Many Bible-believing Christians have to face the fact that standing firm in the faith will often lead to displeasure or anger. Invitations to Roman Catholic funerals and weddings poses a common dilemma. Should you go and please your relatives? Or should you stand on the word of God and boycott the cult that is Catholicism? Pat, who was raised Catholic and taught by nuns, has just given her response to a reader’s question. If you want to get chapter and verse - several chapters in fact!- on the Catholic false church, there is a lot of information in our book Cults and Isms: True or False? available from our web shop.
Dear X (our reader)… What a sweet and holy soul you are! I would pack up a hug and send it if I could! You are suffering the persecution which the Lord told us would come. Religious people then hated Him, and they often hate us now. Here is an ex-Catholics for Christ site which truly says it is the hardest decision you face, whether or not to attend such a funeral.http://www.excatholicsforchrist.com/articles.php?PageURL=funeral.htm
Personally I have not been in a Catholic Church since I left it way back in the 1980s. I was spared any glares from relatives since I'm here and they're in the USA. After my three sisters and I were saved and went to various independent churches, my mother ruefully said once: 'I guess none of my daughters will be at my funeral.'
We failed to get her to leave or to understand what was wrong about Roman Catholicism, but the Lord seemed to change her. Her church of 80+ years one day sent a letter to her and my father saying how much money they should be giving. Wow, that was it. They were so mad about it they stopped going! (They were already disgusted about the pedophile priests). Also, six months before she died, I talked to my mom on the phone and she said: 'Patsy, all I do is thank Jesus. He has been so good to me all my life.'
OK, she never got into the Bible. She never joined an evangelical church. She never really renounced the Catholic religion because she just never knew enough. But I cannot believe that my Lord is going to reject someone who spent her last months of life thanking Him. Her stumbling block was her own parents, who were staunch Catholics and who she loved with all her heart. She could never officially leave the church they had gone to.
I know there are real Christians in the Catholic church, but they should be on the way out. I was in it, I learned, and came out. And never went back in. The only reason I would go in one now would be to take pictures to support one of Alan's talks. I would love to have got a picture of the church I was brought up in, St Andrew's in south St. Louis,Missouri. Although ours was a poor, working class area, the church is very fancy with marble columns, beautiful floors, pews, altar, statues, candles etc.
The thing I wish I had a picture of was the wall and dome behind the altar. Yikes. It was a huge triangle complete with a great big eye in the middle, looming over the entire congregation of several hundred people (with several services every Sunday morning). We now know that eye in the triangle is a pagan symbol, a satanic eye, yet it is even on our dollar bill.
That eye ... as I got older, I wondered if that eye, which we all thought was God's eye, was watching me all the time. It was not a nice thought. It made me want to hide from that eye. That's Catholicism for you....plenty of guilt, and going to 'confession' is the unbiblical Catholic answer. Anyway, the eye and triangle were removed at some stage and painted over. It was a dead giveaway showing the pagan origin of Roman Catholicism - the world's largest non-Christian cult.
All this talk...I can't advise you really about the Catholic funeral. It grieves me to think of you suffering and falling out with your relatives; it is truly a hard, hard decision. I often think Christianity is like a cheese wire in a deli, coming down on the big round cheese and dividing it neatly. We're on one side or the other, the Lord's side or the other side.
There is often a price to pay, and the Lord Jesus said in Luke 12:52,53
'...for from now on five members in one household will be divided, three against two, and two against three. They will be divided, father against son, and son against father, mother against daughter, and daughter against mother; mother in law against daughter in law, and daughter in law against mother in law.'
The great consolation is that there are rewards for faithfulness! Great rewards!
http://www.letusreason.org/Biblexp69.htm - that is a site I really like and that article deals with our rewards for persecution. I especially like this part of the article:
'Manifold blessings are given to those who follow the Lord sacrificially. We have a hundred times the “value” of all we forsake, the favor of God in relationships. Many homes will be opened to God's servants and the many new relationships in the household of God. Houses and lands are accommodations wherever we go for the gospel sake. We come into the family of God and gain a bigger family. God’s promise of provisions for being in the family is eternal rewards now and the life later. It continues through eternity. The persecutions came from those who forsook the comforts of their lives to follow Jesus. In ancienttimesthere was a price for their allegiance, they could lose their job and oftentimesface death. Those who have left all for the sake of Christ do find themselves among genuine Christians; spiritual relatives...'
I hope some of this will help you make up your mind and I pray the Lord will give you peace in your heart about all this. I don't know where you are, but I send you a bundle of love,
From your spiritual relative,
P.S. If it was me, invited to a wedding or a funeral in a Catholic chuch, I think I would ask the Lord to take control of the whole situation, and then try to phone or see anyone He especially brought to mind and say something like this to them: 'Dear so and so, or whoever, I want you to know that I love you and love (whoever it was who died) and I don't want to hurt or offend you in any way. But the problem is that I have seen in the Bible that there is only one sacrifice, the sacrifice of Jesus at Calvary, and there are now no more sacrifices. But the Catholic mass is a sacrifice - they call it 'the sacrifice of the mass' at which Jesus is sacrificed over and over again at every mass, as if God the Father needs more sacrifices than the one at Calvary. The Catholic funeral mass or the mass at a wedding is sacrificing Jesus all over again, and according to what I've learned from the Bible, that is very wrong and offensive to God. So I am afraid I cannot go to the Catholic sacrifice of the mass. I am so sorry if that offends you, but I have to be faithful to what God has revealed in the Bible - that Jesus paid it all at Calvary and there is now no more sacrifice (Hebrews chapters 9 and 10). I hope we can still be friends, and I will always be here for you.' Who knows, maybe they will start to think!
The original e-mail said the the reader had been cut out of a relative's will for not attending a Catholic funeral, an agonising decision. She also suffered glares from them later. I don't know what the relative would have left her, but it would not surprise me at all if the Lord found some unusual way of recompensing her for that, and adding a lot more besides.
Another reader has asked on the subject of funerals, where do you draw the line? What about Lutheran funerals, Anglican funerals etc? Personally I draw the line at Catholic funerals. The Catholic church is different. I ask myself: would the Lord Jesus go to a Catholic church for any reason, a church which re-sacrifices Him every day? No. He would turn His back on it. It has made a travesty of His great sacrifice by insisting on people attending mass over and over again. As someone once said to me, 'It's always the same show.'
Find answers here: