“The Church exists in order to evangelize.” -Pope Paul VI

Evangelizing means “bringing the Good News into all strata of humanity, and through its influence transforming humanity from within and making it new.” (Evangelii Nuntiandi,18)

As Coordinators of Youth Ministry we are called to bring the Good News to young people. Not just the 500 young Catholics who are registered in your parish….the thousands of young people (Catholic and non-Catholic) who live in your parish boundaries! (Yikes…)

Our Protestant brothers and sisters are typically much better at sharing the Good News of Jesus than we are as Catholics. We can certainly learn some lessons from some of them...for example, the Fairfax area Young Life Leader (a non-denominational/Protestant based youth organization) tells a story of how he evangelized a local public high school:

I signed up to be a substitute teacher in the school, and also volunteered to be the soccer coach. This daily presence in the school gave me the ability to build relationships and to ‘earn the right to be heard’. I was able to build a large Young Life group that would meet weekly to sing fun songs, play fun games, and act out hilarious skits. At the end of each meeting I would give a short witness about Jesus Christ.

In time, there began to be a group of young people in the school who did not like the Young Life kids. So I decided to start a second group. We would meet weekly to talk about what we did not like about Young Life, then we would sing fun songs, play some fun games, act out hilarious skits. At the end of each meeting I would give a short witness about Jesus Christ.”

Within every parish there are young people who like “youth group”. However, there is probably a larger group that does not like “youth group” and would never cast a shadow on the door of the youth room. How can we evangelize those young people?

In this chapter, we offer the following: