[quote=jmm08]Actually I disagree strongly.
Jesus said… Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
Obviously, the two or three gathered in His name can even be outside a church. For example, when Jan Tyranowski met with a young Mr. Karol in occupied Poland when such meetings were illegal. Mr. Karol went on to become a priest and is our current Pope John Paul II. I would hate to make any blanket statement that Christ is not present in other Christian Churches (aside from Catholic). I wouldn’t believe it either.
Properly, our relationships with others can be diagrammed as a cross. The Jewish word shalom means peace and justice in all relationships. The Hawaiian word aloha comes close to that meaning as well.
Our vertical (upward) relationship with Jesus, with God, with Mary. Perhaps also with our Priest confessor or our Priest in the Mass.
Our horizontal relationships with other Christians. We are to love one another. That is how others know that we are Christians and that we have something special.
Our horizontal relationships with others (non-Christians). We are also to love them and be a witness to them. Pray for them.
Our relationships with souls in purgatory (perhaps horizontal). To pray for them. To ask them to remember us and to pray for us when they get to heaven. Is this horizontal or vertical, I don’t know.
Our fellowship with saints in heaven. To learn about them as examples for us. To pray for their assistance. Is this horizontal or vertical, I don’t know.
Our vertical relationship (downward) to assist Mary in trodding on the serpent. To bruise his head. Keep the devil under your feet.
I think even as a Catholic that we are responsible for more than just the vertical relationship with God.
So now that I am thinking Catholic, I find that there are more possible relationships to build. And more to be responsible for. Not less.
I didn’t say that Jesus wasn’t present in other Churches. I said: “Catholic worship is God-centered. Protestant ‘worship’ is a sermon, a song, a prayer, and heavy on the fellowship. This is because they don’t have the Eucharist.”
If you think Christ’s Eucharistic Presence is equivalent in any way to the “fellowship” Baptists have, you don’t understand the Eucharist.
Catholic worship is verticle (the Holy Mass is a sacrifice, offered to God), Protestant worship is horizontal (people-centered). I was Baptist for many years. It is a social gathering where we celebrated each other’s presence, fellowshipped, read our proof’ texts from the Bible, sang a couple of songs, prayed a little, and listened to a looooooong sermon. There was no “adoration” or “worship” to it. The focus in Protestant worship is on thee and me. The focus in Catholic worship is on Him.
Perhaps you’ll understand it better bye and bye. Have you ever attended a Latin Tridentine Mass?