What do Catholics and Protestants have in common that makes us family?

I believe Catholics and Protestants are siblings in Christ. I am your separated brethren according to the CCC. What do we have in common that makes us family?

Baptism and our faith in Christ unite us. The Catholic Church considers all Christians baptized with the trinitarian rite, intending to baptise to be in imperfect union with the Church.

In my experience, having looked into many Protestant denominations before I was reconciled with the Church, every one of them, to one degree or another, was founded on denying some aspect of Catholic doctrine. Trying to get all those groups to agree, much less be reunited with the Catholic Church, would be like herding cats. :smiley:

Yep, I agree. Here is a great link to challege the most staunch Protestant. I find lot’s of truth to it through my Protestant experience. Sola Scriptura has its problems, but no I am not becoming Catholic because I am already catholic.


This doesn’t seem to be such a popular topic. Here is what we have in common: we are able to approach God as our Heavenly Father because we are adopted children of God based on what Jesus Christ has done for us. We rejoice in the cross of Christ as one Christian family and one body. It’s funny how both Protestants and Catholics rather talk about our differences rather than what we have in common. If we seem to like it or not; we are one spiritual eternal family with the same Heavenly Father. I hope others choose to particpate on this thread when time allows. - Peace and grace through Christ

Our Love for Christ.
Our Love for one another.
Our want of entering eternal life with Christ in heaven.
Our belief in the ten commandments.
Our belief as Christ as the true Son of God.
Our belief that we are all children of Christ.

The same Father.

Coming back into the Fullness of the Catholic Faith and coming out of protestant Churches, I have the view from both. I found more and more protestant churches teaching what the Catholic Church has been teaching for 2,000 years. The Holiness of Communion,The Holy Spirit, Blood of Jesus,reading Sacred Scripture, Jesus is the Word of God, Authority of it’s leadership, I can go on and on. Catholic’s and Protestants have a lot more in common than they don’t.They only difference I’ve seen is a Minister is Ordained and leader of his church, Catholic Faith has the Chair of Peter and Apostolic succession,that is the major difference.

The Church recognizes that in many ways she is linked with those who, being baptized, are honored with the name of Christian, though they do not profess the faith in its entirety or do not preserve unity of communion with the successor of Peter. For there are many who honor Sacred Scripture, taking it as a norm of belief and a pattern of life, and who show a sincere zeal. They lovingly believe in God the Father Almighty and in Christ, the Son of God and Saviour. They are consecrated by baptism, in which they are united with Christ. They also recognize and accept other sacraments within their own Churches or ecclesiastical communities. Many of them rejoice in the episcopate, celebrate the Holy Eucharist and cultivate devotion toward the Virgin Mother of God. They also share with us in prayer and other spiritual benefits. Likewise we can say that in some real way they are joined with us in the Holy Spirit, for to them too He gives His gifts and graces whereby He is operative among them with His sanctifying power. Some indeed He has strengthened to the extent of the shedding of their blood. In all of Christ’s disciples the Spirit arouses the desire to be peacefully united, in the manner determined by Christ, as one flock under one shepherd, and He prompts them to pursue this end. Mother Church never ceases to pray, hope and work that this may come about. She exhorts her children to purification and renewal so that the sign of Christ may shine more brightly over the face of the earth.

–from Lumen gentium, the “Dogmatic Constitution on the Church” from the 2nd Vatican Council

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

paragraph 818

"However, one cannot charge with the sin of the separation those who at present are born into these communities [that resulted from such separation] and in them are brought up in the faith of Christ, and the Catholic Church accepts them with respect and affection as brothers . . . . All who have been justified by faith in Baptism are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers in the Lord by the children of the Catholic Church."272

paragraph 838

"The Church knows that she is joined in many ways to the baptized who are honored by the name of Christian, but do not profess the Catholic faith in its entirety or have not preserved unity or communion under the successor of Peter."322 Those "who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in a certain, although imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church."323 With the Orthodox Churches, this communion is so profound "that it lacks little to attain the fullness that would permit a common celebration of the Lord’s Eucharist."324


Very well. Please do pray, however, that visible unity be restored. The World takes advantage of our visible divisions to attempt to compromise us. (witness the issues at hand with the HHS mandate)

LOL – great minds think alike!

For starters, we all believe the following:
The Apostle’s Creed (Ecumenical Version)
I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended into hell.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic (universal) Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.

Most of us even state our beliefs in this format (with some minor changes in wording)!
We have more in common than we typically think, mostly because conversation tends to focus on the differences.

United in support for Christian principles: pro-life, traditional marriage & family values. These are issues that should concern all Christians.

Again, thanks a million for your kind postings on all three of my threads. Does anybody remember the Evangelicals and Catholics Together 1 document (ECT 1) in 1994 and the Evangelical and Catholics Together II document (ECT II) in 1996? It seems that work can move forward in 2012 and beyond.

Christian unity is tough because we all want to right all the time; our flesh desires it to be so. But if we are completely honest, there is quite a bit of mystery in the Christian Faith. There is much to say about disagreeing agreeably with Christians from different Christian communities for the sake of Christ. I do understand the Catholic belief of apostolic sucession which is important for the Catholic Faith. I believe in justification by faith alone, but I don’t use that as a reason to draw a line in the sand between Catholics and Protestants. What we ultimately have in common is that our hope is in Christ.

Yep, I embrace the Apostles Creed and Nicene Creed. Unfortunately most modern day non-denominational Christians are quite naive of church history. We all know Christianity did not start in our generation.

It might surprise you that not all Christians believe that a biblical marriage is between a man and a woman. If you went through the bibilcal marriages in the Bible, we may all conclude differently. Biblical marriages include polygamy and incest. Start with the marriages of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob… and continue throughout the Scriptures.

With the exponential rise of destructive societal evils and the ascendency of “Christian bashing;” Catholics and Protestants are more and more circling their wagons and considering the “others” allies, so long as “they” are not glaring at them and muttering under their breath.

A shared “foxhole under fire” probably made fast friends of English and Americans even if the “Yank” had previously thought of the British Empire as a racist, class conscious, megalomaniacal colony taker - while the “Brit” viewed “America” as a mongrel raced hodge podge of megalomaniacal racist Indian-land takers that had butchered their melodious language and advanced vulgar coffee counter to civilized tea.

All of a sudden one begins to think about the Magna Carta, Roger Bacon, Shakespeare, the Beatles, and the courage of Londoners braving the blitz - while the other rather admires Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, Thomas Edison, Gerschwin and the films of Frank Capra. And each has the others’ back.

Per this thread:

All of a sudden a dedication to Christ’s mother seems like another way of “following Jesus” and “maybe a Bible Study on ‘Mary as a prototype of the faithful church’ would be

AND … " … why do they call it a Protestant work ethic? My brother here and I can work hand in hand in harmony and build something great together!"

AT BEST what we have in common is the Holy Spirit guiding us closer to Christ. If we keep our eyes on HIM we will find ourselves united very quickly, yet still with the uniqueness as individuals Jesus created us with. :slight_smile:
Jesus DID correct the Samaritan woman on which nation’s theology was more correct; but He didn’t leave it at that. He called her personally, and then her town’s people as a group, to a deeper relationship with God (Him) ! While some of the more “theologically correct” folks missed their Messiah’s visit and neither “Loved God with their whole heart …” nor " … loved their neighbors as themselves."*

The Samaritans rejoiced in Jesus’ coming and believed in Him. The leaders of the “Chosen People” dismissed Jesus and were replaced by simple fishermen and devout Jewish lay people when the Messiah and “High Priest” declared a New Covenant, a New Sacrifice, and brought about the “new priesthood” promised in Malachi and called the “Order of Melchizadech” in the NT letter to the Hebrews.

As “Catholics” we should follow Christ and lead all peoples to him via His " … teach all nations …" command.

As “Protestants” let our **protests **and actions be against the " … ruler of this world" (Satan) who is to be " … driven out" by the love and sacrifice of Jesus and His body.

John 12:31 Now is the time of judgment on this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out.

And may we together try to fulfill the …

“Unity” prayer of Jesus: *

**John 17:13 ** But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely.

14 I gave** them** your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.

15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. 17 Consecrate** them** in the truth. Your word is truth.

18 As you sent me into the world, so I sent** them **into the world.

19 And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.

20 "I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word,

21 so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that** they** also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me.

22 And I have given** them** the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as** we** are one,

23 I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved **them **even as you loved me.

24 Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

25 Righteous Father, the world also does not know you, but I know you, and they know that you sent me.

26 I made known to** them** your name and I will make it known, that the love with which you loved me may be in** them** and I in them."**

That’s 29 references to unity between Jesus, The Father, the disciples, believers and even coming generations of the unborn (US!). Emphasis mine by font – HIS by repetition and stress! :yup::slight_smile:

In regards to commonground. I heard a sermon once that different Christians were kind of like the Army, Navy, Airforce and Marines. They are all different in their own way but they all have the same job to protect our country. When it comes down to who is in the fox hole with you, it doesn’t matter at that point what your differences are. You are just fighting for your common goal.

If you read Matthew 19 you will see that Jesus affirms marriage between one man and one women as the ideal, as it was in the beginning with Adam and Eve.

Please…by such a reasoning, we’d be stoning a lot of different people all the time…Christ was very, very clear.

“In the beginning it was not so”.

Now what was this beginning? Well, we know from the gospel of St. John:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

Thus, as Christ speaks of the beginning, He truly speaks of God’s original will for man.

And what does He say?

at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one. What therefore God as joined together, let not man separate.

This is Matrimony in the eyes of God. Anything else is abomination, unless it was permitted by God himself for mysterious reasons that we neither know nor should really care about. We focus on the New Covenant under the teachings of Christ, and that is what makes us Christian. To go and interpret the Scriptures individually and craft our own doctrine, that is what can make us heretics, regardless of the community we belong to.

I do like your original question. Truly, all Christians validly baptized share a common brotherhood in Christ, though those who have walked away from the Church are not in full communion and bound by divine will to either move towards universal unity of the one Church (Mt 16:18, Mt 7:24-25, Jn 17, 1 Cor, Eph, Col) or to be scattered and divided ad infinitum (Mt 21:44, Mt 7:26-27).

The Catholic Church has been actively working towards the unity of all Christians, a process called ecumenism which is willed by God Himself. You can read more about this in the decree Unitatis Redintegratio, a worthy reading to understand just how much the Catholic Church has been working for the past decades towards finding and emphasizing our common ground with the communities who at one time or another distanced themselves from the Church, and above all else emphasizing that those who at the present time are born into those communities did not truly choose to leave the Catholic Church.

The restoration of unity among all Christians is one of the principal concerns of the Second Vatican Council. Christ the Lord founded one Church and one Church only. However, many Christian communions present themselves to men as the true inheritors of Jesus Christ; all indeed profess to be followers of the Lord but differ in mind and go their different ways, as if Christ Himself were divided. Such division openly contradicts the will of Christ, scandalizes the world, and damages the holy cause of preaching the Gospel to every creature.

This movement toward unity is called “ecumenical.” Those belong to it who invoke the Triune God and confess Jesus as Lord and Savior, doing this not merely as individuals but also as corporate bodies. For almost everyone regards the body in which he has heard the Gospel as his Church and indeed, God’s Church. All however, though in different ways, long for the one visible Church of God, a Church truly universal and set forth into the world that the world may be converted to the Gospel and so be saved, to the glory of God.

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