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Catholics and Protestants
September 22, 2007 10:31 PM PDT

I got this question in an email from one of my new friends in China who says she is not a Christian but has been attending church and feels at peace there.

"I really got puzzled when I faced the two things "Anglo-Catholic"&"Catholic "&"Christian".Would you do me a favor to differentiate them ,or give me some advice about how to distinguish them?"

Only about one week earlier, I had a young Chinese woman ask me "Do you think Catholics worship the same God?"

I deduced from these two questions that there are a lot of questions about the various churches and denominations in the minds of the Chinese who are just now taking a look at the Christian faith.

Here is my feeble attempt to explain:

Christian - All those who believe Jesus is God's Son and that Jesus paid the price for our sin by dying on the cross for us.

There are two major types of Christians; Catholics and Protestants.

Catholics are Christians organized as the Roman Catholic Church. These Christians generally accept the authority of the Pope in Rome. I believe this is an issue for Chinese Catholics. The Chinese Government is uncomfortable with Chinese Catholics taking direction from the Pope in Rome and instead wants them to be autonomous. (No foreign intervention.)

Protestants are generally Christians who are not Catholic. Protestants broke away from the Catholic church in the middle ages. Protestants
have organized themselves into many different denominations such as Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, and Presbyterian. I suppose you could consider the Three Self Patriotic Movement in China a Protestant denomination.

I am not sure what Anglo-Catholic means but I think it would be Catholics of European decent. In other words white-faced Catholics and not those Catholics from Africa, the Orient, and or Latin America.

One thing I am not sure about would be Orthodox Christians such as the Greek Orthodox church or the Russian Orthodox church. They are definitely not Catholic but may not consider themselves Protestant. Perhaps I should say Christians are of three main types (Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox).

I hope that helps.

The Handwriting Was On the Wall
September 22, 2007 09:48 PM PDT

Meaning - There were prior indications that something bad was going to happen. For example, indications that someone was going to lose their job or the organization would reorganize in a way putting someone at a disadvantage.

Origins – A hand mysteriously appeared and wrote on the wall to predict the death of Belshazzar in the Bible, Daniel 5. “Suddenly the fingers of a man's hand emerged and began writing opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace”

Example Usage – “I knew when they brought in a new manager from outside the company that my chances of advancement in this job were slim and the handwriting was on the wall to start sending out resumes.”

Daniel 5
Belshazzar's Feast
1Belshazzar the king held a great feast for a thousand of his nobles, and he was drinking wine in the presence of the thousand.
2When Belshazzar tasted the wine, he gave orders to bring the gold and silver vessels which Nebuchadnezzar his father had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem, so that the king and his nobles, his wives and his concubines might drink from them.
3Then they brought the gold vessels that had been taken out of the temple, the house of God which was in Jerusalem; and the king and his nobles, his wives and his concubines drank from them.
4They drank the wine and praised the gods of gold and silver, of bronze, iron, wood and stone.
5Suddenly the fingers of a man's hand emerged and began writing opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace, and the king saw the back of the hand that did the writing.
6Then the king's face grew pale and his thoughts alarmed him, and his hip joints went slack and his knees began knocking together.

Hit a Home Run
September 22, 2007 09:24 PM PDT

Meaning – Achieve a large success, perhaps in a quick burst.

Origin – Sports, American Baseball. A home run lets the batter circle all the bases and score. Any other runners on base also score.

Example Usage – “The strategy was risky but the risk turned out to be worth it. He scored a home run.”

At Least Get a Base Hit
September 22, 2007 09:18 PM PDT

The meaning of this idiom is to at least achieve some small success which can be built upon for a larger goal. In other words, don't try to solve too many problems at one time. Go for some problem which can be quickly solved, have a small success, build some credibility, and then build from there.

Origin – Sports, American Baseball. A base hit gets a runner on base and a subsequent batter has the opportunity to move the runner around to score.

Example Usage – The strategy she had to implement was very aggressive but at least she got a base hit. Her first client signed a contract.

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