Protestant Family



After moving off to college over a year ago, I started “experimenting” with different churches. I don’t know what drove me to do so, but I just never felt connected with the baptist church of my family. I tried several different churches, and even almost succumbed to Mormonism. After a long search, I believe I have found my home in the Catholic Church. So far, I’m loving it and I love learning more about it, etc…

The problem is my family. Being staunch baptists, I know they won’t be very accepting to my switch. While I’m back home for winter break, I know that they’re going to want me to go to their church. I’d much rather go to the Catholic church in my hometown, but I don’t want to start trouble.

I don’t know how I’m going to break it to them that I’ve been going to the Catholic church and want to become a member. I definitely don’t think that it’s a bad thing, but I’m pretty sure they will.

So could anyone offer me advice on this?


Hi, Ross! And welcome…what an awesome journey…and it never ends, for our Church is deep and wide with so many beautiful and ancient practices of spirituality…a lifetime on earth will not be enough time to plumb the depths.

Have you started RCIA yet?

May I suggest that, on winter break, you make it a point to go to Mass AND celebrate with your family. At this point, you are going to make the choice of taking the high road (so to speak). As staunch Baptists, they may never truly accept your Catholicism - but try to remember that all truly Christian denominations have aspects of Truth and be willing to celebrate with your family that which you can - and then, go to midnight Mass!


Thanks for welcoming me! I’ve been lurking here for quite some time now, finally decided to join.

I haven’t started RCIA yet. I don’t know how that’s going to work with me having to move between my hometown and the university several times. I might have to wait until I can actually get an apartment here.

Well, I’ll definitely celebrate with them. I just don’t know how I’m going to tell them that I’ve been going to Mass and wish to keep it that way. Their reaction isn’t going to be good.

Also, definitely going to midnight mass!


Hi and Welcome! I’m so encouraged to hear about your journey. It reminds me of where I came from.

I converted a few years ago from a family of staunch members of, what they called, the Christian Church. No one in my family was happy to hear about my conversion (a family member considered the Pope to be Satan’s right-hand man, if that gives you a clue).

However, deep in my heart I knew I was doing the right thing by converting and I also knew that nothing was going to stop me from doing so. I fell in love with Christ in the Eucharist and I fell in love with His Church. Although I was greived by my family’s reaction, I knew where Christ was leading me and I was secure in my decision.

Pray about the situation. Then pray some more. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you and ask Our Mother for strength and wisdom, no matter what happens. You know your family won’t be happy, but is it likely that they’ll stop speaking to you? It’s also strongly possible that they’ll try and talk you out of your decision. Don’t be afraid that you might not be able to answer all their questions. Just focus on Christ in the Eucharist and that will be enough for now.

Just remember that you’re not alone in this situation. There are countless others who have gone through similar situations and God has blessed them for their struggles. Know that there is strength in those who have gone before you. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!

My prayers are with you and your family.

Scout :tiphat:


Our stories are pretty much the same. I was raised Baptist but always felt something was missing. My first two years of college I went to a Methodist church, which was great, but still seemed empty. Then, I transfered schools and started going to Mass with my boyfriend and fell in love with the Church. It all fits and it is so beautiful. I knows its what my soul has been craving all these years.

Telling my family was so hard. Though, I had a leeway into the conversation since my boyfriend is Catholic. I started talking about him and told my mother I had been going to Mass with him. The conversation went from there and she flat out asked me “You’re not thinking of converting are you?” and I told her I was. Of course, she was not happy. She started challenging me and trying to make me explain how I could possibly do this when I “know better” Its sad because so many Protestants think they know what Catholics believe when they really have no idea, and most won’t listen to the truth. I’ve had several discussions with my mother about doctrine. The biggest one was about the Communion of Saints. My mom does not believe that anyone but God can hear us. After having a discussion on this lasting several hours, we went to bed. The next morning, a Sunday, my mom came downstairs looking very upset. She had had a very vivid dream that her grandmother, who raised her and has been dead for quite some time, came to her and was very very angry with her. This dream seemed so real to my mom and shook her up so much she was almost crying in telling me. I didn’t say anything, but I honestly believe there was a reason my mom had that dream. God will help us with our families I really think so. My mom is still in denial about all of this though. She thinks I am only converting cause of my boyfriend and she actually thinks if I marry him I’ll be “forced” to convert. I think she just doesn’t want to believe I’d actually convert on my own. Plus, she goes to a church whose pastor is just…awful. He often stands behind his pulpit and bashed Catholics for no reason at all, and his parishioners eat it up and believe every word. My mom included. They never try to find out what Catholics really believe from anyone but their own pastors, and its sad.

My advice is, take it slow. Let them know you have been going to Mass and when they ask why, tell them the truth. You will get bombarded with questions. Especially about praying to saints, Mary, confession, and communion. Make sure to know the answers to their questions before they are asked. It helps. Though my family is in denial still, my mom is slowly coming around. I think she is finally accepting and I think she’s realizing she’d much rather have me still going to church then not going at all.

It is a long hard process, but worth it. I talked with a nun once who told me dealing with family is some people’s cross to bear. It might be hard and it might make things strained, but we cannot let other’s ignorance and misunderstanding keep us from finding God and worshiping him and obeying him.

If you would like to talk more feel free to PM me. Take care.


Thank you all for the advice. I’m going to be home over Thanksgiving, and I guess I’ll break it to them that I’ll be going to Mass on Sunday morning instead of the Baptist church. Let’s see how it goes…


I should also mention, since I also live in a college town, that most college RCIA programs will take school breaks into account with their programs and suspend their classes at like times. It shouldn’t be an issue should you wish to go through the program.


I just want to thank you for your message. It has helped me to be stronger in our faith.

While dealing with your parents, be very polite and do not hurt their feelings. It is not easy for parents to accept things which are very difficult. Put yourself in their shoes and see how it feels. At the same time, you will never be satisfied if you go back to the place where you feel there is emptiness. Before you utter a single word to them, pray that the Holy Spirit might open their minds and hearts. Nothing is impossible to God. Through you, they may embrace the truth.

I would like to share with you the experience of a Catholic Bishop over here. His father was a beliver in the local traditions and never believed in true God, leave alone the Catholic church. But on the day his son was ordained a priest, he would not move from his seat. He said, I want to be baptised right now by my son!

God has His own ways of tackling the situations. I can assure you of what I can. I will sincerely pray for you and your parents, so that all of you will be at peace and follow the truth.

May our Blessed Mother stand by you, as she stood beneath the Cross.

Warm regards,
Fredrick Correa, Nairobi

When wicked men blaspheme thee, I love and Bless thy name!


I will keep you and your family in my prayers during this season. I hope it all goes well.


Thank you for posing this question. I have been to afraid to. I was raised southern baptist and was told I would be a preacher from as far back as I can remember. I even went to seminary for a semister. ( not a fun time but that’s another thread) My parents and your parents should do lunch. :slight_smile: I & my wife are preparing to take our RICA classes… looking forward to starting. Please stay strong and close to your beliefs. If you feel lead to join the Church then one must do what they feel the Lord leading. You are in my prayers. Like someone else said you are not alone.


Maybe the best way to handle it would be to wait until after the holidays to break the news to your family. Go to church with your family, and then slip out to attend midnight Mass or something. The stress of the holidays can bring out the worst in people and this is just not the time to bring this up. Bring this up at a time where they can think rationally and have time to get over their initial reaction while your not in the house.

I know it’s hard to keep such a secret. I’ve had to do it before during the months preceding my sisters wedding. I had to wait until after the wedding to break the news to my mom that we were moving out of state. It was very hard to keep something like that secret, but I’m so glad I did because it would have ruined my sisters wedding if I hadn’t waited and the stress of the wedding would have made things so much worse.


I pray for all of you that are going through the conversion process and have to deal with hateful family. My mother is Baptist and was raised a staunch anti-Catholic. There was nothing worse in the entire world than Catholicism. And then I told her I was inquiring. Surprisingly, she was more open than I thought. She told me “if you don’t think it’s wrong, maybe it’s not wrong.” So as I went through RCIA, I provided her with information. She finally admitted that everything her Baptist preacher had taught about Catholics was a blatant lie. It was all fear tactics. She is now comfortable with my choice because she sees that I am far happier and am at peace as a Catholic and I never was in the Protestant world. She has actually gone to Mass a few times and loves our priest a lot. (I’m praying for the entire conversion of my family.)

All I can tell you is be charitable to your family but do not bend on your beliefs. If you feel called home to the Catholic Church, you must answer that call. Just remember that it isn’t always rosy because there is so much misinformation out there. Lift your concerns up to Jesus and stay strong. I promise you that the day you are welcomed into the Church and celebrate your first Eucharist is the most amazing day. ALL the trials and tribulations will be worth it when your soul finally feels at peace.


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