No matter how beneficial it might be to have a “personal relationship with Jesus,” if a clearly recognizable Catholic identity is not promoted, then this type of “evangelization” is counterproductive.
The “New Evangelization” should not be out to make Protestants of our Catholics; indeed, we should be out to make Catholics of our Protestant friends and relatives.
Weddell’s book—seems to be that most Catholicshave such a relationship; and this is what they need in order to be “intentional disciples” who spread the Good News (and, presumably, bring converts into the Church).
The problem with this approach is that it has a distinctly “Protestant” ring to it; that is, the emphasis is on “me ‘n’ Jesus,” with less emphasis on understanding the teachings of the Church that Jesus instituted.
Although the new translation has corrected that to some extent, there still exists a poverty of conversion-evoking phrases in the current prayers when compared to the prayers of the 1962 Missal.
For Catholics, in many cases, there is no call to conversion in the Catholic Church, because pastors have such a great fear of hurting someone’s feelings.On the other hand, for Catholics there is an observable measure of one’s relationship with our Lord.The Eucharist is the source and summit of our life as Catholics, and a baptized, confirmed Catholic who faithfully partakes of the sacraments of reconciliation and Holy Communion in the manner prescribed by the Church certainly has a “personal relationship” with Jesus, he or she uses that phrase to describe it.In other words, it presupposes a basic knowledge of the faith.I suspect that the concept of a “personal relationship with Jesus” emerged from the philosophical distinction between a personal God and an impersonal God—but that distinction, too, is fraught with problems of definition and interpretation.The book is , by Sherry Weddell; it has a charismatic bent and is liberally sprinkled with the phrase, “a personal relationship with Jesus.” Though this essay is not meant to be a book review, I shall rely on many examples from Ms.Weddell’s work, as it illustrates very well the thinking behind what appears to be a current trend in the “New Evangelization.” The basic assumption of the people who ask others whether they have a personal relationship with Jesus—and the premise of Ms.And yet, that call to conversion is heeded mightily in Protestant settings.Catholics seldom hear the message that they are sinful, and so they see no need for the sacrament of reconciliation (“I haven’t killed anyone” being a common excuse for not going to confession). a baptized, confirmed Catholic who faithfully partakes of the sacraments of reconciliation and Holy Communion in the manner prescribed by the Church certainly has a “personal relationship” with Jesus, he or she uses that phrase to describe it. ” It’s a question that Catholics are hearing much more frequently in the Church these past few years—a question many associate primarily with evangelical Protestant groups.Since mid-2012, however, a “New Evangelization” book and program have been making the rounds amongst Catholic parishes, making liberal use of that phrase.