05 August, 2009

mater's Granny discussing Jehovah Witnesses criticisms of Catholic Christianity

(‘maters Granny) I left the Catholic Church because of the lies and deciet by the clergy.

(Cristoiglesia) I will be pleased to address any of your so called lies and deceit if you could just reveal them. It is difficult for anyone to speculate as to what you are referring.

(‘Maters Granny) “The Pope is a man who unrightfully takes the name Holy Father.” It belongs only to Jehovah. Scripture says to call no one father except your Father in heaven. Priests have wrongfully taken than moniker and assumed a position that is not theirs to take.

(Cristoiglesia) The term Holy Father refers to the fact that the office of Pope is ordained by Jesus and it is by His authority that the Pope serves as the leader of the apostles. So, the Holiness comes from Christ’s Holiness and not from His own veracity. As for the Scripture verse you say that forbids the use of the term father your interpretation of this verse is based on prejudice causing the presupposition that Jesus was forbidding terms of respect to others. This was certainly not the intent or the correct understanding of what Jesus was teaching. This is a previous writing from my blog that will help you to understand the correct meaning of Jesus’ instructions:

From the early Church we find that clergy were addressed as father. There are those with little knowledge of history or hermeneutical discipline such as understanding Scriptures within context, who believe that the Bible prohibits one from calling a priest father. The words they rely on come directly from Christ:

(Mat 23:9 DRB) And call none your father upon earth; for one is your father, who is in heaven.

Keeping the verse in context let us look at the verse preceding this verse:

(Mat 23:8 DRB) But be not you called Rabbi. For one is your master: and all you are brethren.

Rabbi means teacher and the Latin word for teacher is doctor so anyone using these terms as well are violating the literal interpretation of the text.

Let us look at the verse after verse 9:

(Mat 23:10 DRB) Neither be ye called masters: for one is your master, Christ.

There is no way that the interpretation could be correct if one reads and understands the Matthew passage in context. He is clearly teaching that one should not look to any human authority as our teacher, father, master, doctor or other titles of respect but instead give to God those things that are reserved for Him. Do you also refuse to call people doctor, teacher, professor, mister, or master? All of these are forbidden as well if we are to accept a literal understanding.

Context also requires that we investigate what the other Scriptures say as well as the understanding of these words by those who followed Christ. There are many instances where the writers of the New Testament contradict a literal understanding of not calling a man father, teacher or master. Consider the following verses:

(Act 5:34 DRB) But one in the council rising up, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, respected by all the people, commanded the men to be put forth a little while.

(Col 4:1 DRB) Masters, do to your servants that which is just and equal: knowing that you also have a master in heaven.

(2Ti 1:11 DRB) Wherein I am appointed a preacher and an apostle and teacher of the Gentiles.

Let us examine the statements of St. Stephen to see if he understood Christ to be speaking literally….In is soliloquy (Acts Chapter 7) before the Sanhedrin before his stoning to martyrdom he used the term father in referring to Abraham Isaac and Jacob as fathers and also to his Israelite ancestors as fathers.

St. John the beloved disciple also did not understand Christ to be teaching literally as we can see in the following verses:

(1Jn 2:13 DRB) I write unto you, fathers, because you have known him who is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because you have overcome the wicked one.

(1Jn 2:14 DRB) I write unto you, babes, because you have known the Father. I write unto you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.

(1Jn 2:15 DRB) Love not the world, nor the things which are in the world. If any man love the world, the charity of the Father is not in him.

(1Jn 2:16 DRB) For all that is in the world is the concupiscence of the flesh and the concupiscence of the eyes and the pride of life, which is not of the Father but is of the world.

St. Paul also had a different understanding of Christ’s words than the literalists:

(1Co 4:14 DRB) I write not these things to confound you: but I admonish you as my dearest children.

(1Co 4:15 DRB) For if you have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet not many fathers. For in Christ Jesus, by the gospel, I have begotten you.

(1Co 4:16 DRB) Wherefore, I beseech you, be ye followers of me as I also am of Christ.

St. Paul was speaking of the fact that he is called to shepherd the flock as are all priests. We not only give birth to the Christian through Baptism but also nourish the faithful with the Holy Eucharist and God’s Word. We care for them and bind their spiritual wounds through the delivery of the Sacraments. It is no wonder that we are called father as we care for our Church family as a father cares for his own family.

(‘maters Granny) Jesus is the King of the Kingdom he taught us to pray for in what is known as the Lord's Prayer. The Church does not teach the Kingdom nor do they know what it is.

(Cristoiglesia) Yes, the Lord’s Prayer was taught by Jesus as a response to the question How should we pray. I assume you are referring to the part of the prayer that refers to the coming kingdom, am I correct? Jesus was referring to two things which are His earthly kingdom instituted on the cross with the New Covenant and His heavenly kingdom to come when He returns.

(‘maters Granny) The Pope's Mitre is a symbol of Dagon the fish god.

(Cristoiglesia) You have been reading too much revisionist history. I believe this came from the imagination of Alexander Hislop. It is pure nonsense.

(‘maters Granny) The religion is seeped in untruths and paganism.

(Cristoiglesia) The Bible says that the Church is the “pillar and foundation of the truth” so you are disagreeing with Scriptures. I trust the Bible more than your prejudiced opinion. The Catholic Church is based entirely on the teaching of Jesus and the disciples and not on paganism. That is a ridiculous unsupportable claim. It is sinful speculation on your part.

(“maters Granny)The catechism doesn't even follow the bible.

(Cristoiglesia) There is nothing in the Catechism of the Catholic Church that is contradictory to Scriptures. It does follow the Bible.

(‘maters Granny) Jesus has no connection with anything false, or paganistic.

(Cristoiglesia) Exactly, that is why your attacks on the Church are so ridiculous. Why would Christ found a Church based on Pagan teaching or falsehoods and then tell us that His Church is the enduring Church that the gates of hell will never prevail against? Your claims to the contrary directly attack Christ’s veracity and competence in founding His Church.

(“maters Granny)He is the true, loyal witness of Jehovah God.

(Cristoiglesia) Here is where your heretical teaching reveals itself and that is in the denying of the trinity, the very nature of God and the full divinity of our Lord. Jesus is not just a witness to His Father but is God almighty Himself. He is not a created creature or an incarnation of the Archangel Michael but God incarnate or the Word itself.

(‘maters Granny) He would not sully himself with untruths, paganism, Mary worship or celebration of things that disgust his Father, Jehovah, God the Almighty. I am truly sorry you cannot see you are being duped.

(Cristoiglesia) I agree and there is no paganism in the Church or untruths which as I said before is attacking Christ directly and saying that He is a liar for making His promises to humanity about the Church He founded. There is no worship of the blessed mother as you falsely claim or things that disgust God as you falsely and without evidence proclaim. You sin by separating the Godhead and follow the heresy of Arius which was condemned by the Church as a heresy in the year 325AD. Christ was not the author of heresy through His Church that is called in Scriptures the “pillar and foundation of the truth”.

God bless!

In Christ
Fr. Joseph

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