Catholics do not believe in God's grace!


#1

My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?


#2

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?
[/quote]

What would be the point of countering it if Superpope Grandma is just going to walk away after making her infallible pontifications? Look up the CCC on grace.

Scott


#3

Well, how was she “saved?” That sounds more like playing the yes-no game than actually presenting any type of argument for or against our experience of God’s Grace. She has given you an opinion without any justification at all, not even a description of how she was saved, or how her view of God’s Grace differs from that of Catholics.

newadvent.org/cathen/06701a.htm

Under the justification heading, it talks about the difference between the Catholic and Protestant views of grace. Take a look at that.

Eamon


#4

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?
[/quote]

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1996 Our justification comes from the grace of God. Grace is favor, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life.


#5

tell her you were 11 more recently and that you were also saved and God has been with you. What would she say to that?


#6

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?
[/quote]

Assuming that you are quoting her correctly, the one statement…

G: “No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!”

…makes it sound like your grandmom’s position is, “Once saved, always saved, by God’s grace; Catholics don’t believe in ‘once saved, always saved’; therefore, Catholics don’t believe in God’s grace!”

In fact, the gospels condemn this position, first by implicitly condemning once saved, always saved, in the Parable of the Ten Virgins; and second by condemning certainty of future salvation in the Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican.

In the Parable of the Ten Virgins, Matrthew 25:1-13, there are two groups of virgins. Each has “five (5)” virgins, where each virgin in each group has a “lighted lamp.” Five = “Christ.” “Lighted lamp” = Fire Type = “a special presence of God.” So, the parable gives us a double assurance that each group starts out saved in the parable. One group nonetheless ends up locked-out of the feast. I.e., the lost their salvation. This is clearly not “once saved, always saved.”

In the Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican, the Publican has one redeeming social value – he is humble enough to suspect that he is damned. Christ says that he is saved. The Pharisee, on the other hand, fasts twice a week, prays in the Temple, and tithes. He clearly believes that he is saved. Christ declares him “unjustified” – damnable.

Whom does your grandmom most resemble?


#7

I understand some of your frustration. My grandfather, a devout Southern Baptist, upright, godly, and loving, still will occasionally worry about my Catholicism (I converted at 26) and try to talk to me about it. He tells me, “I know YOU’RE saved, but…” and in that brief second before he continues, I always wonder, “What’s worrying him now, Mary, the Pope, Purgatory, what?” I always respectfully answer him and correct any misconceptions, but some ignorance about the Church is truly invincible (“I think the Catholic Church oughtta git rid of the pope, idn’t no pope in the Bible!”). I just got back from a two week trip home, and this time, he gently tried to caution me about “false interpretations” of the Bible and that we had to be wise about which “teacher” we listened to. I patted his arm and said,“Don’t worry, Pawpaw, my teacher is the Successor to Saint Peter.” I felt guilty because as I remember it now, it sounds a little triumphalistic, which I think we must avoid, as humility serves the truth better and (as has been pointed out) it is Grace that redeems us anyway, so there is no room for pride. Nonetheless, it can be a bit wearing. I do not buy into a Feeneyite interpretation of EENS, so I do not worry about my grandfather (he’s holier and more Christ-like than ***any ***priest I’ve ever met and he beats the bishops all hollow). I do wish more of our fellow Christians understood what the Church really teaches and who and what she is.


#8

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?
[/quote]

Pray for her?

I honestly don’t know what to tell people who claim to tell me what I believe, and refuse to listen.


#9

RomanRiteTeen,

Well, I think “mommy” may be right: you should pray for her, and maybe that’s all you’ll be able to do. You’re in a tough spot—if someone insists on telling you what you believe and getting it wrong despite your attempts to correct the misconceptions, you’re stuck. One suggestion: copy the relevant parts of the CCC that have to do with grace, and then hand it to her instead of just repeating what you have already said. The CCC is “official” Church teaching, so ask her to find where it says that we are not saved by grace.

Good luck!


#10

I’m in the same boat with most of my family (I’m the only Cathoic). She will not believe you even if you brought her undeniable facts and documentation. All you can do is pray for her.


#11

My in-laws do that too and it is very frustrating. Every once in a while they’d spout off some wacky “Catholics believe this, that or the other” statement; completely oblivious to the stupidity of it.

Here’s an actual, factual example…

My mother-in-law saw a crucifix at a Catholic hospital and said to her friend that; “Catholics still believe Jesus is on the cross”. I said; "Clara, now that’s crazy. You honestly believe that Catholics going to Jerusalem would expect to see Jesus hanging on the cross 2,000 years later?” She said; “Yes”, I said; “Doesn’t that sound stupid?”, she said; “Yes, it is stupid but that’s what you believe and there’s the proof” (pointing to the crucifix).

:hmmm:


#12

[quote=Wildgraywolf]My mother-in-law saw a crucifix at a Catholic hospital and said to her friend that; “Catholics still believe Jesus is on the cross”. I said; "Clara, now that’s crazy. You honestly believe that Catholics going to Jerusalem would expect to see Jesus hanging on the cross 2,000 years later?” She said; “Yes”, I said; “Doesn’t that sound stupid?”, she said; “Yes, it is stupid but that’s what you believe and there’s the proof” (pointing to the crucifix).:hmmm:
[/quote]

I absolutely hate that! I know that we should approach situations like that with love in our hearts but I can’t stand someone being ridiculous in a vain attempt to win an argument. Had it been me she said that to, I would have probably told her that since she believes that, she wouldn’t mind me going to her home and helping her to burn her photo albums and any pictures she has on the mantle. After all, those people in the pictures aren’t still posing or playing at the beach like they were back when the picture was taken. Why keep them if her grandchildren are now 10 years old and when the picture was taken, he/she was only 2? She’d probably say that pictures are a way to look back and remember special moments. Well mom, for Catholics, the greatest and most important moment in all of humanity was when Jesus Christ came into this world and died so that mankind might be saved. We weren’t saved because Christ came off the cross! We were saved because He died there! You can make fun of us or beat us up for valuing and choosing to remember what He sacrificed for you and me if you want to because it will only serve to make me more confident that I choose the correct Church to be a member of. The one that doesn’t ridicule someone for loving Christ and remembering what He has done for the world.

Do I sound harsh?


#13

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]…G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say"…
[/quote]

She sounds very protestant as this is one of the most common responses I see from protestants. The biggots anyway. Rather then accepting the ‘truth’ from a Catholic on what Catholics believe they tend to walk off and continue to choose what they want to believe Catholics believe. It’s easier for them to keep their head in the hole if they walk off. The truth about the Church Christ founded and is with today may be too shocking for many of them to accept. They often would prefer a religion that allows them to pick and choose or reinvent what Jesus gave us in His Gospel.

Oh well, good luck. I have some protestant anti-Catholic biggots in my family that actually believe the ‘Roman’ Catholics crucified Christ, celabecy causes preists to become sexual preditors, the Baptists were the origional religion founded by Christ and the Catholics broke off, Emporer Constitine was the first pope and founded Catholicism in 313 A.D., they are saved by faith in Jesus alone, nuns are beaten daily and kept caged up, Jesus had siblings, etc…:whacky:

Just say a rosary for your grandmother every day and others like her. Prayer is a tool Jesus gave us so use it and use it often. Jesus prayed for 40 straight days and fasted. That adds up to a little over 10% of the days in a year. Catholics pray often and for long periods on end, something many protestants have discarded. Pray, pray and pray.

The good news though is that some outside Christs Catholic Church have a chance at salvation. Lets pray for all souls to get salvation. Uhm? One praryer in the rosary says just that too!:smiley:


#14

[quote=Tietjen]I absolutely hate that! I know that we should approach situations like that with love in our hearts but I can’t stand someone being ridiculous in a vain attempt to win an argument. Had it been me she said that to, I would have probably told her that since she believes that, she wouldn’t mind me going to her home and helping her to burn her photo albums and any pictures she has on the mantle. After all, those people in the pictures aren’t still posing or playing at the beach like they were back when the picture was taken. Why keep them if her grandchildren are now 10 years old and when the picture was taken, he/she was only 2? She’d probably say that pictures are a way to look back and remember special moments.
[/quote]

Yep, there is a double standard that defies all reason & logic. I do not understand how anyone can maintain such a mind-set. Like the OP’s grandmother, my in-laws hold; “this is what Catholics believe”, then cover their ears, close eyes, and walk away.

[quote=Tietjen] Well mom, for Catholics, the greatest and most important moment in all of humanity was when Jesus Christ came into this world and died so that mankind might be saved. We weren’t saved because Christ came off the cross! We were saved because He died there!
[/quote]

OMG… My wife said something very similar to her mother once and she replied, “Then how keep being a Catholic”. We were both speechless.

[quote=Tietjen]You can make fun of us or beat us up for valuing and choosing to remember what He sacrificed for you and me if you want to because it will only serve to make me more confident that I choose the correct Church to be a member of. The one that doesn’t ridicule someone for loving Christ and remembering what He has done for the world.
[/quote]

Ahhh… Therein lays the start of my wife’s conversion story.

[quote=Tietjen] Do I sound harsh?
[/quote]

Nope, you should hear my wife…

Like the experience of the OP; bigotry and willful ignorance are tough animals to tame.


#15

Hello RomanRiteTeen,

Ask your Grandmother, “What good must I do to possess everlasting life?” After she gives her answer, say, “No, what is the perfect answer to this question? What was Jesus answer?”

NAB MAT 19:16

“Teacher, what good must I do to possess everlasting life?” He answered, “Why do you question me about what is good? There is One who is good. If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments." “Which ones?” he asked. Jesus replied “You shall not kill”; ‘You shall not commit adultery’; ‘You shall not steal’; ‘You shall not bear false witness’; ‘Honor your father and mother’; and ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

In Christ’s answer He does not mention that forgiveness through his body and blood is also needed to go to heaven but we know He Knew and taught this. The Church knows and teaches that the only way to heaven is through the blood of Jesus. Salvation through the blood of Jesus is what the Mass is all about. The Church also teaches the other things Jesus taught that we must do to go to heaven such as obey the commandments and feed the poor.

Ask your grandmother if she objects to Jesus teaching that we must obey the commandments with all our hearts to go to heaven through Him. The Protestants oppose Christ’s teachings in their “faith only” theology.

The way people go to heaven is through the blood of Jesus, the reason people go to heaven is because they love God and love for God is acomplished through free from the will of God obedience to the will of God.

Please visit Jesus, What Must I Do To Share In Everlasting Life?

Peace in Christ,
Steven Merten
www.ILOVEYOUGOD.com


#16

[quote=RomanRiteTeen]My grandmother says this often, usually presenting it as her reason for being a Protestant. Often our conversations go like this:

G: "Catholics do not believe in God’s Grace!"
Me: "But we do…"
G: "No you do not. All I no is that when I was 11, and when I was saved, God has always been with me!“
Me: But–
G: *stubbornly walks away and/or shrugs of what I else I say”

How do I counter this? I think she would be convinced if she saw some sort of Church Document, or heard a ‘good’ argument. Any suggestions?
[/quote]

Tell her to look at the council of Trent.

CANON I.-If any one saith, that man may be justified before God by his own works, whether done through the teaching of human nature, or that of the law, without the grace of God through Jesus Christ; let him be anathema.

CANON II.-If any one saith, that the grace of God, through Jesus Christ, is given only for this, that man may be able more easily to live justly, and to merit eternal life, as if, by free will without grace, he were able to do both, though hardly indeed and with difficulty; let him be anathema.

CANON III.-If any one saith, that without the prevenient inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and without his help, man can believe, hope, love, or be penitent as he ought, so as that the grace of Justification may be bestowed upon him; let him be anathema.


#17

Yes we do, that’s why we go to confession, to regain grace lost by sin, or in other-words, to recover lost ground.


#18

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