The Institute for Evangelization was created by Archbishop Lori in February 2021 and given its charge from A Light Brightly Visible 2.0. The Institute exists to support parishes and pastorates in their local evangelizing mission. It provides parish leaders with practical tools to clarify their vision, unify their parish, and mobilize for mission.
What is new about this approach?
The Institute is built on the idea of subsidiarity, which means that efforts should be carried out at the lowest level possible so that the parishes are empowered to make decisions on issues that affect them at the local level. Evangelization is done through relationships, so the Institute supports and equips parishes in their local evangelizing efforts and offers programs and ministries that require an archdiocesan response.
Have other dioceses and archdioceses created Institutes?
In recent years, many dioceses and archdioceses around the United States have recognized the growing need to support “New Evangelization” efforts. Some have created institutes, but few have created institutes that support parishes in the same manner that the Office for Parish Renewal and the “Emmaus Teams” supports parishes.
What are Emmaus Teams?
The Office of Parish Renewal has three teams, each with two Parish Renewal Specialists. Each team of two is called an Emmaus Team, which is rooted in the story of accompaniment on the road to Emmaus and Jesus’ exhortation to go two-by-two. These Specialists are well versed in the latest evangelization resources as well as organizational health tools. Every parish or pastorate will have an Emmaus Team.
What is the “New Evangelization”?
The new Evangelization speaks to the urgent need to proclaim the Gospel using new “ardor, methods, and expression.” In 1975, Saint Paul VI issued Evangelii Nuntandi, which is about evangelization in the modern world. From St. John Paul II to Pope Francis there has been a consistent exhortation to proclaim the Gospel using new “ardor, methods, and expression.”
Is Pastoral Planning still happening?
Yes. The Emmaus Teams will be able to support parishes and pastorates in their planning efforts. While the phased process for planning will look different each pastorate is expected to undergo planning and Emmaus Teams will be able to support pastorates in preparation for planning, during planning, and during the implementation process. These teams will ensure a seamless process of Archdiocesan support.