Making the Gospel Come Alive, The Case for Religious Education

Posted on May 11, 2017

The power of religious education to evangelize.

Saint Joe’s Parish, second grade. Was I excited about Vacation Bible School? Maybe…maybe not. It wasn’t even our church, it was “school,” still at least I was doing it with a friend.

The details are hazy, but I remember tinsel, life-sized paper Bible scenes, theatrical skits, and a dramatic dress-up ensemble I was just sure would have rivaled Queen Esther’s winning wardrobe – complete with a flower in my hair. My little heart was won.

Religious Education: Evangelizing in Truth

It is rare that Catholics are “evangelized” that is, rooted in Christ and brought into the full life of the Church, overnight. No, our hearts are rather won little by little. A lifetime of Christian witness, daily encounter with God in prayer, and faith formation, set us firmly upon the Rock.[1] Thus catechized (and evangelized), when the rains of life come, when conflicting voices seem to thunder, there is no washing away the foundation built on truth.[2]

Reach Your Community, Make the Gospel Come Alive

Pope Francis said, “Education cannot be neutral. It is either positive or negative; either it enriches or it impoverishes; either it enables a person to grow or it lessens, even corrupts him. The mission…is to develop a sense of truth, of what is good and beautiful…. True education enables us to love life and opens us to the fullness of life.”

You may have already planned an incredible summer education program or Vacation Bible School. Leaders are trained, engaged, and enthusiastic. Activities are lovingly planned, full of adventure and fun to make the Gospel come ALIVE to your children. But if you’re not reaching your parishioners and the larger community, what’s the point?

Bridge the Gap with ConnectNow

Enter your ConnectNow platform. Not a one-step solution, but a critical piece of the puzzle that can ignite engagement on every level of parish life, including your religious education offerings! For more information on the efficiency of ConnectNow’s integrated system and an in-depth look at powering parish ministries with ConnectNow, please check out our VBS Tools to Jumpstart Next Year’s Ministries blog post.

Marketing and the Parish

Looking for ideas on how to reach your parishioners and community? It starts with a plan and your ConnectNow tools. Stay tuned for a step-by-step guide to effective marketing and engagement – beginning with your summer RE program.

How has your parish leveraged Summer faith formation programs to enrich parish and community life? Share your story or leave us a comment below!

Interested to learn more about how ConnectNow can power your parish ministries? Call ParishSOFT at 866.930.4774 x 7, or sign up for a free demo!

 

[1] Deuteronomy 32:3-4, NIV: “I will proclaim the name of the LORD. Oh, praise the greatness of our God! 4 He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.”

[2] Matthew 7:24-25, NIV: “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”

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