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Iíve never seen Catholics evangelize!
The Divine Life ^ | 6/17/2010 | Eric Sammons

Posted on 06/17/2010 6:38:02 AM PDT by markomalley

Last night I had the fortune of meeting Msgr. Charles Pope, pastor of Holy Comforter/St. Cyprian church in downtown Washington, D.C., and über-blogger for the Archdiocese of Washington. He was holding a meeting at his parish to plan for a major door-to-door evangelization campaign his parish will be conducting this Fall. I was invited to share my own experiences of going door-to-door. In many ways, I was there to smash the many “myths” that have cropped up around going door-to-door. Here are a few:

1) You will be yelled at and attacked.
I have organized going door-to-door to over 2,000 homes in the past four years, and we only had a single instance of someone yelling at us. The vast majority of people are polite, even if they are not interested. But even if someone did yell at you, why should that stop you? Our Lord told us that we are blessed when people persecute us in his name, so being yelled at while sharing the Gospel is a wonderful blessing.

2) Catholics don’t go door-to-door; only Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses do that.
Quite often people who meet us when we are out evangelizing are shocked to hear we are Catholic. They expect us to be either Mormons or Jehovah’s Witnesses. We have even heard people exclaim “I’ve never seen Catholics evangelize!” What a sad commentary. Our Lord told his followers to go to all the nations preaching the Gospel, so all Catholics are obligated to evangelize in some way – and door-to-door evangelization is a great way to follow Christ’s command. Door-to-door evangelization has gotten a bad name, and this is mostly due to the aggressive tactics of Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses, who often browbeat those they meet in their attempt to make converts. But that does not have to be the only way to go door-to-door. In my experience, Catholics take a much more subdued approach. We go simply to share with others about our parish and the blessings we have received there. We have been given a great gift and we are letting others know about it.

3) I don’t need to go door-to-door; I evangelize without using words.
When people are looking for excuses not to go door-to-door, they often remark that the best evangelization is “without words” and that is how they evangelize so they don’t need to preach with words. I’ve addressed that canard here. It is very important to evangelize with our whole lives, including our actions, but it is a false dichotomy to say that we should only do one method. The assumption of the Christian life is that we evangelize with our actions; we also need to evangelize with words.

4) You have to be outgoing to go door-to-door.
Most people picture the typical door-to-door evangelizer as someone who is bursting with enthusiasm and extroverted to the extreme. I have actually found that the best door-to-door evangelizers are the exact opposite; those who are willing to listen are the most effective at sharing God’s love with others. My wife has a definite gift for door-to-door: very often people will pour out their problems on her as soon as she gets to a door, and she is able to tell them that they will be loved at our Catholic parish.

5) Door-to-door is not effective.
People often cite statistics showing that going door-to-door isn’t really effective and it doesn’t bring people into church. My first response would be to ask why the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses are growing so fast then? Also, Jerry Falwell built his megachurch from a tiny congregation by going door-to-door back in the 1950’s. So it can be effective in growing numbers. But the real reason we go door-to-door isn’t to effectively grow our church, it is to be obedient. Christ commanded us to share the Gospel with others, and this is a prime way to do it. And effectiveness can be measured in many ways. I have countless stories of praying with people who are hurting and sharing God’s love with strangers through door-to-door efforts. Furthermore, those who go are energized in their faith and often become better disciples of Christ after going door-to-door. Ultimately, we don’t go door-to-door to get (converts), we go to give (God’s love).

I was very encouraged to see the work Msgr. Pope is doing and the enthusiasm of his parish for evangelization. I hope and pray that more Catholic parishes would recognize the great need to share the Good News with their neighbors who surround them.


TOPICS: Catholic
KEYWORDS: catholic
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1 posted on 06/17/2010 6:38:02 AM PDT by markomalley
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To: Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus

I believe we had this conversation a while back.


2 posted on 06/17/2010 6:39:02 AM PDT by markomalley (Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus)
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To: markomalley
For nearly a year, I was chronically ill. I actually appreciated the folks who went door to door (several different faiths do this). I would politely let them know that our house worshipped God and followed Christ, but my illness was keeping me from attending church. Almost everyone prayed for me, and I thanked them for spreading the Gospel.

They were extremely polite and not aggressive at all.

I'm much better now, and attend church regularly. Both of my babies have accepted Christ into their heart and are preparing to be baptized.

All Christians need to be unafraid and unashamed of their fath. When we hide God's light, darkness takes its place.

3 posted on 06/17/2010 6:55:48 AM PDT by TheWriterTX (-)
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To: markomalley
What about Cyberevangelization? Michael Voris's "RealCatholicTV" is the internet stage of a media tradition dating back to Frank Sheed and Bishop Sheen.
4 posted on 06/17/2010 7:01:45 AM PDT by Ozone34 ("There are only two philosophies: Thomism and bullshitism!" -Leon Bloy)
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To: markomalley
When people are looking for excuses not to go door-to-door, they often remark that the best evangelization is “without words” and that is how they evangelize so they don’t need to preach with words. I’ve addressed that canard here.

Sorry can't agree with that sentiment, I think it is EVEN more important to be able to evangelize without words... by living your life as a witness to the faith, as in all things ACTIONS speak louder than words.

The example you set is what others will follow, not merely your words at their door step.
5 posted on 06/17/2010 7:19:36 AM PDT by battousai (Conservatives are racist? YES, I hate stupid white liberals.)
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To: markomalley
5) Door-to-door is not effective.
People often cite statistics showing that going door-to-door isn’t really effective and it doesn’t bring people into church. My first response would be to ask why the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses are growing so fast then? Also, Jerry Falwell built his megachurch from a tiny congregation by going door-to-door back in the 1950’s. So it can be effective in growing numbers. But the real reason we go door-to-door isn’t to effectively grow our church, it is to be obedient. Christ commanded us to share the Gospel with others, and this is a prime way to do it. And effectiveness can be measured in many ways. I have countless stories of praying with people who are hurting and sharing God’s love with strangers through door-to-door efforts. Furthermore, those who go are energized in their faith and often become better disciples of Christ after going door-to-door. Ultimately, we don’t go door-to-door to get (converts), we go to give (God’s love).

Ping to read later

6 posted on 06/17/2010 7:20:32 AM PDT by Alex Murphy (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2503089/posts?page=9#9)
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To: markomalley

1) You will be yelled at and attacked.

Well I’ve had a loaded shotgun to my head...

But I just continued to tell the man that Jesus loved him and He died on the Cross to save him..

Never let a little thing like a loaded shotgun stop you from telling the truth...


7 posted on 06/17/2010 7:31:37 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: markomalley
Catholics put an average of $2 per-week, per-person into the collection plates. This is despite God's command that we leave Him with 10% of our gross earnings.

Compared to Biblical Christians (Protestants, Baptists, Evangelicals, etc.), Catholics ar the most brazen in their willingness to flout God's meager request that 10% of what is all His to begin with be left to Him for His church's Kingdom purposes here on Earth.

When asked by His disciples how we would be able to discern the "true Church" from all the false churches predicted to be so prevalent in end times, Christ replied;

"By their works shall ye know them."

Seems pretty clear to me. Whether we look at giving at the collection plate, or how many church pastors treat their flocks, there is a pattern here, and Christ predicted it.

Viewed from another perspective, given how the Catholic dogma bears little or no resemblance to Christ's teachings, it's as though the Catholic "faithful" know in their hearts that this man-made, phony religion has nothing to do with God or his Kingdom purpose here on Earth, and they aren't willing to fund any more aggressively the pedophilic penchants of a largely disgraced and disgraceful clergy.

Makes sense to me.

;-/

8 posted on 06/17/2010 7:32:14 AM PDT by Gargantua (DON'T TREAD ON US.)
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To: Gargantua

How in the world did you come up with two dollars? Just wondering.


9 posted on 06/17/2010 7:40:05 AM PDT by timeflies
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To: markomalley

Interesting....My son and I went to the RCIA open house in our parish. He is 10 years old and wants to become Catholic. He decided this at the time I was considering returning. Anyhow, Fr. mentioned there and in the sermon later in the week, how many people show up to learn about the Catholic church, yet we don’t go door to door. Everyone there was suddenly just curious about the church or knew a family member who was Catholic and had questions. IMO, we don’t need to be going door to door.


10 posted on 06/17/2010 7:45:25 AM PDT by HungarianGypsy
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To: Gargantua

. This is despite God’s command that we leave Him with 10% of our gross earnings.
_______________________________________

Source ???

Bible scripture only please...


11 posted on 06/17/2010 7:46:24 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: Gargantua

Matthew 7:16 By their fruits you will recognize them.


12 posted on 06/17/2010 7:46:34 AM PDT by timeflies
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To: timeflies

He must somehow know about the $3 I put into the collection basket the other week. Of course, I am a SAHM trying to start a business, so have no income of my own to speak of(my husband is not Catholic). Just used the extra money I had in my car, so I coud tithe something. ;)


13 posted on 06/17/2010 7:49:00 AM PDT by HungarianGypsy
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To: battousai
...I think it is EVEN more important to be able to evangelize without words... by living your life as a witness to the faith, as in all things ACTIONS speak louder than words. The example you set is what others will follow, not merely your words at their door step.
I agree with you. Nothing disturbs me more than Eucharistic Ministers handing out Our Eucharistic Lord at Mass. If they are distributing, I will avoid them at all cost. Now if a priest came to my door (dressed as a priest; not a golfer), I'd listen to him evangelize, and be impressed that he took the time to come see me. But a layperson evangelizing would be annoying to me, even though their intentions may well be good. As you said "ACTIONS speak louder than words," and IMO this applies well to lay Catholics. If the lay Catholics who evangelize used that time instead to pray for priests, I think we'd be in better spiritual shape.
14 posted on 06/17/2010 7:49:38 AM PDT by mlizzy
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To: Gargantua

Yeah, Catholic charities have done nothing in this world.


15 posted on 06/17/2010 7:50:25 AM PDT by Trailerpark Badass (One good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain.)
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To: Gargantua

Long ago I determined that If I was going to be a Christian then I had to at least give my tenth. I was constantly in dire financial straits in those years and could not in good conscience give 10% to anything that did not pay me back something material. But I started giving 10% of whatever I earned before I spent on anything else,including pressing bills. After only a little while I noticed that I usually had some money in my pocket and could go sit down in a diner with a cup of coffee now and then or go with my wife out to eat. Somehow the bills got less and less onerous. My income did not increase for a long time and was interrupted a couple of times but I lost that constant feeling of desperation and my dread of the telephone. Practically, regularly giving that tithe tended to straighten out my own consciousness of money flow and I have not got “over my head” in probably 25 years and have some savings.


16 posted on 06/17/2010 7:56:36 AM PDT by arthurus ("If you don't believe in shooting abortionists, don't shoot an abortionist." -Ann C.)
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To: Tennessee Nana

According to this site, it doesnt look like there is any commandment of 10%. More of a tradition that started with Abraham.

http://www.layhands.com/MustChristiansTitheTenPercent.htm


17 posted on 06/17/2010 7:58:36 AM PDT by Raider Sam (They're on our left, right, front, and back. They aint gettin away this time!)
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To: Raider Sam

Also there was more than one tithe in the Old Testament. There was a tithe to be saved for the Feast Days and a third tithe to be given every third year for the poor and widows. So actually there was 30% at times coming out of your pocket.


18 posted on 06/17/2010 8:03:02 AM PDT by timeflies
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To: mlizzy
I will avoid them at all cost.

haha that's me too, the guy going to the back of the other line dragging his family along, just so I can receive from the priest :) At least our priest is pretty good with his routine so we know which side of the isle to sit on most days so this happens only rarely.

layperson evangelizing would be annoying to me

Yes, this almost smacks of pretending to be protestant, just go out and preach your interpretation, how are lay people supposed to answer doctrinal questions that are put to them, even if they have all the right answers it is not their authority to do so. Their heart is in the right place but this is the wrong approach for Catholics IMHO.
19 posted on 06/17/2010 8:11:05 AM PDT by battousai (Conservatives are racist? YES, I hate stupid white liberals.)
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To: timeflies

Not sure why the master of all mankind, creator of the universe, etc...needs my money.


20 posted on 06/17/2010 8:15:49 AM PDT by strider44
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