Thinking of crossing the Tiber but

Hello!

I would like to share my background first. I’m 17 years old and turning junior in college (Philippine education. Shorter.) I was baptized a Catholic but my parents were, I believe, protestants even then (My mother is an evangelical but my father is a follower of a tritheist leader). I was still being introduced to the Catholic faith (by my preschool teacher and my grandfather) when I was told to stop doing the sign of the cross. And I didn’t attend any church at all, like my parents.

I studied in an Anglican school all my life and I am very much influenced in their teachings (that are not really exclusively Anglican) and so with my father’s beliefs. When I try to weigh them I usually incline to what my teachers say (The doctrine of Trinity, etc.)

At high school I began to have interest in Psychology and Marxism but they haven’t affected my belief in God at all… or so that’s what I was thinking, not knowing that they have destroyed my idea of morality.

During summer after freshman year, I accepted Christ as my Savior through a website, and began to change my life. During senior year until freshman at college, I began reading more and more about apologetics to defend my faith, basically, from atheist, and somehow, to ‘pagans who worship statues’. In the process I lost my Marxism and naturalistic ideologies. The more I read, the more I identify myself with the Reformers’ theology.

It’s been hard to process them all alone, amd so I joined my sister’s church not knowing that it was connected with the New Apostolic Reformation and when I confirmed it, I left the church and was thinking of becoming a Baptist because they are usually portrayed as uncompromising and formal, unlike most of the evangelical fellowships who makes worship look like concerts.

Then I met a friend at school who helped me a lot with my sadness during that time (sadness due to other issues). We witnessed a miracle together and she was a blessing for me. The ‘problem’ is, she is Catholic (not that devout, though she is a very good friend and doesn’t dismiss your theological tendencies) . How could thar be possible, I tell myself, and I read about Protestant theologians’ view of Catholics (and vice versa) and later, about Protestant misconceptions about them.

Later on I asked myself, “Should I return to the Catholic church?” but I have reservations.

Historical validity is not a question for me. Medieval theologians are great witnesses. But the modern Catholic church is, particularly here in the Philippines. Some priests are known to meddle with politics (some nuns are, too) and they tend to have humanist thoughts come out of their mouths. Also, I have heard of the new age infiltration in religious orders and Catholics’ cultic and esoteric tendencies. And lastly, most Catholics are not good witnesses.

To be fair, It doesn’t mean that Protestants are ALL good witnesses. Generally, they are with their words but they sometimes fail with their actions. What I was thinking about all of these problems are why is the Magisterium laid back (at least here) about these issues? I mean, the Catholic church should have an edge in discipline compared to Protestantism in the sense that they have a central authority to guide them. I’m not telling the church what to do, but I was thinking about these things and would like to get a response.

Thank you and God bless.

Matthew 13:24: Another parable he put before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field;
25: but while men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away.
26: So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also.
27: And the servants of the householder came and said to him, Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then has it weeds?' 28: He said to them,An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, Then do you want us to go and gather them?' 29: But he said,No; lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them.
30: Let both grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.’”

vatican.va/holy_father/francesco/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20130629_enciclica-lumen-fidei_en.html

ENCYCLICAL LETTER
**LUMEN FIDEI **
OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF
FRANCIS
TO THE BISHOPS PRIESTS AND DEACONS
CONSECRATED PERSONS
AND THE LAY FAITHFUL
ON FAITH

You ask a number of different questions and I can’t pretend to answer them all. Your central concern seems to be that there is a disconnect between the faith outlined in the Magisterium and the witness to it made by Catholics. The most important question to me is is the Magesterium true? If the answer is Yes then that is sufficient reason for being a Catholic.

You might suppose that the faithful adherents of a true faith would, through their lives and words bear good witness to that faith. Seeing Catholics not doing so makes you doubt the truth of those belief’s. There are two things I should like you to consider-

Some Catholics, including some priests and nuns, are at best lukewarm in their adherence to the Magisterium if not outright hostile to some parts of it. Therefore the faith they are witnessing to is not Catholicism as such but their selective appropriation of parts of it mixed together with human ideologies and philosophies.

Catholicism looks not only at what people do and believe but at why they do so also. People may hold intellectually to perfectly sound belief’s, insofar as they care about belief at all, but for unsound reasons. They ‘go along to get along’ since professing certain things may be helpful to them in purely material terms.

The Church has often been troubled in its long history by the problem of people being poor witnesses for the faith even to the point of causing open scandal and, as in your case, casting doubt upon the whole faith. In medieval times, for example, figures like St Francis, St Catherine of Siena and St Bridget of Sweden were raised up by the Holy Spirit to attack scandals in the Church and effect a reform in it. St Catherine, for example, wrote to the Pope urging him to act thus-

Do you uproot in the garden of Holy Church the malodorous flowers, full of impurity and avarice, swollen with pride: that is, the bad priests and rulers who poison and rot that garden. Ah me, you our Governor, do you use your power to pluck out those flowers! Throw them away, that they may have no rule! Insist that they study to rule themselves in holy and good life.

And thus-

vices are so abundant, especially among those who were put in the garden of Holy Church to be fragrant flowers, shedding the fragrance of virtue; and we see that they abound in wretched, hateful vices, so that they make the whole world reek!

I have written about this more on my blog Girl Power

Ultimately you are only responsible for yourself before God. If you believe that what the Catholic Church holds to be true is true then regardless of the faithlessness or foolishness of others you personally have an obligation to act on that belief. You can be a true witness even if others are not.

Welcome to the forums~
As the old saying goes, if I could find a Church with no sinners I wouldn’t be able to join.
Mary.

Well said, and welcome to the forums to the Original Poster.
Mary.

Praying to the Holy Spirit to give you strength, fortitude, guidance & direction back to the Church.

Since you mentioned you identify (or used to identify) with the Reformers’ theology, I’d recommend the website calledtocommunion.org for you - it’s written by a bunch of reformed seminarians/professors/Ph.Ds who later became Catholic. The Index page has links the different and multifaceted issues they cover, and they are always open to discussion below the articles. Related to your questions about Catholic sinners, here’s a lecture on the holiness of the Church: calledtocommunion.com/2012/10/the-holiness-of-the-church/ that I hope you find useful.

Glory be to The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be
World without end
Amen

OP. Christ said the Gates of Hell would not prevail against His Church when He gave St. Peter the keys. If you trust Christ, I would trust the Church He established and the people He appointed to watch over it. Remember His promise even when you witness failures and lukewarm attitudes within the Church (you can and will fall too), but it is important to always remember the Church cannot fall since Christ is the cornerstone. Prayers for you as you contemplate these issues.

By the way, you should definitely cross the Tiber…we have cookies :slight_smile:

Hi, and welcome!

I can only speak for the many Catholic Churches I have visited in the South Eastern part of the US, but I don’t find evidence of humanist or new age tendencies here at all. As far as esoteric tendencies, you would have to be more specific, but speaking in general, all major religions have had their mystics. I don’t think the RCC is any more fertile for this kind of stuff than any other religious playground.

Glad your here!

I am from the Philippines, and I confirm that some priests and religious (priests, nuns, sisters, and brothers. Basically those who belong in religious orders/congregations) do meddle in politics. Let’s just be clear that meddling doesn’t necessarily mean running for office. Most of the time, they meddle by protesting against laws that goes against God, as well as corrupt governing practices.

All that matters is where we find Truth. Once you see that the Church has held God’s truth for 2000 years, then it is timing to go swimming across the Tiber!

Keep studying about the Catholic faith, listen to Catholic Answers radio and watch EWTN if you get those in your area or watch them on the internet. Then pray for guidance from the Holy Spirit and you will find your way.

The Church has a 2000 year history, and if one were to read an even-handed history of it, one would find that in the past, the Church has been heavily involved in local and not so local politics at various times; sometimes for good, and sometimes not. One only has to look back a couple of decades in South and Central America to find various priests, sisters, and theologians involved in what has been called liberation theology; some of which had good points and some of which was thinly disguised Marxism - an oxymoron if there ever was one.

The Church is not the individuals who are in it; the Church is the Body of Christ, as represented by the Pope and the bishops in union with him, and those who follow them. That is perhaps not a very good explanation; but the Church is not the Pope We have had a run of very good ones, but history shows a few who were scandalous - which shows that the Holy Sprit protects the Church since they did no harm in faith and morals). Nor is the Church the sister whom you know, of the local pastor, or the person next to you in the pew. They are in the Church, but they are not the Church.

The Church does not micro-manage. There are over 1.2 billion Catholics world wide. It has neither the time, energy, or personnel to oversee every little micro-group within the whole. This is exceedingly upsetting to some people, but in 2000 years of history, that is pretty much the rule. The first rule, if you will, of the Church is to bring people to Christ. Liturgy is not the first rule, although it is an essential element of the first rule. Doctrine is not the first rule, although it too is an essential element. The first rule is to preach Christ, and Him crucified, to use the words of Paul. Some of those responsible for doing so do it better than others, some use better techniques; some stray a bit off the path; others stray more. The Church continues on, in spite of it all.

Wish you were here in Oregon; we have an absolutely awesome Filipino pastor. And young, at that.

=trnsvrsprocess;11851651]Hello!

I would like to share my background first. I’m 17 years old and turning junior in college (Philippine education. Shorter.) I was baptized a Catholic but my parents were, I believe, protestants even then (My mother is an evangelical but my father is a follower of a tritheist leader). I was still being introduced to the Catholic faith (by my preschool teacher and my grandfather) when I was told to stop doing the sign of the cross. And I didn’t attend any church at all, like my parents.

I studied in an Anglican school all my life and I am very much influenced in their teachings (that are not really exclusively Anglican) and so with my father’s beliefs. When I try to weigh them I usually incline to what my teachers say (The doctrine of Trinity, etc.)

At high school I began to have interest in Psychology and Marxism but they haven’t affected my belief in God at all… or so that’s what I was thinking, not knowing that they have destroyed my idea of morality.

During summer after freshman year, I accepted Christ as my Savior through a website, and began to change my life. During senior year until freshman at college, I began reading more and more about apologetics to defend my faith, basically, from atheist, and somehow, to ‘pagans who worship statues’. In the process I lost my Marxism and naturalistic ideologies. The more I read, the more I identify myself with the Reformers’ theology.

It’s been hard to process them all alone, amd so I joined my sister’s church not knowing that it was connected with the New Apostolic Reformation and when I confirmed it, I left the church and was thinking of becoming a Baptist because they are usually portrayed as uncompromising and formal, unlike most of the evangelical fellowships who makes worship look like concerts.

Then I met a friend at school who helped me a lot with my sadness during that time (sadness due to other issues). We witnessed a miracle together and she was a blessing for me. The ‘problem’ is, she is Catholic (not that devout, though she is a very good friend and doesn’t dismiss your theological tendencies) . How could thar be possible, I tell myself, and I read about Protestant theologians’ view of Catholics (and vice versa) and later, about Protestant misconceptions about them.

Later on I asked myself, “Should I return to the Catholic church?” but I have reservations.

Historical validity is not a question for me. Medieval theologians are great witnesses. But the modern Catholic church is, particularly here in the Philippines. Some priests are known to meddle with politics (some nuns are, too) and they tend to have humanist thoughts come out of their mouths. Also, I have heard of the new age infiltration in religious orders and Catholics’ cultic and esoteric tendencies. And lastly, most Catholics are not good witnesses.

To be fair, It doesn’t mean that Protestants are ALL good witnesses. Generally, they are with their words but they sometimes fail with their actions. What I was thinking about all of these problems are why is the Magisterium laid back (at least here) about these issues? I mean, the Catholic church should have an edge in discipline compared to Protestantism in the sense that they have a central authority to guide them. I’m not telling the church what to do, but I was thinking about these things and would like to get a response.

Thank you and God bless.

My dear friend in Christ,
WELCOME TO CAF:)

Because your new you may not be aware that the FROUM limits the size of post & replies.
So here I shall be brief.

There are ober one Billion catholics World wide. Most are good; some are less so. I suspect that is true for all denominations.

What one ought to consider is this: [because eternity is forever; and heaven AND hell are very real]

There is only One TRUE God

That One True God can and DOES logically hold only one set of faith beliefs

& following His own OT tradition of choosing Only One Chosen people: the Jews; Hebrew nation; Christ follwed with FOUNDING only one Church. Today’s Catholic Church; which was the ONLY Chrsitian Faith anywhere in the world for about the first THOIUSAND years.

Christ; being necessarly a GODD and Fair God could and did not wait for Henry VIII, Wyclife, Luther, calvin or Smith to introduce His Faith. That’s logical and obvious and glossed over by many who need to somehow; in someway justify their existence apart from the Only Faith guided, garded and protected by God Himself.

The claim that we somehow “lost” that protection is unprovable. For it to be true Mt. 16:18-19 and John 17: 14-20 would have to be lies or God himself be a liar.:eek::rolleyes:

That ALL salvation must and DOES FLOW through the Catholic Church because it is the only One Founded by God is historically and biblically provable. Don’t judge the Church [One; Holy; Catholic and Apostolic], bya few very human members.:thumbsup:

God Bless you,
Patrick [PJM]

I’m in my 50’s and have been a practicing Catholic from a staunch family all my life and I have experienced the transformation of the Church’s place within peoples lives with surprise and sometimes sadness but sometimes with great hope. I like to say I’m a Vatican II baby. I was being born as those holy men of the Church were convening for that great council.

I feel there was a definite breach in the relationship between the teaching Magisterium and the flock between the end of Vatican II and 1992 when Pope John Paul II commissioned the current format of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

I’d urge you to get yourself a copy of the Catechism as a sound reference point for your questions.

Todays world calls for a mature and discerning faith and confidence to pray and contemplate close to the flame of Christs Sacred heart and that of His blessed Mother.

God Bless.

I think Tim Staples said: “You can’t leave Jesus because of Judas.”

It is true that there are many Catholics, even many priests, who are not faithful to the Church–in fact, none of them are, to one degree or another. Naturally, this hurts evangelization efforts; however, you should not take this as a reason to avoid the Church. Consider the truth of the Church’s teachings. Nowhere else will you find such claims as the Church makes. It is either right, or terribly wrong. There is no middle ground. You are not responsible for others’ sins, your task is simply to seek God. If the Catholic Faith it true, you should follow it, regardless of whether others who have tried have failed.

God bless you

AndrewW94 #16
your task is simply to seek God.

trnsvrsprocess
Actually, your efforts should be to seek Christ’s Church, to join Her, and to develop your faith and to offer Her truths to others. The recommended Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) is a sure norm for learning the faith. As you are searching, you can do no better than to listen to Jesus the Christ, as he founded His Church, the Catholic Church, to lead us to Him.

Jesus founded His Church on Peter:
All four promises to Peter alone:
“You are Peter and on this rock I will build My Church.” (Mt 16:18)
“The gates of hell will not prevail against it.”(Mt 16:18)
I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of heaven." ( Mt 16:19)
“Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven.” (Mt 16:19) [Later to the Twelve].

Sole authority:
“Strengthen your brethren.” (Lk 22:32)
“Feed My sheep.”(Jn 21:17).

Most of His teachings are in the Bible which was declared the Word of God by the Catholic Church – 73 books, no more no less.

Do not be unduly disturbed by those Catholics who do not follow all of Her teachings. Look to those who do, and the life and testimony of the multitudinous Catholic saints who are in heaven.

What questions do you have?

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