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Book & Resource Reviews

Evangelizing Through Story

Posted in Book & Resource Reviews

“Every Christian is challenged, here and now, to be actively engaged in evangelization; indeed, anyone who has truly experienced God’s saving love does not need much time or lengthy training to go out and proclaim that love.”

Pope Francis (Evangelii Gaudium)

“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 below 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.

If you are interested in a Formation and Reflection Event on the role of listening and story in evangelization and the art of accompaniment, contact us today.  

Listening As a Disciple

Posted in Book & Resource Reviews

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 below 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.

If you are interested in a Formation and Reflection Event on the role of listening and story in evangelization and the art of accompaniment, contact us today.  

Dandelions for Mary

Posted in Book & Resource Reviews

Review of Take it To the Queen: A Tale of Hope

Spring in Kansas brings beautiful pink and white blossoms, bright green leaves, new blades of grass, and every young child’s flower of choice: the dandelion. There is usually no shortage of bright yellow blooms and white balls of fluff adorning our slightly neglected yard. Thus, to my daughter’s great delight, she can pick flowers whenever she chooses. Often, she brings the flowers over to me, and joyfully bestows her gift of a dandelion bouquet upon an all too grateful mother. They may be weeds, but when given with total love by a bright-eyed three-year-old, they seem more beautiful than the most gorgeous of roses.

When May arrived, I decided that we would spend a little time honoring and learning about Mary. We planted flowers in a small Mary garden and I purchased a new book. Take It to the Queen: A Tale of Hope width= by Josephine Nobisso is an allegorical account of Mary’s role in salvation and as our mother.  I wondered if the story might be a little advanced for my daughter, but she was captivated. At the end, without any prompting from me, she even asked if the story had a picture of baby Jesus. She must have grasped at least little pieces of the allegory.

How Do You Pray? When You're Too Busy To Pray

Posted in Book & Resource Reviews

Too Busy to Pray

Our church bookclub recently finished the book Saint John Paul the Great: His Five Loves by Jason Evert. Part biography and part explanation of five things Mr. Evert deemed most important to this amazing pope and saint, the book was a page-turning and inspiring read

It must be impossible to read about this great saint without desiring to amend some aspect of one’s own life in imitation of his holiness. Among the amazing aspects of Saint John Paul the Great’s life was his devotion to near constant prayer.

My own prayer life had been inconsistent and of little depth in recent months, so I decided that now would be the perfect time to make some changes. 

Jumping In With Both Feet

Inspired by Saint John Paul the Great’s other great devotion to Mary, I thought that the daily Rosary would be a good place to start. Some of the women in the book club recommended saying the Rosary while doing other tasks, such as driving or doing dishes. After some rather questionable driving, loading dirty dishes into the dishwasher with clean ones and falling asleep while praying in the evening, I decided that I need to pray the Rosary when I am neither busy nor tired.

The Stations of the Cross

Posted in Book & Resource Reviews

The Stations of the Cross refers to the depiction of the final hours (or Passion) of Jesus, and the devotion commemorating the Passion.  

All Catholic parishes have depictions of Christ’s Passion and death called the Stations of the Cross, The Way of the Cross or Via Dolorosa (way of suffering) In many churches, the Stations of the Cross are depicted in stained-glass windows, but other media are used as well, including paintings and stone or wood carvings and sculptures.  Often on Friday evenings during Lent, you can find a parish that’s open with Catholics meditating and saying prayers in unison before each of the 14 stations.

The Stations of the Cross is a Lenten devotion that offers witness to Jesus’ Passion and Death. Often, the Stations of the Cross is an action prayer. Catholics walk to the fourteen stations of the Way of the Cross and stop to pray at each one.  At each station we use our senses and our imagination to reflect prayerfully upon Jesus’ suffering, Death, and Resurrection, and to simply experience the visual images to reflect on Christ’s love for us.

We've listed the best Way of the Cross prayer resources for...

    • busy adults who may not be able to join your parish Stations of the Cross prayer time.

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