Tuesday, January 31, 2012

WHY DO PROTESTANTS DO THESE KINDS OF THINGS SO WELL--HELPING PEOPLE TO LIVE IN THE WORLD AS CHRISTIANS?

Does our emphasis on the vertical aspect of our relationship with God cause us to be indifferent to the horizontal concerns and needs people have? Protestant sermons give lessons on how to live life, Catholic homilies are usually an exegesis on Scripture or an explanation of an esoteric doctrine. Or am I wrong? This video is produced by a non-denominational Bible believing Church:

18 comments:

Carol H. said...

The video made me cry. It reminds me of the verse "the Lord sees not as man sees, for the Lord looks on the heart."

Part of the value of good catachesis is to help us to see more the way God sees. This is a life-long endeaver and does not end with Confirmation.

Thank you for sharing the video. I'm going to have my boys watch it later.

Templar said...

They do those types of things exceedingly well because that is pretty much the sum total of their Theology. Claim Christ as your Savior, and live a good life and *poof* you have a ticket to Heaven.

While I think the message of the video should resonant with any human, Catholics and non-Catholics alike, it should not take primacy in the message of any religion. We are born to know, love and serve God, and to the extent that we serve God when we serve others that is important, but it is but one small part of how we serve God, and not the sum total.

pinanv525 said...

Ok, that is nice, but it is still an appeal to the emotions, which is pretty typically protestant. One gets the impression from the film that all of them need a psychiatrist or a therapist, or maybe group therapy of the "caring" sort. Now, why not have the glasses show such labels as, "unsaved," "unbeliever," "has not prayed in years," "hasn't been to Mass or Confession in ten years," "doubts the existence of God," "atheist," or maybe just a common label for all of them: "sinner."
When I was growing up protestant in the fifties and sixties, the vast majority of sermons in Baptist, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches were about right belief, coming to Christ, confessing sins and getting Baptized, renewing one's faith, right prayer, and saving the unsaved. Gradually, with increasing secularism and the weakening of protestant belief structures, along with humanistic psychology invading the seminaries, sermons became more muted, more concerned with "feelings" (what's that song playing in the background), interpersonal psychology, self-realization. I even had a homiletics course called, "Person Centered Preaching" which I dropped after about the third class because I ran out of anti-nausea pills.
Now, am I to be treated to the spectacle of Catholics falling into the same pit of psycho-theology and "Hi, there, homiletics?"
Look, is it better for someone to die "struggling with addiction" or as an unbeliever? Is it better to die "needing a hug" or needing a Saviour? Is it better to die having "just lost your job" or having just lost your soul? And, for you social work types out there, is it better for the poor to die hungry or unsaved? And, finally, when you are on your death bed, who do you want to walk into the room, Dr. Phil or Father MacDonald? Somehow, this film does not move me. I find it, well, trite.

Anonymous said...

I am probably going to get smacked for this, but you don't need God to be nice in this way. Did that one guy really 'Need a hug?" and was that the correct response to a burley, rude stranger outside a coffee shop? If he tries it I bet when he looks in the mirror he'll see his reflection with 'Needs Stitches' at the bottom. There is a Youtube video of Tom Cruise ranting about how he drives by a car wreck and knows he can help, building on fire?, yep that, too.

Emotion makes me suspicious, so I will be skeptical.

When you are wearing a uniform you are identifiable from a great distance as part of a group. If you care about that group you don't want anyone thinking ill of the others because of anything you do. Furthermore, when you have in your head and heart what the head of the group needs done for your mission, you make everything count in that direction. You pick up the trash, you help people, you do what needs doing and you do don't do it for yourself. We need to be more identifiable by our actions. Ponder this: we are trying to figure out a way to get the politicians to know how many Catholics there are and that what we believe matters. And we think it would be a good thing to have a march. Well what if every Catholic made the Sign of the Cross an bowed his head from three seconds before every meal in every restaurant we go to. Mickey D's, KFC, Delmonicos, every one. Just the Sign of the Cross and three seconds. Someone asks you say, don't mind me, I'm Catholic. And press on.

rcg

TCR said...

If the vertical relationship with God is right and just, then the horizontal or actions toward others should flow divinely from it. "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind, and with thy whole strength. This is the first commandment."

However, we all need to be reminded that charity begins with taking off the blinders of self-interest and loving our neighbor as ourselves. "And the second is like to it: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is no other commandment greater than these."

The video presents the second commandment in a touching, creative manner, but so does---and in a more powerful way---the lives of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, St. Maxmillian Kolbe, St. Edith Stein, St. Damien of Molokai, and the great cloud of witnesses the Catholic Church honors.

Jenny said...

I agree with rcg's first sentence completely.
I have a brother who is one of the best men I know: he "sees" people's needs without the special glasses. He is unchurched since his youth. I don't know what he believes about God. We were raised luke-warm Methodist, but no requirement to even attend. Parents loved singing in the choir, but no "God-Talk" at home, or even grace at meals. But we were raised to care about other people and always show compassion.
I converted to Catholicism at age 16; I could not live without my faith as there would be nothing to sustain me (sacraments). My brother would do anything for me, is a very good man, but remains unchurched and has little to sustain him in hard times.
Note to Pin and rcg: emotion makes most men uncomfortable (just ask my husband)--nothing new there.

Templar said...

Jenny, my wife says I can be unemotional to the point of being detached, yet there are many times that I am within the walls of St Joseph and I am choked up, or fighting back tears. When they strip the altars on Holy Thursday my chest tightens. When the Host is placed before me as I drop to my knees to receive it's all I can do to look at it, as I feel so utterly worthless in it's shadow.

Let us say that I am uncomfortable with emotion spent on passing or worldly matters. But in my Faith I can not contain my emotions very well, as perhaps some on thsi Blog may have already conluded from my posts.

pinanv525 said...

Jenny, it is not emotion that makes me uncomfortable, it is shallow, manipulative sentimentality. Theologically, emotionalism is about the me, the I, and exalts human emotions to the level of revealed truth. Emotionalism was the basis for several early Church heresies, and a "feeling of absolute dependence" (Schleiermacher) was the basis for 19th century neo-protestantism. What is faith? A feeling of absolute dependence upon a "Divine being." How do we come to know God? Through our feelings and emotions. Do you see what is wrong with this? It predicates our knowledge of God upon subjective means rather than upon God's mighty acts, His revelation, and the Incarnation of Christ. It denies the role of the Church and Magisterium altogether as a conduit of grace and salvation.

Now, as a further exegisis of this film, each of the people with whom the man became disgusted were rude or irresponsible...the kid, who was old enough to know better, skateboarding behind a moving car, the person who knowingly stole his parking space, and the man that broke in line...all were rude. But, they get a pass because "they were depressed." Sounds like text book PC thinking and social work to me. LOL!

Anonymous said...

Jenny, if I have a problem with emotion it is that the person displaying it is now taking attention away from solving the problem. I realise this can be a normal situation sometimes, but it happens so often it makes me wonder if the person is just not mature.

Now I need to go harden up.

rcg

pinanv525 said...

...and RCG returns to his dog-eared copy of "Jonathan Livingston Seagull..." LOL!

Anonymous said...

That book made me cry when the seagull crashed into the water and was resurrected as the Wise Gull. Carlos Casteneda made more sense than that.

rcg

Jenny said...

...and RCG returns to his dog-eared copy of "Jonathan Livingston Seagull..."

...and Pin returns to watching "Love Story" on his aged VCR...

pinanv525 said...

Jenny, LOL! "Love is never having to say you're sorry..." Hell, I always thought that was arrogance....

PTL said...

I ended up reading posts once again before leaving my comment (note to self: DO NOT read comments before writing mine first) Guys! I will say good job no animosity in your responses! You all gave me insight I didn't see on the video... FYI This morning I read some of the comments on youtube. The top comments from over 600,000 posts! The first seven never mentioned anything about faith. Interesting huh? For GP's I looked at the next five pages; unreal what the comments were there! No mention of faith or GOD!

Message: To have more compassion for others.

pinanv525 said...

For the Christian, compassion for others goes without saying. The real battle is elsewhere...

pinanv525 said...

Also, this is no time to be congratulating each other on having no animosity and on how "nice" we are. That is the problem that has led to this. We need some righteously mean-ass Catholics...

PTL said...

You always make me laugh Pin, BECAAAAAUSE you never play favorites you find something to say about everyone's posts! hahahaha LMBO!!!! Is this okay to use here Father?
That's all! I think you love a good debate, this is exactly why you do this! I wish I could figure out something mean to say back at you... to make you not feel like I am writing another all gooey, sweet, and just too nice response like before! Alas! Have a blessed weekend Pin! hmmm Patricia wondering what Pin will say next?? tee hee! :-)

pinanv525 said...

PTL, I wasn't being "mean." God bless you and have a great weekend!