Chapter Two: Called by Your Name by: Susan D. Skoor PowerPoint presentation by Lisa Soignier
Doctrine and Covenants 163:1 “Community of Christ,” your name, given as a divine blessing, is your identity and calling. If you will discern and embrace its full meaning, you will not only discover your future, you will become a blessing to the whole creation. Do not be afraid to go where it beckons you to go.
Naming We are spiritual beings living in a spiritual universe. We hunger to know the Creator Spirit as the source of identity, life, meaning and joy.
Naming Our church name is symbolic of the continuing movement of the spirit.
Naming • In ancient Israel, naming a child represented the child’s identity, character, and soul. • Names can express identity and purpose in life.
Questions: 1. Do you know what your name means? 2. Do you know how your name translates into another language? 3. Would your view of yourself change if your name changed? Has this happened, with a nickname, marriage or other circumstance?
A Brief History of Our Church Name • The church name changed to represent shifts in the character and identity of the people.
Our Church Name • The “Church of Christ” – New York • The “Church of the Latter Day Saints” – Kirtland • “The Church of Jesus Christ” – Missouri • “The Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints” • “The Reorganized Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints” – in Missouri after Joseph Smith’s death. • “The Community of Christ” – in the year 2000 for a world-wide church
Questions: 4. What examples of blending names can you think of? 5. Is the name of the church a part of your heritage with the church? How do you feel about the history of name changes in this movement?
Identity and Witness Conversation can lead to witnessing opportunity.
Identity and Witness Use the opportunity afforded by the name of the church, to share who we are and what we do: Our Identity and Calling
Question: 6. How would you respond if someone said “Community of Christ? I haven’t heard about it.”
Calling The name is not who we are as much as it represents who we are becoming, keeping Christ central and promoting God’s reign.
Naming • Our name is a challenge to become who we are called to be. “Tearere Hau” “Tehura Wahine”
Question: 7. How should the challenge to be “Community of Christ” change those who accept it?
Discovering Our Future • Discernment has led to many positive changes in the life of the church.
Discovering Our Future • Discernment – Dedicating time to prayer, meditation, study and quiet listening for direction as we explore the questions before us and the activity of God in the world.
Discovering Our Future The Peace of Jesus Christ is our future vision, expressed in a faith community with diverse concepts of peace and how to achieve it; diversity is a hallmark of the church.
Discovering Our Future Expanding into new areas leads to new questions and answers about identity.
Discovering our Future We must acknowledge that our own background and bias limits our perspective.
Questions: 8. What do you hope the World Church will look like in twenty years?
Blessing the Whole of Creation God pronounced the world good, God loves this world.
Blessing the Whole of Creation All nature is interconnected, and each part of creation has an influence.
Blessing the Whole of Creation Our thoughtless abuse of air, water, minerals, and vegetation in the past century has depleted natural resources, changed weather patterns, and destroyed other species of life at a rate hundreds of times greater than the natural extinction rate. Edward O. Wilson The Diversity of Life
Blessing the Whole of Creation We are not just part of the problem, but a key to the solution in sustaining nature’s balance.
Questions: 9. How would we respond differently to being part of the solution, instead of trying not to be part of the problem? 10. Refer to the list on page 19