The Catholic Church Possesses the Fullness of the Christian Faith
Jesus Christ founded the Catholic Church. Catholics adore and worship the most holy Triune God: FATHER, SON, and HOLY SPIRIT. Catholics are Christians because we are followers of JESUS CHRIST, our Messiah and Lord. The Apostles, early Church Fathers, and a constant line of popes and bishops for 2000 years teach the doctrines of Christ. Countless people have died for the Catholic faith. It is universal and everywhere.
The Catholic Church focuses on union with God through the Bible, Sacred Tradition, and the official teaching of the Magisterium, based on 2000 years of consistent doctrine. The Catholic Church is not a lone ranger religion where the members freely interpret the Bible, any more than citizens of a country can independently interpret their founding documents. We take the Bible literally when it says the Church is the pillar and bulwark of the truth. (1 Tim. 3:15 – RSV) The Bible does not teach that a Bible will be developed, or that the Bible will be the pillar and foundation of truth. The Catholic Church was founded by Jesus Christ and the Church existed before the Bible existed.
Many people who come into the Catholic Church are upset when they first realize that no Catholic ever told them what Catholics really believe and invited them into the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church has been given the fullness of the Christian faith, a feast of many blessings. Catholics are called to share these and to let others know the Truth. If other Christians were living on bread and water, we would help them. Then, why will we not help them know the Truths about the Catholic faith? Some day, they will be most thankful for our love, charity, and true ecumenism. Vatican II reminds Catholics that, All the sons of the Church should remember that their exalted status is to be attributed not to their own merits but to the special grace of Christ (Lumen Gentium, 14).
Other Christian Faiths – Most other Christian churches rely on the Bible alone theory, which was developed by Martin Luther (1483-1546) and others. This is a relatively new theory, since the Bible does not teach the Bible alone theory. Catholics take the Bible literally when it says: Stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter. (2 Thes. 2:15 – RSV – Also 1 Cor.11:2) There are no proofs of the Bible alone theory in the writings of the apostles and the early Church Fathers. If the Bible alone theory were true, what did the many Christians do in many countries for many decades until the New Testament was written, or until the Bible was assembled after more than 350 years and approved by Councils of Catholic Bishops or until the printing press was invented in the 1400s and cheaper copies became available to all nations after Catholic monks had preserved it for centuries?
In other Christian churches, since Luther opened up the Bible to private interpretation, irreconcilable divisions continue to hemorrhage, causing deep pains to all of Christianity. There are now more than 30,000 denominations. Many new Christian churches form every year because there are strong disagreements on whether baptism is necessary, on whether they need to pray a specific sinner’s prayer to be saved, on if they can live a life of gross sinfulness and never repent and yet never lose their salvation, and even on whether it is necessary to believe in hell and damnation. Many Christian churches also oppose one another on whether the Bible’s commands can be changed by a majority vote of a particular congregation on such matters as abortion, euthanasia, the sanctity of traditional marriage, and so on.
Respect for all faiths – Catholics must have great love and respect for all persons, regardless of their beliefs. Catholics are motivated by a great desire to help people of other beliefs so they know the Catholic Church possesses many unique blessings they will not find anywhere else. Please teach and share the truth about the Catholic Church so we can welcome home with open arms and loving hearts all of those who yearn for the historic Church founded by Christ, and who yearn for apostolic authority, for the fountain of grace in the Sacraments, especially the true presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist, and for the greatest prayer on earth – the Mass. We pray for the day when we can fully share the Catholic sacraments with other Christians, especially because of their great love for a close relationship with Jesus, for the Word of God, for joyous singing, and for lively fellowship.
Pope John Paul II wrote: It is not a question of changing the faith or of accommodating it to the preferences of a particular age; in matters of faith, compromise is in contradiction with God who is Truth. (18) Public and private prayer for the unity of Christians should be considered as the soul of the whole ecumenical movement. (20) The Vatican Council’s documents Lumen Gentium and Unitatis Redintegratio state that the one church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church (LG 8, UR 4). In it is the fullness of the means of salvation. (UR 3) Full unity will come when all share in this fullness. (86) (Ut Unum Sint – That All May Be One, 1995)
LET US PRAY FOR ALL AND LOVE THEM ALL.
Always be prepared to make a defense to any one who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence (1 Pet. 3:15 – RSV).
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