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Why Newt Gingrich Converted to Catholicism
TIME ^ | 8/24/09 | Amy Sullivan

Posted on 08/17/2009 9:57:36 AM PDT by marshmallow

Visitors to the Basilica of the National Shrine in northeast Washington often do a double take when they see Newt Gingrich and his familiar shock of white hair slip into a pew for the noon Mass on Sundays. The former Speaker of the House is known for many things, but religious zeal is not one of them. In fact, the social conservatives who fueled his Republican revolution in 1994 often complained about Gingrich's lack of interest in issues like abortion or school prayer.

This past spring, however, after several decades as a nominal Southern Baptist, Gingrich converted to Catholicism. With the fervor of a convert, he has embraced the role of defending both his new faith and religious liberty. In his 2006 book Rediscovering God in America, Gingrich lambasted what he calls the "secular effort to reject any sense of a spiritual life as mattering." And days before he officially joined the Catholic Communion on March 29, he was among the first to criticize the University of Notre Dame for inviting Barack Obama to speak, Twittering (of course): "It is sad to see notre dame invite president obama to give the commencement address since his policies are so anti catholic." (See TIME's 10 Questions for Newt Gingrich)

Gingrich's spiritual awakening has struck more than a few political observers as a bit of positioning for the GOP nomination in 2012. (In the first half of 2009, the former Speaker raked in $8.1 million through his political committee, far outpacing his party rivals.) While he wouldn't be the first to experience a conversion on the road to Des Moines, there are simpler ways of understanding the new godly Gingrich. American Catholicism has been losing members at a remarkable rate; an April 2009 Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life report found that......

(Excerpt) Read more at time.com ...


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Ministry/Outreach; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: catholic; convert; gingrich; justanotherrino; newt; newtgingrich
Gingrich describes the appeal of Catholicism for him in just these terms. "When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you," he told me on a recent summer morning, "it's comforting."

I hear ya, Newt!

1 posted on 08/17/2009 9:57:36 AM PDT by marshmallow
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To: marshmallow

Votes?


2 posted on 08/17/2009 9:59:51 AM PDT by snarks_when_bored
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To: marshmallow

“In fact, the social conservatives who fueled his Republican revolution in 1994 often complained about Gingrich’s lack of interest in issues like abortion or school prayer.”

Well the current speaker is also Catholic...and she feels very strongly about issues like abortion and school prayer. I am not quite sure what the article is trying to say here.


3 posted on 08/17/2009 10:00:29 AM PDT by Grunthor
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To: marshmallow

Thats why you can count my hubby as a convert and me as a revert. I just hope you don’t “bend” the faith to fit your political agenda here. God will not be mocked, sir.


4 posted on 08/17/2009 10:01:04 AM PDT by wombtotomb (Equal opportunity does NOT mean equal outcome!!)
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To: marshmallow
Newt Gingrich too often sides with the likes of Al Sharpton and Nancy Pelosi for me to take him seriously as a conservative candidate. He's on his way to becoming a whitey version of Colin Powell.

NEXT!

5 posted on 08/17/2009 10:01:57 AM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: NYer; Salvation
Gingrich describes the appeal of Catholicism. "When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you, it's comforting."
6 posted on 08/17/2009 10:09:11 AM PDT by Liz (When people fear govt, we have tyranny; when govt fears the people, we have freedom.)
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To: marshmallow
Gingrich's spiritual awakening has struck more than a few political observers as a bit of positioning for the GOP nomination in 2012.

And maybe he just converted because he thought Catholicism was true, as I did.

7 posted on 08/17/2009 10:17:50 AM PDT by Unam Sanctam
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To: marshmallow; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; nickcarraway; Romulus; ...
Catholic Ping
Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list


8 posted on 08/17/2009 10:17:56 AM PDT by NYer ( "One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: marshmallow
Gingrich describes the appeal of Catholicism for him in just these terms. "When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you," he told me on a recent summer morning, "it's comforting."

YHvH is not in the equation; it is all about Newt.
shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiach
9 posted on 08/17/2009 10:26:37 AM PDT by Uri’el-2012 (Psalm 119:174 I long for Your salvation, YHvH, Your law is my delight.)
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To: marshmallow
Gingrich describes the appeal of Catholicism for him in just these terms. "When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you," he told me on a recent summer morning, "it's comforting."

Why not convert to Judaism and (at least) double that figure?

10 posted on 08/17/2009 10:30:32 AM PDT by topcat54 (Don't believe in a pre-anything rapture? Join "Naysayers for Jesus")
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To: topcat54

Because Catholicism is authentic Judaism.


11 posted on 08/17/2009 10:37:20 AM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: marshmallow

Yep. Me too.


12 posted on 08/17/2009 10:39:02 AM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: Unam Sanctam
And maybe he just converted because he thought Catholicism was true, as I did.

I think he converted because he heard that I was converting. For that same reason.

13 posted on 08/17/2009 10:41:07 AM PDT by trad_anglican
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To: marshmallow

I have personally seen Newt at the Shrine for at least the past four to five years (not receiving communion) , so any talk of a sudden conversion is likely unfounded.


14 posted on 08/17/2009 10:41:33 AM PDT by markomalley (Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus)
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To: annalex
Because Catholicism is authentic Judaism.

Then the reference to "2000 years" is inaccurate. Newt could have sounded even more impressive.

"Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone, in whom the whole building, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit." (Eph. 2:19-22)

15 posted on 08/17/2009 10:42:48 AM PDT by topcat54 (Don't believe in a pre-anything rapture? Join "Naysayers for Jesus")
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To: topcat54

Yes, he could have added another couple millenia as far as “intellectual tradition” goes.


16 posted on 08/17/2009 10:51:46 AM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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Comment #17 Removed by Moderator

To: marshmallow
Several other threads here about Gingrich's conversion.

Why Newt Gingrich Converted to Catholicism
Reading Into the Church [Deal W. Hudson]

Gnarly: from abuse victim, to prostitute, to surfer, to minister [Mary Setterholm]
Cathedral rector’s priestly journey began with early conversion [ Fr. Bob Clements]
The Great Philosopher Who Became Catholic [Mortimer J. Adler]
The Greater Blessings [David Mills]
EWTN - Journey Home - June 22, 2009 at 8pm - Dr. Jay Budziszewski - former Episcopalian

Cardinal says Catholics humbled by Anglicans' decision to join church
Catholic convert from Oregon coast becomes a priest (former Evangelical)
EWTN - The Journey Home - June 15, 2009 - Marcus interviews a Muslim convert [Talat Strokirk]
(All Saints) Sisters Doing It For Themselves (Anglican House converting en masse)
Journey Home to the Catholic Church: I Have Jumped into the Tiber to Swim Across (UK minister, Fr. Jeffrey Steel )

EWTN - Journey Home - June 8, 2009 at 8pm - Fr. Jay Toborowsky, Jewish convert
EWTN - Monday 8pm - Journey Home - Jerry & Yolanda Cleffi (former Assembly of God)
Exclusive: Newt Gingrich Opens Up on Catholic Conversion and Embracing 'Overt Christianity'
Mom’s Gift From Pope [Heidi Sierras]
The Journey Home - April 27 @ 8pm - Doug Grandon former Episcopal clergyman

EWTN - The Journey Home - April 20 - Msgr. Keith Barltrop, former Baptist
Journey Home - Monday April 6 - Kenneth Howell, Former Presbyterian minister Newt Gingrich on his conversion to Catholicism
Gingrich Keeps Quiet on Catholic Conversion (received into Church over the past weekend)
Exclusive: Newt Gingrich conversion details; plans release of JP2 documentary

“150,000 new or returning Catholics”
Catholic Church prepares for tens of thousands of U.S. converts
Gingrich to Become Catholic During Easter Season
Faith Journey Leads United Methodist from Pastorate to Catholic Priesthood
From Atheist to Catholic (‘Unshakable’ Rationalist Blogged Her Way Into the Church) [Jennifer Fulwiler]

Former Episcopal bishop discusses his new life as Catholic priest [Father Jeffrey N. Steenson]
The Newt Evangelization: Gingrich to become Catholic
Conservative Episcopal bishop resigned to become Roman Catholic priest (New Mexico) Rev. Jeffrey Steenson
Converted Muslim Tells Story Behind Papal Baptism
EWTN - The Journey Home - December 1 - Dr. Steven C. Smith (former Willow Creek)

Former Socialist senator who converted to Catholicism calls for end to abortion [Mercedes Aroz]
Young New Yorker leaves police force to become priest [Nicholas Fernandez]
Interesting Deathbed Converts
Hollywood screenwriter returns to Cleveland, turns life over to God [Joe Eszterhas]
A Journey in Prayer {Randy Hain} [Ecumenical]

ECUMENIC] Our Conversion Experience (SDA to Catholic) [Brandon and Tara Ogden]
An open letter to Mr. Stephen A. Baldwin, Actor, and “born again” Christian [ Victor R. Claveau, MJ "
Sick person who suffered accident recounts conversion after traveling to Lourdes [Ecumenical] [Antonio Escobedo Garcia]
Welcome Home! Anglo-Catholic Sisters on the Road to Rome [Ecumenical]
Former Anglican Bishop, Catholic Convert, Jeffrey Steenson on Anglocatholicism [Ecumenical]

Jeffrey Steenson: Why I Became Catholic [Address to Anglican Use Conference]
Tony Snow Dead at 53, A Tribute to a Catholic Journalist [Tony Snow - Catholic Convert]
A Sexual Revolution (One woman's journey from pro-choice atheist to pro-life Catholic) [Jennifer Fulwiler]
C of E bishop will defect to Rome
Assyrian bishop explains his journey into communion with the Catholic Church

Virginia Tech tragedy leads bereaved mother on journey back to faith [Marian Hammaren]
Journey Home - EWTN at 8pm - Dr. William Bales, former Presbyterian Minister [Ecumenical]
First the Protestants, Now the Cults: Will We (the Catholic Church) Be Ready? [Open]
Six Million African Muslims Convert to Christianity Each Year [OPEN]
EWTN - The Journey Home - May 19 - Tom Cabeen, former Jehovah's Witness [Ecumenic]

A TRIUMPH AND A TRAGEDY [James Akin]
Alex Jones: the evangelical who became a Catholic deacon
Mary and the Problem of Christian Unity [Kenneth J. Howell, Ph. D.}
How the Saints Helped Lead Me Home [Chris Findley]
Who is Mary of Nazareth? [Kenneth J. Howell, Ph. D.}

A story of conversion at the Lamb of God Shrine
EWTN - Journey Home - 4/7/08 - Rosalind Moss - Former Jew & Evangelical Christian
Our Lady’s Gentle Call to Peace [Joan Tussing]
Coming Out of Sodom (Reversion Experience of Once-Active Homosexual) [Eric Hess]
Our Journey Home [Larry and Joetta Lewis]

Book on Mary turns runaway youngster immersed in drugs and crime into a priest
Dr. Robert C. Koons (former Lutheran) - Journey Home - Monday 3/31 - Conversion Story
The Story of a Convert from Islam – Baptized by the Pope at St. Peter's [Magdi Cristiano Allam]
How Do We Know It’s the True Church? - Twelve Things to Look For [Fr. Dwight Longenecker]
"Have you not read?" The Authority behind Biblical Interpretation [Robert Sungenis]

New Catholics ‘ on fire’ for faith
New faith pulls Hot Springs family together (Baptists join Catholic Church at Easter Vigil) [Danny Morrison and family
SciFi Writer, John C. Wright, Enters Catholic Church at Easter Vigil (conversion story)[John C. Wright]
"What is Truth?" An Examination of Sola Scriptura [Dwight Longenecker’family]
LOGIC AND THE FOUNDATIONS OF PROTESTANTISM [Fr. Brian Harrison]
Pope baptizes prominent Italian Muslim [Magdi Allam]

My Journey of Faith [Marco Fallon]
My (Imminent) Reception into the Roman Catholic Church [Robert Koons]
Thousands in U.S. to Join (Catholic) Church - Many Feel They Have Found a Home
TURN ABOUT (Carl Olson, former Evangelical and Monday's guest on EWTN's Journey Home)
Former Southern Baptist Pastor Now a Traveling Crusader for the Catholic Church [Michael Cumbie]

All Roads Lead To Rome (A Southern Baptist's Journey into the Catholic Church)[John David Young]
Allen Hunt, Methodist Minister ...Journeys Home (Catholic, Re: Real Presence)/a>
The Challenges and Graces of Conversion [Chris Findley]
An Open Letter...from Bishop John Lipscomb [Another TEC Bishop Goes Papist]
Unlocking the Convert's Heart [Marcus Grodi]

His Open Arms Welcomed Me [ Paul Thigpen}
Why I'm Catholic (Sola Scriptura leads atheist to Catholic Church)
From Calvinist to Catholic (another powerful conversion story) Rodney Beason
Good-bye To All That (Another Episcopalian gets ready to swim the Tiber)
Bp. Steenson's Letter to his clergy on his conversion to the Catholic Church

Bishop Steenson’s Statement to the House [of Bishops: Episcopal (TEC) to Catholic]
Bp. Steenson's Letter to his clergy on his conversion to the Catholic Church
Bishop Steenson Will Become a Roman Catholic
Married man considers turn as Catholic priest
Pavarotti returns to the Catholic faith before dying

Searching For Authority (A Methodist minister finds himself surprised by Truth!)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part VI: The Biblical Reality (Al Kresta)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part V: The Catholics and the Pope(Al Kresta)
The Hail Mary of a Protestant (A true story)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part IV: Crucifix and Altar(Al Kresta)

Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part III: Tradition and Church (Al Kresta)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part II: Doubts (Al Kresta)
Conversion Story - Rusty Tisdale (former Pentecostal)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part I: Darkness(Al Kresta)
Conversion Story - Matt Enloe (former Baptist) [prepare to be amazed!]
THE ORTHODOX REVIVAL IN RUSSIA

Conversion Story - David Finkelstein (former Jew)
Conversion Story - John Weidner (former Evangelical)
12 Reasons I Joined the Catholic Church
Conversion Story - Tom Hunt
The Tide Is Turning Toward Catholicism: The Converts

John Calvin Made Me Catholic
Journey Home - May 21 - Neil Babcox (former Presbyterian) - A minister encounters Mary
Going Catholic - Six journeys to Rome
My (Imminent) Reception into the Roman Catholic Church
A Convert's Pilgrimage [Christopher Cuddy]

From Pastor to Parishioner: My Love for Christ Led Me Home (to the Catholic Church) [Drake McCalister]
Lutheran professor of philosophy prepares to enter Catholic Church
Patty Bonds (former Baptist and sister of Dr. James White) to appear on The Journey Home - May 7
Pastor and Flock Become Catholics
Why Converts Choose Catholicism

From Calvinist to Catholic
The journey back - Dr. Beckwith explains his reasons for returning to the Catholic Church
Famous Homosexual Italian Author Returned to the Church Before Dying of AIDS
Dr. Francis Beckwith Returns To Full Communion With The Church
laetare (commentary on ordination of married Anglican convert to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles) Father Bill Lowe
Catholic Converts - Stephen K. Ray (former Evangelical)

Catholic Converts - Malcolm Muggeridge
Catholic Converts - Richard John Neuhaus
Catholic Converts - Avery Cardinal Dulles
Catholic Converts - Israel (Eugenio) Zolli - Chief Rabbi of Rome
Catholic Converts - Robert H. Bork , American Jurist (Catholic Caucus)

Catholic Converts - Marcus Grodi
He Was an Evangelical Christian Until He Read Aquinas [Rob Evans]
The Scott Hahn Conversion Story
FORMER PENTECOSTAL RELATES MIRACLE THAT OCCURRED WITH THE PRECIOUS BLOOD
Interview with Roy Schoeman - A Jewish Convert
Church Is Still Attracting Converts [Jim Anderson]

18 posted on 08/17/2009 11:00:37 AM PDT by Salvation (With God all things are possible.)
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To: marshmallow

And why exactly did Obama convert again?


19 posted on 08/17/2009 11:03:59 AM PDT by FTJM
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To: marshmallow

because he tried Latvian Orthodox but didn’t like the hats?


20 posted on 08/17/2009 11:24:22 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: marshmallow

I love hearing conversion stories. They remind me not to take my Catholic faith for granted and to see it with fresh insight. Catholicism is so deep, rich, and mysterious that I’m amazed we can lift our eyes on the way to Communion.


21 posted on 08/17/2009 11:51:09 AM PDT by Melian ("An unexamined life is not worth living." ~Socrates)
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To: marshmallow

Marriage often plays a major role in a person’s decision to convert to a particular faith. Callista’s strong faith was no doubt a major factor.

Most mainline Protestant Churches have strongly embraced liberalism making it easy to leave them.


22 posted on 08/17/2009 12:01:24 PM PDT by Welcome2thejungle
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To: topcat54
Why not convert to Judaism and (at least) double that figure?

Probably because Christianity is part of the equation here.

23 posted on 08/17/2009 12:23:25 PM PDT by marshmallow ("A country which kills its own children has no future" -Mother Teresa of Calcutta)
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To: marshmallow
"American Catholicism has been losing members at a remarkable rate; an April 2009 Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life report found that for every person who joins the Catholic Church, four others leave."

Huh??? When I swam the Tiber 15 years ago there were 52-53 million Catholics in the US. Now there are 10 million more. I question the Pew stats on this....(and lots of other topics, too!)

24 posted on 08/17/2009 2:41:43 PM PDT by Reo
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To: marshmallow

“Gingrich’s spiritual awakening has struck more than a few political observers as a bit of positioning for the GOP nomination in 2012. “

Right, being a Catholic is a sure fire guarantee of getting elected POTUS. Only one Roman Catholic has ever been elected POTUS, John F Kennedy, and that election was dubious Many assert it was stolen in Chicago and Texas.


25 posted on 08/17/2009 3:02:04 PM PDT by Cincinna (TIME TO REBUILD * PALIN * JINDAL * CANTOR 2012)
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To: marshmallow

This adult convert welcomes Newt home!


26 posted on 08/17/2009 8:07:31 PM PDT by Ronaldus Magnus
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To: topcat54
When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you," he told me on a recent summer morning, "it's comforting."

He obviously wasn't knowledgeable about his faith before he became a Roman Catholic. If he was, he would have known that the true church is the "ecclesia" the called-out assembly of believers in Jesus Christ. It's not any denomination or religion and certainly not one place or building. He could have stayed where he was and become a dedicated, justified and sanctified child of God by being saved by grace through faith in the sacrificial atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

He also divorced his first wife and married his mistress. Did he get an annulment?

It is true that the "faith" really goes back to when Adam and Eve were cast out of the garden. God made them clothing of animal skins. So even back then, blood was shed as a covering for sin. When the Messiah came, he was the "lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world". His blood was shed to make a complete and final propitiation (satisfactory payment) for our sins. Praise be to the one, true God Almighty!

27 posted on 08/17/2009 9:33:04 PM PDT by boatbums (Pro-woman, pro-child, pro-life!)
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To: boatbums

God made them clothing of animal skins. So even back then, blood was shed as a covering for sin.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

It was God who made them skins for them to wear. It shows God’s love and compassion for His children.


28 posted on 08/17/2009 9:39:14 PM PDT by wintertime (People are not stupid! Good ideas win!)
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To: Cincinna
And,don’t forget,he was assassinated after serving only 2 years and 10 months. Yes,I am sure that becoming a Catholic is a great way to get on the road to the presidency.
29 posted on 08/17/2009 10:03:17 PM PDT by saradippity
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To: boatbums
He also divorced his first wife and married his mistress. Did he get an annulment?

He just gave the secret password: Kennedy.

30 posted on 08/18/2009 5:51:03 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: Cincinna

And Kennedy would not have won except that more than 80% of Catholic voters chose him. Although Catholics had generally voted Democratic, the Cold War moved many into the Republican camp. Ike had won a majority amongst them in 1956. Catholic stayed with LBJ and Humphrey. but McGovern turned them off.


31 posted on 08/18/2009 6:35:28 AM PDT by RobbyS (ECCE HOMO!)
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To: onedoug

he probably didn’t need an annulment.

He divorced his first wife (a valid sacramental marriage if they were both baptised Christians) and married again (a “natural” marriage but not a sacrament).

After that marriage, his first wife died.

The “natural” marriage would not be a sacrament and could be ended by divorce. It’s the “Pauline privelege” that if a spouse doesn’t want to stay with a person who converts, they can separate, according to Paul.

Ergo, to convert, he would have to prove all these things before they baptised him and “blessed” his third marriage.

The Kennedys get their annulments by cheating on their wives from the beginning of their marriage, proving that they had no intention of entering a true sacramental marriage, which requires fidelity. Unfortunatly, it’s a “Catch 22” for their innocent spouses.

I dislike Gingrich. I think he is shallow, but an excellent teacher. When I hear him talk, I am reminded of the part in a Man for All Seasons where Thomas More advises an ambitious young man to be a teacher and not go into politics, because he will be corrupted.


32 posted on 08/18/2009 11:52:51 AM PDT by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: LadyDoc

A lot of nuance there. I wonder what God thinks.


33 posted on 08/18/2009 1:33:38 PM PDT by onedoug
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To: Melian
Catholicism is so deep, rich, and mysterious that I’m amazed we can lift our eyes on the way to Communion.

It is, it truly is -- I've been for mass in a few countries as varied as the Far East, Europe, America, the Middle East and India and each time I rediscover The Church and the true meaning of catholicism. The Church is deep, rich with meaning and divine grace as God intended.
34 posted on 10/07/2009 5:06:33 AM PDT by Cronos (Oh bummer -- screwing up America since Jan 2009 - and doing a damn fine job of it too!)
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To: boatbums

The Apostolic Church IS the Church of Christ — we belief in the faith of Christ through His Apostles, not through John Smith or Calvin or others.


35 posted on 10/07/2009 5:08:24 AM PDT by Cronos (Oh bummer -- screwing up America since Jan 2009 - and doing a damn fine job of it too!)
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To: markomalley
I have personally seen Newt at the Shrine for at least the past four to five years

I can verify your statement having turned my head when walking through the cafeteria downstairs some six or seven years ago recognizing a voice and then seeing Newt holding court with a handful of folks. Later, sitting in my car getting ready to leave, Newt got in the car right in front of me...a white Cadillac Escalade.

36 posted on 10/07/2009 5:19:54 AM PDT by big'ol_freeper ("Anyone pushing Romney must love socialism...Piss on Romney and his enablers!!" ~ Jim Robinson)
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