Article on not being Catholic

a friend sent me this article…

challies.com/articles/why-i-am-not-roman-catholic

As she is quite determined that I should steer clear of Catholicism. I was a bit baffled by the unfounded assertions in it (the dismissal of the authority of the church is particularly thin) but more so by the statement that the author ‘joyfully’ accepts there are believers within the Catholic church. Surely that is a bit having your cake and eating it too? Any help on a reply?

My recommendation is…

Some friend. :rolleyes:

Yeah, she means well.

Well this is typical protestant nonsense but it is an opportunity to proclaim the Truth of Jesus Christ and His Church, the Catholic Church. There are many threads on each objection that you could search out. But whenever I encounter this stuff I always try to guide the discussion to Authority because it all comes down to the Authority that Jesus gave the Catholic Church against the authority these people give themselves.

So since he seems to be Bible alone you could start with ‘where in the Bible does it teach Bible alone?’ Where did we get the Bible?

Here is some info along those lines…

catholic.com/tracts/whats-your-authority

catholic.com/documents/pillar-of-fire-pillar-of-truth

Here is a very good read on how the Catholic Church gave us the Bible…

catholicapologetics.info/apologetics/protestantism/wbible.htm

Thank you. I’m a little green about apologetics so although I picked up on the authority issue, I didn’t really know if there was anything new in the article that needed challenging.

Understood…I added some links to info that might help you in my op. All you would have to do is pass them on to your friend.

Okay, it’s on.

I am not Roman Catholic because Rome denies the gospel

. Rome has a gospel but not the gospel and, in reality, their gospel damns not saves because it explicitly denies that justification comes by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. Rome accurately understands the Protestant position and unapologetically anathematizes it. To the work of Christ it adds the work of Mary. To the intercession of the Savior it adds the intercession of the saints. To the authority of the Bible it adds the authority of tradition. To the free gift of salvation it adds the necessity of human effort. In place of the finished work of Christ on the cross it demands the ongoing sacrifice of the mass. In place of the permanent imputation of Christ’s righteousness it substitutes the temporary infusion of works righteousness. In so many different ways it explicitly and unapologetically denies truth and promotes error. The Roman Catholic gospel is a false gospel.This is just another anti-Catholic, but not really "oro-Gospel. How to respond? I already have.
Who REALLY Preaches “A Different Gospel”?
How Is A Catholic Saved?

I am not Roman Catholic because Rome is not the church

. Rome claims to trace her lineage in an unbroken line that extends all the way back to the apostle Peter to whom Christ said, “Upon this rock I will build my church.” In this way she says that she is the church with the power and authority to demand the allegiance and bind the conscience of every Christian.** I do not recognize such lineage and, therefore, do not recognize such authority. Her claims are unprovable** and represent a distortion of the Bible’s claims about Christ’s church. To be Catholic I would first have to bend the knee to the pope as the successor to Peter and acknowledge the Church as the continuation of what Christ began through his disciples. **I cannot, because the Roman Catholic Church is a false church.**Opinion and nothing more and a grossly ill informed one at that. Remember what Bishop Fulton Sheen said.

[size=3]There are not over a hundred people in the United States who hate the Catholic Church. There are millions, however, who hate what they wrongly believe to be the Catholic Church - which is, of course, quite a different thing. These millions can hardly be blamed for hating Catholics because Catholics “adore statues”; because they “put the Blessed Mother on the same level with God”; because they say “indulgence is a permission to commit sin”; because the Pope “is a Fascist”; because the “Church is the defender of Capitalism.” If the Church taught or believed any one of these things it should be hated, but the fact is that the Church does not believe nor teach any one of them. It follows then that the hatred of the millions is directed against error and not against truth. As a matter of fact, if we Catholics believed all of the untruths and lies which were said against the Church, we probably would hate the Church a thousand times more than they do

.Just because they reject Catholicism does not make them right to do so and this is not a valid example of rational reasoning. You might also check out CA’s excellent document, Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth[/size]

I am not Roman Catholic because Catholic worship is idolatrous. Protestants commonly charge Catholicism with promoting worship of Mary or the saints. Under the tutelage of R.C. Sproul I came to understand that this charge requires nuance and is, to some degree, a matter of defining words such as “venerate.” And yet there is undeniably a seed of what I must acknowledge as idolatry.

Sproul has always been an anti-Catholic and so this is nothing new, but the conclusions that they draw are ignorant at best and specious at worst. For example, see My Testimony for a response to someone who made just such an allegation about the church to me.
CA has great responses to this ubiquitous allegation. Here’s several links.

[LIST]
*] The Intercession of the Saints
*] Praying to the Saints
*] Saint Worship?
*]Is Mary’s and the saints’ intercession unbiblical?
*]What is the biblical reason Catholics pray to saints for intercession?
*]Why Catholicism Is Preferable to Protestantism?
[/LIST]

It’s really kind that they concede (as do many a-Cs) that there are Christians within Catholicism, but their reasoning that it is in spite of rather than because of our most holy faith is terribly faulty. Frankly, were I not Catholic I would not be Christian because of the huge diversity of scripture interpretations and the myriad of doctrines that purport themselves to be Christian truth and yet which contradict and even condemn each other.

I think that St. Augustine said it very well.


***“I would not believe in the Gospel myself if the authority of the Catholic Church did not influence me to do so.”
Against the letter of Mani, 5,6, 397 A.D.

No other Christianity (except for Orthodoxy) has the scholarship and historical accuracy of belief that we have. Their beliefs are the new winds of modern teachings of men and though I cannot say that they will all not be saved, I personally am not willing to roll the dice with them with my own soul as the bet.

I hate to say this Joy, but I think you need to just walk away from interacting with this individual and kick the dust off your sandals. They aren’t listening, they aren’t going to listen, and they are quickly becoming more and more rude and vitriolic in their remarks. It indicates a lack of real respect for you as a person and as a Catholic Christian and an ongoing agenda to proselytize you (and all of us) away from our Catholic faith.

Check out that link to Bishop Sheen’s Radio Replies preface and I think you’ll come away with a very rational and peaceful joy of your salvation.

Hang in there. :thumbsup: You remain in all my prayers.

Here’s a link to John Martignoni’s Bible study notes that will cover that.

If you get EWTN TV you might look into his series Blue Collar Apologetics.

Also have a look at his YT videos called Questions Protestants Can’t Answer

Also his site is Bible Christian Society

Thanks for all those resources, Church_Militant, useful and helpful as ever. I think you’re right, it is probably time to stop engaging with this person, they aren’t actually listening to me and interacting with anything I put forward. Shame, really, we used to be good friends. I think I shall quietly disengage and go back to prayer, which I am better at than apologetics!

You have to understand that the key of St. Peter approves that the current Pope is worthy of proclaiming doctrine.

R C Sproul is mentioned on that blog.

Sproul’s famous quote regarding the canon of scripture,

“Its a fallible collection of infallible books”. :rolleyes: good grief!!! Think about THAT statement.

Next time a Protestant wants to argue sola scriptura, ask them to argue Sproul’s statement first…which is what Protestantism believes. If the canon is fallible then the scriptures can’t be trusted. And who decides anything then?

:smiley:

There isn’t anything that I can see in this article that Catholic Answers hasn’t addressed at some point. The trouble is that these arguments are so weak that I have trouble believing they are sincere, and people who put their desire to be right ahead of intellectual honesty aren’t going to be persuaded by reason. In any event, his three main arguments are that he doesn’t believe Jesus requires human effort for salvation, that he doesn’t believe in papal lineage or authority, and that he doesn’t believe in the use of statues or the veneration of saints. None of these arguments is either new or, in my opinion, particularly hard to address.

For example, the author claims that the Catholic Church doesn’t accept the Gospel because “to the free gift of salvation it adds the necessity of human effort.” Yet in Matthew 7:21, Jesus tells us, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven." So Jesus is saying that belief isn’t enough; we actually have to do stuff!

In Matthew 7:26-27, Jesus says, "And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

Again, we find Jesus telling us that his grace requires a response from us. Consider this passage (Matthew 25:34-45):

"Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’
"Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’
"And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’
"Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’
“Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’ He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’”

Feeding the hungry? Clothing the naked? Caring for the ill? Visiting the imprisoned? Does this not demonstrate that Jesus wants more from us than just a mental, even heartfelt acknowledgment of himself as Lord, God, and Savior, but for us to live out the Gospel in our actions?

Here’s an article by Tim Staples on the subject: catholic.com/magazine/articles/we-can-work-it-out

The next paragraph is just circular logic:

Rome claims to trace her lineage in an unbroken line that extends all the way back to the apostle Peter to whom Christ said, “Upon this rock I will build my church.” In this way she says that she is the church with the power and authority to demand the allegiance and bind the conscience of every Christian. I do not recognize such lineage and, therefore, do not recognize such authority.

So, the author doesn’t accept the lineage of the Church because he doesn’t accept the lineage of the Church. That’s like saying I don’t accept that chickens are birds because I don’t accept that chickens are birds.

But it is really the denial of papal authority, not the claim thereof, that breaks from the original teachings of Christianity, as this article demonstrates: catholic.com/tracts/the-authority-of-the-pope-part-i

The claim about Catholics worshiping statues is, in my opinion, so ludicrous that I have trouble believing anyone who makes it actually believes it and isn’t just throwing whatever arguments he can out there to see if anyone will bite. I don’t worship statues, but I do have statues and other items that help me visualize Jesus, Mary, the saints, etc.

Here are some articles from CA on the use of statues:
catholic.com/tracts/do-catholics-worship-statues
catholic.com/blog/tim-staples/so-catholics-worship-statues
catholic.com/quickquestions/how-can-the-church-allow-statues-when-exodus-20-forbids-it

And here are a couple on the veneration of saints:
catholic.com/tracts/saint-worship
catholic.com/tracts/praying-to-the-saints

I’ve come to that conclusion, too.

I also second Blue Collar Apologetics. He lays out his responses to anti-Catholic screeds in a way that’s easy to understand.

The article is very light on arguments.

I don’t believe… The Catholic Church is not… The Catholic Church is not really…

that’s about all it has to say without giving many, if any reasons behind why the author thinks these things.

Seems very poorly written IMO.

-Tim-

Doctrine supposes you are in the right mind. Do have an understanding of truth, that doctrine will never ever fail.

Well…here is 150 reasons to be catholic:

ourcatholicfaith.org/reasons.html

ne Hundred Fifty Reasons I’m Catholic
And You Should Be Too!
by Dave Armstrong

  1. Best One-Sentence Summary: I am convinced that the Catholic Church conforms much more closely to all of the biblical data, offers the only coherent view of the history of Christianity (i.e., Christian, apostolic Tradition), and possesses the most profound and sublime Christian morality, spirituality, social ethic, and philosophy.

  2. Alternate: I am a Catholic because I sincerely believe, by virtue of much cumulative evidence, that Catholicism is true, and that the Catholic Church is the visible Church divinely-established by our Lord Jesus, against which the gates of hell cannot and will not prevail (Mt 16:18), thereby possessing an authority to which I feel bound in Christian duty to submit.

  3. 2nd Alternate: I left Protestantism because it was seriously deficient in its interpretation of the Bible (e.g., “faith alone” and many other “Catholic” doctrines - see evidences below), inconsistently selective in its espousal of various Catholic Traditions (e.g., the Canon of the Bible), inadequate in its ecclesiology, lacking a sensible view of Christian history (e.g., “Scripture alone”), compromised morally (e.g., contraception, divorce), and unbiblically schismatic, anarchical, and relativistic. I don’t therefore believe that Protestantism is all bad (not by a long shot), but these are some of the major deficiencies I eventually saw as fatal to the “theory” of Protestantism, over against Catholicism. All Catholics must regard baptized, Nicene, Chalcedonian Protestants as Christians.

  4. Catholicism isn’t formally divided and sectarian (Jn 17:20-23; Rom 16:17; 1 Cor 1:10-13).

I like # 3 and #4…so memorize them and share them with your friend.

And then, ask your friend…why does he/she believes her interpretation of the Gospel, or her protestant denomination or her pastor’s gospel preaching is true? How can he/she know?

You have already been given a lot of good resources so I am going to give you some personal experience.

The first thing you will need to ask yourself is how important of a friend is she? I am not trying to be unkind, but this is an important question. This will determine the amount of time you will want to devote to this painful undertaking. I have been going through this, making zero visible head way, with my son for about 2 years now. I can only pray some of the info I give him will come back to his mind and he will eventually see the misguided information he is being taught. If she is an important friend I would kindly present to her Church Militant’s information. However, if this is not worth hours of your life I would give her a few bits of info and leave the ball in her court. Something I would probably recommend would be:

Tell her you read the article you sent her and appreciated his opinions. Seeing that she is willing to readily accept the validity of someones words written almost 2000 years after the death of Christ ask her if she would be willing to read some of the writings of the Church Fathers, who learned directly from the Apostles, written within 100 years of the death of Christ. I fear the answer would be no with the reasoning that if their writings were inspired they would have been put in the Bible. I am still trying to figure out how one of James White’s books (oh don’t even get me started on him) is considered a good biblical reference but the church Fathers aren’t inspired. :confused:

At least her answer will let you know if you are dealing with an irrational person that only wants to listen to what is easiest for her.

I don’t want to high jack your thread with my personal ordeal but if you need some support through this feel free to sent me a private message.

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