At parish mission, evangelist tries to start ‘holiness revolution’

| November 3, 2014 | 0 Comments
Dan Dematte

Dan Dematte

Dana Masek wasn’t planning to attend a session of the “Holiness Revolution” parish mission when she came to morning Mass Oct. 28 at St. John the Baptist in New Brighton.

After hearing evangelist Dan DeMatte, she was glad she did.

“I think he’s telling us what we need to hear,” Masek said. “So many of our Catholic churches seem so dead. We’re broken. We’ve compromised with the culture.”

Dematte, a youth minister from Columbus, Ohio, and former member of National Evangelization (NET) Teams, led St. John’s mission Oct. 27-29.

“The world is not yet what God intended it to be,” DeMatte told his morning session audience on day two of the mission.

“More and more today, Christ needs you and me to lay down our lives for the cause of Jesus Christ, for the cause of changing the culture.”

Catholics are called to bring Christ and his Church “into every strata of society,” DeMatte said.

“Jesus’ Plan A — his long-term vision — is for you and I to bring about the renewal in the world, permanent change,” he said.

Needed: More saints

In his command to go and make disciples of all the world, Jesus issued the mission statement, “Help other people follow me,” DeMatte said.

“He doesn’t say go into your church and volunteer for everything, but go into the marketplace, into the neighborhood, wherever you are, and be saints. Whatever we are called to be, we need to be saints.”

DeMatte challenged Catholics to be ministers of life, love and faith, the three crises he said burden today’s world.

He decried the 46 million abortions that are carried out worldwide each year, calling Catholics to be disciples of life via a three-pronged approached. (See box, this page).

To counter the crumbling of marriage and family in today’s culture, Catholics must be disciples of love, preaching that “to love is to give 100 percent of ourselves to the other,” combatting the urge to live for power, popularity, pleasures and possessions.

And, finally, Catholics have to reverse the trends that have seen 30 million people leave the church in the past 30 years and 83 percent of young people leave the faith by the end of their college years.

“We need to be disciples of faith who live our faith publicly,” DeMatte said.

Audience touched

The crowd at the Oct. 28 session of the mission was so large that the morning Mass had to be moved from its usual site in the parish Chapel of the Angels to the main church.

DeMatte, a fiery, impassioned speaker, touched St. John’s parishioners who attended the mission.

Don Kelly said that among the thoughts he took away was the idea to look at things through God’s eyes — the way God looks at things.

“He’s a dynamic speaker,” Kelly said. “His description of the Lord’s passion — you wondered if he helped Mel Gibson with his [film] script!”

Linda Bookey agreed.

“He put you right below the cross with Jesus,” she said.

Mary Lee Kelly, Don’s wife, found DeMatte speaking to her.

“When he was talking about trust in God, I thought, ‘How much trust do I really have?’ ” she said.

“You pray for things and three days later you pray again. I learned you just have to let it go and let God steer you.”


 

3 ways you can be a disciple of life

Evangelist Dan DeMatte’s three-pronged approach to being a disciple of life:

1. Live life to the fullest joyfully. “Allow people to see the beauty of human life,” DeMatte said. As Pope Francis teaches, there is no room in the Church for unhappy Catholics.

2. Recognize the dignity of every human person, from womb to tomb. See every person as a child of God who deserves our love.

3. Use your time well. Don’t spend so much of your time on yourself, your comfort and your pleasure, but spend it on the needs of others.

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Category: Local News