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  4. Ten Crucial Points in the Administration of the Church for our Prayerful Consideration

Seventh, we should not expect those with whom we serve to change in any way; instead, we should desire only that they gain Christ, be filled with Christ, and be fully gained by Christ. There were many problems at that time in the church in Corinth, for some were fleshly, others were fleshy; some had sinned; some were fervent toward the Jewish religion, others sought signs; some sought philosophical knowledge, while others sought spiritual gifts. We may have the expectation that those around us or with whom we serve would improve or at least change a bit, but our only desire and goal should be that they gain Christ and be gained by Christ.

Lord Jesus, may we have no expectations from others to change, but may we learn to minister Christ for them to gain Christ, be filled with Christ, and be gained by Christ fully. May our only expectation would be that the saints would know Christ, grow in Christ, and be filled with Christ. The unique result of our service and work in the administration of the church should be that Christ would be produced in the church , that Christ would grow in all the saints, and that we all arrive at the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.

Eighth, we must clearly see that there should only be one result in our service, work, and administration of the church — the unique result should be that Christ must be produced in the church so that everyone has Christ, so that Christ increases in every member, and so that all will arrive at the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ Eph.

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The result of our work should be Christ, that is, Christ growing in the saints and being lived out in them. Through our work and service in the administration of the church we should bring man into Christ and cause the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ to grow in the church.

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Oh Lord, may the result of our work and service in the church be the increase of Christ in the saints. May we not have any other purpose and goal but the growth of Christ in the church so that we all may arrive at the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

Amen, Lord, may Your element increase in the church. May Christ grow in us and in all the saints, in all the members of the Body, so that we may become Your corporate expression on earth. We need to be men of prayer, praying over these matters and concerning all the saints. Ninth, Paul prayed for all these matters Rom. Paul mentioned the saints by name in his prayer, and he just prayed over them and for them. We may not know what to pray concerning the saints, but we can mention their name in our prayer before the Lord.

In learning to serve and work for the administration of the church we need to pray Eph. We need to pray for us to have Christ revealed in us, Christ living in us, having Christ as our life, ministering Christ, and having Christ manifested among us. Lord Jesus, may Christ be revealed in the saints.

Christian Finances: 12 Crucial Questions for Maturity and Discipleship

May Christ be the life of the all saints in reality, and may Christ be lived out in all the saints. Lord, may we all learn to minister Christ to one another so that Christ would be manifested and expressed through us in the church. Lord, make Your home in our heart so that the church may become the fulness of Christ. We need to believe that God will do superabundantly more than we can ask or think — we have faith in God for all these matters.

These are ten main points on how to conduct ourselves in the church of God for the bringing forth of the one new man. Paul had Christ revealed in him, he saw Christ, he announced Christ, he ministered Christ, his work was Christ, he prayed Christ, his faith was Christ, and the result of his work was Christ. From beginning to end, Christ was central and Christ was everything. Christ was in Paul, He passed through Paul, He reached those whom he served, and Christ was produced both in Paul and in the saints.

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This is the kind of persons we should be: full of Christ, living Christ, expressing Christ, ministering Christ, praying Christ, being one with Christ, and having Christ wrought into us and into those whom we serve. We should allow the Holy Spirit to inscribe these ten points onto the tablets of our heart so that we may live in them, and we should take Christ as life, live Christ, speak Christ, minister Christ, work with Christ, and even be Christ in the administration of the church, the service in the church.

Lord Jesus, we take You as our everything. We want to see Christ, be filled with Christ, have Christ as our life, live Christ, pray Christ, have Christ as our faith and love, and minister Christ to others. Amen, Lord, may Christ be everything in us and to us, and may Christ be the result of our work in the church life! A God-man is a normal believer in Christ; the author of this article is one who is learning to be a normal Christian, a daily enjoyer of Christ , a living and functioning member in the Body of Christ.

Amen, Lord, make us such ones for the building up of the Body of Christ! Jesus called those he healed to communion in the reign of God, and thereby to a sharing in his healing life. Feasting was a sign of healing and forgiveness, as Mark's account of the call of Levi the tax collector exemplifies — There is near unanimous scholarly agreement that Jesus' egalitarian dining with sinners was one of the most prominent, highly symbolic, and ultimately dangerous features of his prophetic mission.

True to classical Jewish prophetic tradition, N.

Wright has argued, Jesus' open fellowship with the poor, the sinners, the nobodies was a highly symbolic enactment of his claim that God was taking a new initiative to deliver his exiled people, inaugurating a new interpretation of Torah for the life of the people. Both the healings and the table fellowship were shocking acts challenging social conventions and the regnant organs of power, both religious and political, countering their claims to divine authority with an enacted proclamation of mercy and forgiveness as the hallmark of God's sovereign rule.

As essential elements of the Gospel narratives, miracles and meals together comprise a bravely enacted vision that proves to be a matter of life or death for Jesus. For believers from the first generations to the present they are an invitation to life "in the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead" Romans It is the revelation of this Jesus as Christ that makes scripture the inspiring, empowering source of meaning in the liturgy's symbolic words and actions. Sound Tradition Standing on Sacred Scripture The language of mercy and healing pervades the collects of the Mass the Opening Prayer and Prayer after Communion throughout the seasons of the liturgical year.

At the climax of the Introductory Rites the presiding celebrant's invitation to prayer and the ensuing collect constantly acknowledge God's mercy and ask for the Spirit to empower us for peaceful solidarity in faith, hope, and love. In light of scripture, this should come as no surprise, nor should contemporary believers bemoan the content of such prayers unless, of course, in hearing them they are imagining a different god than the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ. Liturgical prayer for mercy, forgiveness, and healing is not a matter of repeated groveling before a god who arbitrarily wields autonomous tyrannical authority or only feels powerful by demanding the abeyance of inferiors.

On the contrary, the assembled Church's prayers are life-empowering acts incarnating the faith of the centurion who, in response to Jesus' offer to come and cure his servant, replied: "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only speak the word, and my servant will be healed" Matthew That very biblical passage is the source for the assembly's response to the invitation in the Communion Rite.

Indeed, in the Latin typical edition of the Mass of Paul VI the faithful are to respond: Dominus, non sum dignus, ut intres sub tectum meum, sed tantum dic verbo et sanabitur anima mea. An accurate English translation would read, "Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under my roof, but say only the word and my soul shall be healed. Advocates for the biblically toned-down translation of the official Latin text of the current Communion Rite argue that some contemporary Catholics are so ignorant of scripture that they largely would find the more accurate translation, "that you should come under my roof," arcane and off-putting.

To my mind, that is a distressing admission to how terribly short we continue to fall of the council Fathers' vision that scripture imbue the liturgy and, thus, the lives of the faithful. Indeed, I would press further that the invitation to Communion, likewise, adhere more closely to the Latin typical edition so as to read, "Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, happy those who are called to the wedding banquet of the Lamb ad cenam Agni. The wedding banquet imagery, of course, draws even more broadly and deeply from the parables of Jesus in the synoptic accounts of the Gospel, a fact that altogether attests to the historical importance of wedding, banquet, and supper in Jesus' description of the kingdom of God.

By more explicitly articulating the biblical content repeatedly over time, the invitation to Communion would afford the opportunity for the faithful to hear the Spirit's prompting of connections between their lives and the life God is offering through the indwelling of Jesus among us.

The soundness of liturgical tradition, then, stands on the shoulders of scripture. The execution of a three-year Sunday Lectionary cycle, as well as a two-year cycle of readings for daily Mass, has realized the council Fathers' mandate, "In sacred celebrations there is to be more reading from holy Scripture and it is to be more varied and apposite" SCL, Consistent, widespread, quality liturgical preaching knowledgeable of this treasury is yet to be realized.

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For example, during Year C of the Easter Season six Sundays of second readings from the Book of Revelation afford homilists a tri-annual occasion to link the vision of salvation the Lamb's wedding banquet with its present offer at the Table of the Lord's Body. That preaching improves to be more "the proclamation of God's wonderful works in the history of salvation, the mystery of Christ, ever present and active within us" Questions for Reflection 1.

Can you recall any times at liturgy when you heard a certain passage or even sentence being proclaimed that struck you so powerfully that you had the sense that God was speaking to you in those words? How did that affect your experience of the liturgy but also perhaps your life?

Name and consider the different ways you engage or encounter scripture in your life for example, personal reading, Bible study group, hearing it proclaimed in liturgy, and so on. What comparisons and contrasts do you note in these different modes of engaging the word of God? Do you find them complementing each other, and if so, in what ways? What do you listen for in a homily?

Can you recall a particular homily or preacher you found enriched your participation in liturgy, and if so, how? Bruce T. This is the fifth in a series of six articles reflecting on the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium.

Ten Crucial Points in the Administration of the Church for our Prayerful Consideration

Those using the study guide may find it helpful to read the document, which can be found online at the Vatican's web site, www. The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium teaches: Sacred Scripture is of the greatest importance in the celebration of the liturgy. For it is from Scripture that the readings are given and explained in the homily and that psalms are sung; the prayers, collects, and liturgical songs are scriptural in their inspiration; it is from the Scriptures that actions and signs derive their meaning.

Thus to achieve the reform, progress, and adaptation of the liturgy, it is essential to promote that warm and living love for Scripture to which the venerable tradition of both Eastern and Western rites gives testimony The Unfolding of the Paschal Mystery in Our Lives As the General Introduction to the Order of Christian Funerals tells of the importance of scripture in funeral rites, it exemplifies the treasure of the word of God is for us: In every celebration for the dead, the Church attaches great importance to the reading of the word of God.