Over the next few months, Youth Ministers, DREs and other interested adults are reading through the book Forming Intentional Disciples together. While we are doing so, we are specifically thinking of ways in which the content can be applied to our High School teens and working towards the New Evangelization with them. After every meeting, we will post a summary of what we had chatted about. We would love it if anyone who is reading along with us but cannot make the meetings would post comments and discuss out here in the digital sphere!
An assorted collection of notes follow from our discussion on Chapters 1 + 2:
– It was a shock to read the statistics about how quickly people are falling away from the Church. By the time our young people are 18, a third of them have fallen away from the practice of the faith. The number only grows and grows as they enter young adulthood.
– While we slightly disagreed with the estimated percentage (5%) of people in the average Catholic Parish who have a personal, lived relationship with Jesus Christ, it was powerful to reflect on how small the number is and how we want to grow that important statistic.
– In order to do that, we know that we need to work to continually incorporate into our lesson planning, events, sacramental preparation programs and conversations the theme of conversion and turning our hearts back to the Lord, again and again in our lives.
– We should use the language of journeying and growing more often when we talk about the life of faith and walking this path of loving Jesus and His Church more throughout our lives.
– Doug provided us with analogies about fishing; Kevin delighted us with the imagery of a sponge. All of the analogies ended with the same point: cultivating disciples is indeed an intentional matter.
– We want “Normal List” on page 60 to really be the normal in our lives, the lives of our teens and our Parishes.
– In order to accomplish all of this, we’ve got to have the support of the entire Parish committed to living this life and witnessing it to our teens.
Of course, we’re not sure how we’re going to help make all of this happen yet. We do know it will entail a lot of prayer, sacrifice and creativity. As for everything else, we will come back to the discussion in 2 weeks when we meet again. Please do think about joining us. Come caught up on your reading! We’ll discuss Chapters 3 + 4 on Monday, September 23rd from 1:15 – 3:00pm at the Bishop O’Connor Center.