To my Catholic neighbors.
Because I love you and want to show you something out of humility, not boasting in myself or my wisdom, but in hopes that God has made this plain to us.
Based on what I've heard during my times listening the local Catholic radio station, along with other studies, reading and speaking with former Catholic friends. I've heard a lot about "Mary" and her "intercession" for us in heaven "now and at the hour of our death". You pray to her. You still believe in purgatory. You still seem to have indulgences in the forms of adoration, droning prayers, the rosary, and your good works. I've heard Christ belittled by her "immaculate conception" and her "sinlessness" and heard repetitive prayers described in Matthew 6:6-8
("But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.").
Your apologists have ways around this, but I find it hard not to see it as salvation by works and empty words. These repetitive prayers are broadcast over the airwaves for Catholics to pray in unison. I've heard very little teaching of God's word, and more "Catholic Answers", advice for Catholics, or why you should be a part of the one true Church. Not to say I haven't heard some accurate teaching, but it's mixed with some strange fire. I don't mean to say that everyone under the Catholic umbrella believes all these things, but this is what comes down from Rome, from your Pope who calls himself Holy Father, and is a Jesuit (topic for another time perhaps).
Matthew seems to be hitting on these topics:
"But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ."
If the real Mary can hear you in heaven she must cringe to hear you deify her:
calling her the "Queen of Heaven". Here's what both of our bibles say about this, even if yours has a few more books than mine.
Jeremiah 7:18 The children gather wood, the fathers kindle fire, and the women knead dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven. And they pour out drink offerings to other gods, to provoke me to anger.
Jeremiah 44:17 But we will do everything that we have vowed, make offerings to the queen of heaven and pour out drink offerings to her, as we did, both we and our fathers, our kings and our officials, in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. For then we had plenty of food, and prospered, and saw no disaster.
Jeremiah 44:18 But since we left off making offerings to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have lacked everything and have been consumed by the sword and by famine.”
Jeremiah 44:19 And the women said, “When we made offerings to the queen of heaven and poured out drink offerings to her, was it without our husbands' approval that we made cakes for her bearing her image and poured out drink offerings to her?”
Jeremiah 44:25 Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: You and your wives have declared with your mouths, and have fulfilled it with your hands, saying, ‘We will surely perform our vows that we have made, to make offerings to the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings to her.’ Then confirm your vows and perform your vows!