As a convert to the Church myself, and having gone through so much to be baptized, I love hearing about other people’s journey to their conversion. This is an amazing story!
“Don’t let the Mormons convert you,” a friend told me before I left the Philippines for Utah in 1987.
I shrugged off the advice. I was 15, born and raised Catholic. Our family was devout, usually sitting in the front row of the chapel every Sunday mass. As a teen, I liked to stop by an empty Catholic church after school just to commune quietly with God. Besides, I didn’t even know what or who the Mormons were. Maybe Mormons were like the Jehovah’s Witnesses who sometimes came to our door, giving me a magazine which I politely accepted but didn’t even look at.
That July in 1987, my mom was being sent by her employer to Utah State University (USU) in Logan, Utah, for a training. Being the only child home, I tagged along to America, staying at my uncle’s in L.A. for a few weeks before I joined Mom. Mom would work on her master’s degree while I earned my bachelor’s.
At the airport, a Caucasian lady with tightly-permed, short white curls accompanied Mom to pick me up. She had a soft voice that I had to lean close to understand, but once she enveloped me in her warm embrace, I liked her right away. Mom introduced her as “Mother” Rosa Croshaw, the mom of one of her fellow trainees. She had taken Mom in as though she were her own daughter. She was also Mormon. For the next four years, Mother Rosa and her family hosted us on holidays and helped with things like getting jobs and driving us around until we could get driver’s licenses.