February's Solidarity Campaign has netted 708 gifts so far (goal was 700). Let's set a record by the 28th!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Asian prelate: culturally insensitive proselytism is leading to persecution

Catholic World News - November 27, 2013

An influential Asian prelate said that a culturally insensitive proselytism associated with Pentecostal sects and some Catholic movements is provoking opposition to Jesus Christ and his teaching.

Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil, chairman of the executive board of the Office of Evangelization of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences, distinguished proselytism from evangelization.

“If we are persecuted because of our carelessness, institutional arrogance, lack of cultural integration, we should not consider ourselves martyrs,” said Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil, chairman of the executive board of the Office of Evangelization of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences.

“No doubt there may be opposition, but it is not against Jesus or his message, but against the negative impression developed towards Christians, that is, towards those who are associated with the message,” he told the Fides news agency.

Calling for a “revival of missionary enthusiasm” and emphasizing “the need to share the Good News with great self-confidence,” the retired archbishop of Guwahati, India, upheld the example of St. Paul.

“He was sensitive to the cultural and ethnic heritage of every people,” he said. “The apostle always began by making the concerns and anxieties of the people his, and making his preaching understandable through the use of their categories, adapting to their world view and to mentality of the place.”

Archbishop Menamparampil’s distinction between evangelization and proselytism is not novel; in a 2007 document, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith noted:

In the Christian context, the term proselytism was often used as a synonym for missionary activity. More recently, however, the term has taken on a negative connotation, to mean the promotion of a religion by using means, and for motives, contrary to the spirit of the Gospel; that is, which do not safeguard the freedom and dignity of the human person.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our February expenses ($6,406 to go):
$35,000.00 $28,593.54
18% 82%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: normnuke - Nov. 27, 2013 2:24 PM ET USA

    Ach! Of Course! Here in the US we have been so insensitive to the culture of abortion! Shame on us.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

Two good publishers, six new books for Lent 20 hours ago
Another awkward 'clarification' from the Vatican February 25
Former Israeli ambassador explains how to make 'two-state solution' realistic February 25
Solidarity Campaign: Going well, thanks! And how can you help? February 25
Considering the World of Film February 24

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis to address Congress in joint session in September CWN - February 5