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The Ascension Roundtable

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Burning for Christ or Burning Out? (With Rose Sweet)

Rose Sweet has spent forty years in different areas of parish ministry and more importantly, she’s spent even more time as an avid follower of Jesus Christ. Drawing from her experience in ministry and especially from the way Jesus relates to people in the gospel, Rose shares with us “Four Rules of Relationship” that we can follow to help us avoid ministry burn-out. And even though we’re focusing especially on the relationships you build while doing ministry, I think you’ll finish today’s...

Duration: 00:29:40

Christopher West Talks Marriage Preparation

We need to get marriage preparation right—the stakes are just too high not to. In this episode, Theology of the Body expert Christopher West explains some of the biggest challenges we face when it comes to preparing engaged couples for a joy-filled marriage. He then gives three pieces of advice to help you do a better job walking with couples during their time of marriage prep.

Duration: 00:25:56

Preparing Someone to Hear the Gospel Message (with Thomas Smith)

We often think that the first step of evangelization is to explicitly spell out the gospel message to another person. In this episode, evangelist and Bible scholar Thomas Smith challenges that notion, explaining how evangelization can start with one very simple question. Stay tuned to hear what that question is, and you will find that speaking to someone about the Faith is easier than you think.

Duration: 00:33:56

Why I Converted from Mormonism to Catholicism (with Thomas Smith)

In today’s episode, evangelist and Bible scholar Thomas Smith tells his story about converting from Mormonism to the Baptist faith and then eventually becoming Catholic. He explains what it is about Christianity that made him question his Mormon faith, and he also tells us four things he wishes we’d learn from the Mormon community. He finishes the show by walking us through two simple-to-implement prayer practices that can change your life.

Duration: 00:28:44

Whole Parish Renewal (with Tim Glemkowski)

What happens when one young man decides to pursue the heights of holiness and sets out to bring entire parishes along with him on the journey? Find out in today’s episode with Tim Glemkowski, founder of “L’Alto Catholic Institute. Stay tuned to hear how Tim has helped several parishes be transformed into dynamic communities of missionary disciples.

Duration: 00:48:53

Fr. Mike On Building a Better Relationship with Your Pastor

This week’s episode is short and sweet, but it hits on a topic many of you have written to us about—collaborating with your pastor in a healthy and constructive way. We might all want to be saints, but the reality is that none of us are yet. That means relationships with our pastors can sometimes feel rocky. As lay people, we wanted to get a priestly perspective on the topic and find out how we can do a better job communicating to, collaborating with, and serving our priests.

Duration: 00:23:03

4 Things a Mom Wants You to Know (with Danielle Bean)

Danielle Bean, mom of eight, served as a DRE in her parish, and because of the unique perspective she’s gained from wearing many hats, we asked her what four insights she’d like to share with you. You’ll finish this episode feeling encouraged, and you’ll have a few practical tips to bring with you to work today.

Duration: 00:34:48

An Interview with ProjectYM

Today we sit down with Tony Vasinda and Michael Marchand, co-founders of Project YM, to pick their brains about youth ministry. We discuss the value of a holistic approach to youth ministry that is fully integrated with the rest of parish life, creative ways to support parents, and tough conversations that are sometimes worth having.

Duration: 01:17:47

3 Tips for Parish Staff (An Interview with Sonja Corbitt)

In this week’s episode, we sit down with Catholic convert and Bible study author Sonja Corbitt, who shares three tough lessons she’s learned when it comes to working within the Church. Plus, she gives a sneak peek into her upcoming Bible study.

Duration: 00:34:24

How to Engage Parents During Sacramental Prep

You know that parents are the primary educators of their children, and that’s why it can be so hard when it seems completely left to you, the catechist, to teach them the Faith. How can we, as parish communities, evangelize parents during those key moments of sacramental prep so we can help them encounter Christ, understand their calling as parents, and embrace their role to bring their children with them to heaven.

Duration: 00:38:18

Spiritual Multiplication (an Interview with Dr. Carole Brown)

In a perfect world, we’d bring thousands of souls closer to Christ in our lifetime. But in reality, we'd be lucky to help even ten people grow considerably in their faith. In today’s episode, Dr. Carole Brown explains how our impact may seem insignificant, but if we focus our efforts on building up small groups of disciples, a serious ripple effect may lead millions of people to Christ over the course of time.

Duration: 00:42:12

Evangelizing Within Your Parish

This week’s episode is part two of a conversation about dealing with divisions within a parish. If you want to hear the first part of the discussion, go back and listen to episode thirty-one. In today’s show, Tom and Allen respond to a listener’s question about evangelizing people within one’s own parish while avoiding judgment. They make several key points, reminding us to tread lightly and challenging us to recognize our own continuous need to be evangelized.

Duration: 00:25:12

Millennials, Cliches, and Catching Foxes

Today we sit down with Luke Carey and Michael Gormley, hosts of the Catching Foxes podcast and enthusiastic lay evangelists. We talk with them about reaching millennials with the message of the Gospel, building communities of radical vulnerability, and the laity’s vocation to bring our faith beyond the parish. These guys are hilarious, insightful, and passionate about reaching a predominantly “unchurched” generation. Stay tuned.

Duration: 00:56:47

Dealing with Division in Your Parish

As long as the Church is made up of human beings, certain levels of division will continue to exist. When we’re working at the parish level, how do we understand and work through those divisions with charity and prudence? In this week’s episode, Tom and Allen share an approach to discerning the roots of conflict between parish members, helping everyone move toward unity.

Duration: 00:35:56

Entrepreneurial Ministry: An Interview with Matt Pinto

Most people don’t associate ministry with entrepreneurialism, and in certain ways, that's for good reason. But in this episode, we sit down with Matthew Pinto, president and founder of Ascension Press, who shares with us seven entrepreneurial impulses that he believes are valuable to anyone working within the Church.

Duration: 00:35:36

Catechesis Needs Conversion: An Interview with Dr. Bob Rice

Catechesis, evangelization, theology…you've certainly heard these terms, but what’s the relationship between them? And when it comes to catechesis, how can we make sure we lead people to deeper intimacy with Christ instead of just filling their heads with information that doesn’t affect their hearts? In this episode, Dr. Bob Rice shares advice on how to make catechesis come alive, and he reminds us that the most important ministry in our lives is the ministry God does within our hearts.

Duration: 00:38:42

How the Columbine Shooting Changed Our Ministry (An Interview with Jim Beckman)

Jim Beckman and Tom McCabe worked at the Catholic parish closest to Columbine High School at the time of the shooting, and they were some of the first people on the scene after gunshots were reported to them by a parishioner who lived nearby. In this episode, they share their experience of that infamous day, and they reflect on how the Columbine event fundamentally changed their approach to ministry.

Duration: 00:45:00

Mary Ann Wiesinger on Making Your Parish a Center of Hope and Evangelization

Mary Ann Wiesinger is the Director of Evangelization and Parish Outreach for the Archdiocese of Miami, and she’s working with Archbishop Wenski to help Miami parishes become centers of hope and evangelization. Mary Ann breaks down what that means, explaining how they’re helping parishes become centers of hope by building parish communities where parishioners will risk face to face encounter. She then shares an interesting strategy that Miami parishes are using to better understand the...

Duration: 00:37:33

An Interview with Maria Mitchell: Beauty Catches the World's Attention

Today we chat with Maria Mitchell, the producer behind the Ascension Presents videos. In the first part of the show, Maria shares the story of how being in Rome when JPII died helped her realize her vocation to produce powerful Catholic media. She and Allen then talk about the importance of creating non-cheesy Catholic art, and the responsibility we have to tell the Christian story in a beautiful way that catches the world’s attention. In the second part of the show, we get practical, and...

Duration: 00:27:10

An Interview with Jeff Cavins: What Catholics Can Learn from Protestants (and Vice Versa)

Jeff Cavins grew up Catholic, but he left the Church at age 18, eventually becoming a protestant pastor. Some years later, he returned to the Catholic faith, bringing with him a lot of practical insight from his time in the protestant community. In this interview, he shares some of those insights, emphasizing how the Catholic Church can better share the fullness of the faith by learning from practical techniques used by our protestant brothers and sisters. He also reminds us never to take...

Duration: 00:28:17

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