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Chapter 11. The Four Marks of the Church • 137

1. Consider Christ’s great Commission to evangelize (Mt

28:18-20) as a spiritual vocation contained in our baptismal


2. Be positive and hope-filled. As God’s messengers and Easter

people, we have Good News to share with others.

3. Include all major paths to evangelization: (a) interpersonal

dialogue, (b) parish programs, (c) diocesan direction. The

interpersonal approach is the most effective. Friends, rela-

tives, and neighbors account for four out of five of those

who become Catholics.

4. Begin with the human situation of the person. This might

be people’s four basic fears: failure, rejection, pain, death.

Raise questions about existence and future life. Show how

Jesus understands these fears and offers a salvation that is

the best response.

5. Build on faith experiences. Empathize with people’s love of

beauty, music, and art. Note this in the popular religion

of ethnics and immigrants—and the faith experiences in

Cursillo, Marriage Encounter, charismatic renewal.

6. Evangelize yourself through daily spiritual renewal in union

with Christ. Convinced people convince others. (



[June 1991]: 39-41)


1. How do the Church’s four marks strengthen your Catholic identity?

How can we lessen mistrust and the misunderstandings that exist

among the various Christian denominations in our community?

What can we do to eliminate anti-Semitism?

2. How is the hierarchy—pope, bishops, priests, and deacons—valu-

able for your growth in faith? What sources of spiritual strength

do you receive from the Church’s structures: parish, diocese, univer-

sal Church?

3. Identify practical ways to evangelize others. What are some benefits

the Church receives from those who have embraced consecrated

life? What are ways that the laity can help spread the faith?