Yesterday the Mormon missionaries dropped by. They came by a number of weeks ago, and I let them in. I wanted to be nice, and I thought it might be interesting to talk to them. And it really is. We've each gotten to know a bit more about what the other believes.

Their understanding of Church Authority is rather better than that of traditional Protestants. They maintain that at some point between the Ascension and the Council of Nicaea, the Catholic Church lost Christ's authority. They maintain that their ecclesial community is the Church that Christ re-instituted, and which has his authority. Rather better than those who started from some monk who wanted to fix the Church (Lutherans); from a horny king (Anglicans); from persons wanting to fix either of those ecclesial communities (other mainline Protestants); or from persons who like the bible but have no sense whatsoever of authority or tradition (non-denoms).

I managed to teach them a bit about the Catholic Church, and sent both of them off with a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. I hope that our encounters will lead them in the future to the fullness of Truth.

I was rather happy that I presented a somewhat bible-knowledgeable picture of Catholics. One of their tactics with the loss of authority was that it was lost when the apostles were martyred. I pointed out that they appointed successors (e.g., Timothy). They said the successors were killed as well (e.g., Stephen). At that point I was able to 'lay the smackdown', as it were, and pointed out that Stephen clearly was not ordained to their apostolic office. He was only a deacon!

The point of that paragraph just now: Catholics read your bibles. Be prepared to talk to the Mormons and the JWs when they come around. Since you've got them there, you might as well sow seeds of Truth. And you won't be able to do that with them unless you know your bible.

The Mormon missionaries charged Catholic changes in doctrine, mentioning the following: selling indulgences; infant baptism/necessity of baptism; and asking the intercession of saints. Do look for updates on each of these topics in upcoming posts, as I want to have well-prepared answer next time they drop by.

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