What Do Catholics Believe?
While the Catholic Church is the largest religion in the world, it is sometimes also the most misunderstood. But the beliefs of the Catholic Church and her beautiful teachings are consistent through the ages:
- We believe that human beings were created by God in love and that everything God creates is good and created out of love. The Church believes in the dignity of the human person above all else.
- We also believe that goodness infuses all of God’s wondrous creation. All creation, made by God, reflects that goodness.
- We believe that God loved his creation so much that he became human in the person of Jesus to walk among us.
- We believe in Jesus’ crucifixion, death and resurrection, and we hope that one day we will rise to new life with him.
- We believe in the Holy Trinity, that God has revealed himself to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit – a communion of knowledge and love.
- We believe in community and a living Church – believers are a part of the living Body of Christ and, as such, we are a reflection of the communal nature of the Trinity.
- We believe in the communion of the saints – models of faith who help us and guide us in our daily lives.
- We believe in stewardship. Everything is given to us by God and our Catholic responsibility is to share our time, talent and treasure with those around us.
The 7 Corporal Works of Mercy
- To feed the hungry
- To give drink to the thirsty
- To clothe the naked
- To shelter the homeless
- To care for the sick
- To visit the imprisoned
- To bury the dead
The 7 Spiritual Works of Mercy
- To share knowledge
- To give advice to those who need it
- To comfort the suffering
- To be patient with others
- To forgive those who hurt you
- To give correction to those who need it
- To pray for the living and the dead
The 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit
- Counsel/Right Judgment
- Fear of the Lord/Awe and Wonder
The 3 Theological Virtues
- Love (Charity)
The 4 Cardinal Virtues
The Ten Commandments
The Ten Commandments are more than simply rules and laws. They are a foundation of moral teaching and shape our obligations as Christians in relationship to God. The Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God on Mt. Sinai after being rescued by God from slavery in Egypt. These Commandments are the expression and sign of the Covenant between God and God’s people and are just as powerful and binding as they were when they were written.
- I am the Lord your God. You shall not have strange gods before me
- You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain
- Remember to keep holy the Lord's day
- Honor your father and your mother
- You shall not kill
- You shall not commit adultery
- You shall not steal
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor
- You shall not desire your neighbor's wife
- You shall not desire your neighbor's goods
The 2 Greatest Commandments
When asked which was the greatest of the commandments, Jesus responded with two. In this teaching of Jesus, these commandments complement each other and cannot be seen as existing apart from the other. The first is to love the Lord thy God with all YOUR heart, soul, mind and strength, and the second is to love your neighbor as yourself.
The 8 Beatitudes
These are teachings of Jesus during the Sermon on the Mount in which he describes the attitudes and actions that should characterize his disciples and followers. They can be seen as blueprints for living an authentic Christian life.
- Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
- Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
- Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
- Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
- Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
- Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
- Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
- Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
The 14 Stations of the Cross
- Jesus is Condemned to Die
- Jesus is Made to Bear His Cross
- Jesus Falls the First Time
- Jesus Meets His Mother
- Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross
- Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus
- Jesus Falls the Second Time
- Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem
- Jesus Falls the Third Time
- Jesus is Stripped of His Garments
- Jesus is Nailed to the Cross
- Jesus Dies on the Cross
- Jesus is Taken Down from the Cross
- Jesus is Laid in the Tomb
The 7 Last Words of Christ
- Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. (Luke 23:34)
- Amen I say to thee: This day thou shalt be with me in paradise. (Luke 23:43)
- Woman, behold thy son. . . .Behold thy mother. (John 19:26-27)
- Eli, Eli, lamma sabachtani? (My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken me?) (Matthew 27:46)
- I thirst. (John 19:28)
- It is finished. (John 19:30)
- Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit. (Luke 23:46)
Fruits of the Holy Spirit
- Long suffering
Four Marks of the Catholic Church
Precepts of the Church
- Attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation, doing no unnecessary work on those days.
- Confess serious sins at least once a year.
- Receive Holy Communion frequently and, at a minimum, during the Easter Season.
- Fast and abstain on appointed days and times.
- Contribute to the support of the Church.
- Observe the laws of the Church concerning marriage and give religious training to one’s children by word, example, and use of parish schools or religious education programs.
- Join the missionary spirit and work of the Church.