Mark Driscoll was raised Catholic. I know this because I’ve read many of his sermons and every time he mentions Catholicism he points out that he was raised Catholic. He also likes to mention how Irish he is and how his last name was actually O’Driscoll before his ancestors immigrated to the United States. Oh, and his Grandma liked the Latin Mass. And he was an altar boy. That is how “Catholic” he was raised.
Driscoll and other fallen away Catholic’s like to throw it out there that they were raised Catholic, I guess, because they think that doing so makes them some kind of expert on the subject. Folks, if you think that being “raised Catholic” makes you an expert on Catholicism, please continue reading!
Mark Driscoll is clearly not an expert on Catholicism. In his March 28th Sermon, “Jesus as Sabbath Lord,” Mark Driscoll points out that (you guessed it) he grew up Catholic. He then says that he has no idea why he gave up meat on Fridays growing up. That’s pretty basic. Somebody who was raised Catholic should at least know basic stuff. I don’t know how many times Mark went to Mass on Sunday or how many times he served as an altar boy growing up, but somebody who went often probably wouldn’t be so clueless as to what Mass actually was.
Mark knows why this is. He simply wasn’t raised Catholic very well. In a Sermon on Mary, he even quite humbly points out that he knows many Catholics who are, by his definition, real Christians but he, “wasn’t one of them.” Mark Driscoll did not fail Catholicism. Catholics failed Mark Driscoll.* That’s the unfortunate part of having so many humans working for the Church. Humans fail sometimes, and in the case of Mark Driscoll, we failed. Mark was taught “the rules.” He just wasn’t taught the faith that “the rules” are there to serve. “The rules” should never be passed on as obstacles for authentic worship of Jesus Christ as they were for so many Catholics Mark’s age. We here at DriscollWatch would agree with Mark that following rules for the sake of following rules does nothing for the believer. But we also hope to point out that many of “the rules” that Pastor Mark rebelled from can actually serve worship of Jesus Christ and we invite you to keep reading DriscollWatch to learn why that is.
Mark Driscoll speaks a lot about Catholicism from his own particular experience. I (and other contributors who will hopefully be here in the future) have different experiences. I don’t expect the reader of this blog to choose between my experience, Mark Driscoll’s experience, or anybody’s experience when making judgments over the Catholic faith. I expect them to make these judgments based on the content of the faith itself, which we at DriscollWatch will be trying to present to you as clearly as possible. We hope to be of service to you whether you have never had any experience of Catholicism, whether you consider yourself to have been “raised Catholic,” or whether you currently practice the faith.
In the meantime, lets all keep in mind that simply being raised in any Church, Catholic or otherwise, does not immediately make you a credible witness to the content of that particular faith.