Evangelization, Liturgy & Parish Faith Formation
(c) Dr. Peter J. Zografos
The National Conference of Catholic Bishops articulated three goals for Evangelization in their document, “Go and Make Disciples.”
- To bring about in all Catholics such an enthusiasm for their faith that, in living their faith in Jesus, they freely share it with others.
- To invite all people in the United States, whatever their social or cultural background, to hear the message of salvation in Jesus Christ so they may come to join us in the fullness of the Catholic faith.
- To foster gospel values in our society, promoting the dignity of the human person, the importance of the family, and the common good of our society, so that our nation may continue to be transformed by the saving power of Jesus Christ.
“As liturgist Aidan Kavanagh has concluded, liturgy teaches ‘nondiscursively, richly, ambiguously, elementally’”(Mary C. Boys, Educating in Faith, 99). We are called through our liturgies not to limit our identity to present realities, but to expand to include our highest potential. Liturgy is the celebration of the on-going process of redemption in and of the world. The miracle of the loaves and fishes was that all shared, not just food but self and the multitudes were ministered to by the disciples. We proclaim in our liturgies the model of the reign of God and ritually express our longing for the promised future. Liturgy sustains and nourishes us in our ministries as Disciples of Christ. The worshipping assembly transcends our individuality and emphasizes our community identity. We gather because we are called, like the multitudes, and because we are obeying Jesus’ command to give thanks and share word and bread in his remembrance until his return. It is in our gathering that we show that we care for one another. It is through this formation of liturgical catechesis that we can find Christian conversion and transformation. We do that when we “reverence the dignity of each person, create a spirit of hospitality, and pursue integrity in word and deed in our lives.” (Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Founding Document, July 20, 1991). Liturgy is the source and summit of evangelization.
From Passover to Eucharist: God's Liberating Love
an article by Rev. Lawrence E. Mick