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How to Defend the Immaculate Conception
1. Why does the Church teach that Mary was immaculately conceived? Her conception is never even mentioned in Scripture.
Before presenting the scriptural foundations for the Church’s belief in Mary’s Immaculate Conception, know that the person who is posing this question to you is probably operating with the three following misconceptions: (1) The doctrine infringes upon the universality of Christ’s redemption and the unique holiness of God. (2) The Church has no scriptural foundation for the teaching. (3) If any doctrine is not in Scripture it must not be true. Any adequate defense of Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception is incomplete unless all three of these areas are addressed.
The first issue that you need to cover is sola scriptura—the idea that the Bible is the only rule of faith. One of the reasons why our separated brethren have difficulty accepting certain Marian teachings is that they do not understand the scriptural role of sacred Tradition and the magisterium.
The Catholic Church was commissioned by Christ to teach all nations and to teach them infallibly—guided, as he promised, by the Holy Spirit until the end of the world (see John 14:25, 16:13). The mere fact that the Church teaches that something definitely true is a guarantee that it is true (see Luke 10:16).
Besides historical evidence and the authority of Tradition, several biblical texts can be offered. In Genesis 3:15, God states that there is to be an enmity between the “woman” and the serpent, and this enmity is shared between her seed and its seed. Her seed is the messiah, who stands in opposition to the seed of the serpent. The mother of the messiah is said to share the same enmity—total opposition—with Satan. Read more...
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More than a hundred people, including those above, attended the African American Catholic Convocation April 1 at the Flaget Center. Representatives from seven dioceses in Tennessee, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Maryland came together for a day of praise, worship and community. (Record Photo by Jessica Able)
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SEEK 2017 inspires college students to evangelize at home campuses
by Ana Franco-Guzman Catholic News Service
SAN ANTONIO (CNS) -- In need of reigniting the fire for his Catholic faith, Jeremy Martins found the flame he needed during SEEK 2017.
"SEEK is the log I was waiting for," said Martins, a junior at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. "It has been two years since a real encounter with Christ."
He told Catholic News Service that the conference, sponsored Jan. 3-7 by the Fellowship of Catholic University Students, known as FOCUS, generated a new excitement even though he previously had committed two years of his life to mission work that involved evangelizing young people and help them overcome "the poverty of spirit" in their lives.
Martins was not alone. About 13,000 people, almost exclusively young adults, attended the biennial SEEK conference at San Antonio's Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. The five-day event focused on the theme "What Moves You." Read more...
News and Editorials
by Jessica Able, Record Staff Writer
Young people live what they learn and learn what they live. That is the message more than 100 people heard Dr. Tyrone Powers deliver at the African American Catholic Convocation held April 1 at the Flaget Center.
Powers, from the Archdiocese of Baltimore, told participants during a high-energy presentation to be an example to the young people in their lives.
“They learn from observation, participation and demonstration. The last way they learn is a whole lot of conversation,” said Powers, who is the director of the Homeland Security and Criminal Justice Institute at Anne Arundel Community College in Arnold, Md.
Powers also said it’s important for adults to “demonstrate energy,” even when they are tired, because young people are “watching us.”
“Don’t go home always talking about your problems. Say a few things about your blessings,” he said.
Powers noted the “culture of violence” occurring on neighborhood streets and in wars around the world. Read more...