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Scott Lowry

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Summary for Evangelization Outing Saturday 1 June 2024

June 3, 2024

Summary for Evangelization Outing Saturday 1 June 2024

It was good weather in the square in Watertown, New York. Sunny, warm, and just right for the start of the month of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It also so happens to be the same day gay pride month starts along with a pride concert in the square. To mark the season (and the spirit of this age), we also found out recently that the Watertown Public Library will be hosting drag queen story hours for minor children. For obvious reasons, I think the city scheduled our competing times separately to avoid any conflict. Nonetheless, towards the end of our event as we were breaking down and removing our signage, a number of people began to show up in the square for a concert commemorating this with their rainbow flags and imagery. One of them was smoking marijuana behind us by the park benches. I offered one of the event staff and a band member with his guitar (they were setting up a concert for gay pride) a rosary and a book on the Catholic faith, but she declined in a subtle way, with the response “maybe later.” The guitar player shook his head in disgust.

Overall, Dave and I had a good day. Although we did not come across many pedestrians, the encounters we did have were very fruitful!


Evangelization Encounter:


EE#1.) Larry approached our table. He is an older gentleman and has been in the Christian faith all of his life. He was raised a methodist; however, later on in life he became a Presbyterian. He is also featured in the attached photo sitting on the left of the table. When he approached our table, I immediately noticed that he was carrying a “Planned Parenthood” logoed reusable bag. When I asked him about this, he told us that he did not know what the bag was advertising and was just utilizing it for its use. My response was that I had used a Target reusable bag in the past, even though they hired a satanic artist to draw up imagery of demons and transgender messages for their children’s clothing line, and when I realized the evil they were spreading, I got rid of it (much later than I should have). I also reminded Larry how satan is pretty good at marketing and advertising as he always attempts to sneak his message in there, even through those who are sanctified. As Larry began to have a deeper discussion with Dave about his faith and what he believes, he took a knee on the pavement. In response, we gave him a chair to sit down in so he would be comfortable. Later on, we also provided him a Powerade to drink because the morning was beginning to heat up. 

Larry explained to us how he always prays to the Lord, and how he used to be depressed, especially after divorce. To help him feel better, I explained some details about my divorce when I was an atheist, and what led me to the Church through its process. After some discussion, Larry began to open up: he told us about a time when a stranger on the street did a healing prayer for him by laying on of the hands, and that the prayer was for the healing of his heart and mind. Larry went on to remind us just how fast technology today is for the kids, but whatever happened in that moment, God’s lightning speed of healing and grace came through him instantly and he immediately felt better. Larry also had many questions about the faith, so we gave him information tracts on the Catholic Church and its sacraments, including a rosary that he put around his neck while he talked to us with instructions on it, along with two books I wrote on Christian apologetics. 

Furthermore, Dave began to explain the Catholic faith more in depth with Larry one on one seated across from each other. Dave did a very good job at this, and the both men had a long fruitful discussion, even as I had to walk away to use the bathroom at the newly built YMCA (it was a far walk). When I returned, I noticed Larry telling Dave about the time he went to his sister’s non-denominational Christian church after a long period of not assembling with other Christians. When he got there, the pastor was rude to him and embarrassed him in front of the whole congregation. This deeply upset Larry and challenged his faith. In my response, I told Larry that sometimes satan works through other people without them realizing it so as to challenge us and attack us, for the First Pope Peter even had satan enter him and not realize it, when the Lord told Peter plainly, “Get behind me satan!” Larry took this into consideration, while also considering the fact that maybe in that moment his pastor wasn’t doing this on purpose and that something else was at play. Regardless, Larry said he would never look at that pastor the same way again because she disclosed a private matter to everyone inappropriately. However, Larry explained that maybe “I shouldn’t judge.” I quickly reminded Larry that the Lord has given His people the will and knowledge to judge matters correctly, and although we should forgive others for harming us, it doesn’t mean we have to subject ourselves to them in the future for added abuse, for the Lord’s people shall even judge angels!

From there, Dave explained to him how the 2,000 year old Catholic Aposotolic Church throughout the world gives the same formula and similar liturgy everywhere, and that no sermon would ever call out an individual so as to embarrass them in front of the congregation, because this would cause a conflict of interest involving the sacrament of reconciliation to which the Priests are bound to never disclose to anyone, even at the threat of death. Larry considered Dave’s words carefully, while appearing to open up more about considering the Catholic faith. So, as it turns out, one of the roadblocks for Larry entering the Catholic church was his divorce that was very complex, and his lack of knowledge on what the Church teaches and does in this area prevented him from ever approaching the steps of Christ’s One True Church. 

In good faith, Dave explained to him how there are canon law procedures in the church to determine these matters of annulment and petition to Bishops for entry. It is a very complex process, and not determined by one sole “mock interview” so as to unjustly judge a person. There are many factors at play, and the Church goes through an extensive review process and investigation with oversight to determine these matters, which are far beyond our authority. However, Dave did give Larry hope in that such a matter does not completely disqualify him, and that if he truly desires to enter into full communion with Christ’s body, he should give it a shot, because the Church realizes people and situations are complex, and that it views these matters on a case by case basis carefully within its context. Furthermore, the Church doesn’t nullify what Christ says on divorce and marriage, however, the Church Fathers through scripture does afford other ways for others to enter the Church such as recognizing a marriage as legitimate and continuing, but that the individuals who are separated shall live celibate and not remarry.  

We also explained to Larry that the Catholic Church views other baptized Christians who are not Catholic as Christian brothers and sisters united in baptism through the Holy Trinity. This also led into a discussion about Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses, who are not Christian because of their false views on the essence of Christ and His nature and their acceptance of ancient heresies that have long ago been condemned by the Church and all of Christendom. Larry did not like how the Mormons were very aggressive with him from past personal experiences. We told Larry that not even Christ was aggressive in His ministry; that He told people the truth and gave them a choice, to follow or not to follow. We also emphasized the importance of freewill, which is a gift from the Lord to higher creatures such as humans and angels because of election. Larry definitely seemed to be on board with these truths of the faith.

Throughout our time, Larry asked Dave many other questions about the faith, to which Dave responded well, clear, and precise. Finally, the topic of homosexuality came up, and what the Church’s view on such an act is. We explained to Larry that according to the Church and scripture, sexual immorality of all kinds is a mortal sin, especially homosexuality, because it lives outside the law and purpose of God and is opposed to the plan He has for us. We also emphasized that the Church teaches that sex is a means to an end through marriage between a man and woman for the purpose of children. We also explained to Larry that mortal sins shall separate us eternally from the Lord and lead us to hell because of justice. Larry agreed with us and the Church on this view. 

He asked us because many pastors of the churches he attended promote these mortal sins as the very essence or being of a person. I explained to him that our passions and our acts are not our essence, and that the desire of a person is not who they are. To clarify what I mean by this to you the reader (I did not go this in-depth with Larry): when the will is attached to a desire, then it becomes a sin! For example - if I beat my wife and somebody told me to stop, would I say, “but that is who I am, an abusive husband who batters my wife!” No, because this would be false, for the acts and passions of a person are not their very essence or existence, but something they did that was a mistake! If I had the urge to hurt my wife, but resisted because it was the right thing to do, then that wouldn’t be a sin now would it! It would just mean that I need to work on my anger more. The Church values life more than this and affords humans more dignity in that we believe we are made in the image of God and worth something special, so we are not reduced down to our lower pleasures, desires, acts, and attributes! Such a view is hedonistic and false.

Before Larry took his departure, he thanked us for the discussion. That is when I pulled out a bottle of holy water and said, “would you like to receive some holy water blessed by the successors of the Apostles? We will also pray over you,” Larry accepted. From there, I went up to him and traced the cross in holy water over his forehead. I announced that I was not blessing him. Dave also received holy water traced on his right hand, and I traced the holy water with the cross on my forehead as well.” After I returned to the other side of the table, we all prayed the St. Michael the Archangel prayer together, and we asked for the Lord to continue to draw Larry closer to Him and for the Lord to free him of past, present, and future depression and negative feelings of despair. I concluded the prayer of petition “in the Name of Christ Jesus, amen!”  

On the way out, Larry took us up on the offer to receive a miraculous medal, as we reminded him that many graces are attributed to such a medal. Larry said he would be considering the Catholic Church in the future. Please pray for Larry’s conversion and to draw closer to the fullness of worship!             

EE#2.) A man on a gas powered bike named Scott approached our table. I complimented him on his name and told him my name as well! He talked with Dave and I for a brief moment, but was kind of in a hurry. We also complimented him on his bike. I could not guess correctly how fast it went, so he explained to me that his bike goes up to 50 mph! After this discussion, he accepted a rosary and some books on the Catholic faith. Scott is also a Catholic as well but attends other churches sometimes. Please pray for him to remain solid in his faith!

EE#3.) A woman named Macy approached our table with her leashed dog Fergis. Immediately the dog went around the side of the table and jumped over Dave’s lap to lean over and start licking my face. I am pretty sure his wagging tale was slapping Dave around. Macy accepted some religious items from the table. She also made me sign two books for her that I wrote in defense of the Christian faith before she grabbed them up for herself. Now, I do have bad handwriting, but I still remember cursive from school. She explained to us that she moved from Syracuse to Watertown and did not know of any Catholic Churches in the area. She has been attending some of the Lutheran and Methodist congregations. She also explained to us how she received her Catholic religious education at St. Rose of Lima parish school in Syracuse. I thought this was a good connection, so I told her that I took my first promise in the Dominican Order there this April. From there, Dave and I explained to her the many Catholic Churches in the area. It turns out she lives right next to one and said she would start attending very soon. 

Before she left, she wanted a miraculous medal for her dog Fergis. She allowed me to put The Lord’s Mother’s medal around her dog’s neck before she left. Please pray for Macy to remain in her faith and to begin attending Catholic mass once again. We also reminded her that we will be out here almost every Saturday up until October. 

Thank you!   

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