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Robert Hammering wrote:

Hi, guys —

I have been a convert to the Catholic Church for nearly five years now. I have:

  • read books and tracts
  • talked to Catholic apologists
  • prayed
  • been to multiple priests, and
  • have researched in depth the Marian doctrines.

I still am not convinced of what the Church teaches about her. I love her, respect her, and view her as the most respected and honored creature God ever created, but as for her Immaculate Conception, Assumption, etc; I just can't consciously accept it. I know Cardinal Newman said,

"A thousand difficulties do not equal one doubt."

but I do doubt; it is no longer a difficulty.

  • So with this said, what do I do?

I know you can tell me:

  • to continue to pray
  • ask God, or Mary herself, to reveal herself better to me
  • etc.

Been there and done that. I truly cannot accept these doctrines in good conscience.

  • Do you have any suggestions?


  { After being Catholic for five years, I am still struggling to accept Marian teachings; any advice? }

Mary Ann replied:


I would suggest that you ask Jesus to teach you about His mother. He would be only too happy to do so.

Do realize that the Assumption simply means that she shares in the Resurrection of Christ's body, as we all will, but she shares in it now, because His body was made from hers!

As for the Immaculate Conception, we know that Scripture teaches that nothing sinful can be part of God. Since Christ took His human body from Mary, so she herself was purified by God from the first moment of her conception. You were purified from the day of your baptism. John the Baptist was purified in the womb. Mary was purified by God from the beginning. That's all it means.

Mary Ann

Robert replied:

Hello Mary,

You said:
I would suggest that you ask Jesus to teach you about His mother. He would be only too happy to do so.

I have done this for five years, and feel further away than ever.

  • If I cannot accept Marian teachings do I leave the Church?

I'm always open to understand it better, but I just don't believe in these Marian teachings 100%. To me, over time, human traditions have layered themselves on teachings.


Mary Ann replied:

Robert —

  • Can you accept the explanations I gave?

If not, then it may be:

  • that you still believe that everything must be explicitly spelled out in the Scriptures, or
  • there may be some human issue that is causing static or
  • it may be that you misunderstand faith.

Acceptance in faith does not mean:

  • to comprehend
  • to understand, or
  • even feel that we can intellectually assent to something.

It is an act of the will. "I believe, help my unbelief." It is a choice made in trust of the true and good God. The intellect only, points to or, apprehends the truth to be chosen; a truth we don't see as true, but welcome as given to us by God, so therefore it must be true.

If you believe in the Catholic Church, you know She is founded by Christ and is guided by the
Holy Spirit, who guided the Apostles, after the Resurrection, "into all truth." We don't believe revelation because we find it credible, though it is. We believe it, because God says it.

Mary Ann

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