Only a couple weeks ago, after nearly six months of prayer, study, and debate, I decided I was capable, ready, and willing to enter the Catholic Church. Since then the anticipation and confidence of my decision have been steadily building. I thought it was about time I visit my local RC pastor. Here’s what I came away with:
I should go through the motions and disciplines of being a Catholic for several months before being confirmed to see if it’s something I really want to do with the rest of my life.
Viewing the Church as a dictator of Blacks and Whites and a clarifier of Grey areas would be a bad reason to become Catholic, as I would surely be disappointed by the divergence of opinion found within the Church. The RCC is not a neat and tidy package.
The basic thing that retains the unity of the Catholic Church is the Mass and a recognition of Peter’s leadership and succession. Other than that, division abounds from political idealogies to dogmatic interpretational privilages.
Every Catholic from lay folk right on up to the Cardinals and Arch-Bishops differ from slight to large margins on doctrine and interpretation of dogmas and the Deposit. Therefore, understanding of Church teaching will never be perfect and there’s always room for change; so I must interpret the Deposit and the Magisterium’s decisions (inevitably) by myself, much like what happens when using Sola Scriptora.
…Now obviously this conversation was discouraging. I still want desperately to enter the Church (I’m already baptized; just need Confirmation and the other Sacraments) but now I’m questioning my reasoning for it all over again! Should I listen to my local priest’s advice? Is what he says correct? Is anything universally and clearly understood among RC’s??? Because after thinking about it…the Catholic friends I have really do differ in things even as big as the eucharist and the importance of being pro-life…
I’m feeling so lost again. But I’m determined to persevere into Truth’s Fullness. I will have His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity!