(LifeSiteNews) –– In a text hailed as “an important tool in the essential missionary work of evangelization and apologetics,” Bishop Athanasius Schneider has published an extensive catechism, dealing with numerous questions found in modern society along with answering many of the current attacks on Catholicism and morality.
Credo: Compendium of the Catholic Faith, has been compiled by Astana’s auxiliary bishop and issued to the public by Catholic publishers Sophia Institute. Bishop Schneider officially launched the book at an event October 26, a few minutes from St. Peter’s Square.
Formulated in the traditional style of questions and answers, Credo deals with multiple aspects necessary for Catholics in a society which is steadily abandoning traditional morality.
Schneider begins by expounding on the articles of the Creed, before moving to morals, virtues and questions on sin, along with the Ten Commandments and the commandments of the Church. The third section of the text focuses on the Church’s sacraments and the worship of God.
The book also includes a useful appendix of creeds, prayers, details about the rites and furnishings of the traditional Mass, along with an index of certain errors.
But while the formulation of the book’s contents will appear somewhat familiar to readers of the Church’s more traditional catechisms – such as the Baltimore or Penny Catechism – Schneider’s text is fully equipped with questions and answers relevant to the issues of modern society. He writes clearly and precisely on a variety of topics which have previously gone unanswered in such trustworthy catechisms from previous decades, including:
- social media use, personal technology,
- science and evolution,
- just war, death penalty,
- gender ideology, modesty,
- vaccines, and abortion-tainted products
- health mandates,
- world religions and the primacy of Catholicism
- true prayer,
- faithful parenting, schooling,
- religious liberty, free speech,
- female clergy, scandal in the Catholic Church,
- infallibility of the Pope, magisterium and error,
- pornography, sex education,
- Questions on Sunday working and proper worship,
- Communism, Freemasonry,
- globalism, transhumanism,
- charismatic movement,
- marijuana, drug use,
On the subject of certain drug usage, Bishop Schneider writes:
Is the recreational use of marijuana a sin of intoxication?
Yes. Due to its swift and immediate effect of impairing the intellect, marijuana may only be licitly used for genuine medicinal reasons under the supervision of a healthcare professional.
Whilst, on the topic of the Catholic Church’s relationship with Islam – a subject much promoted by the Vatican currently – Schneider lists Islam among the “principal religious errors regarding the Holy Trinity,” and notes that:
Islam explicitly rejects the revealed truths of the Incarnation, the divinity of Christ, His redeeming sacrifice on the Cross, and the Holy Trinity. They view Christ as a mere prophet, and venerate the Virgin Mary merely as a holy woman, not the Mother of God.
Writing on the very topical aspect of abortion-tainted injections and products, Schneider states:
The development of such products cooperates in the abominable crimes of child-murder and organ theft, which currently drive the abortion and fetal industries. The knowing use of such products – e.g., abortion-tainted vaccines – involves the grave omission of a firm and public protest against such evils, rendering our principled rejection of them ineffective and unconvincing in practice; and conscious consumption of the products of these inhuman ‘industries’ gives the appearance of complicity in these evils.
The reason for his condemnation of such participation is that “however remote the original abortion, the creation and use of such abortion-tainted products continues to instrumentalize the bodies of murdered children, through cell lines once belonging to them.” Schneider delves into the argument further, answering questions about the principle of “double effect” and the Magisterium’s pronouncements on the matter.
Touching on many matters which have been the subject of confusion and error during the course of the Pope Francis pontificate, Schneider also presents a Catholic understanding of fraternity, a term much employed by the Pope:
A universal and naturalistic fraternity based on the bonds of blood and nature is the core of the condemned error of Freemasonry, which proposes ‘a universal religion, on which all men agree. It consists in being good, sincere, modest, and people of honor, by whatever denomination or particular belief that one can be distinguished.’
He succinctly outlines the Catholic and biological realities regarding the transgender ideology – “The male and female sexes are fundamental and unalterable biological realities, and the body of each person reveals whether they are a man or a woman” – and describes gender ideology as “a kind of Gnostic and ultimately Satanic dualism that must be rejected.”
Meanwhile, while the Synod on Synodality is raising and discussing the question of female deacons, Bishop Schneider outlines the consistent teaching on the matter:
What of those who clamor for the ordination of women as Catholic clergy?
They: 1. Oppose the divinely established order of the two sexes, each with its own specific mission; 2. Reject the hierarchical constitution of the Church; 3. Denigrate the unique dignity of Christian womanhood, consisting principally in motherhood, both physical and spiritual.
Presenting his work, Schneider recalled the Scriptural charge to preach the Gospel (1 Cor. 9:16) as well as the duty of a bishop to “maintain the deposit of faith, entire and incorrupt, as handed down by the apostles and professed by the Church everywhere and at all times.”
“I am compelled to respond to the requests of many sons and daughters of the Church who are perplexed by the widespread doctrinal confusion in the Church of our day,” he wrote.
I offer this work, Credo: Compendium of the Catholic Faith, to strengthen them in their faith and serve as a guide to the changeless teaching of the Church. Mindful of the episcopal duty to be a ‘nurturer of the Catholic and apostolic Faith’ (catholicae et apostolicae fidei cultoribus) as stated in the Canon of the Mass, I also wish to bear public witness to the continuity and integrity of the Catholic and apostolic doctrine.
Penning some lines of praise for the book are a number of notable Catholic prelates and scholars, including Cardinal Robert Sarah, the former prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, Tyler’s Bishop Joseph Strickland, and Dr. Scott Hahn.
“While I am sure that this book will serve Bishop Schneider’s aim of coming to the aid of those little ones ‘who are hungry for the bread of right doctrine,’ it will also prove to be an important tool in the essential missionary work of evangelization and apologetics, in announcing the Saving Truth of Jesus Christ in our world that so desperately needs it,” wrote Cardinal Sarah.