Difference Between Christianity and Catholicism

Christianity vs Catholicism

As branches of one of the major religions of the world, knowing the difference between Christianity and Catholicism can be helpful in understanding the religions better. Christianity is the religion having faith on Jesus Christ and his teachings. Catholicism is a branch of Christianity. The other divisions of Christianity are Protestant and Eastern Orthodox Churches. It is well known that Catholicism is a branch of Christianity. So far as their religious understanding goes Christianity and Catholicism have many things common to them. They, Christianity and Catholicism, show some differences too between them in a few other concepts. In definition, the Oxford dictionary says that Christianity is “The religion based on the person and teachings of Jesus Christ, or its beliefs and practices.” Catholicism is defined as “The faith, practice, and church order of the Roman Catholic Church.” For your information, the Roman Catholic Church is ” The part of the Christian Church which acknowledges the Pope as its head, especially as it has developed since the Reformation.”

What is Christianity?

Christianity, especially, Protestantism accepts only two sacraments, namely, Baptism and Eucharist. The Protestants do not believe in asking the saints to pray since they firmly think that Christ alone can intercede with God. Protestants among the Christians do not accept priests and bishops, but they have deacons. Most Christian churches are characterized by the presence of pastors. Protestant Christians, on the contrary, to Catholics, think that Mary was entirely human and hence not holy. Protestants among the Christians do not accept the concept of purgation. They say that any soul for that matter would go to heaven or hell after the death of a person. Protestant Christians do not accept Pope as spiritual leader of the church. The Protestants of Christianity do not believe that the Pope is infallible. Any baptized person is allowed to receive Holy Communion according to the Protestant Christians.

What is Catholicism?

Catholicism believes in seven sacraments, namely, Baptism, Eucharist, Confirmation, Marriage, Ordination, Reconciliation and Anointing of the sick. Catholicism thinks that it is only due to the Christ’s will that there are three kinds of minister in the church. They are bishops, priests and deacons. Catholicism says that honor and respect can be bestowed on the saints depending upon their fidelity to Christ. They, in fact, do not pray to the saints but, on the contrary, would ask the saints to bless and pray for them.

The greatest saint for Catholics is Mary. Mary is the mother of Jesus. Catholicism believes that Mary was holy. Catholics thus assume that Mary was led to heaven immediately after her death whereas Protestants believe that Mary’s body was buried.

Purgatory is not a place but an experience according to Catholicism. According to Catholics, the Bishop of Rome, namely, the Pope is the spiritual leader of the church. Catholicism believes that the Pope is infallible. Finally, Catholicism believes in allowing non-Catholics to receive Holy Communion.

Difference Between Christianity and Catholicism

What is the difference between Christianity and Catholicism?

• Catholicism believes in seven sacraments. Christianity, especially, Protestantism accepts only two sacraments.

• Catholicism, in fact, do not pray to the saints but, on the contrary, would ask the saints to bless and pray for them.

• For Catholicism, Pope is the spiritual leader of the church. That is not so with Christianity.

• Catholicism accepts Mary as a saint and holy. Christianity does not accept Mary as holy.


Further Reading:

  1. Difference Between Christianity and Hinduism
  2. Difference Between Christianity and Judaism
  3. Difference Between Christianity and Sikhism
  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4ED6SKE22N7I7M7SXPIGNHWVGE emma

    Wrong Catholics DO NOT allow non-Christians to take the host (eucarist), they can get a blessing to participate in the ritual but are NOT allowed to break bread if they are not practicing Catholics.

  • Mz.Understood

    This is all just such a silly argument since NO mere mortal human, including priests and the like, know God’s mind. I am willing to bet that NONE of these religions that think only THEY know what is right and will be ‘saved’ and everyone else is damned are even close to what is ACTUALLY God’s plan. Just silly if it weren’t for the fact that SO many hate and die over their religious beliefs!

  • Cat Steppings

    Emma is right, the Catholic church does not allow non-Catholics to receive communion, only Catholics who have received the Eucharist sacrament called “First Communion”, usually at an early age, roughly age 7 (though adults coming into the faith late can receive the sacrament of course after Baptism or Confirmation).

    Of course, if a non-Catholic is visiting a Catholic church service, and they go up to the altar to receive communion during the service with everybody else, they will not be turned away or refused the Eucharist, but the Church asks that non-Catholics refrain from taking the Eucharist and just get a blessing during the communion portion of the service, or the visitor can stay in their seat to pray or sing (there is usually a hymn during this portion).

    Even practicing Catholics are not supposed to receive communion, if they have been living in a state of sin for any period of time, and have not been to Confession with a priest in long time, or not been attending Mass regularly.

    ****In short, you can take communion in the Church as a non-Catholic if you want to, but just know that you aren’t supposed to do it, out of respect for the beliefs of the Church.

  • http://the-world-of-james76.0catch.com James Armstrong

    I’m a Catholic, and I know that the Catholic Church made up the belief that Mary was bodily ascended into Heaven, because the Bible doesn’t say that she ascended, or that she died and was buried, either.
    And if Mary isn’t Holy, then she would have had a son named James – who was supposedly Jesus’s Brother – with Joseph. Which she didn’t, because another woman, who was also named Mary, had two sons, one named James, and the other named John. And another Mary had another James (AKA James The Less).
    So Jesus never had family brothers or sisters. The only related people He had were His Disciples, but they weren’t part of His family.

  • Carol Ann Preston

    If I can’t reconcile any teachings with God’s Word in The Bible (not the Pope or any Canon law), this cradle Catholic finds it has no validity, nor bearing in my life, making me a Christian!
    Sadly and joyfully, I finally had to face the stark reality the Catholic Church leaders/Shepard’s via Bishop’s and Priest’s are representing their best interest, not the Body of Christ!
    After becoming an activist in politics, reading an ‘End of Life’ Legislative Bill, in which the Bill would give Hospitals and Dr.’s complete IMMUNITY from Criminal and Civil liability for their decisions and actions regarding the DNR of a patient. with the Texas Conference of Catholic Bishops feverishly supporting this Bill, sending mass emails through organizations Diocese (areas) financially support AND writing misleading, half-truth information, which included their website.
    During the House public Testimony, one Bishop testified (given super star treatment and allowed to testify once he arrived from his local home, while many people sat for hours, having taken time off from work, paid for hotels, etch. to testify.).
    The shocking moment came when this Bishop’s testimony was nothing but meaningless words which addressed one item within this Bill, the 21 days, in the new Bill, to transfer a dying patient to another facility, ‘is sufficient!’ This was his answer to every question from Committee members,’21 days is enough’ including the question about the ‘process’ by which this State Conference of Bishops decides which ‘prolife’ Bills to support!
    The Committee chambers was filled with an atmosphere of, ‘what the heck is he NOT saying?’ No answer from this Bishop was ever given. As we entered a new day, the number of public testimonials finally began to dwindle, yet my name had yet to be called (I drove 5 hours to testify as I read this detrimental Bill. While the Bishop was ‘testifying’ I was praying, ‘Lord, please help him answer and please don’t ask me to tell the Committee what he won’t say.’. my prayers were not answered, but His Word was true. “Don’t worry about what you will say, as The Holy Spirit will speak for you,’ (paraphrased per my recall).
    At 2:00AM my name was called and I walked to my seat to give my 3 minute testimony. I completed my Hospital Chaplaincy at a Catholic Hospital and have been with many in their last hours or minutes of life and saw this Bill stripping the sick, disabled, terminally ill patients of their basic rights and dignity! And, the State Catholic Bishops in Texas supported this effort and have gravely misled the Church members.
    What the Committee wanted to know from this Bishop? why the Conference supported this ONE BILL, stating numerous times it was a ‘Prolife Bill’ when the true ‘Prolife Bills’ were ignored. This occurred when TX needed two additional Special Sessions to pass any ‘prolife’ Bills.
    The answer? Every Bishop has the final financial responsibility of EVERY Catholic Hospital in their Diocese and they have the responsibility of employment and Department Chairs. This includes the ‘Ethics Committee’ which is made up of employee volunteers. The year before, in another State, a Nun was ex-communicated and fired (she was the Chair of the Ethics Committee), after hearing a case and refusing to bring forth the decision wanted by the Bishop ‘governing’ said Hospital. The current Bill relied heavily upon the untrained members of each Hospitals ‘Ethics Committee.’.
    This was what this Bishop did not want to state, and never learning where donations requested for ‘The Bishops Charity’ went, but someone was paying for the Bishops to pay a registered Lobbyist! He clearly told this group of Bishops this Bill was best ‘for the church’ and failed to enlighten him as to why! Money was going to be saved as ‘Obamacare’ was about to be enacted.
    The House Committee declined to pass this poor Bill, although it had passed the Senate, minus 6 votes.
    The Texas Conference of Catholic Bishops do not represent the people, the Body of Christ, Priest’ receive their direction from their ‘boss’ the Bishop. Many Catholics think my speaking the facts of this Bill, in opposition o the Bishops is ‘a sin.’. The Bishops, are not God, nor represent me, a Christian!
    Regardless of one’s faith, we are ALL accountable for our belief’s and actions, relying on, ‘The ? Said it was good or right’ is not going to work! Take the time to know the truth, The Truth shall set you free! Too many receivers run rampant without accountability.
    I worship God, and The Trinity, grateful for redemption through Jesus Christ, Who is ALWAYS with me in Spirit! To question those in authority is to grow and learn, or don’t and be deceived as you walk with the goats to be slaughtered! God deserves more honor and respect and more of our time!

  • Christina Beahan

    The Pope is not infallible, he is a human. The Papacy is infallible. Meaning, certain. Certain things the pope say or write are considered inspired by God such as the Theology of the Body. The teachings must be collaborated by Catholic doctrine. The actual person, the pope, right now Pope Francis, is fallible and human. The position of the papacy is what is infallible because Jesus gave the papacy the keys to His kingdom. He said to Peter, “I call you Peter or Cephas,(which means rock) and on this Rock I will build my church.” The Rock is the papacy, Peter was the first pope. Peter was not infallible though, he went on to deny Christ before the crucifixion, he was human.

  • obamasux

    catholics believe you must ask the priest for forgiveness. The Bible specifically states that only Jesus can forgive your sins.

    • Chris Harper