I’m sick and tired of watching my friends and family leave the Church!
That was the response I received from a Catholic grandma-in-the-pews when I mentioned a little book study I’d be doing. A book that answers the question of, “How do we stop the bleeding?” Or: “How do I get through to someone that God loves you, and He wants you to know Him, and love Him, and live forever with Him in Heaven?”
The book is Forming Intentional Disciples by Sherry Weddell. There’ve been so many CWG members who’ve had a hand in spreading the word about this book that I couldn’t name them all, but Mark Shea and Christian LeBlanc are top on my personal list. Three of us CWG writers – Lisa Hendey, Sarah Reinhard, & I, have put our hands together for the next step:
This summer at CatholicMom.com, Sarah will be posting weekly discussion questions about evangelization and discipleship. If you’ve got the book, you can read along and share your thoughts. If you haven’t got time for one more book this summer, not to worry – we have put together a discussion guide that includes a summary of each chapter.
The conversation begins Wednesday, May 29th. You can join in at the combox at CatholicMom.com, where you can also leave a link to your own comments on your personal blog. There will be many of us around the Catholic blogosphere discussing this book and these themes, so hunt down a few of your favorite bloggers and share experiences with them. One of our CWG columnists will be hosting the conversation here.
If you are planning to join the blogfest, please leave a link to your blog in the combox right now, so we know to look for you.
If you want to do a real-life study, CatholicMom.com has resources for parishes — bulletin announcements, flyers, and two different formats for the discussion questions. My advice is not to run a 12-week study at the parish, except if you have a regular weekly coffee date that lends itself to this kind of conversation. For a newly-organized book club, it works well to meet just a few times, and to err on the side of offering multiple small groups rather than one giant one.
Our Sunday Visitor has always been very supportive of the Catholic Writers Guild. I’m thrilled to announce they are offering Sherry Weddell’s book at nearly-wholesale price, free shipping, no minimum, for a limited time. This is an excellent opportunity to do a bulk purchase for the parish library, so you have the books on hand to revisit the topic of evangelization over the next several years.
I look forward to hearing from you, and hearing about the work of the Holy Spirit in your parish as you undertake the New Evangelization!