Why do protestants and Catholics disagree


#1

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=62267

I’m still trying to figure out the disconect between Catholics and Protestants. I know we say all sorts of things, that the Protestants destroyed church structure, or that the Catholics have become corrupt, but those aren’t really our problem. What is?

I posted the above link because there is a thread there that describes the Charasmatic Catholic movement. I can’t speak for everyone, but when i look at the Catholic church, i see two things. First, is a lack of an emotional connection with christ that is found in more charasmatic movements.
I’m sorry, but when i look at Catholics, it just seems as if the majority are oblivious to this emotional connection with christ. They say they know him, but they use the word “know” in referring to a head knowledge. They don’t experience christ.
Don’t get me wrong, though. Experience isn’t everything. If you’re not also ground in a knowledge of scripture, God’s character, and his laws, you are lost. But you can’t truly know unless you’ve felt.

The second problem is proably a little more harsh. Catholic laws remind me of the pharasees. Things like who can preform an exercism (something i’ve never even seen, but i think with God i could do it).It seems like the church is trying to decide who should have the power, instead of God directly. Are you clergy that “special” that God favors them? in my church, every single person will attest to being an average person who is used by Christ. isn’t our usefulness in christ decided by our dedication to him, not our title in His church?

Please, do me a favor. Think deeply about the protestant churches you know. maybe even visit a protestant forum for a time. (remember, though… it took me a couple of months to understand the Catholic forum better.)
Then, try and isolate the issues you have with protestants to one or two larger ideas, and lets discuss them. Hopefully, through discssion, we’ll find that maybe our barriars are overcomable.


#2

Hi there!

With all due respect, you cannot wait on your feelings and emotions to guide you and to know Christ. Do you think that Jesus felt like suffering, going to the Cross, and dying? No, but He did it anyway. Many people I know who have joined the Catholic Church were first attracted to it strictly on an intellectual level, but it led them to the Fullness of Truth and to a true conversion of heart.

I agree, when you only look at some Catholics, it may seem as if there is no emotion, but you can’t judge what’s going on in someone’s heart by outward appearances.


#3

Oh my goodness! Where to start?

First, understand that Jesus is the bridegroom and we are the bride. Well, what do bridegrooms wish to do with their brides? They wish for union with them–and that’s exactly what we receive in the Eucharist. We don’t experience Christ? He brings Himself, body and blood, soul and divinity, right into our very bodies!!! That’s just about the greatest way anybody can experience Christ this side of heaven!

As for your other points, I’ll let those more knowledgable than myself handle those.


#4

I’d say the Irish have played a huge role in the tensions between Christians and Catholics. God tells us in the Bible that we are not to be equally yoked with unbelievers, but when they have a gun pointed at you, there’s not much choice but to associate with them!


#5

The eucharist: how can someone who lives on a doctrine of an absolute and literal bible (like following Genesis literally, which I have no problem with, I’m just using it as an example) how can they deny what Christ LITERALLY spelled out for us…whichever biblical translation you use, the words are the same: “This IS my body” not like or a symbol of…IS…

that’s what is hardest for me to understand…to have Christ give you such a great gift of His own body and blood…and then to deny it?

On a side note, I wish Protestants and Catholics could find a way to come together…our separation is killing God’s children and their opportunity to know God on an even deeper level.

on another side note, I disagree that Catholics don’t truly “know” Him…I personally feel that through the Eucharist our spiritual AND physical connection with Him couldn’t possibly be deeper…to have Him physically before you and then to have His body and blood become a part of your own…how can you get deeper than that?
In Him,
Britty


#6

When you go into a Catholic Church and see several people there quietly in adoration, does this mean that they do not know Jesus? If I see a person in a Catholic Church kneeling in prayer is this the lack of emotion you experience.

I have been to my brothers church where they are shouting amen and dancing, I see a lot of emotion connection but I am not one to judge their hearts.

I have sat there in the Catholic Church during Mass trying to be a real man and not shed tears (since I am hispanic and we need to maintain that machismo) but inside I am trembling at the gift that God is giving me.

I know you can have a connection with Christ in other churches other than the Catholic Church, and I have felt that when I went to other churches, but absolute truth led me home to the Catholic Church.

God Bless
Scylla


#7

Exorcisms-My friend was reading a book I loaned him by the Chief Exorcist of Rome, and in it it said that priests exorcising comes from Jesus telling the Apostles that they could exorcise demons. The bishops are the Apostles successors, and so its given to them and priests. Afterall, one generation of people getting rid of demons is just pointless. So actually, God IS saying who can or can’t exorcise demons.


#8

[quote=Egg4christ]The second problem is proably a little more harsh. Catholic laws remind me of the pharasees. Things like who can preform an exercism (something i’ve never even seen, but i think with God i could do it).It seems like the church is trying to decide who should have the power, instead of God directly. Are you clergy that “special” that God favors them? in my church, every single person will attest to being an average person who is used by Christ. isn’t our usefulness in christ decided by our dedication to him, not our title in His church?
[/quote]

Egg,

Your example of “who can perform an exorcism” is a good one. You think that with God you can do it; what if you’re wrong? It could get very dangerous. A lot of people get the idea of “I could do that” when in fact they can’t.

In answer to your other question that I quoted, yes, clergy are that special that they are favored by God, at least in the sense that they can do things that the rest of us cannot. Certainly God can use the lay people to do His work, but some things He reserved for the clergy.

There is also a rather common misconception that I would like to bring up: it wasn’t the Church who made a lot of these rules, it was God. Certainly some rules are Church rules, and the Church can (and does) change them, but others–usually the more onerous ones–are from God and the Church is not authorized to change them.

  • Liberian

#9

Egg4Christ, I don’t get lack of emotion? Is it because Catholic Mass is held with no loud music, screaming and parishiners jumping up and down. Do you consider that emotion. I don’t consider that emotion I just consider that motion. If you would sit in a Catholic Mass and look around you, you will see people on their knees or standing crying. When you see a widow on her knees doing the rosary 30mins before mass even starts with tears running down her face, can you tell me that she is not connected to Jesus in an emotional way. Just because your group, i’m not going to call you group a church, jumps up and down, plays loud music and the minister screams amen and whatever, thats emotion.

Catholic attened Mass with the utmost respect for the Eucharist and have a lot more emotion for Jesus than any of the other groups out there.

And to your statement about our clergy. Wasn’t the Catholic Church founded by St.Peter who was the rock that the Church was to be built on. Peter and the disciples(SP) were given that power by Jesus himself. Wouldn’t that make them the clergy. We follow a chain of Popes since the year of 67 with St. Peter the first Pope and it has never been without a Pope.

Instead maybe you should attend a Catholic Mass so you can see the Real Presence of the Lord in His Enitrety.

You need to realize the Catholics are not the ones with the problem with other Religions, it is the other way around. :tsktsk:


#10

[quote=scylla] I have sat there in the Catholic Church during Mass trying to be a real man and not shed tears (since I am hispanic and we need to maintain that machismo) but inside I am trembling at the gift that God is giving me.

[/quote]

How beautiful!


#11

They dont even agree with each other!

Funny though them seem to stand together against us but they cant seem to keep it together with in their own.


#12

Egg,

My experience with both Catholic and non-Catholic Christians has shown me that emotions and feelings may or may not mean much when it comes to a person knowing Christ. Love of God and neighbor cannot be based on feelings. Marriage is a great example. We must take marriage vows because the euphoria and emotional glow that accompanies courtship and the wedding will quickly subside. Difficulties in our walk can make our marriages seem hopelessly strained and explains why many people divorce. Married couples that depend on the feelings will not be able to hold it together. Those that make the genuine commitment of “for better or worse and until death do us part”, do not depend on their feelings to make it through. Instead, their commitment is a profound covenant oath of mind, heart, and soul that is grounded in the grace of almighty God.

Our commitment to Christ as Catholics and Protestants must be the same. Feelings and emotions connected with our faith will come and go, but our grace sustained commitment of faith will continue regardless of our feelings. If our faith is “feelings dependent” it is on shaky ground and not on solid rock.

The main differences between Catholics and Protestants lie in the following summary:

–The question of authority…bible alone? or scripture, tradition, and the church?

–The questions concerning how we are saved…faith alone? or faith and works(i.e.faith working through love Gal 5:6)?

–The real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist as promised in John Chapter 6, the words of the Last Supper in the gospels, and Paul’s statement in 1 Corinthians Chapter 10 and 11.


#13

Egg,

There are a couple of more points I should make. I am emotionally attached to Christ and His church which is His body. I am not, however, an emotional person by most people’s standards.

A person may have made an emotional connection to Christ, but that person may also be in a position of not really knowing Christ. If a person believes heretical teachings concerning Christ than he/she is not in full communion with Christ. That person’s feelings and attachment to Christ are simply insufficient and only represent part of their journey toward knowing Christ more fully. The Catholic Church offers the fullness of truth within Christianity. Converts to Catholic Christianity speak fondly of their Protestant heritage, but they always remark at how much deeper their relationship has become after joing the Catholic Church. These sentiments are expressed by people who thought they already had “the” relationship with Jesus before becoming Catholic.

The fullness of truth is more important than feelings. Personalities have a lot to do with how we express our faith to one another. On an emotional level these expressions may mean one thing to the speaker and something different to the listener.


#14

[quote=Karen1996]Hi there!

With all due respect, you cannot wait on your feelings and emotions to guide you and to know Christ. Do you think that Jesus felt like suffering, going to the Cross, and dying? No, but He did it anyway.
[/quote]

I would disagree. i think that christ though of you, and loved you enough to suffer anyways.

This is where a huge disconnect happens. You say you experience christ through the eucharist. It sounds like just words. Like you say you experience him, because that’s what you should say, not because it’s in your heart. Nobody talks about experiencing christ like i experience him. When i am working on the simple task of moving crayons for a vacation bible school, yet find the greatest joy i have ever felt. Or as i comprehend a small portion of His plan for me, and the love that went into that plan, and feel bursting with joy, noone talks about that.
to be honest, i’ve taken eucharist(in a catholic church), i don’t think i felt that.

I believe this is one of the areas where we can agree to disagree. Even if you are right, and it is to be taken literally, i would not be condemned for refusing it. You have to pick your battles

Herein lies our problem, when i go into a catholic church, i DON’T see people quietly in adoration.
You misunderstand me. My church is actually more conservative as far as protestants go. Just because you experience something emotionally doesn’t mean you have to be acting crazy. Emotional experiences can and do happen in silence.

I understand equiping average people to do things with God, but that certain things are too much for the average man seems so “holier than thou”. I believe God works through ordinary people, like Peter. although i can’t really convey this through words, it jus doesn’t sit right in my heart.


#15

Yeah, i already commented on this with scylla, but quick recap. I agree. Although sometimes emotion leads to motion, it doesn’t most of the time, and motion is generally a poor gage of emotion.

Yes, but try suggesting to anyone they should get married without having those emotions, and you have problems. I agree, your life cannot be solely ground in emotions, otherwise you will have no faith when you enter the valley. However, you do need to have emotional connection.

To be honest, i’d probably have to take your word on a person emotionally fired but ignorant of the teachings. I’ve never actually seen it. Not saying it doesn’t exist, just i haven’t seen it.

Authority. Can we agree that everything must be subject to scripture? If anything, including tradition or the church, contradicts it, it should be thrown out. Other than that, i fear the church might create extra laws not included in scripture. Is there a place for creating new law? How about we agree that we serve God, and not the law, and that the law is there to guide us towards christ? If we ever reach a point where we feel people are focusing more on serving the law than serving christ, we have a problem.
Faith vs. works…
I believe faith alone will get you to heaven, but i believe works will get you closer to God on this earth. unfortunately, so many people see God as simply a ticket to heaven, and don’t know the half of it. I suppose if works were required along with faith, people would get the message of a life with christ. But, on the flip side, people who have to do works may become confused, and believe that in some way, salvation must be earned. In the end, works must be done out of love for christ and not fear of salvation.
As for the eucharist, we say it seperates us, but does it really? the other two issues dealt with the entire structure of the church, this deals with the interpretation of a single passage.Can we agree that i can be saved without the eucharist, and you can be saved with it? Can we also agree that if we could get over this hurdle, we could quit arguing with each other, and start worrying about advancing his kingdom?


#16

I had some of the same problems coming from an evangelical church to the Catholic Church. You will have different personal experiences than me on your journey of faith. You might never see Catholics living out their faith and might see other Christians living out a full Christian life. Does this prove one is right over the others, from experience?

What if I am surrounded by Mormons, which I know a few, who are devout and live as better examples than the Christians I know?

I know many Catholics who don’t live their faith and if I just judged the Church on their conduct am I being fair to the Church. I should check to see what is the absolute truth. I can honestly say that I have become Catholic because of the absolute truth it contains, not from my subjective truth.

Subjective truth comes into play when you have individual interpretations of the Bible. Which leads to Calvary Chapel, Vineyard, Baptists, Presbyterians, etc… Is that the unity Christ prayed for, this leads directly counter to this unity. On this note I would check out this thread.
forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=63134

I firmly believe in the Bible and how it is the Word of God, but which version should I use? The one that was made canon in about 393 at the Council of Hippo or the King James Version in 1611?

I cannot agree to believing in the Bible alone as a Catholic as that directly contradicts my interpretation of scripture. And I can affirm that nothing the Catholic Church teaches contradicts scripture so that nothing must be thrown out. It just might contradict your interpretation of scripture.

You might see that Catholics believe in things in this way not either or but more both and…

Feel free to ask more questions about the Catholic faith we are always eager to share. But discussing things in this way usually leads off into many tangents so…

I strongly suggest if you want some answers from Catholics start topics on each individual questions so you can get comprehensive answers.

God Bless
Scylla


#17

I’ve vetted the portion of your post concerning faith and works because entire books have been written on the subject. I’ll address the rest of it as follows:

You do not have to take my word for it when it comes to those that are emotionally fired up but ignorant of the teachings. Simply look around you. I can reasonably assume that you have serious disagreements with the teachings of the Mormon Church, but you must admit that many LDS are extremely fired up. Morevoer, they believe themselves to be Christians. JW’s have a terribly distorted view of Jesus and do not accept the Trinity, but they believe Jesus to be the son of God. Moreover, many JW’s are quite fired up for their faith. I could also cite numerous examples within Protestant circles where teachings differ greatly. And yet, in every case their supporters are quite enthusiastic. Being on fire for the Lord does not necessarily include knowing the truth about His teachings.

I will give you this much. I firmly believe that the more you know about Jesus and the more you read scripture the more fired up you will become. That assumes of course that you love God and are not simply pursuing this knowledge as an academic exercise. My experience has followed the following pattern. The more I know about scripture and Catholic teaching, the greater my love for God. My enthusiasm has increased dramatically as has my prayer life.

Your fears about Catholic teaching and doctrine are severely misplaced. The non-Christian observer might find it difficult to tell the difference in terms of behavior and outward appearance between a good Catholic and a good Protestant. If you really know your bible and really know Catholic teaching you will see that there are no contradictions. Serving God includes following His commandments. Faith in Jesus includes love and obedience. Jesus is not only our savior, but He is our Lord and King. His Lordship and Kingship help define our relationship with Him. He is the Lord of lords and the King of kings.

I would say that it is possible to be saved without the Eucharist, but salvation is something only God can give us through the merits of Jesus. If someone professes to believe in Jesus but does not believe what He says, then there may be serious questions concerning that person’s faith and salvation.

You claim that we place our beliefs concerning the Church, and apparently the Eucharist, on a single passage of scripture, but this is not true. Please read John Chapter 6, then read the synoptic accounts of the Last Supper, and finally Paul’s comments in 1 Corinthians Chapters 10 and 11. This is, however, not all that scripture says that points to the Eucharist…there’s still more. As far as the Church is concerned, I would suggest reading Matthew 16:18, Eph 3:10, Eph 5:23, Col 1:24, 1 Timothy 3:15, Matthew 18:17, Matthew, 5:14, and John 17:20. I would then seriously consider reading history and studying the Early Church Fathers such as Ignatius of Antioch, Irenaeus, Justin Martyr, Augustine etal. You will then see the unity of the one Church, and see that its constant teachings have been faithfully transmitted from the apostles right on through to modern times in the Catholic Church.

I strongly believe in being ecumenical with our Protestant brothers and sisters in Christ. We share a great deal in our faith and Christian walk. But just as we share a great deal there also those things which separate us. Jesus does not want us separated. It is the Church established by Jesus himself that provides that unity. It is the unity Jesus prayed for in John 17:20-21 and that Paul talks about in Eph 4:1-5, Phi 1:27, and Phi 2:1-2.

I hope this helps.


#18

You say you experience christ through the eucharist. It sounds like just words. Like you say you experience him, because that’s what you should say, not because it’s in your heart. Nobody talks about experiencing christ like i experience him. When i am working on the simple task of moving crayons for a vacation bible school, yet find the greatest joy i have ever felt. Or as i comprehend a small portion of His plan for me, and the love that went into that plan, and feel bursting with joy, noone talks about that.

So are you saying that you can read hearts, and know that Catholics feel nothing? I am not a demonstrative person, my feelings are usually hid well within. Does that mean that I do not have them, or that I am not adoring Christ while at mass, or at any other time? Are you putting yourself above others who love Christ because you think that you feel Him more? Isn’t that more than just a bit arrogant and prideful?

Are you aware of the feelings of true believers when they receive their Lord and God? I have seen grown men and women cry, or bury their face in their hands because of overwhelming joy. I may not show much of what I feel, but when I receive our Lord it is a time of joy and thanksgiving and humility and, yes, quiet adoration.

I think that you might benefit from reading “Story of a Soul.” Then you will see with what love for Christ a Catholic can perform even the smallest of tasks. For that matter, look at Mother Theresa. Do you think that she did so many things, things that most people would find abhorrent, without the love of Christ?She glorified Him always.

to be honest, i’ve taken eucharist(in a catholic church), i don’t think i felt that.

Since you do not recognize that you are receiving the literal Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ, it is small wonder that you feel nothing. It is not to your benefit to continue to do this. Remember what Paul said:

[/font]1 Corinthians 11:29
[font=Comic Sans MS]For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself.

Herein lies our problem, when i go into a catholic church, i DON’T see people quietly in adoration.

And how often have you gone in? Have you gone in during a Eucharistic Adoration? When you do go, what do you see people doing? I really want to understand how you can determine, by looking at them, that they are not adoring and worshipping Christ.

Just because you experience something emotionally doesn’t mean you have to be acting crazy. Emotional experiences can and do happen in silence.

At least we do agree on this.

I am not trying to be rude or harsh, but it certainly sounds to me as if you are putting your own subjective experiences above those of others, and making yourself to be better than them. This is a hazardous undertaking. Ask the Pharisee, to whom you are so determined to compare us:

Luke 18:9-14
To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else, Jesus told this parable: "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ "But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”


#19

Teri, i’m afraid you misunderstand the spirit of my posts. One of the reasons i dislike talking over the net, you can’t tell anything through tone or body language.

[quote=Egg4christ]noone talks about that.

[/quote]

I would like to believe that Catholics know Christ as i do. I don’t set out to destroy your faith, unless it’s empty… Know what i mean?
Like, if Catholics really know God through their faith, then i could probably learn a few things, and i want to be able to support them against my protestant brothers. But if they don’t know God, then i want to show them the life i have in Him.
I believe, somehow, someway, Catholics know God. Or i’d like to believe. so, i look for signs. Not miraculous signs, or wonders of God, but simply his presence. The way i see it, anyone who is rooted in christ should have an emotional connection with him. I’m trying to find this, but as i said, i’m finding it difficult to find people who talk about that connection.
i’m going to leave the eucharist idea alone. I think we have big enough issues to handle right now that we can leave that for a friendly debate later.

No, you misunderstand. i’m not in the catholic church often. And yeah, maybe I’m not giving it a proper chance. I’m worried that i will go into one of those churches, and maybe see one or two old ladies who get it, and the rest who are obviously there out of percevied obligation. Is this an unfair assumtion? maybe.
Too often i have found that internet religion works in the most ideal model of a religion. In practice, however, most people aren’t that interested. I’m hoping that if i can recognize God in you, the “cream of the Catholic crop”, that i can have respect for the rest.
as for the self righteousness, … i don’t think i’m being a pharisee, but i could see how you could get that impression. I am holding my experiences above yours, but instead of saying “i’m so much better than them”, i’m saying “i hope they are the same way”


#20

[quote=Egg4christ] The way i see it, anyone who is rooted in christ should have an emotional connection with him. I’m trying to find this, but as i said, i’m finding it difficult to find people who talk about that connection.
"
[/quote]

But we do have an emotional connection with God. You are going too much by superficial appearances.

There was a show on 20/20 that talked about the Kabbalah. If I hadn’t known better, I would have thought that the producers were filming a very spirit filled Pentecostal Church. People were on fire. They cried and danced. If you just go by superficial appearances then these people would appear to have a connection with God. Of course, we realize that they are being scammed.

Perhaps someone on this board can suggest one of the Catholic mystics for you to read. I myself would like to read some of their work.


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