Monday, June 30, 2008

A response to Pilgrim

This is a response to "the Pilgrim" over at defending, contending. He wrote an article entitled "It's all about Mary".

Fact or Fiction; Scripture or Tradition?

The following is an examination of fifteen of the most often used arguments by Roman Catholic adherents in their defense of their near deification of Mary, (along with a brief response to each argument). Each of the pictures in this post can be clicked on to enlarge.

15 Most used arguments? By Catholics? Where. Some are common arguments, like #1, some I have never seen before in my life.

Argument 1). Mary was blessed among women: FACT

Mary was blessed, however, so is every Believer. To make the leap that because Mary was blessed she should receive the adoration/veneration/worship that she’s given is not Scripturally logical. In fact, Scripture records the way Jesus handled the first attempt to elevate Mary’s status. In Luke 11:27-28 a woman in the crowd tried to draw attention away from Christ and to Mary (what the RCC has perfected) but Jesus corrected her saying, “On the contrary, blessed are those who hear the word of God and obey it. “ (Luke 11:27-28). Also, Mary wasn’t/isn’t the only person blessed. See the Sermon on the Mount for a list of others who are “blessed” (Matthew 5:3-11).

That is all true, but notice something else, Mary is the only specific person called "blessed". And, not only that, but when the angel greeted her, he stated "Hail, Mary". "Hail" in first century Roman Culture was the greeting a subordinate gave to a superior. The angel was greeting someone greater than himself! This is the only time in the Bible an angel greets someone like this.

mary-statues.jpgArgument 2). Mary is worthy of/deserves our adoration and veneration: FICTION

No human is worthy of any amount of veneration or worship because we are all sinners (Psalm 14:3, Romans 3:23); we are to worship God and serve Him only (Matthew 4:10); and God will not give His Glory to another (Isaiah 42:8, 48:11).

Of course no human is worthy of worship, that is why it is wrong to worship Mary, that is the heresy of Collyridianism. And no Catholic claims that God shares glory with Mary.

mary-worship-2.jpgArgument 3). It is permissible and acceptable to pray to Mary: FICTION

Mary was a human being and suffered the wages of sin–death (Romans 6:23) like everyone else. Scripture prohibits contacting, seeking out, consulting, and/or praying to the dead (Deuteronomy 18:11). It is called necromancy and it detestable to God (Deuteronomy 18:9, 12). Additionally, spiritists, sorcerers, and mediums (who seek to contact the dead) are also condemned by God

This is a favorite of those that condemn the Catholic and Orthodox churches respect of Mary. But the author of this list attempts to equate the belief of the Communion of Saints with the practice of necromancy. When they are in fact 2 different things.

The communion of Saints is the belief that those who have gone to Heaven are aware of and can pray for those of us on Earth. It is the belief that those who die in Christ are forever united with him. Necromancy is the practice of contacting the dead in an effort to tell the future or to change the future. That is also forbidden in the Catholic Church.

mary-statue-worship.jpgArgument 4). By bowing down and praying to Mary, Catholics are not worshipping her, just venerating her. In fact it is also permissible to make statues of her and bow down to them too: FICTION

The “veneration” and bowing down to statues is forbidden. It does not matter what you want to call something to make it more palatable, what matters is what God calls it. We can trivialize sin all day long (humans do it all the time) but God has made His commands very clear. I urge you to review all the pictures in this post (click on them to enlarge) and compare what you see—not with what you think and feel—but with what has been revealed in God’s eternal Word. I recommend starting with the 1st and 2nd Commandments found in Exodus 20:4-5.

You are right, it is wrong to venerate and worship statues. That is why Catholics do not do this. Appearances are irrelevant. Read 2 Samuel 6, it records David singing, dancing, worshiping and offering sacrifices to the Lord. But, in actual appearances, he was doing those things in front of the Ark of the Covenant. Yet no one argues that is a violation of the first commandment, why does David get a consideration that Catholics do not?

mary-worship-3.jpgArgument 5). Mary pleads our case to Jesus who would listen to His mother above us: FICTION

This same Jesus that supposedly obeys Mary’s petitions is the same Jesus who when told by Mary that “they have no wine” replied, “Woman, what does that have to do with us?” (John 2:3-4). She then tells the servants to do whatever Jesus commands.

The Scriptures paint an entirely different picture of the Jesus that supposedly can’t understand us mere humans, thus requiring Mary’s petitions. Hebrews 2:17-18 shows us of a merciful Christ who—being made like man—is able to the come to our aid because He too experienced the same temptations we do. Furthermore, it is Jesus who is our advocate with the Father (1 John 2:1-2), not Mary.

The only fiction here is that this is a belief of Catholics, there is no Catholic doctrine that Jesus will listen to Mary before he listens to us. Please...

mary-worship-on-thhrone.jpgArgument 6). Mary is our Mediatrix, our co-redeemer with Jesus: FICTION

This RCC concept didn’t even emerge until the proclamation from Pope Benedict XV in 1922. But the date of its introduction matters little in contrast to how utterly blasphemous it is to even suggest this, let alone teach as if it’s the truth of God. This idea is in direct violation of God’s Word; Jesus is our advocate (1 John 2:1-2) and “there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus . . .” (1 Timothy 2:5) not Mary.

Another fiction, no Catholic claims that Mary approaches the Father for us, that is a direct violation of 1 Timothy 2:5. Also, our current Pope has stated that Mary will never be proclaimed "co-redemptrix":


Argument 7). Mary was conceived without sin: FICTION

The idea of the “Immaculate Conception” proclaimed by Pope Pius IX in 1854 has absolutely no foundation in the Scriptures. Even King David (a man after God’s own heart) proclaimed that He was conceived in sin and he was brought forth with iniquity (Psalm 51:5) just like every person ever born.

Again, in Luke's Gospel, the Angel refers to Mary as "full of Grace". Where there is sin, there cannot be grace.

mary-worshipped-by-angels.jpgArgument 8). Mary remained sinless her entire life: FICTION

Those who say they have no sin are liars (1 John 1:8); no one does good, not even one (Psalm 14:3); each of us has turned to our own way (Isaiah 53:6); all have sinned (Romans 3:23). This includes Mary. There’s nothing found in Scripture to suggest otherwise. Anyone who claims Mary was sinless is basing this off of their opinion grounded in the purely mythical tradition of man.

Mary proved she was like everyone else (a sinner) when she brought her offering to the temple (Luke 2:24). This was a sin offering that Mary would not have been required to bring had she been sinless (Leviticus 5:11, 12:8). Mary also acknowledged that God was her Savior (Luke 1:47). A sinless person does not need a savior.

First of all, Mary never claimed to be sinless. She brought forth an offering for purification from uncleanliness of childbirth. To fail to do so, would violate the Law, and thus, be a sin. Also, of course God was her savior, who do you think it was that saved her from the stain of original sin?

mary-worship-from-baby.gifArgument 9). Mary remained a virgin her whole life (perpetual virginity): FICTION

This is not only beyond reason, but it is contradictory to the revealed Word of God, the holy Scriptures. Joseph kept Mary a virgin until Jesus was born (Matthew 1:24-25). This means that after the birth of Jesus, Joseph no longer kept Mary a virgin. Mary and Joseph had other children, the half-brothers and half-sisters of the Messiah. This can be seen in Matthew 12:46-50, Matthew 13:55-57, Mark 6:3-4, John 2:12, John 7:3, 5, 10, Acts 1:14, 1 Corinthians 9:5, and Galatians 1:19. (Before you say, “This was brothers and sisters in the Lord” I suggest you read the context of these passages.)

Additionally, Mary withholding sex from Joseph would have not been in accordance with God’s plans for mankind: “Be fruitful and multiply . . .” (Genesis 1:28); “Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control” (1 Corinthians 7:5).

This is easy. Yes, Joseph kept her a virgin until she gave birth. That does not mean she ceased being a virgin as soon as she gave birth, as the literal reading would imply. Also, nowhere does the Bible record Mary having other children. And the brethren and sisters of the Lord? These are translated with the Greek words "Adelphos and Adelphi" Which can mean any number of relations or even countrymen. The fact is, the Bible does not record Mary and Joseph having any other children.

mary-more-angels.jpgArgument 10). Mary ascended into Heaven: FICTION

The assumption of Mary into Heaven wasn’t even introduced into the RCC until 1950 by then Pope Pius XII, and there is absolutely no Scriptural support for this, not even a hint of it in Scripture.

This was hardly introduced in 1950. It has been a belief in the Eastern church since prior to the 4th century. Tradition that has been preserved in the Jerusalem church since the times of the Apostles. Also, I would point out that neither Catholics nor Orthodox claim a Scriptural Basis for this belief.

Argument 11). Mary was the greatest among all born evidenced by the fact that she was “chosen” by God to birth the Messiah: FICTION

If anyone was the greatest ever born it would have been John the Baptist, not Mary. Why? Because Jesus said so. Jesus declared of John the Baptist that of those born among women there is no one greater than John (Luke 7:28). Following the logic of the RCC which drives their adoration/veneration/worship of Mary, one would expect that their devotion to Mary would only be eclipsed by their devotion to John the Baptist, however, this is not the case.

Furthermore, the emphasis put on Mary by the RCC is grossly out of proportion to the emphasis she receives from the Bible. Mary–the earthly mother of Jesus– is never mentioned again in the Bible after Acts 1:14. This means that of the 27 books of the New Testament, only five of them (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts) contain any reference to Mary. Not what one would expect when one looks at the current deification of her by the RCC. Even when one would expect to find her name among those mentioned in Hebrews 11, (commonly known as the great Hall of Faith), Mary and any reference to her is strangely absent.

This is grasping at anything. Neither "Jesus Christ" nor "Holy Spirit" appears anywhere in the Old Testament. Therefore, by your logic, we must assume that they are unimportant right? NO. One verse of the Word of God is just as important as 100.

As for the "great hall of Faith"? NO New Testament figures are named there, so her not being there is not "strange" at all.

mary-coronation.jpgArgument 12). Mary is the Queen of Heaven: FICTION

There is no Queen of Heaven. In fact, the only mention in Scripture of a “Queen of Heaven” (a false god) is in Jeremiah 7:18 in which those who are making cakes to her (and those pouring out drink offerings to other gods) will have the wrath of God poured out on them (Jeremiah 7:20).

Here, you are making a statement of fact "There is no queen of Heaven" with absolutely no supporting evidence. That there is a pagan deity also called the "Queen of Heaven" is again irrelevant. Similar names do not imply any connection.

mary-over-earth.jpgArgument 13). Marian Apparitions are genuine and legitimate: FICTION

Again, no such teaching, example or precedent for this is found in the Scriptures. However, we are told “Marvel not, for even Satan can disguise himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).

No catholic is obligated to believe in ANY Marian apparitions, they are considered private revelation and therefore not in any way binding.

Argument 14). Marian apparition messages are true and from God: FICTION

“You will never be alone. My immaculate heart will be your refuge and the way which will lead you to God.” - Mary Apparition in Fatima

“I alone am able to save you from the calamities that approach. Those who place their confidence in me will be saved.” - Mary Apparition in Akita

“You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my immaculate heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace.” - Mary Apparition in Fatima

“. . . I call upon you to open yourselves completely to me so that through each of you I may be enabled to convert and save the world . . .” - Mary Apparition in Medjugorje

The messages of this entity claiming to be Mary ultimately lead people’s attention away from Christ and to herself (itself), not Christ. The Apostle Paul sought to know nothing but Christ and Him crucified (1 Corinthians 2:2). Furthermore, the Apostle Paul warned us that if anyone, even an angel from Heaven, preached a gospel contrary to what was already preached, he/she/it is to be cursed (Galatians 1:6-9).

Again, I refer you to my answer to the above opinion. Also, I would point out that there have been numerous statements against the "apparitions" at Medjugorje

mary-hail-holy-queen.jpgArgument 15). Roman Catholic Church (RCC) tradition has provided us the doctrines on Mary: FACT

This is true. The RCC consisting of sinful, fallible, fallen human beings has given the world these traditions of men, but the holy revealed Word of God—given to the prophets by inspiration and by which will never pass away—does not support these legends, myths, and downright heretical false doctrines.

Is God incapable of preserving his word outside the Bible? Is humans sinful nature more powerful than the Holy Spirit? Answer these questions and you will have the answer as to whether or not God can use Tradition to instruct his church.


As noted above, Mary is never spoken of in the history of the Church or the letters (Epistles) to the Church (except in Acts 1:14 where a brief mention of her is made). No where in all the instruction of conduct, examples of operation, and direction given to the early church for its operation and function is Mary ever mentioned, yet today you couldn’t walk into a Roman Catholic Church without bumping into something to do with Mary, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a member of the RCC that would deny Mary as being a pivotal or important part of their life in the mother church. This devotion and near-deification of Mary is something you cannot find anywhere in the early Church. The silence of the Scriptures alone speaks volumes against the RCC’s current obsession with Mary.

“For there is one God, and one mediator also

between God and men, the man Christ Jesus . . .”

1 Timothy 2:5


This verse is misleading, of course Catholics don't consider Mary a mediator between God and men. The silence of the Scriptures mean nothing. Mary is not the focus of the Scriptures, Jesus is. And to claim the early church is silent on Mary is to be completely ignorant of the early church. Catholicdotcom has some wonderful quotes of the fathers in regard to Mary.

A HAPPY sign of the times....

Benedict & Bartholomew embrace
Pope Benedict XVI embraces Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I during mass for feast of Saints Peter and Paul in Saint Peter's Basilica at the Vatican June 29, 2008.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Phelps inane ramblings.

Just for grins, I decided to listen to Eric Phelps radio program on This is a one station radio network out of northern Florida.

The topic of his June 19th, 2008 show was the Catholic Code of Canon Law. No, not the 1983 code that is available on the Vatican website, but a 13 point "code" he found in a book titled "Romanism and the Republic" By Isaac J. Lansing and Leroy M. Vernon. This book was written in 1889. The "code" that Eric used is found on page "xi" and it says:

The Canon Law, the undisputed, fundamental code of
Romanism, is utterly incompatible with the Constitution
and laws of our Republic, as witness the following leading
provisions, gleaned therefrom by Dr. G. F. Von Schulte,
Professor of Canonical Law at Prague, viz. : — "
I. All human power is from evil, and must therefore be
standing under the Pope. "
II. The temporal powers must act unconditionally, in accordance
with the orders of the spiritual. "
III. The Church is empowered to grant, or to take away,
any temporal possession. "
IV. The Pope has the right to give countries and nations
which are non-Catholic to Catholic regents, who can reduce
them to slavery. "
V. The Pope can makes slaves of those Christian subjects
whose prince or ruling power Is interdicted by the Pope.
VI. The laws of the Church, concerning the liberty of the
Church and the Papal power, are based upon divine Inspiration. "
VII. The Church has the right to practice the unconditional
censure of books. "
VIII. The Pope has the right to annul State laws, treaties,
constitutions, etc. ; to absolve from obedience thereto, as soon
as they seem detrimental to the rights of the Church, or those
of the clergy. "
IX. The Pope possesses the right of admonishing, and, If
needs be, of punishing the temporal rulers, emperors, and kings,
as well as of drawing before the spiritual forum any case In
which a mortal sin occurs. "
X. Without the consent of the Pope no tax or rate of any
kind can be levied upon a clergyman, or upon any church whatsoever. "
XI. The Pope has the right to absolve from oaths, and
obedience to the persons and the laws of the princes whom he
excommunicates. "
XIII. The Pope can annul all legal relations of those In
ban, especially their marriages. "
XIII. The Pope can release from every obligation, oath,
vow, either before or after being made. "
XIV. The execution of Papal commands for the persecution
of heretics causes remission of sins. "
XV. He who kills one that Is excommunicated is no murderer
in a legal sense."
Well, I set out to try to authenticate this list, and I couldn't. This book is the first appearance of this list and it does not give a page, chapter or even a Book name where they can be found. A search on the name of the "theologian" that compiled it, shows that his name can only be found in association with this list.

This is a common tactic of anti-catholics. (and bigots in general). Create some damning piece of information. Then attach such an obscure and unverifiable citation to it that it becomes impossible to verify. The benefit of this is now, the author can claim that no one can "prove him wrong". This is the logical fallacy of "shifting the burden of proof". To my non-catholic friends, rest assured nothing on this list is true. That is not the Canon Law of the church.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Did Pope John Paul II attend Bilderberg?

According to many websites Pope John Paul II attended the Bilderberg Conference in Portugal in 1999. But did he?

According to World Net Daily, in 1999 Pope John Paul was to attend the Bilderberg Conference in Sintra, Portugal. However, there are no indications he ever did. The Bilderberg's were meeting from June 3-6th. but where was the Pope:

On June 3rd?
On the evening of June 3rd, the Pope gave a homily to the crowd in St Peters Square marking the Feast of Corpus Christi.

On June 4th?
He attended the opening of the 14th plenary assembly of the Pontifical Council for the Family and the Meeting for reflection on the theme "The Paternity of God and Paternity in the Family" Later that day, in the Vatican he recieved and met with the ambassador of the Gabonese Republic to the Holy See.

On June 5th?
In the morning, the Pope arrives in Gdansk, Poland to begin a pastoral visit there.
Later in the day, he celebrates a Mass there.

On June 6th?
The Pope is still in Poland and delivers three more addresses

So, it is safe to say, the Pope never attended Bilderberg.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The False Story of "Sister Charlotte"

Sean, over at "Sean's Faith Website" has already done an excellent expose on this fake nun. I would just like to add some to his research.

Charlotte Keckler was a pseudonym used by a woman who traveled the country in the 60's, 70's and 80's claiming to have "escaped" from a Carmelite Convent. However, she never names this convent, just that it is "foreign". But in reading her story it is interesting to note that in this country everyone speaks English. England, possibly, but I was unable to locate any Carmelite convents in England. It could not be Canada because she states that part of her journey home was on a ship.

A "pastor" by the name of Reckart put up a website defending this one and giving his proof. His proof is her Social Security Death record:

NameBirthDeathLast ResidenceLast BenefitSSNIssuedToolsOrder
CHARLOTTE KECKLER 12 Apr 1898Sep 198394558 (Napa, Napa, CA)(none specified)261-58-5764FloridaSS-5 Letter
Add Post-em
Click here to order a copy of the original record

According to the Social Security Number Decoder, we know that this SSN was issued in Florida in 1951. "Sister" Charlotte's testimony never mentions her living in Florida. That also raises the issue of where was she between 1898 and 1951? Turning to what we do know, thanks to Rootsweb, we can see her death record as well:

Results 1-1 of 1
Last NameFirst NameMiddleBirth DateMother MaidenFather LastSexBirth PlaceDeath PlaceResidenceDeath DateSSNAgePost-emsOrder
09/28/1983 261-58-5764 85 yrs AddOrder a copy of the original certificate from

This gives us a little more info. But a search of the Iowa census at Heritage Quest does not reveal a Charlotte Keckler in Iowa at all in 1900, 1910 or 1920. Neither does it show her (alleged) brother John or sister Connie. So it appears the name she gave in death is as fictitious as her life. Add this to Sean's research and it can safely be said this woman was a fraud.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

More Fanciful Anti-Catholic history...Part 2

Continuing on with "Exposing the Satanic Empire Final Edition", Mr. Thomas also points to another picture of "Catholics at the Grove":
Again, this can look like a very bad picture. Appearing to show what looks like a Bishop and several Nuns in the grove.

But, once again, thanks to the Internet, we can see the truth:

As you can see, this picture of "Catholics" is just yet another play in the Grove, this one in 1909. But the picture used in the video is carefully cropped to remove the stage and orchestra pit.

You can see more pictures of this play in the grove at:

The fact is, the Bohemian Grove is nothing but a summer retreat for bored rich white men. It is not at all unusual for a fraternal organization from the 19th century to be steeped in bizarre rituals. G. William Donoff has written an excellent Sociological study on Bohemian Grove, it is at Read it, you may be surprised.

Monday, June 16, 2008

More Fanciful Anti-Catholic history

A man by the name of Keith Thomas has made his own film and put it up on YouTube. It "details" the "illuminati's" plan to take over the world. It also offers a new twist, that the evil "illuminati" Freemasons are slowly infiltrating the Vatican. Now, he never explains whether or not he believes that the Church is slowly becoming masonic or that the Masons are slowly becoming Catholic. Anyway, it is based on lousy history and histrionics from people like Lorraine Boettner, Jack Chick, Alberto Rivera, Alexander Hislop and others.

Like many anti-Catholics, Mr. Thomas shows that he will believe anything anti-catholic, even when shown the truth, he will stick to his version before he would admit being wrong. There is a reason "Pride" is one of the seven deadly sins.

For example, in his videos, he shows two photos of "Catholics" in the Bohemian Grove:

Now, this photo looks like a Catholic Ritual of some kind. Now, here is the real photo:

Notice something vastly different? Well, the source for the cropped photo is the photobucket account of tlthe5th, who is none other than our old friend Thomas from Spiritually "Smart" dot com. Now, I don't know if Thomas was duped or if he did it on purpose. But, the fact is, that it is obvious it isn't any kind of Catholic ritual. According to the pictures source, it is part of a Play done in 1927 on the Life of St. Francis. But, if it is anti-catholic, it must be true, right?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

When good history happens to bad research.

Richard Bennett has written a new article over at Symphony of Scripture titled History of the Early Church Invalidates Papal Claim of Apostolic Succession. The historical scholarship in this article is extremely lacking. His “examples of early believers testifying to the gospel” Have nothing to do with the notion that the Bible is the sole rule of faith.

He strings together events separated by 100’s of years to try to make a point that the church in northern Italy has always been protestant. He finally claims that the Waldenses (or Vaudois) were not started by Waldo. Interesting to note, however, is that even the Waldenses themselves don’t make this claim. They (rightfully ) claim that: “The Waldensian Church originated with the preaching of the merchant Valdo (Waldo of Lyons, from whom the church’s name originates), 1140 - 1217″ (from the website of the American Waldensian Society

The idea that St. Patrick was a protestant is laughable. We have writings written by him, attesting to his beliefs.

The fact is, the points of this article could have been better made without resorting to poor scholarship.

Monday, June 02, 2008

A great movie

Saw this at the Corral Theater in Wimberley, Texas. (A great place to watch movies). Wonderful message, Christian themes and very exciting action without being bloody.