The Catholic Evangelization
This is a phrase that I have heard over and over ever since entering the Order. When most
people hear the phrase, they get odd pictures in their mind about their fellow parishioners in suits and long dresses with the Baltimore Catechism in their hands and a monstrance or a family statue, going door to door. Or they get the picture of Sister Mary of the Holy Name-That-Devotion in an overtly-stuffy habit peddling EWTN pamphlets.
However, as I see it, Catholic Evangelization is a very simple thing: inviting another to have an encounter with Jesus Christ. When Paul preached at the gates of Corinth, or when Peter placed his hand on the shoulder of the begger, or when Jesus’ Mother spoke the last lines she had spoken in the Gospel of John, they all did the same thing—they pointed to Jesus. They got out of the way and pointed the way to the Son of Man.
On Sept. 3, 2008,Pope Emertis Benedict XVI said, “Christianity is not a new philosophy or new morality. We are Christians only if we encounter Christ… Only in this personal relationship with Christ, only in this encounter with the Risen One do we really become Christians… Therefore, let us pray to the Lord to enlighten us, so that, in our world, he will grant us the encounter with his presence, and thus give us a lively faith, an open heart, and great charity for all, capable of renewing the world.” (Emphasis mine.)
Catholic Evangelization is having the humility and knowledge of Jesus’ gifts that He had given us, and having the compassion to want others to be blessed by the Lord in the very same way. This is the mission of the entire Church, not only for the ordained or the consecrated religious—this is the mission of the entire Body of Christ.
In our parish, we have two events that are imbued with this urgency. One is the Catholic Hackathon, and the other, the Called & Gifted Workshop.
The Hackathon happens on June 6-7. This Hackathon invites software engineers, technical and creative minds together to form new ways to promote the Catholic faith and Gospel in the digital age. We brainstorm and network the first night, and spend the next day, developing and building our idea or project. Registration concludes on May 31st.
The Called and Gifted Workshop (June 13-14) introduces the idea that, by virtue of our baptism, the Holy Spirit has embues us with particular charism in order to fulfill our mission to bring others into a closer relationship with the Holy Trinity. We will discuss many of the Spirit’s Gifts, and offer examples of how other Christians have succeeded in bringing the Gospel Light to others.
As we head towards the climax of our Easter Season, may we, at St Dominic’s Catholic Church in the City by the Bay, bring about a Pentecost!