Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Why Do Methodists Get A Pass By Anti Catholics

A post I did earlier brings this question to my mind again.

Methodist are always in the background in the Bible Belt and elsewhere. They do things like baptise Babies, have confirmation(thought is is not a Sacrament), have some form of Bishops (though quite different from the Orthodox and Catholic viewpoint), and the whole how are you saved business is a tad murky. I can recall when the local Methodist Church experimented with some form of "Altar Servers'. I think they called them acolytes .

This seems to go over in the American Black Community too ( that has it share of odd anti Catholic polemics for some reason) as the AME (The African Methodist Episcopal Church) which is a pretty powerful and robust body still.

IN fact in the Methodist tradition the aspect of a Social gospel and works (though I don't think they are explicitly call it that) are in play.

When the World Wide Methodist Body( That includes most American Methodist) signed on the historic Lutheran Catholic accord on Justification know one batted a eye. See at the Vatican Web site

Other important Documents between Catholics and Methodist are located here at the Vatican

I always enjoy Methodist and for the most part they are pretty Catholic friendly. The fact that Methodist on the whole are sort of anti Calvinist in a way and in their theology makes the lack of attention given to them by the usual suspects even more striking. Add to that the fact their founder was pretty friendly to Catholics and it seem strange. Perhaps Methodists are so much of the Social, business, and political scene it is unwise to go after them than the anti Christ Pope Following, Mary and Bread Worshiping Catholics

David Armstrong has a nice post here on John Wesley and Catholics here.

There are still major difference of course between Catholics and Methodist but the lack of attention given to them by the usual suspects is sort of interesting.


Anonymous said...

Interesting observation ...

Its the same with the Episcopalians. Before my wife and I converted we were in the Episcopal church. Nobody cared. To my more Protestant friends and family this was just one of the legitimate options out there. It might have been considered stifled with its liturgy -- I mean, we gotta let the spirit move. Liturgy? That's too close to dogma. Still, they were tolerant and even granted me the title of Christian.

Saying that you are joining the Catholic Church seems to possess people with demons. At that point I became questionably Christian -- most likely not one and certainly at a minimum greatly deceived.

I didn't get it. A high church Anglican like C.S. Lewis has more in common with Catholics than most people would like to admit ... and certainly more in common with us than with baptists, fundamentalists etc. The Catholic Church is both a minor step and a big step at the same time. Its often minor if you have held many of its doctrines already (which typically happens during a conversion). Its major, mostly for the reaction it gets and because you know going in it isn't a church shopping experience. You are not leaving the faith tomorrow because the pot lucks stink or the child care is lacking.

Non-Catholic Christian -- OK
Catholic -- You're deceived and the truth is not in you ....

In my experience ... sad but true

James H said...

Yeah that is a pretty good observation

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the article, but Methodist, even John Wesley understood salvation comes only through faith in Christ. Some folks have mistaken an emphasis on works to mean that in some manner we earn our salvation, not true, works are our response to God's gracious gift in Jesus Christ.