The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide . As the world's oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.
The Christian beliefs of Catholicism are based on the Nicene Creed. The Catholic Church teaches that it is the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic church founded by Jesus Christ in his Great Commission, that its bishops are the successors of Christ's apostles, and that the pope is the successor to Saint Peter upon whom primacy was conferred by Jesus Christ. It maintains that it practises the original Christian faith, reserving infallibility, passed down by sacred tradition. The Latin Church, the twenty-three Eastern Catholic Churches, and institutes such as mendicant orders, enclosed monastic orders and third orders reflect a variety of theological and spiritual emphases in the church.
Of its seven sacraments the Eucharist is the principal one, celebrated liturgically in the Mass. The church teaches that through consecration by a priest the sacrificial bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ. The Virgin Mary is venerated in the Catholic Church as Mother of God and Queen of Heaven, honoured in dogmas and devotions. Its teaching includes Divine Mercy, sanctification through faith and evangelisation of the Gospel as well as Catholic social teaching, which emphasises voluntary support for the sick, the poor, and the afflicted through the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. The Catholic Church is the largest non-government provider of education and health care in the world.
Did you know...
Feast Day of August 24
Saint Bartholomew the Apostle
was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus
. He has also been identified as Nathanael
or Nathaniel, who appears in the Gospel of John
when introduced to Jesus by Philip
(who would also become an apostle),*(John 1
:43-51) although many modern commentators reject the identification of Nathanael with Bartholomew.
Bartholomew is listed among the Twelve Apostles of Jesus in the three synoptic gospels: Matthew,[10:1–4] Mark,[3:13–19] and Luke,[6:12–16] and also appears as one of the witnesses of the Ascension.
In the East, where Bartholomew's evangelical labours were expended, he was identified as Nathanael, in works by Abdisho bar Berika (often known as Ebedjesu in the West), the 14th century Nestorian metropolitan of Soba, and Elias, the bishop of Damascus. Two ancient testimonies exist about the mission of Saint Bartholomew in India. These are of Eusebius of Caesarea (early 4th century) and of Saint Jerome (late 4th century). Both of these refer to this tradition while speaking of the reported visit of Pantaenus to India in the 2nd century.
In art Bartholomew is most commonly depicted with a beard and curly hair at the time of his martyrdom. According to legends he was skinned alive and beheaded so is often depicted holding his flayed skin or the curved flensing knife with which he was skinned.
Attributes: Knife and his flayed skin, Red Martyrdom
Patronage: Armenia; bookbinders; butchers; Florentine cheese and salt merchants; Gambatesa, Italy; Catbalogan, Samar; Malabon, Metro Manila; Nagcarlan, Laguna, Philippines; Għargħur, Malta; leather workers; neurological diseases; plasterers; shoemakers; curriers; tanners; trappers; twitching; whiteners ; Los Cerricos (Spain)
||The political and journalistic world can boast of very few heroes who compare with Father Damien of Molokai. The Catholic Church, on the contrary, counts by the thousands those who after the example of Fr. Damien have devoted themselves to the victims of leprosy. It is worthwhile to look for the sources of such heroism.
- January 22-27, 2019: World Youth Day 2019 (Spanish: Jornada Mundial de la Juventud 2019) was the 16th World Youth Day, an international event organized by the Catholic Church and focused on faith and youth. Taking place 22–27 January in Panama City, Panama, it was the first of its kind celebrated in Central America. Pope Francis announced the theme for World Youth Day 2019: I am the servant of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word. (Lk 1:38)
- March 19, 2018: Gaudete et exsultate ('Rejoice and Be Glad'; from Matthew 5:12) is the third apostolic exhortation of Pope Francis, dated on the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, subtitled "on the call to holiness in today's world". It addresses the universal call to holiness, with a focus "to repropose the call to holiness in a practical way for our own time".
- January 19, 2018: Pope Francis visited Peru and was met by 4,000 members of the indigenous communities from the Amazon rainforest. He said that the people of the Amazon were threatened now more than ever, and questioned the conservationist policies that affect the Peruvian rainforest. In Puerto Maldonado, he asked for the indigenous communities to be recognized as partners instead of as minorities. He called on the Peruvian people to put an end to practices that degrade women, and criticized the sterilization of indigenous women. From Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon region.
- July 26, 2017: The Holy Name of Jesus cathedral in Raleigh, North Carolina was dedicated. The groundbreaking took place on January 3, 2015.
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