Our community has been enriched by the presence of Bill Collins, a thoughtful and reflective Christian whose faith walk is formally in the Roman Catholic tradition. What do I mean by formally? Well . . . he wants his liturgical experience to be in the historic Catholic tradition, but he is not sectarian and is willing to hob-nob with protestants. Actually, I told him last night that I'm not a protestant - that is, I'm not protesting the Catholic Church. It is obvious to us all that we share in the fellowship of the one Spirit . . . which in our scriptural glimpses into the life of the early church was the way they determined fellowship.
Anyway, Bill keeps talking about how the interpersonal closeness of our community and intimacy is so different from the formality of his Catholic Church community. And while Bill keeps saying how odd it is for him to speak personally and intimately outside the confessional, he does so quite readily . . . opening up himself and his heart to us in teaching and discussion. For something he claims is so unusual for him to experience in a faith community, it is what God has brought him to offer readily.
Truly God is maturing us to a broken humilty which is self-aware in terms of our sin and transparent interpersonally. Those love-discussions which we enjoy in which our inner selves are revealled are healing experiences. May God continue to make the love of the cross our defining characteristic.