Have you ever ended a friendship because your friend relentlessly bashes your faith?


#1

*Just wondering. I have a friend who I haven’t known for a real long time, but long enough. I enjoy her company…enjoyed, I should say. Nearly every time we get together, she takes a shot at the Church…wants Bible ‘‘back up’’ for everything the Church teaches…and the topics range. Today, she asked me to ‘‘back up’’ from the Bible, confession. I showed her the passage, she still doesn’t believe. She started on her rant about the Church being manmade, etc. I have defended the faith as best I can, but I finally said to her…’‘you know, I am thinking we need to part ways.’’ She looked at me dumbfounded…I said…’‘You’re entitled to your thoughts on the Church, but I find that this is no longer a friendship to me…it’s a time where we get together, and I am forever defending my faith. A friend wouldn’t keep bashing my faith. I respect your views, but you don’t respect mine…and I just don’t want to do this anymore.’’

She apologized…I accepted…and then that was it. But, honestly, I am at the end of my rope with this ‘‘friend.’’ And I truly believe that the next time we get together, it will begin again. At what point, do you cut your losses and end a friendship when someone keeps bashing the Church? I will say bashing, because it’s way more than merely asking questions about the faith. Which I’m fine with. More than fine with…we are to defend the Church…but, she gets her answer, and goes off on a tangent…and I just sit there…stewing!

Any stories you can share, would be great. I don’t want to be mean, but if someone just wants to rant about the Church, to me, that’s not an edifying friendship in my life.

PS–I quit the running group, and now run with a few ladies from it. That’s a thread for another time, but for those who followed it…you know what I’m referring to. :o Feeling much better having left it, now. *


#2

If I did, I would have no friends left (minus one of my close friend and boyfriend). I'm so sorry about your "friend" WG. I guess I'm used to it by now, it doesn't affect me as much.


#3

Hi WG :wave:

I wonder if she might be a former Catholic? Normally people in my real life that bash the Church are former or lapsed Catholics.

After you told her how you felt, if she continues her ranting, then definately consider not frequenting her. Friendship goes both ways, she needs to respect you.


#4

*Yes, I agree…yes, she ‘‘used to be’’ a practicing Catholic and now she believes that Christ died so we could be assured of eternal life, but that we are all ‘‘worthy’’ of heaven. Her words…I don’t fully understand what she means, but she doesn’t believe in ‘‘organized’’ religion. She has tried to explain it, but it is not rooted remotely in the Bible…so not sure where she gets it from. I welcome healthy discussions…we are to defend our faith. But, she is jabbing the Church…asking me ‘‘how could I **possibly **believe that?’’ Those types of comments.

Countrysinger…I know, you have said this about your friends…do they bash the faith, though? Again, nothing wrong with healthy discussions, but when you feel like you’re constantly on the offensive, it can get old. :o And the friendship feels tiresome after a while.*


#5

They do bash my faith, but I got have a life, you know? I could be the good Catholic, and have no life.


#6

I haven't ended friendships due to Catholic-bashing, but I have had people end friendships with me because I agree with the Church's positions on abortion and homosexuality.

whatevergirl, I don't think showing Biblical support for Catholic positions with your friend is the way to go, because her interpretation will always be different. I think what you need to do (if you're interested) is get to the root of why sola scriptura is a false doctrine. Maybe, if she's open to it, send her over to www.biblechristiansociety.com.

Otherwise, if you don't want to get into it with her, just make it firm that religion is no longer a topic of discussion unless she's willing to engage in a fair, civil dialogue that includes her giving consideration to the points you raise. Otherwise, if she can't respect your faith, you may just have to gently end the friendship while continuing to pray for her.


#7

I had to stay away from a long-time friend because out of nowhere, she was bashing the Catholic Church and told me that the Church, cenutries ago, prohibited reading the bible and burnt all the bibles. She told me that if I ddnt believe her, I can research it myself and history will prove that the CHruch burned bibles…

I never even touched her religion.She said she is a Christian, doesn’t belong to any denomination ,goes to church on suday whenver they feel like it; they go to any church whether it is baptist, lutehran, pentecostal,evangelical etc…just as long its not Catholic but she has a buddha statue in her room.


#8

WG, I’m so sorry to hear you have this burden in your friendship - or whatever it is now.

If I were guessing further about what is going on, I would suggest that there’s something in your friend’s life that is not in accord with Catholic morals. Is she divorced and remarried without an annullment, or contracepting or cheating on her husband or stealing from her employer? People who are desperately angry and intent on bashing the Catholic Church, especially when they used to belong, are usually trying to justify some behavior that the Church forbids. The only way to live with yourself when you are sinning is to disqualify the one who tells you that you are. If the Church is not true and real, then it has no authority to tell anyone what to do or how to live.

I don’t know how this will help you deal with your friend, but it might shed a little light on things for you.

And I’m really glad to hear you quit the running group. That whole thing was creepy.

Betsy


#9

Maybe if you ask her why it is she keeps bringing it up? You could mention that while your faith is very important to you, you are capable of speaking on other subjects. :wink: I mean, is she talking about it the whole time because she wants to pull you away from the Church? Is it because she thinks all people who believe in Church teachings must be idiots, and you’re not an idiot, so what gives? (boy, have I had that conversation before…) Is it that she is wondering if there was more to what she left behind than she was ever taught or understood?

But if it doesn’t improve, you could certainly break off a short-term friendship because it is no two-way street and you can’t enjoy her company any more.

–Jen


#10

Whatevergirl,

I have had to back-out of friendships/relationships because of Catholic bashing. I simply find people who are constantly negative about the Church are not healthily for me to be around.:o It helps me build my Apologetics arsenal but after a while it gets old and I would rather be with like minded brother and sisters in Christ.:cool:

Also, so glad you found a group of women to run jog with. How is your ankle? Are you still going to do the 5K, coming up?


#11

Hello whatevergirl,

Sorry to hear you're having this type of problem with someone you've considered a friend. To my mind it boils down to, you shouldn't have to walk on eggshells with a friend or always fear that you might end up in an argument simply because you are who you are, believe what you believe, or live a certain way. Respecting differences is a good start to friendship ... being comfortable and enjoying each other's company is way better.

I once had a poster on my wall that read "A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”

In my case I wouldn't call the faith-bashing relentless, and it was only part of why I ended a particular friendship. My former friend apparently went bonkers when it was announced that Sarah Palin would be a Vice Presidential candidate.

My friend ended up initiating the topic of birth control twice, in public ... and I'm a single, never-married Catholic. It was really weird how she brought up the topic first in a restaurant and even weirder when she repeated herself in a craft store out of the blue, using the exact same wording and the exact same question about "Did you hear about the woman who had 17 kids and then the very next kid, the husband abandoned the whole family?" I guess she expected I would have a different answer if I sensed she was angry with my first answer, but no ... I stuck to my original answer that the husband should have honored his marriage vows regardless of the number of children, and that nowadays there was Natural Family Planning.

If this had been the only issue between us I would have been more than willing to stay and work things out in the relationship, as normally this person had made a noticeable effort to respect the difference in our religions.

I would advise you to prayerfully discern the best way to handle your friend.

One thing I did with a different person, a Baptist with whom I corresponded in e-mail, was to write and say, "Please know that whenever you send me a message attempting to convert me, that I am going to pray an entire Rosary for your conversion back to the Catholic Church." Then whenever the Baptist wrote trying to convert me, I would reply saying, "As agreed, I am going to say a Rosary for you ... " ... and then I would go on to defend the Catholic Church. I think the Baptist was amazed that I was able to take her on using both my own experience and the Bible, so pretty soon she stopped writing.

Anyways, may the Lord guide and direct you in your dealings with your friend.

~~ the phoenix


#12

My problem is getting bashed for not having faith.

So, all I can offer you now is two things.

1) You could ask her if she believes she must convert you to her beliefs.
2) You could tell her that you do not believe as she does, and do not wish to be evangelized to by anyone as you are comfortable in the faith community you are in. I don't know your backround, but I would add if you were brought up in the faith and continued through it that your entire life and your way of expressing it has been through this belief, and that you believe you have lived a life that you would never change. And, while you are open to hearing opposing viewpoints, you have given them all great consideration and thought (if you have) and you find yourself where you are. She should accept you right where you are and respect your views, even if they differ from hers.


#13

It seems, the worst are lapsed Catholics.

They seem to need a way to defend / excuse their lapses to Faithful Catholics.

And that is just what I ask them - something like this:. "It sounds like you are bashing Catholicism because you are a lapsed Catholic - Do you feel that you really need to defend, to me...why you left the Church"?

It usually stays with them.


#14

*Dear whatevergirl,
I am so sorry to hear that your “friend” can not accept your life of Catholicism. I would think a “friend” would be considerate of your faith and be kind enough to accept you no matter what religion you hold close to your heart.
I can understand how you get tired of defending your faith. At first it is really kinda’ neat to be able to stand up for your beliefs and share your religious background and love for God with a “friend”. Answering questions about your faith and even defending it can be a rewarding task. What becomes very **hard ***is the bashing. It really hurts me when I try to defend my deep beliefs as a Catholic and no matter what I do or say I am bashed or condemned because of those beliefs.
I have been told before that I will be going to Hell because I am Catholic! This was a friend of mine that shared that with me. I was 17 years old at the time. I stayed a distant friend with her only until we graduated from nursing school and then we departed due to our different employment locations … but that was really hard for me.
I may not agree 100% with other religions or faiths, but you will **never **find me bashing another religion. Never! I believe judgment comes from God!
Asking questions is cool, but bashing!?!?
God Bless You,
Angel Face

P.S. I’ll be praying for you!


#15

I fully agree with Kimmielittle, lapsed Catholics are just the absolute worst. It’s the most bizarre thing! I am friends with Athiests more than I am with lapsed Catholics, or even some cafeteria Catholics. Not only do lapsed Catholics generally give Catholicism a bad name, they also can be very spiteful and weird about their faith. I know, I used to be one. The Athiests I know are more open to discussing Catholicism, or generally more charitable and kind when dealing with Christians and actually aren’t really out to get you like the lapsed Catholic who tries desperately to cling to whatever reason he/she had for leaving the Church.

As for the original question. By golly, in actual fact I don’t really have many friends. I used to have loads. When I was a cafeteria Catholic, lapsed Catholic too, I had friends everywhere and I was invited places and all that. Once I took my faith seriously, everyone split. Including my girlfriend. My “Best” friends (lapsed Catholics) and I don’t really get along. My old friends and I don’t ever talk. The only friends I have are cafeteria Catholics, and I recently realised just how poor friends they were (long story…). Nobody wants to be friends with a 20 year old guy who takes life, his soul, his work and his faith seriously. Nooooo. I’m boring, because I don’t drink, I don’t go clubbing until 5 in the morning 3 times a week, because I don’t get high, because I have “jesus freak” views on sexuality.
The only friends I really have are a bunch of girls, agnostics, who are just there and they accept, ask questions and are nice :slight_smile: One of them has even started coming to Church (thank you, Holy Spirit!).

I have never really experienced “bashing” though, from friends at least. The most I get is an ignorant comment like “The pope is a peado”, and as much as it hurts, what else is to be expected when people only have mainstream anti-Catholic media around them? Anyway I put them in their place! I sometimes try not to throw myself too much of a pity party, but the words of Jesus often ring true to me. All the stuff about being persecuted, etc in his name. I feel that for now, I do walk a very lonely path. One day hopefully the Lord will bless me with good friends and a good lady :smiley: If it’s in his will of course.

But I forget that prayer, I think its a prayer at least, about shunning praise, shunning all that stuff, not fearing loneliness etc. That prayer helped me come to terms with a few things :slight_smile:

Good Luck and remember that letting go of a friend aint gonna hurt you it will probably end up hurting them more (though, they won’t realise it until its way too late) :thumbsup:


#16

[quote="whatevergirl, post:1, topic:199612"]
Just wondering. I have a friend who I haven't known for a real long time, but long enough. I enjoy her company...enjoyed**, I should say. Nearly every time we get together, she takes a shot at the Church...wants Bible ''back up'' for everything the Church teaches...and the topics range. Today, she asked me to ''back up'' from the Bible, confession. I showed her the passage, she still doesn't believe. She started on her rant about the Church being manmade, etc. I have defended the faith as best I can, but I finally said to her...''you know, I am thinking we need to part ways.'' She looked at me dumbfounded...I said...''You're entitled to your thoughts on the Church, but I find that this is no longer a friendship to me...it's a time where we get together, and I am forever defending my faith. A friend wouldn't keep bashing my faith. I respect your views, but you don't respect mine...and I just don't want to do this anymore.''

She apologized...I accepted....and then that was it. But, honestly, I am at the end of my rope with this ''friend.'' And I truly believe that the next time we get together, it will begin again. At what point, do you cut your losses and end a friendship when someone keeps bashing the Church? I will say bashing, because it's way more than merely asking questions about the faith. Which I'm fine with. More than fine with...we are to defend the Church...but, she gets her answer, and goes off on a tangent...and I just sit there...stewing!

Any stories you can share, would be great. I don't want to be mean, but if someone just wants to rant about the Church, to me, that's not an edifying friendship in my life.

PS--I quit the running group, and now run with a few ladies from it. That's a thread for another time, but for those who followed it...you know what I'm referring to. :o Feeling much better having left it, now.

[/quote]

Shake the dust from your sandals, WEG!

I've had friends that I've let go because of similar things, mostly their fem-nazi views that just made my stomach turn. You think to yourself, "what does that have to do with Mexican food?" You know, sometimes you just want to enjoy some Mexican food.

:)

Don't sweat it. Don't try to mend the fence. It's not worth it.


#17

someone like that does not get to be a friend, or stay a friend long. We do have one friend who divorced (they were both Catholic but married outside the Church and not practicing) who moved in with a JW and is starting to proselytize, but DH got hold of him before he had a chance to learn much of their teaching and methods, and he ended that relationship, simply because he had learned to trust DH over the years as a friend and business associate, so listened to him on faith matters, and got him and one adult son back to the Catholic Church.

I have distanced myself from close family members who are relentless in bashing not only the Church by my practice of the faith in a deliberate manner. We can be cordial if thrown together for the afternoon at a family gathering, but if one of them gets a couple of drinks in them, it is time for us to pack up and leave.


#18

I think what you said was perfect WG , and I think honestly she sounds like a lost and immature person. She doesn't seem to know boundaries of social interaction which seems to be a prevalent thing these days. Honestly I think the ball is in HER court now.


#19

Aw, WG…:console:
I am sorry about your situation…I did go to a Fundamentalist Protestant school for highschool (our Catholic highschool was…well…not Catholic:( )
But I made a best friend there who was non-denominational…and one of our mantra’s was that any questions/ discussions would be asked in love and that our discussions would never be condemming…we have had some amazing inter-faith discussions because of this…

I had dealt with a lot of bashing from others ( “you are are going to hell” stuff…:confused:) but they never became a friend…:rolleyes: wonder why?

(Sorry, this was written quickly)


#20

Yes I actually have ended a friendship for that reason. It was actually a guy I met through an online AP class…and we really hit it off…until we started discussing religion. He said that he “wanted to learn more about the Catholic Church” but no, both his parents were Catholic, so he knew plenty, all he wanted to do was bash me and my faith. So I pretty much got sick of him not listening to anything I say and repeatedly throwing insults, that I just stopped talking to him and thus ended our friendship.


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