Evangelization

Why Accompaniment Involves Apologetics

"Road to Emmaus" (detail) by Robert Zünd [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I recently granted an interview to the National Catholic Reporter concerning the upcoming Synod on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment, to which I was elected a delegate. We discussed a number of topics, including the rise of the “nones,” the purpose of the Synod, and creative ways of listening to the concerns of young people. In the course […]

The Invitation

Photograph © by Andy Coan

“Here we go again,” Steve thought to himself as Brian walked across the parking lot towards his car. “Hey Steve, looks like we’re both running a little late today!  How was your weekend?” “It was ok.  Before you say anything Brian, I will go ahead and tell you I didn’t make it to Mass yesterday.  I meant to, but I […]

Generous Giver

Photography © by Andy Coan

Everybody likes free gifts.  Advertisers know that a campaign will have much better results if there are free samples or a free gift with every purchase.  A friend of mine lived by this motto: when it’s free, take two. But when we receive a favor, we’re wise enough to know there has got to be a catch somewhere.  The giver […]

Six Obstacles to Evangelizing in the Modern Age

"The Taking of Christ" (detail) by Caravaggio

“Indeed, let us continue to go out and teach all nations!” As members of the Body of Christ striving for communion with the saints, we are faced with an essential mission contingent upon first picking up our crosses. Our primary duty is to cultivate our interior habits of being by prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Good works follow the cultivation of […]

The Death of an Evangelical Titan

Courtesy of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

I had the privilege of hearing Dr. Billy Graham preach about twenty years ago in Cincinnati. At the time, Dr. Graham was around eighty years old and clearly in frail health. He came to the podium and commenced to speak, but the crowd of young people, stirred up by the Christian rock bands who had performed earlier, was restive and […]

“America” Magazine’s Survey of Women in the Church

Last month, America magazine published a fascinating survey regarding the attitudes of women in the Church. They were kind enough to publish a few of my reactions to the study, but I would like, in this article, to offer a fuller response to their findings. One of the most disturbing conclusions from the survey is that women are increasingly disengaging […]

We’re on a Mission from God

Photography © by Andy Coan

It’s not just about being saved — it’s about taking others with us. Sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ is called evangelism or evangelization, and to share in this apostolic mission is a responsibility of all Christians. This post on spiritual warfare and Jesus’s authority over demons or evil spirits is offered as a reflection upon the readings for […]

An Evening with William Lane Craig

“The School of Athens” (detail showing Aristotle with the elder Plato) by Raphael

Ten years ago, when I was a visiting scholar at the North American College in Rome, I fell into a spirited conversation with one of the seminarians about the state of evangelization in America. We both were bemoaning the fact that the “new” atheists—Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and others—were regularly attacking religion, and I commented that no Christian […]

Witness of the Shepherds

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Murillo

As we continue to ponder the familiar stories of the infancy narratives throughout the Christmas season, we imitate our Blessed Mother, who “kept all these things in her heart” (Luke 2:51). The first time we see that phrase in Luke’s Gospel (our indication of where he gathered source material for his infancy account) occurs during the visit of the shepherds […]