Our Association with the Paulist Fathers
Good News Ministries of Tampa Bay and the Paulist Fathers have teamed up to form a community of Paulist Associates in Florida. The collaboration, which includes retreats, evangelization formation, and other great opportunities, began with a Paulist Retreat on the spirituality of Father Isaac Hecker (founder of the Paulists) on January 5, 2008.
Paulists meet the contemporary culture on its own terms to present the Gospel message in ways that are compelling but not diluted, constantly seeking new ways to spread the Gospel and respond to the deep spiritual longings of the today’s people to help them find fulfillment in Jesus Christ through the inner divine guidance of the Holy Spirit and the teachings, sacraments, worship, and discipline of the Catholic Church.
In meeting the contemporary culture on its own terms, the Paulist Order is always on the leading edge of using modern technology, from books by Paulist Press, to movies and TV shows by Paulist Productions, from outreach to young adults using the tools of young adults, to Paulist Evangelization Ministries.
Who are the Paulists?
The Paulist Fathers are a North American order founded by Fr. Isaac Hecker in 1858. Through the Paulist Associates Program, any interested men and women attend six formation sessions and then make a commitment to embody the ideals of the Paulists in their daily lives.
Isaac Hecker was a spiritual seeker, a wandering soul. He lived for a time in Transcendentalist utopian communities where he consulted the leading thinkers of his day. Once he found the truth in the Catholic Church, he gave his whole life to it. His only desire was to proclaim the truth to others so that they too could find their true selves as North American Catholics. His motto, as seen on his holy card, is:
“In the union of Catholic faith
and American civilization —
A future for the Church brighter than any past.”
The cause for canonization of Isaac Hecker has begun, and he’s been declared a “Servant of God” (the first step toward sainthood).
Good News Ministries directors Ralph and Terry Modica are Paulist Associates. In the spirit of Isaac Hecker and the Paulist Fathers, Paulist Associates assist in the mission of Christ using the gifts God has given us, in the places where we already live and work, in our everyday lives. And we gather periodically as a community to support and encourage one another and to discuss the writings of Isaac Hecker and any other materials we decide to read. For more info, visit the Paulist website.
The goals of Paulist Associates and Paulist Fathers are:
• the renewal of the light of faith in our world
• by first increasing within ourselves reliance upon the inspirations of the Holy Spirit,.
• striving for spiritual excellence,
• understanding more deeply the truths of our faith,
• and then by our enthusiasm attracting others to the same.
If this appeals to you, let us know. The Modicas spearheaded the first community to be formed in Florida, which meets in the offices of Good News Ministries, in Tampa. If you live too far away to join this group, contact us and we will put you in touch with the Director of the Paulist Associates. Or if you’re a man who’s considering the vocation of priesthood, visit the Paulist Vocations website.