From Disillusion To Deliverance (KJV)
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- Format: Folded Tract
- Paper: Gloss Text
- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 8
- Version: KJV
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My religious background was Roman Catholic—I would even say that my family was devout. My brother was an altar boy and my mother hosted the “block” rosary that was so popular in the 1950’s. My parents and I attended the “Sorrowful Mother Novena” at the parish church almost every Friday evening. My mother and I made capes for the statue of the Infant of Prague, always asking for a favor in return. We went to Sunday mass faithfully unless we were ill. My first husband’s cousin was a religious brother in the “Precious Blood Seminary.
“And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins” (Hebrews 10:11).
I was baptized as a baby and was confirmed when I was in the fourth grade. Of course, I don’t remember the baptism, but I have some recollection of confirmation. All the girls wore white, silky hats with a red tassel. We had booklets to study which were covered with green paper. We were instructed to keep these booklets clean—the nuns were very strict! I kept this booklet until I was in my twenties,
I attended the Catholic school grades 2-12. I was a Catholic who lived by their rules. I respected what they taught and never questioned the teachings or practices of the Church. I truly believed that Baptism saved! I can say that for the first 40-50 of my life that I didn’t doubt; I believed and practiced Roman Catholicism.
“For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect” (1 Cor. 1:17).
I did not question the character or authority of the nuns or priests for many years. To me they were to be revered. I thought they were “supertype,” or special human beings. I was big on praying to the saints for favors; i.e. St. Anne, St. Anthony of Padua and St. Jude.
“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).
The sacraments and the practicing of them were very important to me. I was very big on tradition and tried to follow everything and do everything just right. After I married and had children, they received Baptism, First Communion and Confirmation and there was always a party celebration associated with the event.
I can’t say that I didn’t believe in the mass, but it was difficult for me to get “into it.” I only remember once when I was in High School that I felt uplifted after attending mass. I never could get into the swing of saying the rosary. To me it was always boring.
I did not begin to question the Catholic teaching and authority until after my first husband’s death. But the period before his death (he was gravely ill for one year) probably paved the way. Where were my parish friends, where were the priests when I needed them FOR SUPPORT? (Even a casserole for supper would have been welcome from any parish member—but it never happened.) They seemed cold and uncaring.
Shortly after my husband’s death, I stopped by the parish house to arrange for some masses to be read for my first husband. The priest greeted me in a macho way with his jogging/exercise suit and asked me if “everything was back to normal.” My husband had died, leaving me to care for 12, 15 and 17 year olds. This remark from the priest angered me. After my husband’s death, there was no concern shown either from the parish priests or parish members. During my grieving, I began to question more and more. Once I attended a “Grief Weekend” and the priest told me to shop around until I got the answers I wanted. He compared it to shopping for a lawyer or doctor.
I started mass hopping to other parish churches in the area, hoping for some relief from the bitterness and grief that I felt. At times, it helped a little. I definitely was not being fed. I finally reached a point that left me sort of numb, not sure what I believed anymore. I started thinking about attending a Protestant church, but really didn’t know where to go. All this time, I became more and more disillusioned.
I truly didn’t know that you could be sure about Heaven. I had never heard the Gospel until the fall of 1987 (three years after my husband’s death). I had been Roman Catholic for 51 years. Could salvation really be that simple? JESUS DID IT ALL! No works, no church, no “hoping and praying” to be saved was necessary.
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away” (Isaiah 64:6).
The response was gradual. I had a lot of catching up to do! I knew very little of the Bible and almost never read it. (It had been just something to look nice on the coffee table.) It was no great emotional experience as it is for some, but in September 1987, the man who would become my second husband walked me through the plan of salvation and I was saved.
I never went back to mass and communion after this time. As I said, it was gradual for me, so it was not until Sunday, June 26, 1988 that I went forward to make a public profession of faith in Christ at the Sandusky Baptist Temple, Sandusky, Ohio.
“But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God” (Heb. 10:12).
I guess boldness comes gradual for me, too, as I still pray for this often. As a result, I have not shouted my salvation to family, friends, or former priest.
On January 15, 1988, I married my present husband in the Sandusky Baptist Temple. This, in itself, tells of some of my change of heart. I have been scripturally baptized. On Sunday morning, July 3, 1988, Pastor Roger Green baptized me at the Sandusky Baptist Temple. My children were not surprised at my leaving the Catholic Church as they went to the Catholic school and felt grieving, too, with no support from nuns, priests, or teachers. When two of my children challenged and questioned the priest and nun in religion class, they were promptly “shut-up.”
It was not really hard for me to give up Roman Catholicism, as I had nothing to hold on to in the first place. The truth is not there. I am still a baby in the Lord, but as the years go by I seem to come to a little more understanding every day. Praise God!
Major changes in my life, including attitudes and actions, have been gradual. I have come to know the devil will really beat at my door and never stop.
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
Since my accepting salvation, I have had serious illnesses in my immediate family, my own bout with cancer and serious traumatic problems with my children. I don’t enjoy some of the things I used to consider “entertainment,” and I thank the Holy Spirit for this.
I feel that God is using me now to help my husband in the tract ministry, especially at fairs and to Roman Catholics. As far as goals, I am waiting on the Lord to see where He leads me regarding serving Him. My husband and I leave tracts everywhere we can. We also send them with correspondence.
My husband and I have started the R.O.T.C. Ministry (Reach Out to Roman Catholics). Thank you for taking the time to read my testimony. Sincerely, Barbara G. Nutter
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