Faith and Community

Fr. Dale Korogi began his sermon at Christ the King yesterday by observing for alcoholics in recovery, refraining from drinking when things are going well is not so difficult. The real difficulty is not drinking when times are hard, when things are going badly. In those times, recovering alcoholics must really “work the program,” an important part of which is community, the support of others.

Our faith, he suggested is much the same. It is easy to have faith when things are going swimmingly…when we are on top of mountain, as were the disciples in the Gospel we heard yesterday (St. Mark’s account of the Transfiguration). The real challenge to our faith are when we come down from the mountain, the difficult moments – the loss of a loved one, some personal catastrophe. And in those moments, we, too, have to “work the program,” and, as for the recovering alcoholic, community is an important support to our faith.

People sometimes talk about the “church,” when what they are referring to is the governing structure – the hierarchy, church administrators. But that is merely the frame. What fills out the frame, Fr. Dale suggested, what provides the heart and soul of the church is the spirit of the countless bodies – the spirit that binds us to the Body of Christ. Those are the bodies that provide our support when times are tough.

Fr. Dale ended his sermon by saying that when we are linked to one another, we can never be separated from the love of Christ. Alone, singly, we are not the Body of Christ. Together, we can be nothing less.

Our faith community matters. It matters a lot. And, while we sometimes may forget to do so, let us give thanks for the community that supports us always, but whose support we really need when times are rough.