Rising Protestant tide sweeps Catholic Brazil


#1

CARAPICUIBA, Brazil (Reuters) - For years, Ronaldo da Silva’s daily routine consisted of drinking himself into a stupor until he passed out on a sidewalk.

Now he spends his days praying and singing with hundreds of fellow Christians at the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God in Carapicuiba, a sprawling shantytown on the outskirts of Sao Paulo where Pentecostal congregations are found on just about every block.

“I’d probably be dead or in jail if it weren’t for this church,” said da Silva, a 38-year-old former Catholic who claims God cured him of epilepsy and helped him straighten out his life when he converted to Pentecostalism a decade ago.

Conversions like da Silva’s are increasingly common all over Brazil, where a boom in evangelical Protestantism is steadily chipping away at the supremacy of the Roman Catholic Church.

news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070503/lf_nm/brazil_pope_religion_dc


#2

I wonder if they had a prayful life as a Catholic… or taught about the Sacraments. Apparently they were not because Jesus is present in the Church’s tabernacle. Boy, they have no idea what they are missing…


#3

My experience as a Mormon missionary in Venezuela was that people who converted from Catholicism to Mormonism hardly ever attended or cared about the Catholic Church anyway. They might have been baptized as babies, but they weren’t Catholic in any meaningful way.


#4

I’ve always found it interesting how anyone who is identified as “Catholic” is so often portrayed or assumed by the public at large and media types to be DEVOUT, or RAISED Catholics, as if that is automatically true. And as you point out, the person may have never put one foot inside a Church or lived a Catholic life. If the Church misses targeting these folks for evangelization, then someone else WILL target them.


#5

Still no need to be worried. At least that man believes that his sins were forgiven and that Jesus Christ is God and saviour. He could have gone to a non-Christian denomination or to Islam, but he didnt. So praise God for that!


#6

As the opening poster gives the opening link news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070503/lf_nm/brazil_pope_religion_dc

There is ALWAYS a worry when someone leaves the Eucharist. Jesus was very clear on that theology. It can’t be replaced with hand waving and dancing in the isles.

emphasis mine

John 6:

49: Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.
50: This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die.
51: I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh."
52: The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"
53: So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you;
54: he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
55: For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
56: He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.
57: As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me.
58: This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live for ever."
59: This he said in the synagogue, as he taught at Caper’na-um.
60: Many of his disciples, when they heard it, said, "This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?"
61: But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples murmured at it, said to them, “Do you take offense at this?
62: Then what if you were to see the Son of man ascending where he was before?
63: It is the spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.
64: But there are some of you that do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the first who those were that did not believe, and who it was that would betray him.
65: And he said, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father."
66: After this many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him.
67: Jesus said to the twelve, "Do you also wish to go away?"
68: Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life;

What Protestant denomination has the Eucharist?.


#7

The Eucharist is not only offered in the Catholic church.


#8

But if you didn’t count these people, then you wouldn’t have a billion members and you probably wouldn’t be able to claim to be the largest Christian body in the U.S.

Edwin


#9

I asked you to name the Protestant denomination that has the Eucharist


#10

The census accounts for Catholics who are still Catholic. That’s why they take a census


#11

If you mean breaking the bread and drinking from the cup then SDA has that too. Although it`s not a sacrament, rather an ordinance. But the principle is the same.


#12

Lutherans, Anglicans, United Methodists to name a few.

Oh, I know you will argue with me because your understanding of what is and is not the Eucharist would say that these are not Eucharist.

And we can get hung up on that for another 500 years, by that time Ronaldo da Silva will be dead. And he could have been a life long Catholic who never once partook of the Eucharist.

You say:

There is ALWAYS a worry when someone leaves the Eucharist. Jesus was very clear on that theology. It can’t be replaced with hand waving and dancing in the isles.

Please tell me what Eucharist he has left. From his own testimony it appears he never was at the table, so how could he have left it.

Which would you prefer. This man be born, baptized, and buried Catholic having no contact with either the Church or Christ for the rest of his life, or that he come to have an experience of the living Christ within his life? I would think that you would be celebrating the awakening of his soul to God, but you’re worried that the bread he takes at communion might be understood to be bread rather than Jesus’ flesh. It is almost as if we are talking about the yeast of pharisees all over again.

(Note: I said, “almost”.)


#13

Actually, I believe that numbers of adherents for religions are usually based on self-reporting, and the Catholic Church reports the number of baptisms.

Even if I’m wrong, the point remains–many people who are “still Catholic” officially are uncatechized and easy prey for proselytizers. So allegedly it doesn’t really count when these people leave the Church. You’re still trying to have it both ways.

Edwin


#14

Excellent comment!


#15

You make some good points, but you seem to fail to ask yourself the question, “Is it God’s will that he be in the Catholic Church?” – if it is God’s will, then God’s will should be followed, no matter what. That’s what meeting the “living Christ” or “living God” involves: adhering to God’s loving will. And according to Catholicism, it is God’s will that everybody, without exception, be in the Catholic Church. So in the perfect scenario, he would be in the Catholic Church.


#16

Is it God’s will that he be XYZ? Of course that is an important question. If God wants him Catholic, then he should be. If God wants him Protestant, Orthodox, living in Brazil or some other country, poor or wealthy. What does God want for him? This is important. But it is for Rolando Da Sivla to decide, not the Catholic Church.

Funny how, of all the groups within Christ’s body, it is only the Catholics who think that everybody “without exception” is to belong to their particular brand of Christianity. When you describe it like that, Catholicism sounds more like a cult than the Church that Jesus founded.

Before you accuse me of being anti-Catholic, I’m not. I don’t think the Catholic Church is a cult at all. But I do think that you ought to take a second look at how you personally have chosen to relate to it. Take a look at what are often listed as the first two signs that someone is in a cult:

  1. Their leader/s may claim a special, exclusive ministry, revelation or position of authority given by God.
  2. They believe they are the only true church and take a critical stance regarding other Christian churches while at the same time praising and exalting their own group, leader/s and work.

While I don’t think these indict the Catholic Church I’ve come to know in the communities in which I have lived. I do think they look an awful lot like the form of Catholicism I think you are espousing. Catholicsim doesn’t need to have every person become Catholic. It recognizes that Christians can come to and be connected with Christ apart from the Catholic Church. There is no need to make all Christians Catholic. That’s certainly not what Jesus met when he told Peter he would found the church on him.

Now addressing those issues within the Catholic Church that don’t meet the needs of people to find Christ within and through it, so that they feel a need to look outside of it to other bodies, that is a different matter, and an important thing for the Pope to address. But that is totally different than what you suggest.


#17

Seems you’re making up your own rules.


#18

Why cant we talk about the root cause of the problem here?

Is it poor cathesis, or are the priests there giving the flock a more liberation theology or is it the Jesuits again?

Lets get to the Cause.


#19

I suspect they’ll tire of Fundamentalism. Once Catholic, always Catholic, as they say. The superficiality of Fundamentalism overtakes thinking worshipers. Toward the end, they tend to drift back to their old anchor, the Catholic Church. :thumbsup:


#20

No valid priesthood, no valid Eucharist.

If he really was Catholic then he left the Eucharist. As the article said, he would have left the Catholic Church for minimal theology, dancing in the isles and waving his arms.

The Eucharist IS receiving the Body Blood Soul AND Divinity of Christ. It’s not make believe, it’s not working oneself into some altered state intellectually, it’s not working oneself into having an experience. It’s not about speaking in tongues, it’s not about dancing in the isles until you feel the spirit etc etc etc.

I said it’s always a problem to leave the Eucharist. That’s NOT the will of God. The Holy Spirit isn’t the author of division.


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