So Utterly Confused


Hi. My name is Ashley Winters.

I’m not catholic, and I don’t know if I will be joining in the future, but I’ve been reading things online about Catholicism. I do have a NABRE, but when I try to read a little bit of text from a “helpful hint” from the Bible, I feel more lost and confused. I want to understand what I read but all I get is more questions. I’m quite scared to even open the Bible now, because it feels so different.

Any help?

And if you ask what questions I have, the list is overwhelming.


Doubt is the start of certainty.
Amazement the one of philosophy.
Grace, of faith. i guess you should grab the chance of getting your questions answered. why be scared? “Don’t be afraid!” someone said. You should find out about Him in your NABRE.


Huh?? I get the last part - God in the Bible, but before that I’m confused about what you are trying to convey to me.


To get answers, you need questions. Therefore, doubt, uncertainty and ignorance (in the good sense) lead to knowledge.

That amazement leads to philopsophy ispretty obvious, but it is not mine :smiley: If I remember it is Plato, and what it means is: The World is one way. Why? The World is mysterious and fascinating. I am curious about it. That too leads to knowledge.


Step by step, one thing at a time?



Okay I get the first part, and I am probably misunderstanding you, but are you calling me “not smart” by not understanding “amazement leads to philosophy” quote? I really didn’t understand that quote, and I’m not trying to be a burden. I’m trying but Catholicism is much more in depth than anything I’ve ever researched. A lot to take in and try to understand.


Where should I start? I have 100+ questions and if I try to answer them all, I get overwhelmed. How do I know which question I should ask and research? Is there a good beginning question? A simple question?


the bible is to be read over and over, prayed over, and studied patiently.

I suggest you keep reading and studying, and you will likely come across something which answers your questions. It doesn’t all come at once.

the bible is not always immediately understandable. the beauty of it is, that there are levels of meaning, and you eventually learn to climb up to higher levels of understanding.

as scripture says, be patient and wait for the Lord – to enlighten you.Commentaries are sometimes helpful to address questions that people have. It may take years for you to find an answer, so don’t give up.


No, I am not. Why should I? It would be a funny way to welcome you…and even if I knew you being the worse person on earth, I would not. :slight_smile:

I mean by that -as Plato did- that the World itself lights up curiousity. Mystery acts of our intellect. We are made that way. As with your Bible, you may be afraid to open it, because you can sense you may find things. So, what kind of things? What is in there? That’s curiosity, fascination; it can amazement, and that leads to knowledge, philosophie being the love for knowledge (and the argumenting and using concepts, in a very succint way to explain it).


Ugh, be patient. Something I have a very hard time doing. I’m guessing no one else has this problem? Yeah right.

As for levels of meaning, I have not heard of that. Is that part of Catholicism or something else?


Just start asking :slight_smile: it willgo somewhere. Gather the informations you get. Continue studying. Good luck, and God bless you.


Not only in religion you have levels of meaning. Any text may have more tha one meaning. Novels often have more than one,particularly what is called a classic is also a classic because of this depth


Thanks for that. I’m glad you weren’t trying to harm me. I guess, when i asked my question, I wasn’t thinking of Plato. I’m not one that likes philosophy talk. I’m more succinct in just a simple way. Right now I think I need the children’s version, rather than a Plato version. =D


We should never lose our child-like side. So then, you can certainly understand how amazement leads to curiosity and then knowledge. Look at a baby or little child who turns his head towards people he doesn’t know and stare because he pretty much asks himself what he is looking at.


Hi Ashley,

Peter Kreeft’s How To Read the Bible is a good place to start. Here’s an excerpt:

  *There are thousands of books about The Book. Why another one?
  []("")This        Book itself says, "Of making of many books there is no end, and much study        is a weariness of the flesh" (Ecclesiastes 12:12). (This is the favorite Bible        verse of lazy students.) How is this book different?
  First, it is for beginners. It is needed because biblical literacy is declining        in Western civilization, as is literacy in general.
  Second, it is especially (but not exclusively) for Catholics. Ironically,        biblical literacy has declined among Catholics too since Vatican II, even        though that Council strongly called for a renewal of it. A book like this        on Bible basics would have been superfluous fifty years ago.
  Third, it is short and simple. Each chapter can be read over a cup of coffee        and a doughnut. It is not full of the latest theories in professional biblical        scholarship. I am not a professional Bible scholar, but a teacher and an        amateur. (Amateur means "lover".)
  It is also designed to be practical. It is not a shortcut to reading the        Bible itself. It is like a lab manual rather than a textbook. (So is the        Bible itself; its Author intends reading and thinking to be preliminary to        doing: see Matthew 7:24-29.)
  **Reading the Bible should be a form of prayer. The Bible should be read in        God's presence and as the unfolding of His mind. It is not just a book,        but God's love letter to you. It is God's revelation, God's mind, operating        through your mind and your reading, so your reading is your response to        His mind and will. Reading it is aligning your mind and will with God's;        therefore it is a fulfillment of the prayer "Thy will be done", which is        the most basic and essential key to achieving our whole purpose on earth:        holiness and happiness.

*I challenge each reader to give a good excuse (to God, not to me, or even just to yourself) for not putting aside fifteen minutes a day to use this fundamental aid to fulfilling the meaning of your life.

Read more here:


This is my journey, but at the same time, if I decide to pursue the catholic faith, does that mean I have to agree with everything Catholic people teaching in order to become part of the church?

In my other religions (Protestant) I didn’t fully agree with everything that was being taught, and it was with one thing that keep coming up (adultery) in the position of the pastors, that made me turn away.

The “people in power” (priests, bishops, cardinals, pope) have the rule of no wife, but I do know about the sexual abuse also.

How am I to follow anything with so much sin in the world? How do I know I found the truth that works for me?


Here is the Catholic Credo. and well, to be a Catholic, it is required to believe the Church as well, yes. That doesn’t mean you have to believe blindy; it is better and I would say essential to understand why you believe what you believe.

Your many querstions about hierarchy will slowly be answered. Just don’t mix things up for now. As Shin said, step by step. it generally takes a life :smiley: And if you’re not patient, ask God to give you patience. I will pray for you too.


Thanks, I’ll put it on my list of books to get when I get the money.




You know what? First, the easiest thing to do is contact several Catholic parishes
and ask them if they have a RCIA program. (Rite of Christian initiation for adults) It’s
a course that is non-committal, and will answer many of the questions you may have
about the faith.

Second, the Bible isn’t very easy to grasp at the 1st go around. I’ve read it quite a few times and learn something new each and every time. Get an edition that is easy to read. The NAB, Revised edition, St. Joseph edition is very easy to read. For those who are new to the Bible, it is often recommended that it is read in historical order which are 14 books. 1st you read the gospels; Matthew, Mark, Luke and John in the New Testament. Then the 14 narrative books:
Old Testament: Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Joshua, Judges, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, 1 Kings, 2 Kings, Ezra, Nehemiah, 1 Maccabees. Then again Luke, then Acts in the New Testament.

Ask God to help you understand, and take your time.

Hope this helped you out a little.

God Bless you!

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