A Serious Post.
I almost feel bad for posting two religious topics in a row but lately I have been immersing myself in my faith and in doing so have reignited a passion for the faith that leads to me thinking mainly about faith-based matters. So bear with me.
When I was a Protestant I often heard the argument that Catholics don't know their Bible. Catholics don't know their faith. The average Catholic doesn't know WHY they do the things they do, they just do them out of habit.
DISCLAIMER: This post is not meant to attack anyone, it is merely a glance at a curious phenomenon that I've seen in life.
Here's the thing.
When I was a Protestant I didn't know the Bible. Sure, I could quote Bible verses here and there from the Old Testament and I knew my way in and out of the New Testament but I didn't KNOW Scripture. I didn't understand it as a whole but took it in parts. And the majority of people I knew were in the same boat.
Why did we go to Church on Sunday instead of honoring the Sabbath on Saturday? I didn't know. I just went because I was told that's when we go.
Why did we believe in the Trinity? I didn't know and most of the Protestants I knew could NEVER show me in the Bible where that belief comes from. They believe because they're told to believe.
The hard questions were often brushed aside. It just IS. Why do we believe this? We just DO. Where is this in the Bible? We just believe this. I'm sure it's in the Bible SOMEWHERE but I don't know where off hand.
I posit to you that Protestants don't know their Bibles. They don't know their faith. The average Protestant doesn't know WHY they believe what they believe, they believe because they're expected to and they will put aside their own reason to blindly follow someone who can quote the Bible more effectively than they can. True story.
In Protestantism, like in Catholicism, there are simply people who go through the motions. They are culturally Christian. This is true in ANY faith, any religion. It's bound to happen when you have a religion that is accepted almost country-wide. Some people are born into it and stay in it because it's a family heirloom of sorts. Some people pretend to be it to gain favor (as in Politicians or even in workplaces). Some people DO believe in Christ and God but they have no desire to learn more, they want to just believe but lack intellectual integrity and/or believe belief is ALL you need. Blind faith. It's not a Catholic phenomenon.
Now of course I don't actually believe that all Protestants don't know their bibles, and I never make the argument that; The average Protestants doesn't know WHY they blindly do the things they do... but I hope you realize that stating that Catholics don't know their bible, Catholics don't know their faith, Catholics just blindly do what they're supposed to out of habit is an equally unfair statement to make.
We are each responsible for our own intellectual integrity. Stop basing your opinions based on how others act and start basing your opinions on fact.
Fact: Scripture is preached EVERY SINGLE DAY in Catholic Masses throughout the world. Since joining the Catholic Church I have learned several pieces of Scripture that I can now quote by memory and this is because of the Catholic Mass (and I only had to attend every Sunday to learn them! - although I would gladly attend daily Mass if I could).
Fact: Many Catholics don't know why they do what they do but many DO know! And those who know do all the rituals with great joy and peace, knowing full well what they mean and what they signify.
Fact: Catholics are not only encouraged to read the Scripture but there are MANY resources available for free to help them study it. Problem is, they actually have to make the effort to seek these things out and as we know Catholics are people and people can be lazy.
Fact: The majority of Protestants love Scripture.
Fact: Some Protestants have many traditions they follow without being aware they are following a tradition.
Fact: Protestants love Jesus Christ just as much as Catholics.
This post ties in very heavily with my last post so please consider it a part two of the last one!
There you have it. Next up; A look at Exercise!