[quote=deb1]I was visiting with my neighbor yesterday. She and her family are new Christians and attend an Independent Baptist Church. When I arrived, she was talking with a woman from her church. They were discussing this woman’s husband’s problems with the type of witnessing that her church promotes.
Apparently, they are taught to go through the trouble of befriending people. Once they win the person’s trust, then they start inviting them to church. From there they witness to them. They termed this friendship evangilism or friendship witnessing? (Can’t remember which)
Is it my imagination or does this seem underhanded? I would much rather someone openly approach me with their goals. That way, I can tell them to shut up if they offend me. It is much harder to be rude to a friend.
My friend has also expressed with me her concern that some in her church are anti Catholic. She has asked me to attend a homeschooling meeting that is conducted through her church, but the idea that I might be someone’s project puts me off.
I can understand your feeelings Deb1, but also remember that the apostles did the same thing. Andrew went and found Simon… Any way, I agree that it makes one wonder, and the fact that a lot of n-Cs are pretty “slick” about it is disconcerting.
I figure it this way, God brings real friends into our lives and we share what we love with them… that includes our faith.
I had a buddy who was a Wiccan and we talked a lot about stuff and just became friends, a lot of the n-Cs shunned him (and me because of him) and even when they talked to him it was like a high pressure debate/sales pitch and they put him down a lot.
Somehow we got on the subject of all this and he laughed when I told him I really didn’t much care what they thought since I was sure that God knows what I believe and I do too.
As we talked he opened up & I discovered something that apparently no one else knew…
“Smiley” (my friend’s nickname) started off as an atheist…later decided that he wasn’t so sure and so became an agnostic and now was an Wiccan because it seemed to him that there might be a God or gods but he wasn’t sure yet.
See a pattern? I did and I prayed that God would help me be the kind of friend to him that would allow me to share the faith with him, It worked, and he began to read everything I could offer him on being Catholic (while flat refusing anything form the n-Cs) until finally one day he simply said…“y’know, if I ever do become a Christian, it’ll be a Catholic, because what you guys say just makes the best sense.” (If ya think I didn’t praise God for that…ya don’t know me very well…)
Smiley and I lost touch when he moved away, but I remember the guy in my prayers because I know that God knows where he is and is still drawing him to Himself.
I guess the point is that I find it hard to adequately share my faith with someone that I can’t be friends with. I can talk and share with most anyone, (I don’t really meet many strangers) but a friend you can really share what makes life work with. How can one really share our most holy faith with someone else if we aren’t willing to befriend them and disciple them. (Think: sponsor in RCIA)
Fr. John McCloskey has a couple of good articles Here and Here that may also help a little,
As for n-Cs befriending me for evangelism…I reserve the right to respond in kind.