A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Sharing the Good News

By Jane Langham

I often find that God teaches me through everyday events and circumstances.  There was one such late last year, so I thought I would share this with others.

At the end-of-school-year prize-giving events and other end-of-season events for 2021, my grandchildren achieved well, each in their different ways in one or more of academic, sporting or musical fields or being acknowledged for their caring and service attitudes at school. Would you like to know all the specific details for each child? Please don’t stop reading – I know you are not interested in knowing this, nor in the progress of the babies of my various nieces and nephews! But if I was to ask you to tell me all about the progress of your children or grandchildren, or your own personal achievements, that would be a different matter – you would have plenty to tell me for as long as I was prepared to listen and take an interest.

I have had a passion for evangelisation, for ‘sharing the Good News’, for many years. I see my role as editor of our parish magazine as part of this ‘sharing’.  I have attended many workshops and training sessions that aimed to help us with ways to do this ‘sharing’.  One example that was frequently given was how we are always so keen to share any good news we have – telling anyone who will listen when a first baby is born; rejoicing in finding a new position after a time of unemployment.  And so, we were told, should be our enthusiasm for sharing the best news of all, the Good News of forgiveness and salvation. However, I have generally found that it doesn’t quite work out like that in real-life situations.

And so it was that it dawned on me, when I was so full of my news for sharing: that just as it is only close family and good friends who will be the least bit interested to know about what is ‘good news’ for me in family matters, so it is sure to be the same for everything that I hope to share with others. They will only be interested in what matters to me if they also matter to me, if I am a friend to them and take an interest in their life and concerns, triumphs and disasters.   Trying to share good news with others in any way will never be effective unless I am first their friend.

“Go and do likewise” said Jesus at the end of the parable of the Good Samaritan.  Help me Lord to always befriend others.  Then they will see that I have news to share that might interest them.

Adapted from ‘Stories of Hope’, Tawa Parish Newsletter, March 2022.

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