Apologetics

Screen Shot 2020-01-16 at 7.09.04 AMAn enthusiastic Evangelical Protestant got in touch with me over a year ago with a thousand questions. I usually don’t have time for this kind of discussion, but there was something different about this guy. He was a music leader, actor, speaker and involved in a Protestant church that collapsed due to in-fighting and bitterness.

Like mine 25 years ago, his whole world was “Evangelical Protestant.” When his little community collapsed it left his family in turmoil and disarray. Over the year this bright young man delved into the claims of the Catholic Church, read the Father of the Church and asked a million questions. The fruit of his research – which he prepared to help his family and friends understand why he had become Catholic – is now available for all to enjoy!

His beautiful presentation is laid out by topics which he explains briefly and provides many quotes and resources. This will be a valuable resource for many and can be shared with non-Catholic family and friends. Enjoy Jeromy Darling’s creative masterpiece here.

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Conversion Stories Galore!

by Steve Ray on January 13, 2020

Many people don’t realize that we have a Conversion Story page on our website with hundreds of stories.

There are wonderful, emotional, educational and exciting stories of Catholic converts from all walks of life and all types of religions. Some are long and some are short, but they are all interesting with their own story of God’s grace.

Please feel free to read them at www.catholic-convert.com > Community > Conversion Stories, or by clicking here. And if you haven’t added your story yet, please do so.

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A friend and fellow pilgrim got in a row with a friend on Facebook and asked for my help. You might enjoy the question and the answer.

St. Ignatius of Antioch eaten by lions in 106 AD

My friend wrote: “I have a quick apologetic question.  A Protestant Facebook page was denying the Eucharist and I pasted St Ignatius’ quote about the Eucharist, “Let us stand aloof from such heretics. They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again.” (Ignatius of Antioch, The Epistle of Ignatius to the Smyrnæans).   (Picture to right: Ignatius of Antioch eaten my lions in 106 AD).

The antagonist guy responded with this:

“Mike, I have a homework assignment for you.  I want you to find out who “those who hold heterodox opinions” are.  I want you to find out what they believe.  I want you to read this letter from beginning to end and look for the context of what you posted.  Can you confirm in the affirmative that Ignatius had Aristotelian concepts in mind when writing his letter?”

“Any idea what he is referring to and how to respond? If you don’t have time to respond, I understand.”

Mike is a friend so of course I had time to respond:

5283570-3x2-700x467“I am not sure what he is referring to other than that in the 1200’s Aquinas defined Transubstantiation in terms of Aristotelian philosophy of substance and accidents. It is a trick question to get you to admit that St. Ignatius did not know about transubstantiation in Aristotelian terms and therefore did not believe in transubstantiation. 

The truth is — doctrine develops over time. For example Ignatius would not have described the two natures of Christ in terms of the hypostatic union nor the Trinity in the sophisticated words of “generation,” “proceeds” and “spiration” that were later used to more carefully and philosophically define what orthodox Christians had always believed but were later developed further to combat the heretics. 

nt2Even the canon of the New Testament took 400 years to develop and close; neither St. Paul nor Ignatius could have rattle off the 27 books of the NT since that also took time to develop into the canon used by your Protestant interlocutor, though he doesn’t realize that. By trying to trick you he steps in his own trap.

Ignatius believed in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, the two natures of Christ, the Trinity, etc. though he would not have used the sophisticated words later developed to define these things more precisely and deeply.

The little sapling doesn’t look like the big oak tree but they are organically the same thing.  The baby pictures of your challenger may not look like him as a full-grown man but he’s developed over time and is still the same organic person. Theology also develops and takes on new words and explanations but is only a further development of what was already believed by the early Christians. 

Hope that helps. I feel sorry for the deluded Protestants who are so “wise” in their disputations. I used to be one of them and thank God those days are in the past.”

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Aztecs, Human Sacrifice, Abortion and Our Lady of Guadalupe

December 12, 2019

Today we visited the Aztec Temple in Mexico City. The cathedral of Mexico City was built right next to the 500-year temple. I did a lot of study on the Aztecs and their massive human sacrifices and cannibalism. I realized there was a great tie-in with the Catholic faith, the sacrifice of Christ and abortion […]

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In 60 Seconds or Less; Why Do We Need A Church?

December 7, 2019

For a larger image and more readable, click here.

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Eastern Orthodox Challenges the Immaculate Conception

December 6, 2019

An Eastern Orthodox Christian wrote to complain about, or to see how we Catholics explain the Immaculate Conception. He said he had asked many Catholics and none could answer. I find that hard to believe. After I answered his long and slightly edgy e-mail, I received his response – “Thanks.” Picture One: Statue of Mary […]

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Seven Rules for Dealing with Non-Catholic Family and Friends During the Holidays

November 25, 2019

This is always an interesting topic that floods the phone lines. I am posting this again for the Drew Mariani Show today by popular demand discussing how we as Catholics can relate to and influence our family and friends – especially during the upcoming holidays. Ready to go! Family life can cause tension and strife among those we love most. […]

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New Convert Holds His Ground with a Street Preacher

November 17, 2019

I was so delighted to receive this e-mail that I had to reshare it with everyone! Darrell should be a model for all of us!! Hi Steve, Just had to share this…I was visiting San Antonio this weekend and as I walked around the riverwalk section of town, a gentleman approached me with a gospel tract. […]

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How Many Denominations are Too Many?

November 16, 2019

We are currently in Israel with a group of 152 excited pilgrims. I have written a paper on the scandal of demoninations. This blog is an introduction to that paper I wrote entitled “The ‘Myth’ of 33,000 Denominations and Swallowing the Holy Ghost Feathers and All.” In the meantime, this morning I post my discussion on the […]

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“Dear Mr. Bible Guy, Thanks for Confronting my Son…”

October 15, 2019

Posted in National Catholic Register: Dear Mr. Bible Guy Who Tried to Convert My Son and His Friends: These kids don’t just know the Bible, the Catechism, and Church history. They know how to think. Excellent article written by Jennifer Fitz Dear Christian Bible Guy, I want to thank you for coming up to my son and […]

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What is “Organized Religion”?

October 11, 2019

Hey Steve: while I was on a business trip I had a good conversation with my friends, one who is agnostic and the other an Evangelical.  Both of them agreed they didn’t believe in “organized religion”.  From your Protestant background is there a specific meaning to that term or is it just another way to […]

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Sherlock Holmes: Is this a Real Bible Study?

October 9, 2019

The Case for you – Sherlock Holmes: Stan filled the fireplace and lit the oak logs to make the living room cozy for the arriving guests. The Bible Study had been announced at Mass, and now suddenly it was here. Stan and Suzie had been Catholics all their lives, but they had never really studied […]

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Mary and the Apostles are Dead! Only Jesus can Mediate for Us! Really?

October 8, 2019

 Confusion of Many Protestants Too often well-meaning Protestants get confused and accuse of things that are outright nonsense if not lies. It is usually because they never take the time to really understand what the Catholic Church actually teaches and practices. Below is a good example of a kind and well-meaning Protestant pastor who wrote […]

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Steve’s Short Story “The Last Nightmare” Might Scare the Hell Out of You!

October 4, 2019

The Last Nightmare A Short and Terrifying Story by Steve Ray Everything went blank for a moment, but that moment seemed like eternity. He felt a motion, not with wind and breeze, but a motion none the less. He was traveling, moving, floating, transcending-he wasn’t really sure. The sudden blackness gave him time to regain […]

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What Does “Water and Spirit” Mean?

October 2, 2019

Since we were just at the Jordan River, where Jesus was baptized in water and the Spirit came down, I thought I would share this post again. A while ago a Protestant friend tried to prove that Born Again by “water and Spirit” did not mean baptism. Here is one paragraph that he sent me: In John, […]

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Kissing Statues

October 1, 2019

A while ago in Jerusalem I awoke to the loud and intrusive Muslim “call to prayer”, church bells ringing and horns honking. I read this email that came from the United Kingdom… It read, “Hi Steve! I know you are a busy man. Please answer the above issue when the time permits you. I am a Catholic […]

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