On my journey through spiritual matters, I have come to realize that faith without ritual has no meaning. It is through ritual that the bond between Creator and created is strengthened and deepened. If you look at human culture throughout history, it has until recently relied heavily on ritualistic worship to draw people closer to the Divine. It has only been since the rise of Protestantism that mankind has truly started losing this important aspect of worship, something intrinsic to our very being.The Protestants have put forth the idea that all one needs to do is “accept Jesus” to be saved. This flies in the face of millennia of human worship as it is the ritualistic aspect of worship that deepens one’s faith in and understanding of God. This abandoning of the cultic practices that have defined the Church for 2000 years is at the root of the decline of adherence to the Christian faith as defined by Protestant teachings.
What modern Protestant Christians have lost sight of in their rebellion against the Church is that tradition and form of ritual draw believers to the Divine. Professed belief alone without ritual action to strengthen it is meaningless and hollow. To paraphrase James 2:17, faith without works is dead. This is referring to charitable, moral, and just action, but it could just as easily be applied to holy ritual. If you simply profess faith and do not participate in ritualistic worship, how are you to commune with God in a truly meaningful way? Private prayer is important, but it lacks the reinforcing power of the Mass. The Mysteries enshrined in Catholic practices, when understood properly, will draw one closer to their Creator as they better understand their relationship with Him.
If ritual explaining Divinity is removed from worship, the understanding fostered by that core of the faith is lost. Once again, this is evident in modern Protestantism. Ask the average Protestant why they do what they do in their worship, and most will not be able to answer. They do not understand their own faith and religious practice because they have removed the history, tradition, and ritual that defines it. They have been told that it is enough to simply believe, even though the Word of God has said differently.