Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A Priestly Community

Susan Woods goes on to say:

The sacramental character or "mark" also places us in relationship to the church. It is an ordination in the sense that it gives us our place within the church. Baptism orders us within a priestly community, confirmation orders us within a prophetic community, and the sacrament of orders bestows the ability to represent the church and Christ in the governance and sacramental life of the church. What is significant is that all these sacraments place us within a network of relationships. The church is the locus of intersection of these relationships. Another way of saying this is that the church is the locus of charisms, since baptism and confirmation in their bestowal of the Spirit confer gifts for the building up of the body that are personal and particular to each individual, yet oriented to the good of the community. The community, then, is "marked" with these gifts as a kingly, prophetic, and priestly community in its identity as the body of Christ who was priest, prophet, and king.

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