My Letter to a Committed Anti-Catholic

Smoke of Satan & the Open Windows of Vatican II

Satanist thugs break into Catholic Church and steal Consecrated Hosts from a Tabernacle to be used in Satanic Rites

vandalised-tabernacle

An old post that I repost from time to time __ Scoop

Satan is a liar and it is he who, quite often, might confuse our thoughts. Thus my initial decision, to give you no answer, may have been tainted by his urging: for he despises Truth and wants desperately that we not spread it. But Christian charity or love moved by Grace, should not allow me or anyone else to keep the Truth hidden, though it seems probable that you have no intention of listening to it: for you opened your correspondence with the words, “no matter what you send me it will still be of the devil,” which seemingly closes all avenues of approach. But I cannot rely on my assessment of your state of mind or heart. I…

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14 thoughts on “My Letter to a Committed Anti-Catholic

  1. Jock McSporran

    Hello Scoop,

    …. and thanks for posting your heartfelt letter.

    I am (clearly) not a Catholic myself and find myself at odds with huge swathes of Catholic theology. But I don’t really want to get into that here.

    I’d like to draw your attention to something I read recently – Karl Barth’s commentary on Romans 9.

    Karl Barth was an author who I had heard of – because when I was a student (studying sciences), the theology students were forced to read an awful lot of KB on account of the fact that their systematic theology professor was a terrific Barth fan. They basically hated it – and most of them were very glad to get rid of their Barth church dogmatics in the second hand book store as soon as the course was over. This (of course) warned me against reading it, but it did arouse my curiosity, so many years later I bought Barth’s commentary on Romans and many years after that I actually opened it (at chapter 9) and read some of it.

    Barth’s writing on Romans 9 is absolute bollox if you take it as an exegesis on Romans 9 – it is impossible (unless you have a really creative mind and you’re great at eisegesis) to see how what he writes has much connection at all with Romans 9.

    At the same time, though, I found the main idea something I had never thought of before and it was quite brilliant, because it explained an awful lot about The Church.

    In brief: Barth takes the view that those for whom Paul has great anguish and sorrow in his heart, are The Church. Here he means The Church instituted by God Himself.

    Barth then goes on to see no difference between The Church at Jerusalem (Paul’s time), Rome (the Catholic church), Wittenberg (Luther); The Church stands in opposition to the gospel, in some profound sense.

    I think that this may be at the heart of the anti-Catholicism (or indeed the heart of any other anti-Church) that you see.

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    1. Men are quick to want to know more than even a text of Scripture may intend. We are awash with experts who live on egos and such and each seems to oppose others In some small or large way. Peace between theologians and denominations will not be a simple matter of logic , , , as one must first believe that they are adherents to the True Faith that Christ left us. So confusion will plague us I fear until Christ’s return.

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  2. Jock McSporran

    Scoop – thanks for yours.

    Actually, although Barth doesn’t help me at all to understand Romans 9, I think his line is very useful for me in understanding `The Church’.

    You didn’t post the comment from the anti-Catholic which elicited your response, so I don’t know if the poster was specifically anti-Catholic or more generally anti-Church.

    Barth takes the view that 1) belonging to The Church is an integral part of being a Christian, but at the same time 2) The Church is in opposition to the gospel.

    He is right to point out that this really was *exactly* the situation at the time of Christ and at the time of the Apostle Paul.

    You are a catholic and yet I see in much of what you write a deep dissatisfaction with the Catholic church, heavy criticism of the current pope, etc …..

    Your co-blogger CHARLIE (from your own blog) recently wrote a post explaining why he was not a `Protestant’, that `Protestantism’ was rubbish, etc …. and he may well have been right on the main points. Where his post went wrong was trying to explain that Roman Catholicism was infinitely superior.

    I don’t remember a time in my life when I wasn’t a Christian. I do, though, remember a time when I was so thoroughly sickened by what `Christians’ were doing and noting that the people around me who really did have a social conscience were self-declared atheists that I tried to give up being a Christian, but I discovered that this was not possible – and I had to accept who I am.

    There is always a serious problem with The Church, no matter what denomination – and I often feel that those of us who are In Him are so despite The Church rather than because of it.

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    1. Indeed there is always a dissatisfaction with the practical, or should I say human, side of anything that is founded in perfection (a Church Founded by God Himself). I was a dissatisfied Protestant and I am a dissatisfied Catholic although only in the sense above: the inability for people to behave as the Faith is taught and the propensity for us all to try to change what is taught to include our abhorrent behavior. It is spiritual gymnastics to be sure.

      What I am not dissatisfied with Catholicism about (though I was with Protestantism) is the teachings of the saints and the teachings of the Catechism. It is sound and the promises made to this Church seem to have been proven time and time again. Prophecies continue to show that this is the Church but that we simply make a mess of things. Then God sends His punishment and we have some relief until we screw It up again. And so it goes. It is simply sad that the good must suffer with the evil in such winnowing.

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      1. Jock McSporran

        Scoop – …. so I guess my question to you then is: what makes the Catholic Church so much better than the Church that God Himself instituted in the Old Testament?

        During the ministry of Jesus, people came to Jesus in the teeth of overwhelming opposition from the Church. John 9v22 makes it clear that people were afraid of being put out of the synagogue if they indicated any sort of faith in Jesus. In the time of the Apostle Paul, it was the church men (from the Church instituted by God) who were doing the most to oppose Paul – and trying to have him put to death.

        There is something fundamental about this: as Christians we are part of The Church. At the same time, there is something fundamentally rotten about The Church.

        I think it is deeper than simply making a mess of things, getting punished by God and then moving on.

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      2. His work was not completed in the first Church . . . it was like John the Baptist making the way straight for the Lord.

        Your explanation is about as non-sensical to me as saying that there is something fundamentally wrong with Holy Matrimony.

        It is not marriage and the vows made before God that are flawed. It is our own sinfulness and disobedience that makes many marriages the messes that they are. To me the Church is the Perfect Bride of Christ and Christ is the Perfect Groom of the Bride of Christ. We, the siblings of the Church do not always obey our parents or make good use of the gifts given us by our parents. We do not love one another as our Heavenly Parents want us to and we complain when we are tasked with anything that is going to cause us suffering of an inability to follow our sensible delights which we want to pursue. Now it is not the institution of marriage that is at fault . . . it is our fallen nature. The same is true of the Church. Otherwise, you may as well say that Christ was not God and that His Church is a failed task . . . which would be impossible for an all knowing God.

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  3. Jock McSporran

    Scoop – I think that viewing The Church as `The Bride of Christ’, while certainly true, is eschatological. This is something for the next life and not for this life.

    What you write, the cosy terms of `we do not always obey our parents’ certainly does not describe the opposition to The Gospel by The Church at the time of Jesus.

    I don’t agree with you about `his work not complete’ as some sort of excuse for The Church in times before Christ. They were looking forward to the `once for all’ event; we are looking back on the same event; they had exactly the same faith in Christ as Redeemer as we have.

    Some aspects of The Church (the animal sacrifices to cover sin, which would only be dealt with later in the crucifixion) were different, but these were details and the main thrust was the same.

    Whatever characteristics the Old Testament tells us about The Church in time B.C., the same thing holds for The Church today – and much of it isn’t very nice.

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    1. Jock, the prophecy for a Messiah is enough to show that the building of the Church that God had in mind was only the foundational structure and not complete. That many fallen humans missed the fulfillment of that prophecy shouldn’t be a surprise due to our fallen natures.

      Indeed the animal sacrifices for sin and the need for blood was fulfilled by the Lamb of God sacrifice of Christ.

      That which is not nice is in fact simply our fallen natures that respond poorly to God’s greatest gift. A Church ratified and complete in heaven and our reluctance to live according to the directions of Christ and His Church.

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      1. Jock McSporran

        Yes – and what we have today is also the `foundational structure’ and `not complete’.

        It won’t be complete this side of heaven.

        Note that the real problem in The Church at the time of Jesus was not the `sinners’; rather, the people whom Jesus took exception to were the super-strict and sanctimonious Pharisees, those who wrote an awful lot of rules and those who obeyed all the rules.

        There is an inherent contradiction (as Barth correctly points out in his commentary on Romans 9). It is the nature of The Church to try and bring order, while The Gospel, when it breaks in on somebody’s life invariably brings a huge level of disorder.

        Sometimes (for example those trying to kill Paul after his speech in Jerusalem), the disorder brought by the gospel is too much for the church men.

        Of course – we have now driven far away from your original post and we’re onto a completely different topic.

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      2. Of course not, Jock. But this where boys become men or fail at that pursuit. Some, like the prodigal son eventually return and presumably adopt the Will of God Almighty and others will eternally shun His Will. Those in Heaven will be permanent members of the Church. On earth, we are being tested and trained if we will only see the love and patience that God has for us. The lessons are here and we all get a pass or fail grade. Let’s hope we all get a passing grade during this time of probation.

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  4. Jock McSporran

    Yes – we are being tested and trained.

    The issue is whether or not The Church is working to help us to get to heaven or whether it is working to hinder us from getting there – and in the time of Jesus people were being saved in the teeth of opposition from The Church.

    I take a different view from you; I believe that those of us who are `in Him’ are already saved – in the sense that our Salvation is assured. That (I believe) is the content of John 3v16.

    This doesn’t make things any easier; it simply moves the goal posts. We are saved for a purpose and anybody who thinks that the heavenly life consists simply of singing, talking to God and watering pot plants is seriously deluded.

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    1. Let’s not call it a Church in the same way that we call the Church Christ Founded it. As I say it was the preparatory school to accept His Church. It worked for a few and failed many others who thought that it was THE CHURCH or wanted it to be. So they refused the True Church when Christ founded it.

      I know you believe John 3:16 in opposition to other passages that make it seem that it is easy to fall from grace. Even the simple statement that was made about working out your salvation with fear and trembling. Why have fear and trembling if you are already in possession of assured salvation?

      And to your last, I agree as I wrote in my post. We are to continue to work God’s Will in any way that He will give us the pleasure of serving Him. It will be our greatest pleasure to continue to serve Him. After all in Heaven we all have the same Will as God and love will make our work sheer joy. God loves to share His Grace and Happiness and even His intercession due to our prayers with His oldest and best children; the saints in heaven . . . and more so with the Mother Who gave Him a human nature.

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  5. Jock McSporran

    Scoop – thanks for the discussion – but now it seems to be moving onto completely different things and would probably be best picked up again on a different thread in a different context.

    On the point of assurance of salvation – which we should discuss (but perhaps not here) – I think that, as a Christian, you really are working at a fraction of the capacity that you could be working at, because you haven’t accept this. Our starting point should be that the problem of `what happens to me’ has been solved – and we now have to get on with God’s work.

    Throughout Scripture, I see men of God working out their salvation in fear and trembling (the phrase that you pointed to). One example of this is Moses in Exodus 32v10,11 where God intends to destroy Israel, but Moses intercedes with him not to do so.

    He really has to be absolutely sure of his own position before he expresses solidarity with and intervenes on behalf of arrogant and stiff-necked people who well and truly deserve everything that God intends to do to them.

    I see the letters of Paul all starting out with indicatives telling us what we are in Him – and then going on to exhort us to prove that this is true by behaving in a commensurate manner, etc …. I could go on – but the basic point is that I think your service is very much hampered if you don’t accept what you are in Him as the starting point and proceed from there.

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