At a large meeting, Vatican 2, 1962-65, Pope John 23rd and bishops from Ireland, Central America, Italy, Spain and others expressed concern that tradition elevated devotion to Mary to the point of idolatry. They called it The Cult of the Virgin.” The true Mary was a “handmaiden of the Lord” married to a carpenter who directed people to Jesus. She said, “Whatever he says unto you, do it” (John 2:5). On the first Christmas, Mary wrapped her gift to the world and laid him in a manger.

In this cult, Mary is different from the mother of Jesus in Scripture. God warns us not to  worship the creature instead of the creator (Romans 1:25). Jesus is Mary’s creator. We have lost our compass if the Father and Son are secondary in our worship. Bishops concluded it was firmly entrenched and unchangeable. People in Paul’s day tested his teachings by comparing them with Scripture (Acts 17:11). Tune up your balogna detector!

(A)  Mary is “The Mother of  God” according to tradition but the true Mary is mother of Jesus’ physical body. God is a trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Mary is not mother of these three separate persons. God in tri-unity was there a long time before Mary appeared so how can she be his mother?

(B)  The false Mary, according to tradition was free from original sin. Mary of the Bible was not immaculately conceived but considered herself a sinner, “rejoicing in God her Savior” (Luke 1:47). Only sinners need a Savior. “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

(C) In the 1930s, Pope Pius said Mary is mediatrix of all graces. In Scripture, Jesus is the one and only mediator between man and God (1 Tim. 2:5). Tradition added another level with Mary as second mediator who allegedly takes our prayer requests to Jesus.

It is idolatry to pray to anyone but God. When Jesus taught his disciples to pray for forgiveness of sins he did not say, “Our father in the confessional forgive our sins.”  He said, “Our Father in heaven...” (Matt. 6:9-13). Call no man on earth your spiritual father (Matthew 23:9). We have sinned against God. The only one that can forgive us is the one we sinned against.

The Bible warns against necromancy, seeking the dead as in witchcraft (Deut. 18). There is no basis in Scripture for praying to or for the dead. One visionary in Medjugorje said her mother appeared with Mary in a vision.  A message of June 25, 2001:

“Dear children! I am with you and I bless you all with my motherly blessing. Especially today when God gives you abundant graces, pray and seek God through me...come closer to my heart so I can lead you to my Son, Jesus...”

The living seeking the dead [Mary or saints] is an abomination (Isaiah 8:19). In visions, lying familiar demon spirits masquerade as departed persons. People think they meet God but contact Satan. The traditional cult of saints is also unbiblical.


Whom or what did he see in Luke 2:26-30? He was about to die and saw salvation at his eleventh hour. Did he see a Protestant minister, priest or Pope, a Watchtower, Book of Mormon, Koran, zodiac, a Masonic lamb skin, a dollar bill, the Buddha, Muhammad, a bottle of booze or some other counterfeit? Did he see Mary, the mother of Jesus, who stood nearby? NO!  He looked into the face of Jesus. Why burn rubber in the fast lane if you are going the wrong way? Jesus is the way, truth and  life (John 14:6). You cannot find right answers by looking in wrong places. Download your sins on Jesus. “Will Roman Catholics go to heaven?” asked a Catholic.

A priest answered: “Our church has a variety of things: Mary, saints, the Pope, purgatory, relics, icons, shrines, the mass, sacraments and Jesus. If they focus on Jesus they will go to heaven but if they focus on Mary’s treasury of merit, the sacraments including baptism or anything else they will go to hell. Jesus, plus nothing, is the way of salvation. He is The Way to heaven not one of many equally good ways  (John 14:6). You must look beyond  stained glass and ask Jesus to forgive your sins.”

“In the last days some with  seared conscience shall depart from the faith giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils forbidding marriage and meats”(1 Timothy 4:1-5). The Roman Catholic church added so much tradition that finding  truth in that maze is like a needle in a haystack. However, some, like Martin Luther, looked beyond tradition and found forgiveness in Christ.


PURGE-ATORY means to purge or cleanse. Sins that were not absolved at the confessional are allegedly purged by fires of purgatory. For every counterfeit there is a real one, a real place to purge sins. “After Jesus by himself purged our sins [on the cross] he sat at the right hand of the Majesty on high” (Heb. 1:3).

“God be merciful to me a sinner” is the sin purging prayer. A tax collector that prayed went to his house justified, freely pardoned by God’s grace (Luke 18:10-14). Sins are purged by blood not by fire (Heb. 9:22). There is no such  thing as holy water in Scripture.

A priest built a Drive-In Confessional with a sign: Toot and Tell or Go to Hell. There is no need to toot just pray like David after his adultery and murder:

“Have mercy on me, O God...wash me from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. I was shaped in iniquity and in sin my mother conceived me...purge me with hyssop and I shall be clean; wash me and I shall be whiter than snow. Create in me a clean heart and restore unto me the joy of your salvation” (Psalm 51). Our sins are no worse than David’s. God forgave and used him and he will do the same for us.

 Johan Tetsul invented a unique way to raise millions to build St. Peter’s Basilica. At meetings he had an open coffin and said: “As soon as the coin in the coffin rings, the soul from purgatory springs.” Purgatory and penance deny the sufficiency of the cross for salvation. The New Catholic Encyclopedia admits the belief in purgatory depends on early church fathers and tradition and is not mentioned in Scripture but was accepted at the Council of Trent (1545-61).  They pronounced anathema on all who reject purgatory. On the cross, Jesus said, “It is finished” but purgatory teaches further cleansing by fire is needed for salvation.  2nd Machabees 12:39-45 is often cited to show purgatory cleanses from venial sins but those mentioned were guilty of mortal sins, idolatry.



Jesus builds his church on the rock of Peter’s confession: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt. 16:16-18). “That Rock was Christ” not Peter (1 Cor. 10:4). Peter is just a pebble in comparison to the solid Rock, Christ Jesus. Anyone standing on that pebble praying to a false Mary is as far from the truth as east is from  west. In the early church some followed Paul, Apollos, Peter and others. Was Peter crucified for you? Christians have a referral ministry, referring sinners to Jesus. John the Baptist, pointing to Jesus, said, “Behold the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). He did not point to purgatory or  a certain church. All churches have one thing in common: None can save us from our sins; Jesus saves (Matt. 1:21). Catholicism lost its compass because the church is its authority above the Bible. It is sola ekklasia, the church alone, not sola scriptura, the Bible alone. The Bible is infallible not the Pope. They follow shooting stars not the north star.

Magisterium and excathedra dogma also alleged visions and messages from Mary must agree with the Bible. Visions of Mary harmonize with Catholic tradition but God does not contradict himself with mixed messages. Jesus set  the example when he spoke to the devil saying “It is written” (Matt. 4). Neither Jesus nor his disciples quoted from spurious apocryphal books.

I asked a Tulsa, Oklahoma, University theology professor: “What must one do to become a Christian?”

“What kind of Christian are you talking about?”

“Is there more than one kind of Christian?”

“Yes, there are fake institutional Christians that have joined some Protestant or Catholic institution and taken on the label of Christianity. True born again Christians have asked Jesus to forgive their sins and have crossed over from death unto life (John 5:24). You cannot have a counterfeit without a real one. There are no counterfeit $75 bills for there are no real ones.”

Some try to trace the true church through various religious institutions. It is more accurately traced to the first century by  those burned at stakes, beheaded, boiled in oil, killed in prison, poisoned and fed alive to lions.


A false priest sits in a confessional forgiving and retaining sins. In contrast, if we confess our sins our Great High Priest, Jesus, forgives and cleanses us from all unrighteousness every time (1 John 1:9). The Holy Royal Priesthood of all believers, men and women, is the New Testament concept (1 Peter 2:5,9). When Jesus died the temple veil ripped from top to bottom signifying all have direct access to come boldly to God’s throne (Matt. 27:51).

No organized Roman Catholic Church existed until the 10th century. At one time there were five popes: in Antioch, Alexandria, Rome, Constantinople and Jerusalem. After various power struggles the western Pope in Rome became supreme. East and west separated in 1054 forming the Eastern Orthodox Church but kept the same teachings as Rome. On CNN, a reporter said the priesthood is virtually a homosexual vocation with 20 to 50%  in this demonic lifestyle. “Forbidding to marry is a teaching of the devil” (1 Timothy 4:3). There are over 3,000 denominations in Catholicism at present. The Coptic Church has lapsed into idolatry and witchcraft with little evidence of Jesus.


Paul warned about following a false Christ (2 Cor. 11:4). Jesus said, “You nullify the word of God by your traditions” (Mark 7:13). Unbiblical tradition creates a false Christ whose sacrifice is not sufficient to forgive sins but needs help from Mary, saints, sacraments, penance, priests and purgatory. Salvation is found in Jesus plus nothing, sola Christos. “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart God raised him from the dead you will be saved” (Romans 10:9,10).

Catholics also have a tradition of offering up to God their pain and sacrifices they make at Lent and other times. This pain allegedly adds to the pain suffered by Christ and helps in the salvation of sinners. This is totally futile and unbiblical as the cross is sufficient for salvation of all. All the demonic activity in the Catholic church such as homosexuality and sexual abuse of children proves they have a false Christ and dogma that changes heads but not hearts of priests and members. I suggest you leave that cult before it destroys your entire family.


Jesus took bread and said, “This IS my body that was broken for you; do this in remembrance of me. This cup IS the New Testament in my blood; drink it in remembrance of me” (1 Cor. 11:24,25). When Jesus said these words his blood flowed in his veins and was not in the cup. On Remembrance or Memorial Day we remember those who died in wars to preserve our freedom. At holy communion we remember the death of Jesus until he comes (1 Cor. 11:26). It is a Remembrance Day of his death. Rome now teaches one can be saved without the Eucharist so evidently there is no saving virtue in the bread and wine.

A sincere Catholic who visited Lourdes viewed the mass like a cannibal. She was certain the bread and wine turned into the literal body and blood of Jesus. As proof she cited the above verses with emphasis on “this IS my body” and “this IS my blood.” Jesus here spoke figuratively not literally as he did many times. He said, “Whosoever does the will of the Father IS my Mother” (Matt. 12:50). He also said, “I am the door” but did not refer to literal wood and hinges (John 10:7).  Jesus is  “The Bread of Life... the spirit quickens but the flesh profits nothing” (John 6:48-63). It would profit nothing to eat the literal flesh of Jesus or drink his blood. Leviticus 17 forbids drinking blood. The Orthodox Church also believes in the veneration of saints, the bodily assumption of Mary and trans-substantiation which means the bread and wine changes to literal blood and body of Jesus at the mass.


Jesus spoke figuratively about keys to enter the kingdom. The gospel of Christ is the key (1 Cor. 15:1-4). Whether sins are remitted or retained depends on God and the sinner. Billy Graham preached to a packed stadium:

“Many of you have come with problems. Your spouse is unfaithful; your children are on drugs and your whole life is messed up. All these things are symptoms of sin. The New Age Movement tells us to look within but we see sin in our hearts. Winston Churchill said, “Our problems are beyond us.” Jeremiah said our hearts are deceitful and wicked. We have polished our exteriors but need a change of heart. Salvation is an inside job. The heart of our problems is the human heart.

Perhaps you were baptized or confirmed but deep in your heart you know something is missing. I want you to get up from your seats, come forward and stand before this platform. In coming you are saying to Jesus you have done it your way long enough and have messed up and lost your compass. Now you want Jesus to forgive your sins as you receive him as Savior and Lord. As the choir sings, come from the balconies and everywhere. Your friends will wait. We will pray and give you some literature.”

Billy prayed as thousands came forward and stood near the platform. He continued: “If you are truly sorry for your sins and confess them to God, I can say on the authority of Scripture they are remitted because of Calvary. On the other hand, if you know you are a sinner but decided not to repent, your sins are retained and your guilt will go with you from here. This might be your last opportunity to receive forgiveness as God calls.

The penalty for sin is death but Jesus came down to earth from heaven to take our guilt and  die as our substitute to pay our death penalty for our sins. If I was guilty and sentenced to hang but some innocent person loved me and hung in my place, I could go free. A person can accept or reject a pardon. Receive Christ before it is eternally too late. Pray after me: Jesus, I am a sinner; I am sorry for my sins; I ask you to forgive me as I receive you as my Savior, Amen”

Soon the meeting ended. Some decided to retain their sins and went home unchanged. Others confessed theirs to God and were born again, born from above. The same sun that melts butter hardens clay. Some hearts become hardened like stone by tradition and others become flexible and repent. All our sins are against God so we must confess to him then forgive those who have sinned against us when they repent (Luke 17:3,4).

Protestants are those who protested against heresies mentioned in these articles. We must keep up the protest or the abyss of deception will swallow us.

      I have attended Alliance, Assembly of God, Baptist & Christian Life Assembly churches.

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        Pastor, Wayne William Westby.
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