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A Critical Analysis of the Heart of Catholicism - Essay Example

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A Critical Analysis of the Heart of Catholicism

Catholicism looks upon these religious authorities as the mediation between God and a devout Christian. Perceptibly at the heart of Catholicism lies a rigid sense of institutionalism, a strong commitment to the religious authorities, rituals and practices. For salvation and redemption, people need to gather around the bishop since he is the true descendant of God and, therefore, of Jesus. In Catholicism, this institutional approach to belief and the importance of communion with the Holy See through a religious medium like church or other religious authority are essentially inspired by Biblical evidences and history. One of Jesus’ speeches supports Catholicism’s claim about the importance of a believer’s communion with the religious authority is as following: “I say to you, something greater than the temple is here” (Barron 24). Indeed in Catholicism, the ideas of ‘temple’ and ‘bishop’ are the representatives of each other. In this regard, Barron says, “If Jesus is, in his person, the true temple, then he should be the definitive source of teaching, healing and, forgiveness and this is just what the Gospel tells us” (Barron 24). ...
According to the Roman Catholic Church, “only a Catholic Priest ordained into the apostolic succession can administered the Eucharist” (Erickson 1122). Erickson further says in this regard, “If any other person should take the same physical elements and pronounce the same words over them, they would remain bread and wine” (1122). Catholicism, in no way, can detach it from the authoritarian zeal. This same authoritarian zeal in Catholicism manifests a strongly rigid adherence to institutional propriety of performing the sacrament. Since Jesus himself performed this sacrament with a number of his chosen disciples, Roman Catholic Church would prohibit the participation of ordinary people. But such prohibition has severely been criticized by Martin Luther, one of the famous critics of Catholicism, on the point that “[Catholicism] withheld the cup from the laity. They were permitted to take only the bread. The clergy took the cup on behalf of the laity” (Erickson 1123). The Roman Catholics believe in a form of ‘transubstantiation’ which brings a metaphysical change in the elements of the Lord’s Supper administered by the right priest, as Erickson notes in this regard, “The substance of the bread and wine –what they actually are- is changed into Christ’s flesh and blood, respectively. The accidents, however, remain unchanged…” (1124) Such catholic belief essentially lies in Christ’s speech: “This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me” (Corinthians 11:20-21). Any devout catholic further believes that the Holy Communion can be achieved by drinking Christ’s blood, as Christ says, “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not ...Show more

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Catholicism looks upon these religious authorities as the mediation between God and a devout Christian.Perceptibly at the heart of Catholicism lies a rigid sense of institutionalism, a strong commitment to the religious authorities, rituals and practices…
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