Catholic Christian Outreach

Catholic Christian Outreach
Abbreviation CCO
Established October 6, 1988 (1988-10-06)
Founders André and Angèle Regnier
Focus Evangelization on Canadian university campuses

Catholic Christian Outreach Canada (CCO) is a Catholic missionary organization that is present at several Canadian universities. It seeks to bring students into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, equip them to live in the fullness of the Catholic faith, and build them up as leaders in evangelization.[1]


CCO was founded in 1988 by André and Angèle Regnier at the University of Saskatchewan. The Regniers had participated in Evangelical activities with Campus Crusade for Christ at the University of Saskatchewan and were inspired by the zeal and devotion they found there, and they wanted to see a similar zeal within the Catholic Church. They found this zeal in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal, whose spiritual disposition they adopted in their approach to evangelization. They collaborated with their parish priest to develop CCO as a faith outreach program to bring this approach to Catholic university students, helping them to grow in their faith and learn to share it with others.[2]

In 1992 CCO became an incorporated non-profit organization with its headquarters in Saskatoon;[3] its headquarters moved to Ottawa in 2006.[4]

Expansion of CCO

CCO began with only four missionaries at the University of Saskatchewan. As of August 2013 it had expanded to over 70 missionaries at eleven universities[5] and has plans to expand by 20 campuses between 2008 and 2028.[6]

Year University City
1988 University of Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
1994 University of Regina[*] Regina, Saskatchewan
1997 Carleton University Ottawa, Ontario
1998 Simon Fraser University Vancouver, British Columbia
2000 University of Ottawa Ottawa, Ontario
2003 Douglas College[*] Vancouver, British Columbia
2004 Capilano College[*] Vancouver, British Columbia
2004 Dalhousie University Halifax, Nova Scotia
2007 Queen's University Kingston, Ontario
2008 University of British Columbia Vancouver, British Columbia
2009 Laval University[*] Quebec City, Quebec
2010 University of Calgary Calgary, Alberta
2010 Saint Mary's University Halifax, Nova Scotia
2013 Ryerson University Toronto, Ontario
2014 University of Victoria Victoria, British Columbia
2014 Mount Royal University Calgary, Alberta
2015 Memorial University St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
2016 Concordia University Montreal, Quebec
2017 University of Winnipeg Winnipeg, Manitoba

* CCO is no longer present at these universities.

Methods and materials

Students involved with CCO lead and attend weekly faith studies on campus. These faith studies help students learn more about their faith and how they can live it out. The material references Scripture verses from the Bible, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and other Christian writings. They also employ analogies, useful in sharing spiritual realities in common terms. The studies are intended to fuel discussion in a comfortable, small group setting. The five studies are called Discovery, Source, Growth, Obedience, and Commission.

Another method of evangelism used by CCO is on-campus events for large groups of students. One-on-one ministry training and leadership opportunities are available. Students attend retreats, recreational events, and other social and prayer related activities as well.

CCO has created a booklet entitled The Ultimate Relationship which serves as an introduction to basic Christian faith. This booklet has been translated into over a dozen languages, and one million copies were printed and distributed at World Youth Day 2016 in Kraków, Poland.[7]

Rise Up

Eucharistic adoration at Rise Up 2011
Main article: Rise Up (conference)

CCO organizes an annual Christmas conference called "Rise Up". It is the largest Catholic conference for youth in Canada, and drew 850 participants to the 2013 conference in Ottawa.[8]

Rise Up takes place every year from December 28 to January 1. It includes presentations, workshops, live worship, adoration, reconciliation, and a New Year's banquet and dance.[9] It is designed to deepen students' spiritual life and to motivate them to share their faith with others.[10]

Mission projects

CCO has facilitated several domestic and overseas missions throughout its existence, and has attended several World Youth Days.


The annual IMPACT mission consists of students from across Canada gathering in one city for a summer of missionary work. Participants live in community and are assigned to teams at various parishes, where they lead faith studies and organize retreats and special events.[11] Impact also features a weekly event called Cornerstone that involves skits, worship, testimonies, and Catholic teaching,[12] a Courageous Catholic program that teaches people how to share their faith, and a monthly Summit event involving worship, Eucharistic adoration, and Reconciliation.[11]

Impact Locations
Year City
2002 Ottawa, Ontario
2004 Halifax, Nova Scotia
2007 Vancouver, British Columbia
2009 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
2010 Calgary, Alberta
2011 Ottawa, Ontario
2012 Halifax, Nova Scotia
2014 Victoria, British Columbia
2015 Vancouver, British Columbia

Other missions

Other mission trips organised by CCO include Rencontrez Jésus and trips to World Youth Day. Recent international trips have also been made to China and Uganda.


  1. O'Reilly, Pierre. "What is CCO Canada?" (PDF). Companions of the Cross, spring 2002. Companions of the Cross. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-24. Retrieved 2011-05-19.
  2. Scalisi, Patrick (December 2008). "Higher Learning, Higher Power" (PDF). Columbia Magazine: 12. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-24. Retrieved 2011-05-19.
  3. "CCO FAQ". Catholic Christian Outreach. Archived from the original on 2012-09-13. Retrieved 2011-05-19.
  4. "CCO News". Catholic Christian Outreach. Archived from the original on 2007-08-16. Retrieved 2011-05-19.
  5. Gyapong, Deborah (2010-09-06). "Activate the Holy Spirit's spiritual gifts". Western Catholic Reporter. Archived from the original on 2012-03-24. Retrieved 2011-05-19.
  6. Girard, Carolyn (2008-11-10). "20 years of mission for Catholic Christian Outreach". The Catholic Register. Archived from the original on 2015-11-24. Retrieved 2015-02-25.
  7. Prendergast, Terrence (July 30, 2016). "World Youth Day a chance for young Christians to become modern pilgrims". Ottawa Sun. Retrieved 4 October 2016.
  8. Gyapong, Deborah (2014-01-08). "Nun's witness sends students scrambling to confessionals". Western Catholic Reporter. Retrieved 2014-07-15.
  9. Brown, Emma (2012-12-14). "Youth 'Rise Up' to party in two cities". The Catholic Register. Archived from the original on 2014-12-13. Retrieved 2015-02-25.
  10. Yaworski, Kiply Lukan (2013-01-14). "Young Catholics 'Rise Up' in two locations". The B.C. Catholic. Archived from the original on 2014-12-13. Retrieved 2015-02-25.
  11. 1 2 Yaworski, Kiply Lukan (2009-05-27). "Catholic Christian Outreach (CCO) returns to city of its birth for summer Impact 2009 mission: diocese welcomes 60 young missionaries" (PDF). News Archive: Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-02-25. Retrieved 2015-02-25.
  12. Groot, Christina (September 2007). "Catholic initiative has national IMPACT!". CanadianChristianity. Archived from the original on 2015-02-26. Retrieved 1 June 2012.

External links

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