Catholic in Yanchep

The joy of the gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept his offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness. (Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium)

What to do when Jehovah’s Witnesses come to the door.

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The Jehovah’s Witnesses are doing the rounds in Two Rocks and Yanchep at the moment.

When they knocked on my door, I tried initially to engage them in polite conversation.  The problem was that whenever I pinned them down on something, they kept shifting their ground.  For example, they wanted to tell me my Bible was incorrect, and tried to accuse Catholics of not translating Bibles into the vernacular, but seemed a bit confused about the date when the first Bible was written in the vernacular.  They didn’t seem to understand that when Jerome wrote the Vulgate translation (Latin), this was the vernacular!  Or when the original manuscripts were written in, say, Greek, this was also the vernacular!  Or that it was quite normal for books in the West to be written in Latin until the end of the 18th century, while during Medieval times and the Renaissance, Latin was the language of international communication and the language of Universities.

So they switched to asking me what I thought of John 3:16-18, to which I replied that it was fortunate that this weekend was Trinity Sunday, since the Gospel reading is the very one they chose to quote to me.  So they said, “Well, what does it say?” (implying that because it says, “God gave his only Son,” that this means that God and the Son are not both Divine.  I replied that of course the Son is Divine, and for centuries before the Jehovah’s Witnesses were even thought of, it has been believed that Jesus is both fully human and fully divine.  I told them, “What about, “He who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9)?” and added, “I have the very thing for you.  I have just printed out our parish newsletter where there is a rather nice explanation of the Trinity.  Please take one with you, read the commentary and go to the link to The Sacred Page, and you will see a very Biblical commentary on the Holy Trinity.”

They refused to take the leaflet.  I said, “But you want to give me your leaflet!  And you refuse to accept a leaflet I want to give you?”  At this point I think they turned into automatons, mindlessly repeating verses they had mentioned before.  It was obviously impossible to reason with people like this, who didn’t really want to listen, but only to preach, who weren’t interested in investigating any viewpoint that didn’t coincide with theirs, but could only meet people on their own terms.

I rather unfortunately lost my temper with them at this point and asked them to remove themselves from my property, since there didn’t seem to be a stop button for their monologue.  I am sorry now that I allowed them to make me angry, but would like to recommend to our readers to brush up on these bits of advice before you too get a visit:

http://www.catholic.com/tracts/whats-your-authority

http://recoveredcatholic.com/2012/07/30/jehovahswitnessesauthority/

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/apologetics/ap0302.htm

Enjoy your weekend!

Deirdre

 

 

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