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We Were Religious But Lost
By Mr. And Mrs. John Rutili

I was raised a Roman Catholic and I attended Catholic schools. I was taught that by attending Mass, confessing my sins to a priest, praying to Mary and the "Saints," saying the rosary, etc. I might gain merits worthy of obtaining "grace." As a Roman Catholic, however, I always felt an emptiness that could never be satisfied. I hoped that by saying prayers to the "Saints" and making Novenas, and going to Mass, this emptiness could be filled, but it was to no avail. I was the same person going to church and coming out; there was no change in my heart and life.

I had a fear of death, sickness, and of purgatory (a place taught to Catholics where one goes after death to suffer for his sins). This place does not exist in God's Word. Hebrews 1:1-3 tells us that Christ purged our sins. God's Word teaches us that it's Heaven with Christ or Hell without Him. We must make the choice. But at this time I did not know what God's Word taught, and my sins were weighing me down. I was Hell-bound and I did not know it. I tried looking into the Bible, but could not understand it. My condition could best be described in 1 Corinthians 2:14: "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him; …" I was outside of Christ and could not understand the things of God.

I met a Roman Catholic boy, and we fell in love and were married. We both held the same religious beliefs. We thought that salvation was in the Roman Catholic Church, and that water baptism makes one a Christian.

We had two beautiful children given to us, and God in His great wisdom took them back. Our marriage and home became very unhappy at this time due to the fact that we did not know Christ and have Him in our home. All during our marriage I prayed to St. Jude (the saint for hopeless cases), not realizing that I was hopelessly lost and headed for hell. I also prayed to St. Dymphna (the saint for nervous cases), and I would light candles to Mary. Still I did not find the peace I needed, and there was no change in my life. I kept on searching. Jeremiah 29:13 says: "And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart."

I told my husband that I must find God. He couldn't understand why I couldn't find Him in the Mass. Finally our marriage came to a head and my husband left me. Now both my children and my husband were gone. It was as though my world had ended. But thank God the Lord sent me a Christian friend. Prior to my husband's leaving he had repaired the car of a Christian couple. When I returned their car I noticed the Bible in the car. It was a silent witness to me. This lady was different from anyone I had known. She was peaceful and serene. So when my husband left I called her and she came and brought her Bible with her. At first I couldn't understand the spiritual things she was reading from the Bible. You see, as Roman Catholics we were never encouraged to read our Bibles. Then she tuned in to a Christian radio program that I loved immediately. Two days later she invited me to attend a prayer meeting at her church. At first I hesitated about going, but then I agreed to go. I didn't know what church it was, but it was different from any service that I had ever attended. The people were happy, friendly, and sang with much joy. I felt so lost because of my sins, and I asked to talk with the pastor.

I told the pastor about my lost condition, and he showed me from God's Word that as a sinner I must repent of my sins, ask Jesus to cleanse me from sin in His precious blood, and place all of my trust in Jesus Christ and in Him alone for my salvation. I prayed with him a sinner's prayer and accepted Jesus Christ into my heart as my all-sufficient Saviour and Lord.

A new life began for me. I was born into the family of God. I had Christ's peace in my heart at last and was set free from the penalty of my sins. John 8:32 says, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Thank God I no longer had to place my trust in the Mass, Mary, the "saints", confession to a man, saying rosaries, or any of the rest of the confusion found in the Roman Catholic system.

And, my Catholic friend, you too can be set free. Search the Scriptures. Place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ and in Him alone. Turn from the traditions of men and the confusions of the Roman Catholic system.

I know that my Saviour lives within me, and that I have an eternal home with Christ. My desire now is to witness for my Saviour, and to be used as His instrument in winning others to Him.

--Mrs. Lee Rutili

After my wife's conversion, I returned home. Our home was different, and my wife was different. She told me that she had accepted Jesus Christ as her Saviour and Lord. I couldn't understand what she meant. I told her that the Catholic Church with its Mass was the ONLY TRUE CHURCH, and that salvation was only found in the Catholic Church. She told me that Christ was missing from our home because we never knew Him personally. The following Sunday I said that I would go to church with her if she would go to Mass with me. As I frequented these two churches and listened to the preaching, I began to see the difference. I saw that the Catholic church presented the word of man instead of the Word of God. The Lord began to deal with my heart.

A month later an evangelist came to the church we were attending. Through his preaching the Lord brought conviction to my heart, and I really began to search the Scriptures. At first I wouldn't trust a Protestant Bible because I believed it was different and had been changed, so I used the Catholic version. I prayed each time I read its pages, and the more I read, the more the Lord revealed His truths to my heart. I realized that I had been taught falsehood for 42 years.

On New Year's Eve of 1971 my wife was preparing to leave for "watchnight" service at the church. I hesitated at first about going, but because it was my birthday, and the Lord was continuing to deal with me, I went. Through this joyful service, and seeing all the happy Christian people around me, and my wife being so happy in Christ, I too wanted this joy. I accepted Jesus into my heart as my personal Saviour and Lord. I was born-again that night!

As I continued in the Word of God, the Lord revealed many truths to me and confirmed my faith in Him. I saw through the Scriptures that Christ made one perfect sacrifice for our sins, and that it is no longer necessary for a priest to make sacrifice on the altar (Hebrews 10:11). I accepted the truths in God's Word from the Catholic Bible such as: Ephesians 2:8,9, "For by grace you have been saved by faith; and that not from yourselves, for it is the gift of God; not as the outcome of works, lest anyone may boast."

I've put my faith and trust in Jesus Christ who alone can transform the sinner. I'm no longer trusting in the Mass, Communion, sacraments, prayers of intercession to Mary and the "saints," or belief in purgatory, as none of these things can change the heart of any sinner. The Bible teaches that all who trust in these things are under the wrath of God.

The Lord has changed my heart and life, and has given me a real burden for souls. My wife and I have left the false system of Roman Catholicism forever. Now the Lord has blessed us with a tract ministry at Cowtown, New Jersey. We give out His Word and witness to all we meet about our wonderful saviour and His saving grace. We show Roman Catholics the truth of God's Word and tell them how they can be saved without merit, charge, without the help of a priest, sacraments, rituals, confirmation, rosary, holy water, Mass, or purgatory. Pray for us.

--John Rutili


Dear God,

I'm convinced that I'm a lost sinner. I believe that Jesus Christ died for my sins, and arose again the third day. I hereby receive the Lord Jesus Christ as my all-sufficient Lord and Saviour, never to believe or follow the traditions of men as taught to me in the Roman Catholic Church. I repent of my sins (turn away) and with God's help I will follow Christ from this day on.

If you have trusted Jesus Christ to save you as a result of reading this tract or would like to receive helpful literature or basic Bible lessons by mail, contact
First Bible Church at:

Used by permission. For order of quantity contact:
Cowtown Tract Ministry, 14 Maryland Avenue, Pennsgrove, NJ 08069