Catholic studying with a Jehovah's Witness


#1

Hello all,
I am new to this and just found this website.Thank you for all of the information here. I was raised Catholic and about a year ago, a wonderful woman stopped by my home who is a Jehovah’s Witness. I honestly never knew much about the organization, other than various things I had heard over the years (“Don’t talk to them. They drive by your house and get your address because they think they will inherit the Earth for eternity and want to move in your house when you are in Hell.”) At any rate, I have been actively studying the Bible with her weekly, and attended the Kingdom Hall for the Memorial Service of the death of Jesus. I have been to Kingdom Hall a few times since. I have honestly nothing bad to say about my experience. It has actually been wonderful. I thoroughly enjoy the meetings that I have attended which involves a study of a topic and Bible references, and interactive answers with the attendees. Last week was about compassion and how God is one of mercy and compassion, slow to anger, etc. Very uplifting. But I digress…and furthermore, I want to stress I am not some mole here planting information for the JWs.) At any rate, I woke up yesterday with a need to listen to Catholic radio and find this website. As I find myself feeling closer to God and learning more about Jesus, I feel a great sadness and shame that I am somehow betraying the religion of my upbringing. I have read posts that seem like JW’s have some secret cult-like need to convert and I wholeheartedly do not believe this to be the case in my experience. I however think that my heart is yearning to become a more committed Catholic and I don’t know where to start. I think a lot of what draws some of us to the Witnesses, based on talking to several ex-Catholics that have converted, is the foundation of the JWs on the Bible. Although a product of Catholic high school, CCD while in public school, and actually teaching CCD myself was the actual lack of Bible knowledge. As I approach my birthday and the holiday season, it is weighing on me. For those of you that don’t know, according to JWs, birthdays are not to be celebrated are because the only times they are mentioned in the Bible, horrible things happened. (John the Baptist was beheaded at the request of a Pharaoh at his birthday party, I believe.) Christmas is not to be celebrated because it was originally a pagan feast. Even emojis with a halo on it are prohibited because the halo was used by a pagan. I am really struggling with all of this. I view birthdays as being with my loved ones, Christmas as an acknowledgement to Our Savior, and a time of fellowship with others. Is my heart telling me to come home to the Church?


#2

The birthday, Christmas and halo stuff is just strange. Many Catholics are brought back into the fold by first going through some non-Catholic religion. But at some point, red flags usually start going up regarding things that make your conscience perk up and say, ‘wait a second, that’s not right’, and so a Catholic will revisit the Church and usually find what they were looking for.

There are many Catholic reverts on this site. As far as bible studies in Catholicism, one of the best is Jeff Cavins’ “The Great Adventure Catholic Bible Study”. He is also a Catholic revert who found his way back to the Church after being a Protestant minister. I had to go to different parish to participate in it, but that’s okay.

I’ve found JW to be nice people in general, but I don’t talk to any of them other than on my doorstep. But their theology… just doesn’t sit well with me.


#3

Thank you so much! I think this study will be a wonderful resource.


#4

I have friends who are JW. They know I am Catholic and haven’t tried to convert me. They are nice people. But the nature of our relationship was made clear from the start. Friendship but no Bible studies with them. No leaving their literature on my door or in my mailbox. No Witnesses coming to my door.

In your case, the reason the woman keeps coming around is because you’re encouraging her by your willingness to study the Bible with her. She sees it as you wanting to convert. You need to set the boundaries.

God is making HIS view known to you. You are feeling the pull at your heart strings to return to the Catholic Church. The Holy Spirit is telling you to return to the Catholic Church. Listen to Him. Do not return to your local Kingdom Hall. Make it clear to your JW friend that you are not in the market for conversion. You are Catholic and will remain Catholic (if that is your intention). Your beliefs are different from hers. You need to cut the cord with her and with all JWs. Otherwise, you will be in so deep that you may not be able to get yourself out.


#5

I have a co-worker JW and he invited me to the “Hall” because he was giving the “talk”. My co-worker is a fantastic individual so I went. I found it very weird. It almost seemed canned. Very much focused on work work work work and not in the sense of faith producing good works. It came across as how to achieve the kingdom instead of trusting Him and having faith and grace flesh itself out. It was just very mechanical and robotic especially the “watchtower” study part of it. I don’t really know how to describe it but I did find it almost uncomfortable and thought if this is all I knew I would not be a part of the church. BTW I was born in Hollywood and grew up in Pembroke Pines and then west of Davie. Cooper City graduated.


#6

I think so.

Well, since you taught CCD, you’re well positioned to transition into a Bible study. Because the New Testament is based upon the Teaching of the Church and should be understood in light of Sacred Tradition.

Someone already mentioned the Great Adventure. Here’s the St. Paul Center, which is one of Scott Hahn’s websites.

If those aren’t to your liking, just google Catholic Bible studies.


#7

I would say you posting this question is proof positive that you are being pulled back into the Catholic Church.

Here’s a good article on this topic.

https://www.catholic.com/magazine/online-edition/refuting-the-pagan-roots-of-christmas-claim

I think so too. Everyone is different so it’s hard to say this is the best way. I started off with Podcasts and audio talks. I am extremely busy and couldn’t find the time to sit down and read. Audio is the best for me. I pop in my head phones and get to work. Just yesterday I spent 3 hours on the tractor cutting my dad’s grass. He’s upset that I have to take time out of my day to cut his grass, but I’m excited because it gave me a chance to catch up on three episodes of “Called to Communion”.

I also like to listen to Catholic Answers Live

John Martignonie is awesome as well. Bible Christian Society

Scott Hahn is a genius. St Paul Center

The list goes on.

Welcome Home,

God Bless


#8

MT1926 – THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU . This brought tears to my eyes.


#9

THANK YOU. Your post brought tears to my eyes.

After I posted about cutting my dad’s grass I felt guilty, because I felt like I was bragging about my good works. I had to rearrange my schedule this week, so it seems like I’ve had to mention it to a lot of people that I had to work at my dad’s, thus the guilt. Now that I see how it is a witness to the faith as well, I think the Holy Spirit worked through you to easy my mind.

Thank you,

God Bless


#10

florida22:
“I think a lot of what draws some of us to the Witnesses, based on talking to several ex-Catholics that have converted, is the foundation of the JWs on the Bible. Although a product of Catholic high school, CCD while in public school, and actually teaching CCD myself was the actual lack of Bible knowledge.”

I find it amazing when I hear or see Catholics claim that they had a lack of Bible knowledge while in the Church and that it took leaving Catholicism to teach them the truth before they could return to the Church.

When my family and I first moved here, I was 9 or 10, and there were more Protestant churches than Catholic. My (then) Protestant mother had to search to find the nearest Catholic Church. I went to Protestant churches not wanting to interrupt everything I’d learned about Jesus and the Bible in the Catholic Church.

JWs don’t celebrate birthdays or any holidays. They also believe Jesus to be Michael the Archangel. Like Mormons, they have their own version of the Bible and their own beliefs about who will get to Heaven and who won’t.

When I was a child, the priest of the parish I went to at the time said, “Don’t go to Protestant churches or to any church that isn’t Catholic. Their teachings aren’t like ours.” (This was in the 1960s before we moved here.)

Many people today do explore other churches. Our late priest used to encourage those who were about to be Confirmed to go out and see how others taught Jesus. And if they wanted to leave the Catholic Church, this was the time to do it. He didn’t want anyone regretting being Catholic or remaining Catholic. He warned that after Confirmation, there were no takseys backseys.


#11

All of the JW’s that I know are very nice people. Having said that, their lack of understanding of Christian theology and lack of the knowledge of Christian history should be an automatic red flag. I would highly recommend you learn the theology and history so that you have some grounding in your discussions and bible studies.

Three outstanding books written for everyday people that I highly, highly, highly recommend…

You can also buy these new or used from Amazon.

These books will give you a bigger perspective and more comprehensive understanding than anything you will get from the JW’s . I would also highly recommend attending a Catholic Bible study at any local parish.


#12

If you like listening to MP3’s here are 2 resources:

https://www.lighthousecatholicmedia.org/


#13

One thing that triggers for me is a group that will shun and cut off communication with people who leave. That to me says they are trying to exert control.

I will admit personally that the average JW will know the chapter and verse of the Bible better than me but their interpretation of those words is off. That’s where you have to be careful. They are the only group to have changed the translation as drastically as they have to suit their theology.


#14

Do YOU not understand my friend that you’re putting quite possibly your soul at risk?

The Mormons DO NOT accept the bile except as a TOOL to PROVE their NON-Christian belief. They have the BOOK OF MORMONS and a second book I forget the title of; BUT NOT the Bible except HOW to defeat it.

While They Do use the same terms as to we Catholics and Christian, Jesus, Christ, God the Father [BUT NO Holy Spirit]; they hold to heretical - definitions of them.

Jesus is ONLY a good man & a prophet; God the Father was the DADDY of jesus through SEX with a human female

You are franky being SET UP

They are taught to be duplicitous and devious; they are very well TRAINED and it would seem[???] that you may not be.

PLEASE sever this relationship unless you are fully able to explain. and defend our Catholic Faith.

You ARE playing with FIRE in doing what you are doing; Please TALK to your PASTOR for advice and then listen to what he tells you; DO SO ASAP

I’m speaking from experience here, not just sharing MY opinion

Pray very much and speak to your Pastor ASAP


#15

Thank you so much !


#16

Thank you for your comment. I have not studied with Mormons, but rather JWs. They teach that Jesus is in fact born of immaculate conception (no sex with humans); Jesus is the Son of God; and the Holy Spirit is the power of God. They don’t however, believe in the Trinity.


#17

This is something that impresses me, too, back when I used to be involved with them, the fact that they seemed to know so much about the Bible.

They know their own “proof texts” that they use to “prove” their beliefs but when I pointed out other passages that seemed to show Catholic beliefs they just drew a blank.


#18

They do not really teach that Jesus is the Son of God. They teach He is the very first creation amd the only creation directly made by God. They only call Him Son because the Bible does and they think nothing unique about it from the angels other than what I said. They clearly believe there was a time that God was not Father, making the name Father not eternal. The Holy Spirit to them is created and is likened to electricity. If wrong, and they can easily be proven wrong, they sin against all three and treat God as tools.


#19

I canceled my Bible study this week and I am attending Mass tomorrow. I have realized that I should study our Faith with the zeal I have shown for theirs. I began going through the bulletin for tomorrow and was delighted to see that the first reading is from Wisdom: “Wisdom is discerned by those who love her” (Wisdom 6:12-16). Wisdom does not even appear in the JW Bible that I was given…


#20

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