How can Catholics be the evangelizers our world needs?
After his Resurrection, Christ commissioned us to “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). The work of evangelization is tasked to all of us, and is indispensable to others’ salvation and our own. In our modern world, however, which is sadly lacking in authentic relationships and devoid of profound conversations, this mission can seem daunting. Our occasional efforts all too often falter and die on our lips as soon as we realize the looming presence of imminent awkwardness. How can we break through this initial awkwardness which bars the way to life-changing relationships, and finally become the evangelizers our world—our friends— desperately need?
In his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi, Blessed Pope Paul VI expressed this wish for evangelization, which rings strikingly relevant today:
“[M]ay the world of our time, which is searching, sometimes with anguish, sometimes with hope, be enabled to receive the good news not from evangelizers who are dejected, discouraged, impatient or anxious, but from ministers of the Gospel whose lives glow with fervor, who have first received the joy of Christ.”
FORMED is home to a multitude of resources which can equip you to be just such an evangelizer. The following list contains suggested resources to transform the intimidation you may feel toward evangelization into confidence and joy.
FORMED RESOURCES FOR EVANGELIZATION:
LISTEN: Evangelizing Catholics
In this informative and dynamic presentation, Dr. Scott Hahn discusses why the New Evangelization is the greatest priority of the Church at this time, and how we are all called to share our faith. He shows how the Eucharist relates to explaining Jesus’ death and resurrection, and how Saint John Paul II’s call for a New Evangelization must be based on the Eucharist.
LISTEN: How to Bring Fallen-Away Catholics Back to the Church
What is evangelization all about? What role does the Church expect ordinary Catholics to play in spreading the Catholic Faith? Dr. Scott Hahn, author and renowned theologian, challenges cradle Catholics to witness to the Faith through everyday life. He presents proven and effective ways to touch those who have fallen away from the Church, even those with the most hardened of hearts.
LISTEN: Getting Others to Heaven
Believe it or not, we are all called to be leaders. In her typical vibrant and energetic style, Noelle Garcia speaks on the importance of leadership in propagating the New Evangelization. Noelle shares her early experiences of dealing with insecurity, and how she came to better understand what it means to be a Christian leader. She shows that although we are all sinners, God has given us all unique gifts.
LISTEN: Living the Gospel with the Heart of Pope Francis
Dr. Edward Sri is a renowned theologian, author, and professor at the Augustine Institute. In this presentation, Dr. Sri invites all Christians to embrace the call of Pope Francis to be missionary disciples in today’s world. With contagious enthusiasm and insightfulness, Dr. Sri makes the Holy Father’s message both accessible and actionable for people living in this day and age.
LISTEN: Reaching Out to Today’s Culture
In this highly relevant talk, Fr. Robert Barron shares observations from his dialogue with critics of his YouTube videos. He eloquently illustrates how well equipped our Catholic intellectual tradition is to access and clarify the confusion that is so prevalent in our culture about matters of Christian faith and life.
LISTEN: Walk the Walk
Being a disciple of Jesus has always been synonymous with being a Christian. From the Scriptures and from his own experience, biblical scholar Dr. Tim Gray explains how Christian discipleship calls us to follow in the footsteps of Christ as engaged participants in God’s plan, ordering our lives to bear witness to the Lord in our families, workplaces, communities, and to the world.
LISTEN: Change the World in 60 Seconds
In this motivating presentation, Tom Peterson shares how just 60 seconds can truly change the world, often one life at a time. Following a life-altering experience in front of the Blessed Sacrament, Peterson founded CatholicsComeHome.org and VirtueMedia.org, two incredible media apostolates which promote evangelization and the sanctity of life, and are helping hundreds of thousands of souls come home to the Catholic Church. Listeners are inspired and empowered to utilize Tom’s testimony and expertise in their own evangelization efforts.
STUDY: LECTIO: EVANGELIZATION
Who better to look to for guidance on evangelization than the Apostles and disciples of the early Church? And what better place to read their stories than in the firsthand account of the Acts of the Apostles? In the ten-part series Lectio: Evangelization and the Acts of the Apostles, Dr. Mary Healy combines insightful biblical study with Church teaching and practical advice to show how modern Catholics can effectively impact their world for Jesus Christ.
READ: How to Share Your Faith with Anyone
Recent popes have challenged all Catholics to participate in the New Evangelization, but most Catholics feel ill-equipped to take up the challenge. Terry Barber, founder of St. Joseph Communications, has written a practical guide that takes much of the pain and uncertainty out of sharing one’s faith, and explains how to evangelize without compromise or conflict. This is a superb, easy-to-follow playbook for the New Evangelization.
WATCH: How to Win an Argument Without Losing a Soul
Whether you’re arguing with family members or Facebook friends, skeptical co-workers in the office or pushy proselytizers at your front door, it helps to have not only the facts but the skills for presenting your points forcefully and well. In How to Win an Argument Without Losing a Soul, Matt Fradd equips you with the powers of argumentation you need to be an effective debater and the right attitude for doing it with charity, humility, and patience.