Dear Catholic Answers Forum,
I would like to start by saying that this site does great work for God. In attempt to be as brief as possible, I will get right to the point. My girlfriend, whom through God's grace I hope will become my fiance sometime during the next couple of months, is planning on being received into the Catholic Faith at the Easter Vigil Mass. My girlfriend comes from a Southern Evangelical family in Plano Texas. Her father, as well as the entire large family, are very serious about the faith, as well as their dislike of the Catholic Religion. The father carries many of the typical anti-Catholic views; RCC=whore of Babylon, works-righteousness, etc. So, you can imagine his reaction to finding out that she is dating a Catholic from New Jersey. I have met them a few times when I went to Texas, and they were cordial towards me. They have determined already that we are planning on getting married, so I dont think that would be too much of a shock. However, they are under the impression that it will be a "mixed marriage." I feel that this attitude will take a severe turn when they find out that she is converting to the "Whore of Babylon."
Anyway, that is a brief synopsis of our situation. My initial question, aside from simply attempting to start some dialogue about how to handle the situation as a whole, is in regards to when she should tell her parents. Would it be better to wait until after she converts to tell them that she did, or to tell them before that she is planning on converting.
One one hand, I feel it would be better to be honest now. However, the father is a person of great pride, and I feel that telling him before will only make him feel obligated to show her how horrible the Church really is. When he fails and she converts anyway, I firmly believe it would break him even more. That is my basic logic. So could anyone give me some food for thought?
Also, I would like to add that the entire family has handled the situation as people of God. They showed me respect and treated me with dignity, especially in light of what they sincerely believe the Roman Catholic Church to be. I am in no way condemning them for how they are handling this situation. However, the reality is that this may be something worthy of destroying her relationship with her family, that had always been very close. She has 4 brothers and a sister. Her father has always looked at her as the “prodigal son.” She is sincere in her love for Christ, passionaty about her faith, and also has a beautiful singing voice that makes him happy. It saddens me to see her go through this, but also makes me see how amazingly strong she really is. Anyway, I am sorry that post is long. I ask for all of your prayers and may God bless you all.