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New Evangelization

Aug 27

Written by:
8/27/2017 12:00 AM  RssIcon

As we have progressed deeper into the third Christian millennium, we have moved further and further into what Pope St. John Paul II called (and many other Christian thinkers agreed with him) a ‘Post Christian West.’ This was the heart of Pope Benedict XVI’s controversial ‘Regensburg Speech’ that rippled throughout the intellectual world.

In response, every Holy Father since Pope St. John XXIII has called for a ‘new evangelization’ of this post-Christian west. But whenever we talk of the ‘New Evangelization,’ the inevitable question arises: what is ‘New’ about the ‘New Evangelization’?

In short, it is a re-proposal of the Christian message in ways that are unexpected. It is a chance to engage the culture as Jesus did and to bring them closer to Christ. Over the years, this has been done in ever more creative ways. Archbishop Fulton Sheen had his wonderful television program, ‘Life is Worth Living’ that many people still remember. Pope St. John Paul II traveled the world extensively to bring the message of salvation to all corners of the world. (You could argue that he was seen in person by more people than any other individual in human history.) Pope Francis has that warm and engaging smile that draws the world to him so that he can lead them to Christ.

Over the last fifteen years, these efforts have lead to new apostolates being formed and flourishing. EWTN has been broadcasting for nearly 40 years because one cloistered nun had a vision. Bishop Robert Barron noticed that the Catholic voice was noticeably absent from YouTube and started a channel to engage the new atheists on their terms. Fr. Leo Patalinghug appeared on the show ‘Beat Bobby Flay’ and won!

There is a recognition that we can no longer sit in Church and wait for the world to come to us. We must take the message of Christ to the world and re-propose the joy that comes from knowing, loving and serving Jesus Christ in the context of the Catholic Church.

To this end, I have been given a tremendous opportunity to take the Gospel to a new area. I have been invited to be a part of a project for evangelization and outreach in the Church that was unexpected and quite interesting. However, it will take me away from the parishes for a few weeks, beginning this Tuesday.

This is where you come in. Please pray for the success of this project. It is something which is way out of my comfort zone, but could pay large dividends not only for the Church, but also for our two parishes. In this week’s bulletin, there is a flyer with a prayer. I humbly ask that you pray this prayer every day for this project, because only with God’s grace will it bear the fruit that is desired.

Please know that while I am away, you will be in my prayers and always close to my heart and soul. I have been truly blessed by these two communities, and your prayers have given me the courage to do something that is different and new. I look forward to sharing more about this project when I return.

God Bless,
Fr. Kyle Schnippel


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Re: Why do we place a white pall on the casket of the deceased at funeral Masses?
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