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Josh

Evangelising On LDS Forum

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Jane_Doe2
1 hour ago, Seven77 said:

 There is never enough learning.Definitely.

For sure, not everything on the Internet can be trusted.It is very important to get your facts straight from high quality resources. ( it seems that you really know where to go for solid teaching about Catholic teaching… I can recommend more if you wish) And I agree, that there  is a lot of trashy stuff on YouTube, incorrect stuff, gossiping, lack of charity, and bashing, etc.  You know, one of the things I really respect about Mormons is that they are generally very kind people.

The Second Great Commandment is important.

I appreciate the offer for materials, thank you.  I'll let you know if I think of something.

54 minutes ago, Josh said:

Luckily that's not what I posted. 

Let me know if you want to discuss anything :)

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Lilllabettt
On 8/10/2019 at 11:56 AM, Jane_Doe2 said:

It's not that LDS Christians consider to praying to Jesus to be "wrong".  It's just improper because it's not what Jesus Himself instructed us to do, and we show our love for Him by doing what He asked us to do.    And all prayers literally end in Christ's name.  Prayer is a HUGE part of an LDS Christian's life.  

I feel it's important to draw the distinction between listening to the Spirit (which is a huge part of discernment) and just you being emotional.  They are two different things.  

When you say "being emotional"... I think of my 5 year old daughter who gets frustrated and yell "I'm angry!" while literally stamping her foot on the ground.  That's not the Spirit.  

Versus listening to the Spirit is... running with a personal example here: last week I was in a major stuck-spot at work.  I just couldn't figure something out, and it was causing a lot of trouble for months.    Emotionally I felt... frustrated, angry and just fed up.  I felt a prompting from the Spirit "You should call your old friend Ken and ask for his help".  Just that gentle nudge.  Well, I haven't talked to Ken in years and to my knowledge he didn't have the knowledge I need.  But I called him, and he goes "hey, can I do this project for you?  Right here, right now, for free.  I have a job interview Monday that is literally on this type of project and I would love to be able to use this as a portfolio example."

 

 

As to using intellect and studying things out: LDS Christian do that too.  It's just has proportionally less emphasis than Catholic Christians place on it.  Same as Catholic Christians also do believe in listening to the Spirit, but with less emphasis that a LDS Christian.  

Learning how to pray & listen to the Spirit is a HUGE part of spiritual development for an LDS Christian.  If fact I would possibly say it the number 1 biggest piece of spiritual development.  There's a whole bunch of different techniques to help different people-- as we each do think and experience things differently.  It's a part of discipleship that you continue to work on throughout your life.

Aside: I had to Google the phrase "dark night of the soul" for this response and learned some cool stuff about Catholic traditions.  Thank you for that.  

So, given that listening for the promptings of the spirit is so important, is there a tradition around the meaning of dryness in prayer, given that everyone experiences this... or most do? It's a common experience that God seems to be silent, and there are no nudges or promptings. In a lot of lives, people experience the feeling of being totally abandoned by God. Just wondering how Mormons navigate that, given that feeling nudges etc. is so important in daily life. 

Curious again, and no need to answer if you're not comfortable... but have you ever spoken to Jesus?  If you asked the Father "do you want me to have a personal relationship with Jesus" you might be surprised at the Spirit's response. 

(On the chance you were looking for a sign or a nudge to do that,  you could consider this that.) 

It's true that mainstream Christianity, Catholicism included, doesn't consider Mormon's Christian, because they don't accept the Trinity. But, if you have time, would you be able to expound on how you don't? For example, on the lds website, it explains that Mormons don't believe the Father Son and Spirit are one person. But Trinitarians do not believe they are one person either - so what is the real difference? 

Would Mormons accept the formulation that there are three persons in one God? 

Or would they rather say - there are three gods, all united perfectly in one will and purpose - but different beings?

Edited by Lilllabettt

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Jane_Doe2

This was a fantastic post, @Lillabettt

2 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

So, given that listening for the promptings of the spirit is so important, is there a tradition around the meaning of dryness in prayer, given that everyone experiences this... or most do? It's a common experience that God seems to be silent, and there are no nudges or promptings. In a lot of lives, people experience the feeling of being totally abandoned by God. Just wondering how Mormons navigate that, given that feeling nudges etc. is so important in daily life. 

If somebody were to come up to me being 'stuck' like this (because it does happen), I'd ask some questions for the person to be introspective on.  Like:

Are you stopping to listen?  Many times we (we=general humans) can get in the habit with prayer that we treat is like a phone call that we pick up the phone, quickly as possible ramble stuff off, and then just hang up the phone.  Not taking that time to listen.  You got to take the time/energy to listen.  There's a million ways you can set up time/energy/space/movement to have that quality time with God.

Similarly: have your prayers gotten rote, wherein you're just going through the motions and neglecting the heart that should be put into a relationship.  

Do you need to strengthen your "hearing" skills-- working on realizing when something is from God?

Do you have some huge sin in your life or other thing that is causing you ignore God because you don't want to hear it?  

Etc.

 

I am curious: what would be your Catholic answer to this great question?

2 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

Curious again, and no need to answer if you're not comfortable... but have you ever spoken to Jesus? 

I'm 100% cool with that question (any pretty much any other question too-- again OCD honest).

Totally.  Heck, earlier this afternoon I had a teaching moment with my daughter (who's 5 and has scary dreams sometimes) about when she's scared, saying a prayer and asking Jesus to protect her and keep safe.  Stressing once again how Jesus is her Savior.

2 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

 If you asked the Father "do you want me to have a personal relationship with Jesus" you might be surprised at the Spirit's response. 

*Jane blinks in confusion* time out: where in the world did you get the idea that I do NOT consider it critical to have a personal relationship with Jesus?The VERY definition of a Christian is a disciple of Christ.  If you do not have a personal relationship with Christ, then you're doing this whole Christianity thing wrong.  It is the VERY CENTER of who I am as a person.  My foundation, my rock, literally the thing that keeps me sane at points.

(Breaking up my response)

2 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

It's true that mainstream Christianity, Catholicism included, doesn't consider Mormon's Christian, because they don't accept the Trinity. But, if you have time, would you be able to expound on how you don't? For example, on the lds website, it explains that Mormons don't believe the Father Son and Spirit are one person. But Trinitarians do not believe they are one person either - so what is the real difference? 

Would Mormons accept the formulation that there are three persons in one God? 

Or would they rather say - there are three gods, all united perfectly in one will and purpose - but different beings?

LDS Christians believe that the Father, Son, and Spirit are three different persons in ONE God.  Just like Trinitarians.

 The difference comes in *how* these three are believed to be one.  For LDS Christians it's through unity (completely united in will, purpose, goodness, mercy, etc), whereas Christians that adhere to the Athanasian Creed this oneness is through consubstantiality.  

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Seven77
1 hour ago, Jane_Doe2 said:

LDS Christians believe that the Father, Son, and Spirit are three different persons in ONE God.  Just like Trinitarians.

 The difference comes in *how* these three are believed to be one.  For LDS Christians it's through unity (completely united in will, purpose, goodness, mercy, etc), whereas Christians that adhere to the Athanasian Creed this oneness is through consubstantiality.  

so in other words, the Three Persons are united in that they are of one mind? 

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Jane_Doe2
12 minutes ago, Seven77 said:

so in other words, the Three Persons are united in that they are of one mind? 

That + one will + one mercy + one justice + one goodness + one all knowing + one all powerful, etc.  

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Lilllabettt
4 hours ago, Jane_Doe2 said:

This was a fantastic post, @Lillabettt

If somebody were to come up to me being 'stuck' like this (because it does happen), I'd ask some questions for the person to be introspective on.  Like:

Are you stopping to listen?  Many times we (we=general humans) can get in the habit with prayer that we treat is like a phone call that we pick up the phone, quickly as possible ramble stuff off, and then just hang up the phone.  Not taking that time to listen.  You got to take the time/energy to listen.  There's a million ways you can set up time/energy/space/movement to have that quality time with God.

Similarly: have your prayers gotten rote, wherein you're just going through the motions and neglecting the heart that should be put into a relationship.  

Do you need to strengthen your "hearing" skills-- working on realizing when something is from God?

Do you have some huge sin in your life or other thing that is causing you ignore God because you don't want to hear it?  

Etc.

 

I am curious: what would be your Catholic answer to this great question?

I'm 100% cool with that question (any pretty much any other question too-- again OCD honest).

Totally.  Heck, earlier this afternoon I had a teaching moment with my daughter (who's 5 and has scary dreams sometimes) about when she's scared, saying a prayer and asking Jesus to protect her and keep safe.  Stressing once again how Jesus is her Savior.

*Jane blinks in confusion* time out: where in the world did you get the idea that I do NOT consider it critical to have a personal relationship with Jesus?The VERY definition of a Christian is a disciple of Christ.  If you do not have a personal relationship with Christ, then you're doing this whole Christianity thing wrong.  It is the VERY CENTER of who I am as a person.  My foundation, my rock, literally the thing that keeps me sane at points.

(Breaking up my response)

LDS Christians believe that the Father, Son, and Spirit are three different persons in ONE God.  Just like Trinitarians.

 The difference comes in *how* these three are believed to be one.  For LDS Christians it's through unity (completely united in will, purpose, goodness, mercy, etc), whereas Christians that adhere to the Athanasian Creed this oneness is through consubstantiality.  

So, it's hard to have a personal relationship with Jesus if you don't speak to him. Anytime Catholics speak to Jesus, we consider that prayer. Which, I thought Mormons don't pray to Jesus? But it sounds like you did tell your daughter to pray to him for protection?

In Catholicism, dryness in prayer has two meanings: one,  spiritual sloth (you have gotten spiritually lazy and thus its difficult to get a dial tone in prayer). God permits this. Two is, spiritual ascendancy. God wills this. He deliberately withdraws consolation, and any sense of guidance or direction in order to purify your love. This usually happens only after reaching a certain level of divine intimacy. Although for many people they experience a tide  - God is sensible to them, then withdraws, then after a time is in contact again, and so on - for others it is more or less permanent.  St. Teresa of Calcutta experienced a vision of Jesus telling her to leave her convent and start a new order - the Missionaries of Charity. After setting out to do this, God seemingly abandoned her. For decades she endured all types of temptation to atheism. I believe she died in this dark night, although she persevered in faith to the end. Her order was extremely successful but she did not experience nudges or consolations or any sense of the presence of God, for many years.  It was not a question of her not listening - he was silent. Although it was very difficult, her spiritual guides knew what was happening, and so did she, because this is a well trod path in Catholicism. After reaching the level of prayer that she had, when Jesus appeared and was literally visually sensible to her  - the only way for her to grow in love was for her to prove it by continuing to follow Him even without the slightest sensible consolation. She lived both extremes - the extreme consolation of seeing Jesus with her very eyes - and extreme desolation- decades without any contact. 

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BarbaraTherese

WOW! Not often The Dark Night is explained in terms that are readily understood ........and WOW! again.

Excellent post:winner:, Lillabettt - thank you very much - and in an excellent thread too.  Good reading.

 

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Jane_Doe2
12 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

So, it's hard to have a personal relationship with Jesus if you don't speak to him. Anytime Catholics speak to Jesus, we consider that prayer. Which, I thought Mormons don't pray to Jesus? But it sounds like you did tell your daughter to pray to him for protection?

My initial not-very-eloquent response to this first sentence was "does accepting Him as your Lord & Savior, giving your entire heart, mind, and soul to, and strive to follow Him and His example every day somehow not count in your mind?  After all, praying to the Father is done because that's what Christ asked us to do-- the very act is an act of devotion and discipleship to Christ". 

 

 

And then after reading your later sentences, I realized that we're having a miscommunication here regard the word "prayer".  You're talking about "prayer" broadly defined as in *any* communication with the divine.  I'm talking about "prayer" more narrowly defined as formal on-your-knees communication.   

Going with the narrow definition I was using, LDS Christians pray to the Father, in the name of the Son, as instructed by Christ.  Something along the lines of "Dear Heavenly Father......<contents>...., In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen".  

Going with the broad definition you were using, LDS Christians of course communicate with the Father, Son, and Spirit.

 

Aside: it's also important to remember the one-ness between the Father, Son, and Spirit here.

12 hours ago, Lilllabettt said:

In Catholicism, dryness in prayer has two meanings: one,  spiritual sloth (you have gotten spiritually lazy and thus its difficult to get a dial tone in prayer). God permits this. Two is, spiritual ascendancy. God wills this. He deliberately withdraws consolation, and any sense of guidance or direction in order to purify your love. This usually happens only after reaching a certain level of divine intimacy. Although for many people they experience a tide  - God is sensible to them, then withdraws, then after a time is in contact again, and so on - for others it is more or less permanent.  St. Teresa of Calcutta experienced a vision of Jesus telling her to leave her convent and start a new order - the Missionaries of Charity. After setting out to do this, God seemingly abandoned her. For decades she endured all types of temptation to atheism. I believe she died in this dark night, although she persevered in faith to the end. Her order was extremely successful but she did not experience nudges or consolations or any sense of the presence of God, for many years.  It was not a question of her not listening - he was silent. Although it was very difficult, her spiritual guides knew what was happening, and so did she, because this is a well trod path in Catholicism. After reaching the level of prayer that she had, when Jesus appeared and was literally visually sensible to her  - the only way for her to grow in love was for her to prove it by continuing to follow Him even without the slightest sensible consolation. She lived both extremes - the extreme consolation of seeing Jesus with her very eyes - and extreme desolation- decades without any contact. 

That's very interesting.  Reminds me of Abraham being asked to sacrifice Issac actually.  Sometimes we are tested in very unexpected ways.  Thank you for sharing.

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Jane_Doe2
17 hours ago, Josh said:

About last night...

IMG_20190813_194740.jpg

Well, anyways....

Yes, visitors are completely welcome at chapels / Sunday Services at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  Hence the sign.  

The main service Sunday morning everyone meets together, sign hymns, partakes of the Lord's Supper, and several congregation members give short sermons on various topics.  The whole thing lasts an hour.  There is a second hour of church Sunday morning, in which the congregation breaks up into smaller classes for age-appropriate scripture study and/or women's/men's group meetings.  Visitors are completely welcome.  

During the week they'll be various meetings at the local chapel for youth group, women's meetings, potlucks, speciality classes, play basketball, etc. Visitors are completely welcome to those too.

 

 

That's all for your local chapel.  A temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is different than your local chapel.  Temples are far fewer in number (like 1 to 1000+ chapels), don't host basketball games, youth group, Bible classes, Sunday services, or anything like that.  In fact, a temple is closed on Sundays (because on Sunday you should be at your local chapel).  Temples are reserved just for when a practicing LDS Christian wants to go participate in religious rituals (in Catholic-ese you'd use the term "sacrament").  Still, if you really want to see the inside of an LDS temple, a person is welcome to take a digital tour, or visit one in-person during it's open house.  Temples will also have a visitor's area, and some even have full-blown visitor's centers.

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