Encouragement for the Mission…

southsea storm

Right now, we all seem to be “battening down the hatches” in the face of this bad weather that’s hit. The storm raging outside makes me want to go back a week or so ago, to cosy Christmas family time around the fire… But I can’t seem to get Bert from Mary Poppins out of my head, “Winds in the east, mist coming in. / Like somethin’ is brewin’ and bout to begin.” Haha! So, to take our minds away from sandbags and continuously refreshing the weather warning page (people, I do live right on the coast…) now might be a great time to reflect on the year ahead, what encourages us in the mission right now, what excites us about what God is doing, what hopes we have for the months ahead… Please share your thoughts in the comments! Let’s encourage and inspire each other, and glorify God in what he is doing…

For me, there are two particular aspects of the mission where I am really encouraged. When I arrived in Portsmouth last February, I struggled to find other young adults, let alone ‘intentional disciples’. Nine months later, shortly before Christmas, we had the launch event of a Frassati Society. (And here’s the Frassati Society we started in Balham three years ago, which I also wrote about here…) Frassati is a fantastic model for young adult ministry (twenties and thirties) as it is rooted in fellowship (including hiking and service of the poor) and yet combines other dimensions of Christian life, too (formation, liturgy and prayer). The idea behind Frassati is to be super relaxed and friendly, so that people can invite their non-Catholic friends. In Balham, there were many fruits: deepening conversions, a culture of evangelisation, and even a marriage! At the first event here in Portsmouth, we were absolutely blown away when nearly thirty young people showed up, many of them students. Much prayer and apostolic work is now needed to fan into a flame this little spark that’s been ignited…

The second thing I am excited about here in Portsmouth is The Great Adventure Bible Timeline. Following Jeff Cavins’ visit, we are delighted to be running ‘A Quick Journey through the Bible’ eight-session course beginning on 20th January. My mission over the next few weeks is to pray for the Lord to gather many, many people to this Bible Study, that it may be a place where people meet Him.

What I would add about both of these apostolates, is that they are not being launched out of the blue. Maybe this is something for another post, but what I have learnt being here for nearly a year, is that a large foundation of prayer, sacrifice, careful discernment and personal one-to-one apostolate is needed before any event or group can begin. In some sense, these always flow organically. We have to work with the Holy Spirit, not ahead of him.

Please pray for these apostolic intentions – and share yours below!

About transformedinchrist

I live in Southsea and work for the Diocese of Portsmouth. My first love is for catechesis and evangelisation: until January 2013, I worked for a busy, thriving parish in south London coordinating the catechesis - sacramental programmes and adult formation. In November 2013, I completed my MA in catechetics at Maryvale Institute, Birmingham. View all posts by transformedinchrist

3 responses to “Encouragement for the Mission…

  • Marc Cardaronella

    Are there guidelines for starting a Frassati Society? I couldn’t really find any on that site. I’d be interested in getting one going at our parish. The format and structure look really good. It’s exactly what I was thinking of for a young adult group.

    • transformedinchrist

      Hi Mark! I don’t think so… Frassati Society in New York is very active, so when we did this in London, we got advice from them. Basically, a Frassati Society has four pillars based on Bl Pier Giorgio’s life: fellowship, service of poor, prayer & formation, love of the outdoors.

      Hope you are well!🙂

  • keep no secrets, tell no lies

    Hey, ive just stumbled across your blog tonight and honestly ive loved reading about what your doing in portsmouth. Can honestly feel how much you love what you are doing, and how God has called you… it has been incredibly encouraging… myself and my wife run a youth ministry in Perth, Western Australia and feel like we are embarking on a whole new journey, even though we have been involved in you for a number of years…. even now as im righting this (slightly distracted from the assignments im supposed to be doing) i have this excitement and anticipation building inside of me for seeing young people students actually meet christ and see their lives changed, them gasp for air, feel that overwhelming peace that is only in the presence of God. Man!!! i havent felt like this about youth ministry for years, for a while it was a drag, it was had and i felt like a failure and i was even disappointing God with the state of my youth ministry… but now the holy spirit has shown me that is a total lie and that Go wants to still work though us and our youth ministry in our town … i am pumped… anyway apologies for the little rant just need to write something… i honestly hope you are encouraged to know that what you are right in portsmouth is speaking to me in Perth… take care, God bless mate.

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