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Supporting the New Evangelization

Supporting the New Evangelization
Deacon Matthew Skinner

Deacon Matthew Skinner caught his enthusiasm for Glenmary when he started coming to daily Mass at Glenmary headquarters in Fairfield, Ohio, about 10 years ago.

"I was working nearby, and wanted to find a place to attend Mass. As I got to know Glenmary, I became impressed," he says.

He finds the Glenmary people, mission and projects to be compelling. "The more I learned, the more enthusiastic I became," he recalls.

He learned, of course, of the driving purpose of Glenmary-to bring an official Catholic presence to places where there is none.

That resonated with his own personal mission as deacon in Our Lady of the Rosary parish in nearby Greenhills, Ohio.

"I became a regular donor, and changed my will to include Glenmary.

"We hear about the 'New Evangelization,'" he explains, a call from Pope St. John Paul II and popes since. That New Evangelization is a revitalization of the Church, a call to move beyond our comfort zones and do something new to spread the faith.

The Cincinnati deacon saw the New Evangelization in Glenmary: parishes being developed, an openness to the people in poverty, outreach to other churches to gain acceptance in areas where the Catholic Church might not be welcome.

The key for him, he says, is "reaching out to the unchurched." That was Glenmary founder Father Bishop's desire, ahead of his time, perhaps, with his own new evangelization here in the United States. It remains a key effort of Glenmary.

Deacon Matthew's initial contribution, then occasional donations, helps support the work of Glenmary today. With his bequest, naming Glenmary in his will, he looks to the future.

When his earthly time is complete, his generous spirit will keep giving, supporting Glenmary's missionary work years after he leaves. Deacon Matthew sees that as a way to be sure the New Evangelization continues.

Good deacon that he is, Deacon Matthew doesn't hide his light under a bushel basket; rather he puts it on a lampstand for everyone to see (the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 15). He says he takes advantage of any opportunity to share the news about Glenmary.

That even includes his work as deacon at Our Lady of the Rosary.

"I don't preach about Glenmary from the pulpit," he confesses, "but I do mention things such as the home missions-and talk about Glenmary with folks later, one-on-one!"