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“We want to start a fire, not a program.”

Updated: Oct 13, 2022

“We want to start a fire, not a program.”

~ Bishop Andrew Cozzens

Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis

How do you start a fire? You go through a ten-session program and at the end you automatically have fire, right? No, of course not. But it does not just automatically happen, either. You have to start the fire. You have to go through the process of starting the fire and helping it to grow. You have to have a good place for the fire to be, gather kindling and arrange it, have a source of flame or spark, have some larger sticks ready to hand, and have some logs to put on at the right time. Starting a fire is about following a process to get the fire started, to help it to grow, and to give it the fuel it needs to sustain itself. A program could help you understand this process and practice parts of it, but the program is not the answer; the process is.

Bishop Cozzens, who heads up the committee for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops that is overseeing the National Eucharistic Revival, writes that “We want to start a fire, not a program,” and I think that that is something that we would all like to see. We want to see hearts set on fire by their encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist. We want to see loved ones come back to the Church and to truly understand and to live their Faith. We want to see youth, parents, and the elderly energized by the grace that they receive in the Eucharist. We want fire.

Now, what process can we use to get that fire started and to help it grow?

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Dr. Seth Wright

Director of Missionary Discipleship

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