Registered: 2 years, 8 months ago
• Minnetonka, MN team leader • Twin Cities, MN Regional Missionary • Started with SPSE in 2014 Describe your team - size, location and frequency of evangelization outings, other team gatherings Our team includes Catholics from multiples parishes across the Twin Cities and grew out of a Basic Evangelization Training held in Minneapolis in 2015. We have 5-6 active members and about 15 people on our email list. We go out approximately once a month, alternating between parks in Minneapolis and Saint Paul. We also staff vendor tables at Archdiocesan Evangelization events during the year, as well as at parish social events such as festivals, fish fries and conferences. How has God worked in and through your SPSE team? Our team has great support from Archbishop Hebda and Bishop Cozzens, so we are frequently recognized when we are out. We also encourage each other to evangelize at all times in our daily lives, not just when we are at our monthly outings. God has blessed us with return visits by people we have prayed with who have been healed of anger, despair, or alienation from the Church. One woman we met in Saint Paul committed to returning to confession after many years when she talked with one of our team members. Another woman we prayed with at a parish festival was healed of deafness and ear pain and took pamphlets on "Why be Catholic" and "The Eucharist" afterwards. What motivates you to evangelize? or What led you to SPSE? I am a revert, born and raised in the Catholic Church but left in my 20's because I disagreed with so many of the Church teachings and thought I knew better. When "my way, my truth, my life" didn't work at helping me and my family face some serious suffering and crises, I was welcomed back and evangelized by a holy priest. For the first time I met Jesus as real and living, and had a relationship with Him. It changed my life and the lives of my husband and 3 of our 4 children. The suffering now had peace, meaning and we had a joy in our house that could not be explained any other way. The more I learned about the Catholic faith, the more I was in awe of its power, reason and joy. Like the child who gets the coveted present on Christmas, I had to tell everyone. SPSE gave me the knowledge, tools, and support to share what had changed my life. What is the relationship between evangelization and your spiritual life (prayer)? It is very tangible and obvious in my evangelization efforts when my spiritual life is slipping. I am anxious, frustrated at a lack of engagement or off target with what the person really needs. I can't give what I don't have. When I put my life with God first every day, I am at peace with however God uses me to reach others. It's no longer about me; it's being Christ's presence to that person. Then conversion almost always happens in some way. Is there a scripture passage that you turn to often, or a favorite part of mass? At the Consecration, I always pray a personal "Magnificat" prayer, "My Lord and my God; I am a servant of the Lord; may it be done unto me according to Your will." It sets me up for whatever God has planned for me that day. Is there an obstacle you have overcome while leading your team? (tell me about it.) I have had to learn to focus more on supporting my team members in their own spiritual lives (praying with them and for their intentions, listening to them, encouraging them to ask questions and working together to finding answers) and not try to do everything myself, including being involved in every conversation we have. Trusting that God is truly present with us as we go out, and it is He who evangelizes through us is something I've had to grow into.
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