LTRP Note: The following is an extract from Roger Oakland’s booklet, The New Evangelization From Rome—Or Finding the True Jesus Christ.
By Roger Oakland
When Christians speak of evangelism, they are usually referring to efforts to fulfill the Great Commission.
Just before ascending to heaven, Jesus commissioned every believer to proclaim the good news when He said: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).
This Gospel of Jesus Christ is very simple. It is a message that even a child can understand. It is about God’s plan to save us from our sins. Since the fall of man, all have been born into this world separated from God, our Creator, by sin. About two thousand years ago, Jesus Christ, God’s Son, supernaturally came to this earth, born of a virgin. While here on earth, Jesus lived a sinless life. He died upon the Cross at Calvary, and His blood was shed as a sacrifice for our sins. All those who accept and believe in Jesus (that is, who Jesus is and what He has done) can enter into a relationship with Him, the Creator of the universe. This relationship will then last for eternity. This is the simple Gospel.
Unfortunately, Satan has always had an agenda to complicate the Gospel or confound people into believing in something less or something more than what the Gospel message teaches. Paul talked about “another gospel” when he warned the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 11:4) and the Galatians (Galatians 1:6) about the dangers of being deceived. Satan is a clever schemer. Deceiving people in the name of the Savior is part of the devil’s ultimate plan.
Not everything labeled the gospel is the true Gospel. Further, it follows that the term evangelization, if it is based on a counterfeit gospel, will seduce people into believing they are going to heaven, when instead they may be on their way to hell.
In this article, we will be dealing with The New Evangelization, a program promoted by the Catholic Church and designed to win the world to Christ—the Eucharistic Christ.
What is the New Evangelization?
The New Evangelization is a missionary effort of the Catholic Church to bring the “Lost Brethren” (Protestants) back into the “fold.” Most of this effort is aimed at stirring up interest in the Eucharist.
An article published by Zenit (“The World Seen from Rome”) presented a news item based on an announcement made by Pope John Paul II about the Eucharist. The article was titled “Why the Pope Would Write an Encyclical on the Eucharist: To Rekindle Amazement.”1 The pope had already declared the Eucharist to be the focal point for the Catholic Church’s missionary vision at the Eucharistic Congress in June of 2000, but now the pope had written an Encyclical on the Eucharist. The following statement made by John Paul is very enlightening:
[T]he Church will only be able to address the challenge of the new evangelization if she is able to contemplate, and enter into a profound relationship with Christ in the sacrament that makes his presence real.2 (emphasis added)
This statement confirms how this New Evangelization program is directly linked to the Eucharistic Christ. Further, the Zenit article gave more details on how the pope wanted to see this program develop:
I would like to rekindle this Eucharistic “amazement” by the present Encyclical Letter, in continuity with the Jubilee heritage which I have left to the Church in the Apostolic Letter Novo Millennio Ineunte and its Marian crowning, Rosarium Virginis Mariae. To contemplate the face of Christ, and to contemplate it with Mary, is the programme which I have set before the Church at the dawn of the third millennium, summoning her to put out into the deep on the sea of history with the enthusiasm of the new evangelization.3
Making it clear that the New Evangelization program would be tightly associated with the sacrament of the Eucharist, John Paul concluded:
To contemplate Christ involves being able to recognize him wherever he manifests himself, in his many forms of presence, but above all in the living sacrament of his body and his blood. The Church draws her life from Christ in the Eucharist, by him she is fed and by him she is enlightened.4 (emphasis added)
The Facts about the New Evangelization
There are many sources available confirming such a program exists. For example, on the EWTN (Eternal Word Television Network) website under a heading “The New Evangelization: Building the Civilization of Love,” it reads:
As the Holy Father entrusts the Third Millennium to the Blessed Virgin Mary, EWTN inaugurates its New Evangelization specialty site. . . . Under the protection of St. Therese of Lisieux, Patroness of the Missions, and Our Lady of Guadalupe, to whom the Pope has committed the New Evangelization, may the Spirit of God bring about the New Pentecost to which the Church looks forward with hope.5
This above statement may come as a surprise to Protestants who are enthusiastically joining hands with Catholics for the sake of “evangelism.” The Catholic program is committed to “Our Lady of Guadalupe” (Mary).6 Remember, Paul warned the Corinthians about “another spirit” that was associated with “another gospel” and “another Jesus.”
Now, if the Catholic Church was “searching for” a method of evangelization for the “new evangelization” in the year 2000, apparently that method has now been discovered and endorsed. Remember, John Paul II called for a “rekindling of Eucharistic amazement” associated with the New Evangelization.
Another piece of evidence that the Eucharist is a key to understanding the New Evangelization comes from an advertisement in Envoy Magazine titled “Will you answer our Holy Father’s call for the New Evangelization?”7 Beneath the title was an appeal to help purchase and distribute books, tapes, and other literature.
As part of the advertisement, a booklet was shown bearing the title The Most Blessed Sacrament: Our Lord is truly present: Body, Soul and Divinity to make you happy now and for all Eternity! by Catholic priest Stephano Manelli. On the front cover of this booklet was a monstrance. In the location where the wafer would normally be found was an actual face—supposedly the face of Jesus. Consider the following excerpt from the booklet:
Let us ask the question: What is the Eucharist? It is God among us. It is the Lord Jesus present in the tabernacles of our churches with His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. It is Jesus veiled under the appearance of bread, but really and physically present in the consecrated Host, so that He dwells in our midst, works within us and for us, and is at our disposal. The Eucharistic Jesus is the true Emmanuel, the “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23)8
Or the following statement that defies any biblical basis:
With Communion, Jesus enters my heart and remains corporally present in me as long as the species (the appearance: of bread) lasts; that is, for about 15 minutes. During this time, the Holy Fathers teach that the angels surround me to continue to adore Jesus and love Him without interruption.9
Or this statement that seems to reflect a strong spiritual experience that acts as a powerful attraction to the Eucharistic Christ:
All the saints have understood by experience the Divine marvel of the meeting and the union with Jesus in the Eucharist. They have understood that a devout Holy Communion means to be possessed by Him and to possess Him. . . . It is not possible to have a union more profound and more total: He in Me and I in Him; the one in the other. What more could we want?10
New Focus on the Eucharist
In an article titled “New Focus on the Eucharist,” Catholic Herald reporter Russell Shaw summarized the various events Pope John Paul promoted and then asked a very important question: “Pope John Paul and the Vatican lately have been devoting more than ordinary high-level attention to the Eucharist, and now they apparently mean to devote even more. That raises an obvious question: Why?”11 A website called “Apostolate for Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration” seems to answer that question with the following two statements:
The regular practice of Eucharistic adoration, which perpetual adoration fosters, must be at the root of our response. It enables us to respond to the Holy Father’s call with “generosity and holiness.” . . . It will prepare us for the “new evangelization” which will help restore all things in Christ.12
In his encyclical letter on the Eucharist, “Dominicae cenae,” Pope John Paul II said: “May our adoration never cease.” That is what perpetual adoration is: adoration that never ceases. So let us continue to work hard for the spread of perpetual adoration, so that our Holy Father’s wish for perpetual adoration in every parish in the world may be fulfilled and that Christians of this millennium may witness the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Eucharistic Reign of Christ.13
The New Evangelization program will use Eucharistic adoration to rekindle Eucharistic amazement, and more and more people will be drawn by experience to the Eucharistic Christ. An experience-based Christianity not supported biblically is one of the most effective ways to lead people astray. If the New Evangelization points people to a Eucharistic Christ associated with profound experiences including healings, miracles, and signs and wonders, it has the potential to bring vast delusion. We are witnessing this today.
Finding the True Jesus Christ
The biblical Jesus is no longer in the tomb. He is not confined in any earthly vessel or chamber. Jesus warned His disciples about those who say, see he is here or he is there as if physically present on the earth. According to the Gospel, He is physically present seated at the right hand of the Father until His second coming, and through His Spirit dwells in the hearts of every true believer. He cannot be made any more present than He already is.
By contrast, the Catholic “Gospel” makes Jesus physically present at every mass around the world.
The question we each must ask is—Will the Eucharistic Jesus reign in my heart? Will we trust another Jesus because of Rome or because apparitions endorse him? Will we trust another Jesus because of miracles, healings, or the supposed presence of God? Or will we follow the Jesus of the Bible?
Only the Bible, the Word of God, is infallible (2 Peter 1:20-21). It is truth (John 17:17). We know this by its fulfilled prophecies. Dozens of prophecies concerning Christ alone have been fulfilled to the letter. In addition, hundreds of prophecies concerning Israel and the Gentile nations have come to pass. The probability of all this happening by chance is too small to consider. No other book can boast of design with such intelligence. This amazing book records the life of the only perfect Person. No other book and no other man can compare. There is no risk in accepting the Bible as our final authority.
This has been an extract from The New Evangelization From Rome Or Finding the True Jesus Christ. To order in booklet format, click here.
1. Zenit (The World Seen From Rome), “Why the Pope Would Write an Encyclical on the Eucharist: To Rekindle Amazement” (http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/why-the-pope-would-write-an-encyclical-on-the-eucharist).
5. “The New Evangelization: Building the Civilization of Love” (Eternal Word Television Network, http://www.ewtn.com/new_evangelization/Novo_millennio.htm, ).
7. Envoy Magazine, Volume 7.2, 2003, p. 9.
8. Fr. Stephano Manelli, O.F.M., The Most Blessed Sacrament (Havertown, PA: Children of the Father Foundation, 1973), p. 4.
11. Russell Shaw, “New Focus on the Eucharist” (Catholic Herald, October 2003, http://www.catholicherald.com/stories/New-Focus-on-the-Eucharist,3444).
14. Richard Bennett and Martin Buckingham, Far From Rome, Near to God: Testimonies of Fifty Converted Roman Catholic Priests (Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, First Banner of Truth Trust Edition, 1997), p. 212, citing Mariano Rughi.
15. John Foxe, Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (Eureka, MT: Lighthouse Trails, 2010), pp. 266-270
To order copies of The New Evangelization From Rome Or Finding the True Jesus Christ in booklet format, click here.
(photo from the booklet, The New Evangeliazation From Rome)