Are Catholics Christians?

I would like to know what your response would be to the question, or statement that the Catholic faith is not Christian. My sister-in-law attends a college with very few Catholics. She is often approached about her Catholic faith. Upon speaking with her over the holidays, the most frequent misconception she is confronted with is if the Catholic church is Christian. I myself overheard my nephew’s babysitter state that she always thought that Catholics weren’t Christian. This tears me up when I hear this. I sat down with my sister-in-law and helped her with some of the questions she had, explained that Jesus himself founded the Church, and gave her some tools to help explain and defend the faith. But I was wondering if anyone had a great response to that question or statement without having to break out my Catechism or Bible. Any suggestions would be of help.


Catholics are Christians because they are validly baptized followers of Jesus Christ. Some non-Catholic Christians question whether Catholics are Christians because they have their own theological understanding of what it means to be a Christian. Those interpretations, however, began over a millennium-and-a-half after the Catholic Church began teaching what it means to be a Christian, so the Catholic Church’s understanding is the oldest continuous understanding and should thus be given great weight, if not greater weight than the rival novel theories of what it means to be a Christian.

**Recommended reading:

What is an ontological Christian?
Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth**

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