The Catholic Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle

A Catholic Prayer Book and Study Guide

PART II

Catholic Facts and General Knowledge

CATHOLIC BELIEF

THE COMMANDMENTS

Besides believing what God has revealed, we must keep His law.

THE TWO GREAT COMMANDMENTS that contain the whole law of God are:

You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole mind, and with your whole strength; you shall love your neighbour as yourself.

To love God, our neighbour, and ourselves, we must keep the commandments of God and of the Church, and perform the spiritual and corporal works of mercy.

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF GOD

THE CHIEF COMMANDMENTS OR LAWS, OF THE CHURCH

THE FOUR SINS CRYING TO HEAVEN FOR VENGEANCE

THE SIX SINS AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT

NINE WAYS OF BEING ACCESSORY TO ANOTHER'S SIN

CAPITAL SINS, OR CHIEF SOURCES OF SIN

Pride, Covetousness, Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Envy and Sloth.

We should not be satisfied merely to keep the commandments of God, but should always be ready to do good deeds, even when they are not commanded. The commandments of God state the minimum requirements for salvation. They should be kept not merely according to the letter, but also according to the spirit, which obliges us to strive for greater perfection.

THE CHIEF CORPORAL WORKS OF MERCY

PRAYER AND THE SACRAMENTS

1. Man must know, love, and serve God in a supernatural manner in order to gain the happiness of heaven. Man is raised to the supernatural order only by grace, a free gift of God.

2. The principal ways of obtaining grace are prayer and the sacraments, especially the Holy Eucharist. The sacraments of Baptism and Penance were instituted chiefly to give grace to those who do not possess it; the other sacraments, to increase it in those who are already in the state of grace.

3. A sacrament is an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace. There are seven sacraments: Baptism, Confirmation, Holy Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and Matrimony.

4. Prayer is the lifting up of our minds to God.

5. We pray:

6. We should pray especially for ourselves, for our parents, relatives, friends, and enemies, for sinners, for the souls in purgatory, for the Pope, bishops, and priest of the Church, and for the officials of our country.

7. We know that God always hears our prayers if we pray properly, because Our Lord has promised: "If you ask the Father anything in My name, He will give it to you."

8. We do not always obtain what we pray for, either because we have not prayed properly or because God sees that what we are asking for would not be for our good.

9. Distractions in our prayers are not displeasing to God, unless they are willful.

10. Mental prayer is that prayer by which we unite our hearts with God while thinking of His holy truths.

11. Vocal prayer is that prayer which comes from the mind and the heart and is spoken by the lips.

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