Why are you NOT Catholic, POLL


This poll lists different choices as to what prevents you*** intellectually*** from joining the Catholic Church. There may be practical issues relating to the intellectual issue, but this poll is more about Catholic doctrine and beliefs than issues regarding family or culture, for example.

I am genuinely interested, so any respectful feedback relating to your choice would be greatly appreciated.

PLEASE, in a post, identify

*](1) Your current religious adherence
*](2) Why you are interested in Catholicism – after all, you are here at CAF

I’m not voting, because I’m not sure I could narrow it to just one thing. From your above categories, here are some of my objections. They’re ranked in order of least resistance to most offensive.

Marian dogmas: I can agree to these. In fact, I personally believe she remained a virgin, and that there is something to the pious belief in her Assumption. As for being immaculately conceived, I suppose it is possible to understand that Christ purified her at her conception - but it must be clear that she needed a Savior just as much as anyone else. So I’m not opposed to these pious beliefs, but I do think they are just that – pious beliefs. Proclaiming them mandatory things that must be believed for salvation has no basis in Scripture, the early fathers, or the creeds.

Prayer to departed saints: We do ask our fellow Saints Militant to pray for us, and tradition does seem to support the practice – but it mustn’t be abused. They are neither God, nor our One Mediator. I know too many Catholics who treat them like a pantheon of gods or an assortment of Pokemon.

Justification: The Catholic Church has moved closer to the Lutheran position on Justification since Trent, and some high-profile Catholics even appear to be crypto-Lutherans on the subject (here’s looking at you, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI). But I’ve heard many Catholics explain the process of Justification very poorly and, frankly, I don’t see any substantive difference between Semipelagianism and its full-blown mess of a sibling; if a human is, in any capacity, moving toward God on his own, then why need God at all – why separate the two with an arbitrary measurement of ‘how much?’ Either God saves man, or man takes God’s place.

Papal Infallibility and Universal Immediate Jurisdiction: Nope.

I was once Catholic and am now Lutheran.

I am not interested in Catholicism. I signed up when I went back to the Catholic church after about a 22 or so year absence, but have since left the church for good and am now Lutheran as is now my wife and our two kids were baptized Lutheran back in April.

A question for you. What do you make of Matthew 16, and Jesus changing Simon’s name to Peter (I believe the Greek word is “Petros,” which literally mean “Rock,” and which was not a name prior to this in any recorded history.), and then saying “Upon this Rock (“Petros”) I will build my Church.” ?

I’ve often stated my position on papal jurisdiction. It is the main issue for me.


The list of options was made in no particular order.

I would disagree that the Church has “moved closer” to Lutheranism. I believe language and misunderstandings have been better resolved, and we see that our beliefs are closer than once thought. But indeed, the Catholic faith does not teach that one can attain salvation without Charity in the heart, so ultimately faith alone is denied, unless that faith is an active faith-working-in love.

Well good they were baptized and that makes you Catholic! like it or not that’s what you are!

great affection for the Catholic church

not catholic because

birth control
Pope Primacy
women Priests (lack of)
open Eucharist ( lack of)
Perpetual Virginity of Mary
Assumption of Mary
clergy celibacy
Parishes too large
various views on sin

A bunch of people who will not convert to Catholicism but spend copious amounts of tm on Catholic.com…hilarious :shrug:

What do you define as the purpose of human sexuality, and why would it be okay to artificially prevent the purpose which God designed for it?

Pope Primacy

Same question I asked above about Matthew 16.

women Priests (lack of)

Christ was a man. This is an important aspect of his eternal body. The Catholic Priest acts “in persona Christi,” which means that he acts in the person of Christ. Given that the priest is acting in the person of Christ when confecting the sacraments, and given that the distinction between male and female is more than a mere physical separation, it would be impossible for a woman to act “in persona Christi” because it is impossible for a woman to be a man. Since it is absolutely necessary for a Priest to confect the sacraments, it is therefore necessary for a a priest to be male, specifically because of Christ’s masculine identity.

open Eucharist ( lack of)

To Catholics, the Eucharist is the literal body and blood of our Lord and Savior. To take the Eucharist while simultaneously rejecting this reality is gravely sinful because it is a direct rejection of Christ. We do not prevent non-Catholics from taking the Eucharist to keep it to ourselves, we prevent them from taking it to prevent them from falling into sin.

Paul makes this abundantly clear in 1 Corinthians: (11:23-32) (Specifically, 27-29)

For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you,k that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread,
and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.
Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord.
A person should examine himself, and so eat the bread and drink the cup.
For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself.
That is why many among you are ill and infirm, and a considerable number are dying.
If we discerned ourselves, we would not be under judgment;
but since we are judged by [the] Lord, we are being disciplined so that we may not be condemned along with the world.

As Catholics, we wish that all people could partake int eh Eucharist. We cannot, however, ignore the reality that most Protestant religions do not have a proper understanding of what the Eucharist is and would therefore be bringing judgment upon themselves by taking it unworthily.

Perpetual Virginity of Mary
Assumption of Mary

I’ll direct you to Tim Staple’s new book “Behold your Mother.” It addresses pretty much every objection to these doctrines in detail; far more detail than I have the knowledge to go into offhand.

clergy celibacy

This is a matter of discipline and has little to do with the substance of the faith. However, it is mentioned at least once in Paul’s Epistles that the life of a celibate man of God is, in many ways, superior to married life. Several Eastern Rites of the Church allow for married clergy, however, so this is more an issue specific to the Roman Rite.

Parishes too large

…You dislike the Church… because people in an area are Catholic…?

various views on sin

All of which are Biblical: Mortal and Venial Sin

The distinction between grave/mortal sin and non-mortal (venial) sins is made clear


Nothing unclean can stand before God. If a person dies with any sin on their soul then they are, by definition, unclean. As such, some form of purification is necessary prior to entering into God’s presence. This is what we call Purgatory.

The only reason to believe something is because it’s true. I think CS Lewis wrote that. I’m not convinced that what your particular ecclesial community teaches about itself is true. I was born into the Episcopal Church, and I see no reason to leave it.

I would agree with everything cmodmac lists and would add sexual difficulties that your church has found itself in. There is, shall we say, an unhealthiness that is prevalent. I am Anglican (born and raised) and very happy to be so, both theologically and in practice. Plus, you have to admit, we have WAY better hymns. :slight_smile:

For those Catholics in the background, I don’t think it is in the intention of the OP for us to fly down and attempt to change minds on doctrine issues in this thread. The OP just wants some (common? Popular?) reasons why people are not Catholic, correct?

And to the OP, you seem to be someone on the borderline. Is your ultimate intention for this thread to search for and weigh the reasons against Catholicism?

Christi pax,


St. Peter and St. Paul, pray for us!

Nope, I am no longer Catholic. Just because the church has a policy of once Catholic always Catholic, it doesn’t mean that it really has a bearing anyone or anything except for people who may believe that it makes a difference.

I have renounced Catholicism and will not be going back.

  1. I am currently a member of an Assembly of God Christian faith tradition, which is evangelical and on the more conservative side of Christianity in terms of beliefs (Pro-Life, Pro-traditional marriage between man and woman, I do not believe in divorce, I believe in being born again).

  2. Why I am here:
    – I found Catholic radio by accident when flipping radio channels on the way home from work one day last year and have been listening ever since. They were playing Gregorian chants for several minutes and I’ve always loved those. After that, I listened to Al Kresta and Catholic Answers Live and became hooked. I even listen to Son Rise Morning Show on he way to work every day. Only time will tell.

– I am on CAF after hearing it advertised on the radio as a place to come and ask questions about the Catholic faith, along with me listening to EWTN.

– I am most impressed by Catholicism’s pedigree and historicity. It has ties to the apostles and early church.

– am impressed by the hierarchical and logical structure and authority of papacy, reminds me of the military structure.

– am drawn to the sacraments. My church only has marriage and baptism. I feel like I would benefit from participating in reconciliation and would sin less often if I knew I had to confess my sins to a priest.

– I believe God instituted a leader (pope) on purpose.

– I am coming around to the Eucharist being more than just a symbol.

What is holding me back:
– The Marian doctrines and having to pray the rosary.

– believing that baptism as an infant provides salvation. I believe the person must be baptized but also experience an inner transformation in order to be saved, which can only occur when the person realizes what he is doing and assents to it.

However, I am seriously considering attending RCIA in the fall and give it the old college try to see if I can overcome my remaining obstacles because I think that Catholicism may provide the missing pieces to my spiritual journey.

I definitely think you should give RCIA a try. They can probably explain to you in holistic, satisfactory terms the Church’s stance regarding your concerns. As a Catholic, there were some teachings I had issue with, but it turns out I just didn’t understand them as well and needed a spiritual director to explain them to me. After that, it made more sense.

I’m not Catholic because of the stance of the Catholic Church on:

Papal supremacy
Ordination of women
Open communion
LGBT people
Birth control

I’m a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America which is democratic, ordains women, has open communion, welcomes LGBT people in committed and monogamous relationships (including clergy), and believes that artificial birth control is acceptable and believes that salvation is by grace through faith alone.

My interest in the Catholic Church is partly historical (I love history) and I believe that there are many rituals and traditions in the Catholic church that could also be valuable for other Christians including people in the ELCA. I am especially interested in the Catholic Church’s mystical traditions (Julian of Norwich, Meister Eckhart, etc.), its views on saints, etc.

I am a Lutheran.

I selected the salvation issue in the poll because the mean reason I don’t return to the RC church is because I believe in salvation by grace through fait alone.

I am interested in Catholicism because I like discussing my particular faith.

To me, Religion is a social construct created for unifying and sharing the values of a people.

In today’s world, I feel that religion is just humanity trying to make sense of a senseless world. We are scared when faced with the meaningless of life and the finality of death. It is a great coping mechanism to belief in stories or myths that are loved ones have passed down from generation to generation, especially when those faiths promise eternal life and a god who loves you and is so concerned about each and everyone of your actions.

I think the original poster had in mind the Catholic view on baptism: that anyone baptized in the name of the Trinity is Catholic, period.

Christi pax,


St. Peter and St. Paul, pray for us!

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