Friday, October 20, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 355 – Part II.



YOUCAT Question n. 355 - Part II. “You shall not have strange Gods before me.” What does that mean?


(Youcat answer - repeated) This commandment forbids us: to adore other gods and pagan deities or to worship an earthly idol or to devote oneself entirely to some earthly good (money, influence, success, beauty, youth, and so on); to be superstitious, which means to adhere to esoteric, magic, or occult or New Age practices or to get involved with fortune telling or spiritualism, instead of believing in God’s power, providence, and blessings; to provoke God by word or deed; to commit a sacrilege; to acquire spiritual power through corruption and to desecrate what is holy through trafficking (simony).    

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2112) The first commandment condemns polytheism. It requires man neither to believe in, nor to venerate, other divinities than the one true God. Scripture constantly recalls this rejection of "idols, (of) silver and gold, the work of men's hands. They have mouths, but do not speak; eyes, but do not see." These empty idols make their worshippers empty: "Those who make them are like them; so are all who trust in them" (Ps 115:4-5, 8; cf. Isa 44:9-20; Jer 10:1-16; Dan 14:1-30; Bar 6; Wis 13: 1- 15:19). God, however, is the "living God" (Josh 3:10; Ps 42:3; etc.) who gives life and intervenes in history.

Reflecting and meditating 

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2113) Idolatry not only refers to false pagan worship. It remains a constant temptation to faith. Idolatry consists in divinizing what is not God. Man commits idolatry whenever he honors and reveres a creature in place of God, whether this be gods or demons (for example, satanism), power, pleasure, race, ancestors, the state, money, etc. Jesus says, "You cannot serve God and mammon" (Mt 6:24). Many martyrs died for not adoring "the Beast" (Cf. Rev 13-14) refusing even to simulate such worship. Idolatry rejects the unique Lordship of God; it is therefore incompatible with communion with God (Cf. Gal 5:20;  Eph 5:5).     
 
(This question: “You shall not have strange Gods before me.” What does that mean?  is continued)

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 355 – Part I.




YOUCAT Question n. 355 - Part I. “You shall not have strange Gods before me.” What does that mean?


(Youcat answer) This commandment forbids us: to adore other gods and pagan deities or to worship an earthly idol or to devote oneself entirely to some earthly good (money, influence, success, beauty, youth, and so on); to be superstitious, which means to adhere to esoteric, magic, or occult or New Age practices or to get involved with fortune telling or spiritualism, instead of believing in God’s power, providence, and blessings; to provoke God by word or deed; to commit a sacrilege; to acquire spiritual power through corruption and to desecrate what is holy through trafficking (simony).     

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2110) The first commandment forbids honoring gods other than the one Lord who has revealed himself to his people. It proscribes superstition and irreligion. Superstition in some sense represents a perverse excess of religion; irreligion is the vice contrary by defect to the virtue of religion. 2110

Reflecting and meditating 

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2111) Superstition is the deviation of religious feeling and of the practices this feeling imposes. It can even affect the worship we offer the true God, e.g., when one attributes an importance in some way magical to certain practices otherwise lawful or necessary. To attribute the efficacy of prayers or of sacramental signs to their mere external performance, apart from the interior dispositions that they demand, is to fall into superstition  (Cf. Mt 23:16-22).       

(This question: “You shall not have strange Gods before me.” What does that mean?  is continued)

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 354 – Part II.



YOUCAT Question n. 354 - Part II. Can people be forced to believe in God?


(Youcat answer - repeated) No. No one may force others to believe, not even one’s own children, just as no one may be forced to be an unbeliever. A person can make the decision to believe only in complete freedom. Christians, however, are called to help other people, by word and example, to find the way to faith.    

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2108) The right to religious liberty is neither a moral license to adhere to error, nor a supposed right to error (Cf. Leo XIII, Libertas praestantissimum 18; Pius XII AAS 1953, 799), but rather a natural right of the human person to civil liberty, i.e., immunity, within just limits, from external constraint in religious matters by political authorities. This natural right ought to be acknowledged in the juridical order of society in such a way that it constitutes a civil right (Cf. DH 2).    

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Pope John Paul II said, “Proclaiming Christ and bearing witness to him, when done in a way that respects consciences, does not violate freedom. Faith demands a free adherence on the part of man, but at the same time faith must also be offered to him” (Encyclical Redemptoris missio, 1990, no. 8).

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2109) The right to religious liberty can of itself be neither unlimited nor limited only by a "public order" conceived in a positivist or naturalist manner (Cf. Pius VI, Quod aliquantum (1791) 10; Pius IX, Quanta cura 3). The "due limits" which are inherent in it must be determined for each social situation by political prudence, according to the requirements of the common good, and ratified by the civil authority in accordance with "legal principles which are in conformity with the objective moral order" (DH 7 § 3).       

(The next question is: You shall not have strange Gods before me.” What does that mean?)

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 354 – Part I.



YOUCAT Question n. 354 - Part I. Can people be forced to believe in God?


(Youcat answer) No. No one may force others to believe, not even one’s own children, just as no one may be forced to be an unbeliever. A person can make the decision to believe only in complete freedom. Christians, however, are called to help other people, by word and example, to find the way to faith.     

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2106) "Nobody may be forced to act against his convictions, nor is anyone to be restrained from acting in accordance with his conscience in religious matters in private or in public, alone or in association with others, within due limits" (DH 2 § 1). This right is based on the very nature of the human person, whose dignity enables him freely to assent to the divine truth which transcends the temporal order. For this reason it "continues to exist even in those who do not live up to their obligation of seeking the truth and adhering to it" (DH 2 § 2).   

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Pope John Paul II said, “Proclaiming Christ and bearing witness to him, when done in a way that respects consciences, does not violate freedom. Faith demands a free adherence on the part of man, but at the same time faith must also be offered to him” (Encyclical Redemptoris missio, 1990, no. 8).

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2137) "Men of the present day want to profess their religion freely in private and in public" (DH 15). (CCC 2107) "If because of the circumstances of a particular people special civil recognition is given to one religious community in the constitutional organization of a state, the right of all citizens and religious communities to religious freedom must be recognized and respected as well" (DH 6 § 3).   

(This question: Can people be forced to believe in God? is continued)

Monday, October 16, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 353 – Part V.



YOUCAT Question n. 353 - Part V. Why do we worship God?


(Youcat answer - repeated) We worship God because he exists and because reverence and worship are the appropriate response to his revelation and his presence. “You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve” (Mt 4:10).   

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2105) The duty of offering God genuine worship concerns man both individually and socially. This is "the traditional Catholic teaching on the moral duty of individuals and societies toward the true religion and the one Church of Christ" (DH 1 § 3). By constantly evangelizing men, the Church works toward enabling them "to infuse the Christian spirit into the mentality and mores, laws and structures of the communities in which [they] live" (AA 13 § 1). The social duty of Christians is to respect and awaken in each man the love of the true and the good. It requires them to make known the worship of the one true religion which subsists in the Catholic and apostolic Church  (Cf. DH 1). Christians are called to be the light of the world. Thus, the Church shows forth the kingship of Christ over all creation and in particular over human societies (Cf. AA 13; Leo XIII, Immortale Dei 3, 17; Pius XI, Quas primas 8, 20).       

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Worshipping God, however, is also beneficial to men, for it frees them from servitude to the powers of this world. When God is no longer worshipped and when he is no longer thought to be Lord over life and death, others assume that position and put human dignity at risk.     

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2135) "You shall worship the Lord your God" (Mt 4:10). Adoring God, praying to him, offering him the worship that belongs to him, fulfilling the promises and vows made to him are acts of the virtue of religion which fall under obedience to the first commandment.     

(The next question is: Can people be forced to believe in God?)