"Catechesis without a personal relationship with Jesus, without evangelization, is like trying to plant seeds on concrete, not much happens." - Fr. James Mallon
The Alpha course is one of the most effective methods of evangelization today. One of the most exciting effects is the enthusiastic interest for “What’s next?" Once people's faith comes alive and they have an on-going personal relationship with the risen Lord, through evangelization, they are eager to enter and probe the profound mysteries of our Catholic faith.
Our Advisory Board and National Leadership Team have reviewed many outstanding resources and are pleased to recommend the following resources for after Alpha.
The goal of our Alpha USA Catholic outreach team is to help US Catholic leaders and parishes to initiate Catholic renewal and carry out the new Catholic evangelization.
We have selected the resources above because we have found them to be the most effective tools for Catholic evangelization and spiritual formation among many that are available. Based on our experience we chose these because they were most engaging and effective with audiences that used them. They were either Catholic materials or consistent with Catholic principals of evangelization and they served a particular purpose in the evangelization process.
This review is meant to help give more information on how these tools fit in the conversion and spiritual growth process following Alpha. In case you have not yet experienced an Alpha course, we recommend the following resources:
Further information about all the resources mentioned in this article is available from Deacon Steve Mitchell at SteveMitchell@alphausa.org.
Fr. James Mallon speaks about Alpha as “Catholicism 101” and he says it covers 70% of the essentials of Catholic teaching. He describes Catholicism 201 as covering the other 20% plus 10% on morality. This 8 week course is an excellent follow up to Alpha and the topics include the Church, Sacraments, Mary and the Saints, and Catholic morality.
Knowing God Better; Knowing God Even Better;The Eucharist
David Payne from Catholic Evangelization Services in London puts together these wonderful pastoral courses covering many basic topics to help Catholics to grow in their faith.
These three DVD series (and others) from David Payne are wonderful Catholic follow ups to Alpha, and they are especially good for new believers and beginners. As a lay person, David speaks from everyday experience in a way that is engaging and understandable and he includes plenty of stories and humor.
The Great Adventure Bible Study System
The Great Adventure Bible Study is a Catholic Bible learning system that makes the complex simple by teaching the story (the narrative) of the Bible. Every day, more and more people are encountering God's Word through the methods taught in The Great Adventure.
Catholicism, Fr. Robert Barron's Word on Fire Ministry
The CATHOLICISM Study Program presents the strong, ecclesial dimension of the Catholic Faith – God’s revelation through Jesus Christ and His Church. Fr. Robert Barron created this groundbreaking program as a thematic presentation of what Catholics believe and why, so all adults can come to a deeper understanding of the Catholic Faith. Not a video lecture, Church history or scripture study, this engaging and interesting formational program uses the art, architecture, literature, music and all the treasures of the Catholic tradition to illuminate the timeless teachings of the Church.
Little Rock Scripture Study
For a whole generation Little Rock has been offering introductory studies, intermediate studies, and in-depth studies to help Catholics become familiar with the Scriptures. Their web site has everything to get you started.
Review of the Little Rock Scripture Series >>
Emmaus Journey, Catholic Small-Group Bible Discussion Series
Rich Cleveland offers seven Emmaus Journey small group studies to introduce Catholics to spiritual growth and application of the Scriptures into daily living.
Come Follow Me Training
Dick Kiernan offers a focused Bible study series on the essential practices of discipleship, disciple making, and leadership training as a foundation for the new Catholic evangelization. It can also be offered in seminar format.
Unbound - Freedom in Christ
Neal Lozano offers a book and weekend seminar on how to pray for spiritual, emotional, relational, and physical healing. This highly practical training is most helpful to train Catholics who are running Alpha weekend retreats.
Touching Jesus Through the Church
Beginning with Marcellino D'Ambrosio's own story of finding new life and meaning in Christ within the Catholic Church, Touching Jesus through the Church covers the most prominent Catholic distinctives most commonly misunderstood by non-Catholics and Catholics alike. In these videos, used in nearly 1,000 parishes throughout the English-speaking world, Dr. D'Ambrosio makes plain why Catholic teaching makes sense and why living as a Catholic is an exciting adventure. The humor and energy of these videos, each about 35 minutes in length, makes for exceptionally enjoyable and easy listening.
Review of Touching Jesus Through the Church >>
Seven Steps to Becoming Financially Free
Phil Lenahan and Our Sunday Visitor teamed up to produce a wonderful Catholic resource for effective financial stewardship.
Dave Nodar and Dianne Martin team up with Catholic young adults to offer a Catholic evangelization training course. The talks emphasize the Catholic evangelization process and practical ways for application in daily life.
Just Walk Across the Room
Bill Hybels, though not Catholic, offers a wonderful lifestyle evangelization training in four practical segments that is very oriented toward the process. This resource is most helpful because it helps Catholics learn some practical and non-threatening ways to share faith.
These resources provide for continuing formation, help lead people into RCIA and give them a hunger for life in the Catholic Church. We continually review strong follow on Catholic resources for people whose faith has come alive by attending an Alpha course. Please forward your recommendations to: firstname.lastname@example.org