Catholicism

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Can Catholics Be Cremated?

The Catholic Church forbid cremation up until 1963. Catholic belief in the body as the temple of the Holy Spirit — as well as faith in the resurrection of the body — places a strong preference for entombing [more…]

Part of the Series: Coping with Death: 9 Ways to Deal with Funerals, Feelings, and Faith

Who's Who in the Catholic Church?

The pope is not the only leader in the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church, like every structured environment — from governments to corporations to schools to sports programs — has a chain of command. [more…]

How the College of Cardinals Chooses a New Pope

When a pope dies in office or resigns, like Pope Benedict XVI did in early 2013, the College of Cardinals (all the cardinals in the Catholic Church) gather to elect a new pope. No sooner than 15 days and [more…]

Is the Pope Really Infallible?

Catholicism maintains that the pope is infallible,incapable of error, when he teaches a doctrine on faith or morals to the universal Church in his unique office as supreme head. When the pope asserts his [more…]

What Are Extraordinary Magisterium and Ordinary Magisterium?

The pope can exercise his papal infallibility in two ways. One is called the Extraordinary Magisterium, and the other is called Ordinary Magisterium. The word magisterium is from the Latin word magister [more…]

The Job Security of Being Pope

Popes are elected for life unless they voluntarily — without pressure or coercion — resign from office. Pope Benedict XVI resigned early in 2013, claiming fading bodily and mental strength; he was the [more…]

Popes throughout History: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Catholicism regards St. Peter as the first pope, handpicked by Jesus Christ himself, according to the Gospel of St. Matthew (16:18), when Jesus said, “You are Peter and on this rock I will build my church [more…]

The Catholic Pope: His Job and How He's Elected

Known worldwide and to Catholics as thepope, the bishop of Rome is the supreme and visible head of the Catholic Church. The pope has a slew of other titles, but the most common and best-known ones are [more…]

Ten Things You Should Know About Pope Benedict XVI

Pope Benedict XVI was elected in 2007 by the College of Cardinals, and he resigned in 2012. Controversies were a part of his tenure. He was the 265th pope in Roman Catholic Church history and the first [more…]

Key Dates in the Life of Pope John Paul II

Karol Wojtyła, who became Pope John Paul II, did not allow anything to weaken his convictions. He lost both parents and his only brother before the age of 21, but Karol remained faithful to the Church [more…]

The Ways Pope John Paul II Made History

John Paul II's reign as pope contained few hours of idle time, and as a result he changed the world and the perception of Catholicism. Among his accomplishments, Pope John Paul II [more…]

The Names of Pope John Paul II

Like any pope, John Paul II was not born as "John Paul." Here are the names, nicknames, aliases, and pseudonyms John Paul II used (or answered to) in his lifetime. [more…]

John Paul II For Dummies Cheat Sheet

The first Polish pope, John Paul II was a thinker and a leader whose religious convictions defined a new approach toward world politics — and changed the course of history. See the key dates in John Paul [more…]

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