Drawn to Catholicism...but have reservations.

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Thepeug…I am a convert and have gone through some of the same thought patterns. I resolved mine through a wonderful counselor during the RCIA program that I attended and had recommended as a choice for you. ou don’t have to become Catholic after completion. I, as others respondents have said, am not an authority but will direct you as I can. It is impossible to provide complete answers in this forum. I have read the responses. I have supplied references and contradicted some. 🙂 They are going to keep you busy for a while. The search is well worth it. You will gain an inner calm/peace.
 I do recommend the Catechism of the Church as a reference point.  You need to have ready material.  You can’t find a quick answer.  You need a Catholic Bible.  Protestant bibles do not contain the books of the apocrypha. 

 First of all, as I did and believe you must make and accept this decision: “Sacred Scripture is the word of God inasmuch as it is consigned to writing under the inspiration of the divine Spirit (Vatican II, *Dei Verbum*).”  All of it.  Without this premise, you cannot go forth.  The Catholic Church is solidly based on the scriptures.

 “power that the pope yields” – in terms of control, strength or force; NO.  In terms of capacity and ability to act effectively, YES.  He is human.  He has no special, unique spiritual power yet he is guided by the Holy Spirit as we all are.  As the heir to Peter, I believe the Holy Spirit is constantly with him and very close to him.  There is a good link at the top of this WEB page titled “How to Become a Catholic” – see the SIDEBAR “Church & Papacy”.  I think you will find most of your answers about the Pope there.  

 To clarify MariaG “Christ chose Peter” – we have to look closer to the scriptures (remember our premise).  Matthew 16:16 Simon Peter said in reply, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God." 16:17 Jesus said to him in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. *For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.” * The Holy Spirit chose Peter permitting Christ to recognize and appoint to him a special primacy with authority over the rest of the Apostles that has been passed on continually to the present Pope.  Your continued study will make this evident.  Yes, Peter was married.  To be married was to be accepted in the community.  That fact is not important in being chosen.  

 c0achmcguirk refers you to a WEB site, [christiantruth.com/mt16.html](http://www.christiantruth.com/mt16.html).  I took his advice and went there.  One has to understand the other side.  Once I find an error in the text, I stop reading.  The error was in comparing Mt. 16:18 to Eph. 2:20.  It is an easy fallacy to take a phrase out of context and use it to promote your idea – one basis for the thousands of independent Christian denominations today. 

 On the Eastern Schism and celibacy, I refer you to [newadvent.org/](http://www.newadvent.org/.) where you can find a discussion in the Catholic Encyclopedia.  The schism was not a grab for power.  There are many other human issues that evolved.  

 Scott Hahn (a converted Presbyterian minister) has many books and tapes that helped me.  His wife, Kimberly who has a master’s in theology, also converted and has a book that could guide you called [**Rome Sweet Home**](http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0898704782/stpaulcenterf-20/002-0802523-7455220).
One of my favorite verses from Romans, 8:38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, 8:39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

May the Peace of Christ be with you always.

Wow! Thank you so much, everyone, for the wealth of information, resources, and opinions you have given me. Thank you especially for the assurance of prayers as I seek to find a Church home…they are definitely needed. I plan to ask a priest all of these questions as soon as school starts again, but for now I figured I would get a few lay Catholic and non-Catholic opinions.
 Your responses, immensely helpful though they are, leave me with a few more questions.  If you have time, I'd love to hear your thoughts.  First, I'm confused about the difference between the "development" and the "invention" of new doctrine.  Several of you said that doctrine is developed over time and is never modified from the original Apostolic teachings.  However, was the Filoque clause ("and the Son") not added to the Nicene Creed several centuries after the Church was founded?  Similarly, were not the concepts of Purgatory and indulgences articulated or put into practice several hundred years after Jesus' death? Weren't the ideas of Papal infallibility, the Assumption of Body and Soul, and the Immaculate Conception all made into doctrine in the 19th and 20th centuries?  I understand the idea that these concepts always existed as doctrine but were just more accurately articulated as time has unfolded.  Still, the semantic line between the invention of new doctrines and the development of previously unarticulated ones seems to be rather thin.

 Second, I must admit that I was never before aware of the significance of Acts 15:7-11.When read in conjunction with Matthew 16:18-19, it becomes fairly clear to me that Peter occupied a special position of prominence and leadership among the Apostles and elders of the Church.  Particularly striking was the line, "you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that I should be the one through whom the Gentiles would hear the message of the good news and become believers" (NSRV).  I had never taken notice of that verse until you guys pointed it out.  Pretty cool :) .  

 At the same time, I notice that in this instance, as well as during other times in which the Biblical Church needed to make decisions, the leaders of the Church always gathered as a group.  Peter never sat in a chair by himself and made decisions that affected the whole church; leader though he was, he always worked in conjunction with the other Apostles and Church elders.  Throughout Church history, it seems as though the Pope has grown increasingly powerful, while other leaders of the Church have maintained their original positions.  Today, the Pope has the power to make infallible pronouncements concerning matters of faith and morals, even if bishops and Cardinals disagree with such pronouncements.  Jesus assures his followers that "where two or three gathered in my name, I am there among them" (Matt 18:20), and He gives a council of believers the same authority that He granted to Peter when he says, "Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in Heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in Heaven" (Matt 18:18).  These words are the exact same words found in reference to Peter's authority in 16:19, but  in this case they refer to the authority of a council of believers.  Does this not imply that an Ecumencial council, instead of being subordinate to the Pope, should be equal to him?  If Peter's authority has been perhaps a bit exaggerated over the centuries, is the ideal authority structure not one in which the Pope, serving as leader, works in conjunction with an Ecumenical council to make Church decisions?  In other words, I just find it odd that one man has the authority to override the decisions of a large group of valid Church leaders.  Any thoughts? 
 Lastly, someone mentioned that the church in Rome did not break away from the other churches because of a desire for power.  What, then, was the primary cause for the Schism of 1054?  Every article I have read on the subject thus far is biased in favor of either Catholicism or Orthodoxy.  Does anyone know where I can find an account of these events from an fairly objective perspective?

 Again, thank you all for your help and support.  Your eagerness to help epitomizes the intrinsic sense of community that I find among many Catholics.  And to non-Catholics, considering that I'm a non-Catholic myself, your support and opinions are certainly equally appreciated.  Thanks and God bless!
It gives my heart great joy to read that the Spirit is working so strongly in you!

With regards to papal infallibility, a few points… It is extremely RARE that the Pope makes an infallible statement, or ‘ex-cathedra’. Typically, doctrinal issues are addressed, as a whole, from the college of cardinals and bishops. This will probably sit a little better with your reading of Acts. In addition, numerous popes, especially our current one, have been quick to point out that they are simply the Bishop of Rome. This is why the Pope is very hesitant to intercede in certain matters; i.e. the abuse scandal. A Pope is always respectful of overstepping his bounds when it comes to diocesan matters. However, the Pope, as in all institutions, sits as the visible ‘head’ of the church. The ‘gatekeeper’, if you will.

You rightly point to some of the more prominent doctrinal clarifications that have occurred in our 2000 year history. First, these clarifications typically came in response to a rising heresy. They were always understood by the Church as a whole; however, a specific response was needed at that time. Secondly, as you note, these were always done via a Church Council and issued from the collective shepherds of the Church, our bishops.

I hope this helps…you are in my prayers.

God bless!

I too am information seeker. One of the things that has helped me, well, two things, are talking to both believers of different faiths, and two looking at writings both for and against. Fulton Sheed (who said that 99% of people hate not the Catholic Church but what they think the church is, only a handful really hate the church), Scott Hahn, Hans Kung A Short History of the Catholic Church (he helped create/write Vatican II), Keating (of course).

Much of the anti-Catholic writing out there is written out of mis-understanding.

The thing that has allowed me to go through the process to be confirmed (I am already a Christian-baptised in the church) is that although I understand most everything that is written in the Catechism and believe almost everything, I don’t believe or really I should say, I choose not to agree with everything that the Church says is so.

Like what? Well, I think that there is a good argument against both *sola fide *and the Church’s belief of (faith and works -which I forget the latin for…) it can be found here:


If you feel this is where the Spirit is drawing you, then follow Him… He will never lead you wrong. You would be amazed at how many Catholics he has put in our path since we have started attending Mass (daily).

Keith Flanary:
c0achmcguirk refers you to a WEB site, christiantruth.com/mt16.html. I took his advice and went there. One has to understand the other side. Once I find an error in the text, I stop reading. The error was in comparing Mt. 16:18 to Eph. 2:20.
The Greek word for build upon in Matthew 16:18 is epoikodomeo. The word used in Ephesians 2:20 is oikodomeo. I am not a Greek scholar, but these words are obviously related. My concordandance indicates the first word is a derivative of the second.

What error are you refering to, Keith, in the comparison of those passages?
Keith Flanary:
c0achmcguirk refers you to a WEB site, christiantruth.com/mt16.html. I took his advice and went there. One has to understand the other side. Once I find an error in the text, I stop reading. The error was in comparing Mt. 16:18 to Eph. 2:20. It is an easy fallacy to take a phrase out of context and use it to promote your idea – one basis for the thousands of independent Christian denominations today.
I second petra in asking for clarification. The linked article states
What is seldom ever mentioned is the fact that Ephesians 2:20 uses precisely the same language as that found in Matthew 16 when it says the Church is built upon the apostles and prophets with Christ as the cornerstone. The same greek word for build upon in Matthew 16 is employed in Ephesians 2:20.
petra is correct, the words in Matthew 16:18 and Ephesians 2:20 are simply different tenses of the same word and both verses describe the construction of the church in terms a builder’s labourer would understand. Also, I fail to see how Ephesians 2:20 is being taken out of context. If anything, Matthew 16:18 is the verse being taken out of context as it is divorced from Saint Peter’s confession of Christ in Matthew 16:16.

The problem with the “Who-- or what-- is the Rock?” debate is that it is often reduced to a dichotomy:

Either Jesus or Peter

Or either Peter or Peter’s Faith

Or either Jesus or Peter’s Faith

Why can’t it be Jesus *and * Peter *and * Peter’s Faith?

Well, to do so is equivocation! It is equivocal, unless words in Scripture have several senses.
Interesting article concerning equivoation. Someone mentioned that all doctrinal declarations such as the existence of Purgatory, indulgences, the Immaculate Conception, etc. were made by the Pope in council with the bishops. I could be wrong, but weren’t the ideas of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption declared ex cathedra? If they were, does that mean that the Pope just sat in his pastoral chair one day and, after much contemplation, declared such ideas to be necessary for the faith of all Catholics? In other words, in what context are ex cathedra statements issued, and why are they issued? I know the Pope has only used this privilege twice in history, but considering that he ‘obtained’ this privilege as late as 1870, that seems to be quite a bit!
 Because all major decisions mentioned in the Bible and in the early days of the Church were made collectively by its leaders (albeit with Peter or another Roman bishop often acting as leader of the council), I still struggle to justify the idea of one man with the authority to void the decisions of a larger council.  We are invariably influenced by the societies in which we live; this influence extends even to the Church. Given the nearly universal monarchial system of government employed during the Middle Ages, it seems possible that, influenced by this system, the Catholic faithful attributed an increasingly monarchial status to the Bishop of Rome, culminating in the 'universal ruler' that we have today.  Thoughts?  Objections?

Dr Paul:
The concept of the supremacy of Peter, who eventually became the first bishop of Rome, can be understood as a belief that Peter (and subsequent Popes) are “first among equals”. This is evident from the earliest recorded documents. This can be seen clearly in the council of Jerusalem (ACTS 15) in which Paul brings the issue of what to require of the gentile converts to Peter who makes the final decision.

Actually St. James, not St. Peter, makes the final decision at the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15:19):

New American: “It is my (James) judgment therefore…”

Douay-Rheims: “For which cause I (James) judge…”

Vulgate: “propter quod ego (James) iudico…”

I don’t think, however, that this passage necessarily takes anything away from the doctrine of the papacy. Surely the idea of supremacy does not mean that the pope has to personally make every decision in the Church. Even if St. James makes the decision of the Council, St. Peter, clearly, implicitly consents to it. So it is simple for a Catholic apologist to look at this passage in such a way that St. James derives his authority from St. Peter’s consent. (St. James also cites St. Peter in making the decision another item one could point to show St. Peter’s authority.) Also one could argue that St. Peter’s very presence at the Council put his stamp of authority behind its decision no matter who, technically, made that final decision.

Yet at the same time I think (and this is why I am commenting on your use of Acts 15) that it is bad exegesis to use this passage as the basis of an argument for papal supremacy to Protestants. If one already accepts papal supremacy, one could look at the passage as I outlined it above and see hints of the Catholic doctrine. If one does not accept the doctrine of papal supremacy and takes a sola scriptura approach, he will simply fling this verse back at the apologist and say: “James made the decision.” At best a Protestant might admit that St. James and St. Peter come to this decision in concert. At worst the Protestant would declare that St. James makes the decision based on his own authority. To a Bible-only Protestant, it would be impossible, without doing serious damage to the plain meaning of the text, to make it appear as if St. Peter made the decision of the Council of Jerusalem on his own so I wouldn’t use this as a line of argument for papal supremacy with Protestants.

–I’ve always found the debate about Peter and James’ “decision making” in Acts to be somewhat amusing. The apostles showed deference to one another and learned to follow the instructions of Jesus when it came to grasping for position. That said the issue of primacy can in no way be argued for James. It really has to be on other grounds.

It seems clear that if anyone studies scripture with even minimal effort to determine if Jesus left a shepherd, they will come to see the primacy of Peter. It is also obvious that if Jesus left Peter to “strengthen” and lead his brothers(i.e. the apostles), then Jesus would provide such a shepherd for future generations in the church.

I would suggest comparing Matthew 16:18 with Isaiah 22:19-22. This is the best place to start when looking at the papacy. Notice the similarities in the verses and take note that the office described in Isaiah is one that had succession attached to it. Moreover, the office holder would be “a father to his people.” Like the Pope “Papa” or father.

Study the New Testament verses that pertain to Peter and notice how many times he is mentioned. It is amazing what Jesus says and does for Peter. There is no doubt about what the Lord was doing.
Welcome and God Bless!

I’m a catholic with episcopal friends and I say they are the most amazing people and their retreats are wonderful but I’m so in love with the Eucharist! If you ever feel like you need to be with Jesus go make a Holy hour in front of the Blessed Sacrament. I think this is one way that can aide you in your quest to come to love the church as many of us do by focusing on Jesus’ body blood, soul and divinity!

The idea of Purgatory was actually introduced by the Jews contrary to Popular belief. Read 1 and 2 Maccabees.(thats why Luther took them out) And St. Paul talks about it too.(not sure which verses exactly though but they are there, they regard to cleansing by fire)

Fr. Corapi is a wonderful priest and I love his sermons/talks regarding various topics heres a site fathercorapi.com/index.asp

I recommend purchasing cd’s by him regarding the various topics you desire to learn about. fathercorapi.com/shopping/ViewCategory.asp?SID=1&Category_ID=3

I like his style of Preaching and hopefullyyou will too. 😃

Peace an God Bless
I could be wrong, but weren’t the ideas of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption declared ex cathedra?
The dogmas of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption were acts “from the Chair” *and * exercises in collegiality. Here’s the relevant text for the IC:
"Accordingly, from ancient times the bishops of the Church, ecclesiastics, religious orders, and even emperors and kings, have earnestly petitioned this Apostolic See to define a dogma of the Catholic Faith the Immaculate Conception of the most holy Mother of God. These petitions were renewed in these our own times; they were especially brought to the attention of Gregory XVI, our predecessor of happy memory, and to ourselves, not only by bishops, but by the secular clergy and religious orders, by sovereign rulers and by the faithful. . .
"That we might proceed with great prudence, we established a special congregation of our venerable brethren, the cardinals of the holy Roman Church, illustrious for their piety, wisdom, and knowledge of the sacred scriptures. We also selected priests, both secular and regular, well trained in the theological sciences, that they should most carefully consider all matters pertaining to the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin and make known to us their opinion.
"The Mind of the Bishops
"Although we knew the mind of the bishops from the petitions which we had received from them, namely, that the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin be finally defined, nevertheless, on February 2, 1849, we sent an Encyclical Letter from Gaeta to all our venerable brethren, the bishops of the Catholic world, that they should offer prayers to God and then tell us in writing what the piety an devotion of their faithful was in regard to the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God. We likewise inquired what the bishops themselves thought about defining this doctrine and what their wishes were in regard to making known with all possible solemnity our supreme judgment.
"We were certainly filled with the greatest consolation when the replies of our venerable brethren came to us. For, replying to us with a most enthusiastic joy, exultation and zeal, they not only again confirmed their own singular piety toward the Immaculate Conception of the most Blessed Virgin, and that of the secular and religious clergy and of the faithful, but with one voice they even entreated us to define our supreme judgment and authority the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin. In the meantime we were indeed filled with no less joy when, after a diligent examination, our venerable brethren, the cardinals of the special congregation and the theologians chosen by us as counselors (whom we mentioned above), asked with the same enthusiasm and fervor for the definition of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God.
“Consequently, following the examples of our predecessors, and desiring to proceed in the traditional manner, we announced and held a consistory, in which we addressed our brethren, the cardinals of the Holy Roman Church. It was the greatest spiritual joy for us when we heard them ask us to promulgate the dogmatic definition of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mother of God” (Ineffabilis Deus).
. . .And the relevant texts for the Assumption:
. . ."[W]hen it was solemnly proclaimed that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, was from the very beginning free from the taint of original sin, the minds of the faithful were filled with a stronger hope that the day might soon come when the dogma of the Virgin Mary’s bodily Assumption into heaven would also be defined by the Church’s supreme teaching authority.
"Actually it was seen that not only individual Catholics, but also those who could speak for nations or ecclesiastical provinces, and even a considerable number of the Fathers of the Vatican Council, urgently petitioned the Apostolic See to this effect.
"During the course of time such postulations and petitions did not decrease but rather grew continually in number and in urgency. In this cause there were pious crusades of prayer. Many outstanding theologians eagerly and zealously carried out investigations on this subject either privately or in public ecclesiastical institutions and in other schools where the sacred disciplines are taught. Marian Congresses, both national and international in scope, have been held in many parts of the Catholic world. These studies and investigations have brought out into even clearer light the fact that the dogma of the Virgin Mary’s Assumption into heaven is contained in the deposit of Christian faith entrusted to the Church. They have resulted in many more petitions, begging and urging the Apostolic See that this truth be solemnly defined.
"In this pious striving, the faithful have been associated in a wonderful way with their own holy bishops, who have sent petitions of this kind, truly remarkable in number, to this See of the Blessed Peter. Consequently, when we were elevated to the throne of the supreme pontificate, petitions of this sort had already been addressed by the thousands from every part of the world and from every class of people, from our beloved sons the Cardinals of the Sacred College, from our venerable brethren, archbishops and bishops, from dioceses and from parishes.
"Consequently, while we sent up earnest prayers to God that he might grant to our mind the light of the Holy Spirit, to enable us to make a decision on this most serious subject, we issued special orders in which we commanded that, by corporate effort, more advanced inquiries into this matter should be begun and that, in the meantime, all the petitions about the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven which had been sent to this Apostolic See from the time of Pius IX, our predecessor of happy memory, down to our own days should be gathered together and carefully evaluated.
"And, since we were dealing with a matter of such great moment and of such importance, we considered it opportune to ask all our venerable brethren in the episcopate directly and authoritatively that each of them should make known to us his mind in a formal statement. Hence, on May 1, 1946, we gave them our letter ‘Deiparae Virginis Mariae,’ a letter in which these words are contained: ‘Do you, venerable brethren, in your outstanding wisdom and prudence, judge that the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin can be proposed and defined as a dogma of faith? Do you, with your clergy and people, desire it?’
“But those whom ‘the Holy Spirit has placed as bishops to rule the Church of God’ gave an almost unanimous affirmative response to both these questions. This ‘outstanding agreement of the Catholic prelates and the faithful,’ affirming that the bodily Assumption of God’s Mother into heaven can be defined as a dogma of faith, since it shows us the concordant teaching of the Church’s ordinary doctrinal authority and the concordant faith of the Christian people which the same doctrinal authority sustains and directs, thus by itself and in an entirely certain and infallible way, manifests this privilege as a truth revealed by God and contained in that divine deposit which Christ has delivered to his Spouse to be guarded faithfully and to be taught infallibly. . .” (Munificentissimus Deus).
See also Pope Pius XII’s Deiparae Virginis Mariae in which he wrote to the bishops:
. . .We wish to know if you, Venerable Brethren, with your learning and prudence consider that the bodily Assumption of the Immaculate Blessed Virgin can be proposed and defined as a dogma of faith, and whether in addition to your own wishes this is desired by your clergy and people.
I just have a hard time believe that Jesus ever intended Peter to function as an infallible spiritual monarch who has the power to bind the conscience of all of his followers.

I’m cynical by nature, so forgive me, please. But isn’t the founder of the Epsicopal Church Henry VIII? And, on what basis did he start that church?

I’m cynical by nature, so forgive me, please. But isn’t the founder of the Epsicopal Church Henry VIII? And, on what basis did he start that church?
Well, the Episcopal Church is the American version of the Church of England. I’ll admit, the history of the founding of the Church of England is a bit uncouth, to say the least. From what I understand, King Henry VIII wanted to divorce his childless wife, Catherine of Aragon, so that he could marry Anne Boelyn, with whom he was having an affair. The Pope refused to grant him his annulment so, severing his ties with Catholicism, he issued the Act of Supremacy and declared himself supreme head (in a temporal sense) of the Church of England (he later executed Anne and married Jane Seymour). Today, the Archbishop of Canterbury is recognized as the spiritual head of the Anglican Communion, of which the ECUSA is a part. He has nowhere near the authority of the Pope, however.

Also, please understand that I’m not trying to maliciously criticize the Pope or the Catholic Church. I *am *being critical and I *am *trying to be brutally honest in my criticisms, but only becuase by confronted my doubts and concerns about Catholicism head-on can I hope to overcome them 🙂 .

That said, I have two other questions. First, in the Deus Ineffibilis (sp?) the Pope consistently uses the term “we.” Does “we” refer to the Pope in concert with others, or is the term used as a kind of royal “we?” I know it’s a bit trivial, but interesting, nonethless.

Second, someone mentioned Isaiah 22:20-25 in reference to Papal authority. While the passage certainly seems to support the establishment of leader with “the key of the house of David,” it also seems to indicate that this leader will “be cut down and fall.” In verse 23, the Lord says, “I will fasten him like a peg in a secure place.” Two verses later, He says, “the peg that was fastened in a secure place will give way; it will be cut down and fall.” Does the peg in verse 23 describe this new leader, and the second peg describe the dethroned leader mentioned in 17-19? Given that both pegs are described as “fastened in a secure place,” it seems to me that they refer to the same person, meaning that this leader with “the key of the house of David” will be “cut down.” Any thoughts or differing interpretations? Does the Church have an official stance on these verses? Any opinons are appreciated!


To add to your comments on Henry VIII and Anglicanism: Anglicans don’t generally regard Henry VIII as our founder. We claim to be the continuation of the Catholic Church in England, going back at least to St. Augustine of Canterbury (from whom Rowan Williams can trace an unbroken succession). Many of us regret the break from Rome that occurred in the 16th century and would admit that there were many unworthy motives on our side. But to us Henry VIII is simply one episode in our history. For one thing, the Church of England was restored to communion with Rome under Mary, and its relationship to Rome under Elizabeth (some would argue) remained unclear until the Pope took the initiative to excommunicate Elizabeth in 1572. Some Anglicans would claim that that is actually where the final break took place, thus putting the blame on Rome. This is a bit flimsy, because we had clearly adopted doctrines and liturgy that put us in the Protestant camp. But our break from Rome was a long and messy process, and it can’t simply be reduced to Henry VIII’s desire for an annulment.

In Christ,

That said, I have two other questions. First, in the Deus Ineffibilis (sp?) the Pope consistently uses the term “we.” Does “we” refer to the Pope in concert with others, or is the term used as a kind of royal “we?” I know it’s a bit trivial, but interesting, nonethless.
I think it’s the royal “we”.
Hello Chris,
          My name is Stephen and I live in Northern Ireland in the west of the province.
Well first of all let me say I joined an ex-Christian website a month ago and was kicked off after 3 postings, and today I joined a Christian forum and am now kicked off, without any explanation I might add.
Most people have said more or less the things that I was going to say, and may I add, not that it was you that said it but Catholics don’t pray to statues.
Do you have a photographic album in your house ? I’m sure you do, well so do I and I would not think of throwing them out because they remind me of my loved ones and old times.
Statues remind us of the saints, Mary, Jesus, but we don’t pray to the statue, and little children forget about God very easily, “OUT OF SITE IS OUT OF MIND”.
The thing that makes Catholics differen’t is Transubstansiation, and some people have a hard time believing that, even some Catholics, anyway I hope it’s ok to put these websites up as I got kicked off today 5th June for putting them up, they explain it a lot better than I can, God Bless Stephen olrl.org/apologetics/one_church.shtml
And for those that have difficulty with the Consecration then this is an eye opener catholicism,org/pages/aubrey.htm
**Thepeug writes:
**"First, in the Deus Ineffibilis (sp?) the Pope consistently uses the term “we.” Does “we” refer to the Pope in concert with others, or is the term used as a kind of royal "we?"

The Pope uses the term “we” in his writings when addressing the whole Church. He is the Vicar of Christ, and he speaks for Christ. Christ established the Church on earth to extend His Incarnation through time and space. Christ is the head of the Church in heaven; the Pope is His deputy on earth.

Another example: Pacem in Terris (Peace on Earth), Encyclical Letter of Pope John XXIII: “Beginning *OUR *discussion of the rights of man, WE see that every man has the right to life . . .” (emphasis added).

It’s the royal “we” (remember the divine right of kings?), but in the Pope’s case, the King for whom he speaks is Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Christ to His Apostles: “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects you rejects me, and he who rejects me rejects him who sent me” Luke 10:16 (cf Mt 10:40). Christ to the Apostle Peter: “You are Kephas (rock) and on this kephas (rock) I will build my church. . .” Mt 16:18. "Feed my lambs…tend my sheep . . . feed my sheep… Jn 21:16-17.

I wanted to get an official answer for you, but the Q&A is closed – maxed out at the moment.

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