The Fourth Sunday After the Epiphany

The Five Marks of Mission: The mission of the Church is the mission of Christ

  1. To proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom
  2. To teach, baptize and nurture new believers
  3. To respond to human need by loving service
  4. To transform unjust structures of society, to challenge violence of every kind and pursue peace and reconciliation
  5. To strive to safeguard the integrity of creation, and sustain and renew the life of the earth

We come this Sunday to a consideration of the second mark of mission for HTAC—To teach, baptize and nurture new believers. The presumption seems to be that if the Church is faithful in its mission to proclaim the good news of the kingdom that there will be new believers who want to “pledge their allegiance” to this kingdom. How is this done?

The first step is to teach the “laws” of this kingdom—which is what Jesus charged his band of disciples to do “in all the world” (Matthew 28:19–20). And as that great Christian hymn declares, “His law is love and his gospel is peace”. As an act of identification with this teaching, the Church baptizes those who wish to become a citizen of this kingdom. And lastly, like new born children, the Church seeks to nurture and care for those who are new in the Faith.

I look forward to exploring this with all of you on Sunday—see you then!




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