5 episodes

This podcast is produced by the Office of Evangelization and Catechesis in the Diocese of Baton Rouge. The purposes of it threefold: 1) To proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ 2) To apply the Gospel to Contemporary Life 3) To support those who are dedicated to Evangelization and Catechesis

EvangCat Baton Rouge Office of Evangelization and Catechesis

    • Christianity

This podcast is produced by the Office of Evangelization and Catechesis in the Diocese of Baton Rouge. The purposes of it threefold: 1) To proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ 2) To apply the Gospel to Contemporary Life 3) To support those who are dedicated to Evangelization and Catechesis

    Podcast – Pride Celebrations and a Document on Gender Theory

    Podcast – Pride Celebrations and a Document on Gender Theory

    This podcast is an audio form of the article published a few weeks back on the Church’s new teaching document from the Congregation for Catholic Education on Gender Theory. That original article is available here:

    https://evangcatbr.org/2019/06/12/the-catholic-response-to-gender-theory-a-catechetical-series-on-listening-reasoning-and-proposing-with-the-church/

     

    • 7 min
    Catechism in Catechesis: Part III – The Missing Key to Understanding the Catechism

    Catechism in Catechesis: Part III – The Missing Key to Understanding the Catechism

    Friends in Christ, in this podcast you will find a lecture on the missing key to understanding the Catechism, in particular the meaning behind its organization into the four pillars, the history of those four pillars in Catechesis, and how they are reflective of the divine pedagogy (the way God teaches us). This will change the way you think about Catechesis and the process of Christian conversion, and should help you to develop a Catechetical approach that is more effective. Also, you can look really smart with your friends because you can explain to them why the Catechism is arranged the way that it is 🙂

     

    • 40 min
    Catechism in Catechesis: Part II – Context of the Catechism

    Catechism in Catechesis: Part II – Context of the Catechism

    The blog post below is the transcript of the Podcast published in this post



    This is the second of a series of podcasts on the Catechism of the Catholic Church. This podcast is written and recorded on behalf of the Office of Evangelization & Catechesis in the Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge. My name is Barry Schoedel, I am the present Associate Director of the Office of Evangelization & Catechesis.

    To understand the Catechism of the Catholic Church it is helpful to first reflect upon the context in which it was born. By considering the context we can better understand the reasoning behind the formulation of a Catechism, as such, and also some of the pressing needs in Catechesis in the contemporary world.

    To do this we will look together at a letter that Pope Saint John Paul II wrote when the Catechism was originally promulgated in 1992. The letter itself was in the form of what is called in the Church, an Apostolic Constitution. Apostolic Constitutions are generally considered the highest level of decree ordered by a Pope, and are addressed to the Church. They tend to treat of solemn matters, such as the promulgation of laws or definitive teachings. Examples of other contemporary Apostolic Constitutions were on the occasion of the promulgation of the new Code of Canon Law in 1983, as well as a constitution on rules to guide Catholic Universities that they remain faithful to Christ and the Church, and a constitution on rules on electing the Roman Pontiff. As mentioned, such constitutions are reserved for matters of the highest importance in the Church. That should give a sense of the weight of the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, that it was central to her life and of greatest importance.

    The constitution which accompanied the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church was titled Fidei Depositum, or, the Deposit of the Faith. It is this constitution which defines the centrality of the Catechism for the work of Catechesis in the Church going forward.

    The document begins,

    (g)uarding the deposit of the faith is the mission which the Lord has entrusted to his Church and which she fulfills in every age. The Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, which opened 30 years ago by my predecessor Pope John XXIII, of happy memory, had as its intention and purpose to highlight the Church’s apostolic and pastoral mission, and by making the truth of the Gospel shine forth, to lead all people to seek and receive Christ’s love which surpasses all knowledge.

    The pontiff remarked that safeguarding the deposit of the faith is intrinsic to the Church, it is precisely what has been entrusted to her so that she may communicate the saving love of Christ to all generations. This is the task of the Church in every age, to defend, nurture, and promote the teachings of the Gospel of God, Jesus Christ. Importantly, the Pontiff, mentions the Second Vatican Council. It was precisely to strengthen the Church’s pastoral and apostolic mission in the contemporary world that was the inspiration of Vatican II. This council was distinct in that it wasn’t formulated to weigh in on a major theological controversy, like previous councils, but instead was primarily pastoral in nature.

    At this point in the life of the Church she was already well over 2 centuries into the period we call modernity. Catholic faith and unity had been challenged by many things during that period, including the Protestant reformation and conflicts over the authority of the Church in relationship to worldly powers. Particularly in Western Europe agnosticism, atheism, and antagonism toward the Christian faith and the Church seemed ever increasing. Large sectors of society that were previously Catholic were no longer believers, and many actually persecuted the Church.

    • 12 min
    Catechism in Catechesis: Part I – Introduction

    Catechism in Catechesis: Part I – Introduction

    The blog post below is the transcript of the Podcast published in this post with some pictures of the areas mentioned. 



    This is the first of a series of podcasts on the Catechism of the Catholic Church. This podcast is written and recorded on behalf of the Office of Evangelization & Catechesis in the Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge. My name is Barry Schoedel, I am the present Associate Director of the Office of Evangelization & Catechesis

    Initially, the topic matter of the Catechism may not seem that exciting to many people. Folks in one camp in the Church seem to bristle just at the word catechism. You can hardly bring it up in discussion without getting a defensive remark or criticism.  To some Catholics it is simply not even on the radar, they don’t care about a catechism, one way, or another. And among practicing Catholic families there is often still a sense of it as an impenetrable text that is reserved to Clergy, Religious, and maybe the occasional heroic member of the Lay Faithful. And often even those who would like to use it are not able to use it well because they don’t understand the method of presentation it uses and how it is meant to be reflective of the life of a disciple of Jesus. These podcasts are meant to demystify the Catechism of the Catholic Church for all of us.

    I will begin by sharing a personal story of how I came to love the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Some people who have heard my story know that I am a convert to the Catholic faith. I had set foot in a church under 5 times in the first 26 years of my life, and those were accidental. I was young and neighbors took me along. I had never seen a Catholic priest, or a Catholic nun. I had no idea what the Mass was and had never read even one page of the Bible. However, I was deeply interested in the study of religion and philosophy from my late teens and early twenties. I was a seeker. This led me to many places including India for a 3 month period studying at a place in the Himalayan Province called the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives. I studied Comparative Religions, both Buddhism and Christianity as an undergraduate and graduate student. My dream was to get my PhD in academic Religious Studies. Because of this I spent a lot of time studying religious texts of other cultures. In fact, it was in India when my conversion to the Catholic faith really began in earnest.

    I took a hike one day to a neo-gothic Anglican Church called St. John in the Wilderness near McLeod Ganj in the foothills of the Himalayan mountains. This Church was built in 1852 and was known for its stained glass. After being immersed in the Tibetan and Indian cultures of the area and studying closely their religious and philosophical texts I stumbled upon this beautiful Anglican Church. I was immediately drawn to the stained glass which depicted various scenes from the Gospel.

    And that was it: the sacred art evangelized me. What I mean is that the stained glass communicated to me the Gospel in a way that opened up a new horizon for me. I don’t mean that at that point I had a deep understanding of the Gospel, I didn’t. But I did have a sense of the profound goodness of what those stained glass depictions of Jesus, Mary and the Saints represented, and I wanted to enter into that and understand it better.

    So, you may find it strange, but immediately upon arriving back in the United States after my period of study in India I came across a large green book in Barnes and Noble in Olympia, WA, where I was completing my degree. It was called The Catechism of the Catholic Church. I thought, “this is it!”. Now I can see what they believe. I knew already that I was attracted to Catholicism primarily because I knew they had monks, and the religions I was used to studying had monks too. I also new already that Catholicism had a deep and rich tradition of med

    • 8 min
    Evangelization Podcast Series, Episode 2: Evangelization in the Old Testament

    Evangelization Podcast Series, Episode 2: Evangelization in the Old Testament

    Please enjoy the podcast episode above, or if you would prefer to read it, the written form is below.



    Welcome to EvangCat Baton Rouge. My name is Barry Schoedel.  I am the Associate Director of the Office of Evangelization and Catechesis, for the Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge, in Southern Louisiana. This is the second episode in our Podcast Series on Evangelization. Last week we asked the question: what is evangelization? We examined the Greek meaning of the term Euangelion and its various English translations. We left off with the discovery that there are limited uses of the Greek terms that evangelize and evangelization are based upon in the Greek version of the Old Testament, otherwise known as the Septaugint. The Septuagint was in common usage around the time of the incarnation of Jesus among Greek speaking Jews. We see the root of our modern terms evangelize used in the book of the Prophet Isaiah 4 times. We will highlight two of these here.

    First in chapter 40 verse 9 of Isaiah a herald is said to announce a New Exodus which promises delivery from the servitude. Similar to the Egyptian Exodus this new exodus will be  an occasion of the manifestation of the glory of the Lord. To prepare for this a straight and level way must be made, in the same way a road or route is made level and smooth to prepare for the entry of a king or a conqueror in the ancient custom. We recall that in the Gospels this herald is recognized in John the Baptist.

    In the New Testament the route that is prepared for the entry of the Lord is ultimately the human heart, a heart in need of turning away from sin, a heart in need of repentance and purification – hence the baptism of repentance as the making straight and leveling of the route by which the Lord will come in glory. A conqueror and king is indeed coming.

    This is the context for the use of the term euangelizein where the prophet Isaiah proclaims, 

    Go up onto a high mountain,

    Zion, herald of good news!

    Cry out at the top of your voice,

    Jerusalem, herald of good news!

    Cry out, do not fear!

    Say to the cities of Judah:

    Here is your God!

    The good news, the Gospel that is proclaimed is promised to bring comfort to the people because her servitude will have ended, her guilt will be expiated and she will receive in return for her sins an abundance of forgiveness. Intrinsic to the Good News of salvation, then, is the preparation of repentance and also of waiting in faith for the Lord to manifest his glory, for the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. He will come with power, but like a shepherd who feeds his flock and gently gathers the lambs, so shall the Lord do for his people. We see here that the term evangelization or the heralding of the good news is inseparable from the act of the proclamation of a new exodus. Isaiah, can be said here to be an evangelist, in fact each prophet, in their own way, were evangelists, that is they proclaimed a message that was of the Lord, that instructed the people both in what to sacrifice and repent of, but also where their faith, hope, and love must be placed. This is the essential work of an evangelist in every age, first of all, the evangelist instructs in what idols must be given up, what sins must be repented of, and what the nature of true sacrifice is, i.e. what God actually expects of us. But also the evangelist helps us to know where we should truly place our faith, where the object of our hope should really be, and what we ought to love above all.

    Let’s look at Isaiah chapter 52 verse 7 to see how it illustrates the tasks of evangelization.

    Isaiah 52 reads,

    Awake, awake!

    Put on your strength, Zion;

    Put on your glorious garments,

    Jerusalem, holy city.

    Never again shall the uncircumcised

    or the unclean enter you.

    Arise, shake off the dust,

    sit enthroned,

    • 9 min

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