August 7, 2019 - Presenters: Steve & Maureen Anderson / Tony & Kristin Bird
All Christians are invited to a “renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ” (Evangelii Gaudium, no. 9).
Christ calls all people to himself in his Body, the Church, through the workings of the Holy Spirit, so that we can enter into a personal relationship with God the Father. “In virtue of their baptism, all the members of the People of God have become missionary disciples” (Evangelii Gaudium, no. 120).
The Diocese of Biloxi staff inservice is designed to:
- provide an overview of Bishop Kihneman's vision for moving the entire diocese to a culture of missionary discipleship,
- explain the evangelization and discipleship process and provide a common language and vocabulary for the process,
- offer an opportunity for personal encounter with Jesus and personal exploration of the core gospel proclamation (kerygma),
- guide staff through a process of identifying the key elements of their personal journeys to discipleship, and
- equip staff with beginning practical tools and skills to discern where others may be on their faith journey and how to help walk them into their next step.
Many participants find that attending a single seminar or retreat day is only able to provide a brief overview of some of the key elements to discipleship and evangelization. Spending time reflecting, praying, and learning both individually and as a group will help ensure you take the concepts from theories and apply them in practice in your own life and in your parish.
Here you can find the handouts and resources used during the inservce day as well as a list of resources we recommend for both individuals and groups to help you on your path toward missionary discipleship.
There are a number of resources and tools that we can recommend to help you proclaim the kerygma most effectively to the people you have been called to evangelize.
Ultimately however, the most powerful proclamation of the kerygma is the one that comes from out of your personal encounter with the life-changing power of the person of Jesus. The most effective proclamation tool you have at your fingertips is your answer to this question:
WHAT DIFFERENCE HAS JESUS MADE IN YOUR LIFE?
Internalizing and living this core apostolic proclamation in your own life must come before any of these resources below can be used with any expectation of fruitfulness.
From the newborn who sticks out her tongue after watching Mom do it, to the toddler who snags dad's phone and pretends to send a text, to the child who gathers his friends to play school, children learn best through imitation. It is no different with this initial and fundamental proclamation of the person of Jesus.
Any attempts to share the Good News of Jesus with children will suffer greater difficulties and more obstacles when we are not intentionally evangelizing parents (and grandparents!) and then equipping families to share their witness with one another.
The resources listed below, when used in combination with family formation and evangelizatino, can help children encounter, absorb, and proclaim Jesus. The resources here are not exhaustive, but these are a few we have found to be particularly helpful.
The 2000+ year tradition of the Catholic Church is so wide and rich that there is something for everyone, no matter what your background, learning style, interest, or schedule. Whether you have been away from the Catholic Church, want to become Catholic, or desire to grow in a deeper knowledge and appreciation of the Catholic faith, we can provide you tools, resources, and support that fit your needs and your schedule. We invite you to discover that Catholic faith that is more than just a theory, or set of teachings.
As you continue to grow in intimacy and friendship with God, know that we are praying for you. If you have questions, concerns, or find that the resources here aren’t exactly what you need, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Session Presenters: Tony & Kristin Bird
The concept of “love languages” can help us understand how God communicates His love to us and how we in turn can respond to that love. It could be that we are trying to receive God’s love in a language we do not speak well. Instead, consider trying to let God love you the way He created you to best receive love - through your primary Love Language(s).
The love languages can also help us to better reveal God's Love to those around us and can be a great tool to help others to encounter God's Love for them. The resources here were referenced during the Love Language breakout session.
Session Presenter: Maureen Anderson
In the Joy of the Gospel, Pope Francis talks about the essential role of listening in evangelization and discipleship:
“We need to practice the art of listening, which is more than simply hearing. Listening...is an openness of heart which makes possible that closeness without which genuine spiritual cannot occur. Listening helps us to find the right gesture and word which shows that we are more than simply bystanders. Only through such respectful and compassionate listening can we enter on the paths of true growth and awaken a yearning for the Christian ideal: the desire to respond fully to God's love and to bring to fruition what he has sown in our lives.”
The resources here expand on the role of listening and can provide additional reflections, practical tips, and suggestions on how to begin listening with the openness of heart which makes true conversion possible.
Session Presenter: Steve Anderson
“Modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers, and if he does listen to teachers, it is because they are witnesses.”
Pope Paul VI (Evangelii Nuntiandi)
“The witness of Christians, whose lives are filled with the hope of Christ, opens the hearts and minds of those around them to Christ.”
USCCB, Disciples Called to Witness
The most valuable way to share our faith is by telling our own story, our testimony of the difference Jesus Christ has made in our lives, in a firsthand account. This session helps participants identify the key elements of their personal journeys to discipleship.
The resources here expand on the role of story in evangelizing and can provide additional reflections, practical tips, and suggestions on how to think about both incorporating story and sharing your own story.