In his July 20th Daily Meditation, theologian Richard Rohr writes about the difference between faith and belief. He notes that modern scholars have more accurately translated Paul’s letters from “faith in Christ” to “the faith of Christ.” This is not simply about a change in prepositions, Rohr notes, but about a change in how we understand our journeys of faith. Our shared Christian life is not so much about believing in Jesus but about participating with Jesus, sharing in the faith journey that Jesus has already walked.
In his sermon last Sunday, Father Ollie spoke about the many opportunities to engage our faith at St. Peter’s, from outreach and social justice, to formation, worship, and stewardship. We encounter the faith of Jesus by experiencing Christ in our worship, in the sacraments, in music and in our singing. We share in the faith of Jesus in our care for the stranger and the needy in our community, and for each other. We share in the faith of Jesus when we address issues of social justice and when we walk with Christ into the challenges of our society. We share in the faith of Jesus when we give generously of our time, talent, and treasure. And we do all of this together, in community, as a witness of what Christ is doing in and through St. Peter’s.
Sharing in the faith of Christ does not require assenting to a set of intellectual statements. Sharing in the faith of Christ simply requires that we show up and allow our souls to be transformed by Jesus. In the varied changes and chances of life, intellectual statements won’t be able to sustain us through hardship, but if we dig deep we will discover that we are abiding in the faith and love of Christ that surrounds us at every turn.
The Reverend Jacob E. Pierce, Associate Rector