In recent years I know the Holy Spirit has helped me find the words in many conversations where faith is brought up. I have found the key is to build genuine relationships with people who are not Catholic and make sure these talks remain conversations and never arguments, otherwise its most likely a waste of time.
Anyways, I have found that one of the great hurdles in bringing some folks to a better understanding of the Catholic church(let alone come to Mass), is the abuse scandal the media so vigorously covers.
I never know what to say here when someone expresses that they just can’t get past the scandal. As a parent of three kids,many of my relationships are now with other parents, so I hear this from other parents(non-practicing Catholics, fallen away Catholics, protestants etc) and I know, if we as Catholics can’t give good answers here, them taking the next step is on hold. At times I really feel like this a brick wall, even with folks that seem to want to talk faith often.
What do you say when this topic comes up?
How do we not only defend the church here, but assure interested folks their kids are safe?
Thanks for your time and thanks for reading. Would love to get some insight from others who may have experienced this and where able to give sound answers. I strongly feel this may be the last hurdle with at least two other Fathers, whom are very close to getting back to the church.