Skip to comments.Keeping the flock faithful (Catholic priests in battle with Evangelicals for their flock)
Posted on 01/05/2008 7:06:01 AM PST by NYer
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Prayerful support of these priests, ping!
—they oughtta check out what’s happened in much of South America-—
At the same time Latin America has opened up to the idea of "religious freedom" in recent decades, so many recent Hispanics are already Protestant when they arrive.
If the Catholics could figure out how to increase the numbers of priests so they could better serve this growing community in the United States, I'm sure they could continue to attract Hispanic Catholics.
Yet I know that "The Good News is preached to the poor" is one of the "signs" of the Kingdom of God----so I admire the zeal of the Pentecostals and Evangelicals who are reaching out to the poor and the stranger.
So let's try to out-do each other in faith, hope, and love, drawing closer to Christ and helping others drew closer to Christ. A vast competition in doing good. Wouldn't that cause a jigging celebration amongst the angels of heaven?
It is true that many immigrant Latin Americans view becoming Protestant as sort of assimilation to US ways. But Evangelicals and Pentecostals have a very bad retention rate in Latin America, and you will often read articles in their publications lamenting this or wondering about it. Often, Protestantism is just the gateway to things ranging from Islam to unbelief.
Evangelical churches are very personality-driven, and groups will form around one charismatic pastor and either disband if he leaves, or suddenly change their minds and follow an even more charismatic pastor. Also, Protestant churches poach on each other in Latin America, so people are always being “converted” to another church. Unless, of course, like the Indians in Chiapas, the ex-Pentecostals meet Muslim missionaries and become Muslim.
Leaving the Church is a very dangerous thing, and I think that particularly among the not very well educated, it often leads to a loss of Christianity altogether.
Note ~ there are OTHER Pentecostal movements, not just that one.
>Protestant evangelists - people just as dedicated as he is, but with a quite different approach to Christianity - are aggressively recruiting on his turf.
Wow! I thought West Side Story was about forbidden love! (Great, now I have “I’m So Pretty” stuck in my head...)
>Allow women to pastor and become bishops.
Um...no. Why would this author take such a stab at the Anglican Church? I thought that was the closest denomination to the Roman one.
In Protestant Churches, Scriptural authority would not allow for a female to be a priest or ‘bishop’. To step outside the bounds of Scripture is to leave the Protestant realm, just as to allow abortion supporters to participate in mass is to step outside the Roman realm.
If we stick to being the best Catholics we know how to be and if we pray for vocations, I ain't gonna worry.
But I AM going to do penance for the massively culpable way the Church south of the Rio Grande has behaved sometimes.
When my former pastor and I started offering to provide sacramental ministries right in the migrant worker camps around here, the leaders of the camps greeted us with less than overwhelming enthusiasm, which confused us.
Then it finally surfaced that they thought we were going to CHARGE them for these services!
Madre de Dios!
It's as if the Bishops south of the Border forgot what their call was, and decided to monetize the martyrdom of their predecessors.
They do. But even here, when you look at Pentecostalism in the US South, for example, where it really took hold after spreading out from California, you see thousands of little churches, many of them with tiny and aging congregations.
Pentecostal churches are founded on emotion and personality, and the problem is that there is no substance: they offer little in the way of ethical or moral teachings, nothing in the way of intellectual formation, philosophy, etc. So when people move beyond the very basic emotional level where the appeal of Pentecostalism is located, there’s no place for them to go (except out of Christianity altogether). I think we see this phenomenon among native-born black Pentecostals in this country.
Catholic Charismatic movements were successful at keeping Hispanics in the Church, because once they passed through the emotional high that they longed for, there was still the Church with its 2000 years of Christianity for them to explore. One of the big problems in Latin America, of course, was the leftist Catholic clergy, who regard the whole undertaking as a giant social welfare project, and thus simply abandoned the religious aspect altogether. So one really can’t blame Catholics there for looking in other places for some sense of the religious dimension.
Fortunately, I think this is changing. The Pope recently spoke politely but firmly to the Latin American bishops about their lefty-social-worker “Aparecida Statement” (made at the time of his visit to Brazil), reminding them that their duties were to preach and teach the Faith, and not some set of leftwing platitudes.
And thank God for that...They got all that 'religion' out the way and can now focus on Jesus...
You spent a lot of time in Pectacostal churches, have ya??? I have...If you have, I'd have to say you must sleep during the teaching and services...
nothing in the way of intellectual formation, philosophy, etc.
This must boggle your mind:
1Co 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
And here's what God thinks of your philosophy:
Col 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
You really think God honors a religion where intellectuals and philosophers reign supreme???
What, his right leg and left arm speak Spanish. Egad!
No, he honors those that follow the instructions of Christ. That means belonging to the Church he founded. You lack the full faith in Christ and for that I’m sorry for you.
I will pray you one day lay down your hatred for Christ and his Church and come home.
Catholic bump. These people will come home to the one, holy, Catholic and apostlic church when they realize the importance of the Holy Eucharist in their lives.
Something is missing in the other churches! And it’s the REAL PRESENCE and the Mass!
Jesus did not found your religion...That's the claim of your religion, not Jesus Christ...Your religion in no way resembles the True Body of Christ...
I will pray you one day lay down your hatred for Christ and his Church and come home.
Don't waste your time...Jesus knows his sheep and you don't even know if you are one of the Sheep, until you find out if you make it to purgatory...If you endure to the end (of something)...
Jesus wouldn't hear it anyway...Because you pray to Mary or a dead person instead of God and you don't even have a clue whether that dead person is in heaven or hell...And you don't believe in a literal heaven or hell anyway...
ELCA Lutherans, Methodists, and others aren't Protestants anymore?
We don't? I must have missed that particular lesson.
I have a suggestion. Why don't you let us describe our own beliefs, instead of trying to tell us what we believe (and getting it wrong). That way they aren't filtered through the lens of your, uh, objectivity.
You really think God gave us brains so we could avoid using them?
Protestant bigot quoted in the article: “We don’t worship idols,” he said.
Neither do we, moron.
Apparently you guys have a myriad of beliefs, that don't coincide with each other's...
I have read numerous times on these threads where Catholics do not believe in a literal heaven or hell...And I bet it wouldn't take me long to find something put out by your church that agrees with that statement...
Nope...But He gave limitations on what was acceptable...And philosophy is not acceptable...
1Co 1:28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are:
1Co 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
1Co 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
1Co 1:31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
Man's Vanity !b'SHEM Yah'shua
The goal should be to bring people to know Yah'shua.
As far as I’m concerned, if a person comes to Christ, I could care less what church it is in. I don’t see other Christians as competitors. I see them as allies.
I wonder what a a graph would look like comparing the acceptance of Protestantism among Hispanics and the acceptance of birth control? I suspect Protestantism is progressing hand in hand with modernism. I suspect the two lines would more or less overlay one another.
You love to play fast and loose with words, don't you?
The official statement of what the Catholic Church professes is found in The Catechism of the Catholic Church. Read it and see if you can find what you've predicted. You won't but the process of reading it might actually be instructive for you and do some good.
The truth of course, is that there are people of all religious persuasions who call themselves "Christian" but who do not believe in a literal heaven or hell. Similarly with Catholics.
The fundamental mistake which you make, however, is in your understanding of the word "church". The Catholic Church is a "top down" organization, with Jesus Christ as its head and which professes and guards a deposit of faith. It is not a "bottom up" organization. Therefore, if an individual or a group who call themselves Catholics profess a belief other than the official one, that does not make that belief "Catholic". It simply means that they and not the Church have embraced error. Ergo they are no longer Catholic.
In a horizontal, non-hierarchical church on the other hand, which is maybe what you are used to, it is far easier to confuse the beliefs (or lack thereof) of its members for the belief of the church itself. What is truth? It's whatever the preacher of the moment says it is. If you have a new preacher next week, it could be something different.
IOW, your non-Catholic approach to understanding "church" is in error and does not apply to the Catholic Church.
OR not good Catholics and not competent to be considered a source of Catholic teaching, anymore than a Baptist who believes the horoscope is competent to be a voice of Baptist thought.
I read some of your catechism...Enough to know that I don't find it instructive in light of scripture...Therefore it would do me no good to read all of it...
But I assume you are familiar with some or all of it...Enough to know the official position on heaven and hell...I find it interesting that you don't want to post the official position...
The fundamental mistake which you make, however, is in your understanding of the word "church".
I have no misunderstanding of the 'church' in the context of the New Testament church in scripture...Just because you make that claim doesn't make it so...
You may be an expert on what your religion teaches but that in no way makes you an expert or even an authority on the scriptural New Testament Church...
So now you AND marshmallow disagree on what would be official teaching of your church...
According ot marshmallow, one of you is no longer Catholic...Just thought I'd mention that...
Does the Catholic Church teach that it is a “place” or a “state”?
I think by “literal”, Iscool meant place.
>ELCA Lutherans, Methodists, and others aren’t Protestants anymore?
Yup, these are starting to follow the Episcopalians. Women pastors lead to homosexual pastors and then everything goes... If the camel once gets his nose in the tent, his body will soon follow.
Once one part of the Scripture is allowed to be ignored, the whole is up for grabs. Soon, all the little traditions become more important than the Holy Word, and soon we have people saying we cannot literally interpret any of it.
Of course due to the weakening of definitions in this Post Modern society, they will still be called Protestants, but they are falling away from the ideals of the Protestant Reformation.
The doctrinal definitions are being allowed to get muddied. Mormons claim the title Christian, as do up-jumped motivational speakers such as Osteen and Warren, or the univeralist emergents. I just wonder when the Muslims are going to start using the term...
Huh. I used to work weekends in a fabric store, and some Sundays a woman wearing a sash proclaiming her as "Princess Bishop" of one of the local storefront churches would come in to shop. So did the leader of the local coven, but that's another story.
And, as far as I can tell, the Catholic Church teaching would be described more as a "state", as opposed to a "symbol".
Vatican officials said the Pope - who is also the Bishop of Rome - had been speaking in "straightforward" language "like a parish priest".
He had wanted to reinforce the new Catholic catechism, which holds that hell is a "state of eternal separation from God", to be understood "symbolically rather than physically".
Less this source mischaracterized official Church teaching.
The name "Protestant" shouldn't be applied to all non-Roman Catholic denominations. Who would the church that "Princess Bishop" is a member of be "protesting" against?
“Oh good. A fight! That’ll bring peace.”
Peace is the interval between the time you last stomped evil’s butt, and the time evil gets it together to attack you again.
So, yes, a fight is the only thing short of the Second Coming that can bring peace.
“But I AM going to do penance for the massively culpable way the Church south of the Rio Grande has behaved sometimes.”
It’s not always so great north of the Rio Grande, either. In the Boise diocese you could starve to death spiritually and physically before the Church would bestir itself...even before you could run one of these phantom priests to ground.
Of course, you could go to St. Paul’s Catholic center at Boise State University where Deacon Skoro teaches that “sex is the meaning of life.”
Among the problems that Protestants have is that they do not understand the difference between truth and the expression of truth, between accuracy and precision, and they do not understand the notion of context.
Did you know that if you are baptized with water in the name of the Trinity ou are a member of the Catholic Church? And that, despite the lies of anti-Catholics websites, excommunication does not constitute throwing you out of the Catholic Church?
Precision in discourse requires care and effort. Sometimes I have the energy to show that kind of care and to make that kind of effort. Sometimes not. Here it is Saturday, and my guess is that marshmallow was understandably careless in his or her choice of words.
Make the most of it. I stopped using that sort of gambit in adult discussions back in 1962 when I was 14.
Wow, we sure didn't cover THAT in RCIA! Darn Dominicans!
1033 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: “He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.”610
Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren.611 To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God’s merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self- exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called “hell.”
1034 Jesus often speaks of “Gehenna” of “the unquenchable fire” reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost.612 Jesus solemnly proclaims that he “will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire,”613 and that he will pronounce the condemnation: “Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!”614
1035 The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, “eternal fire.”615
The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.
1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”616
Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where “men will weep and gnash their teeth.”617
1037 God predestines no one to go to hell;618 for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want “any to perish, but all to come to repentance”:619
Father, accept this offering
from your whole family.
Grant us your peace in this life,
save us from final damnation,
and count us among those you have chosen.620
You know, I’ve never really thought to ask this, so I’ll ask it here - why is the Catholic Church the only one that puts so much emphasis on Mary? When Protestant churches split off from the Church, why did they leave that part behind?
Not trying to start a religious war here, just realized how ignorant I am of this major difference. For the record, raised Protestant but have attended Catholic mass.
“Less this source mischaracterized official Church teaching.”
Here is the first paragraph of your source:
“HELL is a place where sinners really do burn in an everlasting fire, and not just a religious symbol designed to galvanise the faithful, Pope Benedict XVI has said.”
That would seem to indicate that the Catholic Church teaches, and with the exception of the Modernist Heretics, always has taught, that Hell is a place.
“You know, Ive never really thought to ask this, so Ill ask it here - why is the Catholic Church the only one that puts so much emphasis on Mary? When Protestant churches split off from the Church, why did they leave that part behind?”
Martin Luther himself put the same emphasis on Mary. My belief is that Satan was able to deceive protestants into accepting many of God’s blessings because they were weakened by their refusal of the eucharist.
It’s not just the Blessed Virgin. There are many other blessings that God, as the Good Shepherd, as most loving of fathers, wishes to bestow on us, and which protestants scorn.
I think some of them already do. I've heard of some who claim to accept both the Koran AND the Bible. Now I don't know how they manage this since the texts make mutually exclusive claims about the Old Testament Patriarchs, and even more importantly about Jesus himself. It just sounds like the silly postmodern "multiple truths" brand of syncretism to me, but what do I know?
Like all honors, this one is a nuisance. Unlike many honors it is frightening. If you want to know what frightens me, check out this thread. Asbestos underwear recommended.
I think that since the Reformation there has been a certain counter-dependency to it, to tell you the truth. I don't know all the whys and wherefores of the Protestant depreciation of Mary (as one might say), but I do think we calflicks responded by saying, "Well you can't tell ME what to do. Gimme my Rosary, hold my Bible, and watch THIS!"
And, and the Protestantss will say this is delusional or demonic, for some of us it's experience. I won't say that Mary "brought me to Jesus", but I will say that she brought me closer to Jesus.
My own personal thinking, as an Episcopalian seminarian (in a virtually Calvinist seminary) was that I wanted to be at least analogically like Mary in that I wanted to offer all of myself to God and to bring God's love into the world. Of course, I say "analogically" because Mary already did that. But we still speak of people bringing the gospel to others or of them bringing people to Jesus, and we don't intend to lessen in any way God's role in any of that. (But after a couple of sleepless nights of sermon prep or after tears shed at the death of a child whom one didn't know 12 hours ago, one does feel brought into the "work of Christ", as a sharer or fellow-traveller, or something.)
Then, well, the Rosary is like vitamins. I mean I don't even know I feel bad when I don't take my one gazillion supplements (recommended, I hasten to say, by my physician.) I just sort of plod along.
But when I DO take my pills, if I look back, I say, "Woah, I have some energy! Looka that!"
Similarly, while the Mass, the Liturgy of the Hours (which, when all is said and done, is mostly psalms) and the Bible are at the heart of my daily life as a Calflick, I can sure tell -- if I think about it -- when I skip my Rosary.
Mind you, the Rosary mysteries (if you don't know them, ask. I'll provide a link) are mostly about the life of Jesus. But still, on the sort of childish and schematic basis that "Hail Marys" plus meditating on the life of her Most Holy Son are things pleasing to her, we consider the whole thing a kind of gift to her, as I might try to befriend a king not only for his (and my) sake, but also to ease the heart of his mother.
Anyway, if you say some couple of hundred Rosaries and have the experience I have had of growing closer to IHS, you tend to want to thank Mary.
As to my tag line:
That is part of a revelation less than 200 years ago to a "sister". The famous consequence of that revelation is what's called "The Miraculous Medal", a thing which in my protestant days and my early Catholic days gave me the heebie-jeebies.
But I was favored with a little revelation (NOT a vision, but there were tears) on April 15th of last year, and it had to do with our Lady, St. Catherine Laboure (the visionary of the medal), and with making a new attempt to give myself to the Lord.
And there really are miracles of conversion -- and conversion to Jesus, and only tangentially to our Lady -- associated with the medal. (I choose the word "associated" carefully.) So as I still hope to help people come to where they can see how much Jesus loves them, now I ask the Lady who told the servants, for her last recorded words of Scripture, "Do whatever he tells you," for her prayers
Also, it tends to sort of lay on the table my, ah, denominational predilections to have that tag-line.
Also, you say we put a big emphasis on Mary. You should see the Byzantine Church!
And you say you've been to Mass. How much emphasis was placed on Mary there? I would venture to guess that in by far most of the Masses I've been to she's mentioned maybe twice.
Accuacy implies precision, but not conversely: A statement can be precise without being accurate, but it cannot truly be accurate without being precise.
(Actually,you're quite right. Parts of NJ are wildly beautiful. But I'll never admit it.)
But I acknowledge, albeit reluctantly, that some people use the words as you say.
I would say, "Trenton is on the planet Earth (despite the evidence of our senses)," is accurate, but not precise. While saying "the North east corner of Trenton is a Latitude 10 (little round thing) 30' 45" S, Longitude 45 (little round thing) 21' 30" E." is precise as all get out, but woah is it inaccurate.
But, as I say, YMMV.