Historically, the Roman Catholic Church has not been associated with evangelism. In 2010, however, Pope Benedict XVI issued an edict calling for renewed evangelization efforts in the wake of a secularization process that had caused a crisis of faith as the Pope saw it. Organizations like the Mother of God Community, which hosts a Catholic youth ministry Gaithersburg MD, rose up in part in response to Pope Benedict’s promptings.

The Catholic Evangelical Movement

Pope Benedict issued his edict in the form of an apostolic letter. Apostolic letters are sometimes called papal bulls or papal briefs. In this document, Pope Benedict reaffirmed that the Catholic Church and its members have a moral obligation to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He also noted that it was extremely important for Catholics to use modern forms of communication as tools when they spread the Gospel in this way.

The Mother of God community is part of this charismatic renewal. It has been recognized by Catholic Fraternity of Charismatic Covenant Communities and Fellowships, which has members in more than 220 countries worldwide.

What Is a Charism?

The phrase “charismatic renewal” does not refer to the word “charisma” as it’s commonly used to indicate personal charm, but rather to the word “charism,” which means the gift or power to represent God on this planet. According to Catholic catechism, all believers in Jesus Christ possess at least one charism. Some believers may possess more than one.

The New Testament classifies charisms into three categories. The gift of prophecy includes the ability to teach, to encourage or to rebuke. Priestly gifts showcase the quality of mercy and enable their possessor to intercede with God on behalf of other human beings. Kingly gifts are those that enable possessors to be good at governance.

Other sources catalog the charisms differently:

• Gifts of knowledge: The ability to utter words of wisdom and to distinguish between different kinds of spirits.
• Gifts of speech: Prophecy, speaking in tongues and the facility of interpretation.
• Gifts of power: Powers that derive from absolute faith such as the ability to heal and perform other types of miracles.