What works to bring people into the church?
For more than 20 years, FAITH Catholic has published magazines for Catholic dioceses and organizations. Our clients evangelize in the pages of their magazines by sharing personal witness stories that inspire readers to find out more about Jesus Christ and his Church.
Many of those stories are accounts of people’s journeys back into the Church; many are their stories of finding Christ for the first time and being baptized. We reviewed magazines from the last two decades to see what those people said motivated them to become part of the family of Christ.
The majority of converts and returning Catholics said that it was a relationship with another person that brought them into the Church. More than 60% gave that as the driving force behind their conversion or return.
- 6% said it was a combination of relationship and a life-altering event, such as the death of a loved one.
- 5% said a life event prompted their conversion.
- 7% said that the liturgy, combined with realtionships and with prayer, brought them in
- 7% were drawn by theology.
It is not a surprise that relationships are so significant — that has been true since the Apostles went out into the streets on Pentecost to personally deliver the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Here are some examples of how present-day disciples are evangelizing their families and friends.
Christ is our Hope
RCIA brings a mother and daughter to the faith
A young woman was inspired by her professor to become Catholic and brought her mother into the Church as well.
Eastern Oklahoma Catholic
Here to Stay; James and Sally Hilger’s 500-mile road home
James and Sally’s daughter invited them to Mass; they were so inspired that they joined RCIA
Christ is our Hope
My illness opened my eyes to God
A work friend encouraged her to go back to Church, and came to the hospital to visit. That prompted her return.
The Catholic Mirror
The long way home
Jessica’s caregiver as a child was an Ecuadoran woman named Flora who witnessed the faith. Inspired for years by this devoutly Catholic woman, eventually Jessica converted.
Starting anew with God
Thomas Coffill decided to become Catholic while in prison, and did so after his release, largely because he was guided by Deacon Bob Curtis and his wife, Phyllis.
FAITH Magazine, Lansing
‘Now we can be together with Jesus’
When Joaquin began preparation to receive his first Communion, his enthusiasm and faith inspired his father, Gregorio, to come back to the Church.
FAITH Magazine, Erie
Charlene experiences evangelization within her own family
Charlene was raised Methodist and married a Catholic. They attended Methodist services together, but when their daughter started attending Mass, she was prompted to pray about Catholicism. She converted, and her husband came back.
FAITH Magazine, Grand Rapids
The Journey from Baptist to Catholic
Helen was raised Baptist and came into the Church because of her relationship with her fiance. An encounter with a man in the church when she was there for a marriage preparation class also had an impact.