Do you have non-Catholic, or even anti-Catholic, family members? If so, you’re undoubtedly anxious to bring them into the true faith. They’re your flesh and blood and you probably love them more than anyone else. Knowing that the Church is necessary for salvation, you desperately want them to spend eternity with Jesus in heaven.
It’s hard to keep a cool head when discussing a topic you love with the people you love who may not share your faith. Often, emotions spiral out of control and feelings are hurt.
Here are some tips for discussing your Catholic faith with non-believers in a way that — God willing — opens their hearts to His truth and love.
1. Avoid overly philosophical debates.
You may think you’ve mastered all the arguments for the faith and want to test your intellectual prowess on non-Catholics.
This maneuver often backfires. Family relationships are complicated, which colors attempts to engage in purely rational discussions. Your closest family members likely know all your faults and which buttons to push.
Unless you have an intellectual family member who loves to debate, avoid these types of discussions.
2. Share how Christ and the Church have transformed your life.
This is a great springboard to discuss your Catholic faith. Maybe you used to be anxious and now experience more peace through prayer and the Eucharist. Or perhaps you once lived a wayward life, went to Confession, and now feel the joy of being unburdened by previous sins.
Likely, you’ll touch upon wounds in other family members. Hearing your experience of the healing power of Christ may motivate them to seek the same for themselves.
3. Be patient.
God calls you to plant the seeds of the faith in others. He’s the one who waters them and causes them to bloom.
Don’t expect any overnight conversions. Once you’ve shared the Good News with family members, your next task is to pray and make sacrifices for them.
Trust in God to do the rest according to His will.