Popular culture tends to associate evangelizing with mega-churches and Sunday morning televangelists. Catholics may remember the success of Archbishop Fulton Sheen and Pope John Paul II in years past. But, Father William Fickel, SSS, asserts, “Catholics do not evangelize the way other Christian preachers do, with an altar call that invites an individual to come forward and make a public profession of faith and accept the Lord Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. Rather, it is from the celebration of the Eucharist that we are sent out with others to evangelize by inviting people to belong to the body of Christ and have a place at the table of the Lord.”
The Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing shares the mission of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament, namely, to “respond to the hungers of the human family with the riches of God’s love manifested in the Eucharist” (Rule of Life, 3). In doing this, we follow in the footsteps of Saint Peter Julian Eymard, the Apostle of the Eucharist. Number 33 of the Rule of Life states: “Father Eymard’s ability to translate his eucharistic grace into very diverse ministries stimulates us to be creative in our mission.”
The Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing seeks to answer the spiritual yearnings of the people of our day, as Saint Peter Julian did in his own time, through developing programs, resources, and experiences that foster knowledge and love of the Eucharist and the search for the true meaning and power of the eucharistic mystery.
Number 36 of the Rule of Life of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament expresses it this way: “Like the mustard seed which never ceases to grow, the church progresses in her understanding of the realities and words that have been given to her. Likewise, we ourselves ought to deepen our understanding of the Eucharist and promote a fruitful celebration of this mystery with whatever demands it makes on us.”
Eucharistic evangelizing, then, is both about helping others (and ourselves) find a place at the table of the Lord . . . and then moving from the eucharistic table in mission to the world around us.
Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing
Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament
5384 Wilson Mills Road
Cleveland, OH 44143
Telephone: (440) 442-4734
E-mail: [email protected]