Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Reaching out to the lost sheep

Last year I purchased a copy of the Catholics Come Home DVD for use with my religious ed class.  Yes, I'm aware these kids haven't left the Church, but the first 105 seconds of their 2 minute Epic video is an excellent promo for the Church and a great conversation starter.  (It's here, if you haven't seen it yet.)

Anyway, my purchase seems to have put me on their mailing list and the following arrived in my inbox today ...

 

Pictured Above (L-R) Bishop Julian Porteous and Cardinal George Pell (Archdiocese of Sydney), Tom Peterson (Founder, CatholicsComeHome.org)


CARDINAL AND BISHOPS INVITE CATHOLICSCOMEHOME.ORG TO AUSTRALIA

Sydney, Australia (June 2, 2009) - CatholicsComeHome.org founder and president, Tom Peterson, graciously accepted the invitation of His Eminence Cardinal Pell, and the forty-four Bishops of Australia to present the CatholicsComeHome.org evangelization outreach program to key religious leaders and lay media specialists among the various Dioceses within Australia.  Australia's bishops were impressed by the incredible results following the CatholicsComeHome.org television outreach in the United States, and are discerning implementing the CatholicsComeHome.org TV ad campaign in Australia. 

Peterson also was invited to present the keynote speech at the Australian National Catholic Media Congress, addressing the communications directors and media ministries of all Dioceses, prior to his presentation at the Plenary Meeting of the Australian Catholic Bishops.

Internationally, CatholicsComeHome.org is also in initial discussions with officials in Brazil about a future Catholics Come Home campaign for South America. 

In the United States, more than a dozen Archdioceses and Dioceses have plans to launch CatholicsComeHome.org television and web campaigns in Advent of 2009 or Lent of 2010.  Some CCH partners include: Chicago, Atlanta, Omaha, Charlotte, Providence, Green Bay, Venice FL, Rockford, Joliet, Colorado Springs, Lincoln, and others. 

Following the Diocese of Phoenix launch in Lent 2008, Bishop Olmsted reports that as many as 92,000 inactive Catholics and converts returned to the Church in the Diocese of Phoenix alone, in the months following their campaign.  The Diocese of Corpus Christi, TX completed their bilingual campaign in Lent 2009, and initial results show a 40 percent increase at key parishes during Easter Masses.

CatholicsComeHome.org is a successful multimedia initiative of Catholics Come Home, Inc., a 501(c)(3) not for profit, independent charity.  CatholicsComeHome.org invites inactive Catholics and others, home to the Catholic faith, through television commercials and an interactive website.  After the diocesan campaigns, the directors plan to air nationally on the top television networks and programming in December 2010.

To help bring Christ to a world in need, get involved in this apostolic mission.

One would think that the excellent results in both the Phoenix and Corpus Christi dioceses would be lighting up radar screens in more chanceries than the 11 listed above. 

DOR, with its 25+% decline in weekend Mass attendance in just the last 8 years, ought to be first in that list but I somehow suspect Buffalo Rd. isn't even interested.

2 comments:

Nerina said...

Hi Mike,

I've often thought we should be pushing this organization during the Christmas and Easter seasons when so many C&E catholics come to Mass. I think we're missing a huge opportunity for evangelization. I never fail to get teary-eyed when I hear one of the commercials.

Mike said...

Nerina,

On the day after Easter I was listening to a program on Sirius Radio's Catholic Channel and a caller made a similar observation. He thought it a huge wasted opportunity not to have programs for "lapsed" or "distanced" Catholics in place and ready to go right after both Easter and Christmas and to use part of the homilies at those Masses to invite people to them, or to at least give the pastor a call if they were thinking about returning to the Church.

I have to agree with him - and you.