Dad says "he's too old to change"


#1

Friends: I have shared some stuff with my Presbyterian/Baptist Pastor 80’ish Dad. He has been amazed at such, told me on the phone today, “I’m too old to change”–bless his heart. He loves Jesus so much, and has lived such a Christian life for 80-some years. I love him so. In sharing what I have discovered as a Catholic, he is very intrigued. Said he would send me a couple books on “church history” as he has taught, most likely written by Prots. I love my Dad so much, and have tried most gently to tell him, most importantly that the Eucharist is the REAL Presence of Jesus. He is just taken aback.
Any advice for pursuing this further? He is my precious Dad, lived his whole life serving God, being a true Christian. Yet, he has missed the point in what Jesus meant truly in the Eucharist. One other thing, he has informed me that the church I was raised at, both ministers were recently fired for swindling money. Told him how in the CC, we are not there for a man-worship, rather to worship in the liturgy, and take the real presence of our Lord. I know I must tread most gently here. But any advice???


#2

Paul was kind of middle age when he was knocked down, right? It’s NEVER too late. I wish I could be more charitable here, but, all I can think of is if your Dad TRULY loves God & believes what you say about Catholocism, then, his pride is holding him back & God does not look too kindly on pride.


#3

[quote=adstrinity]Paul was kind of middle age when he was knocked down, right? It’s NEVER too late. I wish I could be more charitable here, but, all I can think of is if your Dad TRULY loves God & believes what you say about Catholocism, then, his pride is holding him back & God does not look too kindly on pride.
[/quote]

But he hasn’t rejected what has come to see as true. He’s still confused and is hanging on to what he has known and believed all his life. It took me (and I dare say most converts) years to come to the place where I could step out of my Prot box and be unafraid to say that the Catholic Church was the Church founded by Christ. I’d say give him the same time and understanding any of us would give to anyone else trying to understand what he could not or never dreamed possible all his life. I’m sure God is patient enough to let him work his way through to the truth. :wink:


#4

[quote=Della]But he hasn’t rejected what has come to see as true. He’s still confused and is hanging on to what he has known and believed all his life. It took me (and I dare say most converts) years to come to the place where I could step out of my Prot box and be unafraid to say that the Catholic Church was the Church founded by Christ. I’d say give him the same time and understanding any of us would give to anyone else trying to understand what he could not or never dreamed possible all his life. I’m sure God is patient enough to let him work his way through to the truth. :wink:
[/quote]

Thx Della!!! Yes, God can do wonders at any age!!! Thank you for your reply!!


#5

[quote=sparkle]Thx Della!!! Yes, God can do wonders at any age!!! Thank you for your reply!!
[/quote]

You’re so welcome! And like the social doofas I am I forgot say that I will pray for your father and for you as you try to help him see the beauty and truth of the Church. God bless you!


#6

[quote=sparkle]Friends: I have shared some stuff with my Presbyterian/Baptist Pastor 80’ish Dad. He has been amazed at such, told me on the phone today, “I’m too old to change”–bless his heart. He loves Jesus so much, and has lived such a Christian life for 80-some years. I love him so. In sharing what I have discovered as a Catholic, he is very intrigued. Said he would send me a couple books on “church history” as he has taught, most likely written by Prots. I love my Dad so much, and have tried most gently to tell him, most importantly that the Eucharist is the REAL Presence of Jesus. He is just taken aback.
Any advice for pursuing this further? He is my precious Dad, lived his whole life serving God, being a true Christian. Yet, he has missed the point in what Jesus meant truly in the Eucharist. One other thing, he has informed me that the church I was raised at, both ministers were recently fired for swindling money. Told him how in the CC, we are not there for a man-worship, rather to worship in the liturgy, and take the real presence of our Lord. I know I must tread most gently here. But any advice???
[/quote]

Maybe your father can help you here. Maybe if you ask him what he would say to an 80 year old atheist man whom he was sharing the Gospel with said that he thinks that he (your father) may be right but he is too old to change.

KK


#7

I was watching “Web of Faith” earlier on EWTN & this very topic came up!! It was a re-run & a 79 year old woman wrote in asking if the Church will accept her because of her age. The one priest said that the oldest convert he’s ever witnessed is 93.


#8

There’s hope for your dad. About two years ago, we had an old man become Catholic at our parish. He’s got to be in his 80s. He’d been coming to Mass with his wife and she was his sponser during the RCIA process. It was unbelievably touching.


#9

[quote=Kathleen Kelly]Maybe your father can help you here. Maybe if you ask him what he would say to an 80 year old atheist man whom he was sharing the Gospel with said that he thinks that he (your father) may be right but he is too old to change.

KK
[/quote]

How true Kathleen! Thank you!!! Think of how exciting it would be for my dad to come to truly KNOW the meaning of the Real Presence in the Eucharist before he dies? It would be wonderful! And the Truth of the Papacy!!! Awesome! I still pray for him and my mom and so many Prot. relatives I have!!!


#10

Prayer is the best thing you can do for your father. God will convert him in His time. Rejoice that he rasied you to be a person of God. I’m confident Heaven has its share or Prebyterians who now understand the full truth even if they didn’t have that gift of faith in their earthly life. Also rejoice in your own gift that God has given to you in coming to believe in the Eucharist.


#11

[quote=sparkle]… Said he would send me a couple books on “church history” as he has taught, most likely written by Prots.
[/quote]

‘History’ sounds like your most effective direction. It is encouraging that Dad goes straight to history (instead of Biblical intrepretation, etc) to try to dissuade you. He has already opened this door for you - walk through it. If he gives you books of dubious scholarly quality, it should be pretty easy to point out and document the factual flaws in those accounts - leading to a more correct (and, thus, Catholic, understanding).

I believe it was John Henry Cardnal Neuman who said something to the effect, “a knowlege of history is the death of protestanism.” History has been the key to many conversions (mine included).


#12

Well, if your father truly believes in Heaven, you might point out that eighty years old is relatively young compared to all eternity. :thumbsup:


#13

:eek: I found myself saying exactly those words; “I am too old to change” to my 12 year old son. And I am only 49! Better get a grip on yourself old man!!! :confused:


#14

prayer?


#15

Sparkle, when I was an Episcopalian, my rector baptized his 85-year-old Jewish grandfather . . . It’s never too late to hope.


#16

[quote=DavidFilmer]‘History’ sounds like your most effective direction. It is encouraging that Dad goes straight to history (instead of Biblical intrepretation, etc) to try to dissuade you. He has already opened this door for you - walk through it. If he gives you books of dubious scholarly quality, it should be pretty easy to point out and document the factual flaws in those accounts - leading to a more correct (and, thus, Catholic, understanding).

I believe it was John Henry Cardnal Neuman who said something to the effect, “a knowlege of history is the death of protestanism.” History has been the key to many conversions (mine included).
[/quote]

Hey thanks DavidFilmer!!!

I think it’s great dad wants to send me a couple of his “church history” books. I know written by Prots. Told him I would read them, and now as a Catholic, I’m very interested to see what points they propose. Yes, I’ll walk through that door, hopefully better equipped than I was a year ago. I’ll keep you in mind for any questions.


#17

if Dad is a reader, I always recommend “Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic” by David Currie to his own Father. One need not be a fundamentalist to benefit from it and learn and enjoy it.


#18

[quote=quasimodo]if Dad is a reader, I always recommend “Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic” by David Currie to his own Father. One need not be a fundamentalist to benefit from it and learn and enjoy it.
[/quote]

Hey thanks alot. I gave my dad this book. He said it was wrought with error. :frowning: As I said though per our discussion over the weekend, he said he wanted to send me a couple books, I said I would read them if he read mine. Am thinking of sending him “Catholicism and Fundamentalism” by Karl Keating. What do ya think? I think it’s the most hard to witness to our own family, when they know us…

Appreciate your response quasimodo! and may God Bless You Friend~~


#19

I presume you realize that the Catholic Church teaches that other Christian faiths can lead to salvation.

Unless your father clearly understands the error of his church, and resists the truth, he is not damned for being what he is.


#20

[quote=sparkle]Hey thanks DavidFilmer!!!
[/quote]

My pleasure.

I think it’s great dad wants to send me a couple of his “church history” books. I know written by Prots. Told him I would read them, and now as a Catholic, I’m very interested to see what points they propose.

This is the perfect opening for further discussion. I envision a conversation beginning with something like, “You know, Dad, I was reading those books you were so kind to send me. But it’s strange - the historical account they presented doesn’t seem to agree with contemporary witnesses or even modern secular historical resources. For example, all these early Christians (ie, the Early Fathers) said… and even the encyclopedia says…” And, depending on the topic, you can probably add other respected protestant authors to the mix (there are some good ones, like F.F.Bruce for Biblical history and development)

I’ll keep you in mind for any questions.

Delighted to help any way I can, as are so many other good folks on this forum.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.