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When Priests Leave the Church. How common is Alberto Cutis journey to Protestant ministry?
America Magzine ^ | October 5, 2009 | Stephen Joseph Fichter

Posted on 06/23/2014 6:17:59 PM PDT by Gamecock

Earlier this year, Father Alberto Cutié, a popular radio and television personality in Miami, found himself the subject of tabloid headlines when he was photographed relaxing on the beach with a woman who turned out to be his longtime girlfriend. Shortly afterward, he announced that he was leaving the Catholic Church to become an Episcopal priest, and in June he and his girlfriend were married in a civil ceremony. The reasons Cutié gave for his conversion to the Anglican Communion were not theological in nature; his primary motivation seemed to be to free himself from the celibacy requirement that the Catholic Church demands of its Latin Rite priests.

How unique is Cutié’s story? How many other Catholic priests have left the church for another denomination in order to marry? Could Cutié’s conversion signal the beginning of another wave of men leaving the priesthood? Until November 2008, when I completed my dissertation on the transition of celibate Catholic priests into married Protestant ministry, it would have been impossible to address these questions. The data I collected over the course of a year allowed me to conduct the first-ever analysis in this field.

Though many social scientists (including my granduncle, sociologist Joseph Fichter, S.J.,) had studied the phenomenon of priests leaving ministry since the late 1960s, I could not find a single research project that dealt with this specific subset. Not even the most elementary demographic data were available. How many Catholic priests chose to become Protestant ministers? From which branch of the priesthood (diocesan or religious) did they originate? What Protestant churches did they choose to join? All of these questions were unanswered. Fifty or Five Thousand?

In his 1961 book Religion as an Occupation, Fichter noted that some “ex-priests” chose to continue their pastoral work in Protestant ministry, but cited only two examples. In Married Catholic Priests: Their History, Their Journey, Their Reflections (2004), Anthony Kowalski writes of “many” who have married and now serve in mainline churches but mentions only five Episcopalians and two Lutherans by name. Certainly there are more but no one seems to know exactly how many. Are there 50, 500, 5,000?

Thanks to information gathered from the research offices of the five mainline Protestant Churches (Congregational, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian), I was able to identify 414 such men in the United States. Following the advice of the late Dean Hoge, I did not contact the Baptist Church or any of the hundreds of small Protestant denominations, presuming that very few Catholic priests would be inclined to join them.

Nearly one-third of the 414 former Catholic priests now serving in Protestant ministry agreed to participate in my survey. Of the 131 respondents, 105 (80.2 percent) became Episcopalian, 15 (11.5 percent) Lutheran, eight (6.1 percent) Congregationalist, and three (2.3 percent) Methodist. I found a 40-year age range: the youngest was 42 and the eldest 82. Their mean age was 62.8 while the median was 64.

The “typical” participant in my study, therefore, was born around 1944. If we divide his life into seven 9-year periods, we find him immersed in Catholic devotions and rituals during the first two timeframes. His service as an altar boy and the encouragement he received from the nuns facilitated his entry into the seminary at the age of 18 in 1962. He dedicated the third period of his life, during the heyday of Vatican II, to preparing for ordination at the age of 27 in 1971. He spent the fourth phase in active Catholic ministry and struggled with his commitment to celibacy. At the age of 36 in 1980, at the beginning of the fifth period, he resigned from ministry, got married, worked for a few years in a non-ministerial job, and eventually began his journey to his new denomination. From 1989 to 2007, he served as a married Protestant minister, twice the amount of time he spent as a Catholic priest. ‘An Agonizing Decision’

Many respondents spoke at length about the critical decision-making juncture of their lives. Most described it, as did Alberto Cutié, as a heart-wrenching process. A former diocesan priest, who now serves as a Congregationalist minister, said:

I had such a nervous encounter with my bishop and with my parents. It was a period of constant headaches. It was a very difficult decision. I was so torn between Sally (pseudonym) and celibacy. When I finally resolved the dilemma, the headaches stopped… It truly was an agonizing decision. I still recall how poorly the bishop treated me. I felt that he really didn’t care about me. I remember my mother saying, “But you are one of the good ones!” I told her that I just couldn’t do it anymore. In the end, both of my parents were very supportive; I was blessed with two great parents. It was an agonizing decision especially after spending eight years in the seminary and nine years in ministry.

Once they began to doubt their commitment to celibacy, most participants began weighing the choices before them. One was to “bite the bullet” and remain a celibate Catholic priest. A second option was to seek a dispensation and thereby enter into a Catholic marriage, but in the process forfeit their beloved ministry. The third alternative, the one that Cutié and the survey respondents chose, was to renounce their Roman Catholic affiliation in order to enter ministry in another domination.

When asked why they made the transition, six out of ten respondents cited celibacy. “I joined the Episcopal Church because I wanted to have the option of being married,” one participant wrote. Some conveyed a deep attachment to the Catholic Church: “My only reason was so that I could get married. Otherwise, I would have stayed.” For the majority, becoming Protestant only occurred after they married. In general, the respondents did not resign because they disliked ministry or had failed at it. Had the pope allowed them to marry, many would have stayed. Three of the respondents stated that they would return to the Catholic priesthood today—if they could bring their wives along with them. The Congregationalist minister above spoke about his time in Catholic seminary as “the best eight years of my entire life.” He described the monks in charge of his formation as men of great kindness, role models who provided him with a solid theological education and a positive spiritual foundation. His problems began during his first assignment:

I was doing really well in my ministry, but rectory life was killing me. The pastor, who was great with the parishioners, had this notion that you need to treat the young priests harshly. He was really hard on us. He made all the rules. There was no discussion. I began to lose weight. I asked the bishop for a transfer. My second pastor was an alcoholic. Besides that, he had his ‘boyfriend’ over at the rectory so often that it made me feel uncomfortable. I asked the bishop for another transfer and this time I was assigned to a truly great pastor. He was so kind to me, and he was someone that I deeply admired. I have often thought that had Father Michael (pseudonym) been my first pastor, I might still be a Catholic priest today. . . . My main issue was with celibacy, however. I always thought that it was unjust, especially when the Pastoral Provision (permission that Pope John Paul II granted in 1980 to Episcopalian ministers to serve as married Catholic priests after their conversion) came through. I thought that such a decision was a double standard. I was battling loneliness. . . . I think that I would have stayed as a Roman Catholic priest if celibacy had been optional.

Other respondents spoke about their dislike for specific tenets of Catholic dogma. Many pointed to the publication of Humanae Vitae as a major turning point in their lives. One former diocesan priest, who is now 80 years old, said, “Humanae Vitae pushed me off the edge. I saw that act as the refusal of the Roman Catholic Church to enter the modern world.”

One of the Episcopalians in the study clearly presented what I categorized as the two main motivating factors: the pull of the “heart” issue (falling in love) and the demands of the “head” (doctrinal dissent):

During my first three years of ordained ministry as a priest, I fell in love with a woman who was the youth minister at my parish. Even though I had questioned the discipline of celibacy before, I began to seriously question and struggle with it. I began to feel that God was calling me in a different direction, that celibacy might not be my calling. Coupled with the struggle over celibacy, I seriously questioned the Roman Catholic Church’s treatment of women, laypeople and homosexuals. The establishment in Rome was becoming more rigid and moving the church backwards. The reforms of Vatican II came under fire. It came to the point where I could not imagine being happy in 20 years if I remained in ministry in the Roman Catholic Church. I felt God was calling me to pursue something else. I dreamed of finding a denomination where I could continue to minister with my wife, a gifted youth and family minister. New Church, Familiar Liturgy

When asked why they chose their current denomination, the majority of respondents spoke of the strong similarity between their present church and the Catholic Church in terms of liturgy, ministry and theology. This was especially true for the Episcopalians and seems to explain why so many of the survey respondents gravitated to the Anglican Communion. Most of those who joined the Episcopal Church said that with only minor adjustments they “felt at home” from the beginning and that they found comfort in the fact that they could hold onto their core beliefs in the Resurrection and the Eucharist. Over time they modified their views on other subjects, such as papal infallibility and women’s ordination, but many of them had already begun to question the validity of those doctrines.

Before I began the interviews, I hypothesized that diocesan priests would be overrepresented in my sample because they seem to be at greater risk for loneliness than religious order priests. (Most religious live in community, while diocesan priests often live alone in rectories because of the shortage of priests.) The survey results support this hypothesis. Based on the historical ratio of American diocesan clergy to religious, one would expect to find 61.5 percent diocesan priests in this sample; in fact, 72.3 percent of the respondents had served in diocesan ministry. (Recall that Cutié was a diocesan priest.)

Where Cutié differs from most of the men I surveyed is in the historical timing of his decision. The majority of respondents began their journey to a new church in the period from the late 1960s to the early 1980s. It seems unlikely that Cutié’s example will spark another wave of priestly resignations. According to research conducted by Dean R. Hoge and Jacqueline E. Wenger in Evolving Visions of Priesthood: Changes from Vatican II to the Turn of the New Century (2003), young priests today are more theologically conservative than their immediate predecessors and are more likely therefore to embrace the church’s traditional teaching on celibacy. Questions remain, however, about how many young Catholic men have chosen lay or Protestant ministry over the Catholic priesthood because of the demands of celibacy—a fitting area of inquiry, perhaps, for another curious sociologist.


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1 posted on 06/23/2014 6:17:59 PM PDT by Gamecock
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To: metmom; Alex Murphy; RnMomof7
Thus sayeth the Lord:

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” (Genesis 2:18)

2 posted on 06/23/2014 6:20:36 PM PDT by Gamecock (#BringTheAdultsBackToDC)
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To: Gamecock

Oh there’s gonna be people vexed with you!


3 posted on 06/23/2014 6:25:04 PM PDT by Mmogamer (I refudiate the lamestream media, leftists and their prevaricutions.)
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To: Gamecock

1 Corinthians 7-8.


4 posted on 06/23/2014 6:25:32 PM PDT by Wyrd bi ful ard (Pope Calvin the 1st, defacto Leader of the FR Calvinist Protestant Brigades)
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To: Mmogamer

It’s a calling!


5 posted on 06/23/2014 6:26:20 PM PDT by Gamecock (#BringTheAdultsBackToDC)
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To: Gamecock
Cutie' is a classic sociopath. It just makes sense for him to bail out of the RCC and become a piskie.
6 posted on 06/23/2014 6:32:41 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: hinckley buzzard
What?

Obeying God's directive ?

Little harsh ain't'cha' skippy ?

7 posted on 06/23/2014 6:41:04 PM PDT by knarf (brooklyn bridge)
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To: Gamecock

80% Episcopagans... 11% Lutherans... Thanks. You’ve confirmed my hypothesis that precious few ever leave to draw closer to Christ: almost all those who leave are fleeing Christ into sinfulness.


8 posted on 06/23/2014 6:43:03 PM PDT by dangus
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To: hinckley buzzard

I’m thinking it was not about celibacy so much, as that from the beginning he should have stayed a layman. He was not priest material. Protestant, yes, but not a priest nor a keeper of the vow.

It’s good he’s gone and happily cheered by whatever led him away and, well,— cheers him now.


9 posted on 06/23/2014 6:53:36 PM PDT by RitaOK ( VIVA CHRISTO REY / Public education is the farm team for more Marxists coming.)
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To: dangus

There are probably more Anglican & Lutheran clergy coming over to RC or Orthodox beliefs.


10 posted on 06/23/2014 7:00:47 PM PDT by MSF BU (n)
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To: dangus

Isn’t that the truth. Never Christ. But, I’m not unhappy to see the Church pruned of the unfruitful, or dead wood who are looking around for the wider, more pleasing, easy path because “we ain’t it”. :)


11 posted on 06/23/2014 7:01:53 PM PDT by RitaOK ( VIVA CHRISTO REY / Public education is the farm team for more Marxists coming.)
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To: Gamecock

You celebrate a man who made a vow to God to be celibate and who broke that vow.

That’s exactly what Martin Luther did!

Both stunning examples of protestantism - break your vow to God and become a hero.

Ad Majoram Dei Gloriam


12 posted on 06/23/2014 7:03:14 PM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Ad Majoram Dei Gloriam = FOR THE GREATER GLORY OF GOD)
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To: Gamecock

The Episcopal Church is a non-Christian cult.


13 posted on 06/23/2014 7:05:59 PM PDT by kaehurowing (FIGHT BULLYING, UNINSTALL FIREFOX)
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To: dangus

So getting married is now a sin, huh? Sure is an inconsistent Church if you ask me (the RCC if that’s their official viewpoint).


14 posted on 06/23/2014 7:06:26 PM PDT by JSDude1
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To: MSF BU
"There are probably more Anglican & Lutheran clergy coming over to RC or Orthodox beliefs."

Doubtful, but irrelevant.

"There are 41,500 Diocesan and Religious priests in the United States today. During the past 60 years 25,000 priests have left the priesthood in the United States and over 120,000 priests worldwide have left."

15 posted on 06/23/2014 7:08:51 PM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion ( "I didn't leave the Central Oligarchy Party. It left me." - Ronaldus Maximus)
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To: Gamecock

FEATURED ARTICLE
Why Did Fifty Catholic Priests Leave the Priesthood?
http://www.bereanbeacon.org/articles/on-catholicism/why-did-fifty-catholic-priests-leave-the-priesthood.html

A Catholic Priest Biblically Saved
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VKiv3ZGAWo&feature=youtu.be


16 posted on 06/23/2014 7:13:32 PM PDT by .45 Long Colt
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To: .45 Long Colt
Far From Rome Near To God, Near to God

This book contains the moving testimonies of fifty priests who found their way, by the grace of God, out of the labyrinth of Roman Catholic theology and practice into the light of the gospel of Christ. But this is not a narrowly polemical work, nor is its relevance limited to the ongoing controversy between Rome and the churches of the Reformation. The love and concern felt by the former priests for those they left behind, and their fervent desire that they too should experience the joy and peace of salvation in Christ are seen throughout. The wider relevance of the experiences described will also be felt in many contexts remote from Roman Catholicism where human pride and presumption have erected rival sources of authority between people and the Word of God, so obscuring the way of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, and in Christ alone.

17 posted on 06/23/2014 7:18:36 PM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion ( "I didn't leave the Central Oligarchy Party. It left me." - Ronaldus Maximus)
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To: LurkingSince'98

To be fair, Martin Luther was excommunicated about 3 years before meeting his future wife because he wouldn’t recant his 95 Theses, which in part was a confrontation of the RCC selling indulgences. If he felt led away from God by the church, and it was the church that influenced his needing to make his celebacy vow, then I can understand why he would believe that God wouldn’t necessarily have wanted him to make the vow.


18 posted on 06/23/2014 8:11:17 PM PDT by Roos_Girl (The world is full of educated derelicts. - Calvin Coolidge)
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

but how many went to become Protestant clergy. Most Catholics who left the priesthood still stay Catholic, just laicized. The ones who do go to Protestantism as clergy tend to go to the mainline-liberal ones such as Episcopalians, ECLA Lutherans, and Methodist, etc.


19 posted on 06/23/2014 8:37:18 PM PDT by CTrent1564
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To: CTrent1564

“The ones who do go to Protestantism as clergy tend to go to the mainline-liberal ones such as Episcopalians, ECLA Lutherans, and Methodist, etc.”

it makes sense that they go where there is a liturgical approach to worship. it would be a comfortable transition.


20 posted on 06/23/2014 8:39:28 PM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion ( "I didn't leave the Central Oligarchy Party. It left me." - Ronaldus Maximus)
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

amoreperfectunion:

That may partially explain it, I don’t think it explains all of it. Many priests left after Vatican II when the so ‘called spirit of Vatican II” never materialized, because the spirit of Vatican II was really not the Holy Spirit, it was a nebulous sprit that wanted the Church to conform to the modern world 100%, so many left for less stricter Churches with respect to certain moral questions that have been at the core of debates in Catholic circles [but there is a Rome that in end holds the line] and protestant groups, which are always subject to the vote of assemblies, thus issues like abortion, euthanasia, women clergy, same-sex marriage tend to split those groups. In Catholic circles, some men [priests] left over the Church not “changing with the times”, which explains a large part of the exodus and going to the Episcopalians, ELCA Lutherans and Methodists provided both a more liberal theology on those moral questions and a liturgical approach to worship.


21 posted on 06/23/2014 8:53:50 PM PDT by CTrent1564
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

I meant as a percentage of clerics going to serve in another faith. In many cases the more devout are discouraged from pursuing vocations...Agony in Albany, etc. I have heard similar things from people in Boston.


22 posted on 06/23/2014 9:22:27 PM PDT by MSF BU (n)
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To: Gamecock

The Roman Catholic priest who serves the local parish in my town is a married man who converted from being an ordained Lutheran minister. He seems to be doing a great job. The parish is happy with him AND he was able to keep his wife.


23 posted on 06/23/2014 9:53:42 PM PDT by tinamina
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To: Gamecock

Jesus spoke of celibacy (Matt 19:12) for the kingdom of heaven, and that is one part of the reason for celibate men in the priesthood. Another reason is that a family commitment distracts the priest from his parishioners. There have been a number of men who left the priesthood to marry, true enough. But if a priest has problems with Church teaching, that is a different matter entirely, and it is better for such men to leave the priesthood than stay and promote division and heresy.


24 posted on 06/24/2014 4:30:39 AM PDT by Montana_Sam (Truth lives.)
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To: Roos_Girl

You obviously don’t understand what a vow means.

Nice rationalization thou.

For the Greater Glory of God


25 posted on 06/24/2014 5:10:08 AM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Ad Majoram Dei Gloriam = FOR THE GREATER GLORY OF GOD)
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To: Gamecock

I’m shocked: another thread about celibacy.


26 posted on 06/24/2014 5:11:51 AM PDT by piusv
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To: Gamecock
How unique is Cutié’s story? How many other Catholic priests have left the church for another denomination in order to marry? Could Cutié’s conversion signal the beginning of another wave of men leaving the priesthood? Until November 2008, when I completed my dissertation on the transition of celibate Catholic priests into married Protestant ministry, it would have been impossible to address these questions. The data I collected over the course of a year allowed me to conduct the first-ever analysis in this field....Thanks to information gathered from the research offices of the five mainline Protestant Churches (Congregational, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian), I was able to identify 414 such men in the United States. Following the advice of the late Dean Hoge, I did not contact the Baptist Church or any of the hundreds of small Protestant denominations, presuming that very few Catholic priests would be inclined to join them.

Nearly one-third of the 414 former Catholic priests now serving in Protestant ministry agreed to participate in my survey. Of the 131 respondents, 105 (80.2 percent) became Episcopalian, 15 (11.5 percent) Lutheran, eight (6.1 percent) Congregationalist, and three (2.3 percent) Methodist. I found a 40-year age range: the youngest was 42 and the eldest 82. Their mean age was 62.8 while the median was 64.

The “typical” participant in my study, therefore, was born around 1944. If we divide his life into seven 9-year periods, we find him immersed in Catholic devotions and rituals during the first two timeframes. His service as an altar boy and the encouragement he received from the nuns facilitated his entry into the seminary at the age of 18 in 1962. He dedicated the third period of his life, during the heyday of Vatican II, to preparing for ordination at the age of 27 in 1971. He spent the fourth phase in active Catholic ministry and struggled with his commitment to celibacy. At the age of 36 in 1980, at the beginning of the fifth period, he resigned from ministry, got married, worked for a few years in a non-ministerial job, and eventually began his journey to his new denomination. From 1989 to 2007, he served as a married Protestant minister, twice the amount of time he spent as a Catholic priest.

PFL

27 posted on 06/24/2014 5:55:03 AM PDT by Alex Murphy ("the defacto Leader of the FR Calvinist Protestant Brigades")
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To: LurkingSince'98

Because God would never tell you to do one thing and then tell you not to do that thing anymore.


28 posted on 06/24/2014 6:41:49 AM PDT by Roos_Girl (The world is full of educated derelicts. - Calvin Coolidge)
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To: Gamecock

“...young priests today are more theologically conservative than their immediate predecessors and are more likely therefore to embrace the church’s traditional teaching on celibacy.”

Liberals of any faith invariably hate the Catholic discipline of celibacy. Try to find one person who accepts things like abortion, ‘gay marriage,’ or female clergy who also thinks the Catholic discipline is valuable and should be continued. They just aren’t out there, as far as I can tell.

Freegards


29 posted on 06/24/2014 6:59:49 AM PDT by Ransomed
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To: CTrent1564; aMorePerfectUnion
In Catholic circles, some men [priests] left over the Church not “changing with the times”, which explains a large part of the exodus and going to the Episcopalians, ELCA Lutherans and Methodists provided both a more liberal theology on those moral questions and a liturgical approach to worship.

It would be interesting if the data included evangelical churches, but it only included five mainline Protestant Churches (Congregational, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian), while most lay converts to Prot. are to evangelical churches*.

And not due to desire for more liberal doctrine, but overall due to spiritual deficiency they found in Rome.

But that RC priests - which the Holy Spirit never titles NT pastors, and which is a result of imposed functional equivalence, and with the defense of that title relying on etymological fallacy - would be more likely to convert to these liberal mainline denoms is to be expected, since these are the most like Rome, and perhaps they can be easily recognized as a "priest" in some.

*68% of those raised Roman Catholic still are Catholic (higher than the retention rates of individual Protestant denoms, but less than Jews at 76%). 15% are now Protestant (9% evangelical); 14% are unaffiliated. Pew forum, Faith in Flux (April 27, 2009) http://pewforum.org/uploadedfiles/Topics/Religious_Affiliation/fullreport.pdf


30 posted on 06/24/2014 7:30:50 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: LurkingSince'98; JSDude1; Roos_Girl
You celebrate a man who made a vow to God to be celibate and who broke that vow....Both stunning examples of protestantism - break your vow to God and become a hero.

A stunning example of Catholicism, which celebrates the theological equivalence of Herod's vow in obedience to Rome over Scripture!

"And the king was sorry: nevertheless for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him at meat, he commanded it to be given her. " (Matthew 14:9)

"But do not thou yield unto them: for there lie in wait for him of them more than forty men, which have bound themselves with an oath, that they will neither eat nor drink till they have killed him: and now are they ready, looking for a promise from thee." (Acts 23:21)

"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;...Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." (1 Timothy 4:1-3)

"This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife...One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)" (1 Timothy 3:1,2,4,5)

"Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?" (1 Corinthians 9:5)

For the fact is that the normative state of NT pastors was that of marriage, and fatherhood (as an argument against contraception) is even invoked as a preparatory ability for the pastorate.

And while celibacy certainly has its advantages as Paul describes, and as in 70AD which Paul seems to foresee, the future now will esp. be difficult for families, yet the apostle also states that celibacy is a gift:

"For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that." (1 Corinthians 7:7)

Thus to presume all basically who are called to the pastorate have that gift is both unScriptural and presumptuous, and is asking for trouble.

Yet the true NT church began in disobedience to men who sat in the seat of Moses.

And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. (Acts 6:7)

"But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye." (Acts 4:19)

For indeed, under the Roman model for authority and determining Truth, the NT church itself is invalidated!

31 posted on 06/24/2014 7:57:19 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: tinamina
The Roman Catholic priest who serves the local parish in my town is a married man who converted from being an ordained Lutheran minister. He seems to be doing a great job. The parish is happy with him AND he was able to keep his wife.

But if she dies, he must remain single, an ecclesiastical law which is foreign to the NT, but so is the church of Rome.

32 posted on 06/24/2014 7:59:39 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: CTrent1564

“but how many went to become Protestant clergy. Most Catholics who left the priesthood still stay Catholic, just laicized. The ones who do go to Protestantism as clergy tend to go to the mainline-liberal ones such as Episcopalians, ECLA Lutherans, and Methodist, etc.”

You may be correct, but I have no statistical evidence to confirm or not...


33 posted on 06/24/2014 8:31:01 AM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion ( "I didn't leave the Central Oligarchy Party. It left me." - Ronaldus Maximus)
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To: CTrent1564

“...and protestant groups, which are always subject to the vote of assemblies, thus issues like abortion, euthanasia, women clergy, same-sex marriage tend to split those groups.”

That brief snippet is not universally true. Church polity varies greatly according to denomination.


34 posted on 06/24/2014 8:32:14 AM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion ( "I didn't leave the Central Oligarchy Party. It left me." - Ronaldus Maximus)
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To: Gamecock
Following the advice of the late Dean Hoge, I did not contact the Baptist Church or any of the hundreds of small Protestant denominations, presuming that very few Catholic priests would be inclined to join them.

So let's just cut a whole group out because the researcher has jumped to a major conclusion.

Is this "study" worth the paper it is printed on.

Possibly, if you are in the smallest room in the house.

Otherwise take with a number of very large grains of salt.

35 posted on 06/24/2014 8:39:56 AM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Proud Infidel, Gun Nut, Religious Fanatic and Freedom Fiend)
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To: daniel1212

daniel1212:

We have been down the priest [presbyter] discussion before. Most of the Catholics who go evangelical are “make up your on religion Catholics” and tend to be very poorly catechized Catholics and if truth be told, many are divorced Catholics who remarried and did not like to be told they could not receive Communion in the Catholic Church, so they go to a evangelical church and are told to call the altar [or something to that effect] and they are now once saved always saved protestants and many of those types never really at their core leave Catholic Church as many of them continue to vent over leaving it or attack the faith of their ancestors. I do believe in many instances the happiness they project in their new found evangelical protestant faith is a façade.

And nothing in those statistics is inconsistent with what I stated. I was only referring to Catholic priests and where they go when they leave. Very few go to fundamentalist or evangelical protestant groups.

As for Catholic laity, that is a whole different discussion. It seems as many go unaffiliated as Protestant 14% to 15% and of those that go Protestant 40% go mainline and 60% go evangelical. But in total, of the 29% of Catholics who left [lets say 29% of 1,000 to use a number] would give you 290 Catholics, 140 of those are basically atheist or agnostic [unaffiliated] 60 are mainline-liberal protestants, so that is 200 and the other 90 or evangelical, so about 69% of former Catholics who leave go to more liberal directions, atheist-unaffiliated or mainline-liberal Protestantism. Catholic Clergy almost exclusively go that direction, i.e. towards liberal Protestantism [Episcopalians, ELCA Lutherans, Methodist].

In summary, those statistics don’t surprise me at all an confirm what would be my ex ante predictions.


36 posted on 06/24/2014 8:46:35 AM PDT by CTrent1564
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

aMorePerfectUnion:

Really, show me one Protestant Group which does not have assemblies which a theological issue can go one way or the other via a vote of said assembly. If the votes become to controversial, eventually some of those churches that use to belong to that assembly will split away. In my home town, the First Presbyterian Church [a very large one] left the PCUSA a few years ago because of what they saw going on at the National assembly meetings. My guess is more will leave the PSUSA over this recent vote.

The United Methodist are heading down the same direction. My prediction, a major split is coming in that group as well in the next few years.

Even the Southern Baptist have some issues brewing over a Pastor in California stating he will no longer preach on homosexuality as a sin [I think that is the case, but I may be off on the specifics]. I think his son now is stating he is a openly practicing homosexual and now the pastor is changing his tune. Now, if the son is struggling with orientation, then he should be welcomed as any other person struggling with sin, but I think the Pastor is now stating he is changing his understanding on the entire issue. So who knows where even the Southern Baptist are heading in the next few years if more and more of their churches adopt this one in California’s theology.


37 posted on 06/24/2014 8:54:14 AM PDT by CTrent1564
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To: CTrent1564
protestant groups, which are always subject to the vote of assemblies, thus issues like abortion, euthanasia, women clergy, same-sex marriage tend to split those groups.

Well... no.

Where you find the splits tend to be in Churches who tend to follow more closely the Roman Catholic tradition of the leaders telling the assembly what they are going to believe. In both cases the clergy tends to be much more liberal about everything then the laity. Which is why you find "democratic" (assembly vote) and "republican" (pastoral vote but churches have elected their pastor) Churches tend to be much more conservative. Where you find church splits in those cases is generally in the realm of personality and fellowship rather then doctrine. Which means that you can have Churches that believe basically the same doctrine with minor variations (women wear a covering in church vs they don't or men may play on non church sports team vs they may not).

But in these Churches you usually (there are exceptions) find very conservative beliefs.

38 posted on 06/24/2014 9:00:56 AM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Proud Infidel, Gun Nut, Religious Fanatic and Freedom Fiend)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

Can you tell me who these churches are that follow the process that you laid out. The ELCA, Episcopalians, Methodist, Presbyterians and even most Baptist don’t follow those procedures.


39 posted on 06/24/2014 9:05:31 AM PDT by CTrent1564
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To: Ransomed; metmom; boatbums; caww; presently no screen name; redleghunter; Springfield Reformer; ...
Liberals of any faith invariably hate the Catholic discipline of celibacy.

Not quite: they actually wish conservative Catholics (though a minority) were all celibate, and are alarmed that conservatives overall have more kids then they do (which they replace with pets, with 4 times as many being in the USA than kids), but what they basically hate is real marriage.

Yet the birth rate is continually dropping in the United States of Contraception, and Catholic states are overall the lowest .

Studies for the United States now show that Catholic families have, if anything, fewer rather than a greater, number of children compared to Protestant families who have similar incomes and education. A similar reversal has occurred in international comparisons. Catholic countries like Spain, Italy, and Poland now have total fertility rates-the number of children born to the average woman over her lifetime- of only 1.4, 1.4, and 1.2, respectively, far below these rates in the predominantly Protestant countries of Northern Europe. Even “Irish” family patterns no longer hold in Ireland, where the typical woman has a little less than two children over her lifetime instead of four or five, even though she is not marrying any later than the typical Irish woman did in the past. - http://www.becker-posner-blog.com/2010/11/the-behavior-of-catholics-and-contraceptive-use-becker.html

Cath. birth rates are much higher in Africa and S America, but Islam overall has the highest.

Monsignor Vittorio Formenti, who compiles the Vatican's yearbook, said in an interview with the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano that "For the first time in history, we are no longer at the top: Muslims have overtaken us". He said that Catholics accounted for 17.4 percent of the world population—a stable percentage—while Muslims were at 19.2 percent. "It is true that while Muslim families, as is well known, continue to make a lot of children, Christian ones on the contrary tend to have fewer and fewer," the monsignor said. - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_population_growth

40 posted on 06/24/2014 9:13:09 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: daniel1212

“Not quite: they actually wish conservative Catholics (though a minority) were all celibate...”

Well, the way I see it is that they want everyone to have sex, including the unmarried and especially clergy. They just don’t want them to have kids because of it. The discipline of celibacy for clergy and religious in the latin Church is universally hated by liberals of any faith. Just like the prohibition of birth control within marriage is invariably hated by the liberals of any faith.

Freegards


41 posted on 06/24/2014 9:46:45 AM PDT by Ransomed
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To: Roos_Girl

“Because God would never tell you to do one thing and then tell you not to do that thing anymore.”

EXACTLY!

Martin Luther was not called to make his VOWS (plural) unless he was called by God.

And there is no “gee I’m sorry Lord, didn’t mean it, fingers crossed, never mind Lord, maybe later......

A vow of celibacy is like a marriage vow - it’s like Herpes, its forever.

AMDG


42 posted on 06/24/2014 10:05:46 AM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Ad Majoram Dei Gloriam = FOR THE GREATER GLORY OF GOD)
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To: CTrent1564; Harmless Teddy Bear

HTB has described to a tee most every baptistic church with which I have ever fellowshipped. The SBC, for just one example, is an association. It’s not a controlling hierarchy. Individual pastorates are filled by deliberation of the local body of believers. Indeed, these congregations do tend tob retain their conservatism despite failures of association leadership.

The main threat of corruption, IMHO, in these scenarios is the association seminaries. If they go bad, then it becomes more difficult to find good pastoral leadership. This is essentially what happened to American Presbyterianism early last century. The modernists staged a coup in the seminaries, took the money, the property, and effectively forced those who wanted to remain conservative to flee and form new churches.


43 posted on 06/24/2014 10:34:46 AM PDT by Springfield Reformer (Winston Churchill: No Peace Till Victory!)
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

That’s a terrific book.


44 posted on 06/24/2014 11:25:54 AM PDT by .45 Long Colt
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To: LurkingSince'98

I guess I’m not so bold to think that God could lead me to do one thing for a season and then another thing when He said that season was over. Clearly the season of RCC priesthood was over for him when he was excommunicated.


45 posted on 06/24/2014 11:31:46 AM PDT by Roos_Girl (The world is full of educated derelicts. - Calvin Coolidge)
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To: Gamecock

It’s obvious!


46 posted on 06/24/2014 12:05:17 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: dangus
You’ve confirmed my hypothesis that precious few ever leave to draw closer to Christ: almost all those who leave are fleeing Christ into sinfulness.

Spoken like a 'true' Mormon.

47 posted on 06/24/2014 12:06:38 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: LurkingSince'98
Both stunning examples of protestantism - break your vow to God and become a hero.


Pope Stephen VI (896–897), who had his predecessor Pope Formosus exhumed, tried, de-fingered, briefly reburied, and thrown in the Tiber.[1]

Pope John XII (955–964), who gave land to a mistress, murdered several people, and was killed by a man who caught him in bed with his wife.

Pope Benedict IX (1032–1044, 1045, 1047–1048), who "sold" the Papacy

Pope Boniface VIII (1294–1303), who is lampooned in Dante's Divine Comedy

Pope Urban VI (1378–1389), who complained that he did not hear enough screaming when Cardinals who had conspired against him were tortured.[2]

Pope Alexander VI (1492–1503), a Borgia, who was guilty of nepotism and whose unattended corpse swelled until it could barely fit in a coffin.[3]

Pope Leo X (1513–1521), a spendthrift member of the Medici family who once spent 1/7 of his predecessors' reserves on a single ceremony[4]

Pope Clement VII (1523–1534), also a Medici, whose power-politicking with France, Spain, and Germany got Rome sacked.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bad_Popes

48 posted on 06/24/2014 12:08:06 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: CTrent1564
The ones who do go to Protestantism as clergy tend to go to the mainline-liberal ones such as Episcopalians, ECLA Lutherans, and Methodist, etc.

Birds of a feather...

49 posted on 06/24/2014 12:09:44 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: LurkingSince'98
You obviously don’t understand what a vow means.

Do you; Mary; take this man Joseph; to have and to hold...

50 posted on 06/24/2014 12:11:59 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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