How does the Catholic Church view the Protestant denominatio

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  • #1858

    James
    Member

    I do not wish to harm other’s feelings nor do I wish to cross any bounderies but I feel like the Catholic Church doesn’t look to kindly on the Protestents. I do wish someone will clarify this statement.

    On another note, I was wondering how does the Catholic Church view the Protestants such as:
    -The Lutheran Church
    -The Calvinist (Presbyterian) Church
    -The Methodists
    -The Church of England (or in America, Episcopalian Church)
    and on forth and so on etc, etc, etc.

    #8986

    LARobert
    Participant

    To understand how and why some Catholics have an unsavory reaction to Protestantism, you have to look at the history behind it. In the USA it was Illegal to be Catholic in all of the Original Colonies except Maryland. When Protestants gained a majority in Maryland, Catholicism became illegal. In Protestant countries many Catholics where killed for practicing their faith. The torture and martyrdom of Catholics was far more brutal in England, Scotland and Ireland (Then under British Rule) than in any Catholic country. When Irish and Italian Catholics came into this country there where discriminated against in jobs, and there where a number of Anti-Catholic groups that went so far as to burn down Catholic Churches. Still today in Northern Ireland Catholics cannot own property, and therefore cannot vote. Catholics are banned from various professions and schools in Northern Ireland. There are many grudges on Both sides that are due more to non-doctinal issues in the past than religious belief.

    The simple answer to your second question is that they are Christians who are not in perfect unity with the Church.

    To paraphrase what Pope Pius XII wrote in his encyclical “The Mystical Body of Christ” There is one baptism, it makes someone a Catholic, and if seconds after they are baptized they fall into error by accepting the teachings of Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Westley or any other man who founded a Protestant Church they are separated from full communion.

    Vatican II also spoke of the imperfect unity that Orthodox and Protestants have with the Church.

    Jesus only founded one Church, with one Truth. In the Bible we read that He promised to remain with the Church even to the end of time. The Church from the very first days has because it is composed of humans, had need of reform. Each of us daily has to reform our lives to become closer to Jesus our Master. As Catholics we need to admit our shortcomings, and stive to “be ye perfect, as My Father in heaven is perfect.” and set an example of what Christ has called us all to be.

    #8989

    James
    Member
    "LARobert":3j7dt5dj wrote:
    To paraphrase what Pope Pius XII wrote in his encyclical “The Mystical Body of Christ” There is one baptism, it makes someone a Catholic, and if seconds after they are baptized they fall into error by accepting the teachings of Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Westley or any other man who founded a Protestant Church they are separated from full communion.[/quote:3j7dt5dj]
    Hypothetically speaking, if I were a Catholic for one, two, maybe even 10 years and then discovered the teachings of either Luther, Calvin or any protestant denomination and I upheld those beliefs, did I just removed myself from the Catholic Church without a formal rite of Excommunication? If so, am I condemned to hell?
    #8992

    LARobert
    Participant

    You would be an ill informed Catholic, who had been deceived by false teachings. Still a Catholic as Jesus only founded one Church, and gave us one Baptism, not a Lutheran, Calvinist or Methodist baptism, but one baptism by which we are incorporated into the Body of Christ. Your union would be imperfect at the point you became a member of any of the sects as you would be rejecting part of the truths He intrusted to the Church He promised He would remain with until the consumation of the Earth.

    If you have begun questioning the authenticity of the Catholic Church based on the false teachings of Sola Sciptura, or Sola Gratia of the protestants, you may want to balance your reading by reading some of the writings of former anti-Catholic protestant ministers like Scott Hahn, who are now convinced by the Bible that the Catholic Church is not simply Biblically based, but the same Church Jesus founded.

    If you are questioning the Catholic Church because of what individuals (clergy or lay) have done, you will find the same thing in every religious group, Christian and non-Christian.

    Being condemned to Hell is something we do based on our actions. If someone is improperly educated in the Catholic Faith, and is persuaded by the errors of Luther, Calvin or others, it is God who will be able to judge if they abandoned the Church founded by Christ out of selfishness or becauseh they truly believed. Not me, or anyone on this board.

    It may help you to know that even though Luther condemned Jews to Hell in his later life, and decried the Pope as the Anti-Christ. The Catholic Church declared that the new theology he invented was condemned, as for him and his soul, the Catholic Church has never made any statements that any one person is in hell.

    During the first to middle part of the 1900’s there was a Jesuit priest by the name of Leonard Feeney. Fr. Feeney became involved with a small group at Harvard University that taught, unless one was a practicing Roman Catholic in a state of grace they would go to Hell. This error was condemend, in favor of the Catholic teaching that God will judge souls based on what they knew and understood, and their willingness to cooperate with the graces and revalation that they where given. Fr. Feeney also denied other Catholic teachings when it came to salvation. The Catholic Faith accepts Baptism of Desire and Baptism of Blood. That is that if someone cannot be baptized by water, (and baptism by protestants who use water and the trinitarian formula is accepted as real or valid baptism.) The desire to be baptized or being martyred for the faith before you can be baptized suffices. There is also Vincible and Invincible Ignorance. That being if someone has not had the opportunity to hear the truths taught by the Church, be he an aboriginal person who has not heard the Gospel, or a Protestant who has been prejudiced against true Catholic Teaching by the anti-Catholic upbringing and false allegations against the Church, they cannot be held to the same standards as someone who was raised and educated in the authentic history and teachings of the Catholic Church. It all boils down to the fact that we cannot see into the soul of others, and cannot judge the disposition of their souls when they finally stand before Christ the Judge.

    #9007

    James
    Member
    "LARobert":1ffd4dd0 wrote:
    It may help you to know that even though Luther condemned Jews to Hell in his later life, and decried the Pope as the Anti-Christ. The Catholic Church declared that the new theology he invented was condemned, as for him and his soul, the Catholic Church has never made any statements that any one person is in hell.[/quote:1ffd4dd0]
    Did the Catholic Church condemn the ideas of Luther rather than him and his soul?
    #9025

    LARobert
    Participant

    The Catholic Church has only made official statements about persons who’s souls are in heaven. This usually based on events or miracles that happen through their intercession after their death, combined with a careful examination of their lives.

    Luther’s ideas that conflicted with the Scriptures and the teachings that the Catholic Church had preserved from the days of the Apostles where condemned formally. If he is in Heaven or Hell, the Church has never stated because it is God who judges our souls not us.

    Some Protestants mistake an Anathema as the Church condemning someone to Hell. As the Church does not have the power to condemn someone to Hell, and unless God revealed it so the Church we will not know until the end of time, we can’t say. Anathema however is a Greek term for “Let them be cast out into the darkness”. This was used by the Church as a metaphore for being removed from the communion and community of believers, not as a physical punishment. If someone is infecting the community with something harmful, you would want to isolate them until they where no longer infectious. In the case of heretical doctine which destroys immortal souls, you don’t want someone to continue to pose a threat to the community. The harshest punishment that the Church has and the greates charity is to not allow someone to harm the souls of others.

    Luther was offered many times safe conduct to explain his writings. He refused and sent letters full of foul language calling the Pope the Anti-Christ, and published comic books with pictures of the Pope with devil horns and a tail. He burned the letters from the Pope in public. He caused both spiritual and civil disruptions. A small group of German princes who where more interested in power than theology patronized him, giving him a palace to live in and all that he needed. He made friends and then broke the friendships, as an example he and John Calvin where at one point united in their attacks on the Catholic Church, but later they wrote horrible things against each other, asking God to cures the other in every possible action of life, including when they went to the bathroom. Something you would not read in most Lutheran biographies.

    Still the Catholic Church has only condemned his errors in theology, and not his soul.

    #9027

    James
    Member

    Thank you for your answers LARobert <img src=” title=”Smile” />

    #9039

    James
    Member
    "LARobert":3507duju wrote:
    and published comic books with pictures of the Pope with devil horns and a tail.[/quote:3507duju]
    Where can I find these images you speak of?
    #9040

    Andres Ortiz
    Keymaster

    You might be able to find some on Jack Chick’s website (to which I will not post the link, but you can find on Google).

    #9042

    LARobert
    Participant

    Just a few of the tamer Lutheran depictions of the Pope.

    While Jon is our host here, and has the right to remove anything he deems objectionable, I’m posting these links as a look into how historically the fight took an ad hominem attack against the Papacy by Luther. However his attacks did not stop there. At first he worked with other Protestant reformers, then changed his mind. He retracted his statements that everyone should read the Bible, and changed it to everyone should interpret it in the same way he did. He started out by being very friendly to jews, then later declared that Jews should be expelled and restricted from most trades, having nowhere to lay their heads.

    Pope with the ears of a Jackass, being crowned by a devil, being eaten by hell.
    [url:3r7g8z54]http://smu.edu/bridwell/SpecialCollections/vrhreformation/Luther1545det.jpg[/url:3r7g8z54]

    Seven headed “Papal Animal” (Note title, Regnum Diaboli, or Kingdom of the Devil)
    [url:3r7g8z54]http://www.qub.ac.uk/iccj/sdixon/REFORMAT/ENG4/GEI444.HTM#title[/url:3r7g8z54]

    Protestant Lord’s Supper, Pope decending into hell
    [url:3r7g8z54]http://www.qub.ac.uk/iccj/sdixon/REFORMAT/ENG4/GEI445.HTM#title[/url:3r7g8z54]

    #9043

    James
    Member

    Were these images made by Luther himself or were they made by a protestant artist?

    #9045

    James
    Member
    "Jon":m93qejy7 wrote:
    You might be able to find some on Jack Chick’s website (to which I will not post the link, but you can find on Google).[/quote:m93qejy7]
    Thank you for this link Jon (and thank you for your links too LARobert.) I looked up Jack Chick’s website and his little comic strips and they are as Anti-Catholic as possible!! And even what he says about other matters in those cartoons are not what most protestant sects teach!! (I can’t say all the sects don’t teach this because I don’t know if there are some that actually do.) I cannot except intolerance of Roman Catholicism or of any Protestant sect or of any other religious thoughts!! I believe that intolerance and ignorance is what drives many people into thoughts of hatred <img src=” title=”Sad” />
    #9046

    LARobert
    Participant

    The woodcuts where done by various Lutheran artists, based on Martin Luther’s writings, and (some) where published by Martin Luther and incorporated into his tracts, which he distributed and sold.

    #9049

    James
    Member
    "Jon":6tnj8xdw wrote:
    You might be able to find some on Jack Chick’s website (to which I will not post the link, but you can find on Google).[/quote:6tnj8xdw]
    In your opinion, what do you think of these cartoons?
    #9050

    LARobert
    Participant

    Short and simple, I think Jack Chick’s tracts are garbage.

    In more detail. He republishes books and tracts that have been proven to be dishonest and have been disproven. His corpus of publications are filled with conspiracy theories that that contradict accepted historical fact.

    Take for instance the theory that Abraham Linclon was killed by a conspiracy headed by the Jesuits and the Pope. Or his series about the alleged life of “Alberto” In the Alberto series, (Which has had major changes in the life story from one edition to the next) Alberto claims to be a “Priest-Bishop, of the Jesuit Order, of the Old Roman Catholic Church”. It does not seem to bother either Chick, or Alberto that there is no office of “Priest-Bishop” nor that the Jesuits are not an order but a Religious Society, or that the Old Roman Catholic Church is a spin off of the Old Catholic Church which was founded in the 1860’s when it rejected the leadership of the Pope, among several other teachings and practices of the Catholic Church. There are a couple hundred groups claiming to derive their orders from the Old Catholic Church of Utrech, (Holland) who vary anywhere from those who have a traditional Mass similar to the old Latin Mass, to groups which have openly Gay and Lesbian “Bishops” and “priests” yet deny most of the teachings of the Catholic Church. Most Old Catholic, and Old Roman Catholic “Bishops” and “Priests” have no Seminary formation, many never having been Catholics, who like the idea of titles and rituals. Catholic teachings are misrepresented in his publications, but he continues to publish them.

    My estimation is at best, he believes in the anti-catholic rhetoric he was raised with, and at worst, there is lots of money in the publication and sales of anti-catholic materials.

    #9052

    James
    Member

    I’ve noticed in his works that he always refers the Vatican as a “whore.” I too find his works unacceptable, misleading, and most of all stupid. He always seems redundant when it comes to insulting the Church. (by that I mean that he always uses the same reasons to justify what he believes is correct.)

    "LARobert":2svy9zfu wrote:
    My estimation is at best, he believes in the anti-catholic rhetoric he was raised with, and at worst, there is lots of money in the publication and sales of anti-catholic materials.[/quote:2svy9zfu]
    According to Wikipedia.org (I know that it isn’t a reliable source of information,) it stated that Jack Chick converted to Christianity. I’m not sure if this is true or not.
    #9053

    LARobert
    Participant

    [quote:eso661uy]According to Wikipedia.org (I know that it isn’t a reliable source of information,) it stated that Jack Chick converted to Christianity. I’m not sure if this is true or not.[/quote:eso661uy]
    IIRC he was in the Navy before he “gave his life to Christ” and “became a Christian” The problem is that the type of Protestantism he adheres to holds a very different definition of what makes one a Christian than many other Protestants, let alone Orthodox or Catholics do. In his way of belief, one “makes a decision for Christ” and at that moment one is “saved” with “eternal assurance” in other words, if you do it the correct way, you are saved, and there is no way that you can back out of it.

    What is not discussed is that one does not have to be a Protestant, or even a believer to have heard most if not all the nasty calumnies against the Catholic Church. Just as one does not have to be a Christian to hear the Blood libels against Jews. I had dinner with a friend recently. She is a Catholic, who for years had abandoned the Faith, married a man who was raised in an athiest family. He teaches High School Trig, Physics, and Science. He thinks himself to be a rationalist, and while he calls himself an athiest, his arguments are more agnostic. However even though he was raised in an athiestic and rationalistic home, he still can recount the anti-semetic and anti-catholic conspiracy theories that he was taught by his parents while growing up. So when I say that Chick may have been raised with anti-cathoicism it does not follow that he was raised in a religious family. Some of the worst anti-catholics are athiests. There is also the fact that people of Chick’s bent do not believe (and most Protestants would agree with him) that there is a visible Church, but that there are those who are saved and those who are damned in all the churches, those who are saved, form an invisible church, and are the “true christians” even though they believe in conflicting doctrines which the other one condemns as heretical.

    #9062

    James
    Member
    "LARobert":1ye89t4g wrote:
    Vatican II also spoke of the imperfect unity that Orthodox and Protestants have with the Church.[/quote:1ye89t4g]
    Quick question: Does Vatican II still uphold the ideas from the Council of Trent?
    #9064

    LARobert
    Participant

    First, the Council of Trent at the At the eighteenth session (25 Feb., 1562) offered safe-conduct for Protestants. This was so they could come before the Council Fathers, and explain their doctrines, after they where given a guarentee of safe conduct home. Luther and the other Protestants refused. It had taken more than ten years up to that point, Protestant princes and the Emperor had squabbled over where the Council should be held, and postponed the opening of the Council, prevented bishops from travelling to attend the Council. Many of the princes who initally accepted the Protestant “reformers” saw it as a way to gain control over the land and posessions of the Church.

    As far as Vatican II and the teachings on Orthodoxy and Protestants, we have to look at what the two Councils where called into being for. Trent delt primarily with Doctrinal Matters, ie was something an authentic Catholic teaching or was it a heretical teaching that contradicted what the Church had always taught. There where some pastoral issues, such as the problems with the training, educational and spiritual of the parish clergy.

    Vatican II was primarily a Pastoral Council. This does not mean as some assume that it can be ignored.

    Since the Councils where looking at different things their documents look at the issues from different points of view. However if we look at Trent, while it (and later decisions of the Church) condemn the new doctrines of the Protestants as heretical, they do hold that the baptisms of most all the Protestants are valid, or true sacramental baptism. So Protestants are truly baptized, and as there is only one Baptism, (you are either baptized or you are not) they are members of the Church, however because they deny many essential teachings of the Church they are imperfectly connected to the Church.

    Further, the Church devided an individual between a Formal and Material heretic. A formal heretic would be someone like Martin Luther, who knows what they Church teaches and rejects it outright. Material heresy is a matter of error that is not culpably held: it is to hold to an error without knowing better, or without realizing that it is an error. So someone who rejects the teachings of the Catholic Church because he is raised outside of the Church, or does not have the chance to learn what the Church teaches, cannot be held at fault for not ascenting to all the Church teaches. The Catholic Church holds that God will judge people based on what they know and understand. At the same time if someone had the chance to learn the Truth, and rejected that chance, God will hold him culpable for that too. We as humans cannot see into the soul, and therefore cannot condemn them, only the errors they hold.

    So I would say, yes Vatican II upholds what Trent says, but Trent tells us what is heretical and what is not. Vatican II tells us (more clearly) how to deal with persons who are separated from full communion with the Body of Christ.

    #9066

    James
    Member
    "LARobert":b043p6go wrote:
    Since the Councils where looking at different things their documents look at the issues from different points of view. However if we look at Trent, while it (and later decisions of the Church) condemn the new doctrines of the Protestants as heretical, they do hold that the baptisms of most all the Protestants are valid, or true sacramental baptism. So Protestants are truly baptized, and as there is only one Baptism, (you are either baptized or you are not) they are members of the Church, however because they deny many essential teachings of the Church they are imperfectly connected to the Church.[/quote:b043p6go]
    So what you’re saying is that all Protestant denominations are in imperfect union with the Catholic Church?
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