People are drifting away from faith. The rise of those who have no religious affiliation is of serious concern to those in religious insititutions. Many presentations about the “new evangelization” dwell in the abstract – be more fervent and use new methods while maintaining the message of the gospel.But how do we concretely do that?
Those who believe, live among family and friends who do not believe. We need to understand the ideas of others and then learn how to talk with them. We can empower people to speak effectively to the world in which they live.
- 10 Ways to Make it Stick: The Importance of Connection for Preaching and Teaching – I
- My Lord and my God: Evangelization as Falling in Love with Jesus -
How does someone fall in love with God? What are the pieces and parts of conversion? This workshop begins with the process of metanoia, moving from the recognition of need, to receptivity, to turning one’s life to God, to strengthening ongoing commitment. It concludes with hands-on work in crafting a life and a message that encourages an encounter with Jesus.
- Atheists, Agnostics, and “Nones” – Why do people not believe in God? What are their objections? This workshop begins by working to understand the mindset of those who do not believe in God, then moves to discuss the perspective of those whose spirituality has become privatized so that they have no need for institutional religion. After we listen, we can then witness with compassion and love about what God means to us.
- Preaching the Blues: Where is the God of Love in the Suffering of Life? - How can we help people to effectively witness to the presence of God in times of change, chaos, and disequilibrium? Each preacher or teacher encounters moments of stress in a community – times of grief, death, war, and pain. Where is God? How can we effectively preach or teach in those crisis moments? What words do we use?
- Building Moral Muscles: Strength Training for Christian Discipleship - Sometimes it feels like we are only a small light in a vast darkness. Goodness, virtue, true caring – where is that? This workshop teaches participants how to speak to moral issues in ways that connect with the people of today’s culture
- Love to Pray? So Can They: Prayer as 3-D in a Flattened World - “Praying” was the absolute bottom value for the youth in the Are You Talking to Me? study. “Trying to be a good person” mattered most, followed by good grades, relationships with parents, etc. This workshop examines the loss of prayer in our culture and how homilists, retreat leaders, and teachers can create moments of rest and peace.
- 10 Ways to Make Human Connections with Today’s Wired Youth - When kids say “relate to me,” preachers, teachers, and parents wonder, “What does that mean? How do we do it?” In this workshop, learn how to strengthen connections from what teens themselves have said. In spite of seeming detached and “plugged-in”, they entreat those in authority, especially teachers and clergy, to bond with them in a personal way.