Marrying A Roman Catholic

Discussion in 'Faith, Devotion & Formation' started by Jellies, Jul 23, 2021.

  1. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    A part of me wants to say the following, knowing how good and solid many American RCs are, and deeply respecting their commitment and witness, in face of opposition. The few ones that are good, are indeed really good. If you have one, then a large part of me intuitively wants to say, "you've got a good one. That's rare and precious, so forget about anything I said, and go for it."

    But here's my main problem, even if you've got a good one. He's not safe from the hands of his own pastors -- because we are living in the era of Pope Francis. You and the bf aren't here for 5-7 years, right? You're here for the next 50-70 years, to spend a lifetime and raise a family together. Do you want him, or the many wonderful children you'll have, to be taught and shaped by Pope Francis? This is a real problem, one that I don't have to deal with in my family, with my wife and kids. The bad apples in the Anglican context don't exercise jurisdiction over me. My kids are safe from the Anglican bad apples. My pastors are solid, all the way up to the tippy top. But no RC is safe from the teachings of Pope Francis. This was the major reason C.S. Lewis didn't enter the Roman church. He said, "If I do, I'll have to sign up for not only everything that they have taught, but everything they will teach in the future".

    Apart from the brainy debates between the Anglicans and the Romans, I also feel real compassion for the good ones among them. Right now it is very difficult to be them, and indications are that it's going to get worse. Because of the news last week, people are already leaving the RCC. Over the last few years Pope Francis has started to push for women deacons, and as you said, he already openly celebrated the idea of gay civil unions. On the other hand, my kids are safe from such influences.

    So if this were a different Pope, I would say look, despite all the problems in Roman theology, they're a safe place to have a home and raise a family. But the RC leadership is what we are seeing in the news. Maybe @Spiritus or some other resident RC can chime in on this, because I don't want to be a homewrecker, but genuinely, honestly, I would be terrified at the prospect of putting my spouse into the hands of Pope Francis, or letting my kids be formed by the Roman church that is to come.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2021
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  2. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I hope I can be of some assistance. I was baptized, raised, and confirmed in the RCC and I married a good RC girl. We have 2 kids, now grown adults, who are Christians. We left the RCC in our late 20s when the Lord convinced us that we weren't being spiritually fed; He led us, believe it or not, to an Assemblies of God church. (God's ways are above our ways!) We were in A/G and non-denom churches for nearly 30 years and I learned far more Bible-based things during this time than I had previously learned. But the preaching and worship music were really going downhill and I was uncomfortable about it. Next thing I knew, the Holy Spirit led me to an Anglican parish! It is where He has planted me now, and I feel very much at home with the traditional hymns and liturgy in a more "saved-by-grace-through-faith-only" atmosphere than one finds in the RCC.

    You have studied this out quite a bit, and I commend you for that. Trust your heart; you have not been misled on the issues you're finding to be bones of contention concerning Roman Catholicism. And I would advise that you come to a mutual understanding with your boyfriend on these faith issues before you ever agree to marry him, for otherwise they could prove to undo the marriage later on. (My son dated a Russian Orthodox woman for a while, and when they could not break the logjam on the differences of beliefs he had to break it off; she simply would not move from her position that he must convert and the kids must be raised RO, and he could not agree with her inflexibility and with some of the Orthodox doctrines.)

    About the Eucharist: latria is definitely unscriptural. I definitely have the same problems with the RC view of the Eucharist as you (transubstantiation, the Sacrifice of the Mass, all of it). Regarding the 'Anglican view,' please be aware that Anglicanism is fairly broad; we have some who are rather close in mindset to the RCs and they tend to go for more 'bells and smells' in worship, and we have some whose mindset tends more toward Protestantism. I personally am of the latter group. I recognize the Presence of our Lord in the bread and wine, and I am highly cognizant of the rich symbolism inherent in the Eucharistic feast (Christ in me, and I in Him, for example), but I do not consciously worship the Sacrament. Yet the act of participation in the Eucharist is an act of worshipping Jesus. Perhaps Botolph takes a somewhat higher view than I, and Anglicanism permits this; but it also permits my lower view. One thing Anglicanism does not allow for, though, is the RC practice of elevating the Eucharist and giving latria to it.

    When I was in the RCC, even though I went to all the Catechism classes (Mom made me go to all of them), looking back I don't think they taught me very well concerning the way of salvation. The emphasis was on being a baptized, Sacrament-receiving member in good standing (no unconfessed mortal sin) with the RCC and in communion with the Holy See. The indwelling Holy Spirit was not taught properly to us; it was as if He were a non-issue in our lives, a stand-off-ish presence who showed up at baptism but who never really interacted with us. The day I was infilled with the Holy Spirit at age 18 or 19, it was like being blasted clean with a pressure washer on the inside and suddenly being aware of the awesome Presence of God Almighty living within me. I didn't understand why God would deign to speak directly to little, insignificant me. Nothing the RCC taught me prepared me for the reality of the indwelling Holy Spirit. I thought I was some sort of freak; I knew no one who'd ever spoken of such an experience.

    Are RCs saved? Are they 'born again' believers? It depends. Some are, some aren't. Same thing with any church, really: some members are, and some aren't. I do think that the RCC makes it harder for their members to be spiritually reborn, though, because they teach the people to trust their baptism, trust their membership, trust their clergy, and trust the RCC itself. For centuries they basically taught that outside of the RCC there can be no salvation; that sort of teaching places all the emphasis on the wrong things. In recent years they've moderated their teaching, because they had to do so; they were taking too much flak from the Protestants and all the people who actually spent time reading their Bibles, and who therefore knew the truth: salvation is by grace through faith in Christ, not through faith in "The Church." But recent 'course corrections' can't make up for centuries of past behavior; the leopard can paint over its spots, but it is still a leopard.

    That is my view. I'm sure a RC will be along soon to dispute and decry my comments... ;)
     
  3. Spiritus

    Spiritus Active Member

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    I've been following the discussion so far but I've been hesitant to respond. I've only experienced the RCC post Pope Francis. Like Stalwart, under a different pope I'd probably give different answers. This is a difficult time for the RCC and everyone in the Church are having and will continue to have a lot of hard decisions to make. That reality compounds the difficulties you're likely to face moving forward.

    I know a lot of mixed Catholic / Protestant couples (my grandparents, all of my aunts and their husbands, friends, and about a third of the couples at my home parish) and the majority of the cases one party felt pressured and converted. There's a degree of resentment in a lot of those cases and in every case that I know of, a substantial amount of heartache due to extended family, friends, etc. I don't mean to be all doom and gloom but it's something I think you should be aware of moving forward.

    I hate to be so blunt but your comments about hiding things from him and intending to convert him from the get go are just asking for trouble down the line. Your boyfriend sounds like he doesn't really know what he believes or where he stands on a number of issues and that's something he should probably figure out for himself.
     
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  4. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    One should always marry a person for who they are, and never for who one wishes them to be (let alone for who one thinks one can remake the person into). No one can change a spouse! Either the spouse will decide on their own to change in some way (not necessarily in the desired way, either!) or the spouse will not change in that regard. Actually, one should always assume that the spouse will change in ways one does not like at some point, and be ready to love and accept them anyway. Agape love is not an emotion; it has more to do with a decision to commit oneself to the other person and to stick with that commitment even when it's unpleasant to do so (and it will get that way at times).

    I don't usually recommend 'self help' type books, but in this case.... I think you should pick up a copy of "Relationship Rescue" by Dr. Phil McGraw, and read at least the first few chapters. Better to have your eyes opened prior to marriage, than afterward. :yes:
     
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  5. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    A few quotes from the early churchmen regarding the Eucharist might be helpful.

    In Against Heresies, Irenaeus wrote that the Eucharist "is no longer common bread, but the Eucharist, consisting of two realities, earthly and heavenly..." For this to be true, the earthly reality (the physical nature of baked bread) must still be present; otherwise there would only be one reality, the heavenly one.

    Hippolytus of Rome wrote (around 215 A.D.) that the bread "is the symbol of the body of Christ" and the wine "is the symbol of the blood which has been shed for all who believe in him.” He referred to the Eucharist as an oblation (as do we Anglicans), meaning 'a thing offered to God.'

    Gelasius, Bishop of Rome, observed in A.D. 490: “By the Sacraments we are made partakers of the divine nature, and yet the substance and nature of bread and wine do not cease to be in them.”

    Theodoret: “The mystical tokens or sacraments after the Consecration, depart not from their own nature: for they remain still in their former substance, and form, and figure.”

    John Chrysostom: “The nature of bread remaineth in the Sacrament.”

    Augustine: “If it be a speech that commandeth, either by forbidding an horrible wickedness, or requiring that which is profitable, it is not figurative: but if it seem to require horrible wickedness, and to forbid that is good and profitable, it is spoken figuratively. Except ye eat (saith Christ) the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. He seemeth to require the doing of that which is horrible, or most wicked: it is a figure, therefore, commanding us to communicate with the passion of Christ, and comfortably and profitably to lay up in our remembrance, that his flesh was crucified and wounded for us.”

    Many of these same writers referred to the Eucharist as the body and blood of Jesus, so they clearly believed that it was more than merely symbolic. But at the same time they hedged against the concept that the bread and wine exchanged their physical nature for flesh and blood.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2021
  6. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    Thanks for your reply . He says he wants the kids to be baptized as Catholics. And he wants to teach them about “his faith.” What does that entail? I’m assuming the pope, praying to Saints, confession, dubious Eucharistic doctrine. I don’t expect him to completely indoctrinate them because like you said RCC teaching has softened a lot in the past few years. I honestly thought i was speculating a little but you’ve confirmed it for me. It’s amazing how one can live their life in peace and say things such as “I trust in the mercy of God” while simultaneously supposedly believing in RCC mortal sin doctrine.

    He says the kids can go with me to church every Sunday and he will come along. He says he can go to church on saturdays. He apparently wants them to receive their sacraments, even confession. I’m surprised they have children confess to a priest in a box. Doesn’t that scare them? Also, how can you tell an 8 yr old child to confess a mortal sin? Children don’t even know the gravity of their wrongdoings most of the time.
    Also, can you pelease tell me where the kids in the RCC are taught the catechism and RC doctrine?
    Is it during Sunday school?
    Because basically what we will mostly be doing is going to church on sundays as a family and I’m assuming he will wants the kids to tag along with theyre around confirmation age most saturdays with him. If the kids don’t get enough exposure to the RCC Sunday school but they participate in my Protestant church every Sunday, they will most likely have a solid doctrine of faith alone by grace alone. RCC teaches faith and grace + church dogma.
    I honestly doubt he will teach the kids much either, he doesn’t like talking about doctrine much and just likes “living it out.”
    And it’s interesting about your son and the orthodox woman. Is their doctrine worse compared to the Roman Catholic? One thing that bothers me is their obsession with icons. If you take their icons away it’s almost like Christianity doesn’t exist. What good is Christ without icons? Lol.
    Is there anything else that’s bad like that?
    he doesn’t expect me to convert to Catholicism at all, or else I won’t be dating him. Orthodox can only marry other orthodox depending on the church I think.
     
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  7. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    What’s wrong with Pope Francis? I thought it was good that he was liberal, maybe the raging trad caths will wake up and realize the church has always been fallible.

    Also, I realize we are supposed to love people the way they are. But is it wrong to pray for them? Is it wrong to speak to them about the peace we have in Christ? He knows exactly how I feel about his doctrines, it’s not like I’m hiding it from him. I’ve told him multiple times the things I disagree with. I’ve tried to be accepting of him, and I am. What I can’t accept however is letting him believe what he believes without at least attempting to let him know there is a greater freedom outside the Roman church. He’s willing to go to church with me also. I don’t expect him to forsake Rome anytime, however, I truly think a lot of the things he believes are Roman party lines. And maybe, just maybe, this slow change I see in him can keep increasing.
    Or maybe I’m just being naive…
    It is my first relationship after all. I have no desire to manipulate or hide things from him. I only want to help him grow in Christ. And really, the main thing I would love for him to know, is that his salvation is not dependent on wether he commits a mortal sin or not. That the only sin that leads to death is unrepentant sin, or blasphemy of the Holy Spirit.
     
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  8. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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  9. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    When I was little, our catechism classes were held on Saturday afternoons for about an hour. For middle and high school age, we went on Wednesday evenings for about an hour. It was just 'classroom learning,' sort of like being in school. I can't say for sure how other parishes might structure their classes, though.

    At age 7 we made our first confessions (in the dark confessional, yes) and first communion. The difference between mortal and venial sins was well explained to us by then, although the teacher pointed out that none of us at that young age were really capable of committing a mortal sin so we weren't supposed to worry about it much. Thinking back, I recall that even at such a young age it bothered me a little bit to think that God would send someone to hell for one bad mistake, like if some adult gave in to temptation and slept in on Sunday morning instead of getting up for Mass, and then got killed before he could go to confession and be absolved (which was on Saturdays for us back then); it just seemed really harsh of God in my young mind to be damning someone He supposedly loved 'so much' for the crime of missing church one time, but I accepted it because they said that's how it is.

    I remember them teaching us that we could be sure the RCC was the one true Church because no other churches could confect the Sacrament into the fullness of Jesus Christ (His entire physical body, spirit, and divinity in every wafer!); all the other churches just had weak imitations or mere 'memorial symbols' but the RCC had the 'real thing.' I even bragged about it to my Methodist neighbor as we rode the bus to school (we were perhaps 9 or 10). I was really indoctrinated.

    Making confession always did feel weird. So ritualized, and so strange to whisper through a translucent screen with the priest: "Bless me, Father, for I have sinned; my last confession was X weeks ago..." Then there was the concept of penance. "Say 5 'Our Fathers' and 10 'Hail Marys'," or whatever. Making partial atonement for my own sins. As if the shed blood of Jesus needed a supplement, I guess. With the knowledge that even the priest's absolution and my penance wouldn't be enough to prevent me from having to suffer in purgatory for potentially hundreds or even thousands of years before I'd finally be purified enough to be allowed into heaven. :cry:

    The RCC knows the objections to the statues and stuff, so they were careful to teach us why, when we light a candle and kneel before the image of Mary (or of Joseph) and pray to her (or him), 'we aren't praying to the statue.' But then, why kneel before the statue? :hmm: It seems all too easy to equate the statue with the actual saint. Some Anglican churches (especially 'high church' parishes) will still have an image of Mary or some such to kneel before, but I'm gratified that my parish does not. After my years in Protestant churches, that sort of thing makes me feel uncomfortable; religious art is fine, but let's not bow down to it, right? :halo:

    My mother was a very staunch RC. That's why we were always in church on every weekend and every 'holy day of obligation', and why she drove me to Catechism religiously. She was so happy when I married a RC girl, and also when we later had our two babies baptized into the RC faith. But then 4 or 5 years later we left the RCC, and I'll never forget the day I told Mom about it. She got that furious look on her face, shook her finger at me, and fairly shouted, "HOW COULD YOU? When you had your children baptized in the Church, you swore a solemn oath before GOD that you would raise them in the Church! How can you even call yourself a Christian when you violate your promise to God?" :facepalm: It took many months of seeing the fruits of the Spirit in all our lives before she really forgave us for 'betraying The Faith'. But then, those were the days when RCs were taught in no uncertain terms that any RC who left the RCC would be damned for eternity unless he repented and returned to the 'one true faith.'

    About the Orthodox churches, if it ever came to it, I'd choose one of them long before going back to a RC church (based on my personal experience). My son could detail all the issues he saw (he went, he talked with their priest, and he studied up about them in depth), but I don't remember now what all he told me. The Orthodox, I'm pretty sure, believe as well that the bread and wine change physically and all that, but they just don't codify how it takes place, whereas the RCC has their belief all lined out to a "T" (for Transubstantiation :yes: ) and you're supposed to believe that (and assent with an "Amen" upon reception) in order to be allowed to receive their Eucharist. The Orthodox likewise have closed communion, but participation there hinges more on membership, I think. They do love their icons and images... even more than the RCs do. My son attended a RO baptism ceremony, and they cast the demons out of the baby a couple of times, then baptized him in water, then chrismated him with oil to receive the Holy Spirit. Lots of incense, too. Like most everything else, they go the whole nine yards in ceremony.

    If you were to marry this guy and have kids, how do you see that playing out on weekends? Will you go to the RCC with the family, and will he go to your church with the family? Or will the odd spouse 'sit out' the opposite church services? Even if you do attend together at both places, you won't be able to receive RC communion and it's a sure bet that he won't partake in your church. Kids will see that, and it will make an impression. They're likely to eventually wonder: if both churches are as "good" as they are being portrayed, and if holy communion has such great significance in terms of a person's right standing with God, why does one parent have no right standing in the other church and vice versa? As they get older, that and the many other tiny discontinuities and unspoken friction points they witness could make them question the sincerity of Christianity in general. From the sound of things, you will have to be the 'anchor' in the household; it will be your task to 'carry the load' of foreseeing these issues and proactively teaching them the right kind of faith: the living faith of an intimate personal relationship with God.
     
  10. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Francis has said things which suggest that Muslims and atheists are compatible with today's RCC, but the fundamentalist evangelicals are enemies of the RCC. Does that tell you anything? :laugh:
     
  11. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    Oh gosh….
    Can you show me where?
    I feel this is bad judgement, but how can anyone truly Christian want to be the “vicar of Christ” lol..
     
  12. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    Honestly that sounds terrible. I know I will probably sound crazy for changing my opinion so fast, but I think I’m just not going to marry him. I didn’t realize they had to go to some catechism indoctrination class. I thought it was Sunday school or something. No wonder he’s so indoctrinated.
    How can a church of Christ possibly indoctrinate so many people? I have to even question my own beliefs. How can so many Christians believe different things? I know God is real, but what is the explanation for the so called “ancient” faiths of RCC and EO to be so different from us? How could Christianity get so corrupt with praying to statues and icons, praying to Saints and hyper venerating them and all the superstition that comes with it? It’s suprising but the RCC describes salvation better than EO. The EO knows of no such thing as faith alone or have a doctrine about justification. But then the RC has overly dogmatized everything and made it so that you go to hell and are some apostate traitor if you don’t believe in their dogmas. Why has Christianity become like this? It’s so sad…
    My BF falls for the indoctrination completely. He even had the gall to tell me today the EO doesn’t have a valid Eucharist until I reminded him the RCC recognizes their sacraments…. And even then he still this his Eucharist is better…..
    I would love to know where In the scriptures or even tradition it says that only the Church of Rome under the papacy can “confect” the Eucharist into the real actual Christ….
    I honestly think I would be unhappy in this marriage. I really dislike seeing people that are brainwashed and don’t reason with logic. It makes the rest of us Christians look bad. The whole RCC can be so easily disproved with a history textbook about the papacy being no existent in the early church and developing over time.
    How did other RCs, including you, respond to the historical consensus that the papacy is a lie?

    also, thank you for answering. I am truly in need of prayer so I would appreciate some. I think I will have to leave him and it will be very very hard for me :(
    Just sad that our Christian faith is so torn. Why is Christ divided?
     
  13. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I think that’s a bit premature. More time is always a good idea, especially since you said this was your first relationship. Experience of dealing with people, understanding others, is a key to having a successful marriage. In terms of practical possibilities in the next few years, maybe Pope Francis will pass away soon and a good traditional Pope will take his place to make things safe for your family. Or maybe things will get so indisputably bad that he will be ok with parting ways with the Papacy.

    I don’t know if you want to hang so much of your future on what happens from day to day over in the Vatican, but yes, many RCs are in this exact boat, and the next 2-3 years will decide the course of many families.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2021
  14. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Here are a few bits and pieces I've read in the past. Francis has said of Muslims, "We must never forget that they 'profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, who will judge humanity on the last day.'" Francis visited a mosque in Africa and told the people there, "Christians and Muslims are brothers and sisters." In the encyclical Fratelli Tutti, following his meeting with Grand Imam Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, Francis wrote, "The Church esteems the ways in which God works in other religions, and rejects nothing of what is true and holy in these religions." They signed a joint resolution stating that people should coexist peacefully and that women should be treated nicely (Al-Tayyeb, for his part, is on the record elsewhere stating that apostates from Islam should be killed.)

    At another place in Fratelli Tutti, Francis wrote that these days are "...a time when various forms of fundamentalist intolerance are damaging relationships between individuals, groups and peoples..." Francis spoke on 12/18/19 in a similar vein: "Beware of the fundamentalist groups: everyone has his own. In Argentina too there is a little fundamentalist corner. And let us try, with fraternity, to go forward. Fundamentalism is a scourge and all religions have some kind of fundamentalist first cousin there, which forms a group." Since Argentina doesn't really have any significant groups of Hindu fundamentalists, Muslim fundamentalists, etc., it is plain that Francis' concern is largely about the one sizable group of fundamentalists present in Argentina: the Christian fundamentalists. In 2015 Francis called fundamentalism "a disease that exists in all religions." Although Francis seems to characterize himself as an evangelical Catholic and usually says good things about evangelicals, in 2017 he endorsed an article that strongly criticized US Protestant evangelicals. And on 9/5/19 he told a group of Jesuits that some U.S. Protestant evangelicals “cannot really be defined as Christian.”

    Francis' words concerning atheists are a bit muddy:
    The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! ‘Father, the atheists?’ Even the atheists. Everyone! And this Blood makes us children of God of the first class! We are created children in the likeness of God and the Blood of Christ has redeemed us all! And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace. If we, each doing our own part, do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter that so much. We must meet one another doing good. ‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!’ But do good: we will meet one another there.​
    Perhaps he only spoke carelessly. It is true that Christ's death and resurrection was powerful enough to redeem all people. But I would say that not all people receive the gift of redemption (through faith) and therefore not all are redeemed. Language like this would, I think, tend to reassure atheists that they have nothing to fear even if they turn out to be wrong in their belief that God does not exist.

    And then there was the time in October 2019 when Francis blessed a pagan Pachamama ('Mother earth') statue in the Vatican gardens. Photos here:
    https://veritas-vincit-international.org/2019/12/12/pope-blesses-pachamama/
    Francis not only allowed a shaman to attend, he even gave her a blessing. Attendees knelt and prayed to the statue, and he seemed fine with that.

    But like Stalwart pointed out, popes come and go. The bigger picture is, what does the RCC teach and are those teachings Biblical?

    When in doubt about a relationship, the best course of action is to take it to the Lord in prayer. Talk to Him, and be sure to listen also! God knows what would happen if you did this, or that, or the other thing. He knows all the permutations. Let the Holy Spirit be your guide. It's often very difficult to set aside the emotions and the intellectual reasoning well enough to hear what the Lord is saying to us, but it is best if we can 'be still' and hear from our loving Master. :thumbsup:
     
  15. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't put it that way. Christ isn't divided. It's people who are divided. The Christians disagree on what's right for a number of reasons, including failure to listen to God in prayer, failure to read and know the Bible, interpreting the Bible in light of one's desires and preconceptions, and many other human shortcomings.

    Thank God for His grace. Without it, we'd all be lost for sure.
     
  16. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    yes, I have told God I will pray about this for a week, I just need him to give me an answer. How can I be sure it is the Holy Spirit guiding me and not just me making up my mind? I just have to trust in God?
    It’s so difficult, marriage is such a big thing to get into. But I feel like I need to get married, to him or someone else. I want nothing more than to share my life with another Christian and to have children and raise them in the faith. But to him, the faith is Catholicism, not just Christ.
     
  17. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    More time for what? Figuring out what I want?
    I will be honest with you, there is more to it than what I posted yesterday, I just didn’t want to say it because this is a website for discussing religion, not my therapist lol.
    But I’ll tell you. I talked to him about this yesterday. In the beginning, as I posted yesterday, he had lead me to think we could attend both churches with the kids. Yesterday I told him I didn’t want my kids going to catholic confirmation class. Then he isn’t budging on that and even tells me that he doesn’t want them going to two different churches because it would confuse them. Which would leave me going to church by myself, which he also says would show we are divided. Then it all culminated into him telling me I should convert to Catholicism. I told him all my disagreements, he genuinely believes the papacy is historically true. I don’t know what to tell him, the historical consensus is that the early church knew of no Roman papal supremacy, but he won’t believe me. He points to the keys given to Peter, tells me it’s scriptural. I don’t know why all of a sudden he’s hardened his heart. I guess it’s because things are getting serious and it must’ve hit him like a ton of bricks. He said going to two churches was wishful thinking on his part. He is genuinely in love with the catholic religion. I told him Christ exists outside of it, but to him the RCC is the one that brought him to God, the one that taught him about the beauty of him. How could it lie to him?
    To me, I came to know God by the preaching of his word. I have no attachment to any church, only to the truth. I would genuinely become catholic if I saw truth in it. But it’s not even my “doctrines,” there is no evidence for the papacy, no evidence the early Christians believed in transubstantiation, plenty of evidence they believed Mary was sinful. How can I lie to myself? Going against my conscience is a sin.
    I told him it’s wrong to believe leaving the RCC for a Protestant church will damn you to hell, and he says it isn’t because you abandon the faith. I asked him, how can you abandon the faith, if the faith is Christ?
    He’s genuinely deluded into believing Jesus has a special connection to the RCC. I don’t want to have kids with someone like that. He doesn’t even want to concede getting married outside a Catholic Church, something which will have no effect at all on anything! I just wanted him to give me one thing, just one thing. not to mention he believes birth control is a sin. Is it? Apparently even the reformers believed that. But I don’t know, the first time I heard it was a sin is coming from him.
    So do you still think that it’s a premature decision? I’m completely torn. He goes on about how much he loves me and still wants to see me. I think he’s being selfish, because he expects me to change my whole life for him, and doesn’t care how that affects me and still wants to see me. Wouldn’t the true loving thing to do would be to realize we aren’t compatible ( because of his expectations and desires) and just break it off with me, instead of saying he still wants to date? I feel like he is thinking about what he wants and completely ignoring my experience. I think he is being very selfish. Then on the other hand, his devotion to God is what I loved and admired about him the most. Besides our myriad of doctrinal differences, I’m sure our kids would turn out to be God fearing. But I have to ask myself, is his allegiance to the RCC too much? Is it God for him, or God + the RCC? Do I want my kids indoctrinated into denying history?
    My fear is I will never find someone like him again, who loves God as much as I do. I think I need to trust more in God, and that he will lead me to someone else. That or trust it will all work out with him. But that’s a bit of wishful thinking don’t you think? I think I’d start to feel resentful after giving up all these things for him. Do you think that would happen?
     
  18. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    I’m guessing you believe they’re not, like me?
    Is it too far from the Bible to be a detriment to children?
     
  19. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Well yeah, we don’t want to get too much into the personal here. Absolutely none of us are qualified to do so. Just let me say a few key points:

    1. I learned never to make important decisions rashly. When tempers are flying high, people in a snap moment can make vast irresponsible decisions. When I feel that my emotions are short-cutting my full grasp of the facts, I always take a step back and come back to it a few days or even weeks later.

    2. I never make a decision when I don’t have all the facts. When I hear you say this is your first relationship, my red flags go off. How can you possibly know the right thing to do, how people act, who else is out there? Taking some time from step #1, to gather more facts, is what I’d do. You can take even a few years to recalibrate and let things play out. Life is very long.

    3. God’s providence is 100%. It’s more than that, it’s 1000%. It’s more reliable than the air I breathe. He believed in you, before you believed in Him.
     
  20. Jellies

    Jellies Active Member

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    Thank you. That’s the best thing I have read all day. I trust in God. It’s just, I don’t know what he wants me to do. I’m a very pragmatic person. I know you say to take time and let it play out. But I don’t want to get into a relationship for 2-3 years just to break up when I knew there were issues from the start. Is it not selfish what he’s doing? I thought maybe people here would encourage me to leave him because of all the wrong doctrines of the RCC and how absolutely hard headed he’s being about what he wants for his kids and me. Can I ask, why is it you are encouraging me to reconsider breaking up? After all, we aren’t married.