Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Catholics and The Bible

LaShawn Barber has an article up in her blog about a young, promising college student killed by a drunk driver who also happens to be an illegal alien. According to the police report, the driver never hit the brakes before he hit Joycelyn Gardiner's car broadside. An the drunk driver had been arrested several times before--and not deported.

So what does this have to do with Catholics and the Bible?

In the comments that followed, Ms. Barber asked a question of a commenter: "Did you ask if she was a Christian." The commenter responded, "I assumed she was a Catholic." To which a third commenter stated that Catholics are not Christians because they don't read the Bible. A fourth commenter agreed with that statement. To which a long-time commenter replied, "Here we go again."

I was tempted to respond, but I didn't want to hijack the thread which really was about the consequences of not deporting illegal immigrants when they're caught. But I'm always amazed by the amount of disinformation and misinformation about the Catholic Church.

I wanted to tell these two ignorant commenters that Catholics read the Bible at Mass every day. Not just on Sunday or Wednesday night, but at each and every Mass--celebrated with a full Eucharist--and not just the Gospel, but the Old Testament, the Acts or the Epistles, and usually a Psalm. The words of the Consecration are those that Jesus spoke at the last Supper. The priest recalls Aaron and Melchisedek during the Offertory, repeats Isaiah when washing his hands, leads the congregation in "the words Our Savior taught us," the Our Father.

I wanted to point out to these commenters that if it weren't for the Catholic Church there would be no Bible. Catholic monks devoted their lives to faithfully copying and illuminating the Sacred Scriptures. I have run into people who believe the King James Bible is the only authentic version; that it is directly translated from the original Hebrew and Greek. Not quite, as it turns out. The King James Bible is an English translation of the Latin Bible in use at that time.

Would this convince those commenters that Catholics are, in fact, Christians? Probably not. Nor would it matter, I'm sure, if I mentioned that I studied the Old Testament my freshman year of high school and the New Testament as a sophomore. Last time I checked, those were the two major books of the Bible.

But then what do I know? I'm a Catholic!