A reader struggles with a failure

He writes:

I really feel bad and ashamed of myself tonight.

What happened is when I got home tonight from work the first thing I did was to get a load of clothes going in the wash after that I started to prepare dinner thinking to myself that I have some important mail coming. As I said, I was working on preparing dinner when there was a tap on the door. My first thought was maybe that’s my neighbor bringing me my mail.

When I opened the door there were two people standing there one male and one female. Both in there early twenties. The female said something to me which I didn’t at first hear. I asked her to repeat herself and she said that they were collecting signatures for some sort of Pro-Choice legislation (Yes, I live in Washington State too).

(Which also means be on the lookout for these people and of course there’s going to be another piece of immoral legislation to vote upon as if majority rule makes everything ok.)

Not being prepared for something like this I simply said, “No not me, no way” they quickly turned around to leave and I shut the door.

I got back in the kitchen and I thought to myself what am I doing? Why don’t I confront them?

I even have several copies of the DVD Blood Money to give out.

Honestly, I’m not sure what I would have said or how I would have approached them. On top of that, it was so unexpected and out of the ordinary that I really didn’t know what to do.

I wasn’t in the Kitchen for more then five minutes when I went outside to look for them and they were no where in sight.

Of course, answering the door with a butchers knife in my hand probably wasn’t the smartest thing to do either. (Yes, I really did answer the door with a butchers knife in my hand.)

Right after this I apologized to the Lord for not being more prepared.

I had a chance to speak with someone about life and I blew it.

Please pray for me and for them.

God Bless.

Depressed in Lakewood

I’ll pray for you, but please don’t be too hard on yourself. God is delighted that you care enough about your faith to want to share it. You’ve said you were sorry. Receive the Mercy, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep walking toward the next time you have an opportunity to share your Faith. You’ll do better because your heart is obviously open to God!

Father, bless your beloved son’s work in the Vineyard through our Lord Jesus Christ! Mother Mary, pray for him and for the people who came to his door that their hearts be touched by the Holy Spirit and converted to Truth and Life through Jesus Christ!

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  • Your reader did the correct thing. In my experience, militant pro-choicers, when confronted, become violent.

    • sez

      Think of it this way: The Lord sends two souls to you door, giving you an opportunity to help them turn toward Him.

      If you simply say “the Church teaches that that is immoral” and silently pray for them, you will have, at least, stood up for Christ. That isn’t really confrontational, and they aren’t going to get violent in that setting, especially if you are calm and brief. It’s even better if you can say something more thought-provoking – so ask the Holy Spirit to help you! – but saying nothing doesn’t help anyone.

      The immediate goal is not to convert them (that’s the Holy Spirit’s job), but to plant a seed. Give them something God can work with. But saying nothing is ducking a responsibility, in my opinion.

  • Not everyone is called to debate someone like this. It takes certain skills and talents to assess the audience and context, marshal arguments, present them clearly and logically, and understand and address counterarguments, all the while remaining calm and civil. Don’t feel bad for not being great at this, or for just being caught off-guard.

  • neoconned

    I did something similar in an RCIA class once. I was a new RCIA instructor at the time, shadowing the more experienced instructors and the DRE. At the very end of one meeting, one of the candidates came out of nowhere with her disapproval of the Church’s teaching on abortion. Some of the older women went kind of ballistic and the temperature of the room started to rise. As it was late and the arguments were becoming emotional rather than reasonable, I interjected something like. “You know, I don’t think there’s a bottom to this right now”. The DRE concurred, gave a really bad answer like “Some bishops agree that in cases of rape and incest, abortion is ok” , we said the closing prayer and dismissed. I went to confession about it, but I still kick myself on a regular basis for dropping the ball. I chickened out because I was not confident in my ability to give the DEFINITIVE ANSWER that would change this person’s mind and put the DRE right. Moral is, don’t be too hard on yourself. Keep trying. The enemy wants you to think you’re a failure so that you’ll keep your mouth shut in the future. Don’t give up!