The Apocryphal Books Apocrypha is a Greek word meaning things hidden, and in ancient times this word was applied to religious writings esteemed almost as scripture by some, but which were not read to the unlearned in public.
This essay compares the beliefs of Roman Catholicism with the conservative wing of Protestantism. In the 16th century, during the Protestant Reformation, many faith groups split away from the Roman Catholic Church.
This destroyed the relative unity of Christendom in western Europe. The Protestant movement further fragmented during the following centuries. At the present time, there are over a thousand Christian denominations in North America alone, in addition to many thousands of independent, unaffiliated congregations, para-church organizations, and personal or "Mom and Pop" ministries.
Although there are also many mainline and liberal Protestant faith groups, most are conservative in nature. Some beliefs of the Roman Catholic church and conservative Protestant denominations are in opposition to each other.
The Catholic church accepts the theory of evolution but regards the human soul to be a unique creation of God. The acceptance of homosexual sexual orientation -- but not same-sex behavior -- as morally neutral by the Catholic Church, but not by many conservative Protestants.
The rejection of the death penalty by the Catholic church, and the continuing acceptance and its enthusiastic promotion by most conservative Protestants. Catholics place ultimate interpretive authority in the Pope and Magesterium. Catholics teach that the bread and wine during the mass becomes the actual body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.
Protestants generally regard the two components as only symbolic of Jesus' body and blood. The gap between the two groups appears to be increasing over time.
Future reunification of the Christian religion was essentially impossible and is getting more so. They agree that his execution brought about atonement -- the potential to bridge the gulf between humanity and God caused by sin.
However they disagree on how this was achieved. They partly agree about the significance of baptism, but disagree about the timing when it is normally performed. They do not agree on which books are included in the official canon of the Bible.
Perhaps the main difference between conservative Protestantism and Roman Catholicism is expressed by the "five Solas". The first three Sola statements of the early Protestant movement stressed that: The Catholic Church stresses a balance between Biblical support and the tradition of the Church itself.
The Catholic Church also teaches that salvation is implemented by grace from God alone. However, they stresses that the church sacraments are the channel for God's grace. Again, the Catholic Church stresses the importance of church sacraments.
There also exists a great gulf between the two groups on other matters of belief and church practice -- particularly with regard to the raptureauthority within the church, church organization, freedom of the individual, freedom of each congregation, etc. The divisions are deep and long-standing.
This has led to prejudice and discrimination.Baptist churches (and others) drop denominational identification from church name to attract new members. Some years back I published a book review in the pages of Modern Reformation magazine.
Some responded with a letter to the editor complaining that I had distinguished between the Reformed churches and the Baptist churches. The Institute's work is guided by a disciplined understanding of the interrelationship between the inner life and resources of American religious institutions.
The research of the Institute focuses on congregations, denominations, megachurches, women, practical theology and other topics helpful to church leadership. Chart of beliefs on topics like the Trinity, divinity of Christ, inerrancy of scripture and salvation. Baptist churches (and others) drop denominational identification from church name to attract new members.
Bumblebees is a four minute film about a young man on the autism spectrum preparing for his first date. The film provides beneficial lessons about romantic relationships and empathy and a clear example of the interplay between symbol and metaphor in a documentary.