WELCOME TO THE HOME OF PARISH EVANGELIZING CELLS IN THE USA
A cell group is not a program, or even a ministry...it is more a 'way of parish life'. Cell groups are small groups that evangelize the parish from within, bringing the light of Christ to its members. Members of the parish (about five to ten) get together in the home of the cell leader to give praise and thanksgiving to the Lord; to share a teaching on a topic of our Faith ; to share Scripture, reflect, and discuss the teaching; to talk about how we have shared our faith with others, in small ways; and to offer intercessory prayer for our families, friends, the nation, and the world. The meetings run by a specific agenda for approximately 90 minutes.
A Gift of the Holy Spirit for the New Evangelization
- To grow in ongoing intimacy with the Lord
To evangelize by word and lifestyle, especially by inviting people to join the group
To grow to a point of "birthing/multiplication"
To give and receive support
To inspire members to prepare for leadership in the future
To be involved in parish ministry according to our gifts
To deepen our Catholic identity
Song and Praise Prayer
Abbeviated Lectio Divina (lifting a verse from scripture, with reflection)
Teaching and Discussion
Why haven't I heard about Cell Groups?
Cell groups are really not new. Jesus had the first cell group with his friends, the Apostles. It is the early Church way. In the early Church, Christians gathered to share the Word of God. They recounted the stories of Jesus, his life, and the personal effect he had on them. Those who believed had such joy that they wanted to share this joy with others that may not have met Jesus or known him.
I'm so busy and my schedule with kids never allows me time for myself.
This is probably the best 90 minutes you can spend sharing faith and life with people that will become friends that last a life-time. We have all ladies' cells (the husbands stay at home and babysit that night), and we have all mens' cells, when the ladies stay home and give their husbands an opportunity to pray and have fellowship. If an evening cell is not convenient...we have cells that meet during the day.
Are you concerned about your teenager with so many negative influences in the culture?
Help them discover all the positive aspects about life, their Catholic faith, their future. Talk to them about joining a teen cell.
As a young adult you want to find your place in the world and be a force for good. Do you want to meet other young adults heading in the same direction?
The young adult cell group may be the powerful support and genuine friendships you've been looking for!
Come experience what over 500 cell members at St. Edward
and thousands worldwide have already discovered!!!
For more information on starting cells in your parish,
call Ileana or Claudia at (954) 436-7944 or
e:mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
International Cells Website (original site)
The Pontifical Council for the Laity
Confirms the Recognition of Parish Cells of Evangelization
12th of April, 2015
The Parish Cell System of Evangelization dating from the year 1987 when Reverend Father Piergiorgio Perini introduced to Italy a pastoral method learned from Reverend Monsignor Michael J. Eivers, of the United States. After the initial launch in Sant’ Eustorgio Parish in Milan, parish cells of evangelization became numerous in many countries in the world. The System provides the creation of small groups of the faithful who gather and discuss how to deepen their Christian life as a life of faith and of evangelization, being strengthened through prayer, spiritual and doctrinal formation, and the mutual sharing of concrete experiences of evangelization.
The commitment of each cell member to the evangelization of their own surroundings, brings about a personal conversion to Christ and also contributes to a profound renewal of parish life.
On May 29, 2008, the International Service Body of the Parish System of Cells of Evangelization was instituted. On April 2, 2009 the Pontifical Council for the Laity recognized the International Service Organism of the Parish System of Cells of Evangelization as the structure at the service of PECS for the support and development of this international instrument of evangelization, making said Body a private juridic personality and approving the statutes for a period ad experimentum of five years.
Considering the consolidation and development of the Cell System during this five-year period and the role played by the International Service Organism;
Seeing the fundamental importance for the Church to strengthen the missionary identity of the lay faithful and to encourage pastors to become aware of their own role in making parishes a community of ardent faith, where members are “agents of evangelization” and the parish “a center of constant missionary outreach” (cfr. Francis, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 28);
With regard to articles 131-134 of the Apostolic Constitution Pastor Bonus on the Roman Curia;
The Pontifical Council for the Laity decrees:
the confirmation of the recognition of the International Organism of Service for the Parish Cell System of Evangelization, a private juridic personality pursuant to 116§2 of the Code of Canon Law;
the approval of the statutes, modified in writing with today’s date and authenticated by the Dicastery and duly filed in its archives.
Dated in the Vatican, the 12th of April 2015, Feast of the Divine Mercy.
Signed by Josef Clemens Stanislaw Card. Rylko
Secretary PresidentFor more information about how to revitalize a parish through evangelizing cell groups,
call Ileana or Claudia at St. Edward at (954) 436-7944.
1st National Seminar for Parish Evangelizing Cells in Bogota, Colombia
February 11-13, 2014
1er Seminario Nacional de Sistema de Celulas en Bogotá, Colombia
Top: Msgr. Gilles Lemaye, Auxillary Bishop of Quebec, Canada ; Don PiGi Perini, President of the International Organism for Parish Cells of Evangelization, Milan, Italy; Padre Mario Hormaza, President of the Center of Formation for the New Evangelization (CFNE), Bogota, Colombia
Presenters and Participants
Only a short 31/2 hour plane ride away from Miami lay a new mission field in Bogotá, Colombia ready to receive the seeds of Parish Evangelizing Cells (PECS). Hosted by the Eudist fathers of the congregation of Jesus and Mary and by the Organization of Minuto de Dios(a Minute with God), founded by the Eudist priest, Fr. Rafael Garcia-Herreros, Colombia’s first national seminar on parish evangelizing cells took place from February 11th —13th.
The team of presenters was made up of Don PiGi Perini, president of the International Body of Parish Cells of Evangelization, well known to many at St. Edward; Auxiliary Bishop of Québec, Msgr. Gilles Lemay; Fr. Nicholas Tremblay of Québec; Paola Marangione, secretary for the International Body; Nicoletta and Stefano Gavazzi, division leaders of the cells in Milan; Ursula Krieger-Zarilli translator for the International Body; and Ileana Iglesias and Claudia Sailsman, USA Promoters of PECS. The team stayed together, ate together, and prayed together for the time they were in Bogotá, fully aware of the great gift that parish cells are for the new evangelization.
Pope Francis, in his recent Lenten message, reminds all of us of how important it is that we have a message of hope for the world. He says,
“ The Gospel is the real antidote to spiritual destitution: wherever we go, we are called as Christians to proclaim the liberating news that forgiveness for sins committed is possible, that God is greater than our sinfulness, that he freely loves us at all times and that we were made for communion and eternal life. The Lord asks us to be joyous heralds of this message of mercy and hope! It is thrilling to experience the joy of spreading this good news, sharing the treasure entrusted to us, consoling broken hearts and offering hope to our brothers and sisters experiencing darkness. It means following and imitating Jesus, who sought out the poor and sinners as a shepherd lovingly seeks his lost sheep. In union with Jesus, we can courageously open up new paths of evangelization and human promotion.”
There were approximately 120 participants at the start of the seminar, which included around 50 priests from various parts of Colombia. The topics presented spoke to the heart of the cell experience: Don PiGi’s conviction and passion came across in his talk about A New Pope, a Renewed Enthusiasm for the New Evangelization quoting Pope Francis as saying “Jesus is our only source of hope in the world. How do we reach the busy people of today? We need a heart that is open—we need to ‘go out’—leave the comfort of our own world—and go out.” Don PiGi added that we need to be converted into people of hope. We must transform the bad that we see in the world to good, saying, “Don’t meet evil with evil, but meet evil with good! This is our program—the work that all of us should be doing—priests, bishops, laity….everyone.” Father Nicholas expressed it in this way, “Our work is to sanctify the human heart.”
Don PiGi also spoke about The Holy Spirit, Principal Agent of Evangelization. “Satisfaction” or “being satisfied”, he says, “is dangerous.” If you are satisfied with the way things are, you will never evangelize. If the Church does not evangelize… it’s not church! We all need a new mentality; we need to be in love with Christ. How can this happen? The Holy Spirit allows this to happen. The Holy Spirit turns everything around. We may resist… but the Holy Spirit wants to mix things up, take us out of our comfort area. Don PiGi went on to speak of his own conversion in November of 1986 on a visit to St. Boniface in Pembroke Pines, Florida. After this point, his pastoral approach changed and over time, his parish of S. Eustorgio became a parish of evangelizers.
Msgr. Gilles Lemay added that as priests, and even as bishop, you cannot evangelize everyone all at once, nor should you try. But evangelize one at a time, one-on-one. Serve your priests, show them love, give them witness of how your faith is growing.
The rest of the team gave witness of the fruit of OIKOS evangelization, being a disciple, ‘discipling’ others, and the overall method for establishing parish evangelizing cells in a community. For many who attended, all the talk became more concrete when on the second evening we divided those present into smaller groups to have an experience of a cell group with a teaching on the Lord’s Prayer. There was laughter, and a few tears, as we shared a little of our lives in these small cell groups.
Our days ended with the Holy Mass -- vibrant music, Colombian style, animated and joyful. It seemed that we received from the participants, so much more than we could have given to them.
Postscript: Our seeds are on their way to bearing fruit. By last report from Colombia, a bishop from Bogotá and 13 priests will travel to Milan, Italy for the 25th International Cell Seminar in June this year.