THE GOSPEL OF EVERYDAY LIFE
What can we, the first Christians of the third millennium, learn from the early Christians? It was at the heart of their families that Jesus was first met, loved and announced. Today it is my family’s turn to play a leading role in the New Evangelization. Let’s reflect together on the ways and means by which we can offer Christ’s friendship to our families, friends and colleagues in the context of our day-to-day lives.
A. Welcome and Prayer: The animator welcomes the participants, summarizes the purpose of the workshop and invites all present to pray.
Come, O Holy Spirit !
Come, O Holy Spirit!
Enlighten my mind to know your commands;
Strengthen my heart against the snares of the enemy;
Inflame my will . . .
I have heard your voice, and I don’t want to harden myself and resist, Saying “Later . . . , tomorrow.”.
Nunc coepi ! Now I begin!;
In case there is no tomorrow for me.
O Spirit of truth and wisdom, Spirit of understanding and counsel, Spirit of joy and peace! I want whatever you want. I want because you want. I want however you want. I want whenever you want.
Holy Mary, Seat of Wisdom, pray for me.
(author: Saint Josémaria Escriva)
B. Reading from the Word of God: Matthew 28, 16-20.
C. Interchange: introduction to "witnessing"
The animator invites participants to pair up (ideally with a person who is not a family member). For 10-15 minutes, each one shares with his or her partner the wonders that God has done and is doing in his or her life.
D. Small group discussion: All are then invited to come together in groups of 4-6. Each group chooses one or more questions — from among those provided on the last page of the publication “The Gospel of Everyday Life—An Adventure Worth Sharing”, a photocopy of which will be provided for the use of each participant — and appoints a secretary who will act as a spokesperson at the end of the exchange (45 minutes).
E. Sharing with large group: In turn, each of the spokespersons briefly summarizes the prospects and leads identified by their small group (30 minutes).
F. Thanks and optional closing prayer: The Lord’s Prayer
G. Parish bulletin: A summary of the main ideas generated by the workshop could be published in the parish bulletin.
Another Possibility: Why not review the fundamentals of our Faith — accompanied by a competent person — during a series of meetings organized with a view to studying together, one by one, the articles of the CREED? Guided reading and meditation of Part One of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (“The Profession of Faith”) will help us on the path of conversion.
Suggested Additional Readings (available free at www.vatican.ca):
- Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity (Apostolicam Actuositatem), Second Vatican Council (see, in particular, nos 3, 6 11 and 28)
- The Role of the Christian Family in the Modern World (Familiaris Consortio), Apostolic Exhortation of Pope John Paul II (see, in particular, paragraphs 52-54)
- The Church in America (Ecclesia in America), Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation of Pope John Paul II (see in particular chapters III and IV)
- At the Beginning of the New Millennium (Novo Millennio Ineunte), Apostolic Letter of Pope John Paul II
- Vocation and Mission of the Laity (Christifideles Laici), Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation of Pope John Paul II (see, in particular, chapter III)
- The Word of the Lord (Verbum Domini), Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Benedict XVI(see, in particular, part 3)
For personal prayer and meditation:
- I Peter 3, 13-17
- Romans 1, 16
- Philippians 2, 1-11
- Mark 16, 14-16 ; 19-20
- Romans 8, 14-17 ; 31-39
- Philippians 1, 27-30
- Matthew 10, 7-8
- Romans 10, 14
- Philippians 4, 4-9
- Acts 10, 37-43
- Romans 12, 1-2
- I Corinthians 1, 22-25
- Acts 2, 22-36
- Romans 13, 11-14
- Galatians 4, 4-7
- Colosians 1, 15-20
- Romans 14, 7-9
- Ephesians 4, 17-24