New Orleans, Louisiana. Whereas the early Christians lived amongst a pagan people, today we live in what might be deemed a “post-Christian” culture. Festivals like St. Patrick’s day and Mardi Gras are Christian events but have been co-opted by a secular culture. But there is no place that is off limits for evangelizing, just as there are no limits to God’s mercy breaking in where we may least expect it.
The following report comes from evangelist Phillip of the New Orleans, Louisiana SPSE team:
“Our outings for Mardi Gras went as usual. It’s actually hard to evangelize during a parade because while the floats are coming by, everyone has their back to you to catch throws. So we have to get there before they start rolling. We advertise, so to speak, on getting the REAL beads that will help you reach eternal life, not the fake ones in the parade that will just be stored until next year. We gave out many rosaries and medals and scapulars. Very few pamphlets as it was a party event. The sacramentals made more of an impression.
We spoke with one woman who lost her son in a motorcycle accident many years ago and was mad at God for taking him. She had not been to church in ten years. It was a delicate matter. After giving her a Rosary and Miraculous medal, before we began our talk, we prayed together for the Holy Spirit to come and a Hail Mary. It was a delicate situation. After ten minutes of conversation she began crying. I told her the church we were in front of just started Confessions and if she would just stumble into that confessional God’s mercy would take care of the rest. She did. She felt like the world was taken off her shoulders.
Other than that it was the usual street evangelization for us. Our pastor told us that even if many don’t come to the table, our witness is important and hundreds might pass by and see our sign and we may never know how many we really reached until we hopefully get to Heaven one day. We agreed.”
Praised be Jesus Christ! “Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever” (Ps 136:1). You may be the only light in someone’s darkness. You may be the only voice of reason in a culture gone mad. You may be the invitation to grace that unlocks the door to someone’s hardened heart. We are to be Christ the world and let our light shine before others for men to see (Mt 5:16). How good is the Lord!