Saturday, March 30, 2013

Interesting Catholic Answers from Catholic Answers

For those of you who have trouble understanding the interpretation of Christianity put forth by the Roman Catholic magisterium, Catholic Answers has a section on their discussion forums where you can post a question and someone on staff will answer the question. In other words, you can get an interpretation of the interpretation and then personally interpret it for yourself.

Here were a few recent interesting questions and answers. I've tried to abridge some of these, so feel free to follow the links to the complete versions. I simply posted some of the things that jumped out at me. This morning I went through a number of these questions with a family member who grew up Roman Catholic, and went to a Roman Catholic school.

Question: is chewing gum while fasting ok?
Answer: Gum is not food. It does not break a fast.

Question: Are Horoscopes sinful?
Answer: "Reading a daily horoscope just for laughs may not be a sin, but it could qualify as a near occasion of sin. That is because the temptation is always present to give credence to the "predictions."

Question: Should priests baptize adopted children of gay couples?
Answer: "Unless there is danger of death, in which case anyone may baptize a child below the age of reason, one or both parents must give their consent and there must be "a well-founded hope" that the child will be raised Catholic. The non-Catholic mother would have to consent to the baptism and the priest or deacon performing the baptism would have to be satisfied that the child would be raised Catholic. Given the fact that homosexual relationships are very often short-term, it is possible that the Catholic "mother" may well not be a part of this child's life long enough to form the child in the Catholic faith (presuming this Catholic could properly form this child in the faith). If you know of a balanced, orthodox priest or deacon in their area, you might give his name to the women and recommend that they consult him for more information about the Church's requirements for infant baptism."

Question: What ability is required to consummate the marital relationship?
Answer: "What is required is that the couple must be able to perform the act of intercourse—even though the man may be impotent or the woman may be sterile. But to consummate the marriage, they must be able to engage in the act."

Question: Did I sin by not going to Sunday Mass?
Answer: "If you forgot or were ill or missed Mass through no fault of your own, you did not sin. But if your just didn't care or were lazy, then it is a mortal sin. "

Question: Is jealousy a sin?
Answer: "Thoughts are just thoughts. It's what we do as the result of them than can cause harm."

Question: What do I do about going to Mass if I live on a remote island?
Answer: "The Sunday Eucharist is the foundation and confirmation of all Christian practice. For this reason the faithful are obliged to participate in the Eucharist on days of obligation, unless excused for a serious reason (for example, illness, the care of infants) or dispensed by their own pastor. Those who deliberately fail in this obligation commit a grave sin."

Question: How is someone who claims to be Christian yet aggressively promotes abortion and "gay marriage" more Christian than a Mormon?
Answer: "When we say that Mormons are not Christians, we don’t mean that they do not act in a Christian way. Many do and undoubtedly are closer to God than many wayward Christians. We are saying that their understanding of the Trinity and Jesus is so defective, that it cannot be called Christian."

Question: Is coffee permitted before Mass?
Answer: "If you can finish your coffee at least one hour before Communion, then it is fine to drink it on the way to church. Otherwise, coffee does break the Communion fast."

Question: Did Mary suffer labor pains?
Answer: "To the best of my knowledge, the Church hasn't defined one way or the other whether or not Mary suffered in childbirth. It is within the realm of acceptable theological opinion to hold either that Mary was free of childbirth pain because she was free of original sin; or that, even though she was not subject to this punishment of original sin, that she may have suffered it to be in deeper conformity to her suffering Son, Jesus Christ. Until the Church decides one way or the other, Catholics are free to hold either opinion."


EA said...

"In other words, you can get an interpretation of the interpretation and then personally interpret it for yourself."

Nothing says certainty like a third or fourth hand interpretation. Take our word for it, you should listen to us; we have faithful Catholic Answers.

PeaceByJesus said...

Catholic Answers Runs Out Of Questions; To Close Its Doors In May

San Diego, CA–It was officially announced today that after 25 years, the largest lay-run Catholic apostolate for evangelization and apologetics in the United States Catholic Answers is closing its doors for good this May. The decision to shut down the apostolate was revealed on a live broadcast of The World Over with Raymond Arroyo last week when, during the break, Catholic Answers Founder and President Karl Keating was caught on a hot mic saying, “Honestly, though, I’m kinda over it. I mean, how many times during Lent do I have to be asked whether frog legs are considered meat?”

63-year-old Keating spoke to the press after the interview and apologized to anyone he may have offended. “Here’s the thing…we’ve pretty much answered everything there is to answer. Simply put, we’ve run out of questions.”

The apostolate is expected to close its doors after releasing its final issue of Catholic Answers Magazine, in which the topic of the proper amount of incense required during a Chaldean Rite liturgy is discussed. “Yup…that’ll pretty much wrap it up,” Keating said. -

John Bugay said...

Question: Is coffee permitted before Mass? -- this is only a problem when you go to Fr. So-and-So's mass. He can crank 'em out in 23 minutes. That was important back in the day. Getting it over with. And so, in that case, you would have to be careful with the coffee.

On the other hand, in another church, and for a longer Sunday mass, (if it was after 11:00 am), you could be stuffing your face with McNuggets, fries, and milkshake as you walk into the back of church and not have to worry about the new-and-improved hour-long communion fast.

John Bugay said...

PBJ, that site appears to be a kind of "Onion" take-off. That's pretty funny.

Ken said...

When did the distinction between mortal and venial sins start?

Was it Tertullian who started that?

and how did it develop into what it is today?

John Bugay said...

Hi Ken -- I talk a bit about that here:

Ken said...

Thanks John!
I always appreciate your work. Hope you are well; and I am praying for you to find good work soon (sorry if I have not seen an update) and praying for continued healing and strength for Beth.

Ken said...

I remember seeing that article before; but didn't have a chance to read it deeply. Hope to have time to digest it and the links.

John Bugay said...

Thanks Ken. Not much has changed. I've had a few opportunities but nothing definite so far. We appreciate your prayers.