Saturday, May 10, 2014


Recently at a gathering at my home, I introduced a minister to others as "The Reverend..". He leaned over and whispered in my ear, "You're the first person--outside of Boston--who knows that is the correct way to make an introduction." (see here)

I said, "I learned that in the 1960s because of hearing Martin Luther King, Jr. introduced as THE Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr."

Today at a craft show, I saw business cards on one of the tables which advertised a cleaning service with the title "Immaculate Concept". I remarked, "Aren't you worried that Roman Catholics would find your company name offensive?" She looked stunned and answered, "I'm a Christian." I replied, "So are Catholics, but I have found that most people do not know the meaning of the term Immaculate Conception; do you?" Obviously offended, she said, "Of course I do; it means that Jesus was the Immaculate Conception." I said, "Oh, no, you're totally wrong, but that is a common misconception (couldn't help myself on that pun); the term actually means that the Blessed Virgin Mary was the Immaculate Conception, NOT Jesus." She said, "I went to the college in Cedarville and that's not what I was taught." I answered, "Then your instructors were WRONG!" She said, "That's just your opinion." I answered, "No, it is not an opinion; it's an historical FACT that The Immaculate Conception has been a Catholic doctrine for more than a century and has nothing to do with Protestant dogma."

By this time, the woman was clearly upset. I asked her if she believed in the Immaculate Conception and she replied, "Of course I do; that's what the Bible teaches." I said, "No, I'm sorry, but you are wrong; it is NOT in the Bible, nor is it in the New Testament, and it is not in the Vulgate or the Apocrypha." She said, "I know--that's the first five books of the Bible." I told her, "No, you're thinking of the of the Pentateuch; the Vulgate is a Catholic Bible." When I explained about the Apocrypha, she said, "Well, that's just your opinion." I said, "No, you can actually read it."

She said, "Then you're Catholic." I ignored her assumption and continued, "Catholics believe that Saint Anne and Saint Joachim were the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and when Mary was conceived in the womb of her mother Saint Anne, Mary was conceived without original sin; you can understand that the vessel for carrying your Lord and Savior had to be without sin."

She said, "I've never heard anything like this." I said, "That's sad that you paid money to go to school and your instructors did not understand the concept." (couldn't help myself AGAIN)

I continued, "This is quite easy; you can look it up online or just look in the dictionary." (see here, the definition from the Oxford English Dictionary)

She then told me she had "lots of Catholic friends" and that none of them told her it was offensive. I doubted that she had "lots" of Catholic friends, but I answered, "Any Catholics I know would not appreciate your cutesy term Immaculate Concept." She answered, "I think it's a good name; what do you mean by cutesy?" I said, "I'm rather certain any Catholics I know would cringe at your lack of respect about their dogma."

Realizing that she wouldn't accept facts, I shrugged my shoulders, waved my hand and said, "Just look it up; you'll learn that I'm right." I did notice her glaring at me several times during the remainder of the show.

When I came home and told Les, he asked, "Can't you go anywhere without having huge discussions?" I said, "Oh, I was just imparting useful information."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I can't believe the number of Catholics (such as Helen and her daughter)who didn't know what the Immaculate Conception really meant. ML