What would it be like


#1

So I made it to my Protestant friends’ youth group again. It was so nice to see everyone there, almost all of my friends made it. We had such a great time hanging out and praising together. One of my closest friend’s older sister gave a talk, and then four of my closest friends led worship with their band and it was amazing. It brought me to tears…but not in the way you would expect.
I have been on a serious Jesus high for the past couple of months, and it is especially showing in my pride for the Catholic Church. The Eucharist has become the most important thing in my entire world, and I have never felt so close to Christ before. That is why something in particular hit me very hard tonight.
One of the songs we were singing (I’m not sure of the title, but I think it’s something like We are Hungry…it goes “we are hungry, we are hungry, we are hungry for you Lord. We are thirsty, we are thirsty, we are thirsty for you Lord.” anyway, it’s not a song that I haven’t ever heard or sung before) was going along fine, I was singing and praying quietly…and then suddenly I sang the wrong word. Looking up, I was confused, and then, when I realized what had happened, I began to cry. One of the lines, “you are the Bread of Life” was changed…I sang Bread, everyone else sang Breath…
I come from a family that is very careful about our faiths. I am not usually allowed to go to my friends’ youth group because my parents are afraid that I will be attacked and proselatized (sp.?) Recently, however, as I have grown stronger in my faith, my parents have grown more confident in me and I have been allowed to attend twice. I go because it’s the only time I’m ever able to worship with the people I love most in the world, my closest friends. I have never been confronted by any of them, except on a very rare occassion, about the differences in our faiths…it has never been an issue for me. But still, it is not something I take lightly, I am VERY protective about my faith. In fact, I have been on the defense, on the “recieving end” for so long that it never occurred to me that I would ever want to “evangelize” them…it’s something I’ve fought against my entire life, and I have sworn to myself that I would never do it to them…but tonight, my heart was torn in two.
I love them soooo much. They are so strong in their faiths, they could move mountains…and yet, singing that song, I once again realized how much MORE they could have…Christ Himself in the Eucharist…and yet…I will never be able to share the sacrifice with them. It kills me everytime I think about it…if ONLY they could knew! If only they could experience Him ONE TIME in the Eucharist, I can only imagine what their praises would be then!!! And still…I can’t…I can’t even tell them because they wouldn’t understand, wouldn’t accept it, they would think I’m crazy, would hate me for doing to them what I know they try so hard not to do to me.
Here’s my prayer, and maybe some of you could help me with this…I don’t know what I am supposed to do. Should I tell my friends, and break everything I’ve challenged THEM on, made them resist for MY sake…how hypocrytical!!! I am so lost…and I prayed so hard tonight for God to show me what to do…if anyone could help with these prayers, please, anything you can say would be appreciated:)
Thank you, God Bless, and I love you all:)
Britty


#2

It’s not hypocrisy to realize you were wrong in the past. In the past you were weaker in your faith, and thought it didn’t matter. Now you realize truly how they are missing Christ Himself! Pretend for a moment that they are athesists and almost certainly destined for Hell. Would you not try to bring them to truth then?

I would try to offer your perspective and to show them your beliefs and why you believe as you do in a friendly way. You needn’t be aggressive and harsh, you only need show your faith for what it is.

Something I would recommend would be

ewtn.com/vondemand/audio/dload1.asp?rafile=iq_2031.ra&source=seriessearchprog.asp&seriesID=-306548622&T1=

Perhaps you could just take the last 20-25 minutes of that and make a CD or something bring it to one of their meetings and suggest you listen to it. Tell them is is simply astounding and will set a true fire burning in them. It will. It really is simply one of the most amazing things I have ever heard. The best part: the second half has nothing Catholic. It’s all just very general Christian. If they like it, ask them if they want more. I can’t imagine how they won’t. The first half of that is about the Eucharist, and it was simply amazing and I can’t imagine how anyone could think it was symbolic after that.

If you think that’s too ‘sneaky,’ that’s perfectly understandable. I like the idea, but it depends on your relationship with them and all. You should absolutely listen to it yourself, though. It’s incredible. :slight_smile:


#3

honestly, I think it is about time you be more vocal about your faith with your Protestant friends. I doubt they would hate you or anything of that sort. Maybe they need to see you more vocal and outspoken about it…anyways, just a thought


#4

Thanks for the advice:) I just can’t see a way that I could ever do that to them…not just your suggestion at all…just…talk to them…because I live my life NOT judging other people’s faiths based on their “religion” or denomination because so many have done that to me…and I would NEVER question their faiths…but it just hurts knowing that I can’t show them…because in a way, even if the saw, they really wouldn’t see…and I have a friend who is considering conversion, and her parents totally hate me now because I’ve “made her question her faith”, I’ve forced my own upon her…and that was never my intention, ever! She totally amazed me and caught me off guard when she told me! but I know how much her parents don’t like me, even though they haven’t met me, and I don’t want that to be my friends. I mean, I know they never would think that of me…but still…AHHHHHHHHHH!!!
I just can’t help but feeling totally…well…helpless in the situation. I’m stuck at a road block because I know how strong their faiths are, but I just wish they could experience the Eucharist, and I can’t even imagine how amazing their praise would be then!!! I was looking around at all of them tonight during worship, and they all were so beautiful…and I pictured them in those same positions before the Host, Christ, and I wanted so BADLY for them to understand.
I think prayer is a good answer…fear is getting a good part of me, and I’m going to take a lot of thinking to figure any of this out:)
Thank you though, I do appreciate it:)

Britty


#5

It hurts so much when you see how much your friends are missing out on!

I’ve never been in that exact situation, but here’s some advice you can take or leave:

1.) First things first, pray. Pray a lot. You may have to pray long and hard, and it may seem like it’s having little effect at times, but prayer, as you said, can move mountains!

2.) Approach your friends carefully. Don’t make it about “I’m right and you’re wrong and these are the reasons why!” Make it about your feelings. Tell them that there’s something eating you up inside, but share your concern about pushing them away. I would think as good friends that they’d be willing to listen at least a little to your side.

3.) You’ve gone to worship with them. Now see if there’s any way any of them will come to worship with you. See if you can get them to mass some Sunday. Bring them early and show them around the church and explain the things they’re going to be seeing. Maybe if they get a chance to see your reverence and deep conviction, it’ll play with their interest. But getting them to mass may be hard. I don’t know. Make it an open invitation and a very casual thing so they don’t feel like they’re being pressed in converting. If it’s just a simple “educational trip”, they may be more willing to go.

4.) Pray some more!

What you have to remember is that none of us can convert people. God converts people. He only sometimes uses us as tools.

But remember: :gopray2: :gopray2: :gopray2:

I’ll put in some prayers for you, too! :thumbsup:


#6

As far as your friend and her family, remember that Jesus said, “For I came to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;” (Mat 10:35)

Christ has to be the most important thing in your life. The truth must come above all. You needn’t be harsh or forcefull with your friends, but you should talk about your faith. When you are with them and they begin talking about their different views on a particular verse, remember that your understanding is valid too! You have every right to say where your faith comes from as they.

A famous man (I forget who) once said that “the people who matter don’t mind and the people who mind don’t matter.” If they are really your friends, they will want to hear what you have to say. They may ultimately disagree, but they will be open to listening to you if only for the reason that your feelings and your opinions matter too. If you will worship with them, its only fair that they will with you, isn’t it? How can they wnat you to respect their beliefs without them respecting yours?

Maybe others have judged you forcefully, and they should not have. However, remember that by NOT saying something to your friends, you are essentially making it so they are forcing their beliefs on you and judging you all over again, even if they don’t mean to. You should not force anything on your friends, but you should talk about your beliefs too, because they are just as valid as theirs’ (and as we know more valid because they are true). There’s nothing wrong with judging between truth and falsehood, or full truth and partial truth in your case. Jesus calls us to do this time and time again. If they disagree, fine, lay off them! :slight_smile: There’s no need to force it, and in fact that’s wrong. Vatican II essentially declared this so. It’s also wrong because Jesus said that only those whom the Father called could come to Him (John 6:44). If God calls them, they will hear you. If He doesn’t, they won’t, and so nothing you can say will change that.

Proverbs sums this up perfectly:

26:4-5
"Don’t answer a fool according to his foolishness, or you’ll be like him yourself.
Answer a fool according to his foolishness, or he’ll become wise in his own eyes."

In other words, on the one hand, don’t argue with people forever when they aren’t listening, but on the other hand, make sure you at least try to talk to people who are mistaken so they don’t think they are right when they’re not.

And pray!


#7

Britty,

You are such a sweet heart. Your gentle and kind spirit is but one part of you. The Lord has given you many gifts. My guess is that the Lord’s grace has once again touched you in a profound way. You are being asked to share what God has given you. Anything from God is something wonderful and good. To hold this back from your friends is much more serious than any challenge or discomfort that you may present to them.

You are right to be bothered by this and should not rush into it. Instead take your time and pray for guidance. A couple of suggestions might get you going in the right direction.

  1. Pray every time you see your non-Catholic companions.
  2. Love them as Jesus loves them.
  3. Wear your love of the Lord on your sleeve. Let your light shine. They will soon want what you have, and may start asking questions without your doing any prompting at all.
  4. Read some materials on how to evangelize and how not to evangelize.
  5. Use scripture and be prepared for every possible question. What you can’t answer on the spot can be answered later after doing some homework.
  6. Take the attitude that at some point you must begin evangelizing your friends. Take baby steps if you must, but go forward.

Praise God that he has touched you in this way. This is a marvelous work of Christ in your heart.


#8

CheesusPowerKid,

I think the best thing you can do is share with a friend or two exactly what you shared with us, that you had the most incredible experience at worship with them this evening and then explain why. Explain that you can understand the hunger they sing about, but that through the grace of God, that hunger can be fed, here and now. Tell them the difference in the wording of the song and show them the scriptural basis for the words you were singing and how it is so integral to the Catholic liturgy and truth lived through the Church.

I think it’s interesting that you had this experience today, when the daily Mass reading was all about how important it is to inform the righteous when they are in error, so that they might live in Christ. (The first part is how if you fail to correct the sinner and they die, you will be held responsible for their death, for having not attempted to dissuade them from their error).

But most important of all, you need to ensure that the key message is what you’ve shared with us, that you LOVE your friends, so much that you cry at the thought of what they are missing. That you don’t want them to think you are judging them, for certainly God alone is the judge, but you love them so much you wish they could have the fullness of the relationship with God that you have been blessed with.

I’ll say a prayer for you and your friends and all those who attend these local prayer & worship sessions.

CARose


#9

Well said CARose :thumbsup:


#10

Brittany, Brittany, Brittany!
I love you a ton! We ALL love you so much! My dear, you have GOT to get the idea that evangelizing is bad, out of your cute head! Hehe. Evangilizing to me is not only sharing but living what you truly believe. You have deinantely dont that, like it or not. You have evangelized to me and now I’m considering converting and becoming a nun! Looking on it now, that seems huge compared to where I was a year ago. It’s actually a little scary thinking about it. You want all us protestants to experience the Eucharist, well in order for us to do that, we have to be Catholic, in order for us to be Catholic we have to learn about what it really means to be a Catholic. Now I’m not saying that just because you tell everyone about Catholicsm everyone is going to completely give up their current religion. But some might. Keep hangin in there love, we love you a ton and always will!


#11

[quote=CheesusPowerKid] I have a friend who is considering conversion, and her parents totally hate me now because I’ve “made her question her faith”, I’ve forced my own upon her…and that was never my intention, ever! She totally amazed me and caught me off guard when she told me! but I know how much her parents don’t like me, even though they haven’t met me, and I don’t want that to be my friends. I mean, I know they never would think that of me…but still…AHHHHHHHHHH!!!

Britty
[/quote]

My parents dont hate you!
They just figure I’m testing my religion not my faith. Aaand though they sorta see you as an influence in me considering converting. Like you said they havent really met you so they dont hate you! In fact I keep telling them that loving you is what Jesus does everyday so they should follow the example! Hehe. So, STOP WORRYING! Its all good, Jesus has gotchya!


#12

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