jesus. Things you may hear about come from Apocrypha and I don’t know how reliable those would be, as they were written well after the life of Jesus. Other information may come from mystics, but again, you have to be careful there.
So, I’ll leave you with this. The world as we know it seems to be coming unraveled. There are so many horrible things happening these days. What do you think is the answer? How do we turn the tide?
I am a mother and grandmother in Tehachapi, California. One of the public schools, Golden Hills elementary…has just approved a Satan Club, as an after school activity, on the school grounds. This is done because the “Good News” club has a monthly meeting and they want to counter it. I would like to provide a “good logical, counter to the validity of this”. But I need help. The “fun” club provides Science and Community Service Projects, games, crafts and lots of FUN!! This Satanist club says your child will learn
1. Critical Thinking
2. Benevlolence & Empathy
3. Problem solving
4. Creative Expression
5. Personal Sovereignty
People don’t know how to counter this, …I need help, please….
..for the Glory of God,
I am a public school teacher (23 years) so I understand your concern. This is something that “we” across the nation need to address before it spreads to the entire country.
Your parish and/or dioceese needs to stand up and fight against this. When they meet – prayer vigils around them. Print and send out your own information regarding the OTHER satanic beliefs. Shed a little light on the real subject. Don’t let them get away with this. Ask yourself, how did we get to this point? By sitting back and doing nothing.
I will be praying for you and please keep me updated through email.
I will include these intentions in my Friday fast and rosary tonight.
A random thought just came to my mind while praying – I wonder why there are no written accounts/gospels/books of the Bible containing the preachings of John the Baptist? There are just small passages of some of his preaching. He, being the greatest of all prophets …. You would think there would be a greater account of his preachings. Your thoughts?
Great question! These are just my thoughts, so take them with a grain of salt. Jesus didn’t write anything down. What we see in the bible is retold by his followers. John the Baptist was pointing the way to Jesus. That has to remain the focus.