Do we tend to mythologize Protestants' anti-Catholicism sometimes?

There are so many threads here and sites across the web that portray Catholics and Protestants as bitter enemies, much like the Autobots and Decepticons from Transformers. But from the Protestants I know, the anti-Catholicism we talk about here at CAF seems to be more remote, more extremist minorities rather than the norm of non-Catholic Christians. I originally got the erroneous impression that not Catholic = anti-Catholic. When talking about faith with my Protestant friends, they hardly say anything criticizing Catholicism. Here are possibly the most anti-Catholic things they have said:

A Baptist girl once said, “sorry, there’s no purgatory”.

And a Presbyterian guy once said “Ugh, you Catholics and your terminology.”

See? Hardly the fire-breathing accusations of James White, Lorraine Boettner or Jack Chick. Many non-Catholics will come to the Catholic youth group where I help out, and they are usually drawn in by a Kairos retreat that we run. They are very accepting of Catholicism and recognize us as Christians, just as are the famous Protestant ministers Billy Graham and Jack Van Impe. The only real anti-Catholicism I encounter regularly is here in Internetland. So is my position correct, or is there something I’m not seeing?

Another Protestant (C. S. Lewis) once said
I think we may accept it as a rule that whenever a person’s religious conversation dwells chiefly, or even frequently, on the faults of other people’s religions, she/he is in a bad condition."

I believe it is a minority of members that cause this problem.

I’m veering in between Strongly Agree and Neutral to be honest. :\

Whilst its true that the average Protestant may not have the same beliefs of the fringe, anti-Catholic fundamentalists minority but it’s that same minority that tends to have a bigger loudspeaker than the rest and, you have to admit, that does draw a lot more attention to them and fool people into thinking they’re representative of the whole bunch.

Most of these misunderstandings are caused by lack of knowledge of what we are biased against. Bishop Sheen said all the hatreds against Catholicm are based on falsehoods About the Church. The Catholic Church teaches “it Can be a sin” to look down on another Faith.

Honestly? I went to a Baptist University in undergrad in the middle of the Bible Belt. There were days where I nearly missed lunch because my bf’s roommate felt compelled to convince me that Purgatory didn’t exist, or wanted to hash out how Catholics feel about Mary and why it was wrong.

But then again, I went to a Baptist University in the middle of the Bible Belt. :slight_smile: It was cool to see students so enthused about their faith, and I probably got exposed to a segment of the population that was above-average in their fervor. Once you strike out into the real world, everyone just sort of ignores everyone else’s business and tends to their own world, and the only meaty, chewy religious discussions you get are on the Internet. :slight_smile:

Honestly, I don’t see a lot of anti Catholicism. In my experience the grand majority is from fundamental groups with a very narrow view of the world; and they also exclude other protestant denominations!

Somewhat disagree. I have known quite a few protestants in my circle of family and friends. Most of them were mainstream evangelicals, and especially Anglicans. Most of them would voice negative opinions of Catholicism occassionally, ranging from a mild disrepespect, to strong (and unfounded) criticism. Sneering and jokes are quite common. The more “enthusiastic” ones were the ones more likely to come out with strong criticism. They make no attempt to understand something before they launch into jokes and criticism. eg. “Catholics don’t read the bible”, “Catholics are superstitious about prayers to saints”, etc…

Having lived large parts of my life as both a Protestant and a Catholic, and in my experience Catholics criticise Protestants much less than vice versa.

Our church collaborates with the neighbouring Catholic and Uniting (a peculiarly Australian combination of Congregationalist, Methodist and Prebytarian churches) congregations in holding parts of it’s celebrations of Easter and Christmas. The clergy of all three take special pains to maintain a good relationship with one another.

I love our local Catholic churches, which are quite beautiful, and the clergy I’ve met there have been wonderful people. I’m also a fan of the RCC Catechism (for the most part). However, I cannot accept that I must believe everything I’m instructed to by the Pope. That’s the whole extent of my ‘anti-Catholicism’.:smiley:

I think one of the biggest problems is lumping protestants into one big group, they are WAY to diverse for that.

If we are talking super conservative fundamentalist or on the other end, the very liberal, sure, they are often pretty anti-catholic and perfectly happy being VERY vocal, and often nasty about it.

In the middle are the evangelical types who will pretty strongly disagree with much of Catholic theology, and often have misunderstandings about what we believe, but can usually keep to a fairly civil conversation.

And then there are the "mainline’ groups who will probably disagree, but fall more into the “go where ever you are fed group” and probably won’t focus much on the differences.

And of course you will get your stray individual from any of those groups who may have had a bad experience with “Catholics” somewhere along the line and likes to vent their anger.

I came from a United Methodist Church, and was very active there right up until I converted, and I didn’t get any negative comments when I left. Plenty of people didn’t really understand and plenty of people were sad to see me go, but there weren’t any negative vibes at all.

I would tend to agree it is anti-Catholic minorities that have such ideas.

I went to high school with quite a few members of the United Methodist Church. I found them to be very kind and very accepting of my Catholic faith; one girl even kinda reminded me of the Blessed Mother!

I’m a Lutheran dating a Catholic… instead of trying to talk to her about converting, I’m usually the one who corrects her statements for her whenever she says something heretical or definitely not-Catholic. I also explain a lot of the nuances of Catholicism to her since I study a ton of theology as an undergrad. So basically, I’m a Lutheran teaching a Catholic about… Catholicism… haha :shrug:

I believe that it is the age of the person that matters whether they are anti-Catholic or anti-Protestant. I had an aunt that was vehemently anti-Catholic, she was a staunch Lutheran. When she found out that I had a Catholic girlfriend at the time, she read the riot act to me. She was that way until she died. We have some older members of our church, that still have a problem with say the word Catholic because of Lutheran Pietism. I may not agree with Catholic doctrine but I am not really anti-Catholic.:slight_smile:

The Catholic Church is All Bible, ( * Where is that in the Bible, Madrid; The Supper Lamb; Scott Hahn* )and Many more. We are the only Church that Lives all the New Testament as God Intended. Every Catholic pratice Is Biblical. Purgatory is in the Old (1 Machabees) and New Testaments (Paul, Corinthians: cleansed as if by fire, before entering Heaven), and common sense. Our Church Fathers wrote the New Testament as God inspired them to. The Mass is the precise Last Supper Feast and Consecration of bread and wine By Our Lord, through the Priest, as Our Lord told the Apostles to do “In My Memory”. (Scott Hahn’s Supper Lamb new classic) :bible1:

You’re seeing exactly what I’m seeing. In fact, I’ve seen more hostility on the Catholic side of the fence. It seems some of us are constantly defending attacks that never come.

I believe that is true, especially for Lutherans. We are much closer to Catholics than what most Catholics think. We go a lot to the old Mission churches in California, when we go in we dip our fingers in the Holy water and cross ourselves and at the altar we will bow and cross our selves. Yes, Lutherans do cross themselves.

As a former Protestant myself, I can attest that anti-Catholic sentiment is definitely in Protestant churches. However, this tends to be case by case. Growing up, I heard more anti-Catholic rhetoric in classrooms than in church. Granted, the churches in my town tended to see more similarities than differences, and I definitely heard Catholics being derided in church when I was in college. I remember feeling less resentment toward Catholicism than confusion (since it made sense!)

Overall, I think that the real issue is that real hard core anti-Catholicism is an extreme stance, and those tend to be vocal. It’s a lot less “you are all going to burn in Hell” and more “how do you get that doctrine?”

I know many Protestants. None of them are even remotely anti-Catholic. They would all state many disagreements with Catholic theology (obviously, otherwise they’d be Catholics) but at least in American urban settings, religious backgrounds are so intermixed and varied that most people know others of different faiths. It’s different when people think about “those Catholics” or “those Baptists” vs. Mrs. McGillucuddy who lives next door.

In the USA, the “to each his own” ethos is very hardwired into the culture. Most American Protestants I know are more likely to say “well, I don’t agree with that” and that’s the end of their consideration. Mixed marriages (different denominations) are also very common in the U.S.

Of course, I don’t find this forum to be very representative of American Catholics in general, either. This forum is very conservative and reads more like The Wanderer than Commonweal or U.S. Catholic. I’m not say that’s right or wrong, just pointing out where it lies on the spectrum.

Any thread that mentions Transformers I’m all over.

Anyway, it depends on the Protestant, depends on teh Catholic. I know so many anti-catholic protestants, even my protestant friends have an underlying distrust of Catholicism and occasionally let slip a passive aggressive grumble.

With that said, I know some really nasty anti-protestant, arrogant Catholics who shame themselves and the truth they claim to spout.

We all have to take responsibility for all our dirty laundry on both sides.

I can’t speak for the USA but in England there’s not much anti-catholic feeling. Unfortunately there is in Scotland and the north of Ireland.

Anti-catholic Anglicans are very unusual, since we consider the RCC to be our beloved (elder) sister church. I belonged to an Anglican forum once, a Church of Ireland one, and there was a strong ethos: no anti-catholicism here, beyond the occasional criticism. But there were quite a lot of anti-Presbyterian comments.

Having said that, when the BBC Christian topic forum closed down I looked for other forums and yes, some of them were anti-catholic, so I didn’t join.

Sadly, there’s quite a bit of anti-Anglicanism round, on the BBC, in the Murdoch press and in this forum (eg the guy who claimed that we introduced abortion on demand).

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