, 10 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
“Evangelization, he said, is to be done by example, and only when one is asked where their attitude comes from should one talk about faith.”

At the risk of being accused of being more Catholic than the pope, I feel I must address that statement. (1/10)

I’ve been active in Catholic evangelization for 25+ years. I led evangelization efforts at my parish for a decade, and was a diocesan Director of Evangelization for 5 years. I’ve even written a book on Catholic evangelization.

So I’ve thought a lot about evangelization. (2/10)
It’s true that example is a key component of evangelization. If you don’t “walk the walk”, don’t bother trying to “talk the talk.” No one will listen to you. The best evangelists in history were also saints, and that’s not a coincidence. (3/10)
People are led to Christ in various ways, and some are led primarily through example. But some are led by someone initiating a conversation about faith. To remove one arrow from the evangelization quiver is to limit our ability to produce converts. (4/10)
When I was in college, I had a Catholic friend who wouldn’t shut up about the need for me to become Catholic, even though I didn’t initiate the conversation. Guess what? I ended up converting because of his evangelization. (5/10)
If my friend had followed the Pope Francis’s advice, I might not be Catholic today. So I’m thankful that my friend took the initiative instead of waiting for me to bring it up. (6/10)
And the idea that you can’t bring up the faith without first being asked is a modern phenomenon. Do you really think St. Paul, St. Francis Xavier, or St. Isaac Jogues waited until someone asked before they brought up Jesus? Of course not. (7/10)
Now obviously there is a need for balance. I’m not saying Catholics should be as obnoxious as possible and shove their faith into the faces of non-Catholics. (8/10)
But let’s be honest: no one’s doing that. Instead Catholics are quoting faux-St. Francis about putting deeds before words (like Pope Francis did) in order to justify *never* talking about their faith. And that’s just an excuse because they fear offending someone. (9/10)
We need to initiate conversations about faith *while* being a good example of that faith.

And at the risk of self-promotion, if you want more of my thoughts on evangelization, pick up my book, “The Old Evangelization”. (10/10)

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