Church of Cattala
Prior to 1617, Cattala had been an essentially Catholic state with the Roman Catholic Church being the centre of all religious and spiritual life in the country. However during the Cattalian Inquisition, the Bishop of Celestine fell out of favour with the Vatican and was removed from office. This led to an outcry in Cattala and the King personally intervened, by reinstating the bishop. The monarchy was excommunicated by Pope Clement VIII and the King and Bishop formally separated from the Catholic Church and withdrew all cardinals and officials from the Roman Catholic faith.
Since the 1617 Schism, the Church of Cattala has undergone significant reform, with factions in the Church taking control over long periods of term and alternating between traditional, Catholic expressions and more modern post-Enlightenment belies. Despite these changes and reformations, the Church has remained similar to the Roman faith through celebration of Mass, belief in the Trinity, following the Catholic Bible and also having Seven Sacraments. However it has it's own Magisterium and Divina Anima Della Chiesa, or head of the faith. The current head of the Cattalian Church is His Eminence, Dr Emerson Pallessus. The Divina Anima Della Chiesa serves a 15-year term as head of the Church, unless he dies or is incapacitated.
In recent decades, the Church has become closer diplomatically and spiritually to the Catholic Church and is now in partial communion with its fellow Christian denomination. The Church of Cattala is limited in size mostly to Cattala, Roumeli and Ionia, and currently has 3.7 million members in Cattala and overseas.
- 1 History
- 2 Doctrine and Practice
- 3 Membership
- 4 Structure
Catholicism in Cattala
Rise of National Church
Doctrine and Practice
The fundamental beliefs of the Cattalian Church is found in the Catechism of the True Faith of Cattala, also known as the Book of the Magisterium. The Catechism says that the Church teaches the Word of God to those who wish to live a Christian life and live in Heaven with God after death. The Magisterium, which writes and updates the Catechism, states that the main teachings of the Church of Cattala are found in the Catechism, the Sacred Scriptures of the Bible and the Sacred Traditions of the Church.
The Cattalian Church holds that there is one eternal God, made up of three persons: God the Father; God the Son; and the Holy Spirit, which make up the Trinity. Cattalians believe that Jesus Christ is the second person of the Trinity, God the Son. In the Incarnation of Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, God became united with human nature through the conception of Christ in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Christ therefore is both fully divine and fully human. It is taught that Christ's mission on earth included giving people his teachings and providing his example for them to follow as recorded in the four Gospels. The Church teaches that through the suffering of Christ and his crucifixion as described in the Gospels, all people have an opportunity for forgiveness and freedom from sin, and so can be reconciled to God. The Resurrection of Jesus gained for humans a possible spiritual immortality previously denied to them because of original sin. By reconciling with God and following Christ's words and deeds, an individual can enter the Kingdom of God, which is the "... reign of God over people's hearts and lives". The Greek term "Christ" and the Hebrew "Messiah" both mean "anointed one", referring to the Christian belief that Jesus' death and resurrection are the fulfillment of the Old Testament's Messianic prophecies.
According to the Council of Trent, one of the last Councils that Cattalian bishops attended as Catholics, Christ instituted seven sacraments and entrusted them to the Church. These are Baptism, Confirmation, the Eucharist, Reconciliation, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Marriage. Sacraments are visible rituals that Cattalians see as signs of God's presence and effective channels of God's grace to all those who receive them. The Catechism categorises the sacraments into three groups, the "sacraments of Christian initiation", "sacraments of healing" and "sacraments at the service of communion and for the faithful". These groups broadly reflect the stages of people's natural and spiritual lives which each sacrament is intended to serve.
Baptism is the first of three sacraments of initiation as a Christian. It washes away all sins, both original sin and personal actual sins. It makes a person a member of the Church. As a gratuitous gift of God that requires no merit on the part of the person who is baptised, it is conferred even on children, who, though they have no personal sins, need it on account of original sin. It marks a person permanently and cannot be repeated. The Church of Cattala recognises baptisms from Anglican and Catholic churches as well as their own, provided that they intend to baptise and that they use the Trinitarian baptismal formula.
For Cattalians, the Eucharist is the sacrament which completes Christian initiation, is the perpetuation of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, and a meal in which Christ himself is consumed. The Eucharistic sacrifice always includes prayers, readings from the Bible, consecration of wheat bread and grape wine, and communion by at least some of the participants (in particular the priest) in the consecrated elements, which by the consecration becomes the body and blood of Jesus Christ, a change known as transubstantiation.
The Cattalian Church sees the sacrament of confirmation as required to complete the grace given in baptism. When adults are baptised, confirmation is normally given immediately afterwards. Confirmation occurs at the age of 16 in Cattala. Those who receive confirmation must be in a state of grace, which for those who have reached the age of reason means that they should first be cleansed spiritually by the sacrament of Reconciliation; they should also have the intention of receiving the sacrament, and be prepared to show in their lives that they are Christians.
The sacrament of reconciliation exists for the conversion of those who, after baptism, separate themselves from Christ by sin. Essential to this sacrament are acts both by the sinner (examination of conscience, contrition with a determination not to sin again, confession to a priest, and performance of some act to repair the damage caused by sin) and by the priest (determination of the act of reparation to be performed and absolution). Serious sins must be confessed within at most a year and always before receiving Holy Communion, while confession of venial sins also is recommended. The priest is bound under the severest penalties to maintain the "seal of confession", absolute secrecy about any sins revealed to him in confession.
Anointing of the Sick
While chrism is used only for the three sacraments that cannot be repeated (baptism, confirmation, ordination), a different oil is used by a priest or bishop to bless a Cattalian who, because of illness or old age, has begun to be in danger of death. This sacrament is believed to give comfort, peace, courage and, if the sick person is unable to make a confession, even forgiveness of sins. Although it is not reserved for those in proximate danger of death, it is often administered as one of the Last Rites.
Holy Orders is a sacrament in three degrees or orders, episcopate (bishops), presbyterate (priests) and diaconate (deacons), which consecrates and deputes some Christians to serve the whole body by these specific titles. The Church has defined rules on who may be ordained into the clergy. In the Latin Rite, the priesthood and diaconate are restricted to celibate men. Married men may become deacons, but that is as far as they can go in the Church. All clergy, whether deacons, priests, or bishops, may preach, teach, baptise, witness marriages and conduct funeral liturgies. Only bishops and priests can administer the sacraments of the Eucharist, Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick. Only bishops can administer the sacrament of Holy Orders, which ordains someone into the clergy.
Marriage, understood as an indissoluble union between a man and a woman, if entered into validly by any baptised man and woman, is considered a sacrament by the Cattalian Church and the most important one for the creation of new life. Divorce is only recognised in instances of adultery, but the marriage bond will continue after the divorce due to the Church believing the bond of union between a man and woman through sex is permanent. Remarriage following any divorce is prevented in the Cattalian Church. Apart from the requirements such as freedom of consent that it sees as applicable to all, the church has established certain specific requirements for the validity of marriages by Catholics. Failure to observe the Church's regulations, as well as defects applicable to all marriages, may be grounds for a church declaration of the invalidity of a marriage, a declaration referred to as an annulment.
The Cattalian Church teaches that homosexuality is not a sin - but the act of homosexual intercourse is, as sex is "preserved for the union of a man and woman, and the procreation of life" alone. Homosexuals are encouraged by the Church to abstain from sexual intercourse. However, the teachings of the Church on Homosexuality are widely ignored in society and is the most controversial statement from the Church. It is also one of the main splits between the Church and wider society - civil partnerships have been legal since 2008, despite the Church's opposition.
Contraception and Abortion
The Church opposes the use of contraception due to sex being "preserved for the procreation of life". The Church teaches that recreational sex is wrong and contraception and abortion are categorised in the same way by the Church. Contraception for non-sexual reasons, such as medicine, is allowed by the Church. Abortion is highly opposed by both Church and most of society, and the Cattalian Church has been a leading opposer to the legalisation of abortion. It's been remarked that the action taken by the Church prevented the full legalisation of abortion.
The head of state of Cattala has served as Chancellor of the Faith since the reign of King Philip in 1617. The monarch has titular leadership over the Church of Cattala, although since the position's creation it has been a largely symbolic position. The Chancellor of the Faith appoints bishops and members of the Magisterium of Cattala on the advice of the Divina Anima della Chiesa and the Curia Philippi, the administrative body of the Church.
The most senior member of the Church of Cattala is the Divina Anima della Chiesa, the Divine Soul of the Church, also known alternatively as the Celestinian Cardinal. He serves a 15-year term as the spiritual leader of the Cattalian Church and is traditionally one of the five provincial archbishops. The current Cardinal of Celeste is Dr Emerson Pallessus, who served as Archbishop of Theremopylae between 1999 and 2007 before becoming the Divina Anima upon the retirement of his predecessor.
The Church of Cattala has five provinces: Celestine, Jennai, Calora, Cape Point and Thermopylae. These are led by Archbishops who form the most senior members of the Cattalian Church. Each province contains four diocese, in addition to the archdiocese itself.
Since a restructuring in 1925, there have been twenty diocese in Cattala, based in cathedrals and led by bishops. They govern over many parishes in their region and usually represent their community in the Magisterium, or the Curia Philippi.
Archdiocese of Celestine|
Archbishop of Celestine
|Celestine||Avias, Aziens, Brunel, Celeste, Celeste Harbour,||Cathedral Church of Celeste||1617|
Diocese of Vittoria|
Bishop of Vittoria
|Celestine||Giorgio, Sutton, Vittoria||Cathedral Church of St Benedict||1850|
Diocese of Alberto and Faulea|
Bishop of Alberto and Faulea
|Celestine||Albert Hall, Erros, Faulea, Fausta||Cathedral Church of the Sacred Heart||1925|
Diocese of Latterina|
Bishop of Latterina
|Celestine||Alton Ridge, Damego, Elloria, Latterina, Messerina||Cathedral Church of St Mary||1617|
Diocese of Amaldo|
Bishop of Amaldo
|Celestine||Amaldo, Western Amosseri||Cathedral Church of St Ignatius||1925|
Archdiocese of Cape Point|
Archbishop of the Cape
|Cape Point||Buento, Cape Point, Brunmoor, Otmoor, Sarella, Targate||Cathedral Church of St Francis||1925|
Diocese of Almae|
Bishop of Almae
|Cape Point||Almae, Lauria, Malvito, Marineo, Marcello, Tulla||Cathedral Church of St Paul||1850|
Diocese of San Pietro|
Bishop of San Pietro
|Cape Point||Callavre, Dallia, Darna, Mestras, Nero, San Pietro, Santo Stefano||Cathedral Church of St Peter the Apostle||1617|
Diocese of Seina and Ionia|
Bishop of Seina and Ionia
|Cape Point||Castell, Celia ,Cressa, Daernos, Errosan, Ionia, Misras, Sallea, Scaval, Seina, Solletto, Tirera||Cathedral Church of St John the Baptist||1925 |
(merger of the Diocese of Seina and Diocese of the Hellenic Province)
Diocese of Aldoak|
Bishop of Aldoak
|Cape Point||Aldoak, Assolo, Brunswick, Collinia, Plemora, Teliseri||Cathedral Church of the Holy Spirit||1617|
Archdiocese of Jennai|
Archbishop of Jennai
|Jennai||Jennai Harbour, Jennai, Porthis||Cathedral Church of All Saints||1617|
Diocese of Hampton|
Bishop of Hampton
|Jennai||Hampton, Ovarco, Southport, Rene, Unwood||Cathedral Church of St Michael||1850|
'Diocese of Tyhrus|
Bishop of Tyhrus
|Jennai||Confini, Elloria, Iannis, Quira, Tyhrus||Cathedral Church of St Mary the Virgin||1850|
'Diocese of Alleras|
Bishop of Alleras
|Jennai||Aeron, Alleras, Malvassa, Minerva, Oster, Rossoporto||Cathedral Church of St Luke||1925|
Diocese of Santa Cecilia|
Bishop of Santa Cecilia
|Jennai||Astanos, Malvito, Pacina, Paluda, Rosebrenne, Santa Cecilia, Sovar, Vergine||Cathedral Church of St Cecilia||1850|
Archdiocese of Thermopylae|
Bishop of Thermopylae
|Thermopylae||Thermopylae||Cathedral Church of St John the Evangelist||1925|
Diocese of Porphyr|
Bishop of Porphyr
|Thermopylae||Fennett, Leystone, Porphyr, Southern Roumeli||Cathedral Church of St Barnabas||1925|
Diocese of Lassinia|
Bishop of Lassinia
|Thermopylae||Disray, Darby, Lassinia, Mennas||Cathedral Church of St Sebastian||1925|
Diocese of Hyriea|
Bishop of Hyriea
|Thermopylae||Abbessa, Apollo, Hyriea, Western Roumeli||Cathedral Church of St Thomas||1925|
Diocese of Guila|
Bishop of Guila
|Thermopylae||Guila, Northern Roumeli||Cathedral Church of St Luke||1925|
Archdiocese of Calora|
Bishop of Calora
|Calora||Calora, Marcillera||Cathedral Church of Christ the King||1617|
Diocese of Cydonia|
Bishop of Cydonia
|Calora||Cydonia, Iralli, Tamer, Visconti, San Nico, Tursi||Cathedral Church of St Joseph||1925|
Diocese of Allia|
Bishop of Allia
|Calora||Allia, Larito, Northern Fieranti||Cathedral Church of St David||1925|
Diocese of Orsini|
Bishop of Orsini
|Calora||Orsini, NW Fieranti||Cathedral Church of Our Lady of the Assumption||1925|
Diocese of Felipe|
Bishop of Felipe
|Calora||Felipe, Central Fieranti||Cathedral Church of St Matthew||1925|