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Diakonia (Service)

Diakonia - The Ministry of Service
Readings: Reflections, pp.20-22; UC Perspective, p.5; RC Perspective, p.5
What words or phrases stand out for you in the following passages?
The only thing that counts is faith working through love.
- Galatians 5: 6b
When the Son of man shall come in his glory,
and all the holy angels with him,
then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
And before him shall be gathered all nations:
and he shall separate them one from another,
as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
And he shall set the sheep on his right hand,
but the goats on the left.
Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand,
Come, ye blessed of my Father,
inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat:
I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink:
I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
Naked, and ye clothed me:
I was sick, and ye visited me:
I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Then shall the righteous answer him, saying,
Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee?
or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in?
or naked, and clothed thee?
Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
And the King shall answer and say unto them,
Verily I say unto you,
Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren,
ye have done it unto me.

- Matthew 25:31-40 (KJV)
Excerpts for Reflection and Discussion
  1. "God’s compassion for the world is most fully expressed in Christ’s death which takes away the sin of the world."
  2. "...the Church of God is committed to serve the world for which Christ died."
  3. "The church’s mission is of a religious nature, which in itself includes all aspects of human life."
  4. "The responsibility of the whole church is to practise love."
  5. "All members of Christ’s Body are expected to take upon themselves the form of a servant in order that God’s loving care is known among people."
  6. "...all forms of social or cultural discrimination in basic personal rights on the grounds of sex, race, colour, social conditions, language or religion” need to be eradicated as incompatible with God’s design."
  7. "...the church is not an end in itself. Precisely because of its grounding in God’s own life, the church is oriented towards the world in service."
  8. How have you experienced God’s compassion for you?
    In what way have you shown compassion in the last month?
    How is Christ’s compassion expressed through the UCC?
    Do you think Christ’s compassion can be expressed by those who do not have a commitment to Christ?