Attending protestant services: true worship and false


#1

I want your opinions: Is it wrong for Catholics to participate in the worship of the false protestant religion without a very good reason? This could include merely attending the services and other religious activities, to actively participating in them, to receiving communion from them. I want your ideas about what situations would be wrong and what would be okay.
I THINK that before Vatican II it was not okay, but has this changed? After all, Pope John Paul II gathered not only with Protestants but many false pagan religions to pray at Assisi.


#2

BTW, what inspired me to create this thread is I was recently reading about the Protestant reformation in England during the reign of Elizabeth I and onward, where many Catholics retained their beliefs but attended the false Anglican protestant services anyway as mandated by law, while other Catholics refused to attend them and held secret masses in their homes and were sometimes martyred.


#3

It depends on a couple different issues.

If you do/did any of the following:

[list]
*]Substituting a protestant worship service for the Catholic Mass
*]Partaking in their version of the Lord’s Supper
*]Going to a protestant service for the sole purpose of entertainment at their expense
[/list]

It is wrong to go/participate in their services.

However, I think it is ok to attend a protestant service if you are:
[list]
*]Also fulfill your Sunday obligation to attend Mass
*]Go to a service to see how they worship and do not participate in their “Holy Communion”
*]Go to one because you were invited to a wedding or funeral
[/list]

This is my understanding on the matter of Catholics attending protestant services.


#4

[quote=MVH]It depends on a couple different issues.

If you do/did any of the following:

[list]
*]Substituting a protestant worship service for the Catholic Mass
*]Partaking in their version of the Lord’s Supper
*]Going to a protestant service for the sole purpose of entertainment at their expense
[/list]
It is wrong to go/participate in their services.

However, I think it is ok to attend a protestant service if you are:
[list]
*]Also fulfill your Sunday obligation to attend Mass
*]Go to a service to see how they worship and do not participate in their “Holy Communion”
*]Go to one because you were invited to a wedding or funeral
[/list]
This is my understanding on the matter of Catholics attending protestant services.
[/quote]

I would agree with this. It all comes down to if your going there in place of Sunday Mass.

If a spouse/friend was protestant I say it would be a way to show support for them and even learn how to talk to them about the Catholic faith.


#5

I participated and sang in a non-denominational gospel choir (I LOOOVVVE to sing), and many of my singing buddies are in this group. Many times, we had to sing as part of their worship service, but near the end of my participation, I would just go up, sing what I needed to sing, and quietly excuse myself during the rest of the service.

BTW, I have left the gospel choir due to the fact that I was not comfortable being a part of this group, having rediscovered my Catholic faith (yeah, I was pretty nominal on my faith when I joined…thank God that He has shown me the error of my ways.) :thumbsup:


#6

Just remember, we call them “Separated Brethren”. They are still our Brothers in Christ.

So yes, as long as way pay attention to the guidelines put up by CatholicDude, we are not doing anything wrong. Would you think it was wrong for a protestant to come to Mass with their Catholic friend? Of course not (although the same guidelines apply).

NotWorthy


#7

I occasionally attend my husband’s evangelical church. I never partake of their weekly communion, and always attend Mass at my own parish before or afterward.

**Also…I sing in the choir…They only sing once in while, ( a worship team leads regular worship) but what I enjoy is the big Christmas production and the Easter music. My own parish choir is medocre at best, and I really need to be part of a good choir, with a good director who stretches us, and chooses wonderfu music. I struggled with this, but decided to stay with the choir…I truly love it, and love the idea of touching people’s lives through good music. I usually do not sing in a regular church service, but do participate in the Christmas production and the Easter music. **


Actually, as I have stated here before, attending this church (once in a while) only strengthens my Catholicity. Strange, but true. I am in no danger of becoming a Protestant…I know who and what I am, and am satisfied that I am where God wants me to be.



#8

A couple weeks ago, I was in NY to visit a friend. She accompanied me to Mass on Saturday evening and I accompanied her to her church (Hungarian Reformed) on Sunday.
We discussed beforehand the not participating in each other’s Communion.
She was so impressed with the Mass that we had several religious discussions the rest of the time I was there and she asked me to send her a “Catholic Bible”.
On the other hand, I was quite underwhelmed by her protestant service on Sunday - though, of course, I did not say so.
The preacher gave a good sermon, which I complimented him on, but the service itself was very dry, uninspiring and only reminded me of my joy in being part of The Holy Catholic Church.
Having come out of protestantism myself, it was my first time back in a protestant church in many years.
It was obvious to me that the protestant folk loved God and were sincere in their worship but it also slammed home to me how much they are missing.
I’m glad I went. It made my Catholic faith stronger than ever.


#9

[quote=catsrus]A couple weeks ago, I was in NY to visit a friend. She accompanied me to Mass on Saturday evening and I accompanied her to her church (Hungarian Reformed) on Sunday.
We discussed beforehand the not participating in each other’s Communion.
She was so impressed with the Mass that we had several religious discussions the rest of the time I was there and she asked me to send her a “Catholic Bible”.
On the other hand, I was quite underwhelmed by her protestant service on Sunday - though, of course, I did not say so.
The preacher gave a good sermon, which I complimented him on, but the service itself was very dry, uninspiring and only reminded me of my joy in being part of The Holy Catholic Church.
Having come out of protestantism myself, it was my first time back in a protestant church in many years.
It was obvious to me that the protestant folk loved God and were sincere in their worship but it also slammed home to me how much they are missing.
I’m glad I went. It made my Catholic faith stronger than ever.
[/quote]

See? That is how I feel when I attend church with my family at their evangelical church…The only difference is that they do have a vibrant service…Lots of music, which I love, and good preaching. But…I am always reminded of how “full” the Catholic faith is…Protestants are good and sincere Christians, but they do miss out on a lot.


#10

Attending is not bad to learn from them or to share your Faith. Do not participate in the the service though.

We pray together at ball games, etc. It is OK to pray together just do not take part in their herisey to God.


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