Monday, January 16, 2006
Misconceptions of the Catholic Church
I have been inspired to write this post by past questions and recent questions that I have been asked since I became a Catholic.
There are many misconceptions regarding the Roman Catholic Church so I was thinking of the main questions that people have asked me and I hope to answer them clearly.
Here are just a few.
Do Catholics think the the Pope is God? Why do Catholics believe that the Pope is infallible in his teachings?
No Catholics do not believe that the Pope is God, or should be worshipped. The Pope is indeed the chief Shepherd of the Catholic fold and Catholics believe that the Pope is divinely protected from error when he acts officially. (ex Cathedra)
But Catholics do know that he is a human being and makes mistakes in his personal choices like we all do.
In order for the Pope to be infallible on a particular statement these conditions must apply some are: He must be speaking "ex Cathedra" (from the chair of Peter)or just officially.
Decisions must be for the whole Church, It must be a matter of faith and morals etc.
Remember that his ex cathedra teachings are not from personal choices made out of the blue, but they are a result of many years of consultations with other Bishops and theologians of the Church.
He is the head of the Church, and we know he is not Christ.
Do Catholics worship Mary?
I don't know how many times I have answered this one. No Catholics do not worship Mary. Addressing prayer to Mary is like asking a close friend for help, so when you ask someone for prayer, you are not calling them God.
So when you see a rosary, don't worry, it's not a worship tool, it's an inspirational way to pray, or as some say a prayer aid.
Catholics worship pictures and statues..
Oh yeah, sure...NOT ! Of course that is not true. Statues and pictures are just reminders of those who have pleased God, they are inspirational people who we can learn a lot from, so if a picture helps you remember I don't see the harm. I keep pictures of my dad (who passed away) so I can be reminded of him, and I look at one particular picture every day!
Only got time for 3 today, I hope to slowly post more from time to time. If I have made a mistake on any of my answers, hopefully some kind person can set me straight :D