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, March 24, 2007

JRR Tolkien's Cure for Sagging Faith

"It takes a fantastic will to unbelief to suppose that Jesus never really 'happened', and more to suppose that he did not say the things recorded of him - so incapable of being 'invented' by anyone in the world at that time: such as 'before Abraham came to be I AM', 'He that hath seen me hath seen the Father', or the promulgation of the Blessed Sacrament in John V: "He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood hath eternal life." We must therefore either believe in him and what he said and take the consequences; or reject him and take the consequences. I find it for myself difficult to believe that anyone who has ever been to Communion, even once, with at least right intention, can ever again reject Him without grave blame. (However, he alone knows each unique soul and its circumstances.)

The only cure for sagging faith is Communion. Though always Itself, perfect and complete and inviolate, the Blessed Sacrament does not operate completely and for once in any of us. Like the act of faith it must be continuous and grow by exercise. Frequency is of the highest effect. Seven times a week is more nourishing than seven times at intervals.
I myself am convinced by the Petrine claims, nor looking around the world does there seem to be much doubt which (if Christianity is true) is the True Church, the temple of the Spirit dying but living, corrupt but holy, self-reforming and rearising. But for me that Church of which the Pope is the acknowledged head on earth has as chief claim that it is the one that has (and still does) ever defended the Blessed Sacrament, and given it most honour, and put it (as Christ plainly intended) in the prime place. "Feed my sheep" was His last charge to St. Peter; and since His words are always first to be understood literally, I suppose them to refer primarily to the Bread of Life."

Thanks to Ma Beck for this post.


Blogger japhy said...

I've been attending Mass daily since last Monday and already I feel a sense of renewal and revitalization. I even went so far as to maintain a Eucharistic fast today -- and Mass wasn't until 7:00pm. I made it through the day with just water. It helps me to appreciate the disciple of some of the religious orders out there.

March 26, 2007 9:23 PM  
Blogger Under the Poetree said...

Excellent, Teej. It reminded me of my latest poem that came to mind only this past weekend. Yesterday it all came together. We are FED at the Table of Life...and only at ONE CHURCH are we fed His Flesh. Yes, in HIS CHURCH. Great post! Thanks!


March 26, 2007 9:26 PM  
Anonymous karl said...

if the words of Jesus are to be taken first literally, why only be literal of the word "feed" and not of the word "sheep" ?? this is bad interpretation with the purpose of trying to make the Bible say something it doesn't. you would be better served defending the Church with the valid claims that easily found, than to twist Scripture into saying things it doesn't in order to make your point. In the long run, it hurts you. To suggest that Jesus was referring to communion when he said "feed my sheep" really brings your ability to interpret the holy Scripture into serious question and hurts your cause of enjoying Protestants from crossing the timber.

March 29, 2007 12:34 AM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

Thanks for your comments.
I think you will need to direct your comments to Tolkien since he was the one who made that statement!
However, your comment that it brings "your ability to interpret the holy Scripture into serious question" is a bit unkind wouldn't you say?
The fact that you don't agree with what you thought was my private interpretation of Scripture, shouldn't empower you (IMHO)to make statements regarding my interpretation of Scripture. After all, doesn't sola scriptura give me the "right" to interpret Scripture as the Holy Spirit leads? I find in blogdom and elsewhere, that as soon as Catholics use Sacred Scripture to point out their beliefs "our ability to interpret scripture is called into question."
I take comfort that Tolkiens's comment was truly not his own either as it reflected the beliefs and teachings of the early church and he was borrowing on the teachings of the Church father's when he made his statement regarding the bread of life. So though you may not agree with the interpretation or our ability to interpret scripture, you have a long line (about 1,970 years) of theologians, saints, Catholic Oxford professors(JRR), to argue with. Karl, your argument isn't with me. It's with Catholicism.

March 29, 2007 11:16 AM  

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