“Letting others know that you are
Catholic and the positive influence
this is for may be one way of
helping others find Christ.”
– Fr. Bill
Have you invited anyone to church lately?
This past year was only the third time in my 39 years of priesthood that I experienced an Easter Vigil without any baptisms.
COVID may have played a role in that. On the other hand, maybe the invitation was never extended. That invitation often begins with the average Catholic in the pew. You are the ambassadors for the parish and for the Church. Others, who may be searching for God, might hear in your description of our faith community or see in your manner of life something that attracts their interest or awakens a longing in their hearts.
When talking with relatives, friends, or neighbors, is there a way to share something you value about our parish or about the Catholic Faith? It could be as simple as sharing the parish’s value of caring for the environment or engagement in issues of social justice and compassion. Perhaps it is the experience of being part of a community that is important to you or the style of Catholic worship. Letting others know that you are Catholic and the positive influence this is for may be one way of helping others find Christ.
Sometimes a direct invitation can work. “I’m going to church this weekend; would you like to join me?” “Have you ever thought about becoming a Catholic?” You may be the only way God has to draw someone to the faith. When you see someone moving into your neighborhood, as you welcome them to the local community, might you ask, “Do you have a church community? Are you looking for one?” If they already belong to another denomination, you could still help them find where that denomination is located.
You may be the invitation someone needs to draw closer to Christ. Being that invitation might help you draw closer to Christ as well.