Category: Heresies and Errors

“For there must be also heresies: that they also, who are approved, may be made manifest among you” (1 Corinthians 11:19). St. Thomas defines heresy as “a species of infidelity in men who, having professed the faith of Christ, corrupt its dogmas.” God allows His faithful to be exposed to heresy in order to test their Faith, their docility, and obedience to Catholic authority. At Baptism we receive the theological virtue of Faith, which is a supernatural light for our intellect, which enables us to “see” the truths that God has revealed through His Church, or as Father Feeney so simply put it, “to think the thoughts of God.” A person, therefore, bearing within him this infused light, will immediately recognize pernicious doctrine for the darkness that it is.

Religious errors, on the other hand, are not necessarily opposed to the virtue of Faith. A validly baptized person may for a period fall into a material error on account of a misrepresentation of Catholic doctrine, or outright misinformation, and be innocent of the sin of heresy. He made be told, for example, that Catholics worship Mary as God, and then he would be in error about what Catholics believe. The providence of God will be sure to provide this person an opportunity, be it by way of a book or a Catholic acquaintance, to hear the truth. Then, if he cooperates with the light of Faith that is in him, he would be bound to accept the truth and seek out the full teaching of the Church.

If as the saying goes “contrast clarifies the mind,” then by studying the Church’s battles against heresies throughout her history, a Catholic can fortify his own Faith. The articles falling under this category are such. They are part of the library of the Church Militant as guardian of the truth and refuter of all heresies.

Pelagius Lives

(See the From the Housetops editor’s introduction to this article.) The February 1991 issue of the Catholic magazine 30 Days featured a very striking cover designed by Romano Sicillani. Michelangelo’s famous painting from the Sistine Chapel, the Fall and Expulsion … Continue reading

Islam Versus the Faith

Much of history since the seventh century has been shaped by an unending conflict between the One True Church and Islam. Today’s Church having fallen into a sorry state with many of her members no longer understanding that they belong … Continue reading