Today, if you watch television, you have probably come across reality shows where people who claim they are a psychic or medium. They claim to be able to connect with the spirit of a relative or friend that has already died and can tell you what this dead person wants you to know. The medium will ask you questions about the person and then will tell you something that quote “only you would be able to know.” One show in particular is about a lady who lives on Long Island, New York and claims to be able to connect with the dead. I will not mention her name, but she has popularized the art of being a medium. And she in particular is probably profiting pretty good from it, I might ad. I only mention this lady as an example so as to ask the question; “As a Christian, should we stay away from them?” The answer is a resounding YES!!!
“Mediums and spiritists” are people who pretend to talk to the dead. They claim to conjure up the spirits in the other world and learn what they are saying and doing. Those spirits are said to speak through them. Their work is all a deception and it is very sinful.
As a Catholic, we should avoid approaching psychics, mediums, palm readers, etc. And because God is the author of love and the creator of the universe, all power resides in him. If this is so, why would we be seeking out people who has magical powers and can connect with spirits. God would not give that power to a few sinful people, but he would give it to the Church he founded by his Son Jesus Christ. All of our love and our attention should be directed to God and his Church. If we honestly think about it, when dealing with these mediums or fortune tellers, we are giving to creatures what only belongs to God.
People who believe in mediums, spiritists and fortune tellers and the like, are actually sinning against the First commandment of God: “I am the Lord thy God: thou shalt not have strange gods before Me.”
The Catholic Church teaches:
All forms of divination are to be rejected: recourse to Satan or demons, conjuring up the dead or other practices falsely supposed to “unveil” the future. Consulting horoscopes, astrology, palm reading, interpretation of omens and lots, the phenomena of clairvoyance, and recourse to mediums all conceal a desire for power over time, history, and, in the last analysis, other human beings, as well as a wish to conciliate hidden powers. They contradict the honor, respect, and loving fear that we owe to God alone.
All practices of magic or sorcery, by which one attempts to tame occult powers, so as to place them at one’s service and have a supernatural power over others – even if this were for the sake of restoring their health – are gravely contrary to the virtue of religion…(Catechism of the Catholic Church #2116, 2117).
Now, when the Church forbids occult contact with ghostly spirits, it is meant that we are not to use techniques to “summons up” departed human beings. It is not however forbidding us to “talk to” or to have a “conversation” with someone who has passed on to the next life. Prayer to saints, on the other hand, is entirely different. The bible gives us examples of how we can initiate contact with the saints in heaven. Starting in Hebrews 12:18, it says; “For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire … darkness … gloom … and the sound of a trumpet, and a voice whose words made the hearers entreat that no further messages be spoken to them…But you have come to… the city of the living God… and to innumerable angels… and to the assembly of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven… and to… God… and to the spirits of just men made perfect… and to Jesus…(Heb 12:18-24).” So, when we initiate prayer, we “come to” God and Jesus, we can also “come to” the angels and “the spirits of just men made perfect.” The “just men” are those who would be saints in heaven.
In the Book of Revelation (ch. 5:18-24), we see how the prayers from earth gets communicated to heaven. The twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and with golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints … the elders fell down and worshiped. The elders are offering the prayers of we the faithful on earth through the symbol of incense filtering up.
Until next time, God bless.