"Real" traditionalists

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ST. IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH (c. 40-110 A.D.) See that ye follow the bishop, even as Christ Jesus does the Father. [8] Follow the bishop, all of you, as Jesus Christ follows his Father, and the presbyterium as the Apostles. As for the deacons, respect them as the Law of God. Let no one do anything with reference to the Church without the bishop. Only that Eucharist may be regarded as legitimate which is celebrated with the Bishop or his delegate presiding. Where the bishop is, there let the community be, just as where Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church. [9]

ST. PAPIAS (c. 60-120 A.D.) But I shall not be unwilling to put down, along with my interpretations, whatsoever instructions I received with care at any time from the elders, and stored up with care in my memory, assuring you at the same time of their truth. For I did not, like the multitude, take pleasure in those who spoke much, but in those who taught the truth; nor in those who related strange commandments, but in those who rehearsed the commandments given by the Lord to faith, and proceeding from truth itself. If, then, any one who had attended on the elders came, I asked minutely after their sayings,--what Andrew or Peter said, or what was said by Philip, or by Thomas, or by James, or by John, or by Matthew, or by any other of the Lord's disciples: which things Aristion and the presbyter John, the disciples of the Lord, say. For I imagined that what was to be got from books was not so profitable to me as what came from the living and abiding voice. [10]

ST. IRENAEUS OF LYONS (c. 140-202 A.D.) Those, therefore, who desert the preaching of the Church, call in question the knowledge of the holy presbyters....It behooves us, therefore, to avoid their doctrines, and take careful heed lest we suffer any injury from them; but to flee to the Church, and be brought up in her bosom, and be nourished with the Lord's Scriptures. [11]

Wherefore it is incumbent to obey the presbyters who are in the Church, those who as I have shown, possess succession from the Apostles; those who, together with the succession of bishops, have received the certain gift of truth, according to the good pleasure of the Father. But [it is also incumbent] to hold in suspicion others who depart from the primitive succession, and assemble themselves [looking upon them] either as heretics of perverse minds, or as schismatics puffed up and self-pleasing, or again as hypocrites, acting thus for the sake of lucre and vainglory. For all these have fallen from the truth. And the heretics, indeed, who bring strange fire to the altar of God -- namely, strange doctrines -- shall be burned up by the fire from heaven, as were Nadab and Abiud. But such as rise up in opposition to the truth, and exhort others against the Church of God, [shall] remain among those in hell (apud inferos), being swallowed up by an earthquake, even as those who were with Chore [Korah], Dathan, and Abiron. But those who cleave asunder, and separate the unity of the Church, [shall] receive from God the same punishment as Jeroboam did. [12]

True knowledge is [that which consists in] the doctrine of the apostles, and the ancient constitution of the Church throughout all the world, and the distinctive manifestation of the body of Christ according to the successions of the bishops, by which they have handed down that Church which exists in every place, and has come even unto us, being guarded and preserved without any forging of Scriptures, by a very complete system of doctrine, and neither receiving addition nor [suffering] curtailment [in the truths which she believes]; and [it consists in] reading [the word of God] without falsification, and a lawful and diligent exposition in harmony with the Scriptures, both without danger and without blasphemy; and [above all, it consists in] the pre-eminent gift of love, which is more precious than knowledge, more glorious than prophecy, and which excels all the other gifts [of God]. [13]

ST. CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA (c. 150 - 216 A.D.) For those are slothful who, having it in their power to provide themselves with proper proofs for the divine Scriptures from the Scriptures themselves, select only what contributes to their own pleasures. And those have a craving for glory who voluntarily evade, by arguments of a diverse sort, the things delivered by the blessed apostles and teachers, which are wedded to inspired words; opposing the divine tradition by human teachings, in order to establish the heresy. [14]

TERTULLIAN (c. 160-240 A.D.) Let them show the origins of their churches, let them unroll the list of their bishops, (showing) through a succession coming down from the very beginning that their first bishop had his authority and predecessor someone from among the number of Apostles or apostolic men and, further, that he did not stray from the Apostles. In this way the apostolic churches present their earliest records. The church of Smyrna, for example, records that Polycarp was named by John; the Romans, that Clement was ordained by Peter. In just the same way, the other churches show who were made bishops by the Apostles and who transmitted the apostolic seed to them. Let the heretics invent something like that. [15] Since this is the case, in order that the truth may be adjudged to belong to us, 'as many as walk according to the rule,' which the church has handed down from the apostles, the apostles from Christ, and Christ from God, the reason of our position is clear, when it determines that heretics ought not to be allowed to challenge an appeal to the Scriptures, since we, without the Scriptures, prove that they have nothing to do with the Scriptures. For as they are heretics, they cannot be true Christians, because it is not from Christ that they get that which they pursue of their own mere choice, and from the pursuit incur and admit the name of heretics. Thus, not being Christians, they have acquired no right to the Christian Scriptures; and it may be very fairly said to them, "Who are you? When and whence did you come?" [16]

ORIGEN (c. 185 - 254 A.D.) We are not to give heed to those who say, Behold here is Christ, but show him not in the Church, which is filled with brightness from the East even unto the West; which is filled with true light; is the 'pillar and ground of truth'; in which, as a whole, is the whole advent of the Son of Man, who saith to all men throughout the universe, 'Behold, I am with you all the days of life even unto the consumption of the world.' [17] When heretics show us the canonical Scriptures, in which every Christian believes and trusts, they seem to be saying: 'Lo, he is in the inner rooms [i.e.., the word of truth] ' (Matt 24.6). But we must not believe them, nor leave the original tradition of the Church, nor believe otherwise than we have been taught by the succession in the Church of God. [18]

ST. CYPRIAN OF CARTHAGE (c. 200-258 A.D.) Our Lord, whose precepts and admonitions we ought to observe, describing the honour of a bishop and the order of His Church, speaks in the Gospel, and says to Peter: 'I say unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build my Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.' Thence, through the changes of times and successions, the ordering of bishops and the plan of the Church flow onwards; so that the Church is founded upon the bishops, and every act of the Church is controlled by these same rulers. [19] Whence you ought to know that the bishop is in the Church, and the Church in the bishop; and if any one be not with the bishop, that he is not in the Church. [20]

ST. HILARY OF POITERS (c. 315-367 A.D.) [T]hey who are placed without the Church, cannot attain to any understanding of the divine word. For the ship exhibits a type of Church, the word of life placed and preached within which, they who are without, and lie near like barren and useless sands, cannot understand. [21] And, O wretched heretic! you turn the weapons granted to the Church against the Synagogue, against belief in the Church's preaching, and distort against the common salvation of all the sure meaning of a saving doctrine. [22]

ST. ATHANASIUS THE GREAT (c. 295 - 373 A.D.) But what is also to the point, let us note that the very tradition, teaching, and faith of the Catholic Church from the beginning was preached by the Apostles and preserved by the Fathers. On this the Church was founded; and if anyone departs from this, he neither is, nor any longer ought to be called, a Christian. [23] Such are the machinations of these men against the truth: but their designs are manifest to all the world, though they attempt in ten thousand ways, like eels, to elude the grasp, and to escape detection as enemies of Christ. Wherefore I beseech you, let no one among you be deceived, no one seduced by them; rather, considering that a sort of judaical impiety is invading the Christian faith, be ye all zealous for the Lord; hold fast, every one, the faith we have received from the Fathers, which they who assembled at Nicaea recorded in writing, and endure not those who endeavour to innovate thereon. And however they may write phrases out of the Scripture, endure not their writings; however they may speak the language of the orthodox, yet attend not to what they say; for they speak not with an upright mind, but putting on such language like sheeps' clothing, in their hearts they think with Arius, after the manner of the devil, who is the author of all heresies. [24]

ST. BASIL THE GREAT (c. 330 - 379 A.D.) To refuse to follow the Fathers, not holding their declaration of more authority than one's own opinion, is conduct worthy of blame, as being brimful of self-sufficiency. [25] Now I accept no newer creed written for me by other men, nor do I venture to propound the outcome of my own intelligence, lest I make the words of true religion merely human words; but what I have been taught by the holy Fathers, that I announce to all who question me. [26]

ST. CYRIL OF JERUSALEM (c. 314-386 A.D.) For the method of godliness consists of these two things, pious doctrines, and virtuous practice: neither are the doctrines acceptable to God apart from good works, nor does God accept the works which are not perfected with pious doctrines. For what profit is it, to know well the doctrines concerning God, and yet to be a vile fornicator? And again, what profit is it, to be nobly temperate, and an impious blasphemer? A most precious possession therefore is the knowledge of doctrines: also there is need of a wakeful soul, since there are many that make spoil through philosophy and vain deceit. The Greeks on the one hand draw men away by their smooth tongue, for honey droppeth from a harlot's lips: whereas they of the Circumcision deceive those who come to them by means of the Divine Scriptures, which they miserably misinterpret though studying them from childhood to all age, and growing old in ignorance. But the children of heretics, by their good words and smooth tongue, deceive the hearts of the innocent, disguising with the name of Christ as it were with honey the poisoned arrows of their impious doctrines: concerning all of whom together the Lord saith, Take heed lest any man mislead you. [27]

ST. JEROME (c. 342 - 420 A.D.) Do you demand Scripture proof? You may find it in Acts of the Apostles. And even if it did not rest on the authority of the Scripture, the consensus of the whole world in this respect would have the force of command. For there are many other observances in the Church which, though due to tradition, have acquired the authority of the written law. [28] And let them not flatter you themselves if they think they have Scripture authority since the devil himself has quoted Scripture texts...we could all, while preserving in the letter of Scripture, read into it some novel doctrine. [29]

ST. AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO (c. 354-430 A.D.) Will you, then, so love your error, into which you have fallen through adolescent overconfidence and human weakness, that you will separate yourself from these leaders of Catholic unity and truth, from so many different parts of the world who are in agreement among themselves on so important a question, one in which the essence of the Christian religion involved? [30] But in regard to those observances which we carefully attend and which the whole world keeps, and which derive not from Scripture but from Tradition, we are given to understand that they are commended and ordained to be kept, either by the Apostles themselves or by plenary councils, the authority of which is quite vital in the Church. [31]

ST. VINCENT OF LERENS (c. 400-450 A.D.)

But the Church of Christ, the careful and watchful guardian of the doctrines deposited in her charge never changes anything in them, never diminishes, never adds, does not cut off what is necessary, does not add what is superfluous, does not lose her own, does not appropriate what is another's, but while dealing faithfully and judiciously with ancient doctrine, keeps this one object carefully in view, if there be anything which antiquity has left shapeless and rudimentary, to fashion and polish it, if anything already reduced to shape and developed, to consolidate and strengthen it, if any already ratified and defined to keep and guard it. Finally, what other object have Councils ever aimed at in their decrees, than to provide that what was before believed in simplicity should in future be believed intelligently, that what was before preached coldly should in future be preached earnestly, that what was before practiced negligently should thenceforward be practiced with double solicitude? This, I say, is what the Catholic Church, roused by the novelties of heretics, has accomplished by the decrees of her Councils, this, and nothing else, she has thenceforward consigned to posterity in writing what she had received from those of olden times only by tradition, comprising a great amount of matter in a few words, and often, for the better understanding, designating an old article of the faith by the characteristic of a new name. [32]

-- Kiwi (csisherwood@hotmail.com), October 19, 2003


-- (top@top.top), October 19, 2003.

Yes,when the bishops follow the faith, we must follow the bishops. When will the bishops start to follow the faith?

-- (9999@444.com), October 19, 2003.

No Pope or Catholic claims Rome is God's headquarters. The Church Jesus Christ founded is world wide; and her Holy Father is the Pope, bishop of Rome. That makes Rome HIS headquarters. It was good enough for Peter, our original Pope. It's good enough for his successors; all the subsequent bishops of Rome. Saint Peter was crucified in the city of Rome.

Read Romans 1, :7-8 and see what Saint Paul thought of Rome. Not the Empire, the Church.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 19, 2003.

I would find it odd indeed if the Christians of Rome crucified their own bishop; but I don't find it odd in the least that the avowed enemies of the Christian Church, the pagan Roman government, crucified the Bishop of Rome. The enemies of the Church still imprison, execute, and assasinate local bishops of God's Church today.

In 1 Peter 5:13, Peter writes ... "She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you greetings, and so does my son, Mark." Scripture scholars, both Catholic and Protestant, recognize that this and other New Testament references to "Babylon", are references to Rome. Isn't it peculiar that Peter states in a written letter that he is sending greetings from Rome, if he was never there?? But not just his own personal greetings - "She" refers to the Christian community in Rome, the Church in Rome, in whose name Peter, as its spiritual head, is sending greetings.

In any case, Scripture is not meant to be a book of history. There are ample early writings by the Fathers of the Church, referring to Peter as the first Bishop of Rome. We learn history primarily by studying such historical records, not by picking through the pages of the Bible.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 19, 2003.

You can't be serious, Faith -- can you?

Don't you find it odd that Rome would crucify their Bishop?

Not "odd" at all. Christians in Rome were a tiny, powerless minority. The emperor's pagans killed the Christians' bishop. You didn't know that?

Don't you find it equally odd that Peter is never mentioned as being Bishop of Rome in the Bible?

Not "odd" at all. All the apostles were bishops around the Mediterranean (and beyond), but we don't find a list of their "assignments" in the Bible. Part of the reason for this is likely to be related to the persecution of Christians.

There is indeed an indication that St. Peter was leading the Church in Rome. The closing verses of 1 Peter include these words: "She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark." The word "Babylon" was "code language" for Rome, and he was speaking of the Church ["She"] that he was heading there. Besides this scriptural evidence, historians have clear information in extremely early, non-scriptural, Christian writings that St. Peter was the first Bishop of Rome.

Even Paul doesn't greet Peter when he writes to the church at Rome (see the book of Romans). Isn't that a strange ommision if Peter were in Rome -- let alone the Bishop there?

It's not an "omission," much less a "strange" one. St. Peter began his apostolic career as Bishop of Antioch in Syria. It was not until much later (after St. Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome) that he made himself the first Bishop of Rome and went there to live and die.

Faith, please pray tonight, asking God to open your heart and mind to the fullness of the truth, even if it leads you to become Catholic.

You are welcome to continue your respectful questions and objections to what we believe (one topic at a time, please). We can answer, and look forward to answering, everything that you bring to us.

-- (YouCant@Be.Serious), October 19, 2003.

Sorry about that, Faith. I wasn't trying to be redundant of Paul's answers. He and you must have posted your new messages while I was putting my reply together.

I also wonder if it doesn't alarm you that Revelation speaks of a religious institution that meets its end by the wrath of God's judgement of her. She is refered to as the Woman who rides the beast and she wears the words "Mystery Babylon" across her head.

It doesn't "alarm" us at all. Did you stop to think about the fact that the Catholic Church has existed for almost 2,000 years -- and must have been aware of these "Babylon" references? If there was anything "alarming" about them, wouldn't they have been expunged instead of being left to incriminate the Church? (To quote my phony address, "You can't be serious!")

Just as "Babylon" referred to the pagan city of Rome in 1 Peter 5, so it refers the pagan city of Rome in Revelation. "Babylon" does not refer to the Catholic Church. No problem!

-- (You@Cant.BeSerious), October 19, 2003.

By the time the New Testament was being written, once great and powerful ancient Babylon was nothing but an series of ragtag villages, composed mostly of mud huts. It played no significant role in the world during Christian times. "babylon" as it appears in the writings of the Apostles is a code word for their immediate persecutors, the masters of the known world - pagan Rome.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 19, 2003.

With all respect, Faith, but: If you have to be shown why and how come Peter is Rome's bishop at the hour of his crucifixion (feet pointed up to heaven), despite your biblical wisdom; how are we expected to give credence to your explanation of a single verse in Revelations, a book full of patently metaphorical images? You're not likely to decipher those passages any truer than thousands of other scholars who tried for two millennia. Or, are you just luckier?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 19, 2003.

I know something of that sort. But already told you, a conviction can be born out of more than what scripture says. Read Saint John's gospel epilogue. Traditions have a way of surviving the centuries; and particularly when our link to Christ is at stake. No good Christian of 2nd century Rome would ever allow the truth of Peter's martyrdom be forgotten. It would be ludicrous. Then there is the Holy Spirit. He makes the truth survive, even 2,000 years later. The Church's feasts are all reminders of the saints and martyrs; and hardly any are written of in the Bible, except for the twelve apostles. Did anybody suppose all the ones who served Jesus Christ subsequently to those, would fall into oblivion and never be recalled in His Church? Hardly; they live on in Sacred Tradition, just as Saints Peter & Paul live on.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 19, 2003.

The Bible also does not mention anything about Henry VIII proclaiming himself the authority of Christianity, over the Pope mind you. Yet, look at Protestantism and its evolution.





-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), October 19, 2003.

Cardinal Alfons Stickler, who was a member of the select committee on liturgy at the Second Vatican Council, gave an interesting speech during the Una Voce meeting on November 13.

Can you comment on what he said?

Davies: Cardinal Stickler pointed out the contradiction between what the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council voted for in their liturgy constitution Sacrosanctum Conciliurn and what has actually been given to us as a result of the liturgical reform. Quoting from the liturgical constitution specifically stated that Latin was to remain the norm within the Roman Rite. He mentioned the cardinal from Sicily who said "Fathers, Fathers, we have to be careful or we'll end up with the whole of the Mass in the vernacular" and all the bishops roared with laughter because they thought such a suggestions was ridiculous. He also pointed out, I think it was in Article 23 of the Constitution on the liturgy, stated that no changes must be made unless the good of the Church genuinely and certainly requires them, and he pointed out that most of the changes that have happened in the mass since the Council were not genuinely and certainly required by the Church and he stated very emphatically that what we had was not Novus Ordo, but Novus Disorder. I was deeply moved by the beautiful (Tridentine) Mass we had before our conference sung in Gregorian Chant by a Choir and with a congregation from some 20 countries. At the end of the Mass I happened to think of the passage by Cardinal Stickler quoted, and I asked several of our delegates; can you think of one thing, one aspect of this morning's Mass that the good of the Church genuinely and certainly requires to be changed? And nobody could think of one example. I would maintain that every change made in the Ordinary of the Mass since the Council could be seen as disobedience to the Liturgy Constitution. The psalm "Judica me" at the beginning of Mass was removed from the 1970 Missal, as were the last Gospel and the offertory prayers. I could go through the Mass from the beginning to end and I would defy anyone to prove to me that any of the prayers removed were genuinely and certainly required to be removed for the good of the Church. Our 26 associations are determined at whatever the cost to insist that we are given access to Mass celebrated according to the Missal of 1962, which was guaranteed by the Pope in the Motu Proprio Ecclesia DeiAdflicta of July 1988.

-- Alexander (Lateran@msn.com), October 19, 2003.

Uhmm......tell that to the Anglicans and Episcopalians.




-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), October 19, 2003.

Henry was Catholic. Luther was Catholic. Henry didn't get his own way so he left God's Church. Luther didn't get his own way so he left God's Church. As for the Protestant Rebellion, there was no "success" involved. It is the greatest tragedy that has befallen Christianity in its entire history. It has caused more devastation in 450 years than the combined efforts of all the pagan emperors who have persecuted God's Church throughout the centuries. Those persecutions ultimately served to strengthen the Church. Denominationalism has left its adherents in doctrinal chaos. Every sect claims to have the truth, yet every sect conflicts with every other. Which tells any honest outside observer that no-one in the whole manmade system actually knows what the truth is. But then, how could they? Truth requires unity, and unity requires authority. Protestantism lacks both.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 19, 2003.

This is pure sophistry, Faith. Didn't you say you wanted honest discussion? This is the truth: You do not follow Jesus Christ. He never taught us anything like your idea of faith. You follow the world.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 19, 2003.


Yes, these men were indeed excommunicated - by their own actions. The Church merely made an official pronouncement of the fact, to warn others that these men were dangerous. However it was not the official pronouncement that effected their excommunication, but their own actions. If the Church had never made such an official statement, they still would have been excommunicated.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 19, 2003.

{Paul:} Truth requires unity, and unity requires authority. Protestantism lacks both.
(Faith:) ... have you taken a close look at the Catholic Church lately?

As my phony e-mail address says, "You Can't Be Serious." Yes, we "take a close look at the Catholic Church" every day. What is truly the Catholic Church indeed has unity, and its shepherds have authority from God, just as Paul implied.

Protesting the false teachings in the Catholic Church was necessary.

There were not, are not, and never will be "false teachings in the Catholic Church."

Even today, the Traditional Church is protesting the Vatican.

Although there are over 30,000 Protestant denominations, I haven't heard of the one you mentioned -- the "Traditional Church."

Unity? Never.....

Unity? Absolutely, and Forever.

Those who reject Church teachings are not practicing Catholics. They cannot affect the "unity" of the Church. They can only disunite themselves from her, just as did the Protestant Deformers of the 16th Century.

-- (You@Cant.BeSerious), October 20, 2003.

Well, by golly, there is a protestant denomination named the Traditional Church [sic], which invented itself from within Anglicanism in 1994.

-- (You@CantBe.Serious), October 20, 2003.

Yes; and in the interim, another 10,000 souls are converted into or back to the faith of the apostles somewhere in the world. That doesn't count the newborns who are baptised as soon as possible. What of that intransigent lot who call themselves ''Trads''--? ? ?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 20, 2003.


No-one who rejects the teaching of the Catholic Church is Catholic. Some try to remain within the Church even while rejecting its teaching, but such people are in fact Protestant. They just don't want to admit it.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 20, 2003.


If someone claims to be Christian but also claims they don't believe in God, are they in fact a Christian? No, of course not.

Similarly, someone who claims to be a Catholic but who rejects Catholic teachings, isn't Catholic, regardless of what they want to believe (or how vocal they are on the internet). This topic has been covered a lot, there are plenty of existing threads on it if you'd rather read them before starting the same thing here.


-- Someone (ChimingIn@twocents.cam), October 20, 2003.

Catholicism IS Christ's One True Church, constant, faithful, and undivided for 2,000 years. This could not be clearer from history, for anyone who actually wants to know the truth. ALL other churches which claim the name "Christian" have come into existence either by separating directly FROM the Catholic Church, or in most cases by separating from other churches which have come into existence by separating FROM the Catholic Church. The fact that people jump off the ship doesn't divide the ship. It only separates them FROM the undivided ship, to their own detriment.

The Catholic Church is not a "denomination". It didn't come into existence by denouncing a pre-existing body. It was founded 2,000 years ago by Jesus Christ, the Son of God, for all men, and is the ONLY Christian Church He intended to be founded. Denominations have no divine origin, and did not exist until a few hundred years ago.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 20, 2003.

Can anyone really say that the "New Evangelization" of the current church, really evangelizes anyone. Conversions have dropped 90% since vatican II. Why convert if you are " somehow,someway, in the Catholic church. I mean this as a serious question, not troublemaking.

-- Climber (mountaintop@pacbell.com), October 20, 2003.

You have it completely wrong, Faith. It won't help arguing with somebody who believes a distorted account of history. There is ONE Catholic (universal Church-- originating in 33 A.D. at Pentecost. Founded by Jesus Christ upon Peter His chief apostle and never having any break in continuity. Constantine the Great wasn't even an apostle. He never met Jesus Christ. He wrote NO Church miisive or encyclical. Period--!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 20, 2003.

Good grief, Faith! No wonder you fell away from the Catholic Church! You knew virtually NOTHING. Your comments are devoid of facts and logic. Too bad your head is not a vacuum ready to be filled, but instead is filled with erroneous, goofy junk. That means we have to painstakingly vacuum it out first and then fill it with delectable truths!

The word catholic means universal and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with Rome.

Absolutely correct (though it doesn't help your case). The Catholic Church is "universally" present. Rome is merely the city whose bishop (the pope) is the supreme visible pastor of the universal Church. He is the successor of St. Peter and the vicar of Christ.

Roman Catholicism began at the time of Constatine -- when Christianity and pagan Rome merged.

"You@Cant.BeSerious." Catholicism began when Jesus founded his Church. Some like to call Pentecost the "Birthday of the Church." We have a writing of the martyr, St. Ignatius of Antioch (second successor of St. Peter as bishop of that city), who knew at least two of the Apostles. In about 107 A.D., Ignatius speaks of the "Catholic Church" -- and does it in a way that indicates that he is not coining the term (which may have been in use for decades). Well, heck, 107 is more than 200 years before Connie's Edict of Milan (legalizing Christianity), ain't it? (Beginning to see why I said that your head has been "full of goofy, erroneous junk"? When you hang around with Fundies and ready their turdy little tracts, that kind of thing can happen to you.)

And I don't think the official title of Roman Catholicism was coined until the time of Luther--though some might argue that it was understood at the time of the great schism.

More goofy junk there, dear. The term "Roman Catholicism" is not an "official title." It was a title of disrespect coined by the Brits of ye olde 16th century schisme and heresye of Hank VIII and Liz I. Faith, you were once a member of the (official-title-since-1st-century) "Catholic Church," as I am still.

Luckily--Christ's true church is His true Body of believers..it is a spiritual thing : )

His true church -- the Catholic Church -- is both a spiritual and a physical thing, the Body of Christ. You are welcome to come back home to the Body.

Conversions have dropped 90% since vatican II.

I believe that this is an error on your part, Climber. There are large numbers of conversions in some parts of the world, especially Africa and Asia. Prove your "90% drop" claim, or deep-six it.

-- (You@Cant.BeSerious), October 20, 2003.

You are not the first to fall in the snares of the devil, Faith. You seem to believe others have to prove the faith to you-- as if YOU will now sit in solemn judgment on Christ's Church! What a farce!

But, for your information; your own fake name, FAITH is what you lack. Without some trace of faith in God, no truth can ever break into your sealed mind. You can't believe anything true. What is it you really believe in? Who is it you believe in? GOD???

(She don't know ! You won't recognise His own imprint on the apostles or their works in the world, or the records they left behind; meaning, you have no faith in God!

You deny all except that Book; as if God gave a bible to YOU personally. And told you: Faith, you're the only interpretor I'll back! It only means whatever you think it means. You are better than my Holy Son's Church! The Church must serve YOU!

Now, as a member of Jesus Christ's true Church; let me say: NO THANKS. Take yourself off to the mental ward of your choice; may God have pity on you.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 20, 2003.

"There is no unbroken line back to Peter--it is an invention"

A: That is pure ignorance. What are you reading? Chick Publications?? The line of papal succession is as well documented as the line of American Presidents.

"All I am pointing out is that Christianity merged with pagan Rome at the time that Constatine was in charge....at about 325 A.D."

A: Yeah sure - that's when the gates of hell prevailed against the Church of God, and Jesus Christ became a liar. Not! Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the empire, and levied penalties against those who persisted in paganism. Does that sound like a merge to you? This REALLY sounds like Chick material! Packaged ignorance!

"You may not choose to recognize the changes that took place, but I can see them simply by looking at the New Testament"

A: What you "see" by personal interpretation of the Scriptures is completely irrelevant, and only serves to demonstrate why the Bible wisely states that Scripture is NOT for personal interpretation! Why do you insist on violating this Biblical command in favor of Luther's novel traditions?

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 20, 2003.


i can see already from your posts that you have little or no interest in discussing the catholic faith. you rail against well known and proven documents and call them (IN YOUR UNQUALIFIED OPINION!!!) a farce. how disrespectful can you be?

Second, you obviously dont understand a simple relationship between acts of men and teachings of the church, and you try to state that the failures of men constitute the failure of God in the church. how foolish.

moreover, grow up and show a little respect. you tell paul m that he should look more closely at the catholic church?!?! i take it you dont know that paul is a CATHOLIC DEACON. that he has studied the church for YEARS. yet you presume to know what we believe before one of our own deacons does? you are as presumptuous as you are ignorant.

finally, you presume to tell us that anyone who claims they are catholic is and should be recognized by the world as catholic??? that has got to be the DUMBEST thing i've heard in a long time. my former protestant minister CLAIMED to have been raised a good catholic and converted away, but when i asked him, he could not name ONE feast day, nor could he give the seven sacraments. humph, some former "catholic" there. no child, you are not in a qualified position to know what it is to be catholic.

SO... lets get down to the meat of the issue instead of beating around the bush. what doctrine of the church is it that you are opposed to? you cant keep just openly attacking the church, there is no intellectual debate there. come on, girl, speak intelligably.

for the forumers, im surprised youve kept up this debate this long, given that it is a completely unsubstantiated attack with no regard to forum rules. if i were you i would not post again until you have an honest question regarding catholic doctrine. after all, why swim in circles with the one armed man?

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 21, 2003.

You have said that I must prove the 90% decline in conversions. You make a statement that they are increasing in the third world countries. You prove that they are. I know for sure that in the society that I reside in, the 90% is accurate. The churches have priestless Sundays, traveling priest from other parishes, and of the people that I associate with, they are Catholics in name only. Most have not been near a church in years, those that go to communion, have not been to confession for several years. It is a serious situation. don't treat it so lightly, by telling me about Africa.

-- Climber (Mountaintop@pacbell.com), October 21, 2003.

No, faith. That's ridiculous.

The ''hierarchy'' isn't giving private interpretation to Christ's Church. The only interpretations we are taught is those which came directly from the holy apostles' (and their disciples) own teachings. Which is the same place (the apostles' teachings) the Holy Bible's written Gospel came from. It's the Church of the apostles, the APOSTOLIC Church that gives every valid interpretation; and that's the main reason we have no other private interpretation. It must not clash with what Bwas taught the very first Christians. And, it never clashes with the Bible; because the teachings come from the same place the Bible came from.

If a Pope tried to change an interpretation of some passage from scripture today, counter to what the first Christians learned at the feet of Christ & the apostles; he would be giving FALSE interpretation; same as the reformers gave to protestants! From where you have picked up all the false teaching! YOU ! ! !

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 21, 2003.

Silly Climber, you make a mistake in trying to fight me. You can't win.

Two messages back, you told us, "Can anyone really say that the 'New Evangelization' of the current church, really evangelizes anyone. Conversions have dropped 90% since vatican II. Why convert if you are somehow,someway, in the Catholic church."

Notice that you referred to the "Catholic Church." That is a WORLDWIDE church -- not some regional thing on the U.S.'s West Coast. Your comment referred to the WHOLE Church. That is why I was RIGHT to reject your claim that "Conversions have dropped 90% since Vatican II."

The fact that there may have been a big drop in conversions in -- to use your words -- "the society that" you "reside in" is not relevant to the discussion that you started. What matters, based on the terminology with which you started the conversation, is that there has not been a 90% drop WORLDWIDE.

Now, if you had specified, in your first message, that you were talking only about your own diocese or state, I would never have responded to you. But since you failed to be specific, I responded with a correct answer. Now your low-class attempt to fight back against me -- instead of apologizing for your error -- shows that you are short on character.

You have the nerve to command me to prove that conversions "are increasing in the Third World countries." Are you so ignorant that you don't even know that conversions are exploding overseas (except in Europe)? You actually need me to "prove it"? That shows me that you don't have your finger on the pulse of the UNIVERSAL Church, but only on your narrow little local situation. That's terrible!

For many years, I have been fully aware of the terrible problems out there in your neck of the woods -- but I don't let my knowledge of those problems blind me to the great things that are happening in many other parts of the world (and even in a growing number of U.S. dioceses). Snap out of it, man!

-- (You@Cant.BeSerious), October 21, 2003.

You DO go on and on. The Church is given all her truth by Christ; and down to us from the apostles. Your so called Bible Christian is down from a few opponents of the successors of Saint Peter; the protestant heretics.

There is no ''Roman'' Church. You call the Catholic Church Roman, another of your inventions. The Jehovah Witnesses, Mormons and Calvinists are all just like yourself: bible-readers who can't understand what they read. That's how you ALL end up opposed to the True Faith, which the apostles gave us in the Catholic Church. You are in ignorance, just as Mormons, Calvinists & JW Bible-thumpers are today. There is almost NO difference between your wisdom and theirs!

Ask me: ''in the New Testament do we see the disciples praying to Mary or any saints for that matter?'' We see it; and we understand the scripture; you don't. The 1st chapter of John, v. :1-11 is an illustration of one saint petitioning Jesus Christ on behalf of others; in the marriage feast of Cana. Mary wanted a favor from Jesus, for those who were in need of it. He granted the favor, even though His hour had not yet come.

You ask: ''Give me an example of infant baptism?'' All the members of the family of converts baptised in one day. I don't think we can say they were all adults. Or-- all born that same day. But, the Bible never said that no babies were baptised. It's YOU who declare there weren't (Acts, 10 :24 to :48).

Same with Holy Communion by NINE-year olds. The practice of prayers for the dead in Purgatory is documented in 2nd Macchabees. This book bears out the truth of Purgatory; so Martin Luther detached it from the protestant Bible which YOU read and kept the truth from you. There is no SALE of indulgences. They aren't for sale; although some practiced it; an abuse in the 16th century; the Church corrected that abuse.

YOU definitely could require a priest some day at your death-bed. He would give you absolution for your sins; and without that you'll very likely be damned for eternity. Christ institutes the sacrament we call confession in the Bible. Look at John, 20 :22-23 ---

''. . . He breathed upon them and said, Receive the Holy Spirit; whose SINS you shall FORGIVE, they are forgiven them; and whose SINS you shall retain, they are retained.'' He made the gift to His Holy Church of His own POWER to forgive men's sins! Read your Bible!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 22, 2003.


-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 22, 2003.

Hi Faith,

I also admire your passion

but your Holy Bible

which you are reading

and which the Holy Catholic Church

Wrote, Identified, Sifted, Assembled, Interpreted, and Applied

officially in the Catholic Synod of Rome in 382 A.D.


"Zeal Without Knowledge is Worthless" Proverbs 19:2.

Faith, you fulfill Proverbs 19:2 to the tee.

I like the name Faith

but the name

Grace Faith Good Works

is Better.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 22, 2003.

The @myway says allI need to hear, so called faith.


-- Karl (Parkerkajwen@hotmail.com), October 22, 2003.

We are talking two different languages here. I am not only referring to my own circle, but to Europe, North America,Australia etc. That is where the money is, which to large extent keeps the church going.

These places are dying, not only spiritually, but physically. They are abortioning, and birth controlling themselves out of existance. Replaced with what ? Muslims, thats what. And if Africa is growing, they are poverty stricken, but again Muslims with their oil etc ,control the money. I reiterate, the church as we know it ,is dying.

-- Climber (Mountaintop@pacbell.com), October 22, 2003.


Does the Potter have Authority over the pot?

Not according to you, Faith.

The Potter, the Magisterium of the Holy Catholic Church, who painstakingly Sifted through all the Writings existing in 382 A.D., determined through the Guidance of the Holy Spirit, which Books deserved to be in the canon of the Holy Bible. Had the Holy Catholic Church decided then to include the Gospel of Peter, you would have it now in your Bible, but you don't see it, do you? Many books were deemed to be insufficiently inspired by the Holy Spirit. Had the Holy Catholic Church deemed the book of Proverbs insufficiently inspired by the Holy Spirit, it would have been not included; but it was included because it was deemed sufficiently inspired.

The pot you have right now, the Holy Bible ~ you definitely owe to the Holy Catholic Church.

How arrogant of you to slight the wise and Divinely Inspired Catholic Councils ~ they were the ones who handed to you the Doctrine of the Trinity as well, otherwise you might be mistreating Jesus as a mere human prophet. I highly doubt that you would be able to know which three dots, much more to connect them properly.

You said, "I know that you will say that then the Church has more authority over the Word of God because it gave us the Word of God. But that is just a false assumption."

No, that is not a false assumption ~ in fact it is Very Biblical: 1 Timothy 3:15 calls The Church (The Catholic Church), and Not the Bible, as the Pillar and Foundation of Truth.

Faith, your false assumption that the pot has Authority over the Potter is indeed false.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 22, 2003.

--yes, but,

Poor Faith, ye of little faith. ''Yes, but;'' That took the wind out of your sails, didn't it? I wanted you to read the 2nd chapter of John's gospel; the first miracle worked by Christ in His public life. He answered the petition of the Virgin Mary, His holy mother. Don't try to pretend you haven't seen it.

Now we know you have no truth. You have your stubborn wishes; your lack of faith in God's Word. And in these short examples are merely a scratch on the surface of your unbelief. Many other truths are to be easily seen in the Bible. You deny all of them; from human ignorance & pride. Poor soul! Who will ever deliver you from the devil's influence?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 22, 2003.


You are outgunned. You are addressing James the way Protestants address one another - "You think" the passage means this? "You read" the passage as saying that? "I see it as saying ...". You speak as though you and James were just trading personal opinions. Apparently you are so steeped in Protestant tradition that you cannot operate on any other level. YOU are indeed offering an opinion, with nothing whatsoever to back it up. James on the other hand, is not offering you his personal take on the passage. He is informing you what the Church of living God, which is the Biblical pillar and foundation of truth, has taught about the meaning of this passage for two thousand years! Against the overwhelming authority supporting this official interpretation, your self-serving twists on the interpretation of Catholic writings are meaningless. The Pillar and Foundation of Truth has definitively declared the meaning of the passage, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. In the face of God's own voice speaking through His Church, no other opinion matters - not yours, or mine, or James's. However, James and I do not deal in such personal guesswork. We look for the truth where Jesus said to look for the truth - in the Church to which He said "He who hears you hears Me; he who rejects you rejects Me". The Church which has not self-destructed into thousands of denomination fragments over its inability to interpret the Word of God.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 22, 2003.

"But the whole problem rests on our disagreement as to just who is the church of Jesus Christ"

A: "Disagreement" applies to matters of opinion. This question is not a matter of opinion. It is a matter of historical fact, fully supported by Sacred Scripture, Apostolic Tradition, and historical documentation. We may "disagree" on the question of the best professional baseball player. That's a matter of opinion. But the identity of the True Church is not a matter of opinion. You either know it or you don't. Your personal background in manmade religion prevents you from knowing the truth. Sorry, but that's the fact of the matter, and any Catholic knows it, so there is little point in displaying your ignorance of Christian history in front of God's Church.

"Jesus said that with the Holy Spirit we will understand everything that He has revealed (Scripture)"

A: That's right. If you listen where the Holy Spirit speaks, which is through the Church Christ founded, you will hear Him. But insisting that you are listening to the Holy Spirit while cutting yourself off from the channel through which He speaks is only a means of fooling yourself.

"You are relying on the private interpretation of a few men. Think for yourself!! You have God's permission"

A: The early Catholic Church relied on the interpretation of a few men called the Apostles, the first bishops of the Church. the next generation of Catholics listened to the interpretation of a few men, the bishops who had been ordained by the Apostles to carry on their ministry. Catholics listened to these men because God had told these men "He who hears you hears Me", and "Whatsoever you bind on earth is bound in heaven". God had assured these men that the Holy Spirit would guide them to all truth. That was a pretty good reason to listen to them, rather than try to figure it out for yourself. It still is. And given the deplorable state of doctrinal chaos among those who do try to figure it out for themselves, I thank God daily that He has kept me safe and secure in the Church of the Living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.

"My opinion is backed up by the Holy Spirit in me., whether you like it or not"

A: Yeah, sure. Bob Baptist's opinions are backed up by the Holy Spirit in him. And Mary Methodist's opinions are backed up by the Holy Spirit in her. The problem is, the Holy Spirit is teaching Bob Baptist things which contradict what He is teaching Mary Methodist. And then there is Pete Presbyterian and Annie Anglican, and on and on and on. And we are supposed to believe that this condition of confusion and conflict is the work of the Holy Spirit?? Not the Holy Spirit I know. The Bible says He is a Spirit of order, not of confusion.

"The Old Testament is filled with examples of God being refered to as the rock and foundation of truth. This carries over into the New Testament where Jesus is refered to as the cornerstone and foundation of the church"

A: That's Right! And that repeated Biblical symbolism is what makes it so profoundly significant when Jesus, who is The Rock, looks Simon the Apostle straight in the eye and says to him - "THOU ART ROCK, and upon THIS ROCK I will build my Church". What a beautiful and clear way of expressing to Simon that the authority being conveyed to him, sybolized by the keys to the kingdom, is Christ's own authority, of which Simon is to to be Vicar and minister, not personal authority owned by Simon.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 22, 2003.


To Faith: Is that really how YOU understand your bible? (not yours, Faith, but the Holy Catholic Church's)

To Faith: Maybe YOU should read for context.

Why should I trust your MISINTERPRETATIONS of the Holy Bible given to you by The Holy Catholic Church?

Why should You Yourself trust your MISINTERPRETATIONS of the Holy Bible given to you by The Holy Catholic Church?

Why should Anyone trust your MISINTERPRETATIONS of the Holy Bible given to you by The Holy Catholic Church?

Who gives you the authority to MISINTERPRET the Holy Bible given to you by the Holy Catholic Church?




Go to The Authority in Correct Bible Interpretation for Two Milleniums!

The One who Wrote, Identified, Sifted, Assembled, Published, Interpreted, and Applied the Holy Bible ~ no other than the Holy Catholic Church!

The analogy


also applies to

Potter:The Magisterium of the Holy Catholic Church::pot:Holy Bible

Please do not get more confused as you already are. You might burst. Or you just like being slithery?

Faith, If you still fail to understand Paul's most logical reasoning, most informative, and most ever patient, I'm beginning to lose Hope in you.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 22, 2003.

Faith has her say:

My opinion is backed up by the Holy Spirit DEVIL in me, whether you like it or not.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 23, 2003.

LOL!! Paul...you don't see how even your statement is a matter of opinion? Why is your opinion not opinion?

faith, paul m's opinion is FACT because it is truth. opinion can be either fact, or false. Paul has truth, the spirit flows through him, and the opinion he has stated to you is very true. your 'opinions/rantings' sit like filth on the tongue.

The church that Christ founded is revealed in the New Testament. It is also revealed how we are a part of this Body.

sure is revealed, it is the church under peter, the roman catholic church. and you are not a part of this body... you have seperated yourself from truth and God, as your chaotic and logically stupid posts have shown us again and again.

It is by faith and by receiving Jesus Christ into our hearts as our Savior.

show me where the Bible says "you must accept Jesus Christ into your hearts as your personal Lord and Savior." THIS child is YOUR manmade tradition which you have created as an article of your false faith. the Bible does, however, state that unless you are baptized you cannot come to Christ, and if you have not eaten the BODY AND BLOOD (not the bread and wine) then you SHALL NOT HAVE LIFE IN YOU. you have seperated yourself from the Body and Blood, faith, come back to Jesus.

It is a personal thing, and a decision we all need to make for ourselves.

AGAIN you create your own fictional bible verses. tell me where, anywhere, the bible says religion is a personal matter?!?!?! it DOESNT religion and worship are to be celebrated en masse. THAT child, can be found in the scripture.

A: The early Catholic Church relied on the interpretation of a few men called the Apostles, the first bishops of the Church.

We can do the same because they recorded everything for us that we need to know unto salvation.

well, YOU cant dear. see, the Bible is not a complete text. there are gaping holes where things are merely refered to, but recorded in other 'inspired' texts. that is where TRADITION comes in. the bible records new information, not what was already in practice, and you have SEVERED YOURSELF from the tradition of Christ.

Jesus wasn't refering to second generation bishops when the original disciples recored His words, "He who hears you hears Me", and "Whatsoever you bind on earth is bound in heaven."

oops... this is where YOU stray. Jesus told us he was setting up a universal church for ALL time. why would he only grant powers to the first generation of the church? dont you see you are calling Christ himself a liar? What about the fact that you have taken the power that Christ gave to his DISCIPLES (the bishops) and applied it to yourself? doesnt that make your own logic faulty? doesnt that make you egocentric (pride = sin)?

Jesus was talking about the very disciples and apostles who wrote the New Testament.

oh, you should know something... the gospels werent written by the apostles and disciples you think. they were written 50 - 150 years later, as all theologians with half a brain can tell you. look, even at the NAMES of two of the gospels, the two named never even met Christ, how would they have written the gospel? if Jesus was talking about the disciples who wrote the new testament, then hed have been talking about priests from AT LEAST the second generation. thanks for proving us right.

The Holy Spirit was promised to all who receive Jesus--not these so- called bishops.

no no no, faith, as you have so wisely informed us the Holy Spirit was only promised to the first generation apostles and disciples, not to you and me. you said it yourself.

Yes--the Living God is the pillar and foundation of truth. That is why it is funny to believe that he would be held up in some man-made religious institution--available only to Roman Catholics.

do you even READ the bible, child? the Living God is NOT the pillar of truth. the Living God IS TRUTH. your bible, if you read it, states that the church is the pillar of truth, built upon the ROCK, which is Peter and his successors.

Because Catholic Carol has some pretty funky ideas as well.

well, why dont we discuss some of those 'funky' ideas instead of just blowing wind about whose opinion is right. maybe when you see the error of your funky thoughts about our 'funky' ideas you may return to salvation. we arent going to solve this issue with a yes no yes no yes no posting strain SO POST SOMETHING WITH A LITTLE MORE MEAT TO IT!!!

But among all these people--there are true believers who have committed their hearts and souls to Jesus Christ alone. They hear His voice and He knows who they are. This is the true church of jesus Christ...and we follow Him through His Word.

quite right. the catholics, true catholics are out there. you just need to find them.

Behold, I am coming soon!

no, please faith, stay at home. even if you went to the server, we dont lounge around at alan greenspuns house.

No--he looked Peter straight in the eye and called him a small stone or pebble (Petros), like a disciple.., but added that he would build his church on Petra--a large rock or foundation which is the proclamation Peter had just made when he said that "Jesus is the Christ--the Son of the Living God!"

NO-- He looked peter straight in the eye and called him stone (petros), not small stone, or pebble. youve been reading your chick tracts too much if you believe that false translation of petros. and He did NOT add that he would build his church on petra (feminine: stone). he stated the on this cepha (rock) he would build his church. HE WOULD NEVER HAVE CALLED PETER CEPHA FOR ROCK. why? CEPHA IS FEMININE. it'd be like naming the man in charge of your church barbara. the whole statement looks like this: "simon, you are stone(petros/peter) and on this rock(cepha) I build My church."

let me ask you some questions, faith... when has a stone ever not been a rock? why would Christ tell peter he was a stone and then say that on THIS ROCK (the stone which he had just named) he would build his church? why do you try to parse the word of God to your own benefit when it so clearly denies your twisting claims?

The pillar and foundation of the church is Jesus Christ Himself.

no, not at all. Christ IS the church. Christ IS the truth. imagine this: a roof(Christ) holding itself up with no support whatsoever. pretty ridiculous right? now here is the catholic church: a roof (Trinity/Truth) upheld by the great Pillar and walls(the Church) which relies on a specific Rock (Peter and his successors). the roof protects the rock from rain and wind, ensuring that nothing wheres away at the rocks ability to sustain truth. the pillar relies on the rock to support the truth which is upheld in the church. I'll take the house i just described over your pile of fallen shingles any day.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 23, 2003.


Jesus did not speak Greek so He did not distinguish between little stone and large rock. Jesus spoke in Aramaic and what He said was: "You are Kepha and on this very kepha I will build my Church."

It was when the Gospels were written in Greek that Petros and petra were used. And as paul h explained, it was in order to NOT use a feminine name for Peter.

-- Glenn (glenn@nospam.com), October 23, 2003.

O Protestants! How they protest!

The Spirit of Martin Luther is upon you, "Faith."

You carry, in the depths of your being, the spirit of your spiritual father, Martin Luther.

You are MORE rebellious and MORE obstinate than he was.

Even Martin Luther conceded, "We are obliged to yield Many Things to the Catholics ~ (for example), that they possess the Word of God, Which We RECEIVED From Them; otherwise, we should have known NOTHING at all about it."

O Slithery "Faith" of "Faith" !

Please do not hiss.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 23, 2003.

and furthermore, "Faith,"

please give up your novice exegesis

it is too pathetic

please look for another hobby

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 23, 2003.

Faith is a poor theologian and apologist; but let's give her credit. Her ways of weasling with the words are highly persuasive, if only she were teaching a Sunday School class. Little kids rarely have the experience to dispute the ''Bible Scholar''. That's Faith's title, Bible Scholar.

Here's the scholar's reply to one important statement. A: The early Catholic Church relied on the interpretation of a few men called the Apostles, the first bishops of the Church. (Paul M.)

(Faith) ''We can do the same because they recorded everything for us that we need to know unto salvation.''

And yet, Faith denies about 3/4ths of what is written. Her bible wisdom is so deficient she can't remember what the Church is called; the PILLAR AND FOUNDATION OF THE TRUTH. (1 Tim, 3 :15) so she bowdlerises it into saying something else.

Her bible wisdom is so lacking she knows nothing about the sacrament of Jesus Christ's Last Supper. Catholics reading the Bible forthrightly can easily see the bread and wine which Jesus consecrated in Luke 22 :19-20 (corroborated in 1 Cor, 11 :23) give us what He was promising in John 6: 54; His body to eat, His blood to drink.

And, should she realise it, all she will think is that we misinterpret it all; but she has no other basis for it than her stubborn opinion. The Church has the testimony of all the apostles and disciples of Christ. The Church isn't giving us opinions; we receive TRUTH from her. Just the same as we received the Holy Bible!

Faith: ''We can do the same because they recorded everything for us that we need to know unto salvation.'' They didn't record what you claim, Faith. You corrupted their record by private interpretation. If you think the Holy Spirit is guiding you, you haven't proved it by your Bible wisdom.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 23, 2003.

Here she repeats the stock protestant reply gotten out of the Jack Chick tract: ''I, says Jesus, am going to build my church on this Petras (Larger Rock and foundation), which is the declaration that you (Petros) just made about Me.'' --It's nothing new, we've seen this before.

It's false. Here is what Christ stated simply: ''You are Peter. (That means Rock)-- NOW; since you're now Peter, I will build my Church on YOU.'' Why have Jack Chix and the scholar, ''Faith'' ignored what Jesus Christ was truly doing: building His Church--???

They would rather quibble and split hairs here working on a word, Petros; than face what Jesus did. He built the Catholic Church in Matthew 16:18 ! ! ! They want to FORGET that!

Of course they do. Because they're out of the Church Christ built. Way out.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 23, 2003.

Have you ever read the passage you are trying to misinterpret your way out of?? If you have then you know that your silly arguments are just so much rhetoric. The passage as rendered in your own Protestant King James Bible, reads ...

"And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed [it] unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:17-18)

Do you know the meaning of the word "THOU"? "Thou" does not mean "your profession of faith". It does not mean "your proclamation". "Thou has only one precise meaning. It means "YOU". There is no other possibility. Jesus did NOT say "I say unto thee, That thy proclamation is rock". He said, addressing the Apostle Simon, "I say unto thee, That THOU art Rock". How can you claim to accept the Bible as your authority, and yet change not only the words of Sacred Scripture, but the clear statement of the Son of God Himself, in an effort to make them conform to your warped personal interpretations? GOD HIMSELF says "Simon, YOU ARE ROCK", and you DARE to say "NO, GOD didn't mean what He said. He meant what I wanted Him to say". Well sorry Faith, but this is God's Word you are playing games with here. As Catholics, we accept it as the inspired Word of God, and if God told Simon that He was Rock, which He clearly did, then that's what He meant. Posting your opinions as though they had some semblance of authority is sad enough, but rewriting the Word of God is really going WAY too far.

You do realize that the Apostle's name was Simon - right? Not Peter? That's why Jesus addressed him as Simon in verse 17. It was his name. His only name. This man was never known as Peter (=Rock) until this very moment, when Jesus Himself assigned that name to Him. From the time of his birth until that very moment, He had been known to simply as Simon. But after that moment he was known throughout the entire Church as "Simon Peter" - "Simon the Rock". It is utterly ridiculous to suggest that Jesus changed Simon's name to "Rock" at the beginning of a sentence, and then referred to a DIFFERENT "Rock" later in the same sentence! Why did He change Simon's name? A whim? A joke? If I say to you "I talked to a priest today, and this priest gave me some advice", would you assume that both mentions of "priest" in this sentence referred to the SAME person? Or was I saying that I spoke to one priest, and another priest gave me advice? Jesus told Simon "YOU are Rock, and upon THIS ROCK I will build my Church. No honest person could possibly misinterpret this as a reference to two different rocks, not even a Protestant.

Let's take a look at how verses 17 to 19 read, based on YOUR personal interpretation of the text ...

"Simon, you have been greatly blessed! The Father has revealed profound truths to you alone! Therefore I say unto you, that you are an insignificant pebble, and I am going to build my Church on a real rock, not on someone like you. But even though you will have no special leadership position in my Church, I give to you the keys to my kingdom anyway. Oh, and by the way - whatsoever you bind on earth is bound in heaven, not that you will have any way of using this special gift."

I don't know about you, but I detect a certain measure of inconsistency there.

Let's see how it reads, based on the Holy Spirit's interpretation, as given to His Holy Church ...

"Simon, you have been greatly blessed! The Father has revealed profound truths to you alone! Consistent with the Father singling you out in this way, I say unto you that you are henceforth Rock, and upon this very Rock I will build my Church. To fulfill this new ministry you will require special authority, so I give unto you the keys to my kingdom, and hereby declare that whatsoever you bind on earth for the good of the Church will be bound in heaven".

See how beautifully it flows?

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 23, 2003.

You go on and fence with the other passage. It has no bearing, Faith-- On what Christ was saying and doing in Matt 16 :18,

He was naming Simon-- Peter; and establishing our Holy Catholic Church; what He calls MY Church. In that very passage, not in Corinthians 1. In Matt 16, His Church was given to us; with His chief apostle as ROCK. Christ was the BUILDER. He built the Church, not Peter. But Peter is the rock upon which Jesus built.

Paul says: ''each one should be careful how he builds. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid--which is Jesus Christ'' --Can't see how Paul can claim, ''I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it.'' Does he mean Paul built the Catholic Church? No. Christ did; it was already built before Paul was converted!

Paul means his preaching is the way he has laid a foundation; the Gospel of Jesus Christ. So, he gives the credit to His Master; Jesus. His preaching is Jesus' Holy Gospel. He uses the Gospel for ''laying a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it.''

The someone else is Apollos; Paul ''planted, Apollos watered''. (1 Cor 3:6) But Jesus is the Word; Paul's Holy Gospel. Paul wasn't speaking of the ''foundation'' of Christ's Church.

You should test the contexts of your messages to us, ''Faith'', before sticking your neck out.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 23, 2003.

An interpretation is one of two things. True or false. It has nothing to do with agreeing with your Church's interpretation; it has to be correct. Yours are just incorrect. I've corrected you, and you're uncomfortable about it.

The only reason I CAN correct you is I have the true interpretations as the Church and the Holy Spirit interpret the Holy Bible.

You have just --rose-colored glasses.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 23, 2003.

"So then why are both petros and petras used in that verse? He said that Peter was petros and that he would build his church on petras..larger rock foundation. "

A: Since you asked, I'll go through it. It's not really very complicated. First of all, remember that Jesus didn't speak Greek. Both Petros and Petra are Greek nouns, so Jesus didn't actually say either of these words. The noun Jesus used, in BOTH positions in this sentence, was the Aramaic word, Kepha (from which we get Cephas, another name for Peter). Kepha has just ONE meaning - ROCK. Therefore, Jesus used the word ROCK in both places. Simple. So why do there appear to be two different words used in the Greek text? In Greek, Petra means ROCK, and Petros means a chip of stone, such as might be produced by a sculptor's chisel - or more loosely translated, a pebble or small stone. The New Testament was written in Greek. Therefore, any quotations from Jesus that appeared in the original New Testament manuscripts were necessarily translations from the Aramaic in which they were originally spoken. The only Greek word which corresponds to the Aramaic word Kepha is Petra, meaning ROCK. Since Jesus used Kepha in both positions, the translator would naturally use Petra in both positions. However, in translating this sentence, the writer ran into a little Greek grammatical rule that complicated things slightly. In Greek, a feminine noun may not be used as a man's name unless it is first masculinized by changing the feminine ending (-a) to a masculine ending (-os). In the first use of Kepha in this sentence, Jesus is actually changing the Apostle's name from Simon to Petra (ROCK). He says to Simon "THOU art ROCK". However, Petra is a feminine noun; therefore to use it as a man's name, the writer had to masculinize it, making it Petros. In the second usage, "upon this Rock I will build my Church", Jesus is using "ROCK" in the usual sense, though figuratively, as a massive foundation. Therefore Petra is acceptable in this position. Unfortunately there was already a masculine Greek noun Petros, meaning a small chip of stone. However, Petros in this sentence is NOT that noun. It is simply the masculinized form of Petra. The meaning remains unchanged.

Scriptural/linguistic scholars who translate the Bible into other languages are well aware of this grammatical quirk, which is why NO translator, Protestant or Catholic, in translating from Greek into any other language, has EVER translated these two words differently, because they recognize that they are in fact one and the same word - Petra - ROCK. So you see, there is no problem here at all, except for those who feel compelled to create problems in an effort to justify their rebellion against the Church of the Living God.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 23, 2003.

faith, since you seem so keen on this arguement while ignoring all the others that i put in my last post to you, i might once again point something out to you which in your invincible ignorance you seem to have missed...

So then why are both petros and petras used in that verse?

in the verse we are discussing petros and petras are NOT both used. the two words used are petros and cepha. IN FACT the word petras does not exist in singular form. the word you keep using must refer to petra, which is the feminine version of the word STONE, just as the masculine version of the SAME EXACT WORD is petros. ROCK is the feminine word CEPHA. which is why Jesus didnt call simon CEPHA in the first place. but there isnt a masculine version of CEPHA, so Petros is the closest thing to cepha that could apply to peter. now, get that through your thick skull and drop it.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 23, 2003.

Hi, Faith. Long time no see, not that I've missed you.

Tell me, do you consider the Roman Catholic Church to be satanic?

Just a harmless little question.

-- jake (jake1REMOVE@pngusa.net), October 23, 2003.

Paul, you have expounded on this short explanation from the New American Bible excellently :

The difference in gender between the masculine noun Petros, the disciple's new name, and feminine noun petra is due simply to the Unsuitabiliiy of using a feminine noun as the proper name of a male. They were also used Interchangeably with the same meaning, "Rock."


2 Peter 1:20:


The New American Bible explains: These verses are directed against the personal interpretation of false teachers of clever tales (this is exactly YOU, "Faith").

You are NOT to interpret Matthew 16:18 Personally, "Faith."

So who can properly interpret Matthew 16:18?


The Magisterium interpreted Matthew 16:18 as (Paul's and Eugene's explicit explanations to you, "Faith," are in UNION with this Correct Interpretation):





The further proof of Matthew 16:18 as being Literal is that St. Peter's bones have been excavated Beneath the Main Altar and Dome Cross of St. Peter's Basilica, in the Vatican, the Center of the Holy Catholic Church.

Who are you, "Faith," to go against the great tide of the great experts of the Truth of the Magisterium of the Holy Catholic Church for Two Milleniums?

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 23, 2003.

I know you miss me jake, come on. Admit it.

I miss you like I miss my Navy days. I often miss being at sea, even though it sometimes made me hurl.

Your board members take on a new life when I post there. Heheh.

They're not mine. You can have them.

I'll tell ya what jake. I'll answer your question when you see fit to finally answer all of mine. Deal?

Never mind.

Hey...did you know that these guys here call you a Protestant? LOL!!

They call me worse than that, dear, but it's on their short list of favorite insults.

-- jake (jake1REMOVE@pngusa.net), October 23, 2003.

"Paul M...you have an interesting theory"

A: What I told you is not a theory. It is historical fact.

"However, couldn't Jesus just have been saying to Peter that he is Peter..(thats a name) that translates Petros."

A: Peter is a common name now, but it was not a name then, any more than "table" or "hammer" or "house" or any other common noun was a name. It was simply a noun meaning "Rock". There is no record of any human being named "Rock" before the moment when Jesus used that noun to change Simon's name, and to simultaneously describe the unique role of responsibility and authority Simon, now Simon Peter, was being given.

"But I am building my church not on your name but on mine...a larger Petra"

A: If that was the case, why involve Simon at all? Tell him he is greatly blessed. Tell Him the Father has revealed a special truth to him. Change his name to Rock. Just so He could then tell Simon that He had nothing special planned for him? Sorry, the passage just doesn't read that way. It builds steadily from the special inspiration Simon received, to Jesus' response to that inspired knowledge, to Jesus changing Simon's name, to Jesus appointing Simon to a new ministry, to Jesus providing Simon with the special gifts of authority and infallibility that he would need to fulfill that ministry - a ministry which today is known as Pope.

"I mean., don't you think God had his hand in overseeing even the Greek? Don't you think that Matthew knew what he was writing?"

A: Of course! Matthew knew exactly what he was writing! He was the one who had to masculinize the noun, and he would not have done so unless he realized fully that Jesus had changed Simon's name. the question is - do we today know what Matthew was writing? If we listen to God speaking through His Church, we do. If we simply design our own interpretations, we don't.

"Much has been said about what Matthew would read like in Aramaic. Some Catholic apologists have even asserted with confidence that they can tell us exactly what the Aramaic would be"

A: It isn't necessary to know "what Matthew would read like in Aramaic", since Matthew's Greek version was the original. There was no "Aramaic version". However, the words of Christ (and many other people) quoted in that Greek text were undoubtedly translated from Aramaic into Greek. There are experts in Ancient languages, including Aramaic, who can back-translate such quotes, so that we do in fact know what they would have looked like in the language in which they were originally spoken. However, that is not necessary to fully understand the intended meaning of the passage.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 23, 2003.

Your board members take on a new life when I post there. Heheh.

no, actually faith, your incessant clinging to ignorance through ignoring any real issues rather bores me.

as i already stated petras is a plural word for STONES. it doesnt make sense for Jesus to say "on this stones i build my church." the word you are looking for, for the last time is CEPHA.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 24, 2003.

Faith says:
''we see a clear distinction between big and little, hot and cold.''

Explain, please Faith: in 2,000 years Catholics have NOT seen your ''clear'' distinctions. We realise; you are a SCHOLAR; you make distinctions all over the place; just so long as you can put down a Church, namely the holy Catholic Church.

That's your only motivation for proposing ''clear distinctions'' out of thin air. You oppose the church. You aren't after the truth; in fact you cover up the truth for an agenda. Shame on you; and calling yourself a follower of Jesus Christ! ''--Yet scholars do continue to disagree about this, and are aware of the multitude of differing positions taken about it!'' Yes; in your dreams.

''. . . the focus does not change!'' Why not, Faith? Just because you can't allow a visible Church from the apostles to our present day! ''Some scholars, having missed the fact that the focus remains on Christ all the way through--are so puzzled by this passage,'' Blah Blah, Blablah! WHO SAYS SO? One of THEM, YOU! --Of course you're puzzled. You're all lost sheep!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 24, 2003.

Well, Luther will surely give "Faith" trophies and medals, wherever Luther may be, for unearthing a so-called controversial point from the protestant point of view. What do you call someone who loves controversies instead of the Fullness of Truth?

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.


-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 24, 2003.

and Eugene,

"Faith" needs a remedial on the Doctrine of Masturbation (see thread).

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.


-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.

Psalm 75:6 :


-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.

BIG PEBBLE and little pebble

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.

O Sola "Faith" !

You are so blind to the beautiful metaphors of the Most Holy Bible.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 24, 2003.


I hope to come to you soon; but I am writing these instructions to you so that, if I am delayed, you may know how to behave in the household of God; which is the church of the living God: which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth (1 Tim 3:14-15).

-- - (David@excite.com), October 24, 2003.

O Sola Scriptura!

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 25, 2003.


That passage clearly states that the Church, not the Scrpture, is "the pillar and bulwark of the truth." It affirms the role of the Church in protecting the truth and interpreting Sacred Scrpipture.

-- - (David@excite.com), October 25, 2003.

Any church which is "indwelt with the Holy Spirit" necessarily teaches the same doctrinal truths. The Holy Spirit does not contradict Himself from one church to another.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 25, 2003.

Faith makes a giant leap in her presumptions: ''applies to any church that is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, based on the principles of Christianity--which Paul clearly describes.''

Only one Church has the Holy Spirit. The Church of the holy apostles, Faith. The Catholic Church. All other churches are the inventions of men; your ''spiritual'' church included. You believe false doctrines of men, not the Word of God. Sorry.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 25, 2003.


Yes my name is David.

After that passage sinks in and you start to understand the Apostolic and Peterine authority, than you can clearley see the truth expressed by the Second Vatican Council:

"It is clear, therefore, that is the supremely wise arrangement of God, sacred Tradition, sacred Scripture and the Magisterium of the Church are so connected and associated that one of them cannot stand ithout the otherers. Working together, each in its own way under the action of the one Holy Spirit, they all contribute effectively to the salvation of souls(DeiVerbum [DV], 10C).

Pray for stronger faith, Faith. :-)

God bless you.

-- - (David@excite.com), October 25, 2003.

"All who believe in Christ and have been baptised into His Body--are His church"

A: What does that phrase mean - "All who believe in Christ"? Does it mean all who believe that he existed as a real person? If so, then it includes the majority of Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, pagans, and even atheists. Or, does it mean all who believe in the TRUTH of His teachings? If that's what it means, then obviously it cannot include all who claim to be Christians, since the beliefs of various Christian groups conflict with each other, often contradicting one another outright. truth cannot conflict with or contradict itself. Therefore groups with conflicting beliefs cannot all be accepting the TRUTH of the teachings of Jesus Christ. So, what does "All who believe in Christ" mean? Or does it mean "all who believe that He is the Savior, regardless of whatever else they believe or don't believe? If that's the case, then what did Christ mean when He said that the Holy Spirit would guide HIS Church to ALL truth? Apparently He meant that His Church would teach only one body of belief, called the TRUTH, and that churches which did not teach that same body of belief are not His Church. Seems pretty clear.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 25, 2003.

Faith, --That may make you a believer in salvation. It's not enough to make you arrive at the fulness of truth. It's half-truths you believe, Faith. Because you misconstrue what the Bible is saying.

These verses you quote are from letters of Paul, a Catholic apostle, to his Catholic brethren and the converts he made for Christ. Catholic converts, not heretics.

You found the Holy Bible thanks to the same Catholic Church. You believe that by just reading, you've reached the same conversion. But you aren't converted yet to true Christian faith. You accept false teachings; and heretical teachings aren't faith in Jesus Christ's words. They're based on error, not on the Bible's revelation. You embrace the false gospel of self-ordained men who opposed Paul's Church; (Heretics) --the Holy Catholic Church.

Even so, it's a start. God in His infinite mercy is bringing you into this unknown sphere and exposing you to His truth. You will know at last the real meaning of the scriptures and actually become a believer. But it will require humility and prayer. Turn yourself over to Him; He will never mislead you. Pray for His truth to be shown you in the Holy Spirit. We also will pray for you and others who are following false prophets.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 25, 2003.

Faith, you told David this -----

He tells us that this way, we will know how to behave in God's household, the church. He is giving us instruction as to how a church should run. He tells us that the church, God's household, is the church of the *Living God*--the pillar and foundation of the truth.

Were you trying to argue that the phrase, "the pillar and foundation of the truth" is referring to "the Living God"?

If you are, you are completely wrong. The grammatical cases of the nouns involved prove that "the pillar and foundation" is referring to "the Church." Any honest Protestant minister who took a class in Greek will admit this to you.

So if you were pushing for the wrong meaning, you ought to have sense enough to realize that your whole ecclesiology collapses like a house of cards. Of course, it already collapses on the very first day you put it forward at this forum, but you didn't notice that fact.

I can just picture that torment you must be experiencing, seeing how so many things you have believed and tried to spread for years is all so much doggy-doo. I can just picture how you must be tighter than a drum inside, experiencing the tension of knowing that you are on a gigantic sliding board, headed down-down-down to where the furnace of Gehenna is burning very brightly -- and that the only way to put the brakes on and start sliding upward is to return to the Catholic Church.

-- (YouCant@Be.Serious), October 25, 2003.

It has to be the Church the Bible refers to, for there was no other Church that the Bible possibly could refer to. Christ founded ONE Church. History reveals that this ONE Church called itself the Holy Catholic Church by the end of the first century. There was no other church on earth for the next 1,000 years. Therefore, simple logic dictates that any reference to "the Church" which appears in the Bible MUST refer to the ONLY Church that then existed - the Church which compiled the Bible - the Church Christ founded - the Catholic Church. I fully understand why you would not want to admit this - but face it, there is NO other reasonable claim that can be made. It's painful to see the shallow beliefs you have been fed come tumbling down, but the Holy Spirit is at work, guiding you to truth. Don't resist Him. Allow Him to tear down what He wants to tear down, so that He can build in you an openness to the fullness of Christian truth. You'll never look back, once you experience it.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 26, 2003.

In her obvious prejudice against His Holy Church, this woman contradicts the apostles and Jesus Christ. She harms only herself.

When one human being installs him/her self in the seat of all-knowing, idolatry results. Faith can't be taught by others. Not by scholars or ministers or even apostles. In her self-absorption, no truth is worthy of belief if it didn't come out of her own presumption. God will forgive her ignorance, we hope.

I sincerely think, with no intent to hurt or belittle her, that Faith is a lady of advanced age. Maybe even older than me; I'm about to turn 66!

By imposing her will on us, & her self-styled knowledge, Faith languishes in self love and egotistic illusions of her own wisdom. The Bible didn't teach her, the world didn't teach her, and by Gum; no Church will ever teach her! Old folks have that character; nothing can budge some older experts.

Idolatry can take unsuspected forms. In Faith, it's the worship of her personal opinion. Her opinion will never be changed, her wisdom never challenged. It's set in concrete; her idol.

Old age should bring serenity, and REAL HOPE in the promises of Jesus. Not self-assurance! Hope in God, who has power over Creation and over life & death. He will help us cross the bridge over into eternal life, we can't barge in on heaven despite all lack of preparation.

Most of all, without discarding our human pride. It was PRIDE that caused the fall of the angels. And it is pride which has cost ''Faith'' her chance at real faith in Jesus Christ. We'll pray for you, Faith. Go in peace!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 26, 2003.

Your ignorance is appalling Faith,

Our Lord gave His Church, in the persons of the apostles and their disciples, explicit commands. The final command, ''Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and behold I am with you even unto the consummation of the world.'' )Matt 28 :19.)

If a Church as you (think) you see it obeyed Him and went; then Christians were taught by spirits. He spoke to living men; and assuring them He would be with His Church all days, it is clear He intended the teaching authority and the VISIBLE Church presence on earth to last here until His return. Your denials notwithstanding, that Church is here today; that Catholic Church. Roman isn't a part of the Church's title. Forget that insignificant detail. You speak of Jesus Christ's Holy Church when speaking of a ''Roman'' Church.

Even one as steeped in prejudice as you can see in the 1st chapter of Paul's epistle to the Romans that Catholics lived in Rome from the beginning. Their first bishop, PETER, the Church's first Pope. But the Catholic Church would still be Christ's Church if Peter had died in Asia Minor or Greece. It wouldn't matter. It's still the everlasting Church Christ gave us. The ONLY one!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 26, 2003.

Come, come Faith;
We read Romans and discover at the very top-- her faith (THAT CHURCH--) is declared all over the world! Rome of the day was the center of all the known world. Paul establishes up front, the church in that city was world-famous for her great faith. Her Catholic faith!

Peter isn't addressed simply because he was to arrive there later on. He, being the apostle he was, became their bishop. If Peter had later departed to some new mission church, he would have been the leader, angel there! But he didn't. He died a martyr in Rome. From then on, his successors as bishops of Rome assumed Peter's chair. No particular mystery about it. There are many documents testifying to Peter's primacy among apostles, and also as Rome's bishop, or Holy Father; Papa. His present day successor is John Paul II, the Pope.

To presume ''They are being told that they are included in the church of Jesus Christ--which is spiritual.'' is utter nonsense. Every soul is a person of flesh & blood as well as spirit. It would not be a Church at all without persons, so it isn't merely spiritual. Church means ASSEMBLY; living & saved Catholics. Paul referred to all of these as ''the saints''; right in chapter ONE, ROMANS!

You are a person, and without a body, you can't even hear the Word of God. You hear it as a person. The Christians of ancient Rome were persons, and Saint Paul was a person. No Church was ever founded by Christ much less any man, which exists as merely spiritual. You've been fantasizing. What a LAME thing to be saying, Faith.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 27, 2003.


-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 27, 2003.

"And do not call anyone on earth 'father', for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called 'teacher', for you have one Teacher, the Christ."

Once again Faith picks and chooses passages which, plucked out of the context of scripture as a whole, appear to substantiate some of her modern manmade traditions.

She says "do not call anyone on earth 'father'; then applies a simplistic, hyperliteral interpretation which completely misses the whole meaning of the text. Perhaps she never read the words of Paul ... "If you were to have countless tutors in Christ, yet you would not have many FATHERS, for in Christ Jesus I BECAME YOUR FATHER through the gospel." ( 1 Corinthians 4:15) Maybe Paul never read Matthew 23? Or maybe he did read Matthew, but didn't interpret his writings foolishly. And how about Peter? "She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you greetings, and so does MY SON, MARK. (1 Peter 5:13). The nerve of that guy, calling himself Mark's FATHER, after Matthew told him not to! This kind of silliness is the inevitable result of trying to interpret Catholic writings without the authority of the Catholic Church which defined those writings as scripture in the first place.

Faith also points out that we are to call no man "teacher". Yet scripture says "Now there were at Antioch, in the church that was there, prophets and TEACHERS" (Acts 13:1) Paul writes: "God has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third TEACHERS" (1 Corinthians 12:28) Is he contradicting the gospel here? He admonishes the Hebrews ... "by this time you ought to be TEACHERS" (Heb 5:12). And James cautions us ... "Let not many of you become TEACHERS, my brethren" (James 3:1) Apparently the Apostles didn't take Matt 23 literally. Neither does the Church of God. To do so would be absurd in view of both Christian Tradition and the full message of Holy Scripture.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 27, 2003.

''Eugene--but you can't show the Scripture to support any of it.'' said ''faith''. But, Faith, we have true faith in the Holy Spirit; we don't have just ''faith'' like yours! For your kind of bogus faith, nothing can prove what your earthly eyes do not read. Fat lot of ''spiritual'' Christianity!

Our Divine Lord isn't ''confined'' in buildings. What an absurd description of Emmanuel! Did you actually conceive His Holy Church as some ''workshop'' or ''organisation''--???

He lives amidst His Holy People; the faithful! They assemble in a house, or temples. Does that offend you? --They aren't what you imagine, moths by the millions fluttering around a giant lamp which is the Bible! Ha ha!

You act as if they gave YOU license to state the exact definition of Church. But you haven't a clue! The holy apostles would have been astounded at your bigotry. There's only one problem with your Christianity: you hate the Catholic faith! No other explanation for this green envy! --May God be merciful to you and save you from the devil. Where you walk walks the evil one, Dear!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 27, 2003.

''You must not be as secure in your faith as you would pretend. You seem far too angry and impatient to be claiming bla blah.''

I don't have to pretend, Faith. I follow in the faith of the apostles. Nothing here that I've stated about the Church is my personal opinion. Everything you've managed to say without prejudice is completely your own opinion. Not from the apostles at all!

If I say some unwelcome things to you, accept them; you're supposedly a Christian willing to suffer for Christ, aren't you? No-- It's your vanity which is upset, not your ''faith experiences''. Whatever that means.

I've covered almost all of Holy Writ and never came upon the expression: ''faith experience.'' There ARE no faith experiences that the Bible upholds. There is just the ONE faith; and that's the Catholic faith.

Saints Peter & Paul, the members of that early Church, the first converts, the clergy and saints: all were Catholics. Your own ancestors had to be Catholics once; unless you descend from modern Hebrews or Orientals. Of them I can truly say; they have no real fault. But you do. Because you come from the original Catholic stock if you are descended from Europeans. Your ancestors were loyal to the Popes! That's a certainty!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 27, 2003.

Poor Faith!
''fallen on your knees and confessed Jesus is your Lord and Savior? Have you given your life to Him and Him alone? Do you know that you will be in heaven with Him on that last day? If you can't answer yes to all these things--then you don't know Jesus.''

It's absurd, calling on a Catholic with these no- brainers. We love Jesus every minute of our lives when we are in a *state of grace*, Faith. Because He gives us every grace. He gives us every grace through the Church and her teaching and the holy sacraments.

Not by falling on our knees and that nice megillah. By GRACE.

''Know Jesus?'' How come you know Him? Our Lord Himself stressed, ''Not everyone who says, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the Will of my Father;'' --Faith.

The will of God is that there be ONE confession of faith. One Body; a Church in whom Emmanuel resides to the end of the world. Not the imaginary kind you preach. The Church which is IN the world, but not of the world. He told His Church, through the apostles: ''You are my friends if you do the things I command you.'' (John, 15 :14,) and in John 17, :9-- ''I pray for them (His Church) whom Thou hast given me;'' verse :20, ''Yet not for these only do I pray, but for those also who through their word are to believe in me.'' This is His Church.

And you, in your self- love, think you have Christ's friendship without obeying His commands? By simply ''giv(ing) your life to Him and Him alone?'' as a single unit! In your own imagination not within His Church? Why are you exempt? No obedience, just ''confessing,''--? ''Lord, Lord!''

When Jesus prayed ''Not for these apostles only, but for those also who through THEIR word (His Church) are to believe in me.'' --He prayed for the Catholic Church! Those who do the will of His Father. Not those who just read a Bible and get nice interior ''feelings'' of grace. Grace is there for you in His Church, not given as a ''faith experience''.

You need his Church for the graces He sends you. You are not called to be an independent. Nobody is!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 27, 2003.


Have you fallen on your knees and confessed Jesus is your Lord and Savior? Have you given your life to Him and Him alone. Do you know that you will be in heaven with Him on that last day? If you can't answer yes to all these things--then you don't know Jesus.

That is absurd. If what you said is true, the whole human race would have converted within a decade or less or Christ's death. You make heaven sound as easy to achieve as falling out of bed.

I suspect you call that "justification by faith alone". Yet you say you still have to fall on your knees to get Jesus, which is a work and you still have to confess with your mouth and that also is a work. And it sounds as if it only has to be done once in a life time.

So according to you, to get to heaven we have to work for a micro- second (knees dropping and confession) and at that point we have eternally perfect faith and then we ought to use a lie to describe it such as, "faith alone!".

Furthermore you get this from scripture of which Jesus himself wrote none of, not one word, yet he lived here 33 years or so. Obviously the histoic Jesus put more hope in his human Church than in writing or he would have written a few things. So the first question ought to be, Where is his Church now? and not, Where is the holy book which he never wrote while he was alive?

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 27, 2003.

I meant

...the whole human race would have converted within a decade or less of Christ's death.

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 27, 2003.

Nice-sounding brainstorm: ''The church is a spiritual truth that will be realized and brought to fulfillment at Christ's return.''

Where is the biblical passage that brought you to this conclusion?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 28, 2003.

You've concluded, The church is a spiritual truth that will be realized and brought to fulfillment at Christ's return.--

Nothing within the passage show us the church is ''a spiritual truth.''

The Church is right NOW with the Holy Spirit in the world. You are so fixated on your semantical wizardry, ''Church means spiritual'', that you can't believe the words of the holy apostles! You plainly don't believe they went forth to all the nations. Or, if they did, they accomplished nothing. Because nobody can tell (as you want it) who believes and who doesn't believe. The Church you believe in is Pie In The Sky.

Pie to be ''realised'' and ''brought to fulfillment''. How did you come by such odd ideas?

Your main problem, Faith; is that you don't think it's necessary to accept any more doctrine than a rudimentary slogan or two. ''Jesus saves,'' and the like. You don't want a Church, so you explain it away.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 28, 2003.

What are those fruits, Faith? And who is producing them now for almost 2,000 years? Not your invisible church with invisible fruits. Christ's Holy Church. The one your ancestors were all members of; has brought forth fruits. Hundreds of thousands of saints; many thousands of martyrs in Christ; and every good work under the sun; as befits that Holy Church. ''--new believers being added every day?'' No question; all who are baptised Catholics! This is the The Church who evangelised the world up to the day; and continues doing so. Not some invisible entity from your imagination. Thanks be to Almighty God!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 28, 2003.

The Most Holy Catholic Church condemned the notion of the "Invisible Church" of the Protestants because it is a Great Lie.

Pope Pius XII said in his Encyclical Mystici Corporis Christi :

As He hung upon the Cross, Christ Jesus not only appeased the justice of the Eternal Father which had been violated, but He also won for us, His brethren, an ineffable flo of graces. It was possible for Him of Himself to impart these graces to mankind directly; but He willed to do so only through a VISIBLE CHURCH MADE UP OF MEN, so that through her all might cooperate with Him in dispensing the graces of Redemption. As the Word of God willed to make use of our nature, when in excruciating agony He would redeem mankind, so in the same way throughout the centuries He makes use of the Church that the work begun might endure.

That the Church is a body is frequently asserted in the Sacred Scriptures. "Christ," says the Apostle, "is the Head of the Body of the Church." If the Church is a body, it must be an unbroken unity, according to those words of Paul: "Though many we are one body in Christ." But it is not enough that the Body of the Church should be an unbroken unity; it must also be something definite and perceptible to the senses as Our predecessor of happy memory, Leo XIII, in his Encyclical Satis Cognitum asserts:


But a body calls also for a multiplicity of members, which are linked together in such a way as to help one another. And as in the body when one member suffers, all the other members share its pain, and the healthy members come to the assistance of the ailing, so in the Church the individual members do not live for themselves alone, but also help their fellows, and all work in mutual collaboration for the common comfort and for the more perfect building up of the whole Body.


-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), October 29, 2003.

When the physical reality of the Incarnate Word in the Eucharist is rejected then the scriptures will be fulfilled when they say, "unless you eat of the flesh of the son of man you will have no life within you". At that point all naysayers understandably lose membership in the physically visible One Church. They may hang on to life for a time but they are now in the process of dying if they deny what has plainly been presented. The visible Church body is in precious marital covenant bond with the physically visible substantially present Eucharist. What a mind-blowing concept !! I love it !!

James I also loved your quotes from popes.

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 29, 2003.

Happy are they who partake in the Holy Eucharist. Have you ever wondered about those who cannot partake, Mike?


-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), October 29, 2003.


God won't hold something against anyone when one's will is not involved. And the Spirit of God is larger than the Church so there are avenues for grace in addition to the Eucharist.

Also there are times when I may not partake such as when in possible serioius sin or when missing the fast before mass or when I miss a daily mass for reasons beyond me. Life becomes more difficult in such circumstances, but it is not impossible to gain merit without the Eucharist. Simply put, one's best odds of salvation are given to those in full communion.

My prayers to all those who cannot partake, I am guessing you are one such person rod. Do you have future hopes in joining us?

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 29, 2003.

What a simplistic analogy. No matter what a Catholic soul may merit, good or evil, this has no bearing on Christ's Holy Church; where His Holy Spirit abides and the faithful assemble in this life. Nor does being an upright and God-fearing man make you a member of the Church. --We do not place limits on whom God will save despite their ignorance of his true Church. That is for Him to judge. We simply announce for those who search: This is the Church; there is no other. And any cursory reading of the Bible shows unbiased Christians that Jesus intended for His followers to be baptised into the Church and obey all He commanded. It isn't what I intended, or the Pope or any saint intended, Faith. It's what Christ has provided for us PERFECTLY. All substitutes are imperfect and not holy at all! There is NO Holy Methodist, or Holy Baptist, or Holy Christian Science church. Holiness is only Catholic; because Jesus founded the Catholic Church. He makes her holy. There is no Holy Invisible Church.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 29, 2003.


For the most part I agree with you BUT it must be said that one's best odds for salvation are within the Catholic Church. It does not give a guarantee but it the best place to be. If a Protestant who was raised from birth as such can not get beyond what he/she was taught than it is likely that they do not sin by remaining as they were raised if no special graces prompt them to become Catholic. But an average Protestant or a Catholic, whose practice is weak, are both on the edge of the wagon. When a bump comes along, that person is the most likely one to fall off. Those in the center of the wagon have room to be tossed around a bit by the waves of life and not fall off.

A good Protestant is better off than a bad Catholic but a good Protestant is not better off than a good Catholic.

We do not know what evil lurks in our future and so we may as well live a strong in the Lord as possible, thus the need to be Catholic even though those lacking the fullness of the faith are weakly part of the family as well. This scripture describes what why the need to be as strong as possible in the Lord >>

Ez 14:12-16

12 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying: 13 Son of man, when a land shall sin against me, so as to transgress grievously, I will stretch forth my hand upon it, and will break the staff of the bread thereof: and I will send famine upon it, and will destroy man and beast out of it. 14 And if these three men, Noe, Daniel, and Job, shall be in it: they shall deliver their own souls by their justice, saith the Lord of hosts. 15 And if I shall bring mischievous beasts also upon the land to waste it, and it be desolate, so that there is none that can pass because of the beasts: 16 If these three men shall be in it, as I live, saith the Lord, they shall deliver neither sons nor daughters: but they only shall be delivered, and the land shall be made desolate.

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 29, 2003.


I wish to return to my Church, not only join. It does seem like a far off dream considering my background.


-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), October 29, 2003.


I recall hearing your story once many threads ago but forget. You could give a link to the thread. I didn't want to deviate from the topic here.

-- Mike H. (beginasyouare@hotmail.com), October 29, 2003.

Faith: The true church is invisible in that we are not confined in a religious institution, and only God knows for certain who are His.

Jesus: Matthew 18:15-17 "If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that 'every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.' If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector."

In this passage, Christ shows that the Church is more than one person, or a gathering of two or three; it cannot be simply an invisible bonding of believers! Christ expects all of his followers to know who is in the Church. Also, it is enough of an "institution" to be able to pass judgement and reprove sinners.

I think that your idea of "Church" is parallel to the Church's idea of the Communion of Saints: all those who live in Christ.

-- Catherine Ann (catfishbird@yahoo.ca), October 29, 2003.

Faith /
What does it matter, except to you, the sinner; whether you do or don't take the Catholic Church for the same one Jesus Christ founded???

I must remind you, you aren't prepared, or gifted in the slightest way to serve up an informed opinion. You are merely ''schmoozing'' here. --Over 200 centuries, kings and emperors, saints and scientists, even the very enemies of Christ have acknowledged the Catholic Church as Christ's true Church. At most, some men came to dispute the sole authority of the Pope; but they were never in any doubt where the Church entered history. She came from the apostles!

A hundred thousand holy books and the Holy Bible itself, have been written in the Catholic Church; and you've written nothing! All we see here is your obsinacy. Who cares what you think? You're only darkening your own soul.

How many actual CHURCHES, MISSIONS, communities of the Christian faith, were established on earth by the Church over 2,000 years; each one announcing the Holy Gospel, proclaiming Christ, and saving souls? An endless number, Faith! Which is not to mention universities, schools, hospitals, orphanages, whole CITIES, built upon the Catholic faith!

You have merely tried to read the Bible; but you presume to tell us what Christ built? What Christ meant? Where Christ placed His authority? Because you crack the Holy Book? Oh ye of LITTLE faith !

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 29, 2003.

"Who were our founding Fathers? What was their religion? The answer is *Protestants*"

Actually the answer is "Quakers" and "Puritans". "Protestant" doesn't actually tell us anything, since Protestantism is a hodgepodge collection of thousands of conflicting sects. If you say a person is "Catholic", you know what they believe. If you say a person is "Protestant", the ONLY thing you know about them is that whatever they have chosen to believe, they think it came from the Bible.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), October 29, 2003.

You think: ''The things you name--universities, hospitals, missions..etc..are the work of Christians..and mostly reformers at that!''

Who founded Cambridge University? King's College? Oxford? The Sorbonne? Salamanca? ALL the most ancient and glorious seats of learning in Europe were the work of the Catholic Church! The ''reformers'' who have built churches & universities & hospitals in this country all come from the original Catholic Church of their ancestors. Every ONE! There WAS no ''reformed'' church before 1520! Only a Catholic Church!

Even the very greatest protestants owe their educations to the Catholic Church. They had no protestant teachers in Europe, prior to the so-called reformation; all those schools had schoolmasters raised in the Church! Baptised Catholics! So, you might say, Benjamin Franklin's great wisdom was a product of Catholic schools, if we go back far enough. Same with your Quakers and Anglicans. Read a history book, Faith! None of the true accomplishments of those Christians you single out for credit did it solely and completely for Jesus Christ. The founding fathers didn't do a single thing solely for Christ. Hospitals built by evangelicals, or other protestants have no true connection to Jesus Christ. The Church built missions and schools and universities dating back 20 centuries. The Red Cross, which is NOT a religious charity at all, is barely 150 years old, and collects from everybody, not just Christians.

I wouldn't take anything away from the good works of millions of Christians. Many have been saints, I'm sure. But the Catholic Church is one model no other faith will ever surpass in faith, hope and charity. Especially charity.

I don't expect you to believe me, Faith; because you live with a very deep prejudice against Catholics.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 29, 2003.

actually, Paul M,

the answer to who were the founding fathers is NOT quakers or puritans. the answer to that question is deists, as quakers and puritans made up only a VERY slight percentage of those considered to be founding fathers. HOWEVER, that has no effect on the basis of yours or eugenes answer, which is that their knowledge could not have existed without the catholic church's compilation of that information.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 30, 2003.


You believe a myth if you believe that our founders were deists.

actually, you believe a myth if you believe otherwise... as FOUR doctorates at my college have informed me (2 history, 2 theology) and one history teacher in my high school (masters degree), I am fully correct. so, what in your fully unqualified opinion makes you more authoritative on history and theology than four professors?

as to the founding fathers being men of prayer... deists pray too. the only difference is the nature of that prayer (ie- deists dont ask for God to do something for them). so, inform your protestant minister to stop spreading historical fallacies.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 30, 2003.

This is meant as a humorous aside; Now we can see the reason I took Faith for an elderly woman. I'm elderly, and I ought to know.

Some old-timers become cantankerous and bitter about learning something new. Faith sounds just like that; no one can tell her; she knows better! Your PhD's don't know anything, she reads the Bible!

Don't tell Faith anything about the Catholic Church; she figured it ALL out long ago! Haha!!!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 30, 2003.

What good is your faith in the founding fathers, faith? They are certainly not a church. If they were God-fearing men, what of that? None of their accomplishments were devoted to Christ; government is what they accomplished.

The Church does today as in the beginning; she wins souls for Christ. She serves God first, neighbor next. Her great schools & charitable works were for the glory and honor of God through Jesus Christ. The government of our country had nothing to do with saving souls; the Catholic faith does. Do you know who hand-copied all the bibles in the world before the coming of the printing press?

Catholic priests and monks in the great cathedrals of western Europe. When the first Bible was printed it was the Catholic edition. Gutenburg was Catholic. No great hospital of the day was erected by any other prince or bishop except a Catholic. You yourself are descended form Catholics.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 30, 2003.

faith, you turned on the italics and then messed up an html tag, so the italics stayed on

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), October 30, 2003.

Relax, Faith,
You said, ''When did I express *faith* in anything other than Jesus Christ?'' --But hey; that baloney about the protestants and founding fathers etc., was to counter what we know about Christ's HOLY Church; you want somehow to grab credit for the ''reformers''.--?

You won't. They themselves benefitted from the evangelization of the western world by Catholics in the ancient era. Without the Church of the apostles, they would have inherited nothing. Not culture, not education, not the Bible! She was their OWN mother Church, and they abandoned her!

Yet you think these rebels were on a par with Jesus Christ's Church, for advancing mankind? Only shows the poverty of spirit you live in. You may say your faith is in Christ; but all your actions are anti-Christ. And half your words are ignorance, the other half lies. Hafta say it, Um sorry !

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 30, 2003.

Dear Faith:
Some quick examples of: (A. lies, misrepresentations) ''--I follow Jesus and all God commands through His Holy Word. That is how we know what those commands are in the first place. (That's simply a lying effort to bring yourself in line with Christ. Nobody obeys Jesus ''through His Word.'') Get real! ''

Lie B. --''Your religious hierarchy does not have more claim or knowledge of the Scriptures just because you keep saying so.'' Nor on account of what YOU say, Faith.

It's what CHRIST says which passes on His own authority to the Church. He says it in the Bible which, lying, you claim to understand. Check Matt 16 :18/:19. The keys of the kingdom? You never read that? - - We obey a hierarchy clearly seen in that same holy Bible. Read Paul's epistles.

Ignorance A. ''The true church is invisible in that we are not confined in a religious institution, and only God knows for certain who are His.'' Prove that from the scripture; that God alone knows who. Prove it. Prove that I, a Catholic am ''confined'' in an institution Prove it, Faith. Our Church is no ''institution; she is a living, growing, active Church, founded by Christ. Ecclesia.

''The things you name--universities, hospitals, missions etc, are the work of Christians.. .and mostly reformers at that!'' Hard not to see this for what it clearly is. A lie. The greatest of these-- all were built by the Holy Catholic Church. Some are still in her possession; and some were stolen from her during that so called reformation (Oxford, Cambridge, Westminster Abbey, numerous Church properties & schools.) The authority of our Holy Father was usurped by Henry VIII; who was born & raised Catholic, and died in sin. Read a history book, faith. You deserve the strong confrontation, which you mistake for a personal attack. Why? You attack the Church, Dear.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), October 30, 2003.

Dear Faith:,br>I say lying because you clearly make statements without the slightest truth in them. You state lies as fact.

I state what is historically accurate; or at least defensible. Something made reliable by documents and living witnessess who gave testimony in favor of the Popes.

To you, this might seem opinion. If so, it's an informed opinion. Go ahead, attack it. But when you lie, as if you were relying on some proof, you simply stink up the forum. The OPEN forum.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 01, 2003.

You say my sources are all Catholic ones. But your sources never have been true because they're anti- Catholic sources. Your lies are based on the lies promulgated by heretical leaders against the Vicar of Christ on earth.

You don't even need to go back down the historical list of Popes to see the discrepancy in your faith.

All you need do is discover for yourself what Church Luther, Henry, John Calvin & Knox and all the so-called reformers broke off from. The Catholic Church, with her legitimate Pontiff! There was no other church extant for them to rebel against! There were only Catholic leaders, before these false leaders became heretical pseudo-believers. Which is all YOU are today; a pretend-believer.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 01, 2003.

SUCCESSFUL? The fragmentation of Christianity into thousands of conflicting manmade sects, in direct violation of Christ's stated purpose for His Church is your idea of SUCCESS? Luther didn't think he had been successful. Before His death he was aghast at the destruction his new tradition had already spawned. In dismay he noted "there are as many doctrines as there are heads" (as close as I can come on the quote from memory). In the final analysis Luther did far more damage to Christianity than Nero or any of the Church's more violent persecutors.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), November 01, 2003.


please dont tell me you honestly believe that division prior to the protestant revolt was anywhere NEAR the problem that division today is. if you believe that, youre impossibly more niave than anyone could imagine.

speaking of which, Paul M, faith is here merely to bash the church with no mentality of learning anything about us. her invincible ignorance is merely a waste of our time here. isnt there are forum rule against posting malicious attacks on the church on this forum?

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), November 01, 2003.

You mean vincible ignorance, right paul?

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 01, 2003.

Well let's say you found yourself in Heaven in the final analysis, Faith.

How would you answer to someone if they asked you how it was that you ended up there as opposed to someone else?

Just curious.

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 01, 2003.


Is this the victory you seek? Is it all about your ego of winning over these men? Is this what all of this debating has been about? If it isn't, then get rid of the "can't handle me" attitude. It is about your theology and your doctrine. It is much like seperating the sin from the sinner.

Yes, I know I wasn't gonna post anymore. I guess Faith that effect on me. I'll just hide back here and munch on this "apple" I found.



-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), November 01, 2003.

It is,/i> Faith's ego she's been fighting about; not faith in God. We have God's Will in mind; we try to help the wayward for God's sake. Faith is on the old power trip. A little Energizer Bunny; bangin away at the drum; with no interest in the truth.

She finally gives herself away:

''I have presented myself as an educated person with good sound points and questions. But you wouldn't be the first board who couldn't handle me.''

She collects scalps at different boards. She got nothing here; but yet she feels important. Fat lot of Christian; Lol!!! Vanity, thy name is woman!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 01, 2003.


-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 01, 2003.

Or is it ''Vanity; it comes down to Emerald and some women''--?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 01, 2003.


-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 01, 2003.


I have a question that I've tried to ask many non-Catholics, and they seem never to answer me.

Why are Protestants so opposed to Catholics? I mean, a Catholic and a high-church Anglican have at least as much in common as the Anglican and a Baptist, so why does the Anglican side with the Baptist in almost every case? It seems almost that "as long as it isn't Catholic, it must be right."

So, do you go to the forums of other "churches" that claim to be the one, true Church founded by Christ, in order to tell them that the Church founded by Christ is a spiritual unity and not a visible phenomenon? Or is Protestantism right by default, regardless of whether the individual Protestant doctrines agree with your idea of a solely spiritual Church?

Is the Bible the only source of truth? Even when printing presses did not exist and Bibles had to be copied by hand onto parchment, a process much too expensive for the common people? Is Christianity a religion for the elite who could afford a Bible, and who were actually taught how to read? Remember, the majority of the world's population before this era was illiterate.

Anyway, I've got to go to Mass! ;^)

-- Catherine Nolan (catfishbird@yahoo.ca), November 02, 2003.

"Your Catholic theology cannot stand under pressure"

:-) Actually our Catholic theology has stood in the face of 2,000 years of virtually constant persecution, without once dividing into denominations, or compromising its original content. In light of that, are you suggesting that a few remarks by a misguided Protestant constitute "pressure"? :-)

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), November 02, 2003.

I am glad that Faith has made her voice heard. She has taught me much through the answers she has received. More and more I do understand the truth that is Catholicism. Thank you Faith for your questions and thank you everyone who gave answers.



-- rod (elreyrod@yahoo.com), November 02, 2003.

"Christ and His apostles, by contrast, told the first Christians to "test everything" (1 Thessalonians 5:21). They taught their followers to use Scripture as the standard for judging the truthfulness of all teaching and to beware of "false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ" (2 Corinthians 11:13)."

In other words, beware of faith01@myway.com?



-- (MattElFeo@netscape.net), November 02, 2003.

To Faith, some pointers on the Word of God:

You say, ''God used men to write the Bible.(The Church; not merely men,)

''What they wrote, however, was not their own ideas.'' (No-- they gave us Christ's reachings, Jesus Christ's, who founded His Church among men.) ''Peter tells us that the writers "were carried along by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:21). Scripture, therefore, is God's Word.'' Correct; all the writers were in Christ's Church, Faith. The Catholic Church. Christ sent the Paraclete, Holy Spirit, to the CHURCH. --Peter was the first Pope given by God to His Church. God BLESSED His Holy Church through the writings of His apostles. Christ's teachings were not lost. They live on in Scripture and Sacred Tradition, each inspired of the Holy Spirit.

As such, the Bible contains only truth. God provided it for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equiped for every good work. (2 Tim. 3:16,17) Yes; and that particular verse of Timothy is written to a ''Man of God,'' a priest of the Catholic Church, Saint Timothy. --Timothy understood it as exactly what Paul intended; a vocational aid for the clergyman.

Catholic priests read the scriptures every single day. They read forty times more scripture in one day than any protestant or protestant minister. Because, you see; God lives in His Church; He's Emmanuel.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 02, 2003.


-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 02, 2003.

"I just have an incredible passion for the Word of God as being the only truth we need"

A: Unfortunately this 16th century tradition of men cannot be substantiated from scripture. It is a peculiar reality that the more one insists on the Bible as the sole source of Christian truth, the farther he removes himself from the truth of the Bible.

"After Christ's ascension into heaven, His disciples went through the world preaching the good news of salvation. Most who heard the message, rejected it, and some even became angry and hostile. But others listened and considered. Contrary to what you believe--people did have the Scriptures available to them--and they were expected to know them"

A: Yes - they went preaching - not distributing Bible tracts. And verbal teaching is the principle way the Good News of Jesus Christ was spread by His Church for the next 1,500 years, until the invention of the printing press made the printed Word of God available to individual Christians. The only scriptures the Apostles possessed were the Old Testament Hebrew scriptures, which had limited value in confirming the new teachings of Jesus Christ.

"Peter tells us about the people of Berea. He says that these people were "of more noble character." They were interested in what the apostle Paul had to say, but they also wanted to confirm forthemselves that what Paul was saying was *true.* How did they do that? Peter reports that "therefore, they "examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true."

A: Once again, the only thing they could confirm from studying the Old Testament scriptures was that Jesus fit the scriptural description of the Messiah. They certainly could not confirm Paul's doctrinal teachings from the Old Testament, since many of the things Jesus taught had never been taught before.

"God used men to write the Bible. What they wrote, however, was not their own ideas. Peter tells us that the writers "were carried along by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:21). Scripture, therefore, is God's Word"

A: Amen! Exactly right. It is also worth noting that the men He used were leaders of the Church He founded - which history clearly identifies as the Catholic Church.

"As such, the Bible contains only truth. God provided it for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equiped for every good work. (2 Tim. 3:16,17) It is the perfect guide to Christian faith"

A: Indeed, the Bible contains only truth. But any honest person who looks at the incredible degree of doctrinal confusion and disagreement among Protestants must conclude that there is more to accessing the truth of the Bible than simply reading it. The Constitution of the United States, while not divinely inspired, also contains truth - but personal interpretation of it would result in chaos, which is why we have a Supreme Court to interpret it authoritatively.

"The Catholic Church disagrees. It says that the Bible is not enough. One must follow Tradition., the unwritten, or non-biblical teachings that supposedly live within the Church, having been passed down for centuries. The Church says that Catholics must give Tradition the same honor or more--than they give the Scriptures"

A: Catholics believe that the Word of God is the guide for Christian living. They believe that everything Jesus taught was the Word of God, since He is God. They don't believe that writing some of it down made it any more the Word of God than it already was, or that failing to write it down made it any less the Word of God. If the Church received it from Christ, it is the Word of God; and everything the Apostles taught and preached was received from Christ, not just the items they happened to mention in their written correspondence.

"In addition, the pope and the bishops say that only they can determine the true meaning of Scripture and since they claim to be the successors of the twelve apostles, their decision is final. No one may question their teachings"

A: Jesus to the bishops of His Church: "He who hears you hears Me"; "The Holy Spirit will guide you to all truth"; "whatsoever you bind on earth is bound in heaven". I know these quotes are not on the Protestant list of approved passages, but they are still God's Word. If you believe the Bible, you believe in the teaching authority of the Church He founded. If you reject the Church, you reject the Bible and the Lord. So says the Word of God.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), November 02, 2003.

Paul, we thank you.
Poor Faith. In one thread she brags that none of the boards she visits has been able to handle her. But every time you post her a reply, she's like putty in your hands; you old Smoothy! Lol!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 02, 2003.

"Binding and loosing" refers to the God-given authority to define a particular doctrinal belief as an essential component of the deposit of faith. Any doctrine so defined is thereby binding on all Christians as Divine truth, and therefore as required belief. Other beliefs may be "loosed" from consideration as components of the deposit of faith - which simply means they are not so bound. Your final statement is correct - the truth is already bound in heaven, and the Holy Spirit guides His Church to teach only what is truth.

"I guess until you., Paul., can show that the early church of Jesus Christ and His apostles were Roman Catholics--we will simply see it from our own vantage points. You trusting the Word of a Church hierarchy and I trusting only the Bible."

A: I have already informed you that the information you need is readily available in the form of Christian history. It is your responsibility, if you really value truth, to do some reading and educate yourself. But it appears that you are already getting a sense that educating yourself is going to bring some walls crashing down around you, so you choose to hide behind "Paul has not yet shown me". Take responsibility for your own spiritual life. If truth matters, then go and find it. If it doesn't, well then there is nothing more to be said. Catholics trust in the Word of God as validly and authoritatively interpreted by the Holy Spirit. You trust only in your personal guesses as to what the Bible - a Catholic book - might mean. Good luck.

"Jesus to the bishops of His Church: "He who hears you hears Me"; "The Holy Spirit will guide you to all truth" ... "Jesus actually said this to his disciples--which Jesus also says all believers will be made disciples as well".

A: Jesus did not preach this to any general gathering of His disciples. He gave these guarantees, and others as well, in "closed session", when He was with His Apostles only, the first bishops of His Church. Again you can easily confirm this from historical sources - which I assume will intensify your fear of consulting legitimate historical sources.

"We can know Him and His Word exactly because he ovver saw it for us."

A: Ho Hummmm - 30,000 conflicting denominations and counting, each of them "knowing His Word exactly". Yep. Uh Huh. Sure.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), November 02, 2003.

Because an emperor was converted to the Faith of the Apostles (in the end) and upheld the true Church; it disqualifies that true Church?

Oh; and it makes no difference that long before the emperor was a Christian, Catholics were being martyred and the Church was under virulent persecution in Rome? That same Church Constantine liberated?

Very strange logic, ''Faith''.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 02, 2003.


May every letter of The Bull of Pope Leo X to your Predecessor, Mentor, Champion, and Spiritual Father ~ Martin Luther ~ remind you of the gravity of your position. I hate to break the old news to you but your ideas are not revolutionary ~ they are a mere duplicate and at best a mere derivative of Luther's Disobedience. I hope that you still have a morsel of humility left in you to reconsider your bitter opposition to the Eternal, Most Holy Catholic Church.



Through the power given him from God, the Roman Pontiff has been appointed to administer spiritual and temporal punishments as each case severally deserves. The purpose of this is the repression of the wicked designs of misguided men, who have been so captivated by the debased impulse of their evil purposes as to forget the fear of the Lord, to set aside with contempt canonical decrees and apostolic commandments, and to dare to formulate new and false dogmas and to introduce the evil of schism into the Church of God—or to support, help and adhere to such schismatics, who make it their business to cleave asunder the seamless robe of our Redeemer and the unity of the orthodox faith. Hence it befits the Pontiff, lest the vessel of Peter appear to sail without pilot or oarsman, to take severe measures against such men and their followers, and by multiplying punitive measures and by other suitable remedies to see to it that these same overbearing men, devoted as they are to purposes of evil, along with their adherents, should not deceive the multitude of the simple by their lies and their deceitful devices, nor drag them along to share their own error and ruination, contaminating them with what amounts to a contagious disease. It also befits the Pontiff, having condemned the schismatics, to ensure their still greater confounding by publicly showing and openly declaring to all faithful Christians how formidable are the censures and punishments to which such guilt can lead; to the end that by such public declaration they themselves may return, in confusion and remorse, to their true selves, making an unqualified withdrawal from the prohibited conversation, fellowship and (above all) obedience to such accursed excommunicates; by this means they may escape divine vengeance and any degree of participation in their damnation.

I. [Here the Pope Leo X recounts his previous Bull Exsurge Domine and continues]

II. We have been informed that after this previous missive had been exhibited in public and the interval or intervals it prescribed had elapsed [60 days]—and we hereby give solemn notice to all faithful Christians that these intervals have and are elapsed—many of those who had followed the errors of Martin took cognisance of our missive and its warnings and injunctions; the spirit of a saner counsel brought them back to themselves, they confessed their errors and abjured the heresy at our instance, and by returning to the true Catholic faith obtained the blessing of absolution with which the self-same messengers had been empowered; and in several states and localities of the said Germany the books and writings of the said Martin were publicly burned, as we had enjoined.

Nevertheless Martin himself—and it gives us grievous sorrow and perplexity to say this—the slave of a depraved mind, has scorned to revoke his errors within the prescribed interval and to send us word of such revocation, or to come to us himself; nay, like a stone of stumbling, he has feared not to write and preach worse things than before against us and this Holy See and the Catholic faith, and to lead others on to do the same.

He has now been declared a heretic; and so also others, whatever their authority and rank, who have cared nought of their own salvation but publicly and in all men's eyes become followers of Martin's pernicious and heretical sect, and given him openly and publicly their help, counsel and favour, encouraging him in their midst in his disobedience and obstinacy, or hindering the publication of our said missive: such men have incurred the punishments set out in that missive, and are to be treated rightfully as heretics and avoided by all faithful Christians, as the Apostle says (Titus iii. 10-11).

III. Our purpose is that such men should rightfully be ranked with Martin and other accursed heretics and excommunicates, and that even as they have ranged themselves with the obstinacy in sinning of the said Martin, they shall likewise share his punishments and his name, by bearing with them everywhere the title "Lutheran" and the punishments it incurs.

Our previous instructions were so clear and so effectively publicised and we shall adhere so strictly to our present decrees and declarations, that they will lack no proof, warning or citation. Our decrees which follow are passed against Martin and others who follow him in the obstinacy of his depraved and damnable purpose, as also against those who defend and protect him with a military bodyguard, and do not fear to support him with their own resources or in any other way, and have and do presume to offer and afford help, counsel and favour toward him. All their names, surnames and rank— however lofty and dazzling their dignity may be—we wish to be taken as included in these decrees with the same effect as if they were individually listed and could be so listed in their publication, which must be furthered with an energy to match their contents. On all these we decree the sentences of excommunication, of anathema, of our perpetual condemnation and interdict; of privation of dignities, honours and property on them and their descendants, and of declared unfitness for such possessions; of the confiscation of their goods and of the crime of treason; and these and the other sentences, censures and punishments which are inflicted by canon law on heretics and are set out in our aforesaid missive, we decree to have fallen on all these men to their damnation.

IV. We add to our present declaration, by our Apostolic authority, that states, territories, camps, towns and places in which these men have temporarily lived or chanced to visit, along with their possessions—cities which house cathedrals and metropolitans, monasteries and other religious and sacred places, privileged or unprivileged—one and all are placed under our ecclesiastical interdict, while this interdict lasts, no pretext of Apostolic Indulgence (except in cases the law allows, and even there, as it were, with the doors shut and those under excommunication and interdict excluded) shall avail to allow the celebration of mass and the other divine offices. We prescribe and enjoin that the men in question are everywhere to be denounced publicly as excommunicated, accursed, condemned, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them. They are to be strictly shunned by all faithful Christians.

V. We would make known to all the small store that Martin, his followers and the other rebels have set on God and his Church by their obstinate and shameless temerity. We would protect the herd from one infectious animal, lest its infection spread to the healthy ones. Hence we lay the following injunction on each and every patriarch, archbishop, bishop, on the prelates of patriarchal, metropolitan, cathedral and collegiate churches, and on the religious of every Order—even the mendicants—privileged or unprivileged, wherever they may be stationed: that in the strength of their vow of obedience and on pain of the sentence of excommunication, they shall, if so required in the execution of these presents, publicly announce and cause to be announced by others in their churches, that this same Martin and the rest are excommunicate, accursed, condemned, heretics, hardened, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them, and so listed in the enforcement of these presents. Three days will be given: we pronounce canonical warning and allow one day's notice on the first, another on the second, but on the third peremptory and final execution of our order. This shall take place on a Sunday or some other festival, when a large congregation assembles for worship. The banner of the cross shall be raised, the bells rung, the candles lit and after a time extinguished, cast on the ground and trampled under foot, and the stones shall be cast forth three times, and the other ceremonies observed which are usual in such cases. The faithful Christians, one and all, shall be enjoined strictly to shun these men.

We would occasion still greater confounding on the said Martin and the other heretics we have mentioned, and on their adherents, followers and partisans: hence, on the strength of their vow of obedience we enjoin each and every patriarch, archbishop and all other prelates, that even as they were appointed on the authority of Jerome to allay schisms, so now in the present crisis, as their office obliges them, they shall make themselves a wall of defence for their Christian people. They shall not keep silence like dumb dogs that cannot bark, but incessantly cry and lift up their voice, preaching and causing to be preached the word of God and the truth of the Catholic faith against the damnable articles and heretics aforesaid.

VI. To each and every rector of the parish churches, to the rectors of all the Orders, even the mendicants, privileged or unprivileged, we enjoin in the same terms, on the strength of their vow of obedience, that appointed by the Lord as they are to be like clouds, they shall sprinkle spiritual showers on the people of God, and have no fear in giving the widest publicity to the condemnation of the aforesaid articles, as their office obliges them. It is written that perfect love casteth out fear. Let each and every one of you take up the burden of such a meritorious duty with complete devotion; show yourselves so punctilious in its execution, so zealous and eager in word and deed, that from your labours, by the favour of divine grace, the hoped-for harvest will come in, and that through your devotion you will not only earn that crown of glory which is the due recompense of all who promote religious causes, but also attain from us and the said Holy See the unbounded commendation that your proved diligence will deserve....

X. No one whatsoever may infringe this our written decision, declaration, precept, injunction, assignation, will, decree; or rashly contravene it. Should anyone dare to attempt such a thing, let him know that he will incur the wrath of Almighty God and of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.

Written at St. Peter's, Rome, on the 3rd January 1521, during the eighth year of our pontificate. Leo X.


Arise, O Lord, and judge Your own cause. Remember your reproaches to those who are filled with foolishness all through the day. Listen to our prayers, for foxes have arisen seeking to destroy the vineyard whose winepress you alone have trod. When you were about to ascend to Your Father, You committed the care, rule, and administration of the vineyard, an image of the triumphant church, to Peter, as the head and Your vicar and his successors. The wild boar from the forest seeks to destroy it and every wild beast feeds upon it.

Rise, Peter, and fulfill this pastoral office divinely entrusted to you as mentioned above. Give heed to the cause of the holy Roman Church, mother of all churches and teacher of the faith, whom you by the order of God, have consecrated by your blood. Against the Roman Church, you warned, lying teachers are rising, introducing ruinous sects, and drawing upon themselves speedy doom. Their tongues are fire, a restless evil, full of deadly poison. They have bitter zeal, contention in their hearts, and boast and lie against the truth.

We beseech you also, Paul, to arise. It was you that enlightened and illuminated the Church by your doctrine and by a martyrdom like Peter's. For now a new Porphyry rises who, as the old once wrongfully assailed the holy apostles, now assails the holy pontiffs, our predecessors.

Rebuking them, in violation of your teaching, instead of imploring them, he is not ashamed to assail them, to tear at them, and when he despairs of his cause, to stoop to insults. He is like the heretics "whose last defense," as Jerome says, "is to start spewing out a serpent's venom with their tongue when they see that their causes are about to be condemned, and spring to insults when they see they are vanquished." For although you have said that there must be heresies to test the faithful, still they must be destroyed at their very birth by your intercession and help, so they do not grow or wax strong like your wolves. Finally, let the whole church of the saints and the rest of the universal church arise. Some, putting aside her true interpretation of Sacred Scripture, are blinded in mind by the father of lies. Wise in their own eyes, according to the ancient practice of heretics, they interpret these same Scriptures otherwise than the Holy Spirit demands, inspired only by their own sense of ambition, and for the sake of popular acclaim, as the Apostle declares. In fact, they twist and adulterate the Scriptures. As a result, according to Jerome, "It is no longer the Gospel of Christ, but a man's, or what is worse, the devil's."

Let all this holy Church of God, I say, arise, and with the blessed apostles intercede with almighty God to purge the errors of His sheep, to banish all heresies from the lands of the faithful, and be pleased to maintain the peace and unity of His holy Church.

For we can scarcely express, from distress and grief of mind, what has reached our ears for some time by the report of reliable men and general rumor; alas, we have even seen with our eyes and read the many diverse errors. Some of these have already been condemned by councils and the constitutions of our predecessors, and expressly contain even the heresy of the Greeks and Bohemians. Other errors are either heretical, false, scandalous, or offensive to pious ears, as seductive of simple minds, originating with false exponents of the faith who in their proud curiosity yearn for the world's glory, and contrary to the Apostle's teaching, wish to be wiser than they should be. Their talkativeness, unsupported by the authority of the Scriptures, as Jerome says, would not win credence unless they appeared to support their perverse doctrine even with divine testimonies however badly interpreted. From their sight fear of God has now passed.

These errors have, at the suggestion of the human race, been revived and recently propagated among the more frivolous and the illustrious German nation. We grieve the more that this happened there because we and our predecessors have always held this nation in the bosom of our affection. For after the empire had been transferred by the Roman Church from the Greeks to these same Germans, our predecessors and we always took the Church's advocates and defenders from among them. Indeed it is certain that these Germans, truly germane to the Catholic faith, have always been the bitterest opponents of heresies, as witnessed by those commendable constitutions of the German emperors in behalf of the Church's independence, freedom, and the expulsion and extermination of all heretics from Germany. Those constitutions formerly issued, and then confirmed by our predecessors, were issued under the greatest penalties even of loss of lands and dominions against anyone sheltering or not expelling them. If they were observed today both we and they would obviously be free of this disturbance. Witness to this is the condemnation and punishment in the Council of Constance of the infidelity of the Hussites and Wyclifites as well as Jerome of Prague. Witness to this is the blood of Germans shed so often in wars against the Bohemians. A final witness is the refutation, rejection, and condemnation no less learned than true and holy of the above errors, or many of them, by the universities of Cologne and Louvain, most devoted and religious cultivators of the Lord's field. We could allege many other facts too, which we have decided to omit, lest we appear to be composing a history.

In virtue of our pastoral office committed to us by the divine favor we can under no circumstances tolerate or overlook any longer the pernicious poison of the above errors without disgrace to the Christian religion and injury to orthodox faith. Some of these errors we have decided to include in the present document; their substance is as follows:

Some of the errors Martin Luther spreads:

1. It is a heretical opinion, but a common one, that the sacraments of the New Law give pardoning grace to those who do not set up an obstacle.

2. To deny that in a child after baptism sin remains is to treat with contempt both Paul and Christ.

3. The inflammable sources of sin, even if there be no actual sin, delay a soul departing from the body from entrance into heaven.

4. To one on the point of death imperfect charity necessarily brings with it great fear, which in itself alone is enough to produce the punishment of purgatory, and impedes entrance into the kingdom.

5. That there are three parts to penance: contrition, confession, and satisfaction, has no foundation in Sacred Scripture nor in the ancient sacred Christian doctors.

6. Contrition, which is acquired through discussion, collection, and detestation of sins, by which one reflects upon his years in the bitterness of his soul, by pondering over the gravity of sins, their number, their baseness, the loss of eternal beatitude, and the acquisition of eternal damnation, this contrition makes him a hypocrite, indeed more a sinner.

7. It is a most truthful proverb and the doctrine concerning the contritions given thus far is the more remarkable: "Not to do so in the future is the highest penance; the best penance, a new life."

8. By no means may you presume to confess venial sins, nor even all mortal sins, because it is impossible that you know all mortal sins. Hence in the primitive Church only manifest mortal sins were confessed.

9. As long as we wish to confess all sins without exception, we are doing nothing else than to wish to leave nothing to God's mercy for pardon.

10. Sins are not forgiven to anyone, unless when the priest forgives them he believes they are forgiven; on the contrary the sin would remain unless he believed it was forgiven; for indeed the remission of sin and the granting of grace does not suffice, but it is necessary also to believe that there has been forgiveness.

11. By no means can you have reassurance of being absolved because of your contrition, but because of the word of Christ: "Whatsoever you shall loose, etc." Hence, I say, trust confidently, if you have obtained the absolution of the priest, and firmly believe yourself to have been absolved, and you will truly be absolved, whatever there may be of contrition.

12. If through an impossibility he who confessed was not contrite, or the priest did not absolve seriously, but in a jocose manner, if nevertheless he believes that he has been absolved, he is most truly absolved.

13. In the sacrament of penance and the remission of sin the pope or the bishop does no more than the lowest priest; indeed, where there is no priest, any Christian, even if a woman or child, may equally do as much.

14. No one ought to answer a priest that he is contrite, nor should the priest inquire.

15. Great is the error of those who approach the sacrament of the Eucharist relying on this, that they have confessed, that they are not conscious of any mortal sin, that they have sent their prayers on ahead and made preparations; all these eat and drink judgment to themselves. But if they believe and trust that they will attain grace, then this faith alone makes them pure and worthy.

16. It seems to have been decided that the Church in common Council established that the laity should communicate under both species; the Bohemians who communicate under both species are not heretics, but schismatics.

17. The treasures of the Church, from which the pope grants indulgences, are not the merits of Christ and of the saints.

18. Indulgences are pious frauds of the faithful, and remissions of good works; and they are among the number of those things which are allowed, and not of the number of those which are advantageous.

19. Indulgences are of no avail to those who truly gain them, for the remission of the penalty due to actual sin in the sight of divine justice.

20. They are seduced who believe that indulgences are salutary and useful for the fruit of the spirit.

21. Indulgences are necessary only for public crimes, and are properly conceded only to the harsh and impatient.

22. For six kinds of men indulgences are neither necessary nor useful; namely, for the dead and those about to die, the infirm, those legitimately hindered, and those who have not committed crimes, and those who have committed crimes, but not public ones, and those who devote themselves to better things.

23. Excommunications are only external penalties and they do not deprive man of the common spiritual prayers of the Church.

24. Christians must be taught to cherish excommunications rather than to fear them.

25. The Roman Pontiff, the successor of Peter, is not the vicar of Christ over all the churches of the entire world, instituted by Christ Himself in blessed Peter.

26. The word of Christ to Peter: "Whatsoever you shall loose on earth," etc., is extended merely to those things bound by Peter himself.

27. It is certain that it is not in the power of the Church or the pope to decide upon the articles of faith, and much less concerning the laws for morals or for good works.

28. If the pope with a great part of the Church thought so and so, he would not err; still it is not a sin or heresy to think the contrary, especially in a matter not necessary for salvation, until one alternative is condemned and another approved by a general Council.

29. A way has beeri made for us for weakening the authority of councils, and for freely contradicting their actions, and judging their decrees, and boldly confessing whatever seems true, whether it has been approved or disapproved by any council whatsoever.

30. Some articles of John Hus, condemned in the Council of Constance, are most Christian, wholly true and evangelical; these the universal Church could not condemn.

31. In every good work the just man sins.

32. A good work done very well is a venial sin.

33. That heretics be burned is against the will of the Spirit.

34. To go to war against the Turks is to resist God who punishes our iniquities through them.

35. No one is certain that he is not always sinning mortally, because of the most hidden vice of pride.

36. Free will after sin is a matter of title only; and as long as one does what is in him, one sins mortally.

37. Purgatory cannot be proved from Sacred Scripture which is in the canon.

38. The souls in purgatory are not sure of their salvation, at least not all; nor is it proved by any arguments or by the Scriptures that they are beyond the state of meriting or of increasing in charity.

39. The souls in purgatory sin without intermission, as long as they seek rest and abhor punishment.

40. The souls freed from purgatory by the suffrages of the living are less happy than if they had made satisfactions by themselves.

41. Ecclesiastical prelates and secular princes would not act badly if they destroyed all of the money bags of beggary.

No one of sound mind is ignorant how destructive, pernicious, scandalous, and seductive to pious and simple minds these various errors are, how opposed they are to all charity and reverence for the holy Roman Church who is the mother of all the faithful and teacher of the faith; how destructive they are of the vigor of ecclesiastical discipline, namely obedience. This virtue is the font and origin of all virtues and without it anyone is readily convicted of being unfaithful.

Therefore we, in this above enumeration, important as it is, wish to proceed with great care as is proper, and to cut off the advance of this plague and cancerous disease so it will not spread any further in the Lord's field as harmful thornbushes. We have therefore held a careful inquiry, scrutiny, discussion, strict examination, and mature deliberation with each of the brothers, the eminent cardinals of the holy Roman Church, as well as the priors and ministers general of the religious orders, besides many other professors and masters skilled in sacred theology and in civil and canon law. We have found that these errors or theses are not Catholic, as mentioned above, and are not to be taught, as such; but rather are against the doctrine and tradition of the Catholic Church, and against the true interpretation of the sacred Scriptures received from the Church. Now Augustine maintained that her authority had to be accepted so completely that he stated he would not have believed the Gospel unless the authority of the Catholic Church had vouched for it. For, according to these errors, or any one or several of them, it clearly follows that the Church which is guided by the Holy Spirit is in error and has always erred. This is against what Christ at his ascension promised to his disciples (as is read in the holy Gospel of Matthew): "I will be with you to the consummation of the world"; it is against the determinations of the holy Fathers, or the express ordinances and canons of the councils and the supreme pontiffs. Failure to comply with these canons, according to the testimony of Cyprian, will be the fuel and cause of all heresy and schism.

With the advice and consent of these our venerable brothers, with mature deliberation on each and every one of the above theses, and by the authority of almighty God, the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and our own authority, we condemn, reprobate, and reject completely each of these theses or errors as either heretical, scandalous, false, offensive to pious ears or seductive of simple minds, and against Catholic truth. By listing them, we decree and declare that all the faithful of both sexes must regard them as condemned, reprobated, and rejected . . . We restrain all in the virtue of holy obedience and under the penalty of an automatic major excommunication....

Moreover, because the preceding errors and many others are contained in the books or writings of Martin Luther, we likewise condemn, reprobate, and reject completely the books and all the writings and sermons of the said Martin, whether in Latin or any other language, containing the said errors or any one of them; and we wish them to be regarded as utterly condemned, reprobated, and rejected. We forbid each and every one of the faithful of either sex, in virtue of holy obedience and under the above penalties to be incurred automatically, to read, assert, preach, praise, print, publish, or defend them. They will incur these penalties if they presume to uphold them in any way, personally or through another or others, directly or indirectly, tacitly or explicitly, publicly or occultly, either in their own homes or in other public or private places. Indeed immediately after the publication of this letter these works, wherever they may be, shall be sought out carefully by the ordinaries and others [ecclesiastics and regulars], and under each and every one of the above penalties shall be burned publicly and solemnly in the presence of the clerics and people.

As far as Martin himself is concerned, O good God, what have we overlooked or not done? What fatherly charity have we omitted that we might call him back from such errors? For after we had cited him, wishing to deal more kindly with him, we urged him through various conferences with our legate and through our personal letters to abandon these errors. We have even offered him safe conduct and the money necessary for the journey urging him to come without fear or any misgivings, which perfect charity should cast out, and to talk not secretly but openly and face to face after the example of our Savior and the Apostle Paul. If he had done this, we are certain he would have changed in heart, and he would have recognized his errors. He would not have found all these errors in the Roman Curia which he attacks so viciously, ascribing to it more than he should because of the empty rumors of wicked men. We would have shown him clearer than the light of day that the Roman pontiffs, our predecessors, whom he injuriously attacks beyond all decency, never erred in their canons or constitutions which he tries to assail. For, according to the prophet, neither is healing oil nor the doctor lacking in Galaad.

But he always refused to listen and, despising the previous citation and each and every one of the above overtures, disdained to come. To the present day he has been contumacious. With a hardened spirit he has continued under censure over a year. What is worse, adding evil to evil, and on learning of the citation, he broke forth in a rash appeal to a future council. This to be sure was contrary to the constitution of Pius II and Julius II our predecessors that all appealing in this way are to be punished with the penalties of heretics. In vain does he implore the help of a council, since he openly admits that he does not believe in a council.

Therefore we can, without any further citation or delay, proceed against him to his condemnation and damnation as one whose faith is notoriously suspect and in fact a true heretic with the full severity of each and all of the above penalties and censures. Yet, with the advice of our brothers, imitating the mercy of almighty God who does not wish the death of a sinner but rather that he be converted and live, and forgetting all the injuries inflicted on us and the Apostolic See, we have decided to use all the compassion we are capable of. It is our hope, so far as in us lies, that he will experience a change of heart by taking the road of mildness we have proposed, return, and turn away from his errors. We will receive him kindly as the prodigal son returning to the embrace of the Church.

Therefore let Martin himself and all those adhering to him, and those who shelter and support him, through the merciful heart of our God and the sprinkling of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ by which and through Whom the redemption of the human race and the upbuilding of holy mother Church was accomplished, know that from our heart we exhort and beseech that he cease to disturb the peace, unity, and truth of the Church for which the Savior prayed so earnestly to the Father. Let him abstain from his pernicious errors that he may come back to us. If they really will obey, and certify to us by legal documents that they have obeyed, they will find in us the affection of a father's love, the opening of the font of the effects of paternal charity, and opening of the font of mercy and clemency.

We enjoin, however, on Martin that in the meantime he cease from all preaching or the office of preacher ...

Decreed June 15, 1520, in the seventh year of Our Pontificate, Anno Domini. Leo X.

-- james (elgreco1541@hotmail.com), November 03, 2003.

You mean vincible ignorance, right paul?

Not right. Whether someone's ignorance is vincible or invincible is known only to God and that person. We cannot read minds.

Invincible ignorance does not become vincible -- i.e., rejection of Catholic doctrine does not become unforgivable by God -- merely because we place before the ignorant person all of Catholic truth. The person must not only be AWARE of the truth but be convinced that it IS the truth. Only then would obstinate refusal to enter the Church be unforgivable. And since we cannot read the person's mind -- to know if (s)he has been convinced -- we cannot judge the person as headed for damnation.

-- (You@Can't.BeSerious), November 03, 2003.

Forgot to add that what I said pertains to someone who has never been a convinced Catholic. If the individual HAS been a convinced Catholic, says the Church, (s)he is in heap big trouble.

-- (You@Can't.BeSerious), November 03, 2003.

Hi John.

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 03, 2003.

Is Emerald your true name, Semi-faithful? I have to doubt that. More like Beavis.

If it is John, or if it isn't; whatzzit to you? You have been rather effeminate of late.

Why were you taken aback when yesterday I said. ''Vanity your name is woman;'' plus: ''Otherwise, woman or Emerald?'' You love these feminine slipper-games don't you, Emmie? Keep it up.

BSD: Whether John Gecik or not; we don't care: start telling your real name. Don't play games with them.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 03, 2003.

I was taken back because it was a bizarre post you fired off to me over there. Kind of like the one you just posted here.

I don't know what to make of it.

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 03, 2003.

Invincible ignorance, meaning "un-conquerable" ignorance, is when there's no conceivable means of knowing any better.

Faith doesn't qualify for this.

Vincible ignorance, or "I could have done something about this if I was honest with myself" ignorance is when someone ought to know better, but chooses not to.

She got herself onto net, got herself into this forum, and got to talking. She's not invincibly ignorant. She choosing. Like all the rest of you.

If she was truly invincibly ignorant, it would be impossible to hold this ignorance, and her behavior in this forum, against her. But it's being held against her.

Therefore, it must be vincible ignorance, if anything at all.

The way you have it laid out, John, does one thing and one thing alone: excuses everybody from actual entrance into the Catholic Church.

Except, of course, the traditional Catholics.

Dang, the way it's strung out these days, it would seem more dangerous to be a Catholic than not be one.

And here I was thinking that the Catholic Church offered safety for a fallen soul... hope and salvation; reasons to rejoice.

I'm right about that last part, you know.

-- Emerald (emerald@cox.net), November 04, 2003.

Hey, Semi-Faithful,
It's you who are now saying invincibly ignorant as applying to ''Faith''. Not me. I never said this would serve her intransigenec.

The concept is absolutely valid. Only the soul in invincible ignorance A-A-A-N-D a just soul, who is repentent of all sin, A-N-D who would have conceivably accepted Christ had the possibility ocurred, is saved without the Church. In fact, as the Will of God would provide; that soul would be INSIDE the Church as one baptised by desire. Without repentence, his invincible ignorance is worth nothing.

Just keep in mind. God is All-knowing, All-Just, and All-Merciful-- that's what holds out hope for the soul who hasn't been brought to baptism in the Church. No man can place limits on God's power and holiness!

All your pontifications cannot change God's ineffable Wisdom and Love. He is our Father, and desires that all men be saved. That is why He gave His Holy Son up as our Paschal Lamb.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 04, 2003.


The Catholic church is THE refuge, which makes it so VERY dangerous for you people who turn their back on it.


-- Someone (ChimingIn@twocents.cam), November 04, 2003.

we cannot judge the person as headed for damnation.


You can't be serious.

You've judged many people to be headed for damnation more times than I care to remember. Suddenly you're handing out benefits of the doubt?

-- jake (j@k.e), November 04, 2003.

The bishops of Vatican II were not, for the most part, either monsters or enemies infiltrated into the heart of the Church to destroy her; they were above all else liberals. Thinking it possible to unite darkness and light, they went as far as they could with the world, which presented itself to them in every form of the revolt against God. In their desire for meeting and union, they went so far that they went beyond the limits of orthodoxy and separated themselves from the true teachings of Christ. Now in the aftemath, we can see the result all about us. If there is no turnaround, ( and it does not appear so), the Church will indeed be brought to a tiny remnant.

-- Fate (Timeclock@ticking.com), November 04, 2003.

Well Fate,

Jesus Christ said that His Church would teach the fullness of truth; that anyone who listens to His Church listens to Him; that whatsoever His Church binds on earth is bound in heaven; that He would be with His Church until the end of time; and that evil would never prevail against His Church. Therefore, if your pessimistic interpretation of the current state of His Church were true, Jesus would be a liar, Christianity would be a tradition of lies, and it therefore wouldn't really make any difference whether such a church endured or not.

However, the Holy Catholic Church I belong to is strong and vibrant in its rich and holy Tradition; the Eucharist I receive is no less my Lord and Savior than when the prayers of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass were in a foreign language; and His Church continues to lead me along toward eternal salvation. Methinks you have been reading too many publications of the doomsday machine known as the "Traditionalist" movement - a misnomer if ever there was one.

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), November 04, 2003.

Only by lost faith would the Catholic make this deduction of a Council of Catholic prelates. Lost your faith in the Holy Spirit and never found it again, Hmm ?

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 04, 2003.

Dang, the way it's strung out these days, it would seem more dangerous to be a Catholic than not be one.

you treat the catholic church as though it is merely a refuge to weather out a storm... and you treat it incorrectly. the catholic church is a bastion of faith, throwing force against the storms of immorality. of course its more dangerous to be a catholic than not to be, Jesus even tells us that the world will hate us for our faith... if you cant hack it though...

And here I was thinking that the Catholic Church offered safety for a fallen soul... hope and salvation; reasons to rejoice.

you know very well, that the soul in the catholic church is under just as much if not more threat of satan as any other soul. joining the catholic church is like signing a price on your own head, that satan wants YOU away from the church. the church does not provide safety, it provides strengthening agents to hold out against satanic onslaught.

hope and salvation to rejoice is about the only realistic thing you pointed to... and we have that. not hope and salvation that the church will protect us from every woe, because that is misplaced, but hoping and being saved by following the teachings of the church lets us rejoice in knowing that one day we will be saved, and safe from the fires and temptation of hell.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), November 04, 2003.

"...you treat the catholic church as though it is merely a refuge to weather out a storm..."

That's not inaccurate about they way we should treat the matter, you know, about refuge and weathering storms, although I would put it in stronger terms, the way the Church has always described itself, which is the Church as the Ark of Salvation which is not merely, but the only refuge against a storm so powerful that all those outside this Ark of safety are lost. The Virgin Mary is connected to this vessel of salvation, being an archetype of the Church itself and the first tabernacle for the Word Incarnate, Jesus Christ.

So I don't really see myself in disagreement with you there, though I might put in it much more forceful terms. As a sidenote, it becomes clearer looking at it this way, why our devotion to the Mother of God is one of the first things to get tossed aside by the Protestants, as well as the adherence to the doctrine of the Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament, both of which are fundamental elements, among others, in attaining salvation.

"joining the catholic church is like signing a price on your own head, that satan wants YOU away from the church. the church does not provide safety, it provides strengthening agents to hold out against satanic onslaught."

Well said, except I hold fast that there's no other safe place besides that Ark, the Church. There's some really, really interesting quotes from popes and saints explaining the Ark and deluge symbolism and it's meaning. I can dig them up if you want, but if I volunteer them everybody will throw tomatoes at me. Your concepts of safety, vessels and storms are correct though according to the Church.

My question for Faith is this:

The Satanists mock the Catholic Church in their rituals. Does this not indicate that the Catholic Church is the true enemy of Satan, therefore indicating that the Catholic Church is the true Church of Christ? Christ is the enemy of Satan, correct?

Satanists have Black Masses. They do not have Black Tent Revivals or Black Wednesday Night Prayer Services.

Has Satan had the wrong enemy all this time, Faith?

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 04, 2003.

If Faith even believed in the devil, her concepts of sin and forgiveness might not be as casual as they are presented. And he wants her ignorant.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 04, 2003.

Invincible ignorance, meaning "un-conquerable" ignorance, is when there's no conceivable means of knowing any better. Faith doesn't qualify for this. Vincible ignorance, or "I could have done something about this if I was honest with myself" ignorance is when someone ought to know better, but chooses not to.

I'll be darned if a heretic is going to try to teach us Catholics what is, and is not, (in)vincible ignorance! I explained the terms above, folks. Refer back to the truth, if the flim-flam man has confused or fooled you. Yeah, I'm talking about Esmeralda ("Emerald" in Spanish), appropriately a noun of the feminine gender, self-applied to a guy who is too weak-kneed to believe all Catholic doctrine.

The way you have it laid out ... does one thing and one thing alone: excuses everybody from actual entrance into the Catholic Church. Except, of course, the traditional Catholics.

What a stupid statement, Esmeralda! Check with your physician for the possible need for some brain surgery.

First --- Many who are not Catholic become convinced that Jesus found the Catholic Church and made it his necessary instrument of salvation. These folks are not "excused" from anything, but have a serious responsibility to enter the Church formally and without delay.
Second --- those who are "traditional Catholics" (which doesn't include you) don't need to make an "actual entrance" into the Church, for we are already within her.
Third -- yours is the special case of a fallen-away Catholic, who never has the excuse of "invincible ignorance." You have no choice but to come back, if you wish to be saved.

The Satanists mock the Catholic Church in their rituals. Does this not indicate that the Catholic Church is the true enemy of Satan, therefore indicating that the Catholic Church is the true Church of Christ? Christ is the enemy of Satan, correct? Satanists have Black Masses. They do not have Black Tent Revivals or Black Wednesday Night Prayer Services. Has Satan had the wrong enemy all this time, Faith?

Well, I'll be darned! That's the first perceptive comment you've made, Esmeralda, in almost two years. Now the only thing left is for you to once again become a member of the "Catholic Church" that you mentioned. Right now, you are closer to being buddy-buddy with that "Satan" guy you mentioned.

YCBS: ... You've judged many people to be headed for damnation more times than I care to remember.

Characteristically inaccurate with your language there, boy! I never "judge" anyone. I WARN folks that they MAY be headed for damnation. And I didn't give the "invincibly ignorant" the benefit of the doubt. The Church doesn't teach (and I didn't say) that they ARE saved, or that they can easily be saved, but only that some of them may be saved.

Sloppy Jake. You don't read right, so you don't think right, so you can't write right. Better to shuffle off into the twilight and take care of our own sorry heretical board, instead of coming here and damaging this potentially great one. (And take Esmeralda with you, so you won't be lonely.)

-- (You@Can't.BeSerious), November 04, 2003.

"Most holy Immaculate Virgin and my Mother Mary, to thee who art the Mother of my Lord, the Queen of the world, the advocate, the hope, and the refuge of sinners, I have recourse today, I who am the most miserable of all. I render thee my most humble homage, 0 great Queen, and I thank thee for all the graces thou hast conferred on me until now, particularly for having delivered me from hell, which I have so often deserved. I love thee, 0 most amiable Lady; and for the love which I bear thee, I promise to serve thee always, and to do all in my power to make others love thee also. I place in thee all my hopes; I confide my salvation to thy care. Accept me for thy servant, and receive me under thy mantle, 0 Mother of Mercy. And since thou art so powerful with God, deliver me from all temptations, or rather obtain for me the strength to triumph over them until death. Of thee I ask a perfect love for Jesus Christ. Through thee I hope to die a good death. 0 my Mother, by the love which thou bearest to God, I beseech thee to help me at all times, especially at the last moment of my life. Leave me not, I beseech thee, until thou I me safe in heaven, blessing thee, and singing thy mercies for all eternity. Amen. So I hope. So may it be."

The prayer of St. Alphonsus De Ligouri to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

-- Emerald (emerald1@cox.net), November 05, 2003.

so we are more or less in agreement over the whole refuge issue, just in different terms. while i do like the ark of salvation concept, it is still important to remember that you can still be swept overboard in the waves. Yes, it is the only refuge from the storms, but that doesnt mean that it wont be on hell of a ride.

Thats why i prefer the bastion image instead. perhaps it is my military side, but i view the church as something of a fortress surrounded by enemies (in this way, if you fall over the wall, you dont necessarily just die, you could very well join the enemy). We know that even in a fortress it is possible to get hit by a well placed arrow, or even a cannon ball, so it is a good image that we fight off the hordes to hold the ground of God.

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), November 05, 2003.

Thats why i prefer the bastion image instead. perhaps it is my military side, but i view the church as something of a fortress surrounded by enemies (in this way, if you fall over the wall, you dont necessarily just die, you could very well join the enemy). We know that even in a fortress it is possible to get hit by a well placed arrow, or even a cannon ball, so it is a good image that we fight off the hordes to hold the ground of God.

It's funny you should use the word "bastions", paul. Cardinal Ratzinger used the same term in his book. The difference between your use of the word and his, is that, for him, the concept isn't a good thing:

"The fact is, as Hans Urs van Balthasar pointed out as early as 1952, that...She [the Church] must relinquish many of the things that have hitherto spelled security for Her and the She has taken for granted. She must demolish longstanding bastions and trust solely the shield of faith." - taken from "Principles of Catholic Theology", page 391.

It's a pretty damning admission concerning the post-Conciliar Church. What else could the Cardinal have meant by "longstanding Bastions" besides the Church's Traditional defenses against Her enemies?

Pope Pius XII identified three elements of the Church that "innovators" (i.e. enemies) wished to "alter" (i.e. destroy): Her liturgy (accomplished.) Her theology (accomplished) and Her very nature. He spoke of a coming attempt to dismantle, destroy and reject these things in the Church. He was talking about the "demolition of bastions." As we can see now, his message was accurate and prophetic.

-- Regina (Regina712REMOVE@lycos.com), November 05, 2003.

You make a good case for the sophist side. It's not open and shut; it leaves out forward progress.

The Gospel has much to say about our Church and her progress through human history. The leading statement, arguably is: ''I am with you all days; even to the end of the world.''

In the beginning, some Christians were stopping their everyday work, since Jesus would return shortly anyway. (2nd Thess :3:11) During the epic persecutions, many were martyred for the faith; but better days were coming ahead. The saints persevered. We see Theresa of Avila, with great pains reforming the convents, and in this era, our Holy Father travelling the globe, enduring even the hatred of whole states like the Soviet Union and Islam.

Always the Church meets with scorn and rage from those who believe it's all over.

It's never backward but forward that Our Lord urges His Church. He says to persevere, and she has. Keep the faith, and she has! I laugh at the few who say she's ''changed''. She's progressing; because life makes it hard to remain static; the Church lives. Christ din't found a static Church.

That's what Saint Paul told the Thessalonians. ''The Lord is faithful who will strengthen you and guard you from evil. (2nd Thess :3:3) We have no cause to retreat into a bygone era; we have the future to gain for His glory. The Church will make greater progress than before, if only we have faith in Him !

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 05, 2003.

forward progress

Church and her progress through human history.

It's never backward but forward that Our Lord urges His Church.

I laugh at the few who say she's ''changed''. She's progressing; because life makes it hard to remain static; the Church lives. Christ din't found a static Church.

We have no cause to retreat into a bygone era

The Church will make greater progress than before

Holy Mother Church does not move anywhere. She is built on a Rock. She demands (or She did, anyway) that the world bring itself in line with Her, not the other way around.

-- jake (j@k.e), November 05, 2003.

Spoken like a true Philistine.

The Rock is Peter, not the Church, Son. The Church is our Lord, His Mystical Body which you are negating in this forum. Progress isn't always into the contemplative life, where you are fixated. Progress requires girding yourself and accepting challenges. I recall Jesus saying, ''Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men.''

There are still countless more men to be caught, Jake. Progress is catching them, because they won't come to you. You must go catch them.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 05, 2003.

I can't respond because, once again, I have no idea what you're trying to say. I'm sure it has more to do with my stupidity than your lack of clarity, but that was totally lost on me.


-- jake (j@k.e), November 05, 2003.

Not stupidity, Jake. A good man can just lose arguments because others try to lead him, but he won't follow. He'd rather keep on arguing after he's licked.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 05, 2003.

She's progressing;

What, in your opinion, is the goal of this "progression?"

because life makes it hard to remain static; the Church lives. Christ din't found a static Church.

[It is an error to say that] Christ did not teach a determined body of doctrine applicable to all times and all men, but rather inaugurated a religious movement adapted or to be adapted to different times and places.

[It is an error to say that] The Church shows that she is incapable of effectively maintaining evangelical ethics since she obstinately clings to immutable doctrines which cannot be reconciled with modern progress.

-from Lamentabili Sane, Pope Pius X.

-- Regina (Regina712REMOVE@lycos.com), November 05, 2003.

Looks like you're licked, Gene.

-- jake (j@k.e), November 05, 2003.

The Church lives. As opposed to remains static; never going into the future and meeting challenges.

Regina/Jake: quoting, ''error to say that the Church shows that she is incapable of effectively maintaining evangelical ethics since she obstinately clings to immutable doctrines which cannot be reconciled with modern progress.

shows that she is incapable of effectively maintaining evangelical ethics? In your dreams, Reginza. No one says such a thing; none of the above, Dear I'm letting one word, ''progress'' state the truth. It IS true; with no progress at all, we are static. Now, I'm conservative. I've no intention of allowing the faith to be compromised or lost. Why are evangelical ethics in question? The job ahead for the Catholic Church is to speak for Christ; not for the Council of Trent. You folks believe all is lost when the Church accepts challenges. All is NOT lost; all is enriched. We live the faith, not the ''tradition''.

That's why you've posted something apropos: It IS an error to say Our Saviour ''inaugurated'' a ''religious movement'' adapted or to be adapted to different times and places.'' This is not what Vatican II is doing! A ''movement'' doesn't change the Church, it's just WORK! It's the work of the Holy Spirit in the Church. ''Inaugurated'' my eye !

If either of you can LICK me; do that. But not by revising history. Recent history licks you both.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 05, 2003.

I'm letting one word, ''progress'' state the truth. It IS true; with no progress at all, we are static.

See the above condemned errors. Forgive me if I'm a bit more willing to take the word of a Pope Saint over yours, which stands diametrically opposed to his. There'a always safety in clinging to Tradition. You can't go wrong.

The job ahead for the Catholic Church is to...

...uphold Tradition; to faithfully transmit what it has received.

speak for Christ; not for the Council of Trent...

...which spoke (and speaks) for Christ.

All is NOT lost; all is enriched.

The evidence is just everywhere.

We live the faith, not the ''tradition''.

That's like saying "I live matrimony, not the vows I took."

-- jake (j@k.e), November 05, 2003.

There are none so blind, as those whose blindness is of the soul.

-- Hory (Horatio@thebridge.com), November 05, 2003.

If you must rage on, Jake:

''...Uphold Tradition; faithfully transmit what it has received'' --Quite right; the Church is willing and able. I love Sacred Tradition. Our Church wouldn't be the Mystical Body of Christ if she didn't care about Tradition. Fully.

''Speak for Christ; not for the Council of Trent, your reply:
''...which spoke (and speaks) for Christ.''
-- Yes; No more than Vatican Council II and our Holy Father, John Paul II. If we can reject these two, we might also reject Trent. YET WE DO NOT.

''all is enriched.'' Your words: ''evidence is just everywhere.'' Just as well as during past times of trial. We must have faith. Jesus Christ demands it. (I hope you don't object.)

Analogy: ''I live matrimony, not the vows I took.'' We love Tradition and don't have to prove it to elitists. Our faith is what established Tradition; not dissent. You must remember your vows to reject Satan and all his pomps. --I certainly do.

You are turncoats because you don't trust the Holy Spirit. Tradition demands we trust Him-- not passing fashions or our own whims.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 06, 2003.

We must have faith. Jesus Christ demands it. (I hope you don't object.)

Not at all. I couldn't agree more.

You are turncoats because you don't trust the Holy Spirit. Tradition demands we trust Him-- not passing fashions or our own whims.

We do trust Him. He will fulfill His promises. Still, it doesn't excuse us from spiritual laziness (not that I'm accusing you of that).

-- jake (j@k.e), November 06, 2003.

You are turncoats because you don't trust the Holy Spirit.

You are proposing that we simply sit back and allow destruction to the Church take its course, while blandly dismissing objections to the destruction as a lack of trust. This might work if Catholics wanted to be seen by the world and, most importantly, by God as a bunch of silent morons who smile and nod as if hypnotized while the structures of their Faith are being dismantled. Call me crazy but I believe God wants more from us than that.

-- Regina (Regina712REMOVE@lycos.com), November 06, 2003.

I'm sorry, but you ARE crazy.

This is B/S: ''Sit back -- allow destruction to the Church take its course.''

Who says so? You?? The Catholic Church is not being destroyed, and nobody would sit back if she were being destroyed. Those upheavals over the last century are world- upheavals. The Church isn't the cause of lukewarmness or apostacy; it's a stage the entire world is in today. You've arbitrarily determined the Church suffers because of the 2nd Vatican Council. But that's not in any way true. You are hardly the fair arbiter, nor are you the only orthodox Catholic left on earth.

You only presume to be, and presume to judge. A faithful Catholic must tell you: keep out of things you don't understand. PRAY! Be faithful!

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 06, 2003.

Raging-a penneth: It's a pretty damning admission concerning the post-Conciliar Church.

There is no such thing as "the post-Conciliar Church." There was the Catholic Church before Vatican II and the same Catholic Church after Vatican II. The confused author of the above ought to convert (or revert) to the Catholic Church, rather than remain bogged down in Protestantism.

-- (You@Can't.BeSerious), November 06, 2003.

The Church isn't the cause of lukewarmness or apostacy; it's a stage the entire world is in today.


You've arbitrarily determined the Church suffers because of the 2nd Vatican Council.

The numbers have been in for quite some time. The New Springtime is a lie, a failure, and a pipe dream.

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------

There is no such thing as "the post-Conciliar Church." There was the Catholic Church before Vatican II and the same Catholic Church after Vatican II.

...and they're exactly the same, right?

-- Regina (Regina712@lycos.com), November 06, 2003.

The very same; except now, for a personal agenda, people like you and Jake have exited her. You have the makings of open schism. The Church is never going to end; your schism will. The Church has the Holy Spirit, to whom you owe your whole faith. You're keeping it from Him.

-- eugene c. chavez (loschavez@pacbell.net), November 07, 2003.

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