Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
May 27, 1954

Catholicism On Television

Eugene Britnell, Newark, Arkansas

Have you ever spent a quiet evening watching television? If so, have you noticed the many free "plugs" the Catholic religion gets through the plays, newscasts, quiz shows, etc.? If you haven't, allow me to give you a synopsis of what I observed in just a few programs one evening.

It so happened that the evening I was watching the Catholics were observing the pope's birthday, and the fifteenth anniversary of his coronation as head of the Catholic Church. The first program I mention was a newscast on a nationwide hook-up. It showed a film of the pope being crowned head of the Catholic Church fifteen years ago. In this film they showed the ring being placed on the pope's finger, along with these remarks: "This ring is worn in honor of Peter the great fisherman, who was the first pope." Yes, they slipped that in a subtle way but it still taught the point intended. Where is the scripture that even hints that Peter was a pope? There is as much difference in the character and teachings of Peter and the pope of Rome as there is in black and white. The pathetic thing is the fact that there were thousands of people viewing and listening who did not know any better.

Then following this report, they switched us to one of the mid-western states for a look at the drought situation. To impress us with the seriousness of the drought, they showed a film of people gathered in a churchyard praying for rain. Who do you think they were? Yes, you guessed right, they were Catholics. The picture showed several of the Sisters with their costumes (I don't know what else to call them) on, and a group of children kneeling around them. They were all so arrayed in beads, crosses, etc., until you could hardly tell if they were in a religious service or a carnival. They were all looking upward, making the sign of the cross and holding the little beads filled with that sacred (?) water. They were jabbering as hard as they could but all you could understand was "Hail Mary mother of God, Hail Mary mother of God" every few seconds. To anyone who knows the truth, it took a strong and calm nerve to watch such mockery. Yes, I believe in praying for rain and anything else that we need from our Heavenly Father, but do not believe in such prayers and religion as that.

A few minutes later, a popular quiz show came on the air. Now you wouldn't think they could get in anything on a quiz show at all would you? On second thought, maybe that was the appropriate place after all, but anyway, they did. How? Well, they had an old gentleman on as one of the contestants who said he fought with General George Custer over 75 years ago. When the quizmaster demanded proof of his age, he out with a baptismal certificate, and what do you think it said? Yep, that is right; it stated that he was baptized THE YEAR HE WAS BORN in St. Mark's Church in some western town. Do you see what they got in there? Everyone knew that St. Mark's Church must have been a Catholic Church. And if he was baptized the year he was born that taught both sprinkling and infant baptism, much to the Catholic's delight.

Well, you would think that was enough for one evening, but it wasn't. The very next program was a play, and sure enough it had a religious scene in it and the men playing that part were dressed and addressed as Catholic "Fathers." (See Matt. 23:9.) All this in one evening? Yes, and I went to bed early at that.

It is hard to see the Catholics get such freedom and kind treatment (for which I'm thankful) and their doctrine taught free in this good land, and at the same time think of what they are doing to our brethren in Italy. Is there anything fair about that? Do they really believe in religious freedom. Let us not deceive ourselves into thinking it can't happen here. The only thing that will ever destroy Catholicism is the same thing that will destroy Protestantism, Communism, and all other isms — the Truth of God. The only institution on earth that will ever teach this Truth is the church of the Lord for it is "the pillar and ground of the truth."