Thursday, October 11, 2012

Snooze Button Meets its End: Year of Faith Resources (Part 2)



123rf.com
By Kate Flannery, Communications Department

On September 30, 2012, I sat among hundreds of people for the John Carroll Society-sponsored brunch after the annual Red Mass at St. Matthews Cathedral in Washington, D.C. and listened attentively to Archbishop Cardinal Donald Wuerl. He was funny, and I couldn’t help but lean over my chair, my chin resting on my arms, as he told us stories about some of his recent experiences with fallen-away Catholics and why the new evangelization of our faith comes at a crucial moment in time.   

According to his eminence Donald Wuerl, new evangelization has three steps:

1.      Renew your Faith
a.       Study, watch, read, learn, discuss. We come from a several thousand old tradition and are rich in resources. Use them!
b.      Receive the sacraments, pray, read scripture, spend some quiet time with God, watch a movie on the saints (Restless Heart, anyone?).
c.       Go deeper than your head, let your faith penetrate your heart.
                                                              i.      "The longest journey a man must take is the eighteen inches from his head to his heart." – Unknown
d.      Other Resources to renew your faith:
                                                              i.     The Catholicism series by Fr. Robert Barron,
                                                            ii.      The Year of Faith: A Bible Study Guide for Catholics by Fr. Mitch Pacwa
                                                          iii.      Eternal Word Television Network
                                                          iv.      Youth Catechism
                                                            v.      Catholic Apostolate Center
                                                          vi.      Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization
                                                        vii.      United States Conference of CatholicBishops page
                                                      viii.      Laudate smartphone app (I especially recommend the pray-as-you-go meditation podcasts!)
                                                          ix.      Know of other resources you find helpful? Let us know!


2.      Stand in the Truth/Have Confidence
a.       Learning why you believe what you do, understanding the history of our tradition and really taking it on as your own allows you to be firm in your faith. Be confident. Have answers to questions you have asked yourself or others have asked you. Stand in your re-discovered truth—stand boldly, confidently and straightly. 

3.      Share this Truth with others
a.       Live your faith—your actions have so much more weight than your words. Your life, your decisions, your words—everything should reflect your faith. This prayer excerpt by Pedro Arrupe, SJ explains this concept quite well:
Nothing is more practical than finding God,
Than falling in Love in a quite absolute, final way.
What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything…Fall in Love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.


How are you getting ready for the Year of Faith?