HUNTINGTON, Indiana, October 25, 2012 – Even the most ungodly person acknowledges the modern world as coarser than ever. The signs are hard to miss. People think science trumps God; media, politicians, and celebrities regularly vilify Church teaching; even avowed Catholics acquiesce to an imitation of their original commitment.
It’s what Christ referred to as ‘rocky ground’ in one of His parables – a lack of fertile, viable faith for nurturing the ‘seed’ of His teaching.
This "profound crisis of faith has affected many people", Pope Benedict XVI says – and has resulted in the global ‘rocky ground’ of hopelessness, rebellion, cynicism, selfishness, and despair. To refresh devotion to Christ and His teaching – and thus refresh oneself – the Holy Father has invited Catholics worldwide to a Year of Faith (from October 2012 to November 2013) for studying Scripture to renew their faith and the joy of life, and studying the Catechism to refresh their understanding of Church doctrine. He chose October 2012 because it is the double anniversary of the start of the Second Vatican Council (50 years--1962) and of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (20 years --1992).
Popular EWTN priest, theologian, and television/radio host, Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J., leads Catholics to a transformed understanding of the Pope’s call to action in his new book, The Year of Faith: A Bible Study Guide for Catholics (Our Sunday Visitor, 2012).
The Year of Faith is a step-by-step guide to faith rejuvenation, to rediscovery of one’s direction in life through following Christ more closely. It shows the reader how to integrate every daily component – relationships, morality, work, talent, recreation, all of it – into a meaningful whole. The book builds from the essential belief in Jesus Christ, to assent to His teachings, to conversion of heart and expressions of faith, and ultimately to each person growing into an effective evangelizer by demonstrating his faith in the public square. Each chapter is supplemented with provocative discussion topics relevant to today’s issues, and scriptural cites for examining the teachings further.
“Each person, even those raised as Catholics, goes through a number of ‘conversions’ throughout his life. New ideas and experiences, some of which contradict faith and morals, affect a person’s perspective and how he behaves. At various stages, a person must ask himself, Do I still believe? How does this all make sense and fit together in my life? Answering these questions truthfully in the depths of one’s conscience usually evokes a conversion experience,” says Fr. Pacwa. It is at this juncture that formerly ‘rocky ground’ becomes viable and the person sees and accepts God in a whole new way.
“For someone to live their faith, it has to be loved and interiorized,” says Fr. Pacwa. “Today’s emphasis on secularism, materialism and relativism positions these ideologies as cutting-edge societal evolution – and the Catholic faith as ‘the old way’ of thinking. People need to see, before it’s too late, how destructive these modern philosophies are, and that faith in Jesus Christ brings true contentment now and eternally.”
Archbishop of Chicago, Francis Cardinal George, who wrote the book’s Foreword, says, “Fr. Pacwa’s book presents a formula for breaking out of self-imposed prisons. Using this book should bring light to our minds and joy to our hearts. This is a book for everyone.”
Publisher: Our Sunday Visitor
Author: Fr. Mitch Pacwa, SJ
Release Date: August 2012
Length: 96 pages, paperback
The world’s largest English-language Catholic publisher, Our Sunday Visitor serves millions of Catholics globally through its publishing, offertory, and communication services. Established in 1912, Our Sunday Visitor publishes a wide range of books including Bibles, biographies of the saints, books by Pope Benedict XVI, children’s books, devotionals, bible studies, inspirational works, and curriculum. Our Sunday Visitor is a not-for-profit organization, returning a portion of net earnings back to the Catholic community through the Our Sunday Visitor Institute. For more information, visit www.osv.com.