How Do You Overcome Doubts?

Question: How do you overcome doubts? After attending college again, and being surrounded by atheists (with good arguments), how do you deal with doubts? I am a believer, and I still believe. This seems to be an isolating place to be.

Upset asian woman on couch at home in the living roomRemember the father begging Jesus to heal the mute boy in Mark 9:24: “I do believe; help my unbelief!” Sometimes the line between unbelief and faith is razor-thin. While you may feel isolated right now, you are in fact in excellent company. Some of our Catholic tradition’s greatest figures — from the Apostle Thomas to Blessed Teresa of Calcutta — wrestled with doubt. Serious intellectual inquiry, such as you are undertaking as a college student, should lead you to seriously question your assumptions about yourself and the world. You will emerge with a stronger faith than if you refuse to entertain the questions. It might help you to find a good study group of people who take their faith seriously and are willing to ask questions with you. The campus ministry center at your college would be a good place to start.

Neela Kale

Neela Kale is a writer and catechetical minister based in the Archdiocese of Portland. She served with the Incarnate Word Missionaries in Mexico and earned a Master of Divinity at the Jesuit School of Theology. Some of her best theological reflection happens on two wheels as she rides her bike around the hills of western Oregon.