St. Joseph Catholic Church, Clayton MO

106 N. Meramec Avenue – Clayton MO 63105 – Parish Office (314) 726-1221

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – February 19, 2017


Trivia night – a fun and enjoyable evening, some questions you can really impress yourself that you know these things – others you don’t have a clue, but then someone else does know it – how do they know that? Whether you or the other person knew it though, just remember what we were talking about, trivia.It isn’t  really that important. So what isn’t trivia? What do we need to know that we would be appropriately embarrassed by if we got wrong? How many hearts does an octopus have? [I got this one wrong, they have three.]

How about this, what is the 4th commandment? Well of course we know that it is “Honor your father and mother.” But does it really matter whether it is the 4th commandment or say if it was the 5th commandment? Well, actually, you might have been correct if you stated “Keep holy the Sabbath.” Did you know that different Christian faiths have different 10 commandments? The ones I am familiar with, and I would imagine you are also, are referred to as the Catholic 10 commandments (Lutherans also use them). Whereas the second set I referenced are often referred to as the Protestant 10 commandments. Some will
state that the different lists come from two different Bible passages, Exodus 20:1-17 and Deuteronomy 5:6-21. But if you look the 10 Commandments up in the Catechism of the Catholic Church it cites both of these passages in listing each of the 10. Reading through these passages you will realize you could list out 14 or 15 commandments if you wanted to, and it is just how you break it down that
varies how you divide them into 10.

The Catholic version breaks down the Protestant 10th commandment, “You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor,” into our 9th “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife,” and our 10th “You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods,” Whereas the Protestant version breaks down the Catholic 1st commandment “I am the Lord your God, you shall not have other gods besides me,” with a similar 1st commandment “You shall have no other gods but me,” and also their 2nd “You shall not make unto you any graven images.”

Actually this is what I consider to be good trivia. On the surface it isn’t really critical if we knew the specific answer or not, but it gets us to look further into the topic. This told us things like what Bible passages they come from, that you could break them up into even more commandments. And hopefully it also gets us to continue asking more, like why they may have broken them down the way they did, was it an intentional difference? Is there a theological difference? Why didn’t I know this before? And also it can help us communicate, so next time you may say you broke a certain commandment you know why the other person may react a little differently than you expected.

Fr. Nick


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