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Welcome Home!

Fallen Away Catholics Who Came Back

Author: Victor R. Claveau (ed.)


318 pages


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   Here are the compelling stories of eleven "reverts", Catholics who fell away from the Church and eventually came back home. Some of the people are very well-known, like Fr. John Corapi, Rick Strom, Victor Claveau, and Jesse Romero, and others are known only in their smaller circles. But each person's story of why he left the Catholic Church and why he returned is a unique and moving tale of God's mercy, love and grace.

    There is one common denominator, though, among the writers of Welcome Home! To paraphrase Archbishop Fulton Sheen, few hate the Catholic Church for what she teaches, but millions hate it for what they think she teaches. The defining moment of illuminating grace almost always came when our storytellers began to examine Catholic teaching for themselves.

    "I have no doubt that those who read Welcome Home! will take from these intriguing conversion stores a renewed spirit of confidence and devotion. In it they will also find an informative source of Catholic apologetics that will especially attract those who have shared similar life experiences in their sincere search for truth and reconciliation with the Church of their youth, which is indeed the Covenant Family of God where the One who is Truth Itself abides forever."
—Fr. Bill Casey, C.P.M.


    "There are approximately 17 million inactive Catholics in the U.S. today. This is not just evidence of an epidemic crisis of faith, it is a summons to faithful Catholics to bring these “lost sheep” back into the fold. With Welcome Home! St. Joseph Communications has answered this challenge by compiling the stories of eleven “reverts” in the hope that fallen-away Catholics will see themselves in these stories and be inspired to return home to the Church.

    "The writers are eleven ordinary Catholics from different walks of life, who honestly and passionately recount their spiritual journeys in their own words. Although three of the writers, Fr. Corapi, Jesse Romero, and Rick Strom, are well-known, they are not celebrities and they are as genuine and down-to-earth as the other eight. What makes these stories so powerful is that they are true and that they describe the kinds of experiences which most Catholics today have lived through or have witnessed in the lives of others.

    "The similarities in the lives of the writers make these stories even more compelling. Ten of the writers were born and raised as Catholics; they went to Mass on Sundays and attended either Catholic schools or parish CCD programs. Yet, they stopped attending Mass and drifted away from the Church after they reached adulthood. Most of them said that their main reason for doing so was the fact that they did not understand or even know many of the Church’s teachings, including such basic ones as the Real Presence and the meaning of the Mass. They also said that they had not interiorized their faith or made the practice of it a part of their daily lives. Therefore, when they left home for college, careers, or the military service, they were unable to defend that faith from the inevitable attacks and attractions of the world. Four of the writers, Jesse Romero, Joseph Ranalli, Scott F. Leary, and Thomas J. Pillion, were lured into fundamentalist churches by friends and co-workers who were openly fervent in their practice of a simple, biblical faith and who made arguments against the teachings and practices of the Catholic Church which these men were unable to rebut. John Corapi, Ann E. Krach, and Terese Norris stopped practicing the faith because it was not compatible with their pursuit of worldly success and pleasure. Confusion about or rejection of the Church’s teachings on sexual morality, especially birth control, led others away from the Church.

    "Fortunately, the writers did not end their spiritual journeys here. Some of them returned to the Church after hearing tapes or reading books by Scott Hahn, Peter Kreeft, Karl Keating, Pope John Paul II, and other contemporary Catholic apologists who were able to answer the questions and objections they had about the Catholic faith. Also, most of the authors credit other Catholics, especially parents or spouses, with helping them return to the Church through their prayers, good example, and attempts at gentle persuasion. In the end, they all believe that it was the Holy Spirit, working through other, concerned Catholics, who brought them back to the Church.

    "Welcome Home! is a valuable tool for evangelization which should be put into the hands of as many fallen-away Catholics as possible. However, it is also a book which the rest of us should read not only because it shows us why so many people stray from the Church, which can help us dissuade others from doing the same, but also because it reminds us that we are the ones who must assist the Good Shepherd in bringing his lost sheep home."

Mary R. Schneider Cleveland, Ohio

Homiletic and Pastoral Review


    “An encouragement to lifelong Catholics and a welcoming beacon for those still outside the fold”

– Karl Keating, Author, President, Catholic Answers


Victor R. Claveau, MJ

The Evangelization Station

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Please contact us at (727) 819-0007 if you have questions.




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