Monday, October 12, 2020

Why Do We Go to Church?


Why does one go to Church? This question has been asked of the believers over the years and a great many will answer for peace of mind. They are looking for peace.  You also have  those who finally entered the church community because they were tired of hearing the nagging of family members. We have those that have remembered what they were taught and want to be 'saved'. (In biblical language the deliverance from straitened circumstances or oppression by some evil to a state of freedom and security)

In one of the diocesan bulletins a retreat master explains to the readers that there are various  answers to the question of why  a person enters the communion of faith.  Many not only attend Mass but also participate in the many different groups and serve the community in many different voluntary capacities. Of this number you have those who separate life of the believer and their daily life. In the home or the workplace you would never now they were believers. There religious life and what they do daily is clearly differentiated.

Often those looking for peace after joining the community, in their relationship with the pastor or other Christians they lose the  peace of mind they had and became disillusioned. God did not hear their prayers and were distraught. Why do we go to church? To find consolation, on the recommendation of another or is it a duty? The writer is going to give the readers his answer to the question.

The main reason for going to church is our love for God. We want to praise and worship and make happy the God who made us and loves us. The duty of the  members of God's kingdom is to respect God and this is the way we achieve our goal of being delivered from the many evils in life. 

In the beginning those who enter the community are looking for what they lack. Of course we have many who with no choice of their on were born into the community and had to make a decision to remain within the community. Those who remain members and do it for God are not many. The sign of spiritual growth is the movement from self centered faith life to one centered in God.

To think of God first and to make God happy we have many different ways but the most important is to love. God is love (I John 4:16). To make the God of love happy is to love God and neighbor—To share the love shown to us, and become that love. 

When we offer Mass together with the community and pray with the community we are expressing our love,  Especially at communion time when Jesus becomes one with us in the sacramental union of the Eucharist. This is a union which we don't have the words to even  imagine. It is a moment of  exorbitant grace. We become one with the love of Jesus. It is not my love but the love of Jesus that I share with others.

The church is teaching this love. This is expressed especially in the communion rite. Everything we do should be manifesting this love that Jesus showed us. This love goes beyond ourselves to all others we come in contact with.  The spirit of Jesus is in all our areas of life. The Holy Spirit is there to bring this truth to our attention.

Why do we go to church? To learn more of Jesus' great love and to become one with that love.

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