Friday, September 28, 2007

The Wonderful Fruit of Apologetics

Here is the conclusion of my exchange with "kobe" on the meaning of Jn 20:21-23 (also see Parts 1 and 2). After this I would like to share a few thoughts on the debate as a whole:
that helps alot, thanks. You're the first "practicing Catholic" I've ever heard from that knew WHY they believe what they do. :-)
Well, even though that is very unfortunate, I am happy to be of service. If you have any more questions, just let me know. You can also check out my Q&A thread in the "General Theology" board.

Pax Christi,
- - - - - - - - - -

That is success people. A lot of Catholics get burnt out on apologetics b/c they think that if their dialogues with people don't result in actual conversions to Catholicism, then they aren't doing any good. This is just not true.

I don't know if kobe has any plans of converting after this dialogue. He may very well be far from crossing the Tiber. But, he understands now why Catholics confess their sins to a priest and why we use Jn 20:21-23 as one of our biblical supports for this practice. More importantly, he knows now that not all Catholics are ignorant of their faith. Some of them can actually quote Scripture!

We may never convince a person of the truth of our position. But, we can at least earn their respect. That's why it's important that our words are always charitable and reasoned. Answer with love, and answer well. Do justice to the Church and to what She believes. In that way we bust the stereotype that Catholics never read the Bible or that we are not interested in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Then the next time your opponent hears someone disparage Catholics, he can say, "No, that's not true, not all Catholics are that way. I met this one guy who loved Jesus and he loved the Scriptures. He could defend Catholic teaching too!" Then more eyes are opened to what it truly means to be Catholic. Then the Catholic Church finally becomes something that is endearing to our Protestant brethren. Once their hearts are opened to the idea of Catholicism, then the Holy Spirit can finally work in them to transform them by the renewal of their minds. Then they are finally able to see the truth in what we believe.

Don't ever give up on speaking the truth in love.

Pax Christi,


Randy said...

I think GK Chesterton said something about simply giving people a reason to stop running from the church. Once they are willing to be fair to it they will grow fond of it. Once they are willing to stop shouting it down they will listen to it with pleasure. The church is inherently attractive to bible Christians. Once we can eliminate the false reasons for writing it off we will be shocked at how many will be convinced. I know I was shocked when I was convinced.

Auroramike71 said...

Thanks Phat for doing what you do.

Timothy said...

Amen. Apologists plant the seeds. The Holy Spirit convicts and converts!

Back to marking the anti-Catholic spam in Google and answering more posts...

Hidden One said...

Every Catholic apologist should have memorized (or have on hand at all times) a specific quote from Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, and every Protestant should be exposed to it.

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