Thursday, June 16, 2016


Fellowship means service, self-restraint and respect for the rights of others.

 Whenever you are alone you are master of your dispositions. You may do as you please, and may release whatever disposition you wish to express; provided you keep within the bounds of law, morals and ethics.  This is called sovereignty

Sovereignty  allows you to rest or lie down on the couch or the bed; if you desire to sing, to whistle, to eat or read, you can do as you please.

Once you are among others: family, groups, or any public event. Your Sovereignty is and must be curtailed. One is required to conform to regulations, customs and traditions--even if no legal, moral or ethical issues are involved.

The reason is, once you are among people, you are a member of a group, and in a group, you are  bound by charity and lose your sovereignty, at least, part of it.

In a group others have equal rights of human dignity. Their rights must be respected as you would expect them to respect you.

This is called fellowship and is opposed to sovereignty. Fellowship means service, self-restraint and respect for the rights of others.

Sovereignty, when among others, means the reverse: domination, unrestricted power, and disregard for the needs, rights, and desires of others. Fellowship is the principle of group mindedness and charity; sovereignty is that of individualism. Each have their place and proper conditions.

To the extent that a sovereign recognizes others he loses the prerogatives of sovereignty. To the extent that a group grants to any of its members the status of sovereignty, it weakens the principle of fellowship.

We have two precepts of charity.  "Master, which is the greatest commandment in the law? Jesus said to him: You shalt love the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment.
And the second is like to this: You shalt love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depends the whole law and the prophets." (Mat. 22: 36- 40)

It is of this second commandment we wish to treat; because it is the origin of fellowship.

"But above all these things have charity, which is the bond of perfection" (Col. 3-14) We cannot find anything in the whole scripture more earnestly recommended to us, or so often inculcated as this union of fellowship. Jesus, the Son of God, recommends it Himself to us, more than once in His sermon at the last supper: "This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you."(John 15:12) and a little after again: "These things I command you, that you love one another. "(John 15:17),  By this we see how much he desires,, that this charity and fellowship  should take deep root in our hearts.

Without doubt it is upon this, that the whole law depends; and this is the fulfilling of all the commandments, according to these words of the apostle:
"Do not owe anyone anything—except to love one another. For the one who loves another has fulfilled the Law." (Rom. xiii. 8.)

The closer a group is to family the more intense the spirit of fellowship should be.

There is hardly a trace of fellowship in the street crowd; there should be a maximum of it in the family. All kinds of groups should  range between the street crowd and the family to varying degrees.

On this scale, a group of friends ought to be held together by a greater measure of fellowship than,  a group of co-workers, and the group of co-workers should be higher rating in fellowship, than a group attending a political meeting.

Not that we should not look to be helpful and kind to all. But we should have a criteria of importance.

The family ought to rank highest in point of fellowship. In a family fellowship ought to be at its maximum, sovereignty at it lowest possible minimum.

It clearly shown by the almost universal prevalence of domestic temper tantrums, which has lead to divorces, dysfunctional families, and stunted psychological growth of children. That sovereignty is being asserted more than fellowship; power used more than peace.

"Charity begins at home." Is not in the Bible, however the scriptures do state: "But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. " (1 Tim 5:8 )

Some Catholics are kind and generous to neighbors, or strangers, but at home they feel the "right" to be domineering, uncharitable, unkind, and uncontrollable in angry rants.

While sincerity in acts of charity can perfect the act, sincerity in uncharitableness does not absolve the unkind action.

In family life an insincere gesture of generosity and fellowship is far more valuable than a sincere expression of enmity and a brutal assertion of one's sovereignty.

Sincere bitterness and sincere hostility is anything but an asset. A family or  group is interested in peace and order. And peace and order are destroyed or disrupted by the temperamental expressions of anger, vindictiveness, and bitterness.

Temperamental outbursts are sincere, but so are murder and burglary. They are based on genuine and sincere desires to kill and rob.

The will to have one's own way of domination and determination to assert one's sovereign rights, is not charitable and not loving the other as yourself.  These actions serves the ends of unrestricted individualism, not those of charitable group life. It is based on the principle of sovereignty, not of fellowship and charity.

Symbolic "victories" of power over peace in the family is not Christian; it's pagan:
"But Jesus called the disciples and said, "You know that the rulers of the unbelievers lord it over them and their superiors act like tyrants over them. That’s not the way it should be among you. Instead, whoever wants to be great among you must be a servant, " (Mt. 20:25-26)

While we should be perfect in our thoughts, and never think evil. Let us go for the good and not the perfect at this point, if we suffer uncharitable thoughts. If we cannot control our angry thoughts, at least we can control their expressions in actions.

We have it within our ability to promote peace over power. If a family member  offends us "turn the other cheek" and wait until emotions have died down before replying, so later you can discuss, in peace, that it seemed unkind or unjust, in your opinion.

But if the other person is set in their ways of symbolic victories, and approaching the topic will just result in another temperamental outburst; it is better to remain silent about the topic, offer it up to God, and pray for peace.

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God." (Matthew 5:9)

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