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Who belongs to the Church?


19 Who belongs to the Church? PERUGINO, Pietro Christ Handing the Keys to St Peter 1481-82 Fresco, 335 x 550 cm Cappella Sistina, Vatican – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Who belongs to the Church?

Who belongs to the Church?
  • 19

PERUGINO, Pietro Christ Handing the Keys to St
Peter 1481-82 Fresco, 335 x 550 cm Cappella
Sistina, Vatican
Compendium of the Catechism
  • 177. Who are the faithful?
  • 871-872
  • The Christian faithful are those who, inasmuch as
    they have been incorporated in Christ through
    Baptism, have been constituted as the people of
    God for this reason, since they have become
    sharers in Christs priestly, prophetic and royal
    office in their own manner, they are called to
    exercise the mission which God has entrusted to
    the Church. There exists a true equality among
    them in their dignity as children of God.

  • Saint Paul compares the Church the Body of
    Christ with the human body, that is, a single
    body with different parts all together.
  • In the body of the Church, the Head is Jesus
    Christ and the different parts, the Christians on
    earth, in Purgatory and in Heaven. This singular
    composition of the Church is called the Mystical
    Body of Christ.
  • The mission that corresponds to each one differs
    according to his or her function in the Church.
    All of them have their own responsibility.

BRAMANTINO The Risen Christ c. 1490 Oil on panel,
109 x 75 cm Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid
Main ideas
1. The Church is governed by the Pope and the
  • The Pope and the bishops make up the Hierarchy,
    which rules the People of God helped by the
    priests and the deacons. We should love and obey
    the Hierarchy.
  • Its mission is
  • to teach the doctrine of Jesus Christ
  • to sanctify with the sacraments
  • to govern the Church declaring laws that bind us
    in conscience, judging and punishing if

GHIRLANDAIO, Domenico Calling of the
Apostles 1481 Fresco, 349 x 570 cm Cappella
Sistina, Vatican
2. The Pope
  • The Roman Pontiff is the successor of Peter, the
    Vicar of Christ on earth and visible head of the
    whole Church, with supreme power over each and
    every shepherd and faithful.
  • Moreover, by divine will, the Pope is infallible
    and, as supreme teacher of the whole Church,
    cannot err when teaching about a doctrine
    pertaining to faith or morals.

3. The bishops
  • By divine institution, Bishops are the successors
    of the Apostles.
  • A bishop to whom a particular Church has been
    entrusted governs that Church with the authority
    of his own sacred power. This power is ordinary,
    immediate and exercised in the name of Christ,
    the Good Shepherd, in communion with the entire
    Church and under the guidance of the successor of
  • they do proclaim infallibly the doctrine of
    Christ () when () preserving for all that
    amongst themselves and with Peter's successor the
    bond of communion, in their authoritative
    teaching concerning matters of faith and morals,
    they are in agreement that a particular teaching
    is to be held definitively and absolutely (Lumen
    gentium 25)

UNKNOWN MASTER, Catalan Christ and the Twelve
Apostles c. 1100 Wood, 103 x 130 cm Museu
Nacional d'Art de Catalunya, Barcelona
4. The presbiters or priests of the second order
and the deacons
  • Priests are Christs ministers who, under the
    bishops authority,
  • collaborate with him preaching the Gospel,
  • sanctifying the faithful and leading Christian
    people to salvation,
  • mainly through the Sacraments of Penance and the
  • Deacons have received an inferior degree of the
    Sacrament of the Holy Order. They are not
  • They receive ordination in order to serve Gods
    People, in union with the bishop and all the
    priests of his diocese, in the ministry of
    liturgy, in preaching and in charity.

5. The laity
  • The greatest part of the People of God consists
    of the laity. Lay people are those faithful
    Christians besides clergy and religious who,
    incorporated to Christ by baptism, form the
    People of God.
  • They participate, in their own particular way, in
    the priestly, prophetic and royal functions of
  • They have to be witnesses of Christ wherever they
    live, and are called to be holy, the same as the
    other members of the Church.

BASSANO, Jacopo Adoration of the
Shepherds 1544-45 Oil on canvas, 139,5 x 219
cm Royal Collection, Windsor
6. The religious
  • Religious are those faithful who live apart from
    the cares of this world in order to profess the
    evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and
  • Thus, they give admirable testimony that the
    world can neither be transformed nor offered to
    God without the spirit of the beatitudes.
  • In this way, they contribute to the good of the
    entire Church and to the fulfilment of her
    salvific mission.

MAGNASCO, Alessandro Prayer of the Penitent
Monks Oil on canvas, 57 x 43 cm Private collection
Resolutions for Christian life
Resolutions to move forward
  • Think about the task that Christ gave us of
    fulfilling the mission of the Church, and draw
  • Pray frequently for the Pope and the bishops,
    especially for the bishop of your diocese. This
    can be done during Holy Mass.
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