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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

OUR THEME FOR 2019
(Part 28)

LAITY NEEDED TO RENEW CHURCH IN CRISIS

March 19, 2019


This is what we have been saying all along. But I will add more reasons why the role of the laity is crucial in the renewal of our Church, especially during these times of great crisis.

First, the harvest is rich but the laborers are few. God wants everyone to be saved. Jesus already did what was necessary for this to happen. And the Holy Spirit is with us on our journey to heaven. But the rich harvest is not happening due to the lack of laborers. Those laborers need to be the laity, who make up 99.9+% of the Church.

Second, the gospel needs to be proclaimed to all, reaching the grassroots at the peripheries. Clerics have their hands full, just caring for their parishes and other ministries. They have no time to go and reach everyone. Who can do this? The laity.

Third, as Fr. Bill says in #3, the bulk of evangelization is to be done through the laity, especially the family. This is about us being families on mission. Clerics have special roles and it is not to have a family. But that is our role. Evangelization starts with renewal of the couple, then their children, then the family being an instrument for doing mission in the world.

Fourth, the laity have untapped potential. They are no longer the sleeping giant, but are still drowsy in their stupor. What they need to realize is that they are called, as baptized Catholics, to be priest, prophet and king. They are not just instruments for various services in parishes or Church orgs. They are not just to animate the temporal order. They are actually to take direct participation in the evangelistic mission of our Church. This is their responsibility, as well as their privilege.

Given the crisis that had been building up for half a century, the Holy Spirit sounded the call to the New Evangelization. Unfortunately, many have not heard of this, some have heard but are not doing anything about it, some would like to do something but do not know what to do. This sorry situation includes clerics, from whom we do not hear much about the New Evangelization.

Thus it is not just clerics who should instruct, train and support the laity to participate fully in our Church’s mission, but the laity themselves should help clerics understand and act on the call to the New Evangelization.

Whatever the engagement of the clergy, we laity should realize God’s call and act accordingly. It is our Church. We are directly called to help renew and revitalize her. One way to do this has already been revealed to us by the Holy Spirit. It is the Live Christ, Share Christ (LCSC) mission. Let us be about this work.

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3 Powerful Reasons It Will Take the Laity to Renew the Church in Crisis, According to this Parish Priest

by Fr. Bill Peckman - March 18, 2019

It is said that for the Catholic Church to be renewed it will take the laity.

This is absolutely true for 3 reasons.

1) The laity make up the overwhelming amount of the Church.

They have strength in numbers. This doesn’t mean that the Church is a democracy. No, it does mean they have the largest influence in the future. From the laity come future clergy.

The clergy of the Church is not an inherited priesthood as was the Levitical priesthood of the Old Testament. The laity is the initial seedbed of priestly and religious vocations. The clergy serve Christ and His Church…they are not to be served by Christ and His Church.

The laity need to take this role seriously and hold their clergy to high standards of holiness. They also need to be sure they are just to the well-being of their clergy.

2) The laity hold the power of the purse.

This is not a power to be abused or used to buy heresy. However, the hierarchy is completely dependent upon the charity of the laity.

While the laity have a duty to make sure the clergy are justly paid (and lay staff as well), they have the duty to be sure their thanksgiving offering is being used for the ends for which it is given.

3) The bulk work of evangelization is to be done through the laity, especially in the family.

They have a greater ability to take the teachings of Christ and His Church into the larger world so as to effect change and justice. This does not mean compromising the Gospel to make it more palatable to secularism. It does mean being the front lines against such motion.

This does not let the clergy off any hooks.

We must train the laity well so they can properly do their jobs. We must make sure the sacramental grace needed for them to execute their duties faithfully and with excellence is readily available. We must be wise guardians of the trust shown us through the thanksgiving offering and the education offered.

The relationship between the laity and the clergy is a symbiotic relationship. We need each other. We need to look for and bring out the best in each other.

A resurgence in fidelity must start in the laity with the assistance of the clergy. From that laity come all out future leaders, both lay and cleric.

From the laity we will get the clergy that they recruit. Recruit with an eye to strength and fidelity. Look for men who would also be good and faithful husbands and prudent and just dads.


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