Greetings and welcome to ‘From Protestant to Catholic- why the Bible and Early Church Fathers lead me to convert from Evangelical Protestant to Catholic.’ I hope you will find this site useful, regardless of where you find yourself in your faith journey. My name is Michael David and I am a young adult who works as a Registered Nurse and is blessed to be a husband and a father to two young children. However, aside from this introduction, this site is not meant to be about me, but rather about the information that ‘turned my world upside down’ about seven years ago.
Though my own Christian background was denominationally diverse (born Methodist, family later joined non-denominational Baptist style church, then I chose to attend Presbyterian-PCA, before briefly joining the Lutheran-LCMS church in college), there was one thing that didn’t change: I hated the Catholic Church as I understood it. I believed the Catholic Church was the prophetic ‘Whore of Babylon’ of Revelation that preached a false gospel, followed an ‘Antichrist pope’, was too ritualistic, too superstitious, too legalistic, and revered a ‘tradition of men’ that the Bible condemned. In researching the various claims of Catholicism to try to expose it to friends and acquaintances as a Satanic distortion of the true gospel, I found myself surprisingly exposed to the beauty, consistency, and truth of Catholicism as found within the Bible, the writings of the earliest Christians, the spirituality of the saints across the ages, and the official Catechism of the Catholic Church. I tried to convert others, but was myself converted (thanks be to God!)…
Yes, a lot has changed in the Church’s 2,000 year lifespan, but I began to realize that almost all of these changes are like the organic growth and development that all living things experience without losing their essential identity, and many changes have been matters of ‘discipline’, not ‘doctrine,’ which is an important theological distinction. The most influential factor for me was definitely the testimony of the earliest Christian leaders known as the ‘Early Church Fathers,’ who often gave their lives for the sake of preserving the one faith, and held beliefs regarding eccliesiology (the Church), sacred Scripture/ holy Tradition, the sacraments, and soteriology (salvation), that I found to be astoundingly consistent with Catholicism and contraditory with Evangelicalism/Protestantism.
The scriptures themselves rapidly made more sense and ‘came alive’ as I learned more about how the early Church interpreted them. Passages which previous appeared to contradict each other and were therefore quietly ignored now harmonized beautifully and provided challenges for spiritual growth. .. After losing much sleep in a process of prayerful study that was exciting, but not always easy (especially considering a few tough teachings and the priestly sex abuse scandal that was occurring), and after a six month courtship with Eastern Orthodoxy… I was eventually received into full communion with the Catholic Church, and I can say that it is truly good to be home!
I have learned so much in my first years a Catholic and I can tell that the ‘spiritual well’ is so deep that I will have a lifetime of exploration and growth ahead of me. I am now blessed to enjoy attending daily mass when my responsibilities permit, reading catholic spiritual classics, praying some of the daily ‘liturgy of the hours’, finding time for short periods of ‘Lectio Divina’ (slow, meditative ‘divine reading’ of scripture), setting aside a daily period of solitude and silence for mental/contemplative prayer, and praying the rosary with my family in the evening when possible. I am thankful to have discovered the ‘extraordinary form’ (traditional Latin) mass at the historic St. Alphonsus Church in down-town Baltimore and love to celebrate the major solemnities of the Church year there. I was blessed to go on a 3 day silent retreat at Holy Cross Abbey, a Trappist monastery in Virginia. Wisdom, mystery, beauty, history… I have found these and more in abundance in Christ’s Body- the Church.
Amidst the vast spiritual riches that I have discovered in the Catholic Church, I am learning that while ‘my head’ has intellectually converted entirely, ‘my heart’ is called to an ongoing life-long conversion that leads to the unspeakable glory of ‘partaking of the divine nature’ in a loving union with the Most Holy Trinity together with the full Communion of Saints… knowing and loving God fully as I am known and loved. Now this is something to live for! This is something to ‘give up everything’ and ‘die to self’ for!
Out of a desire to share what I have found, I’ve created this site to help protestants/evangelicals truly understand the Biblical and historical basis of the Catholic teachings which they protest (whether in knowledge or in ignorance as I once did). I aim not to belittle other Christians’ beliefs, but to share the paper-trail of evidence that I personally found to be a compelling witness to the truth of the Catholic faith. This material can be found here. As I am not a trained theologian or apologist, I attempt to minimize my own commentary when possible. I hope that Christians of all backgrounds will find the content respectful, informative, and engaging.
The Catholic Catechism states that sin and misunderstanding on all sides has tragically lead to the divisions that exist within Christianity today…. By the grace of God, may this site be beneficial in some way to all who are seeking the unity which our Lord Jesus Christ prayed for in the Garden of Gethsemane… Amen.
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Thanks for visiting and may the peace of Christ be with you,