The Mission of the National Service Committee
The Vision and Mission Statements of the National Service
Committee reflect the understanding of baptism in the Holy
Spirit articulated by Frs. Kilian McDonnell and George Montague
in their book, Christian Initiation and Baptism in the
Holy Spirit: Evidence from the First Eight Centuries.
The National Service Committee sees itself as a body of
leaders in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal who work together
to serve the Lord
in “renewing the grace of Pentecost in the life and
mission of the Church” (Vision Statement). Members
are chosen for their “pastoral and visionary gifts”.
The Mission Statement of the National Service Committee
is as follows:
The mission of the National Service Committee is
to stir into flame the grace of Pentecost within and beyond
the Church, to broaden and deepen the understanding that
baptism in the Holy Spirit is the Christian inheritance
of all, and to strengthen the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.
In simple terms the first phrase focuses, as does the
Vision Statement, on the grace of Pentecost, recalling
the prayer of Pope John XXIII and the Church prior to the
Second Vatican Council, “Renew your wonders in
our day as if by a new Pentecost”. The grace
of Pentecost is meant to capture all that we mean and
have experienced in that personal conversion to the Lordship
of Jesus Christ and the empowerment with the Holy Spirit
(see Fanning the Flame, pp. 12-13, 14-15, 26-27).
The Committee’s mission is to stir that grace into
flame in individuals, in the Church, and beyond the Church.
The second phrase focuses both on the work within the Renewal
of deepening our understanding of baptism in the Holy Spirit,
as well as the theological work within the Church of demonstrating
baptism in the Holy Spirit as integral and normative to
Christian initiation and “as the power of personal
and communal transformation with all the graces and charisms
needed for the upbuilding of the Church and for our mission
in the world” (Fanning the Flame, p. 27).
Finally, the third phrase addresses the continuing call
of the National Service Committee to strengthen the Catholic
Charismatic Renewal so that this grace of Pentecost will
not be lost to the Church again, but indeed flourish in
ever new and creative ways so that the Church as a whole
and individuals will truly be renewed “as if by a
Thus, the work of the Service Committee can be grouped into
these three areas:
To stir into flame the grace of
Pentecost within and beyond the Church
To do this, the Service Committee seeks to create opportunities
where the fire and grace of Pentecost can be stirred up
such as convening, sponsoring and planning annual National
Catholic Charismatic Renewal Conferences. Conference weekends
are filled with dynamic praise and worship, excellent teaching
and fellowship in the Holy Spirit.
We have published The New Life in the Spirit Seminars
Team Manual: Catholic Edition 2000, an evangelistic
tool to introduce people to a fuller experience of life
in the spirit. It is currently in its sixth printing, having
sold over 13,000 copies. [Link]
For Seminar participants we have published A Prayer
Journal for Baptism in the Holy Spirit, [Link] a 50-day,
seven week spiritual journey which may be used with Life
in the Spirit Seminars.
The Service Committee also seeks to relate to and work with
other Catholic organizations and movements serving the mission
of the Church. We interact with the leadership of a number
of movements (including Cursillo, Focolare, Marriage Encounter)
and organizations (e.g. Evangelization 2000) in the Church,
as well as a number of U.S. Bishops’ offices and committees
and the Pontifical Council for the Laity in Rome.
Participation has included planning World Youth Day in Denver
(1993), as well as National Lay Forums sponsored by the
U.S. Bishops’ Committee on the Laity (1994, 1996),
and assisting in the U.S. Bishops’ planning for the
Also, in response to Jesus’ prayer in John 17 and
the Holy Father’s encouragement in Ut Unum Sint,
the Service Committee relates and works with members of
other Christian Churches, denominations, bodies and ministries
for unity in the Body of Christ and world evangelization.
This commitment has led the NSC to maintain a close working
relationship with leaders from over 40 Protestant and Pentecostal
Churches and ministries in an umbrella organization called
NARSC (North American Renewal Service Committee), and to
co-sponsor Celebrate Jesus 2000 in St. Louis as a grand
Jubilee event celebrating the 2000th anniversary of Jesus’
To broaden and deepen the understanding
that baptism in the Holy Spirit is the Christian inheritance
We believe that this grace of the Holy Spirit
is meant for the whole Church. As a result of our convening
a pastoral and theological consultation in 1990, the booklet,
Fanning the Flame: What does the Baptism in the Holy
Spirit Have To Do With Christian Initiation?, edited
by Frs. Kilian McDonnell and George Montague, was published.
This booklet, available in 12 languages, serves as a theological
foundation that establishes baptism in the Holy Spirit as
a normative and integral part of Christian initiation and
the Church’s life.
It led to the Theological Consultation with theologians
not involved in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal held in
Boston in 1995 to discuss the thesis of Frs. McDonnell and
Montague’s important work on baptism in the Holy
To strengthen the Catholic Charismatic
This is the oldest and most extensive work
of the National Service Committee. We do this through bringing
Renewal participants together, networking leaders, and leadership
training and teaching.
Bringing Renewal Participants
Convening the annual National Catholic Charismatic
Renewal Conference which provides an opportunity
for God’s people to gather in unity to deepen and
renew their life in the Spirit.
Click here for information
on our most recent conference
Publishing Pentecost Today, which
seeks to strengthen Renewal participants’ personal
lives and deepen the understanding of the Renewal’s
vision and purpose. It is distributed free of charge to
Renewal participants and leaders, as well as key Church
Ethnic Outreach: The Charismatic Renewal
is flourishing among a number of ethnic groups in the U.S.,
among them, Filipinos, Haitians, Hispanics, Koreans, Portuguese
and Vietnamese. We work with the leadership of these groups
so that together we can give united witness to our Church.
Leadership Conferences: In the past, the
NSC has held a Leaders’ Day prior to the National
Catholic Charismatic Renewal Conference. In 2003 the NSC,
in collaboration with the Association of Diocesan Liaisons,
convened our first National Leaders’ Conference since
1979. These conferences are designed to strengthen the individual
leader’s life, as well as to broaden and deepen his
or her faith. They are open to all who serve in any leadership
capacity in the Renewal or in the Church or who feel called
to such service.
NSC Council: A circle of leaders from throughout
the country who gathered to pray and seek the Lord’s
word for the Renewal and to advise the National Service
Committee on its service has existed since 1971. The group
was called the Advisory Committee to the National Service
In January 2000, after several years of prayer and discussion,
the National Service Committee decided to reorganize the
circle of leaders it gathers and rename it the NSC Council.
The purpose of the NSC Council is to actively support the
Mission of the National Service Committee through prayer
and counsel, and consequently through service.
The membership is composed of men and women involved in
the Catholic Charismatic Renewal who are selected because
- commitment to the vision of the NSC;
- gifts and/or expertise; or
- local, state, regional or national leadership
Each Council member will have a limit of two (2) consecutive
terms of three (3) years each. The Council will have at least one in-person meeting per
Click here for a listing of all current NSC Council Members.
Partnership with other leadership groups in the
Catholic Charismatic Renewal: The National Service
Committee seeks to build bridges of understanding and acceptance
within the Renewal on a national level by working with the
Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee on the Charismatic Renewal,
the Association of Diocesan Liaisons, the various ethnic
national committees, renewal center leadership, prayer groups,
covenant communities, ministries, and conferences. The National
Service Committee has been involved for several years in
annual meetings of the representatives of the leadership
groups. On the international level we work with the International
Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (ICCRS), and the Pontifical
Council for the Laity.
Regional Leaders’ Gatherings: Since
the Fall of 1998 the National Service Committee has held
a series of regional leadership gatherings across the country.
Not seeking to replace diocesan leadership meetings, the
National Service Committee seeks to gather diocesan liaisons,
renewal center directors, covenant community leaders ministries
with trans-diocesan influence, ethnic leaders and local
leaders of the local (arch)diocese invited by them.
The purpose is to strengthen leaders in the Catholic Charismatic
Renewal by building relationships with them within a smaller
geographical area; networking them with the National Service
Committee and one another; and providing appropriate teaching
Resource Center: In addition, we also provide
an information resource center for participants of the Renewal
and those who want to learn about it.
Leadership training and teaching
Publication of Pentecost Today.
Faith Sharing Material: The National Service
Committee promotes the creation of small faith sharing groups
within prayer groups and parishes as a primary means of
strengthening and deepening the lives of Catholic Christians.
To aid and foster the growth of such groups we have published
Faith Sharing in Small Groups: The Vision and the Tools.
Growth Seminar: The National Service Committee
contracted with Sr. Nancy Kellar, S.C. to pull together
a nine-week Growth Seminar in three week modules with tested,
practical wisdom for Renewal veterans and newcomers who
have experienced a renewed or deepened Life in the Spirit
through baptism in the Holy Spirit and participation in
a Life in the Spirit or Holy Spirit Seminar. It is entitled:
There’s Always More: Expecting New Fire.
Catholic School of Evangelism: This practical
nine-session School of Evangelism trains people in the dynamics
of personal evangelism. Bringing Christ To My Everyday
World is available in both video and audiotape and
is accompanied by an excellent workbook and Leaders’
Leadership Training Material: The National
Service Committee offers high quality leadership training
videotapes and printed materials that can benefit prayer
groups, leaders’ teams, diocesan renewal centers and
individuals. Included are topics such as the charisms, maintaining
vibrant prayer groups, deepening one’s life of Christian
service, and unity building.
International Outreach: The National Service
Committee also works to strengthen the Catholic Charismatic
Renewal worldwide. We do this through our support of the
Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (ICCRS) and through
the sharing of resources.
The National Service Committee has for years provided financial
support to ICCRS for its important work of strengthening
the Catholic Charismatic Renewal internationally and for
representing the Renewal to the Vatican.
Over the years members and/or consultants to the National
Service Committee have been members of ICCRS. Currently,
former NSC member and past Chairman, Jim Murphy, is the
ICCRS Representative to the U.S. and a member of the NSC
In addition, the NSC receives regular requests from English-speaking
African and Asian Catholic Christians for help in providing
literature, Bibles, and information on the Catholic Charismatic
Renewal. We gladly share as much as we can of what we have
with those who ask.
Chariscenter USA. To accomplish its work,
the NSC has established Chariscenter
USA as its headquarters and as a national office for
the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.
Friends of the National Service Committee. Lastly,
the NSC must continually raise the funds necessary to accomplish
its mission. It receives no funding from the United States
Conference of Catholic Bishops. The Friends of the National
Service Committee are those who support the work of the
National Service Committee through their financial giving
and prayer. We prayerfully ask for