Catholic and Protestant
Protestants and Catholics have several similarities and differences. Catholics church has a long history that has changed in many ways. Protestants are a group of people who protested against some of the wrong things preached by the Catholic Church in 1500’s. Protestants separated from Catholic Church and made their own church that follows their beliefs.
Altar is the central of the Catholic Church and the Christ’s sacrifice is considered to be renewed in the mass. Catholics accept Bible as the inspired Word of God but not as the final authority. Catholics believe that both Bible and the sacred tradition of Roman Catholics are equally important. Popes and councils are considered as equally authoritative. Pope is considered as the ‘Vicar of Christ’ and takes the place of Jesus as the visible head of the church. Catholics encouraged reading Bible as the time passed. In the past, Catholic Church discouraged personal study of Bible and was banned by the Church at one time. Only a few people were allowed to read Bible.
Many Catholics believe in saints and saints became an important part of their religion. Praying to saints and the holy Virgin Mary is vital to Catholics. Praying to saints, worshipping Virgin Mary and purgatory has no basis in the Scripture but have importance on Roman Catholic traditions. According to Catholicism, mere faith in Christ cannot save man. They preached that man has to depend on faith as well as meritorious work. Catholics believe that faith in God is just the beginning of salvation and then the individual should build it with good work. Catholics believes in purgatory which is a place for temporal punishment for those who have done sins.
Pulpit is the center of protestant churches and bible is held in a position where it can be read easily by the preacher. Protestants believe that Bible is the sole source of God’s special revelation to mankind. Most of the Protestants believe that they are not related to the tradition of Catholics but the fact is that the roots are from the time of the Jesus. Most of the theology of Protestants is also originated from catholic tradition. Protestants do not see Pope and do not approve the authority of Pope.
Protestants believe that Christ alone is the authority of the church. They believe that faith in Christ alone can save them from sins as their sins are paid off by the Christ on the cross. Bishoprics and clerical hierarchy is absent among many protestants. But some protestant traditions like Anglicans, Episcopalians and Lutherans have clerical hierarchies which are similar to the Catholics. Protestant do not believe in the idea of praying to saints. Protestants believe that faith in Christ will send them straight to heaven as Christ’s righteousness is imputed to the mankind.