The Purpose of the Missionary Work – Disciple
Baptism, Eucharist, Community, Evangelization
My name is Isabella and I’m a vice-leader of the Community in the School of the New Evangelization “Sursum Corda” in Cracow. We were established in 2014 from two communities: School of the New Evangelization “Sursum Corda” and the Renewal in the Holy Spirit “Redemptor”. Since then we have become one group.
Why are we called “Sursum Corda”? Saint John Paul II spoke about the cross which stands above Poland – from the Tatra Mountains to the Baltic Sea, he asked us to remember about that. We want to lift our hearts up to God in our daily routine, in difficulties and sufferings but also during all the good moments of our life. We want to direct our eyes and hearts towards God to worship Him. Why do we want to worship Him? Because we have experienced God’s love which is totally amazing, full of mercy, waiting for us and forgiving. You cannot be indifferent to such love. We are together to support one another, to strengthen ourselves, to discover our talents and then to serve people using these talents. We are in the School of the New Evangelization – (editor’s footnote) because we want to learn from Jesus Christ, our Master; we want to constantly develop ourselves. Why do we want to develop? We do not want to keep all our experience for ourselves, we want to go and tell others how good God is, how huge is His love. We want other people to meet Him –the living and true God, so that they too can live thanks to Him, as we do. We want to develop the work of evangelization –that is why we are at the School of the New Evangelization.
Our community is diverse because it was built by people who have different histories. Every one of us has his or her own history of meeting Christ and we fulfil Jesus’ calling to go and preach the Good News in different ways. I invite you to listen to other members of our community – hear how they have experienced God and how they cooperate with Him.
My name is Chris. What does to baptize mean? Until I joined the community, baptism was only a ritual and I didn’t realize what it meant to me. After joining the community, two and a half years ago, the Lord, using people from this group showed me what to baptize should be … What it is for me, in fact. Being baptized means to be a child of God. I’ve realized, that through baptism I’ve become His child, beloved by “Dad”, God our heavenly father. He has loved me unconditionally, with firm and perfect love. He loves me even if I’m a sinner, even when my body or soul falls. He is always a loving Dad. And because of that, His Son – Jesus Christ is my brother who is always close to me and will always lift me up despite my weaknesses, despite my sins. He is just waiting for me to stretch my arms towards Him saying: “Jesus help me!”
Living with Jesus means giving everything to Him up to the very end. Devoting ourselves to Him to the very end, regardless of what we want because He is the one who wants to rule our life, who wants to lead us through our life. Living with Jesus means to devote 100% of our life to Him, every part of it: devoting our families, devoting our finances, devoting our jobs, our leisure activities, devoting our whole life to Him.
Living with Christ Jesus also means devoting ourselves to other people: serving at work, serving in the family, serving in the community and serving every person God puts on our way.
Hi! My name is Paulina and I’ve been a member of the Community and the School of the New Evangelization “Sursum Corda” in Cracow for two years. I would like to present my testimony, my history of walking with God, the Lord. In fact, everything began when my parents brought me to church and I was baptized, when I was included into God’s great plan of salvation. But much time passed before I started to know God consciously and authentically. I don’t want to say that the time was wasted. I needed it to prepare my heart for the word of God to bear plentiful fruit. The Seminary of the Renewal of Faith was my turning point. During the eight week retreat, in which I participated during my 3rd year of studies, God showed me Himself as Someone living and acting, Someone who is human, even if I didn’t physically see Him, Someone who is very close, Who is interested in every little thing I bring to Him. I also heard what He told me: “Listen to my words very carefully!” I didn’t know how to interpret that sentence, but I tried to listen to Mass more attentively and to read His word.
This was also a time of great peace in my life and joy in my heart. I could listen to the Holy Spirit and do whatever He wanted me to. This is why, among other things, I’m in the community. The Holy Spirit has led me here to better listen to His words. And I praise Him for that! And I want to say “thank you” to every person who created this community.
The second place where I can carefully listen to God is during the Eucharist – when I can hear His words and take what He gives. I can hear the words: “Peace be with you”, I can praise Him and know Him, thanks to the saints and angels. There is also a very important moment at the end of every Mass when He says: “Go and do similar things! Go and become my witness! Become the person in whom others can see Me. Show that you’ve met Me.” He says: “Go and do not keep it for yourself”. These two places: the community and the Eucharist are a space where I can listen to God carefully and where I want to praise and glorify Him because He has really come to me!
The Community “Sursum Corda” leads the “New Life” Course in which I participated two years ago. I went to church, I prayed but everything was just a routine without real faith. If somebody before this course asked my: “would you belong to this community?” I would answer that I would go to the church every week but the community is not for me. The Course has totally changed my life. I went for that Course during a difficult time in my life. I needed help, even I if didn’t know how that support should look like; I experienced outstanding love. After three days of the Course, I left it as a new person. During “New Life” I saw something in my mind like pictures of people from my whole life whom I haven’t forgiven. In fact, I didn’t remember many of them! After I had forgiven them, my mind was cleared, like a clean sheet of paper. Right now, I know this is God’s promise – He is writing a new scenario of my life according to His plan. This process is still ongoing. Recently, I met my former teacher who I hadn’t seen for twenty-one years. During the “New Life” Course I had forgiven her, but I didn’t expect this meeting in my parish church. The teacher used to live 150 km from my home, but she has recently moved and now she lives five minutes from me. At the end of our talk she told me that she hoped that I didn’t recall the past with anger and that I forgave her. That situation was totally releasing. God shows me that the process of healing is still going on.
What’s more, during the “New Life” Course, God healed my knee. After nine years of my disease I can now kneel! I don’t have any internal or external bleeding; my kneecap doesn’t collapse. I still see the fruits of the Course, there is no time limit for them.
The Course’s leading team did a great job! People devote their time to helping others see God in their lives. During “my” Course I saw a team of people who were full of freedom, joy, peace, with love of each other and of the participants. I wondered where they got it from… I wanted that too! Now I know that it is a grace form God and the fruit of answering Jesus’ call to evangelize. After all these events, I became a member of the community, a member of “New Life” Course team because I know how important it is to evangelize, to preach the Good News that Jesus is risen and speak about loving one another.
Authors: Izabela Nowaczek-Grzywa,
Christopher Duda, Paulina Pytel, Sandra Marciniak
Translation: Dariusz Dudek CSsR