This is largely a response to a blog post.
Firstly I hope you take our prior conversation in the spirit of brotherly love it was intended. I was in no way trying to rain on your parade, your recent conversion and the strength of your faith is fantastic to behold and an amazing gift from God.
I have not been ‘flagellating myself’ only thinking about our conversation. I resumed the conversation because I enjoyed it and wanted to continue and had no idea you didn’t feel the same.
Of course God provides everything for our salvation, and some of the infinite number of these most amazing gifts are only to be found in the Catholic Church, various denominations have more in common with Catholicism than others, the eastern orthodox are obviously the closest, followed by High Anglicans. At no stage however did I suggest anything so crass and deeply wrong as to belittle your relationship with God. To do so would be to besmirch the great many good and holy elements of Christianity we hold in common.
What I was trying to point out was that the vistas of faith are ever wider yet, wider than I can possibly convey or ever fully comprehend, but interestingly a lot of glimpses of these vistas that are uniquely Catholic are made accessible in simple ways. (eg the rosary, praying for saintly intercession, the sacraments, benediction etc etc etc)
You were the one asking the deep and challenging questions, and I was trying to give answers with nuance and depth to match them. It often requires a great deal of deep reasoning to build the foundation for a simple statement of faith, or a simple religious devotion.
Catholicism isn’t overly complex, in fact it is one of the few religions you can fully participate in even if you never got past finger painting, (no thirty minute sermons for us thank ye very much!) and a great deal of deep thought by the greatest minds in history has gone into making that possible.
I certainly never doubted your love for God, I have no idea where that notion came from, maybe a tiny demon whispering in your ear? you have a very strong personal faith and a great love of God which is so beautiful and wonderful to see and has been a blessing to share in.
This sense of judgement must also have come from somewhere else, I never judged you. I have only suggested that protestantism actually imposes limits to the abundant gifts God wishes to give Christians and that these limits are man made and arbitrary.
Which bring us back full circle, why is it that some protestants consider a lot of Catholic beliefs unnecessary additions, yet at the same time can be so certain of something like pre-tribulation rapture theory which is itself a very late addition and in itself fairly whimsical? (First thought up in the 1830’s and only widely populised in 20th century America according to Wikipedia. )
It is, unsurprisingly, uncomfortable to have our comfort zones challenged. I know this from personal experience, I went through great discomfort whilst I was becoming one of those horrible papists lol. I think that is where this is coming from. Study why everything I have said suddenly seems to anger you, I always endeavored to put analogies in the least threatening terms possible. (hence the cake.)
Finally I would say that the journey into the Christian faith is like climbing a mountain, and just as you crest one peak you realise that it wasn’t the summit and the actual summit seems even further away and inaccessible.
Try not to get dispirited, it is a lifetime journey and each peak has a beautiful view. I am a young Catholic, I’ve only been a Catholic for a little less than ten years and I expect I’ll still be feeling a long way from the summit the day I die, but lets go ever onwards and upwards 🙂
Anyway, sorry if this comment is too long or carries something on where you would rather it stop, but I felt the need to shed a different light proceedings. Many blessings and the abundant love of Christ be ever with you 🙂 your brother in Christ.
The Catholic Shinobi 😉