October 24, 2020

Real Differences Between Evangelicals and Catholics

(100% true)

I pass the Inspirational Channel and Morris Cerulo saying that he has 1100 Prophecy Bibles only for his partners who will sow $240 into his ministry.

Next channel is EWTN. Fr. Mitch Pascwa is speaking and says that all of us must saturate ourselves in St. Paul’s epistles this year. Every Catholic should read them all.

UPDATE: Now that we’ve all had a chance to vent….:-)…a few thoughts.

The fact that an evangelical is giving away Bibles is distinctive of evangelicalism. Do Catholics ever just give the Bible to people and say “Read it and see what God says to you in it?”

The fact that Cerulo’s Bible has his prophecy notes on each page shows that evangelicals have their little popes and little magisteriums. They just don’t like to admit it.

The fact is that Fr. Mitch can say let’s all read Paul’s letters, but come back and tell him that Paul never says “Peter is the infallible successor to Jesus” anywhere and you’ll find out how far Paul’s epistles actually go.

If you chase this subject, you’ll discover that some RC scholars do a far better job with Paul’s letters than many Protestants.

Comments

  1. *sigh*

  2. Fr. Pascwa must be a rare bird. (A convert from protestantism?)I’ve never met a catholic who was a serious Bible reader.

  3. Headless Unicorn Guy says

    Only study on Revelation that didn’t degenerate into a “SIX SIXTY SIX! DON’T TAKE THE MARK!” conspiracy scare job was the one taught by a Jesuit.

    And then there was the one on First & Second Kings on EWTN many-many years ago where the Jesuit teaching it went through the list of the Northern Kingdom kings overthrown by their successors and commented “It’s a Banana Republic!”

  4. JCL: The Catholic I am married to reads the Bible pretty much all day long.

    The pope has declared it the year of Paul and called upon all Catholics to read all Paul’s letters.

  5. If I ever decided to convert to catholicism, Father Mitch would be right up there with Scott Hahn for influences in that direction… Why don’t we have anyone like Father Mitch in the protestant church?

  6. Sad but true.

    “Why don’t we have anyone like Father Mitch in the protestant church?”

    We do. They’re just not on “Prosperity”-owned TBN…or not very often.

    I also wonder if the Protestant tendancy to attack anyone who’s doctrine is not 100% like ours may have something to do with that.

    DD

  7. Oh please. I get an email at least once a week from Karl Keating and the Catholic Answers crowd begging for money to avert some sort of pending nuclear size disaster that threatens all that is supposedly whole and sacred…’Help us stave the tide of XYZ by contributing your thousands or the world is coming to an end and there will be no more Catholic Church’.

    Every communion has their wackos – and there ought not be differences between evangelicals and Catholics on at least one score – everyone should bow their knee to our Lord and follow Him each where the Lord has put them.

    Oh. And maybe we ought to think about just turning the TV off…

  8. If we can all keep calm here, I’ll show my cards to say there’s more to this one on a couple of levels than first reading shows.

    It says what it says, and it’s what happens. But there’s other things to see and say. Just try to say them with some maturity and kindness, OK?

  9. Fr. Pacwa is a cradle Catholic, and of Polish ancestry to boot. His academic training has specialized in biblical studies and biblical languages.

  10. I have a question: is there as much variety within the catholic church as there is within “evangelicalism” (assuming you can call a TV preacher running a con an evangelical)? It seems like comparing evangelicals to catholics is kinda like comparing people from Rhode Island with people from Asia (in terms of variety, not in terms of population). Could someone who is more in tune with current catholicism than I am help me out?

  11. Wow! What a great offer!

    For only two hundred and forty of your American dollars, I could get my hands on a special Prophecy Bible (which must be waaay better than a common-or-garden Bible), in order to saturate myself in the Epistles as instructed by the Pope!

    Combine this special unique Prophecy Bible with the Plenary Indulgence for the Pauline Year, and it’s a win-win situation, Michael 😉

  12. Dunker Eric says

    Working at a Catholic school, I see some good things:

    -a campus ministry office that serves students across the political spectrum and sees all of them as real Christians.

    -Church leadership that resists public opinion and encourages scholarship, free-thinking and debate

    -Church leadership that takes stands on issues that are often not popular.

    The homilies I’ve heard do focus pretty consistently on Jesus and Biblical exposition, too. There are negatives as well, of course.

  13. As a casual observer of “prosperity theology”, I usually recommend that people turn off the television and turn to scripture. I also recommend books like “The Politics of Jesus” by Yoder and “The New Monasticism” by Wilson-Hartgrove.

  14. Paul in the GNW says

    JCL – If you haven’t met Catholics who read the Bible, or heard Priests, Popes and Prominent Catholic speakers encourage Catholics to read the Bible, you just haven’t been paying attention. As a cradle Catholic (barely over 40 yrs. old) I can tell you I have been encouraged to read the Bible my whole life, and have generally followed the advice. I am personally doing a pretty thorough personal study of the Pauline Epistles, as Pope Benedict XVI has suggested for this year of Paul. BTW, at the Synod on Scripture, currently underway, they are reading the ENTIRE BIBLE, LIVE ONLINE. Those crazy Catholics.

    Of course, you would be correct to notice, that in general Catholics don’t spend much (enough) time reading scripture privately.

    Today, I saw a man carrying a Bible into my Catholic Church for Mass, and I said to my wife – “that must be a protestant visitor!”

    God Bless

    Paul in the GNW

  15. Michael, I’m sure Kevin D. Johnson is right to some degree. Every group has their extremists who have “jumped the track.”

    But, on any given Sunday morning as I am preparing to leave to attend my own congregation I flip through the “religous” channels looking for something decent to watch. After I’ve gone through Creflo Dollar, Paula White, Kenneth Copeland, John Hagee, and Rod Parsley I just about give up. The best I’ve seen is James Merrit, Jantzen Franklin, and Charles Stanley. But usually these guys are preaching on some kind of “principle” for a better life, marriage, etc.

    And then I happen across EWTN and what do I see? A guy who is all dressed up in his robes and such or some guy with a collar standing in front of a crucifix of the “Blessed Virgin” and preaching.

    And what do I hear? A challenge to be holy, humble, servant-minded, reverent, etc. The focus is on God and Christ and his work on our behalf. I’m not kidding (I know what the TR’s are thinking).

    I’ve asked my wife on many occassions, “Why do the evangelicals preach about us while the Catholics are preaching about Jesus?” Honestly I’d rather listen to Father John Corapi for an hour over any of those mentioned above, even if I have to pick out some of the bones for the meat.

    I don’t think your post is an exaggeration in the least.

  16. Umm…that should have been “in front of a crucifx OR the Blessed Virgin.” Ah…sorry. That wasn’t a good picture.

  17. Kevin D., the difference is that the Catholic church always solicits money from you with a practical rationale, instead of a spiritual one, i.e. “help The Sisters of The Grotto of The Enthusiastic Apoplexy put a well next to our orphanage for terminally-ill children in Beirut (so that Catholicism won’t die and the world won’t end)”, instead of “GOD wants you to buy this special Bible, and the WORD of GOD never comes back void, so OPEN your HEART to GOD”, etc.

    I’m not saying that Catholics aren’t ever guilty of being excessive (we are – my dad gets at least 4 different letters a day from Catholic groups who want money), but I’ve never heard of a Catholic priest ever actually questioning anyone’s salvation over their reluctance to donate to their pet charity, let alone to the latest ‘annointed’ book fad or morality crusade.

  18. As for Catholics reading the bible, right now the Vatican is holding a televised bible-reading marathon, reading the Italian-language bible from Genesis to Revelation. Pope Benedict was the first reader.

    But as for TV preachers trying to get money: I have yet to watch one that doesn’t, in one way or another, suggest you should send ’em some. Some are less scam-artist-y than others; some do nothing more than point out that they are funded by donations, which is meant to lead people to think, “Hey, they’re funded by donations; I could send them a donation.” Not that there’s anything wrong with telling folks you need funding, but selling them $240 tax-deductible bibles doesn’t necessarily sound like you’re seeking the Kingdom of God first.

  19. Maybe after all the Catholics read the Epistles they will convert to Evangelicalism… that would be awesome. I love this Pope!

  20. “I have a question: is there as much variety within the catholic church as there is within “evangelicalism””

    Good question, Mike. A short answer would be “That depends on what you consider ‘variety’.” There are certainly those who are More Catholic Than The Pope (and think that our current fella is falling down on the job something shocking since there haven’t been excommunications and anathemas flung around like snuff at a wake, never mind the wishy-washiness about bringing back the rack and the thumbscrews); those who (God love them) spend a great deal of their time promoting various Marian apparitions of varying degrees of obscurity with urgent messages for repentance and prayer before God chastises a disobedient world; those who just slob along (the great majority of us, myself included); those who pick and choose what they want to believe (the infamous ‘cafeteria Catholics’); those who are convinced that, any day now, just as soon as the next Pope gets elected, there will be all the modernisations they’ve been waiting for with their tongues hanging out (generally, these people have been saying “Just wait for the next Pope!” since, oh, Paul VI).

    And of course, on the extreme of the most extreme fringe (at one end), the Sedevacantists (to boil it down: no valid Pope since – well, depends; Pius X? Earlier? Later? Certainly John XXIII was very suspect, and everyone since is NOT the REAL Pope!) and on the other extreme of the most extreme fringe, those who feel that the Spirit of Vatican II has been betrayed and suppressed, and that the Revolution is about forty years overdue.

    Generally, in Catholicism, if someone is struck with a new light on the Gospel, he or she goes off and founds a religious order (Franciscans, Dominicans, Jesuits, Sisters of Mercy, Poor Clares, etc. etc. etc.) rather than lighting out and setting up his or her own separate church as in Evangelicalism – or at least, that’s how it looks to this outsider 🙂

  21. It can be a mixed bag. The Catholic church could learn ALOT about preaching from our prot brothers. Example.. today the Gospel reading was Matt 22:1-4 and we got a sermon about stewardship.

    I love our priest but what missed opportunity to teach!

  22. Martha,

    As one who crossed the Tiber, I agree with your observations. They match up nicely with mine.

    Mike (the 9:07pm comment) I do agree with you about our preaching. But then, I’ve suffered through a lot of very bad Baptist preaching too. For example, we had a pastor who always went 1 story too long and thereby ruined his point. Then, on Youth Sunday, his son was the youth preacher that day, and did the same thing. ARG

  23. I agree with Martha. As someone once said, Catholicism is a much bigger tent from the inside than from the outside. There are people with a profound devotion to Mary and/or the saints, and there are those more focused on Jesus and our Lord. There are charismatics, and there are people who long for Latin mass in the old rite. There are people who read the Bible, and those who only read or listen what’s in the Sunday liturgy. The list goes on and on.

    For me, as a Catholic with a deep respect for other Christian churches, what bothers me the most is the vast number of nominal Catholics — and I don’t mean those who disagree with this or that Church doctrine, but those who follow the rituals but don’t even attempt to live the faith. This, and the general impression that Christian live is a burden, has prompted me several times to question if I should leave Rome and join people who really seem to enjoy being Christians and try to follow Christ. However, I feel it would be an error to leave a Church whose official teachings are sound and ground both in the Bible and in Church History for another Church (where would I go, anyway?)

  24. I’ve said to people that the best tool the RCC has to win me over to their side of the Tiber is not EWTN. It is all the other “Christian” channels around it. If those were all I know of Protestantism, I would definitely go to the other side.

  25. I like Father Pacwa because he always wears cowboy boots. That makes him cool in my book.

  26. Rob Lofland says

    I think I agree with aialsmoi:
    “on 12 Oct 2008 at 2:44 pm aliasmoi
    *sigh*”
    Morris Cerulo and his ilk makes me sick.
    Does any sane person with any degree of intelligence above idiot not see these con men for what they are?
    I’m not Catholic but the degree and depth of hubris and outright lying for one’s own benefit astounds me.
    I am always amused at ex-Catholic comeidans and writers who thrash in their guilt and the suppposed chicanery of thier clergy.
    Try being a Baptist or a pentecostal.

  27. To say that Cerulo is “giving away Bibles” is, perhaps overly-gracious. Not criticizing you, just observing. 😉

  28. I also stumbled upon Cerullo and if I remember correctly he said God TOLD him to give away 1179? of those Bibles for free (usually you’d have to shell out the $240 bucks, he said)! And of course, they’re not normally available to the general public, only those Cerullo deems worthy of receiving his “anointed” Bible.

    I’ll leave the Catholic stuff alone…

  29. Lord have mercy. There are definitely a fair share of kooky Catholics, as some have pointed out already. Fr. Mitch seems pretty sharp. I don’t have EWTN right now on our cable package (which, for me, right now, is probably good) – but he’s a good one.

    On the Scripture thing, the old Jesuit Priest (87) whom I call my spiritual director, and whom I do not see near enough, led Fr. Mitch’s ordination retreat. Every time I’ve ever had a session with him, Scriptures flow out of the man like water from a living well. If I confess to him, my “penance” is usually something like (pulls some Scripture out of his deep reservoir) “take this and meditate on it for a while.”

    And as I remember it, when I came into the Church at 13 (in 1980), one of the first gifts I was given was a Bible, by an older woman in our parish who sort of took me under her wing. I still have that old Bible.

  30. Jenny Bluett says

    Do Catholics ever just give the Bible to people and say “Read it and see what God says to you in it?”

    First yes, Catholics actually give away bibles, at least in my parish. They give them to the children in the parish school, they give them to RCIA canidates, they catechisms to folks who are participating in the faith formation that just started for adults as well as the weekly CCD classes for the Catholic kids attending our public school.

    My priest encouraged lectino divina in his homily yesterday, I’d say it is an equivalent to evangelical devotions, reading a verse or two and mediating on it in prayer. He then stated “See what God speaks to you”; more personally directed rather than make up your own doctinal confession from your reading.

    I’m particularly curious of what folks think of the Bible reading marathon that the pope, cardinals, bishops are participating in at the bishops’ synod on the Scripture.

    The ENTIRETY of SCRIPTURE read aloud publically by the leaders of our Catholic tradition broadcast and made available the ENTIRE world, what do you think?

    …and please be gracious, don’t anyone toss out a tort about Balaam’s donkey…

    Best,
    Jenny

  31. ” … Morris Cerulo saying that he has 1100 Prophecy Bibles only for his partners who will sow $240 into his ministry.”

    Hmmm … could Cerulo be prophesying that only 1100 partners would want his “special” Bible? 1100, 1100 – must have a special “end time” meaning – must look that up …

  32. anecdotally …

    My wife (Baptist) teaches at a RC High School.

    All teachers are required to undergo religious training (she got her own Catechism of the RC Church, which makes for interesting reading)

    Her observations from the training….

    She was certainly the most willing to participate in the discussion (which may be a personality issue, but I think it is more from the perspective that the RC are trained that only the priesthood has the authority to interpret scripture)

    In discussions over breaks and lunch, it was clear to her that she was much more familiar with the bible than other class members.

    That on most of the issues, there was very little difference from her beliefs and what was taught in the classes

    That among the teachers, she teaches scripture memorization in her class (not a religion class) more than any other of the teachers. In fact, some of the teachers think that she is odd for using scripture (again, I think going back to who has the authority to actually teach)

    As a general rule, I enjoy being with her co-workers at the RC High School a lot more than I enjoyed being with her co workers at a “Christian” school.

  33. We have one very close to us who left the Baptist church to become Catholic. The first thing they did in RCI (Is this the correct term?) was to give everyone a Bible. We attended the confirmation service at the invitation of this person. The priest leading it was a pretty hefty guy. This church had about 700 people in it, all ages. I would guess 60 or so were being confirmed as Catholics. He stepped down to the front pew, put one foot on the pew and leaned over toward those being confirmed and said, “You have taken vows of confirmation to Christ and His Church. But if you do not mean it in your heart, the words are worthless.” Hmmmm…the vows and these words sounded like words I have heard in evangelistic meetings. Very similar.

    I have another friend who knows and has worked with Morris Cerullo. I do not know Cerullo nor do I watch much of what is called Christian television. My television is not Christian. In fact, at times I think it demon possessed and may very well go to perdition. 🙂

    My friend reported (in all seriousness and with tears) that Cerullo told him of an open-air healing crusade in Africa where they “stacked wheel chairs six stories high.” I don’t know about you, but I would pay money to see an old guy heave a wheelchair 60+ feet high in the air! 🙂

  34. Imonk, the irony I see in your TV viewing experience is this: it appears to be some sort of “reverse reformation.” There’s a Protestant “selling” maybe not spiritual favors, but some sort of promise of blessing. And then there’s a Catholic urging viewers to study scripture, the word of God. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

  35. Catholics have always read the Holy Scriptures the Church knows however that reading the Holy book without knowing what it represents and in what context it should be read can lead to heretical thought.

    I find it funny that some of you think that once a Catholic reads the Holy Bible the “scales” will fall from their eyes and become Evangelicals. As a matter of fact when I first began to read the Holy Bible which was around the time I decided to look in to Christianity seriously. I thought from the very first glance that the Catholic position was firmly stablished in scripture. I guess you could say that it was the Holy Scriptures that convinced me that the Church is what it claims to be.

    Look I don’t mean to give you my statement of faith. I just want to make it clear that reading the Holy Bible is not the eye opening experience that you would believe it to be for Catholics, at least not in the sence you would prefer it to be.

  36. Oh and something that might blow your minds the Church gives Plenary Indulgences for reading the Holy Scriptures for more than a half hour a day.

    That is of course to all Christians, so to those Protestants that read their Bibles all the time, just something you might want to keep in mind next time you start doing some Bible reading. 😉

  37. Oh… my :head downward from a heavy heart:… I am a life-long Baptist/Methodist blend because of the family I was born into. I often watch EWTN and have never seen a program I didn’t benefit from in some way. I find it enlightening. I also have benefited from all the television ministries mentioned by all the commentators. I have never been to a church I did not like…no matter the denomination. I find God in every place where I seek Him. We are BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST! He loves us with the same love and He shows us the same mercies…no matter what our religious affiliations. The truth of God is multifaceted. No one denomination has greater ‘revelation’ than another. ‘We are lively stones..fitly joined together’ as the Temple or Church of the Living God. If we are indeed one of the lively stones joined to make the Church…Love will dwell within. When the love of God indwells our fleshly ‘temple,’ we see with the eyes of love. Love is kind. Love sees the good and the benefit. Love does not condemn. Truth is spiritually discerned and experienced according to how God chooses to endow each individual to accomplish his/her destiny in God. I fear there is great danger in doing or saying anything that would bring harm to the ministry of any person who says he/she is called of God.

  38. Memphis Aggie says

    Let me take small issue with this:
    “Paul never says “Peter is the infallible successor to Jesus” anywhere and you’ll find out how far Paul’s epistles actually go.”

    Paul, by his own word, was the least of the Apostles. Why should I look to him over the Gospels? The Epistles are great supporting documents for the Gospels, but they are inherantly secondary and dependent documents. Jesus established the Church directly when He renames Simon Bar-Jonah Peter as sign of Peter’s new mission. Whatever Paul might say is only commentary by comparison. Why should the Epistles go farther than the Gospels? Go ahead and reject the Catholic claim if you must, but Paul is not the be all and end all authority.

  39. I’m not sure if anyone caught this yet but Morris Cerulo isn’t giving away bibles – he’s selling them $240.00. Which, for me, is despicable since each of them probably costs a little less than $20 to make. Who knows? Maybe this is the tv preacher version of an indulgence?

    A.T.

  40. Sean McKeating says

    Michael, I just saw someone in the dark hours of the night peddling holy oil that when rubbed into the skin would cure arthritis, cancer, etc., and that we should “sow into this ministry” so we too could have this miracle.

    This and the prosperity message preachers you decry regularly on your blog are merely creatures of market economics in the religious context. The same impulse that makes people buy the latest pill or machine that will make them lose 12 inches in 10 days and keep eating what they want will also make them susceptible to a spiritual sales pitch in which disciplines and growing in Christ-likeness (which is hard and might challenge our lifestyles)can be short-circuited by sending a check for the “miracle cure” of the holy oil, prophetic bible, prayer cloth, etc.

    The high-powered cash cows on TBN get to stay on TBN because they are cash cows, and it costs money to be on TV. This is nothing more than a market imperative in which appeals are made to our spiritual dissatisfaction and greed in a way that maximizes donations.

    I don’t know exactly how EWTN works, but I imagine it is underwritten by the RCC. If so, during their programs no time need be taken in making an appeal for money. I imagine if Fr. Pascwa had to support his own show, he might have less time to talk about Paul’s letters. But I certainly agree that these underlying realities really make evangelicals look like a foul horde of money-grubbing hucksters in a side-by-side comparison.

  41. *The fact that Cerulo’s Bible has his prophecy notes on each page shows that evangelicals have their little popes and little magisteriums. They just don’t like to admit it.*

    iMonk, that’s a bit of a stretch, don’t you think? Not that there’s no truth to what you say, but the fact that a basic nutball like Morris Cerullo has some following within something loosely labeled ‘evangelicalism’ isn’t very good proof of your point that evangelicals have ‘little popes’ and the like. It seems to me that the most you can prove by that fact alone is that there is some segment of professing Christians (many of which probably wouldn’t know an evangelical from an elephant) who mindlessly follow charismatic leaders. That, it would seem, is endemic to most any faith group in the world. I share much of your cynicism about such things, but methinks thou extrapolateth too much…

  42. Sean:

    EWTN is totally supported by contributions,etc. The RC hierarchy doesn’t officially support it and a hefty (although certainly declining) number of bishops don’t like EWTN at all.

    You’ll see fundraising on EWTN, true, but it is very low-key. Mother Angelica’s appeal was, famously, something like, “Don’t forget to slip us between the heating and the gas bill.”

  43. Morris Cerulo and the other wack jobs on so-called Christian T.V. does not represent confessional protestantism in any of its varieties- Lutheran, Presbyterian, Reformed, etc. Most Confessional Protestants see the high cost of television time as prohibitive and poor stewardship. So TV is left to the hucksters and maybe that is ok. Malcum Muggeridge used to argue that the television medium by nature distorts and lies. I am not an evangelical but I suspect that most evangelicals are no more represented by these hucksters then confessional protestants and mainline protestants. But I must admit I know little of evangelicalism and if you tell me that Creulo and TBN represents the average evangelical I guess I will have to recant. I will be very, very surprized if this tv stuff is what is actually going on in evangelical churches.

  44. urban otter says

    “Not that there’s no truth to what you say, but the fact that a basic nutball like Morris Cerullo has some following within something loosely labeled ‘evangelicalism’ isn’t very good proof of your point that evangelicals have ‘little popes’ and the like.”

    True, the existence of Morris Cerullo’s TV show in and of itself does not prove that evangelicalism has its own little popes. However, each evangelical believes his own interpretation of the Bible is correct, and thus he is his own pope. Or perhaps he believes that his pastor’s interpretation of the Bible is correct, then his pastor is his pope. Or maybe he believes that Morris Cerullo interprets the Bible correctly, in which case Morris is his pope.

    In any event, every Christian everywhere believes that somebody can interpret the Bible correctly. If he’s Protestant, he usually believes that he is the one who can (or will after more study). If he’s Catholic, he usually believes that the pope is the one who can.

    Or we could work on the theory that nobody anywhere can interpret the Bible correctly. If that’s the case there’s no point in bothering to read it at all. Sure, you might stumble on to the correct interpretation, or you might not, but in any even there’s no way to tell. Why bother to try? This is exactly what has happened to many of us. This approach is likely to lead us straight out of Christianity altogether and into… not much.

  45. Lets face it there is deception in both camps and every camp that becomes obcessed with its own particular brand of “strain out the nat and swallow the camel” theology is doomed to futility because ultimately there is no real selfless serving love involved which is the heart of the gospel.
    If the Vatican and all the monumental Protestant churchs gave up and sold all their property & goodies and gave them to the poor there would be an outpouring of the spirit like we’ve never seen in history.
    So the real question( 4 me anyway )is has the truth set you free personally and can you persuade others to see beyond the gospels of hypocricy?
    Free from the religious binds that tie you to a denomination or creed that puts denominational theology before the heart of the gospel which as Christ said is selfless love & mercy.
    Sooner or later these structures just as the political structures of today will fall from their own self serving weight and Gods judgement.
    As it says in the parable of the servants let the wheat grow with the tares because God will do the seperating come harvest time.

  46. On giving away Bibles:

    I am sure some of my Catholic friends would agree (hopefully) that evangelicals have a broader vision of scripture distribution than giving Bibles to kids in Catholic education programs.

    Scripture distribution is a major evangelical outreach, from the Gideons to the various Bible societies. The distribution of God’s word to the public is a crucial part of why evangelicals are involved in everything from God’s Smugglers to IBS, etc distributing scripture to the military, Wycliffe translators, and on and on.

    It’s hard not to make this observation: Is the distribution of the scripture OUTSIDE of the context of the church’s teaching authority something the RCC can fully endorse? Historically, the RCC opposed the translation and distribution of the Bible. Now that the church is more committed to the average Catholic layperson having the Bible and reading it devotionally, how about the next level: scripture evangelism.

    This is close to my heart because our ministry gets Bibles to all our international students every year and they are very appreciative.

    MS

  47. “Paul never says “Peter is the infallible successor to Jesus””

    Well, of course not, Michael. That’s what Acts is for 😉

  48. As I said, Paul never said it. Not in a single pastoral letter. But of course, there’s dozens of good reasons for that. (ahem) He can tell Titus to appoint elders in every city in Crete, and never mention Peter ordaining bishops anywhere, but it’s all saying the same thing. 🙂

  49. Regarding the contrast between EWTN and some of the other channels – well, to be fair, we do have our share of the wacky, the kooky, and the down-right frothing at the mouth, except they don’t make television programmes or set up their own tv/radio stations.

    Another small mercy to be thankful for.

  50. Oh hey, if you go by the Epistles, nobody except Paul (and his companions) was doing anything anywhere.

    James and the lads were just sitting on their backsides in Jerusalem doing nuffin’ – at least, nothing that we hear from Paul 🙂

    Though that is *not* me saying “The Gospel of Thomas is the real low-down on what the rest of the Twelve were doing while Paul was swanning around glamourously being shipwrecked, imprisoned, beaten, run out of town…” 😉