We believe in the holy, universal Church

Fr. Hamilton relays an amusing discussion amongst the pastors of various churches in his town in Oklahoma…

Pastor B (turning to me): “We all believe in the Apostles’ Creed.”

Me: “Well, sort of, but I’m not sure we would all agree on that.”

Pastor C: “Well, now, we don’t have a creed. Our denomination was explicitly founded to be non-creedal. [At this point, I am desperately biting my tongue, wanting to say, “Uh, but that would be a creed, too.” I resisted.] I mean, locally I say for my congregation: We believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior and we seek to serve him in the world. But that isn’t the denomination, that’s just us locally.”

Pastor B: “Okay, fine. But that’s a creed,” he added with laughter. [At this point I wanted to cheer: “Hallelujah! You’ve got it brother! Keep going! It’s starting to make sense!” But I resisted.] He went on, “What I am trying to say is that whether we call them creeds or not, we do all believe the truth communicated by the words of the creed.” Pointing to himself he said, “This Christian believes the Apostles’ Creed.” Then pointing to me he said, “That Christian believes.”

Me (raising my shoulders and nodding): “Well, of course, it’s our Creed.”

Pastor B: “No, it’s ours. We did change the part where you say … uh, … ‘holy, apostolic…'”

Me: “Yes, ‘one, holy, catholic, and apostolic’.”

Pastor B: “Yes, that part. We changed ‘catholic’ to ‘universal’ because people didn’t want to think we were saying we are Catholic.”

So true…

1 Response to “We believe in the holy, universal Church”

  1. 1 Bekah May 10, 2006 at 7:18 pm

    Yep, I remember the discussion preceding our annual recitation of the creed. We left the catholic part, but the pastor defined it every year as “universal”.

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