Thursday

How the Four Marks Push Each Other.

Prayer. Study. Giving. Evangelization.

One of the most important realizations you can make as a Parish leader is that building a Dynamic Catholic Parish starts with building Dynamic Catholic Individuals. Yes, we in our parishes are a community of believers, but we are nothing if the individual is not a true believer. To build a strong community, a strong Church, we need to build strong individual believers.

Pope Francis has been on the forefront of driving this message home since he became our Holy Father.  It's more than just erecting nice buildings and hosting nice community events. It's about establishing prayer-filled days in the lives of our parishioners.

The Four Marks of Dynamic Catholics actually push each other along.

Let's start with Prayer. If we can encourage our parishioners to start their days with prayers, then we're on our way. Many of your parishioners can not make it to Daily Mass for one reason or another. Encourage them to use your new Parish App to join the universal Catholic Church in prayer by reading (or listening) to the Daily Readings everyday. Tell them to listen to the Readings as they drive to work in the morning. Introduce them to the Prayer of the Hours by teaching them how they can start their day with the podcast of the Morning Prayer that is found in the Daily Readings section of their Apps. If we can get them to listen to scriptures every morning, then we have achieved something great.

Study. Once we encourage Scripture reading and prayer among our parishioners, they become more open to studying our Faith. Your Parish App comes with thousands of new articles streaming every minute from hundreds of the Catholic Church's brightest and best writers, preachers and pastors. These articles can also be read by topic of interest. And they are presented in the most interesting magazine format so they are easy to read and follow. Our parishioners can learn about the true teachings of our Church from your App. And the more they understand, the stronger their faith becomes.

Giving. If your parishioners are strong in their faith as a result of Prayer and Study as described above, then Giving comes easily. It is understandable how anyone in parish leadership get lost in the shuffle when stressing over money. But the idea is really very simple. If you have prayerful parishioners, money will never be a problem for your parish. If you have money issues, then it is safe to assume that you have prayer issues among your members. It is that simple. You need to go back to basics. Build Faith, and the rest follows. Encourage your parishioners to use your App to build strong Prayer and Study habits. Then the rest will take care of itself. Oh and let's not forget that the App also makes it convenient to give by allowing online donations straight from their mobile phones or desktop websites.

Evangelization. Finally we come to it. This is not a task we need to remind our parishioners to do. Evangelization is the natural end-product of the first three Marks. When a Catholic is strong in Prayer, Studies the Faith every chance he gets, and Gives whole heartedly to his Church, then he becomes a walking and breathing evangelizer for our Faith. He has then become a Dynamic Catholic. He has become one who we know can make a difference in your parish.

Go back to basics. It's really a simple thought -- Prayer, Study, Giving, Evangelization.

Your new Parish App can play a central role in making it happen. You have a very powerful tool at your disposal. Make a personal commitment to learn your App and use it for yourself and for your Parish.




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