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Kris wrote:

Hi, guys —

I'm confused on how the Roman Catholic Church views other churches, specifically the (ELCA) Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and (UMC) United Methodist Church churches.

I have read, researched, and even interviewed several priest, deacons, and got the privilege to ask our diocese bishop on a call-in radio show this question ... and they all had the same answer, which surprised me!!

The question was about the dialogue the Catholic Church has had with the ELCA and the UMC, for a very long time! I asked each person if we view them as fellow Christians since some believe in women pastors, gay clergy, and gay marriage, etc. and they all said "Yes", that it did not matter.

They continued to say that, though those faiths were morally wrong on those issues, it does not take away from them being fellow Christians and recognized by the Roman Catholic Church.

This is where I'm confused.

  • How and why do we recognize such churches with these teachings?
  • How should I decipher this?


  { How and why do we recognize such churches when their teachings disagree doctrinally with us? }

Mike replied:

Hi Kris,

Thanks for the question.

What makes a Christian part of the Body of Christ is receiving a valid Baptism.
The Lutheran and Methodist churches, to my knowledge, perform a valid baptism.

Although their official teachings can be extreme far from basic Catholic Christian teachings, Our Lord still considers them Christian due to their valid baptism.

This posting will show any reader the Church's form of baptism:

With flowing water running over the recipient's head, this is the form that must be used:

[ Michael ], I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the
Holy Spirit.

Hope this helps,

[Related Posting]

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