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  1. People aren't always aware of ourselves! Yes Cal. I doubt that I am the best judge of whether I am opened or closed minded. I should probably leave that question to someone less biased in my favor than me. I think outsiders are often better judges of what/who we are than us "insiders" who might happily deceive ourselves. Anyway... Me.
  2. I don't know how to know if I am "open minded". Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It seems like it would be stupid to "open minded" or "closed minded" always. It seems like it would be smart to be "closed minded" or "open minded" sometimes. I don't see that either open mindedness or closed mindedness can be categorized as always a virtue or always a vice.
  3. Yeah Miserere, I remember one noted LDS apologist was here for a while in the early days, who subsequently abandoned the LDS faith, refer to Aquinas as an "idiot". That is not what Mark would say I know. He would probably say that Aquinas was brilliant at taking false presuppositions to logical conclusions. We should be dealing with presuppositions, not logical conclusions, and certainly not imaginary idiotic conclusions. As with us, there are always "faithful" souls in every camp, who do not seem to be able to rest secure in their faith, unless other successful errors are obviously stupid.
  4. St. B. The Scriptures that we accept along with the LDS probably does not resolve the question of original sin either for or against the Catholic teaching. However, I have been thinking that if we Catholics would understand our LDS friends better, and they us, both sides could benefit from finding that we agree more about the question of original sin than we might have realized. By not taking their claims of denying original sin for granted, it seems to me like we can show more clearly, and what precisely we mean, by "original" vs. actual sin. For the record, this is all in the "if I am not mistaken" category. If LDS say that newborn babes do not need Christ's Passion and Death on the Cross, and instead merit salvation themselves, apart from Christ's work, I will retract the proposition I am making. The conversation as undertaken by Catholics, or other Christians who believe as we do about the question, should begin to insist that LDS believe in original sin just as Catholics do. Here is my proposed explanation for why this should be the case: IIANM (if I am not mistaken), LDS do not believe that a newborn baby that dies, goes straight to the most exalted place, except because Jesus died for them. A newborn baby has never committed an actual sin at all. Why would a baby need Christ when it has never actually sinned? IIAMN, because like Catholics, Mormons believe that in Adam all die. THAT is, of course, because of what Catholics call, the original sin of Adam. In Adam all die, in Christ all live. IIANM, many LDS understandably, but falsely think, that because baptism is unnecessary for a newborn in their view, that they do not believe in what Catholics call original sin. But IIANM, if they think the baby needs the merits of Christ, it is because they DO believe in original sin. It must be granted that the blood of Christ is applied to newborns APART from baptism in the LDS scheme. But the LDS do appear to, IIANM, believe that newborns need Christ's atonement. It should not necessarily be granted that LDS reject the original sin of Adam in all his subsequent offspring. I say this in an effort to help us understand that we are closer than either side has seen very often. If I am correct about what I think the LDS teach on this matter from my interaction here over the years, I doubt that it is accurate for Catholics to admit that LDS reject what we call original sin. LDS accept original sin (as Catholics understand it). What LDS reject is pedobaptism as a sacramental medium for the remission of original sin in those who have not reached the age of reason. In my opinion, we do not differ about original sin. We differ about how original sin is remitted. IIANM, this should shift the discussion in important ways. "And as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive." ---I Cor. 15:22
  5. "...it can be difficult for people to just walk into a church." I was 21 or 22, from a no church family, had started reading the Bible, and I met this nice girl who was willing to go to church with me. The trouble was, I had never been to one before. I picked her up at her house on a Sunday morning, and we drove and drove until we were almost to where I lived around 15 miles away. We had passed many churches and I always chickened out. We finally went into the last one that would have been before you start going back into the country. For Navidad, the church was pastored by a young Hyles-Anderson grad! We are in the late 70's now. Years later, late 80's, we were co-pastors and changed the name of the church from Victory Baptist to Berean Bible. That change attracted a lot of "loose cannons", but I still see them as good, well-meaning people who were just trying to find their way without wanting to be nailed down to Lutheran or Baptist or Church of Christ. Berean Bible let them express their views with respect. They assuredly brought their backgrounds with them. But it was for a brief time, a seemingly robust and charitable community which believed in a lot of the same important things. Eventually, there lacked agreement on practical issues. It eventually fizzled out like a 4th of July sparkler, even faster than most non-Catholic things. But I think it was a good thing for me, and hopefully for a few others while it lasted. The other pastor, not me, became my brother's father-in-law. The family still thinks they are against the Catholic Church, except for my niece and her husband, who joined the Catholic Church in the Fall. What a blessing...what an amazing, almost unbelievably happy happening, from my perspective. I do not know if my brother knows yet, that his daughter is now Catholic. I have been praying for him. They (my niece and her husband) were waiting to tell them until the first baby came which was last week. I think they thought that might soften him up a little. All because..."it can be difficult for people just to walk into a church". Anyway...thoughts prompted from it being "difficult for people to just walk into a church". I know the feeling very well...but glad I overcame it at last by God's grace.
  6. Tacenda thanks...I am always making unintended puns and missing amusing (to others) things that I say. There were three kinds of gas! I thought I was being clever twice when it was thrice! What a comedian I am...accidentally. I saw the news as gas...the flatulence as gas...I missed the most obvious ⛽. Heh. Thanks for your encouragement Tacenda. God bless you and yours, Rory
  7. "...choosing to be patient with someone who is making us frustrated." Cal, hi. So I carpool with this old never married guy who is always full of the latest bad news, fake or not. Today I was unguarded. Our first time together for about two weeks. I hate the so called news. Whether from the left or the right. It comes with commentary that makes me upset or angry. And here I am with this old guy who has no children or grandchildren, who seems to take joy with every bit of bad information that is pointing to the end of civilization as we know it. "Did you hear about those two banks failing?". Those were either his first words or second. I said I didn't care. "You are going to care." I chose to lose my patience. After I used one vulgarity which is rare for me, he proceeded without any apparent sense of comprehension of my state of mind to make what could only have been a stupid joke about skiers in California who must be happy about all the snow that is causing so many problems. After that he cuts a silent but unmistakable stinky fart. I then chose patience and interacted with his not very interesting comments the rest of the way. I am happier for my patience than for my impatience. I will be much more on my guard tomorrow. I know he belongs in my life. It is not like God made some mistake putting us together. Our car pooling makes sense, and so does his gas...from whatever orifice. May I be good and charitable to him, an instrument of God for my salvation. Pray for me Cal. May God bless you and yours. Rory
  8. finishing...then it means that they had not fully converted to begin with. That priest, who wrote a couple of books about his journey, published by Ignatius Press, always retained his Catholic sensibility about at least one belief. I am of course pleased as a Catholic that He came back to visible communion. But I would have to admit that he was never really LDS. It might be that as your thread implies, "conversions" sometimes have less depth than might be imagined. Associating with a religion is not necessarily CONVERSION.
  9. You might not remember him, Miserere. There was a knowledgable Catholic who was here around ten years ago who became LDS for a while. But he gave signs that he was on his way. All of your posts are "clickbait" for me. And especially a thread. But no, as to a potential disclosure of conversion. I cannot remember what prompted our Catholic convert to reconsider. I remember a Catholic priest who converted and came back because he became disenchanted with the LDS position on abortion. But I would suggest that if a particular teaching or practice becomes a stumbling block....on my phone, unexpected company...might finish later
  10. rod, hey. Not quite a brother... but I sure like you a lot...Catholic prayers like Hail Marys and Glory Be's for ya. Take care and God be with you. Rory
  11. 3DOP


    A quick personal anecdote in support of Dr. Stump's conclusion about the necessary methodology for knowledge of persons. Last year I read a biography of the great poet and playwright, Oscar Wilde. Long story short. He fell into a destructive lifestyle that was truly tragic. But at the end is the story of his deathbed conversion. It gave me an increase of affection for Mr. Wilde, and the good God who kept loving and caring for him to the very end. I could dare to call it love. I wept at the close of that book. It makes me happy whenever I think about it which is often. I now know it was the narrative that enabled me to think I know the poet as a person enough to conceive an affection for him. And a greater esteem than before for the Person who cares for all of us as much as He does for the great British wit.
  12. 3DOP


    OG, hey. thanks again for the link. I have skimmed it with the delight that you have had. The limitations of propositional knowledge keeps popping up for me. I need to re-read the whole thing carefully. I really appreciate the idea behind why we need narratives, and why the Gospels give us narrative descriptions of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity. God knows that we cannot love propositions that state what God is. But He gives us narratives so that we can picture ourselves at the various events of His Son's life. By deliberately placing ourselves at the Gospel scenes we can love the goodness, beauty, and truth that is personified in Jesus. Love of persons over love of facts. We are not easily moved by bare facts about persons. We are moved by knowledge of persons that can only be experienced in person or vicariously as we should do when we read the Gospels. Now I understand better why the spiritual authors so frequently recommend meditations that ask us to make the mental exercise of being present at a narrative event that can become more vivid and real, truly moving to us, if we should take the effort. I had never thought about philosophical and theological methodology. That theology is not about a fact, but about Person/Persons (Three for many of us) is gigantic with regards to method. I found this paper in my first reading (with some skipping for sake of time), to be accessible with effort. Highly recommended. It seems like it will be influential to my thinking moving forward.
  13. 3DOP


    OG, hi. I am familiar with Dr. Stump. I haven't visited her site in a while. I will hope to check out the link. Thanks for the tip.
  14. 3DOP


    Hey Smiley, I was talking to a friend at work about knowledge as angels have it. Man learns through sense experience and necessarily thinks in words and speaks in words in order to communicate to others. According to the faith of my friend and I, the angels don't come into the world as a human with a blank slate, gaining knowledge through sense experience. Being fully formed when God made them, they don't learn as we do. There are no schools for angels. So after that discussion last week, the Mass this past Sunday had for its reading the well-known passage from St. Paul about the superiority and permanent virtue of charity as opposed to faith and hope. What struck me though, because of my discussion during the week, was what the Apostle had to say about knowledge at the end of the chapter: When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But, when I became a man, I put away the things of a child. We see now through a glass in a dark manner; but then face to face. Now I know in part; but then I shall know even as I am known. And now there remain faith, hope, and charity, these three: but the greatest of these is charity. ---I Cor. 13:11-13 I think Paul is giving us an analogy here when he points out the difference between way adults think and the way children think. It takes a child years, even after learning a language, and being able to communicate, to be able to follow abstract ideas and consider philosophical or theological questions. That is how it was for St. Paul, until he became a man and began to be able to reason well and weigh arguments. That is how it is for us all. So we eventually "put away the things of a child". But then it seems like He is telling us that the knowledge we have through faith is as dim and weak in comparison with what is to follow for those who are redeemed, as the thinking of a small child is to a philosopher. Faith grasps but does not comprehend. We pray for faith and we defend our faith and we are grateful for the wonderful gift of faith. But that same faith teaches that this faith isn't intended to be ultimately satisfying. That is why these words resonated with me: Sorry Smiley...I intended to quote you word for word as you explained what you thought the words in Jn. 17 mean in regards to conceptual knowledge versus something that we cannot put into words, because it is inconceivable to us at this time. (I am not very good with computers. I tried to paste. I only managed to delete what you wrote!). Anyway, very well said. My friend was thinking about the passage in Romans where we are told that the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings "which cannot be uttered". Why do we suppose they can't be uttered? Is it illegal? I think not! It is probably beyond words. As you said, ineffable. I joked with my friend that of course, the redeemed will all be speaking Latin, including him. I go to the Traditional Latin Mass and he doesn't and so we have friendly disagreements about a few things. But he knew I was joking. We are both doubting if there will be "language" as we know it in heaven. I am impressed with your view of the utility of faith, as it is intended for the present. I am also pleased to see elsewhere that you had such a good experience at your first exposures to Holy Mass. Come see us again! God bless, Rory, aka 3DOP
  15. Incog. Hi. I haven't been following the thread very far. But I agree with your concern that a God Who is "wholly other" might be difficult to relate to. But then, this wholly Other tells us that we are made in His image and likeness. What? God has made us like Himself in some significant way! Enough like Himself (the Father), that His very own and only Begotten Son, while remaining God, infinitely beyond us in nature, takes on our own nature. I speak as a Catholic of course. The Son of God Almighty takes a human nature. As we do every Sunday and feast day in the Creed, we genuflect at the word that says, "The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us". The other is now another. We are like beings. Fantastic! Maybe the "relationship" is different? I find it exhilarating. Different? Okay. Inferior? Never. No. Never. But what is true? That which seems like what we are most attracted to? I dunno. I like being Catholic. And who can argue with how stupendous it would be if it were true? I think it is true...and fantastic, stupendous, the best news, the good Gospel that saves all who will accept it. I cannot want more. 3DOP
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