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Popular Recovery ministry anti-Catholic?

Discussion in 'One Bread, One Body - Catholic' started by winginitx, Aug 17, 2009.

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  1. winginitx

    winginitx Inquisitor

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    As a leader in Celebrate Recovery - a Christ based recovery ministry for every hurt, habit or hang-up - I just returned from their annual summit at Saddleback Church in California. Yes, the ministry has Evangelical roots, but the focus was on Jesus Christ and non-denominational, and although being the only Catholic in my branch of Celebrate Recovery (CR), I healed many hurts and grew closer to Jesus in the process which also made me a stronger Catholic - which I why I became a leader.

    While at the summit, I inquired at the information booth if there were any Catholic churches that participate in any of the 12,000 churches that facilitate CR. The nice ladies behind the booth laughed so hard and said that I had won the prize for the funniest question. Fine. I sought and spoke to the California rep as I had heard of one Catholic church that may have been involved in their state. Without divulging my faith, the state rep stated that the Cath. church in question no longer supports the CR ministry, furthering that, "...us evangelicals are pretty strict and it just doesn't work in a Catholic setting..."

    While confused, hurt and processing those comments, I and 3700 in attendance had the opportunity to premeire the new promotional video of CR that was due for release. In one segment, a woman stated the she "...grew up Catholic and experienced a fear-based God..." I was flabbergasted. It was not an innocuous comment; this was a professional and edited piece. No other denomination was mentioned and that comment was deliberately included.

    I am not accusing CR of fomenting anti-Catholic sentiment, but they do nothing to dissuade it and market their brand to capitalize on that comment thread of discontent. I confronted some national leaders with my concern which they discarded.

    I feel hurt that I was involved in a ministry for 15 months that had an institutional bias towards Catholicism. I got use to hearing personal testimonies which frequently included the phrase "...I grew up Catholic..." and was always saddened that they experienced my faith that way. I had no idea that this sentiment was rife throughout, and indeed acknowledged by those that should know better.

    Denial is a large part of the recovery process and is destructive. I pray that CR looks inward and see the institutional denial that permeates its mission. CR offers a great dealing of healing to broken spirits and souls. I shall pray that they can take steps to heal that facet of their ministry. Until such time, I can no longer be affiliated with the organization as such.
     
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  2. Rhamiel

    Rhamiel Member of the Round Table

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    a lot of these "non-denominational" groups are the same, when I was in university i went to Campus Crusade for Christ and many of the speakers talked about how they grew up Catholic and then latter in life found Jesus, at first I did not think anything about it, I mean a lot of evangilicals are were lapsed catholics, but after about 3 speakers mentioning that in maybe a little over 2 months, I just did not feel comfrotable there anymore
    in reality "non-denominational" is just code for evangelical Protestant
     
  3. MoNiCa4316

    MoNiCa4316 Totus Tuus

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    :hug:Im sorry about that. I don't know anything about this ministry... but I had a similar reaction when I found out that Campus Crusade for Christ, in which I was involved for a couple years, had some anti-Catholic bias as well. I first joined the organization when I was a Protestant...and later on I converted to the Church, but kept on attending the meetings just to meet up with my friends, etc. But then I started noticing certain things...like the speakers would criticize Catholicism, say things like Catholics dont know God, aren't real Christians, we need to evangelize them... some people i know would go to countries that are predominantly Catholic to "share the Gospel" with them and bring them to "Bible based" churches. I felt hurt, and I stopped attending. I was told that Campus for Christ is "inter-denominational", but it seems only evangelicals are welcome there. They even had this map, that highlighted the "most unreached" places of the world...and shockingly, they included countries like Poland that have a rich Catholic heritage. They said, there are "so few" Christians there - because they're only counting the evangelicals!

    it's kind of sad when this sort of thing happens :(

    the Church teaches that Protestants have incorrect doctrines and are separated, but we still consider them Christians....I wish that it went both ways. There are Protestants who consider Catholics Christians, but there are also many who do not. :(
     
  4. MoNiCa4316

    MoNiCa4316 Totus Tuus

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    lol I wrote my post before I read yours ;)
     
  5. Fantine

    Fantine Dona Quixote Supporter

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    I know many Catholics who have read Purpose Driven Life and I have attended some Celebrate Recovery meetings to deal with co-dependency.

    Yes, there are certainly evangelical people represented in the groups, but I have never encountered or perceived any discrimination. As a matter of fact, accepting others' sharing non-judgmentally, without giving advice or feedback, is one of their rules of sharing.

    What does this poster suggest? That Catholics go to AA instead, where "God as I understand Him" could mean some vague creative energy, formless, shapeless, and soulless?

    I don't know about the rest of you, but when I am experiencing difficulties, being a member of a support group that helps me relate the problems I am experiencing in life to my religious faith and gives me brothers and sisters who support me in my struggles is only about 1001% more effective than saying a novena or other rote prayer.

    Why doesn't Catholicism have its own brand of "Celebrate Recovery?"
     
  6. WarriorAngel

    WarriorAngel I close my eyes and see you smile Supporter

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    Well, if anyone has not noticed [and i was met with this sort of opposition since i was in my teens] that other groups tend to feed off poorly chatechized Catholics.
    I have never noticed a group go after other Protestant groups - but always Catholics.

    It is interesting to note that they tell these ppl [who supposedly knew their faith - but really didn't] that they worshipped Mary, followed pagan rituals, were cannibals..etc
    Yep, i heard the lines to get to me to leave the Church. I figured it was a sales pitch to get me to believe them over what I ALWAYS KNEW. And their ideas were UNTRUE.

    Anyway - sometimes they do it slowly - taking peeps in til they can show you somehow how wrong the CC is.
    I have Protestant in laws and my own niece doesn't like that her pastor preaches against the Catholic Church - rather than teach what is true to his knowledge.

    I have yet to find a Protestant state their pastor speaks all truth, but only the best preachin' he can.

    Anyway - sorry to hear you were hurt. This is unfortunately the only way they can get so many in their churches by deconverting the biggest Church since Christ established it.
     
  7. WarriorAngel

    WarriorAngel I close my eyes and see you smile Supporter

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    Start one.
    Laity can do this with some close relationship or supervision of their priest.

    Priests cannot do everything - especially with a shortage. So as lay ppl we can start groups to help others.

    I wish you the best and think this would be wonderful.
     
  8. Rhamiel

    Rhamiel Member of the Round Table

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    WA, with all due respect you might be a little off base with this
    the calvinist/arminian split is really deep and the attacks on both sides can be brutal
    also the Pentacostals or the denominations that baptise infants are offten attacked by differant denominations, now not as bad as the Catholic Church is attacked, but it is still really bad
     
  9. WarriorAngel

    WarriorAngel I close my eyes and see you smile Supporter

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    Thanks Rhamiel.
    I am only speaking in general from where i grew up. [And even where i live now]

    Didn't realise the splits could be so harsh towards one another.
     
  10. Rhamiel

    Rhamiel Member of the Round Table

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    well the Catholic Church is bigger and better organized and more unified then any other religion on earth, even with all our problems all of our problems we are still "enemy #1" to a lot of these groups, but I have heard Calvinists talk with just as much hate towards Billy Graham as they have towards the Catholic Church, or Baptists talk about speaking in tongues being from the Devil. but it is all small potatos compared to how many of these groups feel about us, my mom is Methodist so I have been around a lot of differant protestants and the division among them can turn ugly
     
  11. MoNiCa4316

    MoNiCa4316 Totus Tuus

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    I agree Rhamiel, but I do think it's really sad how the Protestant groups would agree that the other ones are still Christian, like the Baptists would never say the Pentecostals are not Christians.... or the Calvinists... but it's a common thing to hear (at least where I live) that Catholics are not Christians. NOt everyone I know thinks this way, but some do.

    :(
     
  12. winginitx

    winginitx Inquisitor

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    As the original poster, I am not suggesting a solely AA type program - although I recognize that AA has helped millions.

    Yes, I have thought about starting a christian-based recovery program, not specifically for Catholics - as that would be exclusionary - but one not hostile to Catholics following closely to the CR curriculum.

    These programs save lives...there is not doubt about it. Aside from the anti-Catholic bias in CR, I cringe and am saddened by the thought that Catholics are not getting this kind of recovery to my knowledge.

    I have witnessed people deal with and beat issues such as alcohol, drugs, depression, anxiety, gambling, co-dependance, sexual addiction, pornography, food issues, anger, tobacco, same-sex attraction and the list goes on and on....all from the same program! It really is remarkable.

    I think I may put forth a proposal to our priest and try to get somearchdioses support.

    I am inspired........... :pray:
     
  13. Memento Mori

    Memento Mori Guest

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    What is wrong with both? An effective support group can be an answer to prayer, you know. Not all prayers are answered with lights and fireworks.
     
  14. Fantine

    Fantine Dona Quixote Supporter

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    OK, I went to a CR meeting tonight (for the first time in about a month since I was on vacation...)

    Two members had gone to the Summit, too, and didn't mention anything that was anti-Catholic or say anything that was anti-Catholic.

    I can't imagine how one person in a film saying, "I grew up Catholic with the fear-based God," makes the whole program anti-Catholic. Heck, there are bumper stickers that say, "I survived Catholic school..." I could be a poster child for that bumper sticker (high school only, grammar school was great..)

    In those good old pre-Vatican II days the fear-based God ruled. That image is one of the things pre-Vatican II Catholics need to "recover" from...The woman in the film was stating a fact of life. It's a shame she didn't stay Catholic, but I guess the fear-based God caused some casualties among the faithful.

    I also take issue with the fact that Celebrate Recovery is for "poorly catechized Catholics." Since there is no Catholic-based program for recovery from addictions, co-dependency, anxiety, etc. the choices are between secular programs, twelve-step programs with the "non-specific" God, and CR. CR is based on the Beatitudes (the eight recovery principles.)

    Another thing I like about CR is that it is not substance-specific. You can deal with minor problems or major problems, several problems at once or one overriding problem. You are in groups with others who are working on healing in several aspects of their lives.

    The closest thing Catholicism has in terms of healing is the Charismatic movement, the "healing of memories," etc. I think that this is good, too.
     
  15. KeenanParkerII

    KeenanParkerII Guest

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    Hey Fantine,

    My sister leads a CR group for the largest non-denominational Church in Vancouver, and I've always talked with her about her program, so I feel pretty informed about what they do.

    The 'non-denominational' title is really 'fundamental protestantism' in guise. CR is predominant in the pentecostal and non-denominational circles, and it is no secret that the members of the program, from the organizers to the leaders at the church level, do not support Catholicism. Next time you go to CR, make it a point to ask everyone there about Catholicism. They aren't on a crusade against Catholicism, but they certainly don't support it.

    Why not establish a Catholic-friendly recovery program that benefits the Church rather than bailing out for a program which passively influences people away from the Church.
     
  16. stone

    stone Senior Contributor Supporter

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    I suspect that one of the reason why my name showed up on the list of folk to be laid off from my job after 10 years is because of my defensive position of the catholic church. Of course i can't prove it, but there are more details that i feel like getting into. I've seen a great prejudice from protestants towards catholics. I've even seen that atheist that live in sin gain more respect from some of them than they are willing to give towards the church.

    I remember when the pope came to New York and there were alot of videos on youtube from protestants called street preachers. It is horrible the things that they did in Jesus name.

    I think that God uses these experiences to teach us and to prepare us for what's coming up next.
     
  17. Fantine

    Fantine Dona Quixote Supporter

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    The CR programs in this area seem to be sponsored by Methodist churches, and Methodists seem to be centered pretty squarely between the traditional Protestants (Lutheran, Episcopal, Presbyterian) and fundamentalists (Baptist, A of G, non-denominational.)

    Several of the Catholic churches in our diocese have begun sponsoring Dave Mathews' Financial Peace University. This is another program that has strong fundamentalist roots, although it has helped many people in serious debt straighten out their finances, and has helped educate other couples and their children to learn how to budget responsibly to avert any potential crises.

    I've listened to Dave Mathews on the radio sometimes.

    In both these cases--CR and Financial Peace--I don't think there's anything that would preclude Catholic churches from sponsoring these programs. Catholic churches host AA groups with the "non-specific God" all the time.

    From having listened to Dave Mathews on the radio, I would have more concern about Financial Peace being anti-Catholic than I would about CR--but yet they are sponsored by a number of churches in our diocese.
     
  18. AllForJesus

    AllForJesus Guest

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    Eccumenism is the right thing! not non-denominational
     
  19. KeenanParkerII

    KeenanParkerII Guest

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    Truly, this is not the case in the North-west. It seems that everyone that I've met involved in CR tells me at one point or another, "Catholicism doesn't involve Jesus. I'll pray they're born again."

    :doh:



    That's right! :thumbsup:
     
  20. JimR-OCDS

    JimR-OCDS God Cannot Be Grasped, Except Through Love

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    Well in my early days after accepting Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, even though I was a devote Catholic, myself and members of my family, got involved with Evangelical, and Fundamentalist Protestant organizations.

    The story is the same as the OP's post.

    They welcome you to share what they accept. But demand that you reject what they reject. Unfortunately, Catholicism is one of their
    major rejections.

    For those interested, Matt Talbot Ministries, is a Catholic based organization that works with alcohol and substance abuse addicts.

    Matt Talbot Ministries

    Jim
     
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