Allison came up to me after my talk. She was distraught. Her co-worker Christina was a fallen-away Catholic, and nothing Allison said or did seemed to help her return to the Faith. For years, Christina was indifferent to her religion. She wasn’t anti-Catholic; she just thought there was no purpose to Catholicism. Allison had been inviting her to Mass, encouraging her to go to confession, and giving her Catholic books to read. But to no effect. Allison asked me what more she could do. My answer shocked her.
“Perhaps it’s time to shake the dust off your feet, Allison.”
What did I mean? she asked.
“Some people are just not open to God. Jesus himself told his apostles that if someone doesn’t listen to your words, then you should shake the dust from your feet as you leave that house (Matt. 10:14). He meant that there is a time to move on and stop evangelizing.”
“But Christina is my friend! How could I let her reject the Faith?”
I understood Allison’s pain, and my advice did seem to go against one’s natural instincts. But it was well in keeping with what our Lord asks of us as his disciples.