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Office of Catechesis & Faith Formation
Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph
We help Catholics re-imagine faith formation through missionary discipleship, a powerful process that helps you connect with parishioners, revitalize your ministry, and transform your parish.
A 3-stage process that ensures your people receive the right formation at the right time.
This is the foundation of discipleship ministry. People must know Jesus and his life-saving message before they will want to learn more about him or change their lives to follow him.
Grow in Christ
Next, a person grows in their commitment and relationship with Jesus through ongoing formation and spiritual practices--particularly regular Bible reading and private mental prayer
Finally, we help people use their talents and spiritual gifts in service to others. Mission is an essential part of discipleship. Just as the apostles were gathered, formed, and sent out...so are we.
Learn More About Discipleship Ministry
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...to become a mission-focused, disciple-making Church that can transform the world.
"I dream of a “missionary option” – that is, a missionary impulse capable of transforming everything, so that the Church’s customs, ways of doing things, times and schedules, language and structures can be suitably channeled for the evangelization of today’s world rather than for her [own] self-preservation."
"We have seen it happen over and over. The presence of a significant number of disciples changes everything: a parish's spiritual tone, energy level, attendance, bottom line, and what parishioners ask of their leaders. Disciples pray with passion. Disciples worship. Disciples love the Church and serve her with energy and joy. Disciples give lavishly. Disciples hunger to learn more about their faith...disciples evangelize because they have really good news to share."
As someone involved in ministry, you want to see your parish flourish and grow...to reach more people for Jesus. However, people are busy. They don't see the importance of faith formation and don't make time for it. Missionary discipleship is a new approach that meets people where they are and takes them through a process of faith development. By respecting the stages of spiritual growth, it helps people see the relevance of faith and offers the right formation at the right time. (Click to continue reading)
We know how hard it is to get parishioners involved in regular faith formation...and how vital. People leave the Church without completely knowing what they have! For years Church leaders have recognized the need for a "New Evangelization," a missionary effort to Catholics who, although baptized and catechized, have not caught the fire of Jesus Christ and live nominally Christian lives.
Today, the pastoral vision of Pope Francis is giving us a road map for engaging those Catholics on the margins: parishioners who don't know the beauty of their Catholic Faith, stay an arm's length from parish life, and miss the joy and fullness you want them to experience from a deeply Catholic way of life.
Pope Francis' concepts of encounter, accompaniment, and missionary discipleship are a clarion call to a new way of doing Catholic pastoral ministry. We believe this is exactly what's needed to break through the busy schedules, indifference, and misaligned priorities.
We're here to help parish staffs and ministry leaders answer Pope Francis’ call to make missionary disciples. Not just followers of Jesus, but followers who are missionary...who can reach out and make other disciples.
The process of discipleship actually comes from the Bible. It’s drawn from a careful study of the New Testament -- how Jesus formed the apostles and how they in turn imitated Jesus in establishing the early Church.
This process is a basic framework that can be implemented in different ways depending on the personality of the parish, talents of the pastor, and charisms of the parishioners. It has some fundamental tenets, but it’s more like a loose scaffolding than a fixed program, which means it can accommodate various styles and expressions.
Discipleship is new ground for Catholics…uncharted territory, so to speak. We have a foundational vision, but in moving forward with this new initiative, we are eager to understand the needs and desires of the people in the pews, the people this ground-breaking initiative will affect.
We don't have all the answers. Discipleship is innovative and exciting. We think it's the solution to many of the problems facing the Church, but it's not perfected…not yet. We're on the cutting edge and we need your help.
Will you be a voice in the ongoing discussion on implementing missionary discipleship in our diocese?
If you want to explore how missionary discipleship might fit into your parish ministry, contact us and schedule a meeting. We would love to here from you.
If you're interested in learning more about missionary discipleship and staying in touch with our office, please join our mailing list. We will continue to create new content on discipleship, as well as catechesis, evangelization, adult faith formation, and how to share your Catholic Faith.
Are you comfortable not effectively reaching those people in your parish who are currently out of reach? Do you want your kids and grand kids to be among them?
The practices of the past aren't working. Missionary discipleship is a vision for a different future. Will you join us in this bold and exciting effort to transform the Church and the world?
...about the greatest needs (and obstacles) in adult faith formation today?
In May/June 2017, we conducted listening sessions with over 200 pastors, parish staff, and ministry leaders from around our diocese to discuss evangelization, discipleship, and adult faith formation. We asked two questions: What are your dreams for parish adult faith formation and what are the biggest obstacles to those dreams. Join our email list receive an insightful, free report analyzing over 250 responses from parish leaders.
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