Growing up in New Orleans, my mom and dad were churchgoers. I would go to church with them. Also, I was going to a Catholic school so I had a fascination with the Catholic Church mainly because, in my mind, (their services) didn't take as long. I was bouncing in between my mom's Baptist church, which was called Second Zion Baptist, and going to a Catholic Church.
During a frustrating argument with a Roman Catholic cardinal, Napoleon Bonaparte supposedly burst out: Your eminence, are you not aware that I have the power to destroy the Catholic Church? The cardinal, the anecdote goes, responded ruefully: Your majesty, we, the Catholic clergy, have done our best to destroy the church for the last 1,800 years. We have not succeeded, and neither will you.
We have to separate here the church in its broad sense. We have Catholics, Protestants, Eastern Orthodox churches. The Catholic church is a corporation like a chief executive. A fairly homogenous operation. Today its attitude toward anti-Semitism is much more severe than it's ever been. The Catholic Church today is much less the problem than the other groups.
I wouldn't have known anything about Catholicism if I hadn't been dating Gert. In those days, Catholics were much less ecumenical than they are today. Gert was always of the mind that she wouldn't go to another church except the Catholic Church. So when I would date her in New York City and later when we went to Oxford before we got married we always went to the Catholic church.
And so, lastly, does the very name of "Catholic", which, not without reason, amid so many heresies, the Church has thus retained; so that, though all heretics wish to be called Catholics, yet when a stranger asks where the Catholic Church meets, no heretic will venture to point to his own chapel or house.
I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute - where no Catholic prelate would tell the president (should he be Catholic) how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishoners for whom to vote - where no church or church school is granted any public funds or political preference - and where no man is denied public office merely because his religion differs from the president who might appoint him or the people who might elect him.
The Most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, also Jews, heretics, and schismatics can ever be partakers of eternal life, but that they are to go into the eternal fire 'which was prepared for the devil and his angels' (Mt. 25:41) unless before death they are joined with Her... No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ can be saved unless they abide within the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.
The Catholic Church had strict racial attitudes and intolerance for anybody who was not Catholic. When I look at a lot of Black ministers and what went on in the Black church, I was more caught up with those who were in Cadillacs and shiny suits than I was with those who were Kingian in their style.
Current Catholic worship often ignores the essential connection between truth and beauty, body and soul, at the center of the Catholic worldview. The Church requires that we be faithful, but must we also be deaf, dumb, and blind? I deserve to suffer for my sins, but must so much of that punishment take place in church?
I am Catholic but I want to say something to the Catholics. Thank you for some of the bishops who live in rural areas, and are still Catholic. These bishops of the Catholic churches still pray for the poor, and pray for their president who works for the poor, while the leaders of the Catholic Church only defend oligarchy.
The old Catholic church traditions are worth more than all you have said. Here is a principle of logic that most men have no more sense than to adopt. I will illustrate it by an old apple tree. Here jumps off a branch and says, I am the true tree, and you are corrupt. If the whole tree is corrupt, are not its branches corrupt? If the Catholic religion is a false religion, how can any true religion come out of it? If the Catholic church is bad, how can any good thing come out of it?
Such then in number and importance are the precious ties belonging to the Christian name which keep a believer in the Catholic Church, as it is right they should ... With you, where there is none of these things to attract or keep me... No one shall move me from the faith which binds my mind with ties so many and so strong to the Christian religion... For my part, I should not believe the gospel except as moved by the authority of the Catholic Church.
A move of the Spirit of God is coming to the Catholic Church. The youth in particular will be ignited with a fresh fire of zeal and passion for Christ and His Gospel. A radical company of Believers will arise in the Catholic Church during this move, and they will release a flow of God's love and truth into the nations.
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