The work of evangelization always begins at “home.” This means first the “home” of our own hearts and then the “home” of our parish. The first stage of evangelization, then, is always one’s own being evangelized, through a personal commitment to a life of continual conversion in Christ through the life of the Church. This work that takes place in the “inner man” (Eph 3:16) spills over into a call to conversion in the parish, where those who are actively practicing their faith must hear and accept the invitation to an ever deeper life of intimacy with Christ. This is the very heart of evangelization—the stage without which our outreach to inactive Catholics and those who do not know God cannot bear fruit.
It is for this reason that adult faith formation is an indispensable part of evangelization. Those who wish to evangelize, must first commit themselves to growth and maturity in their own life of faith so that the truth they communicate remains authentic and convincing, rooted and grounded in Christ (Eph 3:17). An integrated adult faith formation program proceeds on two major levels: spiritual development and intellectual/personal development.
* Spiritual development offers the faithful contact with the rich Tradition of Catholic spirituality, centered in the Liturgy and Sacraments but also inclusive of traditional forms of prayer, such as the Rosary and Lectio Divina, pious practices, and sacramentals. The goal of all efforts at spiritual development is to cultivate a more and more authentic and mature relationship with Jesus Christ, who is always encountered in and through the Church.
* Intellectual/Personal development seeks to enrich a person’s knowledge of the Catholic faith so as to enrich and enliven their intimacy with Jesus Christ and allow his love to penetrate all aspects of our lives. The encounter with Christ, summit of all evangelization, is never complete without growth in knowledge of who he is, knowledge which is expressed and revealed in the full body of the Church’s teachings on both faith and morality.
Adult Faith Formation Resources
D/CAFFE – Directors/Coordinators of Adult Faith Formation and Evangelization
- All Hearts Afire Parish Programs
- Ascension Press, Oremus Prayer Series
- Ascension Press, Walking Toward Eternity Lectio Divina Series
- Augustine Institute, Opening the Word Series
- Augustine Institute, Symbolon Series
- ChristLife Evangelization Ministry
- Cursillo Retreats – Philadelphia Chapter
- From the Visible to the Invisible, Congregation for Divine Worship
- Intercessory Prayer Partnership
- Renewal Ministry Prayer Series by Ralph Martin
- Walking with Purpose, Scripture Study for Women
- Ascension Press, Great Adventure Bible Studies
- Ascension Press, Church History Study
- Ascension Press, Catechism Study
- Augustine Institute, Biblical Studies
- Catholicism, Fr. Robert Barron
- Catholicism: The New Evangelization, Fr. Robert Barron
- Courageous Virtue Bible Study for Women
- ENDOW, Formation for Women
- Ignatius Bible Study, Scott Hahn
- In the Beginning: Evidence for God from Physics, Magis Center
- The King’s Men, Formation for Men
- Lighthouse Catholic Media
- Rich Gift of Love DVDs – Theology of Self-Gift Through the Body