How do Catholics view the "One Verse Churches"

I never paid much attention to all the different Christian churches around me, until I started a research project for an article on religions in America. These small mostly rural churches are based on one or two verses of the bible, one aspect, or a quote. They appear to place value on works of the individual. I understand that all churches and religions are free to believe as they wish. These churches are also very tribal in the way they operate. Everyone is not welcome and they openly speak against, and even ostracize people who don’t follow their beliefs. It seems that others are viewed as enemies. That would include Catholics, Methodists, Episcopalians, Lutherans, Presbyterians, etc… I have heard members of these churches call Catholics such things as “demonic idolators.” I have never heard any of my Catholic teachers speak negatively about other religions or the people who follow them. What do Catholics say (if anything) about these churches?

What verse is that?

We say that they are poor, misguided people who decided to rely on their personal interpretation of the Bible rather than on the Holy Spirit’s guidance through the Catholic Church. We pray for them, that they may return to the Truth, and stand ready to welcome them should any of them heed the call home.

Have to say this is about the best answer.


Catholics believe that they are in error. Now, there is some truth in all true Christian denominations, but they do not and cannot possess all of God’s revealed truth. They have scripture, but lack the other two legs of the table of faith: the Apostolic Tradition, and the Magisterium (authority) to interpret scripture and teach without error.

Normally, Romans 3:28

I don’t see “Churches” in this verse? Is this the right verse?

28 [a]For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.

Somebody must have got you started. :wink:

I was feeling, oh, what shall we say? Wistful? Pensive? -]Flowery/-]. Nah, I just summarized the statements of countless converts that I have read here and heard on “The Journey Home”

A family friend recently gave my wife an “inspirational” book, written by the wife of some bible pastor. It was very emotional and contained much gushing praise of a Lord “Who did everything for us long ago (so we need to do nothing)” that reading it it seemed like trying to inflate a balloon with a hole in it. Being unsustainable, at some point, you are going to hyperventilate and go “thud” It has since been recycled.

Could this also include snake handling churches that misinterpret mark?

This was my very first thought as well. I believe this practice is actually illegal in many places.

I think it is illegal except for West Virginia, or so I heard on a history channel documentary (so I don’t know if its legit). Honestly I don’t know how you can take just this one verse and base a whole church on it, but for people in these churches its all they know

If you have a community that is involved, not only is it all you know, it is all anyone around you knows. Look at the small churches with the snakes. They tend to be in isolated communities and are led by someone in whom the members place their total allegiance.

Any one verse church will have a sense of being special, somehow more in line with the will of God than even other churches nominally of the same faith and truer believers. I was in a rural area yesterday and passed three churches on the same side of the street, all of the same denomination, and all within the length of a city block.There has to be some reason they are separate.

I remember when two churches argued over the necessity of baptism, based on the verse “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” Where the two once had joint activities, that stopped, especially after the other church dropped a denominational claim, but was identical to the faith of the other church in every other way.

I know. I know. :wink: :slight_smile:

God bless.

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