Author Topic: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?  (Read 493 times)

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Offline Conversion

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Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« on: October 26, 2012, 10:55:52 PM »
Without bashing the Roman Catholic Church, the charitable and truthful way to put it is I have followed a lot of rituals and rules after my conversion, but very little actual "community" among all of the RCC churches I have frequented.  My own Roman Catholic godmother isn't really into the religion (doesn't even want to talk about it; I found that out AFTER I was baptized), so hasn't been much help to me.  I have found as a Roman Catholic, unless you are a legalistic cradle Catholic, have a huge Catholic family in the pew, are a major financial donor to a parish or are Hispanic, Filipino, Italian or Irish -- good luck!  You are totally on your own.  If anything, Roman Catholics make me long for the warmth of Protestantism!

I initially started going to an Eastern Orthodox church when I was Protestant and searching, but I somehow started watching EWTN as well (seeking accessible ancient Church history) and was seduced into believing salvation can only be had if my soul is under the ultimate authority of the Pope.  Now I wish I would have just stayed where God initially planted me; the Eastern Orthodox Church embraced me.  I made a mistake.  :'(

At any rate, I see there are a lot of ex-Roman Catholics here, but are there any who were once ALSO Protestant?  I feel totally lost on which step to take next.  :-\

« Last Edit: October 26, 2012, 11:04:43 PM by Conversion »

Offline Benjamin the Red

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2012, 11:32:37 PM »
Welcome to the Board!

I know several people who started Protestant, went Catholic, then became Orthodox. I also know several who started Catholic, went Protestant and are now Orthodox.

As far as where to go...read, ask questions. Speak with your priest, and with an Orthodox priest. Start by...just starting.
"Hades is not a place, no, but a state of the soul. It begins here on earth. Just so, paradise begins in the soul of a man here in the earthly life. Here we already have contact with the divine..." -St. John, Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, Homily On the Sunday of Orthodoxy

Offline Joseph Hazen

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2012, 02:12:50 AM »
I am! ...er...was?

Raised protestant for 18 years. Vaguely protestant I should say. My wife, who was raised devoutly protestant, has revealed to me how little we actually practiced our faith. At any rate I was protestant. Went to Youth Group on Wednesdays, Small Groups on Sunday, had the pastor over for parties when we were kids, I know all the contemporary Christian music sung at services, etc.

At 18 I began investigating why there are different denominations. I didn't know why there were Methodists and Lutherans and Baptists and Catholics etc. etc. So I did some research and discovered Sola Scriptura and Tradition and that explained everything. It came down, for me, to either the Eastern Orthodox or the Roman Catholic, and I thought "Orthodoxy isn't Catholic, it's ethnic, so Romans win." I can seriously remember sitting on my bed and thinking that out. So I became Roman Catholic at 19.

Fast forward five years and I was frustrated with Roman Catholicism for a variety of reasons. An Orthodox friend challenged me to find Papal Infallibility in the Early Church and suddenly I saw that the quotes I'd had before could be read differently, and that different perspective made a lot of sense. Unwillingly, at first, I left Roman Catholicism and became Orthodox. I've been Chrismated a little over a year now.

There is a huge difference, 'fellowship'-wise, between Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism. Honestly, I didn't realize how lonely I was as a Roman. I never really thought about it. I might have been able to live that way for the rest of my life and probably would've been fine, but having now gone into a church where fellowship is such a huge part of it, I couldn't go back to not knowing a single person at my parish, having no friends who share my faith, and feeling like an island.

Offline dzheremi

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2012, 02:58:00 AM »
Welcome, Conversion.

I was raised in the Presbyterian church by my mother, but stopped attending when they kicked me out after she passed away when I was 14.

Then I spent about 10 years without any church before converting to the Roman Catholic Church. I spent about 5 years there before becoming really alienated from it in a lot of ways, attended my last Mass in July of 2009.

After about 3 years of learning about Orthodoxy and becoming more and more interested in it, I was baptized into the Coptic Orthodox Church in May of last year.

It's been a long, sometimes confusing ride, and this is the least likely place I'd ever imagine finding myself (honestly, I couldn't have even imagined it), but I'm pretty happy. As far as community goes, the priest from our little church actually called me last weekend to make sure I was okay, since I missed liturgy due to illness. That was a really nice thing, and also one of the deacons sent me three (!) e-mails, to make sure that I knew that we still have liturgy (haha) and that if I need anything I can always ask him and he'll bring it to me. We're talking about a guy who doesn't even have a car. So, uh...I guess they missed me.  :) And I'm not Egyptian, so we don't really share a common language or culture outside of Orthodoxy. But that's greater than anything else anyway.

I agree with Benjamin's advice. The best way to start is by starting. Go to liturgies, coffee hours afterward, etc. Talk to people. Some might be reticent (though it doesn't seem like it from what you wrote about being welcomed, so that's good), but we all love to see our churches grow, so don't be shy! God will make a way for you to come into His church. You have to do your part and get yourself through the door, though. :)


Offline Jetavan

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2012, 12:51:29 PM »
Once Protestant, always Protestant. ::)
If you will, you can become all flame.
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In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
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Offline Conversion

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2012, 01:07:11 PM »


There is a huge difference, 'fellowship'-wise, between Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism. Honestly, I didn't realize how lonely I was as a Roman. I never really thought about it. I might have been able to live that way for the rest of my life and probably would've been fine, but having now gone into a church where fellowship is such a huge part of it, I couldn't go back to not knowing a single person at my parish, having no friends who share my faith, and feeling like an island.

Thanks for sharing, Joseph.  Yes, I agree.  While laws and liturgy are important, so are love, compassion and fellowship.  It doesn't have to be of the "Barney" variety ("I love you. You love me...") or singing kumbaya around a campfire.  But, for me, there at least has to be SOME contact with others of the same faith beyond a forced greeting or farewell for edification.

The majority of the people at my local parish grimace and look like they have one foot out the door.  In fact, at the close of Mass, you see some of them literally running for the door.

Offline Conversion

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Re: Any former Roman Catholic converts (from Protestantism) here?
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2012, 01:09:38 PM »


It's been a long, sometimes confusing ride, and this is the least likely place I'd ever imagine finding myself (honestly, I couldn't have even imagined it), but I'm pretty happy. As far as community goes, the priest from our little church actually called me last weekend to make sure I was okay, since I missed liturgy due to illness. That was a really nice thing, and also one of the deacons sent me three (!) e-mails, to make sure that I knew that we still have liturgy (haha) and that if I need anything I can always ask him and he'll bring it to me. We're talking about a guy who doesn't even have a car. So, uh...I guess they missed me.  :) And I'm not Egyptian, so we don't really share a common language or culture outside of Orthodoxy. But that's greater than anything else anyway.



Call me a sap, but that is heartwarming.