The Church expects Catholics to give "religious assent" to its ordinary teaching on faith and moral issues, but it is not uncommon to meet Catholics who do not agree with all of the Church’s teachings.
In some cases, individuals object to (or do not correctly understand) certain truths of the faith, such as those proclaimed in the Creed. More often, individuals object to some aspect of the Church's moral teaching -- what the Church says we may or may not do, based on its understanding of divine revelation and natural law.
The Church teaches that individuals must follow their own conscience, even if it is wrong. However, it also insists that Catholics have a moral obligation to ensure that their conscience is properly formed.
A properly formed conscience is different from one's personal opinion or desire; it is a decision made by studying and respecting the teaching of the Church. In making a morally correct decision, the presumption is always in favor of what the community believes and the Church teaches.
Nevertheless, some Catholics may have doubts about what the Church believes, or will make choices which contradict Church teaching. It is tempting in those situations to decide that the Church is wrong and to reject what the Church believes or teaches. Usually, however, it would be more honest to recognize that these personal choices are an indication that an individual is, under the circumstances, either unable or unwilling to fully understand, accept or comply with the Church's teaching.
Barring circumstances of a very serious nature, that fact should not ordinarily prevent us from participating as fully as possible in the spiritual and sacramental life of the Church, always with the hope that through our participation we will grow in our ability to respect and understand what the Church believes and teaches.
• If you have questions about, or objections to, certain teachings of the Church, you should visit privately with a pastor, confessor or spiritual director who can help you discern if you understand the Church's teaching correctly, and how your questions or objections affect your relationship to the faith community.
• Summary of What Catholics Believe
• Information for Catholic Seekers
• How to Form a Moral Conscience