My Friend


#1

Recently I have had many heated discussions with my friend, who is a non-demominational Christian, but because of certain recent troubles isn’t going to church presently. We’ve had arguments over women’s ordination and other aspects of the Catholic Church. One thing which especially rankled her is my argument that a priest, even though a pederast, still has power from God to administer the sacraments.

Today I tried to get her to go to Mass again (I took her for Easter; she didn’t like the dullness and the lack of participation, and she thought my pastor was too concerned with the size of congregations and was not “genuine”) and she was very angry, saying “I’ll never convert to Catholicism” because it was organized religion, among other things.

I must admit I was not a good representative of Christ in those situations, because I sometimes came off as very forceful and even self-righteous. Also, at times I say foolish things, such as inadequately defending controversial issues such as the Inquisition. I feel as if I’ve pushed her away from Christ’s Church. Lord have mercy. So, what should I do? For now I’ve decided to back away from such discussions, and pray for her.


#2

Praying for her is a very good thing indeed!

But also is answering her objections. Maybe you are not called to this ministry, but maybe you are. Only you and God know for sure.

Does she object to your priest? Well, some objected even to the Apostles Peter and Paul! Does it mean that the Apostles were preaching falsehood? Or maybe does it mean that not all people respond to the Truth in the same manner?

Why do people object to “organized” religion? I am a Boy Scout leader. We recognize that organization is essential to the success of our program. Can a school be effectively run without organization? Can a business run without organization? Why should a Church be any different?


#3

Hi Augustinian!
Well at least you finally got to the very first thing that we have to do…always; Pray! Remember that it’s not our job to convert someone. That is the function of the Holy Spirit, and without Him our efforts (though well meaning) don’t generally amount to much.

What can you do? Get good info and relax and enjoy your faith. I suggest the San Juan Catholic Seminars apologetics series and you can find them here: catholicapologetics.com/
They will load you up with some of the best answers that I’ve ever seen and they won’t break the bank doing it, nor are they rocket science (or they’d be useless to the likes of me! :irish1: )

One point you might make is that personal sins do not revoke the graces of God, or we’d all be toast. Nor do they depend on the soul of the person bringing us those graces. The apostles were not shining examples of wisdom and high moral character…one sold Our Lord out for pay and then killed himself in a fit of despair, the rest disappeared when Jesus was arrested and then his head honcho denied he even knew Him before the night was out. They were terrified and they hid, Thomas doubted and there were heated discussions and problems in every church in the NT. Those weren’t unbelievers, they were folks just like you and me…warts and all. Yet what was said about them? “These men have turned the world upside down and have come here also”. My point is that if one is gonna reject any religion for the moral failings of it’s leaders, one would have to toss Christianity right off the bat. Yet we don’t because over time they got their stuff all in one sock and look at the great treasures that they have handed on to us. :bible1: The same is true today. Even though there are still some severely messed up people within the church, the vast majority of Priests are doing it right 24/7/365 and if we all do our part…it all works out. the more I consider the apostles…the more I see the glory of Jesus in other’s lives and realize that maybe there’s room for me.
I hope maybe this helps a little.
Pax vobiscum,


#4

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.