Saturday, October 13, 2012

Reformed Protestants must be reading Catholics

One of our correspondents notes how often he runs into Reformed Protestants (Calvinists), who evidence a recent reading of Catholic authors.

The late Charles Colson was certainly an example, for any of you who knew how he delved into the Carmelite mystic, St. John of the Cross, when walking through some deep waters with his family.

Our correspondent points out a recent passage from the blog of the fiercely Reformed Carl Trueman, who is consistently good and recently in a piece suggesting the mortification of the Saints (this time solitude), invokes Newman:
"It was said of John Henry Newman that he was never less alone than when alone. Newman liked the peace and quiet of isolation: it allowed him to read, to think and to write. I confess to some sympathy for Newman on this"
Again, our correspondent notes how people "fail to realize (or don't care) how often Reformed folks tip their hat to us. The dean of them, J.I. Packer, added a chapter analyzing Mother Teresa's lately uncovered Dark Night of the Soul when he reprinted his Rediscovering Holiness. Inside those pages he also noted:
"The Puritans insisted that all life and relationships must become ‘holiness to the Lord.’ John Wesley told the world that God had raised up Methodism ‘to spread scriptural holiness throughout the land.’ Phoebe Palmer, Handley Moule, Andrew Murray, Jessie Penn-Lewis, F.B. Meyer, Oswald Chambers, Horatius Bonar, Amy Carmichael and L.B. Maxwell are only a few of the leading figures in the ‘holiness revival’ that touched all evangelical Christendom between the mid-nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries. On the other side of the Reformation divide, Seraphim of Sarov (Russian Orthodox) and Teresa of Avila, Ignatius Loyola, Madame Guyon, and Pére Grou (all Roman Catholic) ministered as apostles of holiness in a similar way. We [Protestants] must realize that, as John Wesley, for one, clearly saw, the Reformation cleavage was much less deep on sanctification and the Spirit than it was on justification and the Mass."
[Hat tip to J.M.]

No comments: