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Interconnectedness in the Christian faith


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6 hours ago, mrmarklin said:

think what is being referred to is the Protestant movement.

Way too broad of a condemnation.  You should identify by behaviour and not general faith community to avoid condemning a lot of good people.

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On 1/31/2022 at 11:08 AM, Mike Drop said:

Is Mormonism weird?

Only when done correctly. ;)

 

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17 hours ago, James 1 5 said:

I imagine Palm leaves are still used a lot in places like Florida.  Palm trees are very rare where I live.  Fir trees are very common though so finding one for Christmas is no problem.

No. The church doesn’t participate in any of these Christian festivities, not even in Florida.

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20 hours ago, MrShorty said:

Certainly within a small enough subset of Christians, it would be easy for the sample to skew towards this Protestant (Calvinist??) view. Worldwide, Catholicism tends to come up as the majority Christian sect (a little over 50%, isn't it?), and they definitely believe in the necessity of Sacraments (I forget how many are considered necessary, our resident catholics @MiserereNobis would be able to better represent the Catholic views on salvation and the Sacraments). It also seems that there are plenty of Christians with views in between (mostly like what I see @Navidad and @Paloma saying) where maybe baptism isn't absolutely essential for salvation, but it can still be important to a Christian.

I guess what I'm saying is that, long before Joseph Smith came on the scene, the largest divide in Christianity (the Catholic-Protestant schism) included differences of opinion about the necessity of Sacraments. 500 years later, as the dust has kind of settled (though the divide most definitely still exists), Christians attribute many different levels of importance/necessity (from absolutely not necessary or important to absolute necessary) to sacraments like baptism.

There are 7 sacraments in the Catholic Church: baptism, confirmation, eucharist, confession, anointing of the sick (last rites), marriage, holy orders (priesthood).

Baptism is required for salvation, but we also entrust those who are not baptized to God's mercy. Marriage and holy orders are not required. The remaining sacraments are technically not required for salvation, meaning one could be baptized and then die and be saved. However, they help keep us in a state of grace so that we may be saved. The Church requires confession and eucharist at least once a year, though I cannot imagine a faithful Catholic waiting that long.

I like your opening point, MrShorty, because in reading this thread I think Christian and Protestant have been conflated. Much of what people are saying about Christians here seem to apply primarily to Protestants.

I think, doctrinally, LDS and Catholics have much in common, but the LDS culture is more protestant in nature.

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19 hours ago, 2BizE said:

Why doesn’t the Mormon church celebrate traditional Christianity holidays such as Easter, Palm Sunday, etc?  Maybe doing so would allow the LDS church to become more included?

We celebrate Easter. I have the eggs to prove it!

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5 hours ago, Paloma said:

Yes, I agree with this in large part, MN - that there's been much of a conflation of these two as the thread has evolved.

And yet, I had almost the opposite in mind when I began the thread. I wanted to recognize that certain boundaries divide us and yet we can hopefully see each other and connect with each other beyond that.  I think this happens when we  recognize and accept our distinctive differences - and see how our differences also help us to understand and grow.

 In my own experience, I once saw a prejudicial "great divide" between the Roman Catholic church and Protestantism that I've needed to and wanted to change.  There's no way now that I can do anything but feel immense gratitude to and community with the Roman Catholic church, while still acknowledging the theological differences in orthodoxy and orthopraxy of each.  Even in those, I've changed greatly in my own thought and practice and have found that living within any kind of "ism" just doesn't resonate with me.  However, I am thankful to each of these traditions.

My own understanding and practice of faith owes  much to the  Roman Catholic church and the Orthodox church.  I've learned so much and grown in my faith because of all these and more: the Desert fathers;  the monastic movement; Celtic spirituality;  Ignatian and Benedictine spiritual practices;  saints like Teresa of Avila whose book The Interior Castle is some of my significant reading.  So many of my favourite Christian authors are Catholic:  Thomas Merton, Brennan Manning, Henri Nouwen, Richard Rohr etc.  I have almost 50 books on my shelves written by those authors alone - not just because I like to read but because those particular individuals have so much to offer that I'm hungry for.

I also recognize that I've learned and gained a lot from Latter-day Saints in terms of family values, temperance, and of spiritual wisdom and practical living coming together as in Steven Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, etc. I really like and admire my LDS friends in real life who are tremendously wise, kind, fun and creative.  And there are many LDS believers on this board that I really like and admire for their faith positions and convictions, as well as their personalities.

I like and admire the Roman Catholic and Orthodox believers on this board too - and even Protestant ones!  (Oh boy, now that I'm thinking about people on this forum, I think about how much I like a lot of those who don't believe too.  This board deserves a lot of credit for welcoming and maintaining such a diverse community!) 

So my impetus in starting this thread was seeing how interconnected we are when we look beyond the boundaries that divide us and see how we help each other.

Hmmm......Hmmmmm   Let me recap - You have learned and gained a lot form Latter-day Saints; you like and admire the Roman Catholic and Orthodox believers who you owe much to; oh! and "even Protestant Ones!"  Even  Protestant Ones? Even? Even?   If I remember correctly your background is predominantly Anabaptist and even . . . . . Protestant! Didn't you serve with AEF, one of the oldest and greatest Evangelical Protestant missions in Africa, now joined with SIM as possibly the largest Evangelical Protestant mission organization in the world?

OK......seriously I am just busting on you . . . even in good fun. I hope you will take it in good fun and faith, even though it comes from an Anabaptist who also has strong ties to . . . . yikes! . . . Even Evangelical Protestants!!!! Have a good weekend!

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7 hours ago, MiserereNobis said:

I think, doctrinally, LDS and Catholics have much in common, but the LDS culture is more protestant in nature.

Culturally, I agree, due to our recent history of a massive influx of Protestant new converts......   200 years ago. ;)

But mention deification to a Protestant and he will definitely start scanning your balding pate for growing horns. ;)

We are much closer on doctrine with you guys, and for that matter Orthodox Christianity, than Protestantism.  I think that if the COJCLDS collapsed, I would become Orthodox, because they have what I think is a very fine and clear view of deification.

I think that view is pragmatically required to produce a belief that the best route to a perfect world is the emulaton of Christ.  I think the Protestant view of being "saved" forever by the utterance of one simple prayer cannot produce the results of a lifetime devoted to being more Christilike.

I also think that viewing God The Father as an  embodied human, as Jesus also is , radically enhances the ability to see Him as Our Personal Father, whom also can be emulated since Jesus "only did what he saw His Father do" is pragmatically essential to producing believers who are actively dedicating their lives to righteousness.

And then we have the problem of explaining how three persons can be one God- and our paradigm is much easier to understand than the Catholic paradigm.  Also seeing the Godhead as "one in purpose" is directly applicable to seeing our fellow members as a family, also one in purpose with our true Human Father,  spinning off a living  paradigm for defining what a "perfect family" would be, and producing a culture which might actually have a chance of doing that!

So that is my way of seeing it- what practical effect in the real world does the belief produce?-  How useful is the paradigm in producing perfect people?

And what is the definition of what a perfect person/family is?   THAT is where the logic stops and the Spirit enters!   TESTIMONY!  

Personal revelation is the key to all of it- one HAS TO be able to follow one's heart in whatever God wants for us, or it becomes blind obedience, and THAT nullifies any way of providing "authority" for the beliefs and the paradigms themselves.   

And THEN there has to be allowance for error- and that means the ability/ mechanism to repent even after death.   For me, those are the criteria for a logical paradigm to create a perfect people, in my opinion. 

 Anything less than that leaves holes in the Tapestry.

 

 

Edited by mfbukowski
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21 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

I think that if the COJCLDS collapsed, I would become Orthodox, because they have what I think is a very fine and clear view of deification.

I think you've mentioned your admiration for the Coptic Rite before. There is a Coptic Catholic Church that uses the Coptic Rite and is in full communion with Rome. See, you can still come back to Catholicism! (you'd have to move to Egypt, though)

I know you know this, so this is for other readers. Many people don't realize that the Roman Catholic Church is composed of 24 churches. The Latin Church (the one everyone thinks of when they hear "Catholic") is just 1 of those 24. The other 23 are Eastern Catholic Churches, which means they are very very similar to their Orthodox counterparts, but they recognize the Pope as the head of the Church and are in communion with him.

ETA:

Here's a picture of Pope Francis meeting with bishops of Eastern Catholic Churches. Notice their vestments. Yes, they look Orthodox, but these are Catholic bishops. They just don't belong to the Latin Church, so they don't wear Latin vestments. Instead, the wear the vestments of their Church and Rites.

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Edited by MiserereNobis
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3 hours ago, Navidad said:

Hmmm......Hmmmmm   Let me recap - You have learned and gained a lot form Latter-day Saints; you like and admire the Roman Catholic and Orthodox believers who you owe much to; oh! and "even Protestant Ones!"  Even  Protestant Ones? Even? Even?   If I remember correctly your background is predominantly Anabaptist and even . . . . . Protestant! Didn't you serve with AEF, one of the oldest and greatest Evangelical Protestant missions in Africa, now joined with SIM as possibly the largest Evangelical Protestant mission organization in the world?

OK......seriously I am just busting on you . . . even in good fun. I hope you will take it in good fun and faith, even though it comes from an Anabaptist who also has strong ties to . . . . yikes! . . . Even Evangelical Protestants!!!! Have a good weekend!

Yup, that's me!

All in good fun, yes! 😉

But also with the thought that some Protestant attitudes, sentiments and actions can drive me crazy and there are times I absolutely don't want to be identified with them! And I can say the same for some Evangelical mindsets.  However, I don't see that on this board so i shouldn't have let those thoughts slip into my "even Protestants" remark even a tiny little bit.

Anabaptist though ... there's a special place in my heart for them.  I grew up Presbyterian.  My husband was raised in a Baptist home.  We were part of an international and interdenominational "faith based" Mission (AEF, now SIM).  After being missionaries in Africa for almost 15 years, I was on the Board of AEF and then SIM for another 25 years.  For the last 34 years, I've been affiliated with and am an ordained pastor in an Anabaptist (Brethren in Christ) church.  I've worked closely with many friends in the Mennonite Central Committee.  A pastor friend of mine who came to Anabaptism later in life said: "It was like love at first sight. It's like  "Where have you been all my life?!"  I feel much the same way.

And Navidad, when you express yourself, I appreciate and identify with you a lot.

Edited by Paloma
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