Royal Oak, MI
This report comes to us from evangelist Lexa in Royal Oak, MI:
So I’m a 24 year old girl, sitting at a bar between a 60yo man against all organized religion and a 40yo Catholic openly high on mushrooms – as one does on a late Wednesday night. I have never met these men in my life. I was safe and had my friend close by. I did not make any effort to prompt these men about religion, but given the conversation about confession and scandal in the church happening around me…I really had no choice but to evangelize. There were so many misconceptions expressed between the two men, but in this setting, I couldn’t dive into all of them. I told Bret (60yo) that I’m really sorry about what happened to his wife. She was scandalized by people in leadership at her church. I said, “That’s not okay. Unfortunately, it happens in all denominations, but that’s coming from the sin of individuals, not from God.” and he understood that, but his heart was hardened to all churches because of that experience.
I told Bret I was Catholic, and his objection was that Christian babies are born in a state of grace, but Catholic babies are born in a state of sin. I was confused, so I asked him to clarify. He started to explain procreation. I told him that it’s not a sin for married couples to have sex…only premarital sex is a sin. I referred him to Christopher West and Pope St. John Paul II. I said, “I grew up Catholic and have never heard that teaching on sin. The Catholic Church actually has really beautiful and positive messages about sex.” And he was surprised. He said, “Wow, I guess things have changed.”
So…God had some interesting plans for my Wednesday night. I didn’t have any pamphlets or resources with me because I was at a bar, but I gave this man a positive interaction and represented the Church as best I could. He didn’t seem open to ever returning to church, but this could be one step on his journey home. And with a brief conversation, I got the chance to speak to some of his misconceptions. I felt brave for stepping up and the Lord used this experience to grow me as an evangelist. I launched into a story about the Eucharist, saying that Jesus is fully present in the Eucharist, unlike the communion symbols of any other church. And he gave me a hug before leaving.
Praised be Jesus Christ!