I responded to a post in another thread, admittedly off topic and it was suggested I start another thread with the content of my responce. So here goes. I’ll start with what I wrote in the other thread and tack on the question which is the premise of this thread.
My experience, compounded by a very distressing discussion just yesterday, is that there is no other group so strongly anti-catholic, then a catholic who has no idea of what thier faith is about.
My discussion became so distressing I was almost convinced that the entire idea of catholicism is false simply because the vast majority of catholics are no more “catholic” then an individual from another faith or an individual from no faith at all.
Christ said, Satan will not prevail against His church. Which of course means if Satan does prevail, the concept of the Christian God is meaningless. I’d pose the question (in lew of the conversation I had yesterday as well my catholic experience in general) is, Has Satan prevailed?
I don’t think Satan has prevailed because I think if Christ’s church has not withstood the test of time, it’s not because Satan prevailed. That would give credence to the idea of Christ.
I’d lean more towards the “idea” that since there is little evidence of a true church (as we understand the church to be) that the situation is not that Satan prevailed,but rather, there is no Christ and therefore no Satan.
How do we define “prevailed”? If there is one fool left who believed in Christianity, has Satan not pervailed? There may be more then one, but Catholicism is certainly a minority. I’d suggest a vast minority. I’d suggest, an almost significant (relatively speaking)presence in the world. ( I know there are 1 billion but of that 1 billion how many know what is means to be catholic?) I think it can be reasonably argued. that Satan (or lackthereof,) has prevailed.
It was one very discouraging conversation as you can probably tell from the content of this reply. I am asking myself, “Am I the fool”?
Question (problem I am having):
Christ stated a couple of things that I find relevant here. “The gates of hell will not prevail against His Church” and, “Go forth and preach the Good News to all nations” (both off the top of my head…paraphrased). We are instructed that Faith should never go against reason. Is it reasonable to think the Church has not failed when so few Christians understand the teachings of the Catholic(the one true) church?
The “word” of Chritianity has certainly spread all over the world. Butin any one given community (certainly here in the USA) the word has not been heard.
Maybe some will say they disagree with statistical approach to my problem. I believe the number of Catholics who have a “reasonable” understanding of the Catholicism is in the single percentage points. I firmly feel this way based on my experiences. Since coming back to a Faith and attempting to learn all I can I find I am alone. Other then virtual reality,CAF, EWTN etc. I am alone in my Catholic faith amongst Catholic friends (who vehemently deny anythhing I suggest such as Apostolic succession), and Catholic family.
By my experience, by any conservative measure I can manifest, the Church has not “prevailed” over anything at all. The Church is very lonely place indeed.
BTW, I am not giving up. In fact I am off to Mass right now . I’m simply troubled.