Judgmental Parents

I’ve posted numerous times before about finding out more about the Catholic Church and I’ve been going back and forth in my heart & head for quite some time. I haven’t posted on here in a while, so I’ll explain my current predicament.

My parents are Southern Baptist, and I have also been raised Southern Baptist. We normally attend church regularly (lately we haven’t; we’ve been busy & that equals tired), but we are not members where we attend now–we left where we used to be members at. Anyway, I was telling my parents that since we haven’t been to church in the past few weeks, maybe we could attend Mass one time. I told them I just wanted to see what it was like; that I need to expose my self to different things. Of course their response was “We’re not Catholic. We’re not going. Plus, you wouldn’t be able to understand what’s going on.” (Something along the lines of that.) Also, they kept saying how their teachings are different and wrong & don’t match up with the Bible. So I just replied “How would you know? You’ve never been before!”. My mother said she had just heard things about Catholics. Like they go to church and then go home and get drunk (my father said the same things too). I told them not all Catholics get drunk, but again said “How would you know? You only know a few Catholics. Plus, they don’t even act like that!” I just can’t believe (actually, I can) how judgmental they’re being! Like, Catholics are Christians; they’re our brothers and sisters in Christ even if their beliefs differ!

I honestly don’t know what I should do to convince them to let me go. I doubt they will anyway; I’ll probably have to wait until college. I love learning about the Catholic Church and as I learn more it makes me want to join it even more one day. Although, I’m not completely sure I will, I still have my concerns and things I’ll have to work through before I do that. Anyway, is there anything I can do (besides pray to Father God) to try and convince them or just make them see through their ignorance? Also, my mother said the other night when I was talking about it that Catholics believe that there were different levels of Heaven and how good works get you there. And I quickly told her, that she was wrong. That it was Mormons who believed in the different kingdoms (one of my best friends is Mormon), but I’m actually not quite sure on the good works part. Don’t Catholics believe faith+works=salvation? Can someone clear this up for me! Anyway, thank you so much to anyone that replies with advice! I’m sorry this post is so long! There’s a lot to explain! Thanks again! :gopray:


How old are you?

Do you have Catholic friends that will take you to a Mass?
I read your parents didn’t want to take you but they might let you go with a friend, especially if they knew your friend personally. Your friend could then explain how things worked to you and your parents (if they came)

faith + works = salvation is wrong and confuses Protestants.

It’s more like if you have the grace of God then you will obey his commandments and that includes loving your neighbor.
faith => obedience and thus works

If someone claims faith but is not obedient, they do not have the holy ghost within them.

This is a simplified version of Catholic teachings, though the full Catechism of the Catholic Church is available online. catholicity.com/catechism/fullindex.html

Your parents have prejudices that many non-Catholic Christians share, and they are fearful of you becoming Catholic. Pray for strength for yourself and pray for your parents who don’t know any better about what they say, and who love you so much that they are afraid for you and don’t want you to fall into what they have been taught is error.

You ask about faith and good works.
Jesus teaches that good works are needed when He describes the Judgement of souls.

As Judge of souls, He doesn’t separate those who go to heaven and those who don’t just because some have faith and some don’t, but whether or not they have done good works, practical acts of kindness to others during their lives.
You may like to read Matthew 25, verses 31-46, for Jesus own words about this.

He also has other things to say, eg Luke 6:45-49, Matthew 7:21

Also from the bible:
James 2:14-24 What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, and of you says to them, “God in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. But some one will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe- and shudder. Do you want to be shown, you foolish fellow, that faith apart from works is barren? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by works, and the scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness”; and he was called the friend of God. You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone"

Philippians 2:12-13
12 So, my dear friends, you have always been obedient; your obedience must not be limited to times when I am present. Now that I am absent it must be more in evidence, so work out your salvation in fear and trembling.13 It is God who, for his own generous purpose, gives you the intention and the powers to act." And as you see in that text, faith, grace, and good works go together

God bless you. :slight_smile:


age is a big factor for you, if you are not old enough or not legally able to drive, then you have limited options to do your own personal research about going to or exploring a Catholic Mass, of course if you have a Catholic friend who does attends Mass regularly that is the person whom you should really talk to.

Or at least a friend who was or is raised as a Catholic and even though may not attend mass regularly is knowledgable about the mass, and would not be afraid,offended or feel it a burden to take you to a mass and explain things either before or after mass.

But lets say you dont have anyone to go with you, if you have means to go by yourself even if it is behind your parents backs, and i say that not be sneaky, but if your parents or whom ever , if they are so close minded and their hearts are just too closed at the moment, they are just not going to change their minds and give you the go ahead to explore.

Maybe you need to lead the way, maybe if your family sees how you are deciding things for yourself and lets say you decide to go through what is called R.C.I.A, and that you are not returning home a menace to society, maybe their minds will change.

if not, then fine, doesnt mean you have failed and it doesnt mean anything negative towards your parents.

Also just finding a Catholic Church you are interested in or curious about what it looks like on the inside is as good a place as any to start, call the Church office which you should be able to find online or in a phone book, and you should be able to be directed to the priest or even have some basic questions answered by whom ever picks up the phone, or at the very least be transfered to someone who knows , possibly the deacon would be able to answer questions.

i just thought of this too, there might be recorded Catholic Masses online that you can watch and take notes from and ask questions on the forum if that helps you any.

We believe that True Faith in Jesus produces Good Fruit (or Good Works, Acts of Mercy(Spiritual or Corporal))

#1) DO NOT! REPEAT DO NOT ! go behind your parents back.4th commandment honor your father and mother #2) see #1

:wink: which is why i said do not be sneaky about it, but really, what is this person supposed to do , if he or she is really wanting to learn more about the Catholic Church and Faith, but has parents who forbid him or her to even search and learn about it ???

Plenty of conversions are taking place in the Middle East of people turning to Christianity or the Catholic Church against the wishes of their Parents and community, and they sometimes pay a very high price or have to abandon their family all together because of such harden hearts and violence …

I don’t claim to be sharpest tool in the shed by any means, and your comment has brought up a good topic, how do you honor your mother and father if they do not want you to convert to the Catholic Church, or even learn about it ?

I honestly do not have an acceptable answer for that one,

That is what I have wondered about. Is this the type of situation that Jesus was talking about when He said that if any comes to him without hating his mother and father, they cannot be his disciple ? Luke 14:26

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with you learning about Catholicism in light of salvation history. But a faithful Catholic would have to tell you to honor you parent’s wishes. There is no need to hurry. It’s more important to obey God by obeying your parents at this stage of your life. Going to mass with one of your friends is a good idea. I wouldn’t try to push your parents into it. I know Southern Baptist quite well. My affiliation with it is quite close. But if your parents tell you not to go, then you must obey. That is one of the Big 10. You can easily watch mass online if your curious, though the presence of Christ in the Eucharist would be more profound. If you could find a local Anglican parish that converted to Catholicism, you might be better off convincing them to visit. In fact, you ought to look into the Eastern Catholic part of the Church. Learn about the Orthodox and the historical facts about the Spanish Inquisition, Constantine, the Great Schism, the Sack at Constantine, the Saints, Church Fathers. You have much to learn because Protestantism has gravely altered the truth of such salvation history. Church teaching has has been grossly misrepresented my most non-Catholics. Prayers for you.

I’m 15; young I know, haha. I do know people who are Catholic, but I’m not really friends with them. It would be awkward, because they aren’t people I would normally hang out with. Thank you for your explanation!

Thank you for your link! I will definitely check it out! So basically what you’re saying that to have salvation, you have to have faith, and true faith consists of good works? Thanks for your help, by the way! And God bless you, also!

I think I may just have to wait until I’m older until I can go (I can’t even drive yet), but I know I have friends who are also…intrigued…by religion that would go with me to Mass if I ever wanted to go and didn’t want to go alone (I’ve been blessed with such amazing friends)! I will definitely look online to see if I can find videos of Mass, and if I have anymore questions I try to get answers! I’ve heard of RCIA classes, I think they would be such a great learning experience. Thank you so much for your advice; I really appreciate it! God bless!

I will definitely try to obey my parents. I do want to study more about the Eastern Catholic Church. What are the main differences between the Traditional Catholic Church and the Eastern? Thank you for your prayers and advice. May God bless you! (:

The OP said didn’t say her parents didn’t want her to learn about Catholicism, they did not want her to go to mass. She should respect that. The church will still be around when the OP goes off to college. It’s very important that when you want to convert and your family is against it that you proceed with patience and humility. There’s no need to damage your relationship with your parents in your devotion to God.

Get a copy of the catechism. Ask them questions and get their ideas about what the catechism teaches. That way you’ll be dealing with fact and not what they heard about “those Catholics”

You can watch a live mass on EWTN.com 7:00 am every morning. It replays at 11:00 am, 6:00 pm, and 11:00 pm. If you have cable you can watch or just log on to their website and look for the tab that says Television, scroll to Multimedia…

It’s not a question of what’s the difference between the Latin rite and the Eastern rites but a matter of theology in how things are explained. This is complex. I would focus on Latin rite catechism and locate a catechism for Eastern rites. Notice I’m using plural for eastern rites. If you read the eastern Catholicism forum on CAF you can learn more and better. They can teach you more about the Eastern than I can.

90% of Eastern Catholic priests are married by the time they are ordained. Their discipline does not require their priests to be celibate. However, their bishops are required to be celibate.

The Divine Liturgy is comparable to the Mass. However, you’ll see a much older/ancient Liturgy used in the Eastern rites. Depending on the rite depends on which liturgy is used. You’ll have to look more into that to see the difference. The method of communion is performed differently, but the sacraments are the same. Even confession is done differently, but the Latin rite also does similar at times.

I’ve never seen adoration in an Eastern rite church, nor do I know of such a thing. I don’t know if there is even a Benediction, exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Christ in the Eucharist.

Catholics have given you some good advice and information. I agree that you must honor your parents’ wishes. If they are forbidding you to attend a Catholic Mass, then I would honor that decision.

However, you can do your own reading and studying; and I am certain Catholics here will gladly help you with any questions you may have. They’ve certainly helped me, even though I am Anglican. Keep in mind, I started on this forum 3 years ago as a Southern Baptist. So, I’ve come a long way :wink: and share many Catholic beliefs.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church would be very helpful. I own a copy and refer to it often. You can find the Catechism at the Vatican website. This page shows each section, and you can click on the topic you want to search: vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.HTM.

Also, there is a really easy Catechism search option here: scborromeo.org/ccc.htm.

You might want to start with this website, which answers some of the misconceptions about Catholic beliefs: anawim.pair.com/CATHOLICS/INFO.htm.

One thing that might be helpful is to start a thread asking a question about specific Catholic beliefs. Suggestions for thread titles:

**What do Catholics believe about Holy Baptism?

What do Catholics believe about the Lord’s Supper/Catholic Mass/Holy Eucharist?

What do Catholics believe about Salvation?

What do Catholics believe about Purgatory?

What do Catholics believe about Confession?

What do Catholics believe about Communion of the Saints and Intercession?

What does it mean to Pray the Rosary?

What do Catholics believe about Veneration of the Saints?

What do Catholics believe about the Blessed Virgin Mary (BVM)? I would break this question into separate threads as follows:
What do Catholics believe about the Perpetual Virginity of the BVM?
What do Catholics believe about the Immaculate Conception of the BVM?
What do Catholics believe about the Assumption of the BVM?
What do Catholics believe about the Intercession of the BVM?

What do Catholics believe about the authority of the Pope and the Magisterium?

What do Catholics believe about the role of Tradition and the interpretation of Holy Scripture?**

I would start only one or two threads at a time, so you can fully explore each teaching of the Catholic Church.

Peace and blessings to you as you begin this journey, :slight_smile:

One of the things that got Quakers into trouble in England is our refusal to do things in secret…thousands of Friends went to prison instead of meeting in secret. In WWII the Berlin Monthly Meeting continued to meet, even though Gestapo attended meeting to see what the Quakers were up to.

If you are under your parents roof and they are supporting you, you owe them respect and should follow their “rules” while in their household. Don’t “sneak” around…you will only damage your own “witness”.

When you are out of their home and making your own way in this world, you then have the freedom to do your own spiritual questing and visit Catholic churches and even enter RCIA if you so choose…but for now…read, study, pray on your own and honor your parents wishes while under their roof.

Your parents may well be “judgemental”…OR they may have your welfare foremost in their minds…choose to accept their concern for you instead of thinking it’s “judemental”.

Excellent advice, Publisher.


I appreciate this link to the New Jerusalem Bible. I like this translation. Good to find it online.


Well said, Publisher. Very well said.

Komeeks… I’ll share with you something from my own experience. I was raised a Catholic with all the Sacrements, CCD (Catholic education; what a Protestant would call Sunday School), and very supportive parents.

Given ALL THAT… I am here today to say that my knowledge of the faith was lacking. That’s why I am here on CAF.

There’s a lot of ‘junk’ out there on the internet; but for me, it has been INVALUEABLE in my research of Catholicism. This is a fantastic site, with many great members and moderators. The apolagetics (explaination of Catholic teachings and faith) have been great, and my fellow members have been wonderful and supportive. I can’t stress enough how much info I have gotten here. It’s been great.

I would also recomend you buy a good Bible. Try the **Ignatius Bible **. shop.catholic.com/product.php…cat=295&page=1

This Bible will have footnotes, and SEVEN MORE BOOKS in the Old Testement that the King James Bible has!!! It’s important you get the “Catholic” Bible because of the larger Old Testement. If you have this Bible, you can read for yourself what is being discussed here, and make your own decisions about how you feel about Catholicism.

Lastly, I do hope you stick around and become an active participant here. As you see, we have members of all faiths and denominations, and no matter where your road takes you, you will be welcome here.

Good luck, and God bless.

Thank you so much, Anna! I will definitely start new threads soon, so I can learn more! Thanks for the links too!

I will still honor my parents’ wishes and continue to pray and study! And thank you for your insight. I will try to think of them just wanting what they believe is best for me! Thank you!

Yes, I absolutely love this website! I have learned so much from the people on here! Almost everyone is openminded and very polite! I will continue to post and learn more about the Catholic faith! God bless you, too! :slight_smile:

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