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Stephen wrote:

Dear Sirs,

  • Where are the biblical references and Church teachings for the Communion of Saints?

Sincerely,

Stephen

  { Where are the biblical references and Church teachings for the Communion of Saints? }

Mike replied:

Hi, Stephen —

Here they are:

Communion of Saints.
Romans 8:35-39
Death cannot separate us from Christ.

So Catholics are praying to and asking for help from saints that are alive. We pray to Jesus and the saints.
The communion of saints is not an either or issue, it is a family affair!
 
Romans 12:5
We are one body in Christ, individual parts of one another.
Romans 12:10
Love one another with mutual affection.
1 Corinthians 12:12-27
If one part is hurt (suffers), all the parts share its pain. And if one part is honored, all the parts share its joy.
Galatians 6:2
Bear one another's burdens.
Galatians 6:10
Let us do good to all, especially to those in the family of faith.
Ephesians 1:22-23
He is the head of the Church, which is His Body.
Ephesians 3:14-16
St. Paul testifies that the whole family in Heaven and on earth comes from the Father.
Ephesians 4:4
One Body, One Spirit, called to One Hope.
Ephesians 5:21-32
Christ is the Head of the Church, savior of the body.
Colossians 1:18, 24
He is the Head of the Body, the Church.
Colossians 3:15
You were called in one body.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
Encourage, build up one another.
Hebrews 12:1-2
. . . since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses. . .

Interested in what the very first Christians thought, taught, and died for?
Check out what they said on this topic.
 
Catholics are praying to and asking for help from saints that are alive. We pray to Jesus and the saints. The communion of saints is not an either or issue, it is a family affair!

As far as Church teaching goes, the following is from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

Chapter 3, Article 9, Paragraph 5. The Communion of Saints

946 After confessing "the Holy Catholic Church," the Apostles' Creed adds
"the communion of saints." In a certain sense, this article is a further explanation
of the preceding:

    "What is the Church if not the assembly of all the saints?"
    Nicetas, 4th century bishop
The communion of saints is the Church.

947 "Since all the faithful form one body, the good of each is communicated to the others. We must therefore believe that there exists a communion of goods in the Church. But the most important member is Christ, since he is the head. Therefore, the riches of Christ are communicated to all the members, through the sacraments." (St. Thomas Aquinas) "As this Church is governed by one and the same Spirit, all the goods she has received necessarily become a common fund."

948 The term "communion of saints" therefore has two closely linked meanings: communion in holy things (sancta)" and "among holy persons (sancti)." Sancta sancti's! ("God's holy gifts for God's holy people") is proclaimed by the celebrant in most Eastern liturgies during the elevation of the holy Gifts before the distribution of communion. The faithful (sancta) are fed by Christ's holy body and blood (sancta) to grow in the communion of the Holy Spirit (koinonia) and to communicate it to the world.

Hope this helps,

Mike

John replied:

Hi, Mike —

The passages you referenced are good, but do not prove that we are in Communion with the Saints in Heaven.

For that you will need:

  • Hebrews 12:1

      1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith,
      (Hebrews 12:1)

  • Hebrews 12:22-25

      22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, 23 and to the assembly of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to a judge who is God of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks more graciously than the blood of Abel. 25 See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less shall we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. (Hebrews 12:22-25)

    and
  • Revelation 5:8

    8 And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and with golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints;
    (Revelation 5:8)

John

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