Monday, March 21, 2016

It's a Terrible Time to be Protestant

Thank you, God, for my Catholic faith!  Before I go further, let me say that I know some amazing, inspirational non-Catholic Christians.  However, as a head-over-heels-in-love kind of Catholic, I look around, sometimes in horror and sadness at some of the congregations outside of the Church.  They are missing out on so much at a time when we need it all.

Certainly heaven is not just for Catholics but since most of us lack perfection, we need all the help we can get to reach there.  And all of it—not just some of it—is in the Catholic Church.
Here are some of the reasons that Protestant churches are not safe places.
1) Women pastors and bishops. They are inconsistent with the Church Jesus began. There are over 2000 years of unity among the Bishops on a male only priesthood, beginning with the 12 male apostles.  Ample historical evidence explains Why Women Can't be Priests. I want to be led in the way Jesus established.
2) No confession. Sin is in style these days; indecency and scandal are often even idealized. Add in the pornography epidemic, legalized abortion, contraception, and more people than ever are skipping Church on Sundays , so more than ever before, we need a Church that offers reconciliation with God. The sacrament of confession is the power Jesus gave his priests beginning with the apostles when he said, “Whose sins you forgive are forgiven, whose sins you held bound are held bound.   
3) Protestants are a mixed bag on prolife teaching. God is prolife and so is the Catholic Church; no compromises. I am thankful to be in a Church that does not mince teachings and entertain notions that a baby can be killed for the sake of convenience.  Some poor congregations even have women pastors that bless abortion clinics and those that attend Planned Parenthood Abortion Federation's prayer breakfasts. Heaven help them!
4) Marriage is not a Protestant sacrament.  Catholics are not immune from struggles but our teaching is clear, no divorce. Annulments determine if there was a valid marriage to begin with. It’s not always easy but it’s clear and consistent. Marriage is a Catholic sacrament and thus has sacramental graces inherent. For Protestants, Martin Luther broke away and set a new course for marriage.  According to him,  it was humans and not God that joined people together in matrimony, so then humans can break the union asunder. In the early Church of England, the idea that marriage was not a sacrament was used by Henry VIII  to divorce his first wife, Catherine of Aragon so he could marry Anne Boleyn and eventually four others.
According to Religion Dispatches. in modern times, the thinking that marriage is a human custom rather than sacrament “turned out to have great value in moving marriage equality [same-sex] forward in moderate and progressive Protestant churches. In fact, one of the important arguments for marriage equality is founded exactly on the Protestant insistence that, unlike Baptism and Eucharist, marriage is a human custom, the participants in which are specially blessed in the church. As such, its customary rules and structure can change as human societies evolve.”  
5) Actively homosexual church leaders fail to grasp truth and understanding.  A bishop who divorces his wife, marries a man, then later divorces him too, lacks the ability to lead his flock in truth. While Protestant leaders debate the acceptability of an active homosexual lifestyle, the Catholic Church, as always, stays the course.  The Church is unapologetic in offering help through Courage and makes beautiful videos like The Third Way: Homosexuality and the Catholic Church in order to teach truth and draw people into a love that surpasses all others.
More than ever before, I need the comfort and surety of the Catholic Church. Society is not leading with faith and morals and too often Protestants are following society.
Protestants are also ostracized from their heavenly family while we freely access the Blessed Mother and all our brothers and sisters in heaven, the saints. We also receive Jesus in the Eucharist and attend Mass where the Last Supper and Holy Sacrifice is made present at every Mass.  Imagine not having access to those precious gifts.
This isn’t about being better than people of other faiths, because we are not.  It is about having something better-- to help us navigate our time on earth and lead us to heaven.  Let us pray for unity among all our brothers and sisters.  May they be drawn to the truth as the failings outside the Church become more obvious.
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