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Joe Blank wrote:

Hi, guys —

I just have a few questions.

  • Why are my Catholic friends telling me that there are requirements for one to be a saint?
    e.g. Saint Peter, Paul, and Christopher; like performing a certain number of miracles?
  • What is the Scriptural or doctrinal foundation for this?
  • Wasn't there a price for blessings, miracles, or prayers by a priest at one time in the Catholic Church?
  • Does this practice still exist?
  • Why is there such a strong emphasis on the mother Mary and was she sinless?

I am interested in the Catholic faith. I want to know more about it. I have many questions — most of which have to do with basic doctrines found the Bible.

I just want to see if there are answers to these before looking further into the Church.

Thanks for the help.

Joe

  { Are there requirements for a Saint, do you need to pay for blessings, and why emphasize Mary? }

Mary Ann replied:

Hi Joe,

The requirements are not requirements for one to be saint; they are requirements for canonization, for one to be a saint canonized by the Church.

It is a Church thing: rules the Church can set or dispense with. One becomes a saint by being baptized. In that, one then belongs to God and is made holy. One becomes a fulfilled saint
(my term), after a life of lived faith, by going to Heaven. Some of the deceased saints are declared saints by the Church. This declaration has certain preconditions. A declared or
canonized saint is someone the Church declares is in Heaven and worthy of imitation.

There was never a price for blessings, miracles, or prayers by a anyone in the Church, though at times bad priests may have extorted them and ignorant people may have paid for them, as we see even with the priests in the Old Testament.

There is a voluntary nominal offering made, of one's own choosing, a free will offering, if one can, for the saying of Mass for a special intention. It is called an alms. It can also be referred to as a stipend.

Mary was the mother of the Lord, the sole source of the Lord's Human Body, which was offered for our salvation, and the only one with the right to offer Him to the Lord in sacrifice. She is shown in Scripture as:

  • a model of faith
  • the favored daughter of the Father and spouse of the Spirit (in Luke)
  • as one whom all generations will bless, and
  • as one who sees needs and successfully intercedes with Jesus, sharing in His suffering
    (as was prophesied by Simeon in Scripture), and being part of the home of the Model Disciple, John.

She was the center of the Apostolic community.

All of this is Scriptural, and we follow the Scriptures. The Early Church did, too: the earliest Christian art, in the catacombs, depicts Mary with Jesus.

I hope this helps,

Mary Ann

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