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CALL, RENEWAL
AND
EVANGELIZATION
CALL, RENEWAL
AND
EVANGELIZATION
Call, Renewal, Evangelization
Building upon what has been examined
so far, the role of the laity can be
summarized in a three-part statement:
The laity are called to the vocation of
holiness for the purpose of renewing
the temporal order by means of
evangelization.
Called to the vocation of holiness
• The Second Vatican Council consistently
emphasized holiness, as noted above. At
the heart of the Church's encounters with
modernity, with other religions, and with
her own identity is the reality of holiness-
-and the call of everyone in the Church to
the vocation of holiness:
• "Therefore all in the Church, whether
they belong to the hierarchy or are
cared for by it, are called to holiness,
according to the apostle's saying: 'for
this is the will of God, your
sanctification'" (LG 39). It is in
holiness that the members of the
Church become who they are called
to be, and it is in holiness that all are
equals.
• Everyone in the Church, precisely
because they are members,
receive and thereby share in the
common vocation to holiness. In
the fullness of this title and on
equal par with all other members
of the Church, the lay faithful are
called to holiness.
• "All the faithful of Christ of
whatever rank or status are called
to the fullness of Christian life and
to the perfection of charity"(43).
"All of Christ's followers are
invited and bound to pursue
holiness and the perfect
fulfillment of their own state of
life." (CL 16)
• Holiness is the building block
fashioned in the waters of baptism
and meant for the good of the
Body of Christ. The Church, in
baptism, works as the "sacrament
of salvation" and makes the sinner
holy; the newly born child of God
is called by that same baptism to
build up the Church.
• This gift and response is at the
heart of true community, rooted
as it is in the divine life given to us
by Christ in the power of the Holy
Spirit. And the laity, as part of this
community of saints, are called to
build the Kingdom of God in time
and space.
• The vocation to holiness must be
recognized and lived by the lay
faithful, first of all as an
undeniable and demanding
obligation and as a shining
example of the infinite love of the
Father that has regenerated them
in his own life of holiness.
• Such a vocation, then, ought to be called an
essential and inseparable element of the new life
of Baptism, and therefore an element which
determines their dignity. At the same time the
vocation to holiness is intimately connected to
mission and to the responsibility entrusted to the
lay faithful in the Church and in the world. In fact,
that same holiness which is derived simply from
their participation in the Church's holiness,
represents their first and fundamental
contribution to the building of the Church herself,
who is the "Communion of Saints".
• The eyes of faith behold a wonderful scene:
that of a countless number of lay people, both
women and men, busy at work in their daily
life and activity, oftentimes far from view and
quite un acclaimed by the world, unknown to
the world's great personages but nonetheless
looked upon in love by the Father, untiring
laborers who work in the Lord's vineyard.
Confident and steadfast through the power of
God's grace, these are the humble yet great
builders of the Kingdom of God in history. (CL
17).
For the renewal of the temporal order
• For some Catholics the Second Vatican Council
was an updating of the Church that
supposedly resulted in changes to the
Church's goals and focus. This is a drastic
misreading. The Council was a renewal meant
to aid Catholics in re appropriating and
rediscovering the Church's goals and focus in a
world that had changed dramatically in a
short amount of time.
• Church never changes, but our
understanding of how to best live it in
a specific culture does develop and
change. That mission, according to
Apostolicam Actuositatem, is to
proclaim Christ and to fill the
temporal order with the light and salt
of the Gospel; the laity have an
essential role in this task.
• Christ's redemptive work, while
essentially concerned with the
salvation of men, includes also the
renewal of the whole temporal order.
Hence the mission of the Church is
not only to bring the message and
grace of Christ to men but also to
penetrate and perfect the temporal
order with the spirit of the Gospel.
• In fulfilling this mission of the Church, the
Christian laity exercise their apostolate
both in the Church and in the world, in
both the spiritual and the temporal
orders. These orders, although distinct,
are so connected in the singular plan of
God that He Himself intends to raise up
the whole world again in Christ and to
make it a new creation, initially on earth
and completely on the last day.
• In both orders the layman, being
simultaneously a believer and a citizen, should
be continuously led by the same Christian
conscience. (AA 5)
• We cannot overstate the importance and
centrality of the laity in this most pressing
mission. According to Lumen Gentium, it is the
laity's "special vocation . . . to seek the
kingdom of God by engaging in temporal
affairs and directing them according to God's
will. . . .
• There they are called by God that, being led
by the spirit to the Gospel, they may
contribute to the sanctification of the world,
as from within like leaven, by fulfilling their
own particular duties. . . . It pertains to them
in a special way so to illuminate and order all
temporal things with which they are so
closely associated that these may be
effected and grow according to Christ and
may be to the glory of the Creator and
Redeemer" (LG 31).
• The Council Fathers taught that "the
laity must take up the renewal of the
temporal order as their own special
obligation," being led by the "light of the
Gospel and the mind of the Church and
motivated by Christian charity." This
involves a permeation of culture, of
society and of all aspects of the kingdom
of man with the "higher principles of the
Christian life"
• Paul II wrote that "in particular the lay
faithful are called to restore to creation
all its original value" (CL 14). This task is
not the priority of priests or religious; in
fact, they are not qualified for, or capable
of, such activity! Only the laity, because
of their skills in the marketplace, in the
institutions of society and in the everyday
activities of men, can properly perform
this crucial activity:
• "The apostolate in the social milieu, that
is, the effort to infuse a Christian spirit
into the mentality, customs, laws, and
structures of the community in which one
lives, is so much the duty and
responsibility of the laity that it can never
be performed properly by others" (AA
13). In other words, the laity need to
realize they have important work to do,
and the time to start that work is now!
By means of evangelization
• Many Catholic readily admit their
reticence in sharing their faith and
being a witness to non-Catholics--
or even to their own Catholic
family and friends. But John Paul II
stressed repeatedly the need to
evangelize, writing that the
• "The entire mission of the Church,
then, is concentrated and manifested
in evangelization" and "The lay
faithful, precisely because they are
members of the Church, have the
vocation and mission of proclaiming
the Gospel: they are prepared for this
work by the sacraments of Christian
initiation and by the gifts of the Holy
Spirit" (CL 33).
• The Holy Father's consistent call to
evangelization did not come out of a vacuum--
it is a reiteration of the Council's repeated call
for the same. Lumen Gentium states that the
laity "have the exalted duty of working for the
ever greater spread of the divine plan of
salvation to all men, of every epoch and all
over the earth. Therefore may the way be
clear for them to share diligently in the salvific
work of the Church according to their ability
and the needs of the times" (LG 33).
• Baptized into Christ, we are filled with
his life and are called to be little
Christ's--"anointed ones"--who, being
fed by the Eucharist, go into the
world and make the Church visible.
This is very challenging and forces us
to leave our comfort zones, as the
Council Fathers indicate:
• However an apostolate of this kind
does not consist only in the
witness of one's way of life; a true
apostle looks for opportunities to
announce Christ by words
addressed either to non-believers
with a view to leading them to
faith, or to the faithful with a view
to instructing, strengthening,
• and encouraging them to a more
fervent life. "For the charity of Christ
impels us" (2 Cor. 5 :14). The words of
the Apostle should echo in all hearts,
"Woe to me if I do not preach the
Gospel" (1 Cor. 9:16). (AA 6).
• This work of evangelization requires
formation and training, time and
effort: "[T]he laity must be specially
formed to engage in conversation
with others, believers, or non-
believers, in order to manifest Christ's
message to all men" (AA 31).
• It takes many forms, from the silent
witness of one's actions to the use of
modern media to the ordinary
conversations of daily living.
Whatever the means, lay people are
to "announce Christ, explain and
spread His teaching in accordance
with one's status and ability, and
faithfully profess it" (AA 16).
•That in all things,
God may be
Glorified!!!
Sr. Mary Audrey, D. Bejer, OSB

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Call, renewal, evangelization

  • 2. Call, Renewal, Evangelization Building upon what has been examined so far, the role of the laity can be summarized in a three-part statement: The laity are called to the vocation of holiness for the purpose of renewing the temporal order by means of evangelization.
  • 3. Called to the vocation of holiness • The Second Vatican Council consistently emphasized holiness, as noted above. At the heart of the Church's encounters with modernity, with other religions, and with her own identity is the reality of holiness- -and the call of everyone in the Church to the vocation of holiness:
  • 4. • "Therefore all in the Church, whether they belong to the hierarchy or are cared for by it, are called to holiness, according to the apostle's saying: 'for this is the will of God, your sanctification'" (LG 39). It is in holiness that the members of the Church become who they are called to be, and it is in holiness that all are equals.
  • 5. • Everyone in the Church, precisely because they are members, receive and thereby share in the common vocation to holiness. In the fullness of this title and on equal par with all other members of the Church, the lay faithful are called to holiness.
  • 6. • "All the faithful of Christ of whatever rank or status are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of charity"(43). "All of Christ's followers are invited and bound to pursue holiness and the perfect fulfillment of their own state of life." (CL 16)
  • 7. • Holiness is the building block fashioned in the waters of baptism and meant for the good of the Body of Christ. The Church, in baptism, works as the "sacrament of salvation" and makes the sinner holy; the newly born child of God is called by that same baptism to build up the Church.
  • 8. • This gift and response is at the heart of true community, rooted as it is in the divine life given to us by Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. And the laity, as part of this community of saints, are called to build the Kingdom of God in time and space.
  • 9. • The vocation to holiness must be recognized and lived by the lay faithful, first of all as an undeniable and demanding obligation and as a shining example of the infinite love of the Father that has regenerated them in his own life of holiness.
  • 10. • Such a vocation, then, ought to be called an essential and inseparable element of the new life of Baptism, and therefore an element which determines their dignity. At the same time the vocation to holiness is intimately connected to mission and to the responsibility entrusted to the lay faithful in the Church and in the world. In fact, that same holiness which is derived simply from their participation in the Church's holiness, represents their first and fundamental contribution to the building of the Church herself, who is the "Communion of Saints".
  • 11. • The eyes of faith behold a wonderful scene: that of a countless number of lay people, both women and men, busy at work in their daily life and activity, oftentimes far from view and quite un acclaimed by the world, unknown to the world's great personages but nonetheless looked upon in love by the Father, untiring laborers who work in the Lord's vineyard. Confident and steadfast through the power of God's grace, these are the humble yet great builders of the Kingdom of God in history. (CL 17).
  • 12. For the renewal of the temporal order • For some Catholics the Second Vatican Council was an updating of the Church that supposedly resulted in changes to the Church's goals and focus. This is a drastic misreading. The Council was a renewal meant to aid Catholics in re appropriating and rediscovering the Church's goals and focus in a world that had changed dramatically in a short amount of time.
  • 13. • Church never changes, but our understanding of how to best live it in a specific culture does develop and change. That mission, according to Apostolicam Actuositatem, is to proclaim Christ and to fill the temporal order with the light and salt of the Gospel; the laity have an essential role in this task.
  • 14. • Christ's redemptive work, while essentially concerned with the salvation of men, includes also the renewal of the whole temporal order. Hence the mission of the Church is not only to bring the message and grace of Christ to men but also to penetrate and perfect the temporal order with the spirit of the Gospel.
  • 15. • In fulfilling this mission of the Church, the Christian laity exercise their apostolate both in the Church and in the world, in both the spiritual and the temporal orders. These orders, although distinct, are so connected in the singular plan of God that He Himself intends to raise up the whole world again in Christ and to make it a new creation, initially on earth and completely on the last day.
  • 16. • In both orders the layman, being simultaneously a believer and a citizen, should be continuously led by the same Christian conscience. (AA 5) • We cannot overstate the importance and centrality of the laity in this most pressing mission. According to Lumen Gentium, it is the laity's "special vocation . . . to seek the kingdom of God by engaging in temporal affairs and directing them according to God's will. . . .
  • 17. • There they are called by God that, being led by the spirit to the Gospel, they may contribute to the sanctification of the world, as from within like leaven, by fulfilling their own particular duties. . . . It pertains to them in a special way so to illuminate and order all temporal things with which they are so closely associated that these may be effected and grow according to Christ and may be to the glory of the Creator and Redeemer" (LG 31).
  • 18. • The Council Fathers taught that "the laity must take up the renewal of the temporal order as their own special obligation," being led by the "light of the Gospel and the mind of the Church and motivated by Christian charity." This involves a permeation of culture, of society and of all aspects of the kingdom of man with the "higher principles of the Christian life"
  • 19. • Paul II wrote that "in particular the lay faithful are called to restore to creation all its original value" (CL 14). This task is not the priority of priests or religious; in fact, they are not qualified for, or capable of, such activity! Only the laity, because of their skills in the marketplace, in the institutions of society and in the everyday activities of men, can properly perform this crucial activity:
  • 20. • "The apostolate in the social milieu, that is, the effort to infuse a Christian spirit into the mentality, customs, laws, and structures of the community in which one lives, is so much the duty and responsibility of the laity that it can never be performed properly by others" (AA 13). In other words, the laity need to realize they have important work to do, and the time to start that work is now!
  • 21. By means of evangelization • Many Catholic readily admit their reticence in sharing their faith and being a witness to non-Catholics-- or even to their own Catholic family and friends. But John Paul II stressed repeatedly the need to evangelize, writing that the
  • 22. • "The entire mission of the Church, then, is concentrated and manifested in evangelization" and "The lay faithful, precisely because they are members of the Church, have the vocation and mission of proclaiming the Gospel: they are prepared for this work by the sacraments of Christian initiation and by the gifts of the Holy Spirit" (CL 33).
  • 23. • The Holy Father's consistent call to evangelization did not come out of a vacuum-- it is a reiteration of the Council's repeated call for the same. Lumen Gentium states that the laity "have the exalted duty of working for the ever greater spread of the divine plan of salvation to all men, of every epoch and all over the earth. Therefore may the way be clear for them to share diligently in the salvific work of the Church according to their ability and the needs of the times" (LG 33).
  • 24. • Baptized into Christ, we are filled with his life and are called to be little Christ's--"anointed ones"--who, being fed by the Eucharist, go into the world and make the Church visible. This is very challenging and forces us to leave our comfort zones, as the Council Fathers indicate:
  • 25. • However an apostolate of this kind does not consist only in the witness of one's way of life; a true apostle looks for opportunities to announce Christ by words addressed either to non-believers with a view to leading them to faith, or to the faithful with a view to instructing, strengthening,
  • 26. • and encouraging them to a more fervent life. "For the charity of Christ impels us" (2 Cor. 5 :14). The words of the Apostle should echo in all hearts, "Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel" (1 Cor. 9:16). (AA 6).
  • 27. • This work of evangelization requires formation and training, time and effort: "[T]he laity must be specially formed to engage in conversation with others, believers, or non- believers, in order to manifest Christ's message to all men" (AA 31).
  • 28. • It takes many forms, from the silent witness of one's actions to the use of modern media to the ordinary conversations of daily living. Whatever the means, lay people are to "announce Christ, explain and spread His teaching in accordance with one's status and ability, and faithfully profess it" (AA 16).
  • 29. •That in all things, God may be Glorified!!! Sr. Mary Audrey, D. Bejer, OSB