With the beginning of the end of the small group adult series Why Catholic? now here, Sharon Bogusz is not getting wistful. Instead, she’s hopeful about the future of Catholicism.
“Faith development is an ongoing process,” said Bogusz, coordinator for evangelization and adult catechesis for the Archdiocese of Baltimore. “Every Catholic can benefit from an ongoing study and discussion of faith. As adults mature, our ability to understand and critically reflect upon issues of faith evolves and naturally leads us to explore issues of faith and belief with further depth.”
The last six-week session of Why Catholic? started the first week of Lent in parishes across the archdiocese. It is a four-year small faith group exploration of the practices and beliefs of the Catholic faith tradition. Bogusz said that “through study and discussion adult Catholics discover anew the richness and depth of our Catholic faith and apply it to Catholic daily spiritual life.”
The Catholic Review will be running weekly columns on its Web site, www.CatholicReview.org, and post them every Tuesday. Columnists include: Father T. Austin Murphy, Mark Pacione, Anne Buening, Georgina Vaca, Deacon Loren Mooney and Deacon Paul T. Mann.
Bogusz said Why Catholic serves as a form of evangelization toward adult Catholics. She said the goal is for people to mature in their knowledge of the faith and “develop a comfort level discussing their faith in small faith-sharing groups so that they may be witnesses of the Gospel in their daily lives.”
She said the archdiocese’s Division of Evangelization and Catechesis offers consultation on adult formation planning and resources for ongoing evangelization efforts. Later in the spring, she said, the division will be offering adult faith networking gatherings to offer parishes an opportunity to share ideas, experiences, resources and hopes for the future of adult faith formation.
Bogusz is confident Why Catholic? has been a success.
“I’ve seen the energy, enthusiasm and confidence that men and women gain when they come to a better understanding about faith and how it can make a difference,” Bogusz said. “As a result, participants feel a sense of liberty to witness their faith in all aspects of their lives – at work, home, with family and friends.”