It seems clear to me that over the last while, MB’s have been experimenting with a whole lot of strange, useless or bad theology and practice. One of the things that keeps popping up in MB circles is Catholic Mysticism, which others have written about extensively. I’m not really going to write something on a subject that others have already covered, but I wanted to simply directly address the idea that Catholics and Mennonites aren’t “really all that different”, or that we’re “all worshipping the same guy”.
Rather, I’m simply going to post a little comment on what Menno Simon, who was a Catholic Priest, had to say about the Catholic Church after he left. Do contemporary Mennonite Brethren sound anything like the guy whose name they gather under?
“Since then the true messengers of God, taught nothing but the word of the Lord, which is the only doctrine from which our souls can obtain eternal life, as the Lord said, Deut. 8:3. So it is easily here to mark and judge what kind of teachers they are who direct the poor uncultivated people to legends, histories, fables, holydays, images, holy water, tapers, palms, confessions, pilgrimages, masses, matins and vespers; who teach of purgatory, vigils, times, bulls, offerings, and satisfaction for souls and sins, who also make a piece of bread and a drink of wine, to be the essential body and blood of Christ; who teach and say that when they have but spoken these words, Hoc est corpus meum (this is my body), the Lord, willing or not willing, must descend unto their idolatrous hands, even though the Heavens should rend assunder, and the earth crumble down, O blasphemy!
O dear Lord ! my heart trembles in my body, that I must relate and mention such terrible abominations. But because the simple plain people, who do not guard themselves against such seducers; who, conscientiously are bound hand and foot, and are blindly rushed into eternal death, and the abyss of hell, by these useless men, therefore I cannot remain silent, but must disclose this, through undissembled love to God and your souls. Who knows but God may give grace that you may be prevailed upon to hear, your eyes opened to see, and your hearts to understand, that you may be freed from the snares of the devil, whereby you are taken.”
(Simon, Menno. “A Foundation and Plain Instruction of the Saving Doctrine of our Lord Jesus Christ”, The Works of Menno Simon, Volume 1, page 58).
Seems like Menno Simon would have had some words for people infiltrating the MB Church with Roman Catholic teaching and mysticism.
Seems like Menno would suggest that these people are “useless men”, the followers of whom are “blindly rushed into eternal death, and the abyss of hell”.
Menno said it, not me.
For being a pacifist, he sure knows how to pick a fight.
Menno thought that Catholics were headed to an eternity in hell! Yikes! How narrow minded and unloving! I wonder why that was?
You may want to go here and download the black and white PDF document. Informative stuff on what Menno thought about these things, and why. You may possibly learn that what you’ve been told is “Mennonite Brethren theology and practice” is the very thing that Menno Simon himself was rejecting.
Until Next Time,
Lyndon “The Armchair Mennonite” Unger