Will Protestantism divide until it fails ultimately?


#1

We see over 45000 Protestant denominations, more each day.

Will Protestantism ever gain union with Catholicism? In Africa, the Anglican church was splitting badly, so many were running towards the Catholic Church, even clergy. I believe it was recently that 50 Anglican Clergy, including 5 bishops, that converted to Catholicism, not to mention the laity that followed them.

So we see that Protestantism is falling apart, so will the Catholic Church bring them into union or will it just split until it breaks. And we will experience protestant spiritual breakdown until they come to the Catholic Church…

So what do you think will happen to Protestantism in the future?


#2

Having the disobedience of the ego as its foundation, it was doomed from the start. As to its perceived longevity, it took several hundred years for the Arian heresy to die out - and the Arians were much more united.


#3

Your logic is self congratulating but faulty.

I’ve seen a 30k number thrown around but never 45k denoms.
The source was the World Christian Encyclopedia
An honest look at this source showed only 8k protestant denominations, and 223 Roman Catholic denominations.

Now when you dig into the number of denominations, they are identified as seperate on the basis of jurisdiction instead of conflicts in doctrine.

One researcher identified 21 major “traditions” for Protestants, and 16 “traditions” for Roman Catholics
justforcatholics.org/a86.htm

ps. pointing out protestant bashing doesn’t mean I’m not happy to see them ‘come home’ to the RCC


#4

In future I think many Anglicans will be either Catholics or agnostics.For the other denominations,the same fate they endure now will be their predicament in future;a constant breaking down…


#5

Despite how splintered mainline Protestantism is appearing, I think non-denominational/Evangelical Christians are picking up the steam where the original reformation left off. I also think Methodists, or Lutherans are in no danger of dissolving very quickly.


#6

I appreciate the break-down, but as a former Protestant, I politely challenge the view. Within my original “denomination,” there were at least 3 “traditions” I could easily identify in my hometown of only 6000 people. And that’s just the tiny fraction I could witness. We all flew the same banner, but you would go to the church you felt followed your particular set of beliefs. Even the website for the denom mentions the variety of views allowed within churches on such important things as homosexual ordination, female ordination, etc. My original home church, for example, adamantly opposed female ordination, while another one across town didn’t. Thats a pretty “big” difference in tradition. Keep in mind, I’m only giving a tiny, tiny example.


#7

I’ve always thought this. Eventually protestant liberals will become agnostics who don’t really have a creed, while more conservative protestants will either become catholic (I assume mostly anglicans, with a decent share of other groups thrown in there) while the rest of the conservatives who are most likely evanglicals will stay the same, although I feel some day a evangelical churches will start to get too liberal and people will just form more churches.


#8

[quote="JD27076, post:1, topic:294602"]
We see over 45000 Protestant denominations, more each day.

Will Protestantism ever gain union with Catholicism? In Africa, the Anglican church was splitting badly, so many were running towards the Catholic Church, even clergy. I believe it was recently that 50 Anglican Clergy, including 5 bishops, that converted to Catholicism, not to mention the laity that followed them.

So we see that Protestantism is falling apart, so will the Catholic Church bring them into union or will it just split until it breaks. And we will experience protestant spiritual breakdown until they come to the Catholic Church.....

So what do you think will happen to Protestantism in the future?

[/quote]

Most likely, it will continue doing what it has been doing for the last 500 years: developing, changing, splitting, merging, arguing, and reconciling.

As for Anglicanism in particular, having survived Erastianism, Arminianism, Methodism, the Oxford Movement, and the development from being the thoroughly-hierarchical Church of England to being a global communion of autonomous provinces, it seems rather premature to prophesy that it will disintegrate completely over the ordination of women or gay people, not least since both of those changes draw liberals as much as they repel conservatives.

Still, it shall be as God wills.


#9

I think more and more Anglicans, Lutherans, and Episcopals will come into the Church as time goes on, because they have a sense of Church history. Other denominations, as the move further away from Cathilocism, especially non-denominational churches, do not. As for other denominations, the only way I see that happening is if they realize how much the early church looks like the Catholic Church, and if they really investigate what the Catholic Church teaches. As Catholics receive better formation about their faith, it will help bring Protestants into the church. It has to happen one by one as the Holy Spirit leads.


#10

Protestant churches aren’t nearly as divided as people think. Most disagree about baptism, when to take communion, the role of women in the church, and more recently with homosexuality. Actually, Anglicans, who some of you think will merge with the Catholic church are leading the charge to ordain active homosexuals and recognize homosexual marriage. Now that’s a reason to splinter.


#11

[quote="cavaleriesoldaa, post:6, topic:294602"]
I appreciate the break-down, but as a former Protestant, I politely challenge the view. Within my original "denomination," there were at least 3 "traditions" I could easily identify in my hometown of only 6000 people. And that's just the tiny fraction I could witness. We all flew the same banner, but you would go to the church you felt followed your particular set of beliefs. Even the website for the denom mentions the variety of views allowed within churches on such important things as homosexual ordination, female ordination, etc. My original home church, for example, adamantly opposed female ordination, while another one across town didn't. Thats a pretty "big" difference in tradition. Keep in mind, I'm only giving a tiny, tiny example.

[/quote]

My link was to a Catholic site critiquing this faulty position

It's never good to delude yourself.


#12

Yep, pretty much. Protestants tend to change faiths or form new churches when they don’t particularly like the church they’re in now, they also leave any belief they don’t like or understand out of the new church like what happened with purgatory. Also they have no justification that they’re the true church, case and point, catholisim is the only religion with a true class 1 miracle such as Fatima or any of the hundreds of Eucharistic miracles. So yeah they’ll continue to ‘disolve’ until they’re all Catholic or sadly atheist.


#13

I am a convert to Catholicism from evangelical Protestantism.

First, I do not believe the figure of 30,000 +, or 45,000 +, etc. My husband has done some research about this, and has come to the conclusion that the calculations are very strange. I would be careful about throwing these high numbers around. This is the kind of thing that will make thinking Protestants disregard anything else you say because they'll know that this "fact" isn't true and they'll distrust anything else you say.

Nevertheless, there are quite a few denominations of Protestantism.

My opinion is that unity will come about because the horror of sin will continue to increase in the world, especially in the United States, and this will force all Christians to come together and work to defeat the world, the flesh, and the devil.

We see this happening before our eyes right now in the U.S. President Obama's "mandate" forcing Catholic businesses to commit mortal sin is awful, and thankfully, Protestants are joining forces, at least with their words, to unite with Catholics and support them as they try to defeat this devilish mandate. Huckabee's comment bears contemplation: "We are all Catholics now." Wow, that's quite an amazing comment from a Christian who years ago, would have quite possibly considered Catholics "goddess cultists."

We've seen it happening in the last 40 years, as Catholics, Protestants, and the Orthodox come together to try to defeat Roe vs. Wade. Before RvW, it wasn't common at all for Catholics and Protestants to associate much with each other, other than in the secular realm. But when abortion actually became legal in the U.S., Catholics immediately went into action. Protestants were slower, because at that time, we honestly had no idea what was going on. I can remember sitting in Sunday school classes and hearing that sometimes, abortion was the best choice so that a child wouldn't suffer. You see, we were totally uninformed.

But as Catholics continued to hold the line on this battle, Protestants started waking up. The FIRST Protestant that I remember taking a firm and unapologetic stand AGAINST abortion was Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family. He was castigated at first by many Protestants who thought he was being "political," but as he continued to present the FACTS about abortion, evangelical Protestants began jumping on board and joining his fight to stop abortion.

One of the things that Dobson stated early on is that "Catholics puts Protestants to shame when it comes to fighting abortion." Very early on, back when many evangelical Protestant denominations taught that Catholicism was a "cult," Dr. Dobson stood alongside Catholics to fight abortion, and this was not lost on all the rest of us evangelical Protestants. Many of us started getting involved with pro-life work, and for the first time in our lives, spent a lot of time with Catholics--and we learned, to our surprise, that yes, they really are Christians! Wow!

So IMO, as horrible as the scourage of abortion is in the U.S., God has used it to begin to bring Protestants and Catholics together.

Another example is world hunger, which has its roots in human sin. The organization, Bread for the World, occasionally skirts liberalism, but often, the organization does a lot of good, too. There is a mix of Catholics and Protestants in this organization, too, and in fact, this was the first exposure I had to Catholics back in the 1980s--I did a lot of work with Bread for the World and met a lot of wonderful faith-filled Catholics.

What is frightening me right now in the United States is the growing power of the pro-gay-marriage movement in this country, which has paralyzed many Christians. We can't "protest" because in many cases, we will lose our jobs, our neighbors, our positions in various community organizations, and in some cases, our safety. At the moment, the Catholic Church is bravely holding the line on this issue, and although many Protestants agree, they do not have the unity of policy to be able to effectively mount a strong opposition to gay marriage policies, which are rapidly becoming the disgraceful law of the land. I think that this issue will cause many Protestants to draw even closer to the Catholic Church--they have to, because little fragmented "opposition" groups will fall, but a huge united force may have a chance of survival and success.

If you are interested in a wonderful book about the OPs topic, read Being the Body by Charles Colson. This book is about Christian unity, and is written by the co-founder of Evangelicals and Catholics together. Colson (RIP) has many pages of wonderful things to say about Catholicism in this book. This book, written by a leader of the evangelical Protestant world, is one of the main reasons I converted to Catholicism.


#14

Protestants don’t “form new churches”…they merely meet with different believers of the same Church…Catholics don’t take into account a different ecclesiology but try to “force” Catholic belief of “church” onto Protestants…there is only One Church…and this One Church is made up of all who have joined themselves to Christ in faith thru the work of the Holy Spirit…the sign in front of the building may be different…but it’s not a different church as far as most Protestants beleive.

A new congregation formed that brings members of the Church together for worship is simply a new congregation…not a new “church”…it may have a new “church building” and a new “name” designating itself by location, policy, or specific focus on a doctrinal issue…but it’s not a new Church…it’s a new “church congregation” that may have it’s own church officers and govern itself independantly…but there is only one Church.

Protestants don’t tend to “change faiths” with any regularity…a Methodist may go to a Baptist congregation…and may no longer identify themselves as “Methodist”…but in both traditions they are called “Christians”…serve “One Lord” and are members of the One Church.

Since beleivers will always need places of worshp…doubt Prtestants will ever cease to exist alongside Catholic and Orthodox believers.


#15

Some Anglicans do such things.

Others, not.

GKC

posterus traditus Anglicanus


#16

The number of Protestant denominations on here has gone from 20,000 to 45,000 in just one day Wow!:rolleyes:

Anyway: There are two distinctly different sides of Protestantism. There are what I like to call the REAL Protestants such as myself who believe that Jesus did establish one holy catholic and apostolic Chruch and that we stand in disagreement with Rome and it’s Bishop regarding what that Church is that Christ founded and how its authority operates and is seen today. And then there is the other side of Protestantism which are mainly Evangelicals. In my experience, most of these folks have thrown the baby out with the bath water. It is Bible only, literally and singularly. They interpret Scripture privately and it has been much to their error. I wish to be cordial to these folks as many of them are my friends, but I must say that their beliefs and in many cases, lack thereof put them in a very heretical state.


#17

Curiously, there also seems to be, at the same time, a trend toward merger, at least in altar and fellowship. The ELCA with the Epsicopal Church, Moravians, UCC, and some Presbyterians. Not saying I approve, considering the differences in doctrines, particularly over the Real presence.

In Europe, the Porvoo Communion through a good part of Northern Europe between Lutherans and Anglcians.

Jon


#18

I see many Protestants concerned with finding the original Church founded by Jesus eventually moving to Roman Catholicism, and especially Eastern Orthodoxy. However, I also see many becoming disenchanted with the entire thing for any number of reasons and difficulties, and either moving on to another religion such as Buddhism or Islam, or abandoning organized religion altogether.

For those who stay Protestant, however, I see a sharper divide between traditionalist, high-church Protestant denominations (such as confessional Lutheran and High Anglican) and low-church denominations which have very wide tolerances for any number of beliefs (Pentecostalism, United Church of Christ, Church of Christ, Evangelical, etc.) The low-church Protestants will eventually pool together into one super-denomination, or recognize all the other low-church denominations as being equally valid; the true manifestation of the “Invisible Church” idea. I don’t think the middle-way Protestant churches will survive; they will either go high-church or low-church, or die out.


#19

Really does not matter if it is 45,000 or 4,500,none were founded by Jesus or the Apostles. Christ simply founded ONE church and it is His alone.


#20

And right now, that one church is split in half, depending on who’s talking


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