That's not actual true. The word catholic was used in the 1st Century, it simply means universal in Greek, nothing special. Greeks was the common tongue of the age.who="Yankee Yahoo"
KayMarie, please, the Catholics WROTE the Holy Scriptures. For 300 years Christians had no Bible as we know it today, until THEY put it together. There is oral tradition, and there is written tradition. Oral tradition became Sacred Tradition, the traditions of God, who indeed likes incense, and ritual and all the trapping of holiness. He wants us to WORK at our faith, and that means more than just going to Church on Sunday. Written Tradition became the Bible, which THEY, the Catholics, combined and went to GREAT LENGTHS to put together, and during a time when they were still being persecuted, despite tolerance from the Roman state.
No, they don't worship Mary. They respect and honor her as the Mother of Jesus. No, they don't pray to the saints, they ASK for their prayers. No, they don't believe the dead are dead, but in Heaven with God praying for us to get through this sometimes awful and challenging life. And every ritual performed at mass is what the Jews were COMMANDED to do by God, and nowhere was that changed or altered. No, pagan elements were NOT introduced, but some pagan holidays were Christianize to respect the culture and honor the people, without compromising the the faith in any way. And no one fought against slavery, elevated women, fought against abortion (a SERIOUS problem in Roman times), and maintained marriage between a man and woman (against the pagans who thought otherwise for centuries) more so than the Catholic Church.
In fact, I knew a few Jews that became Catholic when they saw it was more Jewish than their own religion, and were shocked at how true to Levite priesthood it was.
There was no CC until Constantine declared it, and made it a state religion. All of the N.T. was already written...as was the O.T. There was a group that compiled those books into what today we call the Bible. Whoever they were, they did a good job.
Rome was not Jewish (hated the Jews), and could not be successors to the Levites.
And Constantine did not make any religion the state religion, it merely made it the law to be tolerated for the first time. The Empire was being torn apart, and the last thing he would want to do was make the State Religion a religion that barely %25 of the population adhered to. Yes, the Empire was still mostly heathen at the time, not Christian, so it would have made no sense to unite under a minority banner. But to tolerate %25 would definitely serve to bring more peace, since the Christians were hated by all.
But these are common myths taught in school, just like the myth that Medieval people thought the earth was flat, or they never bathed, or Christians are against science. All lies, all misinformation, and a lot of it by the early Protestants that Marxist used later.