Proclaiming Christ and his Gospel a 'subversive activity,' says bishop
Published: May 15, 2012
ST. FRANCIS, Wis. (CNS) -- Bishop Donald J. Hying wants Catholics in southeastern Wisconsin to engage in a subversive activity -- evangelization. "Evangelization is a subversive activity, because when we proclaim Christ and his Gospel, we are subverting or upending the sinful or established order of things," said the auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. "Evangelization is about subverting anything that is contrary to the kingdom of God. In that perspective, it is a dangerous activity." Speaking to more than 300 people at the archdiocese's "Making Disciples of All Nations" evangelization summit at the Cousins Center in St. Francis May 5, Bishop Hying acknowledged that for many "it is difficult to share our faith." Noting that the church was not about structures, programs, institutions and buildings, he said, "It is fundamentally about proclaiming the mission of Jesus Christ to the world." The bishop, referencing Chapter 12 of St. Luke's Gospel, added: "To evangelize, we must turn our hearts and souls inside out. We can't stay in the basement; we have to get up on the roof." The summit served as a prelude to the Year of Faith declared by Pope Benedict XVI, and which will run from October 2012 to November 2013. Bishop Hying said a lack of catechesis has left Catholics with "sketchy knowledge of their faith. They believe it, they love it, they live it, but it's hard for them to articulate it," he said. "How do we equip the average Catholic in the pew who can talk to someone at work, across the neighbor's fence, to a relative or friend about the basics of Catholicism in a way that is loving, in a way that is authentic, in a way that is persuasive?"
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