Seek. Learn. Engage

St. Thomas The Apostle Roman Catholic Church

Mass Times

M, T, W 8am
Th, F 8am Communion Service
Saturday: 5pm, 6:30pm (Spanish)
Sunday: 7am, 9am,11am, 5pm
Confession:1st, 3rd and 4th Sat. of the month at 9am
Anointing of the sick: 2nd Sat at 4pm

Office Hours

M-Th 7:30 am-4:30 pm
F 7:30 am-3:00 pm

Events

December

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FAQs

Q:Why are Protestant and Catholic bibles different?

A:Catholic Bibles contain—and have always contained—all of the books of the Bible that have been traditionally accepted by Christians dating back to the time of Jesus. These accepted books total 46 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. Protestant Bibles, however, have seven fewer books in their Old Testament. These seven books excluded in the Protestant Bible are Baruch, Sirach, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Tobit, Judith and the Wisdom of Solomon, plus portions of Esther and Daniel. These books were rejected by Protestant Reformers in the 1500s because elements in these books did not support certain Protestant theology and doctrines. Prior to the sixteenth century, however, all Christians used Bibles containing all 46 books of the Old Testament.During the first century, there was much debate among the early Christians as to what made up the canon of Scripture. The Church, having been given authority by Jesus Christ and under the guidance of the Holy Spirit (see The Church and the Papacy), compiled the Bible in the form that it exists today.

Q:Why can't non-Catholics receive Holy Communion in the Catholic Church?

A:Catholics believe in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, meaning that what appears to be bread and wine is really Jesus’ body and blood—not just a symbol of his body and blood. When Catholics receive Holy Communion, it is an expression of the unity among all those in communion with the Catholic Church throughout the world, who maintain the belief in the Real Eucharistic Presence of Christ. Therefore, only those who believe in the True Presence may participate in this sacrament of oneness with Christ and his Church. “… [T]he celebration of the Eucharistic sacrifice is wholly directed toward the intimate union of the faithful with Christ through communion” (CCC 1382).

Ultimately, Catholics believe that we cannot celebrate this unifying sacrament with other Christians while there are disagreements about the Eucharist itself. However, Catholics pray for the day when we can reconcile with other Christians and share in the unity of God’s people through the Holy Eucharist.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops expresses this desire for unity:

“We pray that our common baptism and the action of the Holy Spirit in this Eucharist will draw us closer to one another and begin to dispel the sad divisions which separate us. We pray that these will lessen and finally disappear, in keeping with Christ’s prayer for us ‘that they may all be one’” (John 17:21).

Q:How should I (a Catholic) respond to someone who asks me if I have been saved or born again?

A: Answer with a resounding, “Yes!” Tell them that it is through Baptism that you were saved, just as the Bible says in 1 Ptr 3:20-21 and that it is through Baptism, water and the Spirit, that you are “born again,” just as the Bible says in John 3:5.You see, many Protestants believe that they are saved by making one single act of faith at one single point in time in their lives. Nowhere does Scripture say such a thing. As Catholics, however, we believe that salvation is a process which begins with our Baptism and continues throughout our lifetimes, just as the Bible teaches us.There are so many places in Scripture, which talk about how one is “saved”, but not one of them says we are saved by one act of faith at just one point in time. As I just mentioned, 1 Ptr 3:20 says we are saved by baptism. In Hebrews 12:14 it says that we will not see the Lord unless we are holy, and that we have to strive for this holiness. In Matthew 6:14-15, it says we must forgive others or we will not be forgiven. Can you attain salvation if God hasn’t forgiven you? No! So, our forgiving others is necessary for our salvation. 1 Tim 2:15 says that woman will be saved through bearing children, if she continues in faith and love and holiness with modesty. John 6:54 says we will have eternal life by doing something…eating the flesh and drinking the blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In Matthew 19, verses 16 and 17, Jesus is asked directly what one must do to have eternal life. Did He say, accept me into your heart once and that’s it? No! Jesus said to keep the commandments and you will have life. Yes, as Catholics we are born again. And, as Catholics we believe that we were saved, as Paul says in Rom 8:24; that we are being saved, as Paul says in 1 Cor 1:18; and that we will be saved, as Paul says in Rom 5:9-10, provided we persevere and keep our eyes on the prize. Salvation is a process, just as Catholics believe, and just as the Bible cle