Thursday, October 30, 2003

When the Teri Schavio case was first reported, I thought that the husband was right. Now that I know the dirty details, I want Teri to live. Why doesn't the husband do the honest thing - surrender the money to Teri's parents and divorce her instead of killing her? I think he wants to kill her so he can get the money. If he is going to be an immoral jerk, go a good job of it, divorce her, and let Teri be taken care of by her parents.
This doesn't sound like it was written by a Catholic. I know the part about "in sickness and health" in the vows. But who wants to be married to a potential murderer?
Last night, my son and I started a fencing class. I kinda laugh at myself for doing this, but I took it in college and loved it. I'm reconnecting with my past.
My son has watched too many swashbuckler movies and likes to pretend he is Zoro. He wrapped a stick with gray tape to make it look like metal, then added a cardboard hilt covered in gray tape. He has been pretending to sword fight with the kid next door for a couple years now. He asked for lessons a year ago, so I'm finally making good on my promise.
I guess I am going because I'm still a kid inside that has an imagination. Fencing stirs it up as much as swinging on a big park swing. (Yes, I do that too.) Besides being great exercise, it is a fun way to spend time with my son. That's priceless. It's getting harder to find things I can do with a 14 year old. Perhaps he thinks his mom is cool for signing us up?? I need to get out of my abstract thinking once in awhile. Fencing is the way I do this for now.

Monday, October 27, 2003

I went to Vandalia, Il over the weekend for the Celebrate the Faith conference. I heard Karl Keating, Patrick Madrid, Ken Howell and other well-known speakers. I was especially thrilled to meet Karl Keating. I have listened to Catholic Answers radio program for six years. It was great to see the face that goes with the voice at last.
Karl had a Q&A time after his talk. I was happy he answered my question. "Have Catholics ever been forbidden to read the Bible? A protestant told me this happen at the Council of Toulouse, which dealt with the Albagensian heresy."
Karl's answer was that Catholics were forbidden to read a translation that was mangled by the Albagensians to support their interpretation. They have never been forbidden to read approved translations.
I was relieved. I could not find the answer on any web site. I had found that there was a Council of Toulouse that dealt with the Albagensian heresy. But I didn't find anything about forbidding Catholics to read the Bible. It would have been a big error, I think, and something I would think would show the pope is not infallible. Now that I understand why, I agree with the decision.

The bishop of Cheyenne, WY told us that he asks the ones he confirms to make three promises: abstain from fornication and pornography, abstain from drugs and alcohol, and not be racist or prejudiced. I think those are some good things to ask kids today.

The talk on the Eucharist by Fr. Phillip Scott taught me something. I get the question "Show me where in Scripture it says that the mass should be a sacrifice. It's just a memorial" I've been a little weak in answering that. I've used Scott Hahn's ideas from The Lamb's Supper about Revelation showing that the Lamb of God is being sacrificed in Revelation. But a more direct quote that would explain it is in Hebrews 5:7 "During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence." Prayer is an offering and therefore is a sacrifice. When we pray, we are offering our praise, thanksgiving, and supplication. At Mass, we do not offer a bloody sacrifice, but the bread and wine are offered along with our prayer offering. I think a verse that is literal is better than the one in Revelation, which is metephorical.

I had a great weekend. I hope to go back next year.

Friday, October 24, 2003

Who should pay for the reconstruction in Iraq? How about Germany, France, and Japan? We rebuilt them after WWII, so why don't they pass the favor on? Here's an interesting article:
How do I deal with my kids that are pack rats, leave shoes everywhere, and ball up their socks?

I try to teach responsibility by making them put their stuff away, do their own laundry (a 10 year old kid can be taught to do this), and take turns helping out. I only do the hubby's and my laundry.

I use a plastic snow shovel to plow the clutter into a pile. One kid picks up trash, one gets laundry, and one gets everything else. The "everything else" job is harder, so it gets rotated among the kids.

I know this is heresy, but I don't sort laundry anymore, except for red cotton items. Permanent press clothes don't bleed like the old cotton stuff did.
The kids each have a separate hamper. They wash everything in it together, so when it comes out of the dryer, they take it to their room. No more laundry sitting around waiting to be sorted!

Red cotton has to be washed separately to keep it from turning whites to pink. I don't buy red cotton anymore and I donate what I can get rid of.

I live with three people who have ADD, so they don't care what the house looks like. My daughter only cares when friends are coming over. I'm the one who has to organize everything and make sure things get cleaned. Since I work full-time, I can't do it all myself, so I don't try. I'm in CHAOS most of the time.

I keep telling myself, "Don't sweat the small stuff. Most everything is small stuff" I read a book about that which was very helpful. My attitude of service to my family helps me from feeling like a victim. It helps me to grow in patience. It's a stressful, but I try to take care of myself by nurturing myself. This weekend, a girlfriend and I are going away to a retreat in Vandalia, IL for the weekend. I need a vacation from it all for a couple days. I'm looking forward to sleeping in a motel room that is CLEAN! Yes! I hope to come back with resolve to tackle some more clutter.

Thursday, October 23, 2003

from the forums at, a reader in the UK writes:
Based on your info, Catholic schools have lower school fees as compared to public schools.

1. Normal Catholic schools charge $3000 and public schools charge $5000.

2. Special Catholic schools charge $5200 and public schools charge $12000.

You also mentioned that the public schools' discipline is bad. But hippyrepublican1972 also mentioned she 'heard a lot of 'horror stories' about Catholic schools (beating with rulers, that kind of thing).'

Assuming your information is correct, why would any parent wants to put his/her kids in the public school (i.e. based on charges, since both schools also have class management problems)?

You seem to be able to pull out and enrol your child in the public or Catholic school (respectively) quite easily, then what issue are you trying to raise? I don't see any discrimination issue mentioned earlier.

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Public schools are funded through taxes, while Catholic schools are not. This means that if I send my kid to a Catholic school, I pay taxes to fund other kid's education and then pay for my own kids out of my own pocket and get no help from the government. My kids are citizens too so they deserve government funding. They don't get a cent. That's discrimination just because they are taught one religion class a day. Why shouldn't the government pay for math, social studies, science etc even if they are not funding the one religion class? I think they should.

hippyrepublican1972's 'horror stories' about Catholic schools are not my experience or what my kids experience. I don't think they are true these days. It may have happened long ago, but then whipping was legal in public schools too until 20 years ago. Hitting with a ruler across the hand was mild compared to what was happening in public schools of the day.
A good teacher does not have to whip. At the Catholic school, my son gets his discipline card signed if he misbehaves. I ground him if his card is signed. He has become a better student since I started grounding him. Kids that don't get their card signed for 8 weeks get invited to a party. My daughter gets to wear regular clothes instead of her uniform if she gets her homework done on time. Eight good weeks gets her an invite to a pizza party. The public schools let the kids get away with anything. I think the discipline in the Catholic schools prepares them to be better citizens.


Hi Betty,

There are two issues raised here. One is the charges, the other is the quality of schools.


Since public schools are funded by taxes (which is the case worldwide), it is unbelieveable that they are charging almost twice that of normal Catholic schools and more than twice that of Special Catholic Schools. It just doesn't make sense. I am not sure if you've got your facts correct. It would be better if you can give a web reference for the fees you mentioned,

In my country, public kindergartens' fees are at least 40% lesser than those run by private kindergartens (including those operated by non-profit organizations such as Churches, Buddhists or Muslims). As for primary grades, parents only need to pay supplementary fees of about about US$15 per month in the public schools. Education is free.

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You misunderstood me. The public schools get about $5000 per kid from the tax payers. None of it comes out of the parent's pocket other than the tax of about $500 for an average three bedroom, two bath house in a nice neighborhood. OTOH, every cent of the Catholic school's money for my kid comes out of my pocket - All $2500 for Kindergarten to 8th grade plus the $500 I pay for the public school kids. I have three kids, one in high school, which costs $5000, an 8th grader, which costs $2500; and a special ed kid, which costs $5200. That's $5000 + $2500 + $5200 = $12,700 out of my pocket plus $500 = $13,200. Why should I have to pay $12,700 when others pay $500? The state laws dictate this unfairness. If one is dissatisfied with the public schools but can't afford a private school, tough luck. Schooling the child at home is not an option for families where both parents work. Instead, parents have to put up with the secular humanism, anti-religion attitude of public schools. A teacher saying the word "God" in a public school can get them fired.

Only recently has the US Supreme Court said that it is not unconstitutional to give special help to disabled kids inside a Catholic school and that the state can give vouchers to pay the private school tuition of poor students. To get the state laws changed, Catholic have to overcome anti-Catholic bias which is rampant here, though not talked about.



I have heard of comments about how ill disciplined students are in European schools. Students are unrully. That resulted in many teachers being unwilling to teach and many changed profession. But discipline is not just the responsibility of the teachers or schools. Parents should be the main persons exerting good influences on their children. However, it is a sad fact that many parents are not good models themselves. Therefore they can't control their children and they expect the teachers to control a class of maybe 30 to 40 children at one go.

In my country, our education system is voted as one of the best in the world. Yet our MOE is constantly trying to improve. Our parents here are very involved in their children's education. I think all these voiced down to the value of education one's nation (both the government and citizens) perceived.

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I agree. With a Catholic school, the parents have more control. The publics have to fight a government bureaucracy. Hopefully, my kids go to school with ones that share the same values as I do. I think this helps a lot.


Your case

From your description of your child's school, the Catholic school is trying to use both positive and negative reinforcement. Personally, I don't like the idea of 'discipline card' because it instills fear rather than responsibility or self-control for the children. The important question to ask is what is the learning outcomes you wish your child to have? Does the school believes and enforces those outcomes? If you are a Christian, then one of the most important outcome should be the instilling of Christian values such as, love, respect, honesty, kindness, faithfulness, etc.

If you are not happy with your MOE, have you voiced it out to them? If the charges are too high, probably your MOE can make adjustment if enough citizens lobby for them to be reduced. But as to quality, I suspect it is going to be very difficult to change and may take years to reform because it involves teachers' training and the change of parents' roles in education.

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I like the discipline system because the parents get to decide how to deal with their child. That's my job as a parent. I know what is going on every week. They need to learn that bad behavior has consequences. That's life. If I don't act right at work, I'll get fired. Eventually, the kid matures enough to learn self-discipline after it becomes a habit. Fear of consequences is how one acquires the habit.
Here are some good sites that address overpopulation:

Did you know that all Christian denominations believed artificial contraception is wrong until the Anglicans approved it for grave cause at the Lambeth conference in 1930? Almost all denominations have caved to allow it now.
Deuteronomy 23:1 condemns birth control by sterilization
Gen. 38:8–10 Onan killed for withdrawal
The biblical penalty for not giving your brother’s widow children was public humiliation, not death (Deut. 25:7–10). But Onan received death as punishment for his crime.

Margaret Sanger started Planned Parenthood because she was racist. She wanted the poor and blacks to cut their reproduction so that whites would dominate. It has gone the opposite from the way she thought it would.

If the US does not have enough workers to replace retiring workers some day, we will have to import them. Where from? Mexico? Saudia Arabia? India? Our whole culture will change. We could end up a Muslim country, not Christian.

Kids force parents to grow up and become more mature. One has to consider the needs of the child. Both benefit.

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

I was impressed by this article: In Pope John Paul II we have seen greatness
By ERIC MARGOLIS (a non-Catholic)
From the Parenting forum at

That's discrimination against Catholic school kids. I mean, realistically, I know why they do it. The religious schools are of the church, and the public schools are of the state, and the two must never mix. But as a result, in my case for example, Catholic school kids are being denied care that they need due to what could be percieved as a legal technicality. I just think that's a gag.


If you remember your American history, there was a "Know Nothing" Party 150-120 years ago. They were anti-Catholics who were against the immigration of Catholics from Ireland and Europe. They tried to pass a Constitutional amendment to prevent any federal money being spent to educate Catholic kids. It failed, but many states adopted what was known as "Blaine amendments" that did the same thing. In my state, the Catholic kids can't even get a bus ride to school or one cent toward the education costs.

In my city, there are 60,000 kids in Catholic schools. Imagine the property taxes that would have to be increased if all those kids went to public schools! The public school kids get about $5000 per kid in elem school and more for high school. Do the math and you'll see why no one is in a hurry to change things. The Catholic parents spend about $3000 per kid. What would happen if all the Catholic schools closed down or went on strike for a year? I think folks would offer vouchers and beg us to re-open them to save them money.

I pulled my daughter out of the regular parish school and put her in a Catholic special ed school because the pubic special school would not take her. At that time, ADD was not considered enough reason to need special ed and I could not get special help for her at the parish school. The discipline at the public school here is so bad that I could not stomach sending her there. She would fall through the cracks and be left behind. The public school offered to do "resource room", where they pull a kid out of a class, say, social studies to tutor them in math. Result? The kid gets behind in social studies and math, so they pull the kid out of another subject for that. That does not seem like a smart plan to me. Although the tuition is $5200 a year, I think she is where she needs to be. If she were in a private special ed school, the tuition would be $12,000. I am grateful I have a good job so I can afford to send her there. I feel for parents that can't do that. Don't be afraid to ask the parish for help or ask for a scholarship to a special school. That might be the answer. Trust God's providence to let you do what is best for your child. Mothers From Hell Advocacy For the Rights of Individuals With Disabilities Organization

Monday, October 20, 2003

New Poll: U.S. Catholics Admire the Pope Yet Dismiss Many of His Views
Here's my post in a new forum at
I have read a lot of posts on other thread where people refer to the "liberal media". Is the media liberal? I decided to do some research on the web and I quickly discovered some research done by David Croteau.

Exerpt from

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Re: "Liberal Media" Fact or Fiction? [kermit] - Oct 17, 2003, 11:29 AM - (5 of 11) - reference
I think this quote says the media is conservative on some issues but not others. You can't average apples and oranges. If the media is moderate, it makes me wonder how far to the left the left is?!! If you call the range of views from Timothy McVeigh to anaracists, then maybe you could say the media is moderate. But I don't think it is moderate when the range is between Republicans and Democrats.

For a review of media bias on the pro-life issue, here is a good link:

Another issue that makes me cringe is that every time any mention is made in the media about the pope or RCC, they trot out the dissident issue of priestly celibacy. Tom Brokaw did this last night after the story on the Pope's 25th anniversary. Brokaw had no reason to go into celebacy because the two things are not related at all. Brokaw led the story with the dissident view, which shows his bias indirectly. Then he presented the other side of story. NBC did the same thing when the Pope visited in 1999 and again last year.

The mainstream media seems to also be biased in favor of gays, not just in the news media, but also the number of sit-coms that promote that lifestyle.

The mainstream news does nothing to educate people that the President and Congress do not have total control of the economy. That is done by the Federal Reserve, regulatory agencies and as a reaction to tax laws. The news media acts as if the President and Congress can wave a magic wand to fix the economy and have failed to do so. Economics was not taught when I was in HS or college. I learned it when I got my MBA. How are people to know how to vote if they are basing their decision on a biased view? Don't they know better? The mainstream news media sounds good to the ear, but it is missing a lot of information people need to be good citizens. The politicians want to fool us into thinking that elected representatives can fix the economy, so they aren't going to educate us.

The mainstream news media has not told people that the $87 billion Bush wants for Iraq is only 4% of the budget. One would think that it is a much larger portion if you listen only to the mainstream news. One has to listen to conservative talk radio to get the full story.

The mainstream news media has not presented the environmental issues fairly. If they told why we should drill for oil in Alaska so that we will be more energy independent, which is a national security issue, maybe people would vote differently. The Green Party got 2% of the vote in 2000, which changed the outcome of the election.

The mainstream news media tells us night after night that things are not going well in Iraq, then they do a story on a poll they took about what people think about Iraq. No wonder the results of the poll are what they are - the poll parrot back what the news tells them. Do they do polls to find out whether they need to do more propaganda? Or have they got the results they want already?

The mainstream news media is shaping the country in the image they want. They can make us believe whatever they want by slanting the news. They should not have that power. It should be true, "We report; you decide."

Thursday, October 16, 2003

I'm going to go to the October 24, 25, & 26 Celebrate the Faith Conference in Vandalia Illinois with a friend. It will be girls' weekend out since I'm leaving the hubby and kids at home. I'm looking forward to seeing some of my favorite apologists; Karl Keating, Patrick Madrid, and Ken Howell. I even found a $40 a night hotel room in Altamont Il, which is 20 miles away. Vandalia's 3 motels are booked (bet the owners like that!). This conference is growing every year. It's only 70 miles from St. Louis, so it draws a lot from there.
I ordered $80 of books from Amazon yesterday. Most are on apologetics, so I hope to learn some stuff I can share here. I can hardly wait. It's like I'm getting my Christmas presents early.
The moderator of forums has closed the Roman Catholicism thread with the explanation that posters were violating the terms of service. The moderator got sick of all the anti-Catholic stuff the other side was posting. I was ignoring it and patiently, rationally answered questions and debates. I wonder though whether the moderator didn't like the Catholic side's cogent debate answers. We were brilliant. I'll have to find a new addiction.
Want to E-mail Congratulations to John Paul II?

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 15, 2003 ( The Holy See made public an e-mail address to which congratulatory messages can be sent to John Paul II for his 25-year pontificate, which will be celebrated on Thursday.

E-mail messages in English should be sent to:

Here's a new trick I learned today:

Cleaning up the Inbox: Fight Porn Spam Without Exposing Yourself to Harmful Material
April 30, 2003
By Daniel L. Weiss

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

The moderator of forums has closed the Roman Catholicism thread probably for good with no explanation. Hmmm? Wonder why? I got this message:
Permission Denied

You are not authorized to view this page.

Other Possible Reasons:
You have not registered with
You are trying to view an admin / moderators only forum.
You have been banned from the forums.

I wonder if the real reason is censorship of the RC point of view?,2933,99945,00.html
More Americans believe in God than in angels, miracles, and even heaven. And while half attend worship services on a regular basis, a majority thinks religion plays too small a role in people’s lives today.

What I wrote to Rush Limbaugh:
Hi Rush,
I just want to let your know I care and that I am praying for you. My husband is a diagnostician for a drug/alchohol treatment place, so I do understand. I never expect humans to be beyond temptation. I'm sorry you have to go through this.

On Sixty Minutes several years ago, there was a report on recovery from the drug you are addicted to. The docs had to put the guy in a coma because he couldn't go through detox awake. Based on this info, only the power of God will get you through this because will power is not enough. Your public confession must have been very painful emotionally, but it is the first step to healing.

Keep believing there will be a silver lining to this dark cloud. Someday, you may become grateful that your suffering has brought you closer to God. That's a long way away from now, but believe it will happen and set that as your goal. Your suffering will not be wasted then.
Betty G. in St. Louis, MO

Monday, October 13, 2003

Is it morally wrong to cross a picket line? The issue is big in St. Louis this week because the grocery store employees went on strike. Should one go to non-union stores instead?
Here's my opinion:
I'm still trying to make up my mind. Right now, I'm on the union's side and won't cross the picket line. Usually, I favor management. I can see both sides. The top pay of $12 sounds like not enough to feed a family these days, especially if that's the prime breadwinner pay. I have a friend that is earning $10 hour with no benefits and she is nearly always broke and needing food help. I guess I'd have to look at the company's budget to see if they can afford to pay more, but I can't do that.

OTOH, if shoppers go to other non-union stores and find out how much cheaper they are, they may never come back. I do the majority of my food purchases at a non-union store and only go to union stores for stuff I can't get at the other one. I don't mind going to more than one store if I save enough to make it worth my time.

The union might be cutting their own nose off. The economy is bad and people are hungry for jobs. These are low skill jobs and people are easily replaced. That would be sad, so that's why I'm on the union side. Not everyone voted for the strike, so for those folk's sake, I'm not crossing the line in hopes it will make the strike short.

I worked for a grocery wholesaler once. They said their profit margin was 1%, but 1% of millions is a lot of bucks! Employers should pay a living wage.

What do you think?
Here's an interesting article that discusses the state of the U.S. Catholic Church's relationship to the papacy.,0,5764957.story?coll=ny-nationworld-headlines
A Quarter Century of John Paul II

"A People Adrift: The Crisis of the Roman Catholic Church in America" by Peter Steinfels

Friday, October 10, 2003

The moderator of forums has closed the Roman Catholicism thread for a few days to let us cool off. There are over 1800 posts to this thread.
I wonder if the "prots" need to huddle to figure out a way to debate us? Or are they thinking we will forget about this forum. I think we are winning, especially if we keep our cool and don't do anything that gets us a kick off posting privileges. I think they will close the thread instead of admitting defeat. We have the truth on our side.

All four of the ones on the RCC side -- me, eirene, proud2bcatholic, and john -- keep them thinking.
I'm going through withdrawal.

Thursday, October 09, 2003

from the RC forum at
I, too, have seen what you describe. I blame that on the pastors. If they are just "going through the motions" then their service will be a dead ritual. Since this is a thread on Roman Catholicism, I will use them as this reference. I have also seen this in the Methodist church because I went to one for a while. Unfortunately, the majority of Catholics (but not all) that I know consider going to mass just an obligation and get nothing out of it. They take an hour out of their week to fulfill their obligation and then go on living the way they please. It has become for them a dead ritual. When you base your whole service on a fixed ceremony, repeated day in and day out, this is the outcome. It is when you allow the moving of the Spirit that the church lights up. The Spirit won't flow where it isn't welcome.
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I disagree. I think those who think it is a dead ritual don't go. I don't know what percent of those that don't go, live a life of serious sin. I can't assume that they all do. I think the bigger category is those that don't go but live a moral life.
I don't find the Mass to be a dead ritual and I've been Catholic for 52 years. I frequently go to daily Mass, not just Sunday. When I discovered that I had to put myself into it to get something out, it all changed. I go to Mass to offer to the Lord all I am and all I have done and all I will do. I give my whole being to the Lord. I unite my heart and soul in worship of the Father. I receive my Lord in the Eucharist and ask Him to change me into the person He wants me to be. I celebrate that the God who became man wants to remain with us so much that He becomes bread and wine that I can receive into my body. I don't go to be entertained. I tune out the music so I can pray contemplatively. I know music is supposed to be prayer too, but I find it distracting from hearing the Lord talk to me. I find the Mass deeply moving, life changing, healing, strengthening and Holy Spirit filled. I has become more meaningful to me since I started studying theology, but not by much. I don't think anyone has the right to judge what is going on inside. It has to be a case-by-case assessment. I have always had heart-knowledge, but not always had head-knowledge. I don't have to know a ton of theology to love and worship the Lord. I'm more interested in knowing "how" than "why". Why I’m Still A Catholic by Andrew Greeley
I don't fully agree with Greeley because he is a liberal and I am conservative, but there are some good points in this article.

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

from the RC forum at
Not even close! One would have to twist Scripture quite a bit to come up with that. We are told many times in Scripture not to communicate with the deceased.
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from catholic .com:
You say God has forbidden contact with the dead (you're probably refering to passages such as Deuteronomy 18:10–11). In fact, he has not, because he at times has given it—for example, when he had Moses and Elijah appear with Christ to the disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matt. 17:3). What God has forbidden is necromantic practice of conjuring up spirits. "There shall not be found among you any one who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, any one who practices divination, a soothsayer, or an augur, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or a medium, or a wizard, or a necromancer. . . . For these nations, which you are about to dispossess, give heed to soothsayers and to diviners; but as for you, the Lord your God has not allowed you so to do. The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brethren—him you shall heed" (Deut. 18:10–15).

God thus indicates that one is not to conjure the dead for purposes of gaining information; one is to look to God’s prophets instead. Thus one is not to hold a seance. But anyone with an ounce of common sense can discern the vast qualitative difference between holding a seance to have the dead speak through you and a son humbly saying at his mother’s grave, "Mom, please pray to Jesus for me; I’m having a real problem right now." The difference between the two is the difference between night and day. One is an occult practice bent on getting secret information; the other is a humble request for a loved one to pray to God on one’s behalf.

In short, the scenario goes like this. Catholicism discarded the scriptural definition of a "saint" and devised a new one, then instructed members to pray to these unscriptural "saints."
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Saints means holy ones, whether alive on earth or alive in Christ, officially recognized or not. It has the same root as "sanctification". Those who are officially recognized by the RCC are a subset of all the saints. It seems you misunderstand RCC jargon.
Remember the story about a beggar named Lazarus in Luke 16:19-31? It is very clear that those who are on the other side of life still care about those of us on earth.
Luke 16:27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him [Lazarus] to my father's house: 28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.

So if you define saints as people on earth, here are some verses that tell us that elders and angels are intermediaries:
Rev 5:8 "And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints." Notice the elders are in heaven already.

Rev 8:3 Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints, on the golden altar before the throne. 4The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel's hand.

The nagging question you must answer here is: Why would the Catholic church rather have members pray to dead men than to the living, all-powerful, prayer-answering God?
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The RCC does not say you can only ask saints to pray for us. Asking them to intercede for us is not a replacement for prayer to God, as has already been said. No one is required to ask for a saint's intercession. It is possible because we are all one body in Christ, whether alive on earth or alive in Christ. I can't intercede 24/7 because I need to sleep, but those are alive in Christ can intercede continuously.

The verse that says Jesus is the sole mediator is preceded by this verse where Paul says that Christians should intercede: 1 Timothy 2:5, "First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way. This is good, and pleasing to God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth"

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

from the forum at "Reasons why you CAN loose your salvation "
You are asking about things that are beyond my expertise and interest. I don't know a lot about these areas and I don't care enough to comment. I have only provided links to web sites. You can discuss this with the webmasters of these sites if you want. I don't want to get in over my head and say something wrong. Tomb of the Virgin Mary Two places claim to be Mary's burial site, Jerusalem and Ephesus. That belief was ancient, dating back to the apostles themselves. What was clear from the beginning was that there were no relics of Mary to be venerated, and that an empty tomb stood on the edge of Jerusalem near the site of her death.

Church tradition relates that Mary was resurrected bodily and taken to heaven, the same reward that awaits all the righteous on the Last Day. What we celebrate is that Jesus's death and resurrection has opened the gates of heaven for us and our body will be reunited with our soul on the last day.
Catholics maintain that the veneration (hyperdulia) accorded Mary, while higher than that accorded any other creature, is infinitely lower than the worship (latria) reserved for Jesus.
As for Deprived v. Depraved, look at this site:
A Tiptoe Through TULIP by James Akin go to "What Catholics believe about" then go to salvation, then predestination
Or look at these sites:
We believe souls really are cleansed by an infusion of the supernatural life. Paul speaks of us as "a new creation" (2 Cor. 5:17), "created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness" . Ephesians 4:24 "and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Depraved v deprived
Original Sin could be called "original selfishness." Our instincts are selfish. We are born with the selfishness principle in us by nature. This is observable even in infants. We do not, of course, personally blame them for being selfish, but as St. Augustine argued, "As we grow older we root out such ways and cast them from us: which means that we hold them to be bad — for no man engaged in removing evil would knowingly cast out what is good."

Original sin is a very unpopular idea in the modern world. But it is an essential part of the Christian gospel, and "[t]he Church, which has the mind of Christ,263 knows very well that we cannot tamper with the revelation of original sin without undermining the mystery of Christ" (C 389). For sin is precisely what this "Savior" saves us from.

Original Sin does not mean that we are "totally depraved" (Calvin's term), or wholly evil, or more evil than good (how could that be measured?), or that our very being is evil, or that we are no longer infinitely valuable and infinitely loved by God. It means that we are mortally wounded, a defaced masterpiece. The greater the masterpiece, the more terrible its defacement is.

This is getting off topic, so I won't say more.

Monday, October 06, 2003

from the Roman Catholicism forum at
I think you would do well to study the history of the Papacy more in depth. First, the idea that there was a bishop of Rome who was the vicar of Christ on earth in the early church is actually a fabrication of reality. In reality, such statements were even used as insults in the early church not as a position of honor. Since there were no Popes in the early church, it is safe to say that there is no succession for the Roman Catholic Church back to Peter either.
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Martin Luther,

Here is the history of the first four popes. THE CHURCH HISTORY OF EUSEBIUS. Book III.Chapter II. "The First Ruler of the Church of Rome.1 After the martyrdom of Paul and of Peter, Linus14 was the first to obtain the episcopate of the church at Rome. Paul mentions him, when writing to Timothy from Rome, in the salutation at the end of the epistle.15 "
Chapter XIII. Anencletus, the Second Bishop of Rome."After Vespasian had reigned ten years Titus, his son, succeeded him.136 In the second year of his reign, Linus, who had been bishop of the church of Rome for twelve years,137 delivered his office to Anencletus.138 But Titus was succeeded by his brother Domitian after he had reigned two years and the same number of months.139"
Chapter XV. Clement, the Third Bishop of Rome."In the twelfth year of the same reign Clement succeeded Anencletus142 after the latter had been bishop of the church of Rome for twelve years. The apostle in his Epistle to the Philippians informs us that this Clement was his fellow-worker. His words are as follows:143 "With Clement arid the rest of my fellow-laborers whose names are in the book of life."
Chapter XVI. The Epistle of Clement. "There is extant an epistle of this Clement144 which is acknowledged to be genuine and is of considerable length and of remarkable merit.145 He wrote it in the name of the church of Rome to the church of Corinth, when a sedition had arisen in the latter church.146 We know that this epistle also has been publicly used in a great many churches both in former times and in our own.147 And of the fact that a sedition did take place in the church of Corinth at the time referred to Hegesippus is a trustworthy witness.148"
Chapter XXXIV. Evarestus, the Fourth Bishop of the Church of Rome. "1 In the third year of the reign of the emperor mentioned above,339 Clement340 committed the episcopal government of the church of Rome to Evarestus,341 and departed this life after he had superintended the teaching of the divine word nine years in all."

Notice that Clement was writing "in the name of the church". He wrote this while the apostle John was still alive and was living much closer to Corinth than Rome was. This shows that the bishop of Rome had authority that the other bishops did not. That fits the function of the pope as the RCC knows it, even if Clement is not called pope at the time. has The Complete List of Popes, all 265 of them.
from the forum at
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Ok, if you believe this, then who believed in the Bodily Assumption of Mary in the first three centuries? Who believed in Mary as the Queen of Heaven and Divine Meadiatrix? ----end quote---
I'm not an expert on Mary. I like to focus on Jesus. I prefer to believe that Revelation 12 is talking about Mary and leave it at that. It's not a big part of my spirituality. The Bible is the story of our salvation by Jesus. I'm not surprised that there isn't much in there about Mary. That doesn't mean these things aren't true, but it is not what we are supposed to focus on anyway.
The only patristics I can find on this topic are in Writings of Early Church Fathers - Volume 8 THE PASSING OF ST. MARY (400 A.D.) THE BOOK OF ST. JOHN CONCERNING THE FALLING ASLEEP OF ST. MARY (4th or 5th century)
I do not hold these writings to be inspired. They seem to indicate that the belief in the Bodily Assumption of Mary was not a modern invention. has a lot of patristic links about Mary.
The circumstances of the Dormition of the Mother of God were known in the Orthodox Church from apostolic times. Already in the first century, the Hieromartyr Dionysios the Areopagite wrote about Her "Falling-Asleep." In the second century, the account of the bodily ascent of the Most Holy Virgin Mary to Heaven is found in the works of Meliton, Bishop of Sardis. In the fourth century, St. Epiphanios of Cyprus refers to the tradition about the "Falling-Asleep" of the Mother of God. In the fifth century, St. Juvenalios, Patriarch of Jerusalem, told the holy Byzantine Empress Pulcheria: "Although in Holy Scripture there is no account about the circumstances of Her death, we know about them otherwise from the most ancient and credible Tradition."
The doctrine of the Assumption says that at the end of her life on earth Mary was assumed, body and soul, into heaven, just as Enoch, Elijah, and perhaps others had been before her. It’s also necessary to keep in mind what the Assumption is not. Some people think Catholics believe Mary "ascended" into heaven. That’s not correct. Christ, by his own power, ascended into heaven. Mary was assumed or taken up into heaven by God. She didn’t do it under her own power.

The Church has never formally defined whether she died or not, and the integrity of the doctrine of the Assumption would not be impaired if she did not in fact die, but the almost universal consensus is that she did die. Pope Pius XII, in Munificentissimus Deus (1950), defined that Mary, "after the completion of her earthly life" (note the silence regarding her death), "was assumed body and soul into the glory of heaven."

The possibility of a bodily assumption before the Second Coming is suggested by Matthew 27:52–53: "[T]he tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many." Did all these Old Testament saints die and have to be buried all over again? There is no record of that, but it is recorded by early Church writers that they were assumed into heaven, or at least into that temporary state of rest and happiness often called "paradise," where the righteous people from the Old Testament era waited until Christ’s resurrection (cf. Luke 16:22, 23:43; Heb. 11:1–40; 1 Pet. 4:6), after which they were brought into the eternal bliss of heaven.
Secondly, I would suggest that you familiarize yourself with Augustine since he is one of the early church fathers for instance who believed in predestination as he was quoted all over the place by John Calvin in his Institutes. So, ma'am, I must ask you: What have you read on patrology? What is your background in reading the early church fathers? You are giving me a very biased veiw of church history, and I think you need to look deeper than what you are.

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Catholics can believe in predestination as long as they don't believe in double predestination. Double predestination says God makes some people destined for hell and there is nothing they can do about this. But it is OK to say God foresaw who would go to heaven and gives them all the graces they need to respond to his grace. God foreknowledge does cause people to go to hell, but He knows who will reject His grace.

At this point you are taking me from my context. I was referring to *Justification* not *salvation.* While I certainly agree that they are related, the distinction must be made. We look back on our justification, and as a result, we have a complete total and everlasting shalom as Romans 5:1 says.
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Romans 5:1 says "Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Yes, we are justified by faith, though not faith alone. God gives us grace to respond.
Protestantism separates justification from sanctification, contrary to Christian Tradition and the Bible (e.g., Mt 5:20; 7:20-24; Rom 2:7-13; 1 Cor 6:11; 1 Pet 1:2). Catholics do not separate them. These verses show that the two should not be separated:

Mt 5:20For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
Mt7:20-23 Thus you will know them by their fruits. 21: "Not every one who says to me, `Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22: On that day many will say to me, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' 23: And then will I declare to them, `I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.'
Rom 2:7-13
For he will render to every man according to his works: 7: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life;
8: but for those who are factious and do not obey the truth, but obey wickedness, there will be wrath and fury. 9: There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, 10: but glory and honor and peace for every one who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. 11: For God shows no partiality. 12: All who have sinned without the law will also perish without the law, and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. 13: For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.

1 Cor 6:11And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
1 Pet 1:2 "chosen and destined by God the Father and sanctified by the Spirit for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you. "
I have dealt with James in my previous post. If you look at verse 18, he sets up the context of showing ones faith to others. It is in this context that he makes the statement in 2:21. Furthermore, again, you did not deal with the fact that I was talking about *Justification* and not *salvation.* It is Justification which is an action of the past resulting in our everlasting peace with God. The only passage addressing Abraham's Justification before God is Romans 4:3.
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Gen 15:6 & James 2:21 both passages talk about Abraham's righteousness. Are you saying that righteousness is not the same as justification or salvation? If so, how? At what point was Abraham "saved"?

Friday, October 03, 2003

from the Roman Catholicism forum at
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I have read vast amounts of western history, but I appreciate the suggestion. I am also very keen, as a large chunk of my family are Catholic, of what the early history of Catholicism/RCC is.

But I also am very aware of how they are not the church that Jesus spoke of, nor are they ever mentioned in the Bible.

And Betty, as a Christian, that is what is the end all be all for me. Again, thank you for your time and effort, but I will always rely on the Bible.

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If you like to read history, you'll be interested in this: The Church History Of Eusebius.

Especially read these parts:

Book III. Chapter III. The Epistles of the Apostles. Chapter IV. The First Successors of the Apostles

Chapter XXV. The Divine Scriptures that are Accept and Those that are Not.

Chapter XI Chapter XIII. are very interesting too.

These pages show that the church had an authority structure and that they went through a discernment period to decide which books belong in the Bible and which did not. The Bible did not fall out of the sky in a leather binding with gold edging. There is no inspired table of contents. If you say you will stick with your Bible, then you are trusting the authority of the Catholic Church to know which books belong in there and which do not. I think even a small glimpse of the history of the Bible would show this.

God bless,


Thursday, October 02, 2003

from the Roman Catholicism forum at

A leader? The only leader in our local church is the pastor. But he is not above us or in a special position. Jesus Christ is the head pastor of my church, not an infallible man. What the Bible says, goes, regardless of what human is up in front.
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In Acts 15, there was a council in Jerusalem to decide doctrinal issues about whether converts had to keep the Jewish law. The apostles, led by Peter, decided an issue that applied to the whole church, not just one locality.

In John 21, Jesus tells Peter to "feed my sheep." Are you suggesting that Jesus has sheep in only one locality? Peter went from Jerusalem (Acts 15) to Rome and was martyred there. Peter tended sheep in more than one locality.

To quote the KJV, Acts 1:15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood. 20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.
So the KJV supports the office of bishop. Likewise, the Bible supports an authority structure.

"1 Peter 5:5","Likewise, you younger members, be subject to the presbyters.",
Deuteronomy 17:12 states: And the man that will do presumptuously, and will not hearken unto the priest that standeth to minister there before the LORD thy God, or unto the judge, even that man shall die....

Mt 18:17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell the church. If he refuses to listen even to the church, then treat him as you would a Gentile or a tax collector.

Rom 13:1-5 "Let every person be subordinate to the higher authorities, for there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been established by God. Therefore; whoever resists authority opposes what God has appointed, and those who oppose it will bring judgment upon themselves. For rulers are not a cause of fear to good conduct, but to evil. Do you wish to have no fear of authority? Then do what is good and you will receive approval fromit, for it is a servant of God for your good. But if you do evil, be afraid, for it does not bear the sword without purpose; it is the servant of God to inflict wrath on the evildoer. v. 1-5

"Hebrews 13:17","Obey your leaders and defer to them, for they keep watch over you and will have to give an account, that they may fulfill their task with joy and not with sorrow, for that would be of no advantage to you. ",

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

from the Roman Catholicism forum at
Berean responds,
The Mass is an abomination so there is no way Catholics are in heaven when it is celebrated. Christ died once. He does not die again outside of time.
That would mean the Lord is perpetually dead and alive at the same time.
Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
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The entire vision in Revelation occurs on the Lord's Day. Rev 5 shows elders reading the scroll and angels worshiping the Lamb of God, which is a description of what happens at every Eucharist. The priest always prays that the angels will take our offering to heaven. Our sacrifice is "on earth as it is in heaven."
Christs sacrifice is finished. It is never repeated on earth or in heaven.
John 19:30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
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Show me the scripture verse that says we are to stop celebrating the Passover. True, we don't need to slaughter a lamb or goat anymore because Jesus is our Passover lamb. The Church nowhere teaches that Christ is resacrificed. But the Passover also includes a bread offering and a wine offering. This is what the Eucharist is all about. Jesus offered the bread and wine at the Last Supper and commanded his apostles to continue doing this.

Exodus 12:8 "And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it."
What does the bread offering signify?
Leviticus 7:12 When anyone makes a peace offering in thanksgiving, together with his thanksgiving sacrifice he shall offer unleavened cakes mixed with oil, unleavened wafers spread with oil, and cakes made of fine flour mixed with oil and well kneaded. 13 His offering shall also include loaves of leavened bread along with the victim of his peace offering for thanksgiving.
Scripture commands us to keep the passover feast.1 Corinthians 5:7-8 " Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth."
"Then came the Day of Unleavened Bread, on which the Passover Lamb had to be sacrificed." Lk.22.7

Acts 2:42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
Christ did not institute a priesthood to perpetuate His finished sacrifice.
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That's not how the apostles thought. Exihibit A:
Acts 1:15-25 Peter stood up in the midst of the brothers. ... He said, "My brothers, the scripture had to be fulfilled which the holy Spirit spoke beforehand through the mouth of David, concerning Judas, who was the guide for those who arrested Jesus..... For it is written in the Book of Psalms: 'Let his encampment become desolate, and may no one dwell in it.' And: 'May another take his office.'

Tit 1:5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you-- 6if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination. 7For a bishop[2] must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, 8but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, 9holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.

Acts 15:24 Since we have heard that some of our number (who went out) without any mandate from us have upset you with their teachings and disturbed your peace of mind,

1 Tim 4:14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through a prophetic message when the body of elders laid their hands on you.

1 Tim 5:22 Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, and do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.
Matthew 28:16-20 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17And when they saw him they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age."

John 20:21 "Again Jesus said, "Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you."
(Lk 22:19) Do this in memory of me"

1 Corinthians 11:23-33 For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, "This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me." In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes. Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord. A person should examine himself, and so eat the bread and drink the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many among you are ill and infirm, and a considerable number are dying. If we discerned ourselves, we would not be under judgment; but since we are judged by (the) Lord, we are being disciplined so that we may not be condemned along with the world. Therefore, my brothers, when you come together to eat, wait for one another.

1 Corinthians 10:14-22,"I speak to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ? Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf.
The plain meaning of "it is finished" should give you some sort of clue.
The plain meaning of "alive forever more" should give you some clue.
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Scott Hahn's web site says,
"When we think about how Christ instituted the Eucharist, we're obviously taken back to the Upper Room. And just recall if you will some well known facts. He and the disciples were celebrating what well known feast? The Passover. .... "Now what's the problem? The problem is that gospel account says something like this: after the third cup is drunk Jesus says, "I shall not drink again of the fruit of the vine until I am entering into the kingdom of God." And it says, "Then they sang the psalms." Every Jew who knows the liturgy would expect: and then they went ahead and said the grace and the blessing and had the fourth cup which climaxed and consummated the Passover. But no, the gospel account say they sang the psalms and went out into the night.

When Jesus was on the cross, "They put a sponge full of the sour wine on hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the sour wine he said the words that are spoken of in the fourth cup consummation, "It is finished." What is the it referring to? That grammatical question began really bothering me at some point. I asked several people and their response was usually, "Well, it means the work of redemption that Christ was working on." All right, that's true, I agree it does refer to that, but in context. An exegete, a trained interpreter of the word is supposed to find the contextual meaning, not just import a meaning from a theology textbook. What is Jesus speaking of when he says, "It is finished?" I mean, our redemption is not completed once he's not yet raised. Paul says, "He was raised for our justification." So what is the it talking about? He said, 'It is finished', and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit, his breath. The it, of course you realize by now, is the Passover sacrifice." That is, Jesus is not saying that his work of redemption is completely finished as you seem to think it is. If it were, why do you think you have to say the "sinner's prayer" to get "saved". Isn't that adding to the finished work of Christ? If it were really finished, all you'd have to do is be born.

We remember what He did.
Luke 22:19 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.
1 Corinthians 11:26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.
Rome is a liar.
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Yes, in one sense the Eucharist is a memorial. But to the Jewish culture, memorial means much more than it does in the American culture. In Jewish culture, memorial means to re-present an event as if the event in the past were happening in the present moment. You can't take Scripture out of its Jewish context when you interpret it.

There is more on this at