FORMER BAPTISTS - what made you convert ?


#1

Hi all the above question pease , thanks chuck

Is there any thing you did not agree with or what ?
Was it hard to leave your church ?
Etc u know what I mean Why did u convert ?


#2

Does it matter what church a person converted to, or are you specifically looking for responses from those who converted to Roman Catholicism?


#3

I left b/c I felt called to the Catholic Church. I prayed and studied..prayed and studied, went to Adoration and it all fell into place.

No, it really wasn't that difficult to leave. Early on in my journey I had a few moments of feeling/knowing that once I made the change there was no going back and was I sure.


#4

I read the Bible cover to cover in 76 days. I realized the "once saved, always saved" doctrine was not backed up Scripturally. I took the Luke E. Hart series from the KNights of Columbus website. I crocheted some rosary beads. After three days, I told my husband that I was too far gone now. I was a closet Catholic. He agreed to go to RCIA with me and we joined at Easter.

Our former church have been so gracious and respectful of our decision. My mom (a Baptist association secretary) is still mad and barely speaking to me, but I find it much easier to forgive and move on instead of retaliating and trying to return the hurt.

Blessings for your journey!


#5

I bought a Catechism and a couple of Catholic apologetics books on a whim, looking for something to study as a way of challenging my own viewpoint. As Chesterton says, the first step toward conversion is deciding to be fair to the Catholic Church. After a few months, I was a goner. I saw a lot of holes in my theology being filled in, questions being answered, by Catholic theology and philosophy. There was not a single core aspect of my Baptist faith that I had to give up to become Catholic; on the contrary, the Catholic faith completed and perfected my Baptist faith.

On a social level, it was a little difficult to leave. I had been very active in my local Baptist church and in our rather small denomination at the state and national level. I miss some of those activities and friendships. My reception into the Catholic Church also caused some friction with my family for a time, but we've largely worked through that now, and have a strong relationship.

I have often said that there are few big decisions in my life that I haven't second-guessed, at best, or regretted, at worst. But, the one decision I've never doubted or regretted for a second is my decision to become Catholic. Even when the trials are severe, I can't imagine facing without the assistance of the sacraments and the fulness of the Catholic faith.


#6

[quote="JDHallKY, post:5, topic:294924"]
I bought a Catechism and a couple of Catholic apologetics books on a whim, looking for something to study as a way of challenging my own viewpoint. As Chesterton says, the first step toward conversion is deciding to be fair to the Catholic Church. After a few months, I was a goner. I saw a lot of holes in my theology being filled in, questions being answered, by Catholic theology and philosophy. There was not a single core aspect of my Baptist faith that I had to give up to become Catholic; on the contrary, the Catholic faith completed and perfected my Baptist faith.

On a social level, it was a little difficult to leave. I had been very active in my local Baptist church and in our rather small denomination at the state and national level. I miss some of those activities and friendships. My reception into the Catholic Church also caused some friction with my family for a time, but we've largely worked through that now, and have a strong relationship.

I have often said that there are few big decisions in my life that I haven't second-guessed, at best, or regretted, at worst. But, the one decision I've never doubted or regretted for a second is my decision to become Catholic. Even when the trials are severe, I can't imagine facing without the assistance of the sacraments and the fulness of the Catholic faith.

[/quote]

Thank you all for your comments I ask becuase I'm going to rcia in september and I go to a baptist Church and I fell called to the church after studying books and on the Internet . So I just wanted to get other people's stories , also what holes did you find in the baptist doctrine ? to me the whole thing seem empty ! Thanks


#7

[quote="Chuck1, post:6, topic:294924"]
Thank you all for your comments I ask becuase I'm going to rcia in september and I go to a baptist Church and I fell called to the church after studying books and on the Internet . So I just wanted to get other people's stories , also what holes did you find in the baptist doctrine ? to me the whole thing seem empty ! Thanks

[/quote]

Check out Fr. Gray Bean's testimony. He's a former Baptist pastor, now a Catholic priest! You can find his written story here: chnetwork.org/2011/01/fr-gray-bean/. You should also be able to here audio of how he came to the Catholic faith on youtube or via mp3 download (as well as a lot of other awesome audio) here: biblechristiansociety.com/download. Hope this helps! :D


#8

[quote="buzzoff1031, post:7, topic:294924"]
Check out Fr. Gray Bean's testimony. He's a former Baptist pastor, now a Catholic priest! You can find his written story here: chnetwork.org/2011/01/fr-gray-bean/. You should also be able to here audio of how he came to the Catholic faith on youtube or via mp3 download (as well as a lot of other awesome audio) here: biblechristiansociety.com/download. Hope this helps! :D

[/quote]

Yes , thankyou it did help :)


#9

Well, the first thing was realizing that the Catholic Church is the historical Church. I realized this when a Catholic told me that the line of Popes goes all the way back to Saint Peter. I then did some more research and was pretty much instantly convinced that the Catholic Church was and is the Church founded by Jesus Christ who promised that the gates of Hell would not prevail against it.


#10

[quote="Chuck1, post:1, topic:294924"]
Hi all the above question pease , thanks chuck

Is there any thing you did not agree with or what ?
Was it hard to leave your church ?
Etc u know what I mean Why did u convert ?

[/quote]

Don't know if this helps, as I left a Reformed Baptist church to join an AFLC Lutheran church, but the primary difficulty for me was the doctrine of particular grace in the Baptist church; that is, that Christ died only for a limited number of persons called the elect. How could I know that Christ died for me? The paragraphs quoted below illustrate the problem.

“How do I know that God is at work in me?” This question becomes all the more critical when we consider another teaching regarding Grace that is espoused in Reformed doctrine: Particular Grace. In this teaching, we are told that God, in His sovereignty, has turned His gracious countenance toward only some, and not others, that God does not love all sinners equally, and that as a result, He did not come to atone for the sins of all mankind, but only for the sins of some. Thus, the Reformed also teach, Limited Atonement. After all, Hell will be populated, and it would place limitations on God’s omniscience if we were to assume that He did not know beforehand who would populate it! If He knew beforehand, then certainly it is reasonable to conclude that God’s sovereign plan of salvation was limited to only some, that His saving Grace was reserved for particular persons and not others. This leaves the poor Christian wondering if he were one of those God had chosen at the foundation of the world; and without the comfort of objective means through which he is promised that the Holy Spirit will work in him, he is left to look within himself, searching for evidence that he is among God’s elect. . .

Lutherans, on the other hand, do not teach that Grace is “particular” or that Christ’s atoning work was “limited” to some, but not to others. Instead, we confess what the Scriptures directly say, and teach Universal Grace (Jn. 3:16) and Universal Atonement (1 Jn. 2:2; Co. 1:19-22). Moreover, because the Scriptures teach that the Holy Spirit is present and working through the Gospel in Word and Sacrament, the Lutheran is confident that (a) since God loves all people, (b) since God atoned for the sins of all people, and (c) since God works to produce and strengthen faith through His appointed Means, then (d) the Christian can confidently seek God outside of himself, placing his trust in the objective promises of the Gospel, knowing that the Gospel is intended for him, and that God is at work through it to save him and to keep him as His own; and (e) the Christian can confidently preach this same message to unbelievers, knowing that He is faithful to work through His appointed Means to produce faith and thereby bring the unbeliever from death into life as His own dear child. . . intrepidlutherans.com/2011/04/differences-between-reformed-and.html

In a way, it was hard to leave the Reformed Baptist church; after all, I had been attending there for a decade or more, though never coming to grips with my own election such that I could ask about being baptized and joining the church. In another way, leaving the church was not too hard in that Lutheran teaching convinced me that God had, in fact, died for me, and that it was not presumption to believe that and join a church (I am no longer an AFLC Lutheran, but that's another story revolving around a congregation's internal strife and split). Also, I continue to be friends with and to see on a regular basis some of the members of the Baptist church I had attended for so long.


#11

I found this from an old post I made several years ago.

One of the last attempts I made to reject Catholicism and cling to my Bible only postition came through John MacArthur. If you are familiar with him you will agree he is very good at exegisis of language. He defended the position of sola scriptura on one verse in the Bible. (the only one that comes close, 2 Timothy 3:16)

I listened as over and over again he inserted the word "sufficient" into what the text said (even though the word is not used). "Profitable" says scripture, "sufficient (acutually "solely sufficient") he said. Like Luther writing in his Bible, adding to the word of God, so he added to the clear language to bring it into line with his theology. He focused on the aim (making the man of God complete) and illogically transfered that aim to the method.

Yes, we Catholics believe in the Bible plus Tradition. But that is a far more historically and Biblically sound postiiton than the Bible plus your infallable interpretaion of it.

"Sola scriptura" is a myth. Those who claim to follow it always must add to scripture. First, they add "sola scriptura" which is not in the Bible. Then they add as they read their own interpretation. This is unavoidable.

The Bible without the Church is as senseless as the law without police, courts and judges. It just doesn't work to let every one interpret and change objective truth on their own.

I was educated in a Baptist University and seminary and worked as a pastor, youth worker and music minister. So, yes, it was hard. Interesting you should as this now. The readings lately have been working through John 6. That was probably on of the first real Scriptures, after the one mention above, I realized only could be understood properly from a Catholic understanding. Otherwise, there must be a logical disconnect somewhere.


#12

I converted for many reasons - the most important being that I came to believe that Catholicism is true. I think the first thing that drew me to it though was the hierarchy. I couldn't understand how each Baptist church was supposed to function so individually.

The hardest parts of converting (other than the response of family and some "friends") were coming to terms with Mary and the Eucharist. In the end, those ended up being two of the aspects of Catholicism that are most dear to me.


#13

My answer comes as a Baptist...Missionary Baptist, who had non-Baptist relatives so I spent a lot of time around other religions and denominations.

I always enjoyed the rituals of the Catholic service and found them to be comforting. I have always had a rosary and would hold it for comfort and while praying, even before converting. My maternal family is from Louisiana so a lot of things that I thought were just "Christian" were uniquely Catholic and I didn't realize it. Mardi Gras is tied to Lent and everyone around me would give up something and we went to church on Good Friday, etc. As I got older, I spent more time asking questions about why things were done different at different churches, which led to more "well that doesn't make sense to me" thoughts.

Major example: Baptist churches don't "celebrate" Lent in the way Catholics do. (Celebrate may be the wrong word.) They recognize the meaning behind the 40 days, and I know tons of non-Catholics who abstain from something. They recognize the holy days connected to Lent, but when I ask why the various churches don't officially recognize it, I usually get "because it's Catholic". I started to see more and more that a lot of things were essentially in "Protest" of the Catholic church, although they made perfect sense and were not "wrong" in anyone's eyes...just Catholic.

The biggest hangup I had was the "saved by the blood" thing. My grandmother and step-grandmother (step-dad's mom) were both Protestants who for the most part try to live the Christian values. They do the Christian "right thing" because it's right, whether anyone sees it or not. It's a sense of right and wrong. But the basics that the church taught were that being "saved", even though you may have been seven or eight years old like a lot of us were, was enough to get you to heaven. I saw people stop attending church, stop being good people and the idea was that it was all forgiven because they were "saved". I didn't ascribe to this but by the teaching of the church, many did and trying to convince them otherwise was senseless.

I actually had a conversation with a Protestant friend a few months ago who was contemplating doing something that was semi-revenge, semi-necessary. While discussing whether or not it was wrong, I said she should separate the part that is her being angry at the person and focus on the part that may harm another if she doesn't speak up. She eventually got tired of trying to figure it out and said, "well I am going to heaven anyway, because I am saved".

I love that the Catholic church has stages of being what a Baptist would call "saved". Baptism....THEN communion....THEN confirmation at a later age. Most of my family and friends who were baptized at early ages admit it was for the wrong reason (to join the choir, to copy someone else) etc and had to really struggle with their faith later because they felt tied to it out of obligation, not out of true devotion. Not to say that Catholics don't stray and have the same issues, but I like the stages of re-affirming yourself to the faith.

Someone mentioned the hierarchy. Wow. YES! I had a serious issue with the fact that although for example, my husband's church growing up, my church growing up and the church we began to attend after marriage were all under the same "umbrella"/conference, they had totally different ways of doing things and all of them were because of Biblical interpretation. Even when the communion was done was totally different. Some did it on Sunday evenings, some only on First Sunday, some only at the evening service. It was too much disconnect and as a military brat and now military spouse, I was tired of wondering "what way does this church do it" when we went to a new place. I love that I can drop in and still feel a part of / as one, with the service no matter where I am. It makes me feel that we are "ONE" church.

Was it hard to leave the church? I miss Baptist music. But I have iTunes and Spotify, etc. LOL I sometimes miss the preaching that gave me chills. But I don't miss the marathon church services. :) Honestly though, the older I got, the more I was convinced to convert and it never gave me pause. I have children who I started realizing would ask me the same questions I posed and I would have no answer better than the ones I was given.

Because we were moving, I waited until we got to our current location to finish the conversion (I had started RCIA and during a rough/medical issue laden pregnancy, stopped going. So I finished here and we converted two years ago. I do find that my knowledge of scripture as a former Baptist is somewhat of a fascination to many Catholics. Also, being able to "pray on the spot" as one lady put it, is something Baptists just know how to do, from years of going to church four or five days a week.

Well that's my long input. :)


#14

...Etc u know what I mean Why did u convert ?

Truth.


#15

I am converting for a lot of reasons, but my first realization came in acknowledging the Real Presence of the Eucharist. I wrote a paper on the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, also a convert, which required me to both give a brief biography and analyze a poem. I learned he converted to embrace the Real Presence, and I wanted to know what that was, because I enjoy having a firm grasp on things.

Cue God smacking me over the head. Very literally. As soon as I acknowledged God in the Eucharist, I acknowledged Him in His Church. Ultimately, I realized that Protestant arguments are just that--protest. I converted for the reason many others have, which is Truth.

I suppose you could say it boiled down to three things:

  1. An understanding of sacraments and the realization that they were both necessary and beautiful (And Biblical, which much of Protestant theology is not.)

  2. Realization of the historicity of the Church and the truth of the Protestant Reformation and its claims (For example, I did not know that Martin Luther changed the Bible. :eek:)

  3. Knowledgable grasp of Church authority and doctrine, including the office of the Pope and Church hierarchy (When I read about Luther's "improvements" of scripture, I immediately asked, "Who gave him that authority?" :D Guess where that went.)

I think for me, the historical argument is strongest. If we accept the Catholic Church came first, then why do Protestants even depart from it? History tells us early Christians celebrated the Eucharist, made the sign of the cross, etc. Don't tell me there was apostasy. After dying on the cross, Jesus is just going to leave us hangin' for 1000+ years? And when Peter dies were SOL and on our own? :shrug: Okay. Protestants (at least the ones I know) seem to think that if they cover their eyes history will either go away or suddenly agree with them.

Hopefully I will be able to get to RCIA and mass soon! I can't drive, so it's a hassle. :(


#16

I became a Catholic 60 years ago at the age of 26 . . . a "backslid" Oklahoma Baptist . . . because Notre Dame had a great football team and the Catholic Church is the most charitable institution in the history of the world. My wilfe who passed away 27 years ago was never baptized a Catholic but she devoted many years volunteering for Catholic chariltable causes such as soup kitichens and homeless shelters. The priest who gave her last rites . . . which caused a lot of flack with a few sniffy, rule-bound Catholics . . . told me that she was a better Catholic than most Catholilcs he knew.


#17

[quote="classica87, post:15, topic:294924"]
I am converting for a lot of reasons, but my first realization came in acknowledging the Real Presence of the Eucharist. I wrote a paper on the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, also a convert, which required me to both give a brief biography and analyze a poem. I learned he converted to embrace the Real Presence, and I wanted to know what that was, because I enjoy having a firm grasp on things.

Cue God smacking me over the head. Very literally. As soon as I acknowledged God in the Eucharist, I acknowledged Him in His Church. Ultimately, I realized that Protestant arguments are just that--protest. I converted for the reason many others have, which is Truth.

I suppose you could say it boiled down to three things:

  1. An understanding of sacraments and the realization that they were both necessary and beautiful (And Biblical, which much of Protestant theology is not.)

  2. Realization of the historicity of the Church and the truth of the Protestant Reformation and its claims (For example, I did not know that Martin Luther changed the Bible. :eek:)

  3. Knowledgable grasp of Church authority and doctrine, including the office of the Pope and Church hierarchy (When I read about Luther's "improvements" of scripture, I immediately asked, "Who gave him that authority?" :D Guess where that went.)

I think for me, the historical argument is strongest. If we accept the Catholic Church came first, then why do Protestants even depart from it? History tells us early Christians celebrated the Eucharist, made the sign of the cross, etc. Don't tell me there was apostasy. After dying on the cross, Jesus is just going to leave us hangin' for 1000+ years? And when Peter dies were SOL and on our own? :shrug: Okay. Protestants (at least the ones I know) seem to think that if they cover their eyes history will either go away or suddenly agree with them.

Hopefully I will be able to get to RCIA and mass soon! I can't drive, so it's a hassle. :(

[/quote]

God bless you.


#18

[quote="pnewton, post:11, topic:294924"]
I found this from an old post I made several years ago.

One of the last attempts I made to reject Catholicism and cling to my Bible only postition came through John MacArthur. If you are familiar with him you will agree he is very good at exegisis of language. He defended the position of sola scriptura on one verse in the Bible. (the only one that comes close, 2 Timothy 3:16)

I was educated in a Baptist University and seminary and worked as a pastor, youth worker and music minister. So, yes, it was hard. Interesting you should as this now. The readings lately have been working through John 6. That was probably on of the first real Scriptures, after the one mention above, I realized only could be understood properly from a Catholic understanding. Otherwise, there must be a logical disconnect somewhere.

[/quote]

I was in BSU in college, and my whole Family was Southern Baptist. It is hard to escape baptists and their dogma in Texas where basically Baptist is the official state religion.

In high school we had illegal baptist prayers over the PA system, "dear hevealy father just this just that in Jaysus nayum aymin".

The city closed a street and paved
it over at city exspense to provide a larger parking lot for 1st Baptist church.

Entire counties are voted "dry" by Baptists who vote dry and drink wet.


#19

Basically Baptists claim to follow sola scriptura, but in fact they do not. They arrive at a pre-determend theology and seek out "proof texts" to back them up.

They ignore or deny scripture verses that say baptism forgives sin, that the Holy Eucharist is the body blood soul and divinity of Jesus and try and say it is an unimportant symbol only.

I think that basically their theology come down to "getting saved" only and all else must be secondary.


#20

[quote="andrewstx, post:19, topic:294924"]
Basically Baptists claim to follow sola scriptura, but in fact they do not. They arrive at a pre-determend theology and seek out "proof texts" to back them up.

They ignore or deny scripture verses that say baptism forgives sin, that the Holy Eucharist is the body blood soul and divinity of Jesus and try and say it is an unimportant symbol only.

I think that basically their theology come down to "getting saved" only and all else must be secondary.

[/quote]

Yep. The Bible was really a major reason for me, too. When I finally began to study some of those "Catholic" verses, I realized that Protestants either ignored them or outright misinterpreted them to fit their theology.

Every time we took Bible study in my church, we were told that every word in the Bible was to be taken literally, but when we got to the Last Supper (Eucharist) my teacher did "taksies backsies." Literal interpretation is all great and wonderful until it suddenly validates Catholic teaching. And Catholics must be wrong, because they're a cult that doesn't believe in Jesus.

When you twist or "cherry pick" scripture to fit what you believe, and then ignore everything else that doesn't, you're not following the Holy Spirit, but your own pride.

That's the other thing that baffles me. I always wondered, "How do I know the Holy Spirit is speaking to me? How can I be sure I'm right?" I'm not a theologian. I haven't studied scripture all my life or been to seminary. I don't have any type of authority that gives me a right to declare if something is correct or not. Everywhere I go on campus, I see groups of people with their Bibles (not pastors or priests) talking about what they think this or that means. With Sola Scriptura Protestantism, everyone is their own theologian. How do we know we're following God and not our own heart? The heart is deceitful, and "feel good" theology is the devil's playground. This is why we need the Magesterium and Church authority. With the Church guiding us, we can know we're right. We don't have to doubt because God has given us a way to be sure that is outside of our lying hearts.

Praise God that we are not boats adrift on a stormy sea, but a mighty warship sure of its cause and course!:extrahappy:


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