To ‘fallen away’ Catholics:
If you were baptized a Catholic, raised in the Faith and have left the Church know that there are many of us, who have remained true to the Faith, are praying daily for your conversion back into the Faith.
Know that this life is a test to see if your soul is worthy of heaven for all of eternity.
Understand that God does not want you to lose your soul.
To pass the test you must align your will with God’s will.
This is done by obeying His commandments, by praying daily, by participating in the Sacraments (which He instituted to help you grow in holiness) and to do the best you can, at all times, at whatever ‘station in life’ you find ourself.
But, God does not interfere with a person’s free will.
We love you.
But most importantly God loves you.
Return His love by praying the following two prayers.
With tearful eyes and contrite heart pray:
“Lord, I confess that up till now I have not lived as a Christian.
I am not worthy to be numbered among Your elect.
I recognize that I deserve to be damned; but Your mercy is great and, full of confidence in Your grace, I say to You that I want to save my soul, even if I have to sacrifice my fortune, my honor, my very life, as long as I am saved.
If I have been unfaithful up to now, I repent, I deplore, I detest my infidelity, I ask You humbly to forgive me for it.
Forgive me, good Jesus, and strengthen me also, that I may be saved.
I ask You not for wealth, honor or prosperity; I ask you for one thing only, to save my soul.
Amen.” [Prayer penned by Saint Leonard of Port Maurice]
Now pray the Act of Contrition:
“O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell, but most of all because I have offended Thee, my God, Who art all good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to confess my sins, to do penance and to amend my life.
Amen.” [Traditional Catholic prayer]
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Recite these two prayers daily.
Don’t stop reciting these prayers until you’ve come back into the the fold of the true Church.
(Note: if you haven’t prayed for a while the words of the aforementioned prayers may not make sense or seem genuine or easy to utter. That’s to be expected… but pray them anyway. With enough time those prayers will begin to sink in and they’ll make more sense or have more meaning to you. Just don’t give up… just do it and don’t stop… let these prayers become part of your daily praying ritual. It’ll get easier and God’s graces will begin to flow to you and it’ll become easier and more meritorious).