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  1. 1. Roman Catholic Ideas and Vocabulary in Bless Me, Ultima
  2. 3. Christianity many branches. “Catholic” refers to one of the oldest kinds of Christianity: Catholic
  3. 4. In the United States, 23.9% of people are Catholic. However, most Americans are familiar with all the Catholic words and ideas in Bless Me, Ultima.
  4. 5. Mass = the Catholic church service Image from
  5. 6. A Catholic religious leader is called a priest.
  6. 7. Sacraments are the special holy things that a priest can do, for example baptize babies and marry people.
  7. 8. Confession is one of the sacraments. Confession is a special, private conversation with a priest in which a Catholics tell what they have done wrong (sins) and are told what to do to be forgiven. This is called “penance.”
  8. 9. Penance is usually saying prayers.
  9. 10. Communion is eating the body and blood of Jesus. This is another sacrament. Children make their first communion when they are seven years old, after studying the catechism. 2011/07/whats-best-way-to-recieve-holy.html
  10. 11. Catechism = the book people study before they can become Catholic. In this picture, children are studying in a catechism class.
  11. 12. The Virgin Mary was the mother of Jesus. She is more important to Catholics than she is to most Protestants. library_article/ 844/Mary__Mother_of_God_.html
  12. 13. In 1531, a Mexican Indian named Juan Diego had a famous vision of the Virgin Mary. This image is called the Virgin of Guadalupe. mperri/ColAm/ColLAAm.htm
  13. 14. Saints are holy people who have died, and who now have a special relationship with God in heaven.
  14. 15. Different saints are the patrons, or special helpers, of different places or groups of people. For example, Saint Christopher is the patron saint of travelers, so Catholics may wear a Saint Christopher medal while traveling.
  15. 16. The Virgin of Guadalupe is the patron saint of Mexico, and of the town in New Mexico where Bless Me, Ultima takes place.
  16. 17. According to the Bible, Jesus was born to Mary even though she was a virgin, and had not yet had sex with her husband. <ul><li>According to the Bible, Mary’s parents were very old when she was born. Catholics (not Protestants) believe that Mary herself was born without her parents having sex. This is the “Immaculate Conception” that the children talk about in Chapter 18. </li></ul>
  17. 18. Baptism is one of the sacraments sacrament. Christians believe that people are born in sin, and baptism washes away this “original sin.”
  18. 19. Everyone is born in “original sin” because of the sin committed by Adam and Eve, the first man and woman in the Garden of Eden.
  19. 20. Baptized Christians who live good lives are believed to go to Heaven when they die. Bad people go to Hell. A mortal sin is a sin for which you will go to Hell.
  20. 21. “ Limbo” is an empty place for innocent people who were not baptized. At the end of Chapter One, Antonio dreams about the “babes of Limbo.”
  21. 22. <ul><li>A rosary is a special string of beads that is used to count prayers. (Rosaries are also used by Buddhists.) </li></ul>
  22. 23. The “Hail Mary” and the “Act of Contrition” are names of specific Catholic prayers.
  23. 24. Holy water is special water that has been blessed by a priest for religious uses.
  24. 25. The End of Jesus’ Life (events that are important to understanding Chapters 17 and 18)
  25. 26. Lent begins in February. It is 40 days of prayer and fasting. <ul><li>Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent, the priest marks everyone’s forehead with ashes. </li></ul>
  26. 27. The last week of Lent begins with Palm Sunday. This was the day that Jesus entered Jerusalem.
  27. 28. Jesus was tried by the Roman governor Pontius Pilate. He was condemned to be crucified.
  28. 29. Crucifixion was a common way of killing criminals at that time.
  29. 30. “ Good Friday” is the day that Jesus was crucified. In Chapter 18, the priest and the children pray “The Stations of the Cross.” This is a series of 14 pictures showing the crucifixion as described in the Bible. All Catholic churches have these pictures along the side walls inside. churchs/chstations.html
  30. 31. On Easter Sunday, Christians believe that Jesus rose from the dead. Antonio and the other children have their first communion on Easter Sunday.