How to respond to protestant friend

I recently converted to Catholicism and my friend who is Baptist is definitely not in agreement with it. I previously was attending the same church as she is now. She keeps telling me about a woman who came out of Catholicism to join the Baptist church I used to attend. She made the statement that why would God have told this lady to leave the Church and told me to join. I just responded that I could not speak to what God told her to do, I could only answer to what God told me. I wanted to say, that woman didn’t hear from God. But that would have been uncharitable, so I held my tongue. Is there anything else I could say if it comes up again?

[quote=Seeking33]I recently converted to Catholicism and my friend who is Baptist is definitely not in agreement with it. I previously was attending the same church as she is now. She keeps telling me about a woman who came out of Catholicism to join the Baptist church I used to attend. She made the statement that why would God have told this lady to leave the Church and told me to join. I just responded that I could not speak to what God told her to do, I could only answer to what God told me. I wanted to say, that woman didn’t hear from God. But that would have been uncharitable, so I held my tongue. Is there anything else I could say if it comes up again?
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I pray you do not lose this friend, but you might.
I am also a convert. I had attended many different denominations, my stepdad was a Baptist. He never did forgive me.
If your friend is open and will discuss it with you, and most Baptists are as convinced in their beliefs as we are in ours, you might share one or two things, very lovingly that attracted you to the Catholic Faith. We know it is God and His Grace but in your studies you have learned a lot about the history of the Church.

I have given her my experiences and revelations that led me to the Church. She has made comments like…maybe you’ll show me something I didn’t know or you never know, maybe God will use you to show me something. I get excited on the inside when she says these things, but I don’t let her know as not to scare her away. Another Baptist friend of mine keeps making the comment, I think I’m going to become a Catholic and then laughs. I can’t tell if he’s seriously interested or just poking fun. But his wife told me that he was watching EWTN one night and when she saw him doing this she questioned him about it. He said, well obviously that I was getting something out of it, so he was just curious as to what it was all about. And he has asked me questions about it. I just try to be as simple as I can with my answers, so he doesn’t think (know) I really, really want he and his family to convert.

My experience of conversion may have been sort of unique. I never, ever considered the Catholic church or thought much about it. Back in April when Pope John Paul II died, I had a strange experience. I was watching the news coverage of him and was intrigued by the people who loved him so much. My Baptist friends would say “worshipped” him so much. But, now I know that’s not the case. Anyway, I also turned to EWTN to watch some of the coverage, just because I was curious about all the people and how people were so dedicated to him. EWTN did a special on events he had attended and clips from World Youth Day. While I watched his interaction with the people and the apparent love he had for complete strangers, I began to think…this man is of God and is holy. He knows the God I know and has the fruits of the Holy Spirit in a way I’ve never seen. If this is so…then I must find out what he believes and why he believes it. He must have the answer.

Furthermore, I had a deep spiritual experience while watching him on TV. At one point while watching him, I saw the countenance of Jesus Christ in him. I really don’t know how to explain it other than it felt like I was actually looking at Jesus right there on TV. His physical appearance didn’t change, but it was like I could see Jesus through him. On this clip he was about to board a plane and had his arm up waving to the crowd and smiling. When I saw Jesus in this man, it was such a powerful sight, that I felt as if I had been stabbed in the heart. I suddenly and immediately fell to my knees with tears pouring and knew that I had found the true faith…(although I wasn’t sure I would become Catholic at that point). All I knew is that Jesus was where this man was.

After this I got dressed, loaded up my kids and ran to the nearest bookstore, where I came across this book…Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Protestant. I bought it, brought it home and devoured it that day. I began studying my Bible as never before. For about six weeks I was constantly being inundated with God’s word pouring over me…almost all day on some days. God would bring scriptures to my mind and they would take on a whole new meaning and I would be astonished at the revealed meaning and think…why in the world didn’t I see this before? On my breaks at work, I would go to my car and read, read, read. And one evening I had a special visit with God during prayer. He was constantly leading me. I could go on and on about other things that took place and other signs that happened. But one more…I had a question about the apocrypha being a part of the Bible. I wasn’t sure if it was really God’s word, since it isn’t part of protestant bibles. I went to visit my Grandmother during this time and late that night in the guest room where I was sleeping, I decided to open this old, old Bible that has always set out on display in her home. I had never looked in it before, that I know of, but for some reason, I felt compelled to open it. What do you know but that the Table of Contents said Old Testament…Apocrypha, New Testament. The Bible was passed down from my ancestors and the date written in it was 1886. It also had beautiful icon drawings in it. I felt the presence of God and knew that He again was leading me. As I say, I could go on, but I won’t for now. Sorry to get off subject, I just wanted to share a special part of my testimony of conversion. And I do feel a special devotion to John Paul II for this. I credit him for allowing God to use him in this way. The scripture that kept coming to my mind during this time was John 12:24 where Jesus tells his disciples…“I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just one grain. But if if dies, it produces many others and yields a rich harvest.” This is the way I think of John Paul II’s death. That through his death, I was brought in to the Church!!! (and I’m sure many others were as well)

What a beautiful testimony! This makes my heart swell :smiley:

[quote=robertaf]I pray you do not lose this friend, but you might.
I am also a convert. I had attended many different denominations, my stepdad was a Baptist. He never did forgive me.
If your friend is open and will discuss it with you, and most Baptists are as convinced in their beliefs as we are in ours, you might share one or two things, very lovingly that attracted you to the Catholic Faith. We know it is God and His Grace but in your studies you have learned a lot about the history of the Church.
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I agree with Robertaf. I seem to run up against a bunch of umm… Interesting people who want to “Save” me from “Romanism” for various reasons (Confession, the Saints, Mary, whatever). I think that instead of trying to find a polite way of saying that “no, it was from the Devil” ask,“Well why did you leave the Church?” in which I find most people are more than happy to tell you all the horrid dogmas of the Catholic Church in which (this is what I do, you might find some other statagy) you go with one of those introverted thinking faces, “But, doesn’t the bible say, ‘…’” in which the conversation wil insue or disappear.
And don’t worry about it, I used to hang with Seventh Day Adventist (who are a bit worse than Baptist in Theology towards Catholics) and they know I am Catholic but, we still get along (we just can’t talk religion all that much, of coarse they are trying to convert me so they don’t want to alieantate me and drive me away from the “truth”) so unless you Baptist Freind is one of those Foaming at the mouth types the freindship should be alright.

Seeking, your not alone in your conversion experience. My cousin works at a Catholic bookstore and she said a lot of people have been coming in inquiring about the Catholic Faith after the Pope’s death. Many of them told her about their conversion experiences when he died.

“How to respond to a protestant friend”

with as much love, patience, and compassion as you would any other person.

which will often frustrate the hell out of you.

Oh the day we could just learn from one another and not argue. Yet I also feel compelled to preach my faith. “I know your not catholic…but here’s a rosary”. and then I’m like, “dammit, I did it again”.

I personally am only able to maintain a friendship with someone who has different beliefs than I if both parties have an unspoken agreement not to harp on our differences. Otherwise, it doesn’t work as a friendship for me.

Also, there must be a large area of commonality in order for me to stay friends with a person. For instance, I have several Protestant friends from work, and we can discuss general references to God, but I try and avoid subjects that might provoke them, such as confession, Mary, the Holy Father. And, I expect them to mostly do the same. I can let occasional lapses pass, but not a steady stream of them.

Anyways, that’s what works for me. If they want to keep bringing up controversial subjects then I don’t want to be friends with them because I don’t A) enjoy argueing and B) like having to let Anti-Catholic comments pass unchallanged.So that leaves us with either C) staying off of areas of disagreement or D)Not getting together anymore.

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