Pedro Pablo Martin stood in front of his congregation, giving his sermon. A bit earlier in the service a man in a hooded sweatshirt had approached the priest, whispered into his ear, “I’m here to kill you.”
As unsettling as the comment was, Father Martin politely asked the man to return to his seat and to listen to the service. He didn’t take the threat too seriously, and certainly wasn’t going to let it deter him from sharing the Word.
But it became clear that the threat was very real, as the man leapt from his seat, pulling out a frighteningly large knife and heading straight for Father Martin. But the man of God called upon our Lord for help and that is when God intervened!
Now, do I believe that God – the actual God, the Creator of Heaven and Earth, and not some pathetic imitation (political or spiritual) – protected that priest? Yes, I actually do.
Why? Because the congregation gave praise to the name of Jesus when the would-be murderer was stopped.
Do I still strenuously disagree with the priest’s Catholic theology? Quite a lot, yes.
We don’t need to have a perfect theology to please God: if this was required, we would all be damned, to a greater or lesser extent. What is needed is that Christ alone is exalted as the only begotten Son of God, and through His name alone is salvation. This, the Catholic Church teaches, so they are Christians.
Christians with serious problems, yes, but even Calvinists have (a different set of) serious problems.
(Tidbit for fellow Calvinists: you’d be surprised how much power love has. I Peter 4:8 declares that love covers a multitude of sins: a truly perfect theology, while certainly desirable, just doesn’t have the same kind of power in the eyes of God…)