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, October 30, 2010

Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Holidays?

                                              American Life League's  Pro-Life Pumkin Contest here

Here's a good article that helps us see the rich liturgical traditions behind all hallow's eve . Let's take back Halloween for Jesus and His Church.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Salvation For a Genius and a Town Fool

The universality of Catholicism never ceases to amaze me. It is a faith that inspired St. Thomas Aquinas to fill countless volumes of books with his expositions and exegesis. Yet, the very same faith that a town fool with intellectual disabilities could completely imbibe and gain salvation for his soul.
     A recent comboxer said:  "Your other notes of refutation on what Calvinists hold are typical misunderstandings of the position confessed." I hear this same tired argument from calvinists when I attempt to refute the tenets of Calvinism.
My conclusion is this:   If a faith system is so complex that relatively intelligent folks can't understand it, perhaps it is not a good faith system, (or one that is exclusively for a small group of intellectual elites.) The way of salvation that Christ brought to the world was fairly simple. It had to be if Christ was willing  "that no man should perish but all come to repentance." Sacramental and simple. "Unless you eat my body and drink my blood, you have no life in you."  Many walked away from Him that day, but for 2000 years He offers Himself to us in under the appearance of simple wheat bread and wine. All it takes is a heart of faith. Not a lot of intellect is involved. Not too hard to understand.

Down in adoration falling,
Lo! the sacred Host we hail,
Lo! o'er ancient forms departing
Newer rites of grace prevail;
Faith for all defects supplying,
Where the feeble senses fail.
Thomas Aquinas

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Check Out This Apologetics Site

Mike Humphrey has a website with lots of good apologetics materials and links. I saw the site a few years ago, but missed the fact that he gives away free Catechisms!
He gives them to those inquirers who sincerely wish to learn more about Catholicism. What a worthwhile apostolate!
Check out his site and pray about sending him a few quid to support this generous and powerful Catholic ministry.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Russ Rentler Interview on Catholic Roundup Podcast 9/27/10

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fr. Barron on Anti-Catholicism

If We Are Catholic, We Need to Act Like It!

"We need to really believe what we claim to believe. We need to stop calling ourselves "Catholic" if we don't stand with the Church in her teachings – all of them. But if we really are Catholic, or at least if we want to be, then we need to act like it with obedience and zeal and a fire for Jesus Christ in our hearts. God gave us the faith in order to share it. This takes courage. It takes a deliberate dismantling of our own vanity. When we do that, the Church is strong. When we don't, she grows weak. It's that simple.  In a culture of confusion, the Church is our only reliable guide. So let's preach and teach our Catholic beliefs with passion. And let's ask God to make us brave enough and humble enough to follow our faith to its radical conclusions."

Archbishop Chaput

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Calvin and Religious Freedom-What Was His Problem With Physicians Anyway?

I have blogged about David Anders, Ph.D's conversion and journey before but I re-read his testimony here.  I was again amazed and how John Calvin became his own "pope", after rejecting the Catholic Church's pope. He made Geneva a religious state and his brand of  Christianity was the only one tolerated.
      Catholicism is often criticized because of its "authoritarian" attempts to control the masses throughout the ages using ex-communication and trials to root-out heresy and schismatics.  Yet, Calvin himself demanded that Genevans obey laws based on his interpretation of Scripture and ex-communicated and punished those who would not adhere, or even just question  his doctrines.He was particularly annoyed with two such "heretics"- both physicians as a matter of fact! See Jerome Bolsec and Michael Servetus .
      When our protestant brothers mention inquisitions and religious persecution by the Church in  their attempt to discredit the  Catholic Church, should we ask them if the behavior of their founders, Luther and  Calvin likewise discredit their belief systems? Both of these reformers had no tolerance  for those who disagreed with their new  theological constructs. I think Calvin for whatever reason particularly despised doctors. I guess its that age-old feud between doctors and lawyers rearing its ugly head.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

What is an Evangelical Catholic?

"I am an Evangelical Catholic....I evangelize Catholics and catholicize Evangelicals"
(Peter Kreeft, Professor at Boston University and convert from Evangelicalism)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Dr. James White Links Me Again!

A few years ago, Calvinist apologist Dr. James White accused me of modalism because of a line in my song Nicean Blues . He caught it when Catholic apologist Steve Ray posted my video on his blog.  But God used Dr. White's comments for good.  I can thank him for pointing this out and thus the studio version of Nicean Blues released September 2009 has the correct theology expressed. I also appreciate that he thought I was a good guitar player too!
The original video without Dr. White's commentary is here. 
He brought this up once again when Catholic Answers put a link on their video page to the Nicean Blues.
I recently recorded another "live" video version with the corrected words in honor of the feast of Pentecost. I will have to send it to Catholic Answers to re-post. Thanks Dr. White for the extra traffic to my blog.

Here's the new version:

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Performance at Catholic Underground-PA

Monday, October 04, 2010

"Shower of Roses" at the Carmelite Monastery, Allentown, PA

This past Sunday the cloistered Carmelite nuns of Allentown had their annual, "Shower of Roses"  on the feast weekend of St Therese. They do this to honor her and give everyone an opportunity to venerate her relic and participate in the benediction.
The monastery chapel was packed to overflowing and they needed the local fire police to direct traffic and parking.  Monsignor Kuhns of the Allentown diocese, spiritual director for the nuns, gave a wonderful homily regarding the "little way" of St. Therese and how we are all invited to participate in it.
   Why do Catholics get so enthusiastic about an obscure cloistered nun from Normandy France who died over 100 years ago at 24 years of age?  Because she showed us how to grow in holiness in the most simple fashion. To offer up our daily sufferings and disappointments all for the love of God.

"Love proves itself by deeds, so how am I to show my love? Great deeds are forbidden me. The only way I can prove my love is by scattering flowers and these flowers are every little sacrifice, every glance and word, and the doing of the least actions for love."

So this obscure nun who died of tuberculosis at 24 years of age showed the world how to love God in the most simple and ordinary ways. Though she never traveled outside the convent, her writings have been spread throughout the world and she was canonized less than 30 years after her death.  She has been declared a Doctor of the Church for her insight and wisdom and joins the company of the likes of Sts. Augustine and Aquinas.

We Catholics don't worship St Therese but many of us have a special place in our hearts because she shows us how we too can grow in holiness and love for Jesus in her "little way." Not only is she a role model, we know that she is available to pray for us as well. One of the last things she said was "I want to spend my heaven doing good on earth."     She certainly is keeping her word!

Friday, October 01, 2010

Guest Blogger Today! Prodigal Daughter on St. Therese

Today my wife, Deborah, takes to the blog and writes about St. Therese of Lisieux .

The first overtly Catholic book I ever read was The Story of a Soul, the autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux.  That was the beginning of a relationship with her that continues to grow stronger all the time.  As an Evangelical Christian, I never believed that Catholics “worshiped” saints, but I did think that interacting with dead people in any way was necromancy and therefore a grave sin.  But once I understood the truth about how Catholicism understands the Church and our connection with those in heaven, I was excited about getting to know all these amazing brothers and sisters in Christ.
Much like any earthly friendship, my relationship with St. Therese has grown over time.  As I said it started with reading her autobiography more than 10 years ago.  Over the years I began reading more about her life and studying her writings.  After we officially returned the Catholic Church in 2004,  we discovered  a  Carmelite Monastery just over the mountain from our home.  We started visiting there on Sundays when they have a service which ends with a prayer and veneration of a relic of St. Therese.   There is also at the monastery,  a little gift shop with books, statues and rosaries. 
One year we made a visit to the monastery right before leaving on a trip to Haiti.  I purchased the book  “The Whole World Will Love Me,” and brought it along on our trip.  One night in Haiti when I went back to my room to read a little before bed, I had a palpable feeling that St. Therese was with me.  I can only explain it as the feeling that you have when you have just been reunited with a childhood friend.  I spontaneously said “You are with me aren’t you?”  and something inside me just knew it was true.  I was thrilled and honored to be visited by such an amazing woman and spent the rest of the trip filled with joy and peace. 
When I got back home that year my devotion to St. Therese increased dramatically.  On my next visit to the monastery I picked up a little booklet of quotes from her.  There is a simple quote for each day of the year.   Whenever I am anxious I always “bring St. Therese with me.”  I imagine her holding my hand and joining me on all of life’s adventures.  With her by my side I know I will have strength on my own “little way.”