Michelle Moran: Important to strengthen those already serving in ministries.
The Catholic Faith Exploration (CaFE) programme aims to build up the faith community, to help it “go deeper” in terms of knowledge, experience and relationships, one of the programme’s key presenters told Catholics recently.
This is not some “self-improvement plan for parish communities” but to boost Catholics’ confidence in reaching out to others so that evangelisation can occur, said Ms Michelle Moran.
She was speaking to 150 participants at a CaFE forum at the Church of St Bernadette on Dec 7. The event was organised by the Archdiocesan CaFE Promotion Team (ACPT).
CaFE was developed in the United Kingdom in 1996 for the re-evangelisation of Catholics.
Each CaFE talk, 35-40 minutes long, is presented through video by clergy, theologians or trained laity, followed by group discussion.
Modules include topics on God, the Mass, the Catholic Church and the Sacraments.
Through the small group discussions, participants are empowered and become more confident about sharing the Good News, said Ms Moran.
Start with strengthening those who have been faithfully serving in parish councils and ministries, Ms Moran suggested.
When the heart of the parish is strong, it can reach out to others such as the majority of the parishioners who faithfully attend Sunday Mass, she said.
“They turn up and pay up because nothing else is asked of them or they don’t find a way into anything else.” The CaFE programme helps build connections and a way into parish groups, she said.
The next group would be to reach out to Catholics who have stopped going to church. One way is to visit them in their homes, she said.
Ms Moran also stressed the need for evangelisation in secular societies as there is a “deep longing within for something else … there’s a lack of home … lack of sense of identity … lack of belonging”.
Several of those who attended the talk said they found it inspiring.
Shawn Liu said the youth of the Church of St Ignatius will explore the possibility of introducing the programme for fellow youths.
Ms Moran is a member of the Pontifical Council for the Laity and president of the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services in Rome.
A separate CaFE forum for priests was held in the morning.
By Darren Boon