How has CAF helped you become a better Catholic?


I’ve learned a lot on this forum, especially about Eastern Catholicism. Enough that I’ve been able to teach my brother, who is in the seminary, about the topic with confidence. (Note: the forum didnt spell out all I needed to learn about the topic, but rather sparked my interest enough to research it on my own) The history, organization and evolution of the Church has always been of interest to me. I’ve also learned a lot about the EF.

My faith waivers daily, this forum could be bad for someone who’s not emotionally mature enough to handle snarky and overly legalistic responses or criticism. I am admittedly a lukewarm Catholic. Thankfully I have pretty thick skin.

In short, this forum hasn’t made be a better practicing Catholic, but it has made me a more informed Catholic.


That’s the default for Discourse, but those parameters can be adjusted for an individual forum. I cannot imagine that this is the standard because there is no way I read 25% of all threads and posts. There are some categories I very seldom go to at all. And I will sometimes go a week without logging in at all. Yet my Lounge card hasn’t expired yet.


Well put. It always intrigues me how different people have such vastly different experiences of the forum. When I see people getting into fisticuffs, I tend to just gloss over it and ignore it. I guess that’s why CAF doesn’t seem so toxic to me. Plus, whenever I have ventured to other places on the internet that discuss religion, CAF is an oasis of charity and sanity by comparison. I really cannot think of a better place online to discuss Catholic things.

Not that there aren’t issues or problems here. But they never seem so bad that I don’t want to come back.


If nobody is allowed to talk about it, how does anybody find out about it? (You can see where it would lose members, as oldies leave, but nobody else knows about it!) I don’t think I would want to join. Just, finding it hard to comprehend.


I don’t know that to be the case, I just don’t see it talked about out here and thought it might be some unspoken rule. But I have problems with seeing rules that aren’t there. As I child I thought everyone coughing during a test was a code to explain you weren’t the one who farted. I would fake a cough in hopes I coughed correctly.

I was so bewildered and amazed the first time I fell through the trap door into that part of the forums and then lost my status from inactivity. I’ve wanted to ask how to get back in. :smile:


Thanks for explaining. It’s best avoided by me. I know how I am. Wouldn’t take long before I said something “wrong.”


You could ask the moderators the question directly, seems likely they would answer the question. My guess is that it’s based on a 30 day measurement. I think people who were regulars, but lost their regular status due to inactivity have a less stringent criterion than those who have never been Regulars.

Be quite “present” here, as it sounds you’ve been in the past, and after 30 days I bet you’ll be back in the Lounge. Shephie, for one, might know, she’s quite observant about such things. :smiley:


If you get the ‘Regular’ member badge you have access to it


You seem to be making an assumption there that those who might be branded as ‘legalistic’ lack compassion. I think this is a false dichotomy that assumes that a person who follows Church teachings very literally, or who likes rubrics followed to the letter, automatically lacks compassion. Is that in itself a compassionate assumption to make?


I’d suggest you read the whole thread and realize my comment was not based on assumption, but specific delivery of message from a poster.

This poster is so quick to brand people as “liberal” that he/she just assumed I was. I’m anything but a cafeteria Catholic. I can imagine how it’d be received by someone just considering the Church.


On the Lounge. As has been mentioned, you gave to be actively “participating” in the Forum. That means reading, in many of the fora, not just one or 2 categories, and to a certain degree posting, and getting some level of recognition for those posts.

Lack of activity will get you out. If you start active participation again, you will eventually get back in.

Suspension knocks you back to “member” trust level, and you lose lounge access. Multiple suspensions, regardless of activity, will keep you at member level, and thus, no lounge access.

There have been some regulars, who, having a bad day, got sent to the penalty box, but eventually got back to regular status and thus access to the lounge.

Just like the other areas within CAF, not all regulars post in the lounge. If you go to badges, find “regular” you can see who has access. Currently there are 61 regulars in the forum, of which 5 are actually trust level 4 (leader)… moderators, discourse staff, and of course, discobot.


Also, I think that a fair amount of strife that goes on in the forums here have to do with not really being aware of personality types that are quite divergent. Also, as Bear pointed out above, people may be accustomed to saying things in ways that are meant innocuously but are taken the wrong way. Others here come off as very abrasive and challenging in their dialogue with others. I think that is just a personality type, and it’s hard to read the “how it’s said” , just looking at the words on the computer screen and not know how that person speaks in every day conversation.


And of course, this can be cultural too. Saying something very directly may be common in one culture, and considered very rude in another.


It has and hasn’t for me. Helped me communicate with other Catholics in a civil way (sometimes) and also frustrated me at other times. Good and bad.


This is a great point. If not for this forum, I would probably be completely ignorant of Eastern Catholicism. I suspect that most normal Latin Rite parishioners in the U.S. who attend one parish exclusively have no clue that it even exists.


Yes, I didn’t know about other Catholic rites in communion with us before the forums.


Yes. It sharpens critical thinking. I appreciate the non-Catholic and yes, non-believing, presence here.


Then perhaps your point ought to be related specifically to the individual poster, rather than make what seems to be a point about ‘legalistic’ Catholics in general.



I logged on one day to post a major prayer request in the Lounge and couldn’t get in. Ouch. It’s such a safe zone that it’s easy to forget to post out here in the wolf pit. :smile:


Reread and you’ll see I said “the most legalistic”, not simply legalistic. I stand by it. There is fallacy in that kind of legalism.

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