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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
November 11, 1988     The Message
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November 11, 1988

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Faith Today Supplement, The Message, Catholic Diocese of Evansville, November 11, 1988 3 iain reluctance even politics. Itowevcr, she the conversational line at faith faith. Your religion is vital, it bcc()mcs of you and it l)ecomes sort of to talk about it," says Ms. a lifelong Catholic. But Is different. it is awkward and I don't it's even ncces,sary to bc talk- personal faith anymore It is to talk about a lot of other things," says Ms. O'Connor, g copywriter for a publishing house in "I think this business evangelists talking about how Jesus -- I don't really that needs to be discussed." O'Connor's feelings aren't by everyone, but they are by others who, while willing questions about their church talk about religion in general, from personal discussions Workings of faith in their lives. some people this may be a from an upbringing where Wasn't much discussed. They be reacting against a stereotype h01d of the sort of person who expresses faith in For parish groul leaders and others, it is worth noting that at a tinle when nlany people make per- sonal faith part of groul3 discussions and private encounters, this dc)esn't just "comes naturally" for everyone. "it's awkward for me because it w;tsn't something I was trained to do -- talk about my faith," says Robert Koenig, a communications professional who works for a non- denominational health care organiza- tion in Philadelphia. "My faith was a given with the people I was sur- rounded by, but now it's not. 'Tve never been the type of person who's been out to convert the rest of the world. However, I think I do try to show by example," Koenig adds. "It's certainly not my style to talk too much about God," says Ann O'Neill, a homemaker and mother of three. "Yet I certainly don't mind talking about my faith at all. "I don't think as a whole that we Catholics talk about our faith very much," Mrs. O'Neill says. "I don't think it's a question of timidity. I think it's more the way we are raised." (Ms. Landregan is a free-lance writer in Philadelphia.) for expression rnabashedly the people shared experiences of God not only the circle of the family and community. They proclaim- experiences to the world at will give thanks to you the peoples, O Lord; I will Your praise among the nations, kindness towers to the and your faithfulness to the 108:4-5). too, are filled with of people who quite span- communicated their ex- to others. When Jesus cured on the gentile side of the man "pleaded to remain But Jesus would not permit told him instead, 'Go home YOur family and announce to them b n! at the Lord in his pity has done  You. Then the man went off and began to proclaim in the Decapolis what Jesus had done for him; and all were amazed" (Mark 5:18-20). Of course, verbal communication is only one way to share one's faith. Actions speak louder than words. Paul frequently speaks to his con- verts about the powerful sign that their lives can be. He urges the Philippians to live in such a way "that you may be ... without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine like lights in the world" (Philippians 2:15). When people share faith, their action proclaims that God is indeed alive and active in people's lives. (Father Castelot is a Scripture scholar, author and lecturer.) FOOD FOR THOUGHT rn There are times when it is important to speak of your faith, but that doesn't .lake it easy to do. Awkwardness and discomfort are common feelings for peo- e Who attempt to put their faith into words- even at home. )i ", *Wha t are some occasions when you think putting faith into words is ! hnPOrtant? tour writers distinguish between speaking about faith or religion and ex- i Oressing or sharing faith in words. What do they mean? 00Socond Helpings. possible to make spirituality an integral part of it ,,m!ly life? At home, the demands of caring for others and the pres of responsl- i". es might at first seem to compete with efforts to nurture a spiritual life. But 'eding God at Home: Family Life and Spiritual Discipline, Ernest Bayer Jr. sug- sts that these need not be competing claims at all "You feel yourself an inhab- itant of two worlds, but a citizen of neither You feel always off balance. And Yet this sense of imbalance is part of the solution, not part of the problem," he Writes. This is an easy-to-read book in which Bayer, a husband and father, writes t out of his own experience in a family setting. Parents will find this writer sym- pathetic to their situation as they seek to five by actions of faith at home. (Harper Row, 10 E. 53rd St., New York, N.Y. 10022. 1984. Paperback, $7.95. This religious educa- | tion supplement is read by countless individuals at home, when they are at their leisure. And it is put to use in educational groups of many kinds -- in parishes, schools, homes. This pull-out supplement supports the ongoing work of religious educators through materials that are easy to read and interesting to discuss. Faith Today another valuable service of your Catholic newspaper Faith Today is a,publication of the National Catholic News Service, which also publishes: TV & Movie Guide. A weekly four-page publica- tion that is invaluable in the age of television and the home videocassette. Offering discussion of the coming week's TV shows of note, reviews of current theatrical films and ratings for films showing in theaters and on cable movie channels, as well as films available in video stores. *Origins, NC Documentary Service. This weekly 16-page publication presents the complete texts of cur- rent documents in the news of the church and its peo- ple. A unique format, along with weekly cross referen- cing and detailed quarterly indexing, makes this publica- tion doubly useful. I *Catholic Trends. Each edition of this four-page, biweekly newsletter reports on current events in the church and serves as a forum of information on the pastoral activities of today's church communities. You'll be surprised how much is found in each edition. To obtain o free sample copy of any of these pub#ca- tions, simply write or telephone: Mrs. Bessie Briscoe; NC News 5ervice; 1012 Moss. Ave. N. W.; Woshington, D.C. 20005. Phone, 202-652-6742. 38