• Please remember: Pray for Ukraine in the Prayer forum; Share news in the Christian News section; Discuss religious implications in FFA: Religious Topics; Discuss political implications in Politics (and if you don't have access, PM me) Thank you! + Fr. George, Forum Administrator

RC wanting to convert to Orthodoxy

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
This is my first post so please bear with me. I have wanted to to convert to Orthodoxy for nearly 5 years. I had attended an OCA mission church for several months and truly felt my soul was there. I feel that the Holy Spirit is guiding me. I almost signed up for classes to start my conversion but my wife and daughter refuse to even consider it. My wife feels I would be breaking up the family since I would be obligated to be actively involved with the thus taking away time I should spend with my family. I felt lonely while worshiping at Divine Liturgy since my wife and daughter were at their RC Church. But I felt I was truly worshiping our God as opposed to when I would go to Mass. even the people at the OCA church were so welcoming as opposed to any RC Church where it was lukewarm at best.
We’ve tried attending a Byzantine rite Church locally but it is a very small congregation and very disruptive family attends making it very distracting to pray.
I studied a lot about Orthodoxy during this time and have taken up a prayer rule as well as pray Orthodox prayers while at Mass.
I’m in a huge dilemma as now I’m neither RC nor EO but my heart is Orthodox. I don’t know what to do and am seeking advice from this group.
Thank you and God Bless.
 

hecma925

Orthodox Taliban
Joined
Jul 31, 2013
Messages
21,477
Reaction score
1,383
Points
113
Age
161
Location
Wandering Fool
Faith
Truthful Chalcedonian Truther
Jurisdiction
Enemy State Orthodox Church Abroad
It happened to me (albeit as a Protestant) and now my wife is Orthodox.  Be patient and pray (a lot).  Go to services when you are able, but be cognizant of your wife's feelings.  Share openly what you learn and find common ground as much as possible.  God will work out the rest.  For us, it took nearly 6 years from first sharing with her to her baptism.  I wish I was more open in the beginning and not so brusque at times, but God filled the void of my failures.
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
I do pray a lot and I’ve tried to be patient as well. She is more open to the Byzantine rite since it appears  there wouldn’t need to be any significant conversion necessary. Neither of us really like the local for various reasons. We have been to another Byzantine Church while on vacation and it was a truly vibrant church. It would have been the perfect compromise if it had been local.
I just find it too difficult to remain a RCA anymore and I see more reverence, sincerity and truth  as well as tradition present in the OC.
 

noahzarc1

High Elder
Site Supporter
Joined
Apr 22, 2018
Messages
768
Reaction score
83
Points
28
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Antioch
Sent you a pm as I've been in the same boat and it is not uncommon. At least she's Catholic so the change is not as dramatic as those who discover Orthodoxy and another spouse is Protestant and has no interest. For the uninterested party, it can seem like another world. I was out of the Catholic Church 20 years when I discovered Orthodoxy, but I think it took 2-3 liturgies for me to feel comfortable. There are stories like yours all over Orthodoxy. I think with your wife being Catholic, after some hurdles, you stand a good shot of seeing her not only becoming Orthodox but devoutly Orthodox.
 

isxodnik

High Elder
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
794
Reaction score
5
Points
18
Location
RF
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
ROC
I have no experience of the convert, but my mother prayed in the monastery for me when I was unbaptized and addicted to the occult. It hasn't been six months since I was baptized. )
Don't delay your convert, and pray for the family. Ask the monks to pray )
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
I know the priest at the OCA Church said he’d pray for me which is why I’m still persisting for Orthodoxy. I attended my first Pascha last year and it was by far the best service I had seen in my life.
I would be happy to contact my local OCA priest and say I’m ready. I fear for my soul as I am no longer in communion with the RC Church but I still attend every Sunday Mass only for the sake of worshiping as a family at Mass. it’s been a hardship for us all. The only Mass I attend is a 7am service at this one RC Church that is more traditional than the rest in the area. The other times Mass is held, it a zoo with kids screaming and crying throughout Mass despite there being a decent sized cry room. This kind of raucous just reflects the type of people who go there who don’t seem to care about anything else. I’m just not happy being an RC anymore but I don’t want to fracture our family.
 

hecma925

Orthodox Taliban
Joined
Jul 31, 2013
Messages
21,477
Reaction score
1,383
Points
113
Age
161
Location
Wandering Fool
Faith
Truthful Chalcedonian Truther
Jurisdiction
Enemy State Orthodox Church Abroad
Paradosiakos said:
This kind of raucous just reflects the type of people who go there who don’t seem to care about anything else.
Huh?
 

WPM

Taxiarches
Joined
Jan 6, 2012
Messages
7,775
Reaction score
14
Points
0
Age
39
Faith
Ethiopian Jew
Working on sAying the prAyers dAily
 

PittbullMom

Jr. Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2017
Messages
41
Reaction score
1
Points
0
Faith
Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Greek, NJ
It was much easier for me to convert. i also left rcc. Only religious person in the family. Weird thing was my husband asked what was the point in leaving ...asked a bunch of questions and whatnot. All of a sudden it mattered. Lol. He did attend a liturgy and a lady from the parish invited us over for dinner. He was ok with it. While I didn't meet much resistance...I respect him as a man and my husband and no matter how fallen away he is...his feelings and opinions matter.  There must be peace in the home and family.  You can worship and wait and pray but please don't argue. Put it in God's hands. Worst case scenario you convert and she won't but wait for the peace and comfort. Don't get chrismated with a heavy heart.
 

noahzarc1

High Elder
Site Supporter
Joined
Apr 22, 2018
Messages
768
Reaction score
83
Points
28
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Antioch
PittbullMom said:
I respect him as a man and my husband ....
No truer words can be spoken. Any man would appreciate that!
 

platypus

High Elder
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
713
Reaction score
6
Points
0
Faith
Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction
Orthodox Church in America
The only advice I can give is to be very careful about how you talk about religion. At some point, you'll have to explain why you're drawn to Orthodoxy (if you haven't already), and you'll need to be able to do this in a charitable way. Possibly many times. It's a very difficult trail to navigate; I wish you the best and I'll pray for you.

 

DeniseDenise

Taxiarches
Joined
Apr 22, 2013
Messages
6,860
Reaction score
73
Points
48
Age
51
Faith
Does it matter?
Jurisdiction
Unverifiable, so irrelevant
Paradosiakos said:
The other times Mass is held, it a zoo with kids screaming and crying throughout Mass despite there being a decent sized cry room. This kind of raucous just reflects the type of people who go there who don’t .....
You do realise that the only OCA ‘mission parish’ in the greater Seattle area is a zoo with kids screaming and crying throughout the Liturgy despite having a cry room?  I know, because it’s my parish.

I would worry a bit more about other issues since no parish is a perfect paragon of what you want to have ‘church’ behave like.





 

Mercurius1

Sr. Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2017
Messages
174
Reaction score
0
Points
16
Location
Texas
Faith
Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Antioch
I'm a convert to Orthodoxy from Roman Catholicism, feel free to PM me with any questions you have
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
The OCA mission church I attended did have family with a toddler that was a real handful but the parents would take turns taking him out to the cry room. The people there were very respectful of each other. Everyone was quite friendly to me. Many were various converts as well. I had a very pleasant experience going there for the four months I attended Divine Liturgy.
My wife wasn’t the only person who discouraged me from going. I spoke to the pastor of the RC my wife attended. He basically said I was in the state of mortal sin because of what I was doing and that I was being a schismatic. I still have no desire to be under the Pope, especially not the current one. I also don’t believe in Papal supremacy nor any infallibilities, etc.
Thank you all for your prayers and concerns.
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
I no longer argue with my wife about the differences in the two faiths. She knows the shortcomings of RC and even agrees with me from time to time but says she’ll never convert. She has never attended an Orthodox Divine Liturgy but has gone to a few Byzantine ones. She was ok with Byzantines but was discouraged by the state of neglect of the Byzantine Church so she is somewhat familiar with a Divine Liturgy.
 

Iconodule

Hoplitarches
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
16,486
Reaction score
20
Points
38
Age
39
Location
PA, USA
Faith
Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction
Patriarchate of Johnstown
The priest is wrong, of course, but he is from his standpoint just doing his job and standing by his convictions. I wouldn't expect a different response from a reasonably non-wishy-washy priest.

Some of the things you note at the OCA church you visited are not necessarily universal. Not all parishes are friendly and welcoming.

Kids yelling, crying, and running around is a regular (and happy) occurrence at the orthodox churches I've attended. It means the adults are bringing their kids to church and do not feel frowned upon, and the kids feel like church is a comfortable place. I think this is preferable to having a cry room.
 

ErmyCath

Elder
Joined
May 15, 2012
Messages
341
Reaction score
0
Points
16
Location
Missouri
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
USA
My wife remains Roman Catholic despite my conversion to Orthodoxy, and she shows no signs of coming around. She and my children (ages 3 years & 10 months) go to mass with the SSPX, and I go to the Divine Liturgy. For a time, I went with them and then to Orthodox liturgy, but I stopped doing that. My thought on it is that I am demonstrating to my children my conviction in the Orthodox faith with the hope that my dedication will influence them over time.

It is painful to be separated in this, but Christ told us that we have to leave all, including wife and family, to follow him.

The difficulty that I've experienced is precisely that it is much easier -- in a multitude of ways -- to be Roman Catholic. From the praxis to the family cohesion, it is a temptation to "go along to get along." But I'm not familiar with any saints who attained God with that mentality...

One thing that I have struggled with is that conversion from Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy probably should not have as its basis a dissatisfaction with Roman Catholicism. Instead, conversion should be rooted in the conviction that Orthodoxy is true: it is not only true relative to Roman Catholicism, but it is true in itself. There is, then, little need to compare the two. Perhaps holding that sort of idea in mind is a good way to approach conversations with a spouse (or a mechanism to recognize that such conversations are ultimately unproductive). It is the Holy Spirit who converts: we need to get out of the way.
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
I visited a Greek Orthodox Church before I went to the “my” OCA Church and thy were as equally welcoming and friendly.
I have thought about what Jesus said in leaving wife and family many times. I also tried going to both Churches with all of us being unsatisfied. The one Mass we could go was very Novus Ordo and none of us liked the priest, for one his homilies at times had subject matter that I felt was inappropriate for children.
My wife fears that I would be abandon our family for the Orthodox family I would join. She felt I would neglect our needs for the needs and time I would have to spend with the Orthodox Church. I know I would have to spend time helping with church needs but I don’t know to what extent.
I had spoken with another RC priest about my feelings about the Orthodox faith and for advice. While he said he couldn’t offer any advice other than saying to let the Holy Spirit help guide me.
Despite what the pastor who said it was a mortal sin what I was doing, I feel better following the Holy Spirit’s direction. I’ve had interest in the Orthodox Church for over 20 years but it has only been a few years that I feel it is the true faith.
 

DeniseDenise

Taxiarches
Joined
Apr 22, 2013
Messages
6,860
Reaction score
73
Points
48
Age
51
Faith
Does it matter?
Jurisdiction
Unverifiable, so irrelevant
I meant literally....

if it was an OCA mission church in the greater seattle area...and was an actual mission church...it was my parish...

and why are you worrying about having to help with church needs before you have even converted......?

People at parishes are just that..people...in all different stages of life, with different amounts of time to give....some just come to services and communion.....others have resources to donate their time.....

 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
No the OCA mission Church is further south in WA state not in Seattle.
I’m not particularly worried but my wife is.
 

krajisnik

Jr. Member
Joined
May 9, 2017
Messages
67
Reaction score
0
Points
6
Faith
Orthodox Christian
Paradosiakos said:
But I felt I was truly worshiping our God as opposed to when I would go to Mass. even the people at the OCA church were so welcoming as opposed to any RC Church where it was lukewarm at best.
It can be so that just your RC church is so strange, and at OCA people are just there as you described.

But in general, what I feel with the RC it is almost a galactic distance between me and worshipping, when in OC it is close to my heart. When I enter any RC church I feel like I'v entered a museum. You can gaze at some great arts, and you can play violin concert of Brahms. The sacred is frozen and not moving.

In the OC I feel the total metaphysics.
 

noahzarc1

High Elder
Site Supporter
Joined
Apr 22, 2018
Messages
768
Reaction score
83
Points
28
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Antioch
ErmyCath said:
One thing that I have struggled with is that conversion from Roman Catholicism to Orthodoxy probably should not have as its basis a dissatisfaction with Roman Catholicism. Instead, conversion should be rooted in the conviction that Orthodoxy is true: it is not only true relative to Roman Catholicism, but it is true in itself. There is, then, little need to compare the two. Perhaps holding that sort of idea in mind is a good way to approach conversations with a spouse (or a mechanism to recognize that such conversations are ultimately unproductive). It is the Holy Spirit who converts: we need to get out of the way.
My thoughts exactly after I found and studied Orthodoxy for a year. I realized it would not be correct to go into Orthodoxy with an anti-Catholic bias I still retained as a Protestant (I was raised Catholic and then went into Protestantism for 20 years.) I realized I needed to give Rome a fair hearing and eventually went home into Rome and thought I was home until the glory of Orthodoxy continued to shine on me and out of me and one day I realized, "Why should it not be so?"
 

SolEX01

Toumarches
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Messages
13,881
Reaction score
35
Points
48
Location
Central Maryland
Website
www.goarch.org
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey
Paradosiakos said:
I no longer argue with my wife about the differences in the two faiths. She knows the shortcomings of RC and even agrees with me from time to time but says she’ll never convert. She has never attended an Orthodox Divine Liturgy but has gone to a few Byzantine ones. She was ok with Byzantines but was discouraged by the state of neglect of the Byzantine Church so she is somewhat familiar with a Divine Liturgy.
Welcome to the forum.  :)

Help me understand what is a Byzantine Church (are you referring to Byzantine/Greek Catholics)?  Are you referring to Greek Orthodoxy as Byzantine Orthodoxy?  How do you differentiate between Orthodox Divine Liturgy and Byzantine Divine Liturgy?

Thanks in advance.
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
The Byzantine Churches I have attended are in communion with the Pope. The celebrate the Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom. I have heard them being also called the Ruthenian Church and Ukrainian Catholics. I as a RC can receive communion there. The liturgy is nearly identical to what I heard at the OCA including some use of Old Church Slavonic. The big difference are the repeated mentions of the Pope, far more than I would hear at a Mass.
 

SolEX01

Toumarches
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Messages
13,881
Reaction score
35
Points
48
Location
Central Maryland
Website
www.goarch.org
Faith
Orthodox
Jurisdiction
Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey
Paradosiakos said:
My wife fears that I would be abandon our family for the Orthodox family I would join. She felt I would neglect our needs for the needs and time I would have to spend with the Orthodox Church. I know I would have to spend time helping with church needs but I don’t know to what extent.
A long time ago, I took my ex-wife to a couple of Orthodox Divine Liturgies (including an ordination).  While I'm not familiar with my ex-wife's current religious status, I think she liked the service even though she was suspicious of a couple of elderly women in the beginning.

Your church can't force you to do something that you don't want to do.  Your family comes first.  Reassure your wife that you won't abandon your family and their needs for the church's.
 

Lepanto

High Elder
Joined
Jan 2, 2017
Messages
677
Reaction score
13
Points
18
Location
Germany
Faith
Roman Catholic
Jurisdiction
Archdiocese of Munich and Freising
ErmyCath said:
My wife remains Roman Catholic despite my conversion to Orthodoxy, and she shows no signs of coming around. She and my children (ages 3 years & 10 months) go to mass with the SSPX, and I go to the Divine Liturgy. For a time, I went with them and then to Orthodox liturgy, but I stopped doing that.
My situation is almost identical, with roles reversed, also two little ones.
For a while, we attended Orthodox liturgies together, which felt great, praising God as a family.
But I stopped doing that, though I cannot say anything negative about the Orthodox parish or priest.
Now, we go separate ways on Sundays.
We are both not exactly happy about it, but what should one do? Pretending unity where there is none?
As for the OP: The only thing I can say is one needs patience. A lot of patience.
 

Tzimis

Taxiarches
Site Supporter
Joined
May 24, 2006
Messages
5,559
Reaction score
260
Points
83
Location
wilderness
Faith
Greek Orthodox
Jurisdiction
EP
Maybe you can attend vespers on Saturday at the OC and attend the RCC with your family on Sundays until you decide when to start WWIII with your wife. Over time she may have a change of heart.
 

Paradosiakos

Prefers the Orthodox faith
Joined
Jan 2, 2019
Messages
80
Reaction score
32
Points
18
Location
Southwest Washington
Faith
Prefers the Orthodox faith.
Jurisdiction
NW
I think I’m going to discuss my desires with my wife to return to the OCA Church I had attended last year. I know it’s a burden for them to wake at 5:00 am so we can all go together to the RC Church that I can still tolerate going to. They don’t seem to care if they go to a more “modern” rite RC Church but I refuse. I’m just too traditional for that kind of thing which is what lead me to learning more about Orthodoxy. I see very little tradition in the RC anywhere except in the one I now attend but even the 7:00 AM Mass is in a very Ordinary form.
 
Top