FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
THE OLD AND THE NEW
July 27, 2014
Today’s gospel: Matthew 13:44-52
Jesus tells parables about the kingdom of God and when his disciples signified understanding, he told them, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” (v.52). Jesus was talking about his teaching (the new) and that of the law and prophets (the old).
So it is with the New Evangelization. Evangelization is old, actually almost 2,000 years old, starting from the time of Pentecost. But the New Evangelization is new. It is a new prophetic call to address the situation of the Church and her mission in this third millennium, given a radically different life and culture in the world. In the old, evangelization was for pagans. In the new, evangelization is for baptized pagans, the lapsed Catholics.
Now “old” evangelization was according to the model of Pentecost, with the coming of the Holy Spirit, empowering the disciples to be witnesses to the ends of the earth. New Evangelization needs to look to this “old,” and recover the methodology of the Holy Spirit. The Church has largely lost this experience of Pentecost. Who today is prayed with as an adult for the baptism in the Spirit? Where today are the gifts of prophecy and of tongues?
So for us in CFC-FFL, it is also about old and new. From the very start, in 1981, God intended for CFC to be an evangelistic and missionary community. Many things have transpired since then, including the split of 2007. We had veered away. So God restored us to our authentic charism, that of evangelization founded on family renewal. But evangelization stalled. God was pointing us to the “new.” This is LCSC.
CFC-FFL is not to be discarded, but in fact assumes a critical role as the backbone of LCSC. We indeed draw from the storeroom both the new and the old.
The New Evangelization is about zeal for the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is like a treasure buried in the field and like a pearl of great price (v.44a,45-46a). We must recognize that and greatly desire it, giving our all (v.44b,46b).
In turn, LCSC “is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind.” (v.47). LCSC casts a wide net, intending to proclaim the gospel to all lapsed Catholics. Jesus says the kingdom of heaven is also like this.
LCSC is all about the work of salvation. We desire for everyone to hear the gospel, so that they will have the opportunity to believe and call upon the name of the Lord and thus be saved. This is about souls making it to heaven. At the end of the age, the angels will separate the wicked from the righteous (v.49). May it be said that we did our part in proclaiming the gospel of salvation to as many as possible, so that they might be saved.
Jesus asks his disciples, “Do you understand all these things?” (v.51a). I pray that your response will be like that of the disciples. “They answered, ‘Yes.’” (v.51b).
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