"There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know him and to speak to others of our friendship with him." (Benedict XVI)
The Church “exists in order to evangelize, that is to say in order to preach and teach, to be the channel of the gift of grace, to reconcile sinners with God, and to perpetuate Christ’s sacrifice in the Mass, which is the memorial of his death and glorious resurrection.” (EN14)
Evangelization is not just the ministry of a few people in the Church. It is not a specialization. Rather, it is the work of the entire Church and all its members. “No believer in Christ, no institution of the Church can avoid this supreme duty: to proclaim Christ of all people.” (RM3) This is the essential aspect of evangelization: to tell the story of Christ and what he has done for us.
The Diocesan Office of Evangelization exists to assist parishes, groups and individuals to become aware of the need for evangelization and to empower every baptized Catholic to become a disciple who shares the faith with others. Following the document of the US Bishops Go and Make Disciples, a National Plan and Strategy for Catholic Evangelization in the United States, the Office of Evangelization has three goals:
- To bring about in all Catholics such an enthusiasm for their faith that, in living their faith in Jesus, they freely share it with others;
- To invite all people in the United States, whatever their social or cultural background, to hear the message of salvation in Jesus Christ so they may come to join us in the fullness of the Catholic faith;
- To foster gospel values in our society, promoting the dignity of the human person, the importance of the family, and the common good of our society, so that our nation may continue to be transformed by the saving power of Jesus Christ.
Year of Faith
In 2012, our Holy Father has proclaimed a Year of Faith,asking each of us to “rediscover the journey of faith so to shed ever clearer joy and renewed enthusiasm of the encounter with Christ.” The Year of Faith opened on October 11, 2012 and will conclude November 24, 2013, but the graces will continue well beyond that time. In our own Diocese of Ogdensburg there will be many opportunities to celebrate the Year of Faith. We have created a special Year of Faith Portal to keep you informed:
Click logo to go to the Diocesan Year of Faith Portal
For more information about the Office of Evangelization, please browse the website, read our newsletter Horizons, follow us on Facebook or contact the Director for Evangelization Marika Donders at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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