Conversion to Catholic with an Evangelical wife?


#1

My wife and I are Protestants (non-denom evangelicals). She was raised Evangelical and has been a Christian all her life. She strongly disagrees with Catholic beliefs. I have been a Christian for about 2 yrs. Learned what I have from my Protestant Church and it’s leaders. I foolishly just assumed that Catholicism was false like everyone else around me. I began to study Catholicism to find out what all the negative feelings were about. So for the last 2 months I have been studying Catholicism and deeply praying for God to put me where he wants me. I found it made alot of sense and now I am feeling drawn toward it. The more I study the more truth I see in the faith. I feel my relationship with Christ has prospered from my searching. My wife told me she would be devestated if I became Catholic. She told me she always said she would never marry a Catholic. I try to explain myself and tell her why I believe what I do. I told her it’s ok to disagree with me but just try and understand. She says she never will. She thinks I am just looking for the truth that I what to hear. I explain to her that I study both views (Catholic and Protestant) and pray for God to guide me in my searching, which I do. She refuses to believe that I’m comparing and praying about the difference between the faiths. All I know is Catholicism is becoming more and more real to me and I see myself becoming Catholic some day. She is becoming very disturbed with my beliefs. I try to be as loving and respectful as I can and never disrespect or degrade her beliefs. Even if I disagree I can still understand them and I do. My wife can’t. She told me so. She has been in tears over this. Even though it is upsetting her I can’t help the way I feel. The Catholic Christian Faith is becoming very beautiful to me. I love my wife with all my heart but this becoming a huge issue with her. I have been in deep prayer for God’s guidence. Does anyone have any advise? God bless everyone!

Searching and Suffering,
Jamie


#2

My wife and I are Protestants (non-denom evangelicals). She was raised Evangelical and has been a Christian all her life. She strongly disagrees with Catholic beliefs. I have been a Christian for about 2 yrs. I Learned what I have from my Protestant Church and it’s leaders. I foolishly just assumed that Catholicism was false like everyone else around me. I began to study Catholicism to find out what all the negative feelings were about. So for the last 2 months I have been studying Catholicism and deeply praying for God to put me where he wants me. I found it made alot of sense and now I am feeling drawn toward Catholicism. The more I study the more truth I see in the faith. I feel my relationship with Christ has prospered from my searching. My wife told me she would be devestated if I became Catholic. She told me she always said she would never marry a Catholic. I try to explain myself and tell her why I believe what I do. I told her it’s ok to disagree with me but just try and understand. She says she never will. She thinks I am just looking for the truth that I what to hear. I explain to her that I study both views (Catholic and Protestant) and pray for God to guide me in my searching, which I do. She refuses to believe that I’m comparing and praying about the difference between the faiths. All I know is Catholicism is becoming more and more real to me and I see myself becoming Catholic some day. She is becoming very disturbed with my beliefs. I try to be as loving and respectful as I can and never disrespect or degrade her beliefs. Even if I disagree I can still understand them and I do. My wife can’t. She told me so. She has been in tears over this. Even though it is upsetting her I can’t help the way I feel. The Catholic Christian Faith is becoming very beautiful to me. I love my wife with all my heart but this becoming a huge issue with her. I have been in deep prayer for God’s guidence. Does anyone have any advise? God bless everyone!

Searching and Suffering,
Jamie


#3

:hmmm: I can’t help you here, but there are plenty of people around here who could. Plenty of people here are converts, maybe some of them could help. That is, if no one else shows up on this thread.

Anyway, these are some threads occupied mainly by converts.

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=199086

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=180835

Hope this helps:shrug:


#4

My husband and I are Protestant converts (in process) to Eastern Orthodoxy. I would suggest that you read, read, read, read. If she is from a Calvanist background it is a great idea to help her understand that Luther never intended to leave the Catholic church, that he belived in sacred tradition and prayers to/thru the Saints. Once you delve into church history of Protestanism you find just how much we need the legs of BOTH sacred tradition and of scripture.

And I would find a priest to speak with. Preferably one that has experience with Protestatism. Our priest for example was a Jewish convert to Southern Baptist, then Pentacostal and then finally Eastern Orthodoxy. His experiences helped him to be able to lead a parish that is 90% protestant converts. Find a priest and talk with him. Have your wife talk to him. And be very patient. We protestants are taught from an early age about the “evils” of Catholocism. It takes a bit for us to get over it.:rolleyes:


#5

Read Rome Sweet Home, by Scott Hahn, whose wife was devastated when he began to be drawn to Catholicism:
amazon.com/Rome-Sweet-Home-Journey-Catholicism/dp/0898704782/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195892766&sr=1-1

She is probably not really familiar with Catholic beliefs. You can familiarize yourself with our beliefs< pray a lot and be patient>
God bless>


#6

Okay, Patton man…slow down…:smiley:

(Don’t everyone just love a new Christian on fire and then starts looking at the Catholic Church :thumbsup: )

Anyway, this website. Catholic Answers…read, read, read.

Anything by Scott Hahn, read, read, read…and like previous poster, if you can get Rome Sweet Home by Scott, read it, and maybe your wife will read it as well. Once you see how long he took to come to the Faith, the thought, research and prayers and the hardships that couple went through…wow…it’s just an awesome book. Search out on the internet any of his CDs…or DVDs, I think you might be able to find his testimony for free or little of nothing…

biblechristiansociety.com/ John Martignoni, free CDs, you can get up to three for $3.00 to cover the postage.

Listen to Catholic Answers Live, if you don’t have local Catholic Radio, just go to EWTN website, Radio, Listen Live…they also have a schedule that you can print out.

Get some books on Mary. Slowly filtering them in to your wife :rolleyes: then get a Rosary… The Blessed Mother, and her prayer brought me Home… Thank you Jesus!

Okay, and lastly…become a CAFer!

Welcome to the forum!


#7

I wish you the best of luck, both in your conversion and your marriage, and I will pray that you are successful in both.

My advice, and I’m sure next time I visit this thread there will be plenty more (and better advice), is to buy a copy of “Catholicism for Dummies.” Read it, keep it around, and maybe she’ll pick it up and some of her questions will be answered out of her curiosity.

Remember, the only people who hate the Church are those who don’t understand it.


#8

Jamie,

I sure do sympathize with you as I’m in much the same boat. I am in RCIA & my DH (Church of Christ) thinks I’m going to burn in hell. I’ve bought so many books, left them around where he might see them & be curious enough to pick one up & thumb through one. I have tried discussing things with him about why I feel I need to convert but he can’t get passed his views of the Church being the whore of Babylon, etc… Sometimes I just don’t know what to do… I just keep praying that things will work out and for strength but he threatens to leave me if I continue to attend class.
I feel I would be denying what God wants if I quit.


#9

Hi Jamie;

Most likely, her issue has to do with not you wanting to become Catholic, but the fact that she opposes Catholicism, and this makes her feel that in some way, you are indirectly saying she is wrong to believe what she believes. It’s probably more personal for her, than her not wanting you to become Catholic. As most of humanity is, we take things personally…

And the obvious, if you become Catholic…how will that affect you and her going to church? You will go to a Catholic mass, she will go to her church…and so on…these are also probably thoughts floating in her mind. Ultimately, she is probably feeling afraid. But, you need to follow God where He leads you…even over your wife’s disappointment. (or potential disappointment) I think that as long as you approach your wife with love and understanding, it should work out. But, if she wants you to remain in a religion for her sake, I would not do that to appease her. She needs to be loving and supportive, as well…I will keep you in my prayers. Please keep us updated.


#10

Yes. You are probably right. I was’nt sure if this is where to post this thread but thank you for your incouragement and advice. I know one of her biggest fears is raising children. She wants so much to be (as a family) a part of a church community, and so do I. And the thought of raising children with different beliefs and different churches scares her. I have been listening to EWTN radio, reading/study alot of Catholic material & writings (including Catholic.com) and of course studying scripture. Catholicism just seems more real and pure to me. I read Scott Hahn’s testimony a few weeks ago and it was very inspiring. His book “Rome sweet Rome” might be my next read. Once again thank you and God bless!

Jamie


#11

Somebody already pointed out Rome, Sweet Home to you. Scott and Kimberly Hahn were very devout, very well educated in their faith Protestants (Presbyterians, I believe), who even attended theological school / seminary and went into ministry together. When Scott started looking into and being drawn towards Catholicism, Kimberly seriously considered leaving her husband; she even got such advice from certain friends and family. But she stuck it out, praying for her husband for years, before she finally examined the Catholic Faith for herself and followed her husband into it.

There are many books out there that could correct the misconceptions your wife might have about the Catholic Faith, assuming she’s willing to read them. But if she comes from an evangelical “Bible only” Protestant background, perhaps you’d like to share the Catholic Verse Finder with her:

shop.catholicapologetics.com/product.sc?categoryId=1&productId=15

This one page (both sides) laminated sheet shows the Scripture verses supporting Catholic beliefs and practices. Some of it is geared towards refuting Jehovah’s Witness door-to-door evangelizers, but much of it is geared toward answering common Protestant beliefs and objections: repetitious prayer, call no man father, veneration of Mary and saints, Bible only vs. Oral Traditions, infant baptism, purgatory, intercessory prayer through saints, faith alone vs. faith plus works, judgment according to our deeds, etc. It’s so compact, both sides of one page, that it’s a small investment of time and energy reading it, but it shows there are Scriptural reasons for Catholic beliefs and practices. Maybe that could soften her heart to see that “there might be something here after all…” and be more comfortable in watching your faith journey.

You and your wife both have my best wishes during this exciting, exhilarating, but possibly scary and uncomfortable time in your lives. Never lose that fire, that zeal for knowing and loving and serving God; what a gift that is in this day and age of complacency and indifference.


#12

I think Kimberly Hahn has also written a book describing the problem from her point of view. It would be well to read that too.


#13

Rome Sweet Home is the best suggestion and also Surprised By Truth by Patrick Madrid also possiblely some thing by John Henry Cardinal Newman.


#14

**The one book to read individually or as a couple is Rome Sweet Home by Scott & Kimberly Hahn, published by Ignatius Press. Scott was a very outspoken evangelical minister who describes himself as very anti-Catholic and Kimberly was raised in a prominent evangelical home who describe their separate journeys into the Catholic Church in this book. They also have tapes of their conversion experiences that are quite informative and many other tapes and books. His journey has influenced many other evangelical pastors and others to become Catholics.
Best wishes to you both.
**


#15

Conversion stories may be of some help to her, find those where the writer “speaks her language”. Scott Hahn is always the #1 chioce. The Surprised By Truth books are good. Both Alex Jones and Mike Cumbee came from a Charismatic background, I’d suggest some of their work (DVDs are good, you can watch together).

Another DVD suggestion is the work done at ninevehscrossing.com/Catholic-Teaching.html

The Common Ground DVD and study guide are :thumbsup: :thumbsup: .

One of the very best ways to beat the mythology - meeting real life Catholics. Find a good Parish and attend some Bible Study classes with your wife. When she meets actual on-fire Catholics, that can make a world of difference.


#16

One’s spouse converting to another religion must be one of the scariest things that could happen to any individual.

If my husband announced he was converting to Islam or Christianity, the next thing that would happen would be the serving of divorce papers!


#17

I can only tell you from my own expereince, when my wife converted away from the True Church I considered divorcing her. I came very close to it, in fact. If not for our children, I probably would have done it. A mixed marriage, expecially one where a spouse converts after marriage, is as difficult a thing as I can imagine.

Every day I am faced with reminders of how she rejected me and has chosen to follow a distorted faith. Even though she attents service with me and the children (she goes alone to her own church) I am reminded that we are a seperated family.

My advice is to talk with her a lot. My wife kept everything secret and I had to discover things. Tell her what you’re doing, why, how and with who. Talk until she tells you to shut up. Remind her that you are not rejecting her, just following a call you feel. You are the one making the unilateral change, she has to adjust to it. The onus is on you to make it as easy as possible. This is not a 50-50 thing, it’s mostly you.

You are probably fighting for your marriage, whether you know it or not. I am still in mine, but I have lost so much of the joy and attraction that I once felt toward my wife. I love her now with that part of me that can choose to love, but not the other part - that attraction thing. She burned that out of me with her conversion. I know that if she had taken any time or consideration on my part that was not a foregone conclusion. She just didn’t seem to care enough to consider anyone but her. That’s the part that hurt the most.

Make sure your wife knows that you understand the pain she is feeling. Make sure you ask her often how she is dealing with it. Be open, supportive and kind.

Take it from a Ghost Man. You can kill your spouse over this, trust me. Some of us are just dead men walking. Make sure your wife doesn’t become one of us.


#18

That was deep. Thank you for that.

Jamie


#19

I will wholeheartedly say that you need to be mindful of your spouse’s feelings…but you must choose God over your spouse. As a Catholic, I can say this–if you were thinking of converting away from the RCC–maybe I’d think something else, because I do believe that the RCC was given to us by Peter, as a manifestation of his conversation with Jesus, prior to His death. That being said–I think you are more than ‘entitled’ to seek the Truth. As the Bible states…You can only serve God or man…you can’t serve both. If your choosing to become Catholic causes a strain on your marriage–that would be awful. But, should we not follow God over our spouses??:confused:


#20

I can certainly agree there; as I said earlier, if my husband decided to become a Muslim or a Christian, I’d certainly have to choose God and divorce.


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