"Why Do Evangelicals Convert to the Catholic Church?" – Evangelical Theologians solve the Mystery!

Have you ever wondered why people like pizza? “Is mystery”, as the great spanish philosopher and manservant Manuel once said. Well, the issue is now solved. Scientists and surveys have consistently proven that people like pizzas because they are yummy.

Have you ever wondered why people become Christians? Yes, I know people like Richard Dawkins would agree with Manuel’s conclusion (“Is mystery”), but once again, it seems that the mystery has been solved. 100% of those who convert to Christianity have said that it has something to do with believing in Jesus Christ. Imagine that.

Well, now some evangelical theologians believe they have solved the riddle of “Why Are Evangelicals Converting to Roman Catholicism?” In this article, Michael J. Vlach of Theologicalstudies.org reports on Scot McKnight’s September 2002 article in the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society “From Wheaton to Rome: Why Evangelicals Become Roman Catholic.”

And the answer is? Well, there are four answers:(1) a desire for certainty; (2) a desire for history; (3) a desire for unity; and (4) a desire for authority.

Fancy that, eh? Who’d have thought? One can barely resist the temptation to go “Duhhh.” People like pizzas because they’re yummy, they become Christians because they believe in Christ, and they become Catholics because they are seeking certainty, history, unity and authority.

But now, here is the really weird thing: is there something WRONG with these desires? I mean, are we supposed to think “Poor souls, led astray by their idolatrous desires”? Are they implying that those evangelicals who do NOT convert to the Catholic Church do NOT desire these things? Is there something “weak” in desiring these things? Are true Christians those who can hold their heads high and stand against the storms of controversy that rage in their traditions BECAUSE they lack of certainty, history, unity, and authority?

What is one to make of such observations?

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to "Why Do Evangelicals Convert to the Catholic Church?" – Evangelical Theologians solve the Mystery!

  1. Rob says:

    -Are true Christians those who can hold their heads high and stand against the storms of controversy that rage in their traditions BECAUSE they lack of certainty, history, unity, and authority?-

    Hmmmmm. I think some in the Emergent Church might say that.

    Good news is, maybe recognizing this will make some of the more radical evangelicals think more about these matters (in particular history and authority) and rectify some of the madness out there. (we have Jesus-onlies over here. That’s a neat one. They are anti-trinitarian, only Jesus is God; indistinguishable from the father, etc. Anyone detect a lack of a magisterium?)

  2. Lucian says:

    Michael J. Vlach

    Vlach is the name given to Romanians by non-Latin populations. I fancy some of his ancetors to have possibly been Aromanians from Balkan countries.

  3. Lucian says:

    What is one to make of such observations?

    I don’t know and I don’t care. As You can clearly see even from my previous comment, I’m an Orthodox, and thus I cherish nationality and nationalism over and above about everything else (the whole tribal, patriarchal thing, You know …)

  4. L P Cruz says:

    Dave,

    I blog about this a long time ago here http://extranos.blogspot.com/2007/05/those-re-conversions.html

    See what you think.

    The truth is that the Evangelical in as much as it has no idea what that word means, which the first Prots used to describe themselves have always been like Roman in its theology. Evangelicalism is fed heavily by the Pietist/Revivalist stream. Hence, there is no certainty because there is always movement and revival going on. It is quite faddish because experience is the norm. Of course, the novelty of experience wears out so a new “move” of the Spirit is sought after. People get tired of that.
    If everything is shifting, no history and no creed, of course it leads to uncertainty.

    They wake up in the morning wondering why they ain’t Roman, when they can not answer why they are Evangelical, of course, they should be Roman.

    But that long rant is not the reason for my post here.

    This Sunday my Lutheran church picked some of the hymns you edited way back then when you were with the LCA. My heart was strangely warmed when I saw your name in the credits.

    I want to say I appreciate your past work in those hymns.

    Thanks for blessing the Lutheran Church of Aus.

    LPC
    The Infamous

  5. L P Cruz says:

    PS.

    I know you are a double agent but we wont tell Mother Church about that.

    (LOL)

    LPC

  6. Schütz says:

    Louis Bouyer was of the opinion that there was a spiritual connection between revivalist protestantism and Catholicism. I don’t know where that puts your thesis, LPC. And yes, I would agree, that anyone who can’t answer the question “Why am I not Catholic?” should be one.

    Re the hymns: Thems were the good ol’ days. Occasionally I attend a Lutheran service and see one of my hymns being used too–occasionally not credited. For those of you wanting to see some of them, why not have a look at my other blog: Sing Lustily and With Good Courage (http://singlustily.blogspot.com)

  7. Past Elder says:

    Looks like I’m off the hook, since I have Catholic and now Lutheran reasons why I am not Catholic.

    Interesting that some of the big number winning “evangelical” types are now beginning to see that their back door stats aren’t that good.

    Experience — what I’m doing for or about Jesus — over that Jesus has done for me eventually will leave one empty, since it isn’t the Gospel, it’s me about the Gospel.

    The problem is, one can find certainty, history, unity and authority in all sorts of places, and many do. These things of themselves prove nothing except having found certainty, history, unity and authority. There is nothing per se wrong with these things — unless one is certain of what is in fact an error, the error has a long history, the unity is unity in error, and the authority defines the error.

  8. gerhard e. says:

    Credo in Unam, Sanctam, Catholicam et Apostolicam Ecclesiam

    – Unam: Unity (Interior: certainty of doctrine; exterior: institutional unity of the faithful of the catholic church)
    – Apostolicam: Historicity and authority

    There are missing
    – Catholicam: Universality (opposite of radicality) gives answers to all the questions of life to all the people in the whole world)

    – Sanctam: The catholic cult, the sacraments and its institutions are holy. They are animated by the Holy Spirit, ant testified by martyrs and miracles.

    I think that all the four notes are found the best in the Catholic Church

  9. wayne says:

    Thats fine and dandy. Folks want history and authority. Ok , open up the history books and lets take a look at Vatican history. Authority? Whats that? Let me take a shot at this one. ” My church is the best cause they say so” Yes, ive read some catholic teachings. They all say that the CC is gods true church and no salvation anywhere else. Its just talk. Talk is cheap. Ever buy a shampoo that says its third rate? They all say they are the best. Mormons, one of them told me that their church is gods church because of their name. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Bingo, that says it all.

    • Schütz says:

      There are many inaccuracies in your understanding of religious authority, Wayne, but I won’t go into all them. I will simply say that I wouldn’t find attractive any religious teacher who says “hell, I don’t know, I’m probably wrong”. When someone attempts to persuade me of their opinion on any matter, it helps that they at least sincerely believe it to be true!

      As for that, as with any self advertising by any organisation or company, it is a matter of caveat emptor. We have the right and the duty to test all truth claims. God gives us the gift of reason to discern between right and wrong. Converts to any religious path from another rival religious path have usually exercised some degree of this discernment in weighing up the claims of the rival paths. I respect this. I think you ought to learn to do so too.

  10. wayne says:

    Thanks for your honest answer. Yore not going to believe this, but, to enter heaven you must be born again. A new spirit placed in you. This new spirit understands the ways of the spirit whereas the unsaved(natural) man cannot understand. The unsaved will join religions looking for salvation. The unsaved will do anything and everything. Thats why some folks join the catholic church or any church(religion). These man made religions are just that, man made religions. Cry out to Jesus for salvation, from where ever you are; jail, the gutter, a death bed, the catholic church, and he is just and forgiving to forgive us our sins and make you born again. That was actally my point, that it dont matter what religion you join you wont get saved until you ask for salvation. Religions cant provide it no matter how much they claim to have god on a leash.

    • Schütz says:

      Yore not going to believe this, but, to enter heaven you must be born again.

      Of course I believe that you have to be born again to enter heaven. AND I believe that I am not “born again” of MY OWN powers or initiative, but by the Grace of God working through the true and valid sacraments of the Church which he established in his Son Jesus Christ.

      The unsaved will do anything and everything. Thats why some folks join the catholic church or any church(religion). These man made religions are just that, man made religions.

      But this is precisely why evangelicals convert to the Catholic Church: because they have tried the “man made” versions of the Christian faith and are yearning for the authentic Faith which Christ himself established.

      Cry out to Jesus for salvation, from where ever you are; jail, the gutter, a death bed, the catholic church, and he is just and forgiving to forgive us our sins and make you born again. That was actally my point, that it dont matter what religion you join you wont get saved until you ask for salvation.

      Seek and ye shall find, as the Lord said, Wayne. And He who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved, as the scriptures say elsewhere. I was “saved” by the Grace of God leading me to his Church, the community of salvation which he established. All who call on the name of the Lord receive the same reply: Come to Christ, Come to his Church.

      Religions cant provide it no matter how much they claim to have god on a leash.

      You are quite mistaken, although you can probably be forgiven, for thinking that this is the way the Catholic Church regards God. In fact, it is completely the other way around: he has us “on a leash” – we are bound to him, and cannot be or do anything other than what he would have us be and do.

Leave a Reply to Schütz Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *