Welcoming Catholics Back to the Church. In Advent, the archdiocese will be initiating an evangelization program which invites inactive Catholics to return home to the Church. Based on St. Augustine’s great prayer “Our hearts are restless, Lord, until they rest in Thee,” this outreach builds upon the natural desire to renew and to deepen one’s faith in God. We will prepare parishes to receive new and returning Catholics through specially developed resources and training for parish staff. Parish and diocesan pastoral teams will respond to people who seek support and healing, especially those who feel alienated or distant from the Church community. In a special message to the archdiocese, Cardinal Seán will invite active Catholics to assist him in the great apostolic work of bringing souls to God by supporting this evangelization initiative through their prayers, generosity and a renewed passion for Christ and the Church.
These initiatives, and the many other ongoing efforts in the archdiocese, are focused on the importance of sharing the gifts of our faith with others so that they can come to know and love Christ our Savior. We are attempting to actively live our baptismal promise and call as Christians. Cardinal Seán’s comments during the 2009 Chrism Mass summed up the fruits of these efforts in a most eloquent way when he said, “We are called to evangelize out of love of Jesus Christ and of the people who will be graced by what His Kingdom of love, peace and justice will bring to their lives.” I urge you to be a partner in evangelization by living your faith fully and sharing your love for Christ generously. Imagine how blessed this new decade will be when Catholics throughout the archdiocese heed the call of Christ and the Church to grow in faith and to become evangelizers for the Lord.
Father Richard M. Erikson is vicar general and moderator of the curia of the Archdiocese of Boston.
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