Journeys Home by Marcus Grodi and a "host of others" is a very inspirational book that details the religious experiences of converts who accepted the Catholic Church and her teachings as the one true Church. Having "come home" myself as a lay person through my baptism in April of 2004, the many experiences as detailed in this book resonated quite piercingly, and I found it to be of immeasurable comfort, for there is often an array of painful struugles that converts go through, especially in respects to family opinions. And perhaps in light of the clergy sex scandal cover-up and other reprehensible happenings that rocked Massachusetts not too far back, the proverbial, "You're converting to Catholicism! What a mistake!" comment would be somewhat understandable. And those comments could get far far worse. However, Journeys Home offers wonderful written testamonials by many stimulating converts. And though their stories are different, they are individually moving in their sincerity and profoundness and are interlaced by one common denominator: the love of Jesus Christ.
Profiled in this book is a vast array of individuals who crossed the "Tiber" from the Jewish, Muslim, Mormon, Episcopal, et cetera, faith. In their witness, they write about their upbringings and the imbued misconceptions that they held regarding the Catholic faith, about our Blessed Mother Mary, the rosary, confession and especially the Holy Eucharist. Each recounted experience deals with what is the most accurate scriptural interpretation, as well as the incorrect evangelical belief of sola Scriptura and sola fide, that Scripture and faith alone will save you. Yet, it is not exclusively limited to academic or theological interpretation, but for me, I found that to be one of the best parts of all these testimonials, because it gave a constant affirmation of what the Bible teaches and what the early Chrurch Fathers advocated, long before any of the other religious denominations (you name them) ever came into existence and which later splintered and splintered and splintered. And I believe the splintering is still going on. With the logical and intellectual, there are also ample examples of the gift of Grace which are movingly recounted.
For anyone who is seriously drawn to the Catholic faith but just can't make the leap, it can indeed be most unsettling, especially when you fear the loss of all that which is familiar, but the articualte and intelligent proofs as contained in Journeys Home illustrate the various trials that these converts went though, and they go through the gamut of loss of friends, jobs, self-doubt, to a vast array of issues. But they trugged on, as Jesus Christ did, and ultimately persevered, and that makes each individual witness have a somewhat overly "happy" ending. That may sound zealous and euphoric or too sentimental, but when you go through the cultural, political, sociological and even spiritual mud that life has to offer, you are indeed grateful to God, the Father, for cohesiveness, consistency, history, stability, tradition and roots. And the Catholic Church, though its millions of members are flawed in every conceivable way imaginable, it is that one special gift for all of us.