Does Catholics HAVE to pray through Mary

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I am a non-catholic, and recently after seeing Mel Gibson's film, I had a discussion with another non-catholic friend of mine. I said that catholics does not HAVE pray through Mary to Jesus, they can pray directly to Jesus if they so prefer.

She said that what I say is untrue, and that the catholics are not allowed to pray to Jesus, and have to pray through Mary or another saint.

Please respond to the email address because I probably won't find this board again. Thanks so much.

I have attented several catholic masses but I decided against the faith on the basis of how they view sex and condoms etc.

-Reenen

(sorry I only saw how to post a question later on)

-- Reenen Laurie (rlaurie@sce.co.za), March 29, 2004

Answers

Reenen, I didn't realize you posted the same question in a new thread so I will post both my replies here.

Reenen, you are quite correct and your friend is quite in error. A copy of this comment is being sent to you concurrently in private email as requested.

-- Ed (catholic4444@y;ahoo.ca), March 29, 2004.


Reenen, you wrote, I have attented several catholic masses but I decided against the faith on the basis of how they view sex and condoms etc. I invite you to return to this forum and explain what it is about the Catholic teaching on sex or condoms that you feel you cannot live with. Usually, when a full examination is undertaken, Catholic teaching dispels many misconceptions and misunderstandings (like having to pray through Mary to Jesus)and reveals a beautiful truth. :-) A copy of this post has been sent to you in private email.

-- Ed (catholic4444@yahoo.ca), March 29, 2004.

No-one "prays through Mary". We simply ask Mary to pray for us. Just as any Christian asks another Christian to pray for them. When you ask a friend to pray for you, are you "praying through your friend"?

-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), March 29, 2004.

Paul is absolutely correct. A catholic may ask Mary to pray for them just as you might ask a friend to pray for you or a family member. For example, I am happy to pray for someone but I realize my prayers don't carry the same weight as Mary's.

You say that you didn't like the Church's stance on sex, condoms etc. I have, during my conversion noted one profound truth and that is that truly serving God means showing Him obedience (that is true love). Obedience is not too popular nowadays. We tend to have the feeling that the universe revolves around us. If you love your earthly parents you obey them even if it causes you pain and God should expect no less.

I fear that more and more protestants and catholics go to church every once in a while and say "hey I am a good guy/gal". Yet they divorce and remarry. They sodomize their spouse. They commit adultery. They have abortions. They totally seperate sex from child bearing. Thats not obedience. God is merciful but I am not sure that being a "good guy" will be adequate on judgement day.

-- David F (notanaddress@nowhere.com), March 29, 2004.


Hi everyone again.

Ok, you all seem to be very informed protestants... :)

Good, then you understand that I only refer to the Bible for truth. Now please explain to me exactly why the catholic church has their views on sex and contraceptices (I presume the reason will be the same one something along the lines of pleasure?) from the bible.

Another further point that I find hard to believe is the Pope's role. I was lead to believe that all men are equal. And with the same piece in mind sainthood... Jesus pays for *ALL* my sins, so I am, in God's eyes just as good as the next man. Even those who became saints had sins. And if Jesus did not pay for their sins, none of their good deeds would make up for their sins. Or am I wrong here? Didn't Jesus say that those of us who is without sin, should throw the first stone?

Also, about the virgin Mary being sinless. Some protestant faiths believe that when you are conceived and born, you are without sin.

Another thing... why would God change something if more people prayed for it? Isn't there a devine plan? Let's say for example... There's a little girl of 7 years old (Amy Bruce...) :) who has cancer. Now why would God let her live only because 25000000 emails has been sent and lets say 50000 prayers has been said? He can give life, and He can take life, and in Amy's case He is taking life, why should we query His decision?

If you are going to say that it is Satan giving her the disease, please don't, and here's why: It is since we sinned from Adam's time that things such as disease hits us, not because we sinned, but because God cursed the earth.

Now I'd like to say that I apologize for the slightly aggressive tone in my reply. I really believe that you are good people and I am not trying to condemn any of it, I am trying to understand the religion better because there is lots of it that I don't comprehend.

And another thing. Thank you so much for your prompt responses, I really appreciate it. You guys are great.

God Bless. -Reenen

-- Reenen Laurie (rlaurie@sce.co.za), March 30, 2004.



Another further point that I find hard to believe is the Pope's role. I was lead to believe that all men are equal.

You were led to believe something which is wrong then. Look in your bible, you will NEVER find any reference that says all mankind is created equal. Quite the opposite in fact. We know (biblically) that mary is "blessed amongst women" that makes her the most holy woman ever, over all other women. We know that the gifts each man are given are according to their potential from the parable of the talents. We know that Peter (the first pope) was given authority over all the apostles. we know that the apostles were given authority to act in persona Christi (in Christs person) to minister. These are ALL inequalities that are scripturally placed. They arent bad, they just are. we give our assent to the pope because he is blessed with the seal of the Holy Spirit against teaching doctrinal error, not because he's more "equal" than us.

And with the same piece in mind sainthood... Jesus pays for *ALL* my sins, so I am, in God's eyes just as good as the next man.

No, not really. There are other things aside from Christs sacrifice to be "just as good as the next man." Christ himself tells us to do good works, to be baptized, to take true communion, to take confessions, etc etc etc. Saints are respected and in heaven because of their exceeding devotion to dedicating 100% of their lives to the will of God. God even makes clear that there are those who are "luke warm" in the faith. We are not all equal, and those at the top should strive to help those below them up.

Even those who became saints had sins. And if Jesus did not pay for their sins, none of their good deeds would make up for their sins. Or am I wrong here?

Yep, right on the money. Jesus' sacrifice makes good works and true faith into the tools by which we gain salvation.

Didn't Jesus say that those of us who is without sin, should throw the first stone?

Yes, which is why the catholic church is a strong advocate against stoning people. (little humor there)

Also, about the virgin Mary being sinless. Some protestant faiths believe that when you are conceived and born, you are without sin.

well, no offense, some protestant faiths believe wrong. The bible makes clear that the stain of original sin, and the 'curse' that goes with it, is born on the soul of each person. Hence, Christ tells us that "unless you be born again of the water and the spirit (ie-- through baptism) then you shall not have life in you." how could you be born sinless and yet not have life in you, when we know the wages of sin is death? if death is born into you, then so the original sin must also be there.

Mary being sinless, however, is an interesting thing. She would not have suffered pain during childbirth, she could hold dominion over man (see genisis for a complete list of the 'curses' she was never privy to).

Another thing... why would God change something if more people prayed for it? Isn't there a devine plan?

There is a divine plan. That plan does not involve every nitty gritty detail that happens here on earth. That idea is not faith in God, its fatalism (ie-- it wasnt my fault, it was fated by the divine plan). So, carrying on...

Let's say for example... There's a little girl of 7 years old (Amy Bruce...) :) who has cancer. Now why would God let her live only because 25000000 emails has been sent and lets say 50000 prayers has been said? He can give life, and He can take life, and in Amy's case He is taking life, why should we query His decision?

Why should God raise Lazarus from the dead because Christ asked for it? why should Christ turn water into wine (even though he didnt want to) just because mary asked him to? why should God not destroy Soddam and Gamora until the rightous had left because one man asked him not to? the divine plan is flexable, and so is God. God doesnt cause that child to die, life does. But God can stop it. (BTW, the answer to your question and all of the ones I asked in response is: because these signs bring glory to God).

If you are going to say that it is Satan giving her the disease, please don't, and here's why: It is since we sinned from Adam's time that things such as disease hits us, not because we sinned, but because God cursed the earth.

Just as God doesnt cause all the happenings on earth, niether does satan. Things happen. Poor luck is all it is sometimes. God didnt curse the earth, he abandonned it from protection from bad things (not acts of satan, just bad things). He allowed the pain of the physical world to touch us, and he let us begin to die (without his protection from the earth around us, we die off).

I hope this helps. Please, I understand that some of these views are very different from what you have been taught, but i have provided quite a few biblical references to review. look it up and honestly think about what your belief is, and what is clearly in the bible. and remember, just because you were taught something from birth does not make it right...

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), March 30, 2004.


Wow Reenen. I've never seen so many thread starters in one post ;)

Others are better informed than myself, but I'd like to respond to at least one of your questions:

You said:Now please explain to me exactly why the catholic church has their views on sex and contraceptices (I presume the reason will be the same one something along the lines of pleasure?) from the bible.

First, did you know that all Christians stood side by side with the Catholic Church on artifical contraception until 1930? Check it out and you'll see. Also, a common method of contraception used today is the Pill. All forms of the Pill not only stop ovulation, but also make the lining of the uterus inhospitable for a fertilized egg to attach. Thus it also acts as an abortificent. Essentially, it's causing the death of a new human life formed by God.

God's Word tells us, Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, who formed you from the womb: "I am the LORD, who made all things, who stretched out the heavens alone, who spread out the earth. Is 44:24

We are also told Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations. Jer 1:5

These passages clearly show that it is God that creates us and animates our bodies with his likeness by imbuing our body with a soul in the womb. This is why abortion and abortificents are such an abomination. By what grounds do we justify gambling with the life of a newly formed human being, guessing whether God has imbued that body with a soul or not? The Pill is designed to prevent life, but also to detroy it.

Now, what about withdrawal and condoms or other barrier methods?

Scripture tells us that children are gifts from God. Scripture also tells us it is God who has reign over fertility and conception. Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, "Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?" Gen 30:2

Up until 1930, Christians generally agreed that artifical contraception was a sin against God. It was called Onanism in reference to Gen 38:8-10.

Then Judah said to Onan, "Go in to your brother's wife, and perform the duty of a brother-in-law to her, and raise up offspring for your brother." But Onan knew that the offspring would not be his; so when he went in to his brother's wife he spilled the semen on the ground, lest he should give offspring to his brother. And what he did was displeasing in the sight of the LORD, and he slew him also.

Now, many Christians interpret these same passages to be that Onan was killed by God because he broke the Levite law. But in Deut 25:5- 10 the punishment for defying this law is not death, but public shame and ridicule. That is why Christians took the view that the God's Word was telling us that Onan's act of spilling his seed is what drew God's pounishment because it was such an abomination in God's eyes. So why did the interpretation change? It changed after many Christians decided that artificial contraception was not a sin.

Catholic teaching is really in line with Scripture and the historic Christian view up until 1930 on the subject of contraception. Also, the Church's teaching did not change with the world. Shouldn't the truth remain true for all times? If contraception is a sin in 1900, why is it not a sin in 1930. Why did the accepted interpretation of Onan's sin change after some Christian denominations decided that artifical contraception was alright within marriage?

The bottom line as to why the Catholic Church teaches that artificial contraception is a sin, is because the Word of God reveals that God instituted marriage as a means for us to share in His creative works. He created sexual intercourse as the means to do that, but also as a means for a man and woman to renew their marriage covenant and increase their love for one another. The Church teaches that sexual intercourse is meant to be within marriage and that it is meant by God to be both procreative (open ot new life) and unitive (open to love). Take away the procreative aspect and you have homosexuality, sodomy, artificial contraception, etc. Take away the unitive aspect and you have test tube babies, artificial insemination, surrogate mothers, etc. It's not hard to understand why the Church teaches what it does concerning human reproduction if you understand that God designed sex for the purpose of creating more souls to love and serve Him and to be a physical sign and renewal of the love between a man and woman in the marriage covenant.

So the Church's teaching on contraception:

1. Acknowledges God as the Father of all creation. 2. Is biblically based. 3. Does not change with time, or the philosophies of the world.

-- Andy (aszmere@earthlink.net), March 30, 2004.


One more thing Reenen, you said Now I'd like to say that I apologize for the slightly aggressive tone in my reply. I really believe that you are good people and I am not trying to condemn any of it, I am trying to understand the religion better because there is lots of it that I don't comprehend.

I don't think you were aggressive at all. In fact I think we all appreciate your honest and forthright questions. In all honesty, there's a lot I don't comprehend either. I struggle to comprehend something new everyday.

The "aggressive tones" we're used to seeing are the ones that tell us that all Catholics are going to hell. They usually work it into the thread starter somehow, or sneak it into a later post if they can wait that long.

-- Andy (aszmere@earthlink.net), March 30, 2004.


Ok, I started a new thread... for the contraceptives.

Quick summary of other 'threadstarters'.

Pope - How can we be sure that there should ever have been a 'second' pope after peter?

All men being equal - Huzzah! I actually agree totally to that, it's just that some religions for some reason doesn't like people saying it out loud!

Born without sin - True, I don't agree with those religions either, but that is ONE way to explain a non-holy-mary birth.

Devine plan - I like the way Paul put it. It is indeed glory to God. But I have stopped praying for rain when the people ask for it. (Here in South Africa it's almost a yearly thing) God will make it rain when He will.

Aggressive tone - Well, I don't believe Catholics go to hell... just those who think Mary can save them. Or maybe those who asked her to ask Jesus to save them. When you want the sugar, you don't ask your mom to ask your dad to pass it on.

-- Reenen Laurie (rlaurie@sce.co.za), March 30, 2004.


"when you want sugar, you don't ask your Mom to ask your Dad to pass it on."

well if you are a protestant, you ask everybody but your Mom to ask your Dad to pass it on.

-- D Joseph (nufiedufie@msn.com), March 30, 2004.



Hiya.

To me, as protestant my beliefs are a very personalized thing. I rarely ask people to pray for me, and I ask Jesus and God the things that I need want myself. Though my prayers try to include worshipping etc. as well. Recently I was in a automobile accident, and during that time there were some of my protestant friends that said out of their own that they would pray for me, but I didn't ask people to pray for me.

So I (personally) would simply ask my dad to pass the sugar. (And maybe in the background thousands may be cheering "please give him the sugar dad!") :)

-- Reenen Laurie (r@s.c.za), March 31, 2004.


when you want sugar, you don't ask your Mom to ask your Dad to pass it on

maybe i'm nuts, but if Dad might have a reason to be mad at me (ie-- i sinned), then i probably would go to mom to ask her to cool him down and get me the goods. Thats why God gave us the mother figure in the form of mary... she holds no dominion except for the special love that Jesus has for her as His mother, which allows her to intercede on our behalf.

Same goes for the saints... even more so than asking your friends on earth (though that is all well and good too). Why ask your friends to talk your Dad into giving you sugar, when you can ask your Dad's friends (saints)?

-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), March 31, 2004.


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