Books to calm an anti-Catholic mother


Hello all,

I am a convert to the Catholic church. Well, technically, not yet. But I will be soon! I’m starting RCIA this fall. I was born and raised Hindu and went through some crazy life experiences that made me fall into the arms of the Church, and I’ve never felt more at home in my life.

My only problem is that my devout Hindu family, especially my super religious mother, aren’t taking the conversion announcement too well. My mother has been ranting and raving about how the Church is backwards and corrupt and anti-woman and anti-freedom. As a convert, I’m not sure I’m secure enough in my knowledge of the faith to really defend Catholicism against her attacks. I was wondering if anyone knew of any really good books that present good solid information about the Catholic church that I could have her read to hopefully give her better insight. (Her information right now comes mostly from CNN :banghead:) I don’t know if they’ll help, but I bet a book could sure explain the faith much better than I could. Especially because my mother knows exactly what buttons to push on me whenever we argue so that I end up bursting into tears instead of getting any kind of valuable information across.

Thanks so much!


I’m not saying your mother is a dummy, but Catholicism for Dummies would be a good start.


Hey there idpatel!! No suggestions just a Hello! :wave: and Welcome Home!:clapping: from just west of you! (I’m in North Dallas.) :slight_smile:


Welcome! :slight_smile:

First of, do not be worried that you are facing resistance, Jesus :signofcross: himself told us that: “Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword. For I came to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.” - Douay-Rheims Bible, Gospel of St Matthew Chapter 10 Verse 34-35. (I am not sure of your knowledge of Christianity, but a verse from the Bible is cited [Book Chapter:Verses] so for example [John 1:1-14]).

As far as explaining Catholicism, know that you owe nobody an explanation for your faith. But to better inform your parents (and the 10 Commandments commands us to Honor thy Father and Mother) there are several books:

The Holy Bible (pick up a copy of the Douay-Rheims if you can, it’s the most faithful translation).

What Catholics Really Believe-Setting the Record Straight: 52 Answers to Common Misconceptions About the Catholic Faith by Karl Keating.

Search and Rescue: How to Bring Your Family and Friends Into, or Back Into, the Catholic Church by Patrick Madrid.

There is an excellent list here of 25 books:

Welcome to the Church! You should try contacting a Priest also, he may be able to explain the faith best, and he will have a solid knowledge.

Laus Deo (Praise be to God).


Actually, I do have some suggestions. If you’re going to buy books, consider going to a local Catholic bookstore. (not a Christian bookstore like Lifeway, or something like that.) Get your book suggestions from this forum at these stores. And the store people can actually help you out.

Here are two that I frequent:

Sacred Heart Books & Gifts Bookstore
7615 Campbell Road Ste. 111
Richardson, TX

They are on the N.W. corner of Coit & Campbell near U.T. Dallas.They do not have a website I have been able to find.

Catholic Art & Gifts
2761 Valwood Parkway, Ste. 300
Farmers Branch, TX 75234
(972) 934-3553

They are 1 to 2 blocks east of Josey Ln. You have to go IN to the parking lot and enter the store on the west side of the building. The building has empty business space on the front street side - the store is NOT closed! I thought so at first until I called. So park on the west side of the building and enter there. You’ll see it. It’s on the north side of the road right next to some other church. They sell church supplies so you can get a chance to look at various items used in Mass as well as take a look at various vestments. They also have a small amount of Byzantine stuff so you can take a look at some of the Eastern Rite icons and other items of interest. They have a HUGE book selection too. As well as study bibles, and the Douay-Rheims version of the Catholic bible. (I picked up mine there. Oh! And pick up tabs for your bible! They help me quite a bit.)

I’m so glad you’re signing up for RCIA!!! :thumbsup:


I’ve been toying with that idea, but my mother has been going on about how my conversion is another rebellious teenager idea and another way for me to disrespect her and I’m not sure handing her a book that calls her a dummy would be the best way to go about that route.

waves back :wave: Hi! and thanks! Nice to see other people from around here :slight_smile:

Thank you so much! Those books all look like wonderful resources. Looks like Amazon is going to be getting a rather large order from me fairly soon.

One more question, just for anyone. Does anyone know of a great essay or book on why the Church is pro-woman? My mother is also a bit of a militant feminist so I’ve been trying to convince her that the Church isn’t going to put me on the floor for the men to trample. (Of course, why she’s calling Catholicism chauvinistic when she’s a Hindu is beyond me :rolleyes:…and the fact that she doesn’t admit that abortion hurts the women who get them kinda doesn’t help with that whole pro-woman argument either)


DR is a good Bible by all means, but it is archaic. I think it is a good devotional Bible, while NAB or RSVCE are better for study purposes. I tend to use NAB myself, despite the rampant criticism it gets, it, and the notes, do indeed have Church approval for reading, and Liturgical use (minus the Psalms) and that’s good enough for me.


AHHHH I LOVE SACRED HEART! I’m a student at UT Dallas, haha, so it’s literally next door to me! My boyfriend and I walk over there all the time and browse around for fun. I bought my Miraculous Medal from there. Looks like I’m making a trip over there sometime this week with quite the booklist. And thanks for the heads up about the other bookstore! I’ll have to find someone to give me a ride over there…my parents wouldn’t let me bring my car out here all the way from Atlanta…something about me not being a very good driver and a 13 hour car ride just didn’t appeal to them! :blush:

I can’t wait for RCIA to start! It’s seriously going to be the highlight of my next year, haha.


Oh my goodness. This might be a little difficult to read, but nothing beats John Paul II’s Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body.

You can even access it for free online, but I’d prefer the book form:

Also see these easy-to-understand youtube videos (this is the first in a series of four; in one of the videos the presenter discusses the “genius of womanhood”):


ooh! A fellow alumn! I graduated from UT Dallas just over a decade ago with a B.S. in Comp Sci. The school has changed quite a bit since then to be sure.

I can completely understand your mother’s hesitation about the Catholic church regarding women. I’m “cradle Catholic” and one of the many (dumb) reasons I stayed away is my misunderstanding about women and their role in the Catholic church. You’ll find that the Catholic church does not disrespect women, just look at how we pay special attention to the Blessed Virgin Mary. :thumbsup:

Peace be with you. I will say a prayer for you in my nightly prayers tonight asking the Holy Spirit to guard you and guide you in your journey. :gopray2:

Anyway, back to the topic. Sorry for the derailment…


My mother has been ranting and raving about how the Church is backwards and corrupt and anti-woman and anti-freedom.

Let’s see.

Some sects of Hinduism required a widow to be burned alive on her husband’s funeral pyre, but the Catholic Church is “anti-woman”?**


I think ANYTHING related to Theology of the Body is too much for a fairly new convert, much less a non-Christian!

There is a pretty good book called “Why Do Catholics Do That?” that might answer some of your mom’s basic questions and concerns. However, she doesn’t seem concerned or questioning so much as bigoted and hateful.

This might be a moment no book can help. It may be a “use your spine” moment, when you tell your mother that you are an adult, and her rants against your chosen faith cross the boundaries of respect.


NAB? RSVCE? :shrug: You’ll have to forgive me, I’m not too familiar with all the Catholic shorthand yet.

I think Theology of the Body might be a little rough on my mom. She’s a reader, but it’s pretty intense. I’ll definitely check out the videos though! Thanks!

Yeah…I’m not really sure either. Luckily, the sect my family belongs to doesn’t require it. That doesn’t mean they’ll try to stop a woman from doing it though :ehh:

Right now she is being fairly hateful, but it’s a shock and it’s completely against how she raised me, so I guess it’s somewhat understandable. Her hate is starting to fade away though! I’ve been praying for her heart to at least open enough so that she’d be willing to hear me. I’m confident that it will happen eventually. After all, not only is the Holy Spirit working on her, but also she is my mother and she loves me, so eventually I feel that she will grow to be respectful of my beliefs, once she understands them properly. I want to have the resources ready for her to be able to understand when she’s ready and willing.


I have absolutely no insight to offer except that I’ll keep you and your mother in my prayers! Welcome into the Church, it’s an amazing place to be! I just want to offer my prayers and don’t be afraid to turn even this trial to God (and I’ll admit this coined phrase often throws me for a loop too and I’m a cradle catholic!). Remember God never throws us anything we can’t handle, even though at the time it may seem like it.

It’s not necessarily a Catholic poem but I love the Footsteps in the Sand. It’s a great sentament that I always picture when I’m struggling with the “can’t handle this” trials.

No matter how hard or awful your mother is, remember she is still your mother and she’ll always love you-- even if she says otherwise.

God Bless!!!:crossrc:


I just wanted to congragulate you and say Welcome to the church :slight_smile: Your in the right place and don’t let anyone try to convince you otherwise. Family or not.

As far as books explaining the faith is concerned, unfortunatly I wouldn’t know to much. I aquired “Catholicism for Dummies” for both myself and my fiancee about a year and a half ago. I read that along with the bible. Really good books. Especially for beginners such as myself.But I’ve kinda slacked learning more about the faith recently, due to my wedding planning. But once it’s all over, I plan on getting back on track and teaching my fiancee more about our faith.

But yeah, I know you said you don’t really want ur Mom to check out “CFD”, so like everyone has said. Check out some local catholic bookstores and look up the books they provided. And don’t worry about people trying to make you feel bad for becoming Catholic. Remember that the Lord said “Blessed are you when they utter bad things against you because of me. Rejoice on that Day. For your is the Kingdom of God.”

Welcome to the church. I’m proud of you :slight_smile:

PS, NAB I believe stands for “New American Bible”. I’m not sure what RVSE stands for though, lol. See? I’m still learning too and I’ve been Catholic my whole life :), lol.


NAB is New American Bible and RSVCE is Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition :slight_smile:


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