From evangelical minister to Catholic seminarian

Posted by Dan Grippo
Tuesday 23, February 2010 | Category:   Vocation and Discernment,Clergy

Here's a story you don't come across every day: An evangelical minister converts to Catholicism and enters the seminary. But that is Gregg Bronsema's story, according to a story by

Born in Chicago, Bronsema and his family belonged to the Christian Reformed Church before becoming Baptist and moving to Oregon. Years later, Bronsema became an evangelical minister.

Photo by Gerry Lewin for Catholic Sentinel (Portland)
It turns out that his spiritual journey was not finished. "It was a little difficult, I'd have to say," Bronsema, 53, said of his decision to convert to Catholicism and enter the seminary. He is studying at Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon.

It was the "last thing in the world" he imagined himself doing. "I didn't exactly come running to the Catholic Church," wrote Bronsema in an open letter to the Oregon parish he has been affiliated with since converting. "I had a lot of stereotypes and misconceptions about the church that had to be broken down. But I have found the strength of the sacraments of the church and what a difference it makes in life."

How did it happen? While working at a Portland Christian bookstore, Bronsema began reading about the Catholic Church. Bolstered by his reading, Bronsema got up the courage to walk into St. Joseph the Worker church in Portland, where he got to know the pastoral staff and members of the parish. Gradually he came to realize this was his spiritual home and he entered the RCIA program.

Bronsema's journey of converting from evangelical Christianity to Catholicism has also been detailed in the Catholic Sentinel (Portland).

How about you? Did you, or someone you know, convert to Catholicism? How would you describe the faith of converts you have met? Are you familiar with the RCIA program?

Reprinted with permission from ©TrueQuest Communications.




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