Saturday, July 10, 2010

Christian Spirituality must be expressed in community.

34"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." (John 13:34-35)

An important aspect of Christian spirituality is how it is expressed within the Christian community. The positive aspect of formal religion is the sharing of a common religious language that is created, the language of symbols and traditions created in the community of believers. The act of faith, like every act in one’s spiritual life, is dependent on language and therefore on community. Only in the community of spiritual beings is language alive. In community, we learn love, forgiveness, compassion, and hopefully acceptance.
The negative aspect of religion is when what is created is a predominate attitude of intolerance among the believers. These include the official doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church concerning its exclusive possession of the truth, the negative way in which Protestant fundamentalism looks at all other forms of Christianity and religion. This intolerance is a source of idolatry because it puts the rules of the religion ahead of God. No longer is the religion an expression of the community’s love for God; instead the religion becomes of ultimate importance.
The visualization of Christianity is expressed by the symbol of the Cross of Christ. However, the Christian churches sometimes neglect the meaning of this symbol by making it the object of worship, and not the sacrifice of Jesus who is represented by this symbol. A fundamental principle to be understood is that no church has the right to put itself in the place of God, nor should it make a symbol the object of worship.
Another important aspect of Christian spirituality is the understanding that Jesus did not come to bring us a new religion. Jesus came to bring us a new way of life. This new way of life requires that it be shared with others. This new way of life must be shared within the community.

Peace and love,


"Then Jesus said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me". (Luke 9:23)

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