Spiritual Warfare Forum: To Counter the Occult Evangelism in Public Places

To Counter the Occult Evangelism in Public Places QUESTION from Gregory Thompson on December 5, 2002 Hello,
My College friends and I have been going to IHOP to converse and have a good time, but recently there is a group of occultist that has been congregating there to spread their theology by baiting the people by their tarot readings conducted by their child who is only a few months old. They also teach their child weird symbols of their religion. I feel the people there that ask them questions are not safe. I think that they are trying to evangelize the public. They stay at IHOP for the whole night past 5 a.m. They have no right to teach their innocent child and the public such filth. I have obtained permission by Father Raef to counter their evangelism. Here is a little information on their group. They consist of a man, his wife, and their child. There is also another that hangs out around them at their, but I don't know if she has any connection to them. They have already encountered one of my friends about his faith. What approach should I take towards these occultists and what should I watch for.
God Bless Br. Jean Paul and Joe.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on December 23, 2002 Dear Mr. Thompson:
I guess the first thing to remember is that this couple DOES have the right to teach their child their own religious values. And they have a legal right to talk to others about their beliefs.
If we were to restrict them of these rights then we could not teach our children Catholicism or talk to people about Catholicism.
The same right that you have to evangelize them is the same right they have to evangelize you.
With that said, you can engage in conversation with them and discuss the issues of the occult, divination, etc. But if such a conversation ends in hostility or unproductive argumentation, then you need to back off. St. Paul tells us to NOT engage in unproductive argumentation.
We also need to remember that apologetics and evangelism is not about fighting, but about presenting the truth of the Gospel in a persuasive and convincing way, but allowing the Holy Spirit to be the convincer. Thus we need not win the debate.
To prepare for conversation with these people you need to learn about the issues of the New Age. San Juan Catholic Seminars has a booklet called, How to Anwser Atheist and New Agers. You might want to check that out. Also Father Pacwa's book on Catholicism and the New Age. Also the book Unmasking the New Age: Is there a New Religious Movement Trying to Transform Society? by the Protestant Douglas R. Groothuis. Another book by a Protestant is also good: Apologetics in the New Age: A Christian Critique of Pantheism by David K. Clark and Norman L. Geisler.
Links to order these books can be foound at our Recommended Books for Spiritual Warfare page: http://www.saint-mike.org/warfare/public/sw-recommended-bklist.html
San Juan Seminars is at: http://www.catholicapologetics.com/
Once learning the apologetics as it concerns new age issues, then with prayer and discernment you may begin to confront these people and talk to others about why the New Age is not the best choice.

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