Monday, May 9, 2016

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 140 - Part II.

YOUCAT Question n. 140 - Part II. Why is the Church not a democratic organization?

(Youcat answer - repeated) Democracy operates on the principle that all power comes from the people. In the Church, however, all power comes from Christ. That is why the Church has a hierarchical structure. At the same time, however, Christ gave her a collegial structure as well.         

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 875 a) "How are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? and how are they to hear without a preacher? and how can men preach unless they are sent?" (Rom 10:14:15). No one - no individual and no community - can proclaim the Gospel to himself: "Faith comes from what is heard" (Rom 10:17). No one can give himself the mandate and the mission to proclaim the Gospel. The one sent by the Lord does not speak and act on his own authority, but by virtue of Christ's authority; not as a member of the community, but speaking to it in the name of Christ.       

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) The hierarchical element in the Church consists in the fact that Christ himself is the one who acts in the Church when ordained ministers, by God’s grace, do or give something that they could not do or give by themselves, in other words, when they administer the sacraments in Christ’s place and teach with his authority. The collegial element in the Church consists in the fact that Christ entrusted the entire faith to a group of twelve apostles, whose successors govern the Church, with the Pope, the Petrine ministry presiding. Given this collegial approach, councils are an indispensable part of the Church. Yet even in other administrative bodies of the Church, in synods and councils, the manifold gifts of the Spirit and the universality of the Church throughout the world can be fruitful.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 875 b) No one can bestow grace on himself; it must be given and offered. This fact presupposes ministers of grace, authorized and empowered by Christ. From him, they receive the mission and faculty ("the sacred power") to act in persona Christi Capitis; deacons receive the strength to serve the people of God on the diaconia of liturgy, and charity, in communion with the bishops and his presbyterate.     

(This question: Why is the Church not a democratic organization? is continued)

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