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Radio Replies First Volume - The Holy Trinity ^ | 1938 | Fathers Rumble & Carty

Posted on 07/26/2009 12:58:27 AM PDT by GonzoII

The Holy Trinity

637. But there are many individual dogmas of the Church which my reason could never accept. Take, for example, your dogma of God.

Catholic dogma concerning the existence and nature of God is in perfect harmony with the conclusions of sane philosophy, which have already been discussed.

638. I am referring to the doctrine of the Trinity. You have no sufficient reason for believing in that contradictory doctrine.

No contradiction is involved in the doctrine of the Trinity. The reason why we believe it is because God says that it is true, using terms which express it as nearly as possible in human language. As God ought to know His own intimate nature, His describing it is the best of possible reasons for believing in it.

639. Has not the Christian doctrine of the Trinity a mythological origin?

No. Christ taught us this doctrine both implicitly and explicitly in giving us His revelation. And He definitely ordered His Apostles to baptize in the one Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

640. But Indian philosophy taught this Trinitarian doctrine long before Christianity.

It did not. In the Vedic philosophy there are traces of a trinity, but not of the Trinity. The idea of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost is not to be found in it. That philosophy taught a pantheistic notion, all things being a kind of emanation from God to be reabsorbed into Him. It has no distinction such as ours between the Creator and the creature, and Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva bear no real resemblance whatever to the Christian doctrine of three divine and equal personalities sharing the one divine nature. The Indian notion no more resembles the Christian doctrine than does the hegelian Thesis, Antithesis, and Synthesis. You might just as well try to account for the notion of the Trinity from any notion of triplicity wherever it occurs.

641. The idea of the Trinity was derived from ancient Egyptian mythology. The Oracle of Serapis used to reply, "First God, Oxen the Word, and with them the Holy Spirit. All these are of the same nature and make but one whole, of which the power is eternal."

Your only reason for attempting to derive the doctrine from Egyptian mythology is that you do not wish to admit that it is from God. The Egyptians derived their religious notions from their own everyday life. They had a multiplicity of gods, a god for every locality, each associated with some animal as a symbol Later the idea grew that the gods resided in statues combining human figures with animal heads. Legend made the gods marry, sometimes two goddesses to one male god, thus forming a triad. Or again, the number three was derived from the family unit of father, mother, and child. The mother was the counterpart of the father, and that father lived again in his child. Religious idealization attributed these notions to a supreme god, and the Egyptians spoke of Osiris, Isis, and Horus, father, mother and child. But Isis and Horus were both inferior to Osiris, and all three mere myths. Nor does even the mythical notion imply a tri-unity or trinity in anything like the Christian sense of the word, nor any true divinity of infinite perfection.

The Oracle of Serapis certainly never used the words you quote. The books of Trismegistus Hermes, or the Hermetic Books, which are the great source of Egyptian mythology are full of Neo-Platonic and post-Christian interpolations and additions, and are unreliable. The attributing of the expressions "Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" to the Oracle of Serapis is but a subterfuge of enemies of Christianity who wish to suggest that the doctrine was never revealed by God. Anyone Can attribute anything to anybody. It is a different matter if you ask for proof of authenticity. Men who will not believe in the doctrines of Christianity with evidence, will swallow oceans of oracles without evidence. Their eagerness not to be credulous when the historical Christ speaks is absurd in the light of their immense credulity when anybody merely mentions the magic words Oracle of Serapis. Their dislike of Christianity at once makes possible any anti-Christian assertion. But this is not rational.

642. Explain fully to us the Trinity, in the Christian sense of the word.

No man on earth can explain fully the Trinity. The finite mind cannot fully comprehend an infinite being. Even did God condescend to explain the doctrine fully to you, you would lack the capacity necessary in order to comprehend it. It is a revealed mystery to be accepted as true merely because God teaches it. However, we can explain the doctrine which Christians must believe. There are three divine Personalities in one divine Nature — the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. These three Persons are equal in all things; equally God, equally eternal, powerful, etc. God is an infinitely perfect and purely spiritual Being, active in His knowledge and love. The knowledge God has of Himself is a living Personality called the Son. The idea of intellectual generation is not foreign to us, for we ourselves speak of our own thoughts as concepts and as the offspring of our intelligence. The mutual and reciprocal love between Father and Son is also a living personality — the Holy Spirit. There is no contradiction in this doctrine. We do not speak of one divine nature, yet three divine natures; nor of three divine persons, yet one divine person. We speak of one Divine Nature, yet of three Divine Persons, nature, and personality being quite different aspects of our consideration. It is as if, when dealing with the Persons, we viewed numerical distinction, as in the addition of 1 + 1 + 1 into 3, yet when dealing with the Nature in which all three Persona share, that fusion which results in unity by multiplication of the same three figures — 1 x 1 x 1 equals 1. Yet while the absence of contradiction is clear, the full significance of the triune nature of God is beyond the limited capacity of the human mind. We know the fact by revelation, and believe it implicitly because God has revealed it.

643. If Christ be the Son of God, there must have been a time when He did not exist, for no son can be as old as his father.

Christ is the name given to the Second Person of the Holy Trinity in His assumed human nature. As the Christ, therefore, He was not eternal, but began in time. But before the Second Person appeared on earth in this human form, he existed as the Eternal Son of God, equal with the Father in all things. But in His divine nature, if He be a son, how can He be as old as His Father? I'm afraid it is impossible to express an eternal fact in terms of time. Time is successive duration. We speak of growing old as time goes by. But in eternity there is no succession of time, and there can be no such thing as age when we speak of God. Father, Son, and Holy Ghost always exist, not existed; and they exist not for a long time, but without time. What we call now is only the indivisible instant which is the last moment of the past and the first moment of the future simultaneously. Our time is based upon the coming and going of movement. But there is no such thing in God. Yet the Second Person of the Holy Trinity is truly a son. A son is a being or person who derives from his father the same human nature possessed by the father. In the one God, the Second Person shares through the First Person exactly the same Divine Nature. And from that point of view He is the Son. But He differs from earthly sons in that He does not receive a numerically distinct nature, nor does He exist subsequently to the Father. He eternally participates in the Divine Nature through the Father. The word son in human language is the nearest inadequate approximation we can find to express the truth by analogy. To say that it completely expressed the reality would be to fall into that anthropomorphism which you would be the first to ridicule. You cannot object to the treating of God as if He were merely a kind of glorified created human being, and then refuse to believe on the score that Catholic theology does not explain Him in terms which would reduce Him to the same level as ourselves.

644. What does the term Holy Ghost mean?

It means Holy Spirit. "Ghost" is Anglo-Saxon for spirit, "spiritus" in Latin meaning a breath. Thus the word spirit is associated with human breathing as a kind of intangible impulse. Christ used the term to bring home to us that the Third Person of the Holy Trinity is the impulse of love invisible and intangible between Father and Son. Since love tends to union, and union with and in God is holiness, the Third Person is termed the Holy Spirit.

645. You teach that the Holy Ghost proceeds from the Son, yet is responsible for the birth of that Son.

The eternal Son of God, in becoming man, took a human nature from the Virgin Mary. Thus was born a being who was both God and man. As God, this Second Person of the Holy Trinity always existed, and from Him in eternity the Holy Ghost always proceeds, as from the Father also. In this sense the Holy Ghost does not give being to the Son. But the human nature, which began in time, was due to the operation of the Holy Ghost, and was assumed by the Son. There is no inconsistency in this doctrine.

Encoding copyright 2009 by Frederick Manligas Nacino. Some rights reserved.
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0

TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Theology
KEYWORDS: catholic; radiorepliesvolone; trinity

Historical Context of "Radio Replies"

By markomalley

If one recalls the time frame from which Radio Replies emerged, it can explain some of the frankness and lack of tact in the nature of the responses provided.

It was during this timeframe that a considerable amount of anti-Catholic rhetoric came to the forefront, particularly in this country. Much of this developed during the Presidential campaign of Al Smith in 1928, but had its roots in the publication of Alexander Hislop's The Two Babylons, originally published in book form in 1919 and also published in pamphlet form in 1853.

While in Britain (and consequently Australia), the other fellow would surely have experienced the effects of the Popery Act, the Act of Settlement, the Disenfranchising Act, the Ecclesiastical Titles Act, and many others since the reformation (that basically boiled down to saying, "We won't kill you if you just be good, quiet little Catholics"). Even the so-called Catholic Relief Acts (1778, 1791, 1829, 1851, 1871) still had huge barriers placed in the way.

And of course, they'd both remember the American Protective Association, "Guy Fawkes Days" (which included burning the Pontiff in effigy), the positions of the Whigs and Ultra-Torries, and so on.

A strong degree of "in your face" from people in the position of authoritativeness was required back in the 1930s, as there was a large contingent of the populations of both the US and the British Empire who were not at all shy about being "in your face" toward Catholics in the first place (in other words, a particularly contentious day on Free Republic would be considered a mild day in some circles back then). Sure, in polite, educated circles, contention was avoided (thus the little ditty about it not being polite to discuss religion in public, along with sex and politics), but it would be naive to assume that we all got along, or anything resembling that, back in the day.

Having said all of the above, reading the articles from the modern mindset and without the historical context that I tried to briefly summarize above, they make challenging reading, due to their bluntness.

The reader should also keep in mind that the official teaching of the Church takes a completely different tone, best summed up in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

817 In fact, "in this one and only Church of God from its very beginnings there arose certain rifts, which the Apostle strongly censures as damnable. But in subsequent centuries much more serious dissensions appeared and large communities became separated from full communion with the Catholic Church - for which, often enough, men of both sides were to blame."269 The ruptures that wound the unity of Christ's Body - here we must distinguish heresy, apostasy, and schism270 - do not occur without human sin:

Where there are sins, there are also divisions, schisms, heresies, and disputes. Where there is virtue, however, there also are harmony and unity, from which arise the one heart and one soul of all believers.271

818 "However, one cannot charge with the sin of the separation those who at present are born into these communities [that resulted from such separation] and in them are brought up in the faith of Christ, and the Catholic Church accepts them with respect and affection as brothers .... All who have been justified by faith in Baptism are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers in the Lord by the children of the Catholic Church."272

819 "Furthermore, many elements of sanctification and of truth"273 are found outside the visible confines of the Catholic Church: "the written Word of God; the life of grace; faith, hope, and charity, with the other interior gifts of the Holy Spirit, as well as visible elements."274 Christ's Spirit uses these Churches and ecclesial communities as means of salvation, whose power derives from the fullness of grace and truth that Christ has entrusted to the Catholic Church. All these blessings come from Christ and lead to him,275 and are in themselves calls to "Catholic unity."276

838 "The Church knows that she is joined in many ways to the baptized who are honored by the name of Christian, but do not profess the Catholic faith in its entirety or have not preserved unity or communion under the successor of Peter."322 Those "who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in a certain, although imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church."323 With the Orthodox Churches, this communion is so profound "that it lacks little to attain the fullness that would permit a common celebration of the Lord's Eucharist."324

269 UR 3 § 1.
270 Cf. CIC, can. 751.
271 Origen, Hom. in Ezech. 9,1:PG 13,732.
272 UR 3 § 1.
273 LG 8 § 2.
274 UR 3 § 2; cf. LG 15.
275 Cf. UR 3.
276 Cf. LG 8.
322 LG 15.
323 UR 3.
324 Paul VI, Discourse, December 14, 1975; cf. UR 13-18.





Rev. Dr. Leslie Rumble, M.S.C.

"I was brought up as a Protestant, probably with more inherited prejudices than most non-Catholics of these days.  My parents were Anglican and taught me the Angelican faith. My 'broad-minded' protestant teachers taught me to dislike the Catholic Church intensely. I later tried Protestantism in various other forms, and it is some thirty years since, in God's providence, I became a Catholic. As for the 'open, free, sincere worship' of a Protestant Church, I tasted it, but for me it proved in the end to be not only open, but empty; it was altogether too free from God's prescriptions."

Eventually, Leslie became a priest of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart.

In 1928, Fr. Rumble began a one-hour 'Question Box' program on 2SM Sydney, N.S.W. radio on Sunday evenings that was heard all over Australia and New Zealand. For five years he answered questions on every subject imaginable that had been written to him from all over that part of the globe. His first show began with a classic introduction:

"Good evening, listeners all. For some time I have been promising to give a session dealing with questions of religion and morality, in which the listeners themselves should decide what is of interest to them. Such a session will commence next Sunday evening, and I invite you to send in any questions you wish on these subjects . . . So now I invite you, non-Catholics above all, to send in any questions you wish on religion, or morality, or the Catholic Church, and I shall explain exactly the Catholic position, and give the reasons for it. In fact I almost demand those questions. Many hard things have been said, and are still being said, about the Catholic Church, though no criminal, has been so abused, that she has a right to be heard. I do not ask that you give your name and address. A nom de plume will do. Call yourself Voltaire, Confucius, X.Y.Z., what you like, so long as you give indication enough to recognize your answer."

"By the summer of 1937, the first edition of Radio Replies was already in print in Australia, financed by Rt. Rev. Monsignor James Meany, P.P. - the director of Station 2SM of whom I am greatly indebted."

"I have often been mistaken, as most men at times. And it is precisely to make sure that I will not be mistaken in the supremely important matter of religion that I cling to a Church which cannot be mistaken, but must be right where I might be wrong. God knew that so many sincere men would make mistakes that He deliberately established an infallible Church to preserve them from error where it was most important that they should not go wrong."

Rev. Charles Mortimer Carty

I broadcast my radio program, the Catholic Radio Hour,  from St. Paul, Minnesota.

I was also carrying on as a Catholic Campaigner for Christ, the Apostolate to the man in the street through the medium of my trailer and loud-speaking system. In the distribution of pamphlets and books on the Catholic Faith, Radio Replies proved the most talked of book carried in my trailer display of Catholic literature. As many of us street preachers have learned, it is not so much what you say over the microphone in answer to questions from open air listeners, but what you get into their hands to read. The questions Fr. Rumble had to answer on the other side of the planet are same the questions I had to answer before friendly and hostile audiences throughout my summer campaign."

I realized that this priest in Australia was doing exactly the same work I was doing here in St. Paul. Because of the success of his book, plus the delay in getting copies from Sydney and the prohibitive cost of the book on this side of the universe, I got in contact with him to publish a cheap American edition.  

It doesn't take long for the imagination to start thinking about how much we could actually do. We began the Radio Replies Press Society Publishing Company, finished the American edition of what was to be the first volume of Radio Replies, recieved the necessary imprimatur, and Msgr. Fulton J. Sheen agreed to write a preface. About a year after the publication of the first edition in Australia, we had the American edition out and in people's hands.

The book turned into a phenomena. Letters began pouring into my office from every corner of the United States; Protestant Publishing Houses are requesting copies for distribution to Protestant Seminaries; a few Catholic Seminaries have adopted it as an official textbook - and I had still never met Dr. Rumble in person.

To keep a long story short, we finally got a chance to meet, published volumes two and three of Radio Replies, printed a set of ten booklets on subjects people most often asked about, and a few other pamphlets on subjects of interest to us.

Fr. Carty died on May 22, 1964 in Connecticut.

"Firstly, since God is the Author of all truth, nothing that is definitely true can every really contradict anything else that is definitely true. Secondly, the Catholic Church is definitely true. It therefore follows that no objection or difficulty, whether drawn from history, Scripture, science, or philosophy, can provide a valid argument against the truth of the Catholic religion."

Biographies compiled from the introductions to Radio Replies, volumes 1, 2 and 3.


1 posted on 07/26/2009 12:58:28 AM PDT by GonzoII
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To: fidelis; Atomic Vomit; MI; Sir_Humphrey; dsc; annalex; Citizen Soldier; bdeaner

Radio Replies Ping

FReep-mail me to get on or off

“The Radio Replies Ping-List”


2 posted on 07/26/2009 12:59:13 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: All

The Radio Replies Series: Volume One

Chapter One: God

Radio Replies Volume One: God’s Existence Known by Reason
Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of God
Radio Replies Volume One: Providence of God and Problem of Evil

Chapter Two: Man

Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of Man & Existence and Nature of the Soul
Radio Replies Volume One: Immortality of the Soul
Radio Replies Volume One: Destiny of the Soul & Freewill of Man

Chapter Three: Religion

Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of Religion & Necessity of Religion

Chapter Four: The Religion of the Bible

Radio Replies Volume One: Natural Religion & Revealed Religion
Radio Replies Volume One: Mysteries of Religion
Radio Replies Volume One: Miracles
Radio Replies Volume One: Value of the Gospels
Radio Replies Volume One: Inspiration of the Gospels

Radio Replies Volume One: Old Testament Difficulties [Part 1]
Radio Replies Volume One: Old Testament Difficulties [Part 2]
Radio Replies Volume One: Old Testament Difficulties [Part 3]
Radio Replies Volume One: New Testament Difficulties

Chapter Five: The Christian Faith

Radio Replies Volume One: The Religion of the Jews
Radio Replies Volume One: Truth of Christianity
Radio Replies Volume One: Nature and Necessity of Faith

Chapter Six: A Definite Christian Faith

Radio Replies Volume One: Conflicting Churches
Radio Replies Volume One: Are All One Church?
Radio Replies Volume One: Is One Religion As Good As Another?
Radio Replies Volume One: The Fallacy of Indifference

Chapter Seven: The Failure of Protestantism

Radio Replies Volume One: Protestantism Erroneous
Radio Replies Volume One: Luther
Radio Replies Volume One: Anglicanism
Radio Replies Volume One: Greek Orthodox Church
Radio Replies Volume One: Wesley

Radio Replies Volume One: Baptists
Radio Replies Volume One: Adventists
Radio Replies Volume One: Salvation Army
Radio Replies Volume One: Witnesses of Jehovah
Radio Replies Volume One: Christian Science

Radio Replies Volume One: Theosophy
Radio Replies Volume One: Spiritualism
Radio Replies Volume One: Catholic Intolerance

Chapter Eight: The Truth of Catholicism

Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of the Church
Radio Replies Volume One: The true Church
Radio Replies Volume One: Hierarchy of the Church
Radio Replies Volume One: The Pope
Radio Replies Volume One: Temporal Power

Radio Replies Volume One: Infallibility
Radio Replies Volume One: Unity
Radio Replies Volume One: Holiness
Radio Replies Volume One: Catholicity
Radio Replies Volume One: Apostolicity

Radio Replies Volume One: Indefectibility
Radio Replies Volume One: "Outside the Church no salvation"

Chapter Nine: The Catholic Church and the Bible

Radio Replies Volume One: Not opposed to the Bible
Radio Replies Volume One: The reading of the Bible
Radio Replies Volume One: Protestants and the Bible
Radio Replies Volume One: "Bible Only" a false principle
Radio Replies Volume One: The necessity of Tradition
Radio Replies Volume One: The authority of the Catholic Church

Chapter Ten: The Church and Her Dogmas

Radio Replies Volume One: Dogmatic Truth
Radio Replies Volume One: Development of Dogma
Radio Replies Volume One: Dogma and Reason
Radio Replies Volume One: Rationalism
Radio Replies Volume One: The Holy Trinity

3 posted on 07/26/2009 1:00:19 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: GonzoII

thank you GonzoII for the post!

4 posted on 07/26/2009 1:13:58 AM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: GOP Poet

You’re welcome.

5 posted on 07/26/2009 1:20:07 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: GonzoII

I’m really enjoying this series of posts. Thanks.

6 posted on 07/26/2009 5:30:15 AM PDT by Not gonna take it anymore
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To: Not gonna take it anymore
"I’m really enjoying this series of posts. Thanks."

You're welcome.

7 posted on 07/26/2009 5:59:13 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: GonzoII

God in Three Persons..
Holy Trinity...

For there are three that bear record in Heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 1 John 5:7

8 posted on 07/26/2009 10:20:01 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: GonzoII

Fr Leslie Rumble - This guy had to be a boxer. I love him. Radio Replies volumes are worth their weight in gold. KB

9 posted on 07/26/2009 10:22:47 AM PDT by kevinrbranson
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To: Tennessee Nana
This verse is most likely a medieval interpolation.

Comma Johanneum

10 posted on 07/27/2009 4:01:56 PM PDT by annalex (
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