Shar writes: Bowing to Mary is Idolatry!There is absolutely NOTHING in the Bible leading Christians to recognize Mary, adore Mary, or talk to Mary. Although most Catholics deny worshipping Mary, a picture is worth 1,000 words. The picture of Pope John Paul II adoring Our Lady of Fatima, and photos of Catholics bowing to Mary, are clear irrefutable evidences of idolatry. Look up the word "worship" in any dictionary and you'll find that Catholics do indeed WORSHIP Mary and other hordes of dead saints.
My response: "hordes of dead saints" and "worshipping Mary"! Oh my! LOL Sorry, but I admit to getting a chuckle out of your wording. Let me say very clearly that Catholics do NOT worship Mary or any other saint. We worship God and God alone. Here's another clear statement and I speak for myself as a Catholic here, I do adore Mary. Mary is precious to me and is my Mother whom I seek to honor. I do pray to Mary, as in petition her to pray for me and with me. I do not pray to her as to God. There is a difference as any good dictionary will show (see definition at the bottom of this post). Pope John Paul II did indeed adore Mary- you got that part correct. He never worshipped Mary, but he did adore her as do many Catholics. Mary is the Mother of God Incarnate how can anyone not love and adore her? She too suffered so that her Son our Lord could bring salvation to the world (Luke 2:35). Can you begin to imagine being a Mother and standing back to witness what her Son our Lord went thru? Would that not cause you to suffer also? Jesus brought salvation to the world and is our one and only Savior, no denying that. But Jesus did not suffer alone according to Sacred Scripture and common sense to anyone who even for a moment tries to imagine what Mary endured witnessing the torture and brutal assault on her Son and His death upon the cross. What a horrible event for anyone to endure and watch, let alone a Mother seeing it occur to her child. For Mary, to see her completely innocent and precious Son, God incarnate go thru that for love of the world... well, yes I do adore and love Mary. She suffered for my salvation because she was and is, the Mother of God Incarnate. And if bowing to Mary is idolatry in your opinion then are all the people who bow to kings and queens committing idolatry too? I many parts of the world people don't shake hands to greet each other, they bow to each other. Is this idolatry in your opinion? You see how silly that way of thinking is? If you bow in worship you are sinning, but for any other reason it is not and God knows the heart of all people. Mary is the Mother of God incarnate, she is the Queen of Heaven because her Son Jesus is the King of Kings, and as such bowing is not idolatry. It can only be idolatry when it is done in worship to someone or something other than God.
Now about the "hordes of saints" (still LOLing over that one), I guess you are technically correct in saying that the Catholic Church does have "hordes of saints" (see definition at bottom) but let me again be clear, Catholics ONLY worship God. We do not worship any saints. I believe I've mentioned this before on this blog, so my apologies if my readers are having deja vu. The Family of God is not separated by death. God is the God of the living, not the dead! (Luke 20:38 "He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.") The believers on earth are part of the same Family of God that the saints in Heaven are. We are One in Christ. The saints in heaven can and do pray for us (Rev. 5:8). If a Catholic on earth asks a saint to pray for and with them they are not worshipping the saint. They are petitioning the saint, that is requesting that the saint pray for them and with them. This is not worship. Prayer has more than one meaning (as seen in the definition below- #3 & #4 & #8 are to saints). Worship is set aside for God only. Catholics do not worship saints, we worship God.
noun, verb, hord·ed, hord·ing.
a large group, multitude, number, etc.; a mass or crowd: a horde of tourists.
–verb (used with object)
1.to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to (God or an object of worship).
2.to offer (a prayer).
3.to bring, put, etc., by praying: to pray a soul into heaven.
4.to make earnest petition to (a person).
5.to make petition or entreaty for; crave: She prayed his forgiveness.
6.to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to God or to an object of worship.
7.to enter into spiritual communion with God or an object of worship through prayer. –verb (used without object)
8.to make entreaty or supplication, as to a person or for a thing.