Realizing at once that the pursuivant had given me away, I said that I would be quite frank and give straight answers to all questions concerning myself, but added I would say nothing which would involve others. I told them my name and profession, saying I was a Jesuit priest, though I did not deserve to be one.There it is. He was willing to risk being tortured to death not primarily to bring people the fulness of truth or a better friendship with Jesus Christ or to share the joy he fells (although all those reasons would have played a role), but "to bring back wandering souls to their Maker," i.e. to save souls from Hell.
"Who sent you here?" they asked.
"The Superiors of the Society."
"To bring back wandering souls to their Maker."
I wonder, will the New Evangelization ever really get off the ground as long as we shelve the most powerful reason for evangelizing? We we ever really be able to convert our society to Christ the King if we don't really think it is vital to do so? In other words, can evangelization, whether new or old, ever succeed when joined at the hip to a "reasonable hope that all are saved?" And finally, should we even risk trying to find out? Is a "reasonable hope" that your neighbor (or mine) might not burn for an eternity in Hellfire really good enough? Ought we not leave aside such hopes for the living and do all we can to give them a better shot at eternal life with God in Heaven? If the answer is "yes", then we need to reinvigorate the New Evangelization with the motivation of the old - the salvation of souls. Who knows, our own souls might just depend on it.