The dogmas of the faith
§ 88 The Church’s Magisterium exercises the authority it holds from Christ to the fullest extent when it defines dogmas, that is, when it proposes truths contained in divine Revelation or also when it proposes in a definitive way truths having a necessary connection with them.
§ 89 There is an organic connection between our spiritual life and the dogmas. Dogmas are lights along the path of faith; they illuminate it and make it secure. Conversely, if our life is upright, our intellect and heart will be open to welcome the light shed by the dogmas of faith.
§ 90 The mutual connections between dogmas, and their coherence, can be found in the whole of the Revelation of the mystery of Christ. “In Catholic doctrine there exists an order or hierarchy of truths, since they vary in their relation to the foundation of the Christian faith.”
Examples of Catholic Dogma
Rabbi Yeshua is the Son of God
Rabbi Yeshua is the Son of God.
I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible. I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father [homoousion to patri]; through him all things were made. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death and was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets.
I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins, and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
By the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.
Rabbi Yeshua told us, “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you” Jn 16:12–15.
Rabbi Yeshua is the good shepherd Jn 10:11. The Church he instituted and promised to protect Mt 16:18 takes what the good shepherd taught and teaches it to us. We believe all that the Catholic Church teaches us as divinely revealed because the Catholic Church teaches it, not because we ourselves have examined the doctrine and accept it as true. A man who can ably defend each and every Catholic dogma and believes it on that basis alone is not a Catholic. We believe because the Church teaches it, and defend it as Church teaching, not as our own.
For example, the Father ’s Fifth Commandment was, “You shall not kill” Mt 5:17. Rabbi Yeshua added, “You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be liable to the hell of fire” Mt 5:21–22.
On that strong ground of divine authority the Church teaches:
§ 2270 Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.
From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.
My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth.
§ 2271 Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion.
This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law:
You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.
God, the Lord of life, has entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding life, and men must carry it out in a manner worthy of themselves.
Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes.
§ 2272 Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life.
A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sentential,” by the very commission of the offense, and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law.
The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.
If, say, a liberal Catholic politician says that he disagrees with the Church and believes that abortion is appropriate in some circumstances, he does not accept Rabbi Yeshua as his shepherd. He is making the moral decisions on his own according to Satan’s temptation, You will be like God, knowing good and evil” Gen 3:5.
In such circumstances, each bishop and priest who is aware of the situation is required to order his priests to withhold Holy Communion from such a person. Canon § 915 declares: “Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.”
However, if the liberal Catholic politician receives anyway, he does not “get away with it.” Rabbi Paul told us, “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord” 1 Cor 11:27. He added, “For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself” 1 Cor 11:29. Such a person will fare worse than one who does not receive. Rabbi Yeshua warned us, “Woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! It would have been better for that man if he had not been born” Mk 14:21.