My parents are controlling. They let me start RCIA, but they wont let me leave their church. I have been RCIA for a year and have to usher at their protestant church every other Sunday, which means I balance going to three churches instead of one. It seems anything I ask from "Can I go to a sleepover?" to "Can I be confirmed?" the answer is no. If it is not a sin, and a person's parents are no longer rational, can a person ignore their parents on certain things?
Hang in there; at some point in time you will be on your own. What you perhaps see as irrational, your parents see as perfectly OK and for your benefit. This is where the art of “negotiation” comes in. As you get older, you should be given more free reign over your own affairs…otherwise, how can you learn from your mistakes?
That is where the difficulty lies. You parents want to keep you from the consequences of making mistakes, but there are some things one has to experience in order to learn from.
It is not wise to ignore your parents, especially when you’re a dependant. Even when you’re out on your own, it is wise to at least take their advice on things into account. In the case of overbearing, overprotective parents, when you’re out on your own it’s wise to at least make them **think **you’re taking their POV into account. But that’s only when you’re on your own.
not enough infor
how old are you for one thing
if you are a minor, but over the age of reason (age 7 generally) you are an adult in canon law for the purposes of the initiation sacraments-baptism, confirmation and 1st communion. However if you are under 18 you are still legally a minor, and the pastor must have at least your parents’ permission, if not their active support, in order to confer those sacraments for you. He must also have reasonable assurance that as long as you are a minor there is reasonable expectation you will continue to practice and grow in the Catholic Faith. If either of these are lacking he will delay (not deny) the sacraments until such time as the situation changes.
As for your parents being rational, it is entirely rational for parents to raise their children in their own faith, and to object if the child wishes to depart from it. Yes you must obey your parents in all things that are not sinful.
Your parents just want what they think is best for you, and if you’re old enough to go to RCIA on your own you are probably not far away from 18. At my parish, at least, under-18s had to go through RCIC. Once you become an adult you will be fully free to make your own choices, including the choice to stop attending their church. Try to hang on until then. Fighting them now might make them pull you out of RCIA and force you to be more involved in their church.
If you don’t have your parents’ permission you will not be able to be received into the church. If that’s the case use this situation as an opportunity to learn about obedience (to God and parents) and to deepen your prayer life.
Worst case scenario, you’ll wait a little bit longer. But when you finally become Catholic it will be such a joyous event.
In most contexts, “No, you can’t go on a sleepover”, “OK, you may go to RCIA but you may not join the Catholic Church, at least not yet” and “Yes, you still have to go to our church with us and do service work there” do not point to overly controlling parents. Their willingness to allow you to go to RCIA is more open-minded than many non-Catholic parents would be, frankly. They may simply believe that you are too young to make such a serious commitment. That is not to say they can’t possibly be controlling, but only to say that you have hardly given evidence that they’re not rational. I think if you talk to the priest overseeing RCIA, he will tell you the same thing. Patience is a virtue gained by its exercise.
If your parents are asking you to do something immoral, then you must ignore them. It is not immoral, however, for someone your age to delay your confirmation. Although I can understand your great desire to be confirmed, your desire to be confirmed will have to suffice for the time being. If you offer God your obedience to your parents during this time, that will be a praiseworthy thing. You will not be made to wait forever. In fact, if you were seeking baptism, your efforts would be considered a “baptism of desire”, which means you would be considered baptised if you died before being granted your desire.
St. Thérèse of Lisieux, in her autobiography “Story of a Soul”, describes the suffering she went through as she tried to gain admission to Carmel at a very young age (she decided during the spring after she turned 14 that she wanted to join the Carmelite convent that Christmas; after much lobbying and prayer–including a direct entreaty during an audience with Pope Leo XIII!–she obtained permission from her bishop to be admitted the following spring, instead, at age 15). Her wait was perhaps shorter than yours may be, but I think her writing may touch you during this time, for she had to be obedient to those who thought her too young to make such a commitment, as well. As she suffered similarly, asking her to pray for you may prove helpful in your quest, as well.
Listen to your parents for now, especially since you are living under their roof. Once you are old enough to move out, then you can make your own decisions.
I come from a traditional Russian family, where even at the age of 22 I still “double checked” with my parents about my plans. It’s a sign of respect to them and a way for me to show my love towards them.
I converted from being a Protestant to being a Catholic while I was away attending college— I still technically lived with them but spent the majority of the time at my college (minus summer and winter breaks). I wasn’t under their household, so I could make my own decisions.
Respect your parents, I already respect the fact they allow you to pursue being educated in a faith other than theirs, in a program with the goal of conversion. I don’t know how open I would be if one of my kids did something similar.
As a minor, they are responsible for you. If they truly believe in their faith, follow their religion, have found comfort and a closeness to God through it, it is natural they would want the same for you.
Take the time to fully understand the teachings of not just the Catholic Church, but also your parents’ protestant denomination. In the long run, it will help them to understand and respect your decision if you can explain those points which have brought you to the Church. They may not agree, but will understand, and as a parent it would be important for me to understand what my children couldn’t accept about the Catholic Church. I would want to know that they were not leaving over misconceptions as opposed to truly understanding but rejecting. If that makes sense.
Please, I assume that you would not want your choice in faith to drive a wedge between you and your parents. Respecting your parents wishes now, I think, will in turn assist in their respecting your choices as an adult in the future.