I don't have a TV and have rarely seen anything on EWTN, but someone called to my attention the "Journey Home" interview on YouTube of Former Episcopal clergyman, Taylor Marshall, which I found notable for one reason. The interview touches on a number of interesting issues, including the role of Our Lady in the story of our salvation; but the key issue, for me, is what Dr. Marshall says about the challenges involved in learning how to think and live as a Catholic.
This is something I have become particularly sensitized to by looking back over my shoulder over the past two decades since I was received into the Church. Old habits of being, thinking, and acting die hard; and this is as true of the former Protestant habits of those of us who are converts as anyone else.
To become Catholic is a process of growing into new habits of being, thinking, and behaving that mean -- in a much fuller sense that even we as Catholics can imagine -- "putting on Christ," taking on the new nature that grace engenders within us, new habits that will hopefully lead us and our families and loved ones to Heaven. And this simply doesn't happen overnight. One doesn't become a Catholic by signing a membership card.
Looking backwards over my shoulder, I can see so many ways in which, even after having been received into the Church, I had not yet "become Catholic." Some of you have pointed out how true this is of many individuals who assume the mantle of speaking for the Church who are former converts, whose Catholicism is still very "Protestantized" by old habits that have not yet died out. In some respects, one could argue that many Catholics are not yet sufficiently Catholic, that even various ministries of EWTN have a certain Protestant patina evidenced in habits of speech and interaction and language of prayer.
Nevertheless, I find this interview pointing powerfully in what I would consider the right direction. There are all sorts of gifts that former Protestant converts to Catholicism bring with them into the Church. In other words, converts can have genuine gifts of insight and discernment that one would not wish them to leave behind in becoming Catholics. Yet there are also ways, deep ways, in which all of us -- former Protestants and "cradle Catholics" alike -- can profit in our pilgrimage through life and hope of Heaven by learning to think, live, and act as true Catholics.