Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

"Why Would You Ever Want to Return to The Catholic Church?"

A conversation started with this question above posited to me on my fb page. I then answered with the statement below. When I reposted this question and my answer months later, it led to a very interesting discussion which I will post at a later time.

Dear _____:
Thanks for your e mail. Do I know you from ( evangelical church) days? I don't recognize your
e-mail name.I would be happy to share with you my reasons for returning to the Catholic Church if you care to listen. My greatest desire is to share this treasure that has been closed to many of us Catholics who didn't understand our faith and just went ... See Morethrough the motions.(at least that was the case with me)
There's a long answer and a short answer to your question. The short answer is that I believe the Catholic Church of today is the one Jesus started. He told Peter that he would build His Church upon the rock (Peter=Kepha) and the gates of hell would never prevail against this Church. I have spent my life desiring to be close to Him and it is through the Catholic Church and receiving Christ in the Eucharist that has brought me closer than I have ever been in 35 years of seeking and wanting to live for Jesus.
When I realized that the early Christians believed Jesus became truly present whenever the bread was broken, I knew I had to return. The Catholic Church still believes that when the priest consecrates the host, Jesus becomes physically present on the altar! Not a symbol, but his flesh and blood for us to worship and consume.(read John 6:) This is a hard concept and he lost many disciples the day he taught them this.But he did not tell them to come back because it was a parable. One year later at the last supper he gave them bread and said "Take and eat, this is my body" Catholics are accused of not taking the Bible literally but they accept this more literally than any other denomination. Later on the road to Emmaus, the disciples finally had their eyes opened to Him in the breaking of the bread(the Eucharist)
For 2000 years Christians have continued to believe Jesus comes to us in the form of simple bread and wine. The Catholic Church has never wavered in this doctrine and it can be easily proven from the writings of the early Church fathers (Augustine, Ignatius, Irenaeus etc)
I wanted so much to be close to Him, and there is no other way this side of heaven to be that close. He allows us to consume Him! This belief in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist was universally held until the reformation. Even Luther, initially believed in Christ's real presence in the Eucharist but the further they got away from the Church, the more they changed the original doctrines held for 1500 years.
So the reason I returned was because Jesus is in this Church in a way that is infinitely more real than anything I had ever experienced before.
If you have time, my story of conversion is here :
www.crossedthetiber.com

God bless you and thanks for your kindness in asking,

In Christ Alone Our Saviour

Russ Rentler, M.D.

6 Comments:

Blogger Aubrey Micah said...

Hi! I used to read your blog a couple years ago when I had mine mine, "Into Marvelous Light". Anyway, though, great reply! Hopefully, I'll be coming into the Church sometime this year!! :) And like you, learning what the Early Church taught on the Real Presence was one of the things that made me realize that the Catholic Church was where I belonged! It was amazing! esp. since I was about 15 when I first found out what the Early Christians actually believed about things like the Eucharist, baptism, the authority of the Church, etc....I never knew that!
Great blog! God Bless!

July 17, 2010 10:37 AM  
Blogger truthfinder said...

Aubrey, it's wonderful that you will be coming into the Church this year! After being a Protestant for many, many years, I came into the Church in 2004. Receiving Him in the Eucharist still moves me to tears. I am SO happy to be Catholic! I will be praying for you. --- Rosemary

July 17, 2010 9:12 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

Thanks Aubrey! You are blessed to be coming into the church so young yet!
God bless you are in our prayers

July 17, 2010 9:19 PM  
Blogger kkollwitz said...

Converts have all the fun.

Just kidding.

July 18, 2010 8:08 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

well, if I had to do it over with, I would have preferred I never left but wished I could of had a personal relationship with Jesus and His Church instead of the "three hour tour, the three hour tour" which translates into 31 years!
yeah,it is kinda fun sometimes, but I admire you cradle Catholics who remained faithful despite some pretty funky goings on in the early 70's in the American Catholic Church.

July 18, 2010 8:13 PM  
Blogger kkollwitz said...

"pretty funky goings on in the early 70's in the American Catholic Church."

But not as funky as stuff I see on YouTube from the Diocese of LA.

July 19, 2010 10:43 AM  

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