Until then, I had lived under the egocentric assumption that everybody is either Catholic or Jewish.
Suddenly, what I wasn’t—a Protestant (a concept I only knew existed for a week)—was what I had to be, or else come to terms with the high probability that I was headed straight to hell.
Most evangelical churches in Italy, many of which we would never step foot into, recognize this truth.
As the evangelical world in America seems rather excited about the Pope’s visit, I can’t help but remember how I felt when I discovered the Evangelicals and Catholics Together document (ECT). Well known evangelical pastors signed a document in which they joined themselves with Catholic priests and Philosophers, in an ecumenical fashion in order to promote the agreements over the disagreements that have plagued Protestants and Catholics for centuries dating back to the greats: Calvin, Luther, Zwingli and Knox.
They agreed to no longer “proselytize” each other, agreeing that Catholics are indeed brothers, and sisters in Christ. The vast majority of Christians in America do not evangelize Catholics.
While she suggested we steer clear of Catholics and their church, my heart pounded hard. Scared to speak but compelled to do it anyway, I raised my hand. With surprised eyes and a foot in her mouth, my teacher changed the subject.
After school that afternoon—in my first year at the small, private, Protestant school where I would stay through high school graduation—I told my parents what my teacher taught us.
Even then, they didn’t want their face to appear on film.
This was only a few months ago – and reflects a hidden truth about Northern Ireland today; more couples are bridging the Protestant-Catholic divide than ever before, but many remain unwilling to talk about it.So in case it turned out that Catholics could not, in fact, be Christians (or I wasn’t one of the few for whom it would happen), I said the Sinner’s Prayer in bed that night.But the first time somebody challenged my church wouldn’t be the last. She now has seven children from the marriage, all of whom have been raised to date who they want so long as the person is decent and honest.He thought it would be easy to accede to their request. He tried to arrange for people to go on air, but only one person responded.So in this article I will try to summarize some of the advice I have given.