Woodrow conversion story
Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 22, 2008
Dear Mr. Ray,
A friend of mine who is a Deacon in the Archdiocese of Detroit gave me your book “Crossing the Tiber” to read when I was a Protestant.
I was interested in hearing what you had to say because I was raised as a Fundamental Baptist (Fundamental, independent, King-James-Only, second-degree separationist, pre-millennial, pre-tribulational, dispensational Baptist to be precise). I left Fundamentalism behind in my late teens (I’ll be 32 in September) to become an Evangelical “mere Christian”, and I kept looking at the various theological traditions to see who’d gotten it right.
I was in a state of theological “flux” for a good 10-12 years. In 2002, I discovered Catholic Answers on Ave Maria and started listening. I didn’t agree with their beliefs, but I was happy to find a resource where I could get real answers about Catholic teaching from knowledgeable people.
At the same, I started a new job where I met my Deacon friend, Mike Chesley. We started talking, he gave me your book, and on Thursday, May 1, 2003 at 2:43pm, I knew I had to become Catholic.
The biggest concern I had in my Christian walk was authority. I looked around at Protestant Christianity and saw confusion everywhere – disagreements over tongues, silly arguments over Bible translations, ancient heresies revived because of ambiguous Bible verses (hence “Oneness Pentecostals”), etc. I gave up trying to know the truth in the Ephesians 3:13 sense, where we will “all reach unity in the faith.” I thought it was hopeless.
Reading your book, among other things, made me realize that Protestant Christianity is so “fluid” and divided because it has cast off the safety net of the Magisterium. I was overjoyed to realize I had a Church to turn to which can settle every little matter of doctrine (over time, of course), a Church that has maintained the same beliefs for nearly 2,000 years now!
I took RCIA at my local parish, and was received into the Church on Easter Vigil 2004. And though the Church considers that day as the day I officially became Catholic, I will always view Thursday, May 1, 2003 at 2:43pm as the exact time I became a true Catholic. I just wanted you to know that.