Fr. Robert Barron’s 7 Keys to Implementing the New Evangelization

by Sr. Susan Wolf, SND on March 25, 2014

in New Evangelization, parish

New Evangelization WebsitesFr. Robert Barron is one of the most well-known, respected and articulate advocates of the New Evangelization. On March 15, 2014 he spoke at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress on “Hope to Set the World Afire.” In his talk he offered 7 keys to implementing the New Evangelization.

1) Lead with the beautiful.
2) Don’t dumb down the message!
3) Preach with ardor.
4) Tell the great story.
5) God does not need us. God loves us and wants us to be fully human, fully alive. (Irenaeus)
6) All of us are made for God. (Augustine)
7) Use the new media.

Following up on point 7, what if we applied some of the ideas that Fr. Barron presented about the New Evangelization in general (please view the video to get his meanings), to the specific content and message of our parish websites? Here are a few questions that we could ask:

  • Does our website reveal what is beautiful about our faith in a beautiful way?
  • Is it apparent from our website that Jesus is the center of our lives and of our community?
  • Do we express joy and enthusiasm for our faith through our website content and images?
  • Is it clear that we know that God loves everyone, i.e. active members, visitors, new comers and inactive members?

What other questions would you ask? Do you think it is appropriate to extend our efforts in the New Evangelization to websites?

How does your parish view its website? Is it an evangelizing website? Why or why not?

Please share any insights you gained from the video or any comments on my application of it.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Sr. Angela Ann Zukowski March 25, 2014 at 7:02 am

Good idea! Thanks!

Tony Krisak March 25, 2014 at 9:56 am

I think your questions about websites are great and hope they are used by many.

Caroline Cerveny, SSJ-TOSF March 25, 2014 at 10:01 am

Are we “static” or visibly “alive” on our parish websites? Do we have something “new” to come back to on a regular basis? – Just a couple of additional questions to consider.

Robert Lucas March 26, 2014 at 7:48 am

Let’s not forget how important it is to keep our web site up to date, adding new stories and links promoting God’s message as well as removing old stories and links before they get moldy and trite.

Sr. Susan Wolf, SND March 26, 2014 at 1:38 pm

Thank you for your comments. As Caroline and Robert have pointed out, it is important to keep our websites fresh and up to date.

Additional thought: Even if you do add new quality content to your website on a regular basis, most people will not come back to see it unless it answers a need they have, is really compelling or they are reminded that it is there. Writing compelling content is a challenge and we have to work on it. As for driving people to our websites, that is where social media networks like Facebook and Twitter can be a big help. We can use them to let people know what is new on our sites and give them the link to connect.

Jim McGovern June 10, 2014 at 11:19 pm

Suggest that all parish sites link to the many other excellent sites. One single site can not address the multiple needs of Catholics.
My credentials: Have made many mistakes and Jesus still loves me.

A warm welcome to our prayer site: Jim… Your brother in Christ

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