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National Congress for Catholics Working with Young People Saturday February 27th, 2010 Friends Meeting House, 173 Euston Road, Euston, London.

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Presentation on theme: "National Congress for Catholics Working with Young People Saturday February 27th, 2010 Friends Meeting House, 173 Euston Road, Euston, London."— Presentation transcript:

1 National Congress for Catholics Working with Young People Saturday February 27th, 2010 Friends Meeting House, 173 Euston Road, Euston, London

2 Called to be Witnesses and Storyteller Dr. Bob McCarty National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry Washington, DC Dr. Maggie McCarty Education for Parish Service Washington, DC

3 Objectives Examine our territory Reconstruct Catholicism – Become an EPIC Church Images of Witnesses and Storytellers

4 I. The Territory Examined … A. The Post Modern World 1.Privatized religion –Religious identity is a private affair –A decline in formal connections and commitment to Church –Rejection of ecclesial authority –“Me First” religion

5 I. The Territory Examined … A. The Post Modern World 2.A religion-less spirituality –Devoid of a historic tradition 3.Religious Individualism –Consumeristic individualism –Religion is one option among many –Catholic identity is fluid and porous

6 I. The Territory Examined … A. The Post Modern World 4.Moralistic Therapeutic Deism –“Cosmic Therapist” and “Divine Butler” –A default position for adolescent religiosity when the community’s engagement and education is weak

7 I. The Territory Examined … Moralistic Therapeutic Deism –A God exists who created and watches over the world –God wants people to be good and fair –Goal of life – to be happy and feel good –Call on God when there is a problem –Good people go to heaven

8 I. The Territory Examined … B.Catholicism Revisited 1.To be Catholic is to be social 2.Catholic identity is weak/diffused/less important “No previous generation inherited so little of the content and sensibility of the faith from their parents as has today’s youth.”

9 I. The Territory Examined … B.Catholicism Revisited 3.Catholic individualism can be positive –Develops ownership, personal maturity, owned faith 4.Catholic Imagination –Coherent Catholic world view –Sacramentality – how Catholics ‘see’

10 I. The Territory Examined … B.Catholicism Revisited 5.To be Catholic is holistic/comprehensive –Head, Heart, and Hands –Moving beyond instructional models to formational approaches –To pass on the faith is to pass on the community

11 I. The Territory Examined … C.The Hungers of Young Catholics 1.for Meaning and Purpose 2.for Connection 3.for Recognition 4.for Justice 5.for the Holy

12 Find a partner to share: Which “hunger” do you find most often in young people?

13 I. The Territory Examined … D.Critical Factors 1.The Church as institution 2.The Church as local faith community 3.The Church as pastoral ministers

14 Entering New Territory The question is not Whether our children will have faith. is faithchildren!

15 II. Storytellers: Catholicism as Spiritual Path What does “spirituality” seem to include?

16 Spirituality is associated with … Mystery Beauty Compassion Truth Inclusivity Meaning

17 Spirituality and Religion What does “religion” seem to include?

18 Religion is associated with … Abstract doctrine Boring rituals Judgmentalism Exclusivity Boundaries and rules Know more about what we DON’T believe, than what we DO believe

19 II. To Be Storytellers … A.Reconstructing Catholicism As spiritual path As the context for “naming” and celebrating our experience of God As the rapture of being alive, connecting faith and everyday life Reintegrate spirituality and religion; vertical and horizontal dimensions

20 So, why are you Catholic? What is it about being Catholic that is important to you? What do you say to young people?

21 II. To Be Storytellers... B.4 Key Themes: Catholicism as a conduit 1.The Jesus Experience 2.Grace: the Spirit Outpoured 3.The Sacramental Community 4.Liberation and Justice

22 The Jesus Experience The heart of Catholicism as spiritual path Affirms AND challenges Lived among the marginalized Created a community of solidarity Cuts through the superficial … entrust ourselves to God whose name is compassion

23 Grace: The Spirit Outpoured Discern the Spirit’s activity and presence Grace frees us … heals us … to become agents of God’s love in the world Grace is God active in our lives and in our world –Feeds our hungers –Calms our anxieties –Fosters our gifts

24 Sacramental Community A unique characteristic of Catholicism Celebrates the profound depths of life’s realities The invisible is made visible Jesus is the sacrament of God We are the sacrament of Jesus

25 Liberation and Justice Liberation: being set free Personal and social Reign of God is radical egalitarianism – inclusive community for the marginalized Crossing over to the Reign … freedom and solidarity

26 II. To be Storytellers... Catholicism as Spiritual Path –The “core” is consistent – provides our identity –The “experience” evolves … the Spirit is never static –Focus on the goal: The Reign of God

27 II. To be Storytellers... C.Be an EPIC Church 1.Experiential 2.Participative 3.Image-Driven 4.Connected

28 III. To be Witnesses A. Examination of Conscience How have I been calling young people to discipleship? How am I fostering their Catholic identity? (100% Catholic!) How is my ministry transforming parish life?

29 How am I fostering the giftedness of young people? How am I collaborating with other pastoral ministers and agencies? How is my ministry to the “unchurched” and “unseen” young people? How is my ministry calling young people to the Reign of God – to the Jesus Dream?

30 III. To be Witnesses... B. Catholic Youth Ministry Community Develop a national vision for Catholic Youth Ministry Develop structures for collaboration and communication among all the stakeholders Attend to the parish context and foster youth friendly faith communities

31 III. To be Witnesses... C.The Reign of God –More joyful? –More compassionate? –More loving? –More peaceful? –More courageous Proclaim the Good News! Connect young people to the faith community! Challenge young people to be disciples of Jesus!

32 Characteristics of the Minister Competence Holiness Vision

33 The Payoffs! Days off in purgatory! This ministry enhances our search for God This ministry fosters our gifts Everyone likes a harvest!

34 The Payoffs! True ministry duplicates itself Youth ministry renews the Church We will be happy … building the Reign

35 Called to be Witnesses and Storytellers: Sharing the Good News Bob McCarty, D.Min Executive Director NFCYM Maggie McCarty, D.Min President EPS


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