Dave “Biker for Christ” VanVickle and I are talking about Catholic schools again (because that worked out so well last time.) We received a lot of feedback from our episode on making Catholic schools evangelizing powerhouses, so we wanted to talk more about what teachers can actually do to be powerful witnesses for Christ.
First we talk about hitchhiking for Christ (because that’s a thing) and then we get into some ways teachers can talk to students about the Faith and infuse it into everything they do in and out of the classroom.
Snippet from the Show
“One of the most powerful things we can offer kids is to replace the false labels that our culture imposes on them.”
Tips to Evangelize Students
- Listen – Students want to be heard and tell their story. Show you’re willing to listen to their point of view and after you get to know them you can start asking the big questions about topics like eternity, purpose in life, spirituality, and Jesus.
- Affirm their true identity – Sarcasm is everywhere in high school, and the labels we affix to young students tend to become their identity. One of the most powerful things we can do is affirm their true identity as sons and daughters of God.
- Teach to convert, not just inform – Frame the lesson plans to form hearts as well as minds by making it Christocentric and tying everything back to the life of Jesus Christ.
- Give opportunities for encounter – There are opportunities in every subject for God to enter in through Goodness, Truth, and Beauty.
- Build community among teachers – What could be a more powerful witness than a group of teachers who actually love one another the way Christ loves them?
5 Practical Takeaways
- Read Catechesi Tradendae, paragraphs 1-5.
- Meditate on Jesus as teacher while looking at your favorite image of Jesus.
- Pick a Bible study and invite teachers to join with you.
- Think of a young person in your life and listen to their story.
- Intercede for Catholic school teachers as this school year begins.
Meet Your Hosts
Michael “Gomer” Gormley
Michael has been leading evangelization and ministry efforts for the past ten years, both as a full-time parish staff member and as a speaker and consultant for parishes, dioceses, and Catholic campus ministries.
He is also the founder and creative director of LayEvangelist.com, and the producer and cohost of a Catholic young adult podcast Catching Foxes, which discusses the collision of Faith and Culture.
He is married to his college sweetheart, Shannon. Together they have about 1,000 children and get about 3 hours of sleep a night, which is alright by him.
David “Dave” VanVickle
Dave VanVickle fell in love with the Lord at the age of fourteen. Since then, he has dedicated his life to bringing others into a radical relationship with Christ.
He is a speaker and retreat leader. His programs focuses on proclaiming the universal call to holiness, authentic Catholic spirituality, spiritual warfare and deliverance. Additionally, Dave has over ten years of experience assisting Priests with their ministries of exorcism and deliverance.
Dave resides in Pittsburgh with his wife Amber and their five children: Sam, Max, Judah, Josie and Louisa.