Talking with Catholics about the Gospel

More than seventy-eight million Catholics live in the United States, representing one of the country’s largest demographics. How then can evangelical and Reformed Christians be better equipped to speak about the gospel with those Catholics? We recognize a gap between our understanding and current Catholic practice. In Talking with Catholics about the Gospel: A Guide for Evangelicals, Chris Castaldo leads us toward a better understanding of how to interact with Catholics about the gospel. Castaldo is also the author of Holy Ground: Walking with Jesus as a Former CatholicJoin us for an excellent and much-needed conversation on an important subject.

See also our recent conversation with Gregg Allison on his book Roman Catholic Theology and Practice: A Evangelical Assessment.

Participants: , ,

Christ the Center focuses on Reformed Christian theology. In each episode a group of informed panelists discusses important issues in order to encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of Reformed doctrine with a view toward godly living. Browse more episodes from this program or subscribe to the podcast feed.

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Bruce Sanders

5 years ago

Like those on the panel, I have ‘sat at the back’ of Roman Catholic and similar churches who do not share the finer points of Reformed theology. From this view at the back, especially during the response to Luke 22:15 … when bread and wine are administered to the faithful in Christ, there really is no meaningful visual difference. As to the personal beliefs of the faithful during the event, there is probably more difference across the Church at large, than between modern Roman Catholics and Reformed. While your sage advice to stay “in love” during dialogues with Roman Catholic Christians is well-intentioned, in my experience, it too-often takes skills well beyond those of the average Reformed person to keep the discussion in love, especially since Reformed have an agenda which backs the other person into a corner.

Rather than offend neighboring Christians, perhaps your recommendations would be better served to encourage your Reformed members to open a dialogue at an Atheist and Agnostic Society gathering (held in most cities). Would it not be less destructive to the Church if the time were spent boldly planting the cross of Christ where the gospel is not yet found?


5 years ago

I listened, and to be honest, I felt a bit uncomfortable and it wasn’t the kind of interview I’d recommend to a friend wanting to learn how to deal with Roman Catholics. Perhaps the book is different, but this interview didn’t lead me to buy it; I’m more likely to borrow the book, if even that.

This coming from a Mexcian-American with many Roman Catholic family members.

Stephen MacKenzie

5 years ago

While reformed folk may very well bristle at just the mention of the name “Dave Hunt”, the hour spent viewing the video version of “The Woman Rides the Beast” is an hour well spent. It is not merely a cheap shot or a caricature as the genre of a “chick tract”, but rather a penetrating expose. You can view for free on youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUFhGQ4Do9s


5 years ago

Thanks for the above programme. This sits well with the programme with Dr . Allison. I believe that there is a clear softening by many evangelicals towards Romanism. I know ECT has had its part to play in this but also a growing ignorance of sound Biblical Doctrine and offical Roman Dogma among even Reformed believers has played a role. Our Fathers in the faith often had a better understanding of these issues and where more adept at standing on solid biblical ground. Regarding Dr. Castaldo’s reference to Catholic Charismatics as if they where all Christians requires greater qualification. Certainly some have come to faith through their reading of the scriptures but many see there position as a renewal of there baptism and greater enthusiasm for Roman Dogma.

Best regards

Richard Begin

5 years ago

I really enjoyed listening to this episode and to the previous episode with Dr. Allison (I bought his book after hearing the episode but have not started it yet). I’m writing for clarifications on the portion of the episode that mentioned “transubstantiation”.

In a previous book on Catholicism that I have read, the author states that during “the miracle of the Mass, at the prayer of consecration, the substance of the elements is transformed supernaturally into the substance of the body and blood of Christ, but the accidens of bread and wine remain…The substance of it [the bread], the essence of it, has been supernaturally transformed to the body, the flesh, of Jesus Christ. Likewise, the substance of the wine has been transformed to the substance of the blood of Christ.”

This sounds like physical presence to me and I though I heard Chris Castaldo say that Catholics don’t believe in the physical presence of body & blood in the Eucharist during the Mass.

Can you provide some clarity…thanks!


5 years ago

Interesting to note that in addition to the body and blood concepts in the sacrifice of the mass – clear roman catholic dogma, that The Council of Trent and The Creed of Pope Pius 4th have the added factors of SOUL and DIVINITY.

Timothy Joseph

3 years ago

Speaking as one who come out from RC.
That is the point, the Gospel is also not found in Roman Catholicism. Rome has some essential doctrine, Trinity, deity of Christ and uses the scriptures, but teaches salvation is Not by grace alone thru faith, instead it teaches salvation BY the Roman Catholic Church alone.
Yes, because of these essentials and scripture, there are people attending RCC who are Christians, but this is in spite of RC teachings. This makes evangelizing RC different than atheists, but only as we encounter those that have already been called among them. Otherwise both RC and atheists need the Jesus of scripture preached to them so that they can be justified and come to saving faith.



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