Growing the Parish as an Ongoing Ministry

Evangelization (growing the parish) is an ongoing ministry of the parish, a process by which the power of the Good News of Jesus makes people into disciples or reinforces their discipleship according to God’s desire to transform all humanity. A parish’s strategy should have three reference points: The parish community itself; members of the community who are not church members: the overarching aim of transforming all human existence.

We cannot evangelize without being changed. This ministry will bring as much to the parish as it offers to others outside the parish. A relatively simple evangelization technique is to invite others to visit our parish and look through their eyes to see how we are viewed. We can use the measuring stick of what others see, and seek, when they come to us. Until we develop the capacity to reach out to those who are not members of parish our growth will be relatively small.

As Catholics we interact in our social life with many co-workers and friends who have no “spiritual home” how would they react if we invited them to our Palm Sunday, Easter or Christmas services. Inviting a friend to join us clearly says we find a benefit from attending our Church and would enjoy having others enjoy that very same spiritual growth and benefit.