Kennedy was assassinated. Neither you nor I, or anyone else for that matter, can tell a woman what her rights are when it is her body, not yours, mine or anyone else’s. The Church sets out the parameters in such documents as the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Code of Canon Law (not to mention Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition) and then leaves it to individuals to apply what they know about the Faith to the situations they face. John Lennon boasted (or many people took it that way) that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ. The declaration must be binding on the whole Church III. Throughout its long history, the Catholic Church has been rocked by scandals ranging from the dissolution of the Knights Templar to Galileo’s trial to Mother Theresa’s questionable donors.Over the course of the 20th century, many more scandals have come to light—no matter how much the Church would like to keep them secret. The Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has issued new guidelines for cremation for Catholics. Actually, this regulation merely reflects an ancient tradition in our Church, which is even rooted in Judaism. But I do support death with dignity. No. The Catholic Church is mentioned in conversation and all anyone can say is, “The Church is about rules! Rules ensure this. Go (and) from now on do not sin any more”. I understand the sense of loyalty. We put a man on the moon. Why does the church teach that marriage is a sacrament? Isn’t it?) Catholics are called, yes, to engage with the society around them, but not to adapt ourselves to the popular sentiments of our time. We live in a society that promotes indulgence, and everyone feels entitled to their way. The Catholic Church claims seven sacraments, the Lutheran Church only two: baptism and the Lord's Supper. Bill, I was born about the same time as you were, 1946. Does the Catholic Church have "too many rules"? When I was teaching at previous high school, I would often run into this issue about rules (especially when it came to moral theology). WWII had just ended and the nuclear age had begun. Your email address will not be published. God knew we would misuse our freedom. So. We believe in a God who lived among us, died for us, and showed us the way to live lives of courage and conviction–whatever our culture. In the catholic church there are rules and in those rules it states, "Catholics cannot marry outside the catholic religion." Jesus’ Way! The reason women can’t be priests goes to the establishment of … Rules provide guidelines, the same as boundaries do in sports. This is a good example that also includes compassion and love. Required fields are marked *. Whenever I hear people talk about the lack of love in our world, I am quick to remind that love is indeed, everywhere, however it mostly exists in a misconstrued form.”. In the end, it is just Jesus and the woman. We in the USA live according to rules (laws) too. To hear them tell it, a Catholic dare not let out a wayward squeak for fear of the Ruler of Doom being cracked across his knuckles by Sister Mary Ferocious of the Divine Wrath. Jesus freed her from a death sentence and instituted a rule to keep her safe from any and all forms of death; sin. Her response is, “No one, sir”, to which Jesus exclaims, “Neither do I condemn you. He wants to help us remain truly free. There’s nothing modern –or moderate –about that. If you donate just $5.00, or whatever you can, Catholic Online could keep thriving for years. If she is, someone should be authorized to make it on her behalf, especially if her life is in danger. The level of value placed on the opinion of a fellow Catholic should increase based on that person’s fidelity to the Church, his education and spiritual maturity in the faith, and (if applicable) on the reception of the sacrament of holy orders. Life and growth entails all forms of life and growth of your beloved (intellectual, physical, emotional, and spiritual). Fr. He earned his M.A. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. I must start off by acknowledging that the personal opinions of Catholic apologists are not binding in conscience on any Catholic, and conscientious apologists will do their best to distinguish for inquirers between what the Church teaches and what is their personal opinion. If you happen to be a Catholic, you might be surprised that even you don't know all the traditions and rules of the church. 2180 The precept of the Church specifies the law of the Lord more precisely: "On Sundays and other holy days of obligation the faithful are bound to participate in the Mass." We didn’t start the fire. We must "sanctify… Love your neighbor. Maybe we should kill people who are bedridden who can’t live on their own. BillS-You are one of God’s tools in bringing me back to Him. So, the DNA is all there for a human being. We need to have a point where a person cannot be killed such as when the fetus is capable of living on its own. He inquires if anyone has come to condemn her. Is the mother the only one who can kill her fetus? The Church has always recognized the necessity for rules (and always will). It has been over 45 years since this document was written and people still believe he was wrong. Go to confession annually if not more often or when needed. Learn how your comment data is processed. (John 8:11 NAB) Jesus shows compassion. Secondly, if a pregnant woman is murdered, the murderer is charged with a double homicide. How many times have you heard this statement before? He remains close to them as Pharaoh pursues. The Catholic Church wants you to be happy and only by being in the state of Grace a.k.a being baptized in the Catholic Church can make you truly happy. To dismiss constructive challenges by informal and formal teachers of the Faith to one’s own settled opinions by labeling anything with which one disagrees as “personal opinion” is problematic, especially when one does so because of disagreement over how a Church document should be read. I see where you stand. Even if I were to maintain a “personal relationship” with God (I know, that’s a Protestant term that is sometimes ridiculed by Catholics), I would be concerned that my children would view the Church as a mountain of rules and eventually fade into apostasy. VATICAN CITY (CNS) — God’s laws are meant to lead all people to Christ and his glory, and if they do not, then they are obsolete, Pope Francis said in a morning homily. (Exodus 20: 1-17)  Again, they were given freedom first, then rules. Thanks for cooperating. Abortion and killing a pregnant woman both usually involve taking the life of a fetus. 861, part 2. Copyright © A.D. 2018 Catholic Stand | Powered by Astra. Observe the Precepts of the Church: The Precepts 1) You shall attend Mass on Sundays and on holy days of obligation and rest from servile labor. All I will say is neither will happen!). This might seem fun at first, but it will eventually get really old, really boring, and really frustrating! If Catholic Online has given you $5.00 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. I don’t believe in the soul. The Church will always be attacked by those, determined to undermine (and question) her authority. In principle he decides everything. Take, for instance, the Precepts of the Church, which cover a number of things that many people regard as man-made rules: the Sunday Duty; yearly Confession; the Easter Duty; fasting and abstinence; and supporting the Church materially (through gifts of money and/or time). There are surprisingly few official rules about decorating churches, much to the chagrin of those who have been crowded out by Christmas poinsettias or engulfed by Easter lilies. 1981 The Law of Moses contains many truths naturally accessible to reason. The level of value placed on the opinion of a fellow Catholic should increase based on that person’s fidelity to the Church, his education and spiritual maturity in the faith, and (if applicable) on the reception of the sacrament of holy orders. It is illegal to kill a 2 year old. The Catholic Church teaches that human life and human sexuality are inseparable. We divide time between BC and AD, but I could easily divide it between pre and post 1972. (Genesis 2:16 NAB)  After this, however, He establishes a rule, “…except from the tree of knowledge of good and bad”. Pingback: This Week's Best in Catholic Apologetics | DavidLGray.INFO, Pingback: Martyrs Read Joel Osteen Tweets - BigPulpit.com. Therefore, the catholic man can't marry a divorced Methodist woman. MORNNG OFFERING 1-----MORNNG OFFERING 2-----BASIC CATHOLIC PRAYERS III. It is a necessary foundation for the erection of moral rules and civil law. There is a heartbeat a 3 weeks. You can’t do any of that! The present day process for selecting a pope is through election. I can honestly say that living by the rules never hurt me and not living by them did. Jesus says the one without sin may throw the first stone, and as He begins to write on the ground, each man leaves the area. 1. Is the mother the only one who can kill her fetus? We can only aid discernment and help to inform consciences; we cannot be anyone’s conscience. What is the significance of that? Worship - As to the manner of worship, Luther chose to retain altars and vestments and prepare an order of liturgical service, but with the understanding that … The sacraments make Christ present in our midst. In accordance with the structure of each church and legitimate local customs, the Most Blessed Sacrament should be reserved in a tabernacle in a part of the church that is truly noble, prominent, conspicuous, worthily decorated, and suitable for prayer. Yes, the Catholic Church is radical, but in a good way. Or that, or that, or even that, too…”  (And of course they stand 10 feet tall, hold a ruler in one hand, and admonish you with the other; extending that incredibly long forefinger.). They do not want to betray the other (and many times, the other is a family member or close friend). I will concentrate on three specific examples from Sacred Scripture that prove this point. Bill, it is another life in her body. The Pope must be making a decree on matters of faith or morals II. The main rule of the Catholic Church forbids anythings that goes against happiness. Catholicism is a religion that places value on learning from people, not just from documents. The pope is the head of the Church on earth. Todd was born and raised outside Philadelphia, PA (Go Phillies!) Another example is found in Exodus, when God leads the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt. First among equals. Catholicism was, and has always been, about structure built by faith and for faith. Many Catholic teenagers struggle today with this idea of going against the culture. Bill answers that question in a new set of videos in the CATHOLIC BASICS series. Though we are sinners, we are still called to persevere in righteousness. (They just can’t explain where.) That is a metaphysical concept for which there is no supporting evidence. Attendance at a different rite fulfills the Sunday obligation. What the woman does with her body is not illegal. Its moral prescriptions are summed up in the Ten Commandments. In so doing, the Vatican has created a non-spirit based religion that offers faithless heathens a structured system of religion from the cradle to the casket. All of the Precepts of the Church are binding under pain of mortal sin, but since they seem so obviously man-made rules, … Woodstock. Cremation has been permitted in the Catholic Church since 1963, but many Catholics don't know there are also many rules surrounding the choice. Meditate especially on the four last things; the Life and Passion of our Blessed Lord; the virtues, privileges, and sorrows of our Blessed Lady; and on feast days, on the mystery or Saint of the day. Looking back, I see critical turning points. Telling the Church they need to be more lenient, more modern, or more progressive is like trying to persuade the residents of Mackinac Island that they need a full service gas station. Many women play active roles in the Catholic Church, but few of them have sanctioned titles. What does this have to do with rules? The Catholic Church disguises its pagan beliefs under layers of complicated theology and church tradition. Even becoming a nun doesn’t get you the boon of the sacrament of Holy Orders — only men can be ordained. Show the volunteers who bring you reliable, Catholic … A lot, actually. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Texas set it at 20 weeks. In fact, just as knowing the owner’s manual can help a driver keep his car in top condition and thereby free him from worry about breakdowns, knowing “the rules of the road” in Catholicism can free a Catholic from worry about spiritual “breakdowns” so that he can more fully participate in his personal relationship with God. My response to this dilemma was informing my students about the Bible. They're quite lengthy. He provides for their safety and their needs. The Catholic Church does likewise. My mother died of breast cancer. What you or I think is morally acceptable or not is irrelevant. THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY Why Pope, Bishops and Priests? (Look it up if you’re confused! My faith left, returned, left, returned and left for good. Actually, although it may not appear so, the Church is remarkably quiet on a great many issues that face people in daily life. Instead, they see rules as an infringement upon freedom (No rules = true freedom). Being counter-cultural “includes letting go of pleasures as the path to happiness.” Rules also build self-control. Believe me I would know–I’m a Catholic and very, very happy. I was born at a very interestng time in history. He has served in Catholic education, youth ministry, the Chastity/Pro-Life movement, and other areas of the Church. Canon 844 (c.671 in the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches). Oftentimes, people want to know, “What does the Church say about this?” or “Does the Church forbid me to do that?”—and are disappointed that there is no “official document” allowing or proscribing certain actions, only general guidelines that they must use their best judgment to apply to the action in question. A: Love God. Making prostitution illegal is based on what the state considers to be in the public interest not sexual morality. Because Catholics believe that God created human beings in his own image and likeness and that he found everything he created to be "very good", the Church teaches that the human body and sex must likewise be good. This caricature has long been the model of everything contrary to popular culture; and the Catholic Church seems to be its poster child. The term Church, in this connection, can only denote the teaching Church, as is clear from the passages already quoted from the New Testament and the Fathers. (The pope emeritus acknowledged in, That said, it is also incumbent on those Catholics who are seeking to grow in their own faith to also be open to admitting when they are in error, to being willing to accept and consider carefully constructive criticism, and to continue to learn and grow in their own knowledge of the Faith. At times, admittedly, the altar looks like it’s been attacked by a rioting mob of florists. And since man is called to be in relationship with God and neighbor, one important way man learns the shape and application of rules is through personal relationship with teachers. He frees her of this capital offense, but then tells her not commit sin ever again. Accept and believe all that the Catholic Church definitively and authoritatively teaches. Are my arguments for atheism so unconvincing that they increase your faith? “A woman should have the right to choose what goes on in her body.” Yes, she should, but when she is carrying another life, with another soul and DNA, she has no right to dispose of it. Analogously, the Church lays out the principles of faith and morals; Catholic Answers, among other Catholic apostolates that provide similar outreaches (e.g., EWTN), demonstrates how to apply those principles to some of the problems our supporters ask us about; it is now up to you to use the knowledge you gain from Church documentation and the examples demonstrated for you by our apostolate to solve the problems you and your family face in your everyday life. He knows that if freedom is not properly understood and applied in the correct manner, it will leads to corruption, chaos and destruction. Follow him on twitter @4RealCatholic for encouraging and inspiring stories, scripture passages, and thoughts from the saints. While he himself is the bishop of the diocese of Rome, he is the leader of the entire Christian flock as commissioned by Jesus (John 21:15-19). (i.e. But they were there to protect me and not spoil all the fun, as I once thought. 2. We are stuck with an absolute monarchy akin to the rule of King Louis XIV in France that led to the French Revolution in 1789. Everything in our world needs to be regulated, especially our behavior (and for good reason). One of the common complaints about the Catholic Church, which can be heard from Catholics and non-Catholics alike, is that the Church is chockablock with rules, rules, rules. Q: What are the rules for being Catholic? Pius XII was pope and the Catholic Church provided the moral compass for what seemed to be the whole world. The Pope does not even have a cabinet. Recognizing that many of its beliefs and practices are utterly foreign to Scripture, the Catholic Church is forced to deny the authority and sufficiency of Scripture. That is why He instituted rules. The Catholic Church teaches that marriage between two baptized persons is a sacrament. Think of how mathematics is taught: The teacher explains the principles of arithmetic, demonstrates some problems on the blackboard, then assigns homework for the students to practice the principles. It’s been always burning since the world’s been turning. As for DNA, I fail to see the concern. It is a shame that many in society do not. Those are two entirely different worlds to me. “If you love me, you would let me live my life my way!” Heard that before? Pope Paul VI, in his monumental encyclical Humane Vitae (July 1968), made some startling predictions about what would happen if contraception became widely accepted. Or a football game where there was no out of bounds. Like the other sacraments, marriage is not just for the good of individuals, or the couple, but for the community as a whole. Every created being, even creation itself, is subject to the rules (whether they be scientific or moral) that shape its being. (John 8:1-11 NAB) This crime was punishable by death (stoning). in Theology from Catholic Distance University (Thank you, St. Joseph of Cupertino). Tower of Babel, Noah and the Ark, Kings of Israel, etc…) Thus, the need for rules! Catholicism is a religion that places value on learning from people, not just from documents. Roman Catholics believe that, under certain circumstances, the pope is infallible (that is, he can not make a mistake). According to the Catholic tradition, the history of the Catholic Church begins with Jesus Christ and his teachings (c. 4 BC – c. AD 30) and the Catholic Church is a continuation of the early Christian community established by the Disciples of Jesus. How is that possible? (3) The Catholic Doctrine Touching the Church as the Rule of Faith. At the beginning, God gives Adam and Eve dominion over all the earth; the plants, animals, all living things. The Church will always be attacked by those, determined to undermine (and question) her authority. Our secular culture enjoys portraying Catholics as those radical ‘kill-joys’, who lie in wait, as you express your means to happiness and the pleasures of this world, so they can rebuke you with, “NO! (Genesis 1:28-30 NAB)  He even tells them, “You are free to eat from any of the trees in the garden…”. He is a proud family man and has a passion for all things Catholic. Of all the bishops and archbishops in the world he is the leader. Rules, rules, rules!” This comment is usually made by someone who feels they are perfectly capable of making decisions without the interference of religion. Much the same can be said of priests and other teachers of the Faith, up to and including the pope. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Those Catholics would be in ignorance of the many saints who stressed the. Imagine a baseball game where no foul balls or strikes were ever called. If the mother is not incapacitated, she is the only one who should be able to make the decision. In the last few decades, new rules have emerged that broaden the options for burials, including where Catholics can be buried and when it's acceptable to be cremated. -----If your occupations and condition of life allow you, make a daily meditation for at least a quarter of an hour or half an hour. Canon 919 of the Code of Canon Law states, "One who is to receive the Most Holy Eucharist is to abstain from any food or drink, with the exception of water and medicine, for at least the period of one hour before Holy Communion." The Church has specific rules on what constitutes a proper Catholic burial that date back thousands of years. The “rules and regulations” of Catholicism no more stifle an individual’s personal relationship with God than the “rules and regulations” of a car’s owner’s manual stifle a driver’s personal freedom to drive his car. Now let’s examine the New Testament. Then you admit that abortion is killing. Knowing what you should do (and not do) provides for an enjoyable experience. The Catholic Church defines three conditions under which the Pope is infallible: I. Prostitution is usually illegal because it draws other socially unacceptable elements such as drugs and other vices. 314. and now lives and works down south. The rules that express it remain substantially valid. (Matthew 5:48 NAB). http://abitadeacon.blogspot.com/2013/02/wow-washington-post-article-that-gets.html. When I was teaching moral theology, my students learned a definition for love, composed by Eric Fromm: “Love is the active concern for the life and growth of that which we love.” Active concern means you always care. This also includes letting go of pleasure as the path to happiness (spoiler: it’s not). But the New Testament idea of faith is not simple; indeed, it possesses a breadth of meaning that has led to varying understandings, even within a single Christian communion. Why is prostitution illegal in 49 states if a woman has a right to choose what is done with her body? The Catholic Church is ruled by an entirely dysfunctional hierarchy. (Genesis 2:17 NAB) God offers freedom to human beings (free-will) knowing we will misuse it. Let’s begin with Genesis. We are a fallen people. This includes loving our neighbor as ourselves. All the rites of the Catholic Church are of equal dignity and equally valid. We find countless examples where God gives us freedom before He institutes rules. While there is indeed room for legitimate diversity of opinion in how Church documents should be understood, Catholics should be wary of falling into a quasi-Protestant. Most people donate because Catholic Online is useful. Damaged lives when love goes wrong remind us why the Church has such stringent standards when it comes to sexual sin. Guy. Many seem to forget that second part. He is the Vicar of Christ in that he guides the Church in faith and morals. In fact, the scholars of the law in Jesus’ day were so wrapped up in doctrine as an end in itself, they were unable to see that Jesus was leading people down a new and surprising path toward his glory, the pope said Oct. 13 during his morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives. Therefore, Catholics always stand in good company. But, just as Jesus once said of the Sabbath, rules are for man, not man for rules. I met my future wife. Catholic ministers may licitly administer the sacraments to Catholic members of the Christian faithful only and, likewise, the latter may licitly receive the sacraments only from Catholic ministers with due regard for parts 2, 3, and 4 of this canon, and can. Nonetheless, now that I am approaching senior citizenship, I feel I don’t need too many rules anymore. Deacon Mike Talbot (www.abitadeacon.com) said it best in an article written in response to a piece that appeared in the Washington Post about Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s retirement: Our call to live counter-culturally is as old as the church itself. The … More → She is indeed (and unapologetically) counter-cultural. I lost my virginity. During the last World Youth Day Pope Francis told the youth of our world: “…be revolutionaries” and “swim against the tide”. http://lifeteen.com/epic-pope-francis-quotes-world-youth-day-rio-2013/, This Week's Best in Catholic Apologetics | DavidLGray.INFO, Martyrs Read Joel Osteen Tweets - BigPulpit.com, The Ongoing Incarnation: A Christmas Meditation, Answering a World of Lies with the Fifth Advent Candle, Eugenics in America: The Legacy of Sanger and Gates, A Countercultural View About Women in the Church, Religious Life – A Gift to the Church and Society. NEW VIDEO EVERY FRIDAY As a Catholic, basically you’re required to live a Christian life, pray daily, participate in the sacraments, obey the moral law, and accept the teachings of Christ and his Church. Some Catholics may believe that the idea of a personal relationship with God is a Protestant invention that they should spurn. If a person is terminally and wants assistance in dying, it should not be denied. States have all kinds of laws regulating vices like gambling, drinking, marijuana use, etc. 1. 3. Still, Catholicism isn't averse to changing with the times. The sexual revolution began. (Exodus 14:21-31 NAB)  It is later on that God presents Moses with the 10 Commandments. Instead, Catholics are called to live in radical service to our God. The apologists here at Catholic Answers seek to provide people with the documentation they need to consider, and to help in applying the principles to given situations, but the final decision is left to them. People have become immune to the dangers of questioning rules, and the media capitalizes on this ignorance. We need rules so our lives can correspond with God’s original plan for us. Your email address will not be published. A Catholic apologist should also be open to admitting when he is in error, to being willing to accept and consider carefully constructive criticism, and to continue to learn and grow in his own knowledge of the Faith. Ultimately, rules give shape to a given thing. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Jesus says in Matthew’s Gospel: “So be perfect just as your heavenly Father is perfect”. (It is interesting that His compassion was counter-cultural. Roman Catholicism - Roman Catholicism - Beliefs and practices: The idea of faith shared by all Christian churches is rooted in the New Testament. As a teacher, I became aware of this underlying sense of loyalty early on. The difference is that, in most civilized societies, the abortion is legal but the killing of the fetus against the will of the mother, including by killing the mother, is illegal. I realize I am on a Catholic blog so I might not have much support. To those who do not need to ask why the Catholic Church follows a path, contrary to the world, no answer will ever be necessary; and for those who do no answer will ever suffice. What is the role of the Pope in relation to the Bishops (and previous Popes)? But why should there be any rules at all? They are constantly inundated with so much ‘pleasure’, they fear ridicule if they question any of it, or hesitate to participate. 1980 The Old Law is the first stage of revealed law. Following are the minimum requirements for Catholics: Attend Mass every Sunday and holy day of obligation. (http://lifeteen.com/epic-pope-francis-quotes-world-youth-day-rio-2013/) Deacon Mike would agree. The Roman Catholic Church is a BIG HOAX because it teaches the TRADITIONS of men instead of the commandments of God. In John’s Gospel, the scribes and Pharisees present an adulterous woman to Jesus. To those who do not need to ask why the Catholic Church follows a path, contrary to the world, no answer will ever be necessary; and for those who do no answer will ever suffice. As someone considering conversion to Catholicism once said to me: Should I ever make the move to Catholicism, I would hate for my perception of God to recede from a God who created me and continually directs my footsteps to a God who stands behind a gray wall of do’s and don’ts. My girlfriend had an abortion after I stopped seeing her. True freedom ), the Lutheran Church only two: baptism and the 's! To persevere in righteousness ( http: //lifeteen.com/epic-pope-francis-quotes-world-youth-day-rio-2013/ ) Deacon Mike would.! Man and has a right to choose what is done with her body is not incapacitated, she the... 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