The threat of secularism weighs heavy on people across the globe. Some Catholics, once strong in their faith and their convictions, are now being led astray by today’s societal and cultural norms. What is the solution? For alumna Elizabeth Slaten (’15), the answer lies in better forming baptized Catholics, who can then share the truths of the Faith with friends, family, and all they encounter. She is taking an active part in the New Evangelization in her new role as Managing Editor of the Catholic East Texas magazine, using her knowledge and passion to “restore all things in Christ.”

The need for continued conversion and formation amongst baptized Catholics has been recognized and called for by popes, priests, and lay people for decades now, spurred on by the call of Pope Benedict XVI and others for a New Evangelization. That call inspired Slaten as an undergraduate at Christendom, where she majored in history with a minor in philosophy.

Following graduation, Slaten dove headfirst into taking part in the New Evangelization, first going to the Augustine Institute in Colorado to obtain a master’s degree in theology, specifically Leadership for the New Evangelization, before returning to her home of East Texas to begin work. There, she took a job as the Director of Faith Formation at a parish in the Diocese of Tyler, Texas, where she oversaw all children’s faith formation, sacramental formation, and more.

“My passion is evangelization,” says Slaten. “I love being able to introduce others to Christ and teach about the Catholic faith.  This is why I first got into parish ministry — to evangelize and teach.”

In her role, Slaten had influence over anything related to formation for every age and state in life. Her work impacted souls for the better and caught the attention of the Diocese at large as well. Late in 2020, Slaten was offered the opportunity to join the St. Philip Institute in the Diocese and become the managing editor of the Catholic East Texas, where she would be able to evangelize to the entire Diocese and beyond.

“The diocese reached out to me and asked if I would consider this position, which was a big surprise,” recalls Slaten. “Ultimately, I took the position because I saw it as an opportunity to continue to evangelize and serve the people of my diocese. I’m excited to be able to use the Catholic East Texas as an additional way to bring Christ to the people in the Diocese of Tyler.”

The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler, Texas.

The Catholic East Texas currently exists as an online platform and as a quarterly printed edition, featuring authors writing on a variety of topics of interest for Catholics of all ages. Slaten, inspired by Bishop Strickland’s Constitution of Teaching, hopes that the Catholic East Texas will become a tool for evangelization and catechesis in every home in the Diocese of Tyler on a regular basis.

“This is what I hope to accomplish in my new role for the Diocese and the St. Philip Institute: to develop the Catholic East Texas into a tool and resource for continued conversion and formation in the Diocese of Tyler,” says Slaten.

Taking the time daily to help fellow Catholics and Christians on their journey can be a humbling experience. But the hopeful end result — Catholics more deeply in love with God and a culture renewed in Christian principles — is one that gives Slaten her drive.

Working on behalf of the Catholic Church can take many forms. For some, it means the religious life. For others, it means serving as directors of religious education. For Slaten, it means now becoming a managing editor of a magazine for the first time in her young career. Rather than be daunted by this, however, Slaten is excited to take this role head on and bring the truths of the Faith to even more people.

Being a part of the New Evangelization is something Slaten has wanted to do for years. Now that she has made it her life’s work, she finds her inspiration daily in a simple principle: by loving the person in front of her.

“I do the most to achieve the mission to ‘restore all things in Christ’ when I strive to love the person in front of me,” concludes Slaten. “When you work for the Church or in any kind of ministry, there are always tasks and projects that need to get done. For a long time, I would get bogged down in this list.  I thought that because I was completing all these tasks, I was serving the Lord.  But this is not the case. To love the person in front of you, this is how we begin to ‘restore all things in Christ.’  It’s not about the tasks you complete for the Church, or your job, or family, or community. It’s about love.”

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