What’s the Difference Between a Catholic and a Christian?

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I was raised Catholic. I attended Separate School and went to mass every Sunday.

In university, I would often argue with my best friend about how Catholicism was the only right religion. Although she was Protestant I believed that she followed a different God.

Somewhere along the line, I got my wires crossed and assumed that if you weren’t Catholic, you weren’t a Christian.

It wasn’t until I was born-again and decided to allow Jesus into my everyday life that I realized how wrong I was.

I remember the cold afternoon where the veil was lifted from my eyes. I attended a women’s retreat and during our coffee break in front of a warm fire, I started to ask questions.

“What’s the difference between a Catholic and a Christian?” I asked.

“Nothing. A Catholic is a Christian. A Christian is one who follows Christ.”

“What’s the difference between a Protestant and a Christian?” I asked.

“Nothing. A Protestant is a Christian. A Christian is one who believes Jesus is the Christ.”

“So both Catholics and Protestants are Christians?”

“If they believe that Christ is God, yes.”

I knew that Christianity started after Christ had been crucified and rose again. The book of Acts outlines the start of the Church.

But I learned that Christianity split into two divisions: Catholic and Protestant.

Over the years, further splits happened in the church that now makes up the variety of denominations.

But the basic tenet of belief in Jesus as Lord and Savior remains the same. So whether you are a Catholic or a Protestant, you are a Christian.

But in saying that, I realize that many people call themselves Christian without actually believing in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.

Rather, they may believe in Him but they don’t necessarily believe Him.

Their lives do not reflect what He taught. They do not follow Him nor do what He says.

Don’t be fooled by someone just because they say they are Christian. Whether they are Catholic or Protestant, it’s the fruit of their lives that reflects their true beliefs.

You may like East City Girl — A memoir of growing up Catholic in a small town
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