Anonymous asked: What do Catholics think about alcohol? I mean, you guys use wine for communion, so you obviously don't think alcohol is sinful, but what exactly is the catholic belief?
You’re right, Catholicism doesn’t teach that alcohol is sinful. Jesus’ first miracle was to turn water to wine at a wedding party, and as you mentioned, Jesus used wine in the Last Supper. Jesus was even accused by Pharisees of being a drunkard. If drinking alcohol is sinful, then Jesus sinned and caused others to do so. In fact, Catholicism teaches that alcohol, having been created by God, is a good thing. It’s something to be enjoyed, a way to have fun and to fellowship with others. Even priests drink sometimes, and some monks even brew beer or wine to support themselves.
However, while alcohol is not inherently sinful, it can be abused. Catholicism teaches that getting drunk is a sin for a few reasons. First, it’s a form of gluttony (excessive use of food or drink), one of the cardinal sins. Second, it’s harmful to your body, since you’re drinking more than your body is able to normally handle. Third, and most importantly, it affects your judgement and inhibitions, making you more likely to commit other sins.
Lastly, as Christians we are called to obey all just laws made by legitimate authority. This includes things like drinking ages, if there is one where you are. (Some people wonder how drinking can be a sin at one age and then magically become okay at another, but it’s not the drinking that is sinful, it’s the breaking the law.) Driving under the influence of alcohol is also sinful because, in addition to being illegal in most places, it greatly endangers your life and the lives of others.
As a sidenote, the idea that alcohol is sinful only dates to the 18th century, and even then only for certain kinds. Even the Puritans were all for alcohol.
Hope that helps!
“You always leave the Rosary for later, and you end up not saying it at all because you are sleepy. If there is no other time, say it in the street without letting anybody notice it. It will, moreover, help you to have presence of God.”
Got Questions About the Virgin Mary?
The Catholic Church has answers! Now in one convenient post, here are some quotes and articles that talk about what the Church believes about Mary and why.
In the course of history, there have been exaggerations in devotion to Mary, but it was not the Church that made her important; it was Christ Himself. The Church has never adored Mary, because only God can be adored. But she, of all creatures, was closest to God. Without her as the key, it is difficult to discover the treasures in the vault of Faith.
God who made the sun also made the moon. The moon does not take away from the brilliance of the sun. The moon would be only a burned out cinder floating in the immensity of space, were it not for the sun. All its light is reflected from that glowing surface. In like manner, Mary reflects her Divine Son, without whom she is nothing. On dark nights we are grateful for the moon; when we see it shining we know there must be a sun. So, in this dark night of the world, when men turned their backs on Him Who is the Light of the World, we look to Mary to guide our feet while we await the sunrise.’— Archbishop Fulton Sheen (via jaycechandler)