This report comes from Donna, of the South Windsor SPSE team:
We were in downtown Manchester in a great location, right in front of the park and near the bus stop. Because it was such a high-traffic area, we were able to talk to many people.
Among them was Chris, who came over to our table, curious to know what we were all about. He started off by saying that he loves being open to learning new things. He told us that he didn’t identify with any particular faith; in fact, when he was in school, he thought that religion was simply an opinion people had. He also said that religion causes a lot of division and arguments among people, and he doesn’t really want anything to do with it. I explained that God wants to have a relationship with us, and religion is God’s way of reaching out to us. Before he moved on, he accepted some literature from us about the Catholic Church.
We then talked to Carl, who had grown up Catholic but had fallen away from the faith. He now questions if God even exists. However, when he said that he believes in a “force” that is love, I explained to him that God is love; practicing our Catholic faith helps us be close to Him. I gave him a couple of pamphlets about reasons to return to the faith and about the existence of God. As he left, he commented that “things happen for a reason,” and he thanked us for the conversation.
In the picture is evangelist Ken, along with Shannon and her granddaughter. Shannon attends a Bible-based church, and she asked if we could pray for her church. They are currently worshiping in a high school, and they are in need of a church building. She also prayed for us, that SPSE flourishes and does well. She thought it was great that we were out on the streets, sharing our faith. We had a great conversation. She accepted a rosary, along with a brochure on How to Pray the Rosary. I shared with her that the rosary it is a very powerful prayer because Mary can intercede for us. I also shared with her that when my mother-in-law had cancer, I had prayed the rosary every night until her cancer was gone.
Praised be Jesus Christ! The Holy Spirit helped the SPSE team to answer the questions and concerns of an agnostic, a fallen-away Catholic, and a Protestant. All of them were a challenge in their own way. However, seeds of faith were planted, and the essence of the message that day seems to have been love – the love that causes God to want to have a relationship with us, the love that helps us to find common ground with other Christians in our shared love of God. All three of them seemed to leave with a sense of optimism, their lives enriched by their brief encounter with a Catholic evangelizer. Would you like to share the truth of God’s love with us? Join us by finding a team in your area, or starting a team of your own!