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March 05, 2006

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"Most important for me is the perceived necessity of sacrificing Jesus over and over again, which is the very heart of RC praxis in the Mass."

Unfortunately the Roman church often does a lousy job at catechizing her children. The Sacrifice is a re-presenting (the Gk word is anemnesis) of the singularly sufficient sacrifice once offered. And in order to "get it" you generally have to accept a sacramental worldview in which the eucharist participates in a timeless way in that one perfect sacrifice. But that is hard to teach a bunch of 10 year old kids.
Having grown up in the North East I have to disagree with Wanderes comment that Catholics become pagans or athiests. They were either always nominal catholics who become athiests because of "catholic guilt" and reject such a God or they become AOG pentecostals. And there are a lot of Prots who have gone pagan.

I don't believe the Roman church is "all that", but I believe that the Evangelical Protestant world has far less to offer- shallow theology, no mystery, no sacraments, nothing truly transcendent, pat bible answers, etc..... And the only thing that has made Rome at all attractive is JPII and the mystical predisposition of the postmodern world. As for me, I am a post-protestant, post-denominational neoCatholic. I make my bed nowhere and everywhere.

Fr. Matt, please don't lump me in with that bunch of 10-year-old kids. I'm older than Vatican II, old enough to have had to learn the Latin responses. God built my brain for languange, and I didn't just learn those responses by rote- I knew what they meant in English, and I had some sort of understanding of them; I was compelled toward the Meaning of them because I longed to belong to God, even as a 6-year-old. The Catechism taught me that the mass is the Unbloody Sacrifice, and the Consecrated Host the True Body and Blood of Jesus. I don't believe that's changed over the years.

I understand and value the concept of anamnesis. I greatly appreciate the sacramental view of things; I never lost some of it, and have returned to much of it. I believe something "happens" at the Eucharist to draw the People of God into the Reality of the Story; I just don't believe Transubstantiation is the "vehicle" for it. I don't see any biblical warrant for it; to me, the RC arguments for it are very thin. That's part of the bed I'm lying on.

The peace of the Lord be with you.
Dana

Dana,

Thanks for the thought. But I disagree with old Tom. I don't think we NEED a new Perspective on Paul. And allow me to clarify. Being anti RC Theology would not equal Anti RC people.

I was born again at age 6, rededicated my life at age 12, and entered the Roman Catholic Church at age 18, to leave her at age 24 for the Vineyard and various other non-demoninational churches.

when 33 I entered the Eastern Orthodox church. However for the past year or so have not been in good standing with her. As some of the things that bothered me about the RC are in the EO as well.

Example (from the RC) Francis De Sales. Supposed to be a great saint of the Church. Gave us the 'ladder rosary'.

In a vision Francis saw a Ladder going to Heaven to Jesus which was really long. And saw a ladder going to Mary which was much shorter. And a voice seemed to say to him, Use my ladder it's easier.

Now, I'm sorry. I may love mass and candles and incense and liturgy, but that's blasphemy. And it cheapens the sacrifice of what Christ did, in fact do for us.

Can we as Protestant, Roman Catholic & Eastern Orthodox agree on some things? Sure. Real Generic basics. Jesus is the Only Way to Heaven, to the Father etc. God is a Trinity. Etc.

also Dana you say here: Lots of people around us, and indeed many Christians, are not invested the question "How does one get saved?"

Well, I must say I've been consumed with just that question since age 6. Salvation is more than Save me from the Wraith to come. But let us remember, it is not less than that.

LYS

Seraphim

btw Dana, Sorry I missed this you say:

Indeed, the idea of Hell is being rethought these days by many sincere "bible-believing" Christians, so your comment about indulgences is probably moot for many.

wow. McLaren is a good story teller, much better than LeHayle, but I'm sorry, still fiction. His last book especially the points about Job, were lame. And I'm not talking behind his back cause I told him that here on Chris' blog when he was a guest.

I still believe in the reality of hell. I still believe there is a heaven to be won and a hell to shun. Thank God for Jesus. And no matter what 're-thinking' folk are doing, well let me put it like this.

I may 're-think' that the train barrelling down on me is made of marshmellows, but I'll still be dead when it hits me. Reality is not based on my wishes or perceptions.

God's Peace

Seraphim

Seraphim,
once again I note things we have in common, particularly our early life; I did it all up to about age 21 as a Catholic. I "went forward and accepted Jesus" at a Billy Graham movie when I was in Junior High, and that was important- and I view that step as a step in the process. From my earliest consciousness of God, I have always wanted to belong to him, be on his side, "be saved", whatever words will convey that. It led me pretty much where you have been. Like Whitewave, I find Orthodox theology (what I know of it) to be beautiful and scriptural- and, like my hesitancy with some RC doctrine, some EO doctrine gives me great pause as well.

My Italian and Jesus-family brother, did you actually read the article? Please don't let the title put you off. I think it would be very helpful for you, even if you end up not agreeing with what he's saying.

Blessings to you-
Dana

God Love ya Dana, and I do sis, I've not only read it this time, but when I bought and waded thru the 3 vol set of ole Toms (NT & People of God, Resurrection & Victory)I read all the stuff on Tom's site about the New Perspective.

I disagree with him whole-heartedly. My reasons are adequately addressed by this quote (2nd and 3rd paragraphs in this article:

Do we need a new perspective on justification?

God's peace

Seraph

I think it's a result of the Catholic Church bashing that's so popular among the Evangelical christians. (At least most of them).

In Costa Rica, most evangelicals are 100% sure that Catholic christians are not even christians. They say that they don't know God because they haven't been born again. (Which simply translated to they haven't said the "I receive you Jesus" prayer.)

We're in bad shape. : (

Gaston!

If you found Jesus at the Altar, during an altar call, if you found Jesus during confirmation, if you found Jesus during chrismation... during baptism.

What's important is that you found Him. Cause what that really means is that He found you.

It's just us arm-chair theologians that argue this stuff. The average believe just loves Jesus and all this stuff is irrelevant. I would never say who was not a Christian. I do get it up over folk who say who isn't a Christian.
L

LYB

Seraphim

Hit post way to quick sorry. The last line shoulda been. "The average believer just loves Jesus and all this stuff is irrelevant. I would never get my dander up over say who was a Christian. I do get it (my dander) up over folk that want to say who is NOT a Christian.

We need to remember that there are those whose Faith is only known to God.

And Jesus is the King & Judge. Romans 8.

LYB

Seraphim

So I read the article, and I disagree- though not wholeheartedly :) The writer's non-disagreeable tone and some of the points he made are good to keep in mind.

I've read Wright's Big Three and and a big chunk of everything else he has written. For me, Wright's interpretive grid makes the whole bible and life in God make sense like nothing else I have ever encountered. Because of it I am deeply and joyously glad to be a Christian like never before in my 50 years. If something else does that for you, then rest there, brother.

L'Shalom and a hug-
Dana

HI Dana,

Sorry, didnt meant to lump you in with those 10year olds. You said, "Transubstantiation is the "vehicle" for it. I don't see any biblical warrant for it"

In the miracile of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes we have a great example of Transubstantiatino without having to resort to Aquinas, per se. While the taste and appearance of the bread remains the same (the accidents), the substance is extended indefinately so that it feeds the five thousand. In the same way one might also say that our substance changed when we were born again. The accidents (our flesh) is the same and we struggle with fleshly impulses, but because there has been a change in substance we are different. I think one can build a strong case for transubstantiation from the New Testament. The important thing however is that we do not need to insist on this explanation - Real Presence is sufficient and consensually recieved.
Blessings. :)

In the miracile of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes we have a great example of Transubstantiatino without having to resort to Aquinas, per se

Fr. Matt, I can see where you are trying to go, but may I suggest rather than Jesus being 'multiplied' in the Eucharist, we are instead "Unified" - Made One as Jesus and the Father are one?

I'shalom

Seraph

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