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  #1  
Old Sep 10, '09, 10:53 am
bmw890 bmw890 is offline
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Default Conflicted

Hello Everyone,

I donít post much on this board, but have been a member for a while now and enjoy reading many of the posts and debates.

I probably posted a while back with a similar post, but I thought Iíd better articulate my feelings lately with regards to Catholicism. Iíll keep it short though.

I was born and raised Catholic but really didnít give it much thought for seventeen years. In high school, I met a girl (now my wife) who was Baptist. I began going to church with her and was really taken by the theology. It was simple and made so much sense. Soon after, I accepted Christ and attended her church fairly regularly.

More recently though, Iíve been studying Catholicism and finding out a lot of truths I missed when I was growing up. Iíve been reading the Catechism, closely reading the Gospels, and studying some other materials. I came to the conclusion a while ago, that Catholicism wasnít nearly as bad as it is represent or misrepresented by a lot of Protestant groups.

As best as I can, I always try to let truth guide my thinking and actions. But I believe that everyone has biases, different backgrounds, etc. that prevent one from obtaining a pure, unadulterated truth. I admit, that had I not been raised Catholic, I probably wouldnít be studying it now. And also, that had some Pastors and other Evangelicals say that if you donít believe if ďSola FideĒ you really arenít a Christian, I probably would have started attending Catholic mass a while ago.

So here I am at an impasse. What does a person do if they see positive things or even correct teachings in both the Catholic and Protestant churches? Can I reconcile the two? For example, I really think the Catholicís teaching on Justification is much closer to that which is taught in the Bible, that Transubstantiation is probably true, and the theology of the Catholic Church. But I donít necessarily agree with the Immaculate Conception, veneration to saints, and a few other teachings within the church. I try to look past them, as not all of the issues I have problems with are dogma, Marian apparitions for example, but still disagree with others.

Should I join a Baptist church for my wife and be a good husband? Should I try to convert her (which I think will never work)? Should we attend separately, knowing that when we have children it will just probably confuse them and do more harm than good? I also pray to God that He forgive my sins with regards to my theology. I donít want to go to Hell because I didnít pick the right church or believe the right thing. I know that statement is somewhat silly, but in a way, itís how I feel. Evangelicals tell me that not believing in Faith Alone is believing in a different Christ and Catholics say that Protestants are outside the true church and are trusted to God. (I know the view has softened since the Second Vatican Council.)

Anyway, Iím just looking for input and advice as to whether anyone else has been in an experience like this!

P.S. I just would like to say that the people on this board are some of the most thoughtful, nicest, and intellectual people I have ever talked to. I wish all Catholics could be like you! So many times, lay Catholics just go through the motions and really miss the point of their faith and Mass. At the end of Scott Hahnís book Rome Sweet Home, he calls for Catholics to be more like Bible believing Christians and Bible believing Christians to more like Catholics. You have the excitement and passion for the faith like an Evangelical would have but the understanding, intellectual rigor, and compassion that sometimes is forgotten in some churches.

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old Sep 10, '09, 12:00 pm
Quatsch Quatsch is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Hello Everyone,

I donít post much on this board, but have been a member for a while now and enjoy reading many of the posts and debates.

I probably posted a while back with a similar post, but I thought Iíd better articulate my feelings lately with regards to Catholicism. Iíll keep it short though.

I was born and raised Catholic but really didnít give it much thought for seventeen years. In high school, I met a girl (now my wife) who was Baptist. I began going to church with her and was really taken by the theology. It was simple and made so much sense. Soon after, I accepted Christ and attended her church fairly regularly.

More recently though, Iíve been studying Catholicism and finding out a lot of truths I missed when I was growing up. Iíve been reading the Catechism, closely reading the Gospels, and studying some other materials. I came to the conclusion a while ago, that Catholicism wasnít nearly as bad as it is represent or misrepresented by a lot of Protestant groups.

As best as I can, I always try to let truth guide my thinking and actions. But I believe that everyone has biases, different backgrounds, etc. that prevent one from obtaining a pure, unadulterated truth. I admit, that had I not been raised Catholic, I probably wouldnít be studying it now. And also, that had some Pastors and other Evangelicals say that if you donít believe if ďSola FideĒ you really arenít a Christian, I probably would have started attending Catholic mass a while ago.

So here I am at an impasse. What does a person do if they see positive things or even correct teachings in both the Catholic and Protestant churches? Can I reconcile the two? For example, I really think the Catholicís teaching on Justification is much closer to that which is taught in the Bible, that Transubstantiation is probably true, and the theology of the Catholic Church. But I donít necessarily agree with the Immaculate Conception, veneration to saints, and a few other teachings within the church. I try to look past them, as not all of the issues I have problems with are dogma, Marian apparitions for example, but still disagree with others.

Should I join a Baptist church for my wife and be a good husband? Should I try to convert her (which I think will never work)? Should we attend separately, knowing that when we have children it will just probably confuse them and do more harm than good? I also pray to God that He forgive my sins with regards to my theology. I donít want to go to Hell because I didnít pick the right church or believe the right thing. I know that statement is somewhat silly, but in a way, itís how I feel. Evangelicals tell me that not believing in Faith Alone is believing in a different Christ and Catholics say that Protestants are outside the true church and are trusted to God. (I know the view has softened since the Second Vatican Council.)

Anyway, Iím just looking for input and advice as to whether anyone else has been in an experience like this!

P.S. I just would like to say that the people on this board are some of the most thoughtful, nicest, and intellectual people I have ever talked to. I wish all Catholics could be like you! So many times, lay Catholics just go through the motions and really miss the point of their faith and Mass. At the end of Scott Hahnís book Rome Sweet Home, he calls for Catholics to be more like Bible believing Christians and Bible believing Christians to more like Catholics. You have the excitement and passion for the faith like an Evangelical would have but the understanding, intellectual rigor, and compassion that sometimes is forgotten in some churches.

Thanks!
As far as Marian dogmas/devotion and veneration of/prayer to the Saints, I recommend listening to this broadcast from Catholic Answers Live: http://www.catholic.com/radio/event....ate=2009-07-10

I just listened to it the other day on podcast, and Mark brings up the very important point in one of the calls that the Marian dogmas were made not to honor Mary but because they are essential in understanding the person of Christ.

Anyway, I don't have time to go into everything, but I am a convert and have struggled with this as well. I found Mark's responses interesting and they were new to me.

God Bless,

Q

p.s. Our Catholic faith is a beautiful thing, I recommend spending some time before the Blessed Sacrament (try maybe choosing an hour every week and making it a regular visit for a month or two). You may also want to meet with a priest you trust, part of their calling is to answer pastoral questions such as yours.
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  #3  
Old Sep 10, '09, 12:04 pm
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SpaceNeedle SpaceNeedle is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

A note of hope: my Godmother's husband (previously baptist) converted to Catholicism after they had been married 30 years. It can and does happen!

May the Holy Spirit continue to guide you.
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  #4  
Old Sep 10, '09, 12:43 pm
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joandarc2008 joandarc2008 is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

I was told the ABSOLUTE minimum you had to believe to be Catholic was the Nicene creed when I was in RCIA. If you adamantly disagreed with that then you were probably in the wrong place. Take this creed point by point and see where you stand. God bless you in your journey.
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  #5  
Old Sep 10, '09, 1:08 pm
rwoehmke rwoehmke is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

To return to the Catholic Church, one would have to accept the dogma and doctrine concerning Mary, however there is no requirement that one must venerate or pray to Mary. The appearances of Mary at Lourdes, Fatima, etc. are considered private revelation and one is free to accept or ignore what is taught that arises from them. Most Catholics, at minimum, believe these appearances, once checked out by the local Bishop for veracity, are truly what they are purported to be. The Nicene and Apostles Creeds, while nuggetizing Catholic beliefs are actually only an outline of the fullness of the truth held by the Church. There are lots of indented subheadings in the outline that really flesh out the fuller meaning of these major points.

My wife, a lifelong Irish Roman Catholic holds that all one is required to believe is contained in the two creeds. What she does not understand is that there are ramifications that expand and clarify these major points of belief.

I wish you many blessings and graces on your journey home to the Faith of your youth..
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  #6  
Old Sep 10, '09, 1:24 pm
CSJ CSJ is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Hello Everyone,

More recently though, Iíve been studying Catholicism and finding out a lot of truths I missed when I was growing up. Iíve been reading the Catechism, closely reading the Gospels, and studying some other materials. I came to the conclusion a while ago, that Catholicism wasnít nearly as bad as it is represent or misrepresented by a lot of Protestant groups.

As best as I can, I always try to let truth guide my thinking and actions. But I believe that everyone has biases, different backgrounds, etc. that prevent one from obtaining a pure, unadulterated truth. I admit, that had I not been raised Catholic, I probably wouldnít be studying it now. And also, that had some Pastors and other Evangelicals say that if you donít believe if ďSola FideĒ you really arenít a Christian, I probably would have started attending Catholic mass a while ago.

So here I am at an impasse. What does a person do if they see positive things or even correct teachings in both the Catholic and Protestant churches? Can I reconcile the two? For example, I really think the Catholicís teaching on Justification is much closer to that which is taught in the Bible, that Transubstantiation is probably true, and the theology of the Catholic Church. But I donít necessarily agree with the Immaculate Conception, veneration to saints, and a few other teachings within the church. I try to look past them, as not all of the issues I have problems with are dogma, Marian apparitions for example, but still disagree with others.

Should I join a Baptist church for my wife and be a good husband? Should I try to convert her (which I think will never work)? Should we attend separately, knowing that when we have children it will just probably confuse them and do more harm than good? I also pray to God that He forgive my sins with regards to my theology. I donít want to go to Hell because I didnít pick the right church or believe the right thing. I know that statement is somewhat silly, but in a way, itís how I feel. Evangelicals tell me that not believing in Faith Alone is believing in a different Christ and Catholics say that Protestants are outside the true church and are trusted to God. (I know the view has softened since the Second Vatican Council.)

Anyway, Iím just looking for input and advice as to whether anyone else has been in an experience like this!

P.S. I just would like to say that the people on this board are some of the most thoughtful, nicest, and intellectual people I have ever talked to. I wish all Catholics could be like you! So many times, lay Catholics just go through the motions and really miss the point of their faith and Mass. At the end of Scott Hahnís book Rome Sweet Home, he calls for Catholics to be more like Bible believing Christians and Bible believing Christians to more like Catholics. You have the excitement and passion for the faith like an Evangelical would have but the understanding, intellectual rigor, and compassion that sometimes is forgotten in some churches.

Thanks!
Dear BMW,

I totally understand your position and it is certainly a difficult place to be. I was baptized Catholic and that was the extent of my Catechism. I ended up going to the Pentecostal Church for all of my young/adult life and that is where I met my wife. Faith alone and Scripture alone were two dogmas of our church and I simply accepted them because it was taught and "proven" by scripture. When I did ask what the early "new testament" church believed, I was told to look in Acts, but there wasn't much other documentation to go on. This was before the days of the Internet.

Just a few years into our marriage, I began to scrutinize much of what I was hearing from the pulpit - a lot of it was sounding superficial after a while. I began to research the early church online and I was flabbergasted by the volume of information there was. I began to look into what the early church fathers believed and I became afraid because a lot of it was sounding Catholic. Like you, I had many misconceptions about the Catholic faith that I had inherited from my Protestant mentors. These misconceptions were quickly dismissed once I began to speak with a knowledgeable Catholic priest and by many of the kind people here on Catholic forums. I also read Karl Keating's book, "Fundamentalism & Catholicism". I highly recommend it.

My wife was very opposed to my Catholic studies and she stated on more than one occasion that we were not becoming Catholic. Little did she know that I had already had a conversion of heart.

Regarding Sola Fide, Catholics do believe that we are saved by faith, but as per James 2:24, we can not separate a living faith from the resulting good works. A faith without works is a dead faith. We need to take verses in the context of the entire scope of Scripture.

I also struggled with some of the other doctrines such as the veneration of saints, Marian doctrines, etc. Once I looked at the doctrine of Church authority, everything else fell into place. I revisited many of these doctrines and once I looked at what the Church actually taught pertaining to them, everything just fit.

The funny thing was that I never really had to "discard" my old faith as much of it was true (or partially true). The Catholic faith simply filled in all of the gaps and completed my faith. I remember reading certain passages (such as James 2:24 or John 6) and I would simply skip over them as I couldn't understand how they fit with my Pentecostal theology, but when I became Catholic, everything just fit. I no longer had to tip toe around certain "difficult" verses. I think that as you embrace Catholic doctrine, it will not oppose Baptist doctrine so much as it will complete it. It will dismiss a few errors only to admit fuller truths.

As a result of my studies, my wife began to look at a few of my books, etc and every now and again, she would ask questions. Initially, she didn't always agree with my answers, but in the end, I could see the Holy Spirit at work. Consequently, we both entered the Catholic Church in 2008 and it has been the most incredible spiritual journey for both of us. Our only regret is that there are not enough hours in the day to study and discover such a rich faith.

Please feel free to PM me if you wish and I can share some of my discoveries pertaining to my studies. It is far too much to share here in a forum. I will say a prayer for you and your wife. Do not fear for if God is with you, who can be against you.

God Bless,
CSJ
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  #7  
Old Sep 10, '09, 1:41 pm
paul c paul c is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
So here I am at an impasse. What does a person do if they see positive things or even correct teachings in both the Catholic and Protestant churches? Can I reconcile the two? For example, I really think the Catholicís teaching on Justification is much closer to that which is taught in the Bible, that Transubstantiation is probably true, and the theology of the Catholic Church. But I donít necessarily agree with the Immaculate Conception, veneration to saints, and a few other teachings within the church. I try to look past them, as not all of the issues I have problems with are dogma, Marian apparitions for example, but still disagree with others.
I think its good advice that you go through the apostles creed (its the first section of the Catechism ) and make sure you can reconcile those issues. if there is anything there that you can't come to grips with, bring those issues here and we can discuss them. As for veneration of the Saints, there is nothing that says you have to venerate any saint. Veneration of the saints is simply learning from their example and if you chose, praying to those that you have an affinity with for them to support you in THEIR prayers. This is the concept of communion of the Saints, we all help each other through prayer. But this should never be a show stopper to joining the faith. It can help you, but you don't need to venerate the Saints as a Catholic. As for the Immaculate conception, why can't you believe that the mother of Jesus Christ was born free or original sin? Does that seem beyond God's capability to achieve? Does it seem unreasonable to you that the mother of our lord, might have been prepared specially for that role form her conception? In any case, its best to go through the specific issues one by one. In the end, you will probably come to accept that the Church really does know the truth on these issues and will explain it to you, if you let it. And remember, you don't need to understand and agree with 100% of the chruch doctrines to begin with. You only need to be open to the fact that they might be true. The rest will follow over time, because it is a process. you don't need to be a Saint on day 1.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Should I join a Baptist church for my wife and be a good husband? Should I try to convert her (which I think will never work)? Should we attend separately, knowing that when we have children it will just probably confuse them and do more harm than good? I also pray to God that He forgive my sins with regards to my theology. I donít want to go to Hell because I didnít pick the right church or believe the right thing. I know that statement is somewhat silly, but in a way, itís how I feel. Evangelicals tell me that not believing in Faith Alone is believing in a different Christ and Catholics say that Protestants are outside the true church and are trusted to God. (I know the view has softened since the Second Vatican Council.)
What the Catholic church offers uniquely is access to the life giving sacraments and the fullness of Truth about Jesus. Where other faiths differ, they diverge from the Truth. In some Christian faiths, the differences are relatively small. in others, much more. We teach that you gain suffiicent grace to be saved through baptism but that you must do the will of God (which is to Love God and your neighbors) to stay in the State of Grace and go to heaven. The church helps you on this path, because it gives you the graces you need to love and it gives you advice on how to live a life of holiness because nothing unclean will enter heaven. There are many, many good people outside of the Catholic church but they will be held accountable for their sins whether they acknowledge this or not. In the Catholic church, you can get sacramental forgiveness for your sins. This is a huge advantage in that it leads to holiness in ways that are not available to the non-Catholic. You can also get the Grace that comes from the eucharist. When you eat his body and drink his blood, Jesus actually becomes part of you. This is of huge significance to the true believer and it can't be achieved without priests, who are linked through ordination to the Apostles.

I don't see how being a Baptist makes you a better husband. It might make you a more compliant one, but not a better one. You need to follow your heart on this while being considerate of your wife. If you act out of love, you wife will see that and will probably follow. The Spirit works in mysterious ways. Be honest about your concerns and your search for the truth.
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  #8  
Old Sep 10, '09, 2:01 pm
bmw890 bmw890 is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Thanks to all who replied so far.

CSJ: I was glad to hear your story as it most closely matches some of the same thoughts I am going through right now. And I can definitely agree with you that the Catholic theology seems to be a more mature and fuller understanding of Scripture as opposed to some of the other denominations.

Thanks to everyone else for replying too! I agree with the Nicene Creed and don't have any problems with it. My reason for writing wasn't to try and work out any small doctrinal problems I have (at least not yet) but rather to see if anyone else ever went through this conflicted feeling and how best to approach it.

Also, I should have been a bit more clear about returning to Catholicism and my marriage. Attending a Baptist church wouldn't make me a better husband, it would just prevent me from causing too big of a rift. My wife is very confident in her faith. Pushing the issue (in any way other than a loving one) is going to cause a huge problem. For example, when we got married, alcohol was one such issue. Her family didn't want it and I didn't see a problem with it. When it got down to it, I was accused of being greedy, selfish, un-loving, etc. because I wasn't respecting my future wife. She really didn't have a problem with the issue but wanted to please her family.

I'd hate for this pursuit, and I know I am using that term too lightly, to cause a big rift in our relationship.

Thanks again for all the replies!
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  #9  
Old Sep 10, '09, 2:22 pm
paul c paul c is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Thanks to all who replied so far.

CSJ: I was glad to hear your story as it most closely matches some of the same thoughts I am going through right now. And I can definitely agree with you that the Catholic theology seems to be a more mature and fuller understanding of Scripture as opposed to some of the other denominations.

Thanks to everyone else for replying too! I agree with the Nicene Creed and don't have any problems with it. My reason for writing wasn't to try and work out any small doctrinal problems I have (at least not yet) but rather to see if anyone else ever went through this conflicted feeling and how best to approach it.

Also, I should have been a bit more clear about returning to Catholicism and my marriage. Attending a Baptist church wouldn't make me a better husband, it would just prevent me from causing too big of a rift. My wife is very confident in her faith. Pushing the issue (in any way other than a loving one) is going to cause a huge problem. For example, when we got married, alcohol was one such issue. Her family didn't want it and I didn't see a problem with it. When it got down to it, I was accused of being greedy, selfish, un-loving, etc. because I wasn't respecting my future wife. She really didn't have a problem with the issue but wanted to please her family.

I'd hate for this pursuit, and I know I am using that term too lightly, to cause a big rift in our relationship.

Thanks again for all the replies!
So your real question, if I may rephrase it, is "How do I return to the Catholic faith in a way that won't create a rift in my marriage to a Baptist?"

If you change the title of your thread to something like that, I bet you will get a lot of very educated responses from people who have been there. This is not an isolated problem, by any stretch of the imagination.

I have not had this problem, personally. but my wife was a lapsed Catholic when I married her and over time, her level of devotion has steadily increased. I never pushed her. I just set an example. She started reading the books I have on apologetics and on the saints. She goes to mass regularly now . so it just happens .

Don't try to push her to become a Catholic. Just be honest about your own search. Talk about what you are learning, but don't push at all. Let her come to the faith on her own time. its okay to go to services with her and also to Mass. Ultimately her conversion will be driven by how well you live the Catholic Faith. if you are sincere in your pursuit without challenging her to do the same, I would be shocked if she doesn't become interested in what you are doing and start engaging as well. but it will take time, Be patient.
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  #10  
Old Sep 11, '09, 2:12 pm
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promethius promethius is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Also, I should have been a bit more clear about returning to Catholicism and my marriage. Attending a Baptist church wouldn't make me a better husband, it would just prevent me from causing too big of a rift. My wife is very confident in her faith. Pushing the issue (in any way other than a loving one) is going to cause a huge problem.
It sounds to me as though you are greatly concerned about being a good husband, but you are not even considering what it might be for your spouse to be a good wife. Your love of God takes first place, above family and above all else. Marraige is a bond in God to bring us closer to faith. If your growth is pointing you back home to the catholic church, then THAT is your priority and your wife, to be a good wife, needs to understand and accept that. You, as a loving husband, should understand and respect her continued baptist faith as well, if that is what she chooses to carry on with.

Do the right thing. Not the expedient thing, my friend. Do not deny what God is leading you to simply because you're afraid of conflict.

This may be premature, but welcome home.

(and yes, I have been in your shoes. I actually just got out of a relationship because I was told that it couldn't go on if I didn't convert. I explained again that I am catholic for life or I would become agnostic since my understanding of truth is that it is embodied in God's church and if that truth is shattered such that I would LEAVE that church, that it will be because Christian truth is so shattered that I could no longer accept a christian God. The result is that i will never convert, not for expedience, not even to save a relationship, not for any reason.)
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  #11  
Old Sep 11, '09, 3:50 pm
steve b steve b is offline
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Default Re: Conflicted

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw890 View Post
Hello Everyone,

I donít post much on this board, but have been a member for a while now and enjoy reading many of the posts and debates.

I probably posted a while back with a similar post, but I thought Iíd better articulate my feelings lately with regards to Catholicism. Iíll keep it short though.

I was born and raised Catholic but really didnít give it much thought for seventeen years. In high school, I met a girl (now my wife) who was Baptist. I began going to church with her and was really taken by the theology. It was simple and made so much sense. Soon after, I accepted Christ and attended her church fairly regularly.

More recently though, Iíve been studying Catholicism and finding out a lot of truths I missed when I was growing up. Iíve been reading the Catechism, closely reading the Gospels, and studying some other materials. I came to the conclusion a while ago, that Catholicism wasnít nearly as bad as it is represent or misrepresented by a lot of Protestant groups.
for understanding, I'll try and ask more questions than make comments. Above all, I hope everything works out well for you.


What got you interested in Catholicism again? As you said, for 17 years you gave it no thought.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

As best as I can, I always try to let truth guide my thinking and actions. But I believe that everyone has biases, different backgrounds, etc. that prevent one from obtaining a pure, unadulterated truth. I admit, that had I not been raised Catholic, I probably wouldnít be studying it now.
As Peter wrote

2 Pet 1:
5 For this very reason make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue withknowledge, 6 and knowledge withself-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these things is blind and shortsighted and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, brethren, be the more zealous to confirm your call and election, for if you do this you will never fall; 11 so there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 12

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

And also, that had some Pastors and other Evangelicals say that if you donít believe in ďSola FideĒ you really arenít a Christian, I probably would have started attending Catholic mass a while ago.

So here I am at an impasse. What does a person do if they see positive things or even correct teachings in both the Catholic and Protestant churches? Can I reconcile the two? For example, I really think the Catholicís teaching on Justification is much closer to that which is taught in the Bible, that Transubstantiation is probably true, and the theology of the Catholic Church.
Protestants have ALWAYS believed in sola fide and sola scriptura. Why is this central dogma of Protestantism just getting your attention NOW?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

But I donít necessarily agree with the Immaculate Conception, veneration to saints, and a few other teachings within the church.
Why

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

Should I join a Baptist church for my wife and be a good husband?

Should I try to convert her (which I think will never work)? Should we attend separately, knowing that when we have children it will just probably confuse them and do more harm than good?
Did any of this come up between you two before you decided to marry?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

I also pray to God that He forgive my sins with regards to my theology. I donít want to go to Hell because I didnít pick the right church or believe the right thing. I know that statement is somewhat silly, but in a way, itís how I feel.
You mentioned Scott Hahn in your post. He said many times in tapes, when he was a student, he loved to ask tough questions of his professors.

As you know, the origin of Protestantism was to divide from the Church of Rome. Here's a question you might ask one of your Protestant pastors you mention above..

Ask them how they would interpret Paul's instruction to the Church of Rome, and how Protestants see themselves in this warning?

Rm 16:
17I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I am full of joy over you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.

and the consequences of division for the individual

Gal 5:

19The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw

Evangelicals tell me that not believing in Faith Alone is believing in a different Christ
As you might know already, There is only ONE place in all of scripture where you find "faith alone" written

Jas 2:
24 You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone.
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