Evangelical Protestant pastors should befriend an evangelical Catholic priest. Our ministries would be far more winsome and inviting as a result of such associations. It would reduce the number of straw men, recycled caricatures, and reductionist explanations that often fill our sermons and lessons. Such conversations would inadvertently cause us to be more accurate in relaying the details of what Catholics confess and would inspire us to pursue the grace/truth balance with greater energy and resolve. I recognize that it may be harder to do this in places like Italy where the Catholic/Protestant intersection looks quite different; but, here in the States, where the playing field is more level, there is much to be gained.
If, for instance, evangelical pastors had a colleague like Fr. Moises (pictured above), with whom to occasionally visit Starbucks, our churches would benefit. We’d still disagree on all sorts of things, but, on account of such a friendship, we’d at least be able to disagree in a way that is more civil and more Christian. In the end, this sensitivity to Christian virtue will help our congregations to embody a greater measure of Christ’s passion—passion for grace and passion for truth.
The following podcast is from a session that I delivered at the National Outreach Conference in which I explore the grace/truth balance among our Catholic friends and loved ones.