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Professor walter sisto

on 22 January 2018

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Transcript of Christianity

Jesus Christ (3BCE - 30 CE)
-2.2 billion (Pew Research2010)
-Largest Religion in the world
-most persecuted religion
"War on Christians"-Newsweek 2012
-Founder of a reformed Jewish movement-->"The Way" --> Christianity
1-Jewish reformer
What was Jesus' "Good News"?
5-Proclaim (kerygma) the good news (gospel)
The Kingdom of God is at hand!!
-Our alienation from God is over!
-Free us from our slavery to
-allow us to be called God's son and daughter
-Love God with all you heart and your neighbor as yourself
-Entrance into the Kingdom of God is contingent upon how we treat the poor (Cf., Lk4.18 and Mt 21.18)

-God the Father calls all men and women to repent and be His Beloved friends/children
How do we enter this Kingdom?
-Jew during Roman oppression of Israel
3-Claims to be the Jewish Messiah
4-Claims to be the Son of God/
Son of Man
What is the Kingdom of God?
-coming reign of heaven on earth
-the community Jesus starts is the beginning of the inauguration of this kingdom
Jesus calls this community the "Church" (Mt 16.18)
-Community consisted of disciples but also 12 apostles
Simon (Peter)-takes a leading role
"You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell/Gahenna will not prevail against it" (Mt 16:18)
Catholic Christians-beginning of papacy
Jesus Life
-Considered a Pharisee by contemporaries
-Criticizes other pharisees for their legalism
-Follows rabbinic interpretation of the Torah
1) His teaching is the correct teaching!
-"amen, amen I say to you..."
2) Pharisee's traditions were making void the word of God!! (Mk 7:13)
-Faithful Jew
3) Because sin is universal no one can judge another..shows mercy to sinners (adulterers, prostitutes, tax collectors, etc.)
4) Places people before the LAW
5) Forgives sins
Rabbinic Context
To forgive sins means
Ignorant of the Torah/ a blasphemer
You are equal to God or in some way God is made present in you
Jesus was indeed claiming to be God
-"I and the Father are One" (Jn 10.30)
-"Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM" (Jn 8:58)
-"I Am who am speaking to you" (Jn 4:26)
But Jesus is Human? What is Jesus?
-Fully God and Fully Man

Hypostatic Union
1-Divine Nature/what
1-Human nature/what
"That which was not assumed is not healed; but that which is united to God is saved"
What does this mean for God the Father?
God is 1
God has one nature/content/What?
God is three hypostases/WHO?
God is Love (1 Jn 4.8)
God exhausts love/is complete love
God the Father (Lover)
God the Son (Beloved)
Jesus saves us from sin
God the Father
-"made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (1 Cor5.21;Rom 8.3)
-rejection of God that leads to alienation from God
-beginning of human history there was this willful separation from God --> original sin
-becomes a social sin (like slave owning in the South)
1-concupiscence-we do what we do not want
Is there evidence for the original sin??
2-there is something wrong in the world
God the Holy Spirit (Love itself)
Jesus' Life
Historical-Accused of a political crime
Paschal Sacrifice
3-God is united with the human race in life, suffering, persecution, abuse, mockery, shame, experience of godforsakeness, and

Central event for Christians
1-Jesus rises from the dead on the third day
"Oh, Death Where is your sting" (1 Cor 15:55); "By death he conquers death" (Orthodox Liturgy)
2-Redemptive sacrifice for all people-no longer alienated from God because of sin
2-Conquers death because he Experiences Death in its fullness
-Nothing can separate us from God now
-Descends into Hell and delivers the righteous
Ancient Holy Saturday Homily:
"Today a great silence reigns on earth, a great silence and a great stillness. A great silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. . . He has gone to search for Adam, our first father, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, he has gone to free from sorrow Adam in his bonds and Eve, captive with him - He who is both their God and the son of Eve. . . "I am your God, who for your sake have become your son. . . I order you, O sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be a prisoner in hell. Rise from the dead, for I am the life of the dead."
3-He reveals what awaits us!
-To be like God forever
-Beatific Vision: See God face to face
-In the presence of God, the Holy Angels and the Saints, all those who die in Christ
-Experience ineffable Joy and Understanding
-Help to fulfill God's plan for humankind (Catholic/Orthodox Hagiography)
-Christians from reformation traditions deny
-Orthodox-"middle state"
-Methodist-Sleeping to the Resurrection"
-Catholic Christians consider a revealed truth (dogma)
-Heaven is for those who completely accept God
-Free from attachments to sin/ false idols
-People who die in a state of sin are not prepared for heaven because they do not want to be there!!
-Purgatory is where these people are prepared to enter into the glory of God
Where did Purgatory come from?
-ancient Jewish/Christian custom of praying for the dead
-Scriptures that speak of cleansing and prayers/alms for the dead
-Led theologians and the Church to speculate and then define this place where souls can receive prayers as Purgatory (1439)
"Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin." (2 Macc 12:46)
"If anyone's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire." (1 Cor 3:15)
Practice of purifying family members with a sacrifice to God (Job 1:5)
-Those who do not love God and God's children
-"eternal fire"-experience of the separation from God
-willfully turn away from God and persist in that state
-St. Isaac the Syrian-fire of hell is the Love of God that you can no longer receive
Is hell empty?
Hell is eternal; has to be for freewill to exist (Catholic, Orthodox, most Protestants)
-not places
-states of being
Death and Funeral Rite
Heaven and Hell are eternal
will experience with bodies
Last Judgement and Resurrection
Resurrection-precedes judgment
-we get our bodies back!!!
Christ returns as the just judge
How have we treated the poor?
God's justice wins
body and soul/spirit
death= the soul's separation from the body
1-soul is returned to body and graced/transformed
body, soul, and spirit
1-spirit= consciousness/mind
2-soul-connects the body to the soul
-death = breakdown of the energy of this connection
-soul stays with body
-like the egyptian KA
Resurrection =
1-Spirit returns to the Body,
2-Soul have new/more intense energy that not only can re-connect the body to the spirit
3-transforms the body
1-Roman Catholic -1.2 billion, largest single denomination
-trace to original followers of Jesus
-split in 1054 (east and West)
2-Reformed/Protestant -1 billion
-Stem from the protestant reformation (1517-now)
-Bible Alone, Faith Alone

Major difference in Church traditions
2/3-Orthodox-300 million
-Middle East, Egypt, Russia, Eastern Europe
-sister of the Catholic Church
-split in 1054
spirit-continues to the afterlife
-every Catholic/Catechumen/ stillborn has a right to a Catholic funeral
3 parts:
1-the Vigil

2-the Funeral Liturgy

3-Rite of Committal
Funeral Liturgy-central element

-prayer for the mercy of God on the deceased and solace for the living
-encourage/not require burial in a Catholic cemetery
The Vigil
-Friends and members of the parish community gather in remembrance of the deceased for prayer, remembrance, and support
-May include rosary prayer and/or eulogy after the service
-liturgical (official prayer service)
-opening prayer, hymns, readings from the bible, intercessory prayers, concluding prayers

The minister says:
Blessed are those who have died in the Lord;
let them rest from their labors for their good deeds go with them.
A gesture, for example, signing of the forehead of the deceased
with the sign of the cross, may accompany the following words.
Eternal rest grant unto him/her, 0 Lord.
All: And let perpetual light shine upon him/her.
May he/she rest in peace.
All: Amen.

-officiated by priest, deacon or lay minister

Funeral Liturgy of Mass
Preparation for Death

1) Final Confession
2)Anointing of the Sick (can also forgive sins if unable to speak/communicate)
3) Final Eucharist (viaticum)
-Central prayer for the deceased
1) Prayer at the entrance of the Church
2) Funeral Liturgy
1-introduction prayer,
2-liturgy of the word (bible),
3-prayer of the faithful
4-liturgy of the Eucharist,
5-concluding prayer
The priest may then sprinkle the body with holy water saying
these or similar words:
I bless the body of ( ), with the holy water
that recalls his (her) baptism of which Saint Paul writes:
All of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into his death.
By baptism into his death we were buried together with him,
so that just as Christ was raised from the dead
by the glory of the Father,
we too might live a new life.
For if we have been united with him by likeness to his death,
so shall we be united with him by likeness to his resurrection.


GOSPEL John 11:17-27
Priest: The Lord be with you.
All: And also with you.
Priest: A reading from the holy gospel according to John
All: Glory to you, Lord.
When Jesus arrived at Bethany, he found that Lazarus had
already been in the tomb four days. The village was not far
from Jerusalem — just under two miles — and many Jewish
people had come out to con sole Martha and Mary over their
brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming she went to
meet him, while Mary sat at home. Martha said to Jesus,
“Lord, if you had been here, my brother would never have
died. Even now, I am sure that God will give you whatever
you ask of him.”
“Your brother will rise again,” Jesus assured her.
“I know he will rise again,” Martha replied, “in the
resurrection on the last day.”
Jesus told her:
“I am the resurrection and the life:
whoever believes in me, though he should die, will come to
and whoever is alive and believes in me will never die. Do you
believe this?”
“Yes, Lord,” she replied. “I have come to believe that you are
the Messiah, the Son.of God: he who is to come into the
—This is the gospel of the Lord.

place of burial
-blessing of land if not catholic cemetery
Final Farewell
The priest stands near the coffin with the ministers who have the
holy water and incense.

Priest: Our brother (sister) has gone to his (her) rest in the peace
of Christ. With faith and hope in eternal life, let us commend him
(her) to the loving mercy of our Father, and assist him (her;) With
our prayers. He (she) became God’s son (daughter through
baptism and was often fed at the table of our Lord. May the Lord
now welcome him (her) to the table of God’s children in heaven,
and, with all the saints, may he (she) inherit the promise of
eternal life.

Let us also pray to the Lord for ourselves. May we who mourn be
reunited one day with our brother (sister). Together may we meet
Christ Jesus when he, who is our life, shall appear in his glory.
-Most Churches have a Bereavement Ministry
-No standards/Laws or required period of mourning
-Church community has obligation to help out
-ministry of the Church and an expression of the
Corporal Works of Mercy:

“Those who are baptized into Christ and nourished at the same table of the Lord are to be responsible for each other”
-Cremation is permitted, so long as remains are treated with reverence
-Bodily burial-stronger reminder of the Resurrection
-scattering of ashes, except in extraordinary circumstances, (e.g. sea burial, is irreverent
-bury or entomb the ashes in an urn)
-Overcome casuistry of Jewish leaders and thinkers
-Radical intimacy with God the Father!
2-New Covenant-law in your heart
The most influential persons in history? (Yes-in the West)
God is you "daddy" or abba
You are judged by how you treat the most vulnerable
-Need to be "poor in spirit"
Jewish Law is secondary
Sin is an offense against reason, truth, and right conscience; it is failure in genuine love for God and neighbor caused by a perverse attachment to certain goods.
Analogy of Being
-Maturity and Dating??
Purgatory is not eternal
-may only be the instant after death
-God's grace prepares you for heaven
-Stress on organ donation and giving bodies to science
-guide for what to do in a difficult situation
-offer options for family to choose prayers and bible readings
Part III: End-of-Life Care
-always respect family and patient's wishes
-Call the patient's parish
-Respect times that patient may want the sacraments: 1) anointing of the sick; 2) Eucharist (if possible); 3) Confession (if possible) from priest
-Stress in this tradition-have faith in Christ Jesus and that your life
-end of life should be a simple transition
End-of-Life Treatments
-ordinary versus extraordinary means
-difficulty in distinguishing them
-If asked, Priest will help
-No problems with palliative care, aggressive treatments, living will
Redemptive suffering
-Christ redeems every human experience even suffering
-our suffering has meaning for our own salvation and for the salvation of the community (Col 1:24)

not vitalist...no need to fear death and suffering
-body regenerates every 7 years...God will regenerates your body at the Resurrection..no need bury immediately or burial traditions
Love your enemies <--> Love God
-historical person
6) Divine Origin
-Founded by Jesus (2BCE-30CE)
-Orthodoxy and orthopraxy
orthodoxy --> orthopraxy
-more different than similar to experiences of joy

Dr. Sisto=
1 Who=Dr. Sisto
1 What=humanity
3 Whos=God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)
1 What=Divinity
= 2 Whats
Gen 3:25; Deut 18:25; 2 Samuel 7:12-13; Isaiah 53: 1-12; Daniel 7:13-14; Micah 5:2; Psalm 22:2, 7-9, 12-19.
-Write law on hearts!!
-God is close!! Accept God's offer for salvation!
264 popes
-Believe in God's love and Forgiveness
-Accept Jesus as your Lord
-To give everything to God
Theological: God the Son dies that we may be saved!!!!!!!!!
1-Ultimate sign of God's love for us---Love to the end!!!!
40 days later he ascended into Heaven (feast of Ascension)
10 days later (50 days after Resurrection or Easter Sunday) third person of the Trinity is sent to earth to strengthen the Church (feast of Pentecost)
Stress on History- no less than 3 searches for the historical JESUS
-Jewish Reform movement
-Stress on Relationships
evidence that Jesus existed!! known for miracle working!! Crucified!!
Jesus Loves YOU!!!
-Fastest Growing Religion??
Biblical and Liturgical Basis
God is the final cause
What is the soul?
What happens to the soul when we die?
-Personal Prayer/ Devotion
-Read Bible
-Contact Priest
After Death
Text used-Order of Christian Funerals
Cremation or burial??
1-always respect the body
2-open to either
-your body regenerates every 7 years
-cannot frustrate the
-honor the body/ashes
3-Stress importance of organ donation (Pope Benedict XVI) and.or donation of body to science
No greater love than "to lay down one's life for one's friends."-organ donation saves lives!! Donating is an act of love!!
for this reason Euthanasia is a serious sin
Where did purgatory come from?
Lex orandi, lex credendi
-ancient Jewish and Christian practice of praying for the dead
Love hurts!!!
Theological Questions
JESUS said: "So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matt 13: 39-50)
Interesting Facts about Catholicism Today
The Catholic Church
feeds more people
houses more people
educates more people
clothes more people
takes care of more sick people
then ANY other institution on EARTH!!
Pope Francis (a very important bishop (1 Tim 3:1)) has made welcoming and taking in the Refugees leaving Syria a priority!!
Full transcript