How do you explain to a Bible Christian that the history of the Church is true such as the history of the bible or the lineage of our Church when they believe that the Roman Catholic Church made up this history. My friend always points me to AntiCatholic web sites with their “historical” findings and when I give her my resource from a catholic site, she tells me to find something that hasn’t been tainted with Catholicism.
If she will take the word of a Methodist point her to Justo L. Gonzalez I found his work very readable and helpful during my journey into Catholicism. After I read the first volume of his “Story of Christianity” all I could think was, “WOW, how can this guy write this and NOT be Catholic?!”
I will pray that the Lord will give you the words your friend needs to hear.
I guess scripture is out of the question, then:thumbsup:
You know what I used the History Channel website for “unbiased” info.
I even used a dictionary and looked up those things.**
I would ask her why she should expect you to look at her sources when she is not willing to look at yours. A discussion can go no where if the different sides are not interested in looking at various different sources.
There are plenty of non-Catholic sources that can back up the Catholic claim. A good museum will have some really good Christian artifacts that are interesting to look at. Check out the Metropolitan Museum of Art and here is one discussing African Christianity. The one on Africa will also lead you to one on the Scriptures in the Medieval era. I have often found that if you type in something like “Bible in Medieval era” or “Art work during the Medieval era” you will get some really biblical things come up. If she is truly interested in studying early Christianity then she is going to have to study the Medieval era. I guarantee the Medieval era will be tough for her to deal with because she will be forced to leave many of her anti-Catholic notions behind. The people of the Medieval era were extremely devoted to Christ and you simply can NOT get around that without greatly distorting the history of the era or unless you completely ignore it. Lastly, this is another site that I have found to be interesting.
Are there any ground rules for this friendship? If she is freely pointing you to anti-Catholic sites and also freely rejecting your input into the ‘conversation’ then
*]is it a conversation?
*]what kind of relationship is it?[/LIST]
It sounds like she believes it is a teaching relationship where she gets to teach you. And it sounds like you have a different notion of the relationship. Are you communicating? What kind of common understanding do you have?
Why would you agree to such a one-sided exchange? Why not tell her to find you something that hasn’t been tainted with anti-Catholicism?
Give your friend Church History in Plain Langauge by Bruce Shelley.
Here is the Amazon link:
This is a history of the church by a respected Protestant professor from Denver Theological Seminary.
Shh! Don’t tell your friend this, but this book was one of the things that convinced me to leave the evangelical Protestant church and become Catholic! I sat in a Catholic Apologetics/History class with this book open on my lap, and it never once contradicted the teacher of the class.
The book makes it very clear that the first church was “Catholic.”
The book gives an excellent description of the Early Church Fathers and also discusses the early heresies.
In the chapters about the Reformation, the author is a little “glowing” about how necessary the Reformation was. But I would not call him anti-Catholic at all.
His chapters about all the divisions in the Protestant church are extremely useful.
The book is easy to read and understand. The language is not high and mighty.
Another book you can offer her is Being the Body by Charles Colson. Here is the link:
This is another book that convinced me to become Catholic. (Shh! Don’t tell your friend that!)
It isn’t a history. It’s an argument why the Christian churches need to work together to fight evil. Chuck Colson argues beautifully in favor of the true Christianity of the Catholic Church. (He’s a Baptist.) I thought the chapter where he describes how he became convinced of the good of the Sign of the Cross was very touching. He also makes a convincing case of how Pope John Paul II, along with Ronald Reagan, Lech Walensa, and several other faith-filled people, brought about the downfall of Communism in Europe. A great read for Catholics and Protestants.