The right tools for the faith

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The Art of Practical Catholicism by George Manassa. Photo: Giovanni Portelli
The Art of Practical Catholicism by George Manassa. Photo: Giovanni Portelli

Constructing practical tools for Catholicism

In the construction industry, George Manassa is used to having all he needs to help complete a job. Now he’s created a toolbox for the ultimate earthly project – getting to heaven.

George recently launched his first book, The Art of Practical Catholicism, at Parramatta Cathedral Hall.

The book is a companion to The Catholic Toolbox radio show and podcast which George hosts and co-founded at the invitation of Maronite priest Fr John Kady.

The weekly show launched in 2018 can be found at the Voice of Charity Australia 1701 AM and on social media platforms.

“I was sitting in one of these meetings and thought, imagine if we as a church had regular strategic meetings about how to implement our faith on a practical level in our lives, how to evangelise in our homes, communities and workplaces.”

It explores aspects of Church teaching and connections with the lives and work of ordinary believers today.

“On a construction site you’ll have strategic meetings called toolbox talks, where project managers, engineers and stakeholders get together and discuss how to take the concept and implement it operationally,” George said.

“I was sitting in one of these meetings and thought, imagine if we as a church had regular strategic meetings about how to implement our faith on a practical level in our lives, how to evangelise in our homes, communities and workplaces.

“That’s how it started.”

How to walk the Catholic walk: George Manassa speaks at the launch of his new book, The Art of Practical Catholicism. Photo: Giovanni Portelli
How to walk the Catholic walk: George Manassa speaks at the launch of his new book, The Art of Practical Catholicism. Photo: Giovanni Portelli

From Podcast to Publication

Last year the podcast passed 70 episodes and George decided to publish a guide for Catholics wanting to bring their faith to everyday life by compiling the best information gleaned from his guests along with his own insights.

He said he had a ‘reversion’ to his faith around 2009.

“I studied my way back in, thanks to the guidance of some excellent teachers at my school who directed me to the Catholic Adult Education Centre which existed at the time,” he said.

“Some parish priests helped me as well, and I had to do it that way, unpacking the dogmas and other teachings of the Church one by one.

“But so much relies on us as Catholics living our faith to effect positive change in the world, at the political, corporate and social levels as well as in our own homes.”

“But then I struggled to live it in my day-to-day life, just as so many other people struggle to live their faith consistently and authentically in this very secular world we live in.

“But so much relies on us as Catholics living our faith to effect positive change in the world, at the political, corporate and social levels as well as in our own homes.

“And if we all do our bit as good Catholics we can have a compounded effect on the moral compass of our times.”

The Art of Practical Catholicism comes with a foreword written by The Catholic Weekly columnist Fr John Flader.

It is available at www.thecatholictoolboxshow.com