From #37: Faith is passed on, we might say, by contact, from one person to another, just as one candle is lighted from another.
This is one of the many points in this encyclical in which I'm reminded of this year's Lawn Chair Catechism series at Catholicmom.com. We're reading Forming Intentional Disciples by Sherry Weddell. While my participation in the series has been shoddy at best, I have been faithfully reading along and I love this book. Just this summer, I've recommended this book on at least three different occasions. That is saying a lot for me. I don't usually volunteer book recommendations.
In the book, the stages of conversion are discussed. Essentially, in order for someone to become a disciple of Jesus, they need to have a personal relationship with His Church. Faith is passed on in personal contact between one person and another. We can't just launch into catechesis; a person needs to trust the Church and have a relationship with the Church before they can learn.
This reading has changed my views on my job teaching Confirmation at my parish. Last year, I concentrated mainly on giving my students accurate information and making that information relevant. This year, I'll likely put more emphasis on prayer and developing a connection with my students.
If you want to read more of my reflections on Pope Francis' first encyclical, visit here.
|And when spreading the faith, don't forget new media.|