Catholic Handbook: Essentials for the 21st Century: Explanations, Definitions, Prompts, Prayers, and Examples

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-03-30
  • Publisher: Paulist Pr
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Whether you are a cradle Catholic, a convert, or thinking about becoming one, you are undoubtedly bursting? with questions about what it means to be Catholic. A Catholic Handbook has the answers. The Paschal Mystery (can you solve it?), the sacraments, grace (the gift that keeps on giving), prayer, the monastic life, the purgatory story, the communion of saints, the lowdown on whether Protestants can go to heaven-in his friendly, down-to-earth style, the sometimes humorous but unfailingly knowledgeable Fr. William Graham has the answers to these and a whole treasure trove of other questions. This book is a "must" for the bookshelves of every Catholic (and future Catholic). Book jacket.

Author Biography

Fr. William C. Graham is a priest of the Diocese of Duluth in Minnesota, professor of theology and religious studies at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, and director of the college's Braegelman Catholic Studies Program. The coauthor of The Catholic Wedding Book (Paulist Press), Fr. Graham holds a PhD in historical theology from Fordham University in New York.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
The Big Picture: Structure, Governance, and Issuesp. 1
The Communion of Saintsp. 1
The Nicene Creedp. 3
Is There a Difference between Religion and Spirituality?p. 4
Structure: Diocese and Parish, Bishop and Priestp. 5
What Are My Rights and Duties as a Catholic?p. 6
Lay Leaders of Worshipp. 8
Feasts and Seasonsp. 9
Liberal or Conservative?p. 9
Who Can Go to Heaven?p. 10
Are Protestant Churches Defective?p. 11
What's the Story with Purgatory?p. 13
What Happens to a Child Who Dies Before Baptism: Do We "Limbo" Anymore?p. 14
What Does the Church Teach about Suicide?p. 14
The Local View: Structures and Toolsp. 16
Should I Read the Bible? Which One?p. 16
What Is Lectio Divina?p. 17
Catholic Social Teachingp. 17
Vocationsp. 19
Monasteries and Religious Lifep. 19
What Is Contemplation?p. 20
The Seven Precepts of the Churchp. 22
The Corporal Acts of Mercy and the Spiritual Acts of Mercyp. 22
What about the Tridentine Mass and Praying in Latin?p. 23
How about Secular Songs or Readings at Mass?p. 25
Sacraments: Faith, Religion, and Theology In Practicep. 26
What Is Ritual For? Or, Are We Really What We Eat?p. 26
Can't I Pray on the Golf Course or from My La-Z-Boy Recliner?p. 28
The Whats and Whys of Prayer, Praise, and Thanksgivingp. 29
Keeping the Sabbath on Sundayp. 32
Christ, the Sacrament of Godp. 35
What Is the Difference between Sacraments and Sacramentals?p. 35
Initiation: Becoming One in the Body of Christp. 36
Baptism: The Door to the Sacramentsp. 36
Confirmation: Sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spiritp. 38
Eucharist: Participation in the Body of Christp. 39
Reconciliation: Pardon and Peacep. 40
Confession: A How-To Guide for the Anxious or Reluctantp. 40
Marriage: Covenant of Lovep. 42
Holy Orders: Set Apart for Servicep. 43
Anointing of the Sick: Confidence in Divine Mercyp. 45
Who Can Bring Communion to the Sick?p. 46
What's RCIA?p. 46
The Funeral Rite: Sure and Certain Hopep. 48
But, Then, What About?p. 50
Can I Solve the Paschal Mystery?p. 50
Why Do We No Longer Say Yahweh?p. 51
When Does Lent End?p. 51
Where Did We Get the Name Easter?p. 52
What's a Triduum? What's an Octave?p. 52
Why Is Easter a Moveable Feast?p. 53
Is the Idea of Sin or Sinfulness Out of Fashion?p. 53
Grace: The Gift That Keeps on Givingp. 54
Why Is It Called the Mass?p. 55
What Is the Liturgy of the Hours?p. 55
Where Did the "Eighth Day" Come From?p. 56
Was Jesus Really Born on December 25?p. 56
What's Up with Christmas Trees? Are They Really Pagan Symbols?p. 57
What's the Difference between Ecumenical and Interfaith?p. 57
Questions From The Traditionp. 59
Who Are the Fathers of the Church?p. 59
Who Are the Doctors of the Church?p. 60
What are the Seven Deadly Sins and the Seven Contrary Virtues?p. 60
Is Mary a Goddess?p. 61
What Are the Seven Sorrows of Mary?p. 61
What about Churches That Sound Eastern Orthodox But Are in Communion with the Pope?p. 62
Why Do We Burn Candles When We Pray?p. 62
What Is the Difference between a Cathedral and a Basilica?p. 63
How Is the Pope Elected?p. 63
Why Do We Say "Lamb of God"?p. 63
Why Do We Sometimes Say "Two Tables" When Speaking of the Eucharist?p. 64
Contemporary Challengesp. 65
Catholic Mannersp. 65
The Challenge: Television and Popular Culturep. 67
How Are Women Part of the Big Picture?p. 68
Do Catholics Have Environmental Concerns?p. 69
Is It a Sin to Not Recycle?p. 69
How about the Saints and Popular Devotions?p. 70
If There is Separation of Church and State, Should Catholics Vote?p. 71
Is All Theology about Liberation and Freedom?p. 71
Does the Church Have Anything to Say about Sex?p. 71
Is There Either Healing or Hope in the Wake of the Clergy Sexual Abuse Scandal?p. 72
What Do Catholics Think about Homosexuality and Marriage?p. 74
How about War, Peace, and Issues of Justice?p. 74
Is There a Consistent Ethic of Life? How Do We Live It?p. 75
Prayerp. 76
Traditional Catholic Prayersp. 76
Marian Prayersp. 80
Prayer Prompts and Examplesp. 88
Notes and Further Readingp. 96
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