Laura is an educator and freelance writer in Calgary, Canada.
The road to Catholicism for new converts is as varied as the personalities of converts themselves. Mine came by means of the sublimely cracked perspective of a neurological disorder called Tourette Syndrome.
Raised in a mainstream Protestant church, I found myself drawn to evangelical circles in early adult life by the zeal and commitment I found there. Active church involvement, university, marriage, three kids and a fulfilling career in education filled the years that followed. Time sailed along at the hectic pace of most young families, until our youngest son, Peter, started having marked difficulty coping with the normal, everyday stresses of school life.
JoAnna is married and has four children. This is her story as a lifelong member of the Lutheran church to Catholicism.
I was born to lifelong Lutherans (ELCA) who, of course, baptized all their kids Lutheran. I was baptized on December 28, 1980 -- a date that I realized, soon after my conversion, as the Feast of the Holy Innocents. I sometimes wonder why I wasn't baptized sooner given that I was born six weeks prematurely, but I suppose that in Lutheran circles baptism isn't considered crucial for newborns, even premature ones.
Almost Not Catholic
Here's the skinny:
● Born into a reverent Pentecostal family
● Former Pentecostal preacher and high school Bible teacher
● Trained in Reformed theology at Oral Roberts University (03')
● Entered into full communion with the Catholic Church November 23, 2008
Now let's dive right into the story from where it gets interesting
On February 5, 2006 my daughter was born. I'll never forget the overwhelming joy and love of that moment. I will also never forget the fear of the Lord that overcame me. It had been fine up until this point to linger in my own religious "ignorance"--I say ignorance because I knew there were serious tensions in my faith but I had no internal drive to resolve them--going about practicing Christianity in the tradition that I had inherited. However, it was quite another thing all together to pass that faith off to this innocent life. As I held my helpless daughter in my arms, I remember knowing that I had run out of time. The time was now to investigate what was the true faith, the true Church, and where in fact would my children be safe from the rising tide of relativism, secularism, and evil.
After being raised Catholic, Richard Evans left the Catholic Church from ages 15-49, becoming an Evangelical minister and eventually a gay activist. This is the story of his departure and return to the fullness of the Catholic faith.
After Coming Out, I Came Home
I CANNOT RECALL A TIME WHEN I WAS NOT AWARE OF GOD IN MY LIFE. While other little boys were planning to be firemen or police, I often said, even at age seven or eight, "I want to be the Pope!" I jumped at the chance to become an altar boy, having already had much practice as the family "priest" when we played Mass—complete, at times, with flattened "hosts" made of white bread and cut out with bottle caps. The idea of actually serving next to the priest at the real Mass was incredible to me, and I did so with joy for the next four years.
Nicole Motsch-DeMille was a graduate of Lutheran schools and an active member of her Lutheran parish until some casual research led her and her family into a major life change . . . and into the Catholic Church.
I am a forty-one year old wife and mother, former high school English teacher and native New Yorker who converted to Roman Catholicism after living my entire life up to that point as a devout and active Lutheran. I attended private Lutheran schools from Kindergarten to twelfth grade. I served Communion at my Lutheran parish. I wrote and taught Confirmation curriculum. I married in the Lutheran Church and baptized both of my children there. I cannot say I was unhappy as a Lutheran, but I did have questions and unresolved issues, Scriptures that didn’t square with what my pastors and religious instructors taught, and a longing for something “more.”