Advent: A Time for Personal Evangelization

December 1st, we begin our advent journey. During the four weeks of Advent, we prepare for the celebration of Christ’s birth through prayer and reflection. We contemplate the First Coming of Jesus as Savior, and anticipate his promised Second Coming. And amid the flurry of Christmas preparations, we look for practical ways to observe the holiness of the season in our everyday lives.

These days we talk a lot about evangelization. Recently I read a definition for evangelization: “Evangelization is the giving of self to another for the purpose of allowing the other to mature in their relationship with Christ”. Then I thought, if one doesn’t have an impressive ‘self’, how can he evangelize another person. What needed is a self evangelization which means ‘preach the gospel to oneself’. Try to practice the gospel values in our life. Pope Francis preached at a Holy Mass on July 7, 2013 that evangelization starts with our own relationship with Jesus. Advent is a good time to foster this relationship through prayer, reconciliation and penance.

The best way to evangelization, for me, is to tell others the wonderful stories of God experience in our own life and how we live that experience in our family. ‘My story’ is a powerful instrument for evangelization. “Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for you hope…” (1 Peter 3:15) If we don’t have a fair story to tell about our faith how we can attract people to the God we believe.  It is too easy to tell people what to do. But one must first do it to oneself. First evangelize oneself, then evangelize one’s family and then reach out to others with those great stories of evangelization.

Let us prepare ourselves to be effective evangelizers during this advent season using all the means church is providing us with, especially through Sacred Liturgy and Sacrament of Reconciliation.
Fr. Binu Joseph.

  HOMILY: 2nd Sunday of Advent .

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December 8, 2019.f​​

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