Evangelizing Catholics

Why the New Evangelization is a 'Catholic thing'

HUNTINGTON, Indiana, April 29, 2014 – Popes have promoted the New Evangelization for decades, ever since Saint John Paul II quietly mentioned it in a Polish field in 1979. Today, the phrase is peppered all over Catholic media, writings, addresses, and events …yet Catholics in the pew remain politely reticent.

Still, the new pope-saint was on to something, now coming into its own — the need for an energetic, urgent, grass-roots re-proclamation of the Gospel to a culture that is rapidly losing its moorings.

But how does the person-in-the-pew summon the courage to share the faith? First, Catholics must be steeped in and grasp the essentials of the faith themselves. “The New Evangelization is more for the baptized than the unbaptized,” says world-renowned speaker and theologian, Dr. Scott Hahn in his new book, Evangelizing Catholics: A Mission Manual for the New Evangelization (Our Sunday Visitor, 2014).

“It’s for those who have been inadequately catechized but all too adequately secularized, and for those who’ve been de-Christianized in the very process of being sacramentalized.”

Make no mistake, there are more than a few Catholics in that category, he says.

But the New Evangelization is also for those who have drifted away from or are hostile to the faith or have never heard the Good News—and Catholics need to reach out to them. How? Evangelizing Catholics provides a game-plan—practical advice to help Catholics negotiate the ins-and-outs of evangelization in the work-place, the home, and in every area of daily life.

Evangelizing Catholics re-familiarizes its readers with the four Gospel writers – the Church’s First Evangelists – and their approaches to sharing the Faith; it draws lessons from the men and women of the Early Church who played a pivotal role in the evangelization of the Roman/ pagan world; it helps Catholics to understand the role of the family as the primary field of evangelization, with the Mass as the center of family life. Hahn also considers the impact of charity, almsgiving, gratitude and good cheer in evangelization, as well as the roles of genuine friendship, being good neighbors, co-workers, and parishioners, involvement in Catholic conferences, retreats, and lay movements—and much more.

“The New Evangelization is the work of our entire lifetime,” say Hahn. “If the only sure thing in life is death, it’s also good to know we are all going to live forever. The question is where, and the answer depends on what we do with the days we’ve been given.” In short, it depends on how Catholics evangelize, he says – not just through words, but deeds and how they live …not just what they share with others, but what they bear for others.

Evangelizing Catholics is an excellent, well written, and comprehensive look at the new evangelization. Lots of good information, inspiration and formation! Indeed, a very useful manual for the new evangelization." -- Ralph Martin, theologian, president of Renewal Ministries, and author of The Urgency of the New Evangelization: Answering the Call (Our Sunday Visitor, 2013).

For an interview with Dr. Scott Hahn, please contact Christine Valentine-Owsik at: (215) 230-8095 or cowsik@osv.com.

About Our Sunday Visitor

The world’s largest English-language Catholic publisher, Our Sunday Visitor serves millions of Catholics globally through its publishing, offertory, and communication services. Established in 1912, Our Sunday Visitor publishes a wide range of books including Bibles, biographies of the saints, books by Pope Francis, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, children’s books, devotionals, bible studies, inspirational works, and curriculum. Our Sunday Visitor is a not-for-profit organization, returning a portion of net earnings back to the Catholic community through the Our Sunday Visitor Institute. For more information, visit www.osv.com.

About the Author

Dr. Scott Hahn

An exceptionally popular speaker and teacher, Dr. Hahn has delivered numerous talks internationally on a myriad of topics related to Scripture and the Catholic faith. Hahn has been awarded the Father Michael Scanlan, TOR, Chair of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he has taught since 1990, and is the founder and director of the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology.

In May 2014, Dr. Hahn was appointed The McEssy Distinguished Visiting Professor of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Mundelein Seminary in Chicago IL. From 2005 to 2011, he held the Pope Benedict XVI Chair of Biblical Theology and Liturgical Proclamation at St. Vincent Seminary in Latrobe, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Hahn is also the bestselling author of numerous books including The Lamb’s Supper, Reasons to Believe, and Rome Sweet Home (co-authored with his wife, Kimberly). Some of his more recent titles include Consuming the Word, Angels and Saints, Politicizing the Bible, Hope for Hard Times, and The Catholic Bible Dictionary.

Scott received his Ph.D. in Biblical Theology from Marquette University in 1995; his Masters of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 1982; and his Bachelor of Arts degree with a triple-major in Theology, Philosophy and Economics from Grove City College, Pennsylvania, in 1979. He was ordained in 1982 at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Fairfax, Virginia. He entered the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil, 1986.

Born in 1957, Dr. Hahn has been married to his wife, Kimberly, since 1979. They have six children and 10 grandchildren.

Book Specs

Publisher: Our Sunday Visitor
Author: Dr. Scott Hahn
Release Date: April, 2014
Length: 176 Pages, Hardcover
Price: $ 19.95
ISBN: 978-1-61278-773-2
Order www.osv.com

Interview Questions

Dr. Scott Hahn

Evangelizing Catholics: A Mission Manual for the New Evangelization

1. Explain what you mean by saying, Catholics can’t keep the faith – unless they can give it away.
2. So what exactly is the New Evangelization, and how does it involve Catholics?
3. And what does it entail for Catholics’ own faith, as well as their influence on other Catholics who may have faded in fervor and understanding?
4. If Catholics don’t need great theological knowledge to confidently live and pass on the faith, where do they start with the New Evangelization?
5. St. Augustine described the process of conversion as “one heart setting another heart on fire.” How can this happen in our midst today, and how can Catholics play a role in that?
6. You say in the book that the Christian family is the primary field for evangelization. Explain that.
7. What do we stand to lose — as Catholics and society as a whole — if we don’t follow Christ’s call for each of us to evangelize?
8. What should be at the center of the New Evangelization, and how can Catholics stay focused on that?
9. Finally, remind us of what Christ has commissioned each of us to do in regard to living and passing on the faith.