Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Motivation for Adult Faith Formation: Juan Diego's Catechist

Today is the feast of St. Juan Diego, famous for his interaction with Our Lady of Guadalupe. This humble, faithful man, who worked in the fields and as a mat-maker, used to walk barefoot 14 miles every Saturday and Sunday (for 3-and-half hours!) to receive instruction on the faith. Later, after the death of his wife, he moved in with his uncle to a place only 9 miles away from Tenochtitlan, where he went for Mass and catechesis.

Since parish leaders today can barely motivate the average Catholic adult to cross the street for adult faith formation, it strikes me that his catechist must have been amazing for him to want to walk that far to hear about Jesus Christ.

Certainly, today's American Catholic adults for the most part are not poor, and probably not very humble. They have much to occupy their time and on weekends are more likely to seek entertainment and relaxation rather than enlightenment. The key to the kind of evangelization that elicits a real hunger for Christ and his community continues for the most part to elude us, although at least we are talking about it.

Juan Diego's instructor must have been one heck of a catechist!

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