YOU CANNOT have God for your Father unless you have the Church for your Mother.
Cyprian, On the Unity of the Church

THE CHURCH must be a mother to all who are weary and heavy laden, to all who have strayed and gone wrong—even to those who have forsaken their mother … and fallen victim to strange ideas. And therefore its task is not to look to the great and powerful … but rather to visit the prisoners and preach the gospel to those who cannot help the church because they have no privileges to bestow.
Helmut Thielicke, Our Heavenly Father

IT IS NOT possible to have Christ apart from the church. We try. We would very much like to have Christ apart from the contradictions and distractions of the other persons who believe in him, or say they do.
Eugene H. Peterson, Reversed Thunder

THE CHURCH is not made up of spiritual giants; only broken men can lead others to the Cross.
David J. Bosch, A Spirituality of the Road

HERE, with our emphasis on the narrative nature of Christian life, we are saying that salvation is baptism into a community that has so truthful a story that we forget ourselves and our anxieties long enough to become part of that story, a story God has told in Scripture and continues to tell in Israel and the church.
Stanley Hauerwas and William H. Willimon, Resident Aliens

THERE'S SOMETHING wholesome, healthy, and very human about going to church and pooling your needs and your ignorance with that of other people who are willing to get out of bed and put on good clothes and come out to this totally gratuitous event. Nobody's forcing them to do it, the rewards are elusive, yet the fact that we do it in a group is somehow part of the point.
John Updike in an interview by Philip Yancey inImage

WHEN WE DESCRIBE "Church," we like to say that it is a gift-evoking, gift-bearing community… . This is why "Church" implies a people; no one enters into the fullness of his being except in community with other persons.
Elizabeth O'Connor, Eighth Day of Creation

ACCORDING TO the prayer of Jesus as presented by the author of the Fourth Gospel, the mission of the church and its fruitfulness in the world depend not so much on what we say to the world as on our sticking together, our coherence in the Way (John 17:23).
Paul M. Van Buren, Discerning the Way

THANKS to the Spirit, the original Christian experience of encountering the risen Jesus can always be lived anew in the worship and communion of God's pilgrim people in history, till all God's promises are fulfilled, and Christ returns in glory.
Bruno Forte, The Essence of Christianity

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