Friday, June 27, 2008

How not to witness to Catholic Christians Part 2

Since publishing my original list of How NOT to Witness to Catholic Christians I have encountered a few more and thought I would share them!

1. Don't waste my time. If you are truly interested in the Catholic perspective that's fine. I am glad to share it with you. But if you already "know what I know" and you are determined that none of my arguments will be persuasive, "no matter what" then you really are not likely to hear or read any of the words I am putting time and effort behind. It is very maddening and it makes me less likely to jump into such a discussion the next time.

2. Don't invoke the devil into it! In an honest discussion between Christians there is no place for stating that the other side has Satan in the cheering section, "twisting words" and "tearing down."

3. Use primary sources. Wikepedia, and Wiki answers, although fun and informative aren't! Also quoting from web pages with unknown authors puts does not help your credibility.

4. We aren't likely to be impressed with testimonies from lay ex-Catholics either. We know how we were catechized and it's no surprise to us when someone leaves because he never learned the Catholic Faith in the first place.

5. Don't be afraid to apologize when you are wrong. Apologies do a lot to build bonds, lighten the mood and move along the discussion.

6. At the same time do not be afraid to give your opponent props! Saying things like "I never thought of it that way'', or "Touche!" or "I see your point" build your own credibility and respect and they help us to hear YOUR points as well .

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Tracy said...

My thoughts exactly Elena, thank you for posting this and updating!!

Maggii said...


Sal said...

"Don't waste my time." Ha!

Once again, use the Socratic method to separate the sheep from the goats.
"When you say 'worship Mary', could you tell me what you think that means, exactly?"
ditto, Papal primacy, infallibility, the sacraments, why we don't use birth control, priestly celibacy, the 'forbidden' Bible, etc., etc.

Forces them to clarify their question, if it's sincere, so you can give them the best answer. And exposes them as 'converter questioners", if they aren't.

Good one, Elena

Anonymous said...

I think you could apply those points to most discussions involving a difference of opinion.