Seeking Catholicism for the wrong reason?


#1

Hello everyone,

I’m interested in Catholicism, but I wonder if my reasons for seeking aren’t quite good enough to seriously pursue it. I’m not attracted to Catholicism because of Jesus or the Bible— I simply long to have an outlet to express my faith. I come from a pagan background, but my spiritual path has shifted to nonreligious mysticism, so I currently don’t practice any particular faith. My spirituality and my connection to God are so strong, but I have no one to talk to, and it’s such a lonely path. There are no religious programs that I can participate in to serve my community, no one to fellowship with or discuss my experiences and revelations, and certainly no one who would ever understand. Even though I’m happy in my faith, I keep being drawn back to Christianity just because it’s “normal” and structured, because it’s the majority religion. I just want to serve, to have a spritual vocation, but I can’t get what I need on my own.

I do think Catholicism is a beautiful faith. I always found it far more spiritual than the Evangelical church I was raised in. I think the litury is powerful, the saints provide wonderful role models, and I appreciate that the priests are always there when you need to talk. I agree with the Church on moral issues, and perhaps in time I could come to believe in the Bible. What do you think I should do? I hate to convert just out of conformity, but I’m just so tired of being alone.

Thanks for any thoughts or advice you might have. :o

PS: sorry if I posted this in the wrong forum. I didn’t find any forum for clueless newbies to post their questions, so I thought this was a good a place as any. Please feel free to move it to the proper place. :slight_smile:


#2

Hi Nightsong,

Thanks for writing. I am one who converted to Catholicism from Protestantism.

I think the primary reason one converts to Catholicism is because it is true. Obviously there is not much reason to convert if one thinks certain aspects of Catholic doctrine are false.

You state that you agree with the Church on the moral issues. My personal suggestion would be to ask questions and study up on areas perhaps you are not sure about. I know when I was in the process of looking into Catholicism it was helpful for me to read books by Catholic converts like Scott Hahn, David B. Currie, Steve Ray and others. This was helpful as these men came from a similar background (Protestantism) as I did so they were more able to address my concerns. I even read some “anti-Catholic” works by Protestants as I figured any Faith that is true should be able to stand up to scrutiny.

One thing that drew me in before all that was the lives of the Saints and the Mysticism of the Church. Saints like John of the Cross or Teresa of Avila or Julian of Norwich really impressed me with the depth of their spirituality.

God bless you and hope you keep searching and asking questions.


#3

Hang out at RCIA…learn a bit. See what happens.

Now, I wouldn’t even thing of getting any sacraments before you are sure that you truly do believe and go through the proper channels, however. But there’s nothing wrong with attending mass to learn, or attending RCIA courses when you still aren’t sure.


#4

From the outside (I am a convert from Evangelicalism) it may look like just one more „denomination“ or spiritual path. From the inside – living as a Catholic(-to-be) and inquiring about the Catholic faith from the perspective of one who says Yes to it – the Church looks like the universe.
A sporting goods company put it well in the slogan: Ski it to believe it!


#5

Why not just go to Mass at least on Sunday and daily if possible? Participate as much as you can. Do NOT recieve Communion. Listen to the Scripture and the Homily. Meditate on the Creed. Attend Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
Read apologetics if you want to, but don’t make that a priority. For now, just soak it all up.

Do all this faithfully and then in six months reevaluate how you percieve Catholicism. Speak with a priest and see if you are on the right track.

May God Bless you on your Journey.
Kori


#6

Hi Nightsong,
You have been given some really great advice here already. I just need to point out a couple of things… Very important things.
Jesus & the Bible.

I once (many years ago) questioned the thought of Jesus. I prayed and I asked God to forgive us if we are all in error. And to forgive me for doubting. I had a dream that night and I have never doubted again.

History, proved to me that Christ did and still does exist. If he hadn’t been here, and died, and then rose again, why would the Apostles have continued preaching his word and suffered the terrible deaths that they incurred? They were crucified up-side-down, beheaded and stoned. Why would they have done this if they hadn’t witnessed the risen Christ? They wouldn’t have. History records many of these events. The Bible is part of that history, but not all of it. Roman records record much of it as well.

Without the full belief in Jesus Christ as our Risen Lord and Savior, and full belief in the Bible as the written word of God, you should not become Catholic. Catholic is Jesus!

I would love to help you in your journey to find the true GOD. I will pray for you.
Knock and the door shall be opened.
Seek and Ye shall find.

You are seeking here, and you shall find the answer. You are knocking, and he will answer the door!

God Bless!
Pam


#7

Good for you!
What was your particular tradition when you were pagan? Were you of the witchy persuasion, or more of the heathen/reconstructionist nature?
I am a revert to Catholicism from paganism, as are many of the members of the board. Feel free to PM me about stuff, anytime.

If you have cable or satalitte, take a peek at EWTN and watch “The Journey Home” and “Abundant Life”. Both are very good.
As for the Bible- I would get the Douay-Rheims (I like the way it is worded. Here is an online version) and just start reading. Start with John, then Matthew, Mark and Luke.
Then go back to the beginning. Always good.


#8

Just a reminder that you don’t have to have cable TV or sattelite to watch EWTN - you can watch for free on the internet. (High speed connection works best).:slight_smile:


#9

Danke :thumbsup:


#10

Your reasons are not “wrong.” I would say that you are being led by the Spirit. But fear not. Hang around for a while, see what this involves, what it MEANS, learn who Jesus IS and what he desires for you.

The Catholic Church doesn’t sign you up on a whim, then lock the door behind you and throw away the key. Discernment takes place over a long period and, as with marriage, there are no commitments until you say: “I do.”

Come to think of it, I was attracted to Catholicism as a teenager (although I didn’t come into the Church until decades later) by:

The film, *The Nun’s *Story
An exhibit of 15th century Flemish paintings (WOW!)
Gothic architecture
Latin (they still used it then)
Gregorian chant

None of these things constitutes a “good” reason for looking at Catholicism – or does it?

Welcome to the boat.


#11

People are drawn to Catholicism in different ways. I know people who were drawn to Catholicism simply because of the scriptural basis for it. I didn’t care much about that- before I converted, I was agnostic- the Bible was irrelevant to me. What drew me into Catholicism was the sacred art, music, and architecture- and the portrayal of the Church in old movies (which were fictional- but whoever made them must have seen something special in the Church- at least in a theatrical sense). I think it was Michelangelo that said “human perfection is only a shadow of the Divine.” That attitude at least got me on the way to conversion- everything else followed (my conversion story is floating around this board somewhere, I think).


#12

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.