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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Discussions About Orson Scott Card » OSC, there is a mistake about Catholic teaching in your response to Dr. Mohler (Page 2)

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Author Topic: OSC, there is a mistake about Catholic teaching in your response to Dr. Mohler
Scooter
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What about "emergency baptisms" for infants who are expected to die before the normal (or selected) time at which a baptism would be performed? Does that not insinuate the absolute necessity of baptism? If a child is raised Baptist but hasn't been baptized yet (hasn't reached the proper age yet), but then dies before baptism, then is that child not lost? But if that child had lived maybe a month later and was baptized Baptist, the child would be saved?

If I have my facts correct, then I think OSC's point is pretty close, even if he does not use all the proper terminology.

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Dagonee
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quote:
What about "emergency baptisms" for infants who are expected to die before the normal (or selected) time at which a baptism would be performed? Does that not insinuate the absolute necessity of baptism? If a child is raised Baptist but hasn't been baptized yet (hasn't reached the proper age yet), but then dies before baptism, then is that child not lost? But if that child had lived maybe a month later and was baptized Baptist, the child would be saved?

If I have my facts correct, then I think OSC's point is pretty close, even if he does not use all the proper terminology.

First, none of this supports the statement to which I took exception, especially considering the context of the article. You're reaching terribly here. Even if your facts are "correct" (they are not), none of that supports the assertion that "good Catholics are convinced that all those Protestants are going to Hell." It's not a question of terminology, it's a question of a basic misunderstanding of Catholic doctrine.

Second, your facts are not correct. There is NO official Catholic teaching on the subject of babies who die unbaptized. Limbo, a state of perfect natural happiness which cannot be equated to be "lost," was a popular answer to the question from the 13th century on. The Pope recently promulgated a document declaring that there is prayerful hope that unbaptized babies go to heaven.

If you're interested in finding out how complex Catholic beliefs actually are, and how willing they are to say "I don't know," here's the recent document.

It goes into great detail as to why we can hope that unbaptized infants go to heaven yet still believe in the great good of infant baptism (which also answers why there is emergency baptism), and the necessity of baptism.

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Orson Scott Card
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I have had comments from several thoughtful Catholics that caused me to realize that my impressions of Catholic doctrine were all historical and experiential from the time before Vatican II. I had underestimated the degree to which the Catholic Church accepts the acts of Protestant churches. While the Catholic Church has long accepted heretic baptism (i.e., when Arians "converted" they did not have to be rebaptized; ditto with Methodists becoming Catholic today), the Pope did recently reaffirm the exclusivity of the Catholic Church's claim to universality. I overstated the degree to which current Catholic doctrine mirrors Catholic doctrine of fifty years ago, but many have overestimated the degree to which Vatican II changed the Catholic claim to unique authority. In brief, the Pope's recent statement affirmed that while Eastern Orthodox Churches are, in fact, part of the Christian Church (though with a 'defect'), Protestant churches are merely sympathetic congregations or communities, NOT the "Church of Christ." Those who know their New Testament will recognize exactly what that means; I was not as far wrong as many Catholics assumed I was.

Nevertheless, I have asked BeliefNet to revise my essay with the following language (the insertion point in the essay will be clear from the beginning and ending of this passage):

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

It is true that when it comes to teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ, we Mormons are definitely rivals with the Evangelical Christian movement. Baptism in one requires a clear rejection of the other interpretation of Christ’s gospel, just as joining either of our Christian traditions means rejecting the Catholic and Orthodox Christian traditions.

Let’s not forget, after all, that Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Christians have an even older “mainstream Christian tradition” than any Protestants, and for hundreds of years they were all convinced that Protestants were going to Hell — and causing the damnation of many souls. Since the 1960s, Catholics have been more polite toward Protestants — the word “heretic” is never used anymore (and they long accepted “heretic baptism”) — but the Pope recently reaffirmed that while the Orthodox churches are to be regarded as “apostolic” with a defect, Protestant churches simply don’t have the apostolic authority.

And to hardline Catholics, any distinction between Mormons and Baptists is pretty trivial — we’re all Pope-disdaining, saint-ignoring, transubstantiation-denying distractions from the true Christian message.

Have we forgotten, too, that American Protestants have a long tradition of denying Catholics the status of Christians? Magnanimously, for purposes of our discussion here, Dr. Mohler is willing to admit that Catholics are Christians ... at least compared to Mormons. He recognizes — no, he asserts — that his movement is part of the ancient Christian tradition, despite the long anti-papist tradition of the Baptist Church.

I submit that tolerance of other views of Christianity is a matter of perspective and situation.

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pooka
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I'm just glad I didn't bet Dagonee any money Card wasn't going to post here. [Smile] I'm also glad that if the Catholics turn out to be right, my son won't be stuck in limbo. Though that lady I talked to on Crete sure seemed traumatized by what her priest had told her when her child died.
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Amilia
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quote:
Originally posted by dkw:
quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:

To Mormons we believe in the same attonement that Jesus performed, the same spiritual relationship between Jesus and his Father, and in the neccesity of the Holy Ghost.

But to trinitarian Christians, you don't believe in the same atonement, because Christ being of one substance with the Father is a necessary part of the atonement. And you certainly don't believe in the same relationship between Jesus and his Father, because trinitarian Christians believe that they are one being, and Mormons do not.
It is thanks to you and all of the other thoughtful trinitarian posters here that I am finally coming to understand that. I don't often post on the many Hatrack religion threads, mainly because the things I know about are amply covered long before I get there, but I read them voraciously. And I see you and others having to explain this over and over. Sometimes it must feel as if you are typing at a brick wall. So I just wanted you to know that someone is reading and learning from your posts. Thank you for being so patient and so clear.
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stihl1
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quote:
Originally posted by pooka:
quote:
but I don't think I'm capable of explaining it properly in this context. Nor can I find a suitable explanation online. So I'm going to have to decline to explain further.
Welcome to our world. It is an interesting disconnect that Saints would be perceived as better off when they are dead. Or is it merely the irreversability of their testimony at that point?

And as I've mentioned previously, I don't understand how Mary's conception could have also been immaculate. I think I understand the concept of original sin. I just don't understand how Mary could have been free from it, or why she would have needed to if Jesus was inherently Virtuous (in the sense of powerful). That is, I don't understand why his conception of the Holy Ghost wasn't enough to make him Virtuous, why his mother would also have to be free of original sin. Dagonee has told me he doesn't understand it before, I thought I'd throw it out there for others.

It's certainly common enough for Mormons to hold various mortals as exemplary, but doctrinally, Jesus is the one supreme Exemplar. If one looks at certain statements about Joseph Smith with the traditional idea of saints, it's a very different statement than what was meant. He's much less, in this sense, than what Mary seems to be for Catholics.

P.S. It's also odd that Mormons say we don't believe in Original Sin when we teach that all will be resurrected through the grace of Christ. I mean, we call it something different, but we're basically saying that mankind is in a universal fallen condition that was reversed for everyone by Jesus. But we're saying it was the ability to die, without which they would have remained in a state of endless happiness but never being able to have children.

P.P.S. I was reading the wikipedia entry on indulgences. It's pretty interesting. I realize it is not necessarily accurate.

http://www.catholic.com/library/Immaculate_Conception_and_Assum.asp
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stihl1
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Some of my personal thoughts of the misconceptions about catholics.

Baptism of infants. Catholics baptize infants as the first sacrament. Baptism, as Christ founded it, was the way to wash us of original sins and join us with the work Christ did for us on the cross. Through baptism, we join the Body of Christ, His church on earth. As the nicene creed says, "We believe in one baptism for the forgiveness of sins." That means as long as it has proper form (with water, and in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) it is valid, no matter what religion does it. At that point, Catholics believe we are all reborn, made new creatures in Christ and a part of His church. Baptist, Luthern, Methodist, Catholic, all part of His church.

However, Catholics believe that salvation comes through the Catholic church. That's the point where we differ from protestants. We believe we must take part in the sacraments, particularly the eucharist, for salvation. The sacraments are mysteries, gifts of grace, instituted by Jesus while He was still on earth. The sacraments help us grow in faith, avoid the path of sin, and to walk the path of grace that God demands from us.

The reasons why the church believes that it is the true, full faith are 3 fold. Apostolic succession, authority, and the sacraments. I explained the sacraments. The church alone has all 7. Others have 1 or 2, the church practices all 7, and can be the only faith to do so because of authority and apostolic sucession.

Apostolic succession means that the apostles that sat at Jesus' feet, learned from him, and received the Holy Spirit at the Pentacost, founded the church. All bishops and priests have directly succeeded them from the beginning. From Peter and the apostles to now, all bishops and priests have been ordained by the direct laying on of hands and all can trace their succession to the apostles.

Authority because Jesus founded the catholic church while on earth. He commanded the apostles to go forth and teach his word on earth. He instituted the sacraments that we practice now. The church that the apostles and disciples founded became the catholic church, and was the only church for 1500 years. Also, he gave Peter the authority on earth, and the keys to the Kingdom.

What the church has always held was that salvation came through the church. Faithful that took part in the sacraments, lived the life God called us to, and tried to avoid sin as much as possible, would have good reason to believe in their salvation. That doesn't mean that one can simply go through the motions and take the sacraments and go to mass and be saved. THat means that the truly faithful that lived through the church would have a great chance at salvation.

That does not mean that non-catholics cannot be saved, however. The church has long recognized that it is possible for people to not be catholic, yet believe as a faithful catholic believes, and live as Jesus has called us to live, and be able to obtain a sufficient state of grace for salvation. And that people not able to know the word of God and of His salvation for all of us, through 'invincible ignorance', could also obtain salvation. And certainly, there are non-catholics more worthy of salvation than some catholics.

The bottom line is, salvation is God's judgement. What the church has taught and does teach is that your best bet to get there, if you are christian, is the catholic church.

A lot of what that document that was released last week is about is combatting the concept of relativism. Pope Benedict in particular has expressed his concern that relativism is hurting the church, and has made it a goal to combat it. Relativism in the sense that many catholics have mistaken the ecumenical movement to reach out to protestant brethren to mean that all religions are valid just because they are a religion. That has never been a teaching of the church. The church has always stated that it is the true, full faith of christianity. Certainly we should and can reach out to other christians, with love and understanding and inclusion. But not at the expense of the truth.

Furthermore, none of that document is anything new, just a restatement of a previous docterine. Lumen Gencia from VII, I do believe. The problem is, a lot of catholics don't understand the fine line the church is walking with these teachings, and just skip right to the 'protestants are going to hell' assumption.

Finally, the problem with catholics, especially in the US, as I see it is that most people don't understand their faith. Don't understand what the faith teaches and why. Blame it on 30+ years of bad formation and teaching in the church. Blame it on laziness and apathy on the part of the laity. Blame it on so-called 'cafeteria catholics'. Whatever reason, not knowing does not negate the teachings of the church, and doesn't mean the church is going to change to make certain people happy. It means that people need to take time to know and UNDERSTAND their faith before deciding they don't agree.

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dkw
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A few quibbles:

quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:


The [RC] church alone has all 7 [sacraments] Others have 1 or 2, the church practices all 7, and can be the only faith to do so because of authority and apostolic sucession.

Orthodox, Anglican, and Episcopal churches also have 7.


quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:

The church that the apostles and disciples founded became the catholic church, and was the only church for 1500 years.

The Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox churches serarated somewhere between the third and thirteenth centuries, depending on when in the very long process of schism you place the actual seperation.
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MrSquicky
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quote:
Protestant churches are merely sympathetic congregations or communities, NOT the "Church of Christ." Those who know their New Testament will recognize exactly what that means; I was not as far wrong as many Catholics assumed I was.
I'm pretty sure I know my New Testament and I don't see anything in that statement that makes saying Catholics believe all Protestants are going to Hell anywhere close to correct.

It may be that you are unfamiliar with Catholic theology and terminology. You might do well, if you wish to understand this better, to look at some of the stuff linked and referenced in this thread and in the thread where the Pope's recent statement was discussed on the other side.

The Catholic Church asserting itself as the only true Church of Christ seems to have taken on a meaning for you that it does not for the Catholic Church (although, to be honest, I'm not sure about this, because you don't actually say what this is). I'd offer as a rebuttal a section from the Decree on Ecumenism, which I believe Dag has linked to in this thread.
quote:
But even in spite of them it remains true that all who have been justified by faith in Baptism are members of Christ's body, and have a right to be called Christian, and so are correctly accepted as brothers by the children of the Catholic Church.
I'm also unsure of what you mean by hard-line Catholics. I note that you changed it to this from merely "Catholics".

If you mean Catholics who take their religion seriously, I don't think your description is accurate. Besides knowing many of these who do not have the beliefs you ascribe to them, I would expect that people who take Catholicism seriously would likewise take the official statements - which directly oppose the beliefs you are saying these people have - seriously.

However, if you are referring to bigots who ignore the doctrine and dictates of their Church, you are likely correct. I have to wonder, however, at the usefulness of referring to them in a discussion of the religion as a whole.

[ July 19, 2007, 12:36 PM: Message edited by: MrSquicky ]

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Mucus
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This discussion really makes me wish that religious terms like Christian, Jewish, Catholic, etc. were defined by taxonomists from a biological background.

From that perspective, this discussion is really just a discussion as to whether Christianity is a monophyletic or paraphyletic group. In fact, for the vast majority of Christians, the debate would not even quite be that...but just a debate on *how* paraphyletic Christianity is.

It would be so much better if religious labels were redesigned to be purely monophyletic and divorced from their value connotations. I also suspect that at most about three people (in the forum, not necessarily reading this thread) will understand without consulting a reference [Wink]

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pooka
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He already retracted that opinion.

I have never said we believe in the same atonement. As mentioned previously, the separateness of the Father and Son is central to my understanding of the Atonement. And if anything, Mormons could be called "Atonitarians" because we feel what was accomplished in the Atonement, which happened largely in Gethsemane but completed on Golgotha, was primary to Christ's mission. I don't know as it's more important than him dying on the cross, but it is at least equivalent, as is the fact that he was born in the first place, which exists alongside the original instance of Adam's fall as a pillar of what the atonement means. I guess rather than atonement, I could say the passion in Gethsemane.

I think it is tragic that any Mormon would try to say we don't believe what we do believe in order to be more presentable to others. Like the bumper sticker says, "It is better to be hated for what you are then loved for what you are not."

But I clicked on this thread because I was very engaged by the teaching of beatific vision, and I think it helps me understand the Saint thing a lot better. I still would say we don't pray unto people other than God, and pleading with someone who is dead seems awfully similar to praying, but setting that aside, I do think I understand it a bit better now. I also have very different feelings from most people about asking others to pray on my behalf, though now that I think about it I regularly tell people I'll pray for them. So I guess I'm a weirdo in that respect.

And it happens that we believe infants who died with or without baptism are some of the only people we can be sure live in God's presence, but I think the general idea is the same even if we feel different on who goes where when.

I believe people of every faith can enter into a state of grace, if I understand it correctly. And I won't take too much offense at standing outside of Christianity in the company of Gandhi, Frankl, and Mohammed.

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stihl1
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quote:
Originally posted by dkw:
A few quibbles:

Orthodox, Anglican, and Episcopal churches also have 7.

Orthodox have all 7. Angelican and Episcopial, any offshoot of the church of England, do not have all of the valid sacraments because they don't have a valid priesthood, from succession. They broke from the catholic church and broke the line of apostolic succession. Which is necessary to perform 6 of the 7 sacraments.
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MrSquicky
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From a Catholic perspective.

However, they believe that they are able to conduct all 7 sacraments, which differentiates them from many other sects that do not recognize the 7 sacraments that Catholics do, which is, I believe, the point that dkw was raising.

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stihl1
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I was clarifying my quote, which was this:

quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:


The [RC] church alone has all 7 [sacraments] Others have 1 or 2, the church practices all 7, and can be the only faith to do so because of authority and apostolic sucession.

That was taken out of context from my explanation of the stance that the catholic church takes that it has the full faith. Other churches might have the other sacraments, but according to the church, and in my opinion, they are not all valid. Especially the sacraments that require a priest to perform.
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Scooter
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It is hard to understand how "emergency baptism" does not connote that the lack of baptism is detrimental to someone.

This thread has been very interesting. I had no idea the Catholic church has changed so much, but I guess that could be said about most if not all churches.

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Dagonee
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quote:
It is hard to understand how "emergency baptism" does not connote that the lack of baptism is detrimental to someone.
Has someone here said that Catholic teaching does not consider the lack of baptism to be detrimental? Once again, the link above "goes into great detail as to why we can hope that unbaptized infants go to heaven yet still believe in the great good of infant baptism (which also answers why there is emergency baptism), and the necessity of baptism."
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Dagonee
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OSC, thank you for your response.

I would like to urge anyone who is interested in learning more about what the Catholic Church teaches to consult either primary sources such as the documents at vatican.va or secondary Catholic sources such as ewtn.com or some of the many good articles on diocesan web sites throughout the USA.

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katdog42
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I know I'm very late to this thread, but I really wanted to thank Dag and all of the others for trying to clear up misconceptions about our church. With some of the media articles written about some of things coming out of the Vatican recently, I feel we've had to do a lot of that lately and I appreciate people who can speak intelligently and appropriately about our beliefs.
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kmbboots
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Good to see you, katdog!
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katdog42
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Thanks kmbboots... been lurking a lot, but not able to keep up with posting.
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Objectivity
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quote:
In general, priests don't perform confirmations. There has to be a Bishop involved in confirmation, either (usually) to conduct the ceremony or to give a specific authorization to the priest to conduct the ceremony.
Not entirely true. A bishop is the one empowered to confirm. However, in many dioceses, bishops are often granting permission to priests to perform the rite instead.

It's a bit controversial because in many eyes, confirmation is the one time many people get to see their bishop.

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stihl1
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quote:
Originally posted by Scooter:
It is hard to understand how "emergency baptism" does not connote that the lack of baptism is detrimental to someone.

This thread has been very interesting. I had no idea the Catholic church has changed so much, but I guess that could be said about most if not all churches.

The catholic church has not "changed so much." The church stands by the same beliefs it as always had. The people within the church try to change it, have tried to change it, but the church stands firm the way it always has.

And in general, baptism is necessary to take part in the new covenant Jesus created. As a catholic, it seems to me to be detrimental that someone would live and die without being batpised in order to take part in that salvation. However, it is not for us to judge someone's salvation, that is up to God. And the church teaches God is merciful and judgement is His. Want to be sure you are in on being saved? Then be baptised. Of course we would want to 'emergency baptize' someone who was dying. We want everyone to be able to take part in salvation.

If you didn't value that, then I suppose it wouldn't be a big deal. But yes, catholics are in the business of evangelizing for Christ and spreading His word. So yes, we would see a death of an unbaptized person as a bad thing.

And I agree with what was said about incorrect interpretations and motives given to the Church as of late, by the media and the rest of the world in general. So much is misunderstood and wrongly interpreted.

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stihl1
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I would also like to add that OSC should think about his own religion before he begins pointing fingers and raising issues with the catholic church for asserting that it is the one, true, full faith. I have gotten a lot of flak (for the lack of a better word) from Mormons telling me about the apostacy of all christianity and especially the catholic church. That even during the time of Jesus the apostles were in apostacy and that from the start the christian churches had it 'wrong'. And that IS a teaching of the mormon church. And I see it as no different from the mormon church telling everyone else they are wrong and that after 1800 years Joseph Smith found secret golden books buried in New York, and that God and Jesus chose him in particular to bring the real true religion to the world. Frankly, it's more offensive to me for the LDS church, with no historical proof or authority whatsoever, to tell the world they are all wrong, than it is for the Catholic Church to restate what it has always asserted from the beginning. At least the church recognizes that other ecumenical communities worship the same God and Christ, that they have the same intentions, and some have some of the same truths as the church does.

Either way you look at it, all religions believe they are right. Why would you want to be a part of a religion if they didn't think they held the truth? But to pretend that the Catholic Church is doing anything worse than the mormon church does is specious and disingenuous.

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Dagonee
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quote:
Originally posted by Objectivity:
quote:
In general, priests don't perform confirmations. There has to be a Bishop involved in confirmation, either (usually) to conduct the ceremony or to give a specific authorization to the priest to conduct the ceremony.
Not entirely true. A bishop is the one empowered to confirm. However, in many dioceses, bishops are often granting permission to priests to perform the rite instead.

It's a bit controversial because in many eyes, confirmation is the one time many people get to see their bishop.

How does this make what I said "not entirely true"? You quoted the part where I said "or to give a specific authorization to the priest to conduct the ceremony." How is this different from "granting permission to priests to perform the rite instead"?

quote:
I would also like to add that OSC should think about his own religion before he begins pointing fingers and raising issues with the catholic church for asserting that it is the one, true, full faith. I have gotten a lot of flak (for the lack of a better word) from Mormons telling me about the apostacy of all christianity and especially the catholic church.
I don't think OSC has a problem with the Catholic Church asserting its primacy. I think he believes the Church is wrong in this assertion, of course, but I don't think he's being at all inconsistent here.

He brought up the Catholic Church as a means to demonstrate that Protestants asserting orthodoxy as a reason to exclude Mormons from the term "Christian" are vulnerable to a similar claim of exclusion from Catholics. I think he is incorrect about his specific assertions concerning those differences and does not comprehend that the differences between Catholics and Protestants are of a different kind, not merely a different degree, than the differences between both and LDS beliefs.

But I don't take issue at all with his highlighting Catholic beliefs concerning the nature of the Church to illustrate that Christians can, even while acknowledging important difference, still acknowledge the common elements of their beliefs and work together based on those common beliefs.

quote:
Frankly, it's more offensive to me for the LDS church, with no historical proof or authority whatsoever, to tell the world they are all wrong, than it is for the Catholic Church to restate what it has always asserted from the beginning.
I don't see how it's more offensive - or offensive at all, for that matter.
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pooka
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The LDS church claims it's one-true-ness by virtue of what could be termed innovation and responsiveness. Though a lot of people, and church members are not exempt, mistake it for authoritative orthodoxy. That is, I know of no official LDS source that would call it the one true church, though "true and living" appears frequently and even "The only true and living church."

A similar issue goes along with the Book of Mormon, that we believe it is "the most correct book", but it does not claim to be perfect, and it is not an upgrade or replacement of the Bible. Many unique LDS doctrines come more from the New Testament than from the Book of Mormon. Man's existence as a spirit before birth, for instance, does not appear in the Book of Mormon anywhere that I can see.


Also, I apologize for my revilings earlier in the thread.

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Scott R
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quote:
Man's existence as a spirit before birth, for instance, does not appear in the Book of Mormon anywhere that I can see.
Alma 13:3

Helaman 14:17

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Jon Boy
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quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:
I have gotten a lot of flak (for the lack of a better word) from Mormons telling me about the apostacy of all christianity and especially the catholic church. That even during the time of Jesus the apostles were in apostacy and that from the start the christian churches had it 'wrong'. And that IS a teaching of the mormon church.

That's not exactly true. I believe the standard position is that the Christian churches went into apostasy after all the apostles were dead, not while they were still alive and leading the church, and definitely not while Christ was still alive.
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Scooter
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quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:
I would also like to add that OSC should think about his own religion before he begins pointing fingers and raising issues with the catholic church for asserting that it is the one, true, full faith. I have gotten a lot of flak (for the lack of a better word) from Mormons telling me about the apostacy of all christianity and especially the catholic church. That even during the time of Jesus the apostles were in apostacy and that from the start the christian churches had it 'wrong'. And that IS a teaching of the mormon church. And I see it as no different from the mormon church telling everyone else they are wrong and that after 1800 years Joseph Smith found secret golden books buried in New York, and that God and Jesus chose him in particular to bring the real true religion to the world. Frankly, it's more offensive to me for the LDS church, with no historical proof or authority whatsoever, to tell the world they are all wrong, than it is for the Catholic Church to restate what it has always asserted from the beginning. At least the church recognizes that other ecumenical communities worship the same God and Christ, that they have the same intentions, and some have some of the same truths as the church does.

Either way you look at it, all religions believe they are right. Why would you want to be a part of a religion if they didn't think they held the truth? But to pretend that the Catholic Church is doing anything worse than the mormon church does is specious and disingenuous.

I think you have missed OSC's point.

My point about "changing" was speaking to the early position of the Catholic church to claim authority and a direct link to Christ's original church/organization, and deeming those who broke away from the Catholic church as heretics (this is a sloppy description, but I believe it is essentially correct). From this thread, it appears that "the Catholic Church" has softened and acknowledged those who would have formerly been deemed as heretics as having valid baptisms and equal access to salvation (at least that is how the church's positions have been described in this thread, essentially). Furthermore, baptism appears to be a safeguard but not essential (by the way, if God publicly announces a requisite of salvation, it is not human judgment to say that it is essential to do whatever it is that God said was essential. However, to declare a certain individual to be condemned to a certain eternal outcome would be a form of judgment).

I admit I have not gone to all the primary sources, and eventually would like to, but my response was based on the information presented in this thread that were allegedly based on said sources.

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Dagonee
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Scooter, I don't have time to go into details, but almost all of your summaries are incorrect. For example, baptism is essential and is much more than a mere "safeguard."
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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by stihl1:
The catholic church has not "changed so much." The church stands by the same beliefs it as always had. The people within the church try to change it, have tried to change it, but the church stands firm the way it always has.


I don't think this is true. And thank goodness!
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Originally posted by Dagonee:
Scooter, I don't have time to go into details, but almost all of your summaries are incorrect. For example, baptism is essential and is much more than a mere "safeguard."

Dagonee -- I thought that with the recent changes/clarifications about unbaptized infants, the Catholic Church was saying that while important, baptism may not be essential. Where did I get it wrong?

quote:
Frankly, it's more offensive to me for the LDS church, with no historical proof or authority whatsoever, to tell the world they are all wrong...
From the LDS perspective, that's the crux of the issue -- whether or not we have the authority to say such things.
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pooka
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Hmm. I really don't like that way of putting it. It's what I didn't like initially. I don't think God has ever given authority to say "we are right and you are wrong". What he has told is is "we are all wrong, and we need to repent."

But maybe I'm just not a very good Mormon.

Even Jesus said "Why do you call me good?"

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TomDavidson
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Even He had to fish for compliments some times.
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Jim-Me
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
Even He had to fish for compliments some times.

He wouldn't have if He spent less time loafing...
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kmbboots
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Heh. Good one.
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Jim-Me
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[Hat]
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by Jim-Me:
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
Even He had to fish for compliments some times.

He wouldn't have if He spent less time loafing...
Don't forget the fishy dealings.
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DDDaysh
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Well, I'm very glad the Catholic church accepted all your baptisms. I suppose there must be an even wider variation than I previously supposed, either that or "methodists" must be special. The Lutherans around here who "convert" are all rebaptised. We really don't have anything except Lutherans that I've ever seen convert. I wonder who decides what will "count"...

On the other hand, I re-affirm my position that Catholic "doctrine" is not the same as Catholic belief, since both tend to change from time to time, and do vary greatly by priest. (As a side note, while a Bishop does do the actual confirmation, the priest directs almost all confirmation prep and decides who the candidates will be.)

Personally, I found both of OSC's statements valid, but I am glad he decided to revise his statement. It means he's still capable of learning from mistakes.... a very good role model.

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Dagonee
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quote:
Well, I'm very glad the Catholic church accepted all your baptisms. I suppose there must be an even wider variation than I previously supposed, either that or "methodists" must be special. The Lutherans around here who "convert" are all rebaptised. We really don't have anything except Lutherans that I've ever seen convert. I wonder who decides what will "count"...
In the two diocese I have been connected with conversion, Lutheran baptisms have been accepted. Most sites I have read cite Lutherans as one of the classic examples of baptisms acceptable to the Catholic Church.

quote:
Personally, I found both of OSC's statements valid
Could you please explain this?

His first statement was flat out factually incorrect. How was it "valid" to you, personally?

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kmbboots
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According to doctrine, Lutherans should NOT be rebaptized. If you are sure this is what is happening, someone is misinformed and this should be addressed.
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pooka
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quote:
How was it "valid" to you, personally?
He attends a diocese that rebaptizes Lutherans.

It's only invalid if a) no protestants require rebaptism and b) baptism is not necessary to not go to hell.

But the important thing is that we Mormons know we are going to Hell. Good thing we don't believe in Hell.

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kmbboots
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pooka, this was discussed somewhere earlier.

Trinitarian baptisms are considered valid baptisms by the Catholic Church. If someone has already had a valid baptism, we don't rebaptise them because that would indicate that we did not consider their baptism to be valid. LDS (along with a few other groups) baptism is not considered valid because it is not trinitarian. Most protestant denominations use what Catholics consider a valid form. It would be disrespectful to indicate those baptisms had to be redone.

And not being baptised does not equal "going to hell".

So that addresses both your conditions.

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Dagonee
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quote:
Originally posted by pooka:
quote:
How was it "valid" to you, personally?
He attends a diocese that rebaptizes Lutherans.

It's only invalid if a) no protestants require rebaptism and b) baptism is not necessary to not go to hell.

OSC didn't say "Some Catholics believe that some Protestants are going to Hell." He said "good Catholics are convinced that all those Protestants are going to Hell." (emphasis added)

Unless he thinks "good Catholics" means "Catholics who believe things contrary to official teachings of the Catholic Church," I don't see how the presence of some Catholics mistakenly rebaptizing Lutherans makes what OSC said valid.

quote:
But the important thing is that we Mormons know we are going to Hell. Good thing we don't believe in Hell.
Again, not true (assuming you meant to state that Catholic teaching is that Mormons are going to Hell). If that's not what you meant, please clarify.
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mr_porteiro_head
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Dagonee, did you see my earlier question to you?
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kmbboots
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mph, I'm sure Dagonee will answer this better and more completely, but as I understand it, it is essential that baptism as a sacrament exist.

There are ways that one can share in the sacrament of baptism without actually going through the ritual. Baptism of intent for example. If someone would have been baptised but couldn't for some reason. The thief on the cross is an example. Babies are another.

It is rather complicated, but my simple "rule of thumb" is that a loving God does not deny His children on technicalities.

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Dagonee
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quote:
Dagonee, did you see my earlier question to you?
I did not.

quote:
Dagonee -- I thought that with the recent changes/clarifications about unbaptized infants, the Catholic Church was saying that while important, baptism may not be essential. Where did I get it wrong?
Here is the recent document from the International Theological Commission. One relevant passage:

quote:
There seems to be a tension between two of the biblical doctrines just mentioned: the universal salvific will of God on the one side and the necessity of sacramental baptism on the other. The latter seems to limit the extension of God's universal salvific will. Hence a hermeneutical reflection is needed about how the witnesses of tradition (church fathers, the magisterium, theologians) read and used biblical texts and doctrines with respect to the problem being dealt with. More specifically, one has to clarify what kind of "necessity" is claimed with respect to the sacrament of baptism in order to avoid a mistaken understanding.

The necessity of sacramental baptism is a necessity of the second order compared to the absolute necessity of God's saving act through Jesus Christ for the final salvation of every human being. Sacramental baptism is necessary because it is the ordinary means through which a person shares the beneficial effects of Jesus' death and resurrection. In what follows, we will be attentive to the way scriptural witnesses have been used in the tradition. Moreover, in dealing with theological principles (Chapter 2) and with our reasons for hope (Chapter 3), we will discuss in greater detail the biblical doctrines and texts involved.

You'd really need the whole thing to answer your question, though.

It's also important to keep in mind what baptism is essential to. For example, it has never been official teaching - though some have taught - that baptism is essential to avoid hell.

Baptism is considered essential for believers to obtain salvation, with various alternative forms available to the standard sacramental form. That's not the same doctrine applied to infants here.

Also, the Church hasn't taught that infants receive salvation. It has taught there is reason to hope that they do.

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kmbboots
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See, I told you Dagonee would have a more complete and correct answer!

If it helps, "univeral salvific will" means God's desire for everyone to be saved.

My "reason to hope" is the surety in this universal salvific will and that God (being somewhat smarter even than we are) has ways to save us, if we want to be saved, that we haven't necessarily figured out.

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DDDaysh
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Valid doesn't necessarily mean absolutely factual. Valid means encompassing the heart of the problem. I think both statements make an adequate representation of the situation.

As for the "good Catholic" thing. If the Pope believes Catholics are the only TRUE church, then it's hard to see how MOST other Christians would not go to hell. Yet, since Catholics also believe being good can make up for imperfection of belief, I suppose that just because you're not Catholic doesn't mean you're going to hell. Still... you'd have all those sins on your soul from never going to mass.... how much do you think you have to donate to the United Way to clear up THAT deficit?

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kmbboots
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Sigh. DDDayish, if you are really interested in the Catholic Church's position on most other Christians, read this:

http://tinyurl.com/3xnyh

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Dagonee
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quote:
I think both statements make an adequate representation of the situation.
If "adequate" means "inaccurate, misleading, and wrong" then I agree with you.

That's not how I use "adequate," however.

quote:
If the Pope believes Catholics are the only TRUE church, then it's hard to see how MOST other Christians would not go to hell.
This has been explained over and over again in this thread.

quote:
Yet, since Catholics also believe being good can make up for imperfection of belief, I suppose that just because you're not Catholic doesn't mean you're going to hell. Still... you'd have all those sins on your soul from never going to mass.... how much do you think you have to donate to the United Way to clear up THAT deficit?
You have a cartoonish view of Catholic beliefs.
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