Today, I'll begin the story of my departure. Liberal Catholics will tell you that Catholics are leaving because they disagree with the church… I was amazed to discover that both Luther and Calvin, in different degrees, taught the Real Presence in the Eucharist. My final step was taken out of a conviction of truth, and it was a step I shall never regret. Biblical Truth Recommended for you. It is the only Church that can, and does, claim institutional continuity from the time of Christ to the present. However, for one thing, they cannot give a clear answer as to whether or not churches which deny this doctrine are in fact part of the One True Church of Christ. And that approach freezes Christianity in time. I rejected the notion of the pope as head of the church and having some magical abilities above others. I did not, prior to my time at college, have to seriously interact with the church fathers, past theologians, or even Protestant thinkers of the past that substantially differed from my own. However, disagreements about Scripture actively led to the creation of new churches in Protestantism, yet Scripture clearly taught that Jesus wants us all to be one (John 17), growing in the truth together (Ephesians 4:9-14). I then read through the canons of the First Council of Nicaea. He was born into a family of Orthodox Christians, in a society where church and state often mix in unhealthy ways. In fact, the old Protestants were closer, spiritually and doctrinally, to the position of today’s old-fashioned Baptist church than to that of the contemporary movement. When I was 13 my family moved from Florida to New York, during which time we began to attend the much smaller church that my father was raised in. I wrote Rev. Protestant Reformed Church a cult? They would not be justified, however, in using that knowledge to start a new denomination. But if the Church is not infallible on doctrine, even when it unanimously agrees on it, why would it be infallible regarding a Scriptural canon? I asked for scripture and that showed that the voice was from God. However I acted on my conscience especially after I read the New Testament. The Memorialist view--that the Eucharist is all bread and that communion is really without divine significance, done merely "in memory" of Christ--that is, the common teaching of evangelicals, wasn't believed or taught by the Reformers. Originally, all of the Reformation churches used this name (or the name Evangelical) to distinguish themselves from the “unreformed,” or unchanged, Roman Catholic And I still could not break free from my epistemic struggle. The Devil Theory collapses on the most superficial analysis. Why I Left the Lutheran Church ... At the time of the Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century, the Anabaptists objected to the infant baptism of the three mainline groups—the predominant Roman Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church begun by Luther, and the Reformed Church begun by Zwingli and continued by Calvin. J.I. It's no wonder that Catholics have been so hysterically hated and persecuted throughout history. He said that he had never found any church fathers who taught that baptism did not truly regenerate, or that justification could never be lost. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!1” A few years ago my wife and I went to a Greek festival hosted by a Greek Orthodox Church in downtown St. Louis. A few months ago, I told the story of my becoming a Christian. No man was to exercise authority over any other, in the affairs of the church, or, more importantly, in the understanding of doctrine. Here lies a central difference between the Catholic and Orthodox faiths as versus Protestantism. And I struggled to believe that it was the case that the Church was just completely wrong about Christian doctrine for 1500 years. Why would Sola Scriptura be true? This thread is archived. In the end, though I was as a man kicking against the goads, I had to bow the knee, humble my pride, and become a Catholic. The way to sound doctrine is to adopt the views of the Persecuted simply because they stand against Rome. Former Catholics or ex-Catholics are people who used to be Catholic for some time, but no longer identify as such. So, I began where most Protestants begin, especially those who have been parked in the Reformed camp for a while. I initially left the Roman catholic church and became a Protestant over the authority of the pope. Far from the Protestant polemical claims that Rome didn't let peasants have the Bible, closer to the truth was that it was impossibly expensive to produce enough of them in the first place, so that individuals could have them. But rarely quoted is St. Augustine's view of the Church, which anticipates ultramontanism (an extreme position on papal authority). Brother Wee is a member of our sister church, Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church in Singapore. In a way, I think that I rejected Hillsong as much as it rejected me. Before the schism the denomination had 6,063 members(1953)—the PRC has passed this membership mark as of 1994. It would be like having a United States Supreme Court case based upon how the Constitution is to be interpreted, if we didn’t yet know for sure which documents the Constitution was composed of. Therefore, it is important to briefly cover why what Protestants think is “the clear teaching of the gospel” is actually not clear in scripture. For example, to put it in a very simplistic way, the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30) doesn't really naturally lend itself well to the idea of faith alone justification the way the Protestants understand it. And the Council of Nicaea was comfortable tackling such topics as the Trinity and disciplinary canons regarding things like bishops, penances, and the like, even while there was not holistic agreement on what exactly constitutes Scripture. It is not possible for me to do this podcast episode complete justice in a single article. Yet the partial corruption thesis collapses from internal contradictions. My high-school conversion to Presbyterian Church moderated my anti-Catholicism. Thomas Cromwell became Henry's chief minister (advisor). I have been a Reformed Protestant, a Presbyterian almost 8 years. Certainly Scripture does not contradict itself; but it seems to, at certain points. Its expansion model was, new Dutch colonies came to the New World and settled in areas, where they formed new Dutch Reformed Churches. It is precisely the conviction of truth that led to my conversion to Catholicism. However I now see the Roman catholic view of Justification and the Protestant view is a strong dividing line between being Roman Catholics and being a Presbyterian Protestant. Ironically, the chain of events that culminated in my… I just needed a more historical form of Protestantism, I told them, perhaps the Anglican Church or the Lutheran Church. Nevertheless, I no longer found Calvin easy to believe when he said that the Church Fathers were more on our side than Rome's. I will say it took courage to do so; I was turning my back on the faith I had lived by all life. Protestants could not answer these and many other questions. Why would Christ have allowed his Church to wallow in the mire of falsehood and heresy for so long? As I … We are as to principle no longer Christian Reformed but Protestant Reformed, because the Christian Reformed Church has in 1924 denied and corrupted the truth by the Synodical adoption of the Three Points, and these did not pertain to irrelevant points but to the fundamental doctrines of God's sovereign grace and the total depravity of the natural man and because we on our part desired by the grace of … I sat down with my Reformed pastor in January of 2019, and respectfully told him that I was convinced that one or the other of the Ancient Churches was true, that we were obligated to join whichever Church that Christ founded, and that I could not in good conscience stay. One easy way to answer this question is to adopt the Devil Theory of History, which says the history of the Church is the story of corruption. I came to the conclusion that it was not, and that I had to make another change. Warning: This board not for the faint of heart. I began with the intellectual side of things. There are a number of passages in scripture, especially in the synoptic gospels, which I had essentially been “trained” to read in a certain way, a way that contextually does not make sense. With over 20 years as a Protestant, I certainly feel more qualified to address Protestantism than I do to properly address the East. The result of this view is intolerable: heresy becomes orthodoxy and anybody who shouts "to hell with the Pope" gets a hearing. Was baptismal regeneration the truth, or a repackaged form of the Galatian heresy? I came to believe that Christ's Church subsists in Catholicism, which is why it has been so successful in defending orthodoxy and in standing against the tides of Christian sectarianism and atheistic modernism. My decision to leave Roman Catholicism was not an easy one. I was still very attached to the idea of remaining a Protestant, and I was very hesitant to leave it behind entirely. When Jesus said “unless you eat My Flesh and drink My Blood you have no life in you,” did He really mean it or was that just symbolic? Download Share ... that to ask the saints for their prayers to God was unbiblical superstition and contrary to the teachings of the “reformed” Church of England. It was then I knew that I was no longer a Roman catholic but a Protestant. Finally, I cannot discuss my conversion without mentioning the Eucharist, the source and sacrament of Catholic spirituality. Prior to that, the printing of books was prohibitively expensive. The Episcopal Church had a membership of 3.4 million in the mid-1960s; today, that number is slightly over 2 million. I was still immersed in the Magisterial Protestant mindset that Sola Scriptura didn't just mean that everyone could interpret Scripture for himself without any guidance from Church History. Do these years offer us anything that will enhance our understanding of Christianity? Something which didn't go against the Universal Consensus of the Church Fathers. Any passage he came across that seemed to point in a more Protestant direction on a given issue, he would write that down. As a result, the Reformed Churches of the Netherlands were established and laid claim to being the continuation of the true Reformed church. He also made a distinction that was very important to me: he explained that many of the Church Fathers had very strong views of predestination, but also that this issue was logically separate from the issue of “once justified always justified.” He then proceeded to go through some very compelling Biblical passages that point to the notion that a man can truly be justified, can truly be in Christ, and yet fall away. What's the evidence for it? And it gets even worse the earlier we go; in the 2nd and 3rd centuries there was not even a definitive body of work known as “The Scriptures” and yet people still needed to save their souls. Protestantism is both an ecclesial movement of the Church, and a devotional urge within the believer. J.I. I had to pray, and I had to consider critically whether the Reformed Presbyterian religion, itself discovered by me through study and hard work, was truly the religion Christ had founded on earth. They also deny that Christ is truly consumed in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist; most deny that it is even a sacrament at all. It had also adopted a hierarchical form of church government which left no room for the autonomy of the local church. This was particularly the case for me because I believed the Catholic Church had substantially changed its doctrines during the Second Vatican Council, (an issue I will briefly return to later). What convinced you that Rome is the church that Christ founded? During that time I was confronted with a number of ideas I had never encountered before. When I was very young, my family attended a large baptist megachurch. Now, as a Lutheran, he conceded the point of “Sola Scriptura”, but nevertheless cautioned that we should be very careful and make sure it is absolutely clear in Scripture before we take a position that goes against the 1,500-year old, universal teaching of the Church. The Baptist culture of my childhood treated Christianity as a wholly individualized phenomenon. He saw four major discrepancies between what the Church was teaching and what Scripture actually taught Where their preaching was heard, churches sprang up. James 2:24 is another well known passage, where the Apostle James, verbatim, contradicts the notion of justification by faith alone. If you know any home-schooling, church-going, large families who earnestly seek God in all they do, you have a good picture of my family in my faith-filled days. It seemed to concentrate too heavily on post-Reformation Church history, and the first 1500 years of Christianity received scant attention. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. A minister I talked to said I should stay in RC because I was raised in it and would never enjoy a protestant service. That year 60% of the denomination membership, the so-called "DeWolf Group", formed the Orthodox Protestant Reformed Church (OPRC). As a Catholic, I also certainly accept its canonicity; it being affirmed by the Council of Trent. You see strict periods of penance assigned to those who are lapsed, and to former heretics who repent. I don't think my experience was far from typical. I will say it took courage to do so; I was turning my back on the faith I had lived by all life. After all, the Bible still was authoritative, I knew that. Ironically, the chain of events that culminated in my… In Matthew 16, Peter himself is given the keys to the kingdom of Heaven. St Francis de Sales argues, I believe correctly, that it was only Peter, properly speaking, who was given the Keys. Once I had processed these realizations I knew for certain I could not stay Reformed. However I acted on my conscience especially after I read the New Testament. But there was still something missing from Presbyterianism for me. In Matthew 18, the other Apostles were also told they have the power of binding and loosing, but they were not actually handed the Keys. Why did you leave Protestantism? “The Epistle of Barnabas”, Justin Martyr's “First Apology”, and Irenaeus’ “Against Heresies” all clearly demonstrate that even in the pre-Nicene Church, baptismal regeneration was the understanding of the saints of the Church. He attends a Ukrainian Catholic parish on Long Island but is a Vatican II skeptic and sympathetic to the SSPX and Archbishop Lefebvre. This Church had drifted away from its biblical and confessional basis. Many know I am an ex Roman catholic. The first thing that really got me questioning the Reformed faith which I held was a podcast by a Lutheran pastor named Jordan Cooper, titled “Perseverance and Apostasy.” In essence Jordan Cooper was seeking to argue against the Calvinist notion of “Perseverance of the Saints”, which in short is the doctrine that once a person is truly regenerated and receives the Holy Ghost, he cannot ever lose his salvation. My conversion to the Reformed faith and the Presbyterian church followed soon after. “We believe in one baptism for the remission of sins”, when taken in historical context, refutes most of Protestantism. The standard Protestant understanding (that James isn't really talking about justification before God but justification before men), isn't well founded in the actual text. The Reformers had valuable things to say; but I thought their words and liturgical practices should be weighed against the whole of Christian tradition. Why I left Hillsong, Justin Bieber’s beloved evangelical church ... People who question and leave the church are considered renegades. I read through every New Testament book, except Revelation, and took notes. It is a good and legitimate reason for refusing to leave the old Church to say that the motive which prompts to such a course is--not charitable. Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church (ARP) Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) ... That is why we laymen should remain as a missionaries to the denomination and not leave. Why I Left The Roman Catholic Church By Dudley Davis The following is a summary of why I am now a Reformed Protestant and no longer a Roman Catholic. It is summarized by the line from the Apostle's Creed: "I believe in the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.". The intercession of the saints and Mary on behalf of Christians on earth was easily rejected. It had been with humanity for two thousand years in what was the oldest and historically first body of Christians, the Orthodox Church.
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