A recent survey from Sept 2010 revealed that most Catholics don’t know much about their faith. It was also not so favorable for protestants with Jews, Mormons and atheist/agnostics outperforming us.
So here are a few questions to ponder and if the spirit moves you, I’d like to hear you answers.
1. Do you think that blessed Mother Mary had other children besides Jesus?
2. Do you think Peter was the first pope?
3. Do you think missing church on Sunday is a sin?
4. Do you think abortion should be legal?
5. Do you think confessing your sins to a priest in the sacrament of reconciliation is necessary to get us to heaven?
6. Do you believe that the wafer of bread we receive at mass really is the Body of Christ?
7. Do you believe the wafer of bread we receive at mass is a not really the body of Christ, but a symbol of Christ?
8. Do you believe the Pope Benedict XVI is the present successor to Peter and is the leader of the Catholic Church?
9. Do you believe it is okay that we pray to Mary and the Saints for intercession as well as pray directly to Jesus (God)?
10. Do you believe that Mary was the Mother of God?
Some of you may find these questions very easy if you know the teachings of the church. But some may not know the church’s teachings and are not sure of the answers to my questions. This concerns me because there are millions of Catholics out there who don’t care to know the teachings of Our Church, as that survey pointed out. I think many “unknowing” Catholics can be duped into leaving the church by other denominations because they may find the “Church of the Hawaiian shirts” is a lot much more casual to attend. Or that the “Assembly of Rock Music Church” is much more fun than the Catholic mass.
Believe me, there are folks out there looking for easy targets…those who don’t know much about Our Faith…they approach you, ask you a few questions, and basically corner you into seeing things their way. If you are not a strong believer, you are at risk to be a “fallen-away-Catholic”.
There is a documentary film out called “Catholicism: Crisis of Faith“. It’s almost an hour long and its done by a fellow named James McCarthy. Through deceptive editing and misrepresentation, he successfully has managed to create a film that, if taken seriously, could lead a lot of unknowing Catholics away from the church. He really paints a negative picture of the Catholic church. In one segment, he interviews Catholics in New York, outside of St. Patricks Cathedral. He asks them how they think they can get to heaven. The answers are surprising and really make the Catholic church look silly. I encourage all Catholics to learn about what it means to be a Catholic. I don’t think anyone should see this film unless you are strongly grounded in your faith…it’s very deceiving.
Mr. McCarthy also wrote a book called “The Gospel According to Rome“. Again, this book is full of misrepresented and basically, false information in attempt to lead Catholics away fro the church. I should add that Mr. McCarthy was once Catholic but has since, fallen away himself. So why am I mentioning a very anti-Catholic book and film? I don’t want to promote an “Us against Them” fight here. But I do know that there are people out there who are not only “non-Catholic” but very “anti-Catholic”…as is Mr. McCarthy. And they are willing and very able to make the Catholic Church seem like it’s the church of the devil. I am serious….they believe we are all going to hell and will try to convince you that by joining their church, they can save you. It’s up to us to to empower ourselves with the knowledge and the history and the beauty that the Catholic Church has for us and not fall prey to the nonsense. What other church can say that Jesus, Himself, created it? And it was started in the year 33! It’s true that there was a schism of the Eastern Orthodox church in 1054, but it wasn’t until Martin Luther began his reformation in 1517 that “another” church appeared. So for about 1500 years after the death of Christ, all Christians were Catholics or Orthodox.That says something about our faith…we have a great history behind us. We simply need to care enough to learn how right we are to be Catholic.
“On this Rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”
By the way, my answers are: 1.no…..2.yes…..3.yes….4.no way!….5.yes….6.yes…..7.no 8.yes…..9.yes…….10.yes.