Think about those times in your life when you have felt inspired to something really great. Where does that inspiration come from?
The Holy Spirit. God inspires us to do great things with our lives.
----Matthew Kelly

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Disclaimer: I am not a theologian, I'm just a Catholic empty nester trying to figure it all out. The views on this blog are my own.

The Instagram Post That Rubbed Someone the Wrong Way

Big quotation marks followed by a quote by Venerable Fulton J. Sheen

Disclaimer: I am not a theologian or an apologist. These views are my own.
Picture this: I come home after my Adoration Hour (which was a really good one, by the way!) and check my Instagram comments. And then I see this:
Comment from Instagram
I knew it was going to happen sooner or later. I knew that eventually someone would read a blog post or I would have an Instagram post that rubbed someone the wrong way and they would feel the need to comment. I wasn't surprised; heck, I wasn't even offended. I read it, chuckled, and said a quick prayer for the person who wrote the comment. I mean, how can I be upset that he is concerned for my soul? If this had happened at a different time in my life I would have shot off a quick response and started a war with words on IG. Instead, I chose to take the high road and let it go. He obviously is a Christian, he just doesn't have all of his facts.

Getting By With a Little Help

Looking at the mediation question, specifically the line that was quoted (1Timothy 2:5):  
For there is one God.
There is also one mediator between God and the human race,
Christ Jesus, himself human,

So this guy, along with many Protestants may have a point. But wait a minute. Look at 1Timothy 2:1:
First of all, then, I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone,
Everyone. Not just a select few. That is one explanation for petitioning for the intercession of saints. Think about it: How many times have you heard people asking for others to pray for them? How many times have you told others that you would pray for them? I know I need as many people praying for me as I can. Especially Mary...she has God's ear more than anyone, so why wouldn't I ask her to help me out? 😁
Sonja Corbit, who is a convert to Catholicism from Southern Baptist, gives excellent explanations in this post.
This article not only gives explanations but has scripture to back it up.
If you need more, this article will prove that there's an abundant amount of scripture about mediation/intercession.

Purification Through His Grace

Purgatory is a tough one for our Protestant friends. At first glance, it would appear that Catholics believe that we can "buy" our way into heaven. That's not it at all. I find it comforting that if we're not quite ready to receive entry into heaven there's a place we can stay until our souls are fully cleansed. If it's all black or white with no gray, then I'm really worried and I have a lot more work to do before He calls me home.
Thomas Smith, in his article Furnace of Love: The Biblical Roots of Purgatory presents 3 ways to talk about purgatory with our Protestant friends:
  1. God is perfect; he is all holy. Nothing unclean can enter his presence (see Revelation 21:27).  Therefore, we must be perfectly holy before we can enter heaven (see Hebrews 12:14).
  2. Though we may strive to cooperate with God’s saving grace, most of us will die with imperfections and attachments to sin.
  3. Therefore, there must be an intermediate state between bodily death and heaven that will cleanse us from our imperfections and prepare us to enter into the all-holy presence of God. The Church has defined this state as “purgatory.”
He also suggests the following scripture for further understanding of purgatory:
1Corinthians 3:10-15 and 1Peter 1:7.
Father Mike Schmitz explains that purgatory is a purification, not a paying of debt. He also talks about the biblical references to purgatory in this YouTube clip. This purification is a result of His grace, not my works.

After I read the guy's Instagram comment, I took a look at his profile and his pictures. As I looked through his posts, I saw this:
Open Bible under the words "Most People Hate the Truth"

Isn't that the truth? When we get to the bottom of it, we're all worshipping the same God. There are so many misperceptions out there about the Catholic Church that it has to make Jesus cry. As Catholics, it is our responsibility to evangelize and be armed with answers about Catholicism. In his book Stop Worrying & Start Living, Gary Zimak has this page for the day I wrote this post: (click on the picture for a bigger view)
Open book to June 22; the words talk about being ready for persecution
Here's the thing: I didn't feel "persecuted". I think his comment came from what he thought was a good place. I felt bad for him, for his ignorance about the Catholic Church, and for his need to plead for me to leave Catholicism. I know I'm getting closer to God because of his comment. Satan would do anything & use anyone to lose souls from heaven. To the man who wrote the comment: If you're reading this (and I'd be astonished if you are!) then I would suggest the book Rome Sweet Home by Scott & Kimberly Hahn. It is by far the best conversion book I've ever read. Or, read Jennifer Fulwiler's (an atheist turned Catholic) Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It. Need another one? How about No Turning Back: a Witness to Mercy by Father Donald Calloway. I know there are more, but those are the 3 most powerful conversion books that I know of. I feel the need to thank this person for commenting on my post. He reaffirmed my belief in the Catholic Church and her teachings by making me dig a little to find answers. I knew they were there!

Even though I knew it was going to happen sooner or later, the comment did take me a bit by surprise. Maybe I should be glad that I had an Instagram post that rubbed someone the wrong way. The Venerable Fulton J. Sheen says it best:

1 comment:

  1. That’s the thing about posting and sharing our faith online—it is bound to rub people he wrong way. I love our brother and sisters who are Protestants. Many of hem, their heart is in the right place and they have a profound love of Jesus. Like you said though, many of them have been led away from the completeness of truth, and that is why I also pray for them.

    I have a few people who I know who are like this, and sadly they are not willing nor ready to hear what I have to say about it.

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