How often do we say to our children, to friends, to colleagues, and anyone who needs to hear it: “Know your math”? Why should we not say the same about religious faith: “Know your faith”? If you are Catholic, you should know your Catholic faith. If you are not a Catholic but have an opinion about the Catholic faith, you should know what their faith is so you do not spread disinformation about what they believe.
Unfortunately, there is so much misinformation in our culture about Catholicism. It has been spreading through books, newspapers, television, the internet, and other mass media. Some say it is fabricated information based on an anti-religion bias, more in specific an anti-Catholic prejudice. Whatever the underlying motive is, there is definitely a propaganda war going on sponsored by some kind of smear campaign against the Catholic Church.
Nowadays anti-Catholic rhetoric is often disguised. Many “liberals” and “progressives” do not oppose Catholics because they are Catholics—that could be taken as discriminatory—but because Catholics are believed to have certain beliefs “out of line” with mainstream thinking. However, those beliefs are often caricatures that are misrepresentations of the real beliefs Catholics hold.
What do Catholics really believe? Asking any Catholic is not always the best way to find out, for some Catholics may not even know the finer details of their own faith, or they have already been affected by the misinformation that keeps bombarding all of us. As Albert Einstein put it, “It is easier to split atoms than prejudices.” So we need to delve a bit deeper than just scratching the surface.
Table of Contents
I. TABLE OF CONTENTS
III. CATHOLICISM AND THE BIBLE
1. CATHOLICS ARE FORBIDDEN TO READ THE BIBLE
2. CATHOLICS ADDED BOOKS TO THE BIBLE
3. CATHOLICS THINK THE BIBLE IS NOT ENOUGH
4. CATHOLICS MANIPULATED THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
5. CATHOLICS INVENTED NEW SACRAMENTS
6. CATHOLICS INVENTED PURGATORY
IV. CATHOLICISM AND ITS CONTROVERSIES
7. CATHOLICS ARE LED BY THE ANTICHRIST
8. CATHOLICS THINK SALVATION CAN BE EARNED
9. CATHOLICS INVENTED PRIESTS
10. CATHOLICS REVERE THEIR PRIESTS
11. CATHOLICS HAVE AN EASY WAY OUT
V. CATHOLICISM AND ITS UNIQUENESS
12. CATHOLICS ARE NOT CHRISTIANS
13 CATHOLICS VENERATE MARY AS A GODDESS
14. CATHOLICS VENERATE STATUES
15. CATHOLICS FOSTER RITUALS
16. CATHOLICS WALLOW IN CHRIST’S PASSION
17. CATHOLICS CONSUME JESUS’ BODY AND BLOOD
18. CATHOLICS ARE REQUIRED TO BELIEVE IN APPARITIONS
VI. CATHOLICISM AND OTHER RELIGIONS
19. CATHOLICS THINK HEAVEN IS ONLY FOR THEM
20. CATHOLICS CLAIM TO OWN THE TRUTH
21. CATHOLICS TAKE ORDERS FROM THE POPE
VII. CATHOLICISM AND ITS HISTORY
22. CATHOLICS CELEBRATE PAGAN HOLYDAYS
23. CATHOLICS ARE CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAM
24. CATHOLICS KILLED MILLIONS DURING THE INQUISITION
25. CATHOLICS HELPED ESTABLISH NAZISM
26. CATHOLICS WERE TOLD TO IGNORE THE HOLOCAUST
VIII. CATHOLICISM AND SCIENCE
27. CATHOLICS DON’T USE THEIR HEADS
28. CATHOLICS STILL LIVE IN THE DARK AGES
29. CATHOLICS BELIEVE IN DOUBLE TRUTH
30. CATHOLICS HAVE HELD SCIENCE BACK
31. CATHOLICS LOST THE CASE AGAINST GALILEO
32. CATHOLICS ARE TROUBLED BY THE BIG BANG
33. CATHOLICS BELIEVE IN A 6-DAY CREATION
34. CATHOLICS MAKE GOD A MAGICIAN
IX. CATHOLICISM AND SOCIETY
35. CATHOLICS REJECT MODERN IDEAS
36. CATHOLICS ARE AGAINST FREE-SPEECH
37. CATHOLICS ARE AGAINST WOMEN
38. CATHOLICS IMPOSE THEIR OWN SHARIA LAW
39. CATHOLICS USE RELIGION TO DISCRIMINATE
40. CATHOLICS ARE HIGHLY SELECTIVE IN MORALITY
We should thank Dr. Gerard Verschuuren for taking on a very worthwhile challenge. Catholic apologetics is something lacking, yet very much needed in our culture. The teachings of the Church are becoming increasingly counter-cultural and thus need constant defending and clarifying. This presents a challenge to bishops and priests, who cannot alone meet this monumental task.
So I thank Gerard Verschuuren for lending such a great support to this necessary and important effort!
Though there are probably more than forty anti-Catholic myths, at least a thorough consideration of forty of the most dangerous and often silly ones is most needed. This is what Gerard Verschuuren has provided in this useful book. Catholics have always wanted to know how their faith is deliberately or out of ignorance misunderstood. Seeing the myths stated and explained serves both for clarity and truth.
— James V. Schall, S. J.
Professor Emeritus Department of Government
Catholics engaged in frontline apologetics will find Forty Anti-Catholic Lies a helpful tool for correcting common misperceptions about the Church widely held by non-Catholics and even some Catholics. Gerard Verschuuren's intelligent explanations are models of clear thinking and clear expression that make a valuable contribution to the important task of setting the record straight.
— Russell Shaw
Consultor of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications
Adjunct professor at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, Rome
Former Secretary for Public Affairs of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops/US Catholic Conference
Gerard Verschuuren's Forty Anti-Catholic Lies debunks a wide range of nonsense about Catholicism, ranging from the sacraments to the historical. Easy to read, it is a comprehensive, and authoritative, volume, one that sets the record straight. Read it and enjoy!
— Dr. Bill Donohue
Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights
"[T]he surprising thing about Verschuuren in this instance is that he can move so effortlessly into doing good, old-fashioned, incontrovertible apologetics. In this book he touches on the most common misunderstandings of Catholicism that are constantly used to attack the Church by both old-school Protestants and today’s culture-bound victims of superioritis."
"He doesn’t shy away from hard topics like the inquisition and papal infallibility... every chapter contains myth-busting gold... you need to put Forty Anti-Catholic Lies: A Mythbusting Apologist Sets the Record Straight on your reading list."
"[This book] should be part of religious education classes not as a primary textbook but as a resource filled with valuable insights and logical arguments to deflate common myths against Catholics that continue to resonate in our world."
"Forty Anti-Catholic Lies is easy reading, accessible to readers from all walks of life, all levels of education, and all degrees of faith commitment. All Catholics, and anyone interested in the truth about Catholicism, should read it."
"Every chapter is a gift.... the book itself is an unstated demonstration of genuine education and thinking totally in contrast to the indoctrination provided by most colleges and universities today.... It is a living definition of real education, learning, and thinking. "