Monday, June 16, 2014

The Birth of the Christian Church

Friends of Faith:
Christ’s church is built upon rock. That is why the Church still stands 2014 years later. It is a Universal Church who believes in the Trinity (God the Father, the Creator; Christ the Son, our role model; and with the Holy Spirit as it’s guide). This is the briefest history of the formation of the Christian church:

And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Mt 16: 18-19

But even Peter denied and protested Christ and the ability of God to prevail. He didn’t believe and he was fearful. Without the Spirit which Christ sent and Peter allowed as his guide, Peter would have been nothing. But because of the Spirit he was able to evangelize and build a Church which continues to lead God’s chosen people today.
Division within the church has been caused by the same denial, disbelief, fear and protests as Peter himself felt when he was handed the keys of the kingdom nearly 2000 years ago.

And likewise, the mission, the vocation, of all Christians (Catholic and Protestant alike)—to lead others to Christ thru the fullness of the teachings of His Church—remains. The hope, joy and peace found through Christ is still being given through the Church, to it’s people, by the leadership of the same Spirit sent by God, through His son, those same 2000 years ago.
I am not sure what it is in our humanity that makes us try to figure everything out on our own but I think Blessed Mother Theresa says it best: “If you are discouraged it is a sign of pride because it shows you trust in your own power. Your self-sufficiency, your selfishness and your intellectual pride will inhibit His coming to live in your heart because God cannot fill what is already full. It is as simple as that.”
Pride tempts us to choose partial truths, the “easy” outs, the happy road, and the “feel good” rules. Consequently, because we do not have enough room for God we also have difficulty finding enough room to fully love our spouses, our families and our neighbors. Pride causes us to believe that we are in power instead of trusting in the power of the Spirit to lead us and giving God real control of our lives.
Like Peter (the first leader of the apostolic church, from whom we trace the successor popes) we are all sinners who sometimes (even often) deny our faith, are in disbelief of Christ’s teachings and His presence, who protest His law (the ten commandments which form His teachings on love and the manifestation of love through our families in the vocation of marriage), and who are fearful of the day to day challenges and sufferings presented by this world.

Come Holy Spirit, Come. Christ promised Your presence as he ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father. Help me to set aside my personal pride to follow Your will, not mine. Thank you for my daily bread, for the many gifts I have but that I don’t realize. Help me to open my heart in faith like St. Peter and Blessed Mother Theresa, by loving unconditionally so that the evils of netherworld shall not prevail. Amen.
Without Christ I am nothing. Without Christ’s church I am wandering without the guide of His Spirit. My prayer is always that I find it in my heart to take up my cross and willingly follow Him,

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