Going overboard in outreach? Opinions?

A young friend at my Catholic church has been replacing our parish youth nights (and also some weekend Masses) with attendance at his friends’ Protestant services, in order, he believes, to show solidarity with them.

I let him know he was missed at our parish, and that he might want to invite his friends to come to some of our parish youth/ social events or to invite them to observe the Mass with him. I am praying for him to return to the Mass regularly. He said he feels there is no difference between most religions, and I reminded him of the uniqueness of Christ’s Real Presence in the Holy Eucharist, the Sacraments, veneration of The Blessed Mother. He said he’s been reading lots of ecumenical books and believes that his friends need him. He seems angry and bitter, now that he is not attending Mass as much. Aside from prayer and encouraging him to invite his young friends to our parish, is there another way to help? He is over eighteen and on his own.

For am 18, it is extremely hard to realize how ignorant he/she is.
Time will teach…
sometims you have got to bang the head agains the wall to understand. :banghead:

You might want to give him a copy of Scott Hahn’s “The Mass of the Lamb’s Supper”. It is a superb, short, very readable commentary on why the Mass so special and different from any other faith service. He might be impressed by the gesture as a gift too.


If outreach is what the goal is, then I would remind him that attendance at Mass on Sundays is what’s mandatory and I would encourage him to go to the other services as well. That would show his friends that even though he attends with them that he is committed to his own faith as well. At this point, it shows his friends that it doesn’t matter where he goes on Sundays which is the wrong message.

When I first got married to my LDS wife, I attended Mass as well as attended the 3-hour block of LDS meetings which included the Sacrament meeting, bible study and priesthood meeting and thought I was overwhelmed on Sundays by that. Now my Catholic activities on Sundays dwarfs that schedule easily. Go figure.

Yes, that is a beautiful and profound book! No one can feel anything but awe and wonder after reading it. That is a wonderful idea to give him a copy:):newidea:
Thank you for that idea! I will purchase it, find a nice card and hope he comes by to Mass so that I can present it to him. If too much time passes, I might ask our parish secretary to leave a message for him that there is something for him to pick up at the church.

That’s right, it must translate to his friends that his beliefs are not something he holds sacred if he gives up the Mass for them. It takes all my energy and time to devote to my Catholic faith. I can’t imagine to going to all those classes as you did! :angel1:

Thank you, I’ll keep to a very gentle approach!

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