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FOR THOSE WHO HATE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH (and especially for Catholics who need some inspiration)
http://www.kensmen.com/catholic/challenge.html ^

Posted on 04/13/2002 7:13:03 AM PDT by NYer

Ask yourself: why do I hate the Catholic Church? Who taught me what I think I know about the Catholic Church? Is what I was taught true? Have I looked at what the Catholic Church has to say about itself, using official resources such as the Catechism of the Catholic Church and papal encyclicals? Could my opinion of the Catholic Church possibly be based on bias, bigotry, bad history, propaganda from the secular media, or the bad priests who get publicity (i.e., the sick, and sickening, pedophile priests or those certain heretical modernist priests the secular media love to give press to)? Is it fair to judge doctrine by such things? Is any group with human beings in it free from sin and scandal? If I am wrong about the Catholic Church, what does that mean?

Here are some common myths about the Catholic Church:
 

Because Catholics reject the tradition of "sola fide" ("faith alone"), they think they can work their way into Heaven and believe they are saved by works
Catholics think the pope does not sin
Catholics re-crucify Christ at their Masses (or at least think they do)
Catholics think Mary is part of the Godhead and is to be worshipped
Catholics worship statues
Catholics think they can't pray to God directly but have to go through saints
Catholics conjure the dead
Catholics believe people can be saved after they die
The Catholic Church teaches that one who isn't formally a Catholic is damned to Hell
The Crusades are an example of Catholic aggression
The Inquisition(s) killed hundreds of thousands of people and targeted Jews
Pope Pius XII was "Hitler's Pope" and didn't do a thing to help Jews during WWII
The Catholic Church wasn't around until the time of Constantine, a pagan who controlled the Church. The Catholic Church did more than baptize pagan calendar days for the good of Christ, it is pagan in its very roots.

If you believe any of the above myths, I implore you to research. For doctrinal questions, ask the Church what it teaches; it's the only fair thing to do. For historical questions, look at balanced and objective scholarly research from a variety of sources (including Catholic ones).

And as you research, keep in mind the common logical fallacies that are often used in attacks against Catholicism:

Generalization:
"I knew a Catholic/ex-Catholic (or I was a Catholic) who was (mean, a drunk, not holy, didn't like the Church, was superstitious, didn't know the Bible, didn't have a deep relationship with Jesus, etc.), so therefore, the teachings of the Catholic Church are wrong." (Ignores the fact that bad catechesis, miunderstandings, or other shortcomings of a few Catholics do not reflect on what the Catholic Church teaches)

Bifurcation:
"If the Catholic Church doesn't teach that it's faith alone that saves, then it must teach that men are saved by their own works." (Ignores that we teach that we are saved by Grace alone -- a Grace with which we must cooperate through "faith that works in love")

Cum hoc ergo propter hoc:
"Winter Solstice is on 21 December; Christmas is 25 December. Therefore, Christmas is a pagan holiday. (Ignores that fact that there are only 365 days to choose from in a year and that the early Church Fathers had good reasons to choose the date they did. It also ignores that Protestants' "Reformation Day" is celebrated on 31 October, the pagan festival of Samhain.)

Post hoc ergo propter hoc:
"Constantine must have been the real source of the Catholic Church's teachings because after his reign the Church grew tremendously, and before his reign it wasn't as well-known" (Ignores the simple fact that Constantine merely stopped the persecution of Christians with the Edict of Milan and allowed Christianity to spread. It also ignores the writings of the Church Fathers who lived before Constantine -- and who were Catholic.)

Straw man:
"You guys worship statues, and that's evil. Therefore, your religion is Satanic." (Ignores that fact that we don't worship statues)

Meanwhile: The Final Challenge

... and now I challenge my brothers and sisters in Christ to take two hours of your life to listen to theologian and former Presbyterian minister Scott Hahn and to Rosalind Moss, who was raised Jewish and later became Evangelical. Both are now 100% Catholic; don't you want to know why? Truly, I challenge you to listen and pray and think about what you hear, all with an open heart to God's will.

Real Audio: Listen to Scott Hahn tell his story
Real Audio: Listen to Rosalind Moss tell her story

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Think the Catholic Church is the "Whore of Babylon," full of spiritually dead statue-worshippers? Think the very earliest Christian Church 'services' were more like those of modern Evangelicals or Pentecostals rather than a sacrificial Mass? Perhaps you will find some answers here.
1 posted on 04/13/2002 7:13:04 AM PDT by NYer
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To: NYer
Thanks for posting this. I doubt most will take the time to do the proper research suggested in the article. But one person may... so it's worth it!
2 posted on 04/13/2002 7:23:09 AM PDT by grumpster-dumpster
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To: NYer
Bump - Scott Hahn is amazing!
3 posted on 04/13/2002 7:23:59 AM PDT by NewCenturions
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To: NYer
Thank you for posting this. I had never heard the expression, "whore of Babylon" until I came on FR, along with the slurs against the Church.

Upon entering University (Catholic), I had many questions about my faith, but with mentoring and classes, my faith grew deeper.

I do believe some resentment is an outcropping from the time when the Church taught it was the only true religion. A nun actually told me that if one were not baptized Catholic, one would not go to Heaven. I knew this wasn't true, and I was only 6.

4 posted on 04/13/2002 7:30:53 AM PDT by Angelique
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To: NYer
Thanks for posting this! Unfortunately, if the vast, vast majority of those who attack The Church actually did any research before hand, they wouldn’t have an argument to begin with.

Still, it’s a good reminder for the Faithful amongst us to brush up on the facts so that we can be better prepared to defend The Church.

God Bless,

Owl _ Eagle
“Guns before butter.”

5 posted on 04/13/2002 7:33:34 AM PDT by South Hawthorne
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To: NYer
I'm sorry to say that your post is wrong from the start. Just because you say the Catholic doctrines say one thing that it is how the Catholic congregation thinks and believes. the real test is to look at and listen to the average Catholic, and there you will see evidence of what you call "myths". When Catholics I know endlessly Talk of Mary and How Holy and special she is (Which I happen to agree with) But They do it to the Exclusion of Christ that is evidence that They are holding Her up Higher than Christ. So there is truth to the Myth. When Catholics talk of doing Pennance to pay for sins, They are reflecting what they have learned from their Priests or fellow Catholics. So again, Truth to your list of Myths. On Tv I watched a debate with a Catholic Representative and a Protestant and the Catholic priest was saying the Catholic Church believes that Mary is Co-redemptrix and Co-Mediatrix with Christ ( Both False and Un-Biblical). You may be able to prove that the Catholic Church doesnt hold these positions on Paper, but the proof is in the words and deeds of the followers. Christ should live in your heart and not in the Dust of bad Doctrine.
6 posted on 04/13/2002 7:36:50 AM PDT by LtKerst
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To: NYer
"I firmly hold that there is a purgatory, and that the souls detained there are helped by the prayers of the faithful. I likewise hold that the saints reigning together with Christ should be honored and invoked, that they offer prayers to God on our behalf, and that their relics should be venerated. I firmly assert that images of Christ, of the Mother of God ever Virgin, and of the other saints should be owned and kept, and that due honor and veneration should be given to them. I affirm that the power of indulgences was left in the keeping of the Church by Christ, and that the use of indulgences is very beneficial to Christians." -- Tridentine Profession of Faith

This statement alone shows multiple instances of Catholic Theology / tradition that go beyond Scripture and distort the gospel.

7 posted on 04/13/2002 7:40:14 AM PDT by drstevej
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To: NYer
I don't have any problems with the Catholic faith. I believe they are Christians just like I am a Christian. I have never said the Catholic faith is flawed. I do wonder why the Catholics are not forcing Pedophiles, homosexuals and, Abortion advocates out of the church leadership. I wonder the same thing about the methodists, presbyterians, Unitarians, and many other denominations who are also Christian. I have never believed any of those fallicies about Catholics listed in this article.
8 posted on 04/13/2002 7:45:53 AM PDT by Khepera
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To: NYer
Thank you for posting this message!! My issue isn't with Catholics, it was with the Vatican. My issue was regarding the condemnation of Israel and what I perceived as a lack of one with the current crisis in the Church. However, I would like to state that ELS sent me the "official" word rather than what we've gotten here in the States. I hope more people read this. Perhaps, the best healing process for everyone would be to stand firm in prayer and let God do what he needs to do. God Bless everyone!! Going out today to rally in support of Israel. Double Bump!
9 posted on 04/13/2002 7:50:01 AM PDT by MoJo2001
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To: NYer
Instead of worrying about "those who hate the Catholic Church" it would be more productive to worry about the child molesters and other perverts in the church and kick their butts the hell out of there.

Now is not the time to be so vain and self-righteous about being a Catholic. Now is the time to be humble and admit there is a big problem with sexual perverts becoming church leaders -- and then do something to change it. Don't give any more money when the collection plate is passed, for example. Protest. Demand something is done.

10 posted on 04/13/2002 7:55:06 AM PDT by Born in a Rage
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To: NYer
I'm still listening to Scott... maybe I'll comment later...
11 posted on 04/13/2002 7:57:20 AM PDT by OHelix
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To: NYer
Thanks. Hope you can get to St Peter's tomorrow.
12 posted on 04/13/2002 7:59:53 AM PDT by Mike Fieschko
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To: LtKerst
I think you are making a the mistake of taking what a few catholics do and say as representitive of the entire church. I would never try to claim that all Protestent are nuts because Jim Jones' followers all drank poisen kool-aid.

The Mary is God BS comes from a few feminests, who would like to see priestesses in the church.

13 posted on 04/13/2002 8:04:19 AM PDT by Calculus_of_Consent
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To: NYer
As a Catholic who is getting his doctorate from Protestant University, I find most of my protestant professors becoming more and more Catholic. For example their liturgies have more symbolism, deeper appreciation for the Eucharist, many are asking the question maybe we should have stayed within the church, a greater appreciation for visible unity, the list goes on. I'm not saying they're going to become Catholic, but they would never for example say that Catholics worship statues or that th epope is the anti-Christ, etc. My advisor, reads St. thomas Aquinas everyday. I find both Catholics and Protestants as a rule more open to each others traditions. The walls are coming down. Once, us Catholics become more serious and have a deeper relationship with Christ, we will see more Protestants taking Catholicism seriously. There is a lot of dead wood within the Church. As a rule I like to hang around Evangelical christian because they keep me honest and on fire for Christ. As the John PAull II has stated the Protestant reformation will make the Church better. Yes, Scott Hahn is great, we neeed more Catholics like him. This is a great post. Happy Easter.
14 posted on 04/13/2002 8:11:49 AM PDT by MagnusMat
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To: NYer
thanks!

Great article...

I am a Catholic who has more than once run into Catholic bashing...

ignorance runs deep in some and they have decided that the way to heaven is to bash Catholics and the like...

trust in Jesus - the light is eternal...

God Bless!

15 posted on 04/13/2002 8:13:20 AM PDT by krodriguesdc
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To: NYer
Thanks for the interesting read. I've lost a lot of faith in Free Republic over the last year or so since I started reading the Catholic threads. I can't believe how many lowlifes there are lurking around here with their low-grade Jack Chick beliefs (real trailer park, big-tent revival, Kentucky Fried televangelist stuff) beliefs. A real eye-opener.
16 posted on 04/13/2002 8:16:44 AM PDT by Conservative til I die
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To: NYer
Think the Catholic Church is the "Whore of Babylon," full of spiritually dead statue-worshippers? Think the very earliest Christian Church 'services' were more like those of modern Evangelicals or Pentecostals rather than a sacrificial Mass? Perhaps you will find some answers here.

The "Whore of Boston" is certainly Cardinal Law.

Yes, I do believe the Catholic Church in the USA at least is nigh unto being spritiually dead. I see people taking communion, then walking right out of church before the benediction.

I have sat in a Catholic church and listened to the priest talk about how he couldn't write a letter of reference for a couple moving to a new parish because he couldn't find any record of their monetary contributions since they didn't use the envelopes.

And if you really wanted to talk about early Christianity you would be talking about the Orthodox church, or the Waldensians.

17 posted on 04/13/2002 8:17:18 AM PDT by ikka
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To: NYer
The problem that I have with the Catholic Church is not specific to the Catholic Church. Large centralized governmental bureaucracies do not serve a church anymore than they serve a nation. The Catholic Church is not the only denomination to be failed by its bureaucracy. People of strong Christian faith can be found in almost any denomination. The problem is, it is hard to keep the faith and at the same time swim against the stream of these large church government bureaucracies.
18 posted on 04/13/2002 8:18:37 AM PDT by Biblebelter
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To: NYer
The thing that has never ceased to amaze me is that anti-Catholics defame us by saying we worship statues, saints, and Mary. They say that the Church teaches this, and quote articles, essays, and books that support their point. Yet, we Catholics deny it to them. Therefore, we've just denied our beliefs and profaned our "gods." Why would we do that? Why would be ashamed of our beliefs? If we believe in statues, Mary, and saints, why wouldn't we prostelytize this? Why not go to the rooftops and shout it out loud for the world to hear? What do we have to gain by hiding our beliefs? What motivation could there be?

At least the Jehovah's Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists don't hide their unorthodox, non-Christian beliefs. They proclaim them, because they believe them to be true. The Witnesses have no problem saying they believe Jesus is just the Archangel Michael in another guise and that they are Unitarian in their beliefs. They don't teach it in private, and then tell people that they really are Trinitarians and that what they may have heard is just a nasty rumor. The Adventists are the same. They believe in worship on the Saturday You don't see them going to Church on Sunday just to fool the Fundamentalists. Why? What would they have to gain by it?

Think about it, Fundies. What do any of these churches, including the Catholic Church, have to gain by hiding or lying about our core beliefs to Fundamentalists? Isn't that really silly?
19 posted on 04/13/2002 8:25:09 AM PDT by Conservative til I die
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To: NYer
Interesting post.

I have a few questions. I ask them humbly, and politely, hoping to gain a few answers. These are things I've heard and read along the way:

1.) Do Catholics reject sola fide? If so, what are the terms of salvation according to Catholicism? Is it achieved thru the sancraments?

2.) How often does the Pope speak ex cathedra? Is he held to be inerrant by the Catholic church when he speaks in such a matter? What matters has he addressed ex cathedra?

3.) Which are authoritative to the Catholic, tradition or Scripture, or both. If the two conflict, which takes priority?

4.) Can you give Biblical support for praying to dead saints as intercessors for us, and not praying directly to the Savior why died for us?

5.) What is the Biblical support for the Catholic doctrine of the Immaculate conception of Mary? Her sinlessness ?(contra. Lu 1:47-- where Mary identifies Christ as her "Savior"-- if she were sinless, why would she need a savior?)

7.) Is the Council of Trent still in force? There is a provision that reads (though I am probably mangling the quote) "If any man holds that the Mass is not a propitiatory sacrifice, let him be anathema." I dont believe the mass to be a re-sacrifice, so am I damned?

20 posted on 04/13/2002 8:25:45 AM PDT by jude24
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