Non catholic becoming catholic


#1

Please no judgements.
I’m thinking about receiving the sacrament of baptism in the future. I’m a non catholic and my husband is also. My immediate family are all atheist, however my parents insisted on a catholic education for my sister. I have cousins and many close friends who belong to our local catholic parish and I have also attended their baptisms.
I decided that I wanted a catholic upbringing for my children and they are both baptised. My husband didn’t agree initially but agreed that it would be best for our kids.
I’m supportive and attend mass with them as much as I can but am starting to realise that there may be a day that I can’t participate fully with them in terms of receiving the bread. I’m also realising that there’s many things the church can change in my everyday life. My kids are being taught to be respectful and responsible and insist on giving thanks before meals and blessing each other which is lovely.
The personal struggles I have are that I feel like a fraud, I want to embrace it but my husband wouldn’t support me attending mass as a family, and I’m having a hard time reconciling my beliefs. I have a science degree and believe in evolution through what I’ve been taught on a biological level.
What I’m asking is, can I reconcile? and do you think I can be baptised? Or should I just continue to enjoy mass as a non-Catholic despite not being able to participate with my kids in communion?


#2

Talk with the priest at the Church your children go to. You cannot make your husband join the church but you CAN AND SHOULD join to help yourself and your children. When he sees the positive changes and blessings it all bring to you and your children he may be willing to join as well. Don’t bug him, just do what you have to do for yourself and for your children. PLEASE just talk to the priest and see what you can do to get started in the right direction.


#3

This is not a bar to becoming Catholic. I have engineering degrees and have no issue with being a good Catholic and believing in evolution.

Edited to add, this article has a summary of Catholic teaching on evolution.
https://www.catholic.com/tract/adam-eve-and-evolution


#4

I think you should follow through on that tug you’re feeling in your heart. At the very least, pursue things and learn more about God and the Church. Be open to the possibilities for your life. It’s always wonderful to me to see how God works in people’s lives. God bless you.


#5

I agree. Learn about it at least for your kids’ sake.


#6

I think in your case I’d recommend learning more about Church history and the basis for Catholic liturgy and theology. The particular issue of evolution is easily reconciled in the Catholic faith. You should consider attending a good RCIA or religious education class on a no-strings-attached basis. Always love to hear of parents who are willing to sacrifice for their children – don’t stop your pursuit of truth in the meanwhile either. :slight_smile:


#7

I’m studying biology and I don’t see belief in evolution as a problem with being Catholic. It would definitely help to read more about Catholism.

For me, G.K. Chesterton and Pope Benedict/Joseph Ratzinger are my favorite Catholic intellectuals and really helped me grow as a Catholic and really appreciate the intellectual tradition of the Church. Chesterton is especially great if you like British humor.


#8

Yes I think some RE would be a good start. After mass yesterday I went back to work and researched the liturgy of the word and eucharist, the meaning behind the bell ringing and offering peace!
I have been to mass many times but never really understood what was happening.


#9

Doing some research is a great idea! There are tons of stuff out there about the Catholic Church. Feel free to ask any questions you have about the stuff you find. Good luck!


#10

The Biblical account of creation is not a science text, as so many misinterpret it as. What it is, is revelation. And, you see, it starts right at the beginning of the Bible. Logically, you’d have the same problem joining any “Christian” church, especially those that INSIST on a literal reading of the text. Instead, read that as a statement that there is ONE God, above all “creation” (yes, that’s a bit circular). The beauty of scripture consists in all the consistency of truth in it.

As revelation, the Bible gives us the good news of salvation by God through Jesus Christ. We’re all sinners and imperfect, struggling for holiness and union with God, not through our efforts, but by grace of God. You can’t tell now how much good your conversion and faithfulness may have on your husband. It ought to be a big influence on your children, as much as you can support and encourage their faith. Accept God’s gift of faith budding in you.


#11

To the OP. I recommend you talk to a priest. Talking to a real person is really helpful. If you want to talk at length, call the rectory and make an appointment.

Best,
Ed


#12

I see. Well perhaps the creation part might take a little convincing. Maybe I’ll see how I feel in time, attend mass and support the kids. I’ll enquire about RE at the Parish.


#13

Can you say the Apostles Creed with 100% conviction?

Can you say the Our Father with 100% conviction?

Do you discern the real body & blood of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist?

If you answer no to any of these, I’d talk to your priest about whatever issue you have, them go from there.

If you answered yes to all three, especially the third, I do not understand your hesitation.


#14

You should become Catholic, but not just because you think it is the best for them, your kids. It is a Catholic parents responsibility to encourage Christian development spiritually like in prayer and knowledge of the Church. It is also important that you attend mass EVERY Sunday (unless you have a good reason) as you have, by baptism, promised to keep holy the Lord’s day. This means no excessive work and going to mass. I believe you should talk to your priest, basically going a little more in depth than what you have stated here because he is the best spiritual advisor.


#15

OF COURSE you’re welcome to come Home. Talk to the pastor of the parish church you mentioned about the Rite of Christians Initiation of Adults (RCIA.)

As an aside, in the Catholic world it’s

“Catholic” as opposed to “catholic.” The “mass” is the “Mass.” The catholic church is the “Catholic Church” or simply the Church. The “bread” is the Most Blessed Sacrament or the Body of Christ.

Good luck! Bring some other members of your family with you into the Church! :star_struck:


#16

I thought God was patient and everyone has a choice. I know many Catholics that don’t go to Mass EVERY Sunday.


#17

God is very patient. Do you see how many sin against and are so hesitant in accepting Him?
But, it is grave matter for a Catholic to skip Mass without an actually good reason (by this I mean, not go to a Sunday Mass at least once a week).
If they do so with full knowledge and will, then it is mortally sinful.
We believe that Mass is the highest worship of God.
Those who skip masses may not be aware that it is grave matter.
Though God is merciful, we as Catholics do not want to offend Him, because we love Him. He loves us. We believe it is our life’s purpose to serve God and do His Will.

It seems like you really want to be part of the Church. I reccomend calling your local church and asking about RCIA classes. God bless


#18

I was going to reply, but Kei put it pretty darn perfectly.


#19

I was raised in a secular (not atheist, but simply non-religious) home. I came to the faith, on my own, as an adult, and remarkably enough, it was actually through my academic efforts that I was pulled to the faith.

The one thing I learned was that God is patient. If you feel you are being pulled toward the Church, then do some investigating. Learn about the faith on your own. Talk to your priest about your concerns and questions (you’ll find most of them are based on stereotypes and assumptions). Join an adult faith formation group. But don’t feel rushed or pressured to make a decision. It took me ten years to finally realize this is where I am supposed to be. And when you reach that point, you see that things like Mass on Sunday aren’t an obligation, they are an opportunity. A chance to disconnect from the world for an hour a week and connect to your family and your faith.


#20

As others have posted, please see your local Catholic Parish Pastor about enrolling in the Rites of Christian Initiation of Adults (R.C.I.A.). This is one of the best gateways into our faith. I am a lead R.C.I.A. coordinator and catechist at our parish. The process takes you through an Inquiry Period where you can really start to be introduced to topics of faith and spirituality as well as learn more about the workings of the Catholic Church. After that portion of the process, you move on to more in-depth knowledge accumulation and opportunities to learn how to express yourself prayerfully. The process at our parish begins in August and ends with acceptance into the Church at the Easter Vigil Mass. This is an excellent journey to take to discern your next steps in Catholic Christianity. God Bless You!!!:pray:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.