As undercover I try to be, I think this topic is one of a crucial fact where when it hits you, it kinda shake you hard. I am an AOG or Pentecost/Protestant Christian and was raised up that way. Coming to know other denominations and experiencing them is another whole level of understanding. Here I am just trying to share my experiences and how it has influenced me.
To start with, it’s a fine confession I would like to make. Yes, I was seeing (not to sure where is the status now) a Catholic guy and we weren’t official till now because both of us weren’t sure whether are we really going to pull it through if we really made the deal. You must be thinking, why is it so difficult when both of us are Christians . Well, the fact is we Christians have different denominations and the way we practice our faiths and values are different.
It all started as I came to know him in Tinder. It’s like an online app where you meet people and if they click , you move on like you go on dates , meet ups etc . So happened we clicked and there were so many similar things we shared. It was like in a dream and I myself keep asking God, is he the real deal or are you just testing me? I am not too desperate for now to have a partner but as the age catches by, you will tend to think too much and sometimes fall for temptations and earthly desires.
We started well and it has been months and we are still on the same track we started. No decisions were made and it was like an LDR relationship. We are currently staying in 2 different countries and met only like 3-4 times. The relationship was kept silent till now and to the fact where I got myself thinking and I think I might need help in the long go. What if we were to get serious and move on? How about the spiritual faith? Are we going to compromise and give in? How about our children later on, will they go to a Pentecost church or a Catholic? The upbringings will be different and mindset and faith will be put to stand. These are the challenges I am facing and I believe some do. I did ask my mentor Uncle(he is a pastor and is good in giving life advice) and he did advised me to not to fall for a Catholic(because of different faith, not being judgmental okay) but if I do, challenges will come and you will need to seek God first in everything you do.
So I did myself some research with various articles on the difference of AOG and Catholics. No discrimination or judgment okay? We are all God’s child. I am just sharing so that in future if any of you have doubts , this blog could help you a little, I hope. This is just a few example . It may sound similar but it isn’t.
♣This is what we Pentecost belief. These are the basics of ‘Four Core Beliefs’ of the Assemblies of God:
Salvation,Baptism in the Holy Spirit, Divine Healing and the Second Coming of Christ
- The Bible (which all us believe in) #The Scriptures are Inspired by God and declare His design and plan for mankind.
- Trinity#There is only One True God revealed in three persons…Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
- Salvation #Every Person Can Have Restored Fellowship with God Through ‘Salvation’ (trusting Christ, through faith and repentance, to be our personal Savior).
- Baptism #Water Baptism by Immersion after repenting of one’s sins and receiving Christ’s gift of salvation
- Tongue #The Initial Physical Evidence of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is ‘Speaking in Tongues,’ as experienced on the Day of Pentecost and referenced throughout Acts and the Epistles.
♣Catholics are, first and foremost, Christians who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Catholicism shares some beliefs with other Christian practices, but essential Catholic beliefs include the following:
The Bible is the inspired, error-free, and revealed the word of God.
Baptism, the rite of becoming a Christian, is necessary for salvation — whether the Baptism occurs by water, blood, or desire.
God’s Ten Commandments provide a moral compass — an ethical standard to live by.
The existence of the Holy Trinity — one God in three persons. Catholics embrace the belief that God, the one Supreme Being, is made up of three persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
Anyhow the churches also practice different service flow. I attended few Catholic services and found myself really out-of-place and there isn’t any input and or any spiritual touch. This is just my plain experience. We AOG are spirit filled. Our church services are mainly full of praise and worship songs, tongue speaking(this is where you connect with God individually and privately), bible teaching (sermon), and fellowship. We also have care groups where we connect even further with our brother and sisters in Christ to study the bible and know each other better. That is a great platform where you get to invite others to your respective meeting areas and tell them about the good news . But still it comes down to individuals.
Catholic churches, on the other hand, is different. I experienced a few where when you enter the church there is this holy water ,where they will take to cleanse their body or soul. After that , the praise and worship session is more towards hymns . They are more traditional I think. Because if you would compare our praise and worship, we are kinda loud and bouncy for Jesus. haha . Our songs are usually contemporary based. SO after worship, they have like bible scripture reading and they will ask questions for you to ponder on . Not much teaching here and I am not too sure whether it’s the normal practice . It was kinda hard for me to digest because some Catholic churches really teach their people the bible and I know well that Catholics know their bible more than we AOG do.
Communion wise, it was the same. Just that they justified clearly that only baptized Catholics’ can participate in the communion. For us AOG, we welcome all baptized Christians. Not categorizing people . This was an eye opener for me. I still love Catholics and they are God’s people.
SO now, at least, you know the slight differences and it is hard on me. AS far I try to blend in, and try my best to explore more, I tend to be more judgmental and this is sad. Even we Christians are being judgmental towards the people who are having the same faith . It isn’t a bed of roses you know. I still pray that maybe one-day things will work out among us and the most important thing is our salvation and are we really going to heaven? And when we enter heaven, what have we done on earth is more important as God will definitely question you. Always be on alert all the time because the end times are near and God is watching us . He loves us so much and wants us to be his disciple according to his heart. ❤