In a web-only interview with George Weigel, the not-quite-converted Chris Castaldo gives Weigel lots of wiggle-room to evangelize Evangelicals with his Roman Catholic message, but fails to alert people of the Borg-like nature of interaction with Rome. From the intro, “Chris Castaldo, director of the Ministry for Gospel Renewal at Wheaton College’s Billy Graham Center, spoke with Weigel about obstacles facing Evangelical Catholicism, from secular hostility to challenges inside the church.”
In the process, the assumption that Castaldo allows to run free is that “Evangelical Catholicism” somehow holds “evangelical doctrines” – which it does not – in favor of the notion that it is “being evangelical” in its spread of Roman Catholicism.
Not only is that fact completely unspoken in this interview, but Castaldo permits Weigel to engage in the fiction that Roman Catholicism somehow encompasses and promotes some “biblical realism” [to use Weigel’s phrase] rather than simply “Roman Catholicism”.
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Castaldo also leaves without comment the impact of the fact that there are “Catholic clergy and laity who are in a ‘diminished state’ of communion with the Church”. We’re not talking about “separated brethren” here. What we are talking about is the fact that “doctrinally wayward priests” actually represent “an abrogation of responsibility by pastors, be they priests or bishops.”
The fact that bishops (and there are many of them) may be not only “morally” but “doctrinally wayward” betrays the confusion that exists within “the Magisterium” itself.
Finally, Castaldo himself amplifies Weigel’s fiction that “Bishop of Rome is, above all, the Church’s first witness—the witness whose own witness strengthens the witness of all the brethren”.
At a minimum, Castaldo and the editors of Christianity Today ought to be castigated for this in polite company, for exhibiting their ignorance of the non-Christianity of Rome when they allow this tripe to be published under their banner.
The hope is that calling this sort of thing to their attention will give them some opportunity to think through what they are doing.