Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The New Evangelization

It's a buzzword, at this point. But really, what does it mean? The Greek word means, "good news." The human context that forms the biblical use of this word is that of a herald, announcing the reign and arrival of a triumphant king. If you weren't on board when the herald came, you'd better leave the realm with haste.

So, in the Christian context, an "evangelizer" announces the good news of the reign of King Jesus, and warns of his imminent return. The Church says we need a new evangelization. Why?

I think it's fair to say that many members of the Church are not ready and waiting for Jesus to return. Here in America, how many people do you meet who start off the story of their faith journey with, "I was raised Catholic, but..."?

"I know the Church would say I shouldn't do this or that, but..."

"I'm a bad Catholic, but..."

I have a feeling that a great number of people wouldn't be as casual if they had to look into the eyes of Jesus--those eyes of pure love--and explain themselves. Church teaching for them is just so many rules, with no meaning or connection to anything they understand.

The New Evangelization is an effort to help every person realize that "The Church teaches..." and "Jesus says..." are functionally the same thing.

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