Non-Denominational College Ministry

Earlier today an old college coworker contacted me. We chatted for a bit, and eventually she asked me if I’d like to meet and talk about her ministry team. I think she’s trying to get me to join it. I’m busy right now but it sounds like she’s going to get in touch again later.

I know that since it’s non denominational y’all can’t really tell me what they believe, but I checked her facebook and it looks like she’s with an Evangelical group? Is evangelical non denominational a thing? I don’t want to join and evangelize people unless I’ll be leading them to my home (Rome).

I guess I’m asking about evangelical non denominational (if that’s a thing) and advice on the whole thing. Hope y’all are having nice days. :slight_smile:

“Non-denominational” just means they are not formally aligned with an established religious denomination (Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, etc.). That said, they are historically Protestant. They might describe themselves as “Bible believing” (though their Bibles only have 66 books, not 73), or include in their statement of faith that the Bible is the only infallible, authoritative Word of God.

I suspect they’d be offended if you told them you only want to lead people to Rome.

Personally I don’t think there is such a thing as “non-denominational”. The people as rule who call themselves by that moniker are usually Baptist or Pentecostal or some combination of the two. They can frequently by identified by them calling themselves “Christian” only without qualifiers. If you don’t agree and don’t 'getsaved" you are not Christian to them. If you think that Baptism (which they often call water baptism) or any of the other sacraments has any real effect on your soul you are not a Christian to them.

I was actually raised and dunked symbolically in such a sect. They used Christian as a brand name. If you did not belong to their sect, you were not a Christian. They called all others “members of the denominations” and they thought they were the only Christians to exist.

But not all University religious groups are like that. I belonged to United Campus Ministries. That group combined Newman Club with Methodists, Episcopalians, Lutherans, Presbys, and a few others. All were Main Line Christians no evangelicals and we all got on well.

If it were me, I’d give this a pass. You write that you are already busy–that’s a good enough reason to give to your friend. Her ministry is decidedly not ecumenical–it’s Evangelical so your Catholic beliefs would not be welcome. Also, she may be using this to try to get you “saved”, so by all means you have no obligation or reason to be a part of it.

I’d stay away too. Start a Catholic version of the group instead! If you’re going to evangelize someone, you might as well lead them into the full truth!

lynnanine. You stated:

Earlier today an old college coworker contacted me. We chatted for a bit, and eventually she asked me if I’d like to meet and talk about her ministry team. I think she’s trying to get me to join it. I’m busy right now but it sounds like she’s going to get in touch again later.

I know that since it’s non denominational y’all can’t really tell me what they believe, . . . .

You also said:

I guess I’m asking about . . . advice on the whole thing. Hope y’all are having nice days.

My advice? Know the sola Scriptura issues cold. Know all the common arguments for and against it in your sleep.

This will go a long way in protecting you in your faith, and give you some basic tools to help bring people to the fullness of truth (“Rome”) without having to memorize many other doctrinal subjects (which will come to you quite naturally later as you evangelize her and others to the fullness of truth because you love them and want the best for them).

If you do decide to do this (I’m not suggesting you do or don’t go on to this “ministry team”) don’t sign any forms which violate your conscience.

If she wants you to sign a contract stating you affirm sola Scriptura or sola fide (one or both are common in these types of ministries), ask her to take out the sola Scriptura and sola fide portions and replace it with direct language from the Bible.

If they have these sola Scriptura or sola fide clauses, they will HAVE to use “man-made” language. Why? Because Scriptural language in the context of support of false doctrines (such as sola Scriptura and/or sola fide), doesn’t exist.

Anything directly out of the Bible and in the proper context, a Catholic CAN sign in good conscience.

That’s my advice on the whole thing.

Hope this helps.

God bless.

Cathoholic

Thank you all for replying! My gut instinct was to not join, so I’m glad that’s in the right direction. I have both a friend and an acquaintance that attend a non denominational church, and from talking with them I know I couldn’t ever advocate for someone attending a church other than the one true church. I do work an 8-5 job and have an hour commute, and then is have to drive an hour to get to the city it’s in! I’ll be able to validly say I’m too busy. Hopefully when we meet I can nudge her along toward the fullness of the truth. :slight_smile:

Yes, “evangelical non-denominational” is “a thing.” :smiley:

Evangelicalism is simply an umbrella term used to describe a certain way of being and understanding what it means to be Christian. The term “born again” is often used in a similar way. Evangelicalism is not a denomination. It defies denominational categories.

Evangelical Christians do a lot of ministry through non-denominational parachurch organizations, rather than denominational agencies.

It may help if you think about it like this: when evangelicals say “non-denominational” oftentimes what they really mean is “ecumenical.” By “ecumenical,” I mean that evangelicals of any denomination or doctrinal persuasion (such as Baptist, Pentecostal, Methodist, Presbyterian or Episcopalian) can feel comfortable.

I’d be curious to what the response to the below would be from such a ‘non-denom’ group"

“Well, I might be interested in such a thing, but only if I can actually be me. Who I really am and what I believe asa catholic and can share that faith with young people. If you’re going to try to muzzle me and corral me into only discussing some truncated portion of my faith, I’m not OK with that.”

Suddenly, you have a huge opportunity to discuss those aspects of faith that unite you and those that divide you. Sounds like a cool discussion to have!

I’m usually pretty interested in discussions with non-Catholic Christians. :slight_smile: that’s one reason I’m not flat out saying no! I’ll have to see how the talk she wants to have with me goes.

Itwin, thanks for further explanation. :slight_smile:

Don’t be surprised if she’s more interested in proselytizing you than recruiting you, especially if you make it clear that you will not violate/dumb-down your beliefs to participate. :wink:

I’ll welcome the challenge to share the full truth! The way I look at it is that anyone who really wants to convert me will keep engaging me, in which case I can hopefully plant some Catholic seeds and let God grow them. :slight_smile:

From personal experience (perhaps yours has been different) they back off and cut off contact once they see you aren’t interested in leaving the Church to join theirs. Many are not interested in being friends as much as they are interested in “winning souls” which for them means pulling other Christians out of their faith communities.

Also, don’t be surprised if this isn’t the case at all.

Perhaps this group wants your help leading others to Christ and has no interest in taking you from Catholicism. Why don’t you ask what the intentions are in regard to that? If it’s harmless, I say go with it.

I expect this will probably be similar, since we are not particularly close. But I’m willing to at least talk once with her.

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