From the time Jesus gave the “Keys of the Kingdom” (Matthew 16:19) to St. Peter (the first Pope), to when Bishop St. Ignatius of Antioch, a direct disciple of the apostle John, about 74 years after the death of Christ, wrote in one of his letters to the Smyrnaeans defining the Church of Jesus as the “Catholic Church,” to today, “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it [the Catholic Church]” (Matthew 16:18). We need to believe God’s Word.
The Catholic Church, the only church Jesus founded, as magnificent as it is, has had its share of problems throughout the thousands of years of its existence, since it is run by men, and men, even though they want to do the right thing (most of the time), from their sinfulness, can some times error greatly. Nonetheless, the Catholic Church is still God’s ONLY Church. He founded no others. The explosion of different Christian faiths, established by men that we have today, have only been around for, at the most, 500 years.
Those faithful to the Catholic Church—not to the imperfect men of the Church but to the teachings and foundation of Christ in the Church—who didn’t abandon God’s Church when things didn’t go well and it was suffering, but patiently stayed by its side through better or worse have benefited greatly with the magnitude of grace God delivered to those who stay obedient to His Word and didn’t break unity with the Church, but carried their cross, prayed for those in need, worked for justice in all love and peace while staying united in one faith.
“I, then, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace: one body and one Spirit, as you were also called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all” (Ephesians 1:6).
Wonderfully the Catholic Church today despite any imperfections of individuals, still has the same doctrine (teachings) and traditions that Christ taught His apostles which are the true requirements of salvation that Christ gave us which have been passed down through out the years. It is, of course, the largest of the Christian faiths and the faith that constructed the original Bible. No one individual (ordinary man) created the Catholic faith using whatever limited wisdom they have thinking they know the correct Way like sadly the many others have been tricked into doing in establishing their faiths. As you know, pride is blinding. We are talking about eternity; we don’t want to mistakenly follow someone who thinks they are given more wisdom than the Church Jesus founded, and be lost forever. The Catholic Church (its true members united) is Jesus’ Living Body guided by the Holy Spirit. (cf. 1 Corinthians 12:27-31). As loving and well intentioned as the other churches may be, everyone can be deceived. We all suffer from wrongful education and pride to some degree. God established one Church, with the assurance it will never fail, telling us to stay united to it, to keep us from going astray and falling into any deadly deceptions. There is nothing of greater importance. Eternity is forever.
It is so easy to misinterpret the Word since the Word is “veiled [hard to understand]” (2 Corinthians 4:3). We have to be very careful we don’t create our own faith and interpret the Word differently than the faith Jesus taught us through His Church and the saints. The devil will confuse us and have us thinking we are doing good, and will have us believing wholeheartedly, and even coming up with great justifications on how we are right and the ones with greater wisdom. Yikes! That devil is so deceptive; we need to be on guard. However, the Catholic faith, according to the Word, has been given special grace that no matter what good or bad does happen, even though some individual men, even within the Church, will mistakenly interpret the Word incorrectly as Peter said in his letter, “there will be false teachers among you [in the Church]” (2 Peter 2:1), it is the Church’s doctrine (Catechism-its teaching of the faith) that we follow, not any imperfect man, and “hell shall not prevail it [the Church]” (Matthew 16:18). That is a wonderful assurance from God that we should humble ourselves and “obey your leaders [in the Church]” (Hebrews 13:17)–even if what we think someone (a leader) wants us to do is incorrect. “Satan can even clothe himself in a cloak of humility, but he does not know how to wear the cloak of obedience.” (Jesus to St. Faustina, Diary #939). God values humble obedience above all and even if we are right (as human error is possible) and the leader is misguided, we are to stay obedient and then pray and work for justice if absolutely necessary. Much of the time, God will show us we are actually the ones in error and it was our pride confusing us. Nonetheless, we are to never abandon the faith that saves because of human error, since that is disobedient to God’s Word and our faith is based on the belief in the doctrine of the Church Jesus founded, but we are to pray for others knowing God will make all good in time through faith–by trusting in Him. “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).
“[The teachers of the law] so you must obey them and do everything they tell you” (Matthew 23:1-3).
Today, the Catholic faith still teaches the same doctrine and has the same traditions Jesus and the apostles taught when the faith first began. I understand it is hard to know right from wrong with all of the false things being said about God’s Catholic Church, but pay no attention to it. The Word says God’s Church will be persecuted…that is how we know we are doing God’s work. “If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you” (John 15:20). Does any of that anger and hate promote unity and love. No. The truth is proven by history, which is fact, not opinion, and history proves that God only established one Church, the Catholic Church…that can’t be disputed as it is historical fact.
I understand, other churches might be more modern, even have greater fellowship, preaching, classes, music or ministries and that is why you are attending another faith..but do any of those reasons save our souls. No. They might be good, but in the end if we aren’t part of God’s only Church, we are lacking what is most important in a faith, the correct teachings that Christ taught which saves.
Many of the other faiths have wonderful things they are doing. If we think what another Church is doing helps us to grow closer to God and serves the people better, join the Catholic Church, and if God wills (always humbly submitting to what God allows), we can help bring some of those things to the Church. Please always remember what is most important in life needs to be in the forefront of our priorities…the salvation of our souls and belonging to the correct Church of Jesus–the Catholic Church, as anything else mistakenly leads us astray.