SPSE teams, like the one in Enterprise, AL, continue to invite people into the unity of the Catholic Church. Here, evangelists Nick and Pete speak with a group of non-Catholic Christians who belonged to a denomination emphasizing the use of a private prayer language, such as St. Paul talks about in 1 Cor 14. But this private language, though good, does not help build the Church in unity (cf. 1 Cor 14:12). The team’s visitors had mistaken that gift for the “gift of tongues” spoken of in Acts 2, which does build the Church.
Acts 2 describes the Day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles in the upper room. St. Peter then spoke to the multitude who gathered at the sound that “came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind”. St. Peter spoke in his native tongue, but everyone clearly understood him in his or her own native language (cf. Acts 2:6–11). This was a gift from the Holy Spirit: “So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:41). The Holy Spirit has repeated this miracle from time to time throughout the 2000 years of Church history.
“The Spirit wants unity, not division,” the evangelists explained (cf. 1 Cor 1:10). Then they asked their visitors why they thought differences in religion exist.
One of them replied, “We believe in God not religion, because it is a man-made thing.”
But does not God gather his disciples into one community, and did He not establish a certain order and structure for that community? That should be clear from the New Testament, which presents the New Covenant as a fulfillment of the Old, and founded on the authority of apostles who solemnly passed on their ministry to others. Evangelist Pete pointed out the origins of the different Christian denominations, most of them within the last few hundred years. In particular, he pointed out to the young people that their own church community was formed fewer than thirty years ago. “Christianity, in Catholicism, is God-made religion — not man-made, as the others are,” Pete said.
Team Enterprise concluded their report to us with, “These were bright young adults who want nothing more than to be closer to God. We just wanted to show them that they can be, by showing them the truth through the Catholic Church. God bless them. And, pray for them.”
Good work, Team Enterprise! And as for you, will you help us help spread the Love of Jesus Christ?