ARE WE ‘WHOLLY’ CATHOLIC?

The original source and meaning of the English word “Catholic” is found in Saint Ignatius of Antioch’s Letter to the  Christian Community of Smyrna in 110 AD, by his combining two Greek words: a preposition, KATA (KATH) “in accordance with” and an adjective HOLAIN “complete or whole” -- giving the Greek word “KATHOLAIN” -- “CATHOLIC;” and referring to the COMPLETE or whole PEOPLE OF GOD, which insures the integrity of ALL of Christ’s teachings. Only later when the Mystical Body of Christ -- the Church -- had extended itself throughout the then known world through the missionary efforts of Saint Paul, did the name take on the added meaning of “Universal” or everywhere.

Evidence of attacks on the COMPLETENESS of Jesus’ teachings is alluded to in many of the Pauline Epistles (1 Timothy 4: 1-5, 7; 2 Timothy 4: 2-4; Colossians 2: 16-19; Titus 3: 9-11) -- all of which display incursions into Christian Communities by adherents of an eclectic pagan religion known as “Mandaean Gnosticism” which held that there are two distinct divine powers -- Spirit which is Good, and Matter which is Evil. Thus arose the Heresy of Docetism which held that the Eucharist could not be the actual Body of Christ, since “body” being “matter” is “evil” and so Christ only APPEARED or SEEMED (“Docet” -- it seems) to have a Body…thus disrupting the integrity of the mystery of the Incarnation and the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist as nothing more than symbolism. Jesus, however, declared: “THIS IS MY BODY.” To be ‘Wholly or Completely Catholic’ means authentically living the teaching of Jesus Christ, as manifested by the Church’s belief that the Holy Eucharist is the “Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity” of JESUS CHRIST and not a mere symbol or myth, which would make us heretical Gnostics and not Christians.

 

This explains why a Pelosi or Biden could claim the word “Catholic,” in spite of their condoning abortion -- since in their infancy they were originally baptized as whole (complete) “Catholics” -- but no longer exemplify in their lives the complete teachings of Christ, since they      rationalize away the Fifth Commandment for political gain.

 

Through our fidelity to all the teachings of Christ, may we not only ‘witness’ the difference between a complete and thus wholly Catholic Church from those heretical ones whose Catholicity means only “universal,” but also glorify God by remaining Wholly Catholic!”

 

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