Author Topic: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"  (Read 2066 times)

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Offline JamesR

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"Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« on: March 20, 2013, 12:13:07 AM »
Where exactly in Protestantism did this question originate, and what exactly is the purpose of it? This is something I've observed among many "non-denominationals" in my life, and I've met some of them who've even got angry when I corrected them about it. In my experience, it seems like a rather derogatory dichotomy rooted in anti-Catholicism (which would also apply to the Orthodox if they knew who we were), yet, at the same time, I've met many people who ask this question without any malicious intent at all.
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Offline stanley123

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2013, 01:21:42 AM »
Where exactly in Protestantism did this question originate, and what exactly is the purpose of it? This is something I've observed among many "non-denominationals" in my life, and I've met some of them who've even got angry when I corrected them about it. In my experience, it seems like a rather derogatory dichotomy rooted in anti-Catholicism (which would also apply to the Orthodox if they knew who we were), yet, at the same time, I've met many people who ask this question without any malicious intent at all.
I usually just say: No, I am not a Christian. I am a Catholic.

Offline Antonis

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2013, 01:29:47 AM »
Where exactly in Protestantism did this question originate, and what exactly is the purpose of it? This is something I've observed among many "non-denominationals" in my life, and I've met some of them who've even got angry when I corrected them about it. In my experience, it seems like a rather derogatory dichotomy rooted in anti-Catholicism (which would also apply to the Orthodox if they knew who we were), yet, at the same time, I've met many people who ask this question without any malicious intent at all.
Don't give the question more value than it deserves. Around my parts it's "Catholic, Christian, or Mormon?" It's not malice, it's ignorance. The youth is extremely ignorant. I know a girl who professes to be "Catholic Christian." I told her that being Catholic implies being Christian. She promptly informed me that on some Sundays she goes to Mass and on others she goes to her local Christian "Cowboy Church." Sigh. Pray for our generation!

I generally answer "Orthodox Catholic," as they are too uninformed to know what Orthodoxy is and at least it will give them some idea of my background, as they'll likely just assume "Catholic" and know that I venerate the saints, etc.

Hopefully.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2013, 01:30:40 AM by Antonis »
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Offline Maria

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2013, 01:34:11 AM »
Where exactly in Protestantism did this question originate, and what exactly is the purpose of it? This is something I've observed among many "non-denominationals" in my life, and I've met some of them who've even got angry when I corrected them about it. In my experience, it seems like a rather derogatory dichotomy rooted in anti-Catholicism (which would also apply to the Orthodox if they knew who we were), yet, at the same time, I've met many people who ask this question without any malicious intent at all.
Don't give the question more value than it deserves. Around my parts it's "Catholic, Christian, or Mormon?" It's not malice, it's ignorance. The youth is extremely ignorant. I know a girl who professes to be "Catholic Christian." I told her that being Catholic implies being Christian. She promptly informed me that on some Sundays she goes to Mass and on others she goes to her local Christian "Cowboy Church." Sigh. Pray for our generation!

I generally answer "Orthodox Catholic," as they are too uninformed to know what Orthodoxy is and at least it will give them some idea of my background, as they'll likely just assume "Catholic" and know that I venerate the saints, etc.

Hopefully.

When I was at a UPS office, a customer ahead of me asked me if I were a Christian.

I answered, "Yes, I am a Greek Orthodox Christian."

He responded, "I know exactly what kind of Christian you are. You are a works-based Catholic without a Pope."

Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2013, 01:35:19 AM by Maria »
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Offline JamesR

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2013, 01:38:24 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??
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Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2013, 01:56:08 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??
Have you ever been to one?
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Offline JamesR

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2013, 02:01:03 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??
Have you ever been to one?

I visited Stanford and San Jose State a few times
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Offline Maria

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2013, 02:08:01 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??

Well, at first I was impressed that he had studied a semester unit about Greek Orthodox.
Then my enthusiasm turned to grief when I realized that they had Greeks labeled as works-based Catholics sans Pope. Little knowledge is dangerous.

Then there was the Greek Orthodox Priest (GOARCH) who went to the airport to pick up the bishop. The Greek Priest was wearing his riassa, so a man approached him and asked if he were a rabbi.
The priest replied, "No I am Greek Orthodox."
The man stated, "I have never met any Greek Orthodox Jews."
The priest responded, "No, I am a Greek Orthodox Christian Priest."
The man said, "Oh, do you still worship Zeus?"

The priest did not have time to finish this conversation, shook his head, and went to greet the Bishop.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2013, 02:10:18 AM by Maria »
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Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2013, 02:09:15 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??
Have you ever been to one?

I visited Stanford and San Jose State a few times
Well, I suppose they don't teach anything at Stanford then, do they? ;)
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Offline JamesR

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2013, 02:11:33 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??

Well, at first I was impressed that he had studied a semester unit about Greek Orthodox.
Then my enthusiasm turned to grief when I realized that they had Greeks labeled as works-based Catholics sans Pope. Little knowledge is dangerous.

Then there was the Greek Orthodox Priest (GOARCH) who went to the airport to pick up the bishop. The Greek Priest was wearing his riassa, so a man approached him and asked if he were a rabbi.
The priest replied, "No I am Greek Orthodox."
The man stated, "I have never met any Greek Orthodox Jews."
The priest responded, "No, I am a Greek Orthodox Christian Priest."
The man said, "Oh, do you still worship Zeus."

The priest did not have time to finish this conversation, shook his head, and went to greet the Bishop.

That reminds me of when my lapsed-Catholic grandmother found out about my conversion and questioned me about it.

"What type of Church do you go to again?"
"Eastern Orthodox"
"Orthodox? So you're a Jew now? How come?"
"It's not Jewish, it's Christian"
"Are you sure?"
"Yes grandma, I'm pretty sure that I'm not a Jew"
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Offline Nicene

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2013, 03:12:11 AM »
I have a feeling it was due protestants just calling themselves and wanting to dissasociate with "roman" catholics. Thus Catholics vs Christian, its a false dichotomy but then again thats what fundamentalism thrives on.
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Offline Arachne

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2013, 03:43:02 AM »
Well, everyone knows that Catholics worship Mary and a bunch of idols, so they're not proper Christians. ::)

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Offline lovesupreme

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2013, 03:10:12 PM »
Then there was the Greek Orthodox Priest (GOARCH) who went to the airport to pick up the bishop. The Greek Priest was wearing his riassa, so a man approached him and asked if he were a rabbi.
The priest replied, "No I am Greek Orthodox."
The man stated, "I have never met any Greek Orthodox Jews."
The priest responded, "No, I am a Greek Orthodox Christian Priest."
The man said, "Oh, do you still worship Zeus?"

The priest did not have time to finish this conversation, shook his head, and went to greet the Bishop.

A Greek Orthodox man once approached me (in typical Orthodox Jewish garb) in an airport. We had a nice conversation.

Today, he's my priest.  ???

When I was at a UPS office, a customer ahead of me asked me if I were a Christian.

I answered, "Yes, I am a Greek Orthodox Christian."

He responded, "I know exactly what kind of Christian you are. You are a works-based Catholic without a Pope."

Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

I don't care what his credentials are, that's just rude. >:(

Offline Papist

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2013, 03:21:27 PM »
I say, "Both. Mic drop." <walks away>
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Offline Hinterlander

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2013, 03:29:47 PM »
I live in a community with many Catholics.  As a world history teacher I cover events like the Reformation briefly . . . It is my experience that they refer to Protestants as "Christians" and themselves as "Catholics."

Offline lovesupreme

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #15 on: March 25, 2013, 09:22:07 PM »
I live in a community with many Catholics.  As a world history teacher I cover events like the Reformation briefly . . . It is my experience that they refer to Protestants as "Christians" and themselves as "Catholics."

But I would think that in doing that, they're not implying that they're not Christians, but rather using a blanket term to describe other Christian groups.

Offline Hinterlander

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #16 on: March 25, 2013, 11:33:46 PM »
I live in a community with many Catholics.  As a world history teacher I cover events like the Reformation briefly . . . It is my experience that they refer to Protestants as "Christians" and themselves as "Catholics."

But I would think that in doing that, they're not implying that they're not Christians, but rather using a blanket term to describe other Christian groups.

Exactly, and the OP noted that this question is sometimes posed "without any malicious intent at all."  To clarify, perhaps the common American simply doesn't have the word "Protestant" in their vocabulary and uses the word "Christian" without intending to insinuate that Catholics don't follow Christ.

Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #17 on: March 26, 2013, 08:40:24 AM »
Q: Are you Catholic or Christian?

A: Yes
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Offline Gebre Egziabeher

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #18 on: March 26, 2013, 08:49:19 AM »
The hundreds of different types of titles all of the separated churches of Christianity have adopted is truly shameful to observe & it deeply saddens me to have to put such manufactured words of transgression before the denominator Christian. But due to all of the differences I am always forced to answer that I am a "Non-Chalcedonian/Oriental Miaphysite Orthodox Christian". More easily describing my jurisdiction is the title "Ancient Orthodox Christian" which many of the West have begun to recognize as a name for the Oriental Churches due to our conservative perseverance of the Christianity that was worldwide until 451 A.D.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2013, 08:50:44 AM by Gebre Egziabeher »

Offline JoeS2

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #19 on: March 26, 2013, 09:41:38 AM »
Q: Are you Catholic or Christian?

A: Yes

Both!  Oh, yeah! ;D

Offline JoeS2

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #20 on: March 26, 2013, 09:43:40 AM »
Turns out that he was a Masters University seminarian in his last semester of studies.

Do they actually teach anything at those Universities anymore??

They are indoctrination centers..

Offline Timon

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #21 on: March 26, 2013, 09:48:06 AM »
This question is one of the reasons I am now Orthodox. I heard all of these foolish, derogatory things said about Catholics and said to myself "this cant all be true..."

It wasnt.

I was just as ignorant though. I didnt really know anything about Catholicism, or Orthodoxy for that matter. I just somehow had enough sense to know that these things (worshipping Mary, worshipping Pope, work-based salvation, etc.) couldnt be as accurate as my protestant friends claimed. 
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Offline Peter J

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #22 on: April 06, 2013, 08:34:05 AM »
I don't have much contact with protestants these days, but I did until about 9 years ago. Anyhow, one thing I remember is that my pov was "Why don't you guys call us (Catholics) 'Christians'?" while their pov was "Why don't you guys (Catholics) call yourselves 'Christians'?"
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Offline JoeS2

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2013, 08:44:14 AM »
I don't have much contact with protestants these days, but I did until about 9 years ago. Anyhow, one thing I remember is that my pov was "Why don't you guys call us (Catholics) 'Christians'?" while their pov was "Why don't you guys (Catholics) call yourselves 'Christians'?"

My relations with my Protestant friends is that Catholics (and Orthodox) strayed away from the early church during the time of Constantine.  And that this ancient church had to be reborn, so to speak, in the form of the Reformation and later on with the more modern forms of Protestantism.
There 'beef' is that the church was corrupted by being legitimized by governments and that the church became too Liturgical and too self absorbing in the form of earthly positions of power.

Offline JamesR

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #24 on: April 06, 2013, 07:31:29 PM »
I've decided to start asking a similar question to them. I'm going to start asking "Are you Protestant or Christian?" and see how they react  :D
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Offline yeshuaisiam

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Re: "Are you Catholic or Christian?"
« Reply #25 on: April 10, 2013, 11:56:54 PM »
I've decided to start asking a similar question to them. I'm going to start asking "Are you Protestant or Christian?" and see how they react  :D

LOL

I witnessed a Mennonite asked the question "are you a Catholic or Christian".  The answer was, "I am a Christian but neither Catholic or Protestant".   The man got a really funky look on his face, and there was not much more to discuss.
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