My Faith Journey
When I was about three years old, my parents converted to Catholicism, so I’m never sure if I should call myself a cradle Catholic or a convert according to traditional designations. For this reason, I have dubbed myself a training wheels Catholic. In any event, I grew up in a Catholic home. As I got older, however, I began to grow away from my faith. I went to Mass with my parents, but the whole thing meant nothing to me. It occurred to me that it was stupid for us to still be thanking God for something that had happened 2,000 years ago because, as far as I was concerned, it had nothing to do with my life. I was just a robot. I sat, stood, and knelt at the appropriate times and said the correct responses, but my mind and heart were always somewhere else during the celebration.
As time went on, I grew bored with the religious education classes at my parish because I thought I knew everything already (arrogance and ignorance are closely related, my friends). So, with this confidence in my own superior intellect (which is really quite funny to look back on now), I started answering questions about the Catholic Church on the web. Oh, how quickly I found out that I knew next to nothing about the Church! The people on this particular site threw out some really convincing arguments that I didn’t know how to counter. Statues started to look like idols, the Catholic Church resembled the Whore of Babylon, and the Mass became one huge cannibalistic ritual. I lost my faith in God and the Church a few times. More than anything, I was scared and I just wanted something that I could be sure about. So, needless to say, I left the Church. Not physically, mind you, but spiritually. I didn’t believe what the Church taught, I didn’t think God was even a possibility, and I was sick of worrying and caring about all of it.
Looking back now, I honestly don’t know what got me out of that slump…but I have a pretty good guess as to Who it was. For some reason, I began to desire to know more about the Church and the Faith. I started reading different apologetics books by authors such as Dave Armstrong (to this day, The One Minute Apologist is my go-to book when I can’t remember which verse I’m looking for), Scott Hahn, and Patrick Madrid. Books and countless websites helped me learn how to defend my faith. Answering questions about the Church became my hobby and new questions were interesting rather than threatening.
Now, I hope to help other teens who are going through the same thing I went through or those who simply have questions. Believe me…walking through it with someone is a lot easier than going it alone.
May God bless you on your own journey!