Pope Francis dreams of a Church that is “completely missionary.” By virtue of baptism, Christians are missionaries in the power of the Holy Spirit to the ends of the earth.
Series: Evangelization Through Art
Without the strong faith and generous service of lay catechists over many centuries, the Church in Asia would not be the living presence it is today in this vast continent of over four billion people.
Catechesis comes from the Greek word meaning “to echo the teaching.” A young religious educator who is passionate about teaching the faith shares his journey of discernment.
Catechists are a hidden but essential face of the proclamation of the Gospel in Asia. Patrash Soren, 72, is an example of that. He goes from village to village, preaching and preparing children and adults for their baptism.
Born in the Philippines, Pedro Calungsod eventually traveled to Guam, U.S. territory, as a young missionary. Calungsod is the patron saint of Filipino youth and a prime example of a catechist who was willing to risk it all to bring the message of Jesus Christ to the world.
If within the next 10 years, if within the next year, if within the next 30 minutes, the ravages of nuclear war are unleashed upon humanity–murdering billions of people, inflicting excruciating injuries upon countless others, sending civilization back to the Stone Age and destroying most of the rest of God’s earthly creation, it won’t have happened without much warning.
All of us are missionaries by our Divine call to share God’s love with others in the concrete conditions we are in. We are reminded of this in a special way this October as we celebrate Mission Month and World Mission Sunday on October 23.
World Teacher’s Day is celebrated on October 5. It is the time when we give honor to teachers who have become pillars of the second home of children in their school of learning.
In South Africa, a Filipino Comboni missionary is developing his painting skills and is engaging in social media platforms to announce God’s love for humanity. “I use the artworks to express my own faith and my life as a missionary, abstract as they may be,” he says.
Faced with an escalation of repression, the Church continues to use its parishes and pulpits in defense of the oppressed. For this, it is paying a high price with continuous harassment of spiritual leaders and direct attacks against infrastructures.