How Do You Say Goodbye?

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DaveBj

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I posted this over in the CHN Forum, but I thought I’d post it over here as well; somewhere in Proverbs it says that wisdom lies in having many counselors.

Begin cross-post:

I’m sure some of you who have completed the journey from Protestantism to the Catholic Church have left friends, mentors, pastors, etc., behind on the “wrong” side of the river. How did you say “Goodbye” to them?

If I complete this process (and it’s looking more and more like I’m going to), there are several Southern Baptist and Church of God pastors and music ministers who are not going to understand what happened, largely because they are not part of the complex process that I’m going through right now. How do I explain myself to them?

I’m thinking in terms of a letter (it would have to be a long one) explaining what made me realize the inadequacies of Protestantism and prompted me to study Catholicism and giving a brief explanation of each of the problematic doctrines and how I came to accept them. That would be followed by a gift of probably Rome Sweet Rome and Journeys Home (Surprised by Truth is actually a better book, in my opinion, but Journeys Home is the book that actually started me thinking, while I’ve only just read Surprised by Truth). The idea is not “I want to convert you” but “these books best explain why I did what I did.”

Anyone have any other ideas?

DaveBj
 
Just wanted to let you know I will be praying for you and welcome Home. Also they are not on the wrong side just not the complete side, and remember they are your brothers and sisters in Christ.

God Bless and glad to know ya
 
I think what they will need most is to know that you are the same person as before (like same food, music, sports etc.) I also think that you have to tell them (not drown them in your personal ride) , but tell them that the prosses has not been an easy one.

That will make it more easy for them to accsept. Ask them if they want a letter and the book! Then you make it more up to them to choose how they want to see you go. (I think we are all unike persons, so you have to listen very much to your “inner-voice” to find out what is best in you situation).

Some vill be happy for you, - some will be sad, - and some might turn their back on you. Prepare yourself for handling all these reactions, so that they don’t disturb your last steps on the road to the Catholic Church!

Hope this was of some help!

God Bless!

G.G.
 
Somewhat similar and yet different, I left a ‘very sinful lifestyle’ which had it’s own culture and ideas which are currently battering down the walls of Christianity/Catholic Church.

I simply made a ‘cold turkey’ break. Yet only one friend stayed friends with me. However, through my Life in Christ and int he Church, I pray to be an example to my friends to change his ways.

Somewhat in your circumstance, I would try to remain friendly and civil with your Protestant ‘brothers in Christ’. (They are still brothers, but not accepting to the Fullness of the Truth). I would give them a copy of Suprised By Truth or any of the other books mentions and ask them, “Where did they (the authors) get it wrong?” John Martingoni, Apologist, always uses this quote to put the other person on the defensive.

I hope this helps!

Edwin

Glory be to Jesus Christ! Glory to Him Forever!
 
Hi Dave! I had several Protestant friends before I became Catholic and, thankfully it did not hurt my relationship with them (I suppose you could see this as a bad thing, too. i.e. an indication of how seriously my friends and I were taking our faith at the time I returned to Rome…).

I have an Aunt whose family is very conservative Southern Baptist, and she wasn’t as pleased about my decision, but then again, she never showed me ill will and is pleased to see my faith in Christ deepen since becoming Catholic.

It is not unlikely that some of your friends will seriously question your decision but I would emphasize the fact that you are a Christian and then, lovingly and as their shock wears off, begin to explain how you came to your decision.

You may also want to look for some books by Scott Hahn that address converting to Catholicism. I don’t have the titles with me but his experiences may mimic what you will see in your own life. My prayers are with you. Congratulations on your journey!
 
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DaveBj:
If I complete this process (and it’s looking more and more like I’m going to), there are several Southern Baptist and Church of God pastors and music ministers who are not going to understand what happened, largely because they are not part of the complex process that I’m going through right now. How do I explain myself to them?

I’m thinking in terms of a letter
Another Dave, David Currie, had the exact same problem. He chose to write a letter to all those who would be dismayed upon hearing that he had followed Christ into the Catholic Church.

The result was a most moving, gentle, and thorough treatment of his conversion. I highly recommend that you get a copy of:

http://www.ignatius.com/Images/Products/bfba.gif

You can read the review at:
Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic

Peace in Christ…Salmon
 
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Salmon:
Another Dave, David Currie, had the exact same problem. He chose to write a letter to all those who would be dismayed upon hearing that he had followed Christ into the Catholic Church.

The result was a most moving, gentle, and thorough treatment of his conversion. I highly recommend that you get a copy of:
I’ve read this book also. I agree it is excellent!
 
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Charles:
I’ve read this book also. I agree it is excellent!
I bought it as well, early in the search process; it is excellent.

DaveBj
 
Hi! Welcome Home!

I’m not in your position (cradle Catholic) but I’ve been struck again and again by something that’s said by many people who have ‘come home to Rome.’ When telling the story of their journey, they often say, ‘I have a great deal of love and respect and gratitude toward the people [in my Protestant church, etc.] who helped me grow in faith.’

I don’t know, of course, but it seems to me that a long letter might just make them heartsick or open you up for a contentious correspondence. I know I’m heartsick when I hear why a relative has left the Church - why shouldn’t your Protestant friends/family/mentors be heartsick when you leave theirs?

As you say, they aren’t in the middle of the same process you are, so a book might (probably would) just sit and collect dust or not make sense to them.

Why not just write and say simply that after a great deal of thought, learning, prayer, (agony?) etc., you are converting to the Catholic Church. Then tell them how grateful you are to God for having put them on the path of your journey. Remind them of things they said or did that built you up in faith. Tell them of any lessons that you will always draw on as you make your way closer and closer to Christ. Hope that you can continue to build one another up in faith, or at least that they will always hold you in prayer, as you will always keep them in prayer. Let them know that you will always thank God for putting them on your path, and why.

That wouldn’t be too long, and it would be the grateful thing to do. I guess it would also help them not to feel like, ‘What did I do wrong that I didn’t know this person was going to Pope?’ (if that’s how they might feel).

Hope this helps.
 
Crossing the Tiber by Steve Ray started as a letter to his family about his decsion to enter the Catholic church. Might want to check it out. Welcome home, God bless.

P. S. if your friends love you, they will accept your decision even if they think you are wrong.
 
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Shibboleth:
So long, and thanks for all the fish. 😃
When i told some of my Baptist friends that I had become Catholic. they looked at me as if I were a Perfectly Normal Beast!

:ehh:

👋
 
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