Goal II and Its Objectives (¶104-116)
104. Goal II: 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
This goal means that we are to invite effectively every person to come
to know the Good News of Jesus proclaimed by the Catholic Church. This
goal goes along with the first one, for, as that goal is sought,
Catholics will develop an inviting attitude as a general part of our
everyday spirituality. This goal means not only that people are invited
but also that an essential welcoming spirit is present in Catholic homes
and in all our Catholic institutions: parishes, organizations,
hospitals, schools, chanceries, and centers of neighborhood service.
This goal also has ecumenical implications.
The strategy behind this goal is to create a more welcoming
attitude toward others in our parishes so that people feel at home;
next, to create an attitude of sharing faith and to develop greater
skills to do this; then, to undertake activities to invite others to
know the Catholic people better.
To attain this second goal, the following objectives should be pursued:
106. To make every Catholic institution, especially our parishes, more welcoming
- review of the hospitality of our institutions;
- use of parochial schools and religious education programs for outreach and welcome for the whole family;
- workshops on greeting and welcoming;
- retraining of ushers, receptionists, and other personnel; and
- study of the access and availability of our institutions to
people (e.g., considering event times, lighting, and signs and posters),
particularly with regard to ways to welcome those with disabilities
(e.g., having ramps into churches, adequate sound systems, and signing
for the hearing impaired).
To help every Catholic feel comfortable about sharing his or
her faith and inviting people to discover Christ in our Catholic family
108. To develop within families and households the capacity to share the Gospel
- faith-sharing groups;
- training on discerning religious experience and articulating it;
- development of a greater ability to listen and empathize; and
- encouragement of converts to share their stories of faith.
109. To equip and empower our active Catholic members to exercise their baptismal call to evangelize
- programs to support parents as the primary sharers of faith with their children;
- family outreach to other families to experience the Good News of Jesus;
- training programs for families, individually or in support groups, on more effective methods of sharing the Gospel; and
- fostering of regular family prayer and share time.
110. To use special times in parish and family life to invite people to faith
- renewal days;
- witness training;
- training of Catholics for one-to-one evangelization;
- use of baptismal and sacramental preparation to expand understandings of discipleship;
- modeling and witness from those involved in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults;
- evangelization components in religious education materials;
- parish missions; and
- preparation of specially designated people as full-time evangelizers.
111. To cultivate an active core of the baptized to serve as
ministers of evangelization in their parishes, dioceses, neighborhoods,
workplaces, and homes
- invitation to young families to share about forming their young children in faith;
- special ministry to young adults in parishes and college campuses;
- emphasis on the evangelizing dimension of youth ministry for middle school and high school students; and
- involvement of youth and families in ministries of faith and service to others.
112. To effectively invite people to our Church
Possible Strategies on the National Level:
- formation of diocesan evangelization committees and offices;
- formation of evangelization teams in parishes;
- formation and support of national and regional schools of evangelization; and
- workshops and support groups for those involved in evangelization in a more explicit way.
Possible Strategies on the Local Level:
- careful input into the images that are projected about the Church through the media;
- recruitment of Catholics skilled in media to assist in this new imaging;
- care for the evangelizing dimension of every official church pronouncement; and
- development of national media campaigns that describe the Catholic Church.
113. To design programs of outreach for those who have ceased being active in the Church
- mailings, home visits, and consistent invitation to people newly moving into parish areas;
- neighborhood publicity through newspapers and posters;
- periodic taking of a census;
- involvement in and service to the neighborhood;
- development of neighborhood, parish, and local events to which
people would be specially invited (e.g., open houses, open forums for
airing questions and issues, events for friends or extended families, or
other programs of welcoming); and
- greater sensitivity to the needs of the seeker.
114. To design programs that reach out in particular ways to
those who do not participate in a church community or who seek the
fullness of faith
- development of programs to help people experience reconciliation;
- renewed celebration of the Sacrament of Reconciliation;
- programs for the divorced and separated and for those who feel alienated from the Church;
- professional surveys of inactive Catholics;
- development of ministries that emphasize the mercy and compassion of God; and
- parish missions.
115. To foster cultural diversity within the unity of the Church
- formation of innovative methods of inquiry in the period before the catechumenate;
- programs of hospitality and welcome, at the local church or in homes;
- exploration of new forms of Catholic presence in cities, suburban malls, storefronts, and other places of congregation;
- personal visits; and
- regional mailings.
116. To deepen ecumenical involvement
- serious review of diocesan policies about parish organization,
leadership, and empowerment to ensure that newcomers to our land have a
place in the Church;
- training of clergy and ministers in needed foreign languages;
- programs to advance greater understanding of cultural diversity;
- efforts to help newcomers to our land to develop their own
social and church structures (while ensuring the unity of the Church);
- joint celebrations of the many cultures represented in our
parishes, especially on great feast days, to reflect the Catholic scope
of our lives.
- careful collaboration with local and state ecumenical agencies;
- joint study of Roman Catholic and other Christian dialogues touching on evangelization, mission, and proselytism;
- study of Roman Catholic understandings of and approaches to Judaism;
- development of sensitivities to interreligious relationship and Roman Catholic teaching on dialogue and proclamation;
- mutual dialogue and sharing;
- joint scriptural study and social justice projects;
- shared discussion groups and socials; and
- joint services of prayer and devotion, where appropriate.