WINDSOR TERRACE – Edmundo Reyes is determined to change your perception of the Catechism. In his opinion, it is more than just a thick book that explains the ins and outs of the Catholic faith.
“It’s a living echo of the voice of God,” Reyes said. “And it is important to bring it to life for a new generation.”
The Catechism was published in 1992 under Pope Saint John Paul II, but Reyes and two friends, Edmund Mitchell and Emily Mentock, seek to benefit Millennials and Generation Z.
On September 7, they launched Real + True, a series of videos, podcasts and social media posts inspired by the Catechism and designed to engage young Catholics fully in their religion. Reyes, Mitchell and Mentock have created a website, www.realtrue.org and a YouTube channel where the videos can be viewed.
Just as the Catechism consists of four pillars – Profession of Faith, Celebration of the Christian Mystery, Life in Christ and Christian Prayer – Real + True too. There will be 12 videos for each of the four pillars. These 48 videos, each six to seven minutes long, feature live action as well as interviews with academics.
The content will be published in monthly units, each unit covering a particular section of the catechism. Real + True will present the second unit starting October 1.
The content is available in four languages - English, Spanish, Portuguese and French – and is accessible free of charge.
“The storytelling style of the first video is done in the tone and language that Millennials and Gen Z would use. We try to keep it in this vernacular so that it’s not just a quote from the catechism, ”said Mentock, associate director of strategy for the Archdiocese of Detroit. Reyes is the archdiocese’s director of communications. Mitchell is the Founder and CEO of Bummer + Lazarus, a Texas-based digital marketing company.
The first video, which deals with the first paragraphs of the Catechism, offers a fun way to look at the need for God to give us direction in our lives. The viewer is prompted to wonder what the world would be like if the cards weren’t there.
“Why are humans so dependent on them and need to know where we are? It is so important for us to know our place in the world and to have a sense of adventure by reading maps and finding places to explore, ”said Mentock.
The founders of Real + True Hope dioceses, churches, ministries and schools use videos and other content as tools for evangelism.
“It’s not a curriculum or a program. It’s really meant to complement all the work they do to connect with the next generation, ”Mitchell said.
The aim is to communicate the idea that the Catechism is a living and breathing entity, he explained.
“We believe that the Catechism is not a manual, a collection of ideas or a set of rules,” Mitchell added. “We believe that the Catechism is the faithful echo of a God who wants to reveal himself to us and wants us to respond to it.