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Dear Catholic.com visitor: Summer is here, and you may be thinking about a well-deserved vacation, family get-togethers, BBQs with neighborhood friends. More than likely, making a donation to Catholic Answers is not on your radar right now. But this is exactly the time we most need your help. The “summer slowdown” in donations is upon us, but the work of spreading the gospel and explaining and defending the Faith never takes a break. Your gift today will change lives and save souls for Christ this summer! The reward is eternal. Thank you and God bless.

I don’t want to be Catholic anymore: I want to be not Catholic. What can I do?

Question:

I don’t want to be Catholic anymore: I want to be not Catholic. What can I do?

Answer:

The fact that you ask this question reveals your recognition of Church authority. Otherwise, why even ask the question? I find this reassuring because no one who recognizes the Church’s authority, and really understands it, would ever want to be “not Catholic.”

I suspect that you question some Church teaching, discipline, or canon law. You want to trust your own authority over that of the Church’s. But seen in its proper perspective, the Church’s authority is comforting because Jesus endowed the Church with its powers so that we might achieve salvation. The Vatican II document Lumen Gentium explains,

For the nurturing and constant growth of the People of God, Christ the Lord instituted in his Church a variety of ministries, which work for the good of the whole body. For those ministers, who are endowed with sacred power, serve their brethren, so that all who are of the people of God, and therefore enjoy a true Christian dignity, working toward a common goal freely and in an orderly way, may arrive at salvation. (LG 18)

I suggest that you seriously look into what it is you are questioning, find out what it really means, why it exists, and ultimately, why you’re better off because it.

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