Tag Archives: Church of Christ

COC #2: When Did the Church Begin?

A Personal Introduction and an Example of the Richness of Catholic Theology

Non-Catholic Christians,

One force that pushed my conversion towards Catholicism from non-Catholic, Stone-Campbellite Christianity was Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger’s theology, who is already our former pope. Of course, such interest antagonized my low-church Fundamentalist sensibilities. Though he haunted me, I enjoyed every moment, and am now attempting to illustrate the richness of Catholic theology by focusing on only one question: When did the Church begin?  

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COC #1: Introduction: Churches of Christ

I have had hundreds of conversations with Restorationists who insist they are not Protestant. True, they are not Protestant (proper); their communities were created after the sixteenth century, but they are certainly Protestant (as an adjective). They were born out of Protestantism, they adopted the Protestant-developed canon of Scripture, and they absorbed Protestant-developed beliefs. For clarity and not disparagement, throughout this book I will refer to the Catholic Church by one of her ancient names: The Church of Christ, and I will refer to Restorationist groups that have assumed her ancient name for themselves as the Protestant Church(es) of Christ.

This book is written in letter form. In style, I am addressing members of the Protestant Church of Christ, but this book is also ideal for Catholic Christians who are targeted for conversion. I had to decide which protests—which differences—to address, so I chose subjects that are, in my experience, more often brought up by Restorationists when they attack Catholicism: subjects I believe are intrinsic to the most important principles non-Catholic Christians rarely consider. Therefore, unfortunately, there are many additional subjects I cannot include in a single manageably-sized book. I simply cannot write about every particular attack; subjects like the Eucharist, our veneration of Mary, canon formation, purgatory, prayers, and on and on. Perhaps I will add a volume in the future. This is a start. It should be sufficient to encourage any theologically-curious member of the Protestant Church of Christ to realize that the real Church of Christ is Catholic. And more importantly, this book provides Catholics with Stone-Campbell Restorationists’ best and most indicative attacks; and shows how Catholic Christianity is always more reasonable, more biblical, more Christian, more plausibly true.