Author Topic: Brief Introduction  (Read 1651 times)

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Offline Carole

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Brief Introduction
« on: August 07, 2006, 03:33:01 PM »
Hello.  My name is Carole and I am, in at least the most technical sense, a Roman Catholic.  Through what seems to be a long, confusing and less than direct journey I am not studying Orthodoxy and considering conversion.

The whole journey started a little over 37 years ago and has taken me from the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod to atheism to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to the Catholic Church, Latin Rite to the Catholic Church Byzantine Rite ... and now finally Orthodoxy.

I am being very slow and very deliberate in my consideration of Orthodoxy lest I make the mistake of leaping too quickly and without a full understanding of what I am doing.  I hope to be able to learn much from reading the old posts in this forum and upon ocassion asking a question or two of my own.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2006, 03:50:37 PM »
Welcome aboard, and I hope your search is fruitful; may the Lord bless you always.
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Offline Carole

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2006, 04:32:50 PM »
Thank you.

Please allow me to give some more information, lest I sound like a church jumping fool  ;)

I was born, baptized and raised in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS).  As a young adult, as the result of loosing some friends and nearly being widowed by a tragic accident I went through a phse of rebelling against God (my atheism phase).  When I realized that something was missing in my life and that that "something" was God I returned to the Lutheran denomination (since I was so familiar with it from my childhood it held a level of comfort that I needed for those very tentative and uncomfortable early days).

After a couple of years of dealing with the increasing moral relativism in the Lutheran denomination (differing levels in different synods) I began to question where I belonged, where God wanted me.  I did a fairly incomplete study based on the erroneous assumption that the Orthodox Church jurisdictions are ethnically exclusive.  There is a large Greek population in our area and several Greek Orthodox churches - but we never explored the beliefs of the Orthodox because we're not Greek.

So we started to explore the Roman Catholic Church.  It was, while not always a perfect fit, much better than the Protestant denominations.  There were things that didn't really make sense and that didn't seem "right" to us (specifically Papal Supremacy and Universal Jurisdiction) but we attributed our "feelings" to our Protestant upbringings accepted the teachings inspite of our reservations. It was not until after we'd been received into the Roman Catholic Church that we were introduced to the Eastern Rites of the Catholic Church.

Of course being introduced to that part of the eastern theology and praxis created questions about Eastern Christianity.  It began to seem that nearly every question about the Eastern Rites of the Catholic Church was answered with a reference to Orthodox resources. Which has created a situation in which we are researching the Orthodox Church.  This research and reading has once again brought to the forefront the issues we had glossed over during our conversion to the RCC.

I am beginning to realize that if we had done our research with due diligence 6 years ago we probably would never have converted to the RCC.  Which puts us in the uncomfortable position of "starting over" and feeling like we look like idiots who are just jumping from one church experience to another.

I didn't mean for this to get so long.  Thank you again for the welcome.


Offline drewmeister2

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2006, 07:41:22 PM »
Welcome.ÂÂ  I first came here about two years ago or so now, still a very (what I thought to be) strong Catholic in my beliefs; now, I am in the process of converting to Orthodoxy, so you never know what will happen to you here ;).ÂÂ  There is some good information here.

One thing I will add: growing up as a Catholic (since you weren't born Catholic, this may not be a problem for you), I had lots of attachment to Catholicism.  Really, I found Orthodoxy to be true after about 6 months or less of looking into it, but it took me about another year (total 1.5 years) to lose the attachment to Catholicism, and say without doubt that Orthodoxy is true.  Best thing I can advise (unworthy though it may be) is that you won't be convinced of Orthodoxy overnight (if you become convinced at all), but it is rather a sort of process.  The other thing I advise is to go to Divine Liturgy; that is ultimately what convinced me of Orthodoxy, as all the endless arguments from the Catholic and Orthodox sides only tended to confuse me, as both had *seemingly* valid arguments.  I converted in my heart via the Divine Liturgy, I guess you could say, before I converted in my brain (and I don't think I have even converted there yet, as I still can't defend alot of Orthodox teachings very well at all, but what matters to me right now is that I am convinced that Orthodoxy is true, and I was convinced in my heart about 1.5 years after looking into Orthodoxy).   

Anyways, again, welcome.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2006, 07:49:28 PM by drewmeister2 »
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Offline Αριστοκλής

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2006, 08:10:42 AM »
Ignored the Greek Orthodox because you're not Greek? Then you're Roman? Just kidding   :D's a common perception.

(And to your question on another forum about Becoming Orthodox, yes; still a good quick read for you.)
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Offline Carole

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2006, 09:04:27 AM »
[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9682.msg130750#msg130750 date=1155039042]
Ignored the Greek Orthodox because you're not Greek? Then you're Roman? Just kidding   :D's a common perception.

(And to your question on another forum about Becoming Orthodox, yes; still a good quick read for you.)

Nope not even close to being Roman either!  ;D 

Though as an aside ...

On Good Friday this year I attended a service at a local Greek Orthodox parish with a friend of mine from the Byzantine Catholic parish that I attend and it was very funny.  My friend K is of Eastern European Jewish heritage.  She is a short woman with dark brown hair, an olive complexion and beautiful brown eyes.  I am 5'7", very fair complexion, blue eyes and red hair.  Many people approached K speaking Greek, to which she had to reply "I'm sorry I don't speak Greek."  Alas, no one spoke Greek to me!  :P

Everyone was very friendly and very helpful pointing out things that I should know ... but clearly I do not look Greek. hahaha


Offline Firiel

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Re: Brief Introduction
« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2006, 11:46:32 AM »
Quote from:  Carole
Everyone was very friendly and very helpful pointing out things that I should know ... but clearly I do not look Greek. hahaha

Heh. I've been to two Divine Liturgies and one
Vespers, and I've been told by a friend that everyone there most likely thinks I'm Romanian because of the traits you describe in your friend, though I get the looks from my Italian side.ÂÂ  ;D

Anyway, to second what drewmeister2 said, I wanted to convert to Catholicism for over a year, and I've still got a lot of attachments to it. For months after I discovered Orthodoxy and was converted through the Divine Liturgy, I couldn't decide which one to go with and it drove me absolutely insane until I remembered how much more fulfilling and beautiful the Divine Liturgy was, compared to the one Mass I've attended. Even now, if I'm especially tired or just not paying attention, I'll start to do something in Latin (which was my habit whilst in the Catholicism phase), realise what language it is, blush, and go to English. Occasionally I've even crossed myself the Western way, and I still find myself automatically trying to defend the Papacy.ÂÂ  ::) It definitely takes time.

Edited for my lack of skills with the quoting function.  ::)
« Last Edit: August 08, 2006, 11:47:55 AM by Firiel »
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