Small “c” Catholics & Big “C” Catholics – No Cafeteria Plan For Me

I had lunch recently with a cradle ( lifelong ) Catholic friend. At lunch, he mentioned looking into a Christian school for one or several of his children ( he has 7 - not sure how recent of a search ). One of the things that the school wanted my friend to agree to was sola scriptura ( scripture alone). My friend said that he was Catholic and could not agree to that. The man at the school said there were other "catholics" in the school but that my friend must be a BIG "C" Catholic. The man at the school and my friend both respected each others position.

Although I have only been around Catholics for just over a year, I have been around some awesome Big "C" Catholics who take their faith seriously. Big "C" Catholics are Catholics that are not on the cafeteria plan like small "c" Catholics also known as cafeteria Catholics. Small "c" Catholics pick and choose what they want to accept, practice, believe, etc.

For me, embracing Catholicism was about experiencing the fullness of the Christian faith and not being on a cafeteria plan just picking what I wanted to accept or reject. It has not been an easy path to be on because there are some differences compared to Protestant beliefs. It came down to either the Catholic Church has authority and is truth or it's not. If the Church does not have authority or teach truth, I might as well shop churches like many Protestants and there is no reason to become a small "c" Catholic. It's all or nothing.

In Protestantism, many people pick a church because it lines up with their own interpretation of scripture. So if one believes in "once saved always saved," then most ( if not all ) Pentecostal churches are out as a potential option. If someone believes in gay marriage, then they can shop around for a church that accepts gay marriage. There can only be ONE TRUTH, but self gets in the way when seeking truth.

In my case with Catholicism, I wasn't shopping for a church that lined up with my own interpretation of scripture. I was seeking the truth. It was not easy putting self and many lifelong beliefs that were not accurate behind me and being open to something new.

I hope that small "c" Catholics will not leave the Catholic Church because something comes along that sounds good that fits more in line with their interpretation of teachings. I hope that small "c" Catholics will become Big "C" Catholics and help unify the Church. I also hope that others outside the Catholic Church will put SELF behind them and God's will for their life before them.

I have found that embracing Catholicism has drawn me closer to Christ and strengthened my faith. It's likely difficult for some people to see especially those living on the cafeteria plan of Catholicism or those outside Catholicism.

Now that I have pushed aside self and discovered the Catholic Church, I want to follow Jesus even more than ever before. It brings a childhood song to memory:

I Have Decided To Follow Jesus

I have decided to follow Jesus;
I have decided to follow Jesus;
I have decided to follow Jesus;
no turning back, no turning back.

Though none go with me, I still will follow;
though none go with me, I still will follow;
though none go with me, I still will follow;
no turning back, no turning back.

The world behind me, the cross before me;
the world behind me, the cross before me;
the world behind me, the cross before me;
no turning back, no turning back.

Are you willing to do as this song says?

This verse "Though none go with me, I still will follow;" resonates with me because I came to the conclusion that I would join the Catholic Church with or without my wife. Fortunately, Brenda is entering the Church with me at the Easter Vigil.

Challenge...

If you are Catholic, please be a BIG "C" Catholic.

If you are not Catholic, please look at the Catholic Church with an open mind and ask God to lead you on your journey. Don't let self hold you back.