So why did you convert??

Hi everyone!

My question goes both ways: former protestants, what lead you to convert to Catholicism? Former Catholics, what lead you to convert to protestantism?

I’m considering converting to the Catholic Church, so I’m just curious about what lead people to or from the church.

Peace and blessings,
Julie

I was raised Baptist, but left for various reasons many years ago. There were some things I had no answer for, and I felt something was missing. During a health crisis I heard the Holy Spirit speak to me. I had watched the Journey Home for 4 years and was impressed with the testimonies of different converts. The doctrine that spoke to me most was the Eucharist and the Real Presence of Christ. I could not find any other Church that believed, taught or celebrated the Eucharist like the Catholics. I bought a NAB and a Catechism of the Catholic Church and began to study. Once I began to read the Bible through Catholic eyes I saw the things I had been missing. I found nothing in the Catholic Church I couldn’t or didn’t believe or understand. I was received into the Catholic Church last fall. I have had very few problems and I believe I am where I am supposed to be.

God bless you on your journey.

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I was convinced of the claims of Catholicism so I converted for two reasons; truth and obedience to the Lord. However, I was not protestant before my conversion.

God bless

Dear sister Julie,

I don’t believe I converted. I made a translation from the Coptic Orthodox Church to the Coptic Catholic Church. I joined the Catholic Church not be rejecting my Coptic Orthodox Traditions, but merely because I rejected all the misconceptions I had previously held about the Catholic Church.

Blessings,
Marduk

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High reverence was my lead to the catholic church, which was from an evangelical baptism,and from a church of England (Anglican) conformation.

The denominations both seemed more intent on receiving the holy spirit than in worship to our father, obviously not all.They also used to gather in the church much and converse on many topics which i found to be recalcitrant from, “Few words are best in the house of the lord”.

I have been so inspired since i was confirmed into Catholicism and its been very cathartic for my moral standing, but also i should say somewhat difficult at times.

Good blessings…

I’ve converted in spirit at this point, and will hopefully a.s.a.p. have the opportunity to enter the Church physically, so hopefully my testimony counts here.

I’ll try to tell this in story form. :slight_smile:

My family isn’t religious, except for my dad, who practices more or less in secret. I suppose for years, perhaps since the beginning of high school, I considered myself a general “Christian” (it’s hard to remember), but I can’t remember doing anything aside from sometimes praying. Back then, I didn’t really know the first thing about denominational differences except for the propaganda taught to me in history classes, but I guess by sola fide standards I was doing okay. Then the last couple years (I’m finishing my second year of college now) where I actually learned about Christianity in general and even attended a non-denominational church with my friend. But I sinned gravely (if not mortally?) all the time, in a variety of ways, and I almost knew and could feel that I shouldn’t, but that was never enough of a reason.

Then, in the midst of one of my toughest semesters ever (last Fall) something caught my eye. My dad usually drops me off at the small college I attend and then continues on to work (and picks me up on the way back), which is a convenient deal, and in the morning on our way there, his lips scarcely move as he stares forward and silently mouths the rosary. I usually just tried not to bother him, but he didn’t mind if I did. So – and I hope to always remember this moment, to burn it into my memory – we were driving along a semi-rural road in the pre-dawn near-darkness, and I remember looking over at him and seeing his lips (in the light of the dashboard? :shrug:) barely moving as usual, and a thought (which, upon later reflection, I realized I’ve only had a few times in my life total: a very rare thought indeed) crossed my mind: “does praying the rosary actually do anything?” Then, within the same instant (I’d be surprised if the word “anyway” appearing in my mind and the following event were separated by a 1/4 second), a car which was waiting patiently at one of those middle-of-nowhere intersections decides to turn left, pulling out right in front of us. My dad didn’t slam the breaks, but he did hit them hard: enough to jerk me forward and wring my adrenal glands, and the guy turning squeaked by. So a few things about this:

  1. I’m not embellishing the timing: it was as if the driver ahead deciding to randomly turn when he clearly and obviously shouldn’t have overlapped with the very end of that question in my mind.

  2. Since this, I usually think of this and like things as “statistical miracles.” Of course, people can say anything isn’t a miracle, especially what I witnessed (which isn’t the wildest thing but it was certainly enough to get the ball rolling), but even with mustard seed-sized faith, I find it hard to dismiss that something was responsible for this statistically interesting event.

  3. I try to be reasonable and logical, so naturally I had to then figure out the following: was this a miracle from the Deceiver or from God?

Okay, so that was the catalyst. The ball’s rolling. For the next half year roughly, up to this day, I spent an inordinate amount of time researching mainly Catholic and Protestant and (a little) Orthodox apologetics. I slowly became a pattern connoisseur, searching deep and wide for answers. At first especially, it was intensely confusing and a little distressing. I realized that whichever sect (if any in particular) was correct, the less-correct sect(s) would have hundreds or thousands of years (depending on the sect) to muddy the apologetic waters and form all sorts of deceiving counterarguments.

I also started praying a lot and praying consistently (probably for the first time ever). I realized I couldn’t do this on my own, but I recognized the true gravity of this decision, and so I tried to clear my mind of all preconceptions and I honestly prayed (on many occasions over those months) something like this:

“God, if any Christian sect holds truest to your truth, or if somehow they all do, or certain ones do, please show me so I know how to best worship you. I want your Truth – no matter the cost.”

And I tried to make sure that I meant it. Each time that I can remember praying that, I got an answer which was along the lines of a “statistical miracle,” though not quite as grand as the first, and it always pointed towards Catholicism. I would always feel at peace after this was revealed to me, not because Catholicism is the most comforting choice at a glance (is St Leonard of Port Maurice’s (private) revelation, or anything for that matter, more comforting than sola fide?) but because the Truth became clear to me, finally. But I would forget much of what I read as I continued my journey, and slowly I would erode down again into doubt, which is why I ended up praying for the Truth, whatever it may be, so many times. There would be a bi-weekly or monthly peak, then a downward slope until the next peak.

(to be continued…)

(continued…)

I started to notice a lot of patterns in the apologetics of both sides, just one of many being the character of the apologists on both sides. Now I’m sure this is by no means universally true, but out of the Protestant apologetics sites I explored, only one of them didn’t come off as soul-scathingly bitter – whereas versed Catholics on this forum and Catholic apologists on other sites were very uplifting and almost magnetic in their understanding and kindness. So it’s not too surprising that I grew a tentative aversion to Protestant apologetics, especially considering (at best) a little and (at worst) a lot of what they condemned was clearly and plainly just hearsay and nowhere to be found in Catholic resources like the Catechism. And this leads me to an interesting sub-story:

Somewhere in the middle of all this, maybe in December or early January, I remember just sitting back, confused and forlorn for some reason or another, and praying that same thing again. At this point, the best way I could describe how most Protestant apologetics (due to either meanness or fabricated truths) made me feel was how Dignam made Sullivan feel in the end of The Departed. So, quite ironically, and likely not by chance, right after honestly praying for the Truth again, a website link in a search engine caught my eye, and my heart sunk because at that point I felt pretty vulnerable and I swore, from its link, that it was a militant Protestant page. So I hesitated, but I thought about it, remembering that I definitely just asked for the Truth, so I clicked on it, and it ended up being one of the best and unarguably logical Catholic apologetics pages I’d found yet. It’s funny how those situations work.

I found even better apologetics later on (I’ll try to list some good ones at the end). It became clear that there are a great number of independent routes that demonstrate that the C.C. holds the fullness of truth.

Eventually I dared pray to a Saint, and then Mary, despite all of the threatening things I’d read about it. If the people on one side don’t have anything but fluff to back up their threats, and if they can’t account for gaps in logic and if they have to, frankly, ignore much of the evidence to prove their points, then be cautious about believing them. I can now pray the rosary in full confidence – because it turned out to not be the things it’s slandered to be, but it is exactly as the Saints say it is: the same experience, the same benefits, the same beauty, the same Jesus-focused meditations and experience with the addition of intercessory requests.

All in all, I found three ways of finding the Truth:

  1. Forget your preconceptions because they may be misconceptions, and honestly and deeply (without forgoing the few Christian fundamentals that almost all sects agree upon) pray for the Truth. This is the easiest way, work-wise, although at least one of my friends claims that he did this and still earnestly believes he has the fullness of truth as a non-denominational (I don’t understand nor can I account for this).

  2. Go the logical route. Spend a considerable amount of time and energy slogging through apologetics until something clicks, and then account for everything that doesn’t click. I would imagine this would work well, but it’s tiring and sometimes depressing.

  3. Believe in love. This is one of the most sincere patterns that I found: that the people who most completely live by the standards of the Catholic Church (the Saints, Blesseds, etc.), who lived in utter happiness and humility despite their (often extreme) sufferings – and who were the champions of altruism, and who lived closest to the perfection of Jesus himself – are not a swarm of insane, demon-possessed deceivers but instead will lead you to a supernatural truth. Basically, to believe and have faith in love, I had to leave behind all those bitter conspiracies and mean-spirited baseless dismissals.

Well, I hope you liked my (true) story. It was fun to write. I feel at peace now.

Now for some of the links I promised (the more you read, the more pieces of the puzzle you attain):

fisheaters.com/responses.html
scripturecatholic.com
chnetwork.org/journals/sola/sola1.htm (through sola12.htm)
catholic.com/library/faith_tracts.asp

newadvent.org/fathers/index.html
newadvent.org/cathen

Thank for the question! :slight_smile:

I converted to a broad based Christianity first, and was enthusiastic, but with no particular direction. I started reading the Bible voraciously, and found, again and again, that there were passages which pointed towards Catholicism but had no meaning in Protestantism. As I started to become more involved in my Evangelical circles, I could almost “feel” that my raw, personal interpretations of scripture were being re-moulded to the Evangelical orthodoxies of Sola Scriptura, Sola Fides, etc., and I resisted this, thinking “What they are teaching doesn’t line up with what I am reading - and they are expecting me to accept it on ‘authority’”. I became a Catholic after 2 years as a Christian. That was about 30 years ago. In those 30 years most of the sense of scripture I derived as personal interpretation is very close to the sense I have received through Church teaching. (Of course, most of my understandings have matured, and some have changed).

So, my story stands as a contradiction to those who think that if one is to “read the Bible for yourself” then one must cease to be Catholic. I began by reading the Bible for myself - and protestantism jarred with me, and Catholicism seemed to fit.

There was one passage which, more than anything else, moved me deeply.

This is how you can know the Spirit of God: every spirit that acknowledges Jesus Christ come in the flesh be longs to God,

[1 Jn 4:2]

I saw that Catholicism not only taught this doctrine unambigously, but, by its emphasis on the visible Church, and the hierarchy as successors to the Apostles, not only taught “Jesus Christ come in the flesh”, but was the very embodiment of it.

In 2002, after 47 years of faithful and enthusiastic involvement in many ministries in various evangelical churches (we switched churches whenever we moved to a different city), we were kicked out of an Evangelical Free Church.

A woman pastor in that church leveled heinous and false claims against me specifically, and also against our family. Briefly, we were accused of undermining the authority of that church because of various questions we had raised in private with the pastors, and because of various family practices.

An example of one of these “family practices” is that we encouraged our younger daughter to sit with her boyfriend during church, instead of insisting that she sit with the youth group.

Another example of a “family practice” is that both of our daughters were involved in figure skating and usually missed Sunday morning worship service, although both of them were faithful in attending the Youth Group meetings on Wednesday night.

When she was a Senior in high school, my older daughter asked the Youth Pastor if they the Youth Group could hold a Bible study instead of just a discussion and fellowship time. He told her that most kids would stop attending if they had a Bible study.

Another decision that the Youth Pastor made was to hold a beach camping experience (at a lake–we live in Northern Illinois, so there’s no ocean) DURING Vacation Bible school. My older daughter asked the pastor to please hold the beaching camping experience during a different week so that the teenagers could be free to volunteer to work at Vacation Bible school, but the Youth Pastor told her that most teenagers didn’t want to help at VBS.

A few months after this, my older daughter met with her Leadership Committee and the Youth Pastor and told them that she was resigning, because it was obvious that they were more interested in socializing rather than learning about God and serving Him.

These were the kinds of things that we did that upset the church pastors.

In addition, the woman pastor accused me of frightening the children, and implied worst things. Thank God I had always held any children’s events or meetings with other parents PRESENT, so that there was no proof of what this woman pastor was saying.

A tribunal consisting of men that we didn’t even know and who didn’t know us, along with this woman pastor, met, tried, and condemned us. None of the parents from my children’s ministries were present.

The meeting ended by them asking us to leave.

Forty seven years were gone, and suddenly, we had no life. We went from spending 5-6 days/evenings in the church or involved with a church ministry to nothing.

From then on, most of the members of that church shunned us.

A year later, I learned that the woman pastor had been fired after she was caught in a lie. Apparently she was a pathological liar.

After the woman pastor was fired, no one in that church ever called my husband and me to tell us that they might have made a mistake and to apologize for their cruel treatment of us.

Our daughters stopped attending church after the ousting. They were furious at the church for treating us so badly after all our service.

I refused to enter a Protestant church after that, and it took several years before I was able to walk into a Protestant church for anything other than a concert or a funeral. I had seen a vision as we ran crying out of the Evangelical Free church after the tribunal kicked us out of a huge Bible shearing away, like mica, and I knew that sola Scriptura was a lie created by Satan and his evil human followers here on this earth. So I wouldn’t even consider a Protestant church that believed in sola Scriptura. Other Protestant churches , especially the mainlines, have accepted the evil of abortion, gay marriage, and open marriages.

So we had no church for several years. I actually told my husband that I would never join a church again unless we were wooed into it by God Himself.

But we knew that it was wrong for Christians to forsake assembling with other Christians, so we began attending Sat. evening Mass at the parish down the street from us. We had never had any objection to Catholics, mainly because during our years of pro-life work, we came to realize that they were “real” Christians. But we believed, as many other evangelicals do, that Catholics have added man-made rituals to the Bible.

We began to realize that everything we were seeing and hearing in the Catholic Church was in line with the Bible. So we started attending an apologetics class offered by the parish, and eventually we joined RCIA.

This process took two years. We did not easily convert. But we were definitely wooed by God. Both of us, at one point, were spoken to by the Holy Spirit, Who told us, “This is the truth. If you reject it, you are in danger of hellfire. Do you accept My teaching and will you say ‘Yes’ to the Catholic Church? Or will you reject My teaching?”

We accepted the teaching of the Holy Spirit, and in 2004, we were received into the Catholic Church.

My older daughter was received into the Catholic Church a few years later.

Our younger daughter still does not go to church. We have reason to believe that she may have been molested in some way at that Evangelical Free church.

We love being Catholic! Based on history and theology, we believe that the Catholic Church is the Church that Jesus Christ founded and intended for human beings to be part of. We believe that Protestant churches have a portion of the Gospel and that Protestants have a hope of heaven through their triune baptism and their invincible ignorance. We pray that the Church might one day be ONE, as Jesus prayed in John 17.

I encourage all Protestants to seriously study the Catholic Church, and not to be afraid.

Having been several flavors of protestanism, I was on a search for truth. Protestanism cannot give you the truth. Only the Church founded by the Truth can provide that. Oddly enough, that Truth could only be found in the Church I was trying to tear down. God works like that. :smiley:

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Convert from evangelical Christianity to Catholicism.

short version: certain things about the history of Christianity did not add up to me. But one thing in particular was an overwhelming dilemma: What if the Orthodox and the Catholics had it right with regard to the Eucharist? If the Orthodox and Catholics were right about this, why would any Christian want to be anywhere else?

It took me about 13 years from start to finish–3 years of concerted study–before I was able to disentangle myself from all my misinformation about Catholicism and take the plunge.

That was in 1999.

What’s it been like since then?

grace upon grace upon grace upon grace upon grace…

no regrets

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Baptist ===> Catholic

The Eucharist and that the Church is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. I read my way into the Church during my late teens/early 20’s.

Wow thank you all so much for sharing your stories! :smiley:

I’m really struck by how similar some of the themes are with what I’m going through right now. I would describe myself as having been anti-Catholic at times and pretty hostile about the Catholic Church. For reasons that I **cannot ** explain or even begin to explain, I began to feel God calling me to the Catholic faith…:confused::shrug:

This frustrated me…still does…and confuses me. It made me even more adamantly opposed to Catholic teaching in the beginning because it didn’t make sense for me to feel called like this. Also, I don’t like change…at all.

Around this same time, my Lutheran church started teaching some things that I completely disagreed with; things that didn’t make any sense to me. They have been teaching things lately that seem contrary to God’s Word, and that don’t completely line up with what I read in the Bible. It’s like they’re only telling part of the truth (Lutheran understanding of justification seems incomplete to me). It’s funny considering the Lutheran church is Sola Scriptura…seems like there wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) be all sorts of holes in the logic then…:confused:

So, despite my anti-Catholic leanings (product of my upbringing and the Lutheran church), I began doing some research, stumbled upon this website, checked out a Catholic Catechism from my library…and here I am today. Once an anti-Catholic, now seriously considering conversion. :o

Still struggling with some things…still learning…still praying for God’s guidance. The thing I’m realizing in my research is that many things just seem like they’re missing in the Lutheran church…

Anywho, I’m not sure where this road will definitely take me, but I would appreciate if people would pray for me! It’s a confusing time for me right now.

Peace and blessings,
Julie

Thank you for sharing your story, and for sharing those links! I’m going to check them out right now. :smiley:

Peace and blessings,
Julie

Hi Everyone,

I hope you have had a good Palm Sunday. It is one of my favorite masses. I am greatly looking forward to Holy Week. This is an amazing thread! It has been a blessing to read of others conversions.

I myself attended the Episcopal Church growing up but I went to Catholic schools all of my life. For whatever reason, I never confirmed Catholic or Episcopalian. After I left college, thoughts of joining the Catholic church were always rumbling and rolling around in my head. This has now been over 10 years. During my spiritual wanderings. I did attend other Protestant denominations but none ever seemd that everything was there and things seemed lacking. I took a good hard look at the Baptist and Episcopal faiths, but so much was missing and that I could not fully embrace that as the full truth. (My husband is Southern Baptist). I was married in a Baptist church. It was a lovely service but I felt something more should have been there. Fast forward 5 years later, almost everyday I drive by a Catholic church and over these years thoughts would come to me of, “stop by”, “you should be going there”, “You are welcome here”, etc. For whatever reason, one Sunday morning I got up, got myself and my son dressed, and off we were to the Catholic church down the street from me. It was a beautiful experience and I truly felt that I had “Wandered Home” Hence, my handle.

I decided that on Ash Wednesday, that I would embrace the Catholic faith and live as much as I could as a Catholic. It has been an amazing journey full of grace but not without it’s trials as well. I did have a very traumatic time of realizing the depths of my sins I had commited when I wandered away from the church. The absolute despair of thinking what life would like be like without God here on earth and my torment in hell if I did not seek the sacrament of confession. I realized there was no reason for living OR dying without God. It was a highly humbling experience. I feel that the Holy Spirit truly led me to that Church and I have since turned my heart and mind to the Catholic faith that the Holy Spirit is residing within me like never before, or maybe it always has and I am just knowledgeable of it now. The world truly looks entirely different and my life is fuller and has more direction and meaning.

I will be going through RCIA next year. I can not believe this time next year, I will be preparing to take Eucharist for the first time and fully becoming Catholic. So much time was wasted wandering but I think I was meant to wander in some way. Now I am ready to go where God leads me and I am grateful for it.

Take care everyone!

Hello! I’m more than happy to share my conversion story, which will come to an end 6 days from today! (I’m getting confirmed at the Easter Vigil). It’s quite a story, and I hope it inspires you to trust in God and the fullness of His Truth.

I grew up my whole life in the pseudo Christian world of modern suburban America, where everything is fine and dandy and you believe and feel whatever fits your liking. My beliefs were such that I agreed that there was a God, and I would ask for help when I really needed it, but until then I was doing just fine. My parents both came from different backgrounds

I was never too concerned with my future, mostly because school and learning came naturally to me. Not only was I successful in academics during my time in high school, but I was also successful at sports and had a somewhat active social life. I despised actually being at school because it was very easy for me and I often felt I was smarter than my teachers (I was extremely arrogant and selfish at this time in my life). I had quite a few girlfriends throughout high school, and in my senior year I met Rachel. There was something so different about her from other girls I knew. She was brutally honest, uncompromising, funny, loving, and very pretty. When we were each accepted to different colleges, we decided we would continue dating while in school.

Our years in college were at times trying. My faith life was non-existent, and I think that because of this, neither was Rachel’s. I say this because I know her faith was somewhat active before we were dating, and I really brought her away from her faith.

In my senior year, in the beginning of 2009, I experienced an incredibly horrible depression that lasted several months. Perhaps I was already in a state of mental weakness, and I was definitely genetically predisposed to anxiety attacks. I realized later that I had been having anxiety attacks before this point in my life, but never really knew what they were and so never really paid them much attention.

What really set me into a whirlwind was contemplating death. It all started with hearing about someone losing their father in a car accident. For some reason, it was the first time I had really sat and thought about what death meant. I realized I had lived my entire life running from it, telling myself it was too far off to care about, and if it did come I would be just fine. This wall of fear I had been running in front of came crashing down on me. I couldn’t eat or sleep and barely could get out of bed. I did not want to attend class and skipped many of them. I was constantly depressed and was always on the phone seeking consolation from Rachel or my family. I was so desperate I went and saw a psychologist. They evaluated me and gave me an anti-anxiety medication to take. I resisted taking it for awhile, but when the depression came back full force, I started on it. I felt like a zombie when I was on it, like my life was slipping away from me, and I felt like I didn’t even know Rachel anymore, and that she didn’t know me. It was the darkest time of my life. At the urging of Rachel, I sought to be baptized, which I never had been since my parents chose not to when I was a child.

I looked for a church to go and be baptized at. Interestingly, the first place I remember calling was a Catholic church. The secretary upon hearing my request to speak with a priest said “Are you Catholic?” I said no. She told me that he could not help me. I was so dejected by this that I was depressed the rest of the day. I wandered around campus at UT and went inside different Protestant churches seeking help. Each time I either left or was turned away for one reason or another. Finally I thought to search online for Christian groups on the UT campus. The first group that caught my eye was Christians on Campus, a non-denominational group of students focused on fellowship and preaching the Gospel. They seemed to be an outgrowth of the local church movement. The local church movement is sort of a descendant of Watchman Nee, whom I won’t go into too much detail about.

COC was Bible alone, once saved always saved, very much fundamentalist. They studied the bible fervently, and were very dedicated to Christ. I called them and told their leader, who I will not name out of respect for him, that I wanted to be baptized, and he was very excited and set up a meeting with me right away. I met him the following Sunday at the local meeting hall for the church. We had a discussion about faith, about all my fears and troubles, and he consoled me greatly. Then I was baptized in a baptismal tub in front of their entire congregation. I noticed no immediate effect of relief but was grateful for their quick response.

The week after this I went on a trip to Colorado. I was still very much depressed during this time, and noticed how forgetful I was becoming on account of the medication I was taking. It made my depression worse to know that I was not fully appreciating all the beauty around me. Towards the end of the trip, I resolved not to take any more of the medication, regardless of how sad I became. I didn’t want it anymore, pain was better than numbness. It was all in all a somber trip because I still felt so lost and helpless. I was reaching the end of my rope, and was so tired of dragging Rachel down with me. I just wanted to be better, to be back to normal.

continued…

When I returned home, at the urging of some of the COC members, I attended one of their meetings. One of their practices was to call on the name of Jesus, calling out loud to him all in unison. It was so incredibly strange to me that I did not know what to do. Everyone was doing it and so I felt compelled to do it also. I started quietly at first, then in my desperation, I began loudly saying His name, asking in my heart for him to heal me. All of a sudden a rush of joy came into my heart that I had never experienced. I felt the sadness burn away and be replaced with a feeling of love and warmth. I was practically reduced to tears. I did not know what to say to anyone, so I sat quietly to myself until it was over. When I returned home, I sat down in my living room, saying nothing, just experiencing the feeling that was in me. It was the best thing I had ever felt, and I felt nothing but pure joy. No pain or sadness could touch me. I had finally gotten what I asked for.

Rachel immediately noticed the change in me, but was not so excited about it. She thought I was part of a cult (which in a way I was), and that something weird had happened. My personality wasn’t the same, my mannerisms were different. I was peaceful, calm and quiet. She became quite annoyed with me over the course of a few weeks. Coupled with the fact that I had changed, I was also talking of nothing but the Bible and friends from church. I was a stranger to her. Finally by the grace of God and much tears, she accepted me for what I had become and was happy for me finding God. She put up with so much from me, including my constant trash talking of Catholicism, a quality I was inheriting from my Bible believing friends.

After graduating I took a job in Dallas. I started to attend meetings of the local church in Dallas, at a home in Mesquite. I knew something was changing in me, as I started to feel more and more foreign to the people I was meeting with. Their beliefs and mannerisms did not agree with me. Their obsession with the Bible started to turn me away. I had heard some anti-Catholic remarks, but they never bothered me until now. The way they would read so deep into single sentences or even words of the Bible made no sense to me. I could attend no longer and stopped returning their phone calls.

About this time I had asked Rachel to marry me, and luckily for me she agreed. We attended marriage prep classes through the Catholic church, a fact I was not excited about in the least. Before I attended my first session, in which we were to fill out a 200 question survey about our beliefs, I had a horrible nightmare. In my nightmare there were people dressed in the habits of nuns, dancing around in circles, calling themselves “The Religious”. They had masks on that resembled disfigured faces. They kept asking me to join them. I woke up terrified, and carried that fear and resentment of Catholicism with me into my first meeting. I went to the church and took the survey with arrogance and also a strong urge to leave. I guess I still did ok because they let me get married. That night I was eating dinner with Rachel and told her about my dream, and also all my views on the Church. Amazingly, with her comparatively little knowledge of Catholic doctrine at the time, she still resisted me and did not give in to my anger and ignorance.

Eventually I got over the nightmare, and we continued doing our marriage prep. Every time we did some prep work I learned something new about the Church. I felt my bias being melted away. The biggest change came during the Engaged Encounter, which is when engaged couples come for an entire weekend retreat to focus on their future marriage. I started to really become interested in Catholic values, especially on marriage, but I was still resistant to the idea of ever becoming Catholic. In fact, I even told a man there who was my roommate for the weekend that he should stay away from the Church. I gave him the name of the church I was currently a part of, even though I really didn’t want anything to do with them anymore. For many protestants the view is, anything is better than Catholic. Oh blindness.

continued…

After we were married, I felt a strong pull towards learning about Catholicism. I was still trying to filter out all the junk and propaganda I had been fed even for the short time I had learned it. I can only imagine the difficulty one must face in joining the Church after a lifetime of fundamentalist inoculation. After many months of dryness and ignoring these feelings, I decided I would once and for all figure out this question. I decided to read the entire Catechism, and I did exactly that. I read it over a period of about 3 months, cover to cover. I came to points in the book I could not agree with, and I would get upset and anxious, like I normally do when something disturbs my peace of mind. I would wait until I was calm then explore it, and internalize it. After doing this throughout the book, and praying for the truth, I could no longer deny truth. I knew in my heart that I could never go back to being protestant, but I still was too cowardly to admit I wanted to be Catholic. What finally did me in was that I read some stories about couples with different faiths. One Catholic, one protestant. It seemed that even in the most fortunate, there was still a piece missing from their relationship, and it is the biggest piece of our entire lives, which is our faith. I already knew what it was like to not share a common faith, I had experienced it for 6 years with Rachel, and even though our relationship was so blessed and amazing, I knew I could not live that way. I resolved then and there I would let go of my pride and join the Church.

After making the decision to become Catholic some months ago, I have been attending RCIA classes and reading anything Church related I can get my hands on. My faith and walk with Christ has only grown stronger, and not weaker. I know that once I can get the sacraments it will only get better. Praise God for leading me to truth, especially when I fought so hard against it.

I grew up in a small country church that was Methodist in name, but really independent and fundamental in practice. As an adult, I maintained a strong faith, but eventually got to the point where I had not attended church reguarly for several years. I began to feel a need to be in church, so I began to look into different denominations to find a local church.

I had never considered Catholicism before and knew very little about it, but something sparked my interest. I decided to learn what I could about the Catholic Church and also research the history of Christianity. The more that I learned, the more I became convinced that the Catholic Church is in fact the original church. Once I realized that, then there was no point in considering anything else.

I attended a few masses (with a critical eye to check it out), bought a copy of the Cathechism (to see what they really taught), and before long, I was signed up for RCIA. I absorbed as much information as I could from every source that I could find.

I’ll always be thankful for the church that I grew up in. They taught me to love God. That being said, the Cathoilc Church has such depth, history, beauty, and truth.

It’s been a great trip to this point, and I’m only just beginning. I’ll come into full communion this Easter Vigil!

Hi, Julie…

Here are conversion stories…that you can read on your own time…

chnetwork.org/converts.html

Another I would recommend is Scott Hahn’s own story…as he recounted in “Rome Sweet Home.”

God bless in your journey…

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