Converting to Catholicism

Hello, I hope this is the right forum for this. I have been in a relationship with a man who I thought wasn’t a serious Catholic but recently told me it bothers him that I don’t believe in a God. I was baptised Lutheran and raised in both a Lutheran and Presbyterian households, my parents are divorced. I haven’t been to church since I was little as both my parents stopped going. The last church service I attended was a Catholic one with my friend about three years ago. Although I no longer believe in God because of certain events in my past. But I realized that this man meant enough to me to look into converting if we ever became serious enough. While I can’t guarantee I’d become a Catholic I’d sure like to try. I work Sunday mornings every week so there is no chance for me to go to church with him or at all. I’m basically wondering where I should start and what I need to know to convert and how the Catholic Church differs from Lutheran and Presbyterian. Any help is great thanks!

Call up your local Catholic parish and ask about RCIA. RCIA are like membership classes. Many parishes offer different mass times other than sunday morning.

Like someone else said, call up your local church and inquire about RCIA. It’s a great deal of fun, at least to nerdy people like me, and you’ll learn about the faith. At my RCIA class, after every month, we meet with the deacon and we speak about any issues or questions we may have privately for about an hour. Though this site is definitely informative, I believe sometimes it’s better to hear things in person than on a forum :thumbsup:

Call up the closest parish and talk about entering RCIA.

First, Hallelujah for opening yourself up to the Church which Christ established!

Anyway,
Can’t attend Sunday Mass? Saturday Vigil (in the evening) is just as valid, look into that.

Now I am only a revert, so I cannot give an extensive answer to the differences between
the Catholic, Lutheran, and Presbyterian Churches, but I can tell you that only one of
them can trace full apostolic succession back to Saint Peter, upon whose confession
Jesus founded his Church.

I can also help you understand the books in the Catholic Bible
that latter Protestants excluded from their bibles. It would take
a lot of information, so I have a group if you’re interested.

I also recommend this
very short video, about
two minutes:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZ5tEzXxSvs

If I may be frank, I don’t get this thread. You’re deliberating whether you should be Catholic rather than Lutheran, but you also say that you no longer believe in God, which is fundamental to being a Christian of any kind. :confused:

There might be more opportunity than you think. Most Catholic parishes offer a Sunday Vigil Mass at 5:00 or 5:30 each Saturday evening. It is considered a Sunday Mass. Also, many larger parishes offer Mass on Sunday evening.

You could check into RCIA, as other posters suggested.

Well, differences between Lutheran faith, far as I know is that we Catholics follow the pope and what is called the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. We believe the Catholic Church is the true faith, and we actually aren’t supposed to even go to other churches, except for perhaps a marriage or funeral.

We don’t hold to any of the Solas…Sola Scriptura, Sola Fide, Sola Gracia. We believe in scripture but don’t believe it is the ONLY way to God, since there is also faith, grace, baptism, etc.

We believe Luther’s beliefs to be heretical.

We seem to hold Mary in much esteem to where we would not hesitate to ask for her intercession. I think most protestant demoninations don’t do that. We will pray the rosary. We will pray for Mary to intercede on our behalf, but we do NOT believe she’s God.

I don’t think Lutherans use scapulars, holy water, do they?

I think it was Luther who removed 7 books from the Bible, leaving his Bible down to 66 books. The Catholic Bible has 73 books.

We go to a priest for the sacraments, including confession.

Please check the facts before making assertions. The above is not true; visiting other churches is completely allowed (I was at one this morning, and it wasn’t a marriage or a funeral), with the understanding that we still need to attend Catholic mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation.

There are different Mass times than Sunday Am. There is Saturday evenging vigil and some places even have a late Sunday afternoon Mass. You will have to check around and have your boyfriend be willing to switch for you to attend together.

RCIA will give her an opportunity to explore and deepen her relationship with God. Though people tend to think of RCIA as simply classes one takes, it has far more to it than that. And if you give the Holy Spirit a bit of room to work, all sorts of wonderful things happen.

GOD is LOVE. Do you believe in love?

I am glad you are open to learning about our faith and I hope you can find answers you are seeking in it. But know and understand that one does not convert to the Church for any other reason than believing in all of its teachings.

Hello. Sometimes, well, at least I suspect so, the Holy Spirit slips in our lives through a side door.

From the above comments you made, it sounds, to me -->please keep in mind this is all my opinion–> that this may be the case. But to me, a huge part of becoming a Catholic means to love God above all else (see Commandment #1). To love God beyond whoever is in your life or not or whatever is happening in your life, or not. However, saying this, I know God is the one who brings us to Him, not the other way around, and this may be a call from Him to you, to turn to Him, disguised as a desire to possibly convert because of a person in your life.

In my opinion, I think it’s definitely worth exploring, and you may discover more than you could ever imagine.

I’d suggest to you for starters to buy the latest version of the Catholic Catechism and read it, to get a RSV Catholic edition Bible, and to get some good orthodox literature on the Catholic faith and read those too. I also like that book This Is the Faith by Fr. Ripley. Also, this very website has such literature.

Also, I’d suggest you go to Eucharistic Adoration -->when you call the priest you can find out where and when it’s held–> and if you can’t make Mass on Sunday mornings, there’s always the Saturday evening vigil. Just don’t go to Communion when you attend. You have to be a practicing Catholic, without mortal sin to do that, as I understand things.

And, I’d suggest prayer. Is there a Catholic bookstore around where you live where you can get a little book of basic Catholic prayers?

Well, for what it’s worth, this is my opinion… :slight_smile:

Placing you in the enclosed garden of the most Sacred Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Please pray for me.

All of the answers have helped immensely!
As to yours, no I currently don’t believe in God. I was raised Lutheran/Presbyterian up until I was 13, and I was a strong believer then some events in my life unfolded and I struggled with agnosticism, atheism, and several other religions. I have since met a guy that stressed he wants someone who would be okay with their kids brought up Catholic. While I am completely okay with them being brought up Catholic (and being taught to be respectful of ALL religions…) I told him I would try to convert. I can’t promise I will but figured I’d give it a try.

Miranda, just tell your man that you want to go to Mass and he’ll help you go with him. We also have Vigil Masses which are celebrated on Saturday evenings and fulfill the Sunday obligation as well. Same Liturgy, same readings, so it’s all good. My DW often has to work on Sunday and so we go to the Vigil Mass.

We did RCIA classes together and it was a great experience for us both.

You might consider checking your local TV listings for EWTN and see if you can catch the times when they air Fr. Robert Barron’s “Catholicism” series. It is an excellent series that covers many aspects that few people…even Catholics think of. It was beautiful and inspiring and I think it will prove to be beyond what you expect when you hear the name.:slight_smile: Worth every minute…believe me.

Thanks for elaborating, Miranda. :slight_smile: From your earlier post, I got the impression that you were putting “the cart before the horse” so to speak, i.e. putting the question of whether to become Catholic or go back to Lutheranism, before the question of being Christian / believing in God.

But of course, I say that tentatively, since reading a post you wrote is a lot different than knowing you well. On the other hand, I would also advice reading with discernment, b/c I think many Catholics (especially those of us who post on the web) have a slight tendency to lump all “non-Catholic religions” together.

conversiondiary.com

This is a website by a former atheist.

Here is her story.

conversiondiary.com/jen

Welcome to CAF!

Miranda-

First, go to amazon or your local bookstore and get a copy of Catholicism for Dummies. Then come back here and ask us lots of questions.

Second, when you are ready, you can investigate Saturday evening mass options since you work on Sundays.

In the meantime, feel free to ask any question you might have.

We’re here to help. :thumbsup:

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