Dear Sister, A few years ago members of the LDS church were courting me. I started talking to them because I needed someone (anyone) to talk to about God. I am a practicing Catholic and knew right away that I would never convert because you just can't get the Eucharist any where else! But after a while I did realize that the Book of Mormon is really suspect and I don't agree with much of what they preach at all, so I broke it off with them. About a month ago I listened to a CD from Lighthouse media called "From Mormon Missionary to the Catholic Church" by Thomas Smith. I was wowed by his advice and experiences, but I also felt that maybe I'd wasted a good opportunity to point out what the scripture really has to say about some important issues for the LDS church (Smith goes in to a lot of this in his talk. He says that when he was a missionary he had never sought out other translations or even looked at the verses they use to back up their theology in their original context. He was introduced to other ways of reading the verses through his missionary work with a woman who had a NRSV Bible).
So, today I got a call from the LDS again, asking if anything had changed in my life and if I'd like to learn more about their church. I said no... but now I feel like maybe I should call them back?
Nothing has changed for me, except that I may be better prepared to be a Catholic missionary to the LDS missionaries. My dilemma is that I want to talk to them in order to give context to some of the material they use to back up their claims... in order to make them take a look at their faith in LDS... but that seems dishonest to me. I know I'm on the right spiritual path for me... but should I be messing with theirs under the pretence that I want to know more about their faith?
Is it better to pretend not to know about some of their teachings in order to shed some light for them, or is it better to be honest and let them stay in the dark?
Oh, it gets better. Now all I have to do to inspire you is post this link to the saint of the day, St. John Olgilvie.
No one is asking you to tough it out in Scotland or even Utah.
To get to your question, should you call them back under the pretense of wanting to know more? No. That would be dishonest. St. Augustine believed that lying was the very worst sin. Or maybe it was St. Thomas Aquinas. One of those two thought that.
Should you let them stay in the dark? You don't have to.
They didn't call you and ask, "do you want to join our church?" They called and said, "Has anything changed?" And the answer to that is, "Yes! I researched a lot about your tenets of faith and I am happy to tell you I have found my faith! In the Catholic Church." You could call them back and say you realized that you didn't answer the question they had fully. "Thanks for calling me! I realized that I wasn't fully present when you called and I'd like to tell you the answer to the question that you asked."
My bet is that they won't hang up on you. These are people that go door to door. They LOVE to argue about their teachings. When I was a child my mother always let them in when they came to the door and we had quite the discussion on every occasion. I don't know if we got through to them. But we certainly listened to what they had to say about Joseph Smith and his Golden Ticket that got lost in a haystack after he was the only person to see it. That was enough for me as a ten year old to cast serious doubt on this religion, not founded by Jesus at all. Although I think there was something in there about Jesus having come here to the United States in a canoe. I couldn't take any of it seriously, but the people that came to the door were lovely, polite young men.
Meanwhile, if it was good enough to inspire St. John Olgilvie, it's good enough to inspire us. Here is little Cindy Bush, whoever she is, singing a favorite of mine, "Come Unto Him" from Handel's "Messiah".
"Come unto Him, all ye that labor. Come unto Him ye that are heavy laden, and he shall give ye rest. Take His yolk upon you and learn of Him. For He is meek and lowly of heart. And ye shall find rest. And ye shall find rest unto your soul."
A wonderful thing to keep in mind for Lent.
It's odd to me that everyone seems to think the "Hallelujah Chorus" from Handel's "Messiah" is a Christmas song. It isn't. Handel's famous number tells the story of the whole life of Christ and the "Hallelujah Chorus" is the big finale after the Resurrection. In my mind it is more properly an Easter song. Maybe we'll start an "Messiah" for Easter campaign.