While people attend church regularly, not all are involved.
We used to gauge involvement by how active people were in church programs. Some membership requirements included attended regularly at Sunday services, giving regularly to finance the parish, and adhering to a statement of faith – with commitment to Jesus Christ as the distinguishing focus of one who attends a Christian Church.
The matter of Jesus has not changed. Being a Christ follower is indicative of being a Christian – or at least it should be. Unfortunately a superficial brand has become more important than the warp and woof of the weave.
Stepping past the core of belief – which is set forth in documents and regulations – we are often short on finding the central part of our gathering together as a parish. What makes me rush to fill the whole of life with others who are Jesus followers?
Parish is from the Greek – para (beside) and oikos (house/home/dwelling). Where a central geographic point is determined as the regional center, the parish becomes all those surrounding that point. In a new day and age, we may even determine a central point as an internet site or other intangible border.
What is the central part of our gathering together as a parish?
While the label or brand is often out front in our considerations, there is a small thing called love, respect and honour that needs to be a part as well. All of these attributes cry for the participants of a parish to reach out to each other, to rejoice and sigh in grief with each other, to see another’s gifting and, in the acknowledgement, to give right of place to their abilities.
This is living life together. Parish the thought!