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As you might imagine, given the work we do here at Church Militant (thanks to your continuing support for it), we come across lots of people of goodwill who simply haven't heard the glory of Catholicism expounded in any meaningful way.
Every now and then, we run into spurts, if you will, where we are heavily engaged in multiple offline conversations with poorly catechized Catholics or goodwill Protestants. We are in one of those spurts right now, as I and others here are spending an unusual amount of time, compared to normal, speaking with such folks over private dinners, emails, phone calls and even "DMing" on Twitter.
And blessed be God for the opportunity to be engaged like this.
It's evangelization in the trenches — much like we imagine would have been the case in the early days of the Church and various periods throughout the past 2,000 years. We're sharing these behind-the-scenes, away-from-the-cameras scenarios with you for one reason: to help you with such activity in your own lives.
And here is a major tip: Get straight to the Eucharist first, closely followed by Scripture. All the other stuff — statues, "worshiping" Mary, confessing to a priest — while certainly worthy of discussion, can easily become distractions to the major, central theme of the Church, the Holy Eucharist, because every single other thing or topic in the Church rises or falls on this single truth. Either that it's actually the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ, or it is not.
As the teaching goes, the Eucharist, the real presence of Jesus Christ, hidden under the appearance of bread and wine, is both the source and summit of the Faith.
So if I may, allow me to walk you through a conversation I recently had over dinner with a Protestant, a nice young chap of obvious goodwill who simply wants to know the truth. We began in the Scripture realm, and I asked him to venture a guess as to why John's Gospel is so profoundly deep and soars to the great theological heights that it does.
He said something along the lines of "because John was the beloved disciple." Well, true enough, as far as that goes. But why, I asked him, was John the beloved disciple, and not the others; and the answer relates directly to why his Gospel is so much more profound, even from its very first sentence ("In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God").
He admitted not knowing, so I said, "John was the beloved disciple because, from all eternity, the Blessed Trinity chose him to be the guardian of the Mother of God after Our Lord's Ascension."
He took her into his home, as commissioned to him by Our Lord from the Cross, and during her years with him, it was Mary who would have been offering her insights into the life and truth of Our Lord, her baby Boy, telling them to him like no other creature possibly could.
In essence, then, John's Gospel, in a certain sense, is the Gospel of Mary. He was thunderstruck at that revelation and confessed that as a Protestant, he had never really considered Mary in any way beyond giving birth to Jesus.
Then he added, but it makes perfect sense, his observation: Who could have known Him better than His own mother? And she would have talked about Him more intimately to John than anyone else could have.
Stepping out of the storyline for a moment, men of goodwill always grasp and respond to the truth; they just need someone to tell them. Hint, hint.
By this time, dinner had arrived, and we dove into the food and then, using John's Gospel, dove into the Eucharistic discourse in chapter six where, at the synagogue in Capernaum, Christ made salvation dependent on eating His Flesh and drinking His Blood.
Then we pivoted to the point of how the Eucharist itself relates to the resurrection of our bodies on the Last Day. Recall that Our Lord said near the end of His teaching there that "he who eats My Body and drinks My Blood abides in Me, and I will raise him up on the Last day."
How are these related, we discussed. Because that is Jesus' actual glorified flesh, His DNA, it mingles with our DNA and it becomes a living physical aspect of our bodies. The DNA of God Himself resides in our very bones, literally — not symbolically, not as a spiritual thing, but as an actual, physical presence.
When we go down into the graves and await the resurrection, our DNA mingled with the DNA of God is lying there dormant, awaiting the trumpet blast from the angel, drawing history to its end. Mediate on that thought for just a moment: "He who eats My Body and drinks My Blood abides in Me, and I will raise him up on the Last Day."
In life and death, as St. Paul tells us, we are the Lord's, even in the grave, because, remember, the grave is just a temporary holding cell: "O death, where is thy sting; O grave, where is thy victory?"
The Eucharist serves as preparation for the resurrection — even in the grave. For as Our Lord said, "I will not leave you orphans." Not in any sense are we ever left as orphans.
So we wrapped up dinner and said our goodbyes for now. The next day I heard from a friend who was there that the young chap said after hearing Catholic glory at full speed, "Have you ever experienced what it's like to have your entire concept of cosmology recomposed in one conversation?"
That is the raw, naked power and glory of the Catholic faith let loose to embrace a soul in search of truth and understanding. This is not the first conversation I've personally had with men of goodwill on this specific topic. And every time, the reaction is the same — total awe. "I've never heard anything like this before" is what another fellow said to me a couple of weeks ago.
So we would like to take this moment to encourage you, strongly, to pursue these lines of conversation with people you know or who come into your orbit.
That said, one thing we hear quite often is, "I don't know enough to get really deep into this." Fair enough. We all know that much of the hierarchy simply abandoned the glory of the Faith and teaching it decades ago, so that is more than understandable.
That's why Church Militant has not only produced two excellent resources for you: our first documentary, God's Lamb, as well as our Where Did the Bible Come From? collection; but we are offering you a package deal on these double resources, a combo buy at just $40.
There's more than just the actual video. The Bible collection, for example, also comes with a book offering more detail on the history of the Bible, along with this pull-out timeline showing the historical development as it relates to world history.
And the God's Lamb DVD also comes with its own booklet to better follow along with the actual video. Normally, these two items cost $70 together.
But our recent inexperience talking with various people has put into our heads that these are the things people need to hear when talking about the Faith, so we have essentially cut the price in half and are making the entire combination available to you for the reduced price.
Get these offerings, watch them, study them, internalize them — just like we did. No one here at Church Militant was born with this knowledge; we have to invest huge amounts of time and study to learn all this.
We've taken all that effort and collapsed it into these videos and supports to make it as easy for you as possible. You can view all of this in just about two or three hours and highlight what helps you further in the books and the timeline.
So we strongly encourage you to take advantage of this and learn about the Eucharist and Scripture in a way you probably have not heard or been taught before. But remember, you are doing this for the sake of others. As the Ethiopian eunuch said to Philip the deacon, "How can I understand the scriptures if no one explains them?"
We have a duty, an obligation, to learn and then evangelize. We make these available to you for that very purpose. Please click on the provided link to buy your discounted dual set today.