Membership in Catholic parishes

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    What is the membership process in your parish?

    For mine it’s pretty simple – if you want to be a member of the parish you come to the office and sign up.

    I want to contrast this with some Protestant churches where they actually have the potential new member sit down in an “interview” with the pastor and then is voted in by the congregation. From what I am told in these churches the pastor just wants to make sure that the person’s salvation is in order. What do you think of that?


    In the Catholic churches I have been a member in (several due to moving in the past 10 years) you can call the office or set up a time to come in and meet with the secretary or Priest ( because I’m from a smaller community I was easily able to meet our priest, maybe in large cities that is more difficult?) anyways, they just had me sign like my name, home address, phone number, any interests I might have like joining choir, teaching youth groups, reader, server, usher, and then they ask you if you’ll take a turn on the funeral committee, um, they also wanted to know the ages of my kids, when they were baptised, where was I baptised, my origianl home church, they gave me a welcome pamplet that told about some programs our church has and groups, info. on the gradeschool, Religous Education times, numbers to call if you are having troulbe meeting people, oh, you name it they were just really awesome and that was it for me, here where I live now, I was followed up with a call several weeks later by a member and asked if I was doing ok and meeting people at church and feel welcomed, etc. I thought that was really nice to know they cared and wanted to know I felt welcomed, I don’t know if enough of that is done and for some people that is so important.
    Hope this help Jon <img decoding=” title=”Very Happy” />


    I just think it is weird that some non-Catholic churches have the congregation [i:3uz6lu4t]vote[/i:3uz6lu4t] if the new person can be a member. Sounds pretty unbiblical to me.

    That’s pretty cool that someone calls you to make sure you are ok. I like that idea.


    Jon, sorry it has taken me so long to post back I’ve been dealing with one sick child after another and then when you think its all over it starts again, ugh.
    Anyways, the church that I go to now has the policy like a welcome wagon, you have certain parish members who have vounteered to be the ones who call and see how your doing since joining, have any questions or concerns etc. This is the first parish that has done that, as I’ve been a member to several parishes as we moved around quite a bit with college etc. in our early marriage and I never heard anything and had a really hard time getting to know anyone and I felt very overwhelmed so this was so cool when I got this call about 2 weeks after letting the parish know I was new and would like to be a member at this church, I got a very lovely call, asking how me and my family were doing, did we feel the church was doing all it could to help us know what kind of things it offered etc. and of course I was given lots of ideas on how to get to know people better what groups there were for couples my age and kids my kids age and wow, that was nice, I really think all churches should have something like that, those bigger parishes is exactly where someone can easily be over looked and that is when another religion can present itself, as I know I have some aunts who left the Catholic faith for some pretty different religions because they were lured away by all the “friendly people” and they were not feeling like they were even known at their Catholic church, so in my opinion if we are to keep people Catholic we have to reach out to them and some people are alot more touchy than others and they really need to be reached out to, I’ve seen some of that, just my opinion. :mrgreen:


    Okay, in most Baptist congregations, you have to go down front during the service and talk to the minister. If there are many respondents, you have to keep singing the last verse of the closing hymn over and over. It’s how come I know “Just as I am” by heart…

    In the old Baptist church of my youth, after satisfying himself that you have indeed had a conversion experience of some sort, the minister would introduce you to the congregation and say something to the effect of, “All those in favor of accepting _____ by virtue of her statement of faith, please let it be known by the uplifted hand.” After this, he would say, “All those opposed? And of course, there are none.” Then he’d turn and shake your hand and tell you how glad we all were and ask you to stay at the front of the church so the congregation could welcome you.

    You have to be awfully sure your slip isn’t showing or your fly partially open to join the Baptist church, I’ll tell you. There are people that postpone their joining for weeks based on the fact that they’re waiting for one more paycheck so they can buy a nicer suit…

    The presbyterians (the frozen chosen, as we like to call ourselves) require that you meet the Elders in Session before church. After asking you if you believe the entire INSTITUTES OF CHRISTIAN RELIGION, the Bible, and most of what Barth wrote, you lie and say, “Sure,” although you’ve never heard of Barth and are awfully confused until you figure out that the H isn’t pronounced and the question had nothing to do with the Simpsons television show. The Session accepts new members, then recommends them to the congregation. No one votes, per se, but we agree to support them in their Christian walk by saying “I will” at the correct place. They want you to meet people after church, too, but most people leave so they can beat the Baptists to the Applebee’s.

    At the PDI church (they have since changed their name, so now I call it The Church Formerly Known As) I attended briefly, you have to attend a doctine seminar of several week’s duration, during which you find out that we’re all predestined to hell or heaven and there isn’t much you can do about it (they’re hyper Calvinist). After this, you’re presented in a group to the church, and you have to give a reason for being so happy about joining and everything, and how much the Cell Group you’re in means to you. They changed the term, Cell Group, after September 11th, to “care group,” for obvious reasons. Most of the women who speak cry during it, and all the men get embarrassed and try not to look it.

    At the Episopal church I attended briefly because my new wife visited my PDI church one time and said she wasn’t going to any “shake your patootie” church, what you do is go to introduction to the Episcopal faith classes during Sunday school hour, where you find out that you really don’t mean any of it, but we say the Creed, etc., because that is what Episcopalians do. Then you end up in the rector’s office after you ask, somewhat incredulously, “Where do you stop, then? Can I not believe in giving money?” Then you start attending a Presbyterian church.

    Happy Easter, one and all.


    [quote:ucz4hgs1]the frozen chosen[/quote:ucz4hgs1]
    What does that mean?


    Chosen — Calvin taught that we are predestined to Salvation. Our will has nothing to do with it. If you’re Christian, it is God’s will, if you’re not, it isn’t His will. In essence, there is only one will in the universe. It is why Reformed churches are so unpopular, because it is pretty fatalistic. “Frozen,” because it is hard to get the average Presbyterian to do anything in the church. I’m a deacon — I know.

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