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The Church Courtyard => Traditional Catholic Discussion => Topic started by: Daniel on January 02, 2019, 04:28:27 PM

Title: Question about candles
Post by: Daniel on January 02, 2019, 04:28:27 PM
I'm not sure I ever understood the theology behind the candles.

I am wondering, why is it ok to light candles? Christ abolished the sacrifices, yet Catholics light candles.

Also, why is it ok to offer candles to the saints? From what I've heard, sacrifices are a sign of latria. So how is this practice not a kind of idolatry?
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Josephine87 on January 02, 2019, 11:05:20 PM
In what way is a candle a sacrifice? Do you mean because they were historically made with animal fat? I thought they had to be beeswax to be used and blessed.
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Daniel on January 03, 2019, 06:06:17 AM
I'll first point out, not all sacrifices are animal sacrifices. In the Old Testament there were also grain sacrifices and incense sacrifices. I'm not sure about candles though. (The closest thing I can find would be the menorah, but that's a little different.)

But I would say that candles seem to be a sacrifice because they're basically a kind of burnt offering. The candle is lit and then totally consumed by the fire. Not only that, but the candle is beeswax. Beeswax is better than the cheap stuff, and more expensive, so it's more of a sacrifice.
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Stubborn on January 03, 2019, 07:49:46 AM
The Altar candles are 100% beeswax, but the votive candles, the ones the people light only need to be 51% beeswax. 

Lighting candles has nothing to do with sacrifice, not sure where that idea even came from.

It's really very simple; when we light a candle, we say a prayer, most often for a certain intention - as long as that candle burns, that prayer goes up to heaven. I like to think of the lit candle, and I think this is true for all Catholics who light a candle, as a type of alert to heaven, a constant reminder of our pleading if you will until the candle goes out.

A long time ago I lit I think 8 or 10 candles in thanksgiving for a favor I received - you may light as many as you wish, just remember to always put the donation in there lol. 

   
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Philip G. on January 08, 2019, 12:17:08 AM
When I think of candle use, I don't think of sacrificing the candle.  I think of being old fashioned.  It wasn't that long ago that my ancestors were using candles/flame to light their way.  I find that to be the sacred element.
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Davis Blank - EG on January 08, 2019, 06:54:53 AM
This is the classic western mindset, gotta question everything and destroy the beauty behind it.  I am not attempting to be flippant or dodge the question.
 Sometimes when we analyze something too much we end up beating it into the ground, and all that's left are meaningless bits of info & data.

If your primary concern is idolatry, is it not enough that both the Catholic & Orthodox do it to indicate that its licit?
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: Gardener on January 08, 2019, 10:59:09 AM
Not just Catholic and Orthodox. Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, et al.; even some evangelicals are starting to reintegrate incense and candles in their services. Many Protestants engage in use of sacramentals, even if they arenít as overtly religious as medals and rosaries.
Title: Re: Question about candles
Post by: aquinas138 on January 21, 2019, 12:43:16 PM
This is the classic western mindset, gotta question everything and destroy the beauty behind it.  I am not attempting to be flippant or dodge the question.
 Sometimes when we analyze something too much we end up beating it into the ground, and all that's left are meaningless bits of info & data.

If your primary concern is idolatry, is it not enough that both the Catholic & Orthodox do it to indicate that its licit?

Bingo. If Catholics of all rites, the Eastern Orthodox, the Oriental Orthodox, AND the Assyrian Church, and the various offshoots of all the foregoing all agree on some practice, then, friends, that's an infallible sign of permissibility that really needs no definition.