Then you are rejecting the Catholic position based on what you define it to mean rather than what it actually means, and what the Church explains it to mean. You think your definition of merit and how it comes about is what the Church has to mean even when it is explained to you that it is not what the Church teaches. If you are not interested in Truth, no one here can help you.
Okay then. let’s use the gift metaphor.
Let’s say it is my birthday party and my father has a huge gift for me on the table. Using my metaphor, I accept the gift and open it. What is inside is so wonderful and life changing that it becomes the treasure of my heart. My thoughts and actions dwell on the treasure of my heart and I tell my friends about it and try to get others to love and enjoy it as much as I do.
In this very short metaphor the gift is Jesus and, receiving the gift is faith, and my thoughts and actions are the works of faith in which I glorify the gift and share the gift with others.
This is a very simplistic and admittedly inadequate metaphor of the Protestant view of Conversion and Sanctification.
What would be a similar Catholic Metaphor on receiving the gift of Jesus that would show the Catholic definition?
The same metaphor. We would call that acceptance of the gift and God’s offer of it to us as “merit.” We merit redemption precisely because God has offered it to us. Choosing to unwrap the gift is the assent of faith, and being given possession of what is inside would be Baptism. And our thoughts and actions and our sharing of the gift with others-we call that faith and good works. The opposite of faith is disobedience, right? And so we show faith by obedience to His will, in a response of loving gratitude for what He has done for us in Creating, Redeeming, and Sanctifying us, and in so doing we glorify His gift and share t with others.
There are legitimate points of departure between what Catholics believe and what others believe. This one—the one about merit—we would all agree on if people would listen to what is actually being said, rather than assuming the word merit is meant in the way a Boy Scout would earn a merit badge.
You’re on the WAY HOME my friend,
Logically and Morally there CAN be only
One True God
One True set of Faith beliefs
And One True Church… today’s Roman Catholic Church & Faith, provable both historically and Biblically
How about we begin with a bit of Bible history:
YAWYEH God with consistency always choose one Man for leadership of HIS Chosen people [even before he identified tham as the Hebrew nation]
Noah, Abraham, Moses, the Judges, the kings, the Prophets leading to John the Baptist, who leads to Jesus, who choose 12 mane LED BY Peter
GOOGLE “Early Father on the Primacy” to obtain confirmation and acceptance of this reality.
I can provide 50 bible- FIRST for Peter if space would permit it]
Secondly in the business world there is commonly just one PERSON who is ultimately IN Charge.
BOTH reflect knowledge of human nature that when there is more than one “equal” boss; MOST often less will be accomplished.
GOOGLE " the early Fathers on the Primacy" for further evidence of this.
This alone ought to assuage your inquiry.
God Bless my friend,
Pray very much
Actually I have a very long list that could be expanded upon.
Contradicting history (Yes from Peter to Francis)
Changing under the explanation of development
Claiming a Patent on Christ
What is the Magisterium exactly?
Catholic morality (How to figure it out)
NFP and Contraception
Need for confession and therefore mortal sin
After a month, how has your experience been on the new forum?
It is curious why some people who joined these Catholic forums aren’t Catholic. And they question why we ask why they aren’t Catholic?! Why do some of those people complain about the Catholic Church, when they chose to become members of these Catholic forums. Instead, I would rather ask why any of you who aren’t Catholic chose to become members of Catholic Answers forums in the first place… that’s the big question I’m most curious about.
I have an entire family in law who wonders why I am not Catholic. If it wasn’t for that I wouldn’t have even known how to spell Catholic.
But the reality sets in and I need to converse with these people. Just a thought…
praying in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, instead of in the name of Jesus Christ only
belief in creation ex-nihilo
the doctrine of the Trinity
choice of bread or wine at communion
no apostles or prophets
… to name a few reasons
I can only speak for myself on why I chose to join. I have rubbed shoulders professionally with many Catholics but I have had very limited conversations in real life with anyone of them about what they really believe. I initially found it fascinating that people here actually possessed a personal faith within the realm of Catholicism. Most Catholics in real life that I have put questions to about their faith don’t seem to know what they really believe or else they just don’t care to verbalize it. So many just seem to think that since they are Catholic that there is nothing else to religious they need to say or know.
If you are questioning why I was questioning the meaning of PJM’s opening sentence regarding the “multiplicity of Protestant faiths” having a sharing in common that should make one desire to be a Catholic, I must admit that I am stumped on what that qualifier even means. Most people seem to be just responding to the thread title. If that is what was meant to be the essence of this thread then my reason for not being Catholic is that I do not believe that God is calling me to be a part of it.
For me, contraception is not even an obstacle. All Protestants opposed artificial birth control prior to the 1920s. It’s hard to deny the damage done by contraceptives use for non-medical purposes.
I certainly don’t wish to imply that it doesn’t exist anywhere, perhaps if my husband and I were based somewhere else we would be telling a different story. We just haven’t found this at our parishes. I even attended a parish where the newsletter literally only contained a list of who was I’ll and who was recently deceased. The only regular groups are for retired old ladies.
I get his dilemma as I have had a lot of times where I’ve thought “can I really do this?” as in stick with and practice a faith when I have no earthly support. Because I already have belief in the Eucharist I feel that if I put my faith in Gods will keep trying then I can. Without the belief in the Eucharist I’d probably feel better off trying to find a church with more support.
A lot of my non-Catholic friends take a very different approach to church. They believe the main purpose of church to be a community of believers. Some will even go “church shopping” to find a good fit. I remember one of them telling me “don’t worry about denomination, find a church where you fit in”. If they don’t find the right church they don’t go. It’s a bit of a leap to go from that way of doing church to being committed to going to mass.
I came to CAF to learn more about Catholicism. I learned much within that first year and I decided to stay because I found that the discussions were a great place to learn more about not only Catholicism but also other groups. Many people in this group may disagree strongly with each other yet there is a huge respect and caring for each other.
I’ve detailed it in other post, but the bottom line is that my son is dating (soon to be engaged) to a Catholic girl. They have been dating for years and whenever I would ask him when he was becoming Catholic he would always tell me that he is not going to become Catholic. That is, until last spring when he said, “I might become Catholic”.
As a result I started to educate myself on Catholicism, trying to filter out the obvious propaganda against Catholicism that is floating around. We have one medium sized Catholic church in our city of 25,000 folks so it is not like I have Catholics at work to ask question about Catholicism. I’ve read Rome Sweet Home and a couple of other Catholic Apologist books. I’ve also read Protestant books by former Catholics and books that compare Catholic Theology to Protestant Theology.
I’ve also read several books on church history.
This forum has become a place to ask questions and, if necessary, try and correct misconceptions about evangelicalism.
I joined because my wife (and now three kids) are Catholic. I came here to get more information about Catholicism as my oldest son moved into the year he started preparing for first communion. I, as a non-Catholic, have been treated fairly poorly/looked down upon at the two parishes (on in town one in the country) here, so I didn’t think the church was the best place for information so I started doing some online research and ended up here.
I created an account to answer some questions directed towards protestants (specifically towards non-denoms) and have just kind of hung on and lurked from there. Sometimes I reply in threads…sometimes I don’t. It can really depend on the subject and temperature of the thread. If it looks like the thread may run hot, and NC’s may be looked down upon (like at my wife’s parish), I’ll probably stay away.
If it looks like we can have an adult discussion on a subject I find interesting, I’ll probably dive in.
Understandable. Thanks for sharing.
I appreciate your honesty and sharing to get a glimpse into your perspective.
Actually, I didn’t understand what PJM meant by ‘high degree of searing’- never heard that strange way of terminology in regards to people’s faith journeys before… he/she didn’t explain his/her question nor inquiry about that very well, but rather just left it vague. Mainly, when you posted that ‘I do not understand the op [original post] question’ (Wannano), I thought you were questioning why PJM was simply asking “WHY then are YOU not a Catholic?”… I went with my first thought & that was to simply answer your question, but looking back on your question, I can see now that you merely were referring to PJM’s “high degree of searing.” Oh well that I misinterpreted your question. Nonetheless, I admire and enjoy reading the replies that I am curious about, as to why some of you joined this forum stuff. Thanks for reading this message. Peace.
Interesting perspective! I have 3 brother-in-laws who aren’t Catholic while the rest of their family is- I can only imagine what they’re experiencing perhaps in similar situation. I’m sorry to hear that that you have been treated unfairly and not appreciated by two particular parishes. Understandable. Hopefully you’ll find subjects to dive deeper into that you find interesting. Thanks for sharing your perspective. Peace!
Ya, they could be. I know early on I was a bit of a “black sheep” with the in-laws, if you will. There are 5 kids in the family, I married the oldest and really came into a HUGE family as the only non-Catholic, not to mention that my MIL converted for my FIL. I kind of think he may have expected the same from me. He once yelled at my youngest SIL because she came to church with us at a Protestant church once (I think she was HS aged). Now all of the kids but one are married. Me and one other husband are the only two NC’s. The family has really warmed up to us, especially now that there are two of us (it helps that my MIL is a convert who is considering reversion).
The toughest part is holiday’s. It doesn’t really make holiday’s like Christmas and Easter all that enjoyable going to a church where, when we’re there, you’re seen as different and not really seen as a part of the rest of the family (12 Catholics and us 2 NC’s) and kind of looked down on.
I’m a Catholic revert but I’ve been having thoughts of leaving the church again.
I had come back to the faith in search of answers to my depression that ruined my life. I’ve been a shadow of my former self ever since. But through God’s grace, I’m here today because I was completely resolved at one point that life wasn’t worth living.
But now I live out of obligation to my daughter, but with little joy and no hope for the future. I feel like I’m buried under my cross. I don’t want to suffer for the rest of my life in the hopes that I will be redeemed
when I die. I’m a brutal sinner, plagued by weak faith and often live in regret because of the affects of my decisions caused by my mental issues. Endless novenas, praying the rosary and weekly confessions and very little has changed over the years. All I ask for is the opportunity to use my gifts to the best of my ability and to support my family. I have received signal graces, but I’m beginning to wonder if God is calling me in a different direction.
Where I live in The Netherlands, Catholicism is dead. My church consists mainly of tourists and expats that only stay in the country for awhile. There is little camaraderie among people here that I feel like an outsider. I feel so alone and often times empty during mass.
I was recently approached by two people on the street asking if I would like to join their non denominational Christian church. They embraced me and prayed for me, and I nearly broke down in public. They made me feel welcome and have even since reached out to me.
I reminisce about a time I visited my cousin’s church, which was also a non denominational church. These are country folk and to be frank, I found it a bit creepy that the service felt like I was watching a game show. But I felt welcomed when I was introduced and there was a real Christian attitude among everyone. These are simple people with simple lives, and they use analogies of hills with peaks and valleys to describe life. They have no interest in deep philosophical discussions, talking about the transfiguration or the sacraments.
I admire my cousin, who has also gone through more than anyone I know. Her mother died when she was in her early teens, her father a decade later and than her younger sister. She developed an auto-immune disease as a result of all the stress and now she is on the verge of bankruptcy as they need money to pay for her husband’s cancer treatments. Yet she plugs on without complaint, full of hope and optimism and often talks about her personal relationship with God.
I will admit that the Catholic church is the fullness of Truth. But I also believe God embraces all Christians, regardless of the Truth. I can only ascertain this through my experience with my cousin and her faith. Perhaps meeting these strangers is his way of giving me direction and fellowship that is sorely lacking in my life.
Please pray for me.