Catholics get to heaven by cooperating with God's free gift of grace, rejecting Satan, and faithfully giving their allegiance to Jesus Christ.
Since the Catholic Church is the original and only church that was founded personally by Jesus around 2,000 years ago, and provides the grace of salvation to souls everywhere on earth, Catholic "rites" vary somewhat from place to place, but rely on God, a common creed, and all the same elements of the faith, in order to guide and sanctify.
The Catholic Church alone was given the power and authority to bind and loose, both on earth and in heaven. Also, the power of the "keys" was given to St. Peter and to his successors, alone.
Catholics believe that Jesus remains the head of the church, with the Holy Spirit as the constant advocate and administrator of divine truth.
Catholics believe that Jesus founded the Church ... not the Bible. He gave power and authority to his Church ... not the Bible.
It is the Church which testifies to the divine, inspired, and inerrant nature of sacred scripture.
All Catholic beliefs and practices are based on the holy scriptures and on the Traditions of men ... Jesus, St. Peter, St. Matthew, St. Thomas, St. John, etc.
Neither Scripture or Tradition is superior, both being necessary for a true understanding of the faith.
Catholics believe in the efficacy of Sacraments, which are outward signs, instituted by Jesus Christ to give grace. There are 7 sacraments.
Sacraments bring about an inner spiritual reality for the benefit of the individual, and for the benefit of the whole church.
Catholics believe that baptism washes away all sin, including original sin, and makes one an adopted child of God, co-heir with Jesus, a member of his universal church, and of the Communion of Saints.
Catholics believe that Holy Communion, also known as the Eucharist, is the authentic and substantial body, blood, soul, and divinity, of the risen Christ. Not symbolic. Real.
At Mass, which is our primary liturgy, celebrated every day, with required attendance on Sundays, we worship God, we celebrate the Bible, and we experience a truly close encounter with the risen Christ.
During Mass, through the actions of the priest, Jesus becomes physically present, and he personally approaches his Father on our behalf.
Then we receive him, in the most holy sacrament of the Eucharist.
Suitably prepared and nourished, we go out into the world to do God's work.
We believe in grace, faith, work, worship, and prayer ... all for the purpose of personal sanctification, and for the greater glory of God.
We don't believe in once saved, always saved. We hope in Christ that he will judge us worthy of heaven, when our time comes.
We have an earthly leader and head pastor, the Pope, who is the successor to St. Peter, whose office was authorized, established, and empowered by Christ.
We have Bishops, who along with the Pope, govern the whole church, and who ordain Priests and Deacons, the men who most directly minister to the needs of all the people.
We believe that the dead in Christ are alive with him in Heaven right now, and that they have been given power and authority by God to assist him with the ongoing work of saving souls.
First among these holy souls is the Mother of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary.
We don't expect a rapture. We do expect Jesus to come again in glory, to judge the living and the dead, and of his kingdom, there will be no end.
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· 1 decade ago