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A New Journal for the New Evangelization

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Church Life: A Journal for the New Evangelization

The “New Evangelization” of the Catholic Church, a term often used by Blessed Pope John Paul II to describe and inspire efforts to reawaken the faith in nominally Christian parts of the world, was used again this month in Rome by the newly created Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, archbishop of New York, in an address to his new colleagues.

At the University of Notre Dame, a new online publication, Church Life: A Journal for the New Evangelization is intended both to celebrate and invigorate Catholic life and mission by exploring aspects of its theology, liturgy, teaching, community, and prayer.

An initiative of the Institute for Church Life (ISL), the free quarterly is edited by Timothy O’Malley, acting director of Notre Dame’s Center for Liturgy, who introduces Church Life as an attempt to examine “how we believe, celebrate, and live the Gospel in our parishes, schools, and dioceses in such a way that all are called to contemplate the wondrous love revealed in the Christ … how the Church manifests her faith in Christ through catechesis, liturgy, spiritual formation, and service to the poor, all of these carried out in the context of contemporary culture and society.”

The inaugural issue of Church Life features several articles by Notre Dame faculty members, including ICL director John Cavadini; Virgil Elizondo, professor of pastoral and Hispanic theology; Lawrence Cunningham, professor emeritus of theology; and Christian Smith, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Sociology, as well the text of Dolan’s address on “The Dignity of the Human Person,” given last December at Notre Dame to inaugurate the ICL’s Human Dignity Project.

In addition to its vivid contemporary photography, the lavishly illustrated issue includes artwork such as Giotto’s “Crucifixion” and Fra Angelico’s “Annunciation.”

O’Malley hopes that Church Life will become a resource for “those charged with developing the Church’s pastoral care in light of evangelization, whether as a catechist, director of religious education, a liturgist or music director, a youth and young adult minister, a deacon, a priest, or a bishop,” but also hopes “to reach those Catholics interested in considering what it means to believe, celebrate, and live Catholic faith in the contemporary world.”

As that audience is as large and varied as the Internet itself, it seems appropriate that Church Life be made available free of charge, to anyone interested.

Very much like the Gospel, in fact.

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