Normally when discussing the truth of Catholicism, people employ theological, philosophical or historical arguments because these are probably the strongest. There are however other more down-to-earth things that are worth considering, especially for everyday people. What I’m going to attempt to do here is make arguments from the real-world experience. I will freely admit that it is possible to argue against most of these but collectively they have to at least make you think.
The Jews still exist but where are the Hittites?
There are many Nations and Peoples who once existed and now do not. The reasons for their demise vary but many including the most powerful in history are now gone. The modern inhabitants of both Rome and Greece don’t seem to have much in common with their ancient forbears either. Yet, the Jews are still with us.
Miracles of the Blessed Mother
The apparitions at Guadalupe, Lourdes and Fatima come immediately to mind and there is even a more recent in Akita, Japan. What distinguishes these events from other miraculous claims is that they were witnessed by many people and had detractors at the time. Those who are skeptical about such things will find a way to be skeptical regardless but events like these are worth considering.
What makes them more important for Catholics is that they involve the Virgin Mary and were witnessed by Catholics. It would be unfair to say Protestants lack respect for Mary but it isn’t at all unfair to state that they don’t hold her in the same esteem as Catholics do. When major miraculous claims are witnessed many times like this and involve Mary, Christians at the very least should take notice.
Preservation of the Church
A persistent myth about the medieval Church is that it had dictatorial power over Europe for much of history. Knowledge of communication, transport and other logistical considerations of the time should alone put that to rest. Modern states in reality exercise a lot more power over their citizenry than the Catholic Church could have ever hoped to in the middle ages.
In reality, the Church of Rome was quite frequently in danger of invasion and destruction throughout history. There are numerous historical events in the history of the church where it could have easily been lost. This includes enemies both internal and external.
Yet, the church has survived all of this and still survives today. Constantinople fell but Rome didn’t. Rome survived Lepanto, Napoleon and Hitler. Rome survives today despite the more recent and insidious internal invasion by those that seem hostile to the church but still dwell within and hold its titles. It survived in Japan without priests for hundreds of years despite the lethal reality for any caught openly practicing the Faith.
It has in short, survived every attack against it.
It is hard not to notice that Protestants care about the Catholic Church like citizens of the United States care about the British Royal Family. That is, despite the acrimonious history, they are still fascinated by the family they have separated themselves from. I suspect there is an unacknowledged sense of loss though I cannot prove this.
Although there have been schisms, the Catholic Church has remained the largest, most powerful and most visible Church of Christ on earth. No small portion of the most reluctant of its lost sons, the Church of England, has continued to hold close to its liturgical practices. People who don’t care about it are nonetheless very interested in it.
Now size and power do not make anything true let alone True but when you consider the fundamental beliefs shared by all Christians, this does make for a compelling argument. If the claims of “Mere Christianity” at least are true, then it is hard to believe that the smaller and ever splintering sections of Christ’s Church are the closest to the Truth.
And even if this is not the case, most Protestants today believe that all who accept Christ as their Lord and Savior will go to Heaven. If one is to really accept this then most of the people in Heaven are Catholic anyway.
The Jews are certainly responsible for Christ’s execution but the Romans carried it out. Skeptics love to point out the at best superficially pagan aspects of the Catholic Church but in reality these boil down to the language of Christ’s executioner. It doesn’t make sense from a human perspective that the Empire that had Christ executed should become the most visual champion of his message on Earth. It does make sense from Jesus Christ’s perspective though.
He submitted to the authority that Pontius Pilate represented but judging from his own words, knew he would be the victor in the end. As most of what little is left of the Roman Empire exists under the banner of Christ, it is hard not to believe that this is what he intended. Rome was the visible instrument of his crucifixion and it is now the visible instrument of the spread of the message of that same crucifixion.
None of what I have written is without holes but the truth of them taken together are worth considering. Know also that there are much better minds than my own out there who could make much better arguments.