The Greek word euaggelistēs is translated “evangelist”. An “evangelist” is a preacher of good news or a bringer of glad tidings, and has its roots in two words meaning “good” and “angel” which also gives us a deeper understanding of the purpose of an evangelist, which is, to be like a messenger sent from Heaven, i.e. “I bring you good news of great joy…” announced by the angel of the Lord in Luke 2:10. It is interesting to note that Holy Scripture tells us that we will be like angels in Heaven.
For those of us called to be evangelists on earth now, we are to still reflect and fulfill that Heavenly created purpose when we “do the work of an evangelist”. Too many “evangelists” are not glad but mad, and are bearers of bad news vs. good.
The first one to preach the good news in the New Testament was Jesus himself, although he wasn’t called an evangelist. But, when Jesus first announced why he had come to his first group of hearers in Nazareth, when he began his public ministry, the first role listed on the job description that the Father had anointed him for, was “to preach good news to the poor” in Luke 4:18. Let this always be the heart of anyone supposedly called to be an evangelist, since the poor do not need to hear any more bad news. They already have enough of that.