Catholic Theology Q and A (closed)

Post your questions in the comments section below.

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32 Responses to Catholic Theology Q and A (closed)

  1. Marvin says:

    Dear Mr. Ronald Conte Jr.,

    I was just inquiring about the priesthood through an Archdiocese for almost 3 months and all of a sudden during a follow up meeting with the vocation director, he told me that he wanted to know what are my feelings, emotions, and reactions about seminary (Priesthood Discernment Retreat) and not about what I think about the seminary in terms of how seminarians carry out their schedule and how to grow closer to Christ. He did not want me to talk about what it meant to be a seminarian in order to prepare oneself to be a parish priest, and how seminarians should conform their minds and hearts to Christ’s Sacred Heart. Throughout the interview I told the priest also that a seminarian whose heart is conform to their minds and heart to Christ through prayer and sacraments and human formation (exercise, playing sports, etc.), he will be ready to minister and preach in the real world that is broken. He was not happy about that answer. He was shocked that I quoted Pope Saint John Paul II’s Pastores Dabo Vobis. He wanted to know if I was happy, glad, anxious, worried, etc. He kept on switching gears and told me that is not the answer I wanted. Seminary life is all about the joy as he told me and how our emotions is what seminarians should know. In other words he did not want me to explain the importance of what it meant to be a Diocesan priest in a struggling world. He told me then to get rid of those Ideas of the sacerdotal role of a priest and the seriousness of seminary. After that, he told me to fix those imperfections within 1-3 years and that there is no definitive timeline for me to enter in the seminary. He says I am ready and the doors are open but… as he told me straight up, sorry you cannot enter this year. You have to wait and will have to continuously attend the monthly discernment retreat.

    I would like to know if what he is saying is true? He does not want me to say why is it important to have a proper formation. He says that I have a backwards notion of what seminary life is perceived. In short, he wanted me to changed my view of Catholicism and accept the changes to the notion of what is it meant to be a diocesan priest. So I just want to clarify with you for a proper truth and guidance. I humbly asked to pray for me to help me do God’s will in whatever capacity that God wants me to do. I know that the call to the priesthood was always in my mind and never left since high school and I have been meeting with my spiritual director. I greatly appreciate again Mr. Conte for your help. Thank you and God Bless.

    • Ron Conte says:

      You are right and he is wrong. Unfortunately, some seminaries are under the control of liberals who have disordered ideas about priestly formation and about the Church more generally. You should pray and continue to work on your formation on your own, and wait and see what God might have in mind for you in the future. Perhaps that seminary will change, or perhaps another opportunity will present itself.

    • Marvin says:

      Thank you very much for your clarity and explanation, Mr. Conte. Thank you also for your given advise. I greatly appreciate your help. God Bless.

  2. James Belcher says:

    Ron,
    Is the duration of time on earth equivalent to time in heaven, purgatory, limbo and hell? I ask this because I am of the belief there is no recognition of time for departed souls. I myself find it difficult for all those departed souls being denied the entry into heaven for a very long period of earth’s time until the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    • Ron Conte says:

      Time is different in purgatory and in the limbo of the Fathers (those awaiting Christ’s opening of the gates of Heaven). It does not follow the same time line as on earth. So if you die one day before the general Resurrection, but you deserve one year in Purgatory, then you go to Purgatory for one year, but are Resurrected the day after you died.

  3. Matt Z. says:

    Is purposely getting drunk an intrinsically evil act?

  4. Andrew N says:

    Dear Mr. Ronald Conte Jr.,

    I was thinking of the metaphysical aspects of salvation and came up with the below. Can you let me know if it in line with Church teaching or has errors as I haven’t heard of any argument being made this way before. Thank You

    We are a union of a human body and an eternal soul, this union of body and soul creates a state of life. When our eternal soul is separated from the body we enter a state of death; the soul still exists but we are no longer alive. An example would be with Music, the composition of a piece and all the notes in order would be like the soul that will always exist, the musicians with their instruments the body, and it is only when the coming together of the two parts to actively play the composition and create the music would be a state of life.

    So one of the things we need salvation from is this state of death after we die. We would need a new human body to join with our eternal soul to bring us back to a state of life. But if we just get another mortal body again we would eventually die again, so what we need is an immortal human body to unite with our eternal souls to have eternal life. There is only one human body in all creation that has conquered death and that is also freely given to us with the promise of eternal life and that is the resurrected body of Jesus Christ.

    In summary, by God becoming man, humanity is offered an immortal human body, the gift of Himself for us to unite our souls to and have eternal life.

    • Ron Conte says:

      No, that is not really correct. Eternal life is given to our souls as well as our bodies. We are not only or mainly given an immortal body. Body and soul unite to form one person, who is given eternal life in body and soul.

  5. A Recent Reader says:

    Thank you very much for the Q&A! –
    In confidance that the Catholic Church will always have the blessings that Jesus Christ created it with and gave to it- that you have so extensively written about- can any light be shed on what Jesus Christ meant when he asked (in Luke 18:8)  “Yet truly, when the Son of man returns, do you think that he will find faith on earth?” ?

    • Ron Conte says:

      At that time, the world will be very sinful. Only a shortening of that time results in the Lord Jesus still finding any faith on earth.
      [Matthew]
      {24:21} For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until the present, and such as will not be.
      {24:22} And unless those days had been shortened, no flesh would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, those days shall be shortened.

    • A Recent Reader says:

      Oh, yes, I see. Wow!
      I believe I recall you having written that those times are beyond ours because other things must happen first. It strikes me as a horrifying thing to contemplate.
      But also very good for chastening-up, and seeing a little better how much is involved in girding and armoring ourselves.

      Thank you!

  6. oopinante says:

    I have read your texts on the New Vulgate, but this edition has papal approval, does that mean that the pope grievously erred in approving an edition full of errors?

    • Ron Conte says:

      Any particular edition of the Bible is subject to scholarly criticism. Approval of Bible editions does not cause grave harm to the Church. The NV is a Latin edition corrected according to the Greek and Hebrew texts, as such it departs from the Latin scriptural tradition. But it is not gravely erroneous and certainly does not harm the Faith or the indefectibility of the Church.

  7. Mike says:

    Dear Mr. Conte: do you know [link deleted] ??
    Have you read it? I have, and I DON´T agree with them. I just wanted to know if you know something else about it. Thanks and God bless you.

  8. A Recent Reader says:

    Dear Mr. Conte,

    When Saint Paul writes “grace and peace” at the beginning of his Epistles- in Titus 1:4, for example:

    “to Titus, beloved son according to the common faith. Grace and peace, from God the Father and from Christ Jesus our Savior”

    -it seems he might be saying more than that he is praying that God the Father and Christ Jesus send grace and peace;  but rather, that he is sending it himself from Them, so to speak, indicating  something like a higher capability and/or authority, etc.

    Do you think that it is correct to take it that way, or is it just shorthand for the more basic meaning?

    Thank you very much.

  9. Marvin says:

    Dear Mr. Ronald Conte Jr.,

    Do we as Catholics, who have relatives who either do not know the faith, hostile about the true teachings of the church or refuse to accept the truths given from a family member (my father) about the faith, allowed to ignore them or not talk to them? Most of them (father’s side of the family) apparently are receiving Holy Communion on special feast days and holy days of obligations. Some show up to church and not care. It seems that my grandmother along with my grandfather both from the US but different part of the state, says that my dad is rigid and not merciful to my uncle (before his passing) who converted to islam just to marry a lady (heretical ex-Catholic) who converted to islam from a family of protestantism who used to be Catholic. My grandmother said that as long as they are nice, successful, and has lots of money. It seems that, according to my father, that many of my relatives from his aide of the family would rather praise the muslim lady for the money that my grandmother is willing to spend for the lose of my uncle. Keep in mind that this lady is a danger as she constantly attacks God, the church, the papacy, etc. Pray for her repentance. I humbly asked to pray for everyone in my father’s side of the family and also pray for me and my parents each day as we are constantly attacked for upholding and embracing the teachings of the faith. I will also continue to work in my salvation and formation each day. I greatly appreciate your help and prayers. Thank you and God Bless!

    • Ron Conte says:

      Don’t cut off family members who have strayed from the Faith, or who are hostile to the Church. Be kind and merciful. Do not preach or correct with words, unless it is likely to have a good effect. Preach and correct by your own behavior and example. Love your family members, just as Christ loves us despite our sins.

    • Marvin says:

      Thank you, Mr. Conte. Amen. I really appreciate the help, concern and counsel you have given. God bless.

  10. A Recent Reader says:

    Dear Mr. Conte:

    When a man markedly adopts the characteristics of speech (tone, intonation, etc.) and behavior (mannerisms, gestures, etc.) of a woman (and the converse- a woman adopting those of a man)- does that not, to some degree, present a scandal to the “little ones” who experience him doing that, who in their formative years, as ‘open books’, are learning how to live largely by what they experience?

    When a society has reached the point that people are surgically and hormonally altering children’s physicality– permanently– because of confusion about this aspect of identity, is it not evident that this, amongst other causes, is a problem, and that it has reached grave proportion?

    Thank you very much.

    • Ron Conte says:

      The Church is our Teacher and Guide. Pope Francis has spoken on this topic, against transgenderism. it is wrong in itself, and has many bad consequences for the individual and society.
      [Deuteronomy 22]
      {22:5} A woman shall not be clothed with manly apparel, nor shall a man make use of feminine apparel. For whoever does these things is abominable with God.

      Our bodies are a figurative clothing of our souls (even though body and soul are thoroughly united as one person). So this verse means women should not change their bodies to become male, and men should not change their bodies to become female, as well as meaning that men and women should not change gender in other ways.

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