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Why A Former Evangelical Loves the Rosary
Catholic Online ^ | February 26, 2014 | Fr. Dwight Longenecker

Posted on 02/26/2014 8:55:59 AM PST by NYer

GREENVILLE, SC (Catholic Online) - In his conversion story Rome Sweet Home Scott Hahn, the once staunchly anti-Catholic Presbyterian minister describes how, as a fervent Evangelical teenager, he discovered his grandmother's rosary beads. His grandmother had just died and the young Scott Hahn ripped the rosary in pieces crying out, "God, set her free from the chains of Catholicism that have bound her!"

Since then, Scott has discovered the power of the rosary and has written a beautiful book about the Blessed Virgin Mary called Hail Holy Queen. Scott is not the only Evangelical to have discovered the rosary. I was brought up in a similar background. After college I went to England to study and was eventually ordained an Anglican priest. As an Anglican priest I used to make my annual retreat at the Benedictine monastery of Quarr Abbey.  Just as I was about to leave for retreat a parishioner gave me a rosary. She had just returned from a pilgrimage to the medieval shrine of Walsingham and had felt led to buy me this gift. I had never used the rosary, and was prejudiced against it.

One of my guiding principles, however, was a little saying I had discovered while a student. It is, "A person is most often right in what he affirms and wrong in what he denies."

So I looked at the rosary and asked myself why I was denying something used by millions of fellow Christians. Who was more likely to be right-me or the millions? So I went to the monastery gift shop and found a little book of instruction and started to learn my way around that "chain of prayer that binds us to God."


(Excerpt) Read more at catholic.org ...


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Evangelical Christian; Prayer
KEYWORDS:
Fr Dwight Longenecker is the author of Praying the Rosary for Inner Healing. Visit his blog, listen to his radio show, subscribe to his weekly newsletter and be in touch at dwightlongenecker.com
1 posted on 02/26/2014 8:55:59 AM PST by NYer
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To: Tax-chick; GregB; Berlin_Freeper; SumProVita; narses; bboop; SevenofNine; Ronaldus Magnus; tiki; ...
One of the best things about Evangelicals is their emphasis on having a "personal relationship with Jesus". Often that means they regard Christ as a friend and brother. That is good, but Jesus Christ is also our Lord and God. Because of this our relationship with him should also be one of adoration and love. What they don't understand is that the rosary draws us closer to Christ in an amazing way.

Ping!

2 posted on 02/26/2014 8:56:44 AM PST by NYer ("The wise man is the one who can save his soul. - St. Nimatullah Al-Hardini)
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To: NYer

I discovered the rosary when I met my wife, a protestant who was a devout Catholic until her mid-30’s. It’s an interesting, but long, story.

But I didn’t discover it the way this guy did. I discovered it in the same way I discovered the koran after 911


3 posted on 02/26/2014 8:59:32 AM PST by cuban leaf
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To: NYer

I pray Rosary daily...
thanks for posting


4 posted on 02/26/2014 9:09:17 AM PST by aimee5291
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To: NYer

I can guarantee there are many more Catholics who became Evangelicals than the other way around. The veil has been rent asunder and we may approach the Throne of God boldly. So many Catholics have discovered this and been freed from the control of men and stepped directly into the Light of the World.


5 posted on 02/26/2014 9:24:39 AM PST by Dr. Thorne ("How long, O Lord, holy and true?" - Rev. 6:10)
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To: NYer

As an Anglican convert to Catholicism while studying at Harvard (not what my Harvard professors would have wished), I was a bit standoffish of the Rosary at first. But I have come to the point of saying it daily, in the evening.

Just about all the prayers in the Rosary are biblical. The Apostle’s Creed, which is a kind of summary of Bible teachings. The Lord’s Prayer, which Christ himself commanded us to use. And the Hail Mary, which Protestants may at first find disturbing. But the first half of the Hail Mary is straight from the Bible—the words of the Archangel to the Virgin Mary at the Annunciation. And the second half asks Mary to pray for us, “that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.” It is not an adoration of Mary, not idolatry, but a fervent request that the Mother of God will intercede for us with her Son, and will help to show us her Son.

Finally, each decade ends with a Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. . . .” So, we pray to all three persons of the Trinity in the course of saying the rosary, as well as asking Mary’s intercession. Jesus Himself said to the servants at the wedding feast of Cana, “Do whatever she tells you.” Because Mary will never say or do anything that goes against His wishes.

As for the Mysteries of the Rosary, those two are basically biblical, and they are centered on the life of Jesus, or on Mary giving birth to Jesus, presenting or finding him in the Temple, and so on. It is because all that she does is directed toward God that the Bible says that “all generations” will call Mary blessed.


6 posted on 02/26/2014 9:24:51 AM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: aimee5291

Me too Aimee! I love the rosary and it has been life changing for me.


7 posted on 02/26/2014 9:26:07 AM PST by PatriotGirl827 (O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee)
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To: Cicero

“Those two” should be “Those too.”


8 posted on 02/26/2014 9:26:18 AM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: Dr. Thorne
I can guarantee there are many more Catholics who became Evangelicals than the other way around.

Majority vote doesn't define truth.

9 posted on 02/26/2014 9:26:58 AM PST by Campion ("Social justice" begins in the womb)
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To: Dr. Thorne

“I can guarantee there are many more Catholics who became Evangelicals than the other way around”

You are kidding right?


10 posted on 02/26/2014 9:27:51 AM PST by NKP_Vet (“From man’s sweat and God’s love, beer came into the world.” – St. Arnold of Metz)
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To: Dr. Thorne

Oh brother.


11 posted on 02/26/2014 9:33:16 AM PST by heights
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To: Dr. Thorne

Control of men? There is no indication of that in the Catholic Church. No


12 posted on 02/26/2014 9:33:41 AM PST by stanne
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To: aimee5291

Same here.


13 posted on 02/26/2014 9:34:18 AM PST by heights
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To: Cicero
I think it's the other way around . . .

"His mother saith to the waiters: Whatsoever he shall say to you, do ye." -John 2:5.

Mary always points the way to her Son.

14 posted on 02/26/2014 9:35:25 AM PST by AnAmericanMother (Ecce Crucem Domini, fugite partes adversae. Vicit Leo de Tribu Iuda, Radix David, Alleluia!)
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To: Campion; Dr. Thorne

Nor does some random statement without any references


15 posted on 02/26/2014 9:35:28 AM PST by stanne
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To: NYer

I happen to know Father, btw. He’s a good man and a good priest.


16 posted on 02/26/2014 9:35:48 AM PST by AnAmericanMother (Ecce Crucem Domini, fugite partes adversae. Vicit Leo de Tribu Iuda, Radix David, Alleluia!)
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To: NYer

How about these protestants praying the rosary.

http://www.catholic.org/prwire/headline.php?ID=11482&wf=rsscol

One of the surviving POWs, who will be at the award ceremony in April at the White House, said Fr. Kapaun was murdered by Chinese prison camp guards in 1951 because he openly defied many of the camp rules, including praying the rosary with other prisoners. Mike Dowe, who like dozens of other survivors of the camp has petitioned both Congress and the Vatican for these honors, recalls that by the time Kapaun died, Protestants and men of other beliefs were praying the Catholic rosary and were openly resisting the Chinese torture.


17 posted on 02/26/2014 9:42:29 AM PST by NKP_Vet (“From man’s sweat and God’s love, beer came into the world.” – St. Arnold of Metz)
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To: Campion; Dr. Thorne
Majority vote doesn't define truth.

And yet, the theory that it does is in the article itself.

So I looked at the rosary and asked myself why I was denying something used by millions of fellow Christians. Who was more likely to be right-me or the millions?

18 posted on 02/26/2014 9:43:11 AM PST by xone
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To: NYer
I know why!

Because deep down we are all idolaters!

19 posted on 02/26/2014 9:51:13 AM PST by Gamecock
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To: xone

The answer is in the wording: “why was I denying”. Always the rejection first before evaluation. To say no is the default position. In that sense its not a question of majorities. It is his own personal search as to why he was saying no to the Rosary. The mention of the multitudes who believe and use the rosary is not an appeal to authority by way of majority but the inner struggle to define the reasoning for his own personal rejection of so many.


20 posted on 02/26/2014 9:54:12 AM PST by JPX2011
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To: JPX2011
The mention of the multitudes who believe and use the rosary is not an appeal to authority by way of majority but the inner struggle to define the reasoning for his own personal rejection of so many.

In other words, voting on the Rosary, millions use it, I reject it, but after reflection, it is millions and I am only one so I'm going to use it too. So it isn't a question of authority or efficacy, it is a variation of 'why everyone else is doing it', why not.

21 posted on 02/26/2014 10:00:13 AM PST by xone
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To: All
In his conversion story Rome Sweet Home Scott Hahn, the once staunchly anti-Catholic Presbyterian minister describes how, as a fervent Evangelical teenager, he discovered his grandmother's rosary beads. His grandmother had just died and the young Scott Hahn ripped the rosary in pieces crying out, "God, set her free from the chains of Catholicism that have bound her!" Since then, Scott has discovered the power of the rosary and has written a beautiful book about the Blessed Virgin Mary called Hail Holy Queen.

A crummy commercial? Son of a bitch!
"A crummy commercial?"

22 posted on 02/26/2014 10:09:28 AM PST by Alex Murphy ("the defacto Leader of the FR Calvinist Protestant Brigades")
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To: xone

Remember we’re talking about an individual and not a topic for a debate team. After all, what is the implication of denying those who use the rosary. Is it not the default position of protestants that those who use the rosary are idolators raising up a dead human being above Christ through the use of pagan repetitive prayer? I suspect that it is a source of serious consideration for someone who denies millions and calls into question their ability to go to Heaven as a result of this practice. So instead of thinking of this as a, “so many are doing it, why aren’t I?” Question perhaps the question would be better phrased, “why do I condemn so many?” I think that is more in keeping with the spirit of the original question.


23 posted on 02/26/2014 10:16:55 AM PST by JPX2011
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To: NYer

One of the very nicest aspects of our having joined our Traditional Latin Mass community is what goes on before Mass every Sunday: while some (often many) wait in line for Confession, the rest of the group prays the Rosary aloud.

Mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, children, teens, and adults.

It is a beautiful thing.


24 posted on 02/26/2014 10:17:26 AM PST by paterfamilias
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To: AnAmericanMother

“”His mother saith to the waiters: Whatsoever he shall say to you, do ye.” -John 2:5.

Mary always points the way to her Son.”

Amen.


25 posted on 02/26/2014 10:19:13 AM PST by paterfamilias
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To: NYer

Great testament to the power of the Rosary. As my tag line says: Mary helps us defeat Satan, it is part of her mandate.


26 posted on 02/26/2014 10:27:56 AM PST by MSSC6644 (Defeat Satan: pray the Rosary.)
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To: paterfamilias

Actually preparation for the mass before it starts is to be respected. The last half hour is supposed to be for quiet preparation for individuals according to Vatican rules/documents. Unless you have permission from the pastor to do an out loud organized prayer recital, you are disturbing others who are there to prepare in their own way for the mass.

Same goes for public adoration of the Eucharist for an hour or a day on the altar. Silence, No group prayer unless permission is granted from the pastor.


27 posted on 02/26/2014 10:28:05 AM PST by RBStealth (--raised by wolves, disciplined and educated by nuns.)
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To: Dr. Thorne
I can guarantee there are many more poorly catechized Catholics in name only who became Evangelicals than the other way around.

Fixed it for you.

28 posted on 02/26/2014 10:32:28 AM PST by verga
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To: JPX2011
Is it not the default position of protestants that those who use the rosary are idolators raising up a dead human being above Christ through the use of pagan repetitive prayer?

If so, that position is supported by scripture as regards prayer to the dead. I wouldn't say the prayers themselves are pagan as the Lord's Prayer is in scripture but the direction of the Rosary in general is the problem. God hears prayer.

that it is a source of serious consideration for someone who denies millions and calls into question their ability to go to Heaven as a result of this practice

Therein lies the real problem, that a man's work gets him to heaven? Again an idea in direct opposition to scripture.

. So instead of thinking of this as a, “so many are doing it, why aren’t I?” Question perhaps the question would be better phrased, “why do I condemn so many?” I think that is more in keeping with the spirit of the original question.

So by not praying the Rosary, I am now guilty of 'condemning' those that do? A sin of commission or omission? No, it is a 'everyone else is doing it' question, with the deciding factor being the practice of millions or the practice or non-practice of the author.

29 posted on 02/26/2014 10:38:10 AM PST by xone
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To: RBStealth

“Unless you have permission from the pastor to do an out loud organized prayer recital, you are disturbing others who are there to prepare in their own way for the mass.”

The pastor is well aware of the practice, and oftem helps out with the confessions before Mass.

Since the entire congregation is kneeling and praying the Rosary together, it does not appear that anybody is disturbed by the practice.

The Vatican has rules which should be respected. However, there are far more disturbing things in the Novus Ordo than Rosary before a Tridentine Mass.

For example, the omission of the Confiteor (which reinforces examination of conscience and confession of sins) in favor of a more superficial “Pentiential Rite” (actually a Rite Without Penitence), or the singing of an upbeat Communion Hymn which is very, very disturbing to those trying to quietly contemplate their reception of the Body and Blood of Christ.


30 posted on 02/26/2014 10:50:00 AM PST by paterfamilias
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To: xone

That’s where we differ. Those in heaven are fully alive and not dead. We are all alive in the Mystical Body of Christ. including Mary and all the Saints so they’re not prayers based in necromancy.

God does hear all prayers. Even those last millisecond prayers of “God, Save me!” So I find it unlikely that He would turn away petitions submitted by his Mother on behalf of the earthly contingent of the Body of Christ. God has no ego. He is not concerned with whether Glory is being “stolen” from Him.

Works flow from Faith. Two sides of the same coin. If there are no works then the faith is sterile. The Rosary is an extension of that faith. Its meditative properties on the mysteries in the life of Christ bring people closer to Christ and impart graces to them. The power of prayer. Let us not forget that God created us and was one of us and therefore is intimately familiar with the human condition. He will not turn away those whose petitions are less that “perfect”.

I’ve always said that protestantism is a perfect faith for a perfect people. It’s just me and God, the rest of you can take a hike. Some of us approach Him in fear and humility and with the tools He provided us and not with a triumphal spirit that is prevalent in protestant spirituality. God is a realist and knows that humanity falls short even as we try to raise ourselves to be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect. He does not begrudge us the means to do that. Salvation must be worked out. So IMO it’s a poor individual who denies these efforts of others to commune with God through prayer.

I wouldn’t say not praying the Rosary is an automatic denunciation of those who do. However, I would say that one has to evaluate their reasons for that objection. Is it an objection based in love and charity for your fellow Christian? Or is it an automatic objection because of the source of the Rosary? If one’s position is that Rome is for it then I must be against it, then there is a problem.


31 posted on 02/26/2014 11:21:04 AM PST by JPX2011
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To: JPX2011
None of what you say is supported by the Scripture, we are to pray to God. While alive on earth, others can and should pray for us and we for them. Death ends the efficacy of prayer for the one who has died according to the scripture.

So I find it unlikely that He would turn away petitions submitted by his Mother on behalf of the earthly contingent of the Body of Christ.

Sentimental sap not attested to in God's Word, because God's Word is about Christ, not His mother.

God has no ego.

He is jealous, says so Himself.

Works flow from Faith. Two sides of the same coin.

They do indeed, but the imagery is more like a faucet. The faucet is faith, a faucet connected to the Living water, shows forth that water. Not a product of the faucet, but of the One Who provides both the 'will and to do' those works which He has prepared beforehand for us to walk.

I’ve always said that protestantism is a perfect faith for a perfect people.

A terrible comparison else it would be 'protestants' relying on works. While the concepts that separated the Reformers from Rome are perfect to the extent that they agree with the revealed Word of God, perfect people don't practice it.

God is a realist and knows that humanity falls short even as we try to raise ourselves to be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect.

He surely is a realist, He sent His Son to die for our sins so that we could be reconciled to Him again. He well knew that we would try and merit heaven by 'raising' ourselves. That is why salvation is grace lest it become a wage. Is not the Holy Spirit operative in Catholicism? If so, why do Catholics assume that they are the ones initiating the actions pleasing to God? Relying on oneself and our own understanding: the first sin and still prevalent today even in outfits that claim Christ as a Redeemer.

Is it an objection based in love and charity for your fellow Christian?

I have identified my objection, but add to it the false hope engendered by doing something said to benefit in a manner not countenanced by God's Word

32 posted on 02/26/2014 11:49:16 AM PST by xone
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To: xone

Most assuredly it is scriptural:

The Church came into being when Christ died on the Cross, but it was formally inaugurated on Pentecost, when He sent the Holy Spirit as He had promised. St. Paul speaks of all Christians as members of Christ, so that with Him, they form one Mystical Body (Cf. 1 Cor 12:12-31; Col 1:18; 2:18-20; Eph. 1:22-23; 3:19; 4:13). St. Paul did not use the word Mystical. It was developed more recently to bring out the fact that this union is unique, there is no parallel to it. It is not the same as the union of a physical body, nor that of a business corporation (Most, 1990, para. 2)

God’s Word attests to petitions for others by others:

The intercession of fellow Christians—which is what the saints in heaven are—also clearly does not interfere with Christ’s unique mediatorship because in the four verses immediately preceding 1 Timothy 2:5, Paul says that Christians should interceed: “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” (1 Tim. 2:1–4) (Catholic Answers, 2004, para. 7).

God is jealous for our love. His is a jealousy not born out of resentfulness in the ways we approach Him.

Another way in which we differ. The faucet (i.e., the Church) is linked with the Living Water. Christ is not separated from His Church.

As Christians we have free will to accept or deny Christ. As such we are free to initiate those actions that are pleasing to God. The Holy Spirit is most assuredly alive in guiding the Church and its members. To the degree that one’s action are inspired by the Holy Spirit is something I cannot answer. But that is ultimately why we do have a Church so that we do not have to rely on our own finite understanding.

Catholic Answers (2004). Praying to the Saints. http://www.catholic.com/tracts/praying-to-the-saints

Most, Fr. William G. (1990) The Catholic Church is the
Mystical Body of Christ
http://www.ewtn.com/faith/Teachings/chura1.htm


33 posted on 02/26/2014 12:29:31 PM PST by JPX2011
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To: AnAmericanMother

Just so. Same point I was trying to make, but I did it too carelessly.


34 posted on 02/26/2014 12:50:41 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: JPX2011
Prayer for others is indeed scriptural. Prayer to departed Christians isn't, the whole of the doctrine hangs on a dream in 2nd Maccabees, a book Jerome rejected, but was compelled to change his outlook..

The Communion of Saints is scriptural as well, but again, prayer to them isn't scriptural. Scripturally, prayer goes to God.

The faucet (i.e., the Church) is linked with the Living Water. Christ is not separated from His Church.

The faith faucet is connected to God, Who gives the faucet to the believer. The presence of God in the believer is the Living Water that supplies the faucet of faith as works flow pleasing to God.

The believer is a member of the Church, the Body of Christ. Catholicism isn't required.

As Christians we have free will to accept or deny Christ. As such we are free to initiate those actions that are pleasing to God.

Initiate those actions as a unbeliever? Draw near on your own efforts to God? That would be a 'work'. Not what the scriptures says. Rom 5:8-11/Eph 2:8-11

To the degree that one’s action are inspired by the Holy Spirit is something I cannot answer.

Phil 2:12-14/Eph 2:10

35 posted on 02/26/2014 1:11:57 PM PST by xone
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To: RBStealth

Agree 100% with this. Makes me crazy when there is no quiet time.

We have Adoration every Thursday from 9 am to 6 pm. But don’t be there at 3 pm. That’s when they say the Divine Mercy Chaplet. First time It happened when I was there, I jumped a foot. LOL

I always avoid that time of day now.


36 posted on 02/26/2014 3:20:37 PM PST by Not gonna take it anymore (If Obama were twice as smart as he is, he would be a wit)
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To: NYer
I don't believe this guy's testimony...

So I looked at the rosary and asked myself why I was denying something used by millions of fellow Christians. Who was more likely to be right-me or the millions?

I guarantee this guy already knew there were millions of Christians who did and do deny the rosary...

Apparently his parishioners have no compunction about carrying and praying to rosaries...Sounds like the Anglicans are closer to the Catholic religion than the Orthodox...

37 posted on 02/26/2014 4:38:21 PM PST by Iscool (Ya mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailer park...)
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To: Cicero

So, if we need to ask Mary to ask her Son to help us, (I guess He needs convincing?) do we first need to ask someone else to ask Mary to ask Jesus? You know, does she, like...need convincing too, like Jesus needs to be convinced to help us?

You know, like “Hail Elizabeth, please ask Mary to ask Jesus, to help us...”?

Ed


38 posted on 02/27/2014 2:47:45 PM PST by Sir_Ed
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To: JPX2011

But saying “Hail Mary” is NOT praying to God, it is praying to Mary!!

Ed


39 posted on 02/27/2014 2:52:34 PM PST by Sir_Ed
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To: Sir_Ed

No, nobody has to pray to Mary. Catholics pray directly to Jesus all the time, as well as to the Father and the Holy Spirit. But there’s nothing wrong with asking a Saint to intercede for you, too, and there’s no saint like Mary.

Pray to her cousin Elizabeth as well, and ask her intercession? Why not?


40 posted on 02/27/2014 4:15:35 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: Sir_Ed

Hail Mary = scriptural. Money phrase, “pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our ddeat.” AKA pray for us to your Son.


41 posted on 02/27/2014 7:28:50 PM PST by JPX2011
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To: JPX2011

Dead people don’t hear our prayers...that is necromancy, we’re told not to communicate with the dead.

Ed


42 posted on 02/27/2014 10:37:03 PM PST by Sir_Ed
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