Outreach & Evangelization Commission
"It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth. But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade." Mark 4: 31-32
“For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? 15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!” Romans 10:13-15.
Data on US Catholics:
From the United States Conference of Catholic Bishop’s website:
The 2008 Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) study "Sacraments Today: Belief and Practice Among U.S. Catholics. . . ," provides a glimpse into the beliefs, practices and attitudes of U.S. Catholics. According to the study, only 23% of U.S. Catholics regularly attend Mass once a week, while 77% self-identify as proud to be Catholic. These statistics point to the need for the New Evangelization.
What is the New Evangelization?
The New Evangelization calls each of us to deepen our faith, believe in the Gospel message and go forth to proclaim the Gospel. The focus of the New Evangelization calls all Catholics to be evangelized and then go forth to evangelize. In a special way, the New Evangelization is focused on 're-proposing' the Gospel to those who have experienced a crisis of faith. Pope Benedict XVI called for the re-proposing of the Gospel "to those regions awaiting the first evangelization and to those regions where the roots of Christianity are deep but who have experienced a serious crisis of faith due to secularization."1 The New Evangelization invites each Catholic to renew their relationship with Jesus Christ and his Church.
Mission of St. Bart’s Evangelization Committee
To help each parishioner to fully embrace and own their faith, practice it like a true disciple, and share same with others, thus bringing them to Christ through their word and deeds.
Goals & Responsibilities of the Committee
Constantly explore ways and programs that will help parishioners deepen/grow their relationship with Christ.
Constantly explore ways and programs that will help parishioners recognize and be ever conscious of the need to practice their faith daily, everywhere and in every situation.
Work with Faith Formation Commission to help parishioners understand their Catholic faith more
Help create and sustain the awareness of the call for each parishioner to share the Good News with others and thus bring them or help them grow closer to their Creator.
Constantly explore ways and programs that will help the parish to become truly an evangelizing parish.
Constantly explore ways and programs that will help equip parishioners in their tasks as evangelizers.
Constantly explore ways and programs that will help us as a parish to reach out into our community and constantly invite people, especially the unchurched and inactive, to God.
Existing Evangelization Activities and Programs at St. Bart’
Summer Door-to-Door Evangelization
Our growing evangelization effort has been largely focused on our street or door-to-door evangelization during the summer. Our Religious Education Department has been doing this for some years now on a limited basis. Since 2013, we upped the ante by re-organizing our Evangelization Committee and bringing our Youth members onboard. Thus, we engage our entire neighborhood once or twice a week most of the summer, greeting them, inviting them to our religious education and parish programs, and just making our presence felt.
We also visit our local Shop Rite mall a couple of days during the summer, distributing fliers and inviting people to our parish programs.
New Parishioners Program
Quarterly we host a welcome gathering for parishioners who joined the parish newly. The program is designed to help them feel welcome and for easier integration into parish life, activities and ministries.
We also participate in the annual Yonkers’ River Fest during the summer, where we host a booth and share out literature and parish information.
Upcoming Evangelization Activities and Programs at St. Bart’s
Bold Disciples of St. Bart’s
We are all called to be Disciples of Christ and spread the Good News. The Good News is not meant for us to horde. We are to share it with others; actually this is Jesus’ command. As a parish, we can begin to accomplish this mission in a variety of ways, which the Committee will help to explore and introduce to the parishioners at Mass.
Share Your Gift of Faith
Does the word “Evangelization” strike fear in your heart? Is there someone in your life that you want to bring to Christ, but you have no idea what to say or do? Conquer your fear by attending a session that will equip you and help you learn how to share your own story of faith as a means of evangelizing others. Plus discover and practice many other techniques in real life scenarios – even your own!
The Top 10 List of Practical Evangelization Etiquette to bear in mind:
10) Smile and be enthusiastic. Smiles can melt away inhibitions.
09) Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Do not criticize, condemn, or complain - find common ground.
08) Learn to listen instead of hear. Be genuinely interested in others. “Be in the room!” (If you find yourself thinking
about what you will say next while the person is talking, you are doing it wrong!)
07) Don’t lecture or debate. No one comes to Christ by being debated or lectured.
06) Don’t deny the truth, embrace it.
05) Don’t justify or make excuses for wrongs that were done – apologize sincerely on behalf of the Church.
04) Don’t feel you have to have all the answers. Let them know you’ll find out what you don’t know.
03) Don’t give all the answers; “Leave dialogue open.” Don’t answer if it will end the conversation. The goal is to
continue the conversation at a later date.
02) Return a question for their question, like “why do you ask…”, or “why do you feel that way”
01) Be honest and be credible – practice what you preach! Be an intentional disciple!
Touched By God Stories
Personal testimonies provide challenging, inspiring and reassuring evidence that God is indeed alive and active among us. Each year, the Evangelization Committee will accept and compile personal testimonies. Encourage and inspire someone on their faith journey by sharing your own story.
The stories will not be stories of conversion alone, but stories of Jesus touching your life, helping you through illness, grief, divorce, abortion, family issues, etc. Jesus said he would be with us always. Share how Jesus has been with you. Someone may need to read your story.
Authors’ names will NOT be used to protect the privacy of the parties. We will notify you if your story is chosen. The Pastor will be fully involved in choosing the stories that will be put out.
Submission for 2016 is still going on. The maximum word count is 2000. Please send your story to Evangelization Committee, C/O The Pastor, 15 Palmer Road, Yonkers, NY 10701, or email it with a message subject: Submission. Please include your name or a pseudonym, a contact number or an email address and the theme category at the top of your story. Email stories to Fr. Raphael at firstname.lastname@example.org or to Cheryl Duda at stBartsRelEd@aol.com
Evangelization Committee Member Position Description
Reports to: Evangelization Chairperson
General Responsibilities of Every Ministry and Committee Member:
Specific Responsibilities of Evangelization Committee Member
Expected Length of Commitment
General Qualifications Required of Every Ministry and Committee Member:
Specific Qualifications Required
Evangelization Committee Chairperson Position Description
Reports to: Report to Commission Chair
General Responsibilities of Every Ministry and Committee Chairperson and Coordinator:
Specific Responsibilities of Evangelization Chairperson
During missions or retreats
Season Masses & Liturgies
Extra Time of Commitment
As needed to carry out the responsibilities of the chairperson of the Committee
Expected Length of Commitment
At least two years
General Qualifications Required of Every Ministry and Committee Chairperson and Coordinator:
Specific Qualifications Required