Praying For Someone To Not Convert?


A protestant recently told me if someone is pretending to be Catholic but is hostile to Catholic teachings to pray that person admits he/she is an atheist.

(By “pretending to be Catholic” I mean received Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist and continues to go to Mass and receive the Eucharist but hates everything the Church teaches. Why this person behaves this way I just don’t know.)

I was taken aback by this recommendation because I thought our hope is always conversion. To pray that someone finally admits he/she hates the Catholic Church and all things moral, to pray that someone admit he/she is atheist, sounds like loss of hope/despair.

What do you think?



Perhaps being honest would be a necessary step in conversion, so I think praying for them to have that honesty is good, but not good enough. You should still pray that the realization leads the person to repentance, rather than complete apostasy.


If you thought someone was only pretending to convert then the best step would be to notify the priest and he could halt the baptism, and other sacraments until he was satisfied that they truly believed and truly had converted…it is kind of evil to pray that someone doesn’t convert to the one true church and kind of evil to pray that someone admits to being an atheist…we should pray for people to join the church and love God, we should never pray for the opposite.


There is NOTHING wrong with praying that a person be honest about their intentions!! God Bless, Memaw


I’m a little confused - has the person already received the Sacraments? Then he/she is Catholic and the prayer intention would be for him/her to receive the graces to become a good practicing Catholic. If he/she was of the age of reason and totally falsifying an intent to enter the Church under false pretenses - although the motivation would be hard to figure out…:confused: there might be something in Canon Law but it’d be pretty unlikely to say the sacraments weren’t valid, I think.

In other words, if they have already converted, it’s too late to pray for them to not convert. What is needed is a conversion of heart :heart: and that would be the prayer intention.

Also, the Protestant who gave that advice, while well-intentioned, in all likelihood doesn’t have enough knowledge of Catholic ways to be able to give a lot of relevant advice. Protestants for the most part (depending on whether “high church” or “low church” or wherever they fall on the spectrum) aren’t as attuned to the sacramental paradigm.


LOL I think I was deliriously tired last night when I posted so I should clarify. It was past my bedtime. :stuck_out_tongue:

This is a family member who was raised in a nominally Catholic home so she was baptized as an infant and attended CCD all though her school years. She has never behaved as a Catholic and is now in her 30’s. She’s told me she’s proud to be vain, narcissistic, and the center-of-attention. She supports abortion, homosexual so-called marraige and euthanasia. She told me that Catholics who don’t are hypocrites. She says all Catholics are “blood-thirsty” because we do horrible things, like the Inquisition, but not her, of course, because she is one of the few who don’t support the Inquisition. She doesn’t believe in God, yet says she “prays” so I can only imagine this “prayer” she participates in is more like meditation.

Yes, she lives in a fantasy world and she is the heroine.

I think also I’ve been talking to Protestants so often I use their lingo. By “convert” I mean an interior conversion. I pray that she will one day know, love and serve God.

The Protestant said that if God doesn’t chose to redeem her that I could pray she be real and honest to stop falsely professing to be Catholic. Is that okay to do? At first it seemed like a prayer of despair. Perhaps, though, honesty could be the 1st step toward interior conversion. And yes, I think the Protestant doesn’t know Catholicism well enough to give advice, although it is well intentioned.


Pray for her and for God to grant her the grace of genuinely converting and for her to accept his graces…pray also for God to change her point of view on abortion, euthanasia and those other things…keep praying for her…and ask the saints to pray for her too…the more she irritates you with her comments then pray even harder for her until god wins and she genuinely converts…remember God doesn’t want anyone to be eternally lost and if she is as you describe, then she desperately needs to be prayed for


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