strengthen the connection between people’s faith and work. (Work
is defined as any productive activity we do.) [Connection could
be interpreted as interaction, interrelationship, and/or
enhance parishes as formation centers which affirm, equip,
challenge, and support believers in their daily life mission to
live the gospel, especially at work
I. An examination of why our commonly understood Catholic
Christian vision, at the grass roots level, needs further
development for integrating faith and work.
sacred vs. secular or spiritual vs. material [This
issue has existed throughout human history. Today’s
materialistic culture makes the issue particularly relevant for
Catholic Christians today.]
separating the divine from the human
misunderstanding the American concept of separation of
church and state
Tendency to view spirituality as fundamentally an interior,
C. Failure to take seriously one's own ordinary life events
including work as a way of encountering the divine.
Too much emphasis upon mission and ministry being directly
related to internal church work or parish commissioned
Lack of recognizing one's work as a possible "religious"
vocation, an opportunity to strengthen the connections between
God, oneself, and others.
Again, Mission has a church. The church belongs to the mission.
The church equates to “the people gathered.”
“Call” equals desires, gifts, talent, interests, skills. All God
given for one’s unique piece of the mission. We are stewards of
what God has given—the call and the mission. The mission is born
of us. The church is the vehicle.
II A realization we, as church, are forming people as
disciples in the world. The Faith Alive! Retreat builds upon the
foundation belief that together we can continue to strengthen
our focus upon the vocation and mission of the laity in the
Emphasis upon forming people for volunteer or paid
"inner/ecclesial church life and work" needs to be extended to
formation for daily life and work.
Recognition that the average lay person would benefit from
learning more about recent church teachings on the role of the
laity in the world, the call of lay people to be Christian
influences in the social, political, military, economic,
educational, medical, cultural, etc., spheres of life
Need to foster approaches in Christian formation that are life
and work-centered, that foster faith-inspired reflection,
decision-making, and action in the midst of the marketplace (we
can infuse much of this into what is already going on in parish
formation of people).
An opportunity to encourage believers to find meaning, value,
and creativity in their work, experiencing their labor as
God-centered, as a vocation, as kingdom building, as responsible
and honest stewardship.
E. A call to lay people to further develop and deepen their own
unique spirituality rooted in who they are and what they do, a
stewardship of God’s gifts integrating personal growth and
concern for the common good, grounded in scripture and Catholic
Integrating personal and social moral growth based on scripture
and Catholic Church tradition.