The Examination of Conscience: Anticatholic Guilt

I have been Catholic for several years now, and I’ve begun to have some guilt. This isn’t the ordinary “catholic guilt” that is highly reputed throughout popular culture.  I have anticatholic guilt.

You see, I’m a convert to Catholicism from Protestantism, but a form of Protestantism that is full of anticatholic sentiment.  You know, the kind of protestant that doubts many Catholics are saved; the kind of protestant that thinks that if any Catholics are saved it is only by being unfaithful to Catholic teaching.  So as a faithful anticatholic, I contributed my fair share to Catholics leaving the church for protestantism.

Here is an example of the behavior I engaged in.  I was in a band for much of my college life.  One of my band mates was a fallen away catholic and, around easter one year, he began expressing desire to go back to the Catholic Church during the Easter season.  I inquired as to why, hoping to lead him in a Socratic way away from this decision that I thought worse than attending no church service.  He said that he just thought he would really like to engage in the sacrament of reconciliation.  I said something dismissive, again trying to manipulate.  He then seemingly dismissed the issue.  I don’t know if my friend has ever come back to the Catholic Church.

There are a number of cases like this where I subtly tried to influence people away from a religion that I ultimately didn’t understand.

This all results in what I call anticatholic guilt.  I’m deeply troubled by the prejudicial and irrational behavior of my youth in this regard.  I have discussed this in confession, but I can’t shake the feeling that there is some deep trouble in the world for which I cannot  make reparation.  That is, I’m not sure there’s any way for me to make this up to the people I’ve wronged in this way, and this deeply troubles me.

Tune in every Monday, Wednesday and Friday for more.

Peace be with you.
-JS

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8 thoughts on “The Examination of Conscience: Anticatholic Guilt

  1. If you have confessed in the confessional my friend to “in persona Christi.” You must accept Christ’s forgiveness.

    God forgives everything if one asks with a contrite heart, for if God did not, the world would cease to exist.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the comment. And I’ve thought about this and I think I did in my initial confession on entering the church. And I’m not sure what this particular blogpost is, but you might be right that on some level I haven’t really fully internalized Christ’s forgiveness for this. But even being forgiven this is the sort of thing where, forgiven or nor, there’s less good in the world because of my young actions. I feel like that is something worth mourning.
      But I’m not sure about any of this really. This is just something that has been on my mind that I thought worth expressing.
      But you’re right to point out that we shouldn’t dwell on forgiven sin.

      What are your thoughts here?

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    2. Those so called catholic priests, are NOT ‘ in persona christi ‘…they are instruments of the devil and satan, a are the rest of the dogmas of rome, and the Whore of Babylon as depicted in Revelation 17 KJV.

      You need to repent and leave that false religion, that deceives so many millions with their lies !!

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  2. You need to repent of being a part of that catholic, whore of Babylon..
    I think that perhaps, you were just a cultural Protestant, not having really been converted, filled with The Holy Spirit.

    Why should you feel guilty about encouraging/persuading deceived catholics, to become Christian, and to leave that demonic Cult. ???
    The confessional is no use to you either.
    Those catholic so called priests are NOT ‘in persona christi’ at all.

    The catholic so called priest, cannot possibly be christ in person..
    After all, is it not true that a great deal of catholic so called priests are actually pedophile’s, and the reason the vatican do not have them prosecuted, is because they actually think t at those so called priests, are christ in person.

    That is one of the reasons why they keep shuffling these disgusting people around.
    Friend, for the sake of your own salvation, and right standing with God, leave that awful depraved cult..

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    1. I understand that it would be rather convenient both theologically and psychologically to be able to dismiss me as never having been a true converted protestant, and I’ve used the same mental trick in the past back when I was a protestant. But the problem is that it’s just not true, and it’s not true of many converts to catholicism from protestantism. But if you’d like to understand some of the reasons I think Catholicism is right, I’ve contributed a brief chapter to a book called Evangelical Exodus, if you’d like to take a look.

      I must caution you that my chapter concentrates on veneration of the saints, which may deeply provoke you. But the whole book is full of interesting conversion stories.

      Any, in an upcoming blogpost I will take on the issue of what exactly “in persona christi” means, and perhaps we can speak more about it there.

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  3. We are not saintly perfect in this life, but we will be if we are in heaven [after this life]. Except for a few, a stint in purgatory will be necessary.

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