Attending a Protestant Church


OP, you shouldn’t go. Your heart is too hard. God is also present at non-Catholic worship (“Whenever two or three are gathered together…”), and maybe, just maybe, he intends you to hear something important there. But you wouldn’t be able to hear it anyway, because your ears and your mind are closed. Either go because you want to go, or don’t. Your wife and kids can go without you, then meet up with you later.


I don’t really get that… As a Protestant, there is nothing wrong w/ making the sign of the cross. Anglicans and Lutherans do make the sign of the cross… I believe the Protestant view would be that it is wrong to compel or force people to do it.


She is not currently singing in the choir, I guess outside of promoting your singing career, just casual membership in a Protestant church choir is outside the realm of reasonable activities for a Catholic, because it would be an ongoing thing / habit.


Yea, I was surprised to hear that other Protestant denominations had the sign of the cross, because they seemed to write it off so quickly as something only Catholics do.


I think it is a good intention to love Protestants, as we are called to love all, even those separated by doctrine, and to seek to build up ecumenism.

After all I’ve gathered, I think that if like me you are secure in your faith, you can think critically about what they are preaching, and generally have no intention of actually becoming a Protestant or giving anyone the impression that you will leave the Catholic Church, you can go once or twice, for a grave reason.


I think you are right on, if it is a religious reason, meaning hoping to get something you normally get from Mass from a Protestant service, and are open to becoming Protestant, then you have no business being at a Protestant church.

There are many ways to supplement your spiritual life.

Like me though, if you have in-laws who invite you all the time, hoping perhaps to convert you one day, then you have to be even more careful.


With all due respect you don’t know me and don’t know my heart or ears or mind. I think critically about what is said in Protestant services and sort out the good from the bad, I’m not saying it’s all bad, there is a lot they have in common with Catholics.

It’s not as simple as go if you want to, if you don’t don’t. That is why I posted all the conditions, and am open to what people say, within reason.

What is the reason my wife and kids can go? Again, my wife is going solely to greet, not to worship or take part in the service, and my daughter is 3 years old. My in-laws have subtly said many times they want us to convert and want to show us off as potential converts. They respect my wife’s conversion, but still are holding out hope for her.


I have been to Protestant Churches for services but did not participate and I understood that it is not fulfilling my regular Sunday Obligation.

Under those circumstances I thought it would be ok.


From a Catholic perspective, there are certainly false doctrines within Protestant teaching, and technically, they are heretics. They may consider us or other Protestants heretics as well, it is religious nomenclature, can’t get around it.

To affirm the truth of something is to necessarily deny its opposite, if it is true that bread becomes Jesus’s body, then it is false to say it doesn’t. One who holds to that false belief would be a heretic, in religious language. In no way does that cheapen the Catholic faith.


That is amazing to me, I thought that all Protestants held to the same teaching on that one.

Again, it’s hard to find a universal Protestant doctrine.


I find the Protestant-Catholic debate tiresome. Like I’m trapped in a B-movie from the 1950’s. When I became interested in Faith about 18 years ago, my spiritual friend, Fr. Gerry, asked me what faith tradition I wanted to be–Jewish, Buddhist, Protestant, Catholic, etc. Because he had friends in each one and would refer me to the one I wanted to go to. When, after some discernment, I told him I had decided to join my wife in her Catholic faith, my Catholic friend Fr. Gerry joked, “Why the hell would you want to do that?”! Today, I work for the Catholic Church and keep Fr. Gerry’s perspective very much in the fore front of my thinking.


I’m not clear on what you mean by that. Did I say something wrong?


As do I, why don’t Catholics and Protestants unite, once and for all and there will be no more divisions over these issues? It would solve innumerable problems in our world.


We don’t have to debate, we can accept different views. Like the 3 blind men trying to describe an elephant–when one has the tail, one has the middle and one has the tusk.


we must debate and dialog. We can’t just accept different views. We should be making all effort to be unified. Why? because that is what Jesus Christ wants. It’s what he prayed for. He prayed that we all be one. He did not pray that we all just accept different views.

I will do all that I can to not be a block to Christ’s prayer for us. If that means having to learn how to debate and dialog and to do it in a most Christian and charitable way then I will. It also means I had to search for the Church founded by Jesus Christ.


Exactly, in the case of Protestant views and Catholic views, it is more like one feels a paw and another feels a hoof, they don’t describe the same animal. Either the Pope is the successor of Peter and holds the keys of the kingdom, or he doesn’t. Either Christ founded the Catholic Church and it can trace its roots to 33AD or not. Likewise for many teachings, they are either true or false, like whether an elephant has a tail or not.

We should strive to find out the nature of the true church and see if the Catholic Church fits that description.


Another thing I wanted to ask.

If I understand correctly, according to some of the posters here, I am uncharitable by not going to my in-laws church.

If we apply that same standard to my in-laws, would they be uncharitable if we invited them and they didn’t attend our Catholic Church?


In short, yes.

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Ok fair enough, thank you :slight_smile:


It depends. My Anglican church does, as do many.

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