Bringing Tim Tebow & Others To The Fullness of Truth That Is The Catholic Church

A very interesting debate broke out recently following my article on the attacks Denver Quarterback Tim Tebow is coming under from militant liberal secularists concerning his public displays of faith. Catholic writer David L Gray wrote this piece and of course there have been many others. The debate shifted to Tim Tebow’s father who is an Evangelical leader and who takes missionary groups to Catholic countries like the Philippines so the people can “Hear the Gospel.” These kinds of statements either make Catholics laugh or get them angry. Whenever I hear these groups say that they are taking the Gospel into Catholic countries I think we should all say, “We have been preaching the Gospel since before the Canon of the Bible came to be,” or “When did your church start?  Actually, we have been under the same management for 2,000 years.” The crux of the matter is how do we willingly lead people to a place we think they most certainly want to go?

I have always found that outside of a few fundamentalist crackpots, most Evangelicals respect us when we humbly but boldly tell them about Church History, Apostolic Succession, the Real Presence and other Sacraments. Why? They sincerely want to know all they can about Jesus and with the aforementioned they aren’t even getting the Readers Digest version let alone the Fullness of Truth.

In some ways Evangelicals are the low hanging fruit of the religious world. They are eager people who want to know Jesus and boy can we show them Jesus. What about the Catholic Church Abuse scandals some say; shouldn’t that prevent them from coming home to Rome? Evangelicals are familiar with scandals, in many ways they have a belief that if a scandal brews it is the work of the devil and where the devil is you know that somewhere nearby the Gospel is being preached, otherwise the devil wouldn’t be there. The devil doesn’t waste his time fighting against with fluff, because fluff never saved souls. I dare say that some Evangelicals might also take to sites such as this or even sites like Michael Brown’s Spirit Daily that delve a little into Catholic Eschatology.

Some may say what about Catholics who have fallen away? Of course it is important for our lost brothers and sisters to come home. However, many are working on that, including Catholics Come Home which is doing amazing work bringing Catholics back home. Recently in Phoenix, 92,000 fallen away Catholics registered in Phoenix parishes thanks to a concerted diocesan campaign implement by Catholics Come Home, which included commercials on television and radio.

Some may say that reconciling the split with the Orthodox Church which took place in 1056 is the most important step, after all aren’t they closest to us in ideology and practice, and hasn’t reconciliation with the Orthodox Church been the primary push by Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI? Yes the last two pontiffs have made a big push with our liturgical friends to the East. However, here are a couple of points. There are more Evangelicals in the United States alone than there are Orthodox Christians in the entire English speaking world. Time is running out to bring our Evangelical brothers and sisters home. Why? Sadly most Evangelical organized churches outside the Southern Baptists are in a statistical freefall due to being raided by non-denominational mega churches. These mega churches which are increasingly becoming entertainment oriented churches have no sound theology to which to build their foundation. We all know what Jesus said about what you need to build your foundation on.  (You might want to read the following article one on what liberals have done to churches in an article entitled: If You Want Liberals To Run Governments Look At What They Have Done To Religion; Left It In Tatters & the effect of entertainment churches on society in an article entitled; Margaritaville Christianity, God’s Way or Our Way?

This leads us to one of the most underreported religious stories of the year; the Catholic Diocese of Orange, California buying Dr. Robert Schuler’s Crystal Cathedral, the nation’s first mega church which had gone bankrupt.  Some folks got caught up in the argument over whether a Catholic Church could even use something that hardly looks like a traditional church. However, think of the significance of the event. Rev, Robert Schuler was such a powerful name, his words were listened to and his church started an entire movement. Yet, look where his church ended up, going back home to Rome. What a metaphor for going full circle back to the Fullness of Truth, the Catholic Church.

While working on our upcoming national cable television show Non Negotiable, Producer & Director Christian Peschken talked about this very subject. Christian implored me that I needed to make this a bigger deal than it already was going to be for my upcoming book. He felt the symbolism of this the nation’s first and once most powerful mega church being turned over to the Catholic Church could not be understated. They who built their foundation on sand have now put their foundation on the Rock of Peter.

Christian and I also spoke about the need for discipleship and this is where the rubber meets the road. He said this has particulalry struck him as he translates Father Robert Barron’s critically acclaimed Catholicism series into Christian’s native German for German television. Christian related to me that daily he is amazed at the ability of Father Barron to explain the Fullness of Truth that is the Catholic Church to those who know of, know little of it, or know nothing of the Catholic Church. Imagine if Father Barron didn’t act upon the talents for conversion and reversion that the Holy Spirit has bestowed upon him? God has given us all talents and interesting connections of which we can tell our neighbors about the Catholic Church in a way they can understand. For example who better to talk to Tim Tebow about the Catholic Church than fellow southerner and San Diego Chargers Quarterback Philip Rivers; a fellow quarterback who is quite fiery and quite knowledgeable about his faith as well. Rivers has appeared on EWTN and spoke of his love of Catholic devotions, especially praying before the Blessed Sacrament. Rivers grew up in rural Alabama where his family had to drive many miles on Sunday morning just to attend Mass. Who better to speak to Tebow than Rivers?

Sticking with this discipleship theme; think about Eastern Catholics talking to Orthodox Christians whose Mass is very similar. Keep in mind Roman Catholicism is only one rite of the seven rite Catholic Church and of the seven rites there are many groups under the umbrella of those rites such as under the Byzantine rite there are Greek Catholics, Melkite Catholics, Ukrainian Catholics etc. God ordered things that everyone can disciple and evangelize with someone with whom they share a great deal in common.

There are many folks in the Coming Home Network who came from various religious backgrounds or were at one time Catholic and had fallen away. They have a unique ability to speak to those with whom they share something in common. I will conclude with an ending to a Steve Ray talk I heard a couple of years ago. Steve Ray concluded a powerful address by recalling the day he and his wife were received into the Catholic Church. He shared a common background with some Evangelicals like Scott Hahn who proudly at one time called himself anti-Catholic. Ray like Hahn only learned about the One True Church because someone decided to defend her teachings thus causing them to assess their beliefs.

Steve Ray stated that on the day he and his wife were received into the Church his wife said she was a little sad that this hadn’t happened years before, “Why didn’t someone who we knew to be Catholic tell us about these wonderful truths?” Why indeed? We don’t have to hit people over the head with truth but we can share it in a way that puts the ball in their court. Jesus himself didn’t convince everyone about his True Nature, not because He couldn’t but because He wouldn’t since everyone has free will to decide, and with that free will comes responsibilities and consequences. However, we must do our best and then as Jesus instructed us wipe the dust from our feet if those who don’t want to hear the truth reject our message. Again it doesn’t have to be that difficult. However, we have to at least try to inform them of the truth. If some of our acquaintances know who our favorite sports teams are, know the type of movies we like to see, and the kinds of concerts we like to attend, but don’t know anything about our faith life, we like those Catholics who knew Steve Ray’s family have let them down. Something for all of us to ponder.

Dave Hartline author of The Tide is Turning Toward Catholicism

17 Responses to Bringing Tim Tebow & Others To The Fullness of Truth That Is The Catholic Church

  • The debate shifted to Tim Tebow’s father who is an Evangelical leader and who takes missionary groups to Catholic countries like the Philippines so the people can “Hear the Gospel.”

    I’m pretty sure the Tebow family was around Mindanao, the Muslim area– that’s where he went back to talk to school kids not so long ago.
    The Moro Islamic Liberation Front could stand to hear the Gospel, and if the Evangelicals can get around the hate to get them to listen, more power to them.

  • I wonder if our atheist trolls will return to raise havoc with this blog entry. BTW, very good, David Hartline! My family is all Pentecostal Evangelicals. I am the only Catholic, so anything they learn about the Faith probably comes from me.

  • Until I had read Dave’s earlier piece about Tebow, I had just assumed he was another Phillip Rivers, what with his pro-life other Catholic-like stances. So that tells me that he just may be the kind of person who could easily cross the Tiber, if not plunge head-long toward his true home much like he does against his opponents despite his father’s anti-Catholic views. I’ve seen stranger conversions, after all.

    By the way, I just saw on the news a report about a controversy involving a rabbi, who says that the pro-Tebow crowd will go nuts and burn down mosques if the Broncos end up winning the Super Bowl.

  • Joel T.: I saw that, too.

    Sic semper tyrannis.

    They murdered 100,000,000 in the 20th century. Using the same “logic”, there ought to be a bounty on atheists.

    Liberals aren’t just evil and hate-filled. They are freaking stupid, too.

  • I recently posted a couple of articles on Tim Tebow also as I am am becoming increasingly saddened by the lack of willingness to understand Tim Tebow’s enthusiasm for serving the Lord Jesus Christ. Feel free to check them out.

    http://catholicboyrichard.wordpress.com/2011/12/15/is-time-tebow-gods-gift-or-something-methinks-so/

    Jesus once was asked by His disciples if they should forbid some other people who were preaching in His Name but did not follow with them. Jesus said, surprisingly “NO.” He further said that “those who are not against Me are for Me.”

    Tim Tebow is our Christian brother and should be respected as such. That is the teaching of our Church and Catechism (reference 817-820). His family is doing a marvelous work in a needy place. Do I wish they brought the Gospel from a strictly Catholic perspective? Of course. But I would rather see a good Protestant who deeply loves Christ than a bad Catholic who snoozes through Mass any day. For us to condemn their work as “anti-Catholic” because they do not follow the hierarchy is ludicrous.

    I say let’s pray for Tebow, and hard. His job is not easy and the temptations are very real in the world he now lives in. satan and not a few women would love to see him fall. Perhaps, just perhaps, he will surprise us all and become a Catholic priest one day. It just could happen.

  • “I say let’s pray for Tebow, and hard. His job is not easy and the temptations are very real in the world he now lives in.”

    I agree, as long as we are not referring to pass completions or fourth quarter comebacks, etc. We pray that Tebow follows and obeys God’s will, whatever that may be. Praise God always, even after a spectacular, improbable, nationally-televised failure. God has a plan for each of us, and we pray for the grace and the wisdom to make the right choices at the right time. Our chosen profession is not always the one God wants for us, and failures — small or spectacular — can be a way of telling us we need to move on.

    Marion Barber deserves my huge respect and prayers for comments he made after his spectacular, improbable, nationally-televised failure:
    http://www.suntimes.com/sports/football/bears/9397550-606/marion-barber-keeps-the-faith.html

    I respect Tebow for the adversity he has overcome, not (yet) for on the field success.

  • Richard,
    I agree with most of what you say, but (i) I think your notion that some Catholics view Tebot’s work as anti-Catholic is a pure red herring and (ii) your description of Catholicism as following the hierarchy is a disappointing trivialization of who we are.

  • Foxfier,
    Although there is a significant Muslim population in Mindanao, Catholics still make up 63% of the population there. Besides this, Tebow built his hospital in Davao which is 95% Catholic.

  • “This leads us to one of the most underreported religious stories of the year; the Catholic Diocese of Orange, California buying Dr. Robert Schuler’s Crystal Cathedral, the nation’s first mega church which had gone bankrupt. Some folks got caught up in the argument over whether a Catholic Church could even use something that hardly looks like a traditional church. However, think of the significance of the event. Rev, Robert Schuler was such a powerful name, his words were listened to and his church started an entire movement. Yet, look where his church ended up, going back home to Rome. What a metaphor for going full circle back to the Fullness of Truth, the Catholic Church.”

    So what does the Church of Nicea being turned into a mosque mean? Secondly, I don’t understand why Muslims need converted if the Church says that they can reject Christ and still inherit eternal life. Not being combative, just some honest thoughts.

  • I like to remind some people of some Gospel-biblical Truth. Jesus told the apostles when they told Him some people are teaching your material but are not with us. His reply, those who are not against us are with us. Revelation gives us the crude truth that if we are lukewarm, not hot or cold, Jesus will “puke” us out! Too manyespecially older Catholics today who do attend Mass are out the door as soon as Communion starts or walk out when they receive the sacrament. I witnessed that so much in a US resort area. St Paul is the patron saint of those who were so full of hate he met Jesus and he sure accepted Him as Lord and Saviour and showed he believed Him when Jesus said why persecute ME, the Church and zealously filled up and built up that Church until they chpped his head off in Rome. The Tebows are doing Jesus’ work and please GOD they will do a Paul on the road to Damascus and make it “all better” as the little ones say, and do not join a parosh where Mass is over for most of the congregatiom while the Supper of the Lamb is being served to the other guests.

  • Thanks for your post G Burch. What does the Church at Nicea being turned into a mosque mean? Sadly, it means the people of the day were taken over in a bloody invasion that saw what is now modern day Turkey become Muslim. Our old friend Mack who posts here occasionally refers to Istanbul as “Occupied Constantinople.” I never give up hope because the Church is who she says she is, “The Fullness of Truth.” I don’t say this out of pride or arrogance but only because Christ said He was the Way the Truth and Light.” He passed that light via the keys of leadership to St Peter and every other successive Pope. The Church says that other religions have pieces and or slivers of the truth. However, the Fullness of Truth belongs to the Church Jesus founded, the Catholic Church. Jesus will judge us all and He knows the ins and outs of all of ours souls. I hope that helps.

  • Us Catholics should be ashamed. Where does the “press” go to find out the “truth” about our Church? Biden, Kerry, Pelosi, “sister” Teresa Kane, “SNAP”, “catholics” for choice, etc.. Even though Tim & his family don’t have all the truth, at least they are standing up for Jesus as in Col. 3:17, which is something that we are not doing very well, are we? Didn’t Jesus say that all men will bend the knee to Him (also, God said the same in the O.T.) & now, men that wouldn’t dare to bend their knee in public (not very manly) are doing the same on national T.V., even though it is in mockery, but who knows just how & when the Holy Spirit will hit them. It will be a wonderful day the the Tebows became Catholic. Can you imagine the horror from the press when a Catholic will do the same as Tim on the field & in front of a microphone? Glory & Praise the Lord. +JMJ+

  • JMJ, yes it is very sad that so many Catholics are CINO’s (Catholic In Name Only.) However, the Fullness of Truth marches on and is examplified in the fine work of many people, some of which I mentioned in the article. While we may be angry at those who let down the Faith, we should never forget those who show her best side to others. Maybe we will have our own version of Tim Tebow someday, or maybe just maybe someone will show him The Fullness of Truth!

  • There are 23 truly ancient churches of varying shades of heresy and schism to the Catholic church. These range from Nestorians and Copts to the Armenian Church and the Chaldeans, Ethiopian church etc. ALL venerate Mary as a unique channel of grace. ALL of them are hierarchal, venerate images and share dozens of beliefs and tendencies with the Catholic church. NONE of the most ancient churches are remotely like the ‘primitive’ church the protestants cooked up from historical ignorance, pride and fantasy. For two hundreds years the apostolic church subsisted without ‘the’ Bible’ which is the gift of the church guided by the Holy Spirit to all Christians. History + Protestantism + Bibliolatry = 33,000 Protestant sects and growing.

  • I am a Filipino and I’m grateful to what Tim Tebow is doing to serve the underprivileged and the needy in my country. I certainly admire Tim for his courageous witness of how to be a true follower of Jesus Christ as he knows it. I’m a Catholic and would be overjoyed to hear the news someday about Tim entering the Catholic Church but I leave that work to the Holy Spirit. I can only pray so much for him. Whether he becomes a Catholic or not in the future, as long as he remains faithful to God until the end, I see no problem with that.

  • Well, Tebow and his team saw their winning streak come to an end against the Patriots. At least he will be keeping his lamp that is his faith out for all to see rather than hidden under a table.

Follow TAC by Clicking on the Buttons Below
Bookmark and Share
Subscribe by eMail

Enter your email:

Recent Comments
Archives
Our Visitors. . .
Our Subscribers. . .