Gema

Favorite saint of purity

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My favorite patron saint of purity is St.Maria Goretti. Are there any catholics who have a favorite patron saint of purity?

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Hi @Gema

I hope you're fine.

I have to confess that I'm really impressed by your faith in God, because you seem really committed. I think this is really amazing.

I do love Jesus myself and I want to do my best to honor Him with all my life with His help. I thank God for His forgiveness because without Him I'm nothing at all.

I do respect you, nevertheless, I want to say the truth. I believe that there are many catholics who are sincere like you in their faith, but they do things that are not in agreement with God. I mean those things are not in agreement with the Bible.

For example, prayer to Mary and the saints...baptism of infants...kneeling before images and statues...

It's clearly said in the Bible that God doesn't want those things. I'm not here to offend you and to make debates. Only the Holy Spirit can convince of sin, justice and of judgement.

I don't have the power to convert you to any religion, this is not my role. And I don't even want to do that. I simply deeply want the truth. According to the Bible, which is God's word. 

I put in attachment a document that talks about catholicism. It is really long...so may be you won't be able to read everything...I didn't read everything. I read some of its content. And I agree with what i read. I don't want to offend you, nor other catholics. I respect catholics as human beings. And there are many of them  I respect and admire. But I still disagree with some dogmas, simply because it seems they are not biblical. What do you think?

understandingromancatholicism.pdf

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Catholics don't pray to Mary or the saints, we ask for their intercession. It's like asking a friend to pray for you. As for "worshipping" Mary, of course, most Catholics do no such thing. To "worship" someone or something implies that one recognizes in the object of worship the source of all worth and goodness. But the Catholic Church teaches that Mary is certainly not the source of all worth and goodness in the universe; she is just a creature, a channel and vessel of God's grace. We call her "Holy Mary" in much the same way that all Christians speak of the "Holy Bible," because the Bible, too, is a vessel, a channel of God's grace to us. As St. Ambrose (340-397) once wrote: "Mary is the Temple of God, not the God of the Temple."

 

In technical, theological language, we say that we offer "worship" (in Latin, latria) to God alone, but what we offer to any created excellence fashioned by God is merely proper "veneration" or "honor" (in Latin, dulia). This is especially true of the greatest masterpieces of God's grace: his saints. Honoring the saints no more distracts us from the true worship of God than delighting in and praising an artist's best work distracts us from proper appreciation of the artist himself. Clearly, the honor given to the excellence of the artwork passes on and glorifies the artist and gives us all the more reason to appreciate and praise him. In a similar way, God is the artist of souls. As we shall see in this series, God has fashioned no greater masterpiece in all of creation than the mother of the Son of God, Mary of Nazareth.

 

This means that when Catholics gaze on Mary, we always see shining in her the light of her Son, the pure reflection of his merciful and compassionate Heart. Here, then, is the first reason why the Blessed Virgin Mary is so important to Catholics: because she is like a window into heaven, a true icon for us of the God who created and sanctified her. Archbishop Fulton Sheen summed it up best in his book The World's First Love:
God, who made the sun, also made the moon. The moon does not take away from the brilliance of the sun. The moon would only be a burnt-out cinder floating in the immensity of space were it not for the sun. All its light is reflected from the sun. The Blessed Mother reflects her Divine Son: without Him she is nothing. With Him she is the Mother of Men. On dark nights we are grateful for the moon; when we see it shining, we know there must be a sun. So in this dark night of the world, when men turn their backs on Him Who is the Light of the World, we look to Mary to guide their feet while we await the sunrise.

Theologian Dr. Mark Miravalle, in his book Introduction to Mary, explains that these actions by Catholics do not necessarily imply that we worship her or even that we worship the statues and images of her that we use in religious devotion:

 

A painting or a statue of the Mother of Jesus serves the same purpose as a family photo on an office desk, or a statue of a public hero or statesman erected in a town square. The image serves as a reminder of the person the image represents, and thereby possesses a symbolic or representational value... .

 

As a father gazes upon the photograph of his family on his desk at work and feels the warming of his heart at the thought of his wife and children, so too, an image of Jesus' Mother can evoke similar feelings of filial love and devotion to her. Yet, as is true of the family photo and the public memorial statue, the Marian statue or image possesses no intrinsic power nor personhood; it only conveys an image of a Spiritual Mother most deserving of frequent remembrance and love. (2006 edition, pp. 214-215)

 

Besides, it is clear from Scripture that not all making and devout use of religious images amounts to "the worship of idols." For example, in the Old Testament, the Lord God commanded the making of two cherubim of gold to be set over the Mercy Seat on the Ark of the Covenant (Ex 25:18-20). When God gave to Kings David and Solomon the divine plan for the building of the Great Temple in Jerusalem, it was to be adorned with carved wooden cherubim (I Kgs 6: 23-26; I Chr 28: 18-19). The prophet Ezekiel also describes carved cherubim in the ideal Temple that he was shown in a vision (Ez 4:17-18). Moses was actually commanded to make a bronze serpent and set it on a pole so that any Israelite who looked upon it might be healed (Num 21:8-9). This shows that religious images can be used not only for decoration, but even as aids to devotion and faith. Of course, when the Israelites began to worship the bronze serpent itself as a snake-god, King Hezekiah rightly had it destroyed (II Kgs 18:4). But it is clear from the Bible that not all religious use of images and statues amounts to idolatry.

 

Even "bowing down" to them or kneeling to pray before them is not necessarily an act of worship. Bowing and kneeling can mean different things in different cultures. For example, in Japan, people bow to each other simply to show mutual respect and honor. Kneeling can simply be an act of humility, love, and supplication, as we ask for the prayers of the particular angel or saint depicted in the image or statue. The intention is simply that the veneration or supplication that we offer passes on to the person that the image represents. Catholics certainly do not intend to ask the paint on a canvas or the plaster or wood in a statue to hear their prayers!

 

Speaking of the Ten Commandments, we might well ask: Did Jesus keep them? All Christians surely believe that Jesus was without sin, the spotless Lamb of God, so he must have kept all of God's commandments perfectly. But that means that he also kept the commandment to "honor your father and your mother" perfectly. As Christians, we are to be disciples of Jesus Christ and follow his perfect example of love for God and for one another. It follows that if Jesus honored his mother and father, that is, the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, then, as his followers, we should honor them, too. As St. Maximilian Kolbe once said, "Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin too much. You can never love her more than Jesus did."The Catholic Church teachesthat Baptism is both necessary for salvation and regenerative, causing us to be reborn as children of God. Through Baptism we receive the life-giving, sanctifying grace of the Holy Spirit. This grace wipes away Original Sin that stains each soul because of the fallen nature we inherited from Adam and Eve. The Church prescribes Baptism by water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, as the normative gateway to God and his family, the Church. The Church has baptized infants from the earliest times and continues to do so today. The Church also teaches that catechesis must follow Baptism to properly assist the baptized on his Christian journey. Both immersion and sprinkling are acceptable forms of Baptism in the Catholic Church.

Takes away all sin. Now, why delay? Get up and have yourself baptized and your sins washed away, calling upon his name. Acts 22:16

To be administered to children. People were bringing even infants to him ... whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it. Luke 18:15-17

But thank you for your concern <3 

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@Gema Thank you very much for your answer ^_^

But I still respectfully disagree...with some points.

10 hours ago, Gema said:

Catholics don't pray to Mary or the saints, we ask for their intercession

Yes, I understand that. And that's exactly what the Bible tells us not to do.

For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus 1 Timothy2verse5

The above verse states that there is only One intercessor for us : Jesus. 

10 hours ago, Gema said:

It's like asking a friend to pray for you

I understand that. God also understands that, and that's why He gave us Jesus. Jesus is the only one who is worthy of interceding for us. The Bible tells us that Jesus is our Lawyer. And also that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us.

My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. 1 John 2 verse 1 

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for usthrough wordless groans  Roman 8verse 26

10 hours ago, Gema said:

A painting or a statue of the Mother of Jesus serves the same purpose as a family photo on an office desk, or a statue of a public hero or statesman erected in a town square. The image serves as a reminder of the person the image represents, and thereby possesses a symbolic or representational value... .

 

As a father gazes upon the photograph of his family on his desk at work and feels the warming of his heart at the thought of his wife and children, so too, an image of Jesus' Mother can evoke similar feelings of filial love and devotion to her. Yet, as is true of the family photo and the public memorial statue, the Marian statue or image possesses no intrinsic power nor personhood; it only conveys an image of a Spiritual Mother most deserving of frequent remembrance and love. (2006 edition, pp. 214-215)

My reply to that is one verse :

God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth. John 4 verse 24

10 hours ago, Gema said:

To be administered to children. People were bringing even infants to him ... whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it. Luke 18:15-17

The Bible says that people were bringing infants to Jesus and that he was laying His hands upon them. Infants were not baptised. In the Bible, people get baptised when they make the commitment themselves towards God. Baby don't have the ability to make the commitment yet. And in the Bible, the baptism is immersion in the water.

In catholicism, the baptism of babies is a drop of water. this is not biblical.

and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God 1 Peter 3 verse 21

Anyway, as I had said previously, only the Holy Spirit can convince you. I shared the biblical truth with you. Thank you for having developped your point of view, even if I still disagree. ^_^

Blessings for you

 

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In 1 Timothy it says that Jesus is our sole mediator, yet we pray to Mary and the Saints. Is that going against the Bible?

1 Tim 2:5 reads as follows: "For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus..." "You see," we Catholics are told, "there is only one mediator between God and men, Jesus Christ. Therefore, praying to the saints goes against the Bible because you are making them mediators between God and man, you are diminishing Jesus' role as the sole mediator!"

 

Is that an appropriate interpretation of that passage? No, it's not and let's see why not. 

In the O.T. we see that Moses, Abraham, and Job interceded on behalf of others... that's mediating between God and man. We know that it is okay to ask others here on earth to pray and intercede for us.... that's mediating between God and man. So, I think, once again, we have a situation where a passage of the Bible is being misinterpreted and misunderstood

There is only one mediator between God and man, the man Jesus Christ, but as members of the Body of Christ, He allows us to share in His mediation.

Also, Scripture tells us that we have only one foundation, Jesus Christ (1 Cor 3:11); but, Scripture tells us that there is more than one foundation (Eph 2:19-20). Scripture tells us that we have only Lord, Jesus Christ (Eph 4:4-5); but, Scripture tells us there is more than one lord (Rev 19:16). Scripture tells us that we have only one Judge, Jesus Christ (James 4:12); but, Scripture tells us there is more than one judge (1 Cor 6:2).

Contradictions in Scripture? No! Not when these passages are all properly understood in context. Jesus isthe only foundation; Jesus is the only Lord; and Jesus is the only Judge. But, we are members of Jesus' Body. Therefore, we are able, according to the graces given by Christ, to share in Jesus' role as foundation, as lord, and as judge, and in other aspects of Christ, as well. Another example, as a father I share in God's role as Father, by His grace. And, so also, we, and the saints in Heaven, and the angels in Heaven, can share in Christ's role as Mediator.

https://www.biblechristiansociety.com/apologetics/two_minute#15

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@Thomist

I partly agree with what you mentioned above : In the Bible it is said, that we, as christians we can pray for each other.

Nevertheless, my concern is God never intended us to pray to dead saints. There is a huge difference.

http://www.bible-knowledge.com/praying-to-dead-saints/

 

Praying To Dead Saints

Should We Pray to Dead Saints?

There are verses in the Bible that say that we are not to try and communicate with the dead. The “dead” are those humans who have already died and passed over to the other side – whether it be to heaven or to hell.

I believe God is telling us with the word “communicate” that we are not to even try and pray to them.

The reason is obvious. They are in heaven.

They are not omnipresent like God is. And even if someone should try and pray to them – there is no way that person would even hear your prayers to begin with unless God would allow it or would transmit the prayer to them.

Even though that dead saint is up in heaven – this person still has no power on his own to make anything happen for you. The best they could do for you is to pray direct to God.

So why waste your time praying direct to a dead saint who does not have God’s full, supernatural power to answer your prayer in the first place – and who probably will not even hear or pick up your prayer anyway, since the chances of that dead saint being tuned into your specific prayer at a specific time are probably a million to one.

 

The reason for this is because God the Father is a jealous God. He, and He alone, is our one and only true God and Father. He, and He alone, is the only One who has the full supernatural power to answer any of our specific prayer requests.

Jesus’ death on the cross has now opened up the gates to heaven. The Bible tells us that we can now boldly approach the throne of God for prayer and intimate communication anytime we want. If you will notice, it says to approach the throne of God, not the thrones of dead saints!

I personally believe that when some people start praying to dead saints instead of going direct to God the Father, I think they may actually be hurting God’s feelings.

 

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On 8/4/2017 at 6:11 PM, Geraldine said:

I personally believe that when some people start praying to dead saints instead of going direct to God the Father, I think they may actually be hurting God’s feelings.

I don't think it hurts God's feelings, but I could imaging God being perplexed at why people would pray to dead saints who have no power to actually do anything. By praying to them it elevates them to a "God-like" status which then starts to get close to idol-worship and that is unbiblical.  I just think it's wrong to begin with. You're praying to people who can't actually help you. Only God can help you through any problems that you may face; not dead saints. Because that's all they are, dead people who lived holy lives. 

It's good to look at people's lives and see what they did right but they shouldn't be worshiped or prayed to because of it. We should be praying to the one who enabled them to make those decisions in the first place and that is God. Without him, we are nothing and that is the same for the dead saints. 

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