Which church has produced more "fruit" catholic or protestant?


#1

I made a post on another forum defending the catholic church’s teaching on the eucharist and its claim to be the only true church on earth. A protestant responded with the following

I want to say that that if the catholic church is the only true church wouldnt there be more fruit? Wouldnt your leadership be walking with God more? Wouldnt more people want to be catholic? Wouldnt just as the early church had people being added daily to the church…wouldnt that be happenning? According to the NT the church had power and influence… they drew people in with the love of Jesus to the point that they completely changed theyre world.
I run into more people who are so hurt by the catholic church, or who never felt what it is to know God in the catholic church on outreach than any other faith I have ever encountered. Yet they are scared by the church because the church didnt offer life…just hoops to jimp through to try and get Gods attention. I am not saying this is true of all Catholics but I am saying I run into it enough and see genuine hunger and desire to know God in these people…and not just know Him but to forsake everything to know Him… that I have to question the catholic church.

I am in no way saying the catholic church is some awful thing because hey stuff happens… but I cant help and have questions as to why. Why do people I meet not ever feel the precense of God in church? Why do they feel dead? How come like the church in acts numbers are not being added daily?

I dont believe of course that that sort of move of God is somehow limited to protestants…but it is limited to those who walk with Jesus…and if your church is so right and true than why dont we see this? What happenned between the NT and now? The Bible says that the mark of true followers of Christ is that the church is growing… if this is not happenning in your church than you are not following after Christ and you are not fulfilling the great commission.

how should we respond to protestants who claim that the catholic church does not produce enough “fruit” or isn’t reaching out to the lost enough? What exactly are the statistics of catholic converts, last time i heard it was growing?


#2

acatholiclife.blogspot.com/2006/07/us-catholic-population-statistics-2005.html

US Catholic Population: 69,135,254 (rose by 1.3 million)

Nuber of students in Catholic high schools: 680,000 (drop by 13,000)

Number of students in Catholic elementary schools: 1.76 million (drop by 84,000)

Number of teachers in Catholic schools: 173,000 (drop by 8,000)

Number of high school students enrolled in parish religious education programs: 729,000 (drop by 26,000)

Number of Elementary students in religious education: 3.5 million (drop by 81,000)

Number of students in Catholic colleges and universities: 764,000 (drop by 9,000)

Church-recognized marriages: 212,000 (drop by 11,000)

Confirmations: 630,000 (drop by 15,000)

First Holy Communions: 833,000 (drop by 40,000)

Infant baptisms: 943,000 (drop by 34,000)

Adult baptisms and receptions into the Church: 154,000 (same as the previous year)

Priestly Ordinations: 438 (drop by 29)

Number of priests in U.S. dioceses and religious orders: 42,271 (drop by 1,151)

Number of permanent deacons: 14,995 (drop by 32 - the first time the number has dropped since Vatican II in the 1960s)

Number of new parishes opened: 46

Number of Catholic hospitals: 573 (drop by 8)

Number of patients helped at Catholic hospitals: 84.7 million (rose by 2.5 million)

London, Feb. 16, 2007 (CWNews.com) - Roman Catholics will soon become the largest religious group in Great Britain, outnumbering Anglicans for the first time since the Reformation, the London Times reports.

Weekly Mass attendance at Catholic parishes now stands at about 1 million, roughly equal to the number attending Anglican services. But the Catholic population of Britain is steadily expanding, mostly because of immigration, while the Anglican community is in decline, the Times observes.

For the first time since the foundation of our country, the United States may have less than 50% of its population as Protestants. From 1993 to 2002, Protestants dropped from 63% of the population to 52% of the population. According to the researchers, it will drop below 50% in the next two years. Catholics remained steady at 25% of the population.

Unfortunately, the number of people claiming no religion has climbed from 9% to 14%. We desperately need to pray that these people see Jesus Christ and see the full truth of the Catholic faith!

The number of people adhering to Islam, Orthodox Christians, interdenominational Christians and native-American faiths rose from 3% to 7%. The number of people claiming the Jewish faith remains just below 2%.

Note: Protestants are defined as “all post-Reformation Christian churches, such as Baptist, Methodist and Episcopalian, including Mormons and New Age Spirituality adherents.”


#3

The Church grew under Pope John Paul II from 700 million to 1.1 billion.

I believe that the growth (400 million) is probably larger than any other organizations entire membership.

Walk with God?!? Give me a break. Tell me who has walked with God more than JPII and Mother Teresa.

When disasters strike across the world, who is often the first group on the scene? Catholic Charities (to be honest, it helps to have parishes near these disaster sites that can quickly be mobilized into relief centers). Who is one of the most efficient charities in the world? Catholic Charities.

They just don’t happen to wear the yellow shirts touting their church when they’re on the scene.


#4

It is true. I over heard it over Catholic Answers Live. It’s never been reported in the media.

I also read that they were the first to respond to the Katrina.


#5

I’m not sure what you are trying to show with your statistics. It looks to me like there are more Catholics overall but less people actually practicing Catholicism or raising their children as Catholics. Or was that your point?


#6

He ask for statistics I gave him Catholic demographics.


#7

Yes there was poll out that 75% of Catholics reject the Church’s teachings which is shameful. :mad:

Though I am not surprise, especially amongst American Catholics. There are only a few of us traditional Catholics devoted to Jesus Christ and his Holy Catholic Church.


#8

You can respond as follows:

Of course Christ’s Church brings forth fruit - the most fruit, with over a billion followers world wide, more than any other Christian denomination and one sixth of the world’s population. In fact as Saint Francis de Sales sums up the fifteenth chapter of the second part of his book the Catholic Controversy “The True Church Must be Fruitful. The Catholic Church is Fruitful, The Pretended Barren” explaining that Christian doctrine is as gentle as rain making “unfruitful soil to bring forth” while the protestants’ doctrine “resembles hail, which beats down and destroys the harvests, and makes barren the most fertile lands” - that the Protestant Churches can only steal away the offspring of the Catholic Church as a partridge, unable to produce their own. This is obvious when looking at the missionary efforts the protestants undertake, sending their missionaries to Mexico, France, or some other Catholic country.

Catholig


#9

I would ask the Protestant a question in return- what fruit are the Protestant churches producing? When anyone with an opinion and someone to listen to it can form a new church, and that new church is “on fire” with its newness, it might be easy to confuse “fruit” with “novelty”. But what about 50 or even 20 years down the road (let alone 2000)? What fruit is that church producing then?

As for Catholics who leave the Church complaining that they’re not “being fed”, I would wonder how many Presbyterians start going to Methodist churches, or Lutherans seek out Pentecostal churches for the same reason. And how many people stop going to the First Baptist Church of Brownville because they don’t like the new preacher and start attending the Second Baptist Church of Brownville instead? Does that mean those churches aren’t producing fruit?

The person seems to be confusing fruit with catechism. Lots of Catholics have a poor grasp of their faith. But is that the sole measure of “fruit”? What about the charities, hospitals, schools, shelters, community programs, etc. that Catholicism runs (even despite a drop in the numbers). What Protestant denomination has as its earthly head a man who is sought out by world leaders? What Protestant denomination can claim saints?

Cheers,
Cari


#10

Pertaining to the teachings of Jesus Christ; The Word of God has been passed on orally then in written form… preserved throughout the ages, coppied and handed down by the Catholic Church.

The Catholic Curch determined the NT cannon of the Bible in 405 AD, it is the Catholic Church that gave to every Christian the collection of Ispired books that we find in the New Testament today.

According to Martin Luther, Protestants have to recognize that without the Catholics they would have known nothing of the Word of God.

So what fruit are the protestants talking about? You mean the Catholic fruit that they have gotten from the Catholic Church?

Without Catholicism there could never have been Protestantism… in every aspect of what they have that comes from Jesus Christ.

Just the facts,
Robert Santos Leon


#11

I will tell you what the OP is talking about. We have a Baptist Church(there are several here, but I know of only the one) here in town. It has doubled its congragants in recent years. Not a few are Catholics who have left the Catholic Church. I was speaking to a woman last night, a single parent whose two kids are in late teens. She said she did not know what she was going to do when they left home. Then immediately said, “Well I have the “family” of my church.” People in this Baptist Church go out of their way to make people feel welcome, to pay attention to them, even the mentally and physically handicapped. My parish on the other hand while it is growing overall has bled more than a few Catholics to this Church. What is their impression of my parish? Cold, rife with cliques and factions, unwelcoming, dead as opposed to vibrant, and so on. Of those parishioners one sees on Sunday, probably less than 25% walk through the Church door during the week. In and out quick on Sunday morning to get it over with. I think many Catholics come because they have no choice or alternate parish near by. Most protestants belong to a congregation because they really want to. They have picked it over a variety of others that are available. One can go on and on about how deceptive emotion is in professing a faith, but I will tell you warm feelings can go a long way in helping to satisfy ones religous longings. Why else do so many of us talk of how we love the Eucharist? It is not just rationality that drives us. Don’t misunderstand me. I love my parish and am highly involved as are some others, but those who are not so involved get pretty short schrift from many of their fellow parishioners. We need in our Church to start responding to the whole person.


#12

As i understand the situation , the vast majority of catholics believe and support the basic fundamentals that the church teaches/claims. As regards numbers…does it really matter if we have 800 million or 1.1 billion ? I have also heard that while the church numbers are decreasing in europe , they are increasing in india , china and africa. Priests from africa are currently filling chuches in some european countries , especially france !
With regards to ‘fruits’ , i have personally met hundreds of catholic and protestant christians whose words and deeds have been ‘christ-like’.
What makes them ‘different’ for me is that they said and did things with warmth , compassion and love…a sincere love.
A church not based on love will surely collapse …!!!:thumbsup: :thumbsup:


#13

It sounds as if the churches in your area need some sort of ‘renew’ initiatives…for example an ALPHA course ; or a few SCOTT HAHN dvd evenings , followed by discussion.
Our church attracted a number of young catholics and protestants when we decided to run the ALPHA course. I cannot tell you how many young people started to come to mass regularly after having attended the course ! IN ITS 8TH YEAR]. Protestants also came to know more about our faith in the process…and many friends were made !
Don’t give up and pray about it…:thumbsup:


#14

I live in a poor section of Las Vegas and determine that most women are sluts.

I live outside in the country next to a Missionaries of Charity convent where every day I observe the nuns going to the city to serve the poor and determine that most women are saints.

I live in Poland and see who the Church brought down communism and determine that the Catholic Church is the New David.

I live in the backwoods of some Bible Belt state where there isn’t a Catholic Church within 100 miles and I determine that the Catholic Church is a figment of the imagination of an old guy in Rome.

The real answer: Ask God when you meet Him face-to-face. Otherwise, this is a he said, she said battle of statistics which may be misrepresentations of the truth resulting in rancor.

As soon as I saw this guys post, it was too obvious he was a guy who wanted to define the debate to be purely subjective where he would be in a place to determine objective truth.


#15

So when are YOU going to step up and start changing this image?


#16

As a matter of fact we have two long term bible studys each year by Scott Hahn or Jeff Cavins, also two shorter ones during Advent and Lent. We have a year long study of the CCC being led by a deacon who I believe has a Ph.D. in theology, I instruct, there are four of us, in the RCIA program each year. We have ten candidates this year. Kids from the parish have made at least two mission trips in the last year. We have a Catholic School and an active RF Program. My son left and went to the Baptist Church and I wondered what drew him so I went to their ALPHA Course. While I have been a parishioner here for 43 years I have not experienced the warmth and welcome that this Baptist Church demonstrates. They circulate whgile We at my Church tend to huddle with our own little group and new comers get the cold shoulder. Some of us try to move around during “donut time” after Mass, but many more isolate into the same little group each week and tend to ignore anyone who joins them. So maybe the warmth and interest “over there” is somewhat artificial, but it sure works.


#17

How could the US Catholic Population rise by 1.3 million if infant baptisms, adult baptisms and receptions into the Church dropped or stayed the same?


#18

Immigration?


#19

That may be true, but I am convinced that objective truth is not the whole story. It is very important to me to know that my Church has it, but as John says to the Church at Ephesus
Rev2:1-6} you can’t forget love. It is not objective truth that impacts the statistics it is more often how welcome people feel. They learn the objective truth after the first attraction draws them. Hopefully the truth keeps most of them.


#20

It really is weird that you should mention feeling strange and indifferent at the ALPHA course run at the catholic church…i say this because i know of two people both catholics] who had nightmareish experiences doing ALPHA at local protestant churches methodist ; non-denominational]. One of the people involved was my nephew and he was disgusted at the lack of warmth shown by many participants…particularly as the whole experience is meant to be an introduction to christianity !!!
It is such a pity that you cannot come and experience ALPHA at our parish…we have it all…shared meals ; singing ; the video ; small group discussions where people are treated with the utmost respect…and finally prayer with all the ‘team’ in the church hall ! In fact we often have local methodists and episcopalians coming to our ALPHA , and i can assure you that each and every person has been overjoyed at having chosen our parish.
Don’t give up…also remember that you will always have people leaving and people joining the church…it’s happening as i type this positive message to all…blessings !


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