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.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

How Do Some Protestants Explain Away the Catholic Faith?

 Renee Linn  presented a very compelling testimony as to what led her to convert in the blogpost here. Some may not read the whole story so I thought I would re-post one key part of her testimony. I think it is instructive when she reveals how as a Protestant, they were able to explain away Catholicism. She stated that "Protestant apologetics against Catholicism were based on a strategy of “downplaying, denigrating, distorting, and denying” key portions of the Catholic argument."

-We downplayed the importance of the writings of the early Christians. Since no Church Father agreed with us Baptists on the issues of justification by faith alone, sola Scriptura, once-saved/always saved, baptism, the Eucharist, church governance, etc., we ignored their writings. We downplayed Protestant disunity. We downplayed the importance of the question of the origin of the canon of Scripture, a question that can only be answered by recognizing the authority of the Church who discerned the canon.

- We denigrated the holiness of Catholic saints. While rightly proclaiming the fact that all of history is “His-story,” we were willfully blind to the “His-toric” importance of the lives of John Paul II and Mother Teresa, just to mention two examples. Although I have known several godly Protestants (most especially when I was associated with the Taiwan Missionary Fellowship), I know of no 20th- century Protestant examples of the saints that the Catholic faith produces. We also denigrated Protestant converts to Catholicism, routinely implying that no one without an ulterior motive would leave the “truth” of Evangelicalism for the errors of Rome.

- We distorted Catholic beliefs when we presented them, so that they would be easier to refute. The classic examples, of course, are the Protestant arguments against “Mary worship,” or “works-righteousness.” By raging against two Catholic doctrines which do not actually exist, Protestant apologists are able to turn their readers against a hypothetical evil, rather than addressing and refuting actual Catholic teaching.

- We denied the development of doctrine, the key to understanding why the doctrine of the Trinity cannot be proved from Scripture and yet is the valid interpretation of the teaching of the Apostles. As a Protestant, I was relying on development of doctrine as the basis of my Trinitarian beliefs, and yet ignorantly believed that “the Bible alone” was the basis of what I believed and practiced.


Blogger Nick said...

The great majority of Protestant apologetics, even from otherwise intelligent Protestants (who make good arguments against Mormons, JWs, etc) somehow make it a staple of their 'ministory' to present lousy arguments against Catholicism. But then again, as Renee and others came to see, these apologists are simply baffled that there could be such a logical and coherent system as Catholicism that can actually produce solid arguments.

March 15, 2012 4:23 PM  

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