Rod Dreher on his conversion

Rod Dreher is the author of the column I linked to a few days ago as well as the book Crunchy Cons. In this post on the Crunchy Con blog he relates the story of his recent conversion to the Orthodox Church. As someone who has followed his columns for several years, I was quite surprised. Then realized that maybe I shouldn’t have been. It’s an interesting story and well worth reading here.

Good luck, Rod, and peace be with you.


  1. The Ironic Catholic says

    That’s one loaded post.

    “I hope also that my own example will encourage others — Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant — to look seriously into their hearts, and detach themselves from both idolizing the Church in the place of Christ — this is partly what led to the Scandal, and partly what led me to put myself in a position where the Scandal destroyed my Catholicism.”

    Amen to that.
    With a little luck and a lot of grace, we’re going to be unified (Catholics and Orthodox) in our lifetime anyway. I hope.

  2. Jonathan Potter says

    Mark Shea’s comments are, as usual, right on target: “I can’t escape the conviction that Rod has basically given a bunch of non-reasons for converting. In other words, his reasons for conversion seem to me to be excuses, not real reasons. I wish I could say otherwise, but I can’t.”

    Read more here.

  3. Jonathan Potter says

    Also check out Cubeland Mystic’s take here.

  4. The Ironic Catholic says

    I don’t know…can’t there be different kinds of conversion?

    I admit he does seem to be running away rather than running toward, but still. I think the blogosphere believes conversion is always about intellectual truth, realizing that 2+2=4. I wish he had stayed in the Catholic Church–and that he had found a warmer welcome in a variety of ways–but we’re all wounded in different ways, and our path to God is formed by that woundedness.

  5. The Ironic Catholic says

    Oh, before the comments roll in, yes, 2+2=4. The Church holds intellectual truth, yes. But Truth is bigger that reason.

  6. Jonathan Potter says

    What Neuhaus wrote over at the First Things blog:

    Over on, Rod Dreher explains at length why he and his family have left the Catholic Church for Orthodoxy. It is painful reading, as it was undoubtedly painful for him to write. For those whom I have described as “ecclesial Christians,” Orthodoxy has to be very seriously considered. In Catholic Matters, I discuss some of those considerations and why I am convinced that an ecclesial Christianity is more fully realized in the Catholic Church.

    Having said that, however, Dreher’s essay is important. Yes, his decision is in large part reactive. But he is reacting to very real corruptions in the Catholic Church. I hope every Catholic bishop and priest will read his essay, and especially those bishops and priests who are inclined to heave a sigh of relief that we have weathered the sex-abuse scandal. And every Catholic engaged in the standard intra-church quarrels, whether on the left or the right, should take to heart what he says about Catholics being more preoccupied with church battles than with following Jesus.

    Dreher concludes his reflection with this: “Still, those of you more charitably inclined, please just pray for me and my family, that we always live in truth, and do the right thing, and be found pleasing to God, the Father of us all.” No Catholic should hesitate to join in that prayer.

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