Christianity vs. Catholicism

The difference between Catholicism and Christianity

Christianity is the religion that believes in the teachings of Jesus Christ as the Messiah and the Son of God. Catholicism is one of the branches of Christianity. The similarity between them is their belief, but there are many differences in the doctrine and practices.

About Christianity

Christianity, especially the Protestant faiths, believes that there are only two sacraments – Baptism and Eucharist. In the church hierarchy each congregation has a pastor. They usually do not have bishops, but they do have deacons.

Christians do not pray to the saints because they believe that the only one to pray to is God. Instead of asking the saints to intercede on their behalf, they believe that Jesus is the only one who can do that. They also do not worship Mary because they regard her as an ordinary human being and they believe that when she died she was buried in the same manner as others of her day.

In Christianity there is no such place or state of being as purgatory. When people die, their souls go to either heaven or hell depending on how they lived their lives on earth. They do not accept the Pope as their spiritual leader and they do not believe that he is infallible. Any person who has been baptized is permitted to receive the sacrament of Eucharist in a Christian church.

About Catholicism

According to Catholic doctrine, there are seven sacraments – Baptism, Confirmation, Penance, Eucharist, Marriage, Holy Orders, and Extreme Unction (Anointing with oils before death). There are three kinds of ministers in the hierarchy of the church – bishops, deacons and priests. The leader of each congregation is called a priest.

Catholics worship the saints because they believe that they were the most faithful of all humans to the teachings of Jesus. They do not actually pray to the saints but they ask them to intercede with God on their behalf. Mary is the greatest saint in the Catholic Church. It is believed that when she died she was taken right to heaven and that her body was not buried in a tomb.

In Catholicism, souls do not go directly to heaven or hell. Instead they experience purgatory, which is not a place, but a state of being. The Pope is the Bishop of Rome and is the spiritual leader of the Catholic Church. He is regarded as being infallible. In the Catholic Church in order to be able to receive the Eucharist, one must be baptized in the Catholic faith.


  • Guest2000

    Jesus Christ founded His church upon Peter and the apostles, giving Peter (the first Pope) the full authority to lead the Church, as we see in the bible:
    “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in Heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My Church, and the powers of Hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven, and what you loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven.” (Matthew 16:17-19)
    Further,  Jesus said to Peter and the other apostles,
    “Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. And whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.” (Luke 10:16)

  • Cathy123

    Catholics believe that there is one God in three divine persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They also believe that Jesus, the second person in the Holy Trinity, is God and that salvation comes through Him alone. As the scripture says,
    But since we are of the day, let us be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love and the helmet that is hope for salvation. For God did not destine us for wrath, but to gain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ… (1 Thess 5:8-9 )
    He (Jesus) is “the stone rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.” There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved. (Acts 4:11-12)

  • Guest

    It is important to be clear that Catholics do not worship saints (not even Mary) as worship is due to God alone.  Catholics do not believe that saints are gods or goddesses.  Catholics see their church as having been started by God the Son (Jesus Christ) and the Reform and post-Protestant-Reformation churches as having been started by men who were not God.  Catholics see “Catholicism” (“universal” or “World-wide” Christianity) as having been initiated by Jesus, guided by the Biblical Apostles and under the continued guidance into the present day of God the Holy Spirit.  In short, despite the faults in individual Catholics and in the Catholic Church as an institution entrusted by God into the hands of sinners, Catholics see Catholicism as the most faithful expression of Christianity. 

    It is difficult if not impossible to come up with a single definition for all of the non-Catholic expressions and forms of Christianity as there is such a huge variety of views, beliefs, traditions and institutions among Christians who are not Catholic.  There are hundreds (at least) of churches that are not in communion with the Catholic Church but nevertheless acknowledge in some way, Jesus of Nazareth as a spiritual saviour of some sort.  For example, there are non-Catholic Christians who see baptism as essential to spiritual salvation but there are others like the Salvation Army (which is a church) that do not practise baptism.

  • Jim2000

    Catholics believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, in faithfulness to Christ’s teaching: Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst. (John 6:35)

    and also,

    “For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.” (John 6:55-58)

  • Jose johnson

    Catholics doest not worship St Mary or Other Saints , they only venerate them. As they are part of Whole  church…for a catholic the saints are their brother and sisters who  went before them leading a faithful life towards God and they should be respected. Since they were more sincere to the Lord, ia m sure their soulswill be more precious to the Lord. If any one believes the Soul is an eternal thing then they should also beleive that  good souls have the power to intercede for its fellow beings…. Thanks 🙂

  • Veneration Vs. Worship  –  Defference between Veneration and Worship is that  – Veneration, is a special act of honoring a saint an angel, or a dead person who has been identified by a church committee as singular in the traditions of the religion. the word Veneration derived from the Latin verb, venerare, meaning to regard with reverence and respect. But Worship is  The absolute acknowledgment of all that lies beyond us—the glory that fills heaven and earth. It is the response that conscious beings make to their Creator, to the Eternal Reality from which they came forth; to God, however they may think of Him or recognize Him, and whether He be realized through religion, through nature, through history, through science, art, or human life and character OR Simply – Worship is an act of religious  devotion usually directed towards a deity. The word is derived from the Old English worthscipe, meaning worthiness or worth-ship  — to give, at its simplest, worth to something

  • darrel

    Read Karl Keatings book Catholicism and Fundamentalism and it will prove we have the better argument historically and biblically, take a chance and read it

  • Liz

    Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Catholics do not “worship” saints. You’re an ignoramus and this information is bogus. I stopped reading after that sentence. But I’m positive the rest of it is wrong n