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We believe in the Communion of Saints. Prior Questions. Why do we pray to saints? Shouldn’t we pray to God alone? There’s a difference between worship and prayer Catholics do not worship saints. We ask saints to pray for us Not praying to a saint. Are we praying to dead people?.

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prior questions
Prior Questions
  • Why do we pray to saints? Shouldn’t we pray to God alone?
    • There’s a difference between worship and prayer
    • Catholics do not worship saints.
    • We ask saints to pray for us
    • Not praying to a saint
are we praying to dead people
Are we praying to dead people?
  • No. These people may have died on Earth, but they are alive in Heaven.
    • Jesus: “I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob … not the God of the dead but of the living. (Matthew 22: 29)
      • (St. Luke's Gospel 20:38 adds "for to him all are alive" or "for all live unto him")
    • “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”
      • (John 11:24)
st anthony patron saint of lost things
St. Anthony (Patron saint of lost things)
  • So I’m praying that St. Anthony will help me find my missing iPod …
    • St. Anthony acts as an advocate. He takes the prayers to God “in person”
    • He can go to the very throne of God

St Anthony, St Anthony

Please come around

………… is lost

And can’t be found

prior questions cont d
Prior Questions cont’d
  • But why not pray to Jesus directly????
    • Every day, we’ve prayed for the sick/suffering, people who are travelling, and “for each other”, “to have a good day”
    • Praying for others is what Christians do!
    • Strengthens the community
    • These other people could pray directly to Jesus, but we pray for them also
    • Kind of like signing a petition (cafeteria example)
  • Although we (humans) are all equal in the eyes of God, those in direct union with Him (in heaven) have more influence
    • JER 15:1 Then the LORD said to me: "Even if Moses and Samuel were to stand before me, my heart would not go out to this people.”
notes
NOTES:
  • As Christians, we are called to be like Jesus.
    • Doesn’t mean that we should try to do everything that Jesus did.
    • Means we should try to be true to ourselves and to our relationship with God just as Jesus was.
    • We are called to follow Jesus’ example, loving generously and using our gifts and talents to help others.
notes1
NOTES:
  • As Catholics, we all live together as a community. Death cannot destroy the bonds of Christian community and love. Those who have died are part of our community, but in a new way.
  • Communion of Saints: All of the faithful form one body in Christ. All of us, living or dead, are part of the body of Christ.
    • By believing in the communion of saints, we believe we are all connected to each other in & through Christ.
notes2
NOTES:
  • Death: Our physical death is not just an end to earthly life. It is also the beginning of everlasting life, when we will become closer to God and to all those who are one with God.
  • God created human beings for eternal life. Jesus came to destroy death and make it possible for us to turn back to God and to share in the eternal life that God offers.
death
Death
  • We become closer to God and to all those who are with God
  • Death does not separate our community.
    • Someone who has died is now closer to God (and has everlasting life). They are stillable to influence what happens on Earth.
review
Review
  • We are called to be like Jesus
    • Can’t do everything he did, but we should try to be true to ourselves and to our relationship with God
  • Communion of Saints: All the faithful (living or dead) are connected. We are all part of the body of Christ
    • Even people who have died are still connected to us.
    • People who have died still have influence over Earthly affairs!!!
    • Stadium example
  • Death does not separate our community.
    • Someone who has died is now closer to God (and has everlasting life). They are stillable to influence what happens on Earth.
what are saints
What are Saints?

Saint are people who:

  • have lived holy lives in obedience to God’s will
  • see God’s great love for them and act the way God wants them to, even when it’s hard.
  • have made a difference in the world– not by doing remarkable things, but by doing ordinary things remarkably well.
  • have learned to hear God’s call in everyday life and are not afraid to answer that call.

Saints are not born saints.

Saints arenot perfect, sinless or invulnerable.

While on one is perfect, some are on the road to sainthood

why do we ask for saints to intercede for us
Why do we ask for Saints to intercede for us?
  • An intercession is asking members of the communion of saints in Heaven to pray to God on your behalf (or on the behalf of others)
  • We do this every morning! (St Peter etc.)
how to become a saint
How to become a saint:
  • 1. Servant of God
    • When the case is opened for consideration
  • 2. Venerable
    • The Vatican counsel determines that you led a life of heroic virtue
    • You worked aggressively to improve your spirituality. You never gave up trying to better yourself and grow in holiness.
  • 3. Beatification
    • After the church establishes one miracle, it is presented to the Pope to see if the person is worthy of being called a saint
    • Once a person is beatified, they’re known as “Blessed”
  • 4. Canonization
    • Another miracle, and the cause is presented for judgment
miracles
Miracles
  • Miracles that occur either before or after death are necessary in becoming a saint
  • God acts through saints to perform miracles around them
  • Saints are role models of the faith.
    • Worthy of being imitated
    • If God grants them the ability to perform miracles, then even He is saying “take notice of these people!”
    • 1 Cor 11:1 “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ” (Paul)
miracles during life
Miracles during life
  • Levitation
    • The person levitates into the air (often during prayer)
    • Ex: St. Francis Xavier
  • Bilocation
    • The person appears in two places (far apart) at once
    • Ex: Padre Pio
  • Stigmata
    • The person’s body has the five wounds of Christ. These wounds will often bleed during mass or feast day, then stop
    • Ex: St. Francis of Assisi
miracles after death
Miracles after death
  • Incorruptibility
    • Long after death, the person’s body is found free of decay when exhumed from the grave
    • Ex: St. Bernadette of Soubirous
  • Liquefaction
    • The dried blood of the person liquefies on the feast day
    • Ex: St Januarius
  • Odor of Sanctity
    • The body of the person has a sweet aroma like roses, instead of smelling like decay
    • Ex: St Therese of Lisieux
patron saints
Patron Saints
  • Chosen as protectors and guardians over life
  • There are patron saints of occupations, illnesses, churches, countries, specific causes
  • Popes have names patron saints, but they can be chosen by individuals/groups as well
  • Often chosen because of an interest/talent/event in the saints life that overlaps in a certain area
  • Can help us follow the example of their life
  • Can also help us through intercession when we pray to them
slide18

Ex: Saint Francis of Assisi loved nature, and is therefore the patron saint of ecologists

  • Ex: Saint Francis de Sales was a writer, and is the patron saint of journalists
relics
Relics
  • Relics are the material remains of a deceased saint or martyr and objects closely associated with those remains
  • Can be entire skeletons, but usually are a part of the body (bone, piece of hairs, tooth)
  • Pieces of clothing worn by deceased saint
  • Objects that has come in contact with a relic
classification of relics
Classification of Relics
  • First Class Relics – item is directlyassociated with the events of Christ’s life or the physical remains of a saint
  • Second Class Relics- item that the saint wore, owned or used often
  • Third Class Relics – object that is touched by a First Class Relic
slide21

We are successful when we develop & share the gifts and talents that God has given for the benefit of all people. We are called to follow Jesus’ example of loving generously and unselfishly