Thank you for visiting this personal reference guide to understanding the teachings of the catholic church and one’s journey into Trust in Christ and the power of God’s Word. Here we will explore the Holy Scripture and provide a very personal reference guide to the transformation of lives from death to Eternal Life.
All praise, honor, and glory to God, my Father in Heaven.
If you are a practicing catholic or someone who is interested in catholicism, then I hope you find my story helpful. Even if you’re not catholic and just want to learn more about salvation, I hope that you will read my message completely. As you begin reading you may feel uncomfortable or be tempted to leave this site, and believe me, I understand that feeling. At one time in my life if I had visited a site like this one, I would have felt exactly the same way. Instead, I ask you to trust that the Lord has brought you here for a reason, and please take just a few minutes to read how God has led me to His One True Church.
I have created this Web site out of love for my Father in Heaven, and love for His children here on Earth. I was guided by the Holy Spirit in developing this message and it was written to help spread the Truth of God’s Word. There is nothing here designed to hurt you in any way because what I share with you is my true story, the story of my Salvation through the grace of God.
Most of all, I tell you this: if you doubt anything that I speak of here in regard to Holy Scripture and the Gospel, then please, DO NOT take my word for anything! I am but a mere human being who is flawed. God and His Word, however, are perfect. Instead of taking my word for anything related to the Gospel — in fact, instead of taking ANY human being’s word — I encourage you to sit down and read the Holy Scriptures for yourself, for His Word contains the Truth about His plan for eternal salvation.
I was raised a catholic, and I knew I was going to heaven…
I was born to faithful catholic parents and was raised in the catholic church. At a very young age, I wanted to do more than sit in a pew at mass, so I volunteered to be an altar boy and was trained to serve on the altar. In time, I was elevated to the leadership position, overseeing all of the altar servers in my parish. I coordinated the schedule and the activities of the altar servers, provided them training, and eventually took part in other committees, groups, and functions of the church, including adult education.
I also became a Sunday school teacher (CCD), preparing young catholic children for their first communion. Once I reached my twenties I became a lector, and each weekend I stood on the altar and read to those in attendance at mass. In time, I was recruited by the head of the church’s RCIA program to become an instructor, teaching converts who desired to become a part of the catholic church.
After 44 years a catholic, I knew in my heart that as a catholic I was a Christian. To even think otherwise for a moment was ridiculous. I went to church, I was baptized in water as an infant, I followed the catholic doctrine, I went to confession and communion, and I knew I was going to heaven. I was certain that I was a catholic Christian. Not catholic or Christian. No, I was a Christian catholic and that was all there was to it.
God’s Plan for Salvation
One day I was watching television, and while changing channels I happened upon a local program that featured a preacher who said he had a special message for all the catholics who were watching. This preacher, a man whose name I don’t even recall today, said that many teachings of the catholic church are contrary to the Bible itself. He declared that catholics who followed the doctrines of the church were being misled and most likely had not received the gift of eternal salvation.
Now, I wasn’t naive. I was well aware that this wasn’t new, that the beliefs and practices of the Roman catholic church had come under fire for centuries. It wasn’t only this random TV preacher dispensing ominous words of warning against the catholic church, there were plenty of other forces out there taking aim at catholicism. My church had warned me that “catholic bashing” had been increasing, particularly in light of the problems the church was facing due to the horrible misdeeds and abuses of some of its priests and others in leadership positions.
But for some reason I found this particular preacher’s message worth additional research. I decided to do what the catholic church had told me to do in such situations, which was to turn to those within my church who were deeply educated in the teachings of the catholicism for help. The next day I spoke to my parish priest about what I’d heard. I asked:
Father, why did this TV preacher say that the teachings of the catholic church sometimes differ from what is in the Bible?”
The priest was fairly terse in his reply. While he didn’t spend a lot of time making any specific references to Scriptures or to teachings of the catholic church, he told me that I should ignore what the TV preacher had said. The priest told me that it was obvious to him that the TV preacher didn’t actually understand the catholic church, that any Bible passages the preacher may have quoted were probably taken out of context, and that I should trust the catholic church for everything I needed to know about salvation. He assured me that I was a christian catholic and I should trust in what the catholic church taught me, and not to question it.
Somehow, his “answer” left me with even more questions. Still, at that time I trusted in the catholic church, my church, and I continued to rely on it and its leaders for guidance in the faith.
My Brother, The Former Catholic
My brother is a former catholic, raised as I was by our faithful, devout catholic parents. He served on the altar as I did, though he never aspired to any particular leadership role in the parish. Eventually, he stopped attending mass at all, and had to be nearly dragged to our parish for one particular Christmas service. Over time, my brother had been making several attempts to try and sway me from my catholic beliefs. Obviously, I had resisted. He tried again and again to lead me away from what I had been taught by the church, but I stood firm.
I felt that I trusted in Christ, but I also trusted in the catholic church.
I dismissed most of my brother’s arguments against putting my trust in the catholic church. I mean, here was a man who didn’t even go to church with us any longer, yet he was trying to tell me — a certified catholic educator — the truth about scripture? About salvation? About where I should place my Trust in order to receive eternal life?