What is the difference bewteen evangelism and proselytism?


What is the difference bewteen evangelism and proselytism?



The former is calmly and joyfully sharing the faith, the former is forceful and pressuring.


By dictionary definition, nothing. However, I would agree with @adamhovey1998 in saying that the denotations are far different.


Semantically, nothing.

Evangelism and proselytism are synonyms.

Pragmatically, I believe proselytism is usually thought of as aggressive, almost propaganda style, “pushing”. Contrarily, evangelism is seen as preaching the Gospel through acts of charity.


Re: Proselytize vs evangelize from pope Francis

Pope Francis is opposed to proselytism. How does he identify it?
Key: tactics to avoid,
Deception, Force, coercion, emotional manipulation, threats, bribery
Or another inappropriate tactics
Don’t Violate free choice
Using motives, contrary to the spirit of the Gospel;

If one doesn’t use the above tactics they aren’t proselytizing



Ecumenism does not have only an institutional dimension aimed at “making the partial communion existing between Christians grow towards full communion in truth and charity”.[46] It is also the task of every member of the faithful, above all by means of prayer, penance, study and cooperation. Everywhere and always, each Catholic has the right and the duty to give the witness and the full proclamation of his faith. With non-Catholic Christians, Catholics must enter into a respectful dialogue of charity and truth, a dialogue which is not only an exchange of ideas, but also of gifts,[47] in order that the fullness of the means of salvation can be offered to one’s partners in dialogue.[48] In this way, they are led to an ever deeper conversion to Christ.

In this connection, it needs also to be recalled that if a non-Catholic Christian, for reasons of conscience and having been convinced of Catholic truth, asks to enter into the full communion of the Catholic Church, this is to be respected as the work of the Holy Spirit and as an expression of freedom of conscience and of religion. In such a case, it would not be a question of proselytism in the negative sense that has been attributed to this term.[49] As explicitly recognized in the Decree on Ecumenism of the Second Vatican Council, “it is evident that the work of preparing and reconciling those individuals who desire full Catholic communion is of its nature distinct from ecumenical action, but there is no opposition between the two, since both proceed from the marvelous ways of God”.[50] Therefore, the work of ecumenism does not remove the right or take away the responsibility of proclaiming in fullness the Catholic faith to other Christians, who freely wish to receive it.

This perspective naturally requires the avoidance of any undue pressure: “in spreading religious faith and introducing religious practices, everyone should refrain at all times from any kind of action which might seem to suggest coercion or dishonest or improper persuasion, especially when dealing with poor or uneducated people”.[51] The witness to the truth does not seek to impose anything by force, neither by coercive action nor by tactics incompatible with the Gospel. By definition, the exercise of charity is free.[52] Love and witnessing to the truth are aimed above all at convincing others through the power of the word of God (Cf. 1 Cor 2:3-5; 1 Thess 2:3-5).[53] The Christian mission resides in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the truth itself which is proclaimed.



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