Christian Conversion

Eden Amberber, Reporter

As the priest says prayers, holy water pours on his face. Once, twice, three times. With every wash, he feels change inside him. He has found personal understanding and a new family. He looks at his mom, a new, thoughtful women.

Freshman Dai Nguyen converted from Buddhism to Baptist Christianity in December 2012.

“It all started when my mom’s friend went to our house one day [for dinner] and [spoke] to my mom about church,” Nguyen said. “But, my mom didn’t want to [talk about religion], so [her friend] said that [my sister and I] should go to church with her and her family.”

At the Baptist church, Nguyen said he saw a religion that had set principles and was open to questions and learning. He said he started a chain reaction with the rest of his family.

“I started to go to church,” Nguyen said. “Then my mom started. Now we all go to church every Sunday.”

Nguyen’s mother practiced Buddhism when he was a child, but slowly, her visits to temples declined and the family became detached from their religion. As a child, Nguyen did not understand Buddhism and what everything meant.

“Me and my sister didn’t really know what [Buddhism] was,” Nguyen said. “My mom would take us to the temple and she would tell us when to go on our knees and when to stand, but I didn’t [understand] what it was for.”

After being baptized, Nguyen experienced a change in his relationship with his family. Before finding Christianity, he said, his family argued a lot and now they talk about their issues.

“The whole family changed from being a bad family to a really good one,” Nguyen said. “Usually, my mom would yell at us a lot, but now since we’ve became Christians, she’s stopped yelling and she talks about our problems and what we need to work on. She treats me like an adult.”

Nguyen said after converting he saw a change in himself. His attitude and outlook on problems became positive.

“I used to cuss a lot.” Nguyen said. “As a Christian, I don’t cuss as much as I used too. I’m now more comfortable with myself.”

Nguyen said that Christianity has broadened his view on other religions, and he has come to realize that there are differences in religion.

“When I was little I didn’t know about religion, I thought everybody believed in God, [even though Buddhists do not acknowledge God],” Nguyen said. “Now I know the different principles and ideas.”

Nguyen said one of the ideas of Buddhism is to do good and have peace. Ironically, Nguyen actually started experiencing those principles in his family after his conversion to Christianity. Since conversion, Nguyen has not second-guessed the actions he has taken to find God.

“Everything changed, in a good way,” Nguyen said. “I got close to God [and] it changed my life.”