The Holy Catholic Church, the Communion of Saints
You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
The unity given to the people of God in Jesus Christ exceeds the disunity which originates from gender differences, ethnicity, religious observance, and social status. The Church is the place where this unity is given yet at the same time has to be worked into. This new-creation reality is declared and celebrated in baptism. It must be claimed and enacted in everyday life. The imagery given is one of changing clothes; putting off the clothes of the old self and putting on the clothes of the new self, which is Christ. In affirming our faith in the holiness and catholicity of the Church, we, in a sense, all put on identical clothing. The Creed intends to unite us in the essential, which is Christ. This brings to mind the imagery of the multitudes of diverse peoples gathered around the Lamb who are all wearing white robes (Rev. 7:9). Meditate on these things.
Here in the church there is the one thing needful: Here is a refuge from the vanity and the storms of life. Here is the calm harbor for souls seeking after salvation. Here is incorruptible food and drink for the soul. Here is the light that enlightens all men existing upon earth. Here is the clean air of the spirit. Here is the fountain of living water which flows to life eternal (John 4:14). Here are distributed the gifts of the Holy Spirit, here is the cleansing of souls.
—From “On Prayer in Church”
St. John of Kronstadt
Express your questions, doubts, curiosities, and conundrums.
Write any fresh affirmation stirring in your heart and mind from today.
Now affirm the Apostles’ Creed aloud:
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth, I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord . . .
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