It is a privilege to contact you and be able to share my dilemma. I am hoping you have time enough to direct me to readings where I can, upon understanding of them, inform my daughter-{recent “convert” to Catholicism}-of how Catholicism has detoured from Jesus’ original teachings.  If you would just point me in the right direction, I am sure I can find my way. Thank you for your site and all the time and research you have excellently put into them.


At ARS we hesitate to “go after” particular Christian groups, so I am a bit reluctant to answer your question.  I have written a book on Church History which details the path the Roman church took over the first several centuries.  It is titled  The Christian Story and is available at   This book will be very helpful for tracing how the Roman Church got off track over time.   I also have a power point on Roman Catholicism which might be helpful.    Roman Catholicism Notes   Roman Catholicism PPT  I am attaching both notes and power point I have used to explain some of the problems with Catholic practice and theology.   In my opinion, the Catholic Church is no worse than most Protestant churches when it comes to basic theology.  In fact, they may be closer to truth than many Protestants and Evangelicals when it comes to theology.  However, in the area of practice (not necessarily doctrine, but traditions), then the Western, Roman Catholic Church is really a mess.  They have a massive array of practices which are taught as doctrine which are clearly not biblical.   Such practices include infant baptism, a separate “priest” class from other believers, indulgences, transubstantiation (the idea that the elements in Communion are actually transformed into the body and blood of Jesus), Purgatory, priestly robes, praying through idols and saints confession to a priest, sacramentalism and many more traditions which oppose scripture.   The history of Catholicism can be used to explain the source of these false teachings and unbiblical practices.   Some arrived in the church early, in the first three or four centuries, while others arose much later.   Most were created as an initially legitimate response to a real problem, but later evolved into a problematic tradition.  The bottom line in all this is Matthew 15 which teaches that when we teach as doctrine the tradition of men, our worship becomes void.

My suggestion for talking with your Roman Catholic friend is that you build up the real Jesus, the biblical view of Jesus, of his church and what it means to be a Christian.  Directly attacking the pope or specific traditions may not be the best approach.  The best approach will depend on the spiritual state of your friend.  I would need more info to give a specific advice as to what material to use.  If you have more specific information I will be happy to give you a more precise response.   I hope you are successful in teaching your friend more accurately from the Bible.

John Oakes

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