Evangelism Antennas: A Fun Story of One Woman’s Day and the New Evangelism :-)

by Steve Ray on December 17, 2012

I gave a talk last week in Ann Arbor Michigan. It was about the New Evangelization. As part of my talk I explained how Janet and I have our “evangelism antennas” up first thing in the morning – alertly watching for open doors and ways to share our Catholic Faith throughout the day. 

After my talk I received this e-mail from Marnie. It was too good not to share. Learn from this! Take her ideas and use them yourself throughout the day. Enjoy!

(I just had a fun antenna moment today – which I will add below soon!! :-)

Dear Steve,

Sue passed along your email.  I was telling her about the day after your Evangelization talk at Christ the King that I prayed in the morning about my antennae being up and had three occasions to share my faith on Wednesday.

 Here is how it went.  I am M and the other person is J for Jennifer.  Jennifer works in the laundry room at Schoolcraft College where David and I go to work out. 

M- (walking past big window of laundry/custodial room)  Oh, I love your purple decorations.  Purple is the color of Advent.  Are you Catholic?

J-  smiling says, yes, and added that purple is for royalty

M – Jesus is royalty!   I’m a convert to the Catholic Church because Jesus did not want disunity; He did not create divisions or denominations.  Merry Christmas!

J – Thank you for sharing that.

(The man in line, waiting to be handed a towel by Jennifer looked bewildered!)


After working out, the young girl at the gym desk told me that I knew her boyfriend from my teaching days.  I said I remembered what a good student her boyfriend was and how he had a nice, church going family.  I told her I knew all about Ward Presbyterian and Oakpoint where the boyfriend now attends.

 I told her how David and I were Kids Kamp directors at Ward for 14 years (she was a camper), but now we are Catholic and love the faith.  Went on to explain how Ward friends don’t understand why we are converts but that we still love Jesus, perhaps more.  Then we talked about whether or not she had a favorite Bible verse, which she didn’t.  I challenged her to find one and report back to me!

 Later in day was checking out at Lord and Taylor, purchasing a gift.  I told the clerk that her accent reminded me of my friend, Ula, who is from Poland.  When she declared that she is Polish, I told her about Ula from Krakow, Poland who had met John Paul II. 

She smiled and I told her how much I loved the Catholic Church and that I was a convert.  I asked her if she had been to the gift shop at The Shrine of the Little Flower that sells hand painted Polish ornaments?  That led to talking about the Eucharist and praying the Rosary.  Meanwhile another customer was waiting and I felt like I should not hurry :-)  

 So….thanks for all the encouragement at the Tuesday talk!  Your talk was excellent, exciting and made me think.  I was taking notes as that is my ADD way of listening better!  In about 2001 or was it 2002, your Defending the Faith talk (@Steubenville) about the Pope, had a huge impact on me.  That is the moment when I finally “got it” – about having a Pope.

On Thursday, at CSS Joshua study, I shared all this with my small group, and at our next fellowship lunch in January, the women decided we would all bring an antennae story to share.

Thanks for using your God given gifts to reach and teach so many of us!  May God bless you and your family this Christmas time.

~Marnie

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

De Maria December 20, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Its amazing how much attention a conversation can get. I remember having an indepth discussion with a good friend of mine, ex-Catholic. We always go over the same stuff and after many years, he’s still not Catholic. But, on that day, there was someone paying close attention.

When my friend and I got up to leave, the listener ran up to us as we were exiting the door. He addressed me. His fist comment was a warning about the snares of the Catholic Church and how the Church had fallen into paganism in the time of Constantine. I said to him, “I believe the promise of Jesus Christ, that the Church will never fall to the gates of Hell (Matt 16:18). Therefore, I don’t believe that ever happened.

Then he said, “you know the Catholic Church used to burn bibles.” And I said, “They only burnt bibles that were not translated correctly.”

Then he said, “they used to bind the bible to keep it from the people.” And I said, “On the contrary. Do you remember when the phone company used to tie the phone book in phone booths? Was that to keep it from the people or to keep individuals from taking it so that it could be available for more people?”

Around that time, the listener’s demeanor changed completely. His shoulders relaxed and he looked downward at my feet. Then he said, “You need to write a book. Why doesn’t anybody tell us these things?” And I said, “There are many books that have been written. That’s how I learned.” The internet was already popular back then and I gave him a few references to look up.

Just the other day, about two days ago, my friend (the same one) and I were discussing religion at work. We were sitting on a stone slab and another guy came and sat down nearby. I don’t know if my friend noticed, but I did. The other guy was sidling up closer and closer. So, I raised my voice another decibel so he could hear my side of the discussion at least.

Keep your antennas up!

Sincerely,

De Maria

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