Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
A Quick Look Across the Tiber (With Updates)
10/08/2008 - James White
I was contacted by someone at a university out east asking if I would be willing to debate Roman Catholicism there if they could find someone to join in the debate. I indicated that would be fine, but that they might have some trouble finding a suitable opponent. Evidently, in calling around, one of those asked to engage in the debate contacted Art Sippo, who, of course, declined. Now, realize, I did not go looking for this, someone contacted me and wanted to set something up. But, the facts of the matter are never overly important to Art Sippo.
Yesterday I noticed a new blog entry on Sippo's website. Here it is. Now, you may recall that at one time Sippo declined a challenge to debate live and in public in his current city of residence on the subject of his own choosing. Why? Because...I'm not nice enough, that's why. Now, that would be like Shaq complaining that Spud Webb is too tall. In any case, please note the title of Sippo's entry. Sippo likes to refer to me as "Pseudopodeo." Many years ago my e-mail address included the biblical term ὀρθοποδέω, orthopodeo. It means "to walk straight in accordance with a rule." It was what Peter was not doing in reference to the Gospel in Galatians 2:14. Sippo has used his playground version of this biblical term for quite some time now. Notice how he begins. "It has come to my attention that the Protestant controversialist know (sic: known) affectionately as "Pseudopodeo" is jonesing for a debate." No, a campus group is looking to arrange a debate is the reality.
He continues, "He is trying to sucker some unwitting Catholic into another of his own sided lynchings in a Protestant venue with an Anti-Catholic moderator." Aside from Sippo's continued existence in a fantasy world, the reality is that when I debated Sippo in 1991, the moderator was...that infamous Anti-Catholic Patrick Madrid, then Vice President of Catholic Answers. In fact, when I debated Gerry Matatics for the first time in Long Beach the moderator was another infamous Anti-Catholic...Patrick Madrid. And the location of that debate? A terrible Protestant venue known as...a Roman Catholic church. And when I debated Matatics on the Papacy at the City of the Lord in Tempe, AZ? The Protestant venue was...a Roman Catholic organization, and the Anti-Catholic moderator was...Scott Hahn.
The irony is that the vast majority of my debates with Roman Catholics have been in Roman Catholic venues, or in secular venues, such as catering halls. The moderators have been either Roman Catholics, Jews, or on Long Island, Pastor Bill Shishko, the Moderator of Moderators! Sippo once again blusters out of his deep well of ignorance, playing to his audience but once again showing his deep disregard for truthfulness in the process.
Obviously, Sippo is still in hiding, smarting from his running from my challenge back in 2005. He lost a few disciples over that one, and is still unwilling to engage in meaningful debate. Note the absurd condescension of this man who knows no bounds in his ability to insult. Let's remember these words of the inimitable Sippo:
Mr. White is an ignorant bigot who has no academic credentials. He was raised by bigots to be a bigot and would parade around in a white sheet burning crosses on people's lawns if there was any money in it. In a strange bizarro parody of Christian discipleship, he hates his enemies and does bad things to people whom he doesn't like. He also is a big whopping LIAR and likes to slander anyone who has the temerity not to kowtow to him. He is known affectionately as Pseudopodeo by those who know him best.
The original URL for those comments was http://www.envoymagazine.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1025, but don't bother looking. The poor folks charged with the clean up of the Envoy forums came along with their electronic scoopers and picked up that mess fairly quickly.
Update: Sippo replies with his normative maturity. Note that in the strange, strange world of Art Sippo, my pointing out his own behavior is "slandering" him. Keep that in mind: quoting Sippo to Sippo is slanderous.
Meanwhile, Sippo is not the only one making quite the spectacle out of himself over on the far side of the Tiber. TurretinFan pointed me to the outrageous comments of "The Catholic Champion," Matthew Bellisario, this morning as well. As most of you know, this month is the 25th anniversary of the founding of Alpha and Omega Ministries. We set up an e-mail address (email@example.com) so that those who have been blessed by this ministry could share how the Lord has used our little ministry in their lives. I have been posting some of them, and have a lot more to go, to be sure. They are very encouraging, and folks have enjoyed reading about others who have had similar experiences to their own. Of course, I have never presented these as apologetic arguments. They are simply testimonials related to celebrating a quarter century of God's goodness to us in this ministry.
Well, I shouldn't be surprised that a guy who would write about my hats (here) would write this. Let's ignore the context, let's ignore the reality that these testimonials are not only wide-ranging but are not presented as apologetic arguments, and let's create a simply inane basis for an accusation of hypocrisy. Evidently, wild-eyed fanaticism is not limited to Islamic responses that ignore context, either. Here are Matthew's words:
I recall reading many times on Mr White's blog how he just could not stand all of these Catholic conversion stories. Now, on his blog his latest entry is a Catholic who converted to the "Reformed" church because of Dr. White. You see, this "Dr White" is two-faced when it comes to these types of things. It's not OK for a Catholic to post a conversion story, but it is quite OK for him to do so, blowing his own horn so he can show just how great he is. The latest entries on his blog have been littered with people hailing him and his ministry as if he were some sort of prophet. And of course he just cannot resist posting these letters or emails. He also thought it was so great to have professional photos of himself posted on his blog as well. Talk about pride and arrogance. No one Catholic is permitted to post a conversion, but for White it's OK. Well, I will call this for what it is. Two-faced arrogant pride.
Ah, well, it is always good to once in a while take a gander across that smelly green river called the Tiber and be reminded of why I haven't the slightest desire to cross it.
Update: The "Catholic Champion" demonstrated that Art Sippo's penchant for not getting the point of a rebuttal is endemic. This speaks for itself.