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"For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18:20


Do millennials make good Catholics?

Laura DeMaria

Naturally, I hope you know I am being facetious here - the answer is a resounding "yes." I know this from my own experience, I know this from the experience of my friends (some of the most passionate Catholics I know) and I know this from stuff I read online

I particularly like that article, linked above, which talks about why many millennial Catholics prefer more traditional forms of worship and the accompanying rituals: adoration, the candlelit Church, veiling, etc. I am not interested in elaborating on that, but rather, starting one step back and thinking about this from another angle: why is it that millennials should even be interested in Catholicism - and make "good" Catholics?

One reason, I believe, is because of our dispositions and personalities. Words I have found to describe millennials: tech-savvy, ambitious, creative, multitasking, passionate about social justice, flexible. 

Sounds like the perfect recipe for an apostle, if you ask me. 

Think about it: a good apostle is one who communicates passionately and persistently, embracing the adventure and challenge of spreading the gospel - creatively, with joy, whatever comes next.

Millennials have nearly unlimited ways of communicating the message of the gospel (see the #medianuns, many of whom are millennials, using SnapChat to share their life). I have found several art-centric digital mediums used to evangelize, including TradWave and Catholic Creatives. And the podcasts - well, just look at The Crunch or Catching Foxes, for starters. 

As for the other traits, I imagine the first apostles had them in spades. Ambition - well, it would have seemed ambitious to evangelize the entire world, no? And as they traversed the world, their passion for Jesus led them to be passionate for his children, in what we would term "social justice" today - caring for the poor, the sick, the marginalized. They would have had to  be flexible, meeting people where they were, over a drink, or in their home, probably speaking in less than ideal conditions - and roll with it. And through it all, relying on the Holy Spirit to guide their steps. 

What would St. Paul have thought of the millennial generation? The original apostles faced unbelievable obstacles, most particularly the political resistance to their mission. Maybe we can even compare the pagan culture then to the secular culture now. It was starting from scratch then; now, in this age of increasing "no religious affiliation," it still feels a bit like starting from scratch. And what the world needs are a young, passionate apostolate (like many I saw at the March for Life - #prolifegeneration) on fire to spread the Word.

This is all hypothesizing on my part - and I wouldn't dream of comparing, without caveats, a generation of history's greatest saints with this generation, or really any other. But I think there is something to this, that the gifts of my generation lend themselves in a particularly fitting way to the challenge that is evangelization. And I truly see millennials embracing their distinctive gifts for this mission, and I have hope for the future of the Church.