We’ve all experienced the standing room only Mass services during Christmas and Easter. This would lead me to believe that people still know where a Catholic Church is located! But why are there so many empty pews during daily and weekly Masses on a regular basis, when there is no holiday to celebrate? Why are we seeing more and more people leaving the Catholic Church to go to non-denominational churches, or not going to church at all anymore? The answer is a simple one that we may not think of at first. LEADERSHIP!
At first, you may think I am assigning the blame to the priests and the bishops of the Catholic Church, but that just isn’t so – at least not fully. Leadership is everyone’s responsibility. Yes, everyone – including you! Jesus said, “As My Father has sent Me, so I send you.” What does that mean? How was Jesus sent? Was Jesus sent to be a follower or a leader? Obviously He was sent here to be a leader. Now comes the thought provoking part – If Jesus was sent to be a leader, and Jesus sends us out on the same mission He was given – “So I send you” – that means Jesus calls all of us to be leaders! We are cannot save humanity like Jesus did by dying on a cross, but that does not mean we are not on the same mission to make disciples of all nations. If the pews are empty, it’s our fault. Sure, let’s blame the leaders…but since we are the leaders it’s our fault!
What have you personally done recently to encourage someone you know who “used to be Catholic” to come back to church with you? How many times have you heard someone say, “I was raised Catholic, but I’m not anymore”, and did not say anything to them to encourage them to give the Catholic Church another try? Those instances are God given opportunities for you to practice the leadership mission you have been called to complete. It’s time to stop being so timid about inviting someone back to church and start inviting people to join you on Sunday at Mass. You are going to Mass on Sunday, right?
Leadership starts with leading by example. In order to bring others closer to God, you must also work on your relationship with God. Your personal relationship. You may have heard our protestant brothers and sisters use the phrase, “Have you accepted Jesus as your personal savior”. Well, have you? This is not meant for only the protestants. Jesus desires a deep personal relationship with each one of us. Our desire must be in line with the Lord’s desire in order to complete the mission we have all been given. So get to know Jesus on a deep personal level and invite someone to come to Mass with you this Sunday!
Adventure Catholic offers leadership training for parishes interested in learning how to “fill the pews”. Our COPEC training method will show you how to create more leaders who invite others to church on a regular basis. Contact us today for a free consultation!