Church and Vocation Questions


#1

As a head’s up, many of you knew me from the past…before I moved out of my parent’s house I could only be baptized non-denominational Christian. My parents heartily disprove of the Catholic faith. This is the second week after I moved out of their house (I’m now nearing my mid 20’s) and was finally able to attend mass at a Church nearby. But, of course I have a few questions…

  1. Is my baptism invalid? I do not have a certificate anymore, was baptized by the women’s minister, not the church preacher. I do not remember if it was done in the name of the Trinity.

  2. Is it wrong for me to take the Eucharist? A older woman I was with knew I had not been baptized Catholic but, indicated it was fine for me to do so. No one stopped me, but, a coworker revealed its considered a sin…and I need to tell the priest. Is this true?

  3. Who do I share with and when that I am interested in looking at becoming a consecrated virgin or nun? When is it okay? I intend to join RCIA but, it may not happen until the fall…I fully intend to keep going to Sunday mass and the class (likely bible study with the deacon) every week. Should I already be telling the priest? I have been thinking of my possible vocation since high school.

Thanks. Any extra information is always helpful.


#2

Is there anyone who was present at your baptism who can recall if is was Trinitarian, or can you contact the minister of the church and ask? If you can’t find out, then you will be baptized conditionally and everything will be fine. Unfortunately, for now, you are not allowed to receive the Eucharist, you might inform the other woman also. Communion is for Catholics, in good standing with the Church, who are in the state of grace. Usually, there is as waiting period of a few years after one has been received into the Church before vocation discernment is started. The Deacon will be able to answer many of your questions before RCIA starts; he is ordained clergy. Welcome Home!


#3

If you were old enough to remember your baptism, then generally you can attest to it yourself. It doesn’t matter if it was a man, woman, etc. as long as the correct form and intent was used. Being nondenominational it can be a little harder to say clearly if they normally meet those conditions. Mainline protestants are generally considered valid with some known exceptions.

Just tell the priest or RCIA director what you remember and if in doubt you would be conditionally baptized.

Yes, you should not receive the Eucharist until you are received into the Church. I don’t know if I would say it’s a sin if you were misinformed, but it could be if you reject the true presence of Christ in the consecrated species or do so in disobedience. I would talk to the pastor and let them guide you.

You can start conversations with your pastor or a vocations director for an order now, but most will want you to wait several years after you are received before letting you into a novitiate. A five year wait is not uncommon. This is not a punishment or to ensure you are “Catholic enough”, but rather that they want to make sure that converts are fully committed to the Church and her teachings. I have seen numbers of anywhere from 30-55% of people that go through RCIA are no longer practicing after 5 years. During that wait you could always look for a spiritual director to help you prepare for a call to religious life.

May God bless you as you make the journey home. I will add a pray for you and all others headed home.


#4

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