What do Catholics believe about Creation?
- Nothing existed before God created the world - Creation Ex Nihilo
- Only God creates because he is omnipotent
- This belief can be found in the Bible in Genesis.
- They believe it is a symbolic story.
- The world was NOT created in 6 days exactly as it says.
What does Creation Ex Nihilo mean?
Creation out of nothing.
Which Catholic scholar talks about Creation ex nihilo?
What happens in Genesis 1?
God creates the world in 6 days and rests on the 7th. He looks at all he has made and sees that it is good. He creates humans on the 6th day.
What happens in Genesis 2?
Adam names all the animals in the world but is still lonely. God creates Eve from Adams rib.
What do Other Christians (Creationists or Fundamentalists) believe about the creation story?
- They believe that the Bible account is accurate and is exactly how the world was created.
- The world was created in 6 calendar days.
- They believe this because the Bible is the word of God and is never mistaken.
What do Jews believe about creation?
- God is the creator and source of all life
- Every week Jews celebrate the Sabbath - recalling that God rested on the 7th day.
What do ORTHODOX Jews think about the Creation story?
- The creation story in the Torah is the same as the one in the Bible (Genesis 1 & 2)
- Just like Creationists, Orthodox Jews think the creation accounts are true.
- They do not accept modern theories such as the Big Bang.
What do Catholics believe about the Big Bang?
- They believe in the Big Bang.
- The theory supports their believe of creation out of nothing.
- The Big Bang theory was put forward by a Catholic Priest.
- ‘Let there be light’ could be reference to the explosion.
- Science explains HOW the universe came about and Genesis explains WHY.
What do REFORM Jews believe about Creation?
- Like Catholics, they believe the Creation stories shouldn’t be taken as historical facts.
- It is symbolic.
- God continues to provide and sustain us through evolution.
What is the Big Bang Theory?
- The world was started with a big bang - a big explosion. Which led to stars and planets being formed.
- It can lead to people such as Hawking to doubt that God exsists as the world can be created without the need for God.
Which scholar supports the Big Bang Theory?
Is there a problem between science and religion?
- No - for Catholics there is no conflict.
- Yes - for people who take the Bible literally (Creationists) there is a conflict.
What is the scientific theory of evolution?
- Idea proposed by Charles Darwin
- The idea that organisms gradually change and develop through natural selection.
- Certain characteristics help animals to survive.
- An example is the Giraffe getting a longer neck over time
- Evolution takes millions of years to come about.
Which modern scholar did we look at for evolution?
What does Richard Dawkins say about evolution?
- Evolution does away with the need for God and the belief that humans have souls.
- Humans are just survival machines and don’t have any other purpose.
- We are just genetic mutation and advanced animals.
What is the Catholic view of Evolution?
- Catholics think that evolution supports the idea of a loving creator God.
- It supports the idea that God created the world with purpose and everything exists as part of his plan,
- The Pope sees no conflict between evolution and Catholic belief.
What is the Catholic view of the sanctity of life?
- Human Life is Special and should be cared for
- Each person is unique because God made them.
- Catholic church teaches that all life is sacred and that everyone has the right to life which should be protected and valued AT EVERY STAGE.
What does St Catherine of Siena say about being made in the image of God? (imago dei)
- The soul is made in the image of God
- Humans come from God
- God creates out of love. The fact humans are made with dignity and in Gods image shows how much God loves them.
- Gods qualities are reflected in us - like a mirror.
What do Jews believe about the sanctity of life?
- God is creator, he alone gives and takes life.
- The Torah (Genesis) teaches that humans are created in the image of God and that life is precious.
- The Ten Commandments also forbid taking life.
What is an abortion?
A deliberate ending of a pregnancy
What is pro-life when thinking about abortion?
The idea that abortion is always wrong and every human (including embryos) has a right to life.
What is Pro-Choice when thinking about abortion?
The idea that a woman should be able to choose what happens to her own body. This includes choosing to end a pregnancy.
What are the UK laws on abortion?
- Abortion was legalised in Britain in 1967.
- An abortion cannot happen after 24 weeks.
- Two doctors must agree to the abortion.
- You must have justification to have an abortion.
- If the baby is found to have a severe disability abortion may take place after 24 weeks.
What does the Catholic Church say about Abortion?
- Against abortion in all circumstances as Human life is sacred.
- Life begins at conception, Abortion is therefore seen as murder
- The foetus has a right to life.
- They would encourage adoption after birth rather than abortion.
What would a Catholic say in response to Peter Singer?
- Humans are always people.
- Even when they are asleep, in a coma or haven’t yet been born.
- Catholics would agree that animals should be treated with care.
- However, as humans are made in the image of God, so they have a dignity which animals do not have.
What is double effect? (Catholic views on abortion)
Double effect says that if the mother’s life was in danger during pregnancy, then the action to save the life of the mother even if it destroys the life of the unborn child is acceptable as the intention is to save the mother.
What are Other Christian views on abortion?
There is no single view on abortion in Christianity.
- Some fundamentalist Christians think abortion is NEVER acceptable.
- Most Christians think that it is not a good thing, but sometimes is the lesser of two evils.
Some situations where it would be the lesser of two evils are:
1. if the pregnancy is the result of rape
2. If continuing the pregnancy might be dangerous to the woman’s health
3. if the child is likely to be severely disabled and so quality of life is affected.
What would Jews believe about abortion?
- They disagree with abortion
- God is the sole creator, giver and taker of life.
- Before we were formed in the womb, God knows us.
- Do not kill.
What is ‘specieism’ for Peter Singer?
- Speciesism is when we say that Human Life is more important than any other life.
- Singer argues that dogs or other animals have more mental capacity and are more of a ‘person’ than a baby or an elderly person with dementia.
- Arguing that human life is more important than any other life is wrong - it is the same as racism.
What does Peter Singer think about the Sanctity of Life?
- Not all life is of equal value.
- If a person cannot think or relate to others, then their life has limited value.
- Therefore, it is morally acceptable to take the life of embryos and new-born babies as they are classes as having limited value.
- This also applies to old people with dementia or disabled people and so this is why it is controversial.
What do Humanists think about abortion?
- There is no set Humanist view on abortion.
- Humanists value happiness and personal choice.
- Generally, they take a pro-choice stance. Abortion is often the most morally acceptable choice to make.
Which Humanist scholar did we look at during our abortion topic?
What does Genesis 1 each us about God and his qualities?
- God is transcendent - he exists outside of space and time (God created the heavens and the earth)
- Eternal - God already existed and has no beginning.
- Omnipotent - God can speak the world into creation and God creates from nothing - only God can do this.
What does Genesis 2 tell us about Gods qualities?
- Omnibenevolent - God loved humans so much that he created a world that had everything on it that they needed to survive.
- Omnibenevolent - God doesn’t want man to be alone so he creates Eve.
- Omnipresent - God is involved in creation and he creates everything.
What do the Genesis creation stories tell us about human beings?
- Sanctity of Life - We are created last and are the high point of God’s creation.
- Humans were created in the image of God
- We were made Male and Female to have children.
- God gave us free-will.
- We were made stewards of creation.
What do Catholics think about stewardship?
- We should all be stewards of creation.
- Catholics believe God made humans superior to other animals by giving them reason and free will and this is why they should look after the world.
- Every individual has a duty to care for their neighbours around the world.
What do Humanists think about stewardship?
- Humanists think we need to look after the world.
- We need to be stewards of the world out of concern for human beings and other animals.
- We should work towards a more sustainable world.
What do Catholics believe about inspiration and revelation from the Bible?
- Catholics believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God.
- God inspired people to write the Bible - not everything is historically or literally accurate.
- Catholics must determine what is true and what is metaphor.
- All Christians should be guided by the teachings of the Bible.
What are the two main parts of the Bible?
- The Old Testament
- The New Testament
What can be found in the Old Testament?
- The laws (Torah) - The first five books of the OT. They tell the story of how the Jewish people became God’s chosen race and how they were told to live.
- Historical books
What can be found in the New Testament?
- It is based on the life and teachings of Jesus and his apostles.
- The Gospels
- The Acts of the Apostles
- The Letters
- The Book of Revelation
What are the Origins of the Bible?
- It took about 350 years for the books in the Bible to be accepted as authentic records of Christian belief.
- For a book to be accepted in the NT it had to:
a. be accepted by all Christians
b. the work had to go back to the apostles
c. have an early written date
d. agree with other Christian beliefs.
What do Other Christians (Creationists/Funamentalists) believe about the Bible and the story of Genesis?
- It is the literal word of God.
- Everything is factually correct.
- They reject the theory of evolution.
- The Holy Spirit gave the Bible and no one should question anything in it because it comes from God.
- Where there appear to be contradictions this is because people do not have enough understanding yet.
What do Catholics believe about the Bible and the story of Genesis?
- Genesis is a myth.
- Lots of stories in the Bible are metaphors (they have hidden meanings)
- Genesis is not literally true, although it has great truths.
- It shows us that God is omnipotent and the creator.
What do Jews believe about the Torah?
- The Torah is the first 5 books of the OT and are the holiest and most important part of scripture for Jews.
- Orthodox Jews believe that the Torah was given to Moses by God and must be taken literally.
- Reform Jews say that the Torah doesn’t need to be taken literally and sometimes the rules have to be adapted for modern life.
What is the purpose of art in worship?
- Art is used to express faith in God and glorify him.
- It can be used as a focus for prayer.
- It helps people to think and reflect on their own beliefs.
- Art can challenge people - it might make someone rethink or reinforce their beliefs.
What is Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam?
- It is on the Sistine Chapel ceiling in Rome.
- The paintings are beautiful and give glory to God.
- The painting also helps us reflect about our beliefs in God as creator.
What does Adam show us in the painting The Creation of Adam?
- Humans were created by God.
- God created a perfect world (Adam is drawn as the perfect Human)
- Humans were made in the image and likeness of God (We have similar qualities to God, but since you cannot paint qualities, Michelangelo painted both muscular)
What does God show us in the painting The Creation of Adam?
- God reaches out to Adam showing us that God is eternal and all powerful.
- The difference in age shows us the parent-child relationship between God and Humanity.
- God is the creator.
What do the outstretched hands of God and Adam in the Creation of Adam show us?
- The touch of fingertips represents God giving life to Adam.
- Human life is sacred and a gift from God.
What does the cloud around God in the painting The Creation of Adam show us?
- God being carried on a cloud by angels shows us the greatness and transcendence of God.
- God is omniscient (The cloud is in the shape of a brain)
- God gives all life (The cloud is also similar to the shape of a womb)
How does the painting The Creation of Adam express Catholic beliefs about creation, God and humans?
- God is all-powerful and transcendent.
- God made each human being in his own image (imago dei)
- Humans are God’s greatest creation.
- Life is a gift from God.
- God is a loving father who cares about his creation.
What is the Tree of Life Apse Mosaic?
- It is found in the apse of the Church of San Clemente in Rome.
- An apse is a semi-circular dome which is above the altar in a church.
- The mosaic has lots of symbolism in it.
What does the cross mean in the Tree of Life mosaic?
- Through the crucifixion people of all nations are saved.
- The cross is a symbol of the death of Christ to take away people’s sins.
- The cross could be the tree of life - there are vines that come from the cross and reach the whole of the mosaic branching to all humanity.
What does the tree at the bottom of the cross mean in the Tree of life mosaic?
- This is considered to be the tree of life to heal the nations.
- It is below Jesus who is the healer of the world.
- The tree is also a reminder of the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the Garden of Eden.
How are the apostles/disciples represented in the Tree of Life mosaic?
- The apostles appear on the cross as doves - 12 of them surrounding Jesus on the cross.
- The doves are a sign of peace and the Holy Spirit filling the disciples at Pentecost.
- They are shown as lambs - there are 12. They, like Jesus, lived a sacrificial life, as they gave up everything to follow Jesus.
- The lambs also face inwards showing they follow Jesus.
What does THE lamb tell us in the tree of life mosaic?
(in the centre of the 12 disciples)
- The central lamb is the lamb of God/Jesus.
- A lamb is a symbol of sacrifice from the Passover when lambs blood was put on the doors of the Jews.
- The angel of death passed over the houses of the Jews and they were saved from slavery.
- Jesus is the lamb of God because his death saved humanity from their sin and death.
What does the Alpha, Omega and Chi-Rho symbol tell us on the Tree of Life Mosaic?
- Chi-Rho - The symbol looks like the letters X and P (These are the 1st two letters of the word Christ in Greek).
- Alpha and Omega - The first and last letters of the Greek alphabet remind us that God is the beginning and the end of all things.
How are the four gospel writers shown?
- The four gospel writers are at the top, shown in different ways.
- Matthew - a man - represents Christs humanity and his humbleness (these are highlighted throughout his gospel)
- Mark - a winged lion - leadership and royalty - Christ as King.
- Luke - winged Ox - Sacrifice - a reminder of his sacrificial death for mankind.
- John - flying eagle - Eagle as the sky - his book is not like the other gospels as it begins with a meditation upon the meaning of Christ.
What is Catholic Social Teaching?
A set of principles about building a just and fair society.
What does Catholic Social Teaching say about Human Dignity?
- At the heart of CST is human dignity.
- Catholics believe that we were created imago dei and that each life is sacred.
- This links to Jesus’ teaching ‘love our neighbour’
- Catholics take strong position on issues connected with the beginning and ending of life.
- This belief has a huge impact on how people support people with disabilities, how they address inequality and their approach to civil rights.
What does Catholic Social Teaching say about the Common Good?
- The church promotes the idea of the common good.
- This means seeking the conditions in society that promote the fulfilment of all people, both as individuals and as groups.
- In order for people to flourish and reach their potential, society needs to promote respect for human rights and the dignity of each person.
- We also need to promote peace and security within society.
How is Britain a multi-faith society?
- We have strong Christian Heritage, however, there are lots of different religions including Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists.
- In the UK people have religious freedom.
- Atheism is also much more common now.
What is inter-faith dialogue?
A co-operative and constructive engagement between people of different faiths or people of no faith to:
a. Promote mutual understanding, respect, tolerance and harmony
b. Identify common ground
c. Engage in shared action for the common good of society.
Why do we need inter-faith dialogue?
- Living in a multi-faith society has many benefits - food, culture, clothes, music and literature for example.
- By living and working with each other we can gain greater tolerance, respect and understanding towards other people.
- This leads to a happy and safe society.
What does the Catholic Church think about inter-faith dialogue?
- They believe they have a duty to share the gospel message.
- They believe non-Christians have some truth - but not all.
- Other religions should be respected
- All people are made in the image of God
- Pope’s often speak about the importance of respect and tolerance between faith.
- Vatican II stressed the importance of dialogue with Jews and Muslims.
Why do Catholic Charities do what they do?
- Humans were created in the image of God.
- Each life is Sacred.
- They believe in Jesus’ teaching ‘Love thy neighbour’ and ‘Treat others the way you want to be treated’
- Respect for human life and dignity and also hope for the common good.
What do CAFOD do?
- They are the major Catholic agency working for world development.
- It tries to live out the Church’s mission on a global scale.
- It tries to help those in need and promotes long-term development so people can support themselves.
- It has a disaster fund to aid people after natural disasters and also refugees.
- 5% of CAFOD’s budget is spent on educating people about the need for development in poorer countries.
- It tries to end poverty.
Who are CAFOD?
- Catholic Agency for Overseas Development.
- They are supported by the Catholics of England and Wales.
What happens in Genesis 3?
The snake tempts Eve and Adam to eat from the Tree of Knowledge from which they are forbidden to eat. The two become ashamed of their nakedness and God banishes them from the garden and punishes them.
Who are St Vincent De Paul (SVP)?
They are an organisation of Catholics who try to help those in need around the UK.
What is the teaching of Imago Dei?
- It means made in the image of God.
- Creation of humans was unlike the rest of creation because they were made in the image of God.
What does Catholic Social Teaching say about justice, peace and reconciliation?
- Peace and reconciliation are at the heart of the gospel.
- It condemns the arms trade and supports those who refuse to take up arms on grounds of conscience.
- It looks towards the kingdom of God and tries to find ways to create lasting peace in the world.
- A peace that is experienced and learnt about from a relationship with God.
What do SVP do?
- Visit and help care for families who are finding it difficult to organise their family or home.
- Help the lonely, bereaved or housebound.
- Visits to sick people.
- Shopping, decorating, gardening, filling in official forms and making sure people receive their benefits.
- Organise children’s camps for children from poor or troubled homes.
- Organising stores for unwanted furniture which can help the homeless.
What is Laudato Si?
- It is a letter from Pope Francis which encourages everyone in the world to think about the gift of the world.
- We therefore need to be good stewards of the earth and look after our gift.
What do Jews believe about Stewardship?
- God gave humans the world to look after in Genesis in the Torah.
- Jews believe it is our responsibility to make the world a better place to live.
What does good Stewardship look like?
- ‘love thy neighbour as yourself’ - helping people in other countries suffering.
- Working for the ‘common good’ - trying to help society.
- We do not own the world, we are simply looking after it for the next generation, so we should do things which keep the world healthy E.G recycle.
What are Human Rights?
- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
- These are the rights all humans should have.
- They include: right to shelter, right to education and right to religion.
What is social justice?
The desire to achieve a just and fair society where everyone has access to the same basic things to live and can look forward to equal opportunities.