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How comfortable do the leaders of Promise Keepers feel with Roman Catholics? Are they really wary and concerned for sound biblical fundamentalist doctrine? Or are they - as we long suspected - hand in hand with Rome on a journey towards ecumenical unity?

Recently, PK was the subject of an article in a Catholic publication, Our Sunday Visitor. The article in question was entitled "Making New Catholic Men: Promise Keepers 'gospel for guys': Is it just the thing that Catholic Men need, or is it bound to loosen male bonds to the Church?"

This article demonstrates just how hard the Promise Keepers leaders have been working to accommodate Catholics in their organisation. The article suggests that Catholic involvement is already significant:

Mike Timmis, a longtime leader in the Catholic charismatic renewal, was welcomed to the Board of Directors of PK in March.
Promise Keepers has spotlighted Catholic evangelist Jim Berlucchi as a speaker at several rallies this year.
"In June, Promise Keepers hosted a 'catholic summit' at its headquarters in Denver, sounding out Catholic volunteers and leaders from around the country.
And earlier this year, Promise Keepers amended its statement of faith, revising the lines that Catholics had found offensive.
Read these quotes and judge for yourself the way things are going:

"Promise Keepers founder Bill McCartney told Our Sunday Visitor recently that full catholic participation was his intention from the start."

"Back in 1992, at our first stadium event, we very clearly stated from the podium that we eagerly welcomed the participation of Roman Catholics…"

"While there are no hard figures, some say that 10-20 percent of those men [attending Promise Keepers conferences] are Catholic. And, recently, Promise Keepers, a largely evangelical movement, has taken steps to attract even more Catholic men to its events and principles of discipleship."

"As executive director of Christian outreach at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio, [John] Sengenberger cites Promise Keepers as the inspiration of the men's conferences his own office has sponsored since 1995...."

"Sengenberger invited representatives from Promise Keepers to visit the university. 'We had some frank discussions and told them we needed to see some Catholic involvement on the leadership level.'"

"When Steubenville hosted its first men's conference in 1995, Sengenberger invited two Promise Keepers officials to attend: Dale Schlafer, who was at that time chairman of the board, and Glenn Wagner, a vice president."

'It was their first time in a Catholic evangelistic setting,' Sengenberger said. 'They were impressed. When they were leaving, we invited them to go through our bookstore and take out any books they wanted. They went home with all kinds of theology books, Vatican II teachings. ... Dale took a set of the Liturgy of the Hours. The following year, he told me he'd incorporated it into his daily prayer, so Glenn asked for one, too.'

"Both men returned to Steubenville for the 1996 men's conference, where Sengenberger took them to a Eucharistic holy hour."

"'I took them aside and explained what we were doing, how this only makes sense if you believe in the Real Presence of Jesus. That night we were down by the stage, and I remember going down on my knees, then prostrate, down on my face - and right next to me was Glenn Wagner, doing the same thing.'

One of the most disturbing aspects of the Sunday Visitor article is the news that PK have altered their statement of belief to suit Catholics. Here are the very quotes:

"… earlier this year, Promise Keepers amended its statement of faith, revising the lines that Catholics had found offensive. "

"… profound differences remained between the evangelicals of Promise Keepers and Catholics who were sympathetic. Last year, Promise Keepers published a 'statement of faith' with lines that seemed to be crafted to exclude Catholics---or force them to reject their Catholic faith.

"Section five of the Promise Keepers credo read: 'We believe that man was created in the image of God, but because of sin, was alienated from God. That alienation can be removed only by accepting, through faith alone, God's gift of salvation, which was made possible by Christ's death.'

"'Faith alone' [says this Catholic magazine] is a key doctrine of the Protestant Reformation. Though the phrase appears nowhere in Scripture, it was inserted by Martin Luther into his German translation of the Bible.

"Concerned about this development at Promise Keepers, Sengenberger had several Catholic theologians review the statement and present their objections to Wagner last summer.

"Early this year, Promise Keepers revised the statement in a way that passed theological muster with those Catholics. 'Only through faith, trusting in Christ alone for salvation, which was made possible by His death and resurrection, can that alienation be removed.'

"Paul Edwards, Promise Keepers' vice president for advancement, explained that the statement of faith is a 'dynamic' document, and that Promise Keepers is open to change.

"'Truth and unity are equal, but in tension,' said Edwards, who was raised a Catholic but now attends a nondenominational church. 'We try to present truth, not washed down, yet not truth that devolves into denominational squabbles'" (Mike Aquilina, Our Sunday Visitor, July 20, 1997, pp. 10,11).

The changes in the above wording are so subtle that many fail to see their deep significance. However, what has happened strikes a blow against all that Christians hold dear - that salvation is obtained through and by NOTHING ELSE but the work of Christ on the Cross and faith in that finished work!

Roman Catholic dogma adds to that work the merits of their sacraments and good works as well as allegiance to the Mother Church! Once something is added to "faith alone", we are no longer obtaining slavation by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ, but by faith PLUS works! This important distinction is lost on many who have never been taught the basic elements of evangelical faith, and know little about the false doctrines of the Roman Church. But the fact remains, that Catholics (as reported above) cannot abide the phrase "faith alone" and have managed to substitute the watered down version of "through Christ alone".

Now, it is self-evident that salvation is "through Christ alone"! Indeed, many pseudo-christian cults preach that salvation is obtained through Christ alone. However, only the true Christian churches teach that salvartion is not only through and by Christ alone, but also BY FAITH ALONE, and NOT through works, liturgies, sacraments and obedience to the priesthood of the Church!

The RC Church teaches that salvation is "through faith", but not through FAITH ALONE. The difference is absolutely crucial. It is the difference between law and grace; the difference between faith and works!

Never have the boundaries been so battered, and the barriers been so flimsy! PK, like many other organisations, seems to have adopted the policy that "anything goes" in the name of brotherhood and unity in the Global Church. If PK are now prepared to see their doctrine as negotiable for the sake of unity, then where do they draw the line?

Confirmation of these extraordinary events is given in the magazine "Christianity Today" in a piece titled "CATHOLIC INVOLVEMENT QUESTIONED" (June 16, Page 58):

"Some Latinos also outlined opposition to formal involvement of Catholics in Promise Keepers. Misael Castillo, pastor of Jerusalem Baptist Church in Miami, noted that Hispanic Baptist pastors in that city have vowed not to participate in any event where Catholics are in leadership roles. Killings of evangelicals by Catholics in Chiapas, Mexico, are a sore issue for many Latino Protestants. This makes PK's recent appointment of Catholic Michael Timmis of Detroit to its board problematic. McCartney, who was raised Catholic and now attends a Vineyard church, says Catholics are welcome if they can abide by PK's "Seven Promises," mission statement, and statement of faith."

The above statement by McCartney is laughable. We now know that the Roman Catholics COULD NOT "abide by the PK Statement of Belief" as it stood, and with what outcome? PK altered the Statement to suit them! What hypocrisy!

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