Stop using the Word Evangelize.

Dear Catholic ministers,

Please stop using the word Evangelize.  The word speaks of the need to force conversion on others which implies a sense of colonialism and force. Please stop stop using this word, even if you don't mean it in this way I urge you to say what you mean.  This is the definition of "new evangelization" from the USCCB (U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops)

"The New Evangelization calls each of us to deepen our faith, believe in the Gospel message and go forth to proclaim the Gospel. The focus of the New Evangelization calls all Catholics to be evangelized and then go forth to evangelize. In a special way, the New Evangelization is focused on 're-proposing' the Gospel to those who have experienced a crisis of faith."

The 2008 Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) study "Sacraments Today: Belief and Practice Among U.S. Catholics. . . ," provides a glimpse into the beliefs, practices and attitudes of U.S. Catholics. According to the study, only 23% of U.S. Catholics regularly attend Mass once a week, while 77% self-identify as proud to be Catholic. These statistics point to the need for the New Evangelization.

 In the spirit of the New Evangelization, it is our hope that the resources on this page will yield even greater harvests for Christ in the future so that all people can dwell in the shade. Pope Benedict XVI and the New Evangelization:

I don't know about you, my fellow Catholic Ministers but this word is gross.  Though, I know it literally means "good news" it is not just a Catholic word but is also a word used by other Christians which, again, implies conversion from a place of freedom.  When I hear the word I shut down. I know, for a fact, many young people hear that word and shut down.

It is a word that makes people STOP listening.

It is offensive to presume that people who are former Catholics need to become Catholic again to find God. God is bigger than this and is not just found in the Church. If you really respect other religions and other expressions of Christianity you must stop using this language!

Finally, I think it is the Catholic Church Hierarchy that needs "new evangelization" as described above.  I suspect that the reason that Catholics are not at Church every week is because it is irrelevant, not helping them make meaning of their lives, patriarchal and misogynistic. If you want "yield a great harvest" then let God be bigger than the Roman Catholic Church.




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