is Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)?
The Church's name tells us a lot about the church:
Christian Church shows that members
have a common bond with the church universal. Disciples of Christ
members as a distinctive body within the church
The church stands for:
faith ~ a personal relationship with Christ, whose
life and ministry reveal God's will.
helping each other; working , worshiping, growing together
in the way of the gospel
Local names may be used by some congregations; such as,
"First Christian Church," "Hometown
in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) means...
devotion are a Christian's greatest source of
strength. There are no set doctrines or uniform
rules, so each person can find the methods that suit him
or her the best.
God has given
each Christian unique gifts and talents. The church
offers many and varied opportunities to put them to use
locally, nationally, and worldwide.
members join together in many ways---sharing each other's
joys and sorrows; helping each other follow Christ's way
in every area of daily life.
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Story of the Christian Church (DoC)
In frontier America, the desire
for freedom that led to the American Revolution was also felt in
American settlers searched for
simplicity and unity. Many Americans wished to reform
existing denominations and to unify them into one Christian
Church based on a simple New Testament faith.
They hoped for a new approach to
religion that would free them from European church structures,
which didn't meet America's needs.
Church (DOC) was born out of this search!
Frontier people lived by their own ingenuity. They wanted
practical, down-to-earth religion to help them cope with and
understand a hard life. As individuals, they felt
they could read and interpret the Bible for themselves and build
faith on reason.
Beginning of the Church
minister Barton W. Stone and several followers broke
their denominational ties to enter into unity with
"the body of Christ at large." They
simply called themselves "Christians."
A group led by Presbyterian minister Thomas Campbell and
his son Alexander, began meeting independently, saying
the church of Jesus Christ was one, open to all.
Alexander Campbell began public debates which, along
with his writing, propelled him into leadership of the
"Disciples of Christ."
The "Christians" and the "Disciples of
Christ" joined together with a formal
handshake. They agreed on basic beliefs and aims.
Alexander Campbell started Bethany College in West
First national convention held in Cincinnati and
missionary society organized.
Christian Church (DOC) is one of the LARGEST Churches
founded on American soil. More than 1.1 million
members in nearly 4,300 congregations across the U.S. and
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do the Disciples BELIEVE?
hard to be specific since they stress freedom and diversity
-- but most do share these basic beliefs.
Christ and the Gospel (translate ~ NO DOGMA!).
~REBIRTH of the values found in the New Testament
accounts of the
~ revealed in many ways, mainly through Jesus. No set
beliefs about God ~ all experience the deity differently.
Child of God, part of God's own divinity; the Child of Man
and Woman, living on earth as human, our Savior, with us
belief in Christ and repentance of sins; acceptance of Jesus
into our lives.
~ of all
Christians in love of Christ. Doctrines and human
differences should not be allowed to divide believers from
the life and work of the church. ALL members are
"ministers" -- entitled to interpret the
Scriptures and perform church functions.
ORDINANCES of the Gospel
two ordinances of the church
~instituted by Jesus himself
an act by which a believer enters into the church
mature individuals who are old enough to make
their own decisions.
immersion in water -- the accepted New
public confession of faith in Jesus Christ and
commitment to discipleship.
of Christ's death, burial, and resurrection, and of
faith in life to come.
the heart of worship.
of Christ and Christ's life on earth.
-- drawing the congregation closer together.
for forgiveness of sins and renewal of life.
to Christ's way.
Lord's Supper is celebrated on Sundays and special
occasions. It is administered by lay people. All
Christians, of any denomination, are welcome to participate.
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is organized to
Manifestations of the Church
local church has its own program of worship, mission,
choose officers, send representatives to regional,
bodies in the U.S. and Canada help start churches,
relocate ministers, and assist congregations.
regions are part of the General Assembly and help choose
the General Board.
Assembly is made up of congregational and regional
representatives and ministers.
Board is a smaller deliberative body that does spadework
for the assembly.
Each level is
INDEPENDENT--determining its own programs, staff, and
Each level is COOPERATIVE--morally responsible to each other,
but without a "pyramid of authority."
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church's world role:
WITNESS TO ALL PEOPLE and NATIONS OF THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST
over the world, Disciples of Christ are working through ECUMENISM:
Disciples of Christ have always been leaders in the effort to
bring Christians together again. They helped organize
National and World Councils of Churches, the Consultation on
Church Union, and other interdenominational efforts.
Their efforts focus on:
-- developing bonds of shared religious experience with
-- identifying common ground between different
-- witnessing and serving others through
interdenominational and united church groups whenever
Church Mission is twofold...
proclaim the Gospel message
Christian Church tries to tell others in word and deed
what God has done and is doing for them, that God has
come into the world and is inviting people to unite in
the task of redeeming and renewing.
truly serve humankind
is dedicated to fighting disease, ignorance, poverty,
racism, war, and oppression. It also conducts
self-help and development programs at home and abroad.
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to ALL Christians
CHRISTIAN CHURCH WELCOMES ALL CHRISTIANS
in its ongoing mission:
spreading the good news of salvation and redemption to
all people everywhere.
important worldwide activities -- and the efforts of all
religious groups to help people.
about God and God's plan
for us. The church offers many resources for
making you a well-informed disciple.
You Need the Church...
relationship with God and God's world.
concern, and support of other members.
the deep fulfillment of of
a life truly committed to Jesus Christ.
A PLACE FOR YOU
CHRISTIAN CHURCH (Disciples of Christ)!
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