As you know I belong to an Orthodox Christian church which is part of the Romanian Dioceses.
We like the Catholic Church have hierarchy we have bishops and patriarchs but we do not have one primary leader,like the pope, Although we do consider that the patriarch from Constantinople takes a higher position in order he is not the ultimate law maker.We have a synod to lead us in major issues of church doctrine and laws.
Last night while listening to Fr.Peter "Shepard of Souls" number 84.A very interesting concept was brought up.What would happen if there was no hierarchy to lead,if God forbid,they were taken from us.what would we do?
This morning while laying in bed I got to thinking about this.
Are we ultimately the product of a hierarchy or our we has priest and church members more then our hierarchical leadership?
Our faith was founded by our leader Jesus Christ and although he did not found the religion he did lay out the values and frame work of our beliefs.
He intern chose 12 apostles who spoke to the masses what his message was and how this pertained in our daily lives.They were responsible for keeping the new churches on track and when St.Paul came along he helped establish how the church would teach and be run and how not only religious people should lead their lives but how priest should conduct themselves and their churches.
This morning I came across a very interesting passage in 2 Corinthians chapter 13 verse4-11 in it it states.
"For though he was crucified in weakness,yet he lives by the power of God.For we also are weak in him,but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.
Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith,test yourselves.do you know yourselves,that Jesus Christ is in you? Unless indeed you are disqualified.
But I trust you will know you are not.
Now I pray to God that you do no evil,not that you should appear approved,but that you should do what is honorable,though we may seem disqualified.
For we can do nothing against the truth,but for the truth.
For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong.And this also we pray,that you may be made complete.
Finally,brethren,farewell, become complete.Be of good comfort,be of one mind,live in peace,and the God of love and peace will be with you."
Suddenly these verses shot off the page to me and I think this is what would help us through our loses if we had no hierarchy.
We has a church have been taught how to live our lives through the teaching of Jesus Christ in trusted to our own priest.We,has through what has been taught to us,need to follow by Jesus example how we are to love each other and keep ourselves,though we be weak,in the following of our daily lives with these teachings.
If we live by the rule Jesus taught us to be good and love each other then although we are weak we will be strong,especially when we are united to each other,which is our Church and other followers of the faith.
Our church is made up also of our leaders the priest who carry the knowledge and understanding of the church teachings and practices through their many years of schooling and faith reading.
If we were to lose our hierarchy the faith would remain on our shoulders and although we are weak if we follow what we were taught we will become strong for the faith will be in each one of us and we will never lose it.
So like any other good organization if each hierarchy were to leave the priest would take over and if anything happens to our priest we as the next in line,the true believes of the church,would have to pick up and carry out what we have been taught and bring it forward to others in the world.That is why through our faith we are enlightened and through our weakness we are made strong.
So although we may be lost at first we would always have our ultamite head of the church Jesus who would guide us through our journey.