Dear Parish Family,
The Historic Diocesan Assembly held this past November 19 and 20 was a real shot in the arm for our Diocese of Lansing. Over 800 priests, deacons, lay ministers, and parish lay leaders were present with all but two of the over 80 parishes in our diocese represented. The effect has been the mobilization of those present to lead the charge in fulfilling the Church’s clarion call for the New Evangelization.
We all know people who have fallen away from the Church. In essence, the New Evangelization is about sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ and inviting them back into the life of His Church. What is “new” in this evangelization is that we are called to do so in a society that in many ways is post-Christian, that is, it has vestiges of a Christian culture, but has become very secularized in many of the most influential institutions of society, such as the world of media, entertainment, education, and of course the government. This requires an approach of sharing the Gospel that, as St. John Paul the Great said, is new in “its ardor, in its methods, and its expression.”
Fulfilling this call entails providing fresh avenues by which our parishioners can share the Good News and invite people back into the life of the Church, instead of the same old practice of inviting them to Mass, which is so life-giving to us, but may be downright boring and seemingly irrelevant in their lives to those who do not know the Person we worship and adore at Mass. Once that person truly encounters Jesus, however, everything changes. Those “encounter opportunities” are what we want to provide and is among the first steps to growing the number of households in our parish.
In order to get things rolling, we are “Rallying a Corps of Disciples for the Lord!” This meeting on Tuesday, February 3 at 6:00 PM is for those who are interested in helping with the planning, organization, execution, and follow-up of such “encounter opportunities” at our parish, as well as other initiatives by which we can strengthen the faith of those who already are practicing Catholics.
All are invited to attend 5:30 PM. Mass in the church beforehand that Tuesday evening and then gather together afterward in the Parish Center for a brief social at 6:00 PM. I will begin a presentation at 6:30 PM, along with other parish lay leaders. Whether your gifts lie in organization, hospitality, craftsmanship, music, administration, manual labor or service, we need you in this great adventure of building up the Kingdom here at our beloved St. John the Evangelist Parish!
Finally,here are couple of photos from the last Fireside Chat at the home of Rob & Valerie Doane. The next one is on Thursday, January 29 is at the home of Jim & Meara Markiewicz.
Yours in Christ,