“More than 40 percent of all adult Catholics in the US today (2001) are young adults, ages 18-39. They are the largest segment of the Catholic population.” – Basic Guide to Young Adult Ministry, Cusick/DeVries, p 6, 2001
Diocese of Charleston’s Associate Director of Young Adult Ministry, Rachel Neubauer, designed a wonderful weekend retreat on the topic of Intentional Evangelization for leaders across the state to gather in Winnsboro, SC. The young adult retreat began with a talk led by Rachel about breaking down The Mission of the Apostolate for Young Adult Ministry. The emphasis was that we have all been entrusted with the apostolate by virtue of our baptism and confirmation and that carrying out the mission of the Church is impossible without a personal relationship with Christ – a vital union dependent and nourished by the Sacraments.
- The Mission: build disciples of all nations so that we may be one with the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit (CCC 845-858, John 17:3)
- Apostolate: “every activity of the Mystical Body” that aims “to spread the Kingdom of Christ over all the earth.”
- “Young Adulthood refers to people in their late teens, twenties and thirties; single, married, divorced and widowed; and with or without children” (Sons and Daughters of the Light,p 7, United States Catholic Conference, 1996)
- Ministry: a service or work that manifests the mission of the church in the ecclesial communities for the sake of growth of life
- CCC 900: “Since, like all the faithful, lay Christians are entrusted by God with the apostolate by virtue of their Baptism and Confirmation, they have the right and duty, individually or grouped in associations, to work so that the divine message of salvation may be known and accepted by all men throughout the earth. This duty is the more pressing when it is only through them that men can hear the Gospel and know Christ. Their activity in ecclesial communities is so necessary that, for the most part, the apostolate of the pastors cannot be fully effective without it.”
Rachel went on to speak about the importance of connecting young adults with Jesus, with a community of peers, to the Church community, and to the global Church. She shared that as Leaders entrusted with a ministry we should all do a F.A.C.T check when active in ministry:
- Faithful: am I faithful to the Church’s teachings
- Available: do I have time to give?
- Contagious: am I living a life that permeates the contagious joy of the Gospel?
- Teachable: am I humble and open to be taught and instructed?
*edited with contributions from Rachel Neubauer