Faith of a Child: A Focus on Evangelization

A parish’s ability to evangelize hinges on inclusion. When families do not find a place for their children to belong in church it often means the adults are excluded too. Laura states “you are limiting who you can evangelize to if you don’t provide something for kids.” She continues, a parish needs to ask itself, “who are we trying to reach? And what are their barriers for coming? And how can we mitigate that? And children’s ministry is a big one.”

An Easy Yoke: A Focus on Rest

For those in the Northern Hemisphere, August marks the peak of summer, a time when many–including priests– schedule their “break.”

But this rest can often equal a burn-out coma or an overscheduled “holiday” only to return to the same hamster-wheel pace.

Father Peirluigi Vajra CRS, a DR coached Parish Priest at Our Lady of Lourdes in Perth, Australia, shares his journey in experiencing rest as something more than just “not-working”. Like many priests – his workload is great, and rest does not come easily. But in his 28 years as a priest, he has come to recognize the profound value of prioritizing rest.

Faith on Fire: A Focus on the 2023 DR Australasia Conference

The conference started with a priest-only session led by Father James Mallon. During the hymn ‘Here I am Lord,’ DR staff member Anushka Peiris recalls standing in the back watching. “I just had such a grateful heart in that moment for all our priests.” Cheryl Surrey agrees, “Looking around at these sparkling wet eyes looking back at you… you could have cut the atmosphere with a knife, it was so beautiful.”

Why We Give: A Donor Story

Christopher Ryan is a lifelong Catholic. His wife, Yuriko, experienced a conversion 10 years ago. When they read Divine Renovation: From a Maintenance to a Missional Parish, they both…

A Prognosis of Life: A Story from the Netherlands

On Nov. 26th, 2011, a reporter asked the newly appointed Bishop of Breda, Jan Liesen, “Are you the last Bishop of the diocese? Will the Church now finally go to rest and be over with?”
While historically a very Catholic diocese in the Netherlands, now only 1% of self-identifying Catholics attend Mass in Breda. Born in the diocese, Bishop Liesen spent most of his priesthood outside of North Brabant.
In 1968, A decade before he went to seminary, all seminaries in the Netherlands (about 30 in total) closed, including in Breda. This shift had an immediate effect on vocations: in one year, ordination dropped to 0. When Bishop Liesen first felt the call to the priesthood as a young man, he didn’t even know the route to take.

The Widow at Nain: A Focus on Mothers

The Widow at Nain is a woman who has lost everything.

In parish renewal, the first step that often leads people to connect with DR is facing their holy discontent, admitting that there is a problem in their parish. For some, with churches closing or parishes amalgamating, it feels like there is nothing left to do but throw up their hands and mourn for what was, like a mother’s despair over a lost child.

A Shrine Church Casting Off Towards Renewal: A Story from the UK

St. Dominic and Our Lady of the Rosary Shrine is a place of pilgrimage as well as a parish for its locality in Haverstock Hill, London. 17 side chapels and 20 altars make the church bigger than some cathedrals in England. Run by Dominicans, Father Lawrence Lew, OP is the Parish Priest, Rector of the shrine, Prior of the Dominican community, and Promoter General of the rosary.

Focus on the Future: A Story from the UK

In less than a year the parish has set up a SLT and grown in numbers as well as giving; but the real excitement lies in the 6 adult baptisms and 14 confirmations that took place over the weekend at the Easter Vigil. There is a real aliveness emerging in the parish — “I’m excited. There is a proper buzz!”

Father Brendan tells the story of one of the men who was just confirmed: “This guy just turned up one day,” the church was open, and the man was sitting in one of the pews. The man said, “Father may I speak with you?” He introduced himself as Arthur and told Father Brendan he instantly “felt at home when he came to the church.” He was in a program getting clean from narcotics and knew he couldn’t do it on his own, he needed God.

Grief and New Life: A Story from Canada

This Easter four adults will be baptized at St. Willibrord Parish in Montreal, Canada. A parish that just a year ago was described as “palliative” – dwindled down to 20 parishioners – is now teeming with new life.  

Over the last year, St. Willibrord’s new pastor Fr. Robert Assaly and Fr. Mike Leclerc, (the Pastor of thriving parish St. Ignatius of Loyola), created one of the most innovative, and evangelistic parish initiatives in the Catholic Church – a missionary partnership between their two parishes.  

This partnership has borne tremendous fruit. There are now 120-30 people at weekend Mass at St. Willibrord. Dozens have had their faith reignited. 


Global2033: A Decade of Evangelization

“The Holy Spirit is initiating something exciting worldwide. We have a chance over the next 10 years to make disciples in our parishes like never before! The potential is huge as many movements and ministries join forces together. The Catholic parish system is the ‘sleeping giant’ in the universal Church and it’s time for us to wake up and invite others to know Christ, 2000 years after the events that changed history forever.”