About 60 members of the St. John the Evangelist Leadership Guild, a group of faithful in the diocese dedicated to broadening their understanding of the Catholic faith, providing Christian fellowship and deepening their personal relationships with Jesus met recently at Regina Health Center in Richfield to hear a presentation on the new evangelization delivered by William Boomer, director of the diocesan Office of Marriage and Family Ministry. His talk, "Start with Heart: Key to the New Evangelization," offered an outline of the meaning of the Church’s contemporary approach to evangelization as taught in several recent papal documents, most notably Pope Francis’ “The Joy of the Gospel.”
Bishop Nelson Perez followed Boomer’s presentation with a short discourse on new evangelization in which he said that the Second Vatican Council began to shift the Church outward and more focused on the world around us. That long process is happening now -- little by little – the bishop said. The new evangelization, which greatly blossomed under Pope St. John Paul II, helped to build a realization that the church is not only a place of arrival, but a place of departure. Bishop Perez also noted that Pope Francis is teaching us that the words missionary and disciple are not mutually exclusive because you cannot be one without the other.
Father Dan Schlegel, the Guild's spiritual director, began the session by leading the group in prayer after which Deacon Mark Yantek, executive director of Regina Health Center, site for the Sept. 6 gathering, provided a short history on the facility. Mount Augustine, which now houses Regina Health Center, was built as the motherhouse for the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine. It opened in 1957. Today, Regina Health Center meets the long-term health care needs of members of several Northeast Ohio religious congregations, clergy from the Dioceses of Cleveland and Youngstown and lay persons seeking a faith-based community environment. Currently, 13 orders are represented at Regina Health Center from the Cleveland and Youngstown dioceses.
After the presentations, there was a reception in the Madonna Garden.
The St. John the Evangelist Leadership Guild represents a group of generous benefactors of the diocese who gather regularly for the encouragement of personal spiritual development. The Catholic Community Foundation organizes events that provide guild members opportunities for prayer and to experience firsthand the people, places and programs that make up the Church in the diocese.