Scripture and the Mission

The National Office of the Pontifical Mission Societies in the United States (New York) recently launched two new websites: offers reflection on Sunday readings in light of our vocation to evangelize; with homily suggestions for the same Sunday readings with an evangelization theme.  Commentary for the coming Sunday is posted on both websites the preceding Monday. There are also mission-based insights on both websites for non-Sunday Liturgical celebrations, such as, for the feast days of St. Thérèse of Lisieux (October 1) and St. Francis Xavier (December 3), and Christmas. The websites have a direct link to related Scripture passages from the “readings” page of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ website

Authenticity & Truth in a Digital Age


VATICAN CITY, 29 SEP 2010 (VIS) - Made public today was the theme chosen by the Pope for the forty-fifth World Day of Social Communications: "Truth, proclamation and authenticity of life in the digital age". His Message for the Day will be published on 24 January 2011, feast of St. Francis of Sales, patron of journalism.
An English-language note released by the Pontifical Council for Social Communications explains that the theme is "to be understood as focusing on the human person who is at the heart of all communicative processes. Even in an age that is largely dominated, and at times conditioned, by new technologies, the value of personal witness remains essential.

"To approach the truth and to take on the task of sharing it", the note adds, "requires the 'guarantee' of an authenticity of life from those who work in the media, and especially from Catholic journalists; an authenticity of life that is no less required in a digital age.
"Technology, on its own, cannot establish or enhance a communicator's credibility, nor can it serve as a source of the values which guide communication. The truth must remain the firm and unchanging point of reference of new media and the digital world, opening up new horizons of information and knowledge. Ideally, it is the pursuit of truth which constitutes the fundamental objective of all those who work in the media".

Using Talents Online

If we want more people to use the Internet for mission, we need to get more of our best teachers and preachers online. Look around, speak with your colleagues. Is there someone whom you can you invite to this important ministry? Go to them and make your case.

Baptism Starts Mission


VATICAN CITY, JAN 9, 2005 “The mission of every Christian also begins with Baptism," said the Holy Father. The rediscovery of Baptism, through appropriate itineraries of adult catechesis, is thus an important aspect of the new evangelization. Renewing in a more mature fashion one's own adherence to the faith is the condition for a true and full participation in the Eucharistic celebration that is the summit of ecclesial life." ANG/BAPTISM/... VIS 050110 (210)

10 Suggestions for Using Social Media

10 Suggestions for Using Social Media at Catholic Organizations
by Craig Berry

This is not an attempt to convince you that ‘Social Media’ is a worthwhile endeavor. I’m assuming you’ve already passed from denial into acceptance that this new form of communication is here to stay. Still, if you need convincing, try this and this.

Link here:
10 Suggestions for Using Social Media at Catholic Organizations – Social Media Management, Internet Marketing and Web-Based Strategies

Seek New Methods of Evangelization

 Seek New Methods of Evangelization

VATICAN CITY, 11 SEP 2010 (VIS) - At midday today Benedict XVI received participants in a congress for recently-consecrated bishops, regularly organised by the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.
The acceptance and the fruit of the proclamation of the Good News are closely linked to the quality of faith and prayer. Those called to the ministry of preaching must believe in the power of God which is released in the Sacraments and which accompanies them in their duty to sanctify, govern and announce. They must believe and live what they proclaim and celebrate.

You must not give in to pessimism and discouragement, because it is the Holy Spirit that guides the Church and gives her ... the courage to persevere and seek new methods of evangelization, so as to reach areas as yet unexplored.

The Christian truth, is attractive and persuasive because it responds to the profound need of human existence, convincingly announcing that Christ is the one Savior of all of man and of all humankind. This announcement remains valid today, just as it was at the beginning of Christianity when the first great missionary expansion of the Gospel took place.

Globalization and Christian Hope

VATICAN - Benedict XVI tells the youth: “In our age of globalization, be witnesses of Christian hope all over the world.”
Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - “Christ is not a treasure meant for us alone; he is the most precious treasure we have, one that is meant to be shared with others. In our age of globalization, be witnesses of Christian hope all over the world. How many people long to receive this hope!” These are the words addressed by Benedict XVI to the youth of the entire world in his Message for the XXVI World Youth Day.

The Pope mentions that the upcoming World Youth Day will take place in Madrid, Spain, in August 2011, on the theme “Planted and built up in Jesus Christ, firm in the faith" (cf. Col 2:7) and that it will be celebrated “at a time when Europe greatly needs to rediscover its Christian roots.” Part of being young is “desiring something beyond everyday life and a secure job, a yearning for something really truly greater...Because human beings are made in the image of God, we do this in a unique and special way. We reach out for love, joy and peace...In some parts of the world, particularly in the West, today’s culture tends to exclude God, and to consider faith a purely private issue with no relevance for the life of society.” The Pope warns of the “a growing mentality of relativism, which holds that everything is equally valid, that truth and absolute points of reference do not exist. But this way of thinking does not lead to true freedom, but rather to instability, confusion and blind conformity to the fads of the moment.”

Commenting on the text from St. Paul chosen as the theme of the World Youth Day: “Planted and built up in Jesus Christ, firm in the faith" (cf. Col 2:7), the Pope notes that “grammatically all three terms in the original text are in the passive voice. This means that it is Christ himself who takes the initiative to plant, build up and confirm the faithful.” Benedict XVI then exhorts the youth to build their house on the rock, to try to follow Christ's word every day. “Listen to him as a true friend with whom you can share your path in life. With him at your side, you will find courage and hope to face difficulties and problems, and even to overcome disappointments and set-backs.”

In the cultural context in which we live today, “Indeed, there is a strong current of secularist thought that aims to make God marginal in the lives of people and society by proposing and attempting to create a 'paradise' without him. Yet experience tells us that a world without God becomes a 'hell': filled with selfishness, broken families, hatred between individuals and nations, and a great deficit of love, joy and hope. On the other hand, wherever individuals and nations accept God’s presence, worship him in truth and listen to his voice, then the civilization of love is being built, a civilization in which the dignity of all is respected, and communion increases, with all its benefits.”

Benedict XVI exhorts the youth to learn to “see,” to “meet” Jesus in the Eucharist, in the Sacrament of Penance, in the poor, the sick, in those in difficulty, in a personal dialogue with Him in faith, through reading the Gospels and the Catechism of the Catholic Church, in prayer. “Our personal faith in Christ, which comes into being through dialogue with him, is bound to the faith of the Church. We do not believe as isolated individuals, but rather, through Baptism, we are members of this great family; it is the faith professed by the Church which reinforces our personal faith,” the Pope says. “There have been, and still are, many Christians who are living witnesses of the power of faith that is expressed in charity. They have been peacemakers, promoters of justice and workers for a more humane world, a world in accordance with God’s plan. With competence and professionalism, they have been committed in different sectors of the life of society, contributing effectively to the welfare of all... In the same way, if you believe, and if you are able to live out your faith and bear witness to it every day, you will become a means of helping other young people like yourselves to find the meaning and joy of life, which is born of an encounter with Christ!” (SL) (Agenzia Fides 4/09/2010)

Complete text of the Holy Father's Message, in English

Complete text of the Holy Father's Message, in Spanish

Jesus the Christ e-Conference

Meeting Jesus on the internet, E-Conference: “Jesus the Christ: Fully Human, Truly Divine”

Sydney (Agenzia Fides) – Fr. Gerald O'Collins SJ will be the headline speaker at the Broken Bay Institute's next National E-Conference, 'Jesus the Christ: Fully human, Truly divine', on Thursday 16 September 2010. The e-conferences began in 2009, and have proved an innovative new way to bring Catholic communities across Australia together for groundbreaking talks from renowned international and local speakers. Communities across the country have hosted the talks via internet feed. These gatherings can follow the talks online, and then participate in sharing and discussion among themselves, and send email questions direct to the speakers. Previous e-conferences have explored the Year of St Paul, St Luke, and Mary - First Disciple. The latest focuses on the central figure of our faith, Jesus Christ. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 1/9/2010 )

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