Help me do Apoligetics to a non practicing catholic

What is a Catholic response to the below message? The person I am discussing this with is a Catholic who is practicing as a Protestent and thier beliefs. He is conducting a bible study which I have stopped attending because of errors or slant that he is putting on the bible. His email is shown below without any reference to names per your rules.

Hello,

Not sure I understand all your objections, as I have been trying to make the purposes of God in history understandable to the average church goers and house wives. I am teaching that the Holy Eucharist becomes the Body of Christ for all believers who partake in faith and obedience; so where are you in your understanding of what was discussed?

I know that it is normal for Roman Catholics to say there is no other way to God except through the church at Rome; this was the basis of the dispute that brought about the Great Schism in the 10th century, when many of the church elders split from Rome to form what we know as the Eastern Rite Church. They believed that Jesus ordained all his disciples to go out and preach the gospel, give Holy Communion, starting at Jerusalem, and that the bishop of Rome was one among equals.

St John -stayed in the Jerusalem region most of his life.
St James , -the Lord’s 1/2 brother was leader of the Church in Jerusalem much of his life.
St Thomas -went east to India, where he was martyred.
St Phillip -went to the south near Ethiopia.
All were ordained directly by Christ, so they would all disagree with you that only through Rome can a person be saved from sin or receive Holy Eucharist; the church at Rome was formed many years after the church in Jerusalem. Jerusalem is where Jesus taught, did miracles of healing, where His death and resurrection occurred, where Pentecost occurred.

Peter and Paul went to Rome as part of their missionary journey, not specifically to make Rome the seat of the church.
Please remember, it is no surprise your views and mine do not coincide exactly as we each have 40 years adult life before meeting. Anything you may hear me teach I will submit to examination to see if it is consistent with the Holy Scripture; if shown to be wrong, I will submit to the scripture.

I would like to see the time line you mentioned, so have a pleasant day!

[quote=fpiazza] Anything you may hear me teach I will submit to examination to see if it is consistent with the Holy Scripture; if shown to be wrong, I will submit to the scripture.
[/quote]

It is my opinion that this is where you START. Sola Scriptura. Get some good info on it. www.catholic.com is a good place to start as any.

I know they have articles on some of the other topics - eg the Primacy of Peter, etc.

Good luck.

Maybe this should be moved to the Apoligetics forum. :thumbsup:

Hmmm, interesting. Well, first prove the primacy of Peter. Maybe mention the letter of St. Clement. It isn’t the Bible, but it is still a historical document. Then you might have to explain baptism by desire and baptism by blood.

There are lots of things in here that need to be addressed, but take them one at a time.

When he says he will submit anything he teaches to see if it “is consistent with Holy Scripture”, what he really means is “if it is consistent with my interpretation of Holy Scripture.” It is a fact that there are many different interpretations of Scripture, including many wrong ones. Just look at all the Protestant denominations. If I say the Bible means one thing, and you say it means another, how are we to know who (if any) is correct? The answer: the Catholic Church. The Apostles, given the authority to teach, baptise, etc, passed on that power to others (most notably Matthias). This continued for two thousand years, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Every bishop can trace back through his predecessors to the Apostles themselves. That is the authority of the Church. Pretty impressive, if you ask me. My point is: what is his authority? By what power does he teach?

If he is, then, teaching his personal interpretation, he needs to be very careful, as that sort of thing is condemned in the Bible.

“First of all you must understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation.” (2 Peter 1:20)
“There are some things in them hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures.” (2 Peter 3:16) So if it is possible to misinterpret the Scriptures, how does your friend know that he is teaching the truth?

PS. - I don’t remember seeing anything in the Bible about Thomas going to India or John staying in Jerusalem. Is he gasp teaching things not in the Bible?:eek: Just my two cents.

Obviously, this fellow behind the e-mail is another misinterpreter of Matthew 16:17-19., the “You are Peter” passage.

Peace be with you!

I hope this helps

[quote=fpiazza]I know that it is normal for Roman Catholics to say there is no other way to God except through the church at Rome; this was the basis of the dispute that brought about the Great Schism in the 10th century, when many of the church elders split from Rome to form what we know as the Eastern Rite Church. They believed that Jesus ordained all his disciples to go out and preach the gospel, give Holy Communion, starting at Jerusalem, and that the bishop of Rome was one among equals.
[/quote]

It is not a teaching of the Catholic Church that the Church of Rome is the “only way to God”. In fact, all one has to do is look at the Catechism to see that. Or, talk to any apologist or priest.
Your friend has his history wrong here, too. While the papacy was certainly a big part of the split between East and West, I wouldn’t say it was the basis of the split. The Schism had more to do with the filioque and doctrine of Original Sin as far as I’ve read in my research. I’ll give you a brief example at the end of my post on why the bishop of Rome was not simply “one among equals”.

[quote=fpiazza] St John -stayed in the Jerusalem region most of his life.
St James , -the Lord’s 1/2 brother was leader of the Church in Jerusalem much of his life.
St Thomas -went east to India, where he was martyred.
St Phillip -went to the south near Ethiopia.
All were ordained directly by Christ, so they would all disagree with you that only through Rome can a person be saved from sin or receive Holy Eucharist; the church at Rome was formed many years after the church in Jerusalem. Jerusalem is where Jesus taught, did miracles of healing, where His death and resurrection occurred, where Pentecost occurred.
[/quote]

See, that should be a red light right there. Your friend refers to James as the “the Lord’s 1/2 brother”. Jesus did not have any siblings. The listings of where the disciples went is irrelevent and meant to draw your attention from what you are claiming. Your friend is simply trying to sound like he knows what he’s talking about by doing that.
It doesn’t matter when the church within the city of Rome was founded; what matters is when the Church was founded (note the use of lower case and capital letters). The Church was founded on Peter, just like Scripture tells us. Pick up a copy of Steve Ray’s book Upon this Rock for an EXCELLENT defense of the papacy from Scripture and early Christian writings.

[quote=fpiazza] Peter and Paul went to Rome as part of their missionary journey, not specifically to make Rome the seat of the church.
Please remember, it is no surprise your views and mine do not coincide exactly as we each have 40 years adult life before meeting. Anything you may hear me teach I will submit to examination to see if it is consistent with the Holy Scripture; if shown to be wrong, I will submit to the scripture.
[/quote]

That first sentence is true, but your friend is again confusing the location of Rome with the Church itself. The location of Rome in and of itself is not important. What is important about Rome, however, is that the seat of St. Peter is there; Rome is where St. Peter died. I’ll refer you to the library on this site under the “Church and Papacy” section for writings by the Church Fathers talking about the primacy of Rome. Again, get Steve Ray’s book for some excellent Scriptural defense of the papacy that your friend might be willing to accept.

Bishop of Rome, Patriarch of the West, the Pope…When Jesus gave Peter the keys to the Kingdom, he was making a reference to an Old Testament passage on stewardship (Isaiah 22). The steward had the “keys to the kingdom” and spoke and acted with the authority of the king. When the steward died, that authority passed to his SUCCESSORS…in the case of Peter, the bishops of Rome. Since the Gospels were written for Jews, any Jew with knowledge of Scripture would have instantly picked up on this reference and its meaning.

In Christ,
Rand

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