What would you say as a best shot to bring an ex-Catholic turned Anglican back into the church?


#1

Just curious, what would you tell me if you wanted to make your best effort to make me a revert back to the RCC as I have been an Anglican received into the church for the last several years.


#2

First question I would ask is why did you leave the Roman Catholic Church? What part of the Church teachings did you disagree with? Also, are you part of the Anglican 'Low" church or the “High” church?

That is where I would start. :slight_smile:


#3

Why are you asking? Do you want to be brought back? If you are comfortable in Anglicanism, why not just leave the poor Catholics alone? (And I know that Catholics could ask me this as well–but besides the fact that I’m not comfortable in Anglicanism, I don’t think, with due respect to mgrfin, that I have displayed the intense and constant animosity to Catholicism that you have. I don’t think it’s good for your own soul to keep on obsessing about Catholicism. If you can’t move on, then maybe you should ask yourself why. I know that I ask myself that frequently.)

Even though I’m not a Catholic, I’ll give two reasons why a person should be Catholic rather than Anglican, and a third why you in particular should not have left:

  1. Anglicanism is obviously not the universal Church, and it does not recognize the authority of any visible body larger than itself that can claim to be the universal Church (i.e., Anglicans, for all their frequent pretensions, have no universal visible Church to which they can be accountable). Catholicism may be the universal Church–if it isn’t, then the Orthodox Church probably is. At worst there’s a 50/50 chance that it is, which is a lot better than you get in Anglicanism.

  2. Catholicism, for all its faults, can speak out against the prevailing culture in a way Anglicanism cannot. Both you and I disagree with much of what the Episcopal Church is doing. So we should look very carefully at the fact that the Catholic Church is the bulwark of these things that we believe but our own denomination does not. Yes, the practical failures of the Catholic church as an institution are horrible, and this is one of the main reasons I have never become Catholic. But in spite of its failures, the Catholic Church has displayed an amazing ability to renew itself and remain faithful at least in terms of its core teachings. Perhaps we should consider the possibility that either we are wrong and these moral principles defended by the Catholic Church are in fact immoral, or that the failures of the Church in practice should not be allowed to outweigh the clarity and power of its teaching.

  3. All of us should remain in the Christian communities into which we were baptized/confirmed unless we are convinced that these communities have abandoned the Faith in some quite radical way. This is the reason I remain some sort of Protestant, and one reason why I hang on even to Episcopalianism, since though I wasn’t baptized into it this is where I ended up as an adult and I don’t want to keep church-hopping. Also, if I don’t become Catholic, where would I go? If I were starting out as a non-denominational Wesleyan evangelical I’d become Methodist, but it’s hard to go Methodist from Anglicanism when Methodism lacks certain elements of the Faith that are more clearly present in Anglicanism.

In Christ,

Edwin


#4

Since I started Apologetics and open my discussion with Non-Catholic Christians, I realized that no matter how much reasoning and logic you explain doctrinal issues, you cannot change the hearts of others.

Man is** not capable to change the hearts of others**. The Holy Spirit convert others. So I leave the** conversion to God**. If you at anytime feel the deep spiritual calling back to the Catholic Church, the confessionals are always made available.

You have that free will to decide. We, Catholics here can debate with you 1,000 times and you would still be objective. We rely God to change the hearts of men.


#5

First I would pray for guidance to our Lord and God.

Then I’d say, “What can I do to help you to follow Christ as He would have you–and all of us-- follow Him?”

And then I’d listen carefully to what you would tell me of your need, instead of me trying to tell you what you need, because I might very easily be focused on doing the ‘right’ thing in the ‘wrong way’ unless I truly listen.

And then I’d pray some more for guidance, and I’d let the Holy Spirit work just as He chooses, however He chooses, because in the end, it is God who wants you to be with Him, and He will give you the grace to be with Him. But I surely would be praying my heart out for you!

And in any case, you will always be in my prayers, no matter what.


#6

I was just thinking how, if I were Orthodox, where would I worship? When I move to a new town (13 moves in 35 years), there is always a Catholic Church nearby. Not so with an Orthodox Church. They haven’t had the same corncern for spreading the Good News over all the Earth that the CC has.

  1. Catholicism, for all its faults, can speak out against the prevailing culture in a way Anglicanism cannot. Both you and I disagree with much of what the Episcopal Church is doing. So we should look very carefully at the fact that the Catholic Church is the bulwark of these things that we believe but our own denomination does not. Yes, the practical failures of the Catholic church as an institution are horrible, and this is one of the main reasons I have never become Catholic. But in spite of its failures, the Catholic Church has displayed an amazing ability to renew itself and remain faithful at least in terms of its core teachings. Perhaps we should consider the possibility that either we are wrong and these moral principles defended by the Catholic Church are in fact immoral, or that the failures of the Church in practice should not be allowed to outweigh the clarity and power of its teaching.

Come aboard, Edwin, and like Scott Hahn you could become part of he movement now taking place to reform the Church, from within this time.

  1. All of us should remain in the Christian communities into which we were baptized/confirmed unless we are convinced that these communities have abandoned the Faith in some quite radical way. This is the reason I remain some sort of Protestant, and one reason why I hang on even to Episcopalianism, since though I wasn’t baptized into it this is where I ended up as an adult and I don’t want to keep church-hopping. **Also, if I don’t become Catholic, where would I go? **If I were starting out as a non-denominational Wesleyan evangelical I’d become Methodist, but it’s hard to go Methodist from Anglicanism when Methodism lacks certain elements of the Faith that are more clearly present in Anglicanism.

In Christ,

Edwin

Jesus said in Matthew 28:18 - 20 **All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. ** Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.

If the Catholic Church lost its way or apostasised, that means Jesus was wrong, which means He wasn’t Divine after all. I don’t accept that. It is because I am convinced in the claim of Jesus to be God that I am a Catholic, despite the sinfulness of certain members of His Church.

Which Church today is most under spiritual attack? Why? Because it holds the Fullness of Truth.

[quote=Nella] Just curious, what would you tell me if you wanted to make your best effort to make me a revert back to the RCC as I have been an Anglican received into the church for the last several years.
[/quote]

Hijikata has a point. Why did you leave in the first place.

I had a crisis of Faith many years ago now when I had to make a choice. The Church’s ruling against the use of artificial means of birth control was being hotly debated. I didn’t want to submit. If I could have proved to my satisfaction that the CC’s claim to be the One, True Church as not true, that would have pleased me. Then I wouldn’t have to go to Mass EVERY Sunday whether I wanted to or not. I could worship God how it suited me.

Reluctantly, I came to realise that for me, to stop being a Catholic would mean rejecting Christianity. That being the case, I submitted my will to God and He has rewarded that over the years.

It is not easy, but Jesus didn’t promise that, He promised peace although not as the world regards peace. I have that peace when I humble myself and accept the crosses He gives me.


#7

I agree with the practical concern (right now, for instance, I have two Catholic churches within a few blocks of me, while the nearest Orthodox church is 20 miles away). I think your explanation is simplistic and unfair to the Orthodox, but that is not really the point of this thread.

Come aboard, Edwin, and like Scott Hahn you could become part of he movement now taking place to reform the Church, from within this time.

Eileen, this appeals to me greatly, but to be honest I think that it’s highly arrogant to convert with that in mind (not accusing Dr. Hahn, who did not convert for that purpose, and I recognize that you aren’t saying that should be the main reason). The reason the faults of Catholicism are a problem for me as a potential convert is not because I think I am better than the Catholic Church, but because I don’t think I am. I am not holy enough to be a reformer. I need a Church that will guide me toward holiness. One of the reasons (not the only one) that I dropped out of RCIA was that at a very difficult point in my life when I needed spiritual guidance, I was not getting the kind of spiritual nourishment from the local Catholic parish that I had gotten from the Episcopal parish. I don’t justify this–my point is simply that I don’t see myself as some great Christian who can come in and help reform things. I am a sinner who needs grace. For all its faults, I’ve received grace in Protestantism. I hope and perhaps 60% of the time believe that I would receive even more in Catholicism, but when taking such a leap it takes more than that. Of course, the other side of it is that if Catholicism is true then I am probably damaging my soul badly every year I put off becoming Catholic.

I think my real problem back then (wisely diagnosed by my medieval philosophy professor, who was also a Catholic priest–and at least two other wise and learned Catholic friends, both of them impeccably orthodox, have more or less agreed) was that my interest in Catholicism was too much of a “head trip.” I didn’t see a good alternative intellectually, but the conviction of the truth of Catholicism hadn’t worked down into my bones.


If the Catholic Church lost its way or apostasised, that means Jesus was wrong, which means He wasn’t Divine after all.

That depends on a lot of unprovable assumptions concerning the nature of Jesus’ promise and the nature of the Church, but this is probably not the place to go into them either.

Which Church today is most under spiritual attack? Why? Because it holds the Fullness of Truth.

And that may be true. But the evidence is also consistent with the idea that maybe Catholicism has brought a lot of corruption on itself by claiming more than it is justified in claiming. A church that claims to be infallible seems in practice to find it hard not to use that claim to shield itself from criticism even on points not covered by infallibility. That can’t help but make outsiders wonder if the claim holds up at all. If Catholics so often fail to question church leaders because they trust the claims of “the Church,” then maybe “the Church” isn’t as distinct from the sinful and fallible church leaders as Catholics claim.

In the Episcopal Church I know that my priests and bishops are both peccable and fallible. That is one of the things that drives me toward Catholicism–the constant need for vigilance is spiritually exhausting. But can I really trust the Catholic Church any more than the Episcopal Church, just because it has preserved certain traditional teachings better? Maybe it has just as many flaws, only different ones?

Edwin


#8

I think your explanation is simplistic and unfair to the Orthodox, but that is not really the point of this thread.

Sorry, wasn’t meaning to be nasty, it was just something I thought about recently. Personally, I think the liturgies would be so much more uplifting, but I can’t be Orthodox just for that reason. I pray for union and a very real return of the sacred to our Catholic liturgies.

At the parish I attend (not in my zone), the PP does religious instruction one-to-one rather than have an RCIA where lay people may do things wrong. He is a very good priest who radiates love and joy and yet is a good example of muscular Chistianity. His love for God literally lights up his face when he is preaching.

For those of us who are convinced in the truth of Catholic Teaching, we need to keep vigilent, instruct ourselves and not leave it to individual priests who may have their own agenda, or simply not read Vatican documents. It’s a struggle sometimes.

Don’t give up the search, I believe the Holy Spirit will lead you home in His time. I say this not out of arrogance, but because I am convinced of the CC and pray for the whole world to join us.

I am not holy enough to be a reformer.

Ditto. All I do is witness to those people the HS sends my way. The spiritual works of mercy tell us to counsel the doubtful and instruct the ignorant. Too bad so many of us get stuck at rebuking the sinner.

LOL, It just occurred to me that anyone who did think they were holy enough to be a reformer would lack the necessary humility to be successful.

Regards


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