Robert asked:

A Mormon friend asked me if you believe you are the true Church why are all your parishes named after different Saints instead of Jesus Christ?

Patrick Madrid replied:

"That's one of the common arguments that Mormons will make both against, in this case the Catholic church but also as a claim for their own validity by saying, see we are named after Jesus Christ ... that's sort of like an added point in their favor. At least that's how it seems to them.

The reason is this ... we name our churches after saints because we believe in the reality we understand the biblical teaching of the saints praying for us in heaven. We know that the saints want to see us get to heaven. They're encouraging us and praying for us both here in this life before they pass on to eternity but also in heaven. This is why for example you'll see in paintings and frescoes and artwork from the early centuries of Christianity, you'll see pictures of saints holding the building of a church ... That's a symbol of the church's recognition that not only do saints like Peter and Paul for example established churches in places like Corinth and Rome and Ephesus and Galatia and all the other places where they went. But it also indicative of their intercession so we name a parish after that saint ...

In no way ... does that diminish ... the honor and glory that we give to God. It doesn't suggest in any sense that we slight God or forget about him but rather as I like to say and as one of the books I wrote is titled Any Friend of God's is a Friend of Mine, so all the saints are his friends so they're our friends too. And that's why we ask them for their intercession and that's why we name churches for them in their honor."


© 2013 Immaculate Heart Catholic Radio

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Show air date: October 2, 2013

Question appeared in show: 14:32

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