Catholic/Christian Etiquette Question

Catholics frequently begin prayers with the words “In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.” My understanding is that this phrase is not common to other Christian religions. Assuming this to be true, if I (a Catholic) were to host a dinner at which our Pastor and a Christian minister of another faith was in attendence, would prefacing Grace with “In the name of the Father…” be inappropriate or offensive to the non-Catholic minister?

United Methodists use the phrase, but it’s usually at the end of the prayer. Baptists around here generally end with “we ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ.” I also heard “in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost.” I certainly wouldn’t be offended if it opened with these words instead.

Aside from marking you as Catholic, I cannot imagine that it would be insulting to any Christian to hear you open a prayer with the Sign of the Cross, (including the accompanying gestures).

Similarly, closing the Lord’s Prayer with “for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory” marks one as not Roman Catholic, (although several related rites employ it), but is hardly insulting to Catholics who have even added that phrase as a codicil to the prayer at Mass.

as a guess, you shouldn’t be. when dining as equals (at work or in some other place,) it could be agreed that one will recite the catholic prayer of thanks, followed by the protestant.

I don’t think the phrase would be considered strange or foreign to almost any Protestant denomination, or in Orthodox churches.

Jehovah’s Witnesses have a different understanting of the identities and relationships of the three entities named in the phrase, but I’m not sure that means they would tend to be offended by hearing it.

The phrase is probably not as common among some non-Catholic Christians as it is with Catholics, but it isn’t at all uncommon.
Chances are they wouldn’t even blink.

I can’t imagine any reasonable person as a dinner guest (whether a Christian of any denomination or not) being offended by their host using such an innocuous phrase as part of a pre-meal prayer.

Wouldn’t you ask your priest if he wanted to say grace?

It’s absolutely no big deal. While such isn’t required, it’s not like it’s forbidden. The only people I know who would object at all are people who don’t believe in the Trinity or non-Christians who object to saying grace at all. (And, of course, those anti-Catholic people.)

I’m very familiar with Lutheran, Pentacostal, and Episcopalian denominations, personally. I have a feeling that none of those three backgrounds would even notice. I certainly wouldn’t see mentioning the Trinity to start a prayer as a specifically **Catholic **thing, just a very devout opening to a prayer.

The only other denomination I have experience with is Southern Baptist, who might think it was a little pompous, but I’ve only been to a handful of Baptist churches, so can’t be as sure on that one.

If you were really worried, you could call your priest and find out what denomination your visiting pastoral person was, and check on their tenets online. I bet you’d find that there aren’t as many line-in-the-sand differences as you might imagine with a lot of them.

Not inappropriate at all. Jesus used the phrase “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” himself (in Matthew 28), so it seems odd that any Christian would be uncomfortable with it.

Thread moved to IMHO (and I fixed the typo in the title while I was at it).

I have yet to meet a Christian so uptight that they’d get offended by that. If I did, I’d probably be unable to suppress my laughter.

As j666 suggested, you could go the ultra-safe route and ask your guest to give the blessing. If your pastor is in attendance as well, I’d guess the expected route would be to ask your pastor to give the blessing, but that’s more a social rank thing than a religious one.

Since that line in the Lord’s Prayer is said in the middle of each mass, I don’t think you are correct about your contention that it isn’t used in the Roman Catholic religion. It certainly is; in some at least.

It’s said at Mass after the congregation says the Our Father and after the priest says another short prayer. It is, as tomndebb points out, something of a codicil. We don’t use it as part of the prayer proper. It was added by a medieval monk in the margins of a Bible he was illuminating, if my college theology professor, a priest, is to be believed.

(Raised as a Catholic, now a Lutheran.) That’s my experience, as well. While that last “codicil” is said in Catholic Mass, it’s said by the priest, not the congregation. When a Catholic says the Lord’s Prayer, IME, he would typically leave that bit off. IME, most mainline Protestants will include the last bit as part of the prayer itself.

“In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen,” is a prayer unto itself. The act of the Sign of the Cross (or “blessing oneself”) is representative of this prayer. It dates from the earliest days of the Christian Church.

Any non-Catholic Christian who would be upset by the action, accompanied with the words of the prayer probably has more of a problem with Catholicism than with the words. And in my opinion, the ones with the biggest concerns over Catholicism would be Evangelicals and Southern Baptists.

The problem is strictly theirs, though. Don’t worry about it.

As part of the Mass, it is said by the congregation. It’s just that there’s a little priest-only section in between.

The one that has always thrown me is the prayers that begin “Jesus,…” (addressing Jesus) and then end “in Jesus’ name, we pray.” …um… people don’t come up to me and say Opal, I want to talk to you about blah blah blah…in Opal’s name we speak.

I mean isn’t it a bit weird to pray TO someone IN THEIR OWN NAME? Yet I hear it all the time.

It’s going at two different parts of prayer.
The first part is a recently-developed convention regarding people having a personal relationship with God. It’s a stylistic choice for the praying person’s benefit - trying to establish a friendly “chattty” relationship, so that the ensuing prayer is more like a conversation than a supplication.

The second part is actual Biblical injunction, most specifically from John 14 : Ask any thing in my Name and I will do it. The easiest way for lots of people to be SURE that they’re praying the right way is to end on that note - In Jesus’ Name, Amen.