Just for a little background, about a year or so ago I had a discussion board on a website in which I held a Catholic Q & A. An individual who identified himeself as “Apostolic” posted long-winded posts attempting to gain converts and give the “truth” as he believed. I did attempt to engage in respectful dialogue with him in order to assist him in understanding the Catholic faith, but he immediately condemned me and anyone else to Hell who did not share the Apostolic beliefs. In any case, I was wondering if anyone here has had experience either from within that religion or otherwise? They seem to be more mainline Christian from what I read from his “online Bible Study” but he was clearly anit-Catholic. Any thoughts?
There are so many with the claim and the name that they are “apostolic.” Of course, there’s only ONE genuinely apostolic church:D . Could you be more specific? Guide me to his website? Thanks.
I could direct you to the general website, www.writing.com, but my discussion board is no longer there as I became to busy with life in general to keep it up. The individual in question joined several groups on the website, many of which I was a part of, but yet seemed to feel the need to “spam” people with his rhetoric and quite literal spiritual attacks. He was eventually banned from the site–twice–due to his constant harassment of people he deemed to be in need of salvation. I had noticed, near to where I lived at the time, an “Apostolic” storefront church, and although I was curious, after my run-in with the individual on the website, I dared not darken the doors for fear I would be forcibly “baptized”. (joking) Unfortunately as he did not give any more than general and overly forceful Protestant views, there’s just not much information. He believed we all need to be “born again” and baptized as adults, that everying that came out of my responses to him were not to be trusted and entirely conflicting with the Gospels…etc. In my own forum, he posted his “Online Bible Study” which were simply posts copied and pasted all over the website, but of course sometimes slightly tailored to the audience. I had to warn him that my forum was for discussion, not posting tracts and that if he wanted discourse, he needed to be specific and non-offensive. My position was that the forum was one for Catholic questions and answers, maybe even somewhat of a haven for Catholics on the site, but he was using it as a tool for evangelism, so I did delete several of his posts while responding that I would welcome actual discussion.
In an e-mail I told him why I deleted his posts and asked him to come back and post appropriately to the forum rules. I also told him I would pray for him.
He pretty much told me that I was going to Hell. I responded again that I would pray for him and then he was banned from the site for other offenses.
I’m sorry so long winded, but that was the extent of my experience, so I guess I was wondering if anyone else has met someone who went about “evangelization” in this manner and defined him/herself in the same manner.
He ended each post with “God Bless You! Amen!”
While I applaud the final sentiment, his approach to “saving souls” probably did more to denigrate the name of Christianity in general than it did in saving souls. I truely do pray for this person and people who try to evangelize in the same manner, but just the same, I want to understand where they come from.
(sorry so long-winded)
Thanks for your response. I, too, have encountered people on the Internet who are rabidly anti-Catholic. They are literally foarming at the mouth, they have such an intense hatred for the Church. And they’re totally irrational. One cannot reason with mental illness. Logic is beyond them. So I just bid them peace, and get the heck outta there.
They hate what they think the Church is and what they think she teaches, which is totally false. But such people prefer fiction to truth. They refuse to accept the truth. They’re hatred is fed by other irrational people just like themselves. Religion seems to be an area that mentally ill people fixate upon.
[quote=Katholikos]Thanks for your response. I, too, have encountered people on the Internet who are rabidly anti-Catholic
I have come across many who claim to hold to the Apostolic Succession. What I find interesting is that the CC is the only church so vehemently opposed. There is no other church that is so strongly disliked. Wonder why that is? :whistle:
Thanks for your responses! True that mentally ill people flee to religion…and no wonder! My mother is bipolar, and she actually became fanatic in the depths of her illness. Although to her credit, at least she didn’t flee her belief for another, but sought haven in the church of her youth and what I even believe is the one true Church.
I’ve done a lot of work with the mentally ill, and I remember that although in one position I was support staff, the case workers were very concerned about the residents flocking to a particular “Revival” and as they had to accompany the residents, saw how they could be misled by the teachings.
While the staff were not “un-Christian”, their concern was the “selling” techniques of the revival and that vulnerable adults were being lured to be “healed” and on to other things. The questioned whether the residents should be allowed to go, as the “Revival” was outside of regular worship for most of them…and I think some saw some “false conversions” that some of these people were simply unable to make with any true understanding.
In my time there a woman looked me right in the eye and told me there was no medication that could help her as she was possessed by demons. I’ve been around mental illness and KNOW of demon attacks…and I believed her…it was something in the eyes and stature of this tortured woman. She was fleeing to religion, but unfortunately religion of any sort was not helping her.
(This is yet another topic…demonic possession…and I don’t feel the need to get into that right now).
The mentally ill, or even so-called mentally ill have nowhere else to go, for Jesus Christ himeslf could have cured them…they are looking to the only hope out there as medication is faulty, counseling is only somewhat helpful, and even in religion…well…we can’t seem to do much more than argue about God in some eyes, but Religion is the last hope.
We really need to pray for the mentally ill…they are easily influenced, easily attacked…and live below the norms of society as their illness is not socially acceptable.
As for as the person I spoke with via the internet…I don’t believe he was mentally ill…just poorly influenced and extremely misguided. What can we reallly do but pray for such people?
Here in Indiana there are several churches in a seeming denomination that describe themselves as ‘apostolic.’
They are visually distinctive in that they seem to have very strict rules about the appearance of women members of their congregation. It would seem that they don’t allow them to cut their hair (their hair always seems to be made up into big buns). And it would also seem that they require them to wear long skirts–ankle length.
So much for the claim that the Catholic Church makes up all sorts of rules to follow and that Protestant church got rid of them all.
Does that seem to jive with what you were able to learn from the fellow with whom you were corresponding?
It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that they require specific dress and rules…his “teachings” were very rigid. In looking back, I wish I had paid more attention to the stuff he wrote…maybe I’d be able to give better information now! He seemed to be a Biblical literalist, but of course, much of what he said was taken out of context and he was given to the fire and brimstone threats of eternal damnation of anyone who disagreed with him.
[quote=Britta]I have come across many who claim to hold to the Apostolic Succession. What I find interesting is that the CC is the only church so vehemently opposed. There is no other church that is so strongly disliked. Wonder why that is? :whistle:
I investigated Eastern Orthodoxy for a year and attended Divine Liturgy and special feast days at a OCA Cathedral every week. I spent quite a bit of time talking with the priests and deacons.
One day I was talking with one of the priests about the claim that the Orthodox Church was the “one true Church.” I don’t know what possessed me, but I asked him, “What if I became Roman Catholic, would that make me part of the one true Church?”
He replied, “No. The one true Church is Orthodox.”
I said, “Well how do we know what ‘orthodox’ is? There are Eastern Rite Catholics…”
(I shouldn’t have said that because he got upset.)
The priest told me: “Catholics are the first Protestants. They have left the Church. True Orthodox have nothing to do with Rome.”
I clarified: “So if you are in communion with Rome, you are outside of the one true Church?”
And he said “yes.”
In the back of my mind, I made the mental note that he was defining “orthodox” as “opposition to Rome.”
I grew up in a very anti-Catholic home so I have considered every “apostolic” alternative (Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, etc.) to Catholocism. It is funny, however, that even I, as a fundie-turned Reformed Protestant, could see that those groups tended to define their “catholocism” as “that which is not Rome.”
So I wanted to figure out why you guys are so disliked…
… here I am.
[quote=Calvin]I grew up in a very anti-Catholic home so I have considered every “apostolic” alternative (Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, etc.) to Catholocism. It is funny, however, that even I, as a fundie-turned Reformed Protestant, could see that those groups tended to define their “catholocism” as “that which is not Rome.”
So I wanted to figure out why you guys are so disliked…
… here I am.
Very interesting story and I’m sure very true. He explained their position. I have a friend who maintains that we were the first schism - although she loves the CC and is loyal to Rome.
Hopefully in your investigation, you will find that we are really not all that bad. We really do love Jesus, His word, and His Church very much.