Personal Faith

Hello,

I don’t know if this topic belongs here. I can’t find anywhere else. I am 15 years old. I am a male. I have been raised up by former Catholics in the Assemblies of God church all of my life. Lately, I’ve been wanting to become Catholic, but I don’t want to abandon my Assemblies of God church, only because I have so many friends and relationships there. I don’t know what to do.

Please help me.

Thank you.

First off, if you feel God is calling you to be Catholic, then do not allow the opinions of others infringe on His plan in your life. If they are truly your friends, then they will accept you and respect His plan for your life.

That being said, just because you become Catholic doesn’t mean attend their services and retain your relationships with the members of the church. It will be difficult, very much so, but it can be done. To do this, you must study both the doctrines of the Catholic Church and the Assemblies of God very closely. You can attend the services, but you must abstain from anything where the theology of the Assemblies of God goes against Catholic Doctrine.

You may also find elements of the Pentecostal nature of the Assemblies of God in Charismatic Catholic groups. I would suggest looking into these groups as they are the Catholic version of Pentecostal protestant churches.

Don’t worry. You can study Catholicism without abruptly abandoning your current Church or your friends there.

Praying for your intentions.

I commend you for looking for a more cohesive form of Christianity - you’d going to get a lot of advice on how to explore the Catholic faith, and that’s a good thing!

I suspect that your parents would be entirely opposed to any change in church, so if I could interject a caution to temper your excitement with a reminder to ‘honor your mother and father’ and to understand that you only have a few more years to wait until you can decide for yourself without appearing to defy your parents.

It’s a difficult decision, for if your parents are not so set in the AofG, your questioning them could bring about a conversion in them too.

You could probably get good advice from a local Catholic priest - he would be able to help you assess the situation with all the details.

My wife used to belong to a Dutch Christian Reformed denomination, but converted to the Catholic Church about a year after we got married. Her entire family still belong to a Christian Reformed faith community (her dad’s a pastor as well) and she still has many friends in her old church. She still keeps in touch with them fairly regularly, and while they have questions, they respect her decision and response to God’s calling. I would hope and pray your friends and family can do likewise.

I will also say that there are some members of her former church who refused to talk to her (or me) after her conversion. Our collective response was “That’s too bad, but oh well. guess they weren’t that good of friends anyway.” God must always come first - it’s a struggle for everyone (myself included), but when we put the opinion of others ahead of God, we are making idols. Go where God leads you - befriend the people that stick by you.

Welcome to CAF. If you hang around a garage you don’t become a car. If you hang around a “church” you don’t necessarily become a christian. Indeed you must become born again, even making faith (that you were brought up in) your own. This could be signified thru water baptism or for some confirmation or bar mitzvah. Changing churches is not necessary but a personal encounter with Christ is. At your age there could be an attraction to be different than your parents. One must always be discerning as to our “desires”. Some even change churches to follow a person they are attracted to. You must also find a deeper anchor for your church convictions than friends and relationships. Again that would be Christ Himself and not His “packaging” as found in this denomination or that one (Assemblies or Catholicism, that is, religiosity)…You are special, and hold on fast to that which you already have. Blessings.

If I might ask, in your post you said “lately you feel like you want to be Catholic”, are you just wanting to learn more about the Catholic faith, did you meet someone who is Catholic that you admire, are you reading in the media about the Catholic church or have your parents talked to you about their experiences in the Catholic church? Just wondering why the sudden call to be Catholic?
Anyhow, if you have any questions about the Catholic faith this is the place to come!

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