The Official Newspaper of the Diocese of Little Rock

Why I am becoming Catholic: faithful share their stories

Published: April 9, 2020   

Why I am becoming Catholic


“Catherine and I were both raised Protestant. As a matter of fact, Catherine’s father is a retired nondenominational pastor. Both Catherine and I fell away from the faith during college. But a few years ago, after our marriage, we decided to recommit to our faith and make it more important in our lives. Upon honestly examining Church history and different theological perspectives, we determined the Catholic Church is undeniably what it claims to be: the one, true and apostolic Church. As new parents, we are eager to enter into full communion with the Church and are overjoyed to have found this community at St. Vincent de Paul.”

Jared Smart, candidate
St. Vincent de Paul, Rogers


“It started out as a need for a Christ-centered culture in our family and Michael, my husband, saw this need. He had been through RCIA as a senior in high school, and he suggested we bring this culture into our home through the Catholic Church. As I started through RCIA, though, I started realizing just how important it is that the ‘church service’ be centered around Holy Communion. It feels like the completion and fullness of our faith in Christ.”

Bethany Correa, candidate
St. Vincent de Paul, Rogers


“I really like how close-knit the (Catholic) community is. I really didn’t get that sense of community growing up in the Baptist church. I saw how close (my fiancé Anna Berkemeyer’s) family is. My family was not that close growing up, and I think it’s very important to bring everyone together. She recently had a death in the family — her grandfather passed away — and just seeing how everyone came together it was just very emotional. I want that closeness for me and my family down the road.”

Parker Marshall, candidate
Our Lady of Fatima Church, Benton


“My husband (Travis) and I had both been raised in several different religious traditions as children. I came to Christ through Young Life and was baptized in Conway Chapel. After we got married in 2016, we discussed trying to find a church to attend together. Travis’ grandmother was Catholic, and, while he was growing up in Chicago, provided him with a strong example of faith. Travis was attracted to the structure and ritual of Catholicism. I had traveled quite a bit as a young adult and admired the beauty and history of the Church in different parts of the world … Our son Sam, who is 8 months old, will be baptized as well, and we are excited about celebrating with our family and friends.”

Melissa Roth, candidate
Sacred Heart of Mary Church, Barling


“We always joked and told everybody I was ‘Cathodist’ (Catholic and Methodist). About two years ago, I started really feeling led to the Catholic Church. We went to Italy last October with a group of people, and we spent about a week at the Vatican. I was overwhelmed and mesmerized by the whole thing. Through that and a lot of prayer, I felt like I was called to join the Catholic Church. I like the traditional services of Mass. I go up every Sunday and get blessed. I want to be a part of the Eucharist and Communion and just really felt drawn and led to convert. I’ve been very, very excited about it.

Lynn Dickey, candidate
Christ the King Church, Little Rock


“I grew up in the Episcopal Church, but my father’s side of the family had a strong Catholic background. When my 8-year-old son Parker was of school age I decided I wanted him to have a Catholic education and he started attending Christ the King School. After going through some life-changing events I knew it was the right time for both of us to become part of the Church … It made us more mindful of our daily decisions. Praying at night has been such an enriching experience for us both. Our first Lenten season has been especially sweet as we slowed down, focused on what really matters, and saw how fortunate we are.”

Kristen Woods, candidate
Christ the King Church, Fort Smith

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