How to be evangelizers

Bishops to vote on priorities for next four years

 The following comes from a November 7 press release from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

 

The U.S. Bishops will vote on a strategic plan for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops for 2013-2016, during their annual November plenary in Baltimore, November 12-15.

The plan has been developed by the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Priorities and Plans.

The proposed plan centers on the New Evangelization called for by Pope Benedict XVI with emphasis on three areas of church life: Faith, Worship and Witness. The plan maps out a direction for [bishops] committees and offices to work together on a limited number of key issues which are generally national in scope. Many of these plans continue the bishops’ focus from the last four years. The proposal outlines efforts listed below.

2013-2014: Focus on Faith. Plans aim to aid bishops and dioceses in helping Catholics deepen their relationship with Jesus, increase their knowledge of Church teachings, strengthen the formation of ministers and, for all, gain a greater confidence in the Gospel lived in society through the parish community. Specific issues include increased education for priests, religious and lay ministers and promotion of vocations, emphasis on such issues as cultural diversity, migration and pastoral care for refugees, respect for life at all stages of development and concern for the poor and marginalized.

2014-2015: Focus on Worship and Parish Life. Plans work toward increasing sacramental practice and emphasizing the welcoming nature of parish communities. This includes special efforts to strengthen marriage and family life and increase Mass attendance and use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

2015-2016: Focus on Witness. Plans support continuing initiatives related to the life and dignity of the human person and promote projects to support diocesan efforts to strengthen and encourage the laity to witness in the public square and to understand their role as evangelizers and witnesses to their Christian faith. Specific issues include a 2016 conference to facilitate Catholics promoting their faith in the public square and learning how to be evangelizers, efforts to increase communications between bishops and members of religious orders and promotion of vocations to the priesthood and religious life.

To read original document, click here.

 

 

Buffer
To add a comment, click on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ icons OR go further down to the bottom of comments to the Post your comment box.

Comments

  1. Cody in Tucson says:

    Bishop Kicanas of Tucson is already implementing “2013-2014: Focus on Faith, gain a greater confidence in the Gospel lived in society through the parish community… specific issues include increased education for priests”, by training his young priests in becoming ‘good Alinsky community organizers’. The following is from Kicanas’s Monday Memo posted 11/5. Kicanas even links the words “community organizing” to the wikipedia writeup where discussions on ACORN and Saul Alinsky appear. The 3 brain washers in the Memo are Alinsky group related. —— “Newly Ordained Mentoring Program” – On Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, we will have the first of three sessions for our “newly” ordained priests – those who have been priests for five years or less. These presentations are designed to build fraternity among the priests, to encourage them in their ministries and to assist them with addressing the various topics encountered in priesthood. The program presenters this week are Joe Rubio, Kevin Courtney and Frank Pierson. Joe Rubio is the lead organizer for the Valley Interfaith Project in the Phoenix area. He also served on a bi-partisan coalition of business, faith and civic groups that issued five guidelines emphasizing a humanitarian approach to immigration issues, shortly after the status of SB-1070 was in question. Kevin Courtney is the Director of the Pima County Interfaith Council and has been very involved in addressing important issues facing us in Pima County. He works with a number of parishes in the diocese as well as other churches and synagogues throughout Pima County. Frank Pierson is an organizer for Industrial Areas Foundation (NOTE: founded by Alinsky), or IAF, which is a national community organizing network established in 1940. The organization provides training, consultation, organizers, and develops national strategy for its affiliated broad-based community organizations. There are 57 IAF affiliates in 21 states, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany and Australia, all working toward social change. He also is a member of our Pastoral Council. These three experts will hold a workshop that will help our newly ordained priests to understand better how to form parish communities and build relationships in their parishes to address community concerns and to organize them to make a difference in dealing with concerns. They will learn how to get actively involved in community affairs and form laity to take a more active role in the public arena.

    • If you can prove that the Bishop is doing anything that is not in accord with or purposely leaves out part of the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” or violates Code of Canon Law which can be found on the Vatican web site –
      contact the US Papal Nuncio and the Vatican immediately.

      CCC: ” 425 The Church has rejected the totalitarian and atheistic ideologies associated in modem times with “communism” or “socialism.” She has likewise refused to accept, in the practice of “capitalism,” individualism and the absolute primacy of the law of the marketplace over human labor.
      Regulating the economy solely by centralized planning perverts the basis of social bonds; regulating it solely by the law of the marketplace fails social justice, for “there are many human needs which cannot be satisfied by the market.”
      Reasonable regulation of the marketplace and economic initiatives, in keeping with a just hierarchy of values and a view to the common good, is to be commended.”

      In addition for the instructions from Pope Benedict on the Year of Faith – go to ” What Catholics REALLY Believe SOURCE ” and share it with the Priests in your Parish and others.
      When a Bishop does not preach properly go around him. Spread the truth.
      The TRUTH of what the Church teaches is found in the CCC even if clergy makes errors.

      “LIBERATION THEOLOGY” violates Church teaching.

      • Cody in Tucson says:

        Ned – The above is from Kicanas’s personal blog, the Monday Memo, straight from his brain. This Memo used to be mailed to all his priests but it is certainly available to anyone who goes on the Diocese of Tucson website, not at all hidden. He is, from his own mouth and what he does, very much a liberation theology kind of guy. Everyone of his priests, if they care to, have access to what I posted above so they should know exactly where the boss is coming from.

        • Cody, print out all of Bishop Kicanas’s writings that violate any teaching in the CCC.
          After you have acquired 4 or 5, send copies to the US Papal Nuncio, and also to the Vatican.
          Bishops can be removed from Ecclisiastical Office – per Code of Canon Law.

      • Pat in GrassValley says:

        Excellent…I will pass this on to my pastor. Thank you.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      This Bishop does not sound like a Catholic. How many souls go to confession on a single week in his see?
      International groups working for social change. Seriously?

      Take Ned’s Advice, This needs to be taken up with Vatican, pronto.

  2. What about the education of the Laity – those who attend Mass on Sunday but do not have time for classes.
    The Laity must teach their children; the Laity must help spread the Faith.
    Is the formation and education of the Laity going to be neglected again?

    50% of all Catholics voted for Obama, so it would be nieve to think that education of the Laity is not needed.
    How about asking the Laity to read the CCC at home, and share it with others ? ? ?

    If the Bishops blow it, the USA will become like Europe. Fewer and fewer Catholics with each generation.

  3. Larry from RI says:

    Where is the plan to defend our Constitutional religious freedom
    If an attack is made on the Constitution, whether internal or external,it must be repealed.
    This attack on religious liberty,contained in the mandate of Potus Obama’s healthcare law, must be fought at all costs.
    If the Catholc Bishops do not stand up like they did in the past political battle and continue their opposition to this infringement of the right to religious freedom,they will be called out for what they will be–political
    opportunists.
    This fight must be the beginning of the beginning of the fight to preserve our US Constitution from enemies
    both foreign and domestic or our religious freedom will cease to exist.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      Wrong priorities. The Church will be there, with or without freedoms. We need to focus on holiness now. That is what is at stake.

  4. More bishops need to witness by speaking out strongly against the HHS mandate as Bishop Conley has. The more bishops that do so the less likely the mandate will be enforced with the consequence of raising the unemployment rate.

  5. Father Karl says:

    How to be an evangelizer, JUST TEACH THE TRUTH, THE WHOLE TRUTH, AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH! Then and only then will the Catholic Church be successful in obeying Christ’s commands to preach the Gospel to all nations.

    • Abeca Christian says:

      AMEN Father Karl! The truth is simple and enough…it does not need to be fluffed up or fancy or creative, the truth is the whole truth…Jesus is truth!

      • The truth is contained in the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition”.

        Due to lousy catechesis over the past 50 years – -
        People can not teach others, what they do not know.
        And unfortunately many people think they already know everything.

        From Father Gino Sylva – of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization –
        “ There are two levels to the New Evangelization.
        First is the FORMATION and EDUCATION of those who practice the faith, so they can be better witnesses and evangelizers in their own lives to those in their family, their neighborhood and their workplace.
        The other level is to REACH OUT to the secular culture, to people who are away from the Church or who are seeking something better, and to put together arenas where they can feel comfortable coming to find something they are looking for. ”

  6. There are many good words in what I just read. Not one leads me to believe that the bishops even care about a majority of Catholics who voted for pro-abort, anti-marriage politicians like Barack Obama – not one ! Where is the emphasis – leadership or being Father Feel Good ? Election after election they fail to lead. And we get taxpayer-funded abortion, a march toward “Anything Goes” marriages, and an occasional statement that they think perhaps those things are less than good for society. The laity ought to hold the bishops accountable. Vote with your dollars, and concentrate your charitable giving on causes that actually reflect Catholic teachings. That’s probably the only thing the bishops will understand. If the Vatican won’t hold them accountable, the people should. Right now, they see you as wallets with souls, and as fulfilling that “there’s one born every minute” thing attributed to P.T. Barnum.

  7. Robert Lockwood says:

    The Bishops plans should start with the pulpit. In stead of serving up scrambled eggs they need to serve meat and potatoes. Father John Corapi who is now out of the picture preached the meaning of the catechism and how to live with current events. What we now get is has little to no meaning to help us through our daily trials. Without strong leadership which we generally do not have they can plan all they want but it will not be productive.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      They have never eaten any meat themselves. Most of these men were ordained in the 70′s and 60′s.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:

      Robert,

      Why do you think the Devil worked so hard to get rid of Fr. Corapi?

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

      • Mark from PA says:

        Mr. Fisher, I don’t think it was as much the devil as it was Fr. Corapi’s own human weakness and ego. He talked a good game but he didn’t practice what he preached.

        • Corapi never gained my trust. Maybe it was his tone or the way he appeared, but seemed more like a hustler than a profoundly faithful priest. And surprise surprise, how did his drama turn out in the end?

          • Mark from PA says:

            JLS, I kind of agree with you here. He seemed that way to me too but I assumed that he was faithfully celibate. When it comes to that I am pretty naive, I must admit.

  8. THE BISHOP CALL FOR THE FOLLOWING:

    “increase their knowledge of Church teachings…special efforts to strengthen marriage and family life and increase Mass attendance and use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation…continuing initiatives related to the life and dignity of the human person and promote projects to support diocesan efforts to strengthen and encourage the laity to witness in the public square…”

    but we all know darned well some of the fans in here will call the bishops wimps for these agendas…GOD only knows why…

    • max,

      YOU know darn well that we are not criticizing them for agendas you spelled out above, but for their lack of a more complete agenda that would include forbidding the Sacraments to public sinners such a Pelosi, Biden, the Kennedys, the Campbells, etc. etc. ad nauseam!

      Have you ever heard of the evil strategy of take one step backwards in order to take three forward?

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

  9. I will give em Bishops my unsolicited advice, which I am almost certain will go unheeded. They should not expect to see any fruits of their efforts. It will take time. They need to prepare the seedbed.
    Did I hear someone ask HOW?

    ALWAYS WEAR YOUR CASSOCK. YOU ARE THE BISHOP AFTER ALL AND THE VISIBLE SIGN OF THE LOCAL CHURCH.

    Then.. Here is my Steps.

    1. Reform the priesthood by foists reforming the seminaries. Form priests like FSSP, Miles Christi or Institute of Christ the king form their men.

    2. Reform all the religious that work within your diocese; require them to wear habits or their respective

    3. Establish total intolerance of decent from Church teaching and be willing to take the fall out in public perception which means using the tools (like excommunication and defrocking) that holy mother church gives you.

    4. Reform all Theology departments within your diocese and reform the way Catechism is taught within your diocese and discipline of liturgy and sacraments.

    5. Know the state of the souls of your priests. Give them the spiritual care that Christ has called you to. You are not their CEO, you are first and foremost their spiritual father and responsible for their spiritual care.

    Do these things and perhaps your successors will see some fruit.

  10. Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

    I will give em Bishops my unsolicited advice, which I am almost certain will go unheeded. They should not expect to see any fruits of their efforts. It will take time. They need to prepare the seedbed.
    Did I hear someone ask HOW?

    1. ALWAYS WEAR YOUR CASSOCK. YOU ARE THE BISHOP AFTER ALL AND THE VISIBLE SIGN OF THE LOCAL CHURCH

    2.Reform the priesthood by foists reforming the seminaries. Form priests like FSSP, Miles Christi or Institute of Christ the king form their men.

    3.Reform all the religious that work within your diocese; require them to wear habits or their respective

    4.Establish total intolerance of decent from Church teaching and be willing to take the fall out in public perception which means using the tools (like excommunication and defrocking) that holy mother church gives you.

    5.Reform all Theology departments within your diocese and reform the way Catechism is taught within your diocese and discipline of liturgy and sacraments.

    6.Know the state of the souls of your priests. Give them the spiritual care that Christ has called you to. You are not their CEO, you are first and foremost their spiritual father and responsible for their spiritual care.

    Do these things and perhaps your successors will see some sour fruit.

  11. Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

    Edit

    #3. 3. Reform all the religious that work within your diocese; require them to wear habits or their respective religious traditional garb, not suit and tie.

  12. Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

    Any bishop can do all this stuff in their diocese. They do not need USCCB to get it done.

    • Individual Bishops are responsibile and will be held responsible.
      In keeping with the Lord’s command their FIRST task is to TEACH -
      Mk 16:15; PO 4; LG 25.
      They will be judged as individuals, not as a group under the USCCB.
      The USCCB (nor any other Conference) is not the Magisterium.

      Unfortunately, many US Bishops do not do their job.
      The following are quotes from Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict) from ‘The Ratzinger Report’.
      “We must not forget that the episcopal conferences have no theological basis, they do not belong to the structure of the Church, as willed by Christ, that cannot be elimiinated; they have only a practical concrete function.”
      “No episcopal conference, as such, has a teaching mission; its documents have no weight of their own save that of the consent given to them by the individual Bishops”

  13. Maryanne Leonard says:

    The single most important person with whom to concern ourselves is not any of the nuns, priests, bishops, not even the Pope himself; it is – yes, you guessed it – oneself! If our hearts are full of love for God and our minds properly informed to help us follow the teachings of Our Lord Jesus Christ, our fellow beings will sense the gifts of the Holy Spirit within us and be more open to hearing how it is they can perceive something godly coming through us from above. I was astonished, humbled, and blessed to learn that two of my fellow creatures came into the Church because of what they perceived in the sinner forever seeking the light that is my highly imperfect self. Whatever good I managed to emanate spoke to them in ways I never could have directly by preaching and posturing; my love for God and for them was genuine, and that made all the difference. I think that love is what caused the spread of Christianity from the very beginning, and I believe it is the love of God for us all that comes into us and, if we do not stop it with our negative thoughts and shameful shortcomings, will flow through us and out to those in need of hearing the Word of the Lord. Beyond that, great learning and great facility with words would serve one beautifully, I am sure, but it all starts with allowing God in the form of the Holy Spirit to fill our souls and finding simple ways to share that love with others. People reading our posts could be attracted to the faith more effectively if they were to read more loving posts and fewer angry comments. I speak to myself as well here.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      Self-praise. Not good. However, personal holiness, and dedication to daily prayer is where it should all start as you say.

    • MaryAnne, you are right. We will be judged based upon our own actions or lack of actions, not the actions of others.
      Others will not determine our eternal life.

      If we are not instructed to do so by our Diocese Bishop and his Priests, then we must read or re-read the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” ourselves and ask others to do the same.
      We must follow the instruction of Pope Benedict in Porta Fidei (see paragraphs #11).
      We have our own obligation to KNOW our Faith, to live our Faith, and to accurately and pass it on to our families, friends, and others.

  14. Kenneth M. Fisher says:

    Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka,

    Unfortunately for their souls, I have seen bishops and Cardinals incognito in suits and ties and worse.

    In all my time with the late Archbishop Lawrence Khai, I never saw him in secular garb. One time, while I was in the gas station paying the bill, he got out of the car in full Bishop’s robes and washed the windows of my car, that was some sight to see! It was not at all embarassing to see such humility in a true Shepherd of God, but it was humbling!

    I miss him very much.

    God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher

  15. I watched the USCCB Conference in dismay.

    1) Sacramento Bishop J. Soto, and his Committee presented an offensive video on “cultural diverisity” that they put together with the University of Notre Dame. Men and women in various costumes dancing during the Mass.
    This was very offensive. The cultural diversity for the USA is that we are a melting pot, not being forced to adhere to other cultures. Only one good Bishop mentioned that it might be offensive to some and needs to go before the Committee on Liturgy – which the committee had not done.
    The dancing and foreign singing included some on the altar and during Mass.
    You will be able to see this video on the USCCB web site in a few weeks.
    Soto got a round of applause.

    2) The paper written on “inviting” Catholics to go to Confession, was questioned by one good Bishop who stated that Catholics are required to go to Confession once a year (precept of Church and in the CCC) and there was nothing in the paper stating this.
    The Bishops’ Committee said they wanted to be gentle so they would not offend anyone, but would try to work something in about the Church’s expectation.

    3) Asking people to read or re-read the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” and share it with others – was not even mentioned in their theoretical proposal which was adopted on evangelization.
    (Apparently they only quote the Pope when it suits them. And then it was taken out of context as Bishop Soto compared the Popes appointing of Cardinals to the wild dancing and entertainment at Mass in his cultural diversity video. This video needs to be reported. It is certainly not acceptable for the USA, and takes minds off God and keeping holy the Sabbath Day.

    4) Rather than differentiating between Faithful Catholics and Catholic heretics – Cardinal Dolan compared the heretics who picketed outside the conference because the Bishops were too concerned about abortion and not concered enough about the poor and did not support Obama, to those who emailed him about concerns.
    Dolan does not differentiate between Faithful Catholics and Heretical Catholics. – As far as he is concerned they are merely right or left.

    The next USCCB conference will be in June in Coronodo (San Diego) for those interested in putting in their two cents outside the building.

    Many of these Bishops do not have a clue. They spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on garbage.
    The reason so many Fundamental Churches are gaining people while the Catholic Church in the USA is losing – is because the Fundamentalists are not afraid of offending anyone – what they believe to be sinful they proclaim loudly and clearly.

    • Dancing was up and down the isles and in the Sanctuary, not on the Altar. (Sorry if I gave the wrong impression.)

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      The Conference is a Joke, all in all said, its kind of a display of what is wrong with the Church in America. Not a single bishop in his Cassock, not even the Nuncio.

      When they speak, you can see them tacking their crucifix away into their jackets, rest it be seen.

  16. “It is a freedom of religion battle. It is not about contraception. It is not about women’s health. We’re talking about an unwarranted, unprecedented, radical intrusion” into “a church’s ability to teach, serve and sanctify on its own”. Those are the words of Cardinal Dolan in March 2012. A crisis was declared that loomed menacingly and dwarfed other issues. Some bishops even spoke of their willingness to go to jail to defend religious freedom. A “Fortnight for Freedom” was announced and the Faithful were called to rally to the cause.

    So, Faithful Catholics awaited and expected directions from their fired up leaders. What do they get from the Nov. 7th Press release from the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops? They get a depressing outpouring of bureaucratic lingo, hopelessly vague, hopelessly un actionable, patently uninspiring, and,as usual, tediously long. Worst of all there is and inexplicable silence regarding the attack on religious freedom. Is this an oversight? If so, what does it tell us about the USCCB? If it is not an oversight, then what does that tell us about them? What is one to say of bishops who will see their Faithful laity have to choose between their jobs and their consciences and won’t offer a word of support or advice? Maybe the bishops will yet address the issue before their meeting is over, but even if they do it is certainly little enough. The matter of religious freedom should be head and shoulders at the top of their priority list. The fact that it is not even on the list adds strength to the view that the USCCB is a subversive element in our Church and should be gotten rid of.

  17. The best gift the Bishops can give the laity is to run a clean shop in their diocese, take child abuse seriously, both in the Church and the Catholic home, and mentor obeying the law, Scripture and the rule of common sense. All these have been abandoned for decades in the quest to the clergy a Top Secret organization whre there is no laity input, participatoin or concern.

    Mentoring Christ’s will is the best policy to restore trust…..we don’t need seminars on how to follow Christ from Churh leaders that broke the law.

    Here’s a good start for the Bishop’s efforts…..kick the Midwestern bishop who was just convicted of misdemeaner child endangerment out of the USCCB. If you keep him in the USCCB, you are sending a messgae that breaking the law is OK. Does the “public square witnessing” the Church desires apply to the USCCB?

    • Bishops do not have the authority to “kick out” other Bishops.
      However they do have the right and obligation to contact the Vatican when there are serious issues with another Bishop.
      Code of Canon Law allows for the loss of ecclisiastical office after a trial.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      USCCB is not a valid group, its not binding in any way to the church. No Bishop has to do anything it says.

      • Bishop’s conferences are valid groups. They are canonically erected. They do not tell bishops what to do. They have a function in the church and can only be changed by the Holy See. Canon 447-459

        • k, the Law delivered by Moses was plain to the leaders of those people, and yet they refused to abide by it. What makes you confident that the bishops abide by Church Law?

        • k, it is not breaking the law of God to be suspicious. Why are you preaching not only false doctrine but stupidness?

          • JLS, base suspicions are mentioned in 1 Timothy 6:3-5. St. Thomas Aquinas discussed the level of sinfulness of suspicion. It can be either a venial or a mortal sin depending on the gravity. St. Francis de Sales spoke of it in An Introduction to the Devout Life. According to the Catechism of St. Pius X, rash judgement or rash suspicion is a sin which consists in judging or suspecting evil of others without sufficient foundation. Ven. Louis of Grenada is his book “The Sinner’s Guide” gives the sage advise to “consider your neighbor’s character as a forbidden tree which you cannot touch.” You can find on traditionalist websites a writing by John S. Daly which lists the Duties of Catholics Concerning their Neighbor’s Faults. It is very much worth reading.

    • Mark from PA says:

      Goodcause, in regard to the Midwestern bishop convicted of child endangerment, I think he is safe as long as he doesn’t say that we should have women priests or married priests. He is a good “company man” so he will be protected.

  18. The bishops on whose watch millions of babies are butchered and thousands of boys sodomized by clerics and homosexual activists running amok in Church leadership … And these bishops want to proclaim how to evangelize … What is wrong with this picture?

  19. “Being suspicious is breaking the law?” Boy…. if that doesn’t sound like the new Obama fascist’s regime! Next question… How to evangelize? Well for starters if you want credibility, it is not a very good idea or morally ethical to pretend that you are someone else on Catholic websites so that you can run interference for bad clergy and mediocrity.

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 250 words, and should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.

Post your comment

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 250 words, and should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.