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  #1  
Old Jul 1, '10, 3:33 pm
IHeartAquinas IHeartAquinas is offline
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Default CARM

The Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry seems to be the source of much of the theology for a couple of friends of mine. While they do not seem (yet) to be trying to get me to convert, and I don't necessarily want to come off as trying to get them to convert, we have been having an ongoing back and forth discussion about our respective theologies for about six months now. While I am able to provide them good defenses of Catholic theology, they seem much more capable of being able to counter my apologetics than I am theirs. The reason I stumbled across CARM is because of a discussion concerning Federal Headship. To me, it seems like a weaker version of Original Sin, and actually seems like it requires a rather huge leap of faith to read it into scripture, but the CARM website helped me understand it better than it had been explained to me.

While there, I stumbled across their apologetics against the Catholic Church and definitely read the articles to see what I was possibly to be up against (as I haven't verified that CARM is the source of their apologetics). In reading them, I can definitely tell that they are incredibly weak arguments, and arguments that I've heard dozens of times (the pope isn't in the Bible, confession to clergy contradicts "confess your sins to one another" ((I already countered this one)), etc.) but CARM seems to have done a better job than most at presenting their anti-Catholic apologetics in a more logically-sound package, which is why I'm not poring through it and trying to find the responses I will need to most of their accusations.

I was wondering if anyone else has had experience with CARM material and people who reference it and what their thoughts are on CARM?
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Last edited by Michael Francis; Jul 3, '10 at 1:16 am. Reason: removed link to anti-Catholic site
  #2  
Old Jul 1, '10, 8:37 pm
josephdaniel29 josephdaniel29 is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by IHeartAquinas View Post
I was wondering if anyone else has had experience with CARM material and people who reference it and what their thoughts are on CARM?
I have lots of experience, several thousand posts. I left a little less than a year ago and haven't posted there since and have no intention of posting there again. It was causing me much distress and was certainly a huge occasion to sin. It is one of the most venomous anti-Catholic sites I've ever seen. I can't think of anything edifying about that site. I recommend you avoid it entirely.


Yours in Christ
Joe
  #3  
Old Jul 1, '10, 10:42 pm
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WetCatechumen WetCatechumen is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by josephdaniel29 View Post
I have lots of experience, several thousand posts. I left a little less than a year ago and haven't posted there since and have no intention of posting there again. It was causing me much distress and was certainly a huge occasion to sin. It is one of the most venomous anti-Catholic sites I've ever seen. I can't think of anything edifying about that site. I recommend you avoid it entirely.


Yours in Christ
Joe
Can I get an Amen brother?!

The site has some very wonderful, no doubt entirely devout and holy people on it who have nothing to better than write vitriolic polemics against anything that does not match their particular definition of orthodox Christianity.

The site condemns Nestorianism and quotes ecumenical councils yet most of the posters there refuse to call Mary the Theotokos. It's a jumbled mess where everyone is their own Pope.

The moderation is extremely disfavorable to "cult" posters such as Catholics, Orthodox, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, and anyone else. The level of venom spewed out, especially at Catholics and Mormons, is quite incredible. It's very easy to get sucked into the level of debate and start being a terrible person.

I highly recommend that any Christian interested in their own personal holiness avoid the place. However, it can be a useful place for sharpening ones wits and exposing oneself to the arguments that the Protestant opposition in the United States uses.
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  #4  
Old Jul 2, '10, 4:38 am
IHeartAquinas IHeartAquinas is offline
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Default Re: CARM

It had not even begun to cross my mind to think about posting there, and I think I will continue to avoid it. Thanks for the heads up. As well, I am using their articles to sharpen my defenses against those that would besmirch the Catholic faith. Though I was pleasantly surprised to find the text of the Didache there, something that very easily shows that the early Church had a hierarchy of Bishops and deacons and so on, something my evangelical friends deny.
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  #5  
Old Jul 2, '10, 4:45 am
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JharekCarnelian JharekCarnelian is offline
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Default Re: CARM

This is from CARM's own website, notice how the Catholic faith is delibrately implied to be non-Christian here.

CARM is a Christian ministry dedicated to the promotion and defense of the Christian gospel and the explanation of Christian Doctrine and Theology. CARM analyzes religions such as Islam, Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormonism, Roman Catholicism, Universalism, Wicca, etc., and compares them to the Bible. We also analyze secular ideas such as abortion, atheism, evolution, and relativism. In all our analyses we use logic and evidence to defend Christinaity and promote the truth of the Bible which is the inspired word of God.
  #6  
Old Jul 2, '10, 9:02 am
BernadetteM BernadetteM is offline
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Default Re: CARM

I don't find any of their responses to be credible. They use personal attacks instead of using any real facts. The Catholics come out looking intelligent in all the debates I have seen. They are no different than the Chick booklets.

I really haven't seen too many loving, caring and Christian people over there. They have no interest in the history of the Church or Christianity as a whole. They are all their own little popes.

If if weren't for Catholics who go to CARM and post the website would close or at least have many fewer posters. If you go to any of the other areas, i.e. Baptist, Lutherans, Church of Christ etc. they have very few posts.

I understand that many Catholics feel called to go there and try to correct the lies and feel that maybe someone who is looking for the truth and happens on CARM will be saved from believing the horrible junk posted, but I think if all Catholics would abondon that site, it would be the end of it. We are what keeps it going.

Also it is very bad for ones soul to even read the posts. There is no love there, no fruits of the Spirit, there is nothing to uplift a person's faith. Only very articulate and knowledgeable Catholics should be posting there.

I can't and won't judge them as to their final distination, but at times I wonder how God will judge them. We had one poster here who said he was Catholic and would go back and forth to CARM and say terrible things about the Catholic Church and then would return to CAF and had a different view. He acted like he just had questions about the faith, but in fact, he in my opinion was playing with us.

I don't go there anymore, never posted there, but found it to be harmful to my spiritual life. I am a convert and know my faith very well and I am strong in my faith, but reading such garbage seems to interfer with our spiritual welfare. Not our faith, but it is just depressing to be honest to see how many who call themselves Christians are not practicing what God calls a Christian to be.

Yours in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary

Bernadette
  #7  
Old Jul 2, '10, 9:59 am
Contarini Contarini is offline
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Default Re: CARM

I agree that the atmosphere is poisonous. It has all the bad aspects of this forum without the good ones.

Edwin
  #8  
Old Jul 2, '10, 10:18 am
Redbaron998 Redbaron998 is offline
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Default Re: CARM

I have been on this site before. I have seem them put forth arguments against Catholics, and seen them all refuted (espically in the Library of this website) For instance thier "Full of Grace" argument is very weak and intellectually dishonest.
  #9  
Old Jul 2, '10, 3:22 pm
IHeartAquinas IHeartAquinas is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by JharekCarnelian View Post
This is from CARM's own website, notice how the Catholic faith is delibrately implied to be non-Christian here.
Because, for being so non-denominationally Christian, they have an incredibly narrow definition of what Christian means.

I have found that the saying "Everyone's a bully on the internet" is true. I have had some of the most fruitful talks with my personal CARM-ers over a cup of coffee. I understand that this is probably more due to the fact that we are friends from work, but I have been invited to their "home church" and I intend to go. The other guys they live with, I am hoping, will be open to honest intellectual dialogue. In either event, I'm fairly certain it will be a "OMG! Let's talk to the Catholic!" session considering how voraciously my two friends have been asking questions and reading things I give them. There are stumbling blocks in the theology that they say they simply cannot accept, but I know they're being forced to look at the bible differently since we started our dialogue, and it gives me hope.

But yeah, seriously, everyone who's a bully on the internet can usually be calmed down with coffee and a cigarette. Heh. That rhymed.
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  #10  
Old Jul 3, '10, 10:04 am
wisdomseeker wisdomseeker is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by IHeartAquinas View Post
Because, for being so non-denominationally Christian, they have an incredibly narrow definition of what Christian means.

I have found that the saying "Everyone's a bully on the internet" is true. I have had some of the most fruitful talks with my personal CARM-ers over a cup of coffee. I understand that this is probably more due to the fact that we are friends from work, but I have been invited to their "home church" and I intend to go. The other guys they live with, I am hoping, will be open to honest intellectual dialogue. In either event, I'm fairly certain it will be a "OMG! Let's talk to the Catholic!" session considering how voraciously my two friends have been asking questions and reading things I give them. There are stumbling blocks in the theology that they say they simply cannot accept, but I know they're being forced to look at the bible differently since we started our dialogue, and it gives me hope.

But yeah, seriously, everyone who's a bully on the internet can usually be calmed down with coffee and a cigarette. Heh. That rhymed.

what i do when i encounter someone anti Catholic, i present what the CC teaches and tell them this is not an argument but i am expressing to them what the CC teaches for 2000 years. this way i close the argument back in forth. there is no argument. i will listen to what they believe and i present what the CC teaches. this way we come out still friends.

i let them know that our conversation is not about debating one another but just presenting to them what the Church says about the Gospels. what the Church is and so forth.
  #11  
Old Jul 3, '10, 10:17 am
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coolduude coolduude is offline
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Default Re: CARM

I've never posted on CARM. I didn't even know they had a forum!

However, I have read some of their articles. Some are good (like 'is the NT reliable?' or articles on Islam), but their articles on the Church are blatantly false. It saddens me to read them
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  #12  
Old Jul 3, '10, 10:23 am
jlhargus jlhargus is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by IHeartAquinas View Post
It had not even begun to cross my mind to think about posting there, and I think I will continue to avoid it. Thanks for the heads up. As well, I am using their articles to sharpen my defenses against those that would besmirch the Catholic faith. Though I was pleasantly surprised to find the text of the Didache there, something that very easily shows that the early Church had a hierarchy of Bishops and deacons and so on, something my evangelical friends deny.
JL: I have never heard of CRAM, those type of groups can help sharpen skills. Yet the draw back is falling into an unchairitable attitude. I find after debating with anti-Catholics even here, I will fall into that mode from time to time. Then when I debate with an honest person, that attitude will, at first, carry over to them. It somethimes takes awhile to realize what you are doing.
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  #13  
Old Jul 3, '10, 3:29 pm
kenofken kenofken is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by JharekCarnelian View Post
This is from CARM's own website, notice how the Catholic faith is delibrately implied to be non-Christian here.

CARM is a Christian ministry dedicated to the promotion and defense of the Christian gospel and the explanation of Christian Doctrine and Theology. CARM analyzes religions such as Islam, Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormonism, Roman Catholicism, Universalism, Wicca, etc., and compares them to the Bible. We also analyze secular ideas such as abortion, atheism, evolution, and relativism. In all our analyses we use logic and evidence to defend Christinaity and promote the truth of the Bible which is the inspired word of God.

As a Wiccan, I thought I'd never find myself in a coalition of undesireables including such august members as Catholicism AND Islam! Let us weld this rabble into an army and crush the forces of Evangelicalism into the dust of history! (Then we will resume our own Afghan-esque infighting).

Seriously though, competitive apologetics is just about the worst waste of oxygen and glucose I can conceive of....
  #14  
Old Jul 3, '10, 5:16 pm
IHeartAquinas IHeartAquinas is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Seriously though, competitive apologetics is just about the worst waste of oxygen and glucose I can conceive of....
AMEN!

Quote:
However, I have read some of their articles. Some are good (like 'is the NT reliable?' or articles on Islam), but their articles on the Church are blatantly false. It saddens me to read them
To be honest, their description of Catholicism is so blatantly false that I won't even look at their descriptions of other religions. If they cannot reliably examine one religion, we cannot expect them to reliably examine another.
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  #15  
Old Jul 3, '10, 5:55 pm
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coolduude coolduude is offline
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Default Re: CARM

Quote:
Originally Posted by IHeartAquinas View Post
To be honest, their description of Catholicism is so blatantly false that I won't even look at their descriptions of other religions. If they cannot reliably examine one religion, we cannot expect them to reliably examine another.
True, true.
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