I tend to try to stay over on the Faith message board because I'm still only learning about Orthodoxy and I don't want to start any debates, but I'm confused and I think that under the guidelines of the boards, this is probably the best place for me to post this.
I will try to keep this as short as possible, but since I don't really have anybody that I know that I can really discuss this with, I have to sort things out in other ways.
I am going to convert. My problem is that I don't know what I'm going to convert to. My goal is to find the TRUE Church. I am wholly and completely ready to drop all of my previous Protestant beliefs and follow the leadership of the Church that Jesus established. I also believe that that church is either the RC or EO. My problem is that I don't know how to know which is true.
My husband is RC, so he would say that it is true. I have a problem with Papal supremacy and infallibility, so I have my doubts about the RC. Do I trust myself though? I am from a Protestant background. I was brought up to trust only myself, but now I'm seeing that that isn't how it's supposed to be. How do I know that I'm not erring again in denying the Pope's authority? Does anyone know of any hard evidence from the Church Fathers or from anywhere before the final schism that could help me?
Part of me says that I could take the easy road and be RC and that way my husband and I could bring out children up in the same church and have unity in our home. But, if I'm going to take the easy road, my Protestant background was about as easy as it got, and that would keep my entire side of the family happy. But if I'm going to follow the Truth, I'm going to have to make some sort of change.
Also, are there any differences with the exception of the belief concerning the Pope between EO and RC that I should be aware of? I've been told Original Sin and the filioque, but I don't see a lot of difference. From the Catholic documents that I've read, they really don't believe in personal guilt to everyone from Original Sin. The description was pretty much the exact same as the description that I got from the EO. I know Augustine's theory, but from what I can tell the RC hasn't fully adopted that idea. Their belief in the way the Holy Spirit is sent forth seems to be the same as well even though they have the filioque statement in their creed. I know the issue of having different creeds is a big deal, but if they pronounce the same belief, then it's the same teaching at core of the problem. Am I missing something?
I've been reading as much as I possibly can on the topic. I've done everything I know to do. I'm now at a stand still because I don't know where to turn. My heart says Orthodoxy, but my mind keeps asking me how I can possibly trust myself to make a true decision.
I'm hoping that I have not been offensive in any way to anyone. I'm also hoping that this does not spark a huge debate. I'm asking with sincerity and would like sincere answers from either or both RC's and EO's.
My next request is to please clarify whether or not you're RC or EO when you answer. It sometimes very confusing and really difficult for me (who is from a VERY LIBERAL Protestant background) to determine between the two faith when I'm not aware before hand from which side it's coming.
Thanks in advance...